Elliptical Trainer vs. Treadmill
you are looking for an exercise machine that you can use at the comfort of your own home, you probably wonder whether you should get a treadmill or an elliptical trainer. Although these two units offer weight loss benefits and improved health,
your choice still depends on what your fitness goals are and your preferred type of workout. However, it is worth noting that these two machines both offer a realistic feeling and act of running or walking on an incline or leveled path. The main and most striking difference, though, is the fact that ellipticals provide you with greater comfort as you perform these moves, particularly when you are suffering from discomfort on yor joints and knees.
Elliptical Trainer and Treadmill – Common Features Between the Two
While there may be some differences in how these two machines function or impact your workouts, there are still some similarities you can expect. These are among the features that both a treadmill and an elliptical trainer have:
1. Accessories for your personal items
You probably want to bring with you some personal items during your workouts such as a book, MP3 player, phone or a water bottle to keep you entertained and comfortable each session. Fortunately, you can find treadmills and elliptical trainers with a small stand or shelf for small items you want to bring along at the gym or keep near you. Just remember that these additional and functional accessories add to the overall price of the unit.
Naturally, you would want to track your progress and realize some areas you need to improve on with every workout session. Both of these pieces of exercise equipment allow you to determine the distance you have run or walked, and it is quite a breeze to choose the setting you prefer in terms of the level of difficulty or duration of the workout. Other features in the electronic console include heart rate monitor and pre-programmed settings to help you attain the amount of calories to be burned.
3. Convenient to Use
If you are setting up an area in your home as a gym, then you can rely on both the treadmill and elliptical for this purpose. All you need is a small space for either of these machines (although a foldable treadmill is much more space-saving), and you can get your workouts in whenever you want. There is no need to spend hours driving to the gym or going out your home when the weather is not exactly favorable. When you feel like workout out, you just have to turn the power on, step on the machine, and just go as long or as fast as you want.
Differences between Ellipticals and Treadmills
Know Your Purpose
As mentioned earlier, ellipticals are generally easier on your joints because of the way this machine is designed. There is an equal balance of the amount of energy you exert using your upper and lower body when you use the elliptical trainer. Hence, you may want to keep on using this machine because there is not much discomfort that comes with it.
However, if you are serious about improving your speed and endurance in running, or you want a machine that offers you the kind of training to prepare for long-distance running or hours of hiking, you might consider working out on a treadmill. This machine helps you get the right form and work on your stamina as you run, plus you can expect a more challenging, yet very rewarding workout.
Preference for Low-Impact Workouts
Some people just give up on the idea of working out because they find it hard on their joints. If this is your concern, then you may opt for an elliptical trainer for your cardio since it is relatively easier on your knees and joints as you walk. You will also find this machine appropriate to use when you are still in the process of recovering from an injury due to running or walking.
Another thing you will appreciate about an elliptical trainer is it offers you a weight bearing type of exercise. This means, it aids in strengthening your bones even better than what other cardio workouts can do. Yet, a more intense cardio exercise can be done on a treadmill.
Both of these machines are generally bulky, but you can always go for a space-saving feature to make sure the equipment is not getting in the way. Treadmills come in foldable varieties, which are perfect for smaller homes. However, an elliptical just comes in one style that you can never fold or position in a small section of your home.
As for the noise level during operation, ellipticals are great if you want a machine that functions silently. Treadmills have an electric motor while ellipticals lack this component. It is better to check with the manufacturer if the unit you wish to get – whether it is a treadmill or an elliptical – has a tolerable level of noise.
Price is also another concern when you buy an exercise machine, specifically when you are on a budget. Primarily, these units are priced at $2000 a piece, at least. This is the kind of price you want to look for when you aim for quality and durability. Sure, there are cheaper ones, but what good are these when they can barely last for a year or two.
How to Choose it? What You Really Need is The Best
When it comes to using a machine to help you work on your legs by running or walking, it is common that people are torn between choosing a treadmill or an elliptical. These offer excellent cardio workouts as you get to burn calories as your heart rate increases with every move. You can also modify or customize the speed, incline and duration of your workouts. Moreover, it is possible to run or walk even when it is freezing cold or scorching hot outside. As you stay inside the gym or your home, these machines can provide optimum convenience and ease in getting your workouts done.
Keep in mind that your decision of choosing a treadmill and an elliptical trainer relies on your target results, as well as the kind of workout you want to do. For instance, a treadmill suits you best when you have the following conditions or needs:
– Running is your passion, and you run professionally or competitively. If you want to improve your speed further and monitor your progress in terms of the length of time or number of miles you can run, then you are better off using a treadmill to achieve all of these.
– For serious hikers and people who incorporate walking as a part of their cardio workouts, then it is advisable to train on a treadmill. It is easy to choose the right settings when it comes to the degree of incline, speed and difficulty level of the run or walk using this machine. So, if you are preparing yourself for an upcoming hike or a triathlon, a treadmill is the right exercise machine for your needs.
– Busy individuals who barely have any time to hit the gym can benefit from a treadmill that can be folded for quick and hassle-free storage. This is particularly true when you are living in a small apartment or condo unit and floor space is an issue. Since the machine is foldable, it does not have to take up what’s left of the limited space you have at home.
On the other hand, there are some instances when you may want to purchase an elliptical trainer instead of a treadmill. Among the advantages you can get from an elliptical are the following:
– You suffer from painful joints and knees, yet you want to continue working out. Since ellipticals are less stressful on your joints, it will be easier walking on these machines.
– If you are leaning towards cardio workouts that are low impact, then an elliptical should be the type of machine ideal for your needs. There is no amount of stress on your joints with every move, and that takes any concerns you may have with using a machine for walking.
-Sometimes, people are reluctant about the thought of working out because they get the feeling that it is painful or uncomfortable. Since ellipticals make your walks easier for you, there is a sense of excitement and encouragement to use this machine. You also do not need to overwork your legs because the feeling you get when using an elliptical trainer is like you are walking on the clouds.
The Choice is Up to You
In the end, you just need to consider your needs, fitness goals, budget and preference for your workouts. These two machines offer you a convenient experience doing your cardio workouts, but they have their benefits and limitations. So, keep in mind the pros and cons of these units, then prioritize the features you want. By doing so, you can make the right purchasing decision you will not regret – and you are on your way to a more productive workout.