Posted by: Rob | 2009/01/10

Elliptical trainer in fitness programme

I am following your excellent bicycle programme &  am in week 4 of the first beginner course (20 km in 10 weeks). However, I am using an elliptical trainer rather than a bike. Is it okay for me to follow the times in the bike programme even though I' m using a different machine?

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Our expert says:
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Hi Rob

Sure. I don't think there'll be too much difference in the benefits you'll derive. Obviously, if you were preparing specifically for a bike event, and need that specific fitness, then it's a different story. Cycling and the elliptical trainer involve quite a different muscle contraction and movement and so you won't become a good cyclist by sticking only to the elliptical trainer.

However, for general fitness, it's not a bad swop. Just be careful that you are comparing time and not distance. I wouldn't, for example, be aiming for 20km, because I think (though I'm not 100% sure) that 20km on a bike would be quicker than 20km on the elliptical. So rather compare time - 30 minutes on one compared to 30 on the other.

If you do that, then you'll get fit as well.

Good luck

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