100 lb. Club - Ellipticals for Big Girls

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03-29-2005, 11:22 AM
I was just curious if any of you have trouble with the elliptical machines? I find myself having a really difficult time on them and step machines. They make my knees burn and I can't get the right pace. Did any of you start out this way? I desperately want to use them because they look like they give you a really good cardio work out and the treadmill gets pretty boring and the exercise bike isn't very comfortably on my Large bottom, lol.

03-29-2005, 11:27 AM
I've had the same problems too. My knees burn when on the ellipticals and I get so winded too.

03-29-2005, 11:51 AM
I have an elliptical at home, I use it everyday. I absolutly LOVE it. When I started my weight loss and exercise endevor in January I had to really PUSH myself to go for 5 mins. I'm up to 16 mins now going at 2.7 MPH at a resistance level 6 (out of 12) and I still get very sweaty and a little winded. I am trying to work up to 20 min before Memorial Day!

03-29-2005, 11:54 AM
Maybe I should try it out then. I feel like an *** for only getting on it for a couple minutes at the gym, that's where the whole self-concious crap comes into place

03-29-2005, 11:58 AM
It's not an easy piece of equipment to get used to! It's ackward at first. I kept trying to lift my heels like I was walking but it's not as hard on your knees and butt if you leave them flat on the pedals!

Ivanna B. Skinny
03-29-2005, 01:26 PM
Yes, the elliptical is difficult to start...but I know you can do it! When I started at 248, I couldn't do even 5 minutes. I would do my exercise on the treadmill, then hop on the elliptical to check myself. Eventually I worked my way up, so much that I gave up the old TM, and now I can do 55 mins + 5 min cooldown on the elliptical. I KNOW you will start to build your endurance and be able to do a kick butt work out, too!

03-29-2005, 02:57 PM
Also, be sure and ask the attendants about possible adjustments you can make with the machine itself to make it more comfortable. Also, if there is more than one type of elliptical at the gym, try all the types with all the possible adjustments. My gym has 4 different brands/models, and I find ONE of them very comfortable, one I'll use if I have to while I'm waiting on one of "mine," and the other two I won't even get on any more.

DON'T worry about getting on a machine for only 5 minutes. That's as long as I could do the elliptical at first. Everyone has to start somewhere, and most gym patrons (a) know this and (b) are too interested in their own workout to pay attention to what you are doing. LOTS of people use machines like ellipticals just as a brief warmup to something else, or do several types of cardio in rotation in a single session, so it's not uncommon to see people hopping from machine to machine to keep things mixed up.

As for bikes, does your gym have recumbant bikes? They are MUCH more comfortable that the upright bikes.

03-29-2005, 03:13 PM
Yeah they do have the recumbent bikes, I will have to check those out

03-29-2005, 03:45 PM
I agree with the others about starting out, I was really out of shape and 5 min. practically killed me but now I'm up to 20 min. and today after my 20 I took a rest and did another 10. Now I'm off for some crunches :D

03-29-2005, 07:23 PM
I have the Gazelle and everytime I use it my knees kill me also my ankles.

03-29-2005, 08:49 PM
For the longest time I wouldn't get on the eliptical because it hurt my knees. But I was working with a trainer and we made some adjustments (like leaving all the settings on zero) and it helped. 5 or 6 minutes was the most I could do. I also worked my way up to 20 - 25 min.

Give it a try...I LOVE the eliptical!!!

03-29-2005, 08:52 PM
I couldn't do 2 minutes when I first started, now I am up to 40 minutes. There are a lot of people I see at the gym that will do cardio for about 5 minutes and then go do weight training so no one is going to think anything. Even if they do who cares? You are there for you, not for what others are thinking. I would recommend doing a few minutes of the elliptical, as much as you can tolerate and then move onto another machine, bike or treadmill and you will gradually see that you are increasing your time. You might have to push yourself a little bit, set a goal and increase it by a minute or two every week. I wouldn't buy a machine that you can't use even if it is cheap. If you are difficulty with the ellipticals at the gym I can't believe that the WalMart ones are going to be any better. Personally it would make me feel worse that I've shelled out a few hundred $$ for a machine I can only use for a few minutes a day even if I am working to increase the time. At least at the gym you've got a wider variety of machines to choose from.

03-29-2005, 11:14 PM
the first time i tried an elliptical i fell off...

and that first time i lasted less than 5 minutes - and i'd been hiking and walking for several miles routinely before i tried one. it's hard! the trainer told me that i wasn't ready for it.

make sure that you have the angle so that all the strain is NOT in your quads - the upper legs. it's more comfortable with a lower angle so that you work the whole leg...

i can now manage nearly a half hour on the blasted thing. and even do intervals... i'd rather go hiking.

and about the step machines. they are NOT for people with joint problems. please reconsider it. at your weight, it's not a good idea. honest. i can't do them. i WON'T do them. <i'd rather hike, but i've already said that a few times>

03-30-2005, 10:54 AM
Thanks everyone :) I'm going to try the elliptical for a couple minutes today :) I'll have to mess around with the settings and get something comfortable. I know when I first met with the personal trainer at my gym he said the ease into it. I'll also avoid the step machines for the time being :)

03-30-2005, 11:53 AM
I have the Gazelle and everytime I use it my knees kill me also my ankles.

I too have the Gazelle(not one with the pistons though). I don't have problems with my knees or ankles on it, but I have problems with my hips hurting afterwards.

03-30-2005, 11:53 PM
I absolutely LOVE the elliptical! I find I get a much better workout, and it's much easier on the knees than the flat treadmill. After sitting on my *** doing absolutely no exercise for over 6 months, I climbed on the elliptical and did 30 minutes (0 resistance), so I felt really good. Yeah, I was tired and sweaty, but that's the whole idea of cardio, so I felt like I accomplished something (so long as I wasn't having any heart pains or difficulty breathing!). They also burn a lot more calories than a treadmill, which is why I prefer them--I feel like I am doing more for myself in the same amount of time. I know the first time I ever tried an elliptical, though, I had a VERY hard time going forward and found it much easier to move my feet backwards, almost like back peddaling on a bike. Maybe that would help you until you build up more strength and/or endurance?

03-31-2005, 03:33 PM
I like the elliptical better than the bike. The bike, even recumbent, my sides of my feet start burning after about 2 minutes. :( Hopefully w/more time on it, this will go away.

Don't be afraid & good luck!

04-08-2005, 07:58 PM
Well, I did it! I was on the elliptical for for 3 minutes today! Not much but my knees were jiggly and burning when I got off! Boy oh boy! That was after 27 minutes on the treadmill.

04-11-2005, 12:22 AM
Wow..good job on the work out. I wish we had a gym here in my small town, you girls are such an insperation.

04-11-2005, 01:20 AM
It's not easy. The first time I could only do 3 minutes. Now I am at 15 but that's with the 3 minute cool down. Not sure if that still counts as 15 minutes.
One thing about the Ellip is that it burns SOOO MANY CALS. I mean, I did the same amount of time and level on that and the tread and burned only 54 cals on the tread (16 minutes) and 155 on the Ellip (15 minutes). I get a little light headed which they say you are suppose to stop but I know it's because of how out of shape I am and how little water I drink (getting better at it.)

04-11-2005, 12:56 PM
Awesome! We are doin it, girlies!!! (and Howie, Si & Frenchy, and where the heck is Matt?)