Would you like to shred your body fat without being confined to the treadmill?

Running on the treadmill is one of the most effective fats burning exercises that you can do at the gym but there are other fun ways to burn the unwanted fat from your body. Exercise gym equipment specialists, Little Bloke Fitness share the following ways you can use alternative pieces of cardio equipment (and sports) as part of your exercise strategy.

9 Cardio Intense Workouts that Don't Involve a Treadmill

#1) The Stairmaster

stairmaster-sm5Stair climbing engages the body’s largest muscle groups to repeatedly lift your body weight up, step after step. In fact, climbing stairs (think hiking!) is considered one of the most efficient and effective cardio and strength building workouts you can opt to do. The Stairmaster offers fantastic conditioning benefits and doesn’t expose your body to high-impact shock that running does. Unlike the treadmill where you have to run at a high speed to get a high heart rate, you can climb the stairs at a moderate pace and elevate your heart rate to the same bpm as an intense run.

Create and challenge yourself to reach and surpass benchmarks like flights climbed, steps per minute pacing, and/or total time spent climbing. Not to mention, you should be able to burn 250 to 500 calories in a single 25 to 40-minute workout.

4 key benefits of stair climbing

  1. Maximize your Cardio Efforts – Stair climbing raises your heart rate immediately – 20 minutes of workout time is likely to include 19 minutes with an elevated heart rate, maximizing your cardio benefits.
  2. Tone and sculpt your entire lower body – Stair climbing engages every major muscle in your lower body as many as 120+ times/minute: glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, and calves. High repetitions are famous for building lean muscle and burning fat which results in toned and sculpted muscles.
  3. Low Impact – Stairmaster's StepMill 5 makes you work hard without being hard on you. You can achieve high work efforts while moving at very low speeds relative to other workout options, minimizing the toll/stress on the body. For example, climbing at 1mph on the StepMill 5 is roughly equivalent to running at 6mph on a flat treadmill.
  4. Make 20 minutes count for 30 – Combining so many positive effects (cardio, strengthening, muscle building, toning) in one workout means it takes less time to get the results you are looking for.

#2) The Cross trainer (Elliptical)

Sore ankles and knees, the cross trainer makes a great alternative option to the treadmill. Here are 8 amazing benefits as shared in Huffington Post:

  1. Improves balance & mobility
  2. Mimic many different types of exercises
  3. Work out the whole body
  4. Requires minimal space
  5. Allows you to multitask
  6. Still get the benefits of a weight-bearing exercise
  7. Increase aerobic (cardio) capacity
  8. Machine maintenance is affordable

Bottomline, ellipticals don't shock or jolt your joints like a treadmill, yet still allows you to get a fantastic cardiovascular, calorie burning workout.

Precor EFX 5.23

You should be able to burn 200-400 calories in a 25-40 minute session on most elliptical machines (look for ones that include an upper body component for even more calorie burning potential). AND, using the cross trainer reduces the muscle recovery time allowing you less ‘off days’ so you can get back in the gym sooner.

#3) Spin bikes

Doing high-intensity interval training on a spin bike can yield some amazing fat burning results in as little as 20 minutes. You should warm up your body for 2-5 minutes and then start doing intervals of 15 seconds where you stand on the bike and pedal for as hard as you can with a high tension. For the following 45 seconds, you will be pedaling at a normal speed so your muscles can recover. You can do this 7-10 times and it will burn a lot of calories in a short space of time.

#4) The Rowing machine

You can use the rowing machine (like a Concept 2 – my favorite rowing machine!) to elevate your heart rate and burn body fat. Start with a 2-3 minute warms up on the machine to get the blood circulating through your body. After the warm-up phase, you should aim to go as fast as you can for 30 seconds to 1 minute and then continue to do this for 10 intervals.You should be able to burn 200-400 calories in 15-20 minutes.

#5) The Upper body ergometer


Upper body ergometer

The upper body ergometer is great for people that may have a limited range of motion or not able to utilize their lower body.

#6) Squash

If you are someone who prefers playing sports for exercise, then playing a competitive game of squash is a great way to burn body fat fast. The intensity of the game usually shoots your heart rate up past 70% of your maximum heart rate – well into the fat burning and/or cardiovascular zone. The movement and the pace of the game are similar to doing an HIIT workout.

A 20-40 minute game easily burns 250-500 calories.High-intensity aerobics exercises.

#7) High-intensity aerobics exercises

There are several aerobic exercises that will help you drop body fat. The most important thing to consider is the intensity of the class to ensure that your heart rate is pushed into your fat burning zone (about 60 to 70% of your max heart rate). HIIT classes are the ideal, but classes such as dance and boxing are good options too.

These classes usually go for about 40 minutes and can help you burn 400 calories.

#8) Touch rugby

Touch rugby is a fast-paced game and will bring your heart rate into a high-fat burning zone as you sprint up and down the field a ton of times throughout the game. The game is so quick that rotations are regularly needed so players can catch their breath. It's a fun, social way to do high-intensity cardio. Aim to play for at least 20 minutes. You should be able to burn at least 200 calories in a quick 20-minute game.

#9) Play basketball

Playing a regular game of full-court basketball will help you shed body fat quickly. Back and forth sprints, jumping, and a slew of other movements will keep you going for the full game. Typically, you will be on the court for 40 minutes, which will involve anywhere from 20 to 40-meter sprints around 80 times a game. Whoa! Sprinting often increases your heart rate to around 70% or more of your maximum heart rate, which will get you some great cardiovascular results.

So what'cha gonna choose?

As you can see, there’s a lot of variety of cardio exercises. You can choose the types of cardio that you prefer, and create a mix that suits both your lifestyle and exercise goals. Just ensure that whatever exercise you choose, you perform it at a high intensity so that you burn your body fat and get the physique that you want.

PS – a post like this isn't complete without a Treadmill Fail compilation? 

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lbf-logoAuthor Bio:

Little Bloke Fitness has grown to be one of the leading dedicated gym and fitness equipment suppliers in Australia. The team is strongly committed to helping people embark on a journey to better fitness and health.

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