How Long Does It Take to Burn 1000 Calories on an Elliptical?

Ellipticals in the Gym

Working out on an elliptical is a great way to add some cardio into your daily routine; even a few minutes on the machine can do wonders both for your body and your mind. When using an elliptical to lose weight, it’s important to know just how many calories you can burn over a set span of time. For those who are wondering about this, the answer is not so straightforward.

As a general guideline, an average person will need to spend at least an hour and a half on an elliptical to burn 1000 calories. However, the number of calories one burns on an elliptical depends on the following:

  • The person’s weight.
  • The speed of the machine.
  • The amount of added resistance.  

This article will offer some information on how long you would need to use an elliptical to burn your desired number of calories along. We’ll also cover the benefits of ellipticals, a few strategies for getting the most out of your workout, and more.

Burn 1000 Calories on an Elliptical 

Woman Exercising on Elliptical

The amount of time you should spend exercising on an elliptical machine all depends on how many calories you wish to burn. According to Octane Fitness, a person burns roughly 2.16 calories for each pound during thirty minutes of exercise. Some simple calculations can help you discover how long your exercise session should be.

According to that math, an average 150-pound person would burn around 325 calories per thirty minutes of exercise. Therefore, you should expect to spend just over an hour and a half on the elliptical to burn 1000 calories. This time frame should be adjusted based on your weight.

You should note that burning calories is not a one size fits all scenario. Your weight, the speed you exercise, and the amount of resistance you employ can all affect the number of calories you ultimately burn.

What About the Elliptical’s Resistance Setting?

You can increase the number of calories burned in a certain time frame by adjusting the resistance levels on your elliptical machine. By increasing the resistance, you will, in turn, lower the amount of time needed to burn your desired caloric goal. For a lower resistance, expect to spend the average amount of time stated in the above section (1.5 hours).

Your Speed Affects How Many Calories You Burn

Ellipticals are powered by your own movement, rather than a set speed like a treadmill. Increasing your personal speed will increase the amount of energy you expend, and therefore burn more calories in the same time frame as someone going at a slower speed.

Weight Affects How Many Calories You Burn

As mentioned earlier, the average person burns around 2.16 calories for each pound of weight during 30 minutes of exercising. Depending on your weight, you may burn 1000 calories faster or slower than an hour and a half. Someone who weighs heavier than 150 pounds will reach that goal faster, while someone under 150 pounds should expect to spend more time on the elliptical.

Below is a small chart comparing weights and how many calories you would burn during a 30-minute session on the elliptical with average speed and low to no resistance (moderate intensity).

WeightCalories Burned
100 lbs216
150 lbs324
200 lbs432
250 lbs540
300 lbs648

Is an Elliptical Better than a Treadmill?

Exercise with Elliptical Machine

You may be wondering the difference between an elliptical machine and a treadmill, two exercise staples often found in homes and gyms. Each has its own pros and cons, and one may be better for a specific exercise or function than the other.

According to Shape, treadmills are better for burning calories than ellipticals, as the act of running expends more energy than using an elliptical. However, this does not mean that treadmills are ultimately better than ellipticals. Ellipticals are often considered better for a low-impact workout, while treadmills are better for race training.

Is an Elliptical Better than Walking?

While ellipticals are great, they don’t burn as many calories as running due to their low-impact nature. But are they better than plain old walking? According to the New York Times, using an elliptical burns more calories per hour than walking. This makes the elliptical a great middleman between running and walking.

The Benefits of an Elliptical

Elliptical Machine Exercise

There are many reasons to choose an elliptical over other cardio machines. It is a popular choice as it is a low-impact machine, meaning anyone of any age and skill can utilize it without getting hurt. Ellipticals are also considered safer than treadmills as the person operating controls the speed.

Not only does an elliptical help you to lose weight, but you can also target specific parts of your body to tone and strengthen! Below are some of the many benefits of adding an elliptical to your daily routine.

  • Improve your balance. Ellipticals require some balance to stay upright. Utilizing your elliptical each day can improve your balance in normal life as well.
  • Burn calories quickly. Burning 300 calories has never been so easy. A quick thirty-minute workout can make all the difference with an elliptical.
  • Strengthen your lower body. Every muscle from your belly button down will thank you after an elliptical workout. You can even target specific muscles — such as your calves or quadriceps — when performing a workout.
  • Lose weight. Not only will ellipticals strengthen your body, but the weight will melt right off. Spending time on your elliptical burns calories quickly and therefore slims you down.
  • Work out those arms. Many ellipticals have handles that move with you to simulate running. You can also double your workout by adding light handheld weights!
  • Increase your stamina. Ellipticals are great ways to increase your stamina without finding yourself completely out of breath.
  • Exercise even with an injury. People in physical recovery love ellipticals due to their low-impact nature! You can stay in shape even when life knocks you off of your feet.

Exercising each day has also proven to improve your mood and help with any stress or anxiety. Using the elliptical is a great way to both target your body and your mind.

Improve Your Workouts

Using an elliptical machine doesn’t have to be boring and repetitive. There are many great ways to strengthen the rest of your body and challenge your mind while still burning calories and melting fat. Below are some helpful steps to improve your daily workouts.

  • Ignore the handlebars. Taking your hands off of the handles helps to improve balance and strengthen your core at the same time!
  • Increase the incline. Increasing the incline and resistance can give your legs something new to work towards and help strengthen those calves.
  • Ride backward. Pedaling backward on the elliptical helps to improve balance and evens out muscle growth.
  • Use a preset program. Many modern ellipticals come equipped with preset programs that will guide you through a workout. Switch up your daily routine by checking them out!

Final Thoughts

Ellipticals are great ways to add cardio into your routine, even if you hate jogging. They are incredibly effective at helping you to lose weight while simultaneously strengthening both your upper and lower body. 

This article has offered everything you need to know about an elliptical, including how to burn 1000 calories, where to purchase an elliptical, and how to improve your workouts. We hope it has served as some inspiration for your next workout!

Benny Laker

I am the owner of High Tech Fitness. I love testing any kind of exercise equipment and enjoy sharing my insights with you.

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