Are you a “cardio bunny?” The tongue-in-cheek phrase is often used to refer to those who work out on cross trainers at a high speed but low resistance. Though some gym-goers dismiss these exercisers in favor increasing resistance instead of speed, the "cardio bunnies" might be on to something.
Studying Calorie Burn
The Cybex Research Institute sought to answer which results in the greatest calorie burn – using the Arc Trainer at a low resistance/high speed, or a high resistance/low speed.
To study this, we brought in a group of exercisers and asked them to work out at a constant power output, but with different combinations of resistance and step rate.
As we’ve examined in the past, power is a function of force and velocity. That means that we can maintain the same power level on the Arc Trainer by manipulating both the resistance and the speed.
What did we find?
Interestingly, exercisers burned the most calories when they maintained a high speed and low resistance. These findings suggest that, for those concerned with calorie burn, it might be wise to focus on keeping a high cadence on the Arc Trainer.
Next time you are on the Arc, keep an eye on your steps per minute (SPM) and try to maintain a fast (150 SPM, or higher) speed.
To learn more about the research, “The Energy Cost of Cross Training at a Constant Power Varies with User Cadence,” read the abstract here.
Discover even more reasons why the Arc Trainer is the best non-impact cross trainer. Learn why the Arc Trainer burns more calories and try out this HIIT workout on the Arc Trainer.
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