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The Best Cross-Trainer Workout Plan For Beginners

cardio workouts
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While it might look a little intimidating, the cross-trainer (aka the elliptical) is actually a great place to start if you’re new to the gym. It gets muscles working all over your body as well as getting your heart pumping to help improve your cardiovascular fitness and burn calories. Plus there is almost always a cross-trainer available in the gym, so you won’t have to waste any time hovering around a bank of machines.

If you’re looking to start from scratch with the cross-trainer then it’s important to plot out your training wisely so you don’t overexert yourself early on. The four-week training plan below is designed to guide complete beginners through their first month on an elliptical. Follow it to get fitter in an achievable way that allows for plenty of rest days between workouts.

The plan should minimise the amount of post-workout muscle soreness you experience by building up the intensity of your training sessions gradually – but don’t hesitate to take some extra rest if your muscles are too stiff after your previous workout.

Each of the workouts in the plan focuses on the total distance you cover but once you’ve become comfortable with the cross-trainer you can also use the resistance settings to increase the intensity of your workout. You can also look to cover the distance faster as you get fitter. In weeks 2, 3 and 4 of the plan, the Tuesday session is a three-mile workout, so try to complete that faster with each passing week to show off your improving fitness – it will be a great motivator!

Cross-Trainer Workout Plan

Week 1

MondayRest
Tuesday Cross-train/walk 2 miles
Wednesday Cross-train/walk 3 miles
Thursday Rest
Friday Cross-train/walk 2 miles
Saturday Rest
Sunday Cross-train/ walk 3 miles

Week 2

Monday Rest
Tuesday Cross-train/walk 3 miles
Wednesday Cross-train/walk 3 miles
Thursday Rest
Friday Cross-train/walk 4 miles
Saturday Rest
Sunday Cross-train/walk 4 miles

Week 3

MondayRest
TuesdayCross-train/walk 3 miles
WednesdayCross-train/walk 4 miles
ThursdayRest
FridayCross-train/walk 5 miles
SaturdayRest
SundayCross-train/walk 5 miles

Week 4

MondayRest
TuesdayCross-train/walk 3 miles
WednesdayCross-train/walk 4 miles
Thursday Rest
Friday Cross-train/walk 5 miles
SaturdayRest
Sunday Cross-train/walk 5 miles