“Lunch Break” Elliptical Workout [printable]

It appears that winter on the East Coast is never going to end. This season, the cold weather came with some new surprises. While looking in the mirror the other morning, I was shocked to see an extra layer of *ahem* soft tissue in a few familiar places. Only once have I ever set out to “lose weight,” naturally proud of my ability to maintain a strong, healthy body by eating well and getting adequate exercise these few years.

Understandably, stress, inconsistency in meals, lack of sleep and oh yeah, STRESS are major contributing factors, but I considered other potential candidates as well. Evaluating physical activity really put things in perspective. My weekly exercise schedule is as follows: 2-3 hours of ballet and stretch each night, with 1-2 rest days throughout the week (appx. 18 hrs/week). Add in the time I spend doing isolated strengthening and toning exercises and you’re looking at an average of 20 hours. This is on top of my 40 hour work week at the office, 4 hours at the studio, and countless hours spent writing, cooking, reading, and my personal favorite, commuting. Because this schedule limits my ability to take class in other styles (e.g. modern, jazz), I find myself only working certain muscles/muscle groups. And even though I walk of class exhausted and sweating each time, it seems that high intensity intervals are still necessary to shape and tone my body as a whole.

workout, exercise, gym, lunch breakWe’ve talked a little about HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) in the past, but it’s no secret that I strongly dislike HIIT workouts using “gym” machines (e.g. treadmill, elliptical). Partly because I get a little dizzy after a while, but mostly because after a few minutes, I get so bored. When I dance, my mind is constantly working – there’s no room or place to “zone out.” But with all these snow days my options are slim. So while working from home last Wednesday afternoon, I finally ventured downstairs to use the fitness center for the very first time.

gym, workout, fitness, distanceSuffice it to say, I actually had FUN while striding on the elliptical. The time away from work gave me the chance to “zone out” in a near-meditative state, and I found enticing variations through tempo and rhythm. After 25 minutes, I had developed a pattern, and after completing a second trial last night, I’m excited to share this “Lunch Break” printable workout with you all! [Average "machine" distance is about 3 miles, give or take.]

HIIT, cardio, snow, workout, exercise, fitness, busyIf you’re like me, every minute is precious. Thankfully a 25-minute workout means…

  • “Moving often” will be much easier to manage, despite a busy schedule (I did it during a 30 minute lunch break!)
  • Your time will be spent wisely and effectively. Every minute WILL count.
  • Best of all: No Boredom! Case in point? Decreasing, alternating intervals. You’ll always be counting down, but never the same way! ;)

You can download the printable by heading over to the Resources tab, or by clicking on this link: Lunch Break Alternating Interval Elliptical Workout (25 min)

Try it, and let me know what you think!

Tell Me: Do you prefer to exercise indoors or outdoors? How much time do you spend working out each week?


  • Becca

    It seems the hardest part of exercise can be boredom at times! Cool printable. Thanks for sharing it at the Healthy Tuesday hop. :)

  • http://mcmmamaruns.com/ MCM Mama

    I would much rather exercise outside. I only use the treadmill or an elliptical if the weather is awful.

    That elliptical workout looks good though!

    • http://esculentdreams.com/ esculentdreams

      I’m with you there ;) Thanks! Gotta do what you can when the snow’s 11″ deep every other day…