I've done things to the elliptical that are probably illegal, not to mention dangerous.
I've been trying to use it like it's a treadmill, or maybe even the open road. Because while I can get through a spin class without missing running, trapping myself on that boring old gym standby has been absolute torture.
Instead of using it as both my orthopedist and the cute little illustrated chart on the equipment instructed, I've been putting it on low resistance, while going at at high speeds, for long periods of time--and have been pretty much been using my toes and calves to power forward, not my quadriceps.
I haven't committed this gym-sin to be a bad patient or because I wanted the amusement of being reprimanded by the sixteen year-old high school student in a YMCA T-shirt who nervously hands out demerits to disobedient patrons of the fitness center without making eye contact. ("Um, ma'am," his voice cracks, "I'm going to have to ask you to limit your time on the equipment to, um, to thirty minutes during, um, peak hours.")
I've just used the elliptical that way because it felt good, and it wasn't until my left knee said, "Now, hey there, lady!" while popping out to the side that I realized I was doing a bad, bad thing.
I have five more days till I can start running again. I think I'll stick to spin class until then. I know I could amp the elliptical resistance up to 12 or 13 and push and pull more and sprint less, but the fact is, I'm over that hunk of metal. What a boring and uncreative piece of machinery--compared to a bike in a dark room, or better yet, my own legs, running on asphalt.
Man, do I miss running!