I have been a fan for a while of using stairs for a workout instead of running on a treadmill when doing cardio.  It is not very common for to see someone try this technique but it is well worth it.

Stairs running is a good alternative to doing regular steady state cardio.  In fact, it has been shown in various studies that the best type of cardio when it comes to burning fat is interval type cardio.  Doing short intense bursts of cardio is more effective at not only burning fat but keeping on the muscle.

Stairs workouts are very much like interval type cardio.  The intensity is always heavier than if you were simply jogging.  Going up a flight of stairs is the intense part and the “rest phase” is when you are going down the stairs.  Although it is considered a rest phase in reality you are always in motion.

One advantage for doing stairs workouts is that your legs will develop muscle.  For a guy this is always a good thing, especially if you do not like doing squats or other heavy weight lifting for the lower body.  For women the advantage is that it tones the thigs and buttocks.

As you can see doing stairs for cardio is a benefit in building lower body muscle.  It also helps you keep the upper body muscle you gain while working out with weights.

You can easily try this type of workout with one simple flight of stairs at home or an office building.  Another option is going a local school where they have stadium bleachers and going up and down the stairs.

  • For stadium bleachers try doing them for a total of 10 to 15 minutes
  • For a flight of stairs (medium to long flight) go up and down anywhere from 5 to 10 times

Try these stairs workouts either running or jogging.  Do them according to your level of experience and slowly build up as you improve.