To lose extra fat, you need to burn calories by exercising. Most of us go for well-defined exercise plans to lose weight. What we ignore are the activities of daily life which can also be highly contributive towards losing weight. One of such activity is climbing the stairs. Most of us go out of our way to avoid stairs, but using them as part of our exercise routine is a great way to lose weight, improve our fitness and tone and strengthen problem areas, like our legs, tummy, and buttocks. Here are some benefits of including this anaerobic activity in your daily routine:-
a) Burns more calories
In comparison to walking, climbing stairs is more strenuous and consumes more energy. You are likely to burn 3 times more calories by climbing the stairs than walking. Spending 15 minutes of your time taking stairs, going up and down, equals to 45 minutes of brisk walking in the park.
b) Strengthens core muscles
Don’t like crunches? Try taking the stairs instead. Working out on the stairs is like a standing crunch – the mere act of pulling the knee closer to your chest while climbing stairs puts pressure on the core, lower back and thighs. So it works as a dual edge sword as it is not only a great cardio workout but also the stairs also help to strengthen your core muscles at the same time.
c) Increases metabolism
Apart from working on your core muscles and contributing towards strengthening them, it increases metabolism too as it burns more calories. On an average climbing 30 steps at a time would help to burn a little more than 10 calories, which is actually great!
d) Helps in digestion
Climbing stairs burns more calories, improves circulation and puts a pressure on the core muscles, this entire process also aids digestion and relieves you from symptoms of constipation or any other related problem. This ultimately helps in boosting the weight loss process too!
e) Excellent workout for lower body
Lower body fat is the most difficult to reduce especially for females. Taking a flight of stairs will ensure that you work more on your hamstrings and gluteal muscles. This in turn will improve blood circulation in the lower body. Returning of the blood to the heart, from the lower body, is difficult and it needs a little push, working on the muscles of the lower body makes this achievable. Proper circulation in the body ensures better muscle and bone health, while keeping one safe from symptoms of muscle cramps, cold hands and feet and muscle fatigue.
The above highlighted benefits prove helpful in throwing some light on the benefits of using stairs on the daily basis. By making them an integral part of your workout you are likely to lose weight even without noticing.
Stair workout variations
If you want to workout on the stairs there are many types of variation you can include in your plan apart from the normal way of climbing stairs. Some of the simple types of stair workouts are highlighted as under –
1. Sprint It Out!
Run as fast as you can up the stairs touching each stair with one foot. Walk back down to the start. Repeat. This one works straight on your butt and thigh muscles.
2. Foot Speed Drill
This one works for your butt, thighs, and calves. Start on the ground level and step left foot onto stair. Immediately step right foot onto step while simultaneously returning left foot to start. Repeat as quickly as possible.
3. Broad Jump
This type of stair workout works on your arms, butt, thighs and glutes. Using arms to propel you, leap to jump up 2 or 3 stairs, landing with soft knees on both feet. Return to start; repeat.
4. V Up
Here’s a good one for your abs. Lie face-up on the ground with arms extended behind head, legs extended in front of you, heels placed on the second stair. Crunch up and touch fingers to toes. Return to start; repeat.
5. Decline Pushup Start
This amazing workout has something for each and every body part. This move works for the shoulder and the chest. With feet on a stair 4 or 5 up from the ground, hands on ground shoulder-width apart. Bend elbows to the lower chest to floor, keeping hips lifted and back flat, then press through palms to rise back up.
These are some of the variation you must try to have a complete body workout without any equipment or gym!
Where to find stairs
Apart from the ones in your home and office, here are a couple of typical places to find them:
1. High-rise car parks
2. Shopping centers
3. Sports grounds
5. Local monuments and lookouts
Thus, the bottom line of discussion is that stairs are a great way to shed off those extra pounds. It is totally free and does not require any type of special equipment. The above explicated benefits and types of stair workout are compelling enough to try this one out for sure!