Stairs make for a tough workout, because of they combine cardio and resistance training, giving you a great aerobic workout while sculpting your thighs and glutes at the same time.
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This spikes your heart rate, blasts calories and improves cardiovascular function, but it also counts as strength training as your leg muscles, (primarily the glutes) work against resistance to move your body weight. To target the glutes, whether you are working out or just walking your normal steps at home, drive through your heels instead of your toes to take the pressure off the knees, and engage the muscles through the back of the legs.
A big bonus to stair workouts: because they are so intense, your workout can be relatively shorter compared to most steady state treadmill cardio workouts.
Do this quick cardio stair workout once a week to increase the intensity of your workouts, target your glutes and burn around 150 calories in just 15 minutes.
Things To Keep In Mind:
Always power walk down the stairs between intervals to keep your heart rate elevated, but avoid falling face first. That’s the quickest way to end a workout.
Consider wearing a heart rate monitor to keep track of your intensity. You’ll want to be working at about 75 to 85 per cent of your maximum heart rate.
All stairs are different, especially if using stairs outside. Some will have landings, and for some it will be more natural to skip stairs in between. Modify as needed and do what feels right and what feels safe.
15-Minute Stair Workout For Glutes
Minutes 0:00-3:00: Warm up
Warm up by repeatedly walking up and down the flight of stairs at a steady pace.
Minutes 3:00-5:00: Skater steps
Face the stairs. Step your right foot to furthest right side of the first step. Push off of right foot and hop onto your left foot, placing it to the furthest left side of the next step. Continue up the stairs, alternating sides.
Minute 5:00-6:00: Squat jumps
Face the stairs, standing with feet shoulder width apart. Bend at the knees to lower into a squat position. Explode through the legs using your arms for momentum to jump, both feet landing on the next step in a squat position. Pause, then repeat moving up the stairs. Squats should be continuous and hops small.
Minute 6:00-7:00: Right leg hops
Hop up the stairs on your right leg. Try not to use the handrail for help, but position yourself near it in case you have any balance checks.
Minute 7:00-8:00: Left leg hops
Hop up the stairs on your left leg. Try not to use the handrail for help, but position yourself near it in case you have any balance checks.
Minutes 8:00-10:00: Glute kickbacks
Face the stairs. Step onto the first step with your right leg. As you drive through the right heel to step up, kick the left leg back, keeping it straight to squeeze and engage the glute. Step onto the next step with your left leg, driving through the left heel to engage the glute, then kickback with the right leg to engage the right glute. Continue climbing the stairs, driving through one heel and kicking back the other to engage the glutes with each step.
Minutes 10:00-13:00: Lunges
Face the stairs. Step up two steps with your right leg. Bend through the right knee to 90 degrees, keeping your weight on your front heel. Pause, then drive through your right heel to rise up and step 2 stairs ahead with your left leg. Bend the left knee to 90 degrees and repeat working your way up the stairs.
Minute 13:00-14:00: Sprint
Sprint up the stairs as many times as you can in 1 minute.
Minute 14:00-15:00: Cool down
Walk slowly to lower your heart rate and recover. Take more time if you need to.