Stair interval training is easily one of the most basic interval workouts you can get started with. Not only can it be a very effective way to boost your cardio fitness, it is easy on the wallet too as the only equipment needed is a good pair of running shoes! Be sure to focus on using proper technique when walking or running stairs. This includes keeping your knees aligned over your feet as much as possible, and making sure that most of your weight is on the balls of your feet. Here are a couple basic interval training workouts you can do on your local set of stairs. Pick one of the following points to focus on, and repeat until you feel ready to move on to the next.
- Walk up one flight of stairs, walk down one flight of stairs
- Walk up two flights of stairs, walk for 30 seconds on flat ground
- Walk up three flights of stairs, walk on the spot for 1 minute to catch breath
- Push yourself physically for 20-40 seconds, take a 30 second to 1 minute rest from cardio and then repeat. You can also add body weight exercises in rest periods.
- Jog up one flight of stairs, jog down one flight of stairs.
- Lateral side jog up stairs, jog down stairs
- Squat jump up one flight of stairs, jog down
- Sprint up one flight of stairs, jog down
Tips To Maximize your Stair Interval Training
Pump Your Arms
Increase your caloric burn by moving your arms along with your lower body as it powers up the stairs. This turns stair climbing into a full body workout.
Don’t Look Down
Keep your eyes focused straight ahead as you walk or run up the stairs. Your feet know where the next step is without you having to look down and see it. By focusing your eyes up the set of stairs, you are going to be able to scale the stairs quicker and you are less likely to trip and fall.
Keep It Smooth
Most likely the stairs you will find yourself on are going to be made of concrete. Avoid pounding your feet as you run up the stairs, as that will increase the strain on your ankles and knees. Try and float up the stairs with smooth, fluid movements. See how lightly you can touch your foot to each stair as you move swiftly upwards. If you feel your joints can’t keep up, try some low impact swimming interval training or a rowing interval training workout instead.
Switch It Up
Don’t do the exact same stair interval training workout for weeks on end. Switch from jogging to running up the stairs for a few days. Try spending one workout just squat jumping up the stairs with a walk-down in between sets. The more you can confuse your muscles, the better the results will be. Not to mention doing the same workout over and over again is boring and lacks the spontaneity that keeps working out fun!