This free fitness equipment is hidden in plain sight


Gretchen Reynolds will be back next week.

For 30 years, every winter, I took an unconventional, low-tech approach to staying fit. From November to February, I climbed the stairs of his 22-story apartment in New York. in short, climbed.

Back and forth, 3, 4, 5, and even 6 round trips in total. Each outing lasted at least 30 minutes. I was always walking and listening to music rather than running, listening to music that was funky enough, sweating and out of breath. It kept me healthy and happy.

Climbing the stairs in an apartment or office building rarely comes to mind as a routine exercise. But it should. According to numerous studies, climbing stairs Whether it’s a short or hard match, strengthens muscles, boosts energy and improves overall cardio.Climbing stairs every day may further reduce risk metabolic syndromea combination of diabetes, hypertension and obesity.

Researchers from the University of Birmingham in the UK said, “Climbing at home was at least as effective as comparable protocols at the gym.” Conclusion Fifty-two sedentary women aged 18 to 45 years (one group climbing stairs at home and another group doing the same at the gym) were tested 2 times a day for 8 weeks. This is the result of observation for 5 days a week, from 1 to 5 times. “Climbing stairs at home is a low-cost and reduced health risk for individuals.”

These 2 minute exercise bursts could be better than your regular workout

Why Stairs Are Good Training

In another study, In the Journal of Aging and Physical Activitycalled stair climbing an “accessible and time-efficient mode of exercise” as a “promising intervention strategy” for improving cognitive performance, particularly in older adults.

As it happens, about 39 million Americans live in multifamily housing, many of them in high-rise buildings with lots of stairs. According to the National Condominium AssociationOffice buildings and shopping malls may also have up the stairs of a skyscraper — known as tower running — Increasing recognition as an organized competitive sport.

Alvin Morton, an assistant professor of exercise and rehabilitation science at Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts, donned a weighted vest to enhance exercise and clipped up and down the stairs of his apartment for 20 minutes.

Every 2,000 steps a day can prevent premature death

“It’s considered at least moderate activity,” says Morton, a member of the American College of Sports Medicine’s Fitness Index Advisory Board. “And your apartment building has stairs.

every time you Step up, you are working many leg muscles. In the process, you defy gravity and lift your entire body weight by as much as 10 inches. Your muscles need to generate enough power to do so, especially if you’re moving at a blistering pace. This is scientifically known as vertical displacement and is considered a form of resistance training.

Stair climbing in routine or naturalistic settings as an exercise is growing in popularity, says Melissa Wehnert-Lottie, professor and director of the Exercise Science Program at Westfield State University in Westfield, Massachusetts. said to be sexual. To see how they fared in a home environment,” she says.

The winter stair climbing training was very rewarding. I was able to work out in absolute privacy without having to brave the cold outside, much less pay an annual gym membership.

Year after year and decades, our commitment to stairs has paid off. Improved speed, strength, endurance and especially footwork for playing basketball and tennis in the warmer months.No need to stick with StairMaster. (Full disclosure: The stair-climbing adventure ended last year when we moved into a warm-climate one-story house.)

How to start a stair climbing regimen

If you decide to turn your stairs into a home gym, experts recommend taking it easy at first.

to start with Only a few floors on each outingStep by step at a slow tempo. Stand straight, pull your shoulders back, and tuck your chin. Because it is easy to fall down when tired. Incorporate breaks. If you’re into metrics, you can use apps like StepJockey, Stairforce, and StairClimbs to track how many floors you climb in a given stint.

If you do it for a long time (eg 15 minutes or more), do it slowly. But if you choose to go fast, keep it brief. wave your arms Once you get the hang of it, you can increase the difficulty and go faster and longer. You can also strap it to your backpack or wrist weights.

“Climbing stairs is great exercise for anyone of any age who already has a balanced workout,” says Roti. “There are no specific recommendations regarding the number of stairs to climb.”

Tourists flock to the stairs of the “Joker”. We’ve ranked other famous steps in Hollywood.

As for the risk of falling on stairs, Morton says, “it’s the same as someone with good balance walking on level ground.” “However, people who are out of balance due to medical conditions, medications, etc. should do activities that allow them to sit, such as riding a bicycle while sitting.”

But to be safe, make sure the stairs you walk on are well lit and wear shoes with reliable traction. Note that the faster you step on your foot, the more likely you are to trip, especially during the descent. grab the railing To keep your balance if you feel wobbly. Finally, consider walking with a partner or group.

There is one final issue to consider if you decide to go it alone.

For decades, I feared my unsuspecting neighbors would be alarmed at the sight of strangers sweating, gasping, and raving about in stairwells. Before you go up, be prepared to explain your existence.

“You’re perfectly safe,” assures fellow travelers who run into me. “Just get a little exercise here.”

Have a fitness question? e-mail I may answer your question in a future column.

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