Looking for a heart-pumping workout? Take the stairs 

Shandra Martinez

| 2 min read

Ann Marie Wakula climbs stairs
Looking for an epic workout in Metro Detroit? Take the stairs at Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills.
“It’s a long way to the top, so get ready to burn some serious calories,” said Ann Marie Wakula, who shared her recent climb of the more than 200 steps.
“If you’re looking for a great way to build strength, burn calories and improve your heart health, look no further than the stairs, whether at home, the office or a local park. Climbing the stairs is an efficient, low-impact cardio workout,” said Wakula, a certified trainer and an over-40 mother of three.

Many benefits of climbing stairs

Wakula is the host of the Fitness Over 40 series, brought to you by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. The three-minute videos feature tips and mini workouts people can incorporate into their daily lives, even at home.
Climbing stairs is a good workout for calves, quads, glutes and hamstrings — along with your lungs and heart.
Chris Robinson, 40, who shares his stairs workout in this episode, adds to the difficulty by wearing a 12-pound weighted vest.
“You run as many as you can until you gotta walk them. The last 15 stairs are brutal,” said Robinson. “Just to go down and come up, I think, for all ages, it’s definitely a badge of honor.”

‘Tackle them at your own pace’

Wakula advises those who tackle a stair workout to stay hydrated and listen to their bodies.
“The nice thing about stairs is you can tackle them at your own pace,” said Wakula. “Start slow and work your way up. Remember to stretch and do a light jog as a warm-up. Always talk to your doctor before starting a new fitness routine.”
On the west side of the state, check out the steps leading to Mount Pisgah near Holland State Park or the nearly 300 steps up to Saugatuck’s Mount Baldhead. Both reward those who make the hike with spectacular views.
But this workout can be done anywhere, including on a staircase near you.
Look for future Fitness Over 40 videos at AHealthierMichigan.org

A Healthier Michigan is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.
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