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Exercise and Fitness

Climbing Stairs

05/05/2010

Question:

Ok..I know it might sound a bit odd but I dont have a gym nearby my home so I was thinking if climbing the stairs at my home couple of times a day will count as worth as walking on a treadmill. I am trying to lose my weight so I am planning to climb up and down the stairs 10-15 times a day. Will this help me lose my weight(especially around my waist, thighs etc). Please advice and give me some tips as I really want to lose my weight and look healthy and thin again. I have no gym near my home and I cant afford to buy a treadmill at home either. Please reply.

Answer:

Taking the stairs is great, but 10-15 times per day is not equivalent to the caloric expenditure of continuous aerobic activity like treadmill walking.  You would need to go up and down the stairs for 10 minutes at a time (without stopping), 2-3 times a day to obtain the minimum ACSM recommendation for aerobic exercise.  In other words, it would take a lot of stairs to see significant fat loss. 

 

 It is more reasonable to walk or jog outside in addition to using your stairs at home.  You certainly do not need to join a gym or buy a treadmill to do this.  When the weather is nice, go for a brisk walk for 30-45 minutes.  Do this as much as possible, ideally at least five days per week.  Regular aerobic exercise and improvements in diet are effective for fat loss.  In addition, it is necessary to do a little bit of strength training to ensure that muscle is not lost along with fat.

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Response by:

Rebecca  Nguyen, MS Rebecca Nguyen, MS
Manager of the Faculty and Staff Fitness Program
College of Education and Human Ecology
The Ohio State University