One of the greatest pieces of workout equipment can be found in your home: the step! A step workout is an amazing way to cross train. It allows you to work your entire body while providing killer cardio and strength-training. Curious? Lace up your sneakers, and head to the staircase. It only takes 10 minutes to improve your cardiovascular health and get toned up for summertime. Of course, you can also try these moves at the gym with a set of aerobic steps.
1. Side step-ups
Stand to the left of a stair, then step up with your left foot while driving your right knee up toward your chest. Lower your right foot back to the ground, and return to starting position. Repeat for 30 seconds, then switch legs. Do 3 sets total. Move quickly and try to do as many step-ups as you can in 30 seconds.
2. Incline push-ups
Get into push-up position with your hands shoulder width-apart and your back flat. However, instead of having your hands flat on the ground, place your hands on the step. By putting your push-ups on an incline, you will work different muscle groups. The lower the step, the harder it is. Need to make it easier? Put your hands on a higher step. Do 30 seconds of push-ups, taking a quick break in between, then do another 30 seconds.
3. Uneven squat jumps
Stand to the left of a staircase with your left foot on the bottom step and your right foot on the ground. From here, lower into a squat position until your right thigh is parallel to the floor. Now for the fun part: Explode upward, jumping so that both of your feet leave the ground. When you land, lower back into a squat. (If the jump is too difficult, start with the squats only, and build your way up by adding in a jump every few squats.) Repeat for 30 seconds, then switch legs. Do 3 sets total.
4. Step burpees
Stand facing the stairs, then put your hands on the bottom step, kick your feet back into plank position, and do a push-up. Jump your feet back toward your hands and stand up. Jump up onto the step. If you are working with a set of stairs, try jumping up to the second stair if you can. Jump back down to the floor and repeat. Move as quickly as you can, keeping your body in a straight, tight line during the plank and jumping as high as you can onto the step. Repeat for 30 seconds and do 3 sets total.
5. Toe taps
Toe taps are as simple as they sound. Face the stair and alternate tapping your toes on the edge of the step. Move as quickly as possible so you keep a jogging rhythm as you tap. Do 3 sets of 30 seconds, taking a short break in between each.
Jennifer Cohen is a leading fitness authority, TV personality, best-selling author, and entrepreneur. With her signature, straight-talking approach to wellness, Jennifer was the featured trainer on The CW’s Shedding for the Wedding, mentoring the contestants’ to lose hundreds of pounds before their big day, and she appears regularly on NBC’s Today Show, Extra, The Doctors and Good Morning America. Connect with Jennifer on Facebook, Twitter, G+ and on Pinterest.