I see almost every staircase as a personal challenge, and as a result I love to take the stairs. Not only are these brief bits of cardio a great way to burn some extra calories throughout your day, Swiss researchers believe that taking the stairs can prolong your life. Their recent research indicates that taking the stairs regularly can reduce your risk of dying prematurely by 15 percent.
Sixty-nine self-described sedentary hospital workers volunteered for the study and were asked to exclusively use stairs and skip the elevator while at work. Over the course of the 12 week study, the volunteers improved their lung capacity, blood pressure, and cholesterol measurements. Plus they lost weight, and their body fat as well as waist measurements also decreased. The added and most expected bonus of taking the stairs was that their capacity for doing aerobic exercise improved. All this adds up statistically to decreasing the chance of premature death by 15 percent, and to me that is reason enough to take the stairs. How about you?