Going Up! Who put these stairs in my run?

Did you know that there are 650 public stair cases in Seattle? The CL Team is very quickly learning about many of them thanks to our very own Captain Ogre. Every month a new route is chosen, the challenge to count all the stairs in the run is thrown down and some good old fashion ‘feel the burn’ is brought to life. Saturday we a had a new route through the Leschi neighborhood with some amazing trails you would never know were in the city.

But why add stairs to your run??? Stairs build strength in ways that even trail running can’t.

  • Stair climbing utilizes plyometric motion (training muscle elastic strength and explosiveness) and strengths the same muscles as lunges and squats. We also would argue that it is more fun than an exercise circuit.
  • Stair climbing is steep than most hill so it elevates your heart rate very rapidly, taxing the lungs and the heart helping to improve VO2 max.
  • Working against gravity builds strength and power.
  • The motion forces runners to use often underdeveloped stabilizer muscles like the gluteus medius.
  • It also works on balance and single leg strength as you have to balance briefly on one leg than the other.

So next time you go out for a strength run explore the city, learn a new hidden route and gain some big benefits to adding a stair set or two.



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