I’m a BIG fan of resistance-based cardio training. I don’t like slogging away on a bike or a stair machine.
And that’s where THIS exercise comes in…
While you can do barbell step-ups with lighter weight and fuller range of motion, this version here uses a heavier weight but a shorter range of motion, so you’re still challenging yourself but just in a different way.
You’ll need a small Step riser (just one) or small solid block and a rack to do this. I recommend doing intervals of 20 to 30 seconds on and equal amount of time off. You can do however many intervals you like…in this workout, I did 15 minutes of this training and that was plenty (it’s brutal!).
Set the safety rails in the rack to just below lockout of the squat. This makes it easy to get into position for the exercise on each interval. Set the Step riser in the rack.
Get the bar on your shoulders then stand up so it’s off the rails.
Now step on with your left foot.
Step up with your right.
Then step back down with your left foot.
Then back down with your right.
Take your designated rest then go again, leading off with the other foot this time (and keep alternating the lead-off foot on each set, to keep things even).
When you finish the interval, just squat down a little and set the bar back on the rails.
This is one of my new favorite ways to do cardio. You get great cardio training while loading yourself with a heavy weight to challenge your muscular system as well.
Oh, and it IS absolutely brutal, when you use fairly heavy weights. Fair warning.