Fit Minute: Step up your game with Achieve Fitness and Wellness

Drew Gustafson of Achieve Fitness and Wellness demonstrates a step up excercise. Photo by Ryan Vermette

There are many simple routines in life that prove to be beneficial to your overall health. From drinking an extra glass of water a day to getting a few more minutes of sleep each night, some of the healthiest habits can be the simplest ones. That same principle can be applied to your workout routine as well. 

Drew Gustafson, owner of Achieve Fitness and Wellness, demonstrated a step-up exercise for this Fit Minute. If you follow in his footsteps, you’ll be able to climb to the top of that six-story building with no elevator in no time.

Gustafson says that the exercise is one that virtually everyone can do because most people have some variation of a step in their home, whether it be stairs or some sort of platform or base.

To start, he says to approach the step and raise one foot onto it before picking the other foot up. Then step back onto the ground and repeat.

“You’re just walking up to the step and going up and down, up and down,” he said.

Pretty easy to follow, right? Though the instructions are easy to follow, Gustafson says that despite the exercise appearing easy, it will work a number of muscle groups. 

“It may not seem like it’s much, but it’s working the glutes, calves, hamstrings, and the quads. So it’s a nice lower body light exercise.” 

For those who want to make the workout more challenging, Gustafson says that skipping a step would make you sweat a little extra.

“You can make it more intense by skipping a step in your home, or if you have a strong milk carton or a strong box. There are so many different elements that you can use for a step up.”

In addition, there are a number of other ways to modify the workout including the direction you move in. Gustafson says that you can do step-ups sideways and backwards as well.

He recommends that beginners start with three sets of up-and-down, 10 to 20 per set, or one set for 30 seconds. Depending on the speed and intensity of your workout, Gustafson suggests doing this exercise every other day.

He noted that you should do what is most comfortable for yourself, and to always check with your doctor before beginning a new workout if there are any injury concerns.

“You can usually get pretty creative depending on your fitness level. I always say for some folks who are maybe starting a new program, or if they have some aches and pains they’re concerned with, I would say to always check with your physician before you start a new program.”

  • Ryan Vermette is the Item's Marblehead reporter. He graduated from Springfield College in 2021 with a Bachelor's degree in Communications/Sports Journalism. While in school, he wrote multiple sports articles for the school newspaper, the Springfield Student, and joined Essex Media Group in August, 2022. Ryan is a college basketball fanatic and an avid Boston sports fan and in his free time, enjoys video games and Marvel movies.