There’s plenty that’s attractive about incorporating a mini-stepper into your fitness programme. Not least of all, it can be a convenient, low-impact, and extremely flexible way to get more activity into your weekly routine without drastically altering your schedule.
But can a mini stepper help you lose belly fat? It certainly can do when paired with a healthy diet and active lifestyle. What it can’t do is specifically ‘target’ belly fat or prioritise trimming the stomach before other areas. As we shall see in this article, ‘fat targeting’ is not really something that we as humans can do through exercise alone!
However, that doesn’t mean that the mini stepper isn’t a good tool to have with you on your belly fat-losing journey. Today we’ll be taking a closer look at how this handy piece of kit can help you lose all manner of excess flab, not just from the midriff. We’ll also be looking at some of its limitations as a fat burning tool when compared to other potential workouts.
Does a Mini Stepper Help You Lose Weight?
It’s worth mentioning at the outset that, when it comes to losing weight, nutrition is almost certainly going to play a bigger role than exercise. That’s not to say that exercise doesn’t play a part in the weight loss game, but ultimately burning fat is about calories and calorie deficits. Dietary choices usually have a larger overall impact on the calories we use and consume than workouts.
Saying that, keeping your cardio fitness up is both necessary for overall health and can help encourage additional calorie burn. The mini stepper can be a useful tool in this regard, particularly because it’s so convenient.
The thing people love about mini steppers is their portability and unobstructive size. If you’re stuck at an office desk for hours a day, with limited time to get out and about, a mini stepper can help turn some of those sedentary hours into active ones.
Although it’s not necessarily going to give you the same calorie burn as an outdoor run or intense gym session, the energy expended by mini stepping shouldn’t be discounted. Estimates indicate that a 155 pound person can burn roughly 223 calories in half an hour of a standing mini stepper workout and roughly 100 calories whilst exercising sitting down. This might not seem like a lot, but over many weeks it all adds up.
This is the crucial takeaway when it comes to weight loss and fat burn. Achieving your goals will come from consistency over time. Any exercise or activity such as the exercise bike that you can incorporate into your routine that is likely to be enjoyable, practical, and sustainable will, in the long run, prove far more effective at helping you burn fat and lose weight than a brief, intense, and ultimately unpleasant stint at the local gym.
In this sense, the mini stepper can be a great tool to help you burn calories and lose fat, especially when accompanied by a healthy diet and other forms of exercise.
Can You Lose Belly Fat With a Mini Stepper?
When asked where they want to lose weight from first, people often point to the stomach. Unfortunately, ‘targeting’ certain areas for fat loss just isn’t something we can do through exercise. Despite what you might read in articles on the latest fitness or dietary fads, ‘spot reduction’, as targeted fat loss is sometimes called, isn’t really a thing!
In this sense, much like spot reducing cellulite, a mini stepper is not going to be any more or less effective at ‘targeting’ belly fat than any other form of exercise. But don’t despair! When our body starts to lose weight it will start to lose weight from different areas at different rates. This will eventually include fat from around the belly.
For some people, belly fat will be the first to noticeably disappear, whilst others may find that their face, arms, or legs start looking trim first. We still don’t really know what causes certain people to gather and then lose fat from certain areas before others, but it seems that our genetics have a big role to play.
Using a mini stepper regularly can help you burn calories over time, particularly if you’re incorporating mini stepper workouts into your routine several times a week. At some point, as long as you continue to burn more calories than you consume, your body will start to take some of this energy from excess fat cells around your waistline. Have patience, weight loss and fat burn is a marathon, not a sprint!
Whilst on the subject of sprinting, there is evidence to suggest that periods of high intensity exercise can help boost our resting metabolism when compared to gentler forms of workout. In this sense, the mini stepper may not be as effective as increasing your metabolism as sprint training, HIIT workouts, or other intense cardio.
However, by playing with the resistance settings and pushing yourself to step harder and faster over short periods, you can use your mini stepper as a form of high intensity training. We all have different limits, so see how far you can push yourself safely within yours.
The higher your heart rate goes during your mini step session and the harder your body needs to work, the more likely you are to boost your metabolism in the hours following the session. These differences might feel marginal to begin with, but over time they can add up to noticeable fat loss!
An ex-triathlete, fitness coach and writer with a Masters in Sports Physiology. Fitness is my passion and I've had my fair share of home fitness equipment tried and tested!