Walking can help lower blood pressure, reduce your risk of heart disease, maintain fitness levels, and lead to weight loss. Unlike more complicated exercise programs, walking is inexpensive, easy to do, safe for almost everyone, and you can do it pretty much anywhere. The Surgeon General recommends adults walk at least 10k steps a day or five miles a day (2,000 steps covers roughly one mile). However, with desk jobs and hectic schedules, most of us are only walking between 4,000 and 6,000 steps per day.
Here are some simple ways to get more movement during your average day. Don’t forget to wear your activity tracker!
- Start your day off with short walk.
- Walk the kids to and from school or their bus stop.
- Skip the elevator or escalator and opt for the stairs.
- Take a stroll during the second half of your lunch break.
- Pace back and forth while talking on the phone.
- Park your car on the opposite end of the lot for some extra steps. If you have extra time, walk a lap around the lot for some bonus steps.
- Play with your kids. Create family activity time and play ball, have a dance contest, or hold back yard races.
- Get off the couch. Walk around the house or march in place during commercials.
- Skip the phone call. Instead of calling your friend to catch up, meet her for a walk instead.
- Walk while the kids have sports or dance practice, rather than sitting and waiting for them.
Compiling steps in small increments throughout the day is more manageable than trying to do 10,000 in one long walk. If you are still wondering how you’ll reach 10,000 steps in an average day, here are some examples that would add approximately 6,000 steps to your daily routine.
Start the day with a quick 5-minute walk. You can walk the kids to the bus stop or take a stroll around the block. Total: 500 steps
Need to catch up on phone calls? Take a 10-minute walk and return those calls. Better yet, meet your friend and take a walk to catch up. Total: 1,000 steps
Walk on your lunch break. A 15-minute walk at a brisk pace can help clear your head and reduce work stress. Total: 1,700 steps
After dinner, get the family together, including your dog, and take a 20-minute walk. You can talk about each other’s day while getting some exercise and fresh air. Warm up with an easy pace for 5-minutes (500 steps), walk briskly for 10-minutes (1,350 steps) and then cool down with an easy pace for 5-minutes (500 steps). Total: 2,350 steps
Doing all of these activities will give you a total of 6,050 extra steps per day!
PRO TIPS: Always try to have 2,500 steps before you leave for work or school. As you work to increase your activity levels, start slowly and build up until you reach your goals. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and end your walk with a few gentle stretches to avoid strains and injuries.
Top 3 EatSmart Bathroom Scales to Compliment Your Walking Plan
Do you need additional motivation or support to stick with a walking plan? Monitoring your weight at home with a bathroom scale can help keep you on track with your health and fitness goals.
#1 Track your fitness with our Precision Body Fat Bathroom Scale. In addition to monitoring weight, it also measures body fat, body water, muscle mass, and other important health metrics. The daily caloric intake feature calculates how many calories are needed to maintain your weight.
#2 Looking to lose weight? The Precision Tracker Digital Bathroom Scale will keep you motivated. It displays the users’ current weight, weight change from the previous weigh in and total change from starting weight. The unique touch screen interface and automatic user recognition make it very user friendly.
#3 Stay on target with our new Precision Choice Digital Bathroom Scale. When your weight is locked in, the Precision Choice will beep allowing you to step off the scale and easily view the display read out. Very easy to use, simply step on and it accurately weighs up to 400 lbs within seconds.
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What are your favorite ways to get your steps in? Tweet them to us @EatSmartScales.