Walk off 3,500 calories with a pedometer
Walk off an extra 3,500 calories in 10,000 easy steps
10,000 steps a day. This is what the experts at the Journal of the American Medical Society suggest you take to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This many steps every day could help you burn up to an incredible 3,500 extra calories per week, helping you to stay healthy and prolong your life and even help you achieve weight loss success!
Step on it - buy a pedometer
Here are a few things to consider before starting:
- Buy a good pedometer or pedometer watch. A pedometer is a good investment and will measure how many steps you take on a daily basis. Without a pedometer, you could be underestimating how far you are already walking... and it's far easier than counting
- If you are not used to regular exercise, using your pedometer as a guide, you may need to work up to your target gradually. If unsure, always visit your local GP or doctor for advice
- Buy a good quality pair of shoes or trainers. Continually walking in flip flops may cause long term damage to your feet and joints and walking distances in heels would just be impractical and unpleasant.
- Think about taking your walking shoes or trainers to work with you so you can walk during your breaks or during lunch. You might even be inspired to run around the block.
Our top steps to pedometer success
Although 10,000 steps a day sounds huge, increasing your level of activity in the day to reach this goal on a regular basis is much easier than you think. So, here are our top tips to hit your daily target:
- Take a lunch break: Take a short walk after you eat your lunch at work. Besides increasing your activity, you get to breathe some fresh air and force yourself to leave your desk behind for 15 minutes - which is no bad thing
- Walk around your block: If you tend to take your lunch break in the canteen, make sure you get out and get some fresh air after you've finished your food - even if it's a walk to the bank to pay some bills
- Use the stairs: Take the stairs instead of the lift. If you have several flights to accomplish, ride the lift until the floor below the one you work on and walk the final flight
- Walk around the office: Rather than relying on email all the time, take the time out to visit your colleagues face-to-face. Not only will this increase your steps, it will help to improve the communication and relationships you form at work
- Park at the far end of the car park: Whether you're at work, visiting the shops or on holiday - rather than parking as close to your destination as possible, get into the habit of parking as far away as you can. Not only will you increase your steps, you'll be more likely to find a parking space and have less chance of getting a dent in your car from other drivers or shopping trolleys
- Take a diversion: Instead of always taking the shortest possible distance to get to your destination, mix it up and try different routes. Your motivation will increase as your route will always be varied
- Leave the car at home: Rather than automatically getting in the car to drive short distances, try walking instead. This is a great way of stepping more - and it will save you both money and the environment to boot
- Get dancing: Switch on your favourite music when you do your household chores. Choose tracks with a faster BPM (Beats Per Minute), you'll be surprised at how this will inspire you to do a few steps and naturally speed up your pace.
- Ditch the remote: Instead of using your remote, try and get up to change the channels/tracks on your TV or iPod dock
- Don't blame it on the weatherman: A bad climate shouldn't be an excuse not to get your steps in. Weather (excuse the pun) you chose to go to the gym, the shops or a museum, don't let the rain stand in the way of increasing your fitness and burning off the calories. Remember, you could just wear a coat.