I began tracking my steps...I barely hit 3,000 the first day. I didn't set out to do more than usual, but I did assume that I was walking a decent amount already. The 3,000 even included a quick 15 minute walk with my dog, for goodness sakes!
It's a bit more work than I expected.
So, over the last couple of months I've been tracking my steps and trying to get more every day. Some days I definitely get closer to my goal of 10,000, other days not so much. I do want to lose weight, as well, so I actually need to get to at least 12,000/day.
Based on the best evidence as of the end of 2003, Dr. Catrine Tudor-Locke recommends the following:
Classification of pedometer-determined physical activity in healthy adults:
1) Under 5000 steps/day may be used as a "sedentary lifestyle index"
3) 7,500-9,999 likely includes some exercise or walking (and/or a job that requires more walking) and might be considered "somewhat active."
4) 10,000 steps/day indicates the point that should be used to classify individuals as "active".
5) Individuals who take more than 12,500 steps/day are likely to be classified as "highly active".
Sneaky Steps at Home and Work
• Park in the far back of the parking lot and walk further to the door.
• Get off the bus a stop or two before your usual stop and walk the rest of the way.
• Use the furthest entrance into your workplace from your parking spot or bus stop, and walk through the building to your work area.
• Don't stand, pace - when waiting for the bus, waiting at an elevator, etc. pace around in circles rather than just standing.
• Circle the room when waiting for meetings to start.
• Use the restroom, copy machine, water fountain, break room, etc. that is further from your work area.
• Take the stairs rather than the elevator, especially for one to three floors, both up and down.
• When making a phone call, stand up and pace around as you talk.
• Rather than phone or email, walk to a coworker's office or neighbor's house and talk to them live.
• When people stop to talk with you, make it a moving meeting and walk around together while chatting.
• Hide the TV remote and walk to the TV to change channels.
• During TV commercials, get up and walk around the house.
• When doing errands, park in a central location and walk to your store destinations.
• Never drive through - get out and park and walk into the bank or fast food stop instead.
Short Dedicated Walks
• Marching Minutes - every 30 minutes get up from your desk or easy chair and do 1-5 minutes of walking in place and stretching your arms, shoulders and neck.
• Before eating lunch, take a 10 minute walking break.
• Walk the dog.
• Look over your usual trips in the car - are there any that you could do as walks instead, such as to the post office?
• If you take your kids to sports or activities, dedicate 10-20 minutes of that time to walking around after dropping them off or when you arrive early to pick them up.
• When waiting at the airport - secure your bags and take a good walk around the terminal area. Don't take the people-mover sidewalks.
Walking Steps Equivalents
1 mile = 2100 average steps.
1 block = 200 average steps
10 minutes of walking = 1200 steps on average
Bicycling or swimming = 150 steps for each minute.
Weight lifting = 100 steps per minute
Rollerskating = 200 steps per minute