You don’t need a gym membership to get the exercise you need. Make walking a regular part of your routine. But how much should you walk to make a difference in your health? According to a 2000 study, walking 10,000 steps a day is ideal. 10,000 steps reduce the blood pressure of those with mild hypertension.
However, hitting 10,000 steps can still be challenging for people with full schedules. But if there’s a will, there’s a way … 7 ways, to be exact:
1.) Park far away
The parking spots closest to most businesses are the first ones taken anyway. Save the effort of looking and improve your health by parking far away instead. You’re more likely to find available spots farther away. You’ll expend energy on something more important, getting enough exercise and meeting your 10,000-step daily quota.
2.) Get off one stop away
Not driving to your destination? No problem. If you take the bus or train, get off at least one block or station away. Then walk to your destination. Make a habit out of this, and you’ll find yourself enjoying these strolls especially in good weather. You may be able to save on transportation expenses too because shorter distances can mean cheaper fare.
3.) Take the stairs
If your office isn’t on the ground level, skip the elevator and take the stairs. Even if your office is on a much higher floor, take the elevator but get off a few floors lower and cover the remaining distance on foot. If you’re just starting your health journey or get winded easily, take the elevator going up but the stairs going down. Gravity is your friend, so the trip is easier on your lungs and legs
4.) Schedule a walking meeting
When meeting with just one or two people, set a walking meeting. If there’s a park or trail near your office, this can be a fun way to take a meeting. Walking meetings are not only invigorating for the body, but they’re also engaging for the mind. Of course, make sure the other attendees are up for a walk, too.
5.) Use your breaks wisely
Coffee breaks can be used for something better, like a quick walk around your office. Opt to use part of your lunch break for a long walk. Either way, you have time to squeeze in some steps during work if you really want to.
6.) Walk your dog
Walking is less tiresome when you have a furry friend or two as companions. You need to exercise your dogs anyway, so you’ll get a twofer if make them walk with you. If you don’t have dogs, volunteer to look after the dogs of a busy friend or a senior citizen that can’t get out. They’ll be grateful for your services.
7.) Forego delivery sometimes
Nowadays, it’s easy to get everything delivered to your doorstep, including toilet paper. But shopping on foot can add to your step total. Looking for items from one aisle to another translates to many steps on your fitness app.
Whether you’re a couch potato or a fitness buff, these tips will help you reach 10,000 steps.