Hitting 10 000 steps a day seems to be many people’s goal, and it’s a very important one. The shift brought on by Fitbit and other wearable trackers created awareness around our mostly sedentary lives.
Now, you don’t have to hit 10k but unless you’re a very active person, you should probably increase your daily step count. Here are our eight tips.
Walk to WorkProbably one of the most obvious changes you can do to increase your daily step count is to ditch the car and walk or take public transportation to work. If your office is pretty far away, this might not be an ideal option, but make it your mission to at least park a bit further away from your building so you can walk the final stretch.
If you’re working from home, this might not apply to you but you can use the same principle for running errands or walking to your nearest grocery store. As often as you can leave your car in the garage, the better.
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Take your walks to another level.
Take Walking BreaksWhether you’re working from home or an office, try to get up from behind your desk or couch every hour or so for a quick walk to stretch out your legs and get the blood moving. If you need to use the restroom, go to the farthest one in your building, if you want to go get coffee, run to the nearest coffee shop (if you can of course), or simply walk down the hall and back.
These breaks don’t have to be long, even five minutes will already make a difference and you’ll notice it on your wearable step counter.
Track your steps, heart rate, exercise, and more.
Take Stairs Over the ElevatorWhenever you get the opportunity, instead of calling an elevator, take the stairs. Not only will you increase your step count, but you’ll also elevate your heart rate and promote better blood flow, stimulate your lymphatic system, and mobilize your joints.
Taking the stairs can even help tone your leg muscles, no matter your age, and you’ll build up your overall cardiovascular endurance which only goes in favor of your overall health and longevity goals.
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Utilize Your Lunch BreakMany people use their lunch break to chill and reset before the other part of their workday begins. Instead of plopping down on your couch or in the common area, grab your lunch to-go and utilize it to the best of your abilities.
Take a walk to the nearest park and eat your lunch on a bench, grab a healthy smoothie and use the time to walk around the neighborhood, or if you have the bandwidth and your eating window allows for a later lunch, sign up for a noon fitness class and get your body moving.
Take your lunch outdoors.
Take Walking Meetings and CallsIf you’re someone who’s stuck in meetings all day long and you don’t have to be seated in front of your computer or in a conference room, take your calls on the go. Walking around will help you focus and concentrate, especially if you’re outside, and fill your lungs with fresh oxygen.
This is an ideal way to increase your step count as you’re not sacrificing any part of your day and you still get to move your body and work at the same time. Additionally, this is a great habit to implement even when you’re not in a meeting but rather have to make a personal call. Whether you call your mom, partner, or your best friend, take your call while you’re working on that step goal!
Take your laptop with you wherever you go.
Set an AlarmSometimes all we really need is a reminder to move. It’s not uncommon to become so engrossed in your work or quite frankly, lazy and binging on your new favorite Netflix show. Set up an alarm to move your body every once in a while during the day and don’t snooze!
Never be late again.
Make Walking Friend DatesInstead of sitting down for coffee, bring your friend on a walking date. Grab your coffee to-go and head to a park, or take the urban route and enjoy catching up while also doing something beneficial for your health. Even if it’s just for half an hour, it will definitely pay off in the long run. And who knows, you just might turn this into a weekly thing!
Take your coffee to go.
Boost Your Weekly Fitness ActivityAnd last, but not least, one of the best ways of increasing your step count is by increasing your weekly fitness activity. It’s not just about hitting your daily goal, it’s more about being consistent throughout your week and increasing your overall weekly step number.
Some days might be busier than others and you might find it impossible to get out on your lunch break, leaving you at only a few thousand steps that day. Make it up by going for a longer walk on the weekend, lace up your shoes and go for a run, or simply get to your gym and walk on a treadmill for an hour. It all adds up!
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Follow these tips and feel accomplished every time your wearable tracker indicates you’ve reached your goal. And if you’re looking to take your steps even further, check out how to turn your daily walk into a workout!