“A journey of a thousand miles begins with one small step” – Chinese proverb
The average person will walk 128,000 km (80,000 miles) in their lifetime. Walking speeds varies greatly depending on height/weight, age, terrain, surface, load, effort and fitness but the average walking speed in 5 km/hour (3.1 miles).
Many of you will have heard of the 10,000 steps a day challenge. Because a lot of us work in sedentary jobs, it is difficult to achieve this goal everyday which has a big impact on both our fitness and our health. Researchers have found that those leading sedentary lifestyles may be reaching as little as 1,000-3,000 steps a day. This is so little when you consider that it takes on average 2,000 steps to walk one mile. There has been a lot of research done in this area and there are endless health benefits associated with achieving just 10,000 steps a day. It is crucial we try to work this exercise into our busy schedules.
The good news is that you can work these steps up very quickly if you are clever about it.
Start making small changes in your commute to work and within your working day.
Walk or cycle to work. If you are living far away and you need to drive park your car further away instead of finding the closest space to the office.
Go for walking business meetings, stand up and walk around during phone calls, walk down to the break room for a drink during the day. Refill your water bottle throughout the day by walking to the break room. Use your lunch break to work out or go for a brisk walk. Use the stairs instead of elevators or escalators. Walk to the shop for lunch or groceries. Even if you’re watching the television in the evening, walk to the television to change the channel or the volume instead of using the remote.
Start wearing a pedometer or using a fitness tracker on your phone and start monitoring your activity levels. Pop it on straight away in the morning and keep it on you until you get into bed at night. If your activity levels are currently quite low, do not jump from this figure straight up to 10,000 steps a day. Your body will not be used to this. Instead try to increase your activity by 500 steps a week. E.g. If you start on 3,000 steps a day, increase this to 3,500 steps everyday for a week. Increase this to 4,000 steps everyday the following week.
Keep a log of this, and keep track of how you feel.
Move! You don’t have time not to!!!