In today’s world, it’s easy to not get much activity in, especially if your job is mostly sedentary.
Because of this your overall energy expenditure is lower than an active person and you may not regulate your appetite as well, and a recent study showed that those who took 7000 steps/d or more experienced lower mortality rates compared with participants taking fewer than 7000 steps/d.
Combine this with the tasty calorie-dense foods all around and it’s a recipe for disaster.
Because of this, I have all clients track their steps, not only for body composition changes (especially if their goal is fat loss) but for overall health.
It’s also easy to incorporate into your day rather than having to dedicate 30-60 mins to formal cardio.
The problem is that activity levels are largely based on habits/lifestyle. And because of this, it’s tough to get more activity in if your lifestyle doesnt naturally get you much activity.
You have to SEEK it out. But if you can do this, you will reap the benefits of:
- Being leaner/easier to maintain weight.
- Healthier overall.
- Better appetite regulation etc.
Let’s go over ways to get more activity in.
5-minute walks, 30-minute walks, 2 hour-long walks, they all count.
You can spend this time listening to podcasts, audio books, enjoying nature, or spending time with a loved one where you arent distracted.
Getting outside is an underrated aspect of overall health. If you go early you can help regulate your circadian rhythm which can help with sleep.
Park further away
Stop looking for the closest spot if you can walk. Easy way to bank steps. And you dont have to dedicate time to doing this.
I cringe when I see people wait or drive around to find the cloest spot.
Stop being lazy.
This is one of those low-hanging fruits where people complain that they cant get enough steps in but all of these add up throughout the day.
Take the stairs over the elevator or escalator
Again, stop being lazy. This is another low-hanging fruit that will add up over time.
Put things further away in your house
This may only add a few steps, but done throughout the day/week it can add up.
Now you combine it with dedicated walks, parking further away, and you can see where these will add up.
Walking and talking on the phone
This is great for those of you who work an office job. Any time I have a call I get up and walk around for at least a little of the call.
When I have strategy calls with potential clients that take 30-45 minutes I easily bank 2-3k steps in that time frame.
Anything that requires you to get up and moving counts.
Youre up and moving, so yes this counts.
Yes grocery shopping and regular shopping increase steps. A lot of people saw this decline during Covid and now with grocery delivery.
I always take into consideration when I have to grocery shop that I will be banking some steps in the process. It saves me time later.
Move around in between your sets
Another way to kill two birds with one stone.
Just seek out activity
I used to find ways to get out of doing things, but now I seek out times when I can get in steps. Does someone have to take out the trash? ill do it, because I get steps.
Someone forgot something and I have to walk and get it? Its fine because I will get steps.
A few common mistakes I see made with steps
1. You think you need to get them all in at once.
By seeking out activities and adding these in throughout the day, you can accumulate them as the day goes on.
Maybe parking further away only gets you 250 extra steps, but then you also put things further in the house, and thats 500 extra steps, then maybe you incorporate a 15-minute walk (1-2k) and because of this, you have now added upwards of 3k steps to your day to what you get from your habits/lifestyle.
2. If a client has a step goal, and they are far off from their goal, they end up not doing anything.
You think “well im not going to hit my goal so I won’t do anymore”.
This is a mistake, every step counts and it helps with your weekly average (which is important).
With anything, it may take you time to get this down, but I promise it will be a habit that will be worth it.
If you dont hit your goal after the first-week dont give up, keep at it.
6-10k steps per day seem to be the best for health and practicality.
Any step tracker will work. Find one that works with your budget and you enjoy wearing.
If you need more guidance or accountability, then my 1:1 online coaching program would be perfect for you. You can check it out HERE.