10,000 Steps a Day? Yes Way!
Daily physical activity is an important component of a healthy lifestyle. Combined with a good diet and sufficient sleep, moderate exercise can help lower your blood pressure, and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes, just to name a few.
An easy way to incorporate physical activity is...walking. Seriously? Seriously! Now, I don't necessarily mean going for a nice, leisurely stroll (though, that can be good, too), but instead more of a vigorous, purposeful walk. Some light jogging wouldn't hurt, either! Another recommendation is 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week. Check out this post I wrote in the fall about Fit-in-15, which has great suggestions on how to make time for exercise in your busy schedule.
10,000 steps may seem like an arbitrary goal...and it is...sort of. That being said, it's a reasonable benchmark. You know that smartphone you're (likely) holding in your hand right now? It has a vast array of accelerometers and gyroscopes and...other electronic wizardry that can measure the number of steps you take in a day, the number of kilometres you walk, etc. There are also great Apple and Android apps you can download that give you a more comprehensive breakdown of your daily physical activity. Or, you can get a good old fashioned pedometer to count your steps.
A great article outlining the benefits of 10,000 steps a day, and strategies on how to achieve your goal, can be found at Participaction
The takeaway from all this is that 10,000 steps a day is a way to set a daily goal. Start at at 5,000 steps and work your way up. Keep track of your progress! Tell people about your achievements! You should feel good about it!