It’s a well-worn bit of fitness advice — you should aim to take 10,000 steps every day. You can work towards a more active lifestyle by trying out these seven easy tips.
Pass up prime parking
If you’re trying to walk more, there’s no need to compete for a front-row parking spot. Instead, park a little further away from your destination. As a bonus, your vehicle is less likely to get dented by an errant door or cart. Plus, it’s usually easier to pull out of more distant parking spots, since you’ll have fewer pedestrians and obstacles to avoid.
Walk while you wait
When you’re taking your kids to sports practice or the playground, it’s tempting to kick back and unwind with your phone, a book or simply by watching your kids cut loose and have fun. Instead of retiring to the bench or bleachers, consider walking laps around the park. It’s an easy way to capitalize on some downtime and enjoy more activity in your lifestyle.
Lunch breaks aren’t just for eating
It probably doesn’t take you a full hour to eat your lunch. Use that excess time for some light activity, such as a leisurely stroll around your workplace. If your workplace has a gym or fitness center, consider hitting the treadmill or elliptical. Even if you can only spare 10-15 minutes, the light workout will help you reach your step goals.
Take the stairs
It’s an oldie but a goodie — skip the elevator and escalator and take the stairs whenever possible. In addition to getting you some extra steps on your pedometer, stair-stepping gives your calves and glutes a workout.
Walk and talk
Whether it’s a night out with your friends or a conversation over the phone, walking and talking can be a fun way to get in some extra steps. Instead of meeting at a cafe, try window shopping, walking around the neighborhood or hiking with your friends. Not only is this healthier, but the experiences you share while you’re out and about can give your crew more ways to bond and spark ideas for future outings.
With their wagging tails and upbeat demeanor, dogs can change a daily walk from a chore into a fun activity. Instead of letting your pup out into the backyard to play, grab the leash and head to the park. Just don’t forget to bring a bag so you can clean up after any messes your pet leaves behind.
Brainstorm on the move
According to researchers at Stanford University, people come up with more creative ideas while walking, versus sitting or standing. If you’re trying to develop a solution to a difficult problem, consider taking a walk through your neighborhood or a stroll on the treadmill. In addition to helping you meet your fitness goals, you just might come up with a useful idea.
When it comes to meeting your fitness goals, a few easy lifestyle changes can make a big difference. While walking is a gentle workout, before beginning any exercise routine, check with your doctor first.