Several years ago I began wearing a pedometer. This is a little gizmo that counts each step I take. This one simple thing changed my whole outlook when I realized that I was I was taking less than 5000 steps a day.
According to an article at About Health less than 5000 steps is considered sedentary. I'd always thought of myself as fairly active so this was a wake up call.
See the article "How Many Pedometer Steps Per Day is Enough?" for more details.
When I first started wearing a pedometer my goal was to increase my steps by 500 to 1000 steps a day. I slowly worked my way up to taking 10,000 of more each day and I've kept up that pace for the last 3 years.
10,000 steps isn't a magic number but one many people aim for. For me 2100 steps is equal to 1 mile so I'm walking around 4 - 5 miles each day. Weekends usually find us walking the trails at a local state park or participating with our walking club and my steps can go up to 16,000 or more.
A few tips pedometer tips:
- Buy a good pedometer. I use one by Omron. You can buy pedometers that track miles, calories burned, heart rate, etc. but I like this that just keeps up with the steps.
- Don't use the freebies that are given away at health fairs. You can jiggle those in your hand and up your steps. That doesn't help you at all.
- I put my pedometer on as soon as I get out of bed. It's surprising how many steps you can take just fixing breakfast.
- If your pedometer doesn't come with a good clasp rig up a way to hold it sucurely on your waistband. I found this out the hard way when my pedometer came off my pants while in the bathroom at Sears. It wasn't pretty...
- Track your steps and aim to add steps each day until you reach a number that's right for you.
- Have fun and enjoy the outdoors. Number of steps are important but shouldn't be your only goal.
I purchased this Omron pedometer at Walgreens for about $15. I've had it for 2 years and I've replaced the battery once. That's a good deal...
Do you wear a pedometer?