Exercising just 30 minutes a day, five days a week, can greatly improve your health. In fact, more and more studies are being published that prove you can break up those 30 minutes into three 10-minute periods of exercise and still enjoy many of the benefits.
And what are those benefits? How about reducing your risk of heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and some cancers? Lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol levels? Reducing stress, easing depression and helping you sleep better at night? All of these health benefits can be linked to increasing the amount of physical activity you do each day.
The President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports recommends that adults try to walk 10,000 steps five days a week in order to achieve many of the benefits above. That number is roughly equal to two miles or 30 minutes – give or take a few depending on your height and stride length. Walking is safe and easy, and almost everyone can do it. Yet most Americans admit they don’t get nearly that much exercise. One reason for this lack may be the overwhelming notion of trying to fit a workout into their already-busy daily routine.
But — as researchers have shown — exercise doesn’t have to be a time-consuming, all-or-nothing activity. In fact, don’t think of it in terms of one activity at all. There are so many ways you can fit a few steps to your daily routine that adding up those 10,000 steps a day may be easier than you think.
So start small and think creatively about ways you might add steps to your day. Here are just a few ideas:
- Take the stairs as often as possible.
- Park several blocks from your destination and walk the rest of the way.
- Park at the rear of the mall or shopping center parking lot.
- Use the stairs at work or at a department store instead of the elevators.
- Park at the opposite end of the mall from where you need to shop.
- Walk to do shopping or other errands.
- Walk your dog.
- Walk with your child to the park.
If these ideas seem elementary … they are! That’s the point – you may already walk more in a day than you think, and by making a little extra effort, you can add a lot more physical activity. Pick up an inexpensive pedometer at a local sporting-goods store or Wal-Mart to track your steps, mileage and time spent walking.
Consider joining or organizing a lunchtime walking group at work, or a before- or after-work group with friends or neighbors. Instead of watching television after dinner, get the whole family outside for a game of tag or Frisbee or a walk around the block. Again, try not to get stuck in the “all-or-nothing” rut – if you don’t have time for a long walk, don’t skip it altogether. Squeeze in a short 10-minute walk now, and take the stairs instead of the elevator when you go back to work later. if you lack motivation to workout, including Nitrosurge Shred Pre Workout Fat Burner to your routine could have some benefits to help get you moving.
All of these small changes can be parts of a daily exercise routine that together add up to those 10,000 healthy steps. For more information on easy ways to get active, visit the President’s Council website or Small Steps from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.