2

One Step At A Time: Walking Your Way To A Better You

Most of us do not move enough.

We drag ourselves out of bed, sit down to the table for a quick breakfast (if we’re lucky) and then get into the car to drive to work before sinking down into that familiar chair for the day. Times are busy, some of us even eat at our desks before starting up again for the afternoon. After a tiring day, it’s back in the car to get home for dinner and then maybe a bit of TV before bed.

Life spent sitting on our butts. Is it any wonder that people struggle with their weight?

Now you might be able to cycle or walk into work. Some can, some can’t. If you can, it’s a great way to get the blood pumping, energise yourself and burn some calories. If you can’t then you can’t. Such is life.

One thing that nearly all of us can do is walk. Whether for an hour in the morning or evening or on your way to work, there’s much to be gained by getting up and going for a walk.

The First Step

Get a pedometer or download an app to your smartphone to track your steps.

A healthy number of steps each day is around 10,000. If you want to focus on burning fat then you should aim for around 12,500.

Aim to improve each week until you’re at a good number of steps each day

All improvement is good improvement so if you’re only taking around 4,000 steps per day at the moment, aim for 6000 tomorrow. It doesn’t take a lot of work to bring that number up!

Start as you mean to go on

Don’t bother trying to do a one-off 20,000 step day if you’ll just do nothing for the rest of the week afterwards. The change you’re looking for will be the result of consistent efforts over time. Just like with nutrition, training and everything else in life.

Enjoy it

10,000 steps isn’t a high bar, it’s moving your body. It isn’t just aimless walking, it includes every step you take throughout the day. Not that aimless walking is a bad thing, many of history’s great thinkers walked great distances and more than a few credited their insights and best ideas to a quiet walk. Studies have shown us that time out in nature replenishes us mentally[1] so if you have a nice area local to you, you’re a walk away from a better mood.

From Aristotle to Charles Dickens to Ludwig Van Beethoven, all of them walked and they walked a lot. Charles Dickens would often walk the equivalent of a marathon[2]. When you walk ideas flow in a way that just doesn’t tend to happen when you’re slouched at your desk staring at the screen.

If it helped these great men, maybe it’s worth trying.

What part does walking play in your day and life? Do you feel better when you walk?

 

  1. Barton, J., Rachel Hine, and J. Pretty. “The health benefits of walking in greenspaces of high natural and heritage value.” Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences 6.4 (2009): 261-278.
  2. “Why These Nine Famous Thinkers Walked So Much | Mark’s Daily Apple”. Mark’s Daily Apple. N. p., 2014. Web. 11 Apr. 2017.

Theo Whittington

2 Comments

  1. I used to love long walks, I don’t walk often anymore. I think I’ll take a long walk this weekend, I don’t know why I stopped!

    • Thanks for the comment James. Same here in all honesty, it can get hard to make time for the simple things sometimes. I’ll be walking to and from the gym this weekend. Nice to slow down from time to time haha. Enjoy your walk.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.