I keep thinking about my goal of entering a race next year and the first thing that comes to mind is that I need a training plan. I am so used to thinking this way with my past running life: goals, weekly mileage increases, hill repeats, speed and distance goals. I have been using step count of late with 10K steps as my daily goal. No idea why or even why that was a goal, but I immediately thought I needed to increase it yet didn’t even understand the basis of the 10K model.
Well, it seems that the concept of “10k steps a day” originated in Japan prior to the 1964 Olympics as a marketing campaign. An early prototype of a pedometer was created that was marketed to health conscious folks in hopes that they would become more active, healthier and thinner. Not a lot of science behind it, but obviously a huge marketing success.
Decades later, better pedometers, backing by WHO and other international organizations, the 10k steps per day has become a benchmark of daily movement. It converts to 4.5 – 5 miles dependent on your stride and you burn around 500 calories.
I am not seeing a ton of consistency behind this routine which prompted me to toss the idea of any formal plans for the foreseeable future. Join me in the ‘keep moving’ mode as I am going to use the 10k steps model as an informal guide. Do what works for you; 4k-6k steps might be just right. I am referring to actual steps (walking, hiking, running) for the bulk of daily exercise. Make the majority of them in the aerobic / high intensity category; add some hills. Mix it up!
You’ve seen lists like this a zillion times, but if you want to add some extra steps every day here are a few suggestions: always take the stairs, park at the far end of the parking lot, walk to get your coffee, always take the scenic route not the shortest distance, get up and move every 15 minutes (your body will thank you) – the list goes on. Want some icing on the cake? Extra movement counts; there are charts which convert various activities into steps. You may reach 10K or beyond every day quickly; it will become routine. What do you do daily to keep moving?
You might not need a formal training plan, but you do need commitment and accountability. I do recommend getting a pedometer; it does keep you accountable and for me that is the majority of the battle. There are so many options from the simplest pedometer to high tech watches. I’ve tried several free apps with varying success and have found the built-in health app on the iPhone works well. The big picture is what I am aiming for – you know if you’ve walked closer to one mile or five miles.
A few final thoughts. Don’t forget to complete your medical data on your phone’s health app (it’s the one with the heart on the IPhone). This program is not a panacea for losing weight; still calories in/ calories out on that front. If you haven’t done much exercise start slowly and increase gradually. Always, always seek advise from your medical professionals in regards to your health and what exercise program is best for you. Don’t forget to stretch; touch your toes daily. Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
Celebrate every step and every victory! You will feel empowered; enjoy the journey. #bethebestyoucanbe #keepmoving
Celebrating making it to Lake Ilsanjo via the Cobblestone and Rough Go Trails – their
names say it all! #kneerehab #brokenpatella