Motivation Monday: How to make those 10,000 steps really count

Walking is great exercise. While many strive for 10,000 steps a day, it's not the only thing to consider for a healthy lifestyle. Chris Freytag takes a deeper look to help you boost your fitness profile.

GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. -- You've heard it before - 10,000 steps a day is a key to better health.  Moving, no matter what you do, is important to your health. And while 10,000 steps is a good number to strive for, not everyone can walk.

The American Heart Association is among those who simply recommend 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.  

If you are starting a walking program, GetHealthyU's Chris Freytag says sedentary people should build up consistency and minutes.  Aim for 30-40 minutes most days.  Once you're able to do that, add some challenge to that walk.

Speed is one way to do that.  The faster you walk, the more calories you burn.

Add some hills if you are outdoors, or if you are on the treadmill, boost the incline, which forces you to exert more effort.

Try to vary your pace.  Think interval training.  An Ohio State University study shows people who do that can burn 20 percent more calories than those walkers who don't.

Finally, even if you are a die-hard 10,000 step a day walker, that's not an excuse to flop on the couch the rest of the day.  The more you move, the more you lose.

Find links and more information on Chris's website, GetHealthyU.com.

 

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