Are you caught up in the post-pandemic fitness frenzy? I sure am! Everyone seems to be hopping on the bandwagon of getting back into shape. Tracking your step count is a great way to burn calories!
Getting our bodies back into shape after hibernating for up to two years has been challenging for all of us. One of the best ways to get back in shape is to keep track of your step count every day. But we can’t expect to zip back into shape without adding a few tricks to our typical workout routines.
Like many people, I try to get 10,000 steps in every day. Sometimes, that is hard. We are focused on specific tasks that don’t allow us to get up and get those steps tallied up. Here are some powerful tips that I use to go about my day, but still get my steps in.
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Photo by Luke Chesser on Unsplash
Number 1 - If you're going grocery shopping, park in the back of the parking lot
There are a number of reasons why you may want to do this.
First and foremost, your car is less likely to get dinged when you are parked in the back of the lot. Secondly, there are usually more open spots in the “back” of the lot. It is easier, quicker, and safer. Win, win, win!
Always look for a spot in the back, but near a cart corral. But if you don’t see one, it never hurts to walk the cart all the way back to the store and then head back out to your car again. More steps!
Hunting for the closest parking spot to your store defeats the purpose if you are adding up your steps.
Number 2 - Take scheduled breaks throughout the day
Schedule three or four alarms on your watch or phone throughout the day.
Alarms make you aware that you need to get up and move around. If you are in a middle of a phone call when the alarm goes off just snooze it until you can get up. Make that a habit!
In addition, consider investing in an adjustable desk that allows you to stand instead of sitting for hours on end. Many companies will compensate you for this as there is proof that sitting for long periods of time is bad for your health.
When you do get up make sure you walk around for 10 or 15 minutes.
You are not just getting extra steps for your daily count. You are increasing your overall body circulation as well! I never used to do this. I would just sit and work, work, work. That is so bad for your health. Take a few minutes to get up, stop what you are doing, clear your head, and walk around.
Number 3 - Don't go through a drive-thru if possible
We are all busy and take advantage of a drive-thru whenever we can find them. I am no different. But, rather than sitting in your car and waiting in line, opt to find a parking spot away from store and then walk in.
By the time you walk into place of business, place your order, stand while it gets prepared, and then walk back to your car, you can easily add a few hundred steps to your daily count.
Remember to park in the back of the lot!
That may not seem like many steps, but it tallies to more than you would have gotten by just sitting in the car and waiting for order to come to you. You won’t feel as guilty about the calories either! More wins!
Number 4 - Take the long way around
This goes along the train of thought for parking situations. Whenever you are walking someplace, be sure you are getting some extra steps by walking the long way around things instead of taking a direct route. Look around for the long way around places – provided it is safe. (No need to head down a dark alley just to get some steps!)
Even if that means being inside a grocery store to grab a loaf of bread, make a point of getting extra steps. If the item you need is on aisle two, try to head over to aisle twelve first and then walk over aisle two. If you are in desperate need of steps that day, walk up and down every aisle so they can tally up. Just be sure not to stop in the cookie aisle!
Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay
Number 5 - If you have a dog, walk him
If you have a dog, take it out for a walk. It may be slow going because the dog will probably want to stop and smell everything.
This isn’t an activity that will get your heart rate up. Even still, you are still getting your step count in and you are with your furry friend. What could be better than that?
Number 6 - Take up a low impact sport
I love being active. If that means taking a yoga class, going on a hike in the mountains, or even walking on a treadmill, these are all easy ways to get in steps without feeling the overwhelming exertion of high intensity fitness.
Low impact could be simply going for a power walk every day. A power walk is walking with intention to get your heart rate up for a period of 30 minutes or more.
There are loads of places where the weather may preclude this, but if it is cold outside, head over to shopping mall or a place where you can walk from one end to the other and get your steps.
Number 7 - Do some light housekeeping
Running the vacuum not only burns calories, but you will also get steps in your daily total while you do it.
If you have a big house, (over 3000 SF), housecleaning can rack up 10,000 steps no trouble at all. A smaller house can easily rack up 4,000 or 5,000 steps by cleaning the rooms, vacuuming, dusting, and running the laundry.
And in the end, you will have loads of steps and a clean house! Very nice.
I hope these tips are useful to you. I use them all the time. Certainly, the parking one. Whenever I’m out shopping, I always look at my step count before I choose my parking spot. If needed, I try to rack up a couple of thousand steps while I’m searching for my next great find!