13 Simple Ways to Increase Your Daily Steps

Where are my 10k steps a day people at?? I recommend it be all of us!

No matter your level of activity, walking is an easy way to help your overall health and well-being. Over the course of the last few weeks, I've made it a goal to get 10,000 steps a day. Those of you in Nebraska know it hasn't been an easy task, particularly with blizzard-like conditions, with never-ending snow and ice. But rain, snow, or shine, I made it happen.

As someone who is already very active, you might be thinking this is a bit unnecessary. However, there are SO MANY benefits to walking 10,000 steps a day. Right now, this is particularly helpful for me, as walking is a time to catch up on favorite podcasts, meditate, engage in meaningful conversation with Laura or friends, or get sunshine (when it's out) and fresh air (even if it is cold, the crisp air is invigorating, amiright?!). Plus, as I'm eating in a deficit right now for #summerbod and #slabsofabs, it is an easy way to get additional volume without wrecking my body.

Completing 10,000 steps a day is also beneficial as research shows it can help decrease chronic illnesses, including heart disease, diabetes, and other metabolic syndromes. It also aids with digestion, improves sleep, reduces stress, decreases hypertension, slows mental declines, improves overall mood, and increases endurance and balance.

Beyond your standard walks (which might include your pet), also consider a few other ways to get those steps in, such as:

  • Parking your vehicle at the back or end of a parking lot;

  • Moving every hour at work for 5-10 minutes (especially with some fresh air and sunshine, your work product and productivity will likely improve); 

  • Using the bathroom on a different floor, or at the far end, of your employment building;

  • Using the stairs rather than the elevator or escalator; 

  • Getting off a bus or train stop one earlier than your usual stop (but remember #SSDGM);

  • Walking to complete an errand close by; 

  • Walking children to school or to the bus stop;

  • Heading to a co-worker's office rather than calling or emailing; 

  • Mowing, raking, or shoveling your driveway/yard;

  • Vacuuming one or two more times each week; 

  • Walking through the aisles of the grocery store (especially the outside perimeter);

  • Going for a short 5-10 minute walk after each meal (this also aids with better digestion and allows food to "settle");

  • Taking extra trips with that grocery haul (I mean, we all our proud of those moments we can get all the bags in one trip, but may as well make the most of the shopping haul).

Author: Zach Anderson, Black Iron Nutrition Coach, @motionsustained