How to get to 10,000 Steps a Day

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Here are some top tips for easy ways to take your recommended number of steps each day.

10,000 Steps a Day

In her 2006 book, Manpo-Kei: The Art and Science of Step Counting, Dr Catrine Tudor-Locke introduces the concept of manpo-kei, or 10,000 steps, popularised in the 1960s in Japan, initially to sell pedometers and promote a healthy lifestyle. In a 2004 paper, Dr Tudor-Locke adds that “10,000 steps/day appears to be a reasonable estimate of daily activity for apparently healthy adults and studies are emerging documenting the health benefits of attaining similar levels”.

The UK’s National Health Service pegs the average person’s steps-per-day between 3,000 and 4,000. So hitting the magical 10,000 steps means more than twice the daily effort — but that is not as difficult as it sounds!

Here are some simple, easy-to-achieve tips to reach your daily goal:

Take the stairs


If an MRT station is part of your daily commute, head for the staircase. Instead of taking the escalators like everybody else, give your daily step count a boost by taking the stairs. The same can be applied to your workplace too, assuming that your office is not on the 72nd floor!

Take a breather


For every hour that you sit at your desk, give yourself five minutes off to stand up and gather your thoughts and get the blood circulating. Or, even better, walk around the neighbourhood to get your blood circulating. A short break every hour may not seem like much, but the health (and step) benefits are huge.

Explore the neighbourhood


The vast majority of commuters stick to the same way to work and vice versa. Taking the effort to explore different routes is a good way to exercise more. You may even stumble upon a new coffee shop or café that you never knew existed.

Get moving


Even if you have had a late night at work, go out for a walk. Make it a social occasion and walk with family or friends — or even the family pet. Even an evening of retail therapy will ramp up your step count.

Break it up


You don’t have to hit 10,000 steps in a single burst. If you are currently averaging 4,000 steps a day, you may find that suddenly doubling your efforts is too taxing, so break it down into small, achievable goals. This makes the goal a lot easier to achieve.

Contributed By: Health Promotion Board (HPB)
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