Guest post by American Heart Association.
We are officially challenging you to take 10,000 steps per day. You heard us correctly, 10,000.
That number may seem daunting at first glance but never fear, we have tips on how you can incorporate physical activity into your daily life. First let’s talk about why this is important.
Did you know that heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, causing 1 in 3 deaths each year? The good news is heart disease and stroke are also 80 percent preventable. We want you to live a longer and healthier life, to enjoy more of life’s precious moments and exercise can help you do that. Exercise helps manage stress, reduces your risk of coronary heart disease and even boosts your energy level.
Why walking? There are countless ways to get active, but walking is the activity with the lowest dropout rate. It is also an easy activity to incorporate into your daily routine and generally safe for people of all ages.
So if you’re ready to get moving we have a few tips to get you started:
- Break it up. You don’t need to walk 10,000 steps in a row, walking in spurts will keep your heart pumping all day.
- Don’t get stuck in a rut. Try a new walking path or invite a new friend to join you.
- Family time. Many of us relax in front of the TV after dinner, but this is a perfect time to take your family on a walk to digest that heart-healthy meal you just finished.
- Find a buddy. Join or start a walking group. Accountability partners keep you on track, increase safety and make walking more fun!
- Fitness tracker. Use a device or app to track your activity. You’ll be surprised at how motivating it is to see your progress.
- Park father. Don’t circle the grocery store parking lot searching for a front row space. Head to the back of the lot, where there are plenty of open spaces, to get some additional steps in.
- Take the stairs. Skip the elevator and walk up a few flights of stairs instead. The more often you do, the easier it gets.
- Walking meetings. Stop multi-tasking and step away from the computer. Walking, fresh air and brainstorming are great partners.
Online buddies can be a great motivator too. American Heart Association and Move It Monday ambassador Jenylyn Carpio is a great inspiration proving that staying active is possible with any lifestyle. Jenylyn is a heart disease survivor. At only 22 years-old, Jenylyn, a mother to a newborn, suffered a cardiac arrest. She was saved when her mother performed CPR, was rushed to the hospital, where she discovered she had an undiagnosed heart condition. Jenylyn has overcome limitations and makes her health, and the health of her family, a top priority. Her doctor even cleared her to participate in her first 5K a few years ago and she is now an active runner. One of her favorite motivational quotes is, “Each step forward is a step to the finish line!”
With Jenylyn as your inspiration, we encourage you to get moving today!
Here are a few more resources to kick start your path to a more active life:
- Ready to move from the couch to the pavement, we have tips to address your obstacles.
- Stretches for walking.
- What to wear when you walk.
- Tips for increasing physical activity at home, in the office or at play.
Join us for an exciting Twitter chat, Monday, August 29 to find out more tips, tricks and motivation!