Walking is undoubtedly one of the best ways to get in better shape. I have had many clients lose significant amounts of weight simply by walking more.
Most people can walk, even if they are significantly out of shape. It’s also easy to scale walking to fit your current fitness level. You can start with a few extra steps per day then increase the volume as you round into better shape.
Walking also doesn’t involve a huge time commitment. You don’t have to get all your steps at once, making it easy to fit into even the busiest schedules.
But how many steps should people take every day?
For a long time now, 10,000 has been the number most people use. But does science support that number? Or is it just the result of clever advertising?
Is there even a “right number?”
The newest information we have makes 10,000 steps per day seem a little on the high side.
According to a new peer-reviewed study published in JAMA Network Open, people who took about 7,000 steps per day had a 50-70% lower risk of dying from all causes compared with people who took fewer steps each day.
It’s worth noting that the study didn’t look into any extra benefits from going over 7,000 steps per day.
Does 7,000 vs. 10,000 steps really make a difference?
I would say yes. 7,000 steps is a more realistic goal than 10,000. Even busy adults can find a way to get 7,000 steps per day.
But Don’t Overcomplicate it
Humans are great at overcomplicating things. We are so good at it that we have managed to overcomplicate the simplest workout in history, walking.
Knowing the exact number of steps you take per day isn’t all that important. At the end of the day, just walk more.
Even if you can’t walk as much as you would like, get up and move more often. Spending less time sitting has been proven to be good for your health.
But, whatever you do, keep it simple.