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Count your Steps, Not Calories

Sep 4th, 2014

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Category: Lifestyle

Count your Steps, Not Calories

10,000 steps a day is the goal! We’ve all hear this a thousand times . . . but why?

In 2004 the Global Corporate Challenge (GCC) looked at 60,000 workers in 55 countries who aimed to walk 10,000 steps every day for eight months.  At the end of the challenge, 67% of participants reported an increase in fitness and energy levels and participants lost an average of 5kg each – just from walking!

After four months, the number of GCC participants with high blood pressure had reduced by 34 percent, while waist size was reduced by an average of 5 cm.

GETTY_H_122812_OlderPeopleWalkingForExerciseThe ones that kept walking 10,000 steps a day, for a further 1 year were able to maintain blood pressure, keep the weight off and decrease their BMI.  They also reduced significant risk factors for heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

A few reason’s to aim for 10,000 steps at least 5 days a week:

  1. 1.  It strengthens you heart: Regular walking has been shown to reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. It lowers levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol while increasing levels of HDL (good) cholesterol and keeps blood pressure in check.
  2. Boost Vit. D level: Walking outside in daylight boosts your body’s stores of vitamin D – a nutrient hard to get from food, but that our bodies synthesise from exposure to sunlight
  3. It gives you energy: It might seem like a paradox (and the last thing you might feel like) but a brisk walk is one of the best natural energizers around.
  4. Tones your legs, bum – and tum: Regular and good walking can help strengthen and shape your legs, calves, quads, hamstrings and lift your glutes (buttock muscles) – especially if you add hills.

Sounds pretty good to me! So, my September challenge to you is try adding 2,000 steps a day to your total until you reach 10,000 a day and see how you feel?

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