And despite the best intentions for New Year's resolutions, motivation to get fit doesn't come easily during the dark winter months. Fortunately, there's a simple solution -- simply focus your attention on the number 10,000. Ten thousand steps, that is.
Experts in fitness and weight management say that walking 10,000 steps per day -- approximately five miles -- can provide enough physical activity to achieve average weight loss goals and increase fitness. Wearing a basic pedometer that tracks the number of steps taken can turn a normal day's activities into a regular workout.
"An average person takes anywhere between 700 to 3,000 steps per day," said Greg Bahnfleth, training and education manager, Life Fitness, a leading manufacturer of exercise equipment for homes and health clubs. "By wearing a basic pedometer for a week, you can calculate the number of steps you take in an average day. From there, make conscious decisions to increase the number of steps that you take every day. Before you know it, you'll be at 10,000 steps."
Bahnfleth noted that it's important to work up to 10,000 steps gradually. "Don't let the number 10,000 discourage you. Let your overall goal be working more steps into your day, and make the total number of steps you take secondary."
To get your steps in regardless of weather, invest in a home treadmill. Life Fitness recently introduced the T7-0 treadmill, which comes with a 10,000 steps tracking program, so you can enjoy Desperate Housewives while the machine counts your steps and helps you reach 10,000 based on how many steps you've already taken, or will take, that day.
Aiming for 10,000 steps per day can bring unexpected benefits. Adding a short walk at lunchtime will add to the total and provide some fresh air, which can lead to a better night's sleep. Running errands on foot and leaving the car behind can make that expensive tank of gas last longer. Best of all, walking is a terrific stress management tool -- and with a clear mind, remembering all of those other vital numbers every day will be a snap.
About Life Fitness
Life Fitness, a division of Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC), is the global leader in designing and manufacturing a full line of high-quality fitness equipment for commercial and consumer use. It is the largest commercial fitness equipment provider in the world and the only fitness equipment manufacturer that has been providing premium equipment for more than 27 years. Life Fitness' cardiovascular and strength-training products, including the renowned Lifecycle exercise bike, are used worldwide in health clubs, fitness centers and wellness facilities, as well as in homes. The company is headquartered near Chicago and distributes its equipment in more than 120 countries.
Life Fitness and Lifecycle are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of Brunswick Corporation.
Source: Life Fitness, 5100 River Road, Schiller Park, Ill. 60176. Phone: 847.288.3300, http://www.lifefitness.com; Contact: Glynis Gibson of Gibson Communications, 773-278-7700, or firstname.lastname@example.org.