I don't know when 10,000 steps became the number we should all try to achieve when losing weight. Some say it began as a marketing campaign for a pedometer in Japan. All I know is I hear the 10,000 steps rule all the time.
Since I wanted to know if this was real or not, I challenged myself to walk 10,000 steps a day for 30 days.
To see the real impact of walking 10,000 steps a day, I decided to change nothing else. I needed to make sure no other factors that would influence my results. I didn't change my diet. I thought about drinking more water and then decided against it.
Walking may be one of my least favorite activities. I needed something to get me through it. I tried adding steps throughout the day. I would dance around the house. That added next to nothing. I would put away laundry one piece at a time. That took way too much time. I would pace while watching TV. That annoyed everyone.
I found that listening to audiobooks, chatting with a friend on the phone, or walking with someone else were the only ways I was able to consistently walk 10,000 steps a day.
When I walk can vary depending on what I need to do that day, the weather, etc. I learned there were a couple times during the day that were better than others. I like to walk early in the morning (truthfully, to get it over with!). A quick walk around lunchtime helps to clear my thoughts. I sometimes walk late at night, especially if I didn't get enough steps in earlier in the day.
Did I Lose Weight?
Nope. I did not lose one pound. I fluctuated slightly, but in the end, there was no change. I weigh exactly what I weighed before I started. Walking alone had no impact on my weight. Perhaps it prevented me from gaining weight, but other than that, nothing.
Did I Lose Inches?
Yes! Before starting, I measured my bust, waist, hips, thighs, and calves. I lost a little bit from each of these areas, totally 6 inches. Surprisingly, I lost the least from my hips and legs.
Were There Other Benefits?
Yes! Although walking 10,000 steps a day did little for weight loss, there were other benefits. I am less distracted while working. I am sleeping better. I am more focused on finding ways to lose weight and get in better shape.
Although walking itself didn't have a great impact on my weight, it is good for my overall health. When combined with other changes (drinking more water, eating fewer calories), it will help with some of my weight loss and fitness goals.
I will continue to walk at least 10,000 steps a day as part of the solution I am looking for, not the only solution.
Photo credits: Pixabay