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Why 10,000 steps a day may not be enough to stay fit



  how many steps do you need per day

Walking can be a great exercise – but 10,000 steps is enough to keep you fit? Angela Lang / CNET

We all know that it is important to exercise every day and our fitness trackers have been trying to take 1

0,000 steps every day for years. But does that number really mean something to your health?

Although this can be a useful way to view your daily activity (because you don't technically have to spend an hour in the gym every day to "be active"), it is really the best way to measure activity ?

Yes, the little daily things you do to do more every day are important. For example, choosing to walk to work, park further away or take the stairs counts for your activity and it's great that our technology can help us see that. But are there real health benefits if you get your 10,000 steps every day? And does how do you really get them to matter? What about the other trainings that you no longer give? Keep reading to find out what science and the experts have to say.

Why 10,000 steps a day are not suitable for everyone

Because everyone is different and has a unique lifestyle, activity level and goals, it makes sense that not everyone needs the same amount of exercise every day to be healthy. Part of this comes down to the individual goals and health problems of each person. But are 10,000 steps a day really enough for the average person to be considered active and healthy? It can be a great goal and a starting point, according to professor Paul Gordon, a practice physiologist and chairman of the Health, Human Performance and Recreation Department at Baylor University.

"The average person takes between 3,000 and 6,000 steps from home to work, shopping, etc. by adding 30 minutes of exercise (about 3,000 steps) that takes us to about 10,000 steps," Gordan said. He added that when it comes to walking, more is better for your health.

So what if you don't just walk for exercise (or even track your steps completely), how much exercise do you really need? According to the Ministry of Health and Human Services, you need at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity (such as brisk walking or swimming) or 75 minutes of powerful activity (such as running or cardio dance) every week. The DHHS also recommends doing strength training twice a week (such as weightlifting or exercises that use your own body weight).

Keep in mind that if you want to lose weight, maintain weight loss or achieve other specific fitness goals, you may need to train more than the standard 150 minutes to reach your goal.

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Where did 10,000 steps a day come from?

The 10,000-step recommendation has been mainstream for some time, but have you ever wondered where it originally came from? Although you might expect the recommendation to come from a medical source or a government health agency, it appears that this is not the case at all.

During a recent conversation at Michelob Ultra's fitness industry event Movement in Austin, sports doctor called Dr. Jordan Metzl states that the number of 10,000 steps is random. The song has roots that you can trace to a Japanese walking club that has taken over the term as part of a marketing slogan.

An article from JAMA Internal Medicine also indicates that there is a & # 39; limited scientific basis & # 39; is to support the claim that taking 10,000 steps a day is necessary for health. But the study found that the participants who took more steps per day (over a four-year period) had a lower death rate than those who took fewer steps.

The best way to keep track of your daily activities

If you have a Fitbit, Apple Watch or another smart watch, you know that these devices can follow much more than just your steps. And while keeping track of the total number of steps and the distance you walk each day is useful, can other factors be a more effective way to measure your activity? According to Gordan, walking is not the best measure of physical activity. "It does not take into account the intensity of the activity and is not effective for forms of non-bearing activity (i.e. cycling)."

Because steps cannot take your intensity level into account, Gordan also recommends using a heart rate monitor to measure training intensity. After all, you can technically get 10,000 steps every day without really raising your heart rate or sustaining it for a long time. "I would encourage participation in weekly activities that increase the heart rate for an uninterrupted period." He said that a balanced exercise routine might look like doing an activity that increases your heart rate (such as brisk walking or running) four days a week, and two days a week going to yoga classes to work on strength and flexibility.

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Is there a better activity goal to aim for other than 10,000 steps per day?

If 10,000 steps a day now seem like a random goal, what are some charities to work towards when it comes to activity? A factor that can make a big difference to your health actually has nothing to do with how many steps you take, but rather how much time you spend. "Studies have shown that prolonged sitting by itself is unhealthy, even if you perform a daily activity. So varied activities during the day is very useful."

Mayo Clinic recommends shortening the time you spend on activities every day, even if you receive the recommended amount of exercise every day. Too much sitting is associated with a higher risk of metabolic problems and can affect your health.

Furthermore, a recent study found that people who spent more than 13.5 hours a day did not achieve some of the health benefits after one hour of exercise, because their overall activity level was so low compared to the time they spent with to sit.


The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a doctor or other qualified health care professional for any questions you may have about a medical condition or health goals.

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