In January 2020, I wrote the article 15000 Steps a Day Keeps The Doctor Away! And it was a great success with some 20000 views on Medium.
Today I decided to narrow the article down a little and make this more accessible for folks to manage. I had several comments saying that 15000 steps are just too much in both time and distance for the average working person to accomplish, and isn’t there another way?
I can confidently say today that 7500 steps a day also does the trick. How do I know this? To be honest, over the last 8 months, I’ve struggled to stick to my 15000 steps daily goal due to my heavy work building a restaurant and digital marketing agency. I simply couldn’t get past 7500 steps a day anymore.
So I decided to take a look at my situation and results and share these with you.
The outcome is clear — I’m just as fit and lean today walking 7500 steps as in 2020, walking 15000 steps a day. The reduced output hasn’t hindered my fitness, health nor have I gained any weight. I’m happy to report another benefit: I’m stressing and pushing myself less to achieve the 15000 steps a day, as I just couldn’t do it, so I settled for what I can get – it’s working just fine!
I’m writing this article at 1 pm today, having already reached my 7500 step goal at 12:30 pm. What did I do? I had a great early morning walk in the hills around my neighborhood, already clocking 4700 steps. Next, instead of driving to the local coffee shop and laundry, I walked there and back, resulting in 7700 steps in the bag — done!
At this point of my day, I’m no longer concerned about having to walk more, as I’m happy with what I’ve got, knowing it yielded an excellent result for both body and mind.
Let’s take a look at what walking — a lot — will do for our health and fitness:
Walking is funny; we have legs to walk, and walking is one of the most basic primal movements. However, most people do everything they can to avoid walking — instead, preferring to take the elevator or escalator up and down a few floors, a car or taxi to the restaurant three blocks away, anything to avoid walking.
Yet just a tiny change of your mindset and reminding yourself to walk as much as you can rather than taking transport will being a tremendous benefit.
My goal is now 7500 steps a day — with one long morning walk and short walks for errands during the day.
I’ve made walking my hobby, not just my exercise, because it supports my heart health, blood pressure, overall strength, mindset, and it’s enjoyable to do.
Scientific reports have shown significant benefits if you increase your daily steps, be that 5000 or more.
Walking is the best form of excersice period.
I’ve been saying that walking is the best thing you can do for your body and mind ever since I embarked on my health journey in 2016. I had to have my right knee replaced with a titanium prosthesis after a ski racing accident in 1990.
The doctor told me to bike and walk (a lot) to recover. Both activities were painful at the time, and I spent the first week cursing myself and the doctor who did this to me!
However, it was a blessing in disguise, as the process made me realize how beneficial walking was. I felt far better after every single walk — energized and positive.
Despite having to walk on a leg that a few days before was battered, chiseled, and drilled, I noticed rapid improvements walk by walk — in my body and mindset.
The Keto Lifestyle, or as I call it today “Healthy Living by Following Natural Principles”
During my recovery period, I stumbled upon the Keto-Primal-Lifestyle and took the Primal Health Coach Institute’s course. Until this point, I hadn’t heard of Keto-Primal-Ancestral living and its health benefits.
Once I studied ancestral health, I started to understand a few things about the state of my body and mind, and I retook charge of myself.
I haven’t looked back since! I’ve noticed more and more articles popping up and talking about walking on social media and various blogging platforms over the last two years.
The Importance of Walking.
Just to let you know, by walking, I mean “fast-paced.” Strolling isn’t the same, it all helps, but you do need to walk with a purpose!
Let’s take a look at the benefits I’ve learned due to my personal experience and the scientific evidence backing it up.
Physical Benefits of Walking:
- Burns fat, as walking is a cardio exercise that keeps you within the aerobic fat burning zone of 180 maximum heart rate, minus your age. While running, biking, rowing, and other similar cardio exercise mostly kick you out of that aerobic zone where you no longer burn fat.
- The fat burning during the walk supports weight loss.
- Lowers blood pressure.
- Walking lowers the risk of stroke.
- Easy on joints, especially ankles, knees, and back, compared to running, which pounds ankles, knees, and back, causing injury and arthritis over time.
- Walking builds bone strength, as the low impact supports bone density.
- Walking is excellent for your heart health, as your heart is never overstressed while walking but is being trained efficiently at a safe heart rate.
- Stimulates all your organs to work more efficiently.
- Fantastic for your legs, especially if you walk in the sand, or are trekking hills, in forests, or hiking. Walking builds powerful and lean muscles.
- Have a headache? Walking in the fresh air will help get rid of it.
- Are you feeling tired or sluggish in the morning? A fast-paced walk will bring a spring back in your step.
- Jetlagged from the 14-hour time zone difference? An hour’s power walk will soothe the symptoms.
- Poor posture from your desk job and slouching? Walking corrects posture as long as you walk upright with good form.
- Barefoot walking: Walking connects you with nature and is grounding at any time. Barefoot walking, especially in the sand, grass, or dirt, stimulates the muscles and nerves in the feet and creates a deeper connection to the earth. Barefoot walking restores our natural walking pattern and builds stronger leg muscles, vital for lower back support.
Psychological Benefits of Walking:
- It cuts stress and anxiety.
- If your creative mind is blocked, and you can’t focus — go for a walk — it will free your mind and stimulate the creative side of your brain.
- Having trouble making good decisions? Walking will help you see things more clearly, and better decisions are the result.
- Depression is one of the most challenging illnesses to overcome. I suffered from depression for several years, not realizing what it was, but walking and meditation helped me the most once I did.
- Angry, disappointed, or any other negative emotions? Walking will relax you, calm your mind, and bring back a sense of balance.
- Don’t like to sit still and meditate? “Strolling walking” is worth gold, and I’ve practiced this for years now to calm myself down.
- You are feeling lazy but guilty because you haven’t exercised all day? Go for a brisk 5 to 10-minute walk, and you’ll feel more positive and okay with yourself.
Scientific Evidence of The Benefits of Walking:
- The best thing to do to improve our overall health and longevity.www.consumerreports.org
- Walking can lower the risk of cancer. www.cancer.org
- Supports longevity — in a review of studies published in 2014 in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, researchers found that walking for roughly 3 hours a week was associated with an 11 percent reduced risk of premature death compared with those who did little or no activity.
- Better memory and cognitive function. A clinical trial of older adults in Japan published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society in 2015 found that after 12 weeks, men and women in a prescribed daily walking exercise group had significantly more significant improvements in memory.
In a Nutshell:
The path to weight loss, strength, a calm mind, and overall good health is way more accessible than most people think. It’s a walk in the park — along with, of course, the proper nutrition, lifestyle habits, stress levels, sleep, and work/life balance. All daily tasks and challenges become more manageable if you walk your 7500 steps a day.
Walking will significantly support your health and wellbeing across the board, physically and psychologically, and it’s proven.
Exercising, being a healthier person, losing weight, and improving muscle mass does not need to be as daunting as the health and fitness industry says. You don’t have to spend hours and hours working on your fitness. Take it easy, enjoy life, smell the roses, and walk!
The key takeaway is to take control of your health and life, get outside, move as much as you can, and move your body in natural ways every day — walking is the most natural thing we humans can do!
The biggest challenge for babies is to start walking, and when they do, parents and the baby are over the moon! So let’s keep that in mind and remember how lucky we are to be able to walk on those 2 legs of ours!
Thanks for reading,