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10,000 Steps & a Friendly Challenge

You probably know what this post is about from that title, right? Yep. Getting in 10,000 steps a day, or more realistically, on most days, is a goal of mine. As you know, I’m done with New Year’s resolutions, but goals, I have plenty of those. One of my goals is to increase movement, okay, in other words, to exercise more. But I prefer calling it movement, don’t you?

Over the holidays when son #1 was home for a visit, he mentioned he had an app for his phone which allowed him to track his steps. I know, I know. These apps and pedometer gizmos have been around for ages, but finally, this sounded like something I might like to try. And guess what? I like this type of motivation.

Besides, according to dear hubby, I’m always on my phone anyway (I don’t think it’s always, but… it is a lot of the time), so having this particular app makes perfect sense for a whole lot of reasons.

So far it’s helping.

We all know how important exercise movement is. Everywhere you turn, there is more and more evidence supporting the benefits. Recently the American Cancer Society and the American Society of Clinical Oncology released the Breast Cancer Survivorship Care Guideline to help breast cancer survivors and their primary care providers better manage their long-term care. Included in this guideline is the recommendation (among other things) to encourage breast cancer patients to be more physically active. The exact recommendation for physical activity is as follows:

It is recommended that primary care clinicians should counsel survivors to engage in regular physical activity consistent with the ACS guideline… specifically: (a) they should avoid inactivity and return to normal daily activities as soon as possible after diagnosis… (b) should aim for at least 150 min of moderate or 75 min of vigorous aerobic exercise per week….; and (c) should include strength training exercises at least 2 days per week and emphasize strength training for women treated with adjuvant chemotherapy or hormone therapy…

But as we all know, sometimes it’s not that easy to just do it. Sometimes we all need some motivation. Especially in the winter months.

I am no different.

So my brainstorm is to invite you, my dear readers, to join me in a 60-day step challenge. If you have a pedometer, an app, a Fitbit or some other kind of tracking device, why not join me in trying to get in a few more steps? (or whatever form of exercise movement you are up for) 10000 steps

And, of course, there is no need for you to set your goal at 10,000 steps a day. You can set your number of steps goal wherever you want.  It’s always best to start off slowly anyway, so a lower number might work better for you. Even a small increase in daily steps seems to make a difference. The point is to try to get in more steps than you are now, unless of course you’re already doing fine exercise-wise and don’t need to add more. If you’re more of say, a pool person, you can set your goal to be a certain number of laps or minutes in the water. Whatever works.

I will write a followup post sometime down the road and let you know how things are going and to see how you are doing as well.

Maybe we can motivate each other a little.

And sometimes a little helps a lot.

Who’s in?

If you do opt in, I suggest keeping a log. This will serve as a visual record, proof, motivation – whatever you want to call it. This is what I’m going to do anyway. Because yes, I have some accountability issues; maybe you do as well.

Do you have pedometer of some sort?

What’s your favorite way to get in movement and how are you doing with it?

Would you like to join me in this friendly challenge?

 

winter walk

Walking in the winter can be challenging. But it can be fun, too, once you’re out the door! And having a dog helps!

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Julia

Wednesday 6th of April 2016

Hi, Nancy -

I LOVED Beth's comment about feeling tagged like a wild animal; I'll never look at my pedometer the same way again :)

I've been about 90% consistent in hitting at least 10K per day. I've been trying to change things up, too, which definitely helps. Better weather helps a lot in that regard; it feels great to be able to walk outdoors without an umbrella and to get out in the garden again - YAY!

I hope everyone else is shaking off winter weather, too.

Nancy

Thursday 7th of April 2016

Julia, I loved Beth's comment too. Wow, 90% consistency is terrific! I haven't done that well. I am so ready for warmer temps so I can not 'dread' going out the door so much. Spring definitely is the great encourager. Thank you for sharing.

Linda

Friday 5th of February 2016

I did it! With my good old pedometer, thank you! I needed the challenge and the company. Here's to tomorrow - Linda

Nancy

Friday 5th of February 2016

Linda, Yay for you! One day at a time doing our best here too. Thank you for joining in.

Beth L. Gainer

Thursday 4th of February 2016

Nancy,

You have inspired me! I've had pedometers, Fitbit wannabes, and all kinds of gizmos that track my activity (I kind of feel like one of those tagged wild animals one sees on TV!). I think I'm done with those, but your post has pushed me to challenge myself to 5 exercise days per week. The exercise (movement) will vary, but it will be a worthwhile activity!!

Thank you for this post. :)

Nancy

Thursday 4th of February 2016

Beth, Well, we always hear changing things up works best, so varying your type of movement is a great idea. Having a daughter at a very busy, active age undoubtedly keeps you moving more than you even realize. Thank you for reading and good luck with the challenge. I'm inspired by all of you.

Rebecca

Thursday 4th of February 2016

Nancy, this is a great idea. And I love how you call these (exercises) "movements". It makes them sound a lot more doable, especially to a lazy person like myself. I have to admit, I stopped "moving" after I received my diagnosis. I was an athlete and got sick anyway -- I know this isn't the right mindset to have. I agree exercising is very important and I am often told that it can contribute to my survival rate (as you also stated). I don't own a smart phone (I know, I know..) but I can track my steps in other ways. My guy has a stopwatch I can use.

I try walking a lot instead of taking transportation. I also move around a lot at home. Playing with pets can sometimes be a rewarding workout. Count me in!!

Nancy

Thursday 4th of February 2016

Rebecca, I certainly don't think you're lazy. Sometimes it's not that easy to 'just do it'. Believe me, I know. I imagine you can get in a lot of walking living and working where you do. And yes, playing with pets can sometimes help us be more active, and it benefits the pets too! Thank you for sharing and participating when and how you can.

Lisa Valentine

Wednesday 3rd of February 2016

What a great way to help ourselves and support one another! I am a little obsessive some days about my step #, but it does serve to motivate me. I look for ways to add more steps-at home, at work, at the store. And it's an added benefit that the physical exercise can help us mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Endorphins are free and very effective. You know I like the idea of gratitude practice too . . . and so I take gratitude walks some days. I walk trying to be more aware of nature around me, or I pick a sense to focus on-sight, sound, smell-and try to focus on that. Besides, I get crabby when I can't exercise. So when cancer treatment got in the way, I looked forward to the days I could get back to even a short walk down the block. A step at a time . . . can add up to 10,000 or whatever your goal is. Onward!

Nancy

Thursday 4th of February 2016

Lisa, I love your idea of gratitude walks. That is a great way to make walking even more productive and meaningful. During cancer treatment I looked forward to my short walks, too, even when they were just down the block a ways and back. And you're so right, one step at at time. They do add up. As always, thank you for your supportive comments. Onward indeed.