Keep Fit with a Pedometer
Keep Fit with a Pedometer
Are you as fit as you should be? Do you exercise regularly, to a reasonable degree? If not, you need to start now. Lack of exercise can lead to heart disease and other serious health conditions, especially when combined with overeating and a poor diet.
Patients with heart problems are often prescribed a pedometer. This little gadget will count their daily steps, showing how much exercise they’re getting and how much more they need to take. But why wait until you reach this sorry state, when you can start counting steps and building fitness right now, and avoid such health risks? Of course, you can exercise without a pedometer, but a pedometer provides an ideal guide and incentive. There’s a range of styles to choose from, with various features and accessories, but a simple, low-cost one will do fine.
Here are some handy tips for getting the most out of your pedometer. Share them with friends and colleagues and stride out together for extra fitness fun. Ready?
Wear your pedometer daily
Make a habit of wearing your pedometer all day, every day, to monitor how much exercise you’re getting. Note your step count at different times, to assess which periods are the least active, and find ways to fit more activity into these slots. Refer to your pedometer’s guide book or check online to see what your minimum step count should be, or for a more personal assessment, consult your doctor. Then focus on reaching that target and keeping to it. If you’re already achieving your recommended minimum count, see how you can improve on it.
Arrange your day around your exercise
If you spend a lot of your day sitting down, you’ll need to change that habit. Even if you need to sit at a desk in order to do your work, it won’t hurt your workload to take a few minutes out every hour for a brief march around the premises. If you’re really pressed for time, just stand up a minute and do some jumps and stretches, and when you visit the restroom, make a detour on the way back. Whether you’re working or idling, you’ll need a break at some point, so use it to get moving.
Counting steps can soon become irksome, if you let it, so get some fun into the process. Turn your fitness drive into an absorbing and rewarding game by setting yourself little challenges each day. Tell yourself you’re going to do so many steps before lunch, or a certain number in half an hour, then see if you can beat your target next day. How many miles can you walk in a week? When you find yourself counting in miles, you’ll know you’re doing well. What’s more, as your muscles tone up and your heart grows stronger, you’ll approach those challenges with new drive and energy, and enjoy them even more.
More ways to make your steps enjoyable
Many people walk for sheer pleasure, and you’ll find it much easier to build your step count if you enjoy the exercise for its own sake, as well as for its challenges. Start by selecting an attractive environment, such as a riverside or park. Now choose an entertaining item to take with you, like a kite to fly or a ball to kick about. If you have a personal stereo, step to the beat of your favourite music. Make different arrangements through the week, such as meeting a friend or browsing around the shops. You might like to swap your walk for a bike ride or swim now and again. The pedometer may not be made for multi-sports, but you are.
The more exercise you take, the more fit and healthy you’ll be. You’ll feel good in yourself too, and will even concentrate better on your work. As for the pedometer, you can put it away once you get into the exercise habit — or give it to someone who needs it.