Opinion

Exercising is a step-by-step process

Who could have ever imagined that I, a mere mortal, could take 5,268 steps in one day?

Well I did, according to a pedometer I borrowed from my coworker Cindy Tran. The slim, beeper-sized device is the latest exercise craze sweeping the nation and the world.

From college students to couch potatoes, growing numbers of people are using the step-counters as gauges to increase their daily activity levels.

A quick nod at the device throughout the day can tell you whether or not you need a quick walk-break at work, or a few extra treads to get into your target number.

The goal is to get 10,000 steps, or approximately 5 miles, in a day.

Think that’s a lot?

Not really.

In the 20 minutes or so it took me to get dressed, eat breakfast and brew a cup of joe in the morning, I took a whopping 230 steps.

By 11 a.m. I was at 500 steps. By 3 p.m. I had taken 2,000. However, the step counter gave me a little bonus as well — a hearty laugh earned me two steps.

I wasn’t going to say anything, but heck, I’m an honest guy.

Inactivity combined with excessive oversnacking is considered one of the major contributers to our country’s massive obesity problem.

Although I, like many people, like taking 30 minutes or an hour out of my life to go the gym as much as I like getting a root canal, I can see pedometers are an easier way to get a workout throughout the day.

Now step counting isn’t a new fad. The Romans used to equate 2,000 steps with a mile.

In Japan, pedometers have been widely used for the last 30 years.

The funny thing is, I thought my friends would laugh at me for wearing such a silly counting device.

Bring it on, I thought, as I walked into the neighborhood bar.

No comments.

Bring it on, I thought, as I walked into the office with the device clipped tightly to my belt.

No comments.

In fact, I had to point out to people that I was wearing it. A couple people said they actually already had one, but they liked my model because it had a fancy LED backlight to view your numbers at dark.

Cindy said she bought her pedometer for $20 at a local department store. Hers has a handy button that automatically converts her steps to miles. Some pedometers claim greater accuracy and go for as much as $100 bucks.

According to the Public Broadcasting Station website, for long term health and to fight against chronic disease, 10,000 steps a day is optimum. For successful, sustained weightloss, 12,000 to 15,000 steps is the standard.

For aerobic fitness, make 3,000 steps fast ones. Slow em back down and aerobic fitnes will do just fine for me.

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