Getting healthier means moving more, and walking is one of the easiest ways to do that. This walking challenge will have you taking 10,000 steps a day—the magic number for optimal health—in just four weeks.
When it comes to being active, most Americans fall short of doing what it takes to be healthy. Case in point: The average adult logs just 5,117 steps per day—well under the 10,000 daily steps many health professionals recommend. Walking this amount has been proven to boost heart and brain health and help maintain a healthy weight.
So how do you reach that goal? Try this simple plan, designed by Nancy Fudacz, master performance training coach at East Bank Club in Chicago, and Gretchen Collins, East Bank’s director of fitness. Each week will challenge you to hit a step goal, and in four short weeks you’ll be logging 10,000 steps a day—and be on the path to better health. While simply following the plan will get you very close to these numbers, using a pedometer, or a fitness tracker, like Fitbit, can give you a more accurate count and help keep you motivated. If you have a Fitbit, you can even sync your steps with this challenge (sign in with your Fitbit username and password on the right).
Over the next four weeks, you’ll gradually increase the number of steps you take every day simply by walking more. The plan starts with getting you to 4,500 steps daily by the end of the first week and then builds each week until the end of week four when you’re hitting the 10K mark.