As you guys probably know, I’m pretty enamored with my Fitbit. Maybe even a little bit obsessed. I’ve had it for over a year now, and it’s one of the best tools for me in making sure I stay active during the day. When I first got my Fitbit, I was averaging about 8,000 steps per day. Now? My goal is at 12,500. I up it by 500 every few months (it varies, but basically whenever I feel I can handle it), and I have no plans to stop that trend.
Now, you may think there’s no way you can hit your goal every day. For me, it can definitely be a challenge. I spend about 2 ½ hours every day commuting to and from work. I work in an office environment that requires me to sit at a computer most of the day. When I finally get home, I have to get dinner on the table, get Abbie to bed, and get prepped for the next day, and it can be exhausting. All I want to do at that point is rest, so it’s important that the majority of my steps happen long before I get in the car at the end of the workday.
Because of that, I’ve worked had to find strategies that help me do just that. These tips help me get in at least 80% of my steps before I even get in the car at the end of the day. Now, these are obviously geared toward someone working in an office environment, but you can tweak them to your own day!
- Get in a good portion of your steps before you leave your house in the morning. I usually like to have 1,000 steps in before I even leave my house. Between getting myself and Abbie ready, eating breakfast, and bringing my things to the car (and starting it, since it’s so cold), I usually get this in without a problem. I usually eat my breakfast standing up (which Chris thinks is weird), and sometimes even walk in place or around my kitchen while I’m eating. Every little bit helps!
- Drink a lot of water. I know what you’re thinking – that’s healthy, but what does that have to do with steps? Well, more water = more bathroom trips = more steps. You’re welcome.
- When you go to the bathroom, take the longest route possible. My desk is at one corner or my building, and the ladies room is in the opposite corner. I could go through the middle, but instead I go all the way around, both to and from.
- Take the stairs whenever you can. I sometimes have to go to the floor above mine, and I always take the stairs unless I’m escorting a client. If I’m just running an errand, I’ll also take a loop around the floor. Takes only an extra minute or so and gets me steps!
- Instead of calling or emailing your coworkers when you need something, go to their desk or office. It not only gets you what you need, but you get face time with them. I also find it usually gets me faster results!
- When you’re on a phone or conference call, pace or walk in place. You’re stuck in one place anyway, so you may as well take advantage of it!
- Set an alarm on your phone or computer to have you get up at an interval that works for you. I have mine set to go off every 40 minutes during the work week. Even if I just get up, walk ten steps out and walk ten steps back, that’s twenty steps with very little effort. Usually, I just take a lap around my office floor.
- If it’s possible, walk to any office errands. One of the things I do every day is head to the post office across the street to check the PO Box for the group I support. Instead of driving, I walk (as long as the sidewalks are clear). It’s a little break in my morning, which helps with my clarity, plus I get the steps.
- If you’re a competitive person, set up a competition with anyone else looking to increase their activity. The challenges on the Fitbit app are super helpful for me – I strive to be in first place, and if I’m not in a challenge, I always want to be at the top of the weekly step list. Something about that motivates me.
- Take advantage of your breaks. I get an hour for lunch every day. I’m also fortunate in that there’s a basic gym in my office building – that’s free for me to use. Rather than sitting on my lunch break eating, I opt to eat at my desk as I work and use my break to walk on a treadmill. I walk at a high incline for about 40 minutes to give me time to change before and after. It doesn’t get me so sweaty and gross that going back to work is uncomfortable, it adds to my steps, and it rejuvenates me for the rest of my day. It’s an all-around win for me.
What do you think? Do you have any other ideas for increasing your daily steps?