Getting in your 10,000 steps has become a daily mantra for many, and for good reason.

A study through Harvard School of Public Health found that taking an hour-long walk five days a week can cut your risk of having a stroke by half. Taking a 30-minute walk for 5 days a week can cut the risk by 24 percent.

The American Heart Association says that a consistent walking program can:

  • Improve cholesterol levels
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Increase your energy and stamina
  • Boost bone strength
  • Prevent weight gain

I also love walking because:

  • It's free
  • It's easy
  • You can vary your speed
  • It can be done anywhere
  • It is a movement our bodies were designed to do

5 Ways To Add Steps To Your Day:

  • Take laps around your house or office!
    • Whether it is to take a break from the computer or during commercial breaks while watching TV, get up and move. This can add hundreds of steps!
  • Layer up and take a walk after dinner.
    • Whether you are going with a family member, a friend, or solo, an evening walk can help clear your mind of your day and give you some fresh air. Wear a headlamp or bring a flashlight!
  • If you have a good sidewalk system, walk to the grocery, coffee shop, gym, work, etc.
    • It sounds crazy to my friends and colleagues that once a week I walk the full 6 miles to work, but those are my favorite mornings. Podcasts, phone calls, and silence can really do the mind and body good.
  • Take a hike in nature or an urban hike.
    • Drive, bus, or walk to a place in your city that you haven't explored and walk/hike around. This could become a weekly ritual!
  • Take the longer route to get to your destination.
    • Add an extra lap or walk up and down the stairs more than once when you need to get somewhere, whether it is at home, at the store, or in the office.

Go-To Snacks To Fuel Your Walks:

These energy bites have a hint of cinnamon and are great on-the-go snacks for any occasion.

Photo by Alli Schifcliff

These rich truffles pack a chocolaty punch and are great snack between meals.

Photo by Melissa Lynn

Super easy to make and a crunchy treat that gives you that protein boost during the afternoon slump.

Photo by larkspur
| Credit: larkspur