10,000 Steps a Day - Harder than you think!


I recently mentioned on my blog that one of the challenges I'm undertaking this February is to walk 10,000 steps a day.

It's now February 7th, and I'll confess it's been harder than I thought.

Don't get me wrong, I love to walk. Back when I lived in London, I walked to and from work every day. Back when I lived in Los Angeles, I'd go for ultra-long, leisurely walks year-round, oftentimes with no destination in mind.

But now that I live in Hamburg, and that I work from home, it's become more of a chore than ever before. Largely because I'm now trying to hit 10,000 steps in one go every day, rather than breaking them up into little chunks. This is basically in an effort to tick that "Yay, I did it!" daily box, rather than, say, going to the grocery store and then realizing after I get back that I still have 7,000 to go, and that I'll have to go out at least once more.

So this really is walking for the sake of walking. Not because there's anything to go. And definitely not just to enjoy the weather (it is February in Germany, after all). But just because I've made a commitment that I intend to honor. Have you ever just wanted to achieve something, just to see if you could? That's me so far in 2018! After Veganuary and Dry January last month, I'm now 10-stepping my way through this month: not only am I walking 10,000 steps a day, but I'm also attempting to spend less than €10 per day.

So here are my recommendations if you want to do the same:

1) On that rare sunny day, GET OUT THERE. Seize the day! Take pictures! Notice your beautiful surroundings, like I did just yesterday strolling around the Alster Lake. Be grateful that you have this wonderful time outside!

2) Never overestimate the importance of a comfortable pair of shoes. At the risk of sounding like a weakling, sport shoes and socks are your best friend when you're looking to walk about five miles all at once every day. Treat this as exercise and take it seriously!

3) Decide how you're going to occupy your mind. Do you like audiobooks? Are there any phone calls you can make? Do you simply want to go through your own thoughts and use this time to come up with ideas? Personally, I've been going crazy with podcasts. A few of my favorites these days: Side Hustle School; the Minimalists; and the James Altucher Show.

4) When the weather is blue, bundle up like gangbusters. Wrap yourself in so many layers as to be unrecognizable if necessary. And then get out there.

5) Walk in brand new directions. I'm lucky to live within a short walk from a gorgeous city park, and from a lake, but I know these already. The real fun - and surprises - have come from exploring the city in new directions.

Honestly, I'd encourage anyone to walk more. How many hours per day to we all spend sitting, or watching TV, or playing with our phones? What if we could channel just a little bit of that time and energy into a free activity that gets us fresh air and inspiration to boot!

Happy walking, my friends!


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