We have so many high-tech ways to stay in shape, and while we love the classes and apps, it can be nice to get back to basics with some old-fashioned walking.
Just how much walking, you ask? New research is one step closer to the exact number of steps needed to hit the federal guideline recommendations, which is 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity activity per week.
Researchers out of the University of Massachusetts–Amherst determined that 100 steps per minute counts as a moderate walking pace and 130 steps per minute counts as vigorous.
The study, which focused on adults ranging in age from 21 to 40, had each individual go through a series of tests on a treadmill. By measuring their heart rates, calories burned, and speed, scientists were able to come up with these magic numbers.
Researchers also noted that if you were to tell the average joe to start walking, chances are they’ll naturally hit over 100 steps per minute anyway. This draws attention to the fact that a simple stroll can have huge implications for your health.
Sure, by including more frequent walks throughout the day you’ll increase your cardiovascular health, but walking can also do wonders for your mental state. Walking has been associated with alleviating anxiety and boosting your mood, making it an optimal activity for those looking to clear their head.
While we’re not saying you have to count every single step you take—although your phone is doing it for you—what we are saying is you should consider walking when you have the option. Take the stairs, walk around the block, or even walk with your colleagues when you have one-on-one office meetings. Your body and mind will thank you.