So on Friday, the walking initiative at my workplace officially ended. The goal was to get all participants to hit 10,000 steps a day, and as an individual participant, I think I kicked ass. Between taking daily walks and hitting the elliptical for 30 minutes every workday morning, I totaled roughly 967,687 steps from May 13th through August 2nd. I say roughly because sometimes, I forgot to attach the pedometer (like when I woke up at 2 in the morning to pee). That’s 82 days, and that averages to roughly 11,801 steps per day.
So yeah, I kicked ass. 🙂
Part of it was great weather. While we had rain, more often than not I was able to squeeze my thirty minute walk in at some point in the evening. On weekends or vacation days/holidays, when I didn’t force myself to do the elliptical, I did two laps around my neighborhood instead of one lap. I discovered that I prefer walking in the heat (with plenty of sunscreen) rather than the evening when it cools off. Sweat is far more preferable to bugs.
On weekdays, I learned that getting up at 6:00 am to jump on the elliptical for thirty minutes actually wasn’t that bad. I thought for sure I’d hate it, but really? While I wasn’t like, Woo-hoo, EXERCISE!!!, I still felt pretty good. I was awake and mobile in the morning by time I got to work, and that led to me feeling far more productive. Also, short of vacation days/holidays (of which I took a handful), I only missed two elliptical sessions: once because I was up for nearly half the night and didn’t think that jumping on the machine the following morning would be good for me, and the second because somehow I slept through my husband’s obnoxious alarm not just once, but TWICE that same morning, which prompted me to set my own alarm from that morning onward. You know, just in case.
Also, to keep up the steps, I set a chime on my phone to go off hourly while I was at the office, a reminder to get up and move around, which involved me walking the inner parameter of our office, just to stretch my legs and back.
My best day I hit 22,390 steps: not only did I do the elliptical that morning, but I took two laps around the neighborhood that afternoon because I felt like it. I think that day was also a grocery store day.
My worst day was 3307 steps: it was a vacation day, so I shrugged off the elliptical, but it also rained all day, so no walking.
So now that it’s over, the big question is, will I keep it up? I want to. I know there’s going to be a part of me that’s like, “I don’t have to record my steps any more… I can shrug this off….” but I don’t want to do that. I’m rather attached to my pedometer, the bulky thing, even though I don’t have to use it anymore. Yet I know what I need to do during any given day to reach a minimum of 10,000 steps, so it’s not like I need it. But it’s an accountability tool, you know? Without the elliptical or my daily walks, I’m lucky to hit 3000 steps in a day, which just goes to show you how lazy and sedentary I can be when I put my mind to it.
So yeah: Monday morning, I keeping the alarm set at six. I plan on dragging my ass out of bed and getting on the elliptical, even though the official, work-related challenge is over. Because it’s better for me, and I might as well do it while I can, you know? Who knows what winter will bring, and I’d really like to drive this habit home.