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Statistics of Stepping


"They" say one should take at least 10,000 steps per day for exercise and general health and well-being. I thought I would give it a shot. However, being the statistics nerd that I am, I would only do it if I could track various statistics. As they say, if you can't measure it, you can't improve it. I knew I wasn't going to keep up this formal tracking forever, but getting a good understanding of my walking habits and general activity was very important to me.

In 6/2009 I decided to do this and keep track of various stepping statistics until 6/2010 (although I ended up doing it until 11/2010). I purchased this Omron, , which was a fantastic choice, and I wore it just about everyday throughout the whole day as much as I could. Most of the time I clipped it on my waistband, or put it in a pocket.

Here are a few screenshots showing some statistics:

I really believe walking is the most underappreciated form of exercise. Almost anyone can walk, it is relatively easy on the joints, doctors and trainers can prescribe it without fear of lawsuits or patient injury, and it is scalable to the individual. Probably the ability to walk long distances is one of the traits that made humans so successful.

In addition to the direct benefits, I think there is a good case to be made for the "preoccupation" aspect of walking. That is, if I am walking for X minutes, that is X minutes I am not stuffing my face with junk food or sitting in front of the computer/tv.

I take much less steps per day now and I feel worse than when I walked more. Maybe it is time to use the pedometer again?

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