Walking is one of the easiest exercises around, especially for pregnant women and mums who don’t have a lot of time to spare for the gym. You can walk anywhere at any time with a pram or baby in a carrier. Plus, it’s practically free – you will need appropriate footwear. And clothing for that matter, unless you want to get arrested.
You may have seen the old advertising campaigns suggesting the average person needs 10,000 steps for good health. Although this is a general guideline to get people moving, it just sounds like so many steps! Personally I don’t track my steps with a pedometer app because I don’t take my phone everywhere I go, but I do try and move as much as possible during the day.
I discovered some sneaky ways to get more walking into my daily routine during pregnancy, when I was tired. All. The. Time. Anyone can adopt these techniques and they may soon become habits.
Firstly, look at your commute to and from work. If you take the train then a bus, consider walking the bus journey, or some of the way. Instead of going directly to work, find an alternative, slightly longer route that will keep you walking for a bit longer.
If you do plan to walk some of the way, be sure to wear comfortable shoes. Yes, even if you are wearing your best-tailored suit. (If you are the immaculately-presented mother who doesn’t have vegemite on her suit when she leaves the house, please tell me your secrets.) For added convenience, leave a pair of black shoes at the office so you don’t have cart them back and forth.
Good footwear is a must.
The workplace is a haven for extra steps. I would always take the long way to the toilet. If you think this sounds like time wasting, well – everyone has to pee at some stage during the day (pregnant women more so than others.) You may as well get some extra mileage out of this inevitable commute and it will only take an extra few seconds or minute out of your day, maximum.
Stairs. Need I say more? If you work on the 22nd floor, then that’s probably a bit much. Instead, consider taking the lift to level 12 and walking up the rest.
At lunchtime, go for a short walk outside of your office. It helps to have a destination, such as a park or a shop, so that walking doesn’t feel like such a chore. The fresh air and exercise may even help you feel a little more energised before the 3:00PM slump hits.
Have a walk around the shops before you start your grocery shopping.
If you drop the kids at school, consider walking some of the way if possible, or walk them to school and pick them up (and vice versa).
For some people, shopping is an easy way to walk heaps. But for me, it’s a matter of get in, get out. I do, however, walk a complete lap of the centre before heading to the supermarket. Another sneaky method is to bring in one bag at a time from the car.
I burned extra calories pushing the trolley….didn’t I?
So, it really is that simple to find sneaky ways and means to walk more during your day and enjoy a healthier lifestyle.