The High Performance Journal

If You Get Less Than 3000 Steps A Day, Read This:

get lean Oct 17, 2023

The High Performance Journal​ - October 17th 2023

The other day, I was having dinner with a friend and the conversation came to his grandparents.

His grandmother is 102 years old and his grandfather was 99 years old.

I asked him what their secret to living longer was and he gave a simple answer:

"They walk 2-3 miles every day"

The average American gets around 3000 steps a day. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors walked 16-17,000 steps a day.

Walking is one of the most important activities you could do for your brain & body. Not getting enough can lead to some serious consequences.

Not getting enough steps throughout the day can lead to:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Weight gain
  • Heart disease
  • Slower recovery
  • Increased stress
  • Lack of creativity
  • High blood pressure
  • Decreased brain activity
  • Dying an early death

I know a lot is talked about zone 2 cardio​ being a key to longevity but the most underrated exercise on the planet to live longer is walking.

This is why in the ​Lean Body 90​ we don't do any traditional forms of cardio. We lift weights and go for walks instead.

Now for a lot of people walking 16-17,000 steps a day is unrealistic and, quite frankly, not needed. We have desk jobs and are not foraging for berries or hunting sabretooth tigers anymore.

How Many Steps A Day Should You Aim For?

The general rule of thumb was to get 10,000 steps but this has been proven to be a myth.

Fun Fact: A Japanese company launched a pedometer in 1965 named "10,000 step meter".
Its slogan was, “Let’s walk 10,000 steps a day” so that number originated from marketing not from actual science.

Here's what the actual science says:

A ​study​ was done looking at 16,000+ women ages 62 to 101. Between 2011 and 2015 they wore step trackers during their waking days.

Key findings from the study:

  • Sedentary women averaged 2,700 steps a day.
  • Women who averaged 4,400 daily steps had a 41% reduction in mortality.
  • Mortality rates progressively improved before leveling off at approximately 7,500 steps per day.

This is why I recommend people to get anywhere from 6000 to 8000 steps a day.

But longevity aside, why else should you get out and start walking?

Walking Boosts Your Brain Health

Walking helps you build new brain cells.

Moderate-paced walking stimulates the release of a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (aka. BDNF)​ that protects existing brain cells while creating new ones.

Walking boosts creativity.

Walking increases the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the brain, which can make you more creative.

A ​study​ done by Stanford found that creative output increased by 60 percent when participants were walking even while facing a blank wall.

Walking improves your mood.

When you walk you release a cocktail of feel-good neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins into your bloodstream.

Walking decreases stress

Too much stress impairs memory, attention, and cognitive flexibility. When you do it in nature it becomes acts like a powerful drug​ for stress relief.\

Walking protects your brain from decline

A ​study​ found that people who walked more than 4,000 steps a day had healthier brain tissue in the areas responsible for memory, learning, and cognitive function.

Walking has also been shown to protect against ​Alzheimer's and dementia​.

Walking Speeds Up Recovery

One of the best ways to help your body recover faster, whether it's from an injury or a workout, is to take a walk.

Most people think that doing nothing is the best way to recover but the hard truth is it slows it down.

Walking helps stimulate blood flow, aids in eliminating toxins keeps your muscles pliable and flexible, reduces lactic acid buildup, and reduces soreness in your muscles.

5 Proven Ways To Add More Steps Into Your Life Without Thinking About It

#1 - Walking Meetings

Zoom calls are opportunities for more steps.

Pace when you're doing meetings & do your calls while walking. This is an easy way to get more steps that are already built into your day.

Some people go as far as putting a mini-treadmill under their desk to walk while doing work.

#2 - Chosen Discomfort

Choose the farthest parking spot from your destination. Take the stairs instead of the escalator. Walking to the store instead of driving there.

These are all forms of what I call Chosen Discomfort. It may not seem like it at the time but doing these throughout your day adds up.

#3 - Walking Entertainment

If you're going to be watching a show on Netflix you can get some steps in without noticing it.

I know some friends who watch movies on their iPads while walking. I have other friends who play video games while walking.

My friend Justin Welsh watches sports while getting some steps:

While this may seem a bit odd who cares? You're turning a sedentary activity into a healthy one while having fun doing it.

#4 - Schedule Your Walks

If you live & die by your calendar like me then you need to set aside time to walk.

Put these in red, make it so you're out of the office & schedule at least 2 to 3 per day.

Doing this will decrease stress, increase creativity & give you a nice break in the day.

#5 - Post-meal Walks

This one is my favorite.

When you eat a meal you can sometimes feel lethargic. Also, if you're anything like me sometimes I'd be searching for more things to munch on.

Walking after a meal helps you boost energy and improves digestion. This also gives you something to do.

Do this with your family and it becomes a great ritual after dinner time.

Walking is the most underrated way to improve your health.

The simplest things are usually the most effective. Walking is the most underrated way to improve your body and brain.

You were born to move and not doing so is a detriment to your health.

If you're getting less than 3000 steps a day aim to get at least 2000 more than you are right now by using the systems provided.

It will improve your body and mind while helping you live longer and become more creative.

So do yourself a favor after reading this and go for a nice walk outside. You won't regret it.

Btw if you're looking to get lean and create all day energy check out the Lean Body 90 program.

This program has helped 1000's of high performers lose the excess weight without doing any cardio or restrictive diets.

If you want to get lean, lose belly fat, and increase your energy levels grab the Lean Body 90 program by clicking the link here.

- Dan

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