Here are the Waushara Argus walkers on a stroll during their break. They try to put on about 1,000 steps in the morning and 1,000 in the afternoon in five minutes.
By Megan Wilcox, APR, ThedaCare Media and Public Relations
Getting in 10,000 steps a day is not easy. Just ask the participants in the Pedometer Challenge sponsored by ThedaCare and ThedaCare Orthopedic Care.
Once participants began tracking their daily steps and realized just how sedentary they are – especially with this winter’s weather making going for a walk around the neighborhood a challenge – many began making small changes to bump up their daily total.
For example, Sara Thompson of the ThedaCare Center for Healthcare Value uses the stairs when going to her office on the fourth floor of The Appleton Center. In addition, when she needs to use the restroom, she walks down to the first floor and uses the one there to get in a few extra steps. She’s now above a daily average of 5,000 steps a day and has her eyes set on averaging 6,000 steps daily.
The Pedometer Challenge began in early February and runs through April 20. The Challenge is designed to increase physical activity by making participants realize how many steps they get in daily. Doctors recommend people get at least 10,000 in daily to improve cardiovascular health.
Tom Clifford, director of digital development at HC Miller in Green Bay, logged 39,300 steps last week and admits the cold weather is making it a challenge to get to the gym. But he discovered “one day of snow blowing the driveway equals the same amount of steps I would take if I walked two miles at the gym. That was interesting.”
Bob Salm of WHBY in Appleton bypasses parking spots close to the door for ones farther away so he can get in a few extra steps.
“One of the things I have discovered is how much it takes to get 10,000 steps in a day. I have been parking my car blocks away from my destination and walking that extra distance and more to try to get those 10,000 steps in,” he says. “I am sure it will be a ‘piece of cake.’ Can I say piece of cake when you exercise? I’m really enjoying this.”
Amber Araiza, who works at the Waushara Argus, is really focused on hitting and surpassing the 10,000 steps a day mark. In addition to walking with other Argus staff members during morning and afternoon breaks around the office, she dusted off her treadmill at home as she tries to walk more than 100,000 steps each week. Last week, she logged 103,450 steps.
“I walk in the morning before work and walk at night. I had been telling myself to get on that treadmill for months. This challenge really got me motivated to get back into shape for summer,” she says, adding that she can’t wait to walk outside.
I think that’s something we’re all waiting for.