Get moving to lose weight and stay fit.
WHAT IS THE STRATEGY TO INCREASE STEPS USING A PEDOMETER?
1. Park your car far away and walk to your destination.
2. Use the stairs, not the elevator.
3. Take a break every hour for five minutes and walk around your office
4. Choose to walk to a nearby place instead of drive.
5. Stand if possible in a meeting or discussion.
6. Move feet and legs while sitting.
8. Use the toilet upstairs or downstairs.
9. Talk to your colleague instead of sending email or making a call.
10. Stretching in office before and after work.
11. Run on the treadmill during lunch break or after work.
HOW DO I CHOOSE A PEDOMETER?
There are two types of pedometer, wearable (like watch or bracelet) and handphone app.
Characteristics to consider
1. Simplicity. Choose one which is easy to use. Just clip it on and you are ready to go. It will reset the steps to zero each day.
2. Added features. Some may calculate time spent in an activity, distance walked, calories and a heart rate monitor. Many activity trackers allow you to sync your data to computers or smart phone apps. Check the battery life too. If you wear it during swimming, make sure you get a waterproof device.
3. Accuracy. Most pedometers are generally accurate and reliable at counting basic steps.
4. Display. Some devices come with a display. You can read your step and other data both indoors and outdoors.
5. Price. The cost of a pedometer usually depends on how many features it offers. Activity trackers that use accelerometer may cost two to three times that amount.
HOW DO I LOSE WEIGHT USING A PEDOMETER?
A typical step per day of various lifestyles of 10,000 steps/day is approximately 300 kcal/day. A person aged 45 and weighing 70kg can burn around 400kcal by walking 10,000 steps briskly (3-5mph).
A recommendation is to walk more than 12,000 steps per day if you want to lose weight. If you're trying to lose weight, you should aim to reduce your daily calorie intake by 600kcal. This is best achieved by a combination of diet and exercise.
An avid sportsman who believes in the healing power of exercise, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ahmad Taufik Jamil is Universiti Teknologi Mara’s public health consultant and exercise physician. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org