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Where Did 10K Steps a Day Come From?

Updated: Jan 29, 2023

Don't beat yourself up for not getting your 10,000 steps/day in. While it is a great to strive for 10k as a gauge of how active you've been (which is about 5 miles), no one is quite sure where that number came from.

A 2019 study shows that 4400 steps (over 2 miles at a BRISK walk @ 4mph) delivers significant health benefits and decreases mortality rates in adult females.

The benefits appear to level off at 7500 steps/day (over 3.5 miles BRISK walk). What is considered brisk? Staying in your Zone 2 heart range, which you'd be surprised is not that high, but is safe and effective. (Another blog to follow on that.)

By the way, 7500 steps/day would satisfy the World Health Organization's recommendation for 150min moderate exercise a week, or 30min x 5 days a week.

Addendum: New research shows that in addition to at least 30 min of Zone 2 cardio a day, trying to get in short 1 minute bursts of activity in throughout the day is a crucial part of your health regimen. So, even if you thought that standing desk would save you, it's can be just as sedentary. Bottom line is, if you haven't moved in 20 min or more, it's time!

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