No need to walk 10,000 steps
If you rarely walk your daily step target, don’t sweat it. New research has found that the 10,000 steps–a-day standard—a popular benchmark for adequate fitness and the default goal for many popular wearable activity trackers—is on the high side, reportsTheAtlantic.com. Harvard researchers gave fitness trackers to 16,000 women ages 62 to 101, recorded their step counts for seven days, and then monitored their health for a roughly four-year follow-up period. After adjusting for diet, lifestyle, and other factors, the researchers found that the women who walked about 4,400 steps a day had a 41 percent lower risk of premature death than the least active, who logged about 2,700 steps. Walking more than 4,400 steps further decreased the risk level only moderately—and the benefits plateaued at around 7,500. Lead author I-Min Lee says the 10,000-step goal should be lowered to encourage more people to get walking. “If you’re someone who’s sedentary,” she says, “even a very modest increase brings you significant health benefits.” She found that the 10,000-step target isn’t actually based on research—it stems from a 1960s marketing campaign for a Japanese pedometer that played on the fact that the Japanese character for 10,000 resembles a man walking.