The Importance of Small Steps In Exercise & Your Daily Routine
April 20, 2022at4:00 PM
Want to know a secret? Physical activity does not have to be strenuous to be beneficial.
You read that right! Studies show that ‘small steps’ a.k.a moderate amounts of physical activity, like brisk walking or short sessions of more intense activities such as jogging for 15-20 minutes, are enough to move the needle of your fitness journey in the right direction.
Here are some reasons why it’s important to incorporate ‘small steps’ into your daily routine:
It helps improve blood sugar levels.
Research suggests that taking three 15-minute walks a day, particularly after meals, can curb risky blood sugar spikes throughout the day. The muscles we use to walk use glucose as energy, reducing how much is floating around in our bodies. While this is most advantageous for people with type-2 diabetes, anyone on a fitness journey can benefit from keeping blood sugar levels in check (and getting that extra bit of cardio too!)
It increases energy and focus.
Studies show standing for as short as 8-minutes or moving for 2-minutes after a half-hour of sitting down improves blood flow and brain activity, giving you more energy and improving your focus. This can help you plow through your work more productively or increase physical motivation before working out. Plus, you’ll be less reliant on snacks to keep your energy levels up, helping you cut down on those added calories you don’t need.
It can lead to better quality sleep.
If you have trouble sleeping, small steps might just be the solution you’re looking for. To be specific, simply taking more steps in a day or going on a 20-minute stroll are positively associated with better sleep. While researchers have yet to pinpoint the mechanism that explains how sleep and walking are directly correlated, we do know that moderate aerobic exercise increases the amount of slow-wave sleep (a.k.a deep sleep) you get each night.
It gets you more active, sustainably.
The biggest appeal of small steps is that it’s not as intimidating to stick to versus intense physical activities. It might not burn as many calories as a 60-minute workout i