How to Take 5,000 Steps Before Your Lunch Break

6 easy ways to take 5,000 stepsStaying active is one of the most important things you can do for your health. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control suggests getting 150 minutes of physical activity per week, which translates to 10,000 steps per day (Fitbit’s default daily step goal). Whether hitting 10,000 steps is as simple as walking to and from work, or a bit more challenging due to a lengthy car commute, one simple way to boost your step count is by being active in the early hours of the day. Aim for 5,000 steps before your lunch break, and you can get a leg up on reaching those 10,000 steps. Here’s how.

6 Habits that Can Add Up to 5,000 Steps Before Lunch

Sweat before work. Whether you’re a night owl or an early bird, try heading to bed 15 minutes earlier to help your body wake up for a quick morning workout. It could be as simple as a 30-minute walk through the neighborhood to get your blood pumping, or a full-on sweat sesh at the gym—whatever it takes to get you up and moving first thing in the morning. Bonus: Studies show that morning workouts can help to reduce blood pressure and boost energy!

Create distance. If walking or biking to work isn’t an option, you’re likely taking public transportation or driving each day. Consider parking in the farthest spot, or getting off the bus a few stops earlier, and walking the rest of the way. This tactic only sets you back a few minutes, but will help you build more steps into your day.

Plan walking meetings. One-on-one meetings are often held in conference rooms, probably because it’s so convenient. But for a change of pace, take those meetings outside. You’ll sneak in extra steps and connect with your colleague, killing two birds with one stone!

Be inefficient. Doing things less efficiently can actually be a good thing, especially when it comes to increasing step counts. Need to use the restroom and get a drink from the kitchen? Do one task at a time to maximize steps—grab your cup of tea from the kitchen first, drop it off at your desk, and then head to the restroom.

Take a mid-morning stroll. While it can be tempting to crank through work at your desk to complete a project, it’s important to spend some time away from the computer screen. Take a mid-morning break and head outside! Pick a coffee shop that’s a few blocks away from the office. Even better, head out before lunch for a 20 minute stroll. Not only will you snag more steps, your creative juices will be flowing, setting you up for a more productive afternoon—a study from the American Psychological Association shows walking can help increase cognitive skills.

Take the stairs. It’s a tried-and-true way to go the extra mile. Instead of jumping in the elevator of your apartment or office building, take the stairs to get more steps and watch your floor count climb. Talk about stepping it up.

Looking to step it up? Learn how Fitbit Group Health can help your company develop a successful wellness program, boost employee health and happiness, and improve the bottom line.

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50 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I would like to have a fitbit watch that would let you answer your phone call Mine only tells me when some one calls or sends a message

  • How many times do you see people park their car as near the supermarket entrance door as possible. Park furthest away, more steps, more parking places and fewer people driving around like motorised chickens.

    • I’ve been doing this lately. I have a “spot” that is allllll the way at the end of the parking lot and it really takes the stress out of finding parking and dealing with others and their shopping carts.

  • surely it would make more sense to go to the toilet, then pick up your mug for tea, or otherwise your tea will probably go cold

    • I do water aerobics and my workouts don’t count any of the movements. Is there a Fitbit I could use in the water?

  • Ahh! it’s 11:48 and I’m at 4k steps… I definitely try to be inefficient, I get off the T (Train in Boston) a few stops early and walk to work for about 20 mins… but once I sit on my desk I get stuck in…

    Need to work on 20 mins break in my mornings to nail that 5k steps before lunch.

    Great article filled with ideas

  • Sometimes the above are just not possible. having to drive 30K to and from work. Working at reception unable to leave your desk except at lunch which is 1/2 hour. No available stairs.
    I have become ingenious with the photo copier, copying 1 page at a time to walk back & forth.

    • I’m with you there – I am a teacher in a 4/5 year old class and you would think getting my steps in would be a piece of cake – nope and my goal is currently 6,000. I spend most of my day standing but not walking ( even taking walks around my classroom doesn’t help – and I walk around the playground for our 45 minuet outside time too!)

    • When you go to the grocery store, take the farthest parking space and do a few (as many as you have time for)
      laps around the store before buying anything.

    • I understand some job keep us in a confined space, giving fewer options to move around. Begin getting steps in before work. If you wake up 1/2 hour earlier and go for a walk. You can get 2-3000 steps in before you leave for work. Some people argue about not getting enough sleep but exercising more often, i.e. getting more steps in may give you better quality sleep to make up for the 1/2 hour lost to exercise.

    • I understand some job keep us in a confined space, giving fewer options to move around. Begin getting steps in before work. If you wake up 1/2 hour earlier and go for a walk. You can get 2-3000 steps in before you leave for work. Some people argue about not getting enough sleep but exercising more often, i.e. getting more steps in may give you better quality sleep to make up for the 1/2 hour lost to exercise.

  • Be more inefficient???? Yeah my boss would love that and I have to bill for each client I work for and have to meet billable goals everyday. Meeting outside??? Discussing confidential information about clients outside???

  • I am a retired granny who takes an active part in caring for 4 grandchildren – all 7 and under. Some days are more active than others but if they want to play a board game, tea parties, drawing, marble runs how do I get my steps in?
    Again if they’re feeling under the weather and just want cuddles – how do I get my steps in?
    More suggestions please for the ‘older’ person who is trying to do the right thing and staying active but can’t manage the ‘optimum’ number of steps.

  • It’s fine to say walk and stay active, but when you have MS and work there is no more energy to move more. Please give stretches and exercises for those of us who are chronically ill.

  • I have been parking in the farthest spot from the door. It adds a few steps, but at age 82 I find it important to keep moving. Use my Fitbit as a motivator, not just a counter. Love my Charge2.0ⁿ

  • These are great ideas that anyone can implement. I started doing a 2-mile walk with my dog every morning so I can get my 5K steps in by 9:00 am. That early step count really motivates me to ensure I get my 10K in every single day.

  • These are all great suggestions that anyone can implement. I began taking my Golden Retriever Baylee on a 2-mile walk every morning, so now I get 5K steps in by 9:00 am. That early step count really motivates me to make sure I never get less than my 10K in every day. No matter how busy you are, you can always make time to walk.

  • A lot of users are pensioners who are trying to get fitter or keep diabetes at bay. Why is all your advise aimed at younger people who work?

  • I used to complete about 13,000 steps per day. Now I have a fractured foot and required to have my leg elevated, and get around on a knee scooter. The most I get now is 6,000 by doing cardio excercise with my arms. None of the steps I take with my good foot count in my fitbit when I am going around with the knee scooter. Why?

  • I normally take a one hour class per day, either cycling, barbell or Barre. How do these classes translate into steps?

  • Some serious eye rolling/yeah right going on with her fifth suggestion about a mid-morning stroll. While we might be able to get away with a 5 minute lap around the parking lot, there is no way our management is going to get on board with people randomly leaving the office to walk to the nearest coffee shop when we have coffee and a mini-concession stand in the office.

    Same goes for a 20 minute stroll in addition to our lunch break – unless she was proposing walking during your lunch break and then eating at your desk while working.

    • i can also say my boss would not like me getting up every few minutes. We combine tasks because we want to keep our jobs. =) but these are good ideas if you can do them

  • I would like articles about people like me. Over 60, disabled and walking with my cane I can do a mile a day, coming at over 2500 steps. Would like some easy ideas to try to step it up.

  • Once I was supervising some kids doing laps at my job as a sub teacher’s aid I walked/jogged too, on my own but visible, you know? And I told the coach “Well, I’m wearing my fitbit! Gotta put some steps on it!” And they were totally cool with that! : )

  • The Fitbit counts my steps when I go UP the stairs. But it would be nice if it counted steps going DOWN the stairs, as well. I was surprised to see that after desending 5 flights, there were no steps counted. I felt short-changed!

  • I would like more information for an 81 year old great grandmother wearing a Fitbit. Number of steps per day is reasonable?onymous

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