One surprising benefit from my kids forcing me to buy an iPhone was my pleasant discovery that the iPhone had a built in steps pedometer. I have been relatively successful in losing weight by following the simple rule "eat less", but I hadn't paid much attention to the second cardinal rule of daily life "move more." Once I started monitoring my steps on a daily basis, I was shocked to see how sedentary I remained even though I thought I was moving around enough during the day. Once this bit of information sunk in, I remembered reading about how Nelson Mandela, the South African hero, kept himself in good physical condition while confined for many years to a tiny jail cell. My ability to walk normally vanished, probably permanently, when a severe vertigo attack landed me in the hospital two years ago and wrecked my balance. I move around fairly well with a cane, though it is difficult to manage stairs and high curbs.
So thus began my quest to increase my steps. I first ramped my walking up to 3,000 steps a day, then 4,000, then 5,000. On some days I managed 6,000 steps. Steps became a game and not a chore. Every time I got up, I would move around for a few minutes. Going to get the mail and walking with my cane beyond the mail box nets me nearly 1,000 steps a day. I know I feel better and that my legs are stronger so I can stand in the kitchen and do chores around the house without any leg pain or discomfort.
If you are a couch potato, start eating less and moving more. You don't need to read ten diet books and 50 exercise books although using common sense in choosing the right foods to eat less and knowing which exercises are right for you so that you don't overdo or cause muscle damage are still important to know about. But anyone can take more steps, and taking more steps is such a powerful step (no pun intended) in the right direction, that you will be soon motivated to expand your transition from an overweight couch potato to a healthier, thinner, happier person. And, miraculously, I always find that when I succeed at one thing, like taking more steps and eating less, that so many other things that improve my life become almost automatic, easy to do without much thought, and then I remain grateful for my kids forcing me to buy an iPhone and for following my own simple rule of eating less.
OK Velna, who always chastised me each day for writing too-lengthy do list tasks, this one isn't so long, but I hope it makes a point. Doing simple things can benefit our lives and the lives of others in so many ways.
Do List task number 298: Take more steps. Start moving, start taking steps, get a pedometer or use your iPhone, and quit sitting still for hours at a time. Your health and well being are too important and too valuable to ignore. Good luck, keep going. The Curmudgeonly Professor.