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Inspiration to Help You Finish the Step Challenge Strong

by 
author image Rachel Grice
Rachel Grice is a contributing fitness editor for Livestrong.com and a certified yoga instructor. Previously, she was the science section editor and titling associate for several other sections of Demand Media Studios, including fitness, nutrition and technology. She completed her undergrad education at the University of Southern California and has worked for Men's Health, FitPregnancy and People magazines.
Inspiration to Help You Finish the Step Challenge Strong
The view from the top is so worth it! Photo Credit: Kristen Schellenberg / LIVESTRONG.COM

Congrats! You made it to the final week of LIVESTRONG’s 10,000 Steps a Day Challenge! By now you’ve walked somewhere in the neighborhood of 210,000 steps. That’s incredible!

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So, to celebrate, let’s do a fun little comparison here. (Don’t worry, we’ve already done most of the math for you!)

How Far Have You Walked?

  • 10,000 steps averages out to about five miles (depending on your stride length).
  • That means that by the end of the month you’ve walked about 150 miles. 
  • That is the distance from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. 
Photo Credit: Gracie Wilson/LIVESTRONG.COM
  • It is slightly less than the distance from Houston to Austin. 
  • It’s about as far as San Diego to Los Angeles if you take Interstate 15 (according to Google maps)

Your turn! What is 150 miles away from your hometown?

How High Have You Climbed?

What about if you turned those walking steps into climbing steps? Here’s how your daily steps stack up to some of the world’s tallest staircases and buildings.

  • The longest staircase in the Guinness World Records can be found going up Niesen Mountain in Switzerland. But at 11,674 steps, it’s pretty close to the daily target.
  • The current tallest building in the world — Burj Khalifa — has 2,909 steps to get to the 160th floor. Visitors aren’t allowed to use the stairs, but it’s an interesting thought when you look down at your pedometer and see 3,000 steps to know that you could have reached the top.
  • Every year the Empire State Building hosts a race up it’s 1,860 steps. The fastest time was 9 minutes and 33 seconds.

Alright, so walking steps and climbing stairs aren’t necessarily a one-to-one comparison, but you get the idea. But if they were, how many Empire State Buildings could you climb in one day, given your average step count?

How Many Calories Have You Burned?

Now for something a little more applicable to your daily life — calories burned! That depends on a lot of factors, but the American Council on Exercise (ACE) estimates that the average person burns 3,500 calories per week walking 10,000 steps a day. So that’s 500 calories a day!

But the more you turn up the intensity, the more calories you burn. If instead of focusing on shorter stints around your home or office (which still count toward your daily total number) you started taking more brisk walks around the block, you’d go from burning around 70 to 120 calories to 150 to 220 in 30 minutes (based on a 125-pound and 185-pound person).

Have you been tracking your calories? How many extra per day have you burned since upping your step count?

Now Go for the PR!

The first week of this challenge you got a baseline number for about how many steps you typically walked in a day. Now, in the final week, it’s time to see how far you can go!

Challenge yourself to add an additional 30-minute walk to your day or commit to a weekend hike (weather permitting, of course). We know you can’t spend all day every day walking, but pick one day — maybe the last day of the challenge — and go for that daily step count record.

Then share it with the Facebook Challenge Group! We want to hear about how far you walked and where. Did you find a gorgeous hiking trail? A cute farmers market to stroll through on the weekend? Or a new park to take the kids or pups to?

Read more: 21 Hiking Trails That Will Inspire Wanderlust

Have a little fun with this challenge!
Have a little fun with this challenge! Photo Credit: Kristen Schellenberg / LIVESTRONG.COM

How to Join the Challenge

1. Find some way to measure your daily steps. There are a lot of fitness trackers out there that you can either wear on your wrist or clip to your clothes. If you don’t want to shell out the money for an expensive wearable that you may or may not use after the challenge, most smartphones will track your daily steps (as long as you carry it with you throughout the day, of course).

2. Download the LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate calorie-tracking app. Not only can you input your daily meals, but if you have an iPhone, the app will also pull the data from your phone’s step-counting app HealthKit to show you how many calories you’ve burned each day. (Bonus points, aka calories burned, for any additional workout you do!)

3. Join the LIVESTRONG.COM Challenge Facebook Group. We’ll be posting lots of helpful info and tips, answering all your questions and connecting you to other members of the community who are joining you for the challenge.

4. Post your progress to the group. Keep the rest of the community updated with your daily walking by posting screenshots of your step-counting app or photos of your fitness tracker or what you saw on your daily walk. Maybe you walked through the park at lunch or took a hike over the weekend. We want to see it!

What Do YOU Think?

Will you be joining us for the 10,000 Steps a Day Challenge? Have you joined the Facebook group yet? Have you ever tried a walking challenge before, or do you currently use an app or pedometer to count your steps? Share your thoughts and questions in the comments below! And be sure to follow our host for the challenge, Jamaica King, on Instagram @rarax3.

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