I saw another classic headline in the media the other day, “The 10,000 steps a day myth: how fitness apps can do more harm than good”
It’s a pity that I saw this over breakfast, as my kids didn’t appreciate having a second shower of the morning, this time with my tea as I sprayed it all over the table in disbelief.
Let me get this straight. We have a clear obesity epidemic, and many people are eating poorly and exercise too little. Yet some doctor keen to make a name for him / herself (I couldn’t even be bothered to find out who he/she was) decides to pour scorn over a well-known and very well meaning mantra that walking 10,000 steps a day will do you some good!
One quote in this report was “Imagine everyone thinks they have to do 10,000 steps but if you are not actually physically capable of doing that, you could actually cause harm or damage by doing so.” OK, so this means that people must be either so dumb, or out of tune with reality, that they will happily drag their sorry carcass to the 10,000 steps finish line every day – even though their body is begging for mercy – just because their latest trendy Fitbit or i-watch says they must… really? Oh, please save me from the thought police.
Conversely, these do-gooders also say that an arbitrary target of 10,000 steps could serve to hinder those who could and should do more than this each day. Call me gullible, but I think that someone who has enough about them to decide to buy a fitness gadget in the first place, will identify that if they can stroll to 10K without breaking a sweat, then they will not just drop onto the sofa feeling justified in munching through a family bag of Cheese & Onion crisps. I think they might know to set a new stretch goal for themselves.
Let people decide for themselves and stop confusing people.