Little changes sometimes add up over time to produce big change. That’s true for our environment and for our bodies. If you know someone who’s trying to lose weight, or maintain it, it’s often easiest to recommend that they take the stairs or walk to the store. Oftentimes this will produce more results for less cost than going to a gym. Here’s why.
Take the Stairs or Walk to the Store to Burn Calories
Someone weighing 240 lbs who walks to the store a mile away will burn about 300 calories. This assumes a round trip at a comfortably slow pace, as reported by the Mayo Clinic. More than half of those calories will come from fat. This Wikipedia article shows how low intensity exercise draws more from fat than from carbohydrates.
If they take the stairs, they only need to climb six minutes of stairs in a day to burn about 100 calories. The same Mayo Clinic article implies this under “stair treadmill.” And remember, the slower they go, the more of that energy comes from fat.
The table below shows an excerpt from the Mayo clinic site with some “low commitment” activities. These are things that they might do with friends in their neighborhood, or on vacation, or at the gym (if they go). You can see that slow walking and Thai Chi are going to be way easier recommendations than rope jumping.
Burn Calories to Lose Weight
So what does all this add up to? Well, if they increase their activity over their previous level, without also eating anything different from what they normally eat, they will slowly lose weight over time. How much depends exactly on their particular situation, but it will happen.
There are lots of other good examples, but we like to mention the BagPack at this point because it helps people walk more without adding a lot of time to their schedule. You can check it out here.