Walking with no purpose is something that, to me, has always felt like a chore. It’s something that most of us do daily in order to get to where we are going or do something that we want to do.
It’s never been something that I’ve given much thought, even 18 months ago when I joined the James Smith Academy and heard the term #NeatUp247 used by Diren Kartal I didn’t really understand or appreciate the impact of walking. However, when most other forms of exercise are taken away from you because of a global pandemic and the only way to keep yourself active is to walk, I started to realise how underrated it was and how overlooked the benefits are.
For me walking came as a way to get fresh air during COVID and that is when the realisation hit, walking is actually good for you and not a chore.
My activity level was increasing, I felt better physically and mentally and I was getting results. Being consistent with hitting my step goal (10k a day) meant I didn’t have to spend hours doing home workouts while the gym was closed to see results. In June I stopped my home workouts and just focused on steps. I clocked up 426,906 steps or 216.5 miles which works out at only 14k steps a day average. I even managed to run a half marathon (I know, who am I!?) The result of all those steps teamed with my normal calorie deficit? 4kg loss, without working out!
So lets talk about why? What is NEAT? NEAT stands for ‘non exercise activity thermogenesis.’ In essence it is burning calories through those non planned activities and makes up around 15% of the energy burned throughout the day. A lot more than the energy you burn through planned exercise (About 5%). Complicated right? James Smith has a great module on this in his academy.
The idea behind #NEATUP247, coined by Diren Kartal is to move more. That movement could be anything from walking the long way home, getting off the bus one stop early, pacing while your making a work call or the one I’m still trying to crack… taking the stairs instead of the lift. It is so easy to get more movement in to your day and yet it is overlooked by lots of people.
For those who want to start improving their health but don’t enjoy workouts or the gym. Walking and NEAT is a great place to start.
In the interest of full disclosure my steps have taken a hit since the gyms reopened back in July as I do prefer lifting heavy things but I am still working towards an average step count of 7k a day on days I train and 10k on days I don’t and I’m still making great choices when it comes to getting my NEAT up. Making sure I get up and move between meetings and stand while I’m making phone calls. As Tesco would say, Every little helps!
To find out more about NEAT I’ve added n links to both the James Smith Academy and Diren Kartal. You can also follow me on Instagram @Fatgirlguidetogettingfit to see how I’m getting on.
So the question is, how are you going to get your #NEATUP247?