Are you a 70 year old and wondering how long you should walk daily? I’ll explain all the recommendations and guidelines for you in this article!
As a general rule, a 70-year-old should walk 20 to 30 minutes or a minimum of 3000 steps per day. The actual distance is less important since one should aim for the activity that one is able to. A brisk walking pace is recommended for 70+-year-olds since that is known as a moderate-intensity activity level.
Walking is a great exercise for seniors and older adults to keep up with their fitness. So, in this article, I’ll explain more about the general recommendations for walking and physical activity for older adults. As well as the health benefits of walking for 70-year-old, and older adults. And most important how to integrate walking into your daily schedule. Let’s find out more!
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How Far Should A 70-Year-Old Walk Daily?
A 70-year-old or senior should 20 to 30 minutes a day. The US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least 150 minutes of weekly exercise for older adults like brisk walking. It’s important to note that this recommendation from the CDC is a general recommendation. How far you can walk daily, always depends on how much you are able to do. As a rule of thumb you can say that when you’re still in good general health as a 70-year-old, you should aim for the minimum daily or weekly physical activity recommendations from the CDC. Maybe, even more, when you’re able to.
20 to 30 minutes a day may sound a lot, but it’s actually a very limited amount of your time when you break it down. Picture this, maybe you like to watch shows on Netflix or something similar. The average episode of a Netflix show is between 20 and 45 minutes. So, stop binge-watching and go for a walk in between the episodes!
The distance you walk is less important. Some people walk at a faster pace and thus walk a greater distance in a shorter amount of time.
20 to 30 minutes walking a day is the equivalent of 2.000 to 3.000 steps if you walk at a brisk pace. So instead of focusing on a time, you can also focus on the number of steps you’ll get daily. Either way, getting your daily exercise and walking it’s important to remain your fitness level.
General recommendations for younger adults are higher, equivalent of minimum 10.000 steps per day. So when you as a 70-year-old still feel up to it, you can also try to aim for that goal. As long as you do what feels good physically about it.
The CDC and other health organizations always recommend focusing on brisk walking for older adults. So, let me tell you more about brisk walking next.
Brisk Walking For 70 Year Olds Explained
The CDC recommends at least 150 minutes of brisk walking or similar moderate intensity exercise a week. Brisk walking means walking at a higher pace than a stroll. According to Healthline brisk walking is walking at an average speed of 100 steps per minute. This means if you walk for 30 minutes at a brisk pace, you’ll easily reach the minimum recommendation of 3000 steps.
Adding a brisk walking routine to your daily activity contributes to your overall health. When you focus on brisk walking you train your endurance, it’s really more a physical exercise than a regular walk.
Also if you want to put in some more work and improve your muscle strength, make sure to include some extra exercises in your walking routine. You can easily do things like push-ups at the end of your walk. Or some squats during your walk. These are exercises you can do with your own body weight and don’t need any extra equipment for!
Fun fact, older people of 65 or older should be able to do at least 8-10 push-ups on average. Is that something you can do?
It’s helpful when you prepare for your daily brisk walk. As a 70-year-old or senior you want to prepare so it’s easier to focus on the walking route and create a daily walking schedule. Let’s focus on how to prepare for that next.
How To Create A Daily Regular Walking Schedule
So, now that we know more about the minimum recommendations for how far a 70-year-old or senior should walk daily, it’s also important to learn how to create a daily regular walking schedule. Once you’ve added walking to your daily schedule, it’s getting more of a habit instead of something extra you need to do. Thus it’s getting easier to reach the minimal requirements of how far or how long you should walk per day.
I recommend adding your daily walking at a specific moment to your schedule. For example, every day before you have something to eat. So you can choose before breakfast, lunch or dinner. You can also decide to combine some things, do a short walk in the morning before breakfast, and a long walk before dinner. This all depends on your personal preference of course and other things you have to do during the day.
For many people, it helps to really block specific times in their agendas, so that they don’t forget to do it or make other appointments so that you don’t have enough time to go on a walk. If you find it challenging to create a daily schedule, I bet you find it helpful to read my article, How To Structure Your Retirement Day.
Get The Right Equipment and Outfit.
Of course, you can just get out of the door and go for a walk. But, when you want to take daily walking a bit more seriously it’s important to get the right equipment and outfit. Many people use a device to measure their daily step counts goal. And also preparing for daily exercise can already help to improve your mood. It’s fun to look for new walking shoes, a smartwatch that can track your activity and prepare the best walking routes for the next week.
Especially when you walk in a group with friends, it’s a great way to get together and prepare for the walks you plan ahead.
Having good shoes is important, and of course, you can easily buy a pair of walking shoes online. But I recommend visiting a local sports store where they can measure how you walk and recommend the best fitting for your feet. Having the right shoe helps to avoid injuries and pain in your joints or getting blisters.
It’s also fun to track how many steps you actually get per day. An activity tracker like a Fitbit watch that you can easily connect with your smartphone is recommended to buy. There are many activity trackers available online, but I find that Fitbit works best and is the best value for money. Get yours here on Amazon.
Benefits Of Walking For 70-Year-Olds
Walking is an easy exercise for many people with moderate physical health. For seniors, older adults, and thus 70-year-olds, walking is an exercise that is related to many health benefits. The CDC’s slogan when it comes to exercise is Move More and Sit Less. Something we can agree on all I think. It’s so important to get enough daily exercise. Not only to stay in shape physically, but also for your mental health.
I always feel re-energized when I went for a walk or did some sort of exercise. This is because our body releases endorphins when we exercise, known as the chemicals in our body that make us feel good.
According to Harvard Health Education, there are many more benefits related to exercising and walking. Some of the most well-known benefits are;
- Strengthening Your Bones
- Burns Calories
- Strengthen Your Muscles
- Increases Flexibility
- Improves Weight Loss
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Benefits Heart Health
- Increases Social Activity
- Improves Mobility
There are many more benefits related to an active lifestyle. Daily walking is just something you can add to your daily structure to make sure you be more active.
Because walking is often a social activity it improves healthy lifestyles among groups of older adults more easily. Many 70-year-olds often walk in small groups and combine their exercise with social activity to interact with friends.
Some other articles I wrote that are helpful for you;
Why Hiking Is Good For Seniors
Science-Based Facts Why Gardening Is Good For Seniors