Last year I achieved something pretty big

Jan 16, 2024
Walking 10,000 steps a day

Last year I set myself a pretty huge goal. To walk 10,000 steps every day for as long as may days as I could.

Doing my daily steps for me meant time away from my desk, time not working and at the time when I started it, it also meant time with the best furry side-kick, my dog Gatsby. When he passed away in September 2022 I wanted to keep up the daily walks. After I lost him I went out for the evening walks alone and it honestly made me so sad, but I wanted to keep doing up the walks, even without Gatsby. I wanted to keep active during my pregnancy and for a while I was walking a lot but as the festive period arrived I dropped off. I didn't prioritise myself within my day and although I had a pretty good streak, I broke my 10,000 daily steps in December and I was really upset about it.


Could you walk 10,000 steps a day every single day?


The day after I had broken my streak I had two choices, be sad about it or get back out there and start again. 

I chose the second option. 

On Christmas Eve 2022 I did 10,102 steps.

I was back in the game!


But this time I was committed, this time I really wanted to keep my streak going. Could I do three months? Maybe even six?

It's probably helpful to know that at that point I didn't know exactly what the end goal was, it just felt like the right move to make. 

The early months through January and February were hard, the weather was awful and I was really busy preparing for a new arrival. But it was important for me to get the headspace, even at the end of the day, so rain or shine I got my boots on and I got outside. 


Then the baby arrived!!

I didn't really know in advance how I would manage the days just before or just after having a baby. When it came to it I think I was running on adrenaline. I got the steps in, every day. (Side note: I had no complications with my pregnancy or birth, please ensure you get health advice if you're pregnant and you're considering doing something similar). And do you know when I did the steps felt really proud of myself for finding pockets of time for something that was important for me. As a parent and mum to a new baby, that feeling is like liquid gold!


I began to realise in Spring of this year, four months successfully into my challenge, that I rarely felt proud of myself anymore. I had previously taken on some huge adventures. I'd hiked across the Arctic Circle, I'd been part of a team who ran 6 marathons in 5 days across the desert, I'd cycled London to Paris, I set up my own law firm!! Life with a toddler and a new baby doesn't lend itself easily to international physical adventures. 


As I pounded the pavements I realised that in the months leading up to the start of the 10,000 steps challenge, I had prioritised my family, my clients, the needs of my businesses but never me. As the days went on, I began to say that I needed to get out and prioritise my steps. It was something I was doing for me, for my physical health and also my mindset. 


I began to notice on the days that I walked early I felt totally different about life. I had clarity in my to-do list and I felt more control of the day, which was rare feeling in the early days of having a new baby. 


As the weeks turned into months I began to wonder whether I could keep it up. If I could make it to six months, could I do it for a year? Would I always be able to fit them in? What if the children were sick (that's how I lost the streak last time)? What if I was sick?


How I fit 10,000 steps in every single day

I began to forward plan and prioritise the steps within my schedule. If I was going to be home alone in the evening, I'd make sure I went out earlier in the day. I added in walk and talk meetings, which I loved and others did too. At first I was a little nervous asking to move meetings away from Zoom but in time other people joined me and they walked too. How amazing is that?! That spurred me on so much, that others had found joy for themselves from my challenge.


I found a way to make my goal fit within my life so much that it became second nature.


It became a thing that my friends and family knew I was doing and they asked me about it. It became part of my day that I would ensure that I always prioritised my time and getting those steps in. There were rainy days, there were freezing days, there were glorious sunsets, walks around the block, walks along beachfronts and above all lots of feeling accomplished. 


You see those little wins add up. Every day, every week, every milestone was a new win and the wins give you confidence and as you build, slowly you begin to realise that anything is possible.


Sure the doubts creep in, as we got towards the end I felt so nervous, what if I forgot? Imagine if I forgot and ruined hitting the milestone. And I nearly did. I had a really busy run up to Christmas and one night I was getting into bed and I glanced at my phone, 9,753 steps, ARRRHH! 


I ran downstairs and began doing laps up and down the kitchen until I'd finished them. Phew.


Then on 23rd December 2023, 365 days after I started, I walked 11,864 steps. I'd done it.


In total in 2023 I walked 4,175,036 steps. I carved out time for myself, improved my mental health and stuck to something I didn't know at the start that I'd actually be able to achieve. 

I'm proud of myself, something I don't say very often. 

And I'm sharing this with you, possibly to inspire you to do the same thing or something similar, but really to share that you don't always need to know how you're going to achieve something to do it. You just need to be determined, dedicated and brave enough to get out there and start.


If you've set yourself some goals for 2024 already I'd love to hear what they are. Hit reply and let me know.

Oh and if you have any ideas on whether I'm meant to stop doing my 10,000 steps I'd also love to hear them, I'm still going!




P.S. This email was first sent out to my mailing list on Friday 5th January 2024. I try and email every Friday, if you'd like to receive these emails you can sign up below.

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