Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Pedometer Challenge

The Pedometer Challenge
Posted by OMB Director Peter Orszag
On October 1st, OMB kicked off the Pedometer Challenge, a voluntary effort to boost OMBers’ physical activity and improve our health. We made pedometers available to all OMB employees to give them a tool to track their steps, increase their physical activity, and make strides towards reducing their stress levels and improving their overall health. In just two weeks, OMB's highest stepper has taken 359,632 steps so far and I'm happy to report that I've taken 179,724 steps. I thought I'd be hard to beat since I like to go for a run every day, but I am currently ranked 49th of the 233 active participants.

The OMB Pedometer Challenge is more than a contest: it's an intervention backed by evidence. Studies show that pedometers are proven to be one of the most cost-effective ways to increase physical activity. According to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the use of a pedometer caused participants to increase physical activity by as much as 27 percent — increasing average daily steps by over 2000 steps per day. A second study suggests that pedometers are one of the most cost-effective interventions for increasing physical activity.

Although there is serious evidence behind the Pedometer Challenge we had a bit of fun with it:

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