22 August 2016

People are being encouraged to get walking in a bid to make the county healthier and fitter with this year’s 20 Million Steps weekend.

Following the success of last year’s 20 Million Steps weekend, which saw over 30,000 walkers complete a total of 33,172,823 steps, this year the target has been doubled with the aim of clocking a grand total of 40 million.

Families, friends, work colleagues and individuals are being encouraged to don their walking shoes over the weekend of September 23rd to 25th and help to smash last year’s total.

People can take part wherever they like, and then log the number of steps they complete online at www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/20millionsteps.

Family walking through a forest

Download the app

This year for the first time walkers will be able to automatically add their steps to the overall count by downloading the Withings Health Mate app. First for Wellbeing has partnered with health company Withings to provide more accurate tracking of steps and opportunities to compete with friends and family to see who will walk the most steps.

Pedometers will also be available from country parks and libraries to help walkers count their steps.

County council cabinet member for public health and wellbeing Cllr Sylvia Hughes said: “Last year’s event was a huge success and we were astounded to see so many people taking part. This is why we’re setting this year’s target even higher!

“We’re confident that together we can reach 40 million steps. The average person walks between 3,000 and 4,000 steps per day, and 1,000 steps is the equivalent of just 10 minutes of brisk walking, so it’s really easy to take part.

“It doesn’t matter where you do your walk, but don’t forget to visit our 20 Million Steps website to find out how to log your steps and help us to smash our target.”

Get walking

Here are some tips to help you clock up your steps:

  • get off the bus early and walk the rest of the way home or to work
  • walk to the station instead of taking the car or bus
  • take the stairs instead of the lift, or walk up escalators
  • walk the children to school, whatever the weather
  • walk the dog

People will be able to pick up a free pedometer at Brixworth, Sywell, Barwell, Irchester or Fermyn Woods Country Parks during the 20 Million Steps weekend, or from a local library which will be organising walking activities and workplaces will also be holding their own group walks.

People can join as individuals or set up teams of their own in order to compete together to help exceed the target.

The 20 Million Steps weekend is part of Northamptonshire County Council’s campaign to make Northamptonshire a happier, healthier county by 2020. Country parks and libraries are managed on behalf of the council by First for Wellbeing.

To find out more about the event, including how to log your steps, visit www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/20millionsteps.