How I Achieved 30000 Steps in a Day | Achieving 30,000 Steps | Step Graph

I have used a wearable of some sort for about the past six years. During this time the common goal for steps per day has always been 10,000. An athletic trainer I knew from the local university would only work out on the days that her pedometer wasn’t aiming to hit 10,000 by the end of the day. I would always endeavor to hit 10,000 steps myself. | Achieving 30,000 Steps | Fitbit SurgeRecently, I switched wearables to the Fitbit Surge . I set my daily goal at 12,000 steps and was off to the races. With my normal daily activities putting me in the 4,000 to 5,000 step range, the remaining 8,000 to 9,000 steps were obtained by walking/running on the treadmill at the gym or on a long walk with the dogs – or both.  This level of activity generally put me in range for my daily calorie burn goal of 2800 calories per day.  It also helped me exceed my daily goal of 6 miles per day. | Achieving 30,000 Steps | 30,000 Steps Badge - Trail ShoeIt wasn’t until recently, on a day that I had explored a new hiking trail in the area, that Fitbit sent me an email advising me that I had attained 20,000 steps in a day and thus had earned the “High Tops” badge. I was happy to achieve the goal, even though I hadn’t planned it. Being one to love checking goals off my list I checked the Fitbit dashboard to see what other badges there were to obtain in this area.  I thought the next one to work towards was the 30,000 steps in a day badge – or the “Trail Shoe” badge.


Considering 30,000 steps is about 15 miles, attaining this number of steps in a day is not something that you’ll just happen upon without some effort. I knew, for instance, that I would have to average about 2,000 steps per hour for the 15 hours I thought I would be awake from 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM. That’s about a mile an hour.


When I woke up just before 8:00 I hit the ground running. As I moved through my morning routine I did so with steps on the brain.

As I brushed my teeth I walked around in a circle in the bathroom, likewise as I brushed my hair. I dressed very inefficiently, taking an item out of the closet, meandering around as I put it on, then walking back to the closet for the next item of clothing, continuing the process until I was fully dressed.

My next chore was to take the dogs out into the backyard to do their business. Instead of sitting on the porch supervising, as I normally would, I walked around the yard until they were both finished. By this point it was about 8:30 AM and I had achieved around 700 steps.  That pace wasn’t going to cut it, but I figured I’d pick up the pace as the day progressed.

PICKING UP THE PACE | Achieving 30,000 Steps | Walking SailorAt noon I took one of my dogs on a walk on a nearby trail.  I was slightly at his mercy because he likes to stop and smell EVERYTHING.  However, I was able to increase my pace to about 750 steps per 15 minute increment.  We only walked for about an hour due to his special needs then headed home.

I was a bit of an under-achiever again for the next hour or two.  But, then had another resurgence of energy as I cleaned the house.  It is definitely possible to increase your steps through vacuuming!  It was also important for me to be less of a multi-tasker as I completed my chores.  Instead of picking up several items at a time to tidy up, I made a separate trip for each item.  Not very productive under normal circumstances, but when every step counts…


By this time it was nearing on 5:00 PM – time for my gym workout!  While my husband was at night school I went to the gym to work out for 1 1/2 hours.  At 5:15 PM when I began my workout I was about halfway to my goal at 15,470 steps but had less than a third of the day left to finish. With my 30,000 step goal clearly in focus I abandoned my usual strength training and headed straight for the treadmill.  With a combination of walking vigorously and running I accomplished an average of 1732 steps per 15 minute increment.  By the time the 1 1/2 hours was up I was sitting at a much more respectable 25,863 steps.


After my workout I spent a little time walking around the yard with the dogs and pacing the halls aimlessly.  Eventually though, I knew I had to put the brakes on temporarily to get cleaned up for dinner.  I found myself wishing I could put my Fitbit back on in the shower – those couple of steps weren’t counting towards my tally and it was killing me!

Once cleaned up I put the Fitbit back on and my husband and I headed out to dinner with a friend.  Normally I would be frustrated having to wait for a table, but in this case I took the opportunity to walk circles around the parking lot.  A few other restaurant patrons looked at me like I was crazy, or casing vehicles to steal something, or both.  Who cares?  I was a woman on a mission!  I still wasn’t quite there though when we were finally seated to dinner and I squirmed in my seat, anxious for the meal to be over so I could be back on the move!


Once home from dinner I completed the final 1500 steps in the comfort of my family room, pacing back and forth behind the couch.  I was a little tired, but less so having spread out my effort throughout the day.  My total calorie burn for the day was a very impressive 4328!  My mileage ended up at 15.72 miles.  I had been considered “active” for 203 minutes.  Finally, as I lay my head on my pillow at the end of the day, my final step tally was 30,324.  The “trail shoe” Fitbit badge was MINE!


If you aren’t currently quite active on a daily basis I do not recommend setting a goal of 30,000 steps per day.  You’re likely to injure yourself.  Or, at the very least be sore enough to deter you from activity for the next few days.

To get a starting goal for daily steps, take the highest number of steps you achieve in a 7 day stretch and make that your starting point.  Complete at least that number of steps daily for a week. Once successful at that, increase the step goal by 500 steps daily and try to be consistent at that for the next week.  Keep increasing the goal by 500 daily steps each week.

Once you’re in the 15,000 step range you can start increasing your daily steps by 1000 to 2000 and trying that for the week.  Once you’re over the 20,000 step range you can further increase it by 3000 to 5000 steps daily.  If at any time you feel it’s too much, scale back to your last attainable goal.


Remember to hydrate yourself throughout the day.  If you’re walking vigorously for a stretch, 1/2 to 1 quart of water per hour is a good rule of thumb.

Think about all of the ways you can increase your steps.  Including, walking instead of driving, taking stairs instead of elevators, marching while watching TV, taking the dog for a walk or meeting with a friend to walk instead of meeting at the coffee shop.

The benefits you’ll reap are many: lower blood pressure, improved glucose levels, increased circulation, better cardiovascular fitness and overall health.

Good luck reaching your own step goals!  I’ll let you know how the next milestone goes (40,000 steps) once I complete it!  🙂 | Achieving 30,000 Steps | 30,000 Steps

36 Comment

  1. Yesterday, My Crew decided we would go out for a Hike. Enjoy nature and hanging out. Took some of our kids. Aging from 9 to us adults. We had a blast and then headed bk. Because there were many different ways to go and the people didn’t take care of the signs very well. We got lost in the dark with very little lights. Thanks to Team Work… We got every home safe way after the park closed. We totaled 18.4 miles. 30,000 steps. We are all very Sore. Over all was worth hanging wt good friends/Loved ones for the whole day and half the night. Would do it again, after lots of rest!!! Good luck everyone. Would most definitely recommend working your way and not over doing it.

  2. Been doing it consistently for months daily. It’s not easy and you will suffer many injuries including wear down of shoes and feet. But so relaxing. I do about 30km including hills.

  3. Hit 30,000 walking around in vegas!

    1. Would love to go back to Vegas! Certainly a lot to see and do there to keep you distracted when walking and nice to go from hot dessert air outside to A/C inside.

  4. I had my better half build me a stand to hold my laptop, and with a good treadmill, I can compute and walk. I have been a walker for decades and if I want to do it, walk a mile in about 10 minutes. I can easily churn miles with my headset on (tunes pumping) and at least 3 mph on the treadmill. It does me good to exercise the body while computing… at 3 I can type even. If I’m just reading I can up it. I do have to take about a mile and a half daily trip to the only stairs that will register and do those steps for as long as I can stand, then go home. (local courthouse). You can get that move-it! Bravo on earning your FIRST 30k. A good solid day of shopping where you are hunting aisles can also help you to rack a good solid 20k without thinking. 🙂 I wanna earn the winged sandals ONCE!

    1. Having a treadmill-desk would be awesome! A solid day of window shopping is a great way to get a lot of steps! I also find that when I’m travelling in new cities that are pedestrian friendly I’m getting 30k plus without even thinking about it. Good luck earning the winged sandals!

      1. I also have my treadmill sitting on my laptop with some super adhesive as seen on tv sticky tape, and I run at 3.5 speed for 2 hours AT LEAST… every night and have yet to reach 30,000 but always get 28,000 .. idk what it is about those last 2,000 steps but today I WILL get 30,000.

  5. I parked at a Walmart. Headed into a huge housing complex. Got over 20K in there walking, enjoying nature and etc…the other 10K finalized it throughout the day….

    1. Sounds good! Enjoying nature is a great way to pack in a lot of steps.

  6. Went to NYC and got 30,000 steps in – now sore but can probably eat whatever I want tomorrw. Lol

    1. Sounds like a great way to get those steps in! 🙂

  7. Sounds like a chore to me. Who has time or the desire to walk 30,000 steps a day? My goal is 10,000,the rest of my day is for living life.

    1. You definitely have to do what works with your own lifestyle.

  8. just work for ups avg 29500 to 32000 steps depending on the route

  9. I do 32000 steps at in a 8 hour shift I work in a warhouse constantly walking

  10. I hit 39,142 steps. So close to 40,000!

  11. Nice article!
    Just hit 32k a day!
    My average is around 16-17k

  12. Julie Johnston says: Reply

    Loved your article – sounded so familiar in trying to crack a 30000 day. My average is 21000

  13. Glen Wickersham says: Reply

    Awesome article! Thanks.

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