Purpose: This study was designed (1) to examine the effects of a 10,000 steps d(-1) exercise prescription on sedentary, overweight/obese adults, and (2) to examine the effects of adherence on body composition and cardiovascular risk factors.
Methods: Fifty-six overweight/obese adults participated in the study. Body composition and cardiovascular risk factors were determined at baseline, 20 weeks, and 36 weeks. Adherence was defined as averaging > or = 9500 steps d(-1) from week 4 to week 36.
Results: 38 participants (68%) wore pedometers daily for 36 weeks and were available for posttesting. Significant improvements were noted in mean values for walking volume (3994 steps x d(-1)), body weight (-2.4 kg), body mass index (-0.8 kg x m(-2)), percentage body fat (-1.9%), fat mass (-2.7 kg), waist circumference (-1.8 cm), hip circumference (-1.9 cm) and high-density lipoprotein (3 mg/dl). The adherers had large improvements in body composition measures, whereas the nonadherers showed little or no change in these variables.
Discussion: A 10,000 steps (d(-1) exercise prescription resulted in weight loss over 36 weeks in previously sedentary, overweight/obese adults. Adherence to the step goal had a marked effect on the outcome.