Save your life: Leave your car at home for short trips
While you might love to take a quick five-minute ride with Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) in the animated movie "Cars," the truth is, every short hop you make in your gas mobile takes years off your life. We've gotten so leg-lazy that some say cars are the new tobacco and just as dangerous for public health.
Almost 50 percent of car trips in the U.S. are three miles or less; 25 percent are less than a mile! So you've got many chances to meet our new challenge: Replace one of your short car trips a day with a walk.
This is a great first step toward getting in your 10,000 steps a day. Steps that make your RealAge younger, reduce your stress, protect you from heart disease and type 2 diabetes and keep your brain sharp, skin less wrinkly and sex life lively. (You can walk about a quarter mile in five minutes; that equals around 500 steps.)
Other great ways to increase your stride time:
Invest in a rolling shopping bag or trundle bag to carry whatever you'd have transported in the car.
At the mall? Remember, most malls have stairs. Eliminate elevators and escalators whenever possible.
Play dates during the day? Walk your kids to their friend's house, and walk back to pick them up later.
Walking opportunities are everywhere. You can slash your risk of death in the next few years by 24 percent if you get in seven hours of moderate activity a week. So drivers, turn off your engines!
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Medical Officer at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. For more information go to www.RealAge.com.