Reader health tip: No cocktail before 10,000 steps

How’s this for motivation? No workout, no cocktail.

That tip comes to us from one of Los Angeles’ best-known food bloggers, JoAnn “Jo” Stougaard, who writes “My Last Bite.” She told us that she has adopted a new rule: The weekend cocktail hour cannot start until she’s logged at least 10,000 steps for the day. She then posts a picture of her pedometer count and shares it via Instagram using the hashtag #LATFit.

Stougaard is one of the “foot” soldiers in the Los Angeles Times’ efforts to make 2013 the year we stick to our health and fitness goals. We’re doing it by taking small, simple steps toward ditching empty calories and keeping exercise fun. (We kicked off the year with a list of 52 “paths to fitness.” You can find it at

Please join us by sharing your suggestions via email or by using the hashtag #LATFit on Twitter and Instagram. Tell us about your workout for the day, how you fended off the candy jar at the office, or how many steps you’ve logged. You get brownie points for reaching the magic 10,000 steps, but don’t worry if you don’t hit that mark. The point is to just keep moving and create friendly accountability. Don’t be surprised, however, if you find yourself looking for ways to get in more steps!

We especially like Jo’s suggestion because it’s all about balance. How are you staying on track in 2013? We want to hear from you.