Fall is a time of transition. As the leaves begin to turn, the days begin to get shorter and the temperature begins to cool, many people begin to look for changes to their routines as well. We think of autumn as a time to “turn over a new leaf”. Perhaps you have been indulging in some relaxation over the summer and are now ready to “get back at it” or maybe, it is a turning point for you all around and you are looking for something new. The following tips can help you get the most out of your routine this fall and to stay on track during some of the tempting holiday times.
1. Take Advantage of Fall Activities – while it is starting to get cooler outside, there are still many outdoor activities that we can enjoy during the crisp and sunny days of fall. Look for seasonal activities that give you the opportunity to be active while enjoying some fresh air such as apple picking, raking leaves (and even jumping in them too!) or hiking outdoors to enjoy the beautiful fall foliage. We are very fortunate to have the beautiful trail system here in Hampton with some sections lighted for enjoyment even after dusk. Get out and enjoy all the beauty the autumn has to offer!
3. Stay Hydrated – as things cool off, we sometimes forget the importance of drinking lots of water during activity as we don’t tend to feel thirsty as often as we do when exercising in the hotter temperatures. Staying well hydrated is important all year round and remember, by the time we start to feel thirsty, we are already starting to become dehydrated so be sure to pack your water and sip regularly throughout exercise.
4. Watch out for Holiday Goodies – As October arrives, we begin by celebrating Thanksgiving and then finish the month off with Halloween. This means that for many of us, we are surrounded by many tempting treats that we may not otherwise keep in the house. When you gather with family for the Thanksgiving feast, make wise choices when filling your plate. Make sure that vegetables fill the biggest portion of your plate and avoid high fat gravies and sauces that add excess calories to the meal. Treat yourself to dessert if it is something you enjoy but make sure to keep portions sizes reasonable. Finish off the day with a nice walk with family to help offset the extra calories you are likely to consume with this holiday meal. When it comes to Halloween, consider handing out a healthy treat or, if you choose to hand out candy, make sure to buy only what you need and get rid of any leftovers. There is nothing more tempting than a large bowl of candy left hanging around the house after the trick or treaters have all gone!
5. Turn Your Work in to a Workout – fall brings along with it many outdoor jobs we need to get done before the snow blankets our yards for the winter. Raking leaves, digging up plants, covering up shrubs for the winter and any other yard work you have to do is a great way to burn calories while enjoying some fresh air. You will be surprised at how many calories you can burn just by getting your fall chores done!
6. Change Things Up to Stay Motivated – as the days get shorter and we often find ourselves coming home from work in the dark, it can be hard to stay motivated to get out and do our evening walk or participate in activities we may have enjoyed during the warmer months. It may be time to find a new activity that you can enjoy throughout these colder months that will keep you motivated. Group fitness classes are a great way to enjoy an indoor workout as the days get shorter. Check out something new to shake things up and keep you motivated to keep on exercising throughout the fall and winter months.
The key to staying active throughout the fall months is in finding activities that you enjoy, changing things up to fit with the weather and finding ways to stay motivated. As the old saying goes, change is as good as a rest so consider this a great time to look for new activities to shake up your routine to keep you active and healthy throughout the beautiful autumn months!
By: Jennifer Gendron, PTS/FIS