Many Fall exercises ideas, such as apple picking and hiking, may help you improve your fitness by adding more steps and motions to your routine.
Even if you’re not driving kids back to school or live in a climate where autumn brings changing leaves and cooler temperatures, the start of fall tends to bring a shift in our schedules and moods, says Lindsay Ogden, a National Academy of Sports Medicine–certified personal trainer and the digital manager for content and coaching at Life Time, a national fitness company that operates gyms and corporate wellness programmes.
With fewer hours of daylight, you may find yourself spending less time outside, particularly in the nights and early mornings. You may find it difficult to maintain an outside exercise, especially if you have been exercising during one of these periods, according to Ogden. “Perhaps it’ll be dark when you wake up.”
She claims that some individuals are more enthusiastic to work out at different times throughout the day. You can also develop a desire for novel methods to exercise. According to Ogden, the “new start” sense that comes with exploring new hobbies may be very inspiring.
The novelty may make it more lighthearted and enjoyable — and something you look forward to rather than something you dread.
Here are some things to try that will help you get plenty of exercises and love the changing seasons:
1. Picking Apples
From apple picking to navigating a corn maze to hiking or cycling, there are plenty of outdoor activities to help you get a few more steps in this fall.
According to Ogden, activities like these may increase total activity throughout the day while also providing small bursts of intensity. Apple picking, for example, requires overhead stretching as well as twists and forward bends (all good for maintaining mobility). You could be inspired to run through a corn maze with your friends and family.
Because you’re exercising several muscle groups, getting different sorts of motion than you’d get at the gym might increase overall fitness, according to Ogden. She also mentions that going outside might help with your mental health.
“Think of ways to appreciate and genuinely embrace the season wherever you are,” Ogden advises. It will feel less like labour if you like moving.
2. Fun Runs
According to Ogden, fall is a “fun run” season. Many cities, for example, have a turkey trot run on Thanksgiving Day or the following weekend. Other fun runs have themes, such as a colour run, in which participants jog through clouds of nontoxic coloured powders, or a leaf run, in which participants jog through a tree-lined course ablaze with autumn colours, and encourage participants to dress up in costumes or festive attire, according to Ogden. Many of these events include a 5K or other shorter distance option, as well as the option to walk the course. A party-like environment is created through music, post-event festivities, and the companionship of people.
Ogden adds, “It’s all about having a good time.” They’re particularly useful if you’re new to running — or if you haven’t started but want to, according to Ogden — since they provide a pleasant and achievable objective to strive toward.
3. Performing dances
Working out doesn’t have to be a hassle, and the colder weather doesn’t mean you have to stick to the treadmill. Instead, stand up and dance to your favourite tunes.
Whether you’re dancing along to your favourite music or in a class with others, the advantages of dancing may be enormous. In a small study of postmenopausal women published in the journal Menopause in July 2021, researchers invited 36 women (average age 57) to attend dancing courses together three times per week for 16 weeks. Participants experienced lower cholesterol levels, enhanced balance and strength, and even higher self-esteem at the conclusion of the four months.
According to Scott Kaiser, MD, geriatrician and head of geriatric cognitive health at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in California, the advantages are likely due in part to the social aspect and exchanging lots of laughs. Despite the fact that he was not engaged in the study, he claims that prior studies on physical exercise and social ties have shown a substantial link between the two.
“And you’re learning something new with dancing, or any class that’s strange to you,” he says. The thrill of the chase might be enhanced by novelty.
If attending a live, in-person group class isn’t an option, check out apps like Steezy and iDance, which offer a variety of sessions at various levels and provide free trial periods.
“Even if you simply dance around your living room to one song,” Dr Kaiser explains, “it tends to increase your health and happiness.” It will be simpler to persist with an activity that you like.
4. Yin Yoga
It’s important to recognise and lean into the downshift as the nights become longer and you approach winter, says Ogden. That means, instead of battling it with rigorous HIIT workouts, try a discipline like a yin yoga, which is gentler and more soothing. Although certain yin practises are akin to restorative yoga, she notes that others may be a true workout.
This kind of yoga entails holding positions for prolonged periods of time, generally three to five minutes, and allowing your body to “sink” into them. This gives you a sense of comfort and relaxation, which is a terrific approach to maintain your exercise stress-relieving (rather than stress-inducing) when you transition to a more intense autumn schedule. But it’s not all relaxation – these lengthier holds may be powerful, particularly after the first minute, and you could find it more challenging than you anticipated, in a good way.
5. Leaves raking and other yardwork
It is not necessary for all fitness endeavours to be full-on, scheduled exercises. Home gardening duties such as raking leaves or planting tulip bulbs for spring, according to Ogden, may help your body move in a variety of ways.
According to the authors of an editorial published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine in February 2019, they may be classified as high-intensity incidental physical fall exercise ideas. This is defined as intermittent bursts of exercise that may be accomplished via ordinary duties such as raking, house cleaning, lugging heavy groceries, or running up a flight of stairs.
In that article, the researchers describe how even a few seconds of these activities may have considerable health advantages (such as increasing cardiovascular function, better blood sugar regulation, and decreasing type 2 diabetes risk), especially for persons who are otherwise highly inactive.
6. Strengthening Exercises
Strength training routines may be a terrific addition to your fitness plan during the colder months. According to a Clearwater, Florida–based fitness expert, less sunshine and harsher weather may drive you to seek out more indoor-friendly routines regardless. Author of The Little Black Book of Workout Motivation, Mike Matthews, CSCS.
There has been a lot of studies done on the benefits of lifting weights. According to Many autumn, activities may help you improve your fitness by adding more steps and motions to your routine. a study published in Sports Medicine in May 2021, it may help manage blood sugar and enhance cardiometabolic health, reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Dropping down and banging out a lot of pushups isn’t your thing? Matthews recommends attempting a strength-training routine that you haven’t done before. He claims that trying something new might provide a significant increase in the drive.
“When you’re limited on time, as when your autumn calendar becomes crazy hectic,” he adds, “strength training can be really efficient, and just a few sessions a week may help you feel stronger.”
Affiliate disclosure: The links contained in this product review may result in a small commission if you opt to purchase the product recommended at no additional cost to you. This goes towards supporting our research and editorial team and please know we only recommend high quality products.
Disclaimer: Please understand that any advice or guidelines revealed here are not even remotely a substitute for sound medical advice from a licensed healthcare provider. Make sure to consult with a professional physician before making any purchasing decision if you use medications or have concerns following the review details shared above. Individual results may vary as the statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.