So in a few weeks the clocks are going back.
And for some people that knocks them completely off track.
Some people hate early mornings. Others hate dark evenings.
Either way, it’s generally agreed that during Autumn and Winter your pillow and warm duvet calls louder than going for a jog.
Yet since keeping active releases endorphins (those feel-good hormones), and a lack of sunshine reduces serotonin (which balances out our mood) ditching exercise for staying wrapped under the covers for another 20 minutes isn’t exactly the best answer.
If the darker days leave you feeling demotivated and sluggish, I get it! But I also know that it can become even harder to pull yourself out of bed and slip your trainers on when the Winter hits us full pelt, not to mention the drop in temperature can make our joints feel a little more achey and our muscles feel tight…
…Which is why sticking to your active habits (or even starting them right now) is a great idea to help make heading into the Winter and whole lot easier.
Want to know some ways to make it easier for yourself and decrease the likelihood of the cold weather making your joints feel stiff and achey?
Lets get to them 😉
Keep It Simple
Seriously, exercise doesn’t need to be over-complicated. Can you find 20 minutes in your day for a brisk walk in the fresh Autumn air?… Going for a walk outdoors is a whole lot easier than promising yourself that you will get up early and head to the gym. Although watching the sunrise by the sea can really help give you a mood boost in the morning!
But what if you can’t face the idea of going for a walk when it’s a bit colder outside? That’s easily solved:
Go For A Walk Indoors
How do you do that? Simple! You can boost your fitness and increase your step count by taking a brisk walk around your local shopping centre, or even when you need to pop to the shop to get some food in for the week.
Just pick up the pace and walk a bit faster than normal, and you’ll be fitting activity in without making any extra effort!
One of the next things I love about this time of year is this…
Beat The Crowds
Of course it’s nice to head off for a coastal stroll during the summertime, but the only problem? Everywhere during the summer is packed! But now the kids are back at school, parks, beaches, and national walks are much quieter – so you have the perfect opportunity to take full advantage of the peace.
Next, have you considered doing this?
Try Something New
Like I said earlier, now is the perfect time to start building and sticking to healthy habits just before the clocks go back, and what better way to kick start that by trying something new?
The list is endless – Yoga, Pilates, bowls, indoor badminton, whatever you fancy! And if you’re thinking about joining a class to make keeping active more enjoyable with others, now is a great time to get yourself signed up as classes are likely to be a lot less oversubscribed now than they are in January when the ‘New Years resolution’ brigade show up!
This next one makes everything easier, and a lot more enjoyable…
Set Yourself Small, Achievable Goals
One thing I’ve found that keeps me on track is setting myself goals. The moment I stop setting goals, the harder it is to be consistent, and the easier it is to say, “Oh another 10 minutes snooze in bed won’t hurt.”
Setting yourself achievable goals can be the trick to keeping yourself accountable. It can be anything from being able to walk up to the top of Roseberry Topping, being able to walk an extra 20 minutes, to be able to take part in a small charity race, to lower your blood pressure to a healthy level…
Whatever you choose, striving towards this goal will motivate you throughout the winter, especially when you see small changes happening.
Now Strictly Come Dancing is back on our screens how can you NOT feel inspired to dance?!
There’s plenty of dance classes around. Whether you opt for Salsa, Tap or even Zumba, it will give you a great cardio workout and can help build stronger bones – and it’s also a great opportunity to make new friends.
Up Your Activity Levels At Home
Let’s be realistic despite your good intentions, chances are you’ll be spending more time indoors over the next few months than outdoors – it happens to pretty much all of us.
However, that doesn’t mean your activity levels have to drop – as long as you remember to add some incidental exercise into your day.
A few tips?
If you need to take a call, stand up and walk around whenever you’re on the phone. You could always deliberately leave it in another room so you have to hurry to answer it when it rings, too. And doing the housework can also get the heart going.
Autumn is a great time to take advantage of building new habits and maintaining your fitness to help make keeping those good habit up in Winter, easier.
P.S. If you’ve got back pain that makes it hard to get out of bed on a morning and keep active – a bad back that’s flared up, has come on out of the blue, or if you’ve been suffering for a while that it’s just become a normal part of your daily life – that doesn’t have to be the case.
Here’s a free tips guide that you can start using as soon as today, to help ease your back pain quick, visit here to download it: http://www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain
You might know Paul as an expert Columnist who writes weekly health articles for TWO of the North East's biggest daily Newspapers, The Northern Echo And The Hartlepool Mail, he is a regular Speaker at Industry Seminars around the globe and a Radio Personality, often heard on the BBC. Paul has been an expert guest on dozens of Radio shows and regularly interviewed in newspapers, magazines and trade journals all over the world, including the Guardian.
Paul’s background included working extensively in the Premier League with a Top Professional Football Team, and since quitting his job in Professional Football in 2007, his Physio Practice has become the fastest growing in the UK and biggest in the North East. So successful, that companies like BUPA, ASDA, The Vela Group And Coast & Country, repeatedly retain his Physio company's services to keep healthy their own staff and workforce. Paul Gough Physio Rooms is now a large multi-physio, multi clinic speciality practice in Darlington, Durham, Guisborough and Hartlepool.
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