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Fitness Friday: Fall into outdoor exercises

By Rachel Swick Mavity | Sep 21, 2012
Source: images Gather the family, grab your helmets and head off on a bicycling adventure.

Summer has passed; bathing suit season is mostly over, and now is the time to get back into the routine of exercising in the great outdoors.

With the heat, many of us have been stuck inside doing our exercises, but hopefully the cooler breezes of September will beckon us to get outside as a family.

I recently read online that by 2030 half of all people in each state will be obese. This statistic startles me! I don't feel like I see that many obese people walking around, yet the numbers must be continuing in an upward trend.

As a woman who has struggled with weight all her life, I know that our bodies do respond to regularity.

For example, if you regularly eat high-fat or fried foods, your body starts to gain pounds. Your body also starts to feel sluggish and less interested in getting off the couch.

On the other hand, if you eat regular, healthy meals, your body burns up that fat, and you feel energetic, which prompts you to get off the couch.

I continue to struggle with my weight every day, but I can proudly say the scale continues to reward my efforts with lower and lower numbers.

I was talking to my sister earlier this week about calorie intake. Often, in an effort to lose pounds, we eat fewer calories than recommended. In return, our bodies go into starvation mode and cling to that fat. In order to shed the fat, a certain amount of calories must be taken in. Pair the right number of calories with an exercise plan, and poof, you lose weight.

I am not saying it is easy. It certainly is not, but I am saying that it is possible.

The best way to get there is to set an attainable goal. In the past, I had such lofty goals - i.e. I will lose 30 pounds by Christmas.

Often I would get off track and give up. Having smaller goals has helped me reach them  - i.e. I will lose one pound this week. Or I will lose one pound a week for five weeks.

Then if I get off track and don't lose that pound, I know I have to work harder to lose more the following week.

Having a partner in weight loss also really helps. I have lost the most weight ever since partnering with my husband. We work together. We try not to judge the other person if he or she is having a rough week. We encourage each other. And, when he goes out for his morning jog, it reminds me that I better get a workout in as well.

With baby steps, we can all lose weight, be healthier and happier this fall.

Now onto the fall workout tips.

Tip: It only takes 30 days to cement a workout habit. That means if you join a gym this month, and continue to go every day for 30 days, you will be over the hump of starting a fitness regime. And, you will be well on your way to losing weight and feeling healthier.

Tip: The weather is still warm enough to wear a T-shirt, but cool enough that you won't come back from a workout drenched in sweat. Take advantage of the weather by getting outside with the family. Try a new bike path, take a walk around a lake, explore new trails at your local park, hike to the top of a mountain, etc. Try bicycling, walking, hiking, jogging and playing golf and tennis. The time spent out in nature will do as much good for your mind as for your body. Let the fresh air refresh your spirit.

Tip: Now that kids are getting up early to head to school, you might have to tweak when you fit exercise into your day. Try taking a lunchtime walk around your office complex, or head outside and walk to lunch or a park. Fitting exercise into the middle of the day saves you from having to energize yourself to do it in the afternoon. If you decide to make an afternoon workout your priority, get it in right after work. Go straight to the gym or change into your workout clothes at the office so you are already in the mindset that this workout will happen.

 

Hope these tips help you plan your fall workouts. As always, have a great weekend in the kingdom of drool!

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