FALL INTO FITNESS:
Addie Spahr Kim
October is in full swing already and there is lots of buzz around all things Autumn with “pumpkin” in the lead for the top rated item talked about, consumed, tweeted, pinned, and instagramed this time of year. While I am a huge fan of pumpkin everything (well, except PSLs – pumpkin spice lattes, which have too much sugar, an unnatural spice and other stuff that I would cross off the healthy list) and love Fall food flavors, there is something else that I love about Fall – the fitness motivation it gives me. As a health coach I know the importance of exercise for one’s optimal well-being. BUT, I’m not going to lie, I don’t looooovvve to exercise. I do love how I feel after I work up a good sweat though and know that I need to exercise to manage stress, maintain good energy, fight off illnesses that are always lurking about, and be a lot more joyful for my family (translation: more patience and less yelling when it comes to parenting very energetic 5 and 7 year old boys).
Something about Fall gets me super motivated to exercise more. Maybe because it’s cooler (heat slows most of us down). Maybe my body knows that the seasonal change is happening and is craving some extra toxin purging that happens with a good sweat. It’s hard to say why I feel more motivated this time of year to move my body, but Falling into Fitness is always a good idea, regardless of the season, so I am working hard to harness the feeling I have in Fall year round.
What I find helps me and my clients is to 1) Explore your inner adventurer (try saying that 10 times) and get outside; 2) Bust out the beats (solo dance-partying and pretending your auditioning for the Voice while exercising is totally okay); and most importantly 3) Carve out time where and when you can, aka make #smallchanges. Here are a few tips to consider if, like me, you need some extra motivation:
- Explore your inner adventurer. If you’re not stoked about the gym, use this time of year to explore outdoors.
- Trail adventures: Having just moved from DC to North County San Diego, I am loving all the trails. Just yesterday, I threw my kids’ bikes in the car and we took our 10 year-old dog to the trails at Encinitas Ranch. The kids biked while Stella and I jogged and watched the sun start to set over the golf course. It was breathtaking and fun for the whole family.
- Yoga and a sunset, yes please! If you’re a yogi, check out the sunset yoga class at Hotel Del Coronado with Yoga Six this Saturday October 14 (bonus: mimosas served after class)!
- Paddle your way to something new. If you haven’t tried paddle boarding yet, there are tons of options throughout the San Diego area, but a great North County option is to rent board at Paddle Planet in Leucadia and head to the Carlsbad Lagoon.
- Do an outdoor bootcamp. One of our closest friends in DC (@bruffy_tim) just launched a mobile gym in San Diego (@atlasmobilegym) where they set up at various locations throughout the week in the mornings and then their trainer @salina_duggan is offering private training sessions (she brings the whole gym to you – because it’s on wheels. So cool!) The boys and I had fun testing it out this past weekend! There are tons of other options like this and park boot camps.
These are just a few of the many outdoor fitness options in and around North County San Diego (hello beautiful beaches and all the cool sports that come with SoCal living).
2. Get inspired with new music
Music is scientifically proven to improve endurance. According to Scientific American, “Recent research clarifies not only what type of music is best suited to a workout, but also how music encourages people to keep exercising.” So let the music motivate you to get moving! If you haven’t caught onto the endless music streaming apps, then it’s time to explore them. Whether you like Pandora making a playlist for you, are one of the cool people that subscribes to Apple Music and gets all the special access options (hello James Corden carpool karaoke sing-a-longs), or like me flip between making my own playlists or discovering new music on Spotify, there really are endless music inspiration options. So bust out some beats and get that body moving and grooving!
3. Small Changes are better than No Changes
Sometimes we convince ourselves that exercise has to be done in a gym or studio, with an instructor, or when we plan out that run or bike ride with a certain miles goal. If we can’t make time for those structured activities then often we don’t do anything. Interval training also known as HIIT, high-intensity interval training, is actually growing in popularity and availability all over. This type of exercise condenses an hour or more of traditional exercise into a few minutes of high-intensity exercise, According to the Washington Post, “studies have shown improvements in markers of cardiovascular health, metabolic capacity and aerobic fitness that often exceed those seen in continuous moderate-intensity exercise – all using workout routines that are relatively short.” And guess what, there’s an app for that! (actually multiple). Just about everyone is a smart phone user these days so even downloading one of the popular workout apps that creates anywhere from 5 minute+ workouts is a good strategy if you just need squeeze in movement wherever you are. For me that is sometimes using the Sworkit app where I just do 10 mins of crunches, push-ups and jumping jack style exercises with my kids or while they play and if that’s all I do, then I at least I still did something. #smallchanges make a huge difference so keep striving for those easy-to-achieve actions. Some of us are marathoners, but most of us just need to stay focused on short and sweet forms of exercise so that we get our bodies to move in some way daily. Period.
Wishing you joy as you Fall into Fitness!