As the weather cools down, the days shorten and the trees lose their leaves, finding the motivation to exercise may be easier or more challenging for you. Cooler temperatures may leave some feeling invigorated and energised, with more drive to work out for longer; while others despair at the shorter days and cool weather, struggling to stay active.
If you fall into the latter category, it can feel difficult finding the motivation to keep a consistent exercise routine. You could be doing yourself a disservice, however, as staying active during the colder months has multiple benefits. Not only does it keep you physically healthy, boosting your immunity during the cold and flu months and helping keep off excess holiday weight, but it provides a massive boost to your mental health during a challenging season.
Here a few tips that may make exercising feel easier in the shift from summer to autumn:
Switch up your routine
Once the clock changes, it can be difficult to motivate yourself to go to the gym after work when it’s dark outside and all you feel like doing is cosying up at home. For those who typically exercise post work, it may be an idea to try shifting your routine and working out in the morning. With the sun out, you can get your workout done and out of the way, leaving no need for procrastination later in the day.
If you really struggle getting outdoors or to the gym once it’s colder, there are plenty of at home workouts to try that require zero equipment. Body weight exercises such as squats, lunges, pushups, situps, and planks are all great exercise and a quick session can be done in 20 minutes. In between exercise, you can get your cardio in with moves such as jumping jacks, burpees and high knees.
Get outside while you still can
Even though the seasons are shifting it’s still a great time of year to be outside while you still can. While the sun’s still out, it’s advisable to get small doses of sunshine and top up your vitamin D reserves.
Furthermore, while there’s a chill in the air, activities such as jogging can be more enjoyable and manageable in lower temperatures. Spending time outdoors and in nature is a great way to destress and enjoy all of the incredible autumnal colours and wildlife.
Staying active outdoors is a lot easier and more enjoyable when you’re suitably dressed. A good idea is to wear layers when exercising in the autumn. Keep warm and dry from the chill and any rain with different layers that will help trap heat and provide insulation against the elements.
A good tip is to make sure your outer layer is water proof and your base layer is of a fabric that pulls moisture away from your skin, like the moisture wicking fabrics used in high-performance sportswear. This is key as fabrics like cotton trap moisture and will leave you cold, wet and weighed down.
Do exercise that you genuinely enjoy
You’re more likely to exercise with an activity that you genuinely enjoy doing and don’t find a chore or a bore. For you, this may mean walking outdoors (a particularly great way to enjoy take in the delights of fall), doing a yoga class at a nearby studio, or making the most of the various facilities at your local gym. At David Lloyd Clubs you’ll find a number of diverse ways to stay active, from swimming in our heated indoor pools, to playing tennis on an indoor court, trying a fun HIIT class, or zen-ing out in a yoga class.
Prioritise sleep and a healthy diet
Sleep is extremely important, helping your body to detoxify and rejuvenate throughout what is often a stressful season. Adequate sleep will help to regulate your mood, boost your immunity and gut health, and regulate your appetite.
While it can be tempting to lean on warming carb-rich foods in the colder weather, make sure you eat plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and proteins to keep you healthy.
Make exercising throughout the autumn and winter enjoyable and sign up to your local David Lloyd Club today.