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Get Ready to FALL into Fitness!

Here Comes the Fall!

Here Comes the Fall!

Is it me, or does the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day fly by faster with each passing year? I know the calendar says we still have 16 days until the official start of autumn, but for me, summer ends with Labor Day. Sigh. I hope everyone enjoyed the end of the season and that the new month is off to a strong start.

One thing I love about September is the fact that all the back-to-school buzz makes this the perfect time to re-focus your attention on getting your health and fitness routine in tip-top shape. Maybe you’re thinking: “Laura, are you kidding? I’m too busy trying to get the kids back on a regular schedule, I have no time to even think about working out!” Well, why not turn that challenge into an opportunity? As you help the family re-adjust to the non-summer-Friday work weeks and new start times for school and after-school activities, it’s also the time to fit some fitness into your own routine. Who deserves to carve out some time get that daily dose of much-needed endorphins? The answer is simple – YOU!

Here are some tips to set the pace for a FITASTIC fall ahead:

  • Seek Out New Schedules & Offers:  Group fitness schedules often change in September. Maybe this is the season that total body conditioning class finally fits into your schedule. Be sure to ask about any back-to-school specials, including friends and family rates. This is a great time to make exercise a family affair or schedule bi-weekly workouts with a buddy!
  • Fall Into Healthy Eating Habits: Packing lunch for the kiddies? Add just a few more minutes to the prep time and create some healthy snacks or small meals for yourself. I spend approximately 30 minutes every Sunday slicing and dicing veggies including peppers, celery sticks and carrots and then pack them in reusable containers. I can grab a portion anytime as a healthy snack or side dish or I can mix the veggies with brown rice for a mini-meal. Some of my other favorite go-to eats include raw almonds, green apples and hard boiled eggs.
  • Put It In Writing: If you drive your kids to school or your spouse to the train station, figure out if there’s time immediately following a drop-off or right before a pick-up for a workout. You could hit the gym for a group exercise class, drive a few more blocks to the park for a run or meet a friend for a brisk walk. Typing the activity in to your smart phone task list or putting an old-fashioned sticky note on the fridge is a great visual boost to keep that workout on the schedule.
  • Ten Minutes of Something is Better than Nothing!  As time seems to grow more precious each day, there are plenty of workouts geared toward gaining maximum results in less time.Click here for a refresher on my “Tear-It-Up-in-Ten Circuit”  Do you really only have five minutes to spare? No problem. Click here for a reminder on how you can burn some calories and get the heart pumping with the four-minute Tabata workout.
  • Wardrobe Prep Do you help your kids pick out their clothes before they go to bed? Then go ahead and put out your own morning workout gear, too! Put your clothes in the bathroom the night before. It’s usually the first room we visit after we wake up, so if your clothes are staring you in the face, it may be harder to ditch the workout. If you’re exercising after work, pack your gym bag the night before and leave it by the door to grab on your way out. (And don’t forget to grab one of your prepped snacks for some healthy fuel, too!)

Finally, it’s important to remember getting fitness on your schedule and healthy foods into your fridge are two big steps toward a healthier you in the season ahead. During my annual August blogging hiatus, I had many conversations with several different gal pals (who also happen to be great moms) about their frustration over falling off the fitness wagon over the summer. Between keeping the kids entertained and all the BBQs, they found themselves eager to get back into a leaner, meaner routine. I’ll tell you what I told them: leave the “sins of the summer” in the past, but keep the memories close in your heart. Just as the leaves are sure to fall in the days ahead, you’ll soon find yourself back on track with your efforts to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

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When It Rains…

Bring on Fall!

Bring on Fall!

I hope everyone enjoyed the last official summer weekend of 2015. Now that we’re just two days away from the official start of fall, I can sum up how I’m feeling in one word: overwhelmed.

I can’t explain why, but this year I’m finding it harder to get back to the normal swing of things following the easier, breezier days of summer. The crowds returning from their beach houses to crowd the neighborhood, the students swarming the streets and subways and the sudden spike in my freelance work load has me struggling to find a balance in my daily routine.

However, as I soaked up my last dose of summer sun over the weekend, I had an epiphany: worrying about why it’s taking some extra time to get back to normal is 1oo-percent non-productive. I realized I’m better off using my energy to push forward and keep on top of the elements I can control. For me, that means making sure I find time to exercise. My brain functions best when I get that daily dose of endorphins only a good sweat can provide.

While I hope you find your own strength through exercise, I’m using this Motivation Monday post to encourage you to find 30 or 60 minutes in a day to do whatever helps you deal with your own demands of the new season. Maybe you relish a daily walk or find comfort preparing healthy meals. Maybe this is the season you start adding a hot bath or an extra five minutes to a shower at night to unwind or simply catch up with some old friends on an old-fashioned telephone call. We all deserve to find some moments of peace in the midst of our demanding daily grinds. If you have a secret for staying grounded when things get overwhelming, I’d love to hear about it!

So if you feel like you haven’t gotten it together for the new season, remember, you’re not alone. (And seriously, who really has it altogether all the time?) Take a few deep breaths, find one constant to get you through whatever the day throws at you and let’s welcome a fall filled with new chances to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

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