10 Tips for Fall Fitness
Fall is a super season for shaping up, experts say.
"Raking leaves or doing some fall outdoor yard work is a great way to
get the heart pumping, and it's great calorie-burning," says Freytag.
2. Think outside the box. Always wanted to learn to tap
dance? Attempt to box? Master the jump rope? Ask any schoolchild: Fall is a
great time to learn something new.
Many classes at gyms and elsewhere get started in the fall, so look around
and see if something intrigues you.
And with the kids in school, parents have more time to check out those
classes, Freytag says.
Fall is the perfect time to gain new physical skills, Price says, because
you burn fewer calories when you begin a new activity (thanks to the learning
curve). If you learn something new now, by next summer, you'll have mastered
the skill -- and you'll burn more calories doing it, just in time for swimsuit
3. Be an active TV watcher. Many people get geared up for
fall premieres of their favorite television shows, says Freytag. "If you're
going to sit down and watch hours of TV, get moving," she suggests.
"Make a date with exercise and TV."
While you watch, you can walk or run in place, do standing lunges, do tricep
dips off the couch, or lift weights. During commercials, do push-ups or
sit-ups. In a one-hour show, you probably have close to 20 minutes worth of
4. Integrate exercise into your life. You already know the
obvious suggestions: park farther away from your destination; take stairs
instead of elevators; take a walk during your lunch break. Here are a few that
are less obvious:
- If you're spending the afternoon taking kids to soccer practice, instead of
reading a book or visiting with another parent, "why not walk around the
outside of the field while they practice?", suggests Price. "Or (if you
feel comfortable) warm up and cool down with the kids."
- Or try "walking meetings," like those Price and his colleagues at
Biomechanics often hold. '"We go for a walk, we brainstorm, and we figure
out who's going to take what responsibilities," says Price. "'Things
get achieved much more quickly," he says, and everyone feels better for
- You can even get moving while you get motivated -- for fitness or other
life goals. '"Get some inspirational music or find a motivational talk and
download it to your iPod," suggests Durkin. Walk while you listen for 30