Numerous studies show that the more we sit and the less we move, the sicker we are.
On the flip side, there are many studies that show that any amount of exercise is better than none, and that moving is associated with better health.
A September 2017 international study of 130,000 healthy men and women aged 35 to 70 from urban and rural areas of 17 countries indicates that any kind of regular physical activity can lengthen your life.
So why is autumn a great time to get started? Here are four reasons:
- We engage in more screen time. New ways of consuming media mean fall isn’t the big start to TV season that it once was, but it’s still the time when we tend to start sitting down more.
If you’re watching a screen, consider using exercise bands or light weights for some seated strength training. There are also standing exercise routines you can do while viewing.
If you your favorite show has commercials, use those breaks to invest in yourself and exercise through them. The point is: screen time doesn’t have to be sedentary time.
If you can invest in an hour of screen time, why not use at least 20 minutes of that time to take care of yourself each day?
- The holidays are coming! The holidays often lead to overeating and consuming less-than-healthy foods we wouldn’t normally eat.
If you get into a routine in early fall of being more active, this healthy habit will be more likely to stick with you when you might be indulging in more calories.
- Most dogs like cooler weather. Dogs, you say? Yes. If you are a dog lover and you can’t motivate yourself to move, do it for Fido.
I have yet to meet a dog that didn’t love to explore, and he or she will keep you on track for a daily walk with a wagging tail and soulful eyes. Plus, estimates show that one out of three pets in the U.S. is obese.
If you don’t have your own pup but you like dogs, consider walking them at a local shelter. Knowing you are doing a good deed for a soul in need may be all the motivation it takes to get you on a schedule.
And if you’re not a dog person, find a human buddy who wants to move more and motivate each other. People who team up tend to be more successful with sticking to their goals.
- Cooler temps mean fewer bugs and colorful leaves. Those of us in central Pennsylvania are lucky to enjoy the benefits and beauty of distinct seasons.
In fall, conditions are usually ideal for a walk in the park, and we are fortunate to have many to choose from. Almost every community has a park nearby that offers easy walks.
For those who are feeling more adventurous, there are great hiking opportunities to be found in state parks throughout the region. If you’re not a winter walker, transition to walking indoors at a shopping mall or gym.
Moving has been shown to lengthen life and improve health. We’ve covered just a few ways you can be more active. Maybe you dance, walk, bike, jog or do seated strength training.
No matter how you decide to move, doing it regularly can give you more energy and help improve your health.
Increasing the amount of time that you engage in some physical activity each day has even more benefits. No matter how you move, there’s no better time than the present to get started.
If it’s been awhile since you’ve exercised and you have health issues or concerns, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise routine.