Let the Change of Seasons Inspire Good Health with Fall Activities

Connect with the beauty of the changing landscape and feel an emotional boost

Fall is the season of transition. We shed the old, hibernate for a while, and ready ourselves for something new with the coming of spring. That often means letting go of habits that may be limiting or unhealthy and opting for something better. Cooler weather is also motivational for getting outside, exercising, and cooking healthy soups and stews.

Here are some suggestions for activities that may offer a direct health benefit and certainly an emotional boost, simply from connecting with the beauty of the changing fall landscape.

Roast fall vegetables. Favorite ones for roasting are potatoes, carrots, beets, parsnips, asparagus, eggplant, tomatoes, and onions. It’s best to roast at a low temperature (325 for 24-40 minutes) to ensure the vegetables retain their nutrients.

Go pumpkin picking. Find a guide to Lehigh Valley pumpkin patches here. Many farms that offer pumpkins incorporate other activities like corn mazes and hay rides for a well-rounded fall destination with something for everyone in the family.

Meditate outside. There is a difference between meditating inside a building, sheltered from natural elements, and doing it in the great outdoors. Not only are you able to breathe in fresh air, but gentle breezes and the chirping of birds (or crashing of waves) can add to your concentration.

Collect pinecones. Little wonders of nature, pinecones are ideal for all kinds of crafts. Piled together in a bowl, they make an organic centerpiece and when painted, can become holiday decorations. Collecting them in the woods on a nature walk can be an opportunity to de-stress.

Plant spring bulbs. It’s not too early! Plant tulips, daffodils, lilies, hyacinths, iris, and amaryllis now, while the soil is still workable. The bulbs send down roots in the chilly fall soil then go through a winter “chill time” to stimulate growth. You’ll be rewarded with a splash of color in the spring.

Write a gratitude list. We don’t have to wait until November to express gratitude. It’s a practice that’s good for our health any time of year. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.

Play touch football. A friendly game of football with the neighbors or relatives is a fun way to socialize and exercise at the same time. Both men and women of all ages can play together, there’s no tackling or risk of injury, and it’s simple to learn.

Go for a bike ride. The beauty of bike riding is that along with being able to see the leaves changing up close, you can smell the aromas of autumn as you ride. Among the benefits is increased cardiovascular fitness, increased muscle strength and flexibility, and decreased body fat levels.

If you’re thinking fall is a good time for changes to your lifestyle – no matter how minor – it can be helpful to engage a health coach to keep you motivated and on track. It’s even better if you can take part in a health coaching program through your employer. If that’s not something already offered, speak to your supervisor or human resources director about how to get one started.

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