Staying Healthy On Your Bike This Autumn

04 November, 2015

Although fall is a lovely time of year to get the most out of your rides just before winter, with seasonal changes comes early sunsets and colder climates. With longer darker days fatigue, seasonal sads, and lack of exercise tend to come as we start to hide indoors from the cold. Getting on your bike through fall has its obvious reasons for keeping fit throughout the season, it's also a great way to combat the seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and the coming winter blues. If you're feeling the side affects of time changes, it can be difficult to get a regular routine on your bike but once you do it, it's all joy from there.

If you're looking for motivation and tips to stay on your bike and smiling, here are some ways to keep you on your bike and healthy during the seasons too.

Nutrition
This is a big one for me as I tend to crave heavier foods as it gets colder. Instead of giving into those cravings, try adjusting to seasonal fruits and veggies. Blackberries, apples, squash, brussels sprouts, pomegranates, persimmons, cabbage, pears, cranberries, sweet potatoes, beets, etc. Soups, juices, roasts, salads, are great ways to use these seasonal produce.

Move For Your Mind
If you are sensitive to shifts of time and experience SAD's or winter blues, getting outside on your ride during the morning may help a great deal. Lower light levels contribute to the fatigue and low moods during these changes. This means one may need to adjust their schedule and not all are lucky to have flexibility but if you're able to do so on the weekends, it'll still have a great impact on your mood as you are exposed to sunshine.

Dress for Temperatures
I know we all would rather stay in bed and keep hitting the snooze button rather than getting up and going for a brisk run or ride. But rather than making excuses to stay in bed, get yourself that cute cycling jacket, gloves, and shoes to give you an excuse to wear them and ride throughout fall.

Sleep/Eat for Immunity
Protecting yourself from the cold and SAD's is important, however, it's not enough to keep you from catching a virus. Ensuring you get enough sleep and nutrients are crucial to maintain a healthy immune system. A good 7hrs of sleep and food high in immune booting nutrients can help you go a long way to keep you sick free. Plenty of fresh water, garlic, raw foods, probiotics, Vitamins B, C, D, and Zinc are all essential to keeping a balanced immune system.

Enjoy The Fall
Whatever it takes you to get out into the fresh air before dark, do it while there's still light outside so you can enjoy nature and all of her changes. Although staying active is necessary, autumn is also a nice time to slow down and enjoy some internal reflection. Allow this time for nurturing yourself by eating seasonal foods, spending time at home nurturing your body, and giving yourself permission to make different choices and changes about your lifestyle.

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