Fall for fitness

Give yourself the gift of staying active this fall and winter. The tips below can help you beat the dark, damp days and keep you moving.

Make outdoors safe and fun

  • Make sure cars see you. When walking, jogging or biking at dawn, dusk or after dark, wear a reflective vest and a headlamp, or carry a flashlight. The same goes for walking with Fido – put a reflective collar on your dog or have a lighted leash for more visibility.
  • Safety first. If you wear earbuds, take one out so you can be aware of your surroundings.
  • Get outside during lunch. If you can break away during the day for a quick walk, you’ll get some exposure to Vitamin D (even on cloudy days), boost your heartrate, and your mood.
  • Try a new sport. It’s a great time to try something new like snowshoeing. Sledding and tubing with friends and family are amazing calorie burners, especially if you walk back up the hill. If you’re a skier, you can save money on a season pass with King County’s discount at the Summit at Snoqualmie.

Exercise in disguise – sneak it in

  • Be neighborly. Rake your leaves and how about your neighbor’s, too? Raking is a great way to burn calories and get your heart pumping. Also, if you live near a storm drain, removing leaves can help protect your street from flooding.
  • Couch to crunch. If you watch TV, do something active while you watch. Try doing push-ups, lunges, dips off the couch or stretches.
  • Find ways to move during your day. Skip the elevator and take the stairs at work. Park further away from the store entrance when running errands. Do calf raises while brushing your teeth. Are you sitting in the stands during your kids’ sport practices? Walk around the field instead.
  • Check out these tips from Kaiser Permanente to work exercise into your daily life. Remember, 10 minutes at a time is fine.

Indoor resources

  • King County has 20 onsite activity centers equipped to provide moderate level physical activity for your wellness needs. Check this list to see if there’s one at or near your worksite.
  • Check out our Gym Discount Program. Most facilities offer a discount on enrollment fees and some discount the monthly membership fee, too. There may be seasonal promotions that are better than the County’s discount rate, so be sure to ask for any specials if you’re signing up for membership.
  • Host a class, or bring in an instructor. King County’s policy allows employees to use conference rooms and other shared spaces for physical activity when not in use for county business.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend 150 minutes of moderate level activity and two days of muscle strengthening each week. To learn more, visit their website.

Sources: WebMD, Kaiser Permanente

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