By Chris Hynson
Get your walking shoes on, grab your bike or your dog, and enjoy the upcoming fall weather around Riderwood’s walking trails! When you walk on different terrains such as paths with hills and slopes, you can significantly enhance the strength of your lower body muscles and cardiovascular system. You teach your muscles to adapt to terrain differences. This helps your body improve strength and burn more calories as a result.
Exercising especially in the fall, can also help you feel energized and rejuvenated from the air and natural Vitamin D from the sun. Exposing your body to the greenery of the outdoors, as well as cool weather can increase mental clarity and improve your mood according to Dr. Graham Rook, professor of Microbiology at the University College of London. A June 2017 article in the New York Times regarding outdoor exercise reported that going for a long walk outside can even reduce anxiety. Staying active around greenery especially, can increase serotonin levels to your brain.
However , before you decide to head outdoors to exercise during the fall season, always be sure to dress appropriately and layer up your clothing. You may wear a light jacket, windbreaker or sweatshirt. Your body’s temperature will naturally increase as your heart rate increases from exercise and you do not want your body to feel chilled from the cooler temperatures.
A smart strategy is to layer down your clothing as you continue with your outdoor exercise so that you do not risk catching a cold or becoming ill. Moisture wicking material shirts such as “DriFit” are ideal for getting the moisture away from your skin, so that your body remains dry while you are exercising. Regardless of the activity, be sure to take advantage of the cooler fall temperatures to get outside and get in some exercise.