It's certain fall is just around the corner! Friday night's lights are blazin' stadium stands, and Saturdays are action-packed days of cheering at youth league events. This time of year parents' schedules are more kid-focused, leaving fitness to fend for leftover energy and summer's by-gone best laid plans to stay fit.
No need to fret, the seeds you planted this summer to be a fit-parent are budding a harvest of healthy habits. All of the work you put into action (even if on paper) wasn't in vain. You just need a bit of watering to sprout up some.
Here are a few seasonal refreshers.
- Get back to school to learn a new skill! Whether you get bold and finally take that dance class you always wanted to try, learn to swim or you pick up the tennis racket and hit a few balls across the court, learning a new skill burns more calories because you're using both physical and mental muscle. One of the best ways for kids to get active is to follow our lead. An active mind is an active body.
- Gather your harvest: Pick a few of the season's best fruits and veggies at your local farmer's market and try out a new recipe. September is national fruits and veggies matters month, celebrate by creating a month-long menu of a variety meal options like smoothies for breakfast, grilled vegetable wraps for lunch and enjoy a fresh homemade low fat apple crisp for dessert. (see recipe below)
- Enjoy the view: Walking the grounds of the ball field or simply taking a stroll during your lunch break is a great way to see things from a different and fresh perspective. Taking in the fresh fall air can clear your thoughts, observing the landscape surrounding you can spark new ideas and short bursts of movement can spur a desire to keep movin'.
- Sign up for a charity walk or join a walking group: As the weather begins to cool, and the leaves begin to change, it's as if the outdoors have sent an 'all call' invitation to get out and start walking. Sign up for a charity walk and/or find a walking group in your community or at work. This is a great opportunity to meet new people, establish an accountability network and move with a purpose!
- Make it a family affair: Turn off the TV and get outside! Before the day begins, the middle of the day, or to end a busy day, gather up your family and visit a local park, a fall festival or walk around your neighborhood. Taking a walking tour through your community might expose you to some of the hidden gems in your town and spark up adventurous conversations. The South Cobb community has quite a few historical sites neatly tucked away amongst beautiful trees and scenery. Make it a scavenger hunt to explore your city's landmarks. Sept. 24 is Family Fitness Day, get out and celebrate your family's fitness!
Let the change of the weather invite you to savor the flavors of the season. Whether it's the smell of roasted peanuts from the concession stands or the crisp air calling through the trees, there's no doubt that cozy nights are on the horizon. 'Til then let's take advantage of the opportunity we have to keep movin'. Stay tuned as we savor the flavor with some of fall's favorite comfort food recipes with a healthy twist.
"Lovin' Fall APPLE CRISP"
2-3 Red Delicious Apples
1 cup of uncooked quick-cook oats
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon (for apples)
1 tsp cinnamon, ginger & nutmeg
1 tbsp butter (yes REAL butter)
drizzle of honey or agave nectur
Slice apples into thin wedges and spread into a lightly sprayed (with baking spray) baking dish. Sprinkle apples with cinnamon in a bowl, combine oats, brown sugar, spices, butter and enough honey or agave to lightly coat oats. mix together until small chunks are formed. evenly spread oat crumbles over apples, bake approx. 15-20 minutes until crumble begins to brown.
Enjoy! Serve with low fat vanilla yogurt.