There’s a thrill to living out of a suitcase, travelling the world and managing every and all of theunexpected events along the way. As a pro cyclist, maintaining peak fitness while juggling the instabilities of the lifestyle adds to the challenge, big time. And I love it.
But full disclosure: by the time September or October rolls around (the end of the race season), it wears on me. It feels like my lifestyle looks like my 6-year-old self’s bedroom after a Saturday night slumber party: total chaos. Thankfully, autumn is like nature’s post-sleepover Sunday afternoon. Whether you’re a pro athlete, a young kid, or an adult, fall is time to rest, recover, reorganize, and let summer time’s energy sink in. I’ve learned as an athlete that it’s essential to take a step back and break things down to come back stronger. It’s the same for every human being!
This is what I get up to every fall:
- Unless my heart is really yearning to go for a spin, I take a couple of weeks off of the bike. I feel lazy at first, but I learned giving myself permissionto step back is important.
- Re-establishing organization that takes the sidelines during the excitement of summer feels great. Fall cleaning is actually more important to me than spring cleaning! I get rid of things I don’t use by putting them for sale on second-hand item websites like Kijiji. They get a second life, and I get some extra space!
- Every fall, I “reset” my eating habits. Because of the shorter days and cooler weather that keep us inside, we generally spend less energy than in the summer. If you do endurance sports like I do, toning down the carbohydrates (when your body likely needs much less than what summer activity demands) might be a good idea. Personally, this helps me avoid feeling sluggish. I replace simple carbs with more raw vegetables. I also make batches of simple single portion meals that I stick in the freezer so they’re ready when I am. After months of being on the road and eating race food, this helps me get back into a normal meal routine.
- As most of us who travel or work a lot, I depend on my smartphone to stay connected during the rest of the year. Fall always feels like the right time to temporarily tone down my screen time. Instead, I read paper pages! I’m currently reading “Born a Crime” by Trevor Noah and an F. Scott Fitzgerald classic will be next. My glasses all have See Coat Blue treatment that filters harmful blue light from screens, but they’re just as useful for good ol’ paper books: I chose to have the Relaxsee NEO lens by Nikon in all of my glasses too. Relaxsee NEO is a new concept by Nikon that has been especially designed to reduce eyestrain by relaxing your eyes when concentrating on near vision.
- Weaving new activities into a fall routine is my favourite a way to meet new people, and be healthy. I love fitness classes like yoga and Essentrics, and doing hikes, jogs, and mountain biking to enjoy the crisp air, and gorgeous, ever-changing fall colours.
I wish you all a wonderful transition season. Rest, reorganize, reset, and enjoy some new activities this fall like a pro athlete! Your heart, body and soul will be grateful!