Conker your goals: What squirrels can teach us about autumn training
Seasonal scenery (& scampering squirrels)
Autumn is a fantastic time of year to run or cycle outside. If you don’t live near a park or any trails, it’s a perfect time to visit some.
In contrast to our high tech world of screens, you get to feel like you’re enjoying nature, as you see the leaves change colour and have to dodge squirrels scurrying under your feet carrying chestnuts to bury away. (A bit of dodging and weaving is good training for your stabilising muscles too!)
Building a training routine in autumn will help you stick with it when winter comes, bringing colder and darker conditions. You’ll be able to draw on your strong autumn base (banking those stored chestnuts!) and stick with the routine you’ve made, instead of hibernating and making plans for getting out when it’s better weather in spring.
Autumn is a great time to build your base for goals in the next year.
This could look like:
- Entering some cross-country or trail running events, to get your legs and lungs stronger. This also makes running on the road seem much easier afterwards.
- Working on something you know you need to improve (a weekly habit for those using Art Of Your Success Training Journals). This could be getting more sleep; doing more strengthening exercises or working on your technique.
A lot of large spring and summer events open for registration in autumn. You’ve got time to get ready with your autumn base, so autumn is a good time to enter and make the goal real. This gives you more focus in your training.
My headtorch and gloves always signal that the early mornings have become more autumnal. It’s back to wearing more high viz kit when it’s darker, and needing lights on my bike.
We all know having the right kit helps keep training more enjoyable. A little like the squirrel in its one outfit, I wear multifunctional headwear all year round! But I start to wear it round my neck a bit more in autumn, which really helps you feel a bit warmer without having to wear more layers. If it’s rainy, I turn it into a cap just to feel a bit protected, and if it’s particularly cold I wear it over my nose. This goes for under the helmet too. Check Art Of Your Success multifunctional headwear including ways to wear it.