Back to the Fall Routine

Blog Post created by dr_hurt on Sep 11, 2009
Fall is a busy time for many people, marking the end of summer vacation for students, teachers and other school personnel. For those of us who work year-round, we too are affected by the busyness that the fall season brings including stopping for school buses, managing the morning school traffic, coordinating the kids’ sporting and school events, and gearing up for the holiday season. With all this hustle and bustle comes added stress. Keeping in mind that stress oftentimes leads to relapse, and at the very least can be a trigger to smoke, we want to remind you to put thought into your relapse prevention plan.

Perhaps it’s now time to shake up your exercise routine. If you found the summer too hot to get out there and exercise, the coolness of autumn might be your ticket! If, on the other hand, the colder weather makes it more difficult for you to get outside and move, it might be a good time to look into a gym membership.

In addition to paying attention to physical activity, think of the fall as a good time to monitor your eating habits as well. Snack on a crisp apple when you have an urge to smoke. Stock your pantry with fall vegetables to make new soups, and look for some other low-fat recipes utilizing seasonal goodies such as pumpkin.

Looking for ways to maintain your good health will also keep you on track to remaining smoke-free.

And if you haven’t yet made the commitment to stop smoking, think of the fall as an opportune time to set a quit date by going to http://www.becomeanex.org/the-ex-plan.html#calendar. By the time January 1st rolls around, you’ll be a “seasoned” nonsmoker, and will be able to share your coping skills and support with someone who’s making a new year’s resolution!

Dr. Richard D. Hurt is an internationally recognized expert on tobacco dependence. A native of Murray, Kentucky, he joined Mayo Clinic in 1976 and is now a Professor of Medicine at its College of Medicine. In 1988, he founded the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center and since then its staff has treated over 33,000 patients for tobacco dependence. Send your questions directly to Dr. Hurt at AskTheExpert@becomeanex.org