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OT - Tone-Up Tuesday

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Happy Tuesday, STalkers! It’s that day of the week again…

Are you already enjoying colorful leaves and cooler temps? I am (yippee!!!). Don’t let that stop you from being active outdoors. In fact, get the entire family involved in some alfresco fun!

Buy a Bike

Why it’s good: New models arrive in the stores as the summer riding season wraps up. You’re more likely to get a good deal when stores are trying to get rid of old inventory. Biking as a family is a great way to connect with nature and each other.

Keep it safe. Make sure everyone wears a helmet, whatever their age. The helmet should sit level on the head and about 1 to 2 finger-widths above the eyebrow. It should fit snugly and not rock or slide in any direction. The side straps should form a V under and slightly in front of each ear. Chin straps should be buckled and allow room for no more than 1 to 2 fingers between the chin and strap.

Make it kid-friendly. Make fun the goal—not speed, distance, or perfect technique. That might mean frequent stops for a snack, water break, sight seeing, or even just some time to rest your bottom.


Find a 5K

Why it’s good: Participating in a charity race shows your children or grandchildren the value of keeping fit and giving back to society. Local 5Ks (short for 5 kilometers, or about 3.3 miles) tend to be abundant in fall, including around Thanksgiving, when many communities host “Turkey Trots” and similar events. Search for a walk or run near you at the Running in the USA website:

Keep it safe: Dress in layers. The first should be made of moisture-wicking fabric to wick sweat away from your skin. The next layer should focus on insulation, to help you retain heat by trapping air close to your body. If the day is gray and wet, add a windbreaker or lightweight rain shell on top to protect you from the elements.

Make it kid-friendly: If your family isn’t active already, start building endurance a few weeks before. Begin leisurely walking a few blocks, adding a little more distance each time you hit the road. Post your progress on a chart on the refrigerator so everyone can count down to the big event.


Play in the Park

Why it’s good: The park is full of swings, jungle gyms, walking paths, and open fields so you’re sure to get a good workout no matter what you want to do.

Keep it safe: Pack a healthy lunch, some energy-boosting snacks (such as apple slices with nut butter or hummus with carrots and whole-grain crackers), and plenty of water. Even though the weather is cooler, you still need to keep well hydrated.

Make it kid-friendly: Play follow the leader: Take turns being the “coach” and order each other through activities like marches, forward lunges, side steps, and jumping jacks. Or set up an obstacle course with cones, using the jungle gym as the main event.


Rake Leaves

Why it’s good: Bending your legs, moving your arms, and scooping up leaves is a great way to get your heart pumping. It also builds strength in your legs, core, shoulders, and arms.

Keep it safe: Practice proper raking posture to prevent injury, especially to the low back: Keep one foot slightly forward and bend at the knees, keeping your back flat. This way your leg muscles will take the brunt of the weight, not your back. To avoid overuse on one side of the body, switch arms every 10 minutes or so.

Make it kid friendly: Create a little competition. See who can make the biggest pile of leaves; the winner gets a prize. After you’ve got a few piles set up, let the kids jump in!

Psssst… If you include the furbabies in your family fun, don’t rake up poopies with your leaves. Unless it’s for an obnoxious skid…LOL


Go Apple-Picking

Why it’s good. Spending time walking in natural settings can benefit both your mental state and your physical health. And fresh apples are a rich, portable source of nutrients and fiber, plus a delicious addition to many Fall dishes!

Keep it safe: Slather sunscreen on exposed skin. Even on a cloudy autumn day, the sun can still do damage. And be sure to rinse apples before eating them, to prevent exposure to bacteria that can cause foodborne illness.

Make it kid-friendly: Have kids separate apples by color. And make a game out of finding apples with no wormholes.


Apple Cinnamon Quick Bread

Apple bread ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2/3 cup neutral cooking oil, like canola or vegetable
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups peeled and chopped apples (about 2 medium)

Cinnamon Sugar Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


  1. Preheat your oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Grease a 9×5″ loaf pan and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  3. Add the oil, eggs and vanilla and stir until just combined.
  4. Fold in the apples.
  5. Scrape into a greased loaf pan.
  6. Mix together sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over bread.
  7. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean, about 60 minutes.
  8. Cool for ten minutes then remove from pan to wire rack. Let cool until just warm and then slice.


ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Yummy apple cinnamon bread!!! i was just looking at some used bikes this morning!!! I love the fall!!! I'm hoping to run more on weekends too on the roads!!!

Aniki-Moderator's picture

I just picked a bunch of apples (before they fell onto the ground to become deer/critter food). I plan to make some apple bread and a Finnish Apple Cake. Trying to decide if I want to make a small batch applesauce or apple butter with the remainder (I've never made either).

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Do applesauce or apple pies!!! (I love apple pie... lol)

Fresh fruit is always better than non fresh!

Letti.R's picture

Apple cinnamon anything baking  has to one of the nicest smells in a home!


Aniki-Moderator's picture

Yes, Letti! When I was younger, my Mom always made baked apples - core the apple, add a butter/sugar/cinnamon mixture, and bake. I haven't had a baked apple in years....

Siemprematahari's picture

I love bike riding especially with the foliage during the Fall. Your recipe seems amazing. Thanks for sharing!

Aniki-Moderator's picture

I'm a FInn and love sharing recipes. Especially recipes for goodies that go well with a cup of coffee!!

lieutenant_dad's picture

Damn you for posting that recipe! I want to try and eat healthy, and this weather only makes me want to eat all the sweet bread (not to be confused with sweetbreads). 

Cover1W's picture

What the what?!  I just made that bread, a yeasted version.....unfortunately it didn't rise (my bad for the choice of yeast I used).  But SD12 and I are trying it again this weekend!  It smelled good and the crust was delicious. 


Aniki-Moderator's picture

Cover, I can honestly say that I have NEVER made anything with yeast. However, I want to try my hand at bread this Winter so... bring on the yeast!

Cover1W's picture

oh, it's really easy once you start.  I make bread most of the time for the household and I don't have a lot of free time.  It's so good and so easy once you get the hang of it.  If you would like, I can share my two favorite easy recipes with you tomorrow (they are at home).  One is 100% whole wheat and the other a 1/2 & 1/2 version.  Both made from scratch.

A friend gave me a bread maker so I'm experimenting with that too.  It's not quite the same as hand-kneaded and the loaves are oddly shaped, but I made a great French bread this weekend with it.


thinkthrice's picture

if I ate cinnamon apple bread.  that being said I DID have an italian cookie or two this past month.  Tomorrow is my once a month reckoning!  YIKES!!   There is a charity run coming up on veterans day but I'll probably end up helping Chef on one of his jobs since you can't find good help these days.

strugglingSM's picture

...I went to the gym for the first time in months. I'm trying to go before work, because going after is too challenging. It had been so long that they called me to find out if I wanted to put my membership on hold. 

I should find a 5K to sign up for...when I was in shape, I used to love running 5Ks.