This article originally appeared on womanshealthmag.com
Don’t feel SAD about the end of summer, instead take our challenge.
This month embrace the #takeitup mindset, and feel the best you’ve ever felt.
Kicking off on Monday 5th we’ve got 26 ways for you to invest in yourself. That’s one thing every day for the whole month that will get you back on track and feeling stronger and healthier than ever.
So, make September the month you…
1. EMBRACE JOMO
Take up the Joy Of Missing Out. Miley Cyrus and Chrissy Teigen made it famous by swerving the VMAs for yoga and Subway; Women’s Health coined it.
There’s nothing wrong with turning down invites. Try it, you might just like it.
2. UPDATE YOUR RUN
Whether you’ve signed up for an autumn race or are crossing your fingers for a London ballot place, this is the perfect time to get your running back on track.
If you need a little encouragement or want to set yourself a training plan the N+RC app has had a serious update.
The newest features include the ability to personalise your schedule, share your goals and competewith other users – that definitely warrants a new pair of trainers!
3. FINISH ON TIME
Step away from your desk. You may think that late-night working is winning you kudos with the boss (if they’re still there to witness it!) but your health isn’t giving you high-fives.
Eating within two hours of going to bed has been linked to high blood pressure and could actually be worse for your heart than a high-salt diet. A flawless argument for working 9 to 5.
4. TURN BACK THE CLOCK
With all that extra time after dinner you’ll be able to get serious about anti-aging.
Origins are getting anxious about your skin’s #QuarterLifeCrises, but don’t rush to your panic stations just yet. The new Original Skin Essence Lotion (£22) is designed to fight the early signs of ageing. Phew!
5. CURB THE CAFFEINE
Although going back to work after a long summer of park workouts and Sunday avo brunches feels like a slog, caffeine is not the answer! Swap your flat white for a drink sans cortisol hit.
If you’ve reached peak matcha try the T+ Smarter Tea (£3.69); it’s packed with antioxidants, essential vitamins and powerful botanicals.
6. HEAD TO THE BARRE
Barrecore launch their new killer muscle toning Sculpte classes this month. If you thought their signature class was tough, try adding a resistance band… This class is perfect for anyone who finds the regular class a bit slow.
7. GET FED BY THE MED
Long summer evenings have faded so inject sun back into your day with Mediterranean food. A new study found that the kilos vegetables, fish, nuts and healthy oils in this diet can lower your cholesterol and combat heart disease too.
Check out our top Mediterranean recipes.
8. OUT RUN SEPTEMBER
Pound the pavements whilst doing your bit by taking part in Macmillan’s OutRunSeptember.
Whatever your ability, set yourself a goal and get going. With a range of mileage targets to beat, you can lose pounds and raise money for charity all at the same time.
9. MEET FACE TO FACE
We’re all guilty of painfully misinterpreting emails and texts once in a while, be it an ambiguous wink-face emoji or a misunderstood sarcastic comment. However a recent study by The International Communication Association found that unfortunately no matter how well you think you know someone, you’re no better at figuring out what on earth their message means by staring at the screen.
So do yourself a favour, lay down your iPhones, and talk face-to-face. Skintime is in.
10. MAKE WAY FOR WHEY
Not sure whether all the articles on protein are really milking the benefits? Let the ‘Whey Box’ – think Graze but for protein- inform your judgment.
Sign up to receive a monthly haul of whey sachets perfect. They’re perfect for keeping in your gym bag.
11. TAKE A LEAP INTO THE UNKNOWN
End of summer blues? Add bounce to your workout by signing up to take part in Gravity Force’s Jump Revolution classes.
Their one-hour high intensity, low impact fitness class burns through fat, while building, toning and defining muscle. Jump on it.
12. SWITCH THE TEQUILA FOR TUMERIC
Launching this month, James White Drinks’ Turmeric juice Zinger shot won’t get you fired if you knock it back at your desk. However it will ignite your metabolism.
Containing freshly pressed Turmeric juice, apple, lemon, pepper and chili it ticks the anti-inflammatory boxes plus helps promoted glowy skin and boosted brain power. We’ll take that over a hangover any day.
13. DITCH THE TUBE AND DON THE TRAINERS
TFL has launched a new tube map complete with info on how many steps there are between stations.
Their new map revealed that there are only a meager 400 steps between Covent Garden and Leicester Square so there really is no excuse for not hopping off one stop early.
Check out our London Tube Workout
14. SWAP PAINKILLERS FOR YOGA
September is pain awareness month, but don’t reach for the medicine cabinet just yet. A study out this week by the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health concluded that as well as being all round amazing, yoga can relieve pain too.
Luckily Jessica Skye has got your back (ache), she’s just launched a new YouTube channel full of her yoga wisdom.
15. INVEST IN GYM UNDERWEAR
All knickers are not created equal and while your lacy numbers may give you a boost on a night out, they’re not the ones for the squat rack.
Grab yourself a pair of Bjon Borg’s new wicking Hydro-Pro and dodge that sweaty crotch situation…
16. CATCH THE LAST WAVE.
This month, check out our guide to surf retreats and book yourself a last minute get away. The clever guys at Harvard found that you only need six days in the sunshine to enjoy the a vitamin D high for one month after.
17. GET THE DOWN LOW ON YOUR DOWN LOW.
Research by the Eve Appeal Charity found that nearly half of British women were not able to label a basic diagram of a vagina.
Get yourself out of that 50% ASAP by checking out our cheeky Guide to Lady Gardens.
18. TAKE THE PLUNGE
Whether you’re starting your fitness journey or want to switch up your usual routine, there are a range of aqua sports that you may want to embark on.
If you’re not a fan of the water, fear not, there are also options that don’t actually involve getting wet (unless you fall in of course).
Aqua pilates is a great way to take the plunge. Alternatively, opt for Aqua spinning – swim caps not mandatory.
19. TAKE SOME ALONE TIME
Studies show that many of us struggle to be on our own, but the benefits are out there for all to hear. Recent research concluded that we’re able to concentrate more and be more productive after spending time by ourselves.
Why not schedule in a session of solitude, or simply take half an hour to sit in the park before using the other half of your lunch hour to accomplish some much needed adult admin.
If you’re in need of some mindfulness inspo checkout WH’s new Strong Mind section; the new issue’s out on Wednesday September 7th.
20. BREATHE YOURSELF BETTER
Tracking physical activity is second nature to most of us – but now you can track your mental wellbeing too.
By closely monitoring breathing patterns, the Spire wearable and app (£119.95) flags up tension and attention span so you can make sure your head’s on the right track too.
It’s available exclusively from Apple Stores across US and Europe and online at Apple.com and Spire.io, and Amazon.com.
21. UNLEASH YOUR WILD SIDE
Lifting heavy is the key to keeping fit, strong and lean, but repeating the same planes of movement like deadlifts and bicep curls neglects other muscle groups, which could eventually result in an injury.
Trainer Nathan Helberg has decided to fight back with an animalistic take on getting stronger with the Iron ZUU class available at Virgin Active Clubs across the country.
Alongside some pretty intense intervals with weights you will crawl, waddle and slither your way round the room to challenge joints and muscles in ways you probably haven’t done previously.
“The idea is to strengthen your body from all angles so nothing will phase your body,” says Helberg.
The result? A stronger, more flexible and less-injury prone bod.
22. HIT SNOOZE ON AGEING
Your eight hours a night might be ageing your face.
A new study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal revealed that the forces applied to your face by your pillow can lead to the development of ‘sleep wrinkles’.
The main offenders? Side and stomach sleeping. While we can’t change our unconscious habits you can try the Iluminage Beauty Skin Rejuvenating Pillowcase, £50.
Made from cosy satin infused with copper oxide, which is able to penetrate skin, increase cell turnover and is clinically proven to decrease lines in four weeks.
23. SLEEP WELL
If you struggle to drop off then you could reach for a mug or Horlicks and the shipping forecast.
Alternatively try Introducing the Sleep Induction Mat by Bulletproof, £39.95. Used 15-40 minute before bed it draws on the principles of acupressure principles, it’s designed to target trigger points to stimulate faster, deeper sleep.
24. WEAR IT WELL
Frame has bent over backwards for fitness this month. Already, they’ve opened a dedicated yoga studio in King’s Cross, plus launched a new clothing range designed by Frame founder Pip Black and Joan Murphy.
Fusing technical fabric with fashion-forward and functional silhouettes, the collection can we worn to anything from HIIT class, to ‘at-home’ yoga to a trip to Homebase (yeah we all have to sometimes) #athleisure.
25. GET UP, STAND UP
Go back to work with some positive thinking and some positive posture. Swap your desk for a sit-stand option and feel the benefits of faster reaction times, a longer attention span and a perception of a lighter workload.
It’s known as one of five simple ways to make your 9-5 healthier.
26. BUY A BLANKET
…and sleep naked. As the temperatures start to drop, add another layer to your bedding rather than your bed-clothes. New science has found that it may be the cure to insomnia.