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November can be a tough month, especially if you’re living up north. I find that the short days, long nights and dreary weather really get to me. My happiness relies so much from spending time outside, but the late fall weather makes that hard. November is that awkward period when summer sports don’t really fly, but it’s too early for outdoor winter sports. This year I felt a real seasonal slump coming on and I knew I had to get on top of it quick smart. I’m not going to lie and say these ideas are a quick fix, but why not give them a try? There is so much magic out there in November, we just need to know where to find it!


1. Fresh air and a view
The weather in November can be limiting as to how we play outside, but that doesn’t need to stop you. Invest in some quality rain gear (you will have it for years to come), get outside and get moving. Whether it’s a hike, run or walk, plan to explore a new local trail. If you can locate one with a beautiful view, even better. I’ve also found that organising to go with a friend forces me to stick to my plan, as it’s harder to back out on the idea last minute. Plus, exploring is always more fun with friends.

Anna Segal Mountains
Photo by Anna Segal
2. Take a cold plunge
I’ve recently discovered the benefits of cold-water therapy and the results almost seem like magic. For me, my favourite type of cold plunge is fall/winter surfing. The excitement of getting a wave distracts me from how cold the water is! But, if surfing isn’t your thing or you live far from the ocean, plunging yourself into a lake, or even taking a cold shower will do wonders for your immune system, circulation, energy levels and mood.

Anna Segal cold water surfing

Photograph courtesy Anna Segal

3. Dinner with Friends
I absolutely love the company of my friends. They bring me up when I’m feeling down and never fail to give me a boost of energy. However, I am a complete homebody and the short days in November don’t do this hermitting habit of mine any favours. I’m trying to overcome this contradiction by planning dinner with friends at least once a week. It could be one friend, or five, but no matter the number, there is always an uplifting magic in their presence. 

4. Cutting out alcohol
No, not forever, I love my red wine too much. My aim is to do one month without alcohol. I started November 5th and will be sticking to this until December 5th.  This may not be for everyone, but personally I’ve found it is helping be sleep more deeply and therefore feel less lethargic throughout the day. My latest trick has been replacing alcoholic drinks with an Ener-C and sparkling water. 

Photography by Spencer Watson

5. Goal Setting
Finally, a little bit of goal setting to keep you on track. Try writing down your goals for the month on a piece of paper and keeping it beside your bed. You will see it there each morning and evening. Yet, you won’t need to read them each day, as you’ll know what you have committed to.  That little piece of paper will act as a daily reminder of magic you’ve decided not to miss.

By Anna Segal. Anna is former Olympian and professional freestyle skier who makes her home in beautiful Pemberton, BC.


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