It’s obvious that we love living an active and healthy life. But with that extremes are never our go-to. Deprivation, strict rules, beating ourselves up for indulging or missing our exercise targets all have to be removed from a healthy life. Just like a pendulum, if we swing one way, nature tells us we’re going to swing all the way back the other. And so will you. So that’s why deprivation is now recognised as one of the most damaging things we can do for a healthy and wholesome life. With the festive season comes parties, late nights, and all sorts of temptations around us. And we say indulge. But learn how to help your body and mind stay balanced and happy at the same time. Here are some of our favourite ways to balance out the festive season.
Apple cider vinegar and/or lemon in the morning
A healthy digestion keeps us feeling good. Not only will it help us get rid of bloating and discomfort that comes from that, but also it literally keeps us happier. How? They now call the stomach the second brain, as it is crucial in the creation of serotonin. Sip lemon and water or apple cider vinegar with water in the mornings to kick-start your digestion and make sure things stay active.
Sleep as much as you can
One of the most important parts of a healthy and happy life is rest. Our body can’t feel nourished or strong or happy if it’s not given time to reboot and rebuild. Try your best to get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. With lots of parties and outings this time of the year, sometimes getting your dose of sleep might mean you have to say no to something else. Be ok with that and know it’s for your health.
Move your body
Movement everyday is one of the best ways to maintain your health. This doesn’t have to mean an hour of cardio or a big exercise routine, it might be walking to the supermarket, playing with the kids, catching up with friends for a walk, a gentle swim in the ocean, or of course yoga. Yin is a beautiful option for when you’re feeling particularly run down. We have a few poses you can do at home when the silly season gets a bit much.
Let go of guilt
Guilt is not a fun emotion. Notice if you are beating yourself up for not eating perfectly, or having one too many glasses of wine, for choosing sleep over a workout, or simply not maintaining a routine you’ve set for yourself. Watch the negative self-talk that starts to happen and notice how it makes you feel. Not great, hey? This is detrimental to living a balanced and wholesome life. When you notice those thoughts coming up, do your best to spin them a little and be kind to yourself and grateful for the things and people in your life. A thought can go from “I’m so lazy I didn’t get up for my 6am class today”, to “I’m so grateful to have spent time with my friends and family last night, I needed the rest.” Sometimes our perspective on things is the only thing that needs to shift.
Help you body heal itself with breathing
Breathing. Sounds easy enough, we do it all day. But we don’t use it as much as we should. When you feel stressed, busy, guilty – anything like that. Stop and breathe for 5-10 breaths. Slowing inhale to the count of four (or five or six if you have the range), pause at the top of your inhale and then exhale for the same count. Watch how it slows everything down and suddenly you’re back in the present moment.