What Should You Do For Exercise?
In Chinese culture, this is a time for going inward, resting and sleeping, and for nourishing the body for the year ahead. While intense exercise isn't necessary this time of year, keeping the body moving is very important year round. To best harmonize yourself with the Winter season, consider this period to be more about healthy body maintenance rather than about goals to achieve dramatic changes to our bodies. Light exercise, like walking, stretching, Tai Chi, and gentle yoga at least 3 days per week is perfect for the Winter. Nutritionally nourishing the body is also important this time of year. The better we take care of ourselves during the winter, the healthier we will be all year.
What Should You Eat?
First, Bone Broth is a commonly recommended dietary staple during the coldest months because it is incredibly nourishing and easy to digest, and it's good for pretty much everyone. Drink a cup on most days to see the greatest benefits to your digestion, immunity, and overall vitality.
In addition to adding bone broth to your regular menu, it is also important to enjoy your favorite traditional holiday foods - in moderation. Moreover, adding some digestive supplements to your routine can minimize the digestive discomforts associated with over-indulgence while also supporting normal function and nutrient absorption - which further supports your health. Sometimes, even Acupuncturists develop a "screw it" attitude and eat too much pie and apple crumble. Nobody's perfect! However, it's important not to give up on your healthy eating habits most of the time. Try to practice a 70/30 balance this season. 70% healthy, 30% holidays. Your body will thank you for it in January! Keeping up your healthy habits this winter will prevent you from getting sick, keep you strong, and help you manage your holiday to-do list.
Stay (reasonably) Motivated!
Motivation can be difficult in the winter months. Depression, tiredness, frequently catching colds, pain, stomach upset, and low energy all could be signs of Vitamin D deficiency which is easy to correct with a great nutritional supplement. It's also important to consider your workload. Being over stressed can also dramatically affect your mood and motivation. Stop by the office for a $5 mini stress treatment or pick up some great stress supplements to prevent the negative effects of stress on the body and to support adrenals, sleep, and stress eating. Do keep in mind, however, that this is the time of year to do less overall. Winter is a great time for planning, but postpone starting those large projects until the springtime. Starting large projects in the Spring, which begins in early February, is favorable because spring energy promotes smooth, rapid growth and progress.
Where Should I Focus My New Year's Resolutions?
Many of us resolve to "get healthy" every year. Unfortunately, few of us are actually able to keep those "get healthy" resolutions. It's not all your fault! As we've discussed before, winter is a time to sleep, nourish, and prepare for the coming year. It's not a good time of year to start a 6 day/week intense workout schedule! Fighting the energy of the season will take more willpower and be more stressful on the body, which leaves you more likely to be negatively depleted and at risk for getting sick. Instead, focus on the nourishing aspects of your health this Winter. Resolving to make 2 more home-cooked meals/week, add amazing nutritional supplements to your routine, drink Bone Broth daily, or incorporate 20 minutes of relaxing activities to your day is a more beneficial resolution than intense exercise because those choices are consistent with the season. Adding activities that are safe, sensible, and easier to accomplish makes your success more likely! Add a new, healthy task to your routine every 3 weeks this Winter, and you are resolving to be healthy AND successful in in the coming year!