Getting through the holidays ‘unscathed’ as it were can often feel like a warzone. Okay, I’m being dramatic - but it can be extremely challenging with all of the hustle and bustle, frenetic energy, crowds, gifts, stuff, overspending, not to mention the temptation of less than quality food devoid of nutrients, alcohol, and eggnog! So it's at this time of year I discuss with my clients strategies and
techniques to help them stay on track. Of course, what we do on a single holiday or birthday is not what’s going to give us heart disease or cancer, it’s what we do on the other days and year round - what we do on average. So my suggestion is to be mindful of your ways but don’t beat yourself up if you go overboard for a day or so. Just make it a firm point to get back on track. Remember, these are holiDAYS not holiWEEKS ;-)
Here are 5 tips to stay on track and to help you feel your best throughout this holiday season.
1. Breathe. I bet you didn’t think that would be first on my list. Breathwork is important during times of stress and chaos. Just be mindful during your days. Is your breathing shallow? Do you find yourself sighing often? Then take a few minutes to focus on your breath. Deep inhales, deep exhales. There are all kinds of apps you can get on your phone to help you with breath work, meditation, and other ways to de-stress. My favorite app at the moment is Calm.
2. Drink 1 large glass of water, preferably with lemon each morning. Do this before you do anything else. Most of us do not hydrate ourselves enough during the day and the best way to start out your day is with a large glass of lemon water. But remember, hydration is not about simply drinking your standard 8 glasses of water per day. It’s about the efficiency of your body actually hydrating and absorbing water into its cells. Your body gets hydrated when you drink liquids as well as when you’re eating hydrating foods, like fruits and veggies, throughout the day.
3. Stretch. Yes, we all need to exercise on a daily basis. This is critical to wellness and longevity. But did you forget about stretching? Stretching increases blood circulation throughout your body, reduces muscle tension and is something we can do all day long. When you first wake up, before you even get out of bed, move your head up and down and from side to side. Bring your knees, one at a time, up to your chest and stretch out your hips and thighs. When you’re waiting for your tea or coffee to be made, stretch your arms and shoulders against a doorway or wall. There are all sorts of ways to stretch and limber your body. Exercise yes. But don’t forget to stretch as well.
4. Green smoothie. I gotta advise it because it'd just that good. I could say eat one gigantic salad each day to ensure you get your greens but I don’t think that is realistic for everyone so, at the very least, get into your system one green smoothie per day. Load it up with a variety of greens (don’t stick to just one), add cucumber, zucchini, cauliflower or broccoli (you don’t need much), throw in some seeds (hemp, flax, or chia), add as much fruit as you like (but keep the ratio of greens higher than fruit), and I like to use frozen fruit to make my smoothies thicker and more like a milkshake. Then add as much alternative milk as you’d like to get the desired consistency. Boom - you’re done. Blend away and drink it on up. If you do nothing else during this holiday season with your food choices, drinking a green smoothie each day will at least keep you filled with nutrients and help to support your immune system.
5. Detox foods. Like I mentioned above, if you are not going to eat super clean during this holiday season, then at least you can help yourself by drinking a green smoothie each day and, when you’re not at a holiday shindig, focus on eating foods that help to cleanse and detox your body. I work on detoxing my body everyday by incorporating foods that help to do this in a natural manner. Here is a list of some great detoxifying foods to hang on your fridge. Try to incorporate several of these into your diet everyday.
So enjoy the rest of the season and use these 5 tips to help you stay in balance.
Now it's your turn. I'd love to hear some of the techniques you use to help you stay on track. Just comment below.
And if you're wanting to get serious come the New Year, don't hesitate to contact me.
I'd love to help.
Happy Holidays! xx