It truly is a wonderful time of year. Ideally, the holidays are a time to spend with loved ones, enjoy winter activities, and recharge before a new year begins. Realistically, we overbook ourselves, deal with stress of holiday travel, and allow our self-care to take a backseat to all of the festivities. That’s okay, it’s the holidays! However, there are simple hacks that we can do everyday through the season to keep us energized and feeling well so we can whole-heartedly enjoy our loved ones, our travels, and every single one of those holiday parties.
- Allow yourself to fully enjoy and indulge in whatever it is you’re doing with your family and friends! Unless you have a serious allergy, of course, enjoy the holiday treats and your favorite foods. Prohibiting foods only makes us want them more and can lead to overindulging. It also takes us out of the present moment and creates anxiety. Food is our fuel and affects function, yes, but it also brings people together and is nourishing for the soul. Having a slice of pie or a cookie (or two) will not have long lasting effects! Your body is amazing and will get you back to equilibrium.
- Drink a lemon + ginger elixir first thing in the morning. This is my favorite way to start the day - especially in the Winter time. Lemon is an excellent source of vitamin C, which is important in collagen production. This is good news for dry Winter skin! It is also loaded with anti-oxidants, which fight inflammation & help to boost our immune system. Ginger is a stimulating herb that is known for its digestive support. It can help with a long list of GI symptoms - nausea, cramping, and pain. Ginger is also extremely high in in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory effects. I recommend 1 cup of warm/hot water with a generous slice of lemon and 1 inch fresh ginger root, diced. Let it steep for a few minutes & enjoy before moving on to any other morning beverages!
- Take 5 deep breaths before you eat. Our nervous systems need to be in “rest + digest” for our bodies to properly break down foods and absorb their nutrients. When we’re stressed and distracted while eating, we are already diluting our GI systems strength in digesting our meal. Taking deep breaths and calming ourselves before enjoying the food in front of us allows us to optimize the first step in proper digestion. Breathing also brings us into the present moment, which is important for both the way we process our food & the way we connect with those we are breaking bread with!
- Keep your blood flowing! When we’re traveling and out of our routines, it can be really challenging to stick to our regular forms of movement. This is where we need to get creative! Taking walks around the neighborhood once a day is a great way to get our energy flowing and also to spend time with our loved ones. There are other ways to move our blood too - walk to the back of the plane and do some simple stretching or bust out a few of your favorite yoga moves before bed. Whatever it is, keeping the blood flowing will only do wonders for our physical and mental health during the holidays!
- Hydrate! This doesn’t need much explanation. Especially during the Winter, most of us are chronically dehydrated. We can always drink more water. Try adding a pinch of salt to your water bottle to increase absorption. The more hydrated we are, the better our bodies function! Plug: lemon + ginger elixir in the morning.
Staying committed to the tips above helps me to keep grounded during this season and I’m confident it’ll help you too! It’s the season of giving and connecting - let’s not forget about giving to & connecting with ourselves, too.