10 Tips to Stay Healthy and Motivated This Winter.
Winter is on its way and that means darker nights and colder weather. Start taking steps today to get ready. The winter months can cause you to struggle with diet and exercise and for many people may make everything feel even harder, especially getting motivated to move your body. Whipping winds and dry air can also be harsh on the skin and hair and your face is the one thing that is always exposed to the elements so you have to protect it. We also have a tendency to want to do less and eat more, which is not good for us as winter can bring colds, illness and isolation. It’s also a busy and exciting season, with many fun family dinners and holiday parties, which usually cause cravings for more carbs and comfort food. However, once the festivities are over, that’s where many people start to experience a lack of motivation. So, it is important to summon your inner strength to stay motivated, healthy and busy.
Now is a good time to plan ahead and prepare.
- Change up your beauty regime: We layer our clothes in the winter months and you may need to do the same with your beauty products, too. Your skin will need extra hydration so invest in good skincare products that contain hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and hydrating creams with lots of antioxidants in them. Remember, you still need your sun screen even in the winter months. Avoid using facial products that contain alcohol, which can really dry out your skin. Remember to exfoliate lightly as this will help remove any dry dull skin allowing your moisturizer to penetrate better.
- Dry body brushing and coconut oil can work wonders. Do it, at least, a couple of times a week before taking a shower or bath. For any stubborn dry patches on rough elbows and knees try some honey and sugar to exfoliate and make sure to take care of your hands and feet.
- Stay fit and healthy: It’s so tempting to hit the snooze button especially on a cold winters You have to have a mindset and stay focused on the benefits exercise brings you. It can help to manage stress levels and give you an abundance of energy, it helps to fight fatigue and boost your immune system so that it can fight off bacterial and viral infections. You’ll feel better than ever if you keep exercising when the temperature drops. Invest in some cute workout wear to help get you motivated. Try to keep your exercise routine as exciting as possible. Spice it up! How about some belly dancing, Zumba classes or salsa dancing? Exercise helps to flush toxins from the body which promotes healthier skin and boosts your mood keeping the winter blues at bay. Have fun, try to get out doors as much as possible, bundle up and go for a walk or even a snowball fight.
- Arrange your wardrobe: This is the time to wash and pack away your summer cloths. Go through them and throw anything you know that you’re not going to wear next year including any T-shirts that are stained and well worn, and check over your summer shoes. There will probably be a few things that you’ll keep around for the fall like blazers and cardigans. Adjust your wardrobe so that you have room for your sweaters, thermals, gloves, coats, and hats and make sure they are all in good condition. It is a great time to de-clutter; your personal space is a great reflection of your mental space. Pop on some up beat music to get you motivated about doing it, dance around, sing out loud and have fun.
- Get your kitchen ready: Clean out the fridge and freezer, get rid of any half empty bottles that may have been sitting in your fridge all summer long. Think about healthy winter foods, and for those of you on the run get some awesome slow cooker recipes. Try eating a hearty protein packed breakfast which will help to keep your energy levels up longer. Cook with spices like garlic, cardamom, ginger, cinnamon and turmeric. They help to warm the body and improve the immune system, and are antioxidants which can help combat some conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. They also help to lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation. Eat more fruits, veggies and fiber, as it can be more tempting to eat unhealthy foods. You can boost serotonin with healthy carbs like whole grains, sweet potatoes, yams, pumpkin and squash. Serotonin is considered a natural mood stabilizer and its chemical helps with sleeping, eating, and digestion. It also helps reduce depression, regulate anxiety, heal wounds and maintain bone health.
- Take your vitamins: Keep your immune system strong by boosting your levels with Vitamin D and mineral zinc. Take plenty of vitamin C as this offers protection against immune system deficiencies and is particularly helpful in preventing cold and flu. Omega 3 oils are a must for keeping your skin, hair and nails healthy and strong. B vitamins are beneficial to help protect against depression. Elderberry has shown to shorten the duration of colds. If you really do not like taking too many supplements, then find a good quality multi-vitamin instead.
- Stay hydrated: When the temperatures outside are colder, we spend more hours indoors in overheated homes and offices. We soon begin to dry out, our skin, nose, mouth, lips and body, which all need moisture. Therefore, drinking plenty of clean fresh water and staying hydrated is one of the best things you can do for your health. If you don’t like to drink cold water then try warming it up and add a slice of lemon. Staying hydrated can actually help fight off colds and flu. Keep some humidifiers going at home or keep pans of fresh water on top of your radiators to help keep moisture in the air.
- Plan a vacation or time at the spa: Winter is a good time to recharge. Plan a winter break or pamper time at the spa, this will give you something to look forward to and can help to keep you motivated. While living in the present is beneficial, you may at some point need extra help to get you through any difficult times. So, having some fun plans to look forward to can give you the motivation that you need until you can finally reward yourself.
- A good night’s sleep: Aim for about 7-8 hours a night of sleep. Try to be consistent as to when you go to bed and wake up. This will help your body regulate is own inner clock. A well-rested body can fight of illness. Sleep helps to restore your immune system, while you rest your body repairs itself. Create a relaxing bedtime routine, take a nice warm bath as boosting your body temperature will help you get to sleep faster or find a good book to read. At least two hours before bed chill out and unwind, try some relaxing techniques that will prepare your body for sleep.
- Have more sex: We tend to cuddle more in the winter months and that brings us closer and help chase away any winter blues. So, don’t hide the lingerie, pull them out, get creative and have some fun. Cuddle up and watch a romantic movie, have a nice bubble bath together or shower. If you have a hot tub, jump into that and get all warm and loose. Remember to pull out the massage oil. Have your bedroom dimly lit, light some candles or burn essential oils, make it feel romantic. You’ll certainly heat up under the covers having fun together.
- Have fun: Find fun things to do. Stress and depression can weaken your immune system and that will certainly make you more vulnerable to illness. Start a new hobby, find a creative outlet to keep those juices flowing. Remember the importance of staying connected to others. Invite friends over for dinner, or go to the movies with a friend. Staying social is good for your health and wellbeing.
Before you know it, spring will be in the air. And that’s another blog!
Diane Morgan works with women who are overwhelmed and torn by the aging process and have a hard time finding themselves and their place in life during and beyond midlife. She is the creator of a powerful transformational program Awaken Your Beauty Inside Out: Fall In Love With The Skin You’re In. This phenomenal program capitalizes on her 20 plus years of experience in the beauty industry and her expertise as a certified Master Empowerment Coach for women.