Article contributed by Natalie McGrath, Endeavour College and Naturopath
If you are anything like me, you may love this time of year. The weather is amazing and there is a hint of excitement for the upcoming celebrations and festivities. From work functions, family catch ups, holidays starting, there is a lot to look forward to.
With all these extra activities there can be changes to our normal daily routine. So how can we navigate through these times and still feel amazing and not let our health go on the back burner. Why leave your health to the 1st of January which has been proven time and time again not be effective in achieving your goals. Instead let’s implement some strategies now so you can have the energy and vitality to enjoy this time and start next year feeling great and not being in recovery mode.
1) Being mindful – With so much on our plates, figuratively and literally, it’s a time where the days can run into each other without a thought of what’s good for us. So, it’s important to take some time out in the day to still that busy mind. It doesn’t matter how busy you are, you can take 10 minutes to meditate. Yes, this old chestnut that everyone struggles with. To maake it easier for yourself get yourself an app, I love Headspace. Set a time every day that you can just calm that nervous system and get refocused.
2) Be prepared – Does any one else consider cheese boards, platters and grazing tables as food heaven? So that I’m not hovering over the food all night I find that a little preparation can really help. Try having a substantial snack with protein and fats before you head out. A favourite of mine is rice crackers with avocado and some salmon. It prevents me from being ravenous and I can enjoy the food but not needing to devour everything in sight.
3) Keep moving – We may not be able to keep up our regular exercise routines but what a great opportunity to try new things. Walks on the beach, take the kids on a bush walk, try paddle boarding. Also try and keep your body moving throughout the day. Just quick 10-minute walks throughout the day, has many health benefits form improving circulation, reducing stress and inflammation.
4) Be kind to your self – Celebration means food. Indulge a little and enjoy it, savour it. We don’t need to go into food comas to feel satisfied. Eat things in moderation. You can also be kind to yourself in other ways. You don’t need to say yes to everything. If it doesn’t float your boat you can say No. Unless its Christmas dinner at the in laws, you may need to suck that one up.
5) Staying hydrated – The biggest underlying contributor to fatigue is dehydration. So, keep up the water. A good measure of how hydrated you are is the colour of your urine. The aim is to have your urine as clear as possible. Drinking alcohol is very much a part of the festive season. My advice is to space drinks out with water. If you are going to be partying quite hard then a good Vitamin B complex and St Marys thistle can help support that hard-working liver.
Start implementing some of these strategies now and set yourself up for a time of celebration with energy and vitality and start the new year with your best foot forward.