We’re in the dead of winter, and that can leave us feeling tired and sluggish, to say the least. That’s normal, and you may be dreaming of bikinis or cute plus size swimsuits and an island vacation, but along with jetting off to the Caribbean for some sun, there are other things you can do from home to feel and even look your best every day.
The following are tips you can integrate into your life right now to give you a mental and physical boost.
Take a Walk Every Day
It’s cold and you’re tired, but if you can carve out time for a walk every day, and especially if you can do it outside, it’s going to boost your mental and physical health.
Often, even if we regularly workout, we may still have a largely sedentary lifestyle because of our jobs. If you can add a walk to your routine every day you get more steps in, plus you can get some vitamin D, which many of us are deficient in during the winter.
It doesn’t have to be a long walk to have a positive impact.
If you can’t walk in the morning or evening, try doing it during lunch.
Find A Type of Exercise You Enjoy
Exercise is inevitably one of the most important things we can do for our mental and physical health, but it’s tough to get motivated. Make 2020 the year you experiment and find an exercise that you enjoy doing.
It could be running, cycling, skating, weightlifting, yoga, or anything that you look forward to.
It makes it a lot easier to stick to a routine if you like what you’re doing. If you hate a specific type of exercise, don’t do it. There are plenty of options.
If you’re not ready to commit to full-on workout sessions, that’s okay too. Try to get in small amounts of activity throughout your day. Short amounts of exercise, such as 1 to 10 minutes throughout the day, can bring the same benefits in terms of lowering cholesterol and blood pressure are compared to 30 minutes of continuous exercise.
Shift Your Diet
Frequently we won’t change our diet unless we want to lose weight for a certain occasion, but the food we eat plays a much bigger role in our lives than just how we look and what we weigh.
The food we eat affects how we feel every day.
Eating the right foods isn’t necessarily about counting calories, but is instead about choosing things that are nutrient-dense rather than processed.
When you’re snacking on sugary, processed foods, not only can it contribute to weight gain but it can impact your mood.
For example, if you eat foods high in vitamins and protein, they absorb slower than processed foods and then increase your dopamine levels, giving you a natural mood boost.
Eating foods high in B12 and D can also help your mood as can foods like salmon, broccoli, and lentils.
If you remember to eat five small, healthy, and nutrient-packed meals a day it can keep your metabolism operating at a healthy level and it can also help you maintain steady energy levels.
Eating well to feel well doesn’t have to be boring, and you can also add some dark chocolate into your daily routine because it might give your brain a boost. Dark chocolate has flavanols which can improve blood flow to the brain.
Spend Time with People You Care About
It’s easy to get busy and overwhelmed, and if that’s the case, one of the first things you might do is cut out spending time with the people you care about. Whether it’s girlfriends, your spouse or partner, or your family, carve out time every week to enjoy time with the people who are important in your life.
Create a Healthy Morning Routine
How you start the day sets the tone for everything else you do.
Make your morning meaningful. Spend your mornings, even if it’s just 10 minutes, doing something that brings you joy or value. This might be journaling, meditating, stretching, reading affirmations—it can be anything.
You have to find what works for you.
Finally, train your brain to see things differently. If you start to feel negative about something, shift your thoughts instantly to something you feel grateful for. It’s simple, but it can go a long way because our brains are the drivers of everything else in our lives, so we have to harness the power of our thoughts.