The calendar, newspapers and media are all saying spring has arrived - just try telling the weather to catch up! The recent freezing snap has really made us all want to shrivel back indoor under the duvet… But don’t be fooled this situation will turn around in a second; get busy with your spring preparations as there are still plenty of changes you can make at home to get your body into shape and out of sluggish winter mode.
First, you will need to take a serious honesty check on all your daily habits and work at removing those that prevent you being as healthy as you can.
If, for example, you eat large amounts of processed foods, get little exercise, have a high intake of alcohol, smoke (yes, some people still do this!) and feel unhappy with your personal relationships be aware that this not necessarily an over night process.
Focus on one or a couple of changes, rather than overloading your system with trying to change everything at once. Essentially these changes require a total change in lifestyle. I would strongly suggest getting into a positive mind set by seeking out all the support you can get from friends and family - big changes require work and commitment to achieve long lasting success.
1. Detox – now is a good time to detox and throw out all the heavy winter food! You don’t need to go on a special diet just switch to a high vegetable diet with plenty of water to lessen the burden on the liver to clear toxins and the flush the kidneys. You will not only feel lighter but also reduce your calorie intake without having to consider portion size too much.
2. Don’t start your home workout cold - Try dancing and listening to more up tempo music for at least 15 minutes to warm up then take it outside with a brisk 30 minute walk if the weather permits - you'll feel more invigorated and burn more calories.
3. I've mentioned this one so many time and believe me, it's as much as a reminder for you - drink more water (with a squeeze of lemon if you prefer) or tea; not only does it lessen your appetite but keeps your mind alert.
4. High Intensity Training HIT - Still a lot of talk around HIT in the media but don’t believe the hype! Ease yourself into a structured exercise programme and build up to performing or mix in HIT sessions over the course of spring to help create another dimension to your exercise programme. Group exercise sessions are a great way to get started, especially circuit classes where you can build up the intensity over time.
5. Reduce sugar intake - I know we're approaching the chocolate fest celebrations of Easter but this would be a good time to increase your fruit intake and lower your alcohol intake (this is basically sugar). Many magazines and a number of recent television programmes have highlighted the addictive and damaging affect a diet rich in sugar can cause. Check these articles on the relationship between sugar, children and adult population to see the depth of the challenge facing us all to remain healthy.
Bye for now – I’ll be back in a couple of weeks with more on the spirit of spring!