There are only 3 weeks left until the official start of Spring and if you are like me and live in California, chances are Spring has already sprung. I love this season because it means the long winter is over and life is renewed. I love planting a garden (at my mom’s) and doing my spring cleaning. But is also a time when I really commit to my health. We all make New Years Resolutions but when Spring comes around it’s a chance to evaluate what is working and what isn’t.
I know life gets busy but before you say “I don’t have time” remember that there are a ton of things you do on a regular basis that you would never skip, no matter how busy you are like doing the dishes and brushing your teeth. Health should be like that too! It should become habit to take care of yourself. I have some things that I do every week for my health and I have made a pact to myself that I will do these things. I even put them on my calendar to remind myself just like I would remind myself of a work meeting or car service appointment.
There was a time when I was so stressed out that I felt like I was going to have a nervous breakdown. I was putting everything in the world ahead of myself and I will not do that any longer. Take care of yourself first and everything else will fall into place.
Here are my health and fitness MUST DOS:
1. Dry Brushing-
I cannot sing the praises for dry brushing enough! I dry brush every day after washing my face and brushing my teeth. It has amazing health benefits such as detoxing the lymphatic system, exfoliating, opening pores, removing dead skin and helping with circulation. It also feels amazing!! Be sure to buy a brush that has natural bristles (I found mine at Target), a long handle for reaching your back and always brush towards your heart (I do my entire body starting at my feet).
2. Take Vitamins:
I know there are a lot of conflicting reports about vitamins and you never can be too sure so I don’t overdo it. My first priority is to get vitamins from the healthy foods I eat. But to be sure I am giving my body all it needs to be healthy I do supplement with a few key vitamins. I take 1,000 IUs of Vitamin D everyday, Primrose Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Calcium, and a Probiotic. If you can take only one I would highly recommend Vitamin D. It makes me feel happier and gives me energy.
3. Detox Regularly
I recently read a health book called Quit PMS that described how important it is to detoxify your liver and digestive system regularly. About every other month I do the 7 Day detox cleanse from Whole Foods. It is especially important if you are a women because estrogen needs to be broken down and flushed out of your system regularly or it gets reabsorbed into your system. The probiotics in the cleanse help break down the estrogen and other toxins and can even prevent cancer.
4. Weekly Wheat Grass Shots
I live down the street from Jamba Juice so about once a week I go there and do a wheat grass shot. $2.99 is a small price to pay for this amazing super food. It is one of the healthiest foods on the planet. It contains all the vitamins and minerals you can think of including 17 amino acids and chlorophyll which breaks down toxins in the blood. I have been taking these shots since college and after staying consistent I have noticed that I have so much energy.
I am OBSESSED with hiking. Since I live in San Francisco now I am blessed with so many awesome trails to hike. We usually go for a two hour hike every weekend. We pack water, some fruit and nuts, sunblock, and sunglasses and that is pretty much all we need. Each time I hike I leave my phone in the car so I can use the time not only to challenge myself physically but to also meditate and reconnect with myself and with nature. Just like I do in my weekly yoga class- I use this time to bring awareness to the moment, to the beauty of God’s creation and to the silence that is so hard to find in the city. Some of my favorite local hikes are Mount Tamalpais, the gorgeous Redwoods at Purisma Creek, and Almaden Quicksilver near San Jose. Hiking is not only a total body workout but it is so much more fun than a treadmill. Also because it allows me to reconnect with nature it has a spiritual health benefit.
6. Use Essential Oils
I am loving Essential Oils. I got the Idea from a few You Tube bloggers I followed as well my yoga instructor, who always uses them during shavasana. They have amazing health benefits and have even been prove to reduce the amount of stress hormones in the blood. I usually go to Whole Foods after my hike to try some health food samples and grab a salad. Last week I also picked up and essential oil diffuser at Whole Foods for $50. They have a large selection of essential oils as well. I’ve been using grapefruit and lavender and they are amazing. I sometimes get ice pick headaches but I started doing a dab of oil diluted with water on my temple and I haven’t had an attack since. Lately I have been diffusing lavender and I have seen a huge reduction in stress.
7. Pamper Yourself
Every week I take time out to just pamper myself. I usually do this on Sunday after my hike and house chores are finished. I make some green tea, start my oil diffuser, put on the “Spa” station on Pandora, apply a face mask and do my nails. Every time I stop by Walmart or Target I grab a couple of these sample freeman facemasks for my weekly pampering. I keep all my spa supplies in a basket in my bathroom and I just grab whatever treatment catches my eye while I sip my tea and relax. This helps me reset for the busy week ahead.
I hope you enjoyed my post! Tell me about your essentials in the comments!