You know how nice it feels to drive your car home after getting a tune up? The oil is squeaky clean, the fluids have been topped off, windshield wipers have been changed, tire pressure is at that perfect level, and it’s been washed inside and out? It occurred to me this morning as I was walking past my neighborhood auto-shop, that just like our cars need a tune up, a seasonal renewal is as important to our own bodies.
So obvious, right?
Well, if you're anything like me then this summer has been a whirlwind of managing kids home from school (we're almost over THAT finish line!), travel, wet pool towels and bathing suits (every where!), backyard parties with foods that you don't normally eat as often, late nights and early mornings. Oh... with work mixed in there, too!
Here's what I'm planning to do to transition into a lovely fall. Join me?
1. Change The Oil
The oil in a car engine keeps all the moving parts working together so the vehicle moves along smoothly, yeah? Thinking about this in terms of my body - what am I doing to hydrate your system on a daily basis? Coffee, black tea, sugary drinks and soda, as well as alcohol are extremely drying to our system, which can lead to dehydration. Most of us are walking around dehydrated!
Each morning I am re-committing to starting with a tall glass of room temperature water, followed by a tall glass of lemon/lime water (a drop of lemon or lime essential oil, OR the juice of one lemon/lime in about 16oz of water). I do usually like to have a hot drink in the morning as well and have dropped coffee in favor of herbal tea or chai with coconut milk (no sugar). This (approx.) 32-48oz of liquid in the morning gets the gut moving (poop! a good thing!) and hydrates the body first thing in the morning before introducing food. The rest of the day I will be sure to drink the rest of the ounces of plain water that I need. My general rule of thumb is "half your body weight, in ounces, per day."
2. Fill All Reservoirs
I'm tired. For reals. It's been a long summer on a lot of levels; days seem super long with three kids spanning three developmental phases (4, 10, 13!). I am re-evaluating what it is that I need to "fill my cup, so it runneth over". Last week I was going to a morning yoga class and my oldest yelled out "Don't you love me enough to stay home with me all day?". I quipped back, "No. I love you enough to go to yoga class because I'm a better person after I come back home." Of course, this led to lots of yelling and eye-rolling on her part that she was KIDDINNNNNG, MAMA ... UGH!
Find your thing. Take time for you; I promise it's OK. Critical, even.
3. Change Windshield Wipers
Sometimes my view of life is all splattered with dead bugs. I mean, really. It's so easy to focus on the "what's NOT HAPPENING" when there are a million things that are happening for me. I have realized that with a daily gratitude practice (writing those things down!), and a simple meditation practice (somedays it's closing my eyes for one minute and breathing), I am able to more easily appreciate the flow of abundance that is in my life and to see a clear vision of the path in front of me. Like when you put those fresh wiper blades on the car and you go thru your first rainstorm. So clear! And the fun part is, like begets like. The more clear your view so you can focus on flow, the more flow.
4. Keep Tire Pressure Leveled
There are many benefits of keeping your tire pressure at the correct level (read more here if interested). The gist:
"With the right amount of air pressure, your tires wear longer, save fuel, enhance handling, and prevent accidents. Failure to maintain the correct air pressure can result in poor gas mileage, reduce tire life, affect vehicle handling, and cause vehicle overloading."
This reminds me of S T R E S S; the tires on your car are meant to help navigate the road and there are real safety concerns if they aren't maintained. Here's the deal - we live in a stressful world and we are bombarded with information every second. Honestly, that's not going to change any time soon. What CAN change? My response to the stressors around me. My willingness to add extra stress to my mind and body. I know that when my body is under stress from things like caffeine, sugar (including refined grains which turn into sugar in the body), processed foods, and alcohol I'm less able to deal with every day stress that is bound to come up. And I also know that high levels of continued stress in the body can act as fuel for disease.
Whole, unprocessed foods. The entire rainbow of fruits and veggies. Whole, unrefined grains. Eating this way helps me feel at ease and more able to deal with life!
5. Wash Inside and Out
An awesome way to do both of these things at once? Dry skin brushing! So easy and I'm re-committed to doing it every morning. Here's how it works:
Before getting into the shower each use a dry skin brush to brush the skin pretty rigorously with numerous long strokes per body part, moving upwards toward the heart. Brush your legs, arms, backside, torso; everywhere you can reach. There are lots of tutorial videos online that can show you in more detail.
A couple reasons this is awesome: it exfoliates your skin, tightens loose skin, reduces cellulite, and most importantly moves the lymphatic system. Our lymphatic system is critical to draining lymph (decrease swelling and bloat), filtering lymph (killing bacteria and viruses), filtering the blood (out with the old red blood cells, in with the new) and removing impurities from the body.
This isn't rocket science, I know! Simple changes made daily, over time, create AMAZING results for you health and well-being. Want to join me in renewing for the fall season?
28 Day Fall Renewal
I will be covering all of these practices and more in my 28 Day program beginning September 17, 2015. I have everything you will need to get started making the daily shifts: a step-by-step guide, recipes, a shopping list and meal planner, as well as a transition recipe packet & food diary PLUS a private forum, weekly in-person workshops at Ease Yoga & Cafe in Del Ray, along with gifts and discounts. I will be with you every step of the way with daily e-mail support and to cheer you on.
Need a tune up? Stressed? Sad? Disconnected? Fed-up? If you are local to the Alexandria, VA area please join me for my Fall 28 Day Renewal program hosted by Ease Yoga & Cafe. 4 weekly in-person workshops and 28 days of online support, workbooks and recipes. LEARN MORE AND REGISTER HERE. Early bird pricing until 9/10! Comment or email me with questions at hilary AT wiselightwellness DOT com.