Hi, Dyan here (The Health Coach Is In) to help you figure out some easy ways to combat that feeling we sometimes get when the leaves are off the trees and the sun sets way to early and we've unpacked all of our winter clothes, to live in, for those hibernation months of winter...brrrrrrrr.
SO WHY AM I TALKING ABOUT BEATING THE WINTER BLUES?
Depending where you live, New York City vs Miami, winter will be either something you dread or something that passes you by without much notice.
Sometimes even the people who live in the warmer states, like the state I live in California experience seasonal changes that effect their moods and disposition.
The extreme form of this is called SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder. SAD is a cyclical form of depression caused by changes in the circadian rhythm, a 24 hour cycle that regulates biochemical processes in the body.
For some people, as the hours of sunlight decreases in the winter, and even the fall, their circadian rhythm cycle can be disrupted.
The hormone melatonin and the neurotransmitter serotonin suddenly drop in the winter and this causes lethargy, depression, irritability and weight gain.
SO WHAT ARE THE TOP 10 TIPS FOR BEATING THE WINTER BLUES?
TAKE VITAMIN D3
Vitamin D3 is not actually a vitamin, it's a steroid hormone manufactured in the body from direct exposure to sunlight.
Because sunlight is weak or scarce in some winters, be sure to buy Vitamin D3 supplements or Vitamin D3 liquid extract drops to make up for lost sunlight! (2000 - 5000iu daily).
INVEST IN A HIGH QUALITY LIGHT THERAPY SUN LAMP
Light therapy sun lamps are often household necessities in states that suffer from lack of winter sunshine, like Washington and Alaska.
Be sure to invest in a high quality sun lamp that you can use throughout the day for 15 minutes at a time.
Sometimes it's best to surrender to winter and take up hibernation like a big ole bear. You can watch movies you've been longing to see or curl up on the couch with a good book you've been meaning to read or get cozy by the fire in your favorite woolly socks.
EAT WARM, NOURISHING COMFORT FOODS
Use this time to make those rich bean soups and hearty squash and root vegetable stews that you've been wanting to try. It will nourish and warm your body and your spirit.
WATCH COMEDY SHOWS THAT MAKE YOU LAUGH OUT LOUD
Laughter is the best medicine. Download your favorite comedian and watch the show till you have a stitch in your side from laughing or put on your snugly winter boots and invite a friend out to see your favorite comedian live.
GO FOR WALKS OUTSIDE IN THE COLD, FRESH AIR
Just because it's cold outside, doesn't mean you shouldn't be outside. As long as you layer up with your woolly sweater and scarf even the snow and sleet will be your friend. Take a stroll on chilly wintry evenings and return home refreshed.
SPEND TIME SOAKING IT UP IN A HOT TUB OR HOT BATH
There is nothing that raises your body heat quite like soaking it up in a hot tub, hot bath or a sauna. Just do it weekly throughout the winter! You can't go wrong.
FIND A MOVEMENT CLASS THAT MAKES YOU SWEAT
Getting your body moving floods you with feel-good endorphins. So find a high energy dance class (or DVD), like African Dance, Zumba or Belly Dancing and get your grove on.
Then treat yourself to a cup of hot chocolate afterwards with your new dance buddy.
BUY SOME GREAT LOOKING WINTER OUTFITS SO YOU DON'T FEEL FRUMPY
Take all your old, moth-eaten winter clothes to the Goodwill and buy yourself some head-turning winter gear like warm leggings and boots or a great looking hat and sweater, so you can go out and about in style and feel fab, too!
TAKE A VACATION SOMEWHERE SUNNY OR TROPICAL
If the winter months are simply unbearable, there is nothing that breaks it up better than a short vacation to a sunny place like Hawaii, Mexico or Caribbean. It will give you a boost to get through the rest of the winter and this time with a natural tan.
HOW WILL I KNOW WHICH ONE OF THESE TIPS WILL WORK FOR ME?
Start by picking your top 3 that just jump out at you. Those are the ones that obviously appeal to you the most, so that's a great place to start!
Next, schedule a time on your calendar to actually do them!
So if you picked hot bath, movement class and nourishing soup, then go out today and buy the ingredients for the soup to cook tomorrow and find a movement class, DVD or Youtube you can start next week and then step into your hot bath, local hot tub or backyard spa, and do this once a week!
Once you've done all those keep doing them if you enjoy them! And then start adding more from the top 10 list until pretty soon winter will be over and you will yearn to do it all over again!
You'll feel good in your bones that you beat the winter blues this time and had a lot of fun doing it!
If you're in search for an amazing life-long plan to help you lose those "winter pounds," or keep the pounds off if your at your body goal, a plan that will fit easily into your lifestyle, show you how to make healthy new habits stick, re-frame any negative thinking about YOU, and transform your old beliefs into new ways of thinking about YOU?