Daylight savings time jumps at us with the enthusiasm of a joyful five-year old that cannot wait to get out and play. That’s why I like it and with that extra time in the evenings it’s perfect to re-establish determination to get and stay healthy, flexible and youthful, regardless of the date on our driver’s license.
Okay, it’s true. When there’s more daylight after work and school, there are more challenges to keep our wellness goals. To help you identify some concerns and get you to push yourself ahead for health, here are some recommendations so you’ll be ready when it’s officially swimsuit season.
Special note: If you’re feeling out of sorts, stuck in an unhealthy rut or need a push, consider talking with your doctor. If this medical pro thinks it’s okay, then perhaps it’s time for a spa getaway or just a weekend with plenty of pampering to get you back in the springtime pink.
*This spring push yourself to exercise every single day. This is the hardest part. You must nudge your mind and body into action. New habits, such as those outlined below, could take as long as six weeks to become a routine. That means you’ll need to follow the tips even when you don’t want to.
*This spring push yourself to get daily dose of outdoors and fresh air. Yes, I know that we still have rain and cloudy days, but ultra-violet rays filter through the clouds. Smooth on a layer of sunscreen and take a walk at lunch. Walk if it’s raining—you won’t melt. Walk if it’s windy and feel the wind blow through your hair. Figure out how to be outdoors at lunch, when the sun is at its highest. You’ll want to walk for 15 minutes to an hour, starting more slowly if you haven’t been involved in a regular exercise program.
*This spring push yourself to carefully select clothing, make up and a hair style that shouts, “I am happy being me!” Sure it’s okay to wear an old jacket and worn out sneakers to walk on an amazing spring morning. Yet, if you need to boost your mood, get some new fitness clothes in bright, neon colors and a must have this spring? Shoes in hot, crazy colors. As you know, I like to hike the hills around Ojai and sometimes as early as I’m hiking, it’s cool. I always layer and then can take off layers as the day warms up. Even if you’re not there on the hillsides with me, layering is smart.
*This spring push yourself to find a friend who is ready to push herself, too, so you can buddy up. Have you noticed that an office mate, a loved one or some friends from book group, class or your church seem like they’d be fun to hang out with? Then be brave and see if they’d like to start a walking group, playing basketball at the high school or your favorite springtime sport. When you buddy up with another, he or she will push you should your daily resolve to get outdoors weaken.
*This spring push around the furniture to let in lots of light. Pull back the drapes in your office or home so that you can capture as much natural light as possible. If you work in a windowless office, there are artificial lights that produce “natural” qualities that may help you too.
*This spring push yourself to keep eating and drinking for a healthy, trim and fit body. During the winter, we often eat more fatty, sugary foods. Remember those holidays and parties? Yet, these heavy foods increase unwanted body fat, which in turn makes us feel sluggish and less attractive. All that contributes to lower self-esteem. You get the picture. Every day this spring, strive to eat five different fruits and vegetables every day. Try to go vegetarian one day a week too. And remember, portion size counts. There is lots of info online about portion control with charts and pictures to help you.
*This spring push yourself each day to seize the day. Do something out of your character, like wearing red lipstick. Help someone unexpectedly. Smile. I’m not immune to tough times as many of you know the Cluff clan has had more than its share it. That said, may I personal encourage you to push yourself toward better health. The pushing is worth it as you stay fit for life.