9 Winter Health Tips to Stay Healthy This Season

Winter has begun, which means the cold weather is here! The cold has long been associated with getting sick as people spend more time indoors in close quarters, immune systems are lowered, stress is increased, and healthy habits sometimes go out the door. But winter doesn’t have to mean a season of sickness! Read on to find ways to stay healthy this season with these winter health tips – from eating healthy meals among winter treats to protecting your body from winter colds.

 

Woman Detoxifying in Infrared Sauna for Winter Wellness

 

Detoxify

 

One of the most useful winter health tips is detoxification. There are many benefits of detoxification, such as the elimination of toxins and chemicals, ease of muscle soreness, and general relaxation. Sweating is one of the main forms of detoxification. Either hit the gym or use an infrared sauna for a deep sweat session that will leave you feeling healthier this winter season. An infrared sauna will take your detox to the next level with a slew of other health benefits such as reduced stress, improved skin health, a boosted immune system, and of course, a great way to stay warm – all great things for winter health.

 

Stay Warm

 

Getting sick in the winter is a common occurrence, and it may partially be caused by the cold. Some viruses spread more easily in cold air, and being cold may have an adverse impact on your immune system. One way to help keep your body healthy is by keeping warm. Luckily, this means you also get to be more comfortable! When you’re outside, wear appropriate clothing, and make sure your extremities are well protected. You can also keep warm by having a session in an infrared sauna, which will make you warm while boosting your immune system. Cozying up next to the fire, enjoying warm foods, holding a mug of warm tea, and exercising can also help.

 

Exercise

 

Apart from the warmth, exercise is one of the top ways to stay healthy regardless of the season. With large, indulgent meals and the desire to just sit in front of the fire, it’s easy to fall off the workout wagon. Exercising doesn’t just help you stay in shape physically, it can also help you stay in shape mentally. Movement helps boost endorphins, which is especially helpful in the winter when many experience Seasonal Affective Disorder. Get active for 30 minutes every day, whether that means taking a stroll outside or hitting the gym. This way, you can stay happy and get your blood pumping.

 

Woman Eating Healthy Meal for Winter Health

 

Eat Well

 

The winter is full of warm and cozy treats that can be hard to ignore. This winter season, indulge in moderation and consider a detox after. Try to keep the decadent treats to a minimum, and make sure you have plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to get your daily dose of vitamins. Take the time to plan out meals a few days in advance, focus on lighter fare that allows you to take advantage of local farmer’s markets and seasonal items, and eat as healthy as possible to support your overall mission of good health and wellness over the winter. Sure, you can indulge here and there, but it feels a lot better to eat healthfully than to overeat.

 

Get Rest

 

With the winter months being some of the most hectic for many, rest is one of the most important winter health tips. This season, take time to rest and relax to recharge your body. Whether it’s an hour to read your favorite book or ensuring you get the proper number of hours of sleep every night, rest is important for brain function, mood, and even cardiovascular health. Between work, social engagements, and life in general, it is important to make time for yourself and take it easy to let your body heal and recuperate. Work rest and sleep into your daily routine to get your body on a healthy schedule.

 

Step Outside

 

Depending on where you are, the weather outside may be frightful, but the benefits of going outside are so delightful. Spending some time outside is linked to many benefits that may affect your mental health during the winter, such as boosting creativity and concentration, fighting Seasonal Affective Disorder, improving your mood, reducing stress, and preventing cabin fever. Don’t get the winter blues stuck inside, bundle up and go outside for your mental health. Always be sure to check the weather beforehand and wear appropriate clothing, stay hydrated, and stay warm to prevent catching a cold!

 

Woman Meditating for Mental Health in Winter

Meditate

 

Quieting your mind in the winter may seem like a difficult task when you’re still recovering from the holidays and starting to plan the year ahead, but taking 10 minutes of your day to meditate can help significantly reduce your stress. Work meditation into your daily routine, whether it’s when you wake up or before bed. Take this time to center yourself and collect your thoughts. Meditation can be done anywhere, but we recommend trying it in a sauna or in bed for ultimate relaxation. You can boost your meditation session by pairing it with a bit of daily journaling to keep track of your mood and how your mental health is impacted.

 

Set Boundaries

 

An important tip for mentally staying healthy during the winter is learning how to set boundaries. There are some settings or situations that might make you uncomfortable, and that is okay! Whether you’re avoiding large crowds or simply don’t have the time on your plate to make new plans, boundaries ensure that you don’t end up experiencing burnout – which can lead to stress that can eventually contribute to worsening your health. Set these boundaries with yourself and be comfortable with saying no to plans that don’t work with your schedule or your comfort level. Those close to you will respect and understand your choices!

 

Prevent Sickness

 

The winter season means colder temperatures, which often lead to sickness if proper precautions aren’t taken. Cold weather facilitates the spreading of germs and lowers your immune system. This tip might not 100% be in your control, but taking extra care in winter to prevent sickness and boost your immune system can help reduce your chances of catching something. Along with the tips above, you can keep your body healthy this winter by staying hydrated, taking vitamins and supplements, washing your hands frequently, wearing a mask in large crowds, and minimizing contact with those who may be sick.

 

This winter, take extra care of yourself to ensure you have a healthy and happy season! Use these winter health tips to guide you along your health journey. Remember, many of these tips are helpful year-round. Start incorporating these practices into your everyday routine to start a healthy future for yourself.

How to Have a Healthy Transition Back to “Normal Life”

After this last year and a half of a different approach to life, it might feel a bit odd returning back to pre-pandemic life. With increased vaccine rollouts and expanded access across the country, returning to “normal” is something on the horizon that many are looking forward to. However, this return to normalcy is making some anxious. People who are still worried about contracting the virus or who are used to spending time alone may find it difficult to return to their pre-pandemic social lives.

This is why it is so important to set a plan for healthy transitions for life after COVID so it isn’t an overwhelming experience. Read on to find the best ways to mentally and physically prepare yourself for getting back into the swing of things in a healthy manner.

 

Friends Having Coffee During Life After COVID

 

Tips for the Return to Normalcy

 

Build Up Your Immune System

Health is obviously one of the top priorities when returning to life after COVID. Building up your immune system can help keep your body in the best shape possible to defend against any sickness. In this last year and a half in isolation, your body hasn’t been exposed to many outside influences, which might make you more susceptible to illnesses such as general colds or even allergies until your immunity is built up again.

Help give your immune system a boost naturally by having regular infrared sauna sessions, taking supplements, exercising, reducing stress, and eating a healthy diet.

 

Define Your Priorities

After a year and a half at home and away from our regular activities, it can be overwhelming with all the new opportunities available. People to see, things to do, places to visit, it can all feel like a bit much. Define your priorities to make the transition easier to manage. Make a list of what you’d like to do first, whether that’s going on a trip you’ve had to reschedule or visiting friends or family members you haven’t seen in years.

 

Determine Boundaries

Once you have your priorities set, determine some boundaries. You don’t need to return to your pre-pandemic social life right away, and if you’re wary of seeing certain friends or are nervous about some interactions, it’s okay to take a step back. Set a window of tolerance, which is essentially a comfort zone that you can work, live, and socialize within, adjusting it as things open up more.

 

Couple Maintaining Healthy Lifestyle After COVID

 

Embrace the Good Changes

There’s no denying that the last year and a half has been a challenge. It has been a weird period of change that has been both uncomfortable and uncertain, but it’s also important to take a look at the good changes. Perhaps you learned a new skill or picked up a new hobby. Or maybe you’ve adopted a healthier lifestyle or have invested more time into your mental health. During your return to normalcy, embrace the good changes during abnormal times.

 

Find a New Routine

At the start of COVID, our lives were rocked and routines were thrown out the window. Over the months, you probably found a new at-home routine. And now, that routine might have to change again. Whether you’re going back into the office after working from home or starting to do things on the weekend again, settle into a new routine that helps you fit in all the things you need to do in the day.

 

Make Time for Yourself

With all this energy going toward thinking about things to do when returning to normalcy, it can be easy to forget to take time for yourself. You’ve had a year and a half to yourself, so don’t stop that important time now. Set aside time that doesn’t revolve around anyone else and pamper yourself. Have a spa day, go on a solo run, watch your favorite movie, lounge and read a book, or spend time on a hobby you love.

 

Woman in Infrared Sauna for Overall Health

 

Manage Your Overall Health

We mentioned boosting your immune system above, but there are other aspects of your health that are important to manage as well. Of course, still do the basics like washing your hands and maintaining distance between those who may be sick. You should also continue to exercise, eat a healthy diet, meditate, and go to doctor appointments to take care of your mental and physical health.

 

Reflect on Your Experience

This last year and a half has been a life experience many were not expecting or prepared for, which means we were collectively thrown into a world of change. It is important to reflect on these months, from the good to the bad. Reflection will help you appreciate the wins, process the hardships, and celebrate the return to normalcy even more. This is an important step forward in understanding how the pandemic has affected your life moving forward.

 

Set Realistic Expectations

At the end of the day, it is important to set realistic expectations for yourself when returning to normalcy and life after COVID. Things are going to be different from how they were pre-pandemic with our new normal. Expect that it’s still going to be a learning curve getting back into the swing of things, and that’s okay! With realistic expectations set and healthy transitions in place, going back to normal will be easier than you expect.

 

Happy Friends Embracing After Returning to Normalcy

 

Healthy Transitions for Life After COVID

 

While COVID may be around for a bit longer, we are certainly getting closer to “normal” life once again. Planning and setting up healthy transitions after this last year and a half can help you ease back into an old lifestyle that feels pretty new. Take things slowly and don’t pressure yourself to do anything you aren’t comfortable with yet.

This period in life has been a learning experience and has made a large impact on us all. Anxiety about life after COVID is totally normal, but it can be managed with the right steps. Plan your transition for your return to normalcy, set boundaries, reflect on your experience, and focus on your health. Taking care of your own physical and mental health should be your top priority at this time.

Putting Together the Ultimate Total Body Wellness Routine

A lot of health routine guides will tell you how to focus on one part of your wellbeing, be it diet, exercise, or something else. But we know that having a routine for total health and wellness requires a lot more than focusing on just one thing. From meditating for your mental health to staying hydrated for your physical health, a lot goes into creating a routine that benefits your overall health. Read on to find the best ways to have the ultimate total body wellness routine, from mind to body.

 

Woman Stretching in Morning for Physical Health

 

Wellness Routine for Physical Health

 

Begin Your Day with a Stretch

Your daily routine should start off with a good stretch. Stretching in the morning improves your energy levels, improves your circulation, relieves any tension or pain from sleeping the night before, encourages good lymphatic function, and prepares your body for the day ahead. To really bolster your morning stretch, a quick hot yoga session in an infrared sauna will really invigorate your day.

 

Exercise Regularly

Getting proper exercise benefits your mental and physical health. Sedentary behavior has been linked to many medical problems. Moving more and sitting less can have major health benefits such as reduced stress, maintaining a healthy weight, improved metabolism, and more. Aim to get around 2.5 hours of active movement a week to keep your body healthy and in top shape, and use an infrared sauna to boost your workout even more.

 

Get Quality Sleep

Getting quality sleep gives you a headstart on good mental health each day. The tough thing about sleep issues is that they lead to stress, which leads to more trouble sleeping – and the cycle continues. You can counter this by sticking to a bedtime routine. Try limiting screen time before bed, or going to bed at the same time each night. Developing a predictable routine around sleep can help put your mind at ease when it’s time to rest.

 

Couple Sitting in Infrared Sauna for Physical Health

 

Sit in an Infrared Sauna

If you have an infrared sauna or access to one, having a sauna session in your routine can be a huge benefit to your total body wellness. Infrared saunas offer a number of health benefits such as muscle recovery, improved skin, boosted immune system, reduced stress, increased metabolism, and much more. Infrared sauna sessions can be as long or short as you need them to be, making them an easy addition to your daily health routine.

 

Stay Hydrated

Did you know that becoming even slightly dehydrated can lead to lowered mood and decreased concentration? Keep water or other low-sugar drinks on hand to sip throughout the day, especially if you’re sweating more than usual due to activities such as exercise or sauna use. If you need to, set an alarm every hour to drink water until it becomes a natural part of your healthy daily routine.

 

Take Supplements and Vitamins

Sometimes, what you eat isn’t enough to get your daily needed vitamins and nutrients. Include daily supplements and vitamins into your routine after speaking to your doctor to see what is best for you. Consume your nutrient essentials, such as a high-quality multivitamin, a vitamin D supplement, and capsules of omega-3 fish oils. This combo will help to reduce inflammation, boost immunity, lower blood pressure, and ensure optimal health.

 

Man Reading Book for Mental Health

 

Wellness Routine for Mental Health

 

Decrease Your Screen Time

Our phones, tablets, and televisions are our windows to the world. But every once in a while, taking a break is a good thing. There are lots of studies to support limiting the screentime of children and young adults, and adult studies are trending in the same direction. Excessive screen time has been linked to a reduction in gray matter in the adult brain. When this happens in your frontal lobe, it can lead to problems with impulse control. 

 

Eat Brain-Friendly Foods

Food can help improve your mood. Not the treats you may be thinking, like a cookie for a job well done. Try foods rich in vitamin B-12 and folate if you’re looking for ways to fight depression. Vitamin D from dairy products is linked to an increase in dopamine, which helps with mood regulation. Avoid sugar and carbohydrates when stressed, as they can cause spikes in blood sugar and hormones, which can leave you feeling even more off-balance.

 

Practice Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation is a technique that helps reduce stress by slowing down your thoughts. This helps you move your focus away from negative emotions. Mindfulness meditation is rooted in breathing exercises that keep you focused on the present moment. Studies have shown that meditation makes you less distractible and improves your resilience to stress. You can get started by dedicating as little as five minutes a day to developing your practice.

 

Woman Writing in Journal Before Bed for Mental Health

 

Prepare the Night Before

A successful morning starts the night before. Set clear intentions for the next day, acknowledge the present day, and express gratitude for what happened. Reflect on your day by remembering what went well and what could have gone better by writing in a journal. You can also physically prepare for the next day by doing something like planning your outfit or packing your meals to help reduce stress the next day.

 

Set Weekly Goals

On top of preparing the night before, setting goals at the start of the week can be a great addition to your mental health routine. If you make a schedule and set goals for yourself for the week, you’ll be more on top of your days, and when you’re more on top of your days, you’re more on top of your life. As you cross off the tasks on your to-do list, you will feel a sense of accomplishment which will help reduce stress.

 

Stick to a Routine

Especially when you run a business or a household, a schedule or routine can be an excellent tool for organizing your busy mind. That’s because it limits the number of decisions you have to make each day. Routine prevents decision fatigue where you tire yourself out by getting bogged down by a bunch of small repetitive decisions. When you plan things like what you’ll wear, or what you’ll have for lunch, you’re less likely to experience decision fatigue.

 

Setting a daily routine for a healthy body and mind can set you on the path toward a healthier and more efficient lifestyle. Incorporate as many of the above tips for good daily routines into your life as you can and start to form healthy habits that will have lasting benefits on your wellbeing. Good habits take some time to form, and bad habits can be difficult to break, but the end result is well worth it for your total body wellness!

Work from Home Tips for Extra Energy & Motivation

Working from home has become the norm for many in the last year, and was a major shift in how we all work. In fact, 7 in 10 white-collar workers are still working remotely after all this time. Separating work from home has been easy for some and difficult for others, but the difficulties can be lessened with a bit of self-care and structure. If working from home has become part of your work schedule either recently or for the last few months, these tips will help you stay energized throughout the day when your home and office are in the same space!

 

Woman Working from Home on Couch with Dog

How to Stay Healthy While Working from Home

 

Go for a Walk

Adjusting to working from home means adjusting to a calmer environment, which also could mean adjusting to a more sedentary work style. You might not have noticed it in the office, but once you don’t have coworkers’ desks to visit, conference rooms to rush to, or the printer to check, you’ll realize the lack of movement at home. Go for a walk every couple of hours or so to get your blood pumping and your body moving. Walking can help you stretch your legs, burn some calories, and get you out of uncomfortably sitting in a chair all day.

 

Use a Sauna

If you have access to an infrared sauna while working from home, it can be one of the most helpful health tools. Since sauna sessions can be as long or short as you need them to be, it can be a great way to break up your day. Start off with a mini session before, during, or after work to help you feel energized and have mental clarity – you can even use essential oils to awaken the senses or to help you feel relaxed. And if you had to, the dry heat of saunas allows you to bring in electronics, which means you can even answer work emails or take a call while in it (though we recommend you have some time for yourself!).

Your sauna is also a great place to meditate when you do get that time to yourself. Even a 10-minute meditation and some stretching in your sauna can help. And with working from home typically being sedentary, sauna use can help you burn more calories than just simply sitting at your desk.

 

Stretch Often

If you don’t have a sauna at home, still make it a point to get up out of your chair and move your body from time to time. Stretching is so important, especially when working from home when many don’t have the same desk setup as when they did back in the office with ergonomic chairs and keyboards. Set a timer to stretch at least every two hours. Stand up, touch your toes, roll your neck, stretch your wrists and fingers. This helps your body increase circulation and can also help prevent you from forming poor posture.

 

Man Working from Home and Eating Meal Prepped Food

Meal Prep

When you work from home, you don’t have access to your company’s office kitchen stocked with snacks at all times. And you likely don’t have company-sponsored lunches. This means you and your pantry are fully responsible for those midday work snack attacks! Meal prepping at the start of every week can help combat the issue of not having anything in the fridge to snack on when you need a little boost. Making your own meals also helps you stay on track with eating healthy, which in turn can help you focus better and have more energy.

 

Drink Water

Staying hydrated while working from home is something that is easily forgotten. If you’re used to the easy-access office water cooler at the office, you might find it harder to keep track of your water intake when you have to make a trek to the kitchen. Either set water reminders throughout the day to fill up your cup or get a big water bottle and set timers to encourage you to finish the water by the end of the day. Staying hydrated will help you feel better and sharper throughout the workday.

 

Talk with Someone

This one is for your mental health. In the office, you probably talked to multiple people throughout the day. That face-to-face contact and direct conversation is something that is lost when working from home. Over time, the lack of physical presence of other people can make you feel isolated and alone. Make it a goal to hear someone’s voice every day, whether that means scheduling a meeting with your coworker, calling a friend, or even simply going to the grocery store and saying hi to the cashier. Speaking to someone can really make a difference!

 

Digital Calendar and Coffee for Daily Routine Working from Home

Work from Home Motivation Tips

 

Stick to a Schedule

One big difference between working in an office and working from home is the change in structure. In the office, there is a social expectation to be somewhere at a certain time and looking a certain way. At home, things might not be so rigid. While the increase in freedom may sound nice, it is also important to stick to somewhat of a schedule and a routine to keep you from losing motivation. It doesn’t have to be anything too involved, simply get up at the same time every morning, put on an outfit other than PJs, and set work hours that don’t blend with home hours.

 

Reward Yourself

Working from home can start to feel a bit monotonous – if you let it. Monotony definitely has an impact on your motivation, so it’s best to keep things interesting in your home office. Break up the day and boost your motivation to complete tasks by rewarding yourself from time to time. For example, reward yourself for finishing a presentation by getting a fancy coffee from the coffee shop. Or reward yourself for getting through that long call with 15 minutes of you-time in your infrared sauna. Make your reward anything you’ll look forward to after a task.

 

Go for a Walk (again)

Yes, a second recommendation to go for a walk! But this time, it’s for motivation while working from home. Sometimes all you need is a break from your desk and some fresh air to get you back into the right mindset to knock out your next task or project. Dedicate some time every day to walk around the block a few times and leave your work at home. Use your walk as a time to connect with yourself and take a break from your computer. If the weather isn’t great, try replacing your walk with some yoga or meditation inside to give your mind a break.

 

Whether you are recently starting a new work-from-home position or have been working remotely for months, these tips can help you feel more structured, organized, energized, and motivated in your home office. The switch from office to home is definitely a learning experience that can be handled by putting extra effort into taking care of yourself. Movement, mental health breaks, and schedules will hopefully make your work-from-home experience a bit more enjoyable!

13 Ideas to Give a Fun & Healthy Father’s Day to Your Dad

This Father’s Day, treat your dad to something that will leave him feeling great! Whether it’s healthy Father’s Day gifts that your dad can use and enjoy every day or a day filled with healthy activities, nothing really quite beats the gift of wellness. From outdoor activities like golfing to giving the gift of an infrared sauna, there are plenty of things you can do to make a memorable Father’s Day for him.

 

Dad Using Infrared Sauna from Father’s Day Gift

 

Healthy Father’s Day Gifts

 

Infrared Sauna

Giving the gift of an infrared sauna is giving the gift of ultimate health and wellness – and all to enjoy at home! Your dad has gone through a lot to raise a family, which means there is probably a bit of parental stress he has gone through over the years. Luckily, stress relief is one of the many health benefits of using a sauna. Show your thanks to all the hard work your dad has put in with this ultimate Father’s Day gift.

 

Smartwatch

Whether your dad is tech-savvy or not, a smartwatch is a great gift to give for Father’s Day. From keeping track of text messages and calendar updates to fitness tracking and heart rate monitoring, smartwatches offer a number of benefits to improve your dad’s day. There are many styles to choose from as well! This gift option is perfect for dads who value both health and style.

 

Eyewear

Everyone uses eyewear to some degree. Sunglasses, computer glasses, eyeglasses, and readers are common parts of someone’s eyewear collection, so why not help dad add another pair to his collection? Glasses can be a personal style choice, so if you aren’t sure exactly what your dad wants, you can always give a gift card to a place like Warby Parker so he can go in and find the perfect fit and style for him.

 

Dad Cooking with New Father’s Day Cooking Tools

 

Cooking Tools

There’s a stereotype of dads loving to grill, but many love spending time in the kitchen as well. There are a bunch of cool kitchen gadgets out there today. Pressure cookers, high-tech blenders, and air fryers are all popular items right now for the dad who already has all the basics. If you’re looking to get him something he’ll use every day, look into getting him a new knife set, cutting board, or pots and pans to take his kitchen to the next level.

 

Food Delivery Service

Is your dad not so much into cooking himself? Make it a bit easier with a food delivery service subscription. You can order boxes that send fully-prepared meals or just the ingredients to make a recipe at home. This can also be a great option for dads who do like to cook, but are looking for new recipes and ideas to try! In addition to meals, you can also send your dad snack box subscriptions – from international snacks to healthy snacks.

 

Bathroom Accessories

This one might seem a little off the beaten path for gift-giving, but bathroom accessories can be great for your dad – and they might be things he hasn’t thought to get for himself yet. While bathroom gifts might get a good laugh, they can really be a game-changer for adding comfort to a bathroom. The Squatty Potty has great reviews, and easily installed bidets have been a hit product recently. Don’t knock it until you try it!

 

Shaving Kit

Want something a little more sophisticated for your dad’s bathroom? A fancy shaving kit can be the perfect addition to his countertop. There are plenty of razor styles available depending on your dad’s preferences, whether he likes a more modern razor or one with a traditional touch. And don’t forget to add the accessories. An exfoliator, shave butter, and post-shave cream can help give your dad the smoothest and most luxurious shave of his life.

 

Father Listening to Audiobook Subscription Father’s Day Gift

 

Audiobook Subscription

Is your dad a fan of books, but doesn’t have the time to read? Or is he someone who is into podcasts and wants to become a bookworm? An audiobook subscription might be the answer for him. This Father’s Day, gift him a subscription to an audiobook service so he can explore the world of listening to their favorite and new books. Listening to audiobooks is perfect for sharpening minds, using during 

 

Noise-Canceling Headphones

Whether Dad is listening to his new audiobook subscription or training for a half-marathon, he needs light-weight, noise-canceling headphones to improve the experience! Look for a pair that is sweat-resistant, comfortable, wireless, and has great sound quality. Though gifts are always great as surprises, asking your dad if he likes a certain style (over-ear, earbuds, etc.) can help ensure he has the perfect fit.

 

Masterclass Membership

Give your dad access to a library of more than 80 online lessons taught by industry experts, including science courses from Neil deGrasse Tyson, cooking classes from Wolfgang Puck, and basketball basics from Steph Curry. Each Masterclass lesson lasts about 10 minutes and there are typically 20 lessons per class, so he’ll have time to take courses across a wide range of topics during his yearlong membership. 

 

Family Fishing Together on Father’s Day

 

Healthy Father’s Day Activities

 

Explore Outdoors

Nothing quite beats some fresh air. Spend some quality time outdoors with your dad this Father’s Day and enjoy the summer weather. The best part about this activity is that there are so many ways to enjoy it. Want to take it slow? Go on a nice stroll or leisurely bike ride. Into sports? Take your dad golfing or to the tennis courts. Looking for a bit of adventure? Try kayaking or exploring a new hiking trail. The possibilities are endless! 

 

Take a Class

One great way to keep the mind sharp is by taking classes. Sign up for a class or workshop with your dad and find a unique way to bond this Father’s Day. Who knows, maybe it’ll start a new shared hobby. Whether your dad is interested in learning more about glassblowing or wants to hone his cooking skills, there is a wide range of classes to choose from depending on what your dad’s interests are.

 

Have Family Time

At the end of the day, the most meaningful gift you can give your dad on Father’s Day is family time. Gifts and activities are always a great addition to family time as an extra celebration of your father, but time together is the most important gift. Family time doesn’t have to be in person, either. Give your dad a call on the phone or on video to simply catch up and say thank you for all the years he spent raising a family. It means the world and is priceless.

 

This Father’s Day, really step up your gift-giving! These Father’s Day gift ideas are sure to impress your dad and really show him how much you appreciate all he has done for you. And by helping your dad improve his health, you’re also giving him the gift of a long and happy life.

Spring Exercise Tips & Outdoor Workouts to Enjoy this Season

Spring is officially here and the weather is here to prove it! What better way to celebrate than enjoying the great outdoors? Now that the weather is warming up for the spring, take advantage of the change in season. Read on to find workouts and activities to do outside to get fit in nature while enjoying the nature around you, along with tips on what to do before and after your spring outdoor workouts to keep you feeling healthy all season (and year) long!

 

Couple Doing Outdoor Workouts Together in Spring

 

Tips for Outdoor Workouts

 

Have a Warmup Session

Warming up for exercising outdoors is just the same as if you were about to do a gym workout. Warmup sessions help prepare your body for movement, which helps reduce your risk of injury or strain during your workout. Try some stretches and low-intensity exercises to get ready to work out in nature safely and effectively.

 

Dress Appropriately

The right clothes can make or break your outdoor workouts! With so many different outdoor activities, be sure to check which gear you might need to be safe during your excursion. Wear something that is breathable and comfortable for what you’re about to do, and double-check to see any additional items like harnesses, life vests, or helmets are needed.

 

Wear Sun Protection

Even if Earth Day takes place in the spring and not during the hotter months of summer, the sun can still definitely take its toll if you aren’t prepared. Always put on sunscreen when doing a workout in nature and consider wearing other sun-protective items like hats or light jackets to keep the sun damage at bay.

 

Stay Hydrated

Hydrating is one of the most important things of any workout, especially if you are exercising outdoors! Outdoor workouts typically mean exposure to the sun and less access to fresh water, so be sure to bring a water bottle to ensure you stay healthy and avoid serious dehydration.

 

Recover with an Infrared Sauna

Hitting the sauna after working out can make your outdoor fitness efforts even more worthwhile. Not only will your muscles heal quicker, but you’ll also feel more rejuvenated and extend the benefits of exercising well past your workout. Using a sauna enhances the muscle recovery process by increasing blood circulation and helps relieve muscle tension.

 

Couple Riding Bikes and Exercising Outdoors

 

9 Ways to Workout in Nature

 

Biking

Cycling has plenty of benefits for both the mind and body. To start, it’s a great lower body workout that works your quads, hamstrings, and calves. It’ll also help you get your cardio in, and therefore improve your cardiovascular health. 

Plus it’s non-weight-bearing, which makes it a good option for people dealing with joint pain or injury. Pedaling while maintaining balance and steering also improves your coordination. A bike ride is great for your mental health too! Cycling can relieve stress and boost mood, plus it’s a great opportunity to bond with your friends and family.

 

Hiking

Hiking can be a peaceful walk in the park or a heart-pounding workout. Hiking tones your lower body, and upper body if you use poles. It’s great cardio to keep your heart healthy and boosts bone density as a weight-bearing exercise. Feeling stuck? Hiking can improve creative thinking and problem-solving. As you make your way down the trail, you’ll hear nature sounds like birds and rushing water. These sounds are proven to have a calming effect. Hit the trails today, and see the health benefits of hiking for yourself!

 

Jogging

Jogging is often defined as running at a pace less than 6 miles per hour and, like running, it improves your cardiorespiratory health and boosts your mood. Aside from the physical health benefits of jogging, there are also many psychological benefits as well. Some of these include increased mental flexibility, confidence, stress relief, and the emotional boost of the runner’s high. Jogging is a cardiovascular exercise. Such activity sends more nourishing blood to the brain, which can help you think more clearly. It also releases your natural mood-elevating compounds.

 

Friends Kayaking in Spring to Workout in Nature

 

Kayaking

Lovers of kayaking often say the biggest draw is the peace and serenity of being on the water. Research shows that kayaking has benefits to our physical and mental health. Kayaking works your upper body, increasing muscle strength in the back, arms, shoulders, and chest. It also works your core strength and leg strength for kayakers. It is also low-impact, creating a smaller risk of injury or strain, and improves your heart rate and cardiovascular health. Paddling has mental benefits, too. Being out on the water has a calming effect on the brain, and can help lower stress and anxiety levels.

 

Paddleboarding

Stand-up paddleboarding, or SUP, is an excellent workout while getting you some quality time exercising outdoors. Few activities provide such an extensive range, from upper body training to leg work and core strength building. At the same time, it’s also a fairly low-intensity and fun thing to do. SUP outdoor workouts can be as laid back or intensive as you want them to be. Paddle around calm waters and activate your core, or step it up by doing SUP yoga to help engage your muscles for a full-body workout.

 

Rock Climbing

Exercise is all about engaging your muscle – from your heart to your biceps and quads – and asking those muscles to perform work. And when it comes to activating and training a diverse range of muscles, few exercises rival climbing as climbing is a more complex movement than most exercises. No climbing surface or route is quite like another, so the work you ask your muscles to perform during a climb changes each time you exercise. Make sure you have the right safety gear in place and see nature in a way you haven’t seen from the ground!

 

Friends Playing Tennis in Spring for Outdoor Workouts

 

Sports

This is a broader option for exercising outdoors, which makes it an option for nearly anyone! From tennis to soccer, find a way to get active on the court or the field to really enjoy being outside. Playing a sport with someone is a great way to be social and bond while reaping the benefits of exercise and being outdoors. You certainly don’t have to be a pro to play a sport! Play with someone who is on the same level as you to have a friendly match. Who knows, maybe your one-time outdoor sports workout may grow into a new hobby!

 

Swimming

Swimming is another great low-impact exercise, which means it allows people recovering from injury to stay fit without straining their bodies. The water also provides resistance, which increases muscle strength and tone as you swim. Lastly, swimming stretches your muscles and increases flexibility. Swimming helps you relax and destress. Floating in the water dulls the sensory information that can overwhelm, creating feelings of calm. The rhythmic movements and breathing can also provide meditative benefits.

 

Yoga

Seeking some peace and stability, while enjoying the fresh air? Outdoor yoga could be for you! The combination mind-body workout of yoga pairs perfectly with the all-over health benefits of time spent outdoors. Feel your worries melt away as you breathe in the fresh air and focus on your wellness. Contact with nature has been found to lower blood pressure, strengthen the immune system, help mitigate disease, and reduce stress levels. The combination of peaceful yoga with nature makes for a great mental and physical exercise this spring.

 

This spring, make a point to get outside and be active! There are plenty of outdoor workouts for every skill and activity level to “spring” into fitness for anyone. Use these tips and ideas to workout in nature and fully appreciate the change in season while keeping your body healthy and happy.

The Side Effects of Stress and 15 Stress Management Techniques

Unfortunately, stress is a common factor in our lives, from work to personal life. Stress is a natural and healthy response in some situations, but suffering through chronic stress can have lasting side effects on your health. Luckily, there are many stress management techniques available to help relieve stress and anxiety for a happier and healthier life. Read on to learn more about the impact of stress on our health and what you can do to help manage it.

 

What Causes Stress?

 

On a very basic level, stress is caused by experiences that your body perceives as challenging on a physical, mental, or emotional level. Stress is a normal human reaction that happens to everyone when changes or challenges (stressors) are experienced. Your body then produces physical and mental responses.

Stress isn’t always a negative response, as it can help you adapt to stressful experiences to help your body better manage the situation. Short-term, acute stress is perfectly natural and easily manageable. On the other hand, long-term, chronic stress can have a serious impact on your health. Prolonged periods of stress without the ability to relax or recover can have lasting effects on your mind and body. Poor stress management can also lead to the development of unhealthy coping habits such as excess drinking, eating disorders, and even drug use.

Common Causes of Stress

Caring for a family member Increase in financial obligations
Chronic illness or injury Job situations
Death of a loved one Mental health
Divorce Moving to a new home
Fear and uncertainty Traumatic event
Getting married Unrealistic expectations
Health conditions World events

 

Symptoms of Stress

Aches and pains Jaw clenching
Anxiety or irritability Muscle tension
Chest pain Panic attacks
Depression Racing heart
Exhaustion or trouble sleeping Sadness
Headaches, dizziness, or shaking Stomach or digestive problems
High blood pressure Weak immune system

 

The Side Effects of Stress

Abnormal heartbeat (arrhythmia) Heart attack
Asthma attacks Heart disease
Changes in sex drive Heartburn
Depression High blood pressure
Digestive issues Irritable bowel syndrome
Fertility problems Skin problems
Flare-ups arthritis Ulcers
Hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) Weight gain or loss

Stress Management Techniques

 

Yoga

When feeling stressed, stretch it out. Yoga is the perfect way to wind down and relieve stress, as it has the potential to get both your body moving and your mind resting. If you are home, set up a quiet space to dedicate some time to focus on your poses, breathwork, and even meditation. You can release even more tension by doing hot yoga in a sauna. No space for a yoga mat? You can still destress with some simple sitting and standing yoga poses.

 

Sleep

Sleep seems to always be on lists for better health, and for good reason! A lack of sleep can seriously contribute to increased stress levels if you are feeling tired throughout the day. Unfortunately, lack of sleep can cause stress… and stress can cause lack of sleep. If you find your mind racing with stress before bedtime, it might be time for a new nightly routine. Dedicate some time to unwind before bed to help you sleep better and reduce stress the next day.

 

Sauna Use

Using an infrared sauna offers a wealth of health benefits, and one that everyone can benefit from is stress release. For starters, your sauna session can be your own personal escape to have 20 minutes all to yourself. On top of the mental break, infrared saunas can help ease muscle tension you may be feeling from stress and can help improve your sleep, which in turn helps reduce stress. You can also add sound therapychromotherapy, and aromatherapy to your sauna session to add extra touches of relaxation.

 

Meditation

Meditation brings short-term stress relief as well as lasting stress management benefits. There are many different forms of meditation to try – each one is unique and brings its own appeal. You might develop a mantra that you repeat in your mind as you take slow deep breaths. Or, you might take a few minutes to practice mindfulness, which involves being in the moment. Another option is guided imagery where you imagine yourself being in your “happy place”.

 

Leisure

Leisure activities can be a wonderful way to relieve stress. Yet, many people feel as though their lives are too busy for hobbies, games, or extra fun. Building time for leisure into your schedule could actually be key to helping you feel your best. When you feel better, you’ll perform better, which means leisure time may make your work time more efficient. Whether you find joy in caring for a garden or you like making quilts, hobbies and leisure are key to living your best life.

Digital Breaks

Looking at a screen all day and all night can lead your mind to constantly be running. The pressures of news stories, social media, work, and other obligations can be hard to escape when we are always engaging with them. Start dedicating some screen-free time to your day to decompress from a digital overload, and try to do it right before going to bed to help you wind down. It’ll be better for your mind and be a nice rest for your eyes.

 

Exercise

Physical activity is key to managing stress and improving mental health. And the best news is, there are many different kinds of activities that can reduce your stress. Join a gym, take a class, or exercise outside. Keep in mind that there are many different ways to get more physical activity in your day, too. Walking, yoga, strength training, kayaking, hiking, and spin class are just a few different examples of ways you can get stress relief through exercise.

 

Creative Outlets

Getting in touch with your creative side may have been easy for you during childhood, but if you’ve lost touch with your penchant for artwork, it’s not too late to pick it up again. If you aren’t into drawing or painting, consider coloring in a coloring book. Adult coloring books have risen in popularity and for good reason – coloring can be a great stress reliever. Try out different creative outlets to see what fits your style best. Who knows, maybe you’ll make a new hobby out of it!

 

Breathing Techniques

Just focusing on your breath or changing the way you breathe can make a big difference to your overall stress level. Breathing techniques can calm your body and your brain in just a few minutes. The best news is, they can discreetly be done anywhere. So whether you’re in a stressful meeting or you’re stuck in traffic, breathing exercises could be key to reducing your stress no matter which situation you’re in.

 

Aromatherapy

You’d be surprised just how many aromatherapy health benefits there are, especially when it comes to your mood. If you’re feeling stressed, try some essential oils to help put you in a better mindset. When you need a bit of calm and relaxation, enjoy the scent of classic lavender. Need to reinvigorate your mind? Peppermint and citrus essential oils can have you feeling refreshed.

How to Prevent Stress

 

Cut out Stressors

This one might seem obvious, but the best way to reduce your stress is to cut something stressful out of your life. Get rid of the things that are adding to your stress so you can experience more peace. Watching the news, being constantly connected to your digital devices, and consuming too much caffeine are just a few of the things that may add more stress to your life. Making some changes to your daily habits could be instrumental in helping you feel better.

 

Time Management

If you’re trying to squeeze 20 hours worth of work into 16 hours, you’re going to feel stressed. Reducing your workload could be key to helping you get through the day feeling better. Honing your time management skills can allow you to minimize the stressors that you experience, and better manage the ones you can’t avoid. Be okay with saying no to things that will overload your day and create a to-do list to better organize your time.

 

Diet

Emotional eating and reaching for high-fat, high-sugar foods can provide a temporary sense of relief, but add to your long-term stress. Refined carbs, like cookies and potato chips, can cause a spike in blood sugar. When your blood sugar crashes, you might experience more stress and anxiety. Instead, consume a healthy diet that can help you combat stress over the long haul. Foods like eggs, avocado, and walnuts support mood regulation and energy balance.

 

Social Support

Having supportive people in your life is the key to stress management. Whether you need to vent or simply want a distraction, have a family member or friend that you feel comfortable confiding in for support. You may also need to expand your network. Join an organization, attend a support group, or get professional help if you find that approach better-suited for your needs to help reduce stress.

 

Time for Yourself

At the end of the day, one of the most efficient stress management techniques is making time for yourself. Stress stems from being overwhelmed, which typically stems from being stretched too thin with other obligations. When you put yourself first, you allow yourself to decompress and reconnect with what is important. Remember, the best way to be there for others is by showing up as your best self. Make time for yourself every day, whether it’s a full-blown spa day, a 20-minute sauna session, or a 10-minute yoga and meditation session before bed.

 

Finding the best stress relief strategies for you may take some experimenting. Some strategies may take practice, too. But it’s important to keep looking for the tools that will help you manage life’s inevitable ups and downs in a healthy way. Keeping stress at a manageable level is important for your overall wellbeing, so use these tips to help manage and prevent stressful moments in your life.

Reasons to Invest in Your Health This Year

You may have heard it before: Your health is an investment, not an expense. This statement couldn’t be truer, but it can be easy to brush off investing in your health due to the cost. After a year where health has been so emphasized, this is the perfect time to really put a focus on your health and put it at the top of your priority list.

Here’s something else you may have heard: Health is wealth. Your wellbeing is priceless, but being healthy can make you wealthy in a number of ways. That wealth can be found in money saved on medical bills, or more importantly, it can be found in the additional time you get with your loved ones.

Taking charge of your health will bring you a happier and longer life. Read on to see the benefits of making your health a priority and some tips on how to invest in your health, from eating fresh ingredients to using healthy technology.

Benefits of Investing in Health

 

An Overall Improvement in Life

Your health needs to become a priority right now in your life, don’t wait. Each and every choice you make has a distinct impact on your future, and the sooner you start investing, the sooner you can reap the rewards of living a healthy life. There are many daily healthy habits that you can start adapting to right now. These changes and investments aren’t just a fad, they’re the smart things to do to live a happier and longer life.

 

Prevention is Better Than Cure

If you invest in your health today, you are fighting and preventing future diseases. We are lucky to have advanced healthcare to treat a number of illnesses, but treatment can, unfortunately, be very costly – both monetarily and physically. Investing in your health now can help prevent these illnesses in the future. This means your future self doesn’t have to worry about incurring those costs, which will more than likely be more than the cost of simply investing in your health now.

 

More Time with Loved Ones

How can you be there for your spouse, children, and family if you are sick or gone? The answer is you can’t. So, let this be the goal that drives you to take action. Start daily healthy habits now to keep you around longer. Go to the dentist regularly, do self-breast exams, get up and hit the gym, and start a new healthy grocery list. “What you do today determines your tomorrow.”

Ways to Invest in Your Health

 

Install an Infrared Sauna

Investing in an infrared sauna for your home might be one of the best (and most luxurious) health investments you can make. Installing an infrared sauna gives you access to maximum health benefits right in your home. Detoxification, pain relief, stress reduction, and weight loss are just a few of the benefits you can gain from consistently using a sauna for 20 minutes a day. Depending on your needs, you can request a quote today to start investing in your health this year.

 

Join a Fitness Program

Fitness memberships can really run the gamut. You can shell out $10 each month for a basics-only workout or up to almost $200 for a luxurious program. Whether you join a gym or take part in an online training program, the average monthly fee tends to be closer to $50 or $60, which, as long as you use it, is worth it. Working out regularly is linked to a lower risk for high cholesterol, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and many other chronic diseases.

 

Buy Healthy Ingredients

Sure, there’re inexpensive fruits and veggies that are good for you (think: brown rice and bananas), but it does tend to cost a little more to eat healthy food – about $45 more a month on average. Not sure it’s worth it to fill your cart with whole grains, fresh produce, and high-quality proteins? It is. Just like regularly working out, eating a healthy diet rich in produce can decrease your risk for heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and even some cancers.

Have Health Insurance

Employer-sponsored plans, which more than half of Americans have, cost an average of about $138 a month. Individual plans, which are for people who buy insurance on their own, are costlier and average around $456. Health insurance isn’t cheap, but it’s still a smart health investment. People with health insurance are more likely to get preventive care, which can help catch health issues before they become major – and majorly expensive to treat.

 

Go to Your Annual Exams

With insurance, a typical doctor’s visit can cost somewhere between $25 and $250. Without health insurance, the average doctor appointment costs between $300-$600. These numbers can quickly rise if you need additional testing or prescriptions. By going to your annual exams for preventative care, you can keep an eye on your health regularly and monitor issues before they grow and start to cost the higher visit fees for those larger treatments and procedures.

 

See a Therapist

Does everyone need to do this? No. But if you have chronic stress or anxiety, talking to someone might be a good idea. It isn’t necessarily cheap, though. An hour with a therapist can sometimes cost $100 or more per hour, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. But it can help ease your mind, which in turn, can improve your overall health. Feeling stressed out all the time is linked to weight gain, menstrual cycle issues, and even heart attacks!

Take a Vacation

Taking a vacation might night be in the cards right now, but it’s definitely worth saving up for a trip once travel is on your itinerary. A trip might not seem like investing in your health at first glance, but it certainly can be! Sometimes a break from reality is what we need to realign ourselves. Whether you take a weekend road trip that costs you $150 or you splurge on a 2-week escape to go island hopping, vacationing can be great for your mental health.

 

Improve Your Sleep

Insufficient sleep has been linked to chronic conditions, such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Of course, sleep is free and doesn’t necessarily require a monetary investment. However, you can still invest your time to ensure you have an adequate amount of sleep. Or invest in natural sleep aids such as aromatherapy, an infrared sauna, and good-quality sheets to help you have a restful night.

 

Your Health is Priceless

 

The thing about being healthy is that it isn’t always the cheapest option, but it is always the best option. Choosing to cook a nutritious dinner for yourself will usually cost more than a drive-through meal. And in the short term, not going to doctor’s appointments may save you some money on your copays. But at the end of the day, investing your time and money into your health can end up saving you a lot in the future. Preventative care can help save you money on future treatments and improving your overall health will save you time to do the things you love with the people you love.

13 Ways to Upgrade Your Daily Routine for Better Health

Many people made New Year’s Resolutions for better health, and the most effective way to achieve those goals is by having a healthy daily routine. Your daily routine consists of all of your habits, and forming healthy habits is key to all good daily routines. These actions structure your day and make the difference between operating at peak efficiency and struggling to make it through a poorly-planned day. From infrared sauna use to stretching every morning, find ways to upgrade your daily routine below!

How to Make a Daily Routine for Yourself

 

The key to good daily routines is forming good habits and putting the effort into adopting healthy habits that you can easily incorporate into your routine. A habit is something that is done regularly or repeatedly, and creating regularly healthy habits is essential for your wellbeing. The structure of your daily routine and the habits you chose to follow can have a major effect on your physical, mental, and emotional health. Healthy habits that are done on a regular and consistent basis can be the difference between operating at peak efficiency or struggling to reach your health goals.

 

Example of a Healthy Daily Routine

 

Wake Up and Stretch

Stretching in the morning improves your energy levels, improves your circulation, relieves any tension or pain from sleeping the night before, encourages good lymphatic function, and prepares your body for the day ahead. If you have an infrared sauna, a quick hot yoga session will really invigorate your day.

 

Start your Day with a Glass of Lemon Water

Make your first sip of the day be refreshing lemon water. Simply add the juice of half a lemon to your glass and drink it to enjoy a refreshing start to the day. Lemon juice reduces your body’s acidity levels, which in turn protects you against inflammatory diseases such as fungal infections and osteoporosis.

 

Eat a Good Breakfast

Fuel yourself with a healthy mix of protein, slow-release carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals. Sensible options include yogurt with nuts and berries, a vegetable omelette, and low-sugar granola bars with a piece of fruit. If eating a full meal in the morning isn’t your thing, try packing in nutrients through healthy smoothies.

 

Stay Hydrated

Did you know that becoming even slightly dehydrated can lead to lowered mood and decreased concentration? Keep water or other low-sugar drinks on hand to sip throughout the day. If you need to, set an alarm every hour to drink water until it becomes a natural part of your healthy daily routine.

Have a Healthy Lunch

Even the busiest of us can grab a healthy lunch. You just need to think ahead! Avoid too much fat at lunch time, as it promotes afternoon lethargy, which isn’t going to help you get through a busy day. Opt for fresh and whole foods that will power you through the afternoon until it’s time for dinner.

 

Get Moving in the Afternoon

Most of us have a mid-afternoon “slump” somewhere between 2pm and 4pm, but you can keep yourself going through the day by choosing a healthy lunch and taking some moderate exercise in the afternoon. This doesn’t have to be strenuous. Just a 10-minute walk and a few stretches at your desk can work wonders.

 

Sit Down for Dinner

Life can get hectic, and it can be easy to grab a quick dinner at the end of the day. Make an effort to slow down in your healthy daily routine and actually sit to enjoy your meal. Whether it’s a homemade dinner or a to-go meal you ordered, sitting down for dinner allows your body to start to wind down from the day.

 

Pick Up Your Home

Whether you are aware or not, the physical space we live in has a large effect on how we behave. A messy home can all have a negative impact on our mental state and our health. This doesn’t have to be a deep clean, but picking up your home from your daily activities can cut down on frustration and give you a fresh start the next day.

 

Avoid Screens for the Last Hour Before Bed

Turn off your phone and computer at least an hour before bed to help calm your mind and prepare yourself for sleep. The blue light from phone, computer, and TV screens can keep your brain in a more active state, so find a pre-bed activity that cuts down on screen time to help you wind down and improve your sleep.

Happy Couple Enjoying Infrared Sauna for Mental Health

Take Time to Relax

Find a healthy activity that relaxes you every day. This could be reading, spending time with a pet, or meditating. For ultimate relaxation in your healthy daily routine, invest in an infrared sauna. With a plethora of health benefits packed into a 20-minute session, sauna use is one of the easiest and most effective ways to incorporate health into your daily life.

 

Journal About Your Day

Journaling has become a popular part of many peoples’ healthy daily routine, and for good reason. It helps you collect your thoughts at the end of every day, which is great for mental stimulation. It can also be helpful for planning out your next day so you can go to sleep ready to take on the next morning when you wake up.

 

Take Vitamin C Before Going to Sleep

Take half a teaspoon of buffered vitamin C powder in a glass of water before turning in for the night. This is a quick, effective means of reducing the acidity in your body. It will also ensure that you go to bed well-hydrated, which will help you wake up with a clear head and ready to take on the next day.

 

Go to Sleep at a Reasonable Hour

It sounds obvious, but if you want to feel your best then you must get enough sleep. Most experts recommend that we get between 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Some of us can get by on six hours of sleep, but be honest with yourself – if you feel better having had more sleep, bear it in mind when setting your alarm clock.

 

Setting a healthy daily routine can set you on the path toward a healthier and more efficient lifestyle. Incorporate as many of the above tips for good daily routines into your life as you can and start to form healthy habits that will have lasting benefits on your wellbeing. Good habits take some time to form, and bad habits can be difficult to break, but the end result is well worth it in your daily routine!

New Year, New You: Healthy New Year’s Resolutions Challenge

In 2021, start off the year with a challenge. Rumor has it that it takes 3 weeks to make or break a habit. While experts question the validity of that statement and we wish it were that easy, we definitely think 3 weeks is a great amount of time to get a start on new habits. That’s why we put together this 3-week Healthy New Year Challenge to get you started on the right foot going into 2021.

Follow this New Year’s resolution challenge to keep you on track so you can truly stick to your resolutions and actually reach your health goals in the new year – whether that means eating healthier, exercising more, being more mindful, or making more time for yourself..

New Year Challenge: Week 1

 

Day 1: Dedicate an Hour Completely to Yourself

Life can get busy, and 2020 sure was hectic. It’s easy to get caught up in things that don’t allow you to have you-time. Block off one entire hour to yourself (or more!) to focus on you. Mark it on your calendar, put up a “do not disturb” sign, and enjoy some time dedicated to things that give you a mental break like reading, using a sauna, or watching a show.

 

Day 2: Cut Down on Social Media

Looking at a screen all day can lead to overstimulation, especially around the holidays, which can lead to mental exhaustion. Whether for an hour or for the whole day, unplug for some time to focus on non-digital activities that benefit your new year health. Spend time with family, pamper yourself with a home spa day, work on a hobby, or just relax.

 

Day 3: Get in 10,000 Steps

Walking 10,000 steps a day has been a highly-recommended activity to help maintain physical health. Immediately jumping to 10k a day can be difficult, so instead dedicate just one day to reaching your goal and pay attention to what lifestyle changes you can make to make it a long-term habit.

 

Day 4: Do a 16-Hour Fast

The 16:8 fast is a great way to do a mini gut reset and dip your toes into the world of intermittent fasting. During this, you will do a 16-hour window of fasting and an 8-hour window of eating. People typically choose to eat lunch and dinner then fast through the night and breakfast the next day to maintain a somewhat normal routine.

 

Day 5: Practice Breathwork

Sure, breathing is an activity we do without even trying, but putting focus into your breathwork can be great for your mental health – something greatly needed after the whirlwind of 2020. Learn some new breathing exercises that help you slow down, destress, and find some mental clarity throughout your day-to-day life.

 

Day 6: Cook a New Recipe at Home

Spice up your daily menu by researching healthy recipes to whip up in the kitchen. Look for healthy recipes that include nutritious ingredients such as vegetables and fruits. Summer is a great time for produce, so your recipes will be nutritious and delicious.

 

Day 7: Rest and Journal

At the start of this 3-week new year challenge, take some time to sit down and write down the things that you are grateful for. Visualization of your accomplishments, blessings, and experiences helps highlight the positive things in the last year. Writing the items down can be a therapeutic exercise for your emotional and mental health.

New Year Challenge: Week 2

 

Day 1: Go to Bed 1 Hour Earlier than Normal

Sleep is another important basic need for your health, but it is easy to let life (and the holidays) get in the way and eat into your sleep time. Not only does sleep allow your body to rest and recover, it can help prevent illness as well. Today, budget an extra hour to go to sleep early and allow your body to fully rest.

 

Day 2: Connect with a Loved One

If 2020 was anything, it was definitely a lesson on connecting with people. It can be easy to lose touch with loved ones, but it is just as easy to reach out and say hello. Make a friend or family member smile by sending a quick note – and set aside some time in case that quick note turns into a long conversation!

 

Day 3: Try a New Exercise

If you’re doing the same workout every time, you are sure to get bored of the same moves every time. That, and your body isn’t getting as well-rounded of a workout. Look up new workout routines to help mix it up and keep things interesting. Pro tip: Using a sauna after a workout makes it even better.

 

Day 4: Do an 18-Hour Fast

Pick it up a little from Week 1 and add two hours to your intermittent fasting! An 18:6 fast is 18 hours fasting with a 6-hour window to consume your daily calories. This timing is very popular and is a sustainable way to fast on a regular basis. Though just 2 hours longer, this longer fast helps you burn more fat and better stabilize blood sugar levels.

 

Day 5: Meditate for 30 Minutes

We’ve mentioned breathing exercises, and meditation falls right into the same vein of new year health. Meditation helps you center your mind and find ways to shift your mentality into a calmer, more accepting state. Meditation can be a few minutes or a few hours depending on how deeply you want to go.

 

Day 6: Plan a Weekly Menu

Knowing what you are going to eat throughout the week is a great way to stay on track with health, time management, and budget goals. Think about what your week ahead looks like and plan how often you will cook at home and when you will eat out. Try to plan at least 3 at-home meals this week to start cutting down on expensive and unhealthy eating out.

 

Day 7: Rest and Journal

Halfway through the challenge, use your journaling day to think about the future. If you’re wondering how to keep New Year’s resolutions, this is one very helpful way! Writing down your goals and taking time to consider what really matters to you helps you visualize what needs to be done and also helps with setting more realistic expectations for yourself.

New Year Challenge: Week 3

 

Day 1: Cross an Item Off Your To-Do List

Having too many things on your plate can lead to frustration and stress. Instead of worrying about your whole list, use this day to knock out a big-ticket item on your list that you have been putting off. Once the task is complete, you will feel a sense of accomplishment and relief that it is finally done. Taking your list task-by-task makes the list more manageable.

 

Day 2: Plan a Group Zoom Call

Seeing friends in person hasn’t been the easiest thing this year, but we are lucky to have the technology to connect in different ways. Organize a group video call with friends to bring back a sense of being social. You’d be surprised just how uplifting it is to simply laugh with friends over Zoom.

 

Day 3: Be Active Outside

A daily dose of fresh air is great for you physically, but it is also a great activity for mental health. Being stuck inside all day can lead to negative feelings, especially if you don’t have much natural light. Brighten up your day and invigorate your mind by getting outside for at least 30 minutes.

 

Day 4: Do a 24-Hour Fast

The final week of your new year challenge includes a full 24-hour fast! On top of the additional fat burn and blood sugar management that comes from extra hours of fasting, this is also a great test of will power. If going from morning to night without food doesn’t appeal to you, try starting and ending at lunch time so you can still get a meal in during the day.

 

Day 5: Add Yoga to Your Workout

Yoga is a great way to challenge your body in new ways. Spend 30 minutes stretching, activating your core, and tapping into new movements you might have thought weren’t possible! Step it up by doing hot yoga in a sauna for added health benefits. Not only is yoga great for the body, it’s also a perfect time to try meditation for your mind.

 

Day 6: Meal Prep for the Week

Now that you have been cooking more at home and have the weekly menu planning down from last week, take it a step further and cook all your meals for the upcoming week. Preparing your meals for the week not only helps you cut down on time cooking throughout the week, it also allows you to keep an eye on every ingredient you are consuming.

 

Day 7: Rest and Journal

At the end of your 3-week new year challenge, this is the perfect opportunity to reflect back on how you feel, what worked for you, and what long-term changes to make in your life to continue with your healthy New Year’s resolutions. Documenting your accomplishments is a great thing to look back on if you ever feel as if you are losing motivation.

 

Knowing how to keep New Year’s resolutions is always a common concern as a new year rolls around. Use this 3-week challenge to start off 2021 on a great, and healthy, path. Whether you find health in the kitchen, gym, sauna, or journal, any step you take is a step in the right direction for this next chapter!