Getting Through these Last Weeks of Winter
We are in the midst of what seems like day 800 of winter. I’ll be honest, I’m one of those who doesn’t handle winter very well when it drags like this. Weather really impacts my mood, so when it’s gloomy and cold, I basically feel that way too. I find that really paying attention to my health really helps me especially during this time. Here are some things I do to kick those winter blues to the curb!
Whether its 20-30 minutes at home or an hour at the gym, this is SO important to beating the winter blues! Exercise really gets those endorphins going, and gives you that happy boost. I like to get to the gym 3 days a week, and work out at home in the AM 2 days a week. At home I try to get in 20-30 mins of HIIT (Heather Robertson on YouTube has some great home workout videos). At the gym I start out by doing 10 mins of cardio on the elliptical or bike, then move into 30-40 minutes weights - either lower or upper body, depending what I’m working on that day. Getting a good schedule going is a great way to stick to it and stay motivated. Also, getting a good workout playlist going really helps. Here’s my current (always changing) workout playlist.
I usually suck at this during this time because winter makes me want to eat anything and everything sweet and salty, which in turn makes me feel crappy and low energy the next day. What works for me and keeps me disciplined at home is creating a weekly meal plan, a specific grocery list, and buying ONLY things on that list. My weakness is chips and cookies - if I buy them, they will be gone in a snap! So if I know I won’t have good self control with something I see, I simply don’t buy it. A typical easy weeknight dinner for us is chicken with sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts. I season with EVOO, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika and thrown in the oven - super easy, healthy and filling! I’ve also been making green juice in the AM - my latest go to is kale, cucumber, ginger, green apple, and celery. I blitz it all in the Vitamix, strain, and drink. It’s deceivingly good and a great start to the day! I especially do this Monday mornings because I would be lying if I said I didn’t cheat on the weekends ;).
Our diets usually lack some important nutrients, so I make sure to take a daily multivitamin. In addition, I like to take a probiotic. Studies have shown that gut health can have an impact on your mood and mental health, so paying attention to this is vital especially during this time! If you’re not sure where to start with a probiotic, I would do some research first on this and even better, see your doctor for the best advice. There are a ton of different probiotics out there. Also, as I mentioned in my last post, if you don’t know what vitamins or supplements you need, Care/of allows you to take a quiz online and they formulate vitamin packets custom to your needs/goals. Lastly, I’ve become a big fan of Vital Proteins. I love their collagen peptides , especially great for us girls! It’s good for your skin, hair, nails, joints and ligaments, and tendon health. I like mixing it in my coffee or tea, or in my morning smoothie.
Of course I have days/weeks where I get off track with either diet or exercise, but Dan and I always make sure to get each other back on track! Doing this with someone else, partner or friend, definitely makes it easier because it keeps you both accountable :)
Is there anything you’re doing to get through this last stretch of winter?
Current favorite Brand: Vital proteins. Their products really seem to work for me and their branding is on point.
Currently Reading: Finishing up Catherine of Siena’s biography before getting into another murder mystery novel. Also listening to the “Cold” podcast about, you guessed it, a murder mystery (a real-life one).
Currently on the docket: Wrapping up a microsite for Abbott, and about to jump into a design project for Chicago School of Musical Arts.