Spring cleaning isn’t just about opening up the windows and sweeping the winter dust off the floor. It’s also about cleaning up your habits so you can enjoy your best health all year long! Spring is a great time to revisit the habits we’ve gotten into over the winter or over the last few years that don’t support wellness and vitality, and gently making the changes that will have us feeling energetic and motivated every day of the year.
Clean up your foods
The first thing you’ll want to do is go through your pantry and your shopping lists to clear out any junk foods that have accumulated. Sure, it’s nice to have processed food snacks every now and again, but if you have large packages that are unfinished, or if you habitually get them in your grocery order, it’s a bad habit that will lead to bad health.
Lots of people go for chips and sweets in the winter months because they are comforting, and are a source of quick energy because of the high carbohydrate content. Biologically speaking, this makes sense because these foods can trigger a release of the neurotransmitter dopamine that makes us feel happier and more relaxed. Dopamine also wires the reward pathway, which means that every time you eat these processed and blood sugar spiking foods, it’s like a light going off in your brain because you won a prize. This is one of the big reasons we have cravings for these kinds of foods, and why it’s so hard to avoid them.
It only takes a few days to reduce those cravings and shift those bad food habits! Once you’ve gotten the unhealthy snacks out of the pantry, replace them with healthier options like veggies, fruits, nuts, and cheeses. For sweet cravings, try Keto Cocoa, which can be made either hot, like a hot chocolate, or frozen and blended, like a chocolate milkshake! Try it in your coffee in the morning for an indulgent mocha without any guilt.
Clean up your fitness
Have you been sitting a lot over the winter season? Staying at your desk too long, and filling the evening hours with your favorite shows? Time to get up and move more!
Some people try to jump into an advanced fitness program straight from being sedentary, and while their ambition is admirable, this is a surefire way to get some new injuries. Start slow, firstly because easing into a new fitness program will condition your body more effectively and avoid injuries, and secondly because you’re building a habit, which is proven to work best when you take small steps you can maintain over a long period of time.
To start your new fitness plan, first see how active you have been over the last few months, then gradually increase your activity. If you’ve been sitting a lot, a good goal is to get 5,000-10,000 steps per day. Once you can reach that with no problem, add another activity, like yoga, jogging, or weight lifting. Remember, to make fitness a habit, make it fun! Try a dance class, go hiking, or try out martial arts! There are so many ways to stay active that you have an endless variety to choose from.
If you’re struggling to have the energy you need to adopt a more active lifestyle, you might be low on electrolytes, since the electrolyte minerals often aren’t available in the foods we buy at the store. Electrolyte minerals are essential for energy balance and for staying hydrated. Start your day with a balanced electrolyte drink to help you stay energetic and feeling great through work and your workout. Check out all 9 delicious flavors, and the travel packs that are designed for on-the-go hydration.
Clean up your sleep
Winter is dark and cold, and we all just want to stay under the covers and sleep in. From an evolutionary perspective, this instinct kept us warm and safe through the winter months, and we conserved energy when food might be scarce. Today, that translates to taking our phones and computers to bed, staying up late, and looking at bright lights late into the evening.
Reset your sleep schedule by choosing a bedtime that’s about 8 hours before you need to get up, and aiming to go to sleep at that time, not just get into bed and look at your phone. Phones, computers, televisions, and other lights should be dimmed around sunset, since lower levels of light trigger the release of melatonin in your brain to help you fall asleep.
You might already turn the thermostat down at night to save on your electric bill, but the real reason this is a good idea is because cooler temperatures help us to reach deeper, more restful states of sleep. Some people find that they sleep better with a fan on, and others prefer a weighted blanket. Try these tactics to see how much better your sleep gets!
To transition into a better sleep pattern, and help you get better sleep at any time, grab a bottle of Lights Out. It has a low dose of melatonin, along with gentle herbs that will help you to relax, unwind, and improve your sleep scores. Whether you need support falling asleep, staying asleep, or both, Lights Out is a safe and effective option to help you get restorative sleep every night to wake up at your best every morning.
As the days get brighter and the weather gets warmer, notice the habits you’ve gotten into that support your wellness, or take away from it. Remember to make changes slowly so that new habits stick, and you don’t fall back into patterns that aren’t so healthy. Most importantly, take time to do the things you love! It’s much easier to keep yourself in great shape when you’re happy with your life.