Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring Clean Your Routine!

Though it may not seem like it, thanks to these chilly temperatures and stubborn snow, Spring is here! Before you can even think of spring cleaning your closet (because let's face it, there's no point putting away those boots and winter coat quite yet) take the time to spring clean your routine! Spring is a time of renewal and rebirth, so what better time to take the opportunity to clean up your daily routine by introducing some positive changes that will leave you feeling spectacular inside and out!

1) Start each day with warm water with lemon & positive affirmations
Enjoying a mug of warm water with lemon every morning before your coffee or breakfast is a great way to boost your metabolism and flush toxins out of your system, not to mention kick start your hydration for the day. While you're waiting for the water to boil, make a point of looking in the mirror and talking to yourself (yup, I said talk to yourself!), look into your own face and remind yourself what you are grateful of about yourself and your life. Starting your day with positive affirmations will allow you to start your day on a positive note, and will help you keep that positive energy grooving through you all day long!

2) Resist technology
It's easy to get sucked into the vortex of emails and social media first thing in the morning, especially with so many of us using our phone as our alarm clock. I understand the feeling of wanting to get caught up with what is going on in the world right when you wake up, but this is also a way of stressing yourself out right smack at the start of your day. Resist. Allow yourself to enjoy the first half hour to an hour of your morning. Try starting your day with a few sun salutations, play music, sing (even if you fear driving your neighbors insane), think about what you are looking forward to about the day and not what you fear.

3) Go green
It's amazing how many vitamins and minerals are packed into dark green leafy vegetables, but with a busy and on-the-run schedule, it can sometimes be tricky to find a way to make those green wonders apart of your daily diet. To make sure that I am getting enough dark green leafy veg in my diet each day I always make sure to keep my fridge stocked with lots of fresh spinach, whatever berries I can get my hands on, and fresh or frozen bananas. Making a green smoothie is super quick, easy, and will leave you feeling energized and invigorated! No time to make one during your busy day? Whirr one up the evening before to have ready in the fridge before you head out the next morning. I like to make my green smoothies with one or two big handfuls of fresh spinach, one banana, 3-4 strawberries, a tablespoon of chia seeds, and about 1/2 cup - 3/4 cup orange juice or coconut milk. I promise, you will hardly taste the spinach but it will do wonders for your body!

4) Take time to write
Keeping a diary isn't just for schoolgirls with heart-wrenching crushes. Keeping a journal is a great way to get to know yourself, vent, keep your goals on track, and understand what the heck is going on in that complicated head of yours. Don't let yourself feel silly about writing in it, remember that this is just for you. It's about the process of writing not about re-reading past entries (which we all know can feel incredibly embarrassing). 

5) Sweat
Force yourself to get active in an activity that you enjoy. Dance, run, do yoga or pilates, take a kickboxing class, go cycling, hike, whatever! Just do something that you find fun and allows your body to move and sweat out the toxins trapped within it. Taking part in physical activity will not only help your overall body health, but the health of your mind as well, raising your endorphins and self confidence! How much activity is enough? For lower impact activity you will have to put in more time (60-minutes), for moderate activity you should be putting in anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes, and for high impact activity you can do as little as 20 to 30 minutes. Make sure to get that 20-60 minutes in at least 3 times a week for the best inside and out results. 

6) Scrub-a-dub-dub 
With shorts, skirts, dresses, and bathing suits on the way you want your skin looking its best, so take the time once or twice a week to scrub your body to reveal silky and glowing skin. More and more research is coming to light about the positive effects of dry skin brushing such as its detoxifying effects, how it can help prevent and get rid of cellulite, stimulate your circulation, and more! So how does one skin brush? It's easy! Invest in an all-natural skin brush from a health store, and in the morning before you step into the shower lightly brush your dry skin in a circular motion, starting from your feet and moving all the way up to the top of your neck. If you're not into the idea of skin brushing, why not use an exfoliating scrub. My favourite is an all-natural Olive Wash & Exfoliant that I brought home with me on my trip to Israel a couple years ago. Though you can purchase this scrub online and have it delivered to your home, I bought mine in the olive oil mill where it is made. The scrub, which is made primarily from olive pulp, smells fresh and delicious, leaves my skin incredibly soft and glowing, and has also helped to get rid of my acne (yup, you can even use it on your face as this product is an exfoliant, cleanser, and toner all in one!). If you're on a budget, it's easy to make your very own customized scrub right at home! Simply combine coffee grinds, sea salt, coconut oil, brown sugar, and baking soda to scrub all over your skin while showering. 

Listening To:
Broken Bells - Holding On For Life

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