Everyone knows that when on an airplane and the oxygen mask falls from above you are supposed to put is on yourself before you assist others right? Well you'd be surprised how many people, especially moms, who say "my child of course" when I ask them this question. If you don't give your body what it needs to function properly first, you won't be able to properly care for others later.
Here are some tips for restoring your energy and practicing self-care during the holidays:
1. Get 7-9 hours of sleep and be in bed by 10pm. The hours of sleep you get between 10pm and 1am are more valuable than the sleep you get after that. It's when your body is programmed for cognitive and physiological repair. This may mean skipping your favorite show, spending less time on Facebook or leaving the dirty dishes in the sink for one night. That's okay, I promised you won't miss anything and you will feel like a million bucks in the morning.
2. Drink plenty of water. Dehydration means not enough water for your body to do it's daily functions. If your body can't function properly and process food for energy, you won't feel like doing much. Did you know that 90% or more of the country is chronically dehydrated? The first piece of nutrition homework that I give to my clients is to get 64 oz of water or more per day every day for 7 days. If they do nothing else with their nutrition, they must focus on this. The side benefit.. they experience less hunger and cravings too!
3. Get 20-40 minutes of exercise most days of the week. Exercising gives you a boost of endorphins and cortisol that leaves you feeling energized during the day, not to mention it boosts your confidence. The type of exercise recommended will vary based on a person's current energy functioning. Someone who is experiencing mild to severe adrenal fatigue will benefit from restorative activities like yoga and walking or from anabolic activities like strength training (but not extremely intense strength training). Rule of thumb, if you feel energized after your workout, you picked the right activity for you. If you feel drained, you went too hard or too long. Your body needs to rest and do lighter activity.
4. Eat every 3-4 hours. Ever heard of the expression "hangry"? That's us getting cranky and angry when we haven't fed our body in a while. Going a long time without food drops our energy levels and we start to become a cranky person, one others may not want to be around.
5. Add superfoods to your body. In this day and age our food is pretty depleted of nutrients because our farming fields are so over used and full of toxins from the environment. We also may be eating a bunch of processed foods that often times don't have much nutritional value. I recommend multi-vitamins and a superfood shake called Shakeology. Shakeology serves as a quick, low calorie meal and gives you a daily dose of dense nutrition. When I first started drinking it, I noticed within days my energy levels were up.
6. Spend less time with toxic people. This is probably one of the most important and most difficult things to do during the holidays. Toxic people can DRAIN you and drive you to reach for a bowl of ice cream to drown your anger or sorrows. Don't give them a chance to steal your energy. You control who you spend your valuable time with so surround yourself with people who are going to lift you up and bring you joy!