As the holiday season begins, these self-care tips can help us brave the cold.
Days are growing shorter, wish lists are growing longer, knits are becoming the norm, Mariah Carey’s jingle has become stuck on repeat, and baby it’s cold outside. Winter is here. Protect yourself from seasonal stress with my favorite holiday season practices for warming self-care.
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Winter is the time of year that many fair-weathered runners either hit the treadmill or hide in bed. However, there is nothing in the world like a run through a winter wonderland to make you feel like a joyous kid on a snow day. Layer up and slip and slide around the cold streets to quickly warm your inner temperature as you reconnect with your inner child.
Melt away tension with massage on the mat
My favorite way to release on days of winter weather long distance running is to hit the mat. Cold weather can make the body slower feel sluggish so I like to ease into my yoga routine with slow and mindful yin postures or self-massage. Investing in a tennis ball can do wonders to spice up your winter yoga practice. Try tennis ball myofascial release to melt tension out of your shoulders, calves, feet, or anywhere else in the body that your holiday stress may manifest.
Soften the skin with a home spa routine
Get crafty by making your own natural cosmetics for a luxurious home spa day. Brown sugar scrubs are easy and inexpensive to make at home (bonus: they can be jarred and gifted as creative Christmas treats!). Try a 1:1 ratio of brown sugar to warm coconut oil, and massage it into your skin in the shower for buttercream frosting-soft skin.
Heat the belly with warm bowls
Cold weather can make us crave hearty dishes. Nourish your body with healthy and satisfying warm bowls that will keep you full all day. Spiced oatmeal or dark chocolate quinoa bowls make for decadent winter breakfasts, and savory kitchari or chickpea buddha bowls can be delicious midday meals. Complement these dishes with your favorite hot teas to sip and savor mindfully with your meal.
Warm the heart with good company
The holiday season wouldn’t be the same without family members who tell hilariously bad jokes, friends who guilt you into Secret Santa exchanges, and colleagues who have had one too many at the holiday office party. After you’re warmed, calmed, and filled with nourishment, you can put your best face forward among your company who you love because of (or maybe despite) their holiday cheer. Allow their presence to warm your heart and radiate your own centered season’s greetings back in exchange.