10 Weeks to a Healthier, Happier You!
I get it...I really do, because I was there. You want to look better, feel better, have glowing skin but have no idea where to start and are left feeling confused and overwhelmed.
Over the years I've learned that small changes, one step at a time, will give you the best results in the long run. I know you want to see and feel changes "now" but our bodies don't work that way. Be patient and trust the process. Don't skip steps and give yourself a week to get used to the new habit and really make it part of your daily routine before moving onto the following week.
Here are 10 steps to implement over the course of 10 weeks:
Week 1: Tongue Scraping
Start your morning with this easy Ayurvedic Practice: Tongue Scraping. Why? This is actually just as important as brushing your teeth and it takes seconds to do. At night, while sleeping, the bacteria, food debris, dead cells, and toxins accumulate on our tongue. This spreads down to our gastrointestinal tract and to the rest of our body. If we do not scrape these toxins off every morning, our tongue reabsorbs them. This lowers our immune system and decreases our ability to absorb nutrients, leading to weight gain, acne, illness, bloating, gas and constipation.
Week 2: Room Temperature or Warm Water with Lemon or Lime
Cold water is bad for your digestion (or your Digestive Fire according to Ayurveda). Start evening morning with a tall glass of room temperature or warm water. Add 1-2 drops of doTERRA Lemon or Lime Oil. If you are dealing with Adrenal Fatigue, add a pinch of sea salt. You haven’t had fluids for roughly eight hours, so drinking a glass when you first wake up will help rehydrate the body and allow for good digestion.
Week 3: Probiotics
After your nice glass of room temperature water take a probiotic...every morning! When I'm traveling I will take a second one at night before getting into bed. Probiotics are supplements filled with bacteria that help your body's digestive system perform. A good probiotic will survive the early digestive process and release friendly bacteria in your intestines. When choosing a probiotic, look for one with multiple bacterial strains, especially Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Also, look for a probiotic formula with a probiotic fiber like inulin or fructogliosaccharides that feeds good bacteria and encourages them to colonize. Remember, your health starts in your gut!
Week 4: Healthy Breakfast
Start every day with real, fresh food! Yes, you can still have your coffee but make sure you break your fast with nourishing food. This can be a room temperature smoothie filled with fresh, seasonal greens, adaptogens and low-glycemic fruits, such as berries and lots of healthy fats (coconut milk, sprouted nut milk, avocados) or perhaps sautéed bitter greens (great for your liver) with omega-3 rich pastured eggs. Know that by simply changing your breakfast, you are changing 33% of your diet! Pretty cool!
Week 5: Move
Do you want to look AND feel good? Move your body every day for at least 30 minutes. This doesn't have to be a "Barry's Bootcamp" type of workout. Find something you love and you will be much more likely to be consistent with it. I loooove my "Sweat" App from Kayla Itsines. I do a 28 minute workout with the App three times a week. It doesn't take up much time out of my day, it energizes me and I can do it in my hotel rooms as well. And yes, it's hard! On the other days I practice Yin, Hatha, Restorative or Kundalini Yoga or go for nice long walks. I strive to find a balance between strength training and calming, grounding, centering exercises or practices. Also, listen to your body...just because your calendar says that it's "Strength Training" or "Cardio" day the t might not be what you need on that particular day. You want to make sure your workouts are relieving stress rather than compounding it.
If you need some motivation and/or inspiration, check out, my former (Virgin America) colleague, Jaime's instagram feed or website to sign up for this Greek Goddess's Workouts. Jaime is a working, single mom and all-around inspiration. She has been featured in Shape, fitness, Jillian Michaels and more.
Week 6: Increase Water Intake
The forgotten health and beauty "nutrient", water! Water makes up 60-70% of our body weight and 70% of your skin. So if you want gorgeous, vibrant, glowing skin you better drink up. Dehydration releases stress hormones, which in turn leads to an increase of inflammation in the body. Read"Aging". Water is essential for a vast array of bodily functions from our metabolism and nutrient absorption to detoxification and circulation. I love adding a few drops of doTERRA's Citrus Essential Oils for added liver-supporting properties and also to help me drink more water throughout the day. In summer months we are blessed with gorgeous, water-filled produce such as watermelon and cucumbers. These help hydrate our bodies more efficiently.
Week 7: Daily Supplements
Read this post I wrote on why it's important to take a Supplement every day. Place your Supplements on your kitchen counter so that you see them and remember to take them!
Week 8: Breathe
Breath brings oxygen to to our bodies tissues. It removes acidic dioxide waste, and encourages nutrient delivery to our cells through healthy circulation. I am guilty of years of shallow breathing thus missing out on precious energy and waste removal from my cells. Set an alarm on your phone for at least twice a day to stop everything for a handful of minutes to simply breathe. If you can, close your eyes. Take several slow, deep breaths from your diaphragm. Breathe in through your nose for 5 seconds, hold for 2-3 seconds and exhale slowly for 5. I love adding a drop or two of an Essential Oil into my hands and cupping them over my nose and mouth while doing this exercise. It's such an easy way to reset your Nervous System.
Week 9: Dry-Brushing
Read this post I wrote on Dry Brushing and why I do this every day and what Essential Oils I use for additional support.
Week 10: Sleep
Aim for 8 hours of sleep every night. This is a non-negotiable for me. Here is my night time routine to help me wind down and prepare for a great night's sleep:
- A couple of hours prior to going to bed I make an herbal or Rishi tea to help me wind down.
- If I have just returned from a work trip I make sure to take an Epsom Salt Bath with relaxing Essential oils.
- I like to do a few simple yoga poses...sometimes it's something as easy as "legs up the wall" for a few minutes.
- I wear blue light blocker glasses in the evenings so that the lights don't interfere with my melatonin production.
- I try my best (but epically fail) to turn off technology at least an hour prior to bed.
- I don't dink coffee after noon as it stays in your system for hours.
- I diffuse essential oils in my room and also place a few drops on my pillow.
- I keep the bedroom on the cooler side.
- I keep a journal by my bed to "brain dump" my thoughts or worries.
- I love to read in bed for at least half hour before going to sleep.
Congratulations!!! You have taken huge steps in improving your health! By now your skin should be glowing and your energy soaring! I'd love to hear how these 10 weeks went for you. What was your biggest challenge? Your biggest win?