Spring Clean Your Wellness
Every year when spring rolls around, we think “Time for spring cleaning!” We clear out the cobwebs, sweep the front step, tidy up our rooms, and freshen our homes to welcome the warm weather and sunny days ahead. We got our spring robbed from us this year being stuck at home so we are making up for it now before summer is officially here in a few weeks!
One area we don’t think to spring clean is our wellness. It’s essential for our wellbeing to check in once in a while to make sure everything is tidied up and we’re ready for the coming season.
I’m going to share with you three of my favorite lifestyle changes to make every spring that will help you do just that. They’re fairly easy to implement and you’ll reap plenty of health benefits. Plus, don’t miss out on my bonus recipe at the end of the post!
Drink More Water
During the cooler months, we tend to forget to drink enough water. Because it’s not sweltering out and we’re not as active, we don’t sweat as much, and we don’t feel as thirsty hence we don’t remember to stay hydrated. So, let’s break out that favorite water bottle and drink up!
The recommendation varies depending on your size, but the idea is to aim to drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water each day. Or, at least that is what we’ve always been told. Read why that may not be true here. As an example however, if you weigh 120 pounds, you should strive to take in at least 60 ounces of water in your system daily. We usually recommend a general 32-64 ounces of water daily.
It may seem like a lot at first, but there are many ways to drink this amount of water. Filtered water, fruit-infused water, and seltzer water or sparkling water are great options. We don’t recommend sports drinks as most are high in sugar. Drink coconut water or make your own electrolyte water. Coffee and alcohol, which in fact dehydrate you, are not, so they don’t count towards your daily water intake.
Tip: Start your day with a glass of 8 ounces of water as soon as you wake up (try warm water with lemon if you don’t like cold water in the morning) and keep your water bottle with you to sip from throughout the day.
Add More Steps
With the lengthening of daylight hours, you’ll have more opportunities to get outside and enjoy a walk. After meals is an ideal time to take a stroll as it will help get your digestive juices going. Or if you’re an early riser, go for a quiet, meditative stroll to ease into your day.
You can even use this time to catch up with friends and family. Call up a friend for coffee and rather than sitting at the cafe, take your drinks with you as you go for a walk. There is literally nothing better than walking around the lake with a friend or someone you love! On weekends, plan a walk through the park with your family. You will all benefit from the bonding time as well as the exercise.
Tip: We prefer an old-fashioned pedometer over fit-bits to track steps but there here are plenty of options available. Challenge yourself to get the recommended 8,000 to 10,000 steps a day.
You know that feeling you get when you’ve been sitting at your desk for too long, and you reach out your arms and take a deep breath and say “Ahhhh”? Doesn’t it feel good? Well, it shouldn’t be the only time you stretch.
Getting into a daily stretching routine will help you maintain your flexibility and mobility. You won’t feel as creaky, tight or stiff. Stretching in the morning can help get your blood flowing and leave you feeling more energized. In the evening, you can do stretches to help you relax and prepare your body for a restful sleep.
One of my favorite stretches is the standing side stretch. Let’s give it a try. Start in a standing position with feet together, and arms stretched out over your head, hands together with palms touching. Slowly reach to one side keeping your arms long and hands together. Take five deep breaths then slowly return to the middle. Repeat on the other side. Do this one or two more times. Now, don’t you feel better?
Tip: Add this stretch to your morning routine. After you have your glass of water, take a couple of minutes to do a few standing side stretches.
There are more lifestyle changes you can implement to improve your wellness this spring but adding these three is an excellent start as they’re reasonably easy to add to your daily routine.
Beet and Citrus Salad
There are so many seasonal fruits and vegetables to look forward to when spring rolls around. Two of my favorites are beets and spinach. I like to combine the sweet taste of beets with the tanginess of citrus and the bold flavor of goat cheese to make a delicious and vibrantly colored salad.
For a dressing, I like to drizzle it with my healthy go-to oil and vinegar dressing. The light flavor allows the tastes of the salad to shine through. Optionally, you can add cooked shrimp or chicken for protein for a fully balanced meal.
The recipe calls for goat cheese, but if you don’t eat it, you can substitute it with feta cheese or leave the cheese out. Also, tangerines work just as well as clementines in the recipe.
It will keep well in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. It’s easy, and pretty, to take to work or on a picnic when stored in a mason jar. Just keep the dressing separate until you’re ready to eat it.
Beet and Citrus Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
- 4 large beets
- 4 clementines, separated into sections
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 2 cup spinach
- 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
- 1 cup crumbled goat cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- Add the beets to a large pot of boiling water. Simmer until tender, about 40 minutes. Drain and let cool.
- Combine oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper to create a dressing. Mix well.
- Peel and cut into bite-size cubes. Add remaining ingredients. Drizzle with dressing. Stir to mix.
Now you know my favorite ways to spring clean your wellness and one of my favorite recipes! What are yours? Share in the comments what you like to do when spring rolls around.
Be Well & Thrive!
With Love & In Health,
Sarah Outlaw, MH, MSACN
-For more information on who we are and what we do at Natural Health Improvement Center of South Jersey and Natural Health Improvement Center of Des Moines, browse the rest of our website. We offer Nutritional Coaching, Nutrition Response Testing, Functional Nutrition, Herbal Medicine, and Homeopathy. We also offer detox services including an infrared sauna, and PEMF (pulsed electromagnetic field therapy mat, and foot bath(DSM office). We are on the front lines of wellness for you!