Ohhhhhh Monday. We meet again.
Actually, let’s not have any of that attitude. Instead, how the heck are you on this beautiful new day!? Did you have an epic weekend?
Nothing too crazy went down over here, but highlights included a lovely hot yoga class at Moksha and starting my Crossfit foundations personal training sessions. One of the first orders of business in this intro experience is to increase my hip flexibility so that I can squat deeper (#lifegoals), so there was a whole lot of stretching going on. I’ve got my work cut out for me, but I’m excited to make progress over the coming weeks.
Speaking of progress, it kinda sorta feels like Vancouver has regressed in its progress towards spring. After what seemed like an odd period of lovely sunshine, this past weekend we got a ton (by Vancouver standards) of snow. Last week the authorities on Groundhog Day in Canada reported that our celebrity groundhogs predict an early spring, but now I’m not so sure. I’m not sure about you, but it always seems to take a little extra oomph to get me going on the cold wintry days – especially after the holidays. With that in mind, over the past month I’ve curated a couple of my winter wellness favourites to share with you. These are the little things that have been keeping me happy, healthy and hydrated lately and they’re just too good to keep to myself. 🙂
The Philips goLITE BLU energy light
I briefly mentioned this handy little light a while ago in my post about how to beat the winter blues. It was sent to me to try and after using it about 4-5 mornings per week for 3 weeks, I can honestly say I noticed an improvement in my daytime mood and energy levels.
The goLITE BLU is small and plugs into the wall to charge. You can keep it plugged in while sitting in front of it, or charge it up and use it cord-free anywhere you go. The charge lasts for about an hour and the light is a bright blue colour to simulate natural daylight. Initially I wondered if it would be blindingly bright but don’t worry because this wasn’t the case! It’s super lightweight and also comes with a pouch so you can pack it up while traveling. I haven’t done a ton of jet setting over the past 3 weeks, but I imagine it might also be useful for helping with jet lag and body clock adjustments.
Philips reports that the light is super efficient, using only 200 lux to achieve the effect of about 10,000 lux of white light. They recommend sitting in front of the goLITE BLU for 20-30 minutes, either in the morning or in the afternoon to help prevent dips in energy levels, so that’s what I did. I found that using it while eating breakfast in the morning was the most convenient, and made a point of doing this on days when it looked like the sun definitely wasn’t coming out. (There were many!) As I said in my earlier post, as someone who struggles a bit with Seasonal Affective Disorder, I have no idea why I never looked into buying one of these sooner. If you also don’t get along with winter so well, I’d highly recommend checking this out!
Mmmm…. my whole body relaxes just thinking about these! I’m not a coffee drinker but this winter have fallen madly in love with turmeric lattes, as well as matcha lattes made with homemade nut milk. The nutrition geek in me loves the mega anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric and the huge dose of antioxidants in matcha powder (withinUs TruOrganic Matcha is my go-to). Health benefits aside though, both are just delicious! Making a latte (or even just drinking matcha whisked with boiling water) while curling up with a blanket and magazine is quickly becoming one of my favourite lazy Sunday rituals.
I’ll preface this one by telling you that I was not a black licorice fan as a kid. The thing is though, that licorice as a herb is great for digestion, just like fennel. I’ve learned to like it by drinking Saje Organic Digest Remetea regularly after meals, and now I actually crave the taste.
Recently at work I discovered a box of Yogi Egyptian Licorice Tea that someone had put in the kitchen for sharing. Feeling adventurous, I gave it a try. GUYS, it was delicious! It’s got a mild natural sweetness and is super soothing, especially after lunch. I’m totally hooked and have been buying both the Stash and Yogi brands which are herbal and caffeine-free. You still won’t catch me anywhere near black licorice though. 😉
Renew Life Norwegian Gold Super Critical Omega
You may recall me mentioning Renew Life in the past and how they make my favourite probiotic supplement, but that’s not all they’ve got. Another product I’ve been using for the last little while is their Super Critical Omega, a highly concentrated dose of omega-3 essential fatty acids. Omega-3s are critical for reducing inflammation (whether that’s from injuries, tough workouts, or longer-term conditions like arthritis) and they play a role in improving mood.
Quality and source are super important when it comes to fish oil (and all supplements), and this one has a 5 star rating from the International Fish Oil Standards Program. If interested, you can read more about that here.
Sibu Moisturizing Body Cream
This isn’t the first time I’ve told you about Sibu, but I’m especially grateful for their all-natural, sea buckthorn-infused skincare line in the winter. Over the past couple of years I’ve tried to green up my beauty care routine as much as possible and while I still often use coconut oil as a moisturizer (that stuff is great for everything), it can be pretty greasy. I’ve gone through about 2 bottles of Sibu’s Moisturizing Body Cream (that’s the big orange tube in the photo below) this winter and it has zero greasiness, an amazing smell and totally does the job. It’s also kind of magical in that it’s strong enough to soften areas like my feet, but can also be used on my face if I forget to pack my facial moisturizer when I go to the gym.
On a side note, Sibu has just had a website re-fresh and the new site is looking beeeeeautiful!
Now I’d love to hear from you. What products or little rituals are helping you to get through the winter? Tell me in the comments below!