Have you ever had one of those hectic days? Where everything is just flying at you a mile a minute? Or you’re so stressed, you have trouble falling asleep? Well, guess what: the answer is in your breath.
Some of you may have experienced the calming effects of focusing on your breath during yoga. It is a simple technique that can be used anytime, anywhere – not just on the yoga mat – to bust stress!
Here is how:
Sit in a quiet place you feel comfortable, roll your shoulders back and straighten your spine.
Deeply inhale and hold it for a few seconds.
Take your right thumb and press it to your right nostril, close it completely and exhale through the left.
Pause and inhale through your left nostril.
Use your ring and middle finger to close your left nostril and exhale through the right before pausing and breathing in again through the right.
Continue to alternate sides, making sure to pause for couple seconds at the top and bottom of each breath. Each breath you take should be long and full. Continue alternating nostril breathing for at least 5 minutes. If you want to aim for a deeper sense of relaxation, you can do it for up to 10 minutes.
Now, if you’re nose it so congested due to allergies that you cannot do this exercise, well then, that’s another conversation.
How is everyone doing on Week 2 of the 8 Week Lifestyle Challenge? If you are like me, I suspect you’re still experiencing some sugar cravings. Cravings can last anywhere from one week (manageable) to 3 weeks (no fun) so it is very important that you continue to be vigilant, read labels and stay off the sugar. If you start to eat sugar again, you will fall back into the bad habits you have worked so hard to break. Don’t undo your wonderful efforts!
If any of you are having difficulty meeting the Healthy Eating, Exercise and Emotional Challenges this week, I welcome you to utilize my YouTube playlist. I continually post great resources on my playlist like a quick 10 minute exercise routine, exercises for seniors, videos on deep breathing exercises and meditation as well as guides to healthier eating.
Visit us on YouTube! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCl0T9HkrfH-E24XSC5ZXDVQ/videos?view=1
If you were hoping to see significant, fast weight loss in doing this challenge and haven’t, do not be discouraged. We have seen a number of patients in our office who are doing the challenge and have lost 1-2 pounds, which is exactly what I would expect. The goal here is to make positive lifestyle changes over a period of time. The weight loss will come if you continue to meet the challenges during the course of the 8 weeks (and beyond). The Annals of Internal Medicine recently reported on a study in which making positive lifestyle changes resulted in decreased incidence of disease over time (in this case diabetes), irrespective of weight loss. Think of the 8 Week Lifestyle Challenge as your guide to establishing a foundation of good habits so that you can maintain a healthy lifestyle over a long period of time.
Let us know how you are doing! Share your comments on our blog so others can learn from your successes. Many of you have paired up with a friend in doing this challenge. Please invite them to join the conversation on our blog and Facebook page as well:
Visit us on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Annapolis-Allergy-and-Health-Enhancement-Center/306212383009?ref=hl#
My Facebook followers will get a special treat this Friday so if you haven’t already, visit our page and give us a “Like” so you won’t miss out on this special post!
I wish you all the best as we continue this 8 Week Lifestyle Challenge together!
Meditation for Beginners
Meditation is incredibly beneficial for lowering stress levels, decreasing anxiety and creating an overall sense of well-being. Unfortunately, many of those new to meditation get frustrated in the process easily and quickly lose interest. Read this informative article to learn how to overcome these hurdles and make meditation part of your wellness regime.