Five Easy Ways to Detox for Fall

ajgovonidetoxSo maybe you threw back a few ((several)) cocktails, over-indulged on burgers and chips, cut back on workouts and hopefully enjoyed time with friends and family to celebrate a final weekend of summer…GOOD. You should have! If you really want to see some gains not only fitness, but in your overall heath and outlook, then enjoying these simple pleasures of life are essential and vital to creating a happier, healthier you.

After a holiday ((or summer)) splurge comes the desire to get back on track, start over, really commit to a new plan,  to bounce back, as it were. Rather than viewing that mini vacation from your routine as a set-back from which you need to recover, view it instead as part of the process to progress – don’t necessarily bounce back, bounce forward. Be better than before. Your body and your mind appreciate the break, but make it one step back and 2 steps forward.

A common misconception is to go overboard on juicing, fasting, refusing food or returning pretty hard into your workouts. Not necessary. Instead, make a few little changes to set yourself back on a path of success.

Here are 5 easy ways to Detox the weekend ((and summer)) and begin to freshen up for Fall….no extreme dieting, juicing, or killing yourself in the gym required.

1. WATER. Drink hot water with lemon upon rising, lemon helps cleanse and detoxify the body, and hot water helps to get things moving. Drink a lot of good quality H20 throughout the day (aiming for 2-3 liters or roughly half your body weight in ounces). It’s best to drink water before and between meals, avoid drinking it with and shortly after meals since this can cause a slow down of digestion, creating a back-up. And spice it up! Adding ginger and cayenne pepper to hot water helps detoxify and eliminate any bloat you may be experiencing after a weekend binge.

2. MOVE.  Sweating is the best way to release toxins in the body. You don’t need to spend hours on the workouts though, just get moving, now. Aim for 30-45 minutes of intense work four to five days a week, and utilize major and multiple muscle groups in your workouts, along with HIIT (high intensity interval training) to efficiently burn more fat. Check here for a total body workout to do! However, it’s important to move through out the day in addition to your workout. An hour workout is great, but if you sit for the majority of the day, you’re not only doing your health harm. but that chair/car/couch could be the reason you’re not losing stubborn weight. Do YOGA- for a number of different reasons- specific asanas aid in detoxification, pranayama techniques help purify the body, and yoga, overall, can ‘de-clutter’ your mind. Move when you wake up and before you hit the hay. Start your day with a 20 minute jog or brisk walk before breakfast, or some sun salutations. This can help burn extra fat. End your day with a 20 minute post dinner walk, and stretch before bed.

3. REDUCE. There’s no need for starvation dieting, fasting or juicing, but reducing your intake of certain foods is important. Avoid foods that cause inflammation, increase cravings, and those that your body stores as fat. Examples of these are:caffeine (which raises cortisol, the stress hormone, in the body, stubborn weight maintainer), alcohol (your body has to metabolize this first, meaning everything else consumed is stored as fat), dairy (can cause inflammation and mucous in the body), SUGAR (sugar is a nasty little drug that does quite a bit of harm on the body. Even reduce your fruit intake to 1-2 pieces, and keep it to the lower GI fruits during this time), gluten and grains, processed meats and packaged foods. No you don’t always have to get rid of these things, yet if you want to see changes and reap the health benefits of a detoxification, then as much as possible, these foods need to be reduced or eliminated from your diet while you freshen up.

4. EAT. The worst thing you can do is to go into starvation mode after a weekend holiday binge. All this will do is wreak havoc on your metabolism, and cause for a grumpy, more hungover-feeling. If you’re going to fast, do it between dinner and breakfast. Aim for a full 12 hours without eating between these meals. Your body needs this time for maintainence. Don’t eat within 3 hours of going to bed. Feed your body, and fuel it up with the good stuff it needs to thrive throughout the day. This means increasing your veggie and fiber intake, incorporating lean, high quality proteins with each meal, and include cucumbers and leafy greens – they will help balance pH levels (which can be really acidic after a weekend of booze, meat and chips).

5. REST & RELAXATION. It’s September, and other than January, it tends to be the month where everyone is ready to  get back on track. Take a little bit of time writing down your goals and setting yourself up with a rhythm that you’re looking forward to starting, and one that’s attainable and maintainable. Set small goals for yourself, check in on them frequently to measure your progress. In a month where school and work come back in full swing,  managing stress levels is crucial to help your body recover and ‘detoxify.’ When cortisol levels are high, your body has a natural tendency to hold onto fat, particularly around your midsection (a self-preservation technique that dates back to your ancestors). Incorporate yoga or moving meditation into your day, practice breathing techniques and get out in nature…everyday. And most importantly, sleep. Sleep is the time your body repairs and rebuilds. Get your 8 hours of sleep and be a happy camper.

ajgovoniAJ Govoni is an accomplished fitness professional, yoga teacher, and beach-bum traveler, with a love for using nature as her gym. She leads outdoor fitness programs and specializes in training and yoga for athletes and women. Through rockin’ playlists, happy vibes and sweaty flows, AJ’s classes will leave both your body and mind feeling good. Her sense of adventure has brought her backpacking to different regions of the world where she became fascinated by the activities, healing techniques, diets and lifestyles of other cultures. She fuses these discoveries into her work to bring a fresh perspective on active living, health and happiness. Follow AJ’s journey on Facebook , Instagram and her workouts and writings on her blog. Catch the ride with her! www.ajgovoni.com

4 Simple Ways to Live with Intention this Fall

TDFW13shootLondonWEBREZ73It’s that time of year again. When the world seems to speed up even faster. Things need to be planned. To be scheduled. To be added into your already busy life.

It’s when the children are heading back to school and holidays become memories. And the time of year when we start to worry about all the things that need to get done, rather then of all the things we want to enjoy.

But my goodness, they are some of the most beautiful months of the year.

As we move forward into a busy-making time of year, I just want to remind you of the true nature of this time of year. 

While everyone is running around adding in weekly meets, daily schedules, monthly events and everything in between, nature is reminding us that this is the time to let go.

Surrender, transformation and letting go are all qualities of the world around us during the Fall months. 

And isn’t it ironic that while we feel the need to control, build, add-to our lives – that nature around us is taking its time, eliminating the non-essentials, letting go of the need to grow, push and expand.

The leaves slowly start to change from green to gold. The garden reaches it’s most bountiful. The sun falls a little sooner leaving us cooler and more contemplative.

Just as the Summer draws us out into the heat to grow, achieve, do, push and strive – the Autumn season calls us back into receiving, allowing and surrender.

Even when we don’t feel like we have the time for it. 

We are reminded to slow down and dress with a little more mindfullness – warmth and comfort in mind.

We are blessed with the fresh vegetables as they come into the end of their growing cycle – nourishing us a little more deeply.

We are invited to reflect on all the things that we need to let go of in our lives – as we begin to restructure our daily lives.

Today I want to share with you a few things you can do to step into the next part of the year with grace and ease.

Especially in those moments when you feel like you need to do this or need to be there.

This week – choose to be on purpose with the things you add to and release from your life. 

It can be way too easy for us women to allow the world around us to dictate what we will do next, where we should go and how we should spend our time and energy.

But as always, we have a choice. And with that choice, we have the ability to offer the people around us the best version of ourselves.

Maybe taking some extra time out will make you a better partner. Maybe saying yes to yourself will make you a better friend. Maybe investing in yourself will make you a better person.

Maybe you matter more then you are willing to admit. And saying you will take care of your body next month, next year and next is very different then actually setting the intention to make the change. 

In this moment, choose to live with Intention this Fall and repeat after me…

“This week I will live with intention by choosing…

 The Way I Spend My Time – I will schedule in non-negotiable time early in the morning and just before bed to relax, nurture my body and take time for meditation and reflection. If this means getting up earlier or cutting back on television/internet time I will make the changes I need to in respect for myself.

The People I Surround myself with – I will get really clear on the people I choose to spend my time with and energy on. This includes both in person and online. If there is someone I’ve been missing, I will call them up and set a date to meet. If there is someone who is draining me, I will limit or eliminate the time I spend with them, lovingly and with kindness.

The Places I Spend My Time –  I will be mindful of where I spend my time and how it feels to be there. If my living room feels messy and disorganized, I will take time to tidy it up and change things around till it feels fresh and inviting. If I drive the same way to work, I will change it up and walk. If my bedroom is a mess of clothes, old magazines and things I no longer need – I set time aside to create a sanctuary.

The Things I Put in and on my Body – I will be aware of the things that I eat each day and how those foods make me feel and the energy that they give me – including the water I drink. Equally, I will be mindful of the products I put on my body, always asking myself- are they natural? do they make a difference? is there something less-toxic I can use instead?

Here’s the the thing, you may not feel like you have the time to join the gym, do a detox or make it to yoga every week.   You may not even be prepared to simply start meditating or moving your body each day.

But you will still have to move through your life with the energy, wisdom and clarity to make a difference in the lives of the people around you. 

Because you care about your family. You want to be a wonderful partner and friend. You have dreams you want to reach and goals you want to achieve.

…and because if you choose to put yourself last, it’s not only your mind, body and Spirit that will pay the price.

It’s the people who care about you. 

So for this week and the rest of the year, I invite you to live with intention. Especially in how you spend your time, who you surround yourself with, where you live/go and what you nourish your body with. And let each choice be loving, kind and intuitive. 

Because in the end, you are really the only one that knows what’s best for you. 
amber86Amber Chalus is a Free-Spirited Adventurer, Holistic Lifestyle Coach and Certified Yoga Teacher. She lives in the heart of Saskatchewan with her charming British husband and adorable rescue dog, Indi. You are invited to join her growing community of spirited women at her online sanctuary, AmberChalus.comHer mission is to help and inspire women to nurture their physical and spiritual health through yoga, holistic nutrition and radical self love. She believes that every woman deserves to feel connected to her body, radiate with confidence and live the life of her dreams – naturally! She is also the co-creator of the 30 Day Wildly Nourished Challenge at wildlyvibrant.ca