ten self-care ideas for the fall season

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I meant to have this post go up yesterday for Wellness Wednesday, but didn’t have it done in time so here it is today, instead! One thing I really love to do is embrace the seasons when it comes to everything from food to skincare to fun activities and, of course, self-care.

Since fall is the time of year when we try to embrace all things cozy, it really is the perfect season for self-care. So, here are ten ways to incorporate some fall vibes into your self-care routine.

go for a walk with a cup of coffee or tea
Going out in the morning or evening for a walk doesn’t have to be the fast-paced, fitness armband scenario we often think of. Try starting or ending your day with a leisurely walk around your neighborhood and take a warm drink with you to make it even more of a treat.

plan a nature hike with a group of friends
I have such vivid memories of a specific fall hike that I took with my friend Ashley in Kentucky a few years ago. We went during the peak of fall foliage, so these golden leaves were constantly falling all around us and it was completely magical. Gather some friends and find a good hiking spot that’s challenging enough to be a workout but also beautiful enough for forest bathing.

make or buy a batch of beauty products with fall ingredients
Treat yourself to some seasonal beauty products like pumpkin face masks, apple cider vinegar hair rinses, and cinnamon bun scented bubble baths. Another great pick is the Eminence Cinnamon Paprika body lotion.

cook a nourishing meal
There’s something about a warm, fall meal that just feels so nourishing. Go all out with a wholesome meal and be sure to incorporate seasonal foods like pears, apples, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, potatoes, brussels sprouts, winter squash, persimmons, green beans, and fennel.

diffuse a cozy essential oil blend
Swap your summer scents for fall essential oils like cinnamon, clove, ginger, bergamot, and so on. Try a couple of blends, too, like spiced cider, pumpkin pie, and spicy chai.

start taking a vitamin d supplement
As the weather gets cooler and the sun isn’t out as long, it’s important to supplement your Vitamin D if needed. Lack of Vitamin D can result in depression, fatigue, illness, hair loss, and more, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting it.

switch to a heavier moisturizer
To protect your skin from drying out in the cold air, make the switch from a light, summer moisturizer to a thicker cream like EltaMD’s AM Therapy Moisturizer or Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrate.

incorporate seasonal ingredients into your meals
This goes hand-in-hand with what I said above about cooking a nourishing meal. When planning your weekly meals, build them around ingredients like brussels sprouts, apples, beetroot, quince, pomegranate, and butternut squash.

try abhyanga massage
Abhyanga is an ayurvedic massage technique using warm oil. Yes, this is probably easier to have done at the spa, but you can definitely do it at home, too! Not only does this feel amazing, but it also has a ton of great health benefits. Warm up an oil well-suited for your dosha (sesame oil for Vata, coconut or sunflower oil for Pitta, and almond or olive oil for Kapha), get in an empty tub and go for it.

create a vision board
Since fall is a season with noticeable change, I think it’s a great time to start or update your vision board. I like to write down a few area of focus like health + wellness, relationships, work, home, and adventure. Then, I jot down what I want those areas to look like before going onto Pinterest to find representative images. You can either print these out and then paste them on a board, or better yet, use Canva to create a clean vision board that you can print out all at once. What I love to do with my vision board is use it as a focus point during my morning meditation.

What are your favorite self-care practices for fall?

wellness wednesday: the hot-cold shower

Happy Wellness Wednesday! I have a quick tip today that will help increase blood circulation, ease muscle pain, improve the quality of your hair and skin, and just make you feel really clean and energized. It sounds like a miracle, no? It's one of my favorite things---the hot-cold shower. 

You take your shower like normal, but then at the end spend 2-4 minutes going through this process. Make the water as hot as you can take (without it being painful) for 30 seconds, then as cold as you can take for 30 seconds. Repeat this as many times as you'd like, making sure to always end on cold. 

My biggest tip is that when you're in the cold cycle, you should ensure that the cold water is hitting all of the major pulse points so that your body is cooling down fast. This means under your arms, neck, wrists, and inner thighs.

Let me know if you try this one out! I swear, this makes me feel so awake and clean and truly does help when I have muscle tension the day after a workout. Not to mention, cold water is so good for your skin and hair.

what i ate wednesday

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Happy Wednesday! My intention lately has been to eat more protein, specifically 20g of protein four times a day. So, here's what I ate on a random day this month.

Breakfast: I started the day with overnight oats I had prepped the night before. I've become quite the master of overnight oats, having created many different variations I love. Today, I had what I like to call my 'chai banana bread' flavor. It's oats, almond milk, chia seeds, half of a mashed banana, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and cardamom. I topped the oats with sliced banana.

After arriving at the office, I drank a protein smoothie that I made with half a frozen banana, cherries, pineapple, coconut, almond milk, MCT oil and chocolate egg white protein powder. Like I said above, my goal is to have four meals per day that consist of 20g of protein and this one contains 23g in the protein powder alone. Sometimes, I prefer to just mix the powder with almond milk for an easy chocolate shake, but today I made it a little special.

Lunch: For lunch, I had two really good stuffed and roasted bell peppers. They're stuffed with a mixture containing vegan 'ground beef', mung beans, brown rice, tomato sauce, turmeric, and other spices. I ate this for dinner the night before and they were great warm, but also great cold as leftovers. After roasting them, the top of the filling gets crunchy and it tastes kind of like a summer version of Thanksgiving stuffing. 

Along with the bell peppers, I had a few blue corn tortilla chips and an amazing homemade fruit salad. I chopped up and added any fruit I could find at home and ended up with apples, tangerines, blueberries, watermelon, strawberries, and grapes topped with a lime-agave dressing and hemp seeds. 

Later in the day when I needed a pick-me-up, I had a Sambazon energy superfood blend with acai, yerba mate, and guarana. 

Dinner: As usual, I wasn't super hungry around dinner time so I had a really simple bowl of ramen and for dessert, some apple slices covered in almond butter, granola, and melted chocolate. SO good!

wellness wednesday: the summer wellness guide

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Happy Independence Day! Now that it's July, we're officially in the second half of the year and summer is upon us. For me, summer is the ultimate season for wellness. It's a time when we are all getting out more to experience nature and hopefully engaging in self-care. There are so many great things you can do for yourself in the summer months, so here's my little guide.

MIND
Unplug
This summer is a great time to unplug from phones, computers, and TV. There's no set parameters for unplugging, it's all up to how you feel. To start small, try leaving your phone turned off in a drawer for a few hours. You may end up leaving it off for a whole day or the entire weekend. Use the time you would have spent mindlessly scrolling to try a new creative or physical hobby, or just take a nap!

Engage in more culture
Use the summer season to experience some new books, art, movies, music, or performing arts. Something I like to do is write down a few subjects that I'd like to learn more about. It could be anything: astrology, European history, creative writing, whatever. Then, I like to choose culture that will help me learn more about those things. 

Check in on your goals
June marks the middle of the year, which means the summer is a natural time to check in on your annual goals, benchmark where you're at, and re-evaluate for the rest of the year. Take time to reflect on the first half of the year and celebrate all of the (big or little) things you've accomplished.

BODY
Food + Drink
Eating fresh, in-season, and cooling foods during the summer is a must. If you can get it at the farmer's market, that's the way to go. In ayurveda, summer is the Pitta season (my personal dosha), which means heat and dryness. You'll want to balance this out with light, cooling foods like salads, fresh fruit (especially watermelon), mint, lime, coconut, cucumbers, basil, and sweet dairy products like yogurt and ice-cream.

Beauty
The biggest, most obvious priority is sun protection so don't forget your SPF! But here are some other beauty-related things you should try during the summer. Try massaging your body with cooling coconut oil before your shower. Spritz your face with rose water. Exfoliate your skin with sugar and salt scrubs. Add a salt spray to your hair routine. Exfoliate your scalp with a salt scrub.

Exercise
Working out too hard in the heat isn't good, so focus on fun activities like swimming, hiking, and bike riding instead. Yoga is a great addition to a summer workout routine and there are even practices specific to the season.

SOUL
Clear negative energy
Midsummer is a great time to clear any negative energy built up in the first half of the year. Many people use sage, but I recommend cleansing your space by burning palo santo instead. It cleanses only negative energy and has a sweet scent that makes it a wonderful part of your meditation ritual.

Summer scents
Updating your scent collection is an easy way to embrace the new season and to feel fully entrenched in the current state of things. Switch out your hand soaps, candles, room sprays, and even personal fragrance for scents like tomato leaf, citrus, fresh florals, and salt. 

Grounded in nature
I think we all spend more time outdoors in the summer, but its important to be intentional about it. Spending intentional time in nature is grounding for the soul and tends to help you get more sleep, as well. Take a barefoot walk in the grass or sand, really take in the smells and senses of your natural surroundings, and simply engage yourself in nature. 

what i ate wednesday

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Happy Wednesday! Today is another 'what I ate' day, so let's get straight into what I ate all day yesterday.

For breakfast, I had a fruit bowl consisting of sliced watermelon, strawberries, and bananas topped with a bit of honey and unsweetened coconut flakes. I also had a piece of sprouted toast and sliced avocado. This is one of my favorite easy and healthy breakfasts to have during the week.

Lunch was a vegan BLT sandwich using my dad's recipe for coconut bacon. I just toasted some whole grain bread and topped it with Vegenaise, romaine lettuce, tomato, and the coconut bacon. With that, I had a peach-pear LaCroix and a homemade protein cookie.

For dinner, we had tofu dressed with Trader Joe's soyaki sauce, wild rice, and broccoli. Later that night, I had some popcorn with nutritional yeast and more LaCroix.

I swear, I pick the most boring days to document what I eat! One of these days, I'll pick a fun day. Haha!