Opt Outside

And here we are...already at the close of March and solidly footed in a fresh, new season. For me, this signals a perfect time for reflection and review of the whirlwind that was first quarter, what my new year goals were, what was accomplished...what should be reassessed. It is a prime opportunity for renewal.

Winter tends to overstay its welcome in many parts of the world, something I recall (now) with amusement, from my times spent in upstate New York and the Pacific Northwest. It can be an absurdity to even consider venturing outside. As Spring eventually settles in for good, however, there is every opportunity to disconnect from the virtual world for a while and reconnect with yourself and the outside one. It is a feast for the senses, along with gifting your physical and mental well-being.  It elevates the spirit, opens the lungs, and clears the mind. All good foundations for positive thinking and problem solving.

There is a saying that I live by and that is, "In running I find solutions, so the solution is running". Not everyone is a runner, nor does one need to be. The message is that the harmonious collaboration of your physical, mental, spiritual self along with nature (which you are an extension of, by the way) can do astounding things. Walking, hiking, even gardening or journaling gets the job done. When I have a struggle or consternation, I push myself out the door. Disappointments? Heartache? Frustration?  I opt outside.

As far as I'm concerned, any time is the right time to connect with your inner self, get outside and get moving. We all have read about the benefits of morning wellness routines, which set the stage for the rest of the day. While I believe this to be absolutely 100% true, it is a chronic struggle of mine, being a conditioned "night owl". Mornings have and always will be, my biggest challenge. Nonetheless, there are a couple of things that ensure an easier transition from dreamland to sunrise. The first, is honoring a realistic and customized sleep routine, which I touched upon in my Winter post. The other, naturally, is proper fuel. 

 

Yes, breakfast is absolutely essential. Don't skip it. Here, I've shared a few of my favorite morning energy boosters, which are incredibly satisfying and easy to grab, "on-the-go". 

What is more motivating than food? Coffee, perhaps? How about food and coffee? Yes, please:

The sky is the limit on creativity when preparing these energy protein bites and they are really a perfect boost for any time of day:

As with granola. It can also be astoundingly healthy when you make it yourself. Here, I picked my a few of my favorite fruit, nuts, seeds and spices to create a great cereal on its own, or as a topping to transform my energy protein bites into an out-of-this-world breakfast bar:

How will you renew yourself and your spirit?​ Remember, it's all connected. We are all connected to nature. Even after my run, I allow myself a few extra minutes  (sometimes up to an extra mile) for myself to walk home, be aware of my surroundings, breathe, and really take in the positive rewards of activity, prior to rushing off to the next obligation. It's really important. Spring has been working hard for you, so take a moment to delight in all of its gifts, while you're off unlocking all of those amazing discoveries waiting inside of you.

Enjoy!