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Winter Blues

Depressed in Paris....photo © 2006 Toni Birrer | more info (via: Wylio)Some of you may love winter. Love, love, love it. Others… not so much. Even more so, some may suffer from the blues when the change of season sets in. This is often referred to as Seasonal Affective Disorder, ironically known as SAD.  For those of you who just get a little ho-hum when the weather turns to those with a more severe reaction to seasonal changes, here are a few tips to helping improve those winter blues.

Exercise. Yup, put on your workout clothes, your heavy coat and waterproof boots and head to boot camp, small group training, or even outside! Plan your weekend around outdoor activities. Going to destinations for winter sports is fun, but walking, jogging, skating, or cross-country skiing in a neighboring area, away from the crowds and hordes of resorts is a great idea! These activities also offer a good diversion for those who may feel it is important to exercise daily, but constantly fight boredom with their routine.

Learn something new. Take a class. Start a new hobby. Join an indoor swim club or sports team. New activities will encourage your brain to work in new ways.

Socialize. Not the most fun activity when you are feeling blue but it will help lift your spirits.

Get your supplements in!

Fish Oil: not only is this supplement good for your heart, it helps regulate hormones, which is great for menopause, postpartum, and PMS.

Vitamin D:  when you’re stuck inside all day, your body lacks vitamin D that comes from the sun naturally. This vitamin seriously boosts your immune system. (Ever wonder why we get so sick in the winter?) Take a couple 2,000 IU a day of D3 and watch how great you’ll feel.

Vitamin B12: the dots that you place on your tongue and dissolve are better than the pills you swallow. These little pills are fantastic for energy, and will help you avoid that second cup of coffee in the morning.

Music. Studies have found that listening to classical music, paired with exercise, helps to reduce depression in people. So, Pandora some Beethoven and smile.

Make your bed. For some reason, I find this incredibly hard to accomplish. Yet on the days that I do make my bed, it always makes me smile to see my room neat.

This is an easy way to feel accomplished on days you are just feeling overwhelmed and trapped inside. Straighten your sheets, fluff your pillows, stand back and look at what you accomplished. This one also works to help prevent you from going back to bed. Mentally, you’ll feel as is you’ve gotten over one task; now to take on the laundry. Ick.

Eat Seasonally. Many of the vitamins our bodies lack in the winter can be found in foods that are ripe this time of year. Foods that are high in Calcium, Vitamin C, B, D, and A are great this time of year. Stick to apples, squash, onions, potatoes, carrots — basically brightly colored veggies and fruit that you would typically see at a traditional Thanksgiving feast.

Sources: http://www.wisebread.com

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