Back to Basics
By: Haylie Haase
Fads and yoyo dieting and get thin quick tricks: oh my!
Guys, we need to get back to the basics of health. Our ancient ancestors weren’t worrying about the latest belly wrap or the coolest detox tea. Think about it! They were connected to the earth. Up with the sunrise, down with the sunset, relying on foods from the earth, walking everywhere they went. Now, I’m not suggesting we shuck planes, trains, and automobiles and hop on our nearest farmer’s horse. What I am saying, however, is that our core is with nature, and with that, our health is actually very simple.
This is the first of a series of six blog posts to get us back to the basics of wellness. Yes, I’m sure you’ve heard it all before: “eatcho greens, getcha sleep.” But, as often as you’ve heard it, how consistently have you applied it? I challenge you this week (YES YOU, YES RIGHT NOW), and throughout the rest of this series to adapt these core, basic health remedies and see your life change. Six weeks, six new posts, six new habits to adapt into your life. Start your transformation now!
First and foremost Granger Fitness Fam: y’all need some sleep. And I mean good quality sleep. According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, “sleep plays a critical role in immune function, metabolism, memory, learning, and other vital functions.” This all sounds fancy and important, but the base of it is that your body functions at its highest level on the appropriate amount of sleep. This means you’re less likely to get sick, your metabolism is burning energy how it should, and your mind is sharp. On good sleep, you’re a healthy, fat burning, clear-minded machine.
Okay, so how do we achieve this? Separate time for yourself! Creating a good wind down environment puts your mind and your body in the right space for sleep. This should be a prioritized thirty minutes to an hour before bed. The little excuse gremlin in your head is probably telling you that you can’t possibly make time for that. Let him control you and keep being tired, or grab the dang reigns of your own mind and life and
P R I O R I T I Z E yourself!
In those peaceful thirty to sixty minutes at night, put the phone away, stretch, pray, read, meditate, journal to release your day or to solidify your gratitude in it. Just focus intention on your peace and wellness. This will soon become one of the favorite moments of your day and a portion that you begin to crave as your grounding center.
For me specifically, this came with strict planning and discipline until it became a habit. I have a list of nightly (and morning, daily, and weekly) things that center me and keep me on my wellness path. I made these lists into a wall hanging with my life’s mission statement and bible verse that I need right now as well. We’ll get into a life’s mission statement in our final post in this series, I promise.
Here’s what mine looks like: With sleep music playing, I stretch, do an entry in my gratitude journal, and I pray.
Simple, basic, wildly impactful.
Yes, I have fallen off the train I’ve built for myself, and when that happens I feel the stress, misdirection, and irritation bubble up much quicker in me. This nightly plan you create for yourself may need to be shifted as you find what works for you. You may also find that all the things that bring you peace that you would like to do to settle out of your day before bed, might be too much. My suggestion for that is to assign certain things to the morning—right when you wake up. My prayer, mediation, rehydrating, weighing myself, and morning gratitude are the first things that happen when I roll out of bed in the morning.
As I mentioned above, a half an hour or hour may seem absolutely insane to you right now, but as you fall deeper into this practice you will realize how vital focused peaceful time before bed really is to aid in great sleep. The beginning of your journey may be a simple ten minutes of writing what you’re grateful for in a journal you keep in your nightstand. And that’s okay! Small steps in the right direction are still huge!
This week, develop a plan for yourself to wind down before bed! Feel the results of this intentional rest and come back for next week’s post for your wellness.