Take a slow, deep breath. Winter is here. A seasonal practice requires you to pay close attention to how the environment shifts and how it influences you. You may need more oils, grounding foods and slow practices in the early winter transition from autumn, whereas more stimulating practices and foods will keep you from feeling stagnant and cold as the winter season deepens.
Everywhere around you, the natural world is withdrawing and embracing a dark season of slumber and dormancy. There is a particular stillness that characterises winter, and with it comes a subtle invitation to redirect our energy.
The winter season holds the perfect antidote to the fast-paced mobility of the summer and autumn. This is a time of rest, reflection, holding space, vision, hibernation, and to withdraw some of your outwardly-focused energy and redirect it inward.
Conversely, the calm, peaceful nature of the winter can also leave us feeling weighed down, stagnant, or uninspired. Every season has the potential to either bolster or encumber your sense of well-being dependent on your constitution. With the dynamic changes of the seasons, it’s important to use presence and self awareness to learn how our bodies are affected by the seasons, times of day, lifestyle factors and different stages of life, this is the key to maintaining that inner balance that shapes our health.
Maybe you’re feeling lethargic, unmotivated, sluggish or slightly depressed? Maybe your lips are dry, your hands and feet are always cold and your appetite has changed? Maybe you’re finding it hard to wake up, retaining more fluid or feeling a stiffness in your muscles and joints?
These are all signs of an internal imbalance that are exacerbated by the dominant elements of the external environment. The dominant natural elements for winter are water, earth and air. This will be reflected in the body by feelings of dryness, coldness, heaviness, slowness and denseness. The simplest way to look at it is like this, in order to counter balance the effects of winter you need to produce heat or from an element perspective fire, think warmth, spice and spark!
This simple guide will explore some general recommendations from some of our TRY ~ BE pillars to put into practice to help you find equilibrium this winter. Then over the course of the season across our channels we will provide more tips, tools and resources to support you to get curious and take autonomy of your wellbeing this winter.
SUPPORTIVE WINTER NOURISHMENT : FOOD
Winter is actually the season when the digestive fire is strongest. The body requires more fuel to stay warm and nourished in the winter months.
Our bodies, therefore, crave a more substantial, nutritive diet at this time of year, and you will likely find yourself eating larger quantities of food.
Some considerations for a supportive winter diet:
- You’ll want to focus on eating warm, cooked, slightly oily, well-spiced foods.
- Drink room temperature, warm, or hot beverages and avoid iced or chilled drinks, if possible. You can increase heat and circulation while encouraging clean and clear respiratory passages by drinking a tea boiled for five minutes with ½ teaspoon each of dried ginger, cinnamon, and clove.
- Hearty, heating vegetables like radishes, cooked spinach, onions, carrots, and other root vegetables are well-received this time of year, as are hot spices like garlic, ginger, black pepper, cayenne, and chilli.
- Cooked grains like oatmeal, cornmeal, barley, tapioca, rice, or kitchari make a terrific breakfast, and lunches and dinners of steamed vegetables, whole wheat breads, and mushy soups are ideal.
- Keep the tastes of salt and sugar to moderation especially if you’re dealing with fluid retention, ideally focus on pungent, bitter and astringent tastes to keep you light.
- Depending on your constitution, you may benefit from a 1-3 day liquid cleanse to clear brain fog and lighten your body. Our TRYBE x FELS KITCHEN CLEANSE involves a 3 day cleanse designed by naturopath / nutritionist Felicia Dekeghel + 3 infrared saunas with us. We tailor other cleanse advice to you specifically. So get in touch with any questions.
SUPPORTIVE WINTER LIFESTYLE PRACTICES:
You’ll want to cultivate a light heart and a sharp sense of purpose this winter in order to counter the cold weather and the seasonal tendency toward melancholy and loneliness.
Invite warmth into your mind, body, and relationships, and create frequent opportunities for playfulness. Try to avoid rushing. Instead, make a concerted effort to embrace a slower, more relaxed pace through the winter months to recharge.
This is a great time to engage in meaningful relationships but balance your connection with others to connection with self; daily quiet time, reflection, and stillness are encouraged. After all, the slow, heavy qualities of the winter months offer a rare opportunity to retreat and check in with ourselves.
MOVEMENT ~ The best times to move are between 6am - 10am or 6pm - 10pm.
Brisk walks: Daily 30 mins of brisk walking helps to keep the body mobile in a gentle way. Reducing stagnation and stress levels. Offer you a great opportunity to soak up some time in nature.
Power flow yoga: Using flowing sequences like Sun Salutation is a great way to increase heat in your body whilst expelling stagnant energy and lubrication muscles and joints. Moving through the sequence to one inhale and exhale and for up to 10 repetitions to really build fire.
Breath of Fire (also called Kapalbhati) is yogic breath technique that cleanses the lungs and sinuses, energizes the body and mind, and helps the body to heal and build strength. Wanting to learn how to? Come to one of our breath work sessions on the deck.
SELF MASSAGE ~
Daily using sesame seed oil, gift yourself a self massage starting at the feet with upward strokes. This helps stimulate lymphatic flow, aids digestion and softens and nourishes your skin. We offer an inhouse add on to your sauna, give it a try next visit.
SAUNA ~ Infrared Saunas are the perfect antidote to the winter climate. The more obvious reason, they heat up the body and counter balance the cool climate, keeping you warm and energised. They are also great for helping you rid the body of fluid build up, loosen muscles and joints, increase circulation to help with cold hands and feet and they will assist in healthy sleep patterns. Commiting to a 2-3 sauna a week ritual will greatly benefit anyone feeling lethargic, sluggish, unmotivated and holding too much fluid or weight.
IN HOUSE MASSAGE ~ Keeping up a consistent massage ritual is a great way to take a preventative approach to your wellbeing, assisting the body in flushing toxins and built up fluids, realigning all limbs, reducing stress and encouraging presence. We recommend booking in house with us to get a monthly massage. We tailor our Equilibrium massage, strokes, smells and focus uniquely to you, depending on your constitution, your current state of well being and the season. As an example of how a massage is tweaked to winter, we use sesame oil as our base oil to warm and ground, our essential oils are blended using energising smells of peppermint, lemon, warming smells of cinnamon and the calming, nurturing smells of lavender. Our strokes are faster and stimulating and hot towels are used to wrap and ground your feet. This would then be tailored further specifically to you and your needs.
Want to dive deeper in understanding your unique constitution and how the TRY~BE tools would benefit you daily or seasonally? Book a consult in house with Co-founder, Ruby, she will use an Ayurvedic analysis tool to get to know you, work out your constitution, you current state of being and then offer guidance on how you could best use our house and the tools in the TRY~BE technique.