1. Punch it out
Lots of people think of boxing as a way to get rid of stress and aggression. And yes, that can certainly be true! But what I find even more powerful (having dabbled in boxing for over four years) is the confidence in knowing I have more tools than the average person to protect myself with my bare hands, quick feet, and sharp reflexes -- all attributed to the sport.
Even though I don't see myself fighting any time soon (though I have thought about it...), I still get a rush every time I step in the ring for class or treat myself to the occasional one-on-one session. The mix of speed, power, and agility is intoxicating, and there is no better way to kick off a positive can-do attitude in the New Year than by throwing some punches.
Want to know how to start or take your boxing to the next level? Join us in Costa Rica for a special Boxing & the Beach retreat January 25-29! We will be focusing on technique, conditioning, and skills for all levels with Coach Nikki of Work Train Fight... and in true Ketanga spirit we will also be hanging out, surfing, and enjoying local food and drink!
2. Stop mid (Netflix) binge
Somehow the concept of binging has become common and even 'cool' when in reference to a TV series. What!? I mean, I love my watch-a-thons (more PC?), but I'm not too keen on the thought that a couch and TV set have utter control on my life and productivity.
Before you take personal offense and think this is all about cleansing yourself from Netflix completely, think again. Having down time and zoning out to rest your mind is a good thing! But like most indulgences, balance is key. So what am I saying here?
Give yourself permission to watch an episode or two (or three) of the only Shonda series you haven't seen yet, but give yourself a set limit and peel those eyes off the screen to make way for something - anything - else. Just like waking up early or ripping off a bandaid, at first it will suck, but then you'll be much better off for it! And if you can say NO to Netflix, you can pretty much do anything.
3. Find your flow
We've all heard of the winter blues, and likely felt them as well. It's no joke that the dark, cold winter can have an effect on our mood, body, and even health. But when we make an effort to bundle up and get things done, we truly feel more accomplished and are even more grateful for that fuzzy blanket gifted by Crazy Auntie over the holidays. So how to find peace and motivation to push through the coldest days? Yoga... for real!
There are so many types of yoga, and when you find what works for you, it can make a huge difference on your attitude, physical and mental strength, and mobility- especially during the freezing time of year when I don't know about you, but I feel like my whole body stiffens up. As someone who has always liked high-intensity fitness styles, I was most attracted to vinyasa / power yoga because of its combo of strengthening, stretching, and stability benefits.
If you're looking to take your yoga to the next level, or to practice in the warmth (and I'm not talking about hot yoga), I'd suggest looking into our Power & Empower retreat in Costa Rica, January 28 - February 1. What makes this such an exciting program is that the yoga is a power/vinyasa flow which is great for yoga and HIIT enthusiasts. Plus, there will also be higher-intensity Pilates-style classes to target our bodies in a completely different way. And when we're not on the mat, we'll be surfing, biking, and relaxing on the beautiful beach!
4. Prep for meal prep
When asked in an informal survey about meal prepping habits, the overwhelming reason why most of my subjects don't prep is because they simply don't know where to begin. Trying to figure out what to eat for dinner after a long day of work is challenging enough, but planning for the whole week? Yup, it can definitely be a bit intimidating. So our tip for feeling empowered to cook and eat healthier in the New Year is to prep for meal prepping.
This step goes before grocery shopping, before menu planning. We're talking basics here, like making the kitchen look like a place where you'd like to spend time (de-clutter, keep the counters clear of mail and packages), and ensuring you have all of the supplies you need (tupperware, tupperware, tupperware... and spices!). The meal prep guru herself, Alyssa Gagarin suggests, "picking up clear glass containers to store healthy snacks like nuts and dried fruit, so that [you're] more enticed to reach for a healthy option. Plus, they always look beautiful when displayed like that!"
To learn more about meal prepping from the unofficial meal prep guru, Alyssa Gagarin, check out the upcoming Fitness, Food & Fun retreat where she will walk through tips, tricks, easy and healthy recipes, all in beautiful Costa Rica!
5. Splurge on what you WANT to wear (to the gym)
When laundry day comes around and all I have in my closet to work out in are old t shirts and the black leggings I don't like as much as all the other black leggings, I will admit, I am often less likely to go to the gym - and I love the gym!
So over the holidays I did two things that have already affected my drive to go to the gym and my performance while there. 1) I de-cluttered my closet and donated/recycled all those 'meh' gym clothes that seem to be the last ones picked. 2) I treated myself to some new workout tops and sneakers (ok, my Grandma bought me the sneaks). Now, when I go to pick out clothes for the gym, I like all my options, and I'm excited to wear them!
Plus, having less clutter and more space in my small NYC apartment actually makes me more productive and calm when I work from home! Try it out, and let me know if these tips or any others listed above work for you!
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