I really try not to be one of those people who constantly complains about the weather. Especially in a year when I have experienced true sorrow and loss in the wake of my mother’s death, I should know better than to lament over a snowstorm or two. However, I’m just going to say it — this winter in New York City was brutal. It was just one of those unrelenting winters, that seemed to be never-ending, and quite clearly got into all of our bones and under all of our skin.
As mundane a subject as it may seem, there is a reason people always talk about the weather. It is so much a part of our lives and how we live. It sets the tone for our days, our activities, our emotional states, and even our health. And I think at times we forget to give the weather as much credit as it is due — feeling guilty when we complain about it, or worrying that we have nothing more interesting to speak about when we revert to the seven-day forecast in conversation. However, talking about the weather is just talking about our common human experience. So the next time you gravitate toward the temperature in a conversation, give yourself a break — you are neither being shallow, nor uninteresting.
Equally, it is not to be underestimated the effect the weather actually has on us. I am sure we have all felt similar pangs of guilt about our state of being over the last few freezing months — hibernating inside, loading on comfort foods, feeling unusually fatigued, having just a little less motivation than usual, and just feeling all around crabby and low in energy. However, why do we feel guilty? These are all perfectly normal behaviors and feelings during such a long and cold winter. So go ahead, I am giving you the permission right now — let go of the guilt.
Now that we are rid of that, and as we can feel spring finally showing its face, it’s finally time to dust off our emotional and physical layers (I mean your winter coats, not your waist lines!), and start feeling anew again. Spring is the perfect time for new beginnings. Whether you are restating the vows you made to yourself on January 1st, setting new goals, or just knowing you are going to have a renewed sense of appreciation for something as simple as feeling the warmth of sunshine on your skin — this is the perfect time of year to renew, reset, and rejuvenate.
As I begin to come out of one of the darkest and coldest winters in New York and in my life, I can already feel a new sense of lightness and excitement again. And as I clean out my closets of my wooly coats and sweaters, to make room for flowy dresses in floral prints, I am doing the same with my mind and body — cleaning out my winter diet for lighter, fresher foods; catching that extra mile in the late evening warm light; and taking The Sweat Life to new heights and new directions with Sweat It Forward and other exciting developments to come!
I also offer you a week of content to help inspire you to start anew this spring. Peloton Cycle head coach Lisa Niren offers 5 steps to refresh our goals; holistic nutritionist Tara Milhem talks about the benefits of juicing vs. cleansing; soundproofing guru Alan Fierstein explains how he gives our favorite NYC fitness studios a new sound to keep the fitness party going (and avoid noise complaints!); and last but not least — powerhouse media personality and Emmy winning writer for The Mindy Project, Tracey Wigfield sheds some light on how she found the confidence she was looking for in her TV writing career.
As you head into this week, make a list of three things you want to clean out and clean up in your life!
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