9 Ways to Make the Most of Your Snow Day.
Mind. Body. Spirit.
There’s no greater feeling than listening to the radio on an icy morning, holding your breath and hearing the name of your school or office read under the list of area closings. With roads unsafe to drive, your gut reaction may be to go straight into couch potato mode, but why would you waste a day gifted to you to realign mentally and physically? Shake off the laziness. Here are nine ways to make the most of your snow day.
Rise and Shine
You have been given the opportunity to get a little more rest than usual, and there’s no doubt you should accept it graciously. However, be careful not to overdo it. While it might feel right at the time, not waking up until midday can really throw off your sleep schedule, disrupting your mental clarity and training capability. Instead, get an extra hour or two and then up and greet the day. Your body will thank you for it.
Although a welcome break, a snow day will undoubtedly be a hiccup in your routine. If you’re not careful, the temptation to munch on unhealthy snacks all day will overtake you. Always be intentional about your food choices, but take advantage of the extra time and supplies you have at your disposal on your day off. The last thing you want is to feel sluggish and weak after a snow day when you had the perfect opportunity to give your body the proper fuel it needs.
Without the time demands of a normal weekday, you have the chance to build your knowledge of things that might normally get pushed aside. Take a few minutes to look through and educate yourself on some of the latest health and wellness tips and training regimens. This will help you from getting into a rut in various parts of your life. Exercising your mind is just as important as your body. Checking out the latest ATA Blogs never hurts either.
Fight the urge to lounge around on the couch all day. Get your heart rate up with some of the cardio workouts you found during your catch up reading. If you have access to a treadmill or elliptical, get in a mile or two. If that sounds too boring, run through your form, practice sparring drills and go through the exercises in ATA Fit. You may drag your feet at first, but you already know how much more clearheaded and positive you’ll feel afterward. Put in the time and you won’t regret it. In fact, you’ll be happy you did.
That part about the importance of expanding your mind wasn’t an excuse line for you to read nonsense articles or watching TV all day. Even if your school or office is closed, chances are you still have work to get done. Spread out and set some very distinct objectives. It’s possible the low-pressure environment of your own home just might get you on a roll, allowing you to not only follow your goals through to completion, but to work ahead, saving you the time and stress later.
Once you achieve your mission, chances are you’ll be excited and ready for a change of scenery. If the weather permits, get out there and enjoy yourself. Make a snowman, shovel the driveway, whatever you want to keep the blood flowing. However, it is important to be careful not to get injured or sick, so as not to compromise your training. Take precautions, dress appropriately and you’ll be fine. The fresh air will do you good and keep you from getting stir crazy.
Now that you can’t feel your nose, it’s time to head back inside. Take a shower to warm up and eat a healthy meal to appease the appetite you worked up outdoors. Then do whatever it is that calms you. Maybe that means you read a motivational book or listen to your favorite music. Spend some time stretching and giving your muscles the time they deserve. Clear your mind and take deep breaths. Make a plan for the next day and go into it with confidence.
Once you have your thoughts together, meditate on the other people who have helped you reach your foals or inspired your ambition. Then reach out to them. Whether it’s by phone, social media, Skype or a trusty handwritten letter, make a connection. You don’t have to pour out your soul in a message. Just let the people who matter to you know that they do. This is a shared world we live in. An individual’s strength and honor are pointless without community.
Go to Bed
You’ve had a long day. If you’ve stayed productive and focused, you’ll be ready to hit the hay. The temptation will be there to stay up later and watch one more episode or read one more chapter, but you know your body needs rest to move forward in training. Just like you started your day with a purpose, you should end it in the same way, knowing your time did not go to waste.
Author: Jess Ardrey | Originally published in Vol. 21 no. 4 of the ATA World Magazine.