Spring has arrived in most of the northern hemisphere! Even though nights (and days!) can still be cold and we might be surprised by some snow or frost, nature has already started the transition to the new season (which always takes some back & forths weather wise ; ) and has moved from the stillness of winter to the energy & growth of spring.
Our bodies have also started to prepare for warmer weather by melting fat (if we eat the right foods, more on that below) and the liver is ready to flush toxins.
This simple cleansing spring morning ritual will support this detox process & energise you for this exciting new season that’s perfect for new beginnings.
#1 Wake up as close to sunrise as you can
The longer you stay in bed after sunrise, the heavier you will feel. After 6 am, we enter the kapha (earth-water) cycle which is the heavy time of the day. Avoid starting your day with a heavy feeling and get up at the crack of dawn.
#2 Brush your teeth, scrape your tongue
Brushing your teeth & scraping your tongue will make sure accumulated toxins in the mouth will be removed before you put any drink or food in your body again.
A (white) coating on the tongue usually indicates some undigested food particles, so if you notice a white layer on the tongue in the morning (sounds gross I know), scrape your tongue each morning, but also a look at your eating pattern:
- are you eating late at night?
- are you eating hard to digest or processed foods?
- are you stressed when you eat which could inhibit proper digestion?
Becoming aware of these habits is the first step to changing them, see what you can do to create healthier eating habits.
#3 Drink warm water (with lemon)
This habit has become well known over the past few years, but still many people start their day with coffee.
While one cup of coffee in the morning, during spring season (when you have a kapha constitution!) is fine, drinking it as the first drink of the day is not so great.
Instead, to stimulate digestion, drink warm water before breakfast and add some lemon to it for an extra boost. I wait a little after I drink my warm water before I have breakfast and do the following two rituals first.
#4 Brush your skin before the shower
Spring is moist, heavy, slow, gooey, stuck and oily. So how do we balance these qualities, that we also might feel in our bodies during this season? We add the opposite qualities.
So instead of an OIL massage in the shower (which you’ve heard me say a million times ; ) we can do a DRY massage with a brush before hopping in the shower. This will stimulate blood flow and release toxins from the skin.
If you have the tendency towards dry skin, you can still do your oil massage after the dry skin brushing.
#5 Exercise vigorously
This slow and heavy season calls for an energetic lift with all we do, so exercises that make us sweat are perfect right now. You don’t have to go crazy if you have a vata or pitta constitution, but kapha can work as hard as they feel like.
Practice upbeat yoga (slightly faster paced sun salutations are great right now), HIIT or a brisk walk with running intervals if kapha is in your dosha.
I usually only have 5-10 minutes for this in the morning, so choose something that gives me energy in just a short amount of time. Do what you can but move!
#6 Breakfast time : )
Breakfast means breaking the fast. So make sure you have had at least 12-14 hours of fasting during the night (your last meal should have been around 8 pm latest and with easy to digest foods).
Some rye toast with apple butter is great this time of the year or try grapefruit with honey, lime and ginger for a real energy boost. If you’re easily cold, try a porridge with amaranth or millet & some cinnamon for example.
Vata & pitta can get away with a slightly more sustainable breakfast, but kaphas should stick to lighter, warming and easy to digest foods.
In general, I try to make my breakfast big enough so that I can get to lunch without snacking.
Now you might think this morning ritual will take forever, but I promise it doesn’t. I do this every morning and it takes me 20 minutes extra next to getting dressed and getting my son ready for the day.
If you feel overwhelmed by all of the rituals, start by adding one of them to your day but do it EVERY DAY. This is key!
Nothing will change overnight so be patient to feel the benefits. But remember that everything you do for your body that’s actually beneficial like these rituals, will have a BIG impact when done consistantly (80% of the time). Once the ritual feels easy and effortless, add the next one.
Let me know in the comments if you have any questions and which ritual you’ll be adding to your spring morning routine!