Before going hiking in Golden Gate State Park yesterday, on the first day of Autumn, I noticed the weather report in the Visitor's Center: Snow predicted above 8,000 feet after midnight... Welcome to fall in Colorado! We woke up to a drizzle with much cooler temperatures today and a strong breeze.
Windy and Cold - classic aspects of the VATA DOSHA. As we transition into the fall season, the evenings cool down, the nights are colder, and in Boulder, at least, the winds seem to pick up, again... Time to add a few nourishing soups to the diet, made with fresh, organic vegetables. Time to modify the oils in our diet, and maybe add a little more to our food. Adding more Ghee and/or Olive Oil to our diet helps calm and lubricate. Now is a great time to switch from Coconut to Sunflower Oil on the skin, and possibly even some Sesame Oil on the bottoms of the feet before bedtime to calm the nervous system. The wind and the weather at this time of year can easily dry us out, so in addition to adding in more oil to the diet and on the skin, be sure to drink lots of clear water in between meals. Room temperature or even warm water is easier on the body. Try it, you'll like it!
Feeling anxious? This common Vata complaint is best supported through calming and centering practices that include alternate nostril breathing (click here for details) as well as a grounding yoga practice. Try some restorative postures with a block or bolster, allowing the energy of your body to anchor down toward the earth. Spend time in postures that target the large intestine and colon, the seat of the Vata Dosha. Apanasana (knees to chest), Uttanasana (standing forward bend), Bhujangasana (cobra pose) and Setu Bandha Sarvangasana with a block under the sacrum (Supported Bridge Pose) provide great opportunities to root down and gently massage the abdominal area, helping to calm the restlessness inherent in this season.
Taking a few minutes out of the day to nourish with oils, breathing practices and/or gentle movement can help us transition through the fall season gracefully. Email me with any questions or for advice on developing a personal practice: firstname.lastname@example.org.