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Week of March 18th

Hi my Sunny-Sunny-Sunglasses!

So sunny it's a good day for a "Drive-drive-drivey-drive-drive". All my Mo Willem fans would understand the reference. That big star in the sky is making quite an unsubtle debut, like a sizzling tease before next season's album drop. Last week we talked about how to physically and mentally dethaw to get out of our frozen ways and anxious loops that keep us in our hard exteriors.

Right now, with the sun poking out and the energy of the city shifting, we're at the first stages. Removing ourselves from our cramped ice boxes and sitting under running warm water. More than the warmer temperature, which is serving as both a hug and boot to get out of the damn house and do stuff, it's actually the LIGHT. That light that's pouring in through the windows and your feeling on your skin right now, that is EVERYTHING. I'm going down a rabbit hole learning about the benefits of light. Not just turn on a lamp, "Viola...LIGHT!" But the natural stuff from the sky. How the brain registers different types of light, which ones are the healthiest, and how much sway this has on our mental health. Seasonal depression is a real thing that we are all affected by it to a degree, definitely some more than others. The latest podcast I'm listening to breaks down how and why and, more importantly, how to get ahead of it.  

I'll try to be as quick-winded as possible, because even though light speed is fast, the explanation of how light works is not. Basically your mental health, positive moods, ambition, healthy releases of dopamine, depend so much on our circadian clock. Your circadian clock is your sleep-wake cycle and all the physical, mental and behavioral changes you experience in a 24-hour cycle. A healthy circadian clock is dependent on your light-dark ratio and how effective each one is. That balance of being well rested to have full energy or vice versa. More than that, when the sun hits your face, the neurons in the eye signal the circadian clock which is a direct line to mood centers to the brain.

The part that I love though about all this is the circadian clock SUMS photons. It basically cashes in on the light you are exposed to like a piggy bank. It holds it and literally saves it for a rainy day. Even on a cloudy day it is still absorbing, investing, cashing in. Which is great news for us Seattleites! However, the key to "getting rich" is getting as much of this nourishing light as possible. Now, what about those of us that have to work long hours, or the weather truly is miserable most of the year, or where you don't have the time to comfortably be outside for lengths (...which is most of us)??

 Apparently it's not just the duration but the windows in the day where the sun is most effective. Prime times are when the sun is low in the sky, low solar angle light, is the key type of light that turns on all the happy sensors in the middle of the brain. Those times are the early morning light and evening sunset light. Just feeling it through a window is not a relevant wavelength to trigger the good stuff. You should be outside, open air, opening those french doors to a balcony while clutching your steamy coffee like a Nespresso commercial.

At least 10 minutes of exposure is what it takes for magic to set in. So that might mean waking up earlier or parking further from your home or your kid's school, to get in a brisk morning sun exposure. Same for the end of the day. In the long term it is investing in your mental and overall health, in the short term it will help you fall asleep earlier (if you have trouble falling asleep).


Yep- this is when I started to really listen cause I got problems... Big "Z" problems. Hi my name is Celeste and I'm a terrible sleeper. Apparently catching that low skyline, early morning light gives your circadian rhythm a head start on it's full swing range. If you think of a swing set, you don't just push someone on a swing standing close to them in the center. You walk them back and start the arc as high up as possible, giving them a big head start on their momentum. That's what the early light does. Same with the lower level sunset light. This helps finish your full swing, stay awake until bedtime to help give you a deeper sleep throughout the night. When we would travel to different time zones, Noemie's sleep trainer would say take her on a walk at dawn and dusk. This actually helped ALL of our jet lag and we acclimated way faster- now I know why. 


This is just light, imagine what they have to say about DARK! Which by the way is exactly equally important, one depends on the other for that circadian rhythm to feel balanced. I won't get into the details but if you're wanting to learn more, I'll share one of my podcasts links below. If you struggle with seasonal depression or just SLEEP I highly recommend a listen.  


This week let's continue the theme of dethawing, getting toasty in our core to feel light on our toes. Incorporate some fun swingy moves, where pace and momentum can both be playful and intentional. If you need an excuse to be up earlier and cash in some of that early AM golden goodness, my Tuesday 7am classes are a BLAST. It's circuit style and we do not need caffeine to wake up.  I find clients keep forgetting I offer this class if you're trying to fit something in before work. Light is a beautiful powerful thing, so is movement. So waking up to both is my favorite part of my week. I don't know about you but I'm ready to turn my Big "Z" problems into Big "D" energy (you know what I'm talkin' 'BOUT!)!


ALSO ALSO!! Because we need both early morning and late daylight, if you can't make it this coming Friday, every last Friday of the month I'm starting a studio field trip and hang out at Imperfetta (conveniently walking distance from the studio). From 2:30p - 4p. Anyone can join, super relaxed, come anytime before or stay longer. Just a fun way to cap off our month with a well earned shorty pour. 

Here's that podcast on light, dark, and how it affects our sleep and mental health.


Excited to make your bodies sweat, smile, and shine some serious light into your solar powered hearts!!




REMEMBER Registration is open for our Sayulita Retreat in October!! Click below!


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