I’ve been in a DIY frenzy as of late. As I get more picky about how it is I choose to spend my money, I’m finding some things can be replicated at home when you have the time (which I do) and when you want things done your way. Below are some of the indulgences in which I’ve partaken this week:
Food: Homemade sauerkraut & kimchi
Reading Move Nourish Believe‘s blog has made me re-evaluate the importance of pre- and probiotics in my diet. As I’m prone to digestive issues, it was silly of me to neglect probiotics in my diet in the past few months. If I’m being honest, it was due to my compulsion for eating flavored greek yogurt like dessert that made me stop purchasing the delicacy. Luckily, it’s as easy as pie to make homemade sauerkraut (I used this recipe on MNB’s blog) – all you really need is cabbage and salt!
I also took the time to make homemade kimchi last night using Maangchi’s easy kimchi recipe. I’m so glad I have a fiancé who is into eating all sorts of food as he was the one who first encouraged me to make my own kimchi. Being 100% Korean, I grew up with Korean food at home but never bothered to learn recipes as I figured I could just buy it on my own. Now that I’m older and a wee bit wiser, I’ve come to realize nothing tastes quite like homemade goods. Luckily this recipe produces an astoundingly tasty kimchi – the only limiting factor in its consumption is the spiciness! Thank goodness, right? Otherwise I would finish a jar in a day. Those who can’t tolerate spiciness can look into white kimchi – I associate it as a summertime dish just because that’s when I used to have it at home, but with ingredients like Asian pear, jujubes and chestnuts, it sounds just heavenly.
Beauty: Homemade hair masks
As someone who has been color-treating and heat-styling my hair since 2013, I’m no stranger to the dryness that comes to my hair from such beauty treatments. However, the dryness of winter as well as my attempts to growing my hair out have left it feeling particularly brittle. While I love the Garnier Fructis Damage Eraser Hair Mask I currently use every week, my vein of logic led me down the the belief that fresh ingredients must be better than products with an indefinite shelf-life. As I always have plenty of eggs, olive oil and honey in stock, I made a hair mask earlier this week using these ingredients and my ends still feel moisturized four days later. There are several more homemade hair mask ideas here – I think I’ll be trying out the banana hair mask next week!
Fitness: Online yoga videos
I held a prejudice against yoga when I first got into fitness earlier this year – I viewed it as a frou-frou, “posey” sort of activity that could not possibly lead to weight loss. After all, how could an hour of yoga compare to an hour of cardio? I stumbled upon yoga accidentally this week as I was looking for something nice and easy to do on a day when I wasn’t in the mood to run. I now concede that I didn’t know any better about yoga and all that occurs in the aftermath of consecutive days’ worth of practice as I’ve officially become a yoga convert. I’m surprised to say I choose to spend the majority of this week practicing yoga at home instead of at the treadmill in the gym.
With the plethora of free yoga videos out there on the internet, I think it’s important to find an instructor whose style and personality you like best. If anyone who is new to yoga, this one on beginners yoga for flexibility & relaxation made me realize yoga isn’t all about crazy wild handstands. It can be incredibly soothing to your body, calming and consequently a wonderful (and free!) de-stressor of sorts. Another video on morning yoga for weight loss video makes me feel so much more in-tune with my body’s needs and hunger levels for the rest of the day, I now finally feel like there’s been some light illuminated in the realm of yoga & weight loss.
Practicing yoga has helped me to see just how incredible our body’s capabilities are. Your joints, muscles, lungs, heart and internal organs work continuously and constantly, even when it’s being fed sub-par nutrition and even when there’s enormous physical or mental stress. If anything, 20 minutes of yoga WILL help you feel less stressed. It will encourage you to breathe deeply at least a few breaths instead of the shallow breathing we’re accustomed to all day. All you need is a mat to practice yoga! And I appreciate that I don’t feel famished after half an hour of a yoga session at home which I most certainly would feel if I ran for half an hour. Let just hope I maintain regular yoga practice as nothing without constantly development means much if it’s only a several week fling.