By Dr. Elaine Ducharme

We made it! The last remnants of snow are gone from my driveway. My husband commented that I definitely seemed happier/more relaxed now that the weather has changed. He has known me for over 50 years. He sees me turning up the thermostat, turning on the fireplace, huddling under afghans , sitting with a heating pad or microwaved wrap on my body for months…while he sat in a tee-shirt. Of course I am happier! I truly do not understand people who love cold weather. But this blog is about life after winter. It exists and it is beautiful. And, although I hate to admit it, it might even be more beautiful because of winter.

Daffodils are popping up in my yard. Trees are budding. Birds are nesting. Life is being renewed. We are emerging from our cocoons. I have joined many others walking during lunch hour. Walking on the week-ends, my husband and I have been able to say hello to neighbors and dogs we have not seen in months. Even eating a lighter and healthier meal seems more doable. Essentially, I have been able to renew my own commitment to a healthier life style.

I would like to issue you a challenge. Can you make or renew your own commitment to a healthier life-style? Can you make your diet a bit healthier? Can you add in 15-20 minutes of exercise 3 times a week?. Can you find a healthy recipe to try and if it is good, share with a friend or all of us? You don’t need to join a gym and commit to an hour of exercise every day. Most people can’t go from 0-100 quickly. They are bound to fail if they set goals that are too lofty. But small changes that last help us get to our loftier goals.

To make this a bit easier, consider getting an app, such as Pacer, that records your daily steps and helps you keep track of what you are eating. Many are free or very inexpensive. It makes a huge difference if you are recording what you eat. It is amazing how many calories we consume when we are not keeping track.

The sunshine is beckoning me to come outdoors. I wish you all a wonderful and very healthy day. And I invite you to share your tips on how you are renewing your o


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