Holiday Stress & Self-Care

At this moment Thanksgiving is less than a week away and the holiday season is officially upon us. This is normally a season of increased stress for most people but it can also bring a lot of joy so we tend to handle the stress a little better and it all seems worth it for a fun and festive season.

This year is different though! The things that brought us joy may not be accessible in the middle of a pandemic. I think we all want to be safe and protect our loved ones from illness and suffering, so it is important to do the right thing and give up some of our traditions this season. For those without close families or the many families that have experienced loss this year, this may be a time of deep sadness and further isolation. Our hearts and minds are being taxed a lot more in 2020 and we need to focus on our mental health and well-being now more than ever.

Our mental health affects not only our quality of life but it can damage our physical health too. One very common symptom of...

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10 Songs to Start Your Day With


Music is magical. Hearing a song can transport you back in time to a specific memory, calm you down, amp you up or make you feel warm and fuzzy! Most of us know the power of a good playlist at the gym - I know several people that will forfeit a workout if they forget their headphones. This is why I think finding a motivational song to start your day with can be transformational. I have included my top ten choices below. Each song has a different genre or energy about them in hopes you can find one that will resonate with you. If you have a song that can uplift you and shift you from "waking up on the wrong side of the bed" to being excited for the day to come, please share your secret song in the comments! The songs are linked to Spotify and I have added more songs to the playlist here.
 

1. Happy 

2. Beautiful Day

3. Don't Worry, Be Happy

4. I Got You

5. You Can Get It If You Really Want

6. Walking on Sunshine

7. With My Own Two Hands

8. Feeling Good

9. Lovely Day

...

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Medical Marijuana - Friend or Foe?

I'm not shy about the fact that I use medical marijuana but I'm also not one to scream it from the rooftops either! I did create a medical marijuana journal to help people track what works to help their ailments because I have struggled to find the correct strain for my needs, but other than that I don't share too much about it.... until now.

Last Friday was my birthday and I decided to give up marijuana until at least the end of 2020. This decision came for a small variety of reasons but primarily because I have had one of the hardest months of this health journey and I have turned to marijuana so much that it feels like a really unhealthy coping mechanism. I think it is important to see how my body feels without it and to start turning to healthier coping mechanisms. It is really the only habit I have that I question whether it is healthy, and if it is truly helping me cope and manage my symptoms or if it is limiting my healing ability.

On a good day, I don't want to touch it. I...

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10 Things to Let Go of Today to Help Your Nutrition Journey!

The reason I don't just give my nutrition clients a meal plan to start is because our eating habits have so much to do with our mindset. Your mind is what sabotages your diet, not your body. Handing someone a precise meal plan to follow may work for a short term period but if you really want to make a long term lifestyle change then you have to let go of your limiting beliefs. Reclaiming your freedom from the food police, the demons that keep you in body shame and the never-ending self-attacks requires you to give up those negative mental thought patterns. 

Letting go of the old will allow you to create space for the new, positive and encouraging thoughts! Are you ready to let go of your limiting thoughts and begin to eat without fear, guilt or shame? Getting to that place doesn’t happen when you continue to hold on to habits, beliefs and people who are keeping you down, over and over again into your own worst nightmare of negative patterns.

Here are 10 of the most...

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50 Ingredients to Avoid!!

At this point in the world, I don't believe anyone can live a chemical free lifestyle but I still think it is important to make a large effort to clear out the chemicals you can. I wanted to make you a brief list of what you should really try to cut out when you can but the list became long quite effortlessly. These ingredients are so hard to spell and pronounce that I know looking at a label can be like reading a foreign language, but that is a sign that what you are about to eat is NOT food rather it is a chemical food product.

The reason I say that you can't be truly chemical free is because the FDA has approved a list called GRAS, meaning Generally Recognized As Safe. You can look at the list here https://www.fda.gov/food/food-additives-petitions/food-additive-status-list They have decided that these items can be added to our food without research on the safety repercussions of long term use. In all, there are an estimated 1,000 GRAS substances for which safety decisions were...

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Why balance should not be overlooked!

In my experience, nobody really talks about balance until they are seniors. You would think at some point a senior would warn the younger generation to work on their balance!! Unfortunately they don't, but I am happy to educate you on the importance of balance.

I have had clients come to me after taking major falls from teens to seniors and the aftermath is never pretty. I have seen concussions, brain injuries, broken ankles that needed to be screwed together, dislocated knees and torn tendons. Falling can do major damage that can not only stick with you for a lifetime but can even be deadly.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • One in four Americans aged 65+ falls each year.

  • Every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall; every 19 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall.

  • Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults.

    ...
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8 Natural Remedies for Pain Relief

Some days I feel like it is a blessing, and some days it is a curse but I am allergic to most pain killers. I feel like it is a blessing as I will never have to worry about addiction or deal with the mirage of side effects that go along with taking pain killers. But I'm sure you can understand why it is also a curse! I have dealt with a lot of pain over my lifetime with migraines starting at the age of 7 to polycystic ovaries wreaking havoc in my late teens and twenties to my recent four year journey with illness. I have had to find other ways to deal with my pain and I thought I would share them in case they could help you too.

 

Music

When I was younger, my number one remedy was music. I would find super relaxing music and just start taking slower and deeper breaths while imaging the pain dissipating with every breath. This was before I knew anything about yoga or breathing - it was just this natural intuitive decision. I know this method may sound too simple and you may...

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Foot Health: Treat Your Feet!

Our feet carry us just about everywhere we go. Even if you are driving in the car, you are depending on your right foot to control the gas pedal. A small cut, a banged or ingrown toenail. a bunion, or a blister can completely change our quality of life yet we give our foot health very little attention. I know this won't change based on this one blog post but I would at least like to help you become more aware of your feet.

 

One important reason to pay attention to your feet is because of the kinetic chain. We have five different points along the kinetic chain: the ankle, the knee, the hips, the shoulders, and the head. Every time you take a step, the ankle joint has an affect on every single on of those joints above it. Have you noticed most people don't walk with their feet straight ahead? This generally doesn't start with birth! This can start at a young age when a child replicates how their parents walk but it is not how we were designed. A pronated foot can cause the arch...

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Lemon Ginger "Cheesecake"

nutrition vegan recipe Aug 17, 2020

My dear friend Veronica asked me for a lemon inspired dessert recipe months ago and it has honestly taken me this long to come up with something! Lemon is definitely a wonderful flavor in desserts but because it is also sour, you generally have to add a lot of sugar to make it sweet. Fortunately, in the world of raw vegan desserts there is usually a way to make any traditional dessert idea at least a bit healthier. This recipe truly is healthy though! There is quite a bit of maple syrup but other than that, the remaining ingredients are all very healthy. I know there is only a small amount of turmeric for the coloring but turmeric, ginger, and lemon are all pain relievers and natural anti-inflammatories, and the nuts and coconut oil are healthy fats that are good for your heart and brain.

 

Make the crust in a food processor by combining:

3/4 cups raw almonds

1 medjool date, pitted

1 T coconut oil

Once those ingredients have been processed then add 1 T maple syrup and...

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Strengthen & Stretch: A Very Gentle Workout

I have to be honest, being chronically ill is like living on a roller coaster. My body is continually challenging me and it's difficult to keep the mind balanced when the body is pulling you up and down. Between the body and the mind, it is difficult to be as focused, productive, and consistent as I am used to. These last six weeks have been a really difficult phase but I am finding my way back and feeling a little better these last couple of days.

I tell you this because I have been struggling to find my way to be consistent with The Flexibility Guru. I started a YouTube channel but I have been at a loss on what I can share that would be most helpful. Today I feel like I have discovered at least one focal point for the channel! I am going to be sharing more workouts for people struggling with chronic illness. Now you don't have to be ill to do these workouts - they would be great for seniors, beginners, and self care days too! 

Over the last couple of months I have really...

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