Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Feelings of Bliss Even Without Pizza!

Well, I got through my fast and to my surprise it was so much better than what I had experienced during the last fast I did like this. I had over prepared because of the experience I had before and the truth is other than feeling light headed, I really felt great. Last time I said I would never do this again, but here I am. I made it through and I'm glad I did it and I will do it again, perhaps around the same time next year.
This is not the way to break a fast, though it may seem tempting!

Breaking the fast is just as important as the fast itself. What you eat, when you eat and how much you eat are so important imperative after a fast. The first week or so after is primarily fruits and vegetables and oddly adding foods back in can be somewhat difficult and that blissful feeling during the fast usually subsides once foods are added back in and even if you aren't overeating, which you shouldn't do after a fast, you can experience dips in energy when you add foods back in, but that will dissipate. Not only does it take quite a bit of energy to digest foods, it may be that the fruits and veggies are pushing additional toxins through your body and this can result in energy depletion.

All in all, I feel great, my metabolism is working better than it has in a long time and things in general went much smoother this time. I'm still in the process of adding foods back in to my diet, but I'm nearly back to a normal healthy diet.

Fasting can be a nice break from everything. I know this may sound weird, but it was an oasis at a very stressful time in my life and it was just what I needed. I wouldn't necessarily recommend that someone go on a fast while experiencing high levels of stress, but this had a lot to do with me listening to exactly what my body needed and there isn't really anyone that can know your body any better than you.

I'm feeling good and still aiming for hiking a fourteen-er in the early fall and I'm still in the conditioning phase. Things are progressing and I feel confident I'll be ready by the time early fall rolls around.

I feel like this is the year my health will improve by leaps and bounds and many goals that I've been hanging on to will finally be attainable. Stay tuned!

Monday, May 30, 2016

Day 3 - The Calm Before the Storm

I'm on the third day of my 9 day fast. This is the last day of juice fasting before the 3 day water fast. I'll return to 3 days of juice after the water fast. I'm feeling really good with the exception of the occasional light headed feeling. I suspect the next few days will be a bit different. The last time I did this fast the water fast was the most difficult part, but I am hoping that this time will be different. Each consecutive fast is supposed to get easier. That is my wish for this one and I feel I'm well prepared no matter what direction I head the next few days. My stats will be taken twice a day and reported to my doctor for monitoring. I'm in good hands. I always feel great after a fast no matter how difficult the fast itself is.

Here is a look at the produce for one day of juicing. I cannot believe that I've ingested this many fruits and veggies for the last 3 days.

Produce for day 3 of the 9 day fast
It is tough to fit 3 days worth of produce in the refrigerator for a juice fast.

The only issue I've run into is with the removal of supplements and the histamine intolerance is kept under control with my thyroid medication (Liothyronine). I've had hives the past few days as a result. Ideally with any fast you want to stop all supplements and medications, but sometimes it just isn't possible. I had to take a reduced dose of my medication in order to control the hives.

Once the fast is complete it will be equally as important that I am very careful about how and when foods are added back into my diet... I've heard many a story from others that just couldn't hack the fast and they chose to break the fast with a burger or pizza... poor choice... they ended up paying for it. They felt so sick. This is a bad idea. I can tell when I add normal whole foods back into my diet after a fast those that are more difficult to digest, such as animal protein get added back last. Having this experience helps me to know how brutal it would be if I chose to eat pizza or burgers right away. It pays to be patient and truthfully I love the way I feel after I fast, inside and out, so that is the reward and I want to hang on to that feeling as long as possible, so I am motivated to eat well after a fast.

Cheers! Let me know what your favorite health or wellness activity is. What makes you feel at your best?

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Time for Spring Cleaning

You may or may not know this, but according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, Spring time is the best time to cleanse or detox the liver and in our toxic world, we could all benefit from cleansing our liver. This isn't just beneficial for someone that drinks alcohol. If you take any medication, drink water from the tap, eat conventional foods or simply live in the world that we live in, you will benefit from cleansing your liver. One of the simplest things you can do on a regular basis is to drink roasted dandelion root tea, preferably organic. I learned this from one of my first Naturopathic doctors. Dandelion is extremely beneficial for your liver and drinking tea on a daily basis is simple to do. If you don't like tea, you can typically find dandelion root in capsule form in your local natural foods store. When the dandelions start to bloom, this is a good reminder that it is time to take care of your liver. There are so many other ways to cleanse your liver and some of our livers need more attention than others. If you have a health condition, you likely need a little extra help in this department.

I will be doing a more serious cleanse/fast at the end of May. It is a 9 day fast. The first 3 days are juice, followed by 3 days of water and then another 3 days of juice. There is more to it than that, but this is beneficial for more than just the liver and it will be doctor supervised. This isn't something you should do on your own without supervision. There are other fasts that can be done on your own. Any fast will give your entire digestive system a break so that it can repair itself. I've done this type of fast a couple of years ago and I feel I'm ready to do it again. It is definitely not for a first time faster either. I used to do juice fasts on a regular basis. It is best if you've never fasted before and are thinking of fasting to start with a juice fast. If you have health issues, I highly recommend that you talk with your doctor first before doing a fast. The health benefits from a fast can be huge and it can improve chronic conditions depending on how long the health condition has been there.

Fasts are a matter of personal choice and they aren't for everyone, but if your curious and you've never fasted before, spring time is a great time to fast.  But, if a fast is not for you, there are so many other ways to detox and improve your health. What type of spring cleaning are you doing for your body? 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Have You Checked in with Your Emotions Lately?

I cannot believe that Spring is upon us. Time really does seem to fly. This is such a good reminder of why it is so important to live in the moment because we don't get any of our moments back. I try to do my best to live in the moment, but the mind is a tricky thing. I battle to shut my mind off as I'm sure most of us do. It's that busy-body in your head that always has an opinion or judgement about everything. It gets easier as I discover what my triggers are and how to turn those triggers into a mirror of sorts that tells our very own personal experience in this world. It is not an easy thing to do, but it does get easier with practice. If anyone is confused by what I'm saying, this is based on the teachings of David R Cope. He teaches how to really feel feelings, which is something our minds would like us not to do. I believe that for any sort of healing to be successful, this is an extremely integral piece, but it is not for the faint of heart. It is a way of becoming less emotionally charged and more neutral starting with things as simple as being irritated in rush hour traffic to deep seating dysfuntional family issues. My opinion is that if you are new at this, its best to start with the traffic and work your way up to the family issues. The method I'm referring to is the Healing Heart Method. You can read more about it here: David R Cope

I'm excited about the opportunities that this year holds in store for me and I'm thrilled to say that mostly I feel good, but I certainly know that stress can make my conditions spiral out of control, so with that in mind I will do my best to remain present no matter what this year has in store. I will do this because I know that it will reduce stress and will help me to experience more good days than bad.

What do you do for your emotional well being?

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Spring Chicken


I’ve recently started to condition for climbing a 14-er in the early fall. I haven’t climbed a 14-er since my 20s. I have to admit that I’m a bit nervous, but I know I can do it. I know that in some ways this training will push me to my limits as I’m no Spring chicken, but I also know that that when I reach my goal it will be rewarding in so many ways. More than aches and pains I am most worried about my lung capacity, so I will have to work at increasing my lung capacity over the next several months. The thing that is most amazing about this is that in years past this would not have even been a consideration with my health status. I’m thrilled that I’m able to make this a goal. 

Not only am I looking forward to the climb, but also to Spring, which is just around the corner and it is that time when we crave the newness of Spring and yet how quickly we forget that Winter is what balances out the crazy hectic pace of life. It is a time to rest, relax and repair before life becomes busy and on the go. It is a time to look inward and as that comes to a close, I can honestly say I’ve have accomplished a fair amount of personal and professional growth in the past year.

Do you have health and wellness goals? These goals are important to being and staying well, so here is to your wellness.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Be Well Even in Winter

This is a time of year that the winter blues can set in for some people, which adds to the propensity for respiratory infections and colds/flu this time of year. I wanted to share one of the ways that I help myself to heal faster from acute illness and best of all ward illness off from ever taking a foot hold.

I sit in an infra red sauna about 3 times a week for about 20 minutes. I didn't start out like this, but I've been sitting in a sauna for many years and I've worked up to the time and frequency that I'm currently at. The sauna is not for everyone, but it can be super beneficial for most people. If you suffer from adrenal fatigue, are pregnant or suffer from another chronic illness, the sauna may or may not be for you and you should check with your doctor first. That being said, the sauna is an excellent way to take time for yourself and to assist your body in its detoxification process. The benefits are numerous from there.

A sweet looking sauna located in Canada.

My husband has two saunas in his clinic and I'm fortunate to be able to sit in the sauna just about any time I see fit. You may not have that luxury, but it is possible you might find a spa or clinic near you that may have sauna package and typically the cost is very reasonable. It is such a great way to warm up from a chilly day and we still have several chilly winter days ahead. Here is a link to my husband's blog about the benefits of some sauna time. Treat yourself today. click here

There are other ways to ensure wellness as the winter blues hit. This is a great time of year to put plans in place for mile markers and wellness goals that you'd like to set for the year. I've done this and it is my goal to condition myself to climb a 14er in the fall of this year. The thought climbing a 14er is somewhat intimidating since I haven't hiked a 14er since my 20s, but this is a very doable goal, yet challenging. My focus is set and I know what I have to do to be successful.

Another goal that I've set for myself this year is to cultivate more joy and pleasure in my life. When we experience joy and pleasure, we also naturally receive a boost in what is called Nitric Oxide. This is an important life giving gas, not the toxic kind that is important for cardiovascular health and so much more. By the way, negative thoughts and feelings can reduce your Nitric Oxide levels, so turning those feelings around as quickly as possible is so important to your health. Check out a post by Christine Northrup for more information on this topic. click here

There are many other things you can do to stay well and ward off the winter blues, but these are a few good was to start.

Be well!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Reflecting vs Resolutions

This is a great time of year to reflect on the year. As most of you know I'm not much of a resolutions kind of gal. I've always felt if something needs to change, then change it. I'm not waiting for the new year. That said, I do take this time to see how far I've come on my journey over the past year and I have things in mind that I know I will do to move the journey forward in the coming year. It is a look in the rear view mirror  so to speak and I do try to visualize what I want or hope for for myself, my family and the world around us in the coming year. It has been a year full of big accomplishments in my household and I don't look at myself as an overachiever or perfectionist, but there were big rocks that had to be moved in order to make it to the next phase of my journey and I knew going into this year that I would experience a fair amount of stress though I never lost sight of the goals and I cannot help but feel like it all came together near the end of the year tied up in one big pretty bow. It isn't often I feel that way at the new year... it usually feels like a big mess, so I will savor this one for sure... and yet there were items that were lower on the priority list that will get pushed to next year and I'm really ok with that. Many people experience anxiety or anticipation around the coming year with undue pressure that they put on themselves. This is something I find to be counterproductive and I personally don't set goals for myself that are unrealistic. They sometimes may seem like a bit of a stretch, but not unrealistic by any means.

My Christmas gift to myself is acceptance, not just of myself, but of others and of situations or circumstances. There will always be work to be done, but I feel that acceptance is a great way to be in the moment. My second gift is learning to roll with the punches (This is not a new gift, but one I'm constantly honing). Though I've always been fairly adept at accepting change, I feel I am much more at peace when change takes place now and I feel as though the year in the "rear view" or in retrospect was a big lesson in experiencing peace along with major changes, which makes it soooo much easier to embrace and get on with life. I'm still working through the last exercise from my previous post about how we reflect/project our feelings onto others or onto objects, so I don't have an update other than the continuation has been just as impactful. I feel lighter about life and like I have room for whatever the coming year will bring. This is a good place to be and I'm thankful for that.

I'm proud of my family and friends as I've seen so many of them achieve growth personally and professionally that has been impactful in a positive way in their lives and in mine. They may not realize it, but I want to be the one to acknowledge them.

May the coming year reveal great opportunities as it unravels its seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks and months! I wish you success with all the coming challenges the new year will bring and my hope is that you will be gentle with yourself in this fast paced and sometimes crazy world we live in.  My wish for my readers is for peace, love and joy! Happy New Year!