Living the Life You Love While Being Healthy

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I just recently found out that a beautiful spark of life and dear friend of mine has been taken off cancer treatment and put on Hospice.  She was also my first Health Coaching client several years ago when I first graduated from school.  She’s an amazing person who has had a dramatic impact on my life and has helped me grow tremendously as a person.  So, while I am supposed to be blogging about sugar this week, I decided to pause a moment and remind everyone that our lives are not about always being the best and healthiest.  We have to enjoy them as well.  Creating amazing health really is about feeling better so we can enjoy our lives more.

This is why the Wheel of Life exercise is so important.  It’s so easy to get caught up in our health, professional, or educational goals that we forget to stop and smell the roses.  Taking a comprehensive look at our lives, all areas of them, we can determine where we need to put forth more effort.

In addition to that, this effort we are putting forth, needs to be something that we enjoy.  Don’t eat food you hate “because it’s healthy”.  Don’t do a workout you hate because you get the best results.  You’ll hear me say all the time that I love to hate Focus T25 because it pushes me and I use several swear words throughout the program because it’s really hard.  I; however, love how I feel after accomplishing it.  So the short term discomfort gives me long term gains and makes my life better.  When deciding where to put your efforts, you need to evaluate the difficult things this way.  Are they going to add value to your life?  Will you eventually be able to find more joy?

Sometimes, just sometimes, you also get to just do things you enjoy regardless of your goals.  Actually, you can do this whenever.  I love coffee, with lots of cream and sugar.  I don’t over do it because too much sugar or too much caffeine makes me feel yucky afterwards.  That one cup a day I do enjoy, though, I thoroughly enjoy.  I love the way it tastes, I love the little pick me up it gives me, I love the camaraderie I have with others who are also addicted to coffee.

So while you are doing amazing things while being focused on your goals, don’t forget to live the life you love as well.  Find ways to accomplish your goals while enjoying what you’re doing.

Sugar is Destroying Your Body

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I love my cup of coffee in the morning.  I also love my coffee with cream and sugar.  A lot.  I actually like my cream and sugar with a little coffee.  I’ve slowly added more coffee so I can put just a little cream and a little sugar and it still tastes good but it was a slow and gradual process and I never quite made it to being able to drink my coffee black.  That’s part of my 20% “soul food”.

Why am I so concerned with taking sugar out of my diet?  So very many reasons.

The most known issue is the high calorie content with little to no nutritional content.  It’s empty calories and if you’re working on being healthier and losing weight sugar is working against you.

There is also a link between sugar and depression.  This is huge because stress eating, especially high sugar content foods, is so much worse when suffering from depression.  It’s a vicious cycle that can have devastating effects.

It can create non-alcohol fatty liver disease.

Decreases insulin sensitivity.

Makes potentially harmful changes in the heart.

There is a link to poor memory and learning disabilities with high sugar consumption.

Increased risk for Type 2 Diabetes which could lead to decrease kidney function and then kidney disease.

Sugar consumption can also play a role in sexual dysfunction.

Sugar increases inflammation and can increase joint pain.

Honestly, the list goes on and on.  There isn’t a list of benefits.  The increased energy you get from sugar comes at a high cost and you can get your energy levels from much better sources.

Why do we crave sugar so intensely?  It’s hard wired into our brains.  Back in the day (a long long time ago) our ancestors needed the natural sugars from fruits to have enough energy to perform daily functions of surviving the wild and reproducing to propagate the human race.  Our bodies adapted to make us seek out sweet foods.  A lot has changed since then and we have to fight against our natural sugar cravings now.  Thankfully, there are processes to put into place that will help and make healthy living in today’s world easier.

I have a 1 hour online Sugar Detox workshop that is free to attend.  Check out my events section on my Facebook page.

What’s a Health Coach?

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So you’ve heard about coaches.  There’s life coaches, business coaches, legal coaches, health coaches, and many other coaches.  Basically anything that you could need help for, there’s a coach for.  Why?  What’s so special about having a coach.  Why are people willing to spend money to have some one “coach” them?

It’s simple really: life isn’t simple, having someone in your corner helping to guide you and keep you on track frees up your mind and reduces stress.  It helps give you your life back.  If you have a question, ask your coach.  If you’re feeling like you just “can’t” anymore, call your coach.  Lost on where to go, don’t even know which questions you should be asking?  Hire a coach.

What’s special about health coaches?  Health coaches in particular are there to help you balance your life, reach your goals, and take care of your body so that you’re able to accomplish what you set out to do.  Everyone’s circumstances are different, it’s hard to get what you need from a book when it comes to your health.  Even if you don’t have a “disease” you had an upbringing that created tendencies that you have to work with and possibly change.  Your coach can help guide you there.

Why am I special?  🙂

I primarily work with people who have around 100 lbs or more to lose.  Not only have I personally lost 100 lbs, but I’ve also gained it back and lost most of it and gained it back again, and again, and again.  I personally understand the struggle inside and out of depression, gaining weight while pregnant or after having a baby, of drug addiction, of living in an abusive relationship and using food to cope, and the physical pain that comes with carrying so much weight and the emotional pain of seeing yourself in the mirror every day.  I understand that everyone has come from a different background, that we all have different goals, but that with 100 lbs or more to lose, we are all going to have some significant common ground.

You can expect in a program with me that we will start where you are at right now.  That means that I’m not going to jump you into some pre-made mold of where I think you should be or are capable of being.  Determining where you are is always our first objective.  Next, we’re only going to work on where you want to go.  Again, there is no one size fits all mold of what health should look like for everyone.  Yes, I know that contradicts most likely every doctor you’ve ever talked to.  It’s the truth though.  We all have some things we can overcome, others we just need to accept, and different ideas of what “good” feels like.  So our second objective is to figure out where you want to go.  Then we’ll create a plan with small but significant steps to get you from where you are to where you want to be naturally.  That means that how we progress is determined by what will actually work for YOU.  Again, no pre-made program that I use for everyone.  What motivates you might not motivate anyone else.  I won’t know all this until we figure out how you work.  What are your intrinsic and external motivation factors?  What are your triggers?  What are some things you are not willing to give up? (Don’t even think of telling me I can’t have my cup of coffee in the morning!)  So, in essence, every step is determined by you.  I’ll educate, guide, and help motivate, but you are the one who will be making progress, you are the one who will have a better understand of yourself, and you are the one who becomes the person you’ve always wanted to be.  Since it all stems from you, it will last.  They are YOUR changes, YOUR new habits, YOUR new life!

I can’t wait to work with you!  Visit me on Facebook and send me a message to set up your no cost one hour health coaching session.  Find out for yourself with no obligation what a difference it can make having a coach in your corner!

Joy

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Finding Joy for some is the meaning of life.  And what greater meaning would there be?!  The ability to find joy in every day tasks, obligations, and challenges can completely change someone’s life.

What joy is there to be found in doing laundry? (My personal Hell I’m constantly in with four children to take care of.)  If you actually sit down and are mindful about it, there’s quite a bit.  Look at how the clothes are worn.  Your kids are active and having fun, you have a job that keeps you busy and helps take care of you financially.  Your partner enjoys his hobbies.  Finding one of your favorite shirts reminds you of all the fun times you’ve had wearing it.  Every article of clothing tells a story about how you obtained it, the person’s life who wears it, and is proof that you have the ability to at least clothe yourself and your loved ones.  Plus, what feels better than finally getting to the bottom of the clean clothes basket and having everything put away?!

There are many things that finding joy will be near impossible for, at the very least you can try to find peace in your heart for those situations and look for comfort in other ways.

So when evaluating Joy, keep in mind it’s not just about doing things that bring you joy, but also the ability of finding joy in every day things.  Life is as amazing as you perceive it to be.  If you struggle with finding joy or making time to do things that bring you joy, it’s time to keep a Time Journal.  Track your habits in a time calendar and see where all your time goes.  What can you delegate out?  What can you stop doing all together?  Where can you multitask? We all have the same 24 hours in a day, it’s important to make them count and find joy all throughout the day, every day.

Want to know more about doing a Time Journal?  Message me and set up a free one hour coaching session!  Let’s set it up and help you create the life you want!

Circle of Life     Spirituality     Relationships     Career     Education     Finances     Nutrition

Physical Activity     Social Life     Home Environment     Creativity     Health     Joy

Nutrition

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You would think with me being a Health Coach that I mostly talked about nutrition; however, nutrition is pretty straight forward and is pretty simple once you understand some simple aspects.

First: the food and drinks you consume should help you feel better.  If something makes you feel sluggish, angry, tired, etc. then you should not be consuming it no matter how “healthy” everyone says it is.  Most likely you have an allergy or a sensitivity.

Second: nutrition isn’t complicated.  I promise.  You have your three Macro nutrients: protein, carbohydrates, and fats.  Then you have your Micro nutrients: all your vitamins and minerals.  Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to eat a balanced combination of foods that provide your recommended intake of your macros and micros.  It’s not super important that you hit your numbers every day (if you’re keen on tracking these things) as long as you average them throughout a relatively short time span.  Here’s a visual to help:

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Looking at this plate you see that for most people vegetables and whole grains need to make up the majority of what you eat.  Keep in mind that protein isn’t just meats.  Here is an amazing site that thoroughly explains non meat sources of protein.  I’m not going to tell you that you shouldn’t eat meat, just offering up options.  Variety is the spice of life and all that jazz.  Plus, getting protein from plant sources also increases your vitamins and minerals you consume because plants have more nutrition to offer than animals.  You’ll also notice that it includes fats and oils.  These can be a dipping sauce or dressing for veggies as well as whole foods.  It’s best to make the sauces yourself so they don’t have all the added bad ingredients we’re trying to avoid.  There are quite a few foods that can be included in fats and oils such as avocados, fish, walnuts, and flax seed.  Notice the drink isn’t milk, it’s water.  Staying hydrated is very very important for your body to function properly.  It’ll also help your body to digest your food properly and for your cells to assimilate the nutrients.  How much water should you be drinking?  Here are two articles that help explain the answer to that (I’ll also be answering that question in another post on another day). 1 2  The last thing I want you to notice is the wording along the edge of the plate.  That is a reminder that being healthy is more than what you consume.  The Circle of Life is very important to your health and to make the biggest impact you have to have balance in all areas.

No where on that plate is there highly refined and processed food.  That being said, I follow the 80/20 rule.  Do your best (not perfection) 80 % of the time.  Then 20 % of the time allow some “soul food”.  Life is meant to be enjoyed (remember Joy is one of the sections in the Circle of Life).  I have a cup of coffee every day.  The coffee isn’t bad, the creamer that has quite a bit of sugar in it is.  I also enjoy a single dark chocolate Dove candy every day (my “Daily Dove”).  Lastly, I eat breakfast at Denny’s with my family on Sunday mornings.  It’s a ritual we enjoy together and not one I’m going to be changing.  I don’t worry about what I eat Sunday mornings because why ruin my 20% time by stressing about what’s the healthiest choice?

So when evaluating your nutrition you need to ask yourself: Am I eating foods that make me feel good physically?  Am I consuming a variety of non processed foods so I get my micros  over the course of several days?  Am I allowing myself times where I consume “soul foods” without feeling guilty?  Pretty simple stuff.  Application of these concepts can be hard if you don’t understand cravings or you grew up eating mostly boxed meals and don’t know how to prepare and combine whole foods to create nutritious meals.

Having a health coach becomes very important when you’re working on your nutrition not because it’s a complicated subject but because it’s easy to get stuck in a rut and not get the variety your body needs and because without a good understanding of how cravings work, sometimes willpower alone isn’t enough to work through unhealthy eating habits by yourself.  Take a moment to message me to schedule your free first coaching session!  Make sure you write down the questions you most want answered so you don’t forget before your appointment!

Circle of Life     Spirituality     Relationships     Career     Education     Finances     Nutrition

Physical Activity     Social Life     Home Environment     Creativity     Health     Joy