*HEALTHY

Early January a struggle?

There are two camps of people that get hit with January blues.

Those affected early January and those more likely to be affected end of January. Here’s why you may find yourself in either camp and 5 things that help:

Early January

It’s all about dopamine, weather, and change of pace.

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Coming off the 6 week manic high of the holiday sprint filled with sugary boozy bliss (and possibly an intense end of year sales quarter), the brain is revved up and used to more dopamine and depletion than normal. It’s largely in survival mode, distracted by purpose and hustle.

Holiday travel, parties to attend, cards to put out, deals to close, events to host, presents to wrap, and booze to cheers elevates brain reward chemicals and stress hormones for an inevitable crash.

Come January, the weather has been cold and Vitamin D deficient for almost 2 months, but the time sensitive distractions have now waned. Overnight, the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ celebrations turn to ‘New Year, New You’ extreme discipline- but the weather is still uninspiring and cold.

Dance on tables New Years night, hit the ground running (literally) New Year’s day. It’s quite the bipolar turn around. Consequently, some of us struggle with this brain chemistry pivot.

End of January

If your industry conference schedule includes the JP Morgan conference in SF, CES in Vegas, or DAVOS in Switzerland, you likely won’t feel the dopamine pull back until late January as you’re still in the chaotic throws of non stop happy hours and needing to be ‘ON.’

No matter when the gray fog of January hits with its judgy drill sergeant sidekick, you’re not alone, and these can help:

  1. Pick a 2 week buffer

Whenever your sprint is scheduled to slow, pencil in 1 week of no social obligations to catch your breath and re-acclimate.

Organize the office, plan your quarter, look at exercise class schedules, and get more sleep. If you’re an over achiever, possibly dip your toes in a mild exercise and meditation attempt and slow the recent fun crutches the body has gotten used to imbibing (sugar & booze).

2. keep self compassion top of mind

Think of the first 2 weeks of your New Year as a detox, slow down period. Add in more veggies, stretch, take a moment to reflect on what you did right last year. Lots of kudos, celebration, and gratitude for the blessings and accomplishments. Chocolate chip cookies & wine can still be on the menu as your body adjusts but more veggies take center stage.

Hold space for the brain to withdraw from the manic pace it’s grown accustomed. It’s a good time to consider more sleep, massages, bone broth, and setting up the body for a detox or fast - just not abruptly.

Doubling the lemon water gets bonus points.

This is not the time for a slammed to do list or unrealistic, punishing fitness goals. It’s cold outside, the body is in hibernation mode, and it’s dry. An hour involving the jacuzzi/sauna with some stretching/dancing, ending with a blanket by the fire is perfect.

No need to dust off the running shoes quite yet if they’ve been sleeping for 2 months. Re-stabilize your core and joints and stretch before hitting the sprints.

3. Double the Vitamin D & B and consider happy lights.

If you struggle during the winter with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), head to vitamin D -ASAP. I take medical grade 50,000 IU of Vitamin D per week during the winter. You’ll notice more tanning beds in Seattle and Portland - and there’s a reason. They also sell bright happy lights for your desk or bedside table to mimic warmer months.

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With the downshift in daylight and sunshine, SAD symptoms may require more fun cardio movement for endorphins, long hugs with friends for oxytocin, and gratitude lists for perspective to keep happy chemicals flowing


4. Have the reboot plan -and permission slip for it- ready.

When Dopamine pulls back and immediate purpose isn’t forcing us to show up, downshifting to a new pace can be literally painful. Knowing it’s coming helps, but having the permission slip in your pocket may be necessary.

Something like, “Even though this feels weird and lacks the exuberance of the holiday grind, this is the right way to spend my time and sets me up for a happy year and healthy mind/body. I have permission to transition.”

Anyone with early trauma, anxiety, depression, or addiction tendencies will especially benefit from this external permission reminding the brain it’s ok to rest and recalibrate as it inevitably searches for stimulation.

5. Keep perspective

People really don’t expect much of each other during January and even February. However you spend it is the right way. No one is keeping track of whether you’re perfect with your resolutions or ‘hit the ground running’ in “your best year yet.”

In fact many are right there with you recalibrating. Dry January, detox, and Whole30 attempts often affect social schedules. SAD affects many moods and energy levels. People disappear to focus on work or escape to snowy destinations to ski.

It’s the perfect time to take care of you and celebrate what’s already been accomplished.

9 things to know about Narcissists

Narcissists can make you feel crazy. Before you have tools to identify and understand them, you can fall prey to their unaware antics ~ especially if you were raised by one and subconsciously seek them out.

 
 

Here are 9 things to help you recognize, protect against, and have compassion for this personality disorder:

1. They often don’t know they have it.

Narcissists really can’t hear you and truly don’t think it’s them. The idea that they are always right is so needed and their ego so fragile, it’s too damaging to hear anything to the counter.

2. They will always find a way to make it about them.

Conversations circle back to them. Only their feelings matter. While they struggle to feel empathy for another’s plight, they get offended and possibly punishing should you not see the severity of their circumstance. Their agenda, no matter how damaging to your world, are all they can see.

3. They justify whatever is best for them

Narcissists make most of their decisions based on how they feel about something. If they’re bored or depressed, they want to move or end the relationship or start a new business. They look to something or someone outside themselves to solve their feelings and needs. They expect you to go along with their “solutions,” and they react with irritation and resentment if you don’t.

4. They feel very alone and can’t connect

Because of their lack of empathy, and constant need for self-protection, narcissists can’t truly love or connect emotionally with other people. They cannot look at the world from anyone else’s perspective. This makes them emotionally needy.

When one relationship is no longer satisfying, they often overlap relationships or start a new one as soon as possible. They desperately want someone to feel their pain while having little ability to respond to other’s pain or fear.


5. They are terrified of not being enough

Their brain has created this coping mechanism of delusions of grandeur that can be quite dangerous to dispute. Because they need this image of themselves to feel real, anyone that disputes their over inflated self should duck. They have no sense of humor when the joke is on them.

6. They can be quite charming

They are tap dancing for their survival and they need your positive mirroring of their self image to continue on. This makes them quite motivated to gather the likable skills necessary. They know to offer you something as they reach out with an ulterior agenda.

7. There are varying degrees of Narcissism

One can have narcissistic tendencies or have a full blown disorder. I rank it based on the inclination to make it about themselves and the degree of delusion.

If they only keep people around that are their clapping audience and can’t see why one would ever choose what is best for everyone if it conflicts with what is best for them, you’re likely dealing with a narcissist. They can’t fathom anything being more important than their needs.

Trauma can spark a pain-based self absorption in otherwise good people. This is almost it’s own category. This one I call ‘pain-based narcissism’ and I believe it can be reversed depending on how severe and how long ago the trauma happened.


8. Trigger a Narcissist and get ready to apologize

…and swear to never do it again. Be ready to feel like you’re talking to a wall that quickly gets defensive and angry. Full blown Narcissists don’t have a concrete sense of self and usually can’t self soothe well so if you’ve accidentally triggered their protection system, fix it ASAP and release expectations they’ll apologize. They will only escalate the fight and crucify you for daring to bring up the idea of their imperfection.


9. Confront a Narcissist and expect to get ‘Gas Lit’

Gas Lighting is a maddening tactic that turns any fight on their adversary into a way they can win at all costs. It’s called “gas lighting” and truth need not apply. It’s about winning, not reconciling and the facts are not important. Manipulation and bullying tools get employed to throw you off. We’re have a very public political example to study.

They’ll yell louder and bring up non relevant damning details to try to throw you off the main point. You’ll feel like you’re going crazy and your nervous system will be assaulted and wildly triggered. If you’re looking through a healthy lens, you may make the mistake of trying to include fairness or logic to the equation.

This is a mental illness and normal paradigms do not apply. Gas lighting is quite damaging and can undermine your view of reality so get away from a Narcissist that does this if you can.

We also, unfortunately, have a greater chance of developing tendencies ourselves if we were raised by a Narcissist. Self awareness of your tendencies is a great way to know you’re not a full blown Narcissist.

Narcissists have a protective mechanism that keeps them from acknowledging any personal flaws. It’s too painful for them. If you can actually see your self absorbed tendencies, you have a real shot at healing them.



How a Wellness Socialite serves two masters

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Balancing wellness in our fast paced, fun world is tricky.

-Sara Plummer Barnard

There are so many obligations and pressures and SO MANY cool things to experience. Where do we exert and where to we conserve? Time to rest or time to push through?

We really are trying to be healthy and get all of our work done and frolic with the fun kids and connect to our highest purpose and and and~ we have 24 hours and mitochondria that requires certain things to output optimal energy.

Top 5 tips to balance it all better:

1. Know your stressors and what depletes you

2. Know what's worth getting depleted for

3. Ditch the next day shame. Permit, commit, and have a recovery plan in place.

4. General Rest Hacks and Recovery Tips

5. Specifics Tips for Alcohol, Sleep Deprivation, Anxiety, Over eating, and Travel

 

1. Know your stressors / depletors

  • Sugar? ... Not enough sleep? ... Traumatic Childhood? ... Manic Over-scheduling?

  • Narcissistic Boss? ... Competitive Friends? ... Family pressure? ... Work Load?

Knowing what really takes it out of us lets us plan ahead and have compassion for our resulting fatigue that can take us out of the game. Be honest about how your habits, environment, and community make you feel. Some may require more recovery time than others and some should be avoided entirely.

2. Know what's worth getting depleted

Life is exhausting and we have to know what we value, what we feel is worth blowing our energy load. If we can't get clear on this, we'll spend our time tired and yet unfulfilled. It doesn't have to make sense to anyone else. It just has to light you up and feel worth it if it involves late nights, stimulating substances (dessert, drugs), or your time (you'll be sacrificing that morning jog).

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  • What's your real life bucket list?

  • What do you feel you should do? What values are being advertised to you? Do you care about those really? Are you just keeping up with the Jones'?

  • Do you actually care about tradition, hallmark holidays, sports schedules, that 4th group of friends you're supposed to be seen with, or pressuring family values? (If yes, awesome, note that! If not, what will you lose sleep over?)

  • Connect with your true north in that moment - what do I actually want to be doing now?

3. Ditch the next day shame

Once you know what you're willing to tire yourself out for, go for it. Yes you may feel crummy the next day but own your choice, permit yourself, commit to the decision, and know you have a recovery plan. 

4. General Rest Hacks and Recovery Tips

  • Sunday sleep in (or 1 other day per week to reset and catchup a bit)

  • Lunch nap or solo walk

  • 1 night/week early 8:30 bedtime. (If you stayed in, don't scroll Instagram)

  • Stop eating 4 hours before bed most nights (allows body to go into empty belly Autophagy cleaning cycle while giving your digestion a break and letting blood sugar rebalance)

  • Meditative deep breathing with soothing sounds, eye shade, and pep talk positive thoughts

  • Notice where you're mean to yourself and jot it down ~ then start interrupting that asshole

  • Switch to veggies, protein, and good fats (ditch the exhausting blood sugar spike emergency)

  • Take a 5 day alcohol/sugar break ~ let the body reset and not be in constant recovery mode

  • Flush it out with water ~ mood lift, cleansing detox, beauty booster, and cellular gift

  • Give Credit & Gratitude ~ list out your accomplishments and tune the brain back to grateful.

5. Beauty Hacks & specific remedies

ALCOHOL:  Booze dries us out, slows our filtering of other toxins, and steals our electrons. Here's how to help avoid a hangover and some next day recovery tips

  • While drinking, Go bulletproof! This means clear spirits (no wine/beer), no sugary mixers. Skip dessert on alcohol nights. Vodka Soda, Tequila lime,

  • Antioxidant liver support vitamins ~ help the liver make master antioxidant Glutathione by giving it the building blocks NaC & ALA with Vitamin C

  • Drink water every other drink. ~ Hangovers are a combination of dehydration and free radicals stealing electrons from our cells. Keep the water coming. Ditch the sugar.

  • Sleep ~ let the body process the poisons and filter. This one doubles as an inflammation reducer and beauty hack. Sleep is magic.

  • Cold Shower/ SF Bay dips ~ reset the body and lower inflammation

  • Move that body - walks in the sunshine are everything.

  • Skip the next day coffee and opt for green tea thats less acidic and dehydrating.

  • Next day breakfast should have a whole lot of good fats and vitamin rich, fiberous veggies

    • eggs & spinach /broccoli scramble (turmeric & pepper on eggs, sea salt/cayenne optional)

    • avocado & sea salt / avocado crab salad

    • banana & almond butter

    • VitalistSuperfood Aloe Detox drink ~ mint, lime, aloe, ginger, spirulina

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LACK OF SLEEP: this one is tough but we can feel a whole lot better with a few tweaks

  • Eat less food. ~ Yes you will be seeking more stimulation but the body is tired and can't handle the extra processing load. Absolutely NO SUGAR if you have to be awake and productive the next day. The sugar crash will put you to sleep and wreak havoc on your tired skin.

  • Power nap when possible (every minute counts)

  • Under eye cream and fabulous concealer / brightener (Benefit's Shybeam adds to any concealer)

  • Lots of water, minerals (magnesium), and amino acids to help with body function.

  • Walk in the Sunshine! This mood boost, Vitamin D3 bath, and lymphatic detoxing through movement is ALL.THE.THINGS. Start slower and then pick up the pace as your body comes alive.

  • Wear bright colors, lips too. (yes you feel like death but vibrant colors (esp. yellow) are mood boosters and red lips keep us feeling fierce)

  • Triple the Vitamin C! ~ you can't take too much and this may be the difference between getting sick after a big night or not. Plus you'll notice a positive skin difference. I live on Oxylent (emergenC in a pinch) most days but really go for it after partying.

  • Protein over carbs if you want to focus and feel good. .Carbs if you want to numb out and nap.

 

ANXIETY / STRESS: your brain is low on magnesium, you're depleted, and the anxiety is here

  • Lots of oxygen! ~ Deep diaphram breathing tells the brain things are A-ok. The faster the thoughts are going the slower and deeper the breath should be

  • Power nap / Meditative break ~ The anxiety won't let you feel accomplished anyway, so stop what you're doing and literally do nothing. Remind that anxiety that you're not going to be pushed around by it's irrational panic. Your brain is depleted and you actually need rest. Deep breathing is your only real to-do list

  • GABA, Magnesium, Vitamin B12, D, C, amino acid 5HTP

    • GABA helps the brain chill out

    • Magnesium also helps with the chill while being needed in 300+ brain chemical reactions (epsom salt baths, spinach, almonds, cashews, dark chocolate all have magnesium)

    • methylated/converted B12 & B9 are both the buffers against stress in the body and the mechanics that take amino acid building blocks and create hormones / happy brain chemicals. (read more about Bs here)

    • D ~ linked to good mood, weight loss, strong bones, immune function, and heart health

    • 5HTP is the amino acid that builds Serotonin. People that party on Molly take lots of this the next day. It's a good building block for us to take in the afternoon to build up our reserves and especially the day after lots of happy stimulation. I use Neurothera that combines all of these ingredients.

 

OVEREATING: It's easy to get caught up in stressful work and social situations and eat to soothe or distract. If this has happened, here's how to reset:

  • Wiggle. Dance. Walk. ~ put that food to work and send it to the muscles for use. The dance floor can seriously help the damage of the buffet. Walking after a meal is wonderful to reset.

  • Forgive yourself ~ Yes you feel stuffed and yes you have to be in a bikini this weekend. It's ok. The body will process it and there was probably a needed mineral in that food combo that is just what your body needed. One meal is no big deal, especially with the tool of intermittent fasting!

  • Intermittent fasting ~ eat 14-16 hours after you take your last bite. Drink water and let your body process that food and stabilize blood sugar before giving it more. Overnight fasting is great (and easier). If you feel hungry, make some bulletproof coffee/tea with coconut oil or butter in it. Break the fast with slices of good fat rich avocado.

  • Commit to experiment ~ If you know you're an anxious eater, have some food rules. See how you feel after ditching alcohol at one event, sugar at another, and dairy/meat at another. See which social food combo works best for your body and what should be avoided. Just don't ditch them all at the same event. Start slow and experiment with breaking this common overeating cycle.

 

TRAVEL: Dry airplanes, too much sitting, recycled air, unhealthy snacks, and weird hours can throw us off. These can help:

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  • Under Eye Cream ~ wear it and bring it

  • Lots of water - bring or buy a bottle

  • Healthy Snacks ~ Avocado cut in half in bag, Almonds/Walnuts, VitalistSuperfood Nut Balls,Paleo Bar, Home popped Popcorn in a bag, Starbucks Match green Tea Latte, Salad or sushi bought at the airport (careful with the dressing), Apple, Nitrate free Turkey/Beef Jerkey, Steamed Veggies.

  • Bring a Jacket/scarf for warmth and low back support (who are those seats made for?)

  • Fascia releaseTennis Balls for massage

  • Bring Eye Shades to sleep

  • Stretch, Rollout, and maybe walk that morning

  • Walk around the airport

  • Dress fabulous enough you'd be ok running into an ex but comfy enough to take a nap (leggings and lipstick)

  • Time your nap and pop a melatonin for longer flights entering a new timezone

  • Vitamin C!!! Your skin, immune system, and pending jet lag are begging you!

 

 

This sugar baby survived a 2 week cleanse

Two weeks into my blended raw veggie, superfood cleanse and…

1.     EVERYDAY WORKS:

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Everything in my closet fits and daily life is easier. My thoughts are clearer, anxiety largely gone, reactions are better, and mood is balanced.

There’s no random bloating, intense cravings, evening cramping, IBS, or constipation. There’s no time taken out to recover from odd meals, sugar spikes, or toxins from the night before.

I don't fear the dark corners of my mind as toxins spike my chronic inflammation, steal B vitamins and magnesium, and leave me without a mental life preserver when stress happens. 

I hadn’t anticipated the 'life is just easier' benefit of this Vitalist cleanse.

 

2.     I NOTICE MY RELATIONSHIP WITH FOOD 

With my cells being fed and blood sugar balanced, I’m not actually hungry. BUT I still very much crave sugar to get me through dull moments and distract with a high. The lack of option is liberating and over time the cravings went down.

It’s nice to have the decision already made, to just feel the urge and notice it without struggling with whether or not to cave to it. My brain slowed down it's ADD search for sugary escape once it knew it wasn't an option. I enjoyed more natural focus.

 

3.     I'M LEARNING BALANCE 

After doing the first week by the book, I detected a craving from my body for animal protein. I had been on the easy to digest, raw, vegan, masterfully combined superfood blends. I had done the herbs, the castor packs, the tummy massages, the oil drinking, the rest, and even the dreaded coffee enema. It all felt medically good for cleanse purposes but not necessarily perfect for my body chemistry daily.

So I played with balance. I promised myself I'd focus on the wins.

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I celebrated my exhibition of more discipline than I thought possible for my rebellious, impulsive, use-sugar-as-a-drug spirit.

Off alcohol and sugar the last month+ to prep and build slowly, I was able to celebrate how big of a deal that was and allow modifications the second week with total self love.

After the big liver and gallbladder flush, I observed a rebellion against the 5x/day herbs. I wanted to sneak in a deviled egg or cooked soup stripped of its original enzymes. I wanted spice intensive, flavorful, sugary curry.

And so 2nd week, I allowed myself, and I watched.

A bit of bloat creeped back in with harder to digest choices and less fluids but I retained a desire to continue mostly blended superfoods 70% of the time for ease and comfort.

I felt a welling pride that I was shifting my flexibility around previous all or nothing thinking and could hear my body's preferences.  I knew I could go back to 5 days of herbs and all blended before the next liver flush and really appreciated the ease these food combinations were bringing to my life.

I liked having the blueprint AND noticing where my wiggle room was on the spectrum. I was celebrating wins instead of counting personal errors.

Halle-friggin-lujah!

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I love that my food spectrum no longer includes slurpees, ice cream snickers bars, or cheetos. Sugar and starchy processed carbs are my Achilles heel. Others may struggle with dairy or meat, but I really get worked over by blood sugar spikes.

A recent habitnutrition.com blood test had confirmed what I already intuitively knew: I had sensitive pancreatic cells struggling to release insulin so often. I am prone to diabetes if I eat common sugary desserts – even more so as my activity level downshifts with age.

Plus, like many people, I have chronic inflammation from fast living and high toxin exposure compounded with intense internal dialogue ~ {I suspect originating from early trauma and attempts to system override to prove worth through "productivity."} My already high cortisol levels don't need sugar's 'helpful boost' and the path I was on is ripe for an autoimmune disease.

Even knowing about inflammation's damage, I feared letting go of my sugary security blanket and frankly doubted I could. I had asked the universe for a done for me, easy, delicious way to break my patterning. And doing this first step FEELS HUGE! :)

I know I don't really have the luxury to continue to treat food like an escapist drug rather than information for my cells so I'm super grateful these blended drinks weren't gross. I had to find a better coping mechanism than sugar and the delicious Vitalist superfood blends made exploring this transition possible. The chocolate chia protein powder nut milk blend mimics a cold chocolate mousse and got me through cravings.

The Takeaway 

Experimenting with truly balanced blood sugar for 2 weeks has been such a gift. Having clearer thoughts, needing less sleep, feeling lighter in my body, enjoying a svelte physique, and reducing decision fatigue in the food arena has been great. I suspect the aloe in my favorite 'Aloe Detox' blended drink has also helped repair leaky gut damages to my intestinal walls. That drink will forever be found in my fridge.

Pretty excited to be past the all liquid part so I can get back to the Unicorn nutballs and the nut cheese, jalapeno chip Nachos. I love food and want to feel good and sometimes that's a tough balance for this sugar baby.

Could Stress be making you fat???

Stress in our environment (fear, anger, shame, anxiety, urgency) and toxins in our food trigger our adrenal glands to release stress hormone cortisol.

This keeps us ready to react to the stressor in a way that our body thinks may save our lives. It's an outdated formula and with modern fast pace and high stimulation, the very chemicals that kept our ancestors alive, are keeping us fat.

 

Digestion is harmed

When we're stressed, we can't digest our food properly and we don't absorb all of our nutrients. Our body shoots it through to ditch any blood flow distractions not necessary to get us out of that jam. Hence why people in super scary situations have the sudden intense urge 'to go'.

High Cortisol = Tummy Fat retention

Beyond our body not metabolizing our food, chronically high cortisol goes from being a performance enhancer, to a serious liability. The body holds onto tummy fat in the presence of cortisol incase it needs future caloric energy reserves and as a protective buffer for our organs.

Cortisol may save our lives in extreme situations, but it doesn't help get us ready for bikini season. The body releases fat stores when it's calm, breathing in oxygen, and sending the messaging to the brain that everything is A-ok.

Toxins stress the body & are stored in fat cells!

If you're sleeping, meditating, breathing, and chilling but the weight isn't releasing, look at internal trapped toxins that could be creating a state of constant inflammation.

Chronic high inflammation reads as stress to the body. The body releases cortisol to manage the inflammatory incident. Inflammation, when acute is quite healing. But longterm, it's extremely damaging. It's a sign to the body that there is something to fight, something wrong. Chronic inflammation puts the body in a state of internal war as immune system soldiers get mixed signals and often friendly fire bringing on autoimmune diseases. The body often holds onto protective fat. 

The body also manages toxins (chemical stressor) by getting them out of circulation and stored away IN FAT CELLS. This means the more toxins, the more the body holds onto fat cells as protective cubbies keeping toxins from damaging parts of the body.

The body is not going to burn important toxin cubholes (fat cells) when you exercise. It does not want to re-release toxins into the system. People that have stored toxins and lose weight too quickly often see a panicked body recruit even more fat cells and quickly put weight back on to get those toxins again out of blood circulation. Resulting in EVEN MORE WEIGHT GAIN!

Here's the GetHSH Weight Release Program I wrote to address this 20th century stress syndrome and give us a real chance to be our body type's ideal happy, healthy weight.

Stress releasing slimming system with the 9 free recipe, workout, and mood enhancing bonuses

Stress releasing slimming system with the 9 free recipe, workout, and mood enhancing bonuses

Exercising harder doesn't work when our hormones are off and our toxins are being stored in fat cells. Let this book show you how to lower your stress & systemic inflammation and release trapped fat.


BONUS VIDEOS:  Stress keeps us tired & fat

Dr. Steph from Functional Medicine SF breaks down what stress really does to you, what Adrenal Fatigue is, and what you can do about it. Get HealthySexyHappy interviews top experts to help us look & feel our best.

We know how important sleep is and it's frustrating to miss out on essential healing, restoring beauty zzz's. Dr. Steph from Functional Medicine SF breaks down what's been getting in the way between you and a blissful night's sleep.


3 things that help a depressive episode.

Depression is an illusive enemy coming on when we least expect it.

It's never the right time and not knowing how long the episode will last is terrifying. Ideas of productivity go out the window as our purpose, worthiness, future happiness, and ability to focus get questioned by the internal minute.

Here are 3 things that I've found really help drag me into the light with some forced perspective when my brain starts turning left.

 

1. Get Outside to connect with community / phone a friend

The last thing you'll want to do is often the best thing to shatter the lies spreading through the narrowing walls of your mind. Walking in the sunshine to a coffee shop and being super kind to the cashier, smiling at a stranger, or spreading compliments does an unexpected perspective shift.

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The addition of people / fresh air / sunshine / new views (external variables) that likely need your kindness, injects a small sense of community, mass vulnerability, and sense of worth. That person whose child you complimented probably needed to hear they are doing ok as a parent. The cashier you tipped and thanked is likely still stuck on the last guy who took out his frustration on her.

Your input and positive vibes matter and you'll see it on the world around you - if you just get outside and put on your best happy actor face for others' benefit. This is tough if the shame cycle has already kicked in making you want to hide from everyone. I promise, they don't see what you see at this moment and will love the positive moment with you.

If you can't get outside, phone a friend. Rather than share what is bugging you, tell them how much you appreciate them and their friendship. Glow about their positive attributes and how much they mean to you. Joke about the impending cheesiness and then lay it on thick.

Depression loves to bring other people down with it while making us feel fearful that others wont like us once they see our darkness. It gets us coming and going. Rather than play it's game, just spread light and hang up. You'll feel the other person's boost and it.will.feel.awesome. It will also remind you of the impact you have in others lives. The world will look a bit sunnier for a second.

 

2. High Intensity Movement & Water!

Endorphins, Oxygen, & Opiates ...mmmmmmmmm. Changing our biology often kick starts brain boosting self confidence, a sense of worth, and overall feel good. It doesn't have to be kick ass or super long. 5-7 minutes of no break squats, cardio, yoga, weight lifting, or dancing gets the blood flowing, the breaths deeper, and calms the brain. AND moving blood, flushing your system with water, and shaking the lymphatic system helps detox. Toxins can definitely be a triggering source of a depressive episode. Dehydration is the 3rd leading cause of depression so water is a double threat against the dark D-bag.

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 If you're under the weather or super fatigued, consider sitting in a sweaty sauna, getting a massage, or stretching to change your biology. The endorphins may be absent but the detox properties, oxygen, focus on the present, and opiates will help. A brilliant friend who has similar brain chemistry reminded me that cold showers/cold water is proven to jolt the mind out of depression. "I smile and get fired up everyday I turn off the hot water at the end of my shower."

 

3. Practice Permission, credit, & Gratitude

Got a brain that won't budge after you've tried the above two? Maybe your brain is signaling it's time to rest and reboot. Let's take stock of what you've ALREADY done for work, friends, family, home organization, planning, charity, health, or goals in the last week, month. Credit counts!

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A Depression prone brain often has a default setting that goes back to fault finding and feelings of unsafe / unworthiness. So let's look at the data, not the lies of our mind. Even small stuff counts! You open email? Get out of bed? Look nice one of the days this week? Spread kindness to an animal, child, stranger, or friend? Show up when you said you would? Choose to eat something green? Awesome! Write it down.

 Then let's look at the natural blessings around. Is it a nice time of year for your favorite fruit? Weather decent? Got great hair? Have a friend you're grateful for? Small and large things we are blinded to when the depression filter kicks in are often quite substantial. But we can no longer see them as depression robs our joy and hides the goodness in our lives. I've found that when in doubt, showing up even when I don't feel like it really matters. It shifts perspective and builds momentum and pride. 

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Fighting back against depression is maddening, difficult, and still important. As it makes the case for why you and your contribution are worthless, show up for life anyway - even spacey / lost / fuzzy headed / less articulate / joyless / unmotivated ... IT REALLY MATTERS. Every time you do show up, give yourself major kudos.

 

**Bonus tip**

IV nutrient therapy is the mood boosting game changer I turn too when I know my system is really off. For $200 (+$60 glutathione and selenium/zinc add ons), you can get your essential vitamin, minerals, and hydration put straight back into the vein. This bypasses any absorption issues or leaky gut your system may have. Noticeable mood boost, especially if this depressive episode was brought on by toxins or depletion. I like Dr Neetu at Dryp Studios.

 

Only those with these tripwire brains get how tough life is when the "why" disappears. I can not speak for your experience and welcome additional treatments that work for you. Let's figure this out together! 

Hit the button below to email me if you'd like a copy of the 56 page mini book I wrote on the many spokes on the depression wheel and some things we can do about it.

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GETHSH is a wellness blog dedicated to researching the variables in the formula to feeling good. All suggestions should be taken on your own free will after consulting your physician.

LIVER DETOX

Liver- Processes toxins & Fats when healthy

Liver- Processes toxins & Fats when healthy

13 Foods that make a big Difference

Garlic- Liver Allison & Selenium- aid in liver cleansing

Grapefruit: Vitamin C & ANtioxidants, Boosts Liver Detox Enzyme, flushes carcinogens

Beet & Carrots- High in Flavanoids

Green Tea- Caticans (asist liver function) and antioxidants

Leafy Green Veggies- so powerful, chloryphyll (suck up blodd toxins), eliminate chemicals, pesticides)

Avocados- produces glutathoine which liver needs 

Apples- High in Pectin

Olive Oil- cold pressed, organic olive, hemp, or flax oil help create lipid base in body to suck up toxins in body

 B vitamins improve fat metabolism and liver function and clear congestion

Cruciferous Vegies- natural emzymes necessary. Cabbage- helps activate 2 crucial enzumes that help liver flush. Artichoke, asparagus, okra and brussell sprouts also fabulous.

Lemon / Lime- citrus = vitamin C helps make toxins water soluble. Drink in morning for liver stimlation

Walnuts- Argenine amino acid help detox amonia and support glutathione production in liver

Turmeric- liver favorite spice that assists enzymes in 

 

LIVER CLEANSE- 

-DAY 1: carrot / beet/ cabbage / spinach/ lime juice or smoothies 1 day before

-DAY2: Fast all day (9.5 PH water good). Minimum stop eating by 1pm. Mix 4 tables spoons of edible EPSOM SALTS divided into 3 separate cups of water.  Drink one Cup at 6pm. At 10pm once COMPLETELY ready for bed, mix a glass of extra virgin organic olive juice and 3 lemons worth of juice. Get in Bed and drink fully, immediately lying on our back or right. Expect a bit of sleeplessness.

-DAY 3: 7am or later- Drink 2nd Cup of Epsom Salt water.  Return to Bed or watch relaxing move 9am Drink 3rd Cup. Expect a lengthy release from your urine and bowels.  Continue juicing and eating VERY clean. No alcohol, processed foods, or sugar.

-DAY 4: Eating from the list above, continue to flush with PH water and get plenty of rest.

 

YOU DESERVE TO FEEL GOOD

 

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GETHSH is a wellness blog dedicated to researching the variables in the formula to feeling good. All suggestions should be reviewed with your licensed practitioner and taken on your own free will.

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My personal supplement protocol

Focus. Energy. Clarity. Calm.

In pursuit of a brain that works and a mood that's happy, I've tried a ton of things.

My supplement cabinet is now filled with nutritional hacks for PMS relief, focus, mood boost, and hangover avoidance. I prefer trusted brands that have good sourcing and come recommended by friend and functional medicine superstar Dr. Stephanie Daniel. Her suggestion toward Julia Ross's book on amino acid therapy kept me off anti-depressants during a tough time. I am now convinced that one trigger for depression is a depleted brain.

When the nutrient suggestions started getting overwhelming, I created a graph to keep them organized. I color coded the supplements so I could see which colors/nutrients played a role in multiple benefits. Notice how green Omega3 is involved in everything.

 

Everyday I make sure to get my Bs, Cs, Ds, Omega3s, minerals, and amino acids. Here's why:

Amino Acids are building blocks that help make our skinny/pretty/happy hormones and brain chemicals. B vitamins pull double duty in the body!! They are the mechanics that help convert these building blocks into hormones and are also the soldiers that buffer against stress. If we're stressed, we often don't have enough Bs left over to make enough feel good chemicals. With that workload, we go through a lot of Bs and many of us require a converted "methylated" form. Vitamin B injections work well for many and I love them.

Vitamin D3 is the energy, happiness, thyroid function, appetite suppression, bone strength, and immune system 'super hormone' that most of us are low in. I like Vital Nutrients D for when I travel and an under the tongue spray for home.

Omega 3s are the good fat our brain craves. Mood and clear thinking are directly tied to Omega3 fatty acids present in the body. The aging brain needs even more.

Minerals are the cofactors that make sure the important reaction in the body take place. Magnesium, the calming mineral that is crucial in the brain is involved with over 300 chemical processes in the body!

Probiotics are the good gut bacteria linked to happy mood, manageable waistline, and possibly everything else! Fiber feeds our good bacteria, sugar feeds the bad bacteria, and probiotics refill the ranks giving us more of the good. Helpful if our partying lifestyle, stress, or antibiotics have killed off our good guys. Below are the daily 5 I take.

I start my morning with a ton of lemon water to flush my organs and get my adrenal, immune, and skin supporting Vitamin C.  I take my brain and mood supporting amino acids on an empty stomach. If I want extra focus, I'll take a Neurothera or a NooTroo nootropic. If it's a tea/coffee day, I like the bullet proof executive style of blending nutrient rich grass fed butter into my tea for delicious brain food.

After a couple of hours of fasted work time and flushing of my system, it's time for a protein rich meal with eggs or salmon. Here is where I take the fat soluble supplements like B, D, and Omega 3 that absorb best in the presence of fat. 

If the work morning has left me anxious, I'll take a calming NeuroCalm filled with Taurine, GABA, Magnesium, and L-Theanine.

Because my stress hormone cortisol is unfortunately high, I also take a daily adaptagen formula that builds back my buffers giving me more stress resilience. I wrote the FreeTheFat weight loss program around this product after seeing stress' connection to stubborn weight retention.

The desire to feel focused but calm while lowering both my inflammation and cortisol inspired the CALM HAPPY FOCUSED bundled. Neurothera is the addition here with it's cognitive amino acids and mood boosting herbs.

The rest of the bundles are found on the supplements page and shown below.

Notice that the same 5 supplements are put into different combinations for desired mood effect. These are my favorite addon to my daily essential 5. I like the CALM HAPPY FOCUSED 4 pack -which is the same as buying Calm Pack + Happy Pack (but cheaper when bought together). Not until I venture out of mood / stress  and into beauty / hangover helper do new supplements emerge from the antioxidant family.

If I've been partying alot, I take the 3 antioxidant rich blends found in the BEAUTY BLEND. The hair/skin nails for beauty, antioxidant formula for anti-aging and the liver detox to support my liver.

If I'm running low in general, I'll restock with the biggest bundle THE WORKS that comes with wonderful digestive enzymes to get the most out of my food and free radical destroying antioxidants to help with aging and hangovers. This has the highest overall savings but still feels like a huge sticker shock even though I can do the math logically.

And finally, my super secret for when I'm truly depleted: IV therapy. 

Dr. Ahluwalia of Dryp.com has locations all over the bay. At $200-$300 a pop it gets pricey but man does it work to put you back in the game. I love the master antioxidant Glutathione add on!! Come flu season, opt for the extra zinc and selenium.

Love to hear your tips and tricks!

 

Here are a few other helpful graphs I put together along this journey to feel good.

Amino Acids and their Benefit:

 

Nutrient Benefits

 

Always open to new nutrient suggestions, leave yours in the comments below.

What I learned creating a weight loss program.

I wrote my first wellness book in 2016. I wanted to understand the digital marketing process and had a partner focused on the weight loss arena. I had a suspicion that the same things that were adding weight to us were also causing depression and fatigue.

I spent 6 months writing FreetheFat - a stress reducing slimming system. Another 3 months building the website, established a corporation, legally tying to a business partner, hiring a rad spokesperson, shooting a commercial and exercise video... the whole deal. It took most of my focus and I all but ignored this blog.

And it didn't go as financially planned.  Here are 4 things I learned:

1. Follow your passion, seriously

I got talked out of writing the mental health and relationship health books I am passionate about in favor of the weight loss genre. Because time and energy are so valuable, it only makes sense to only go big in areas we really care about. When it gets tough, we stand strong on the hills we're willing to die on.

I'm really passionate about how our inner monologue and external relationships affect our perspective and happiness. The weight loss follows faster when we're happy and relaxed. We eat less to fill a hole or avoid a scary task and more to enhance productivity and pleasure. We rest enough living in faith that the important stuff will get done.

2. Certain fats are really important & sugar is the enemy

While researching FreetheFat - a stress reducing slimming system, I learned how important good fats are. Omega3s help with mental health, weight loss, and feeling satisfied.  I smear everything with avocado, organic butter, flaxseed oil, or coconut/MCT oil now.

I learned weight loss is highly up to our individual genetic makeup but sugar is bad for pretty much all of us. Like really bad. From the stress hormone release to turning on fat storage mode, sugar jacks us up. But fiber helps and sleep is the master reset. Anything that calms and heals get us lean. Anything that spikes cortisol adds to weight gain mode.

So I made very little money but learned how to manage the stress of that - including how to not turn toward my favorite vice - sugar. Well, at least without fiber and plenty of water to balance.

3. We can do it!

We really do have the tools to do the things we're meant to do on this planet. Anything too good to be true really is just that. My business partner didn't end up knowing how to do most of the things he thought he could - but what a cool experience to show myself I could do/learn/find most myself.

And wow did my community show up and spread love and support. That alone was worth the frustration. In the end, I found a new bestie tech team member, wrote 300+ pages, and learned to manage disappointment. I even had the time to experiment with nutrient combinations finding success with amino acid therapy.  Check out my findings:

All that nutrient research showed that intestine absorption is tricky business and supplement sourcing matters. I couldn't align with those lucrative but suspect supplement providers.

After the initial business partner frustration, I connected with a medical grade supplement supplier my doctor friend uses and didn't have to feel morally conflicted in suggesting questionably sourced, profit-focused vitamins.

If things had gone as planned, I would have deferred to early advisors and accidentally become another shady vitamin pusher. Talk about losing my mission. The universe kindly led me instead to trusted brands at discount.

 
 

 

4. Count the wins & only the wins.

Staying engaged with our journey and proud of our attempts is winning. Staying focused on these wins is essential for a positive mindset and a life we're excited to show up for.

I will forever turn to sleep, morning fasting, lymphatic movement, certain herbs, and deep breaths when I want to get bikini ready. I won't attempt to lose weight by spiking my cortisol, destroying my joints, and breaking down my body. Devoting a year to writing a program - even if for only me - is worth what I learned.

Finishing something is huge for my perfectionist brain. If nothing ever feels good enough, saying something is done is damn near impossible. But the 1st draft is done!!! I needed to get my first book done so I could get the rest written. I'm proud of creating these and I'm choosing to count the wins.

I put together 8 guides, 7 supplement bundles, 1 large book, produced a voice recording, and a website. Peter Diamondis is right about "Fail often and fail forward." (His book Bold is fantastic btw). I can be really hard on myself and 2017 is all about celebrating every win keeping the mind in a state of empowerment and excitement.

Another win was the psychological growth. The experience drudged up all sort of old emotional baggage that I needed cleared. I was really disappointed and fighting my brain's cruel attempt at tying this timeline "failure" to all future failures. Old disappointments, false programming, and anxieties needed to see the light so they could be addressed. Super grateful to have new awareness around what those inner sabotaging voices quietly say all day long. No wonder it's tough to get stuff done.

Plus, when I got really frustrated, I hopped a plane to South Africa where I read two more fantastic health books, had the trip of my life, climbed Lion's head, and supported a dear friend who is changing the world for women's safety. I would never have been so trigger happy if not so desperately disappointed.

The biggest win is the progress on the depression book.  I couldn't ignore the correlation between food and pleasurable escape. My mental health focus just had to look at which foods make us sad and how hard it is to give up a sugary pleasure source when we are depressed. So I ended up writing a 56 pager about my actual passion anyway.

I grew my compassion for this losing battle. If we can't address our depression, we're going to have a hard time saying no to pleasurable food and drinks. And feeling shame around that is both unfair and damaging. 

Despite so many things not going as planned, I love the wellness research that came out of this writing exercise and the information in the Free the Fat: Stress reducing slimming system

The real reason we're tired & how it's keeping us fat.

The real reason we're tired & how it's keeping us fat.

We're tired, our wounds don't heal as fast, our hangovers are worse and last longer, and we have stubborn weight that doesn't fall off like it used to. What's going on?

A poisoned culture that's not allowed to talk about the problem.

A poisoned culture that's not allowed to talk about the problem.

Why the US is probably going to continue getting fatter and sicker. When a problem is so big, we'd rather make sick acceptable than chip away at the mountain.

How to survive your first CryoTherapy session.

Cryotherapy is a bit mind blowing. Using Nitrogen gas to drop the air temperature around your naked buns to -238 for a 3 minute healing recovery session appears to not only speed post-workout recovery, it has anti-aging, calorie burning, healing, skin renewal side benefits.

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Being on my wellness checklist, I headed over to the Performist in Palo Alto to see what this state of the art Cryo experience was all about.

After a health questionaire and taking my blood pressure, I'm shown a changing room where a robe, socks, and slippers await. I'm told that metal is no bueno at low temperatures so any, ahem, body jewelry would have to be removed. 

I got down to socks only and bravely walked into a room with a metal standing tube and a nitrogen tank with way to much frost on the knob to elicit comfort.

This was going to be cold.

Once in, I ditched the robe, put on the snow gloves, and looked at the count down as the nitrogen was turned on. Being walked through the benefits was helpful as the temperature plummeted.

The benefits are pretty appealing.

Better post workout recovery as lactic acid is whisked away with the blood flow racing to warm your core. Healing mechanisms turned on. Skin purification for the same reason. As the body pulls the blood out of the extremities toward the core, the dirty blood gets drawn out of the muscles and limbs. Upon returning, it's much cleaner, nutrient rich blood.

Our blood becomes enriched with oxygen, enzymes, and nutrients. The body begins to eliminate damaged cells and toxins from your internal organs and tissue.

Did I mention the endorphins?? There's an endorphin feel good that lasts hours as well as a calorie burn of 500-800 calories as your body revs up the metabolism and calorically prioritizes keeping you warm. 3 minutes of discomfort = up to 800 calories!? 3 minutes that is also healing, revitalizing, anti-aging. I can do this! 

Then there's the white fat cell die off that adds an extra benefit.

The "cool sculpts" of the world use this same technology but only on the "problem areas" freezing and killing the fat cells who eventually get pee'd out after filtering through the system.

. Apparently, the outer layers of skin are those affected by the temperature and that's where the bad white fat cells live. So even in this total body recovery freeze, the outer layers of skin will sacrifice those fat cells first leaving them unprotected against the cold. You'll notice these areas get coldest. Fabulous side effect.

The last 20 seconds are the trickiest. the mind starts doing the "yup, I'm done!" My legs got impatiently tingly & i wanted to sit down.

And then it was over. Upon exiting, I threw my robe back on and was instructed to walk around awaiting blood flow to return to my arms and legs. I really wanted to sit as I had little faith in my legs capabilities. I was assured this was all psychological and my legs were fine. 

Depending on how you handle stress, you may see that side of yourself pop up. I noticed irritation toward the nitrogen administrator. My fight or flight had been triggered with the extreme temperature. What a little fighter I am!

To recap: It's tingly cold, a little unnerving, and your nipples get hard and irritated, but that level of benefits for 3 minutes of discomfort is sooooooo worth it!

Pro Tip: Finding a calm, accepting meditative breath is helpful in accepting the therapy and receive the benefits. Like all of life, accepting discomfort helps it pass quicker and the lesson learned faster. Only when I started to resist it, did I experience the most discomfort and impatience. 

ICE ICE BABY!

This one change helped me start the New Year svelte.

This was the first holiday season I found myself without alcohol. Managing family holidays with out vodka soda is something I would NEVER normally recommend. Your sanity is essential after all & most of our families keep the fun in disFUNctional. 

Here's how I found myself sober through the season and the awesome result come January 1st 2016!

Dec 15th LA Work Event

Dec 15th LA Work Event

This year, on a mid-December trip to LA, I got the annual sinus infection. Lots of exercise, little sleep, colder weather combined with Halloween > Bermuda > overindulging at Thanksgiving and I wasn't exactly shocked my immune system gave me the bird. 

It started with a headache and by end of week had turned into a punishing ear infection.

Now, ice pick to-the-ear pain is usually something I hop on antibiotics for --- but I've been doing the whole probiotics, bone broth, L-Glutamine thing to build back my good gut bacteria. And antibiotics would negate much, if not ALL of my progress.

Like most, I have leaky gut- a dangerous separation of the intestinal wall cells. This single cell barrier on the intestinal wall is what helps absorb nutrients through the gut lining and keeps toxins and food particles from seeping into the rest of our system. Inflammatory immune system reactions and food allergies pop up when food particles & toxins seep through this barrier. My favorite foods could possibly make me sick moving forward - not ok. Gotta seal that gap.

I was scared & grossed out enough to lower my toxins and commit to resealing the bonds between these gut lining cells. The immune system related illnesses like Rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid problems are becoming unfortunately common in modern day culture & my joints have gotten really achy as I push my body to the limit with my high inflammation lifestyle. 

Another fun celebratory December tradition:  boozy, blissful, all you can eat Guardsman charity Crab Feed 

Another fun celebratory December tradition:  boozy, blissful, all you can eat Guardsman charity Crab Feed 

When I say "committed," I don't mean I was ready to give up alcohol or even sugar for that matter. Two huge inflammation offenders I rely on as lifestyle coping mechanisms. I was starting with the good probiotics in and decided to worry about getting the bad food out later. I know I know, both are necessary...

Santa Con San Francisco- 2016

Santa Con San Francisco- 2016

LA Family Holiday Celebration

LA Family Holiday Celebration

But this damn ear infection and my refusal to go on antibiotics made for a hard new reality. Processed foods, sugar, and alcohol had to beat it during the most sugar filled, drunk part of the year. To get my immune system strong enough to kick this bugger, I had to hydrate and sleep a whole lot more while ditching the weakening toxins. Waaaaa!?

My alcohol-fueled holiday cheer marathon was getting majorly f'd with. Could I do it?

If I wasn't being reminded hourly by a friendly stab to the side of the head, there's not a chance I would have made it. Spiked egg nog & hot toddies are too delicious. Without pain pounding me into submission, I likely wouldn't have stayed strong. I also married into a particularly fun family who know what to do with a dance floor & our friend group of stylish, event planning, marketing mavens make for a non stop party.

I was in big trouble.

However, holiday party 7 came and went & outside of a faked shot of vodka at a fun fam white elephant, I managed to go without alcohol hitting my lips.

Then New Year's in Tahoe approached and thanks to the cold, dry 10 degree weather and the occassional ear stabs,  being further dehydrated and dry did not appeal. I managed to stay sober even on the costumed dance floor. I was starting to feel invincible. Maybe I could release my attachment to a favorite coping mechanism after all. Even if I didn't really have a choice, and shouldn't be overly patting my own back, this was real progress! What a fun realization and a confidence boost of the possibilities! 

Here's what I noticed come Jan 1st, 13 days after kicking booze:

*My skin is clearer, tighter, and I'm way less bloated / puffy. I'm sure the sleep & extra hydration along with ditching alcohols dehydrating side effects were a power combo.

* I'm noticeably leaner. Starting the year with lean, toned thighs is not a resolution I set, but I'm bikini season ready mid winter!! This.Is.Incredible. I'm grabbing by bun / thigh crease in magical wonder. My credit card may be maxed out, but my body is not!

*I can see my abs- that helpful little cushioning layer is vacationing allowing for a flat tummy.

*I think clearer and have less fatigue. My mood is more even. Depression and brain fog are gone and I can handle stress with more grace. I'm not depleted and fumbling around for a sugar fix wondering which obscure amino acid or enzyme my body really needs. I don't feel crazy!

*I'm calmer and can focus better. With more rest and less stimulating sugar and alcohol pumped through my holiday month, I hit January with more dopamine receptors! This allows smaller tasks to be able to release the same brain chemical blitz of motivating goodness that usually requires more stimulation to achieve. 

*I'm motivated to keep it clean, green, & hydrated. Momentum is real and starting the New Year not feeling bloated & behind is just wonderful. This may be game changing enough to make Dec 15th my last drinking day of the year moving forward. I KNOW, CRAZY! I can't say enough good things about how different & empowering this year's start feels. 

WHAT A CHANGE FROM LAST YEAR'S BLOG POST!

i highly recommend taking 14 days of little sugar and no alcohol to reset your mind, mood, and waistline. Add in more sleep, more Lemon water, and 3/week sweat sessions in the sauna or spin bike for a heavy dose of feel good.

 

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YOU DESERVE TO FEEL GOOD!

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**GETHSH is a wellness blog dedicated to researching the variables in the formula for happiness & health. All suggestions should be reviewed with your licensed practitioner and taken on your own free will.

 

The Happiness Advantage

So today I took the bait & got my panties in a bunch (shocker)... But in the process had an AHA moment & sought out 5 things to help the brain seek out happiness over separation. WOO HOO!

3 exercises to Ditch the Double Chin

Getting older or living fast comes with a certain loss of skin elasticity & muscle strength. High inflammation levels break down the parts we take for granted in our youth leaving us with floppy underarms and double chins- even when we haven't put on weight.

Keep that neck high and tight with these 3 quick exercises done regularly:

1. Tongue to Chin:

Open wide, stick that tongue out, and reach for your chin. Hold for 10 seconds. (Feel the muscles working by taking your thumb and touching under your chin.)

2. Tennis Ball:

Hold a tennis ball against your throat with your chin. Press tightly, then release slightly 10x.

3. Bed Head Hang:

Lie on your bed with your head hanging over the edge. Lift your chin up towards your chest and hold for 5 slow seconds. Slowly lower down and repeat 10x.