HANDLING THE HOLIDAYS WITH MY SECRET WEAPON - CBD OIL

How many of you get anxiety and a bit more stressed around the holidays?!?! Family dynamics, crazy holiday gift giving stress, insane parking lot madness.... 

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yeah, me too!


Over this past year, I’ve worked hard to find alternative ways to combat my anxiety, be a social butterfly, and keep my stress level super low. My secret weapon has been using CBD on a daily basis.

My day typically starts with a drop or two of 500mg Peppermint MY SOUL CBD in my coffee (I’ll admit, I’m a peppermint mocha girl any time of the year - I’m so not team PSL), and I’ll apply muscle & joint cream post workout or post photo shoot to avoid any aches or pains that cause irritation at night.

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Of course, I could take prescription meds to keep my anxiety away but I quickly discovered that the medication I had been on left me feeling numb to my emotions, always feeling tired, not enjoying workouts, gaining weight, and quite honestly, not feeling like myself - almost as if I was going through the motions, but not really enjoying anything.

After 8 months of taking my daily dose of anxiety medication I decided to cycle off (totally not following doctors orders, but hey… I had to try it on my own). When I felt a bit of panic or anxiety set in, I decided to focus on how CBD could become part of my daily routine. I began to feel like my old self; happy, full of energy, clearer mind, and ready to get back to doing what I love; working out, cooking, standup paddleboarding, and running my business.

To say that I am an advocate of using CBD would be an understatement. We’ve even introduced CBD to our anxiety filled 130# great dane who suffered from anxiety and being a bit overprotectiveness when people come to visit.


SO WHY I CHOSE CBD OVER MEDS? 

CBD WAS THE PERFECT ALTERNATIVE TO USING DAILY MEDS WITH UGLY SIDE EFFECTS. 

My side effects from using anxiety meds:
feeling numb to everything
tired
emotionally blah
weight gain
foggy & hazy Brain

USING CBD GAVE ME - well, ME BACK: 


I RECLAIMED CLARITY IN MY THOUGHTS & EMOTIONS
I FELT HAPPIER & MORE ALIVE
BACK TO MY "OLD" SELF
NOT FEELING CO-DEPENDENT ON A PILL


WHY I CHOSE to ALIGN MYSELF WITH SOUL CBD... 

SOUL CBD's mission is to provide people and pets with the highest quality, all natural solutions for: pain, anxiety, inflammation, sleep, digestion, and overall health to thrive in their daily lives.

All Soul CBD products are produced in a food grade, GMP-compliant facility, and are tested by third parties for safety and quality.

GENETICS
Our strain of isolated Crystalline CBD is the foundation of Soul, and is high in CBD,
stable and resistant to pests
and pathogens.*

FARMS
Our farming partners are family owned and operated, and have been innovators in hemp agriculture, propagation and cultivation techniques for decades.

PROCESS
Our unparalleled purity quality is a
result of farming in the rich, fertile soils
of Kentucky, along with our proprietary harvesting and processing technologies.

PURITY
Our products are produced in a food-grade, GMP compliant facility and always tested by third parties for safety and quality, yielding the cleanest CBD available.

Are you like what the heck is CBD? Don't worry I got you!

CBD, short for Canabidiol, is a naturally occurring ingredient found in both industrial hemp and cannabis. Our CBD products are only sourced from Hemp. This ensures all of our products are legal, safe and non-psychoactive.

CBD affects the Endocannabinoid system (ECS). ECS helps maintain homeostasis in two areas: the firing of brain cells in the nervous system, and the inflammatory response of the immune system.

CBD is present in more significant quantities in hemp than marijuana, and because it is non-psychoactive, CBD is widely regarded as the cannabinoid with the most health potential by researchers.

READY TO GIVE CBD A TRY?  - I'M SHARING MY AFFILIATE LINK HERE

WORKING WITH CBD

When I started experiencing anxiety and panic attacks - my initial goal was to avoid prescriptions completely and opt for the most holistic approach. After speaking with my doctor we decided that I should work with a prescription for a few months to keep my anxiety at bay was the best course of action. Still, I wasn't convinced medication would be the answer and continued my quest for a holistic options.

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After sharing my anxiety symptoms with a few friends, they suggested the using CBD oils.

Incorporating CBD oil has been incredible for not only managing my anxiety, but also improved mental focus and sleep quality. Currently, I am using My Soul CBD and am loving the 500mg peppermint option.  Our pups are also taking their pet blend at 250mg in bacon flavor. 

I should also mention that I was a nightly sleep-aid user and couldn't even attempt to go to bed without taking an over - the - counter sleeping pill or dosage of liquid sleep aids. While the pills and potions claimed to be non-habit forming, a habit was created and since transitioning to the oil I haven't had the need for any other sleep aids.

My dosage has been two - four drops under my tongue before bed and wake feeling incredibly rested, if I am feeling a little stressed or my anxiety peaks during the day, I take two drops under the tongue. The next purchase I intend to make will be for a balm or salve to use to aid in recovery from workouts and training.

 

Let's chat about the benefits to CBD: 

Personally, I've been attracted to CBD to aid in settling my anxiety but CBD can also help aid in inflammation reduction, pain, joint and muscle relief, digestion, and provide assistance to overall health.  

How to use CBD: 

Everyone is different so your needs/dosage may vary - but you can ingest CBD by taking a dropper under the tongue or add a few drops to your coffee or tea.  CBD can also be in a balm or muscle relief cream which is great for those who workout or suffer from joint pain.   

Why I chose to align myself with Soul CBD:

Let's be honest... I'm a girl and love pretty things so the packaging really drew me into the line, but more importantly the creators behind the line were a huge factor.  Soul was created by a world class athlete and a fellow holistic health coach.  Plus, their entire line is THC free!  

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WHY ARE SMOOTHIES SO IMPORTANT FOR BREAKFAST?

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and sometimes it just doesn't fit into our schedule the way it should. How we begin the day will determine how the rest of the day goes. It will determine if we feel energized or if we feel dragging with a lack of energy. What we put in our bellies is directly related to how we physically feel. So if you are a skip breakfast and grab the coffee mug morning person then this blog is totally for you.

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We all need and crave energy. I know I do! Sometimes it is so easy to want to stop by the nearest fast food joint or even forget breakfast and just get through the morning on 1-2 cups of coffee for the energy needed to survive the day. I don't want you to just survive through the day though; I want you to thrive through the day. I also don't want you to go on the "crash and crave" roller coaster for the entire day. If you begin your morning with caffeinated coffee and sugar, you will crash, and you will be either too tired to make it through your responsibilities or you will be reaching for another cup of coffee to get through a few more hours.

 

Smoothies are another quick alternative to a fast breakfast that can help energize us throughout the entire day. When you toss in some greens, a little fruit, and a healthy liquid like coconut water you are bound to feel energetic and ready to take on the day. Starting the day with a smoothie also gives you well needed antioxidants which help protect our bodies from free radicals, and it is a great low glycemic start. Eating a low glycemic breakfast will help curb your sugar cravings for the entire day and it will also help with not crashing.

 

Next time you want a quick breakfast, try a delicious smoothie that will leave you feeling energized and motivated. A morning smoothie will provide your body with the nutrients it needs to produce natural energy and naturally boost your metabolism. So, what are you reaching for tomorrow morning? I know I will be pulling out my blender and getting ready for some long lasting energy.

 

My go to recipe is:

  • A handful of spinach or kale

  • A half cup of diced fresh pineapple

  • A half of a cutie (clementine)

  • Two slices of lemon with the rind

  • 2 scoops of protein powder

During meal prep combine all of the fruits and veggies into a ziplock baggie and place into the freezer.

 

**This simple step will save you a lot of time in the morning.**

Add the contents of the baggie to your blender with a choice of protein (greek yogurt, whey protein powder, or plant based protein powder) with ice and water. You can also use coconut water as an added boost.

 

Blend and enjoy!

 

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BULLET JOURNAL FITNESS TRACKER

When I first learned about bullet journaling in 2016 I fell in love due to my slight obsession with stationary, all things office supplies, and being a creative. Over the past few years I've created several bullet journals, but finally decided to create one specific to my health and wellness journey.

I love being an old school planner with pen and paper. It's the only way I can be consistent and keep myself accountable. I love the scrapbook / diary feel and freedom that a bullet journal creates. Plus, it's my creative outlet. I spent countless hours on Pinterest looking at various layouts and settled on the one below. There are a few tweaks to be made for next week, but overall - the layout is simple, minimal, and does the job.

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On the left page: I have included the June calendar and highlighted the current week along with four weekly goals that are specific to wellness. Followed by a section for each day of the week that lists my workout for the day and the exercises. I include the rep range, number of sets, and the # of weight used. I've also added a box "WINS FOR THE WEEK" to track non-scale victories!

At the time of the photo, I had not finalized the rest of my workouts for the week. This will be completed based on my schedule and will make those adjustments on the fly. I am aiming for daily cardio in the form of spinning and/or training for a 5k. Additionally, I want to add a day of yoga/stretching. Sunday will be a reset (diet) and rest day before kicking off the week again on Monday.

On the right-hand side I've included a quote at the top of the page and running down the left column is my meal plan along with a grocery list and water tracker.

 

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Original Layout Credit: sourced on Pinterest

HOW MY PHOTOGRAPHY BUSINESS LED ME TO THE INSTITUTE FOR INTEGRATIVE NUTRITION

//MY STORY//

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For as many years as I can remember, I dreamed of being a professional photographer.  I was glued to behind the scenes videos of photo shoots, soaking in beautiful imagery in fashion magazines and falling in love with the process of printing my own work.  I wanted nothing more to become a professional photographer. What I didn't account for was how following my creative heart would end up causing me an excessive weight gain and loss of one’s self.

In complete transparency, my photography business wasn’t the only factor in my weight gain and downward spiral, but it played a greater role than I realized. My lack of a healthy lifestyle started in college like it does for most.  It's the first time of being on my own - making my own eating decisions and finding other distractions that kept me from being active. Like most college kids I ran on caffeine and poor decision making when it came to food which would carry out into my early years of adulthood.  This "lifestyle" only continued to become increasingly poor when I returned home from college and began building a photography business.  I poured my heart and soul into my business and let my health fall to the back burner. As my business gained traction and success the scale increased until I hit rock bottom on the floor of our closet. Tired, burnt out, overworked and at my heaviest weight of all time - I had a "Come to Jesus" moment and knew that I couldn't continue this way of life.  

True to form, I attempted fad-diet after fad diet and even thought that meal skipping would work. It wasn't until I had an honest heart to heart with myself that I reached out for help and began a 12-week clean eating program with the help of a coach.  In those 12-weeks I transformed every aspect of my life starting by adding my name to the ever growing daily to-do list. On the surface, this appears selfish, but putting myself first allowed me to serve my clients, family and friends better because I was feeling fulfilled.  At the end of the 12-weeks I lost 20 pounds and found an incredibly strong love for health and wellness.

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//STUDYING AT THE INSTITUTE FOR INTEGRATIVE NUTRITION//

When the 12-week program wrapped up, I quickly noticed a new found love for health and wellness and I was hungry to learn more.  A crazy chain of events leads me to enroll in a year-long holistic health coaching program with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN).  Attending IIN was the perfect program for me as I was still running my photography business and needed to attend classes around my schedule. 

Attending IIN, pushed me to question how I approached my own health and wellness as well as how I help my clients approach their health and wellness.  It’s not about a one-size-fits-all lifestyle and I truly learned how to look beyond food and movement to connect the dots with other areas of my life that were causing discord which affected my weight, lack of energy and struggle for balance. I was able to learn over 100 different dietary theories that pushed me to think differently and beyond fad diets or the diets that are pushed out by main-stream media.  Several modules encouraged you to examine your relationship with personal development, self-care, spirituality, relationships and career all of which I pushed to the back burner when building my photography business.   

 

//How IIN Works//

The set-up for attending IIN is pretty genius.  With the ability to log-on and attend class at any time of the day you are never behind. A new module is presented weekly and includes classes on dietary theories, methods of movement, how to coach your clients and business development.  When I attended IIN in 2012, we attended coaching calls with a moderator to help keep us on track and coached us to be the best coach we could be.

 

//WHO IS IIN FOR?//

I truly believe that anyone can benefit from IIN if you have an interest in health and wellness.  For me, I was curious about having a better understanding of how my mind, body, and spirit played into my relationship with food and movement.  Attending IIN pushed me to reconnect with the areas of my life that deeply desired to be nourished and in turn, helped me overcome my weight challenges which I am happy to say I am 60 pounds lighter! Plus, I am able to use the coaching skills I learned in my practice and also within my photography business. 

 

//WHAT ABOUT A CAREER AS A HEALTH COACH?//

Attending IIN is the first step if you want to pursue a career as a health coach, but it doesn’t guarantee you’ll come out with a thriving practice.  That my friend is on you! This isn’t to scare you, but the direction you take your coaching business will be based on your desires upon graduation.  I have friends who have written books, incorporated health coaching into their yoga practice or found that coaching has helped them with the loss of a loved one and is now providing grief counseling through health and wellness.  

Personally, I used my holistic health coaching certification as a starting point to then become a personal trainer and blogger.  Honestly, the career possibilities are endless - it simply comes down to how much work you want to put into making your dreams a reality.

Still on the fence about attending IIN?  I’d happily set aside a few minutes to chat with you to answer any questions you may have. Complete the form below and we can start a conversation.

 

I hope my review on IIN help provides a bit of clarity around the program - Feel free to click one of the links below to learn more about the program, sample a class or download a free e-book!  

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