Luminous Wellness with Jennifer

Over the past several months, I’ve gotten notifications from WordPress that I’ve had many new followers to this blog.  I’ve also received several nice comments on various blog posts that I wrote over the year that I managed this blog.  I wanted to say thank you, I really appreciate it!!  

However, I’m not posting on this blog anymore, because I finally chose a business name to go with my health coaching business, and created a brand new website where I’m also blogging as well!  

ImageI’m still blogging about my healing journey and fun wellness inspired things that I love to do, like health conferences.  Be sure to go to http://www.luminouswellnesswithjennifer.com to check it out!  

Thanks so much for following me!  ❤  

 

Normal – What Does That Feel Like Anyway?

It’s been a very long time since I wrote anything on this blog.  I’ve allowed myself to slip away from it, partially because I was stressing myself out with feeling that I had to write in it every single day, and partially because I put pressure on myself to always appear perfect, which is quite an impossible standard.

I’ve been working on teaching full-time, finishing up my health coach certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and figuring out how to get myself 100% healthy and on the right track again.  I started a new blog to chronicle my journey, partially because I’m no longer following a strictly vegan diet.  It turns out that one of my many health issues is having adrenal fatigue.  I’ve been reading up on it and several people that were formerly vegan all agree that eating small amounts of animal protein helps the adrenals get stronger, and I need that more than anything right now.

To find out more about my health issues and what’s been going on with me, check out

http://luminouswellnesswithjennifer.wordpress.com/2012/12/11/normal-what-does-that-feel-like-anyway/

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Getting Back on Track

I’m not quite sure how to begin this blog post.  I can’t believe it’s been a month since I was in Vegas, learning from the best coaches and corporate team at Beachbody about how to grow my business.  I got to meet Shaun T…

Attended amazing training workshops…

Over 5,000 coaches!!!

and solidified my commitment to continue to help as many people as possible by helping to End the Trend of Obesity in the United States.I also celebrated my 30th birthday with my friends & family with some gluten-free vegan Z Pizza and an awesome gluten-free vegan cake from CakeLove.

Yet despite my commitment to help End the Trend by helping others, I let myself slip with my eating habits.  Ok, so I haven’t really been eating THAT bad — I still don’t eat junk or anything processed.  I lost weight in Vegas, but coming back, I wasn’t mindful of planning my meals, and would start eating bananas or whatever else was around.  Now a banana here or there is ok, but eating too much of anything will cause you to gain weight, no matter what. And we all know that having PCOS causes you to gain weight in the flash of an instant if you’re not careful.

The result?!  I gained back at least 7 pounds of the weight that I lost on the Beachbody Ultimate Reset.  Not good!  Now I feel like I have to work 3 times as hard to get it back down again (of course, not uncommon with PCOS).

I really think I was ashamed to admit that I’d gained weight.  Afraid to admit that I allowed myself to slip up and that I wasn’t being as perfect with my eating as I sometimes appear to be, as if I’m being a hypocrite.  Yet I’m admitting this to show that we can’t all be perfect all the time.  We all slip up, but the most important thing to remember is that we can always get back on track.

I’ve been working out consistently with my Beachbody workouts (even doing a little Brazil Butt Lift, so much fun!!!), and it actually looks like I’ve lost several inches, so you can’t tell that I’ve gained weight.  I’m determined to get back to where I was and then some.  I refuse to allow PCOS and fibromyalgia win.  I am more than just my body, but my body is also what allows me to enjoy everything that life has to offer, and I’m going to do what it takes to be an example for myself and for other women that PCOS can be successfully managed through proper diet and exercise.  We’ve got this!

Go Heavy or Go Home!

I just had the best workout ever and I can’t get over how amazing it made me feel.  Last week, I went through the same workout, but I could barely do it because the pain from my fibromyalgia was so horrendous.  This week, I powered through it and even though I was sweating buckets, I felt fantastic.  Chalene Johnson even said at the very end “You should feel like a million bucks” and I shouted back at the TV “yes Chalene, I do!!!!”  I can’t wait to work out live with her at Beachbody’s Coach Summit in Vegas in a few more weeks.

I even bought heavier weights last night because 5 pounds just wasn’t cutting it anymore!

Despite the recent weight loss that I’ve had thanks to the Beachbody Ultimate Reset, my weight has stabilized and I’ve been getting frustrated with myself because of the fact that I still have body fat on my body.  Which you might think sounds kind of ridiculous, but as my good friend Katy affectionately says to me, I’m eating “twigs and berries.”  I honestly don’t understand how it’s physiologically possible for me to have fat on my stomach and thighs when I drink a superfoods shake for breakfast everyday, have a salad with fruit for lunch, have another shake as a snack, and then eat vegetables with a whole grain for dinner, practically everyday.

I’d understand if I were eating junk here and there, but I’m honestly not.  There’s nothing that I’m eating that my body can grab onto in order for the fat to be there.  The only thing I can think of is that something strange is going on with my PCOS.  Either I’m not eating enough calories, or I’m eating too much (I don’t ever bother to count calories).  My guess is I’m not eating enough, because I’ve been waking up in the middle of the night starving.  I’ve also been eating higher glycemic fruits, like bananas, so I guess I have to cut back.  I’m still figuring out what works for me, because so many foods still make me so bloated, but it’s just so frustrating because I know that I take care of myself, and although I’m not severely overweight, I’ve got at least 10 to 20 pounds to go.  It’s even more frustrating when I see people shoveling junk into their bodies and they maintain a slim physique.  Trust me, the last thing I want to be doing is shoveling junk into my body, but it’s kind of a pain having to overanalyze every little thing that goes into my mouth.  Ok, rant over.  🙂

The weather’s been gorgeous around here, so today at lunch I sat outside with my IIN Fast Track Workbook and worked on learning on how to market myself while I enjoyed my delicious fruit.

And then when I left work, I couldn’t resist stopping by Starbucks and buying a soy chai (with half the amount of sugar or else it’s way too sweet for me!) and then having some Shakeology “ice cream” as a snack!

I also ordered two new books from Amazon and was excited to see that they were at my door when I arrived.  One’s a brand new vegan cookbook (as if I didn’t have enough already!) and the other one is about, as the title says, healing your headache.  The latest medicine that the neurologist gave me isn’t working, and even though I’m seeing him again next week, this book came recommended to me by another Beachbody coach who has fibromyalgia, and I’d like to see what it says and whether it’ll help me.  Hopefully it’ll tell me something new that I don’t already know.  It also had great reviews on Amazon.

For dinner, I had these amazing Tempeh Taco Lettuce Wraps courtesy of The Fitnessista.  A super easy recipe that only took me a few minutes to make!  Unfortunately I didn’t have mushrooms and I probably would’ve added some more spices next time, but definitely a recipe worth repeating!

Can’t believe it’s already June tomorrow, but I’m ready for it!

Fibromyalgia meets PCOS

Imagine having pain all over your body 24/7, with no relief in site.  It’ll come and go in waves, but it’s always there.  For a while, the best I could describe it is that it felt like I could always use a massage through my shoulders and back, but I didn’t think much else of it.  Oh yeah, and then there are the chronic daily headaches that I live with on a daily basis and that I’ve talked about before.

As I’ve gotten more involved with going to the chiropractor regularly and been more involved with researching my symptoms, I’ve been hearing more and more about fibromyalgia.  My chiropractor even briefly mentioned to me a few weeks ago that he thought I might have fibromyalgia, but I still had no idea what it meant.  I finally did my own research thanks for Fibromyalgia Awareness Day and thanks to the guidance of a few other Beachbody coaches that also have it, and I couldn’t believe that I felt like I was reading about myself.

So today I finally talked to my chiropractor about it.  My Beachbody coach friends told me to ask him about a functional medicine doctor.  Somehow, it went over my head that he also practices functional medicine.  He’s actually been suspecting for a long time that fibromyalgia has been my problem, but since it’s hard to diagnose and there’s no specific test for it, other autoimmune diseases must first be ruled out of the picture.  Since I’ve tried pretty much everything and ruled out a lot of things (including Lyme!), he finally conducted the official diagnosis by assessing the fibromyalgia trigger points, which was most definitely painful!

I’m actually happy that I finally have an answer.  And it’s no wonder that nothing is really working and I feel the way that I feel.  Having PCOS AND fibromyalgia is quite a concoction in my body, to say the least.  I know that the healthy lifestyle changes that I’ve made are definitely helping.  Exercise is definitely helping.  Even if I don’t immediately feel it, I know that the pain could be a lot worse.  And every single day I’m thankful for my illness (illnesses? dis-eases?), because if it weren’t for what I have, I would never have discovered my true passion.

Now, onto the food I had today!  Shakeology was for breakfast, as usual.  I actually stopped taking pictures of the Shakeology because they’re always the same, yummy and good!  But I do have an awesome picture that was shared by another coach on Facebook related to Shakeology!

Lunch was a yummy microgreen salad

With some fresh fruit

I did have a chocolate Shakeology as a snack before doing my ChaLEAN Extreme (gotta stay in shape, despite the pain!)  I used to use the pain and being chronically tired as an excuse, but after another coach told me that she doesn’t let fibromyalgia win, I decided to adopt the same attitude, and I haven’t missed a single workout since!  🙂

I was super tired today too, because I didn’t sleep well last night.  On days like these, I don’t feel like cooking.  Instead of being lazy about it though, I threw some millet into the rice cooker, chopped up some zucchini, onion, asparagus, and some carrots, and dinner was ready in less than 15 minutes.  Quick, simple, easy, and delicious!

And now I’m headed to bed because my pain levels are high and I need some sleep!!!