Treading Water and Health

So I have been in the full throttle of being a student and an adult. Although I’m very lucky because I still live at home and am being supported through my education – so I am a full time student and not working – let me repeat, I am very lucky.

I am a nursing student, and it takes a lot of time, energy and effort. I have been treading water with my health (physical and mental) and the point is just not to drown. I know this sounds a little dramatic but those who deal with or care for someone with mental health issues will understand. My bipolar does not define me, but it is a part of me. And it is something that is triggered easily by stress and bad health habits (like stressing over studying and not sleeping, or copious amounts of caffeine, etc). So I’m treading water until summer comes again and I can fully focus on my health.

I also deal with PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome). Long story short, my hormones tend to mess with me and that doesn’t help the already fluctuating moods and my proneness to weight gain (+medication weight gain) and struggle to take it back off. I was diagnosed when I was 14 years old and am now 23, and have never really focused on it or dealt with it. So I am doing my research into things to help me.

I used to manage it well before being engulfed by post-secondary education, but I am determined to get back there.

I’ve also started to take a heap load of vitamins to help with overall health and problem specific issues.

So here are some things I’m doing [I am not a doctor and cannot give advice in such – this is just what I’m doing for me]: 

Vitamins –

  • vitamin D
    • there are some studies that show it can help with depression and mood fluctuations, especially with the seasons changing
  • multivitamin for women
    • general overall health
  • probiotic
    • this helps with stomach/intestine bacteria, it helps the body process foods and eliminates bloating pain, discomfort, can help with heartburn (I have GERD) and just overall improves the gut
  • magnesium
    • helps with such a variety of things but I’m taking it for migraines, mood swings, and pms symptoms,
  • evening primrose oil
    • this is to help with the PCOS, I’m still new to it but I’ve heard it can help with hormone fluctuations and therefore possibly east cystic pain
  • folic acid
    • this is for the mental health, its been shown in bipolar to help with both down swings and up swings
  • omega-3
    • this is also for the mental health and overall brain health, helping with moods

I also started drinking lemon water with apple cider vinegar in the mornings with my breakfast and coffee, its supposed to help with weight loss, digestion, lowers blood sugar levels, and helps heart health.

Other than that I am trying to eliminate processed food (so things like white bread), which I know I won’t completely rid of, but I am trying to cut down.

The next step is introducing exercise again, but thats a work in progress.

Until next time!

 

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How do you like your coffee?

I am currently sipping a brewed Keurig coffee with a little bit of unsweetened vanilla almond milk. It’s a little strong but just what I need.

Today marks the day I start a self-love journey. I am so tired of comparing myself to others and just not feeling healthy in general – so it’s time to make a change – and I’m excited. I’m working with a wellness coach and today we met for the first time and she is lovely. You know when you just get a good vibe? Yup I am feeling hopeful.

Sure I’d love to lose weight (that medication often makes hard to lose) – but she said something that made me think a lot and come to the conclusion; that why do we as a society focus on weight loss and not overall health and happiness?

I am always looking for the next goal, “ok once I do this I’ll feel good”. But why not make lifestyle changes and plan for longer term happiness and work on myself from within?

Well I am going too. Starting today.

 

Losing how much?? Fitness plan and routine*

Save to say we all go through phases of wanting to lose weight/tone up/lean out/build muscle/etc.. For me this is losing weight and being strong. My 2 body goals.

So my overall goal is to lose around 100 pounds and build my strength. I realize this is not going to happen even close to over night but I’m willing to work at it for a long time because I want my lifestyle to change not be a fad.

So being a previous athlete who has gained weight from medication and health, and bad eating habits – I know a little about working out and nutrition. It’s just about getting back there. So my plan for now:

Nutrition: High protein, low carb. Eat eat eat your meat (and alternatives). And some low carb veggies and low sugar fruit. Some people go extreme but if I’m craving and pb & j sandwich I’ll have it but I mainly strive to eat clean.

Workout: I range and aim to hit 20-45 minutes of cardio (been loving cycling) and then weights for about 10-20 minutes. I write out a plan for myself and target different muscle regions on different days to alternate and allow for max rest and push when each is needed.

So far I am down 6.4 pounds! Only 93.6 left !

If you have any workout tips, people to follow, articles to read, hit me up and let me know please!!

New Passions

I can’t believe I’m saying this – but I love running. It is hard, very hard, but so rewarding at the same time. I run in a group which helps when I feel like I can’t go on, and it keeps me active. I’m going on my third week of this new passion of mine, and I haven’t missed a day yet (I run 3x a week).

I got a nice pair of running shoes, the Under Armour Bandits 2 and they are actually great. They have good support, and a fair bit of cushion which is extra helpful for my achey joints. Plus they look amazing.

My first couple of runs I didn’t track but I’m using an app called “Runkeeper” now and it’s also great. It gives me my time run, distance, pace, and elevation. So far my longest run has been 2.21 km (about 1.4 miles) and it was just under 10 min per km. So no I am not fast at all, but I do it – I run.

I love learning about running and better techniques, so if you have any tips or input let me know!

Benefits of Açaí We Actually Care About

I am on a mission to get healthier and lose weight. Some strategies for me, include eating breakfast – a healthy breakfast. So I made coffee (a necessity) and a big fruit smoothie with açaí added in. I hear a lot of benefits about this fashionable ingredient and a lot of “myths”; but what is actually important and seemingly real?

#1. Heart Helpful – Because it is so high in antioxidants it is bound to have helpful effects but in this case it aids in lowering cholesterol which in turn helps your heart not work as hard and overall keep cleaner.

#2. Digestion aid – Again because of the antioxidants, they have a good ability to aid in digestion due to being nutrient rich and high in fiber (and we all know fiber is helpful for many things).

#3. Immunity helper – It is high in that Vitamin C and ellagic acid which is said to be a dueling combo that helps boost your immune system. It is not a replacement for medicine if you are sick but can help prevent a cold coming on, instead of maybe your high sugar orange juice.

#4. Energy – Because it is overall a healthy supplement, it can lead to an increase in energy and stamina. I can attribute to this because of my large smoothie I’m drinking at the moment and feeling wonderful.

This is my main thoughts I’ve researched and feel are said to be true. Just like any other fruit or supplement there are pro’s but not miracle workings. So just be educated in what you consume and keep positive in finding solutions for you.

2017 Goals and Hopes

How do you define success? Is it losing 10 pounds or is it being comfortable in your body?

Ideally we think ok set this goal and than I will be.. happy, confident, satisfied, etc.

But it’s the “than I’ll be..” that gets us tied up in a pattern of frustration. Why don’t we set ourselves up for success? Let’s make goals based off how we want to feel and see our life and not by how we are going to get there. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to lose weight but ultimately I want to feel confident and love my body.

So here’s my top 3 goals and hopes for 2017:

  1. love my body and be confident
  2. feel joy in more aspects of my life
  3. feel strong emotionally and physically

What are some of your hopes and goals?

How to Get Fit.. right?

For most of us there is this every strive to get fit. But how do we do it; cardio, lifting, yoga? There are so many options in this day and age. Being a biology and psychology major, I love how the body works and how the mind is involved. So I’ve been doing research on this matter.

Cardio is key.

This is the biggest thing I’ve learned for fat loss, and it doesn’t have to be a 5km run, dance, laugh, walk, MOVE. That’s it simple.

Now here is the trick, build lean muscle. Muscle helps to burn extra fat. Now I’m not saying you have to get ripped, but light weights like 5 or 10 pound weights will help with weight loss and overall fitness.

Lastly, lighten up. If you miss a couple days or weeks or months, screw it – jump back on the train.

You cannot hate yourself into loving yourself.

So here’s an example I’ve what I try to do (disclaimer: I am by no means a professional in any sense of the word).

–> cardio 4-5x a week (I do count work as a big contributor to this because I walk and stand all day, minimal sitting)

–> light weights and body weight exercise 2-3x a week

If you like fitness ideas and themes let me know by liking this and I will happily do more!