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In the latter half of August 2018, I decided to really work on my health and find more natural approaches to do so. This was after an expert in PCOS basically told me that I could just stay on birth control pills to manage it for the rest of my life! 😱

I came across the keto diet and did that for 3 months. However, since I have slow digestion, the program has WAYYYYY too much meat for me and I never felt hungry. But the keto diet was a great kick start to transition to paleo, which is basically what I still follow. Keto helped me stop a lot of junk cravings but I still wanted to feel better.

I started working with a nutritionist who specializes in PCOS in January 2019. And while working with the nutritionist involved revamping everything I had known in terms of food, what would work for me, motivation and habits, it was sooooo worth it.

When I started mid-August 2018 to make a total change and find something that was a permanent solution, I weighed about 245 pounds. Fairly accurate as I went to a gym and used the scale there. I’ve included a couple of before pics from earlier in 2018.

Summer 2018
April 2018 at a gala

Since that time, I’ve lost 81.8 pounds to date. This is the first time that I’ve ever released weight and actually been able to keep it off!! Ever! And no, I’ve had no surgeries or used any gimmicks. I just had to make real, sustainable changes with the guidance of my nutritionist.

I have improved health in so many ways – better sleep, more energy, less brain fog, better walking ability with osteoarthritis, less PMS, clearer skin, less hirtuism, better digestion, very few junk food cravings, and more confidence because I feel much better! I’m still a work in progress and have more goals that I want to reach but I’ve included recent pics from this month.

Summer 2020
August 2020 birthday celebration

I hope this inspires you to reach your goals! You can do this. And if you veer off track, the next day is a new one; the next meal is another chance to do better. Until next time, 🥂 to your good health!

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Feeling Festive

Today I am celebrating progress! 🥳 so many times, we (and especially me!), focus on how much further we have to go. But I decided that I’m going to start measuring how far I’ve come and making victory laps of baby steps.

Yes, I’m still in physical therapy but I can finally raise my head to a neutral position. Yes, I need to tone up more, but I’m down approximately 104 pounds from my highest weight. Yes, I still rely on a cane when needed, but I don’t need a knee replacement today.

Rejoice in celebrating life!! 🎉🎊🎆

🥂to your good health! Until next time …
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April Explorations

So I’ve been in social/physical distancing for 7 weeks now…. and when the weather is great, I go out for a walk since our gym is closed. Thankfully, my apartment complex has been posting suggestions of walking trails that are still open during this time. Today, I decided to check out the Riverwalk in a neighboring town.

Entrance to Riverwalk

Riverwalk is actually part of a walking trail between two parks and can extend to a local mountain area. Now, I didn’t walk that far! (I wasn’t thinking recently, ate food with paprika which is a nightshade and aggravated joint pain.) It’s a really pretty area, a bit hillier than what I am accustomed to. While I wore a face covering, I only saw one other couple that had on masks so the next time I go, it will definitely be earlier in the day for fewer people.

I truly believe walking and just being in a nature is therapy. Well, it is for me. And it’s great exercise…and with heavy pollen winding down, it’s a great opportunity to get outside of my four walls and get a change of scenery.

This was actually written in chalk at several locations on the trail LOL

Below are more pictures from exploring today.

Over the Eno River

How has your physical distancing been? What have you learned from it? I am doing a series of chats with friends of activities or ideas that they have been involved in during this time; we will be on Instagram. I chose that platform so that I can have another person on with me. If you are interested in checking it out, my IG is msinternationalsuperstar. This time may be difficult for some and let’s all be a help to one another by connecting. As always, until next time….

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Excuse or No Excuse

One of the things that I hear the most is that eating healthy is expensive. But it doesn’t have to be. Now, I choose to eat as much organic that I can when purchasing groceries but I’m a singleton and make enough to do so. I’m not bragging; before my current position, I only got organic produce when it was on sale but I still tried to buy healthy food. And you may still think- but healthier food is still more! But is it? Let me explain.

My aunt has really bad acid reflux. I mean, she’s had to go to urgent care several times. And she doesn’t make much money with super crappy insurance. (I could write lots of blogs on how bad insurance is but I digress…) so each urgent care visit has an unexpected associated cost plus time missed from work. This is in addition to the monthly premium that she pays, any meds needed and follow up care. Thankfully after her last visit, she listened to the doc and has not had more crisis events. But these events add up!

She eats healthier and more appropriate foods that avoid illness. She’s also started losing weight as a result. And I totally get that. She’s not allowing excuses to stop her progress. And that’s my goal. I travel all the time for work, my sleep patterns can be all over the place, I don’t always have access to quality food… the list can go on and on. But I decided that I didn’t want to be in pain forever, getting sicker and weaker. And I had to literally write down the excuses that I was telling myself every day and then counter them with true statements. It’s so easy for the mind to resist change, even if it’s positive change, and hang on to hang ups.

So everyday I have to make a choice to be healthier, regardless of the piece of chocolate that I had yesterday or the egg biscuit sandwich I had while at the airport; true from this morning in Atlanta! I will still take my supplements because they help in the long run. I’ll still make sure to get in at least a mile of walking even though I’m on a 5 hour flight; not doing so will leave my joints way too stiff and painful. And I will do what I can to continue to be healthier, without falling back on excuses.

So have you let excuses stop you from moving forward? Have you found a way to mitigate excuses? Share and let’s discuss. 🥂 to your good health. Until next time …

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2020 Intentions

2020 isn’t just a new year. We are on the precipice of a new decade! And it’s time to be intentional with where I want to be during that time. I recently viewed a clip of Steve Harvey on twitter and he talked a good deal about writing your vision and keeping a vision board in front of you to actualize your future- having place to move toward rather than floating around any which way. So I’ve written ALOT about my hopes for this new decade that cover multiple aspects of life. You’ve got to write the vision and make it plain! I also made a digital vision board so that I can see it on my computer and use as my phone’s wallpaper.

Source: Country Living

I don’t necessarily set new year’s resolutions but I have started setting intentions and goals. I hope to bring these intentions with me every day. The intentions that I have set for 2020 are joy, love and blessings. My goals include continuing the great work on my physical health that I’ve started, working on career health (a unique way of framing it), and improving emotional and mental health. I want to continue working with a friend’s non profit foundation and hone in on my life’s purpose.

Thank you for taking the time to read my writings and I hope to continue to earn the privilege of your time in 2020. Happy New Year to all!! 🎊🥂🍾