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A Pizza Find

I have been wanting really good pizza for awhile! But with so many dietary restrictions, it’s a challenge to find something to purchase that won’t cause pain or bother my allergies; in other words, cause more inflammation. So I decided to start paying attention to ingredients that I might be able to try and give it a whirl.

And I made on today! AND IT WAS TASTY! When experimenting, I don’t really use measurements lol; it’s more of a play it by ear method. The crust is cauliflower based by Caulipower. I then minced 4 cloves of garlic and poured extra virgin olive oil in a bowl with the garlic so that the oil covered the garlic. I whisked for a bit and then whisked in dried oregano.

With the garlic oil base

Next I poured these onto the crust. Tomatoes are nightshades and tend to cause joint pain so I’m trying different bases. I cut up pre-cooked chicken sausage and added to the crust. Lastly I used a mix of goat cheese and vegan cheese (that’s not cashew based because cashews are a no for me) to top. I baked for about 15 minutes on 400 degrees.

What would I do different? Probably just use goat cheese. I liked that more than the vegan cheese but that’s matter of preference. I would also have added onions, olives and more oregano. Next time, I’ll also try a pesto base instead. To keep from getting bored, I have to keep trying different options. This will definitely go into the rotation!

Finished pizza

Any suggested toppings? List them below and I’ll try them too. 🥂 to your good health. Until next time!

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Ergonomically Working from Home

Today’s blog post will be the last installment of working remotely as multiple states seek to re-open soon. I believe that many employees who did not have the opportunity to work remotely prior to coronavirus may be able to moving forward as companies see that employees can be productive and save on overhead while working from home.

One of the aspects of working from home that I did not consider when I began is ensuring that I used ergonomic products. Now, I’m the beginning, my health was not 100% so I worked from the comfort of being in bed …or so I thought. Not using the appropriate office furniture and equipment definitely took a physical toll on me – even to the point of now doing physical therapy for spine and neck. Yikes!

What would I have done differently if I could go back on time? I would have actually used the desk that I had but rarely used. Then maybe I would’ve noticed other products that could help along the way. I’ll share the two that I purchased since beginning physical therapy.

This is my stand to hold my laptop. It ensures that my eyes are actually at the appropriate level so my neck, shoulders and spine can attempt to be in alignment. The stand is adjustable in height as well and can work for either laptops or computer monitors. While this is not an endorsement, I purchased it at Staples before the outbreak of coronavirus.

My desk has a keyboard holder that slides out as well. Purchasing a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse was a game changer. Before I held my shoulders up as I placed my forearms on the desk to type. Wrong, wrong, wrong said my physical therapist. Using the keyboard has decreased neck and shoulder tightness and tension. Again, game changer. This is not a super fancy keyboard. I picked them up at Target immediately after a physical therapy appointment. The combination of both purchases was well under $100 so I consider them great investment tools.

Health is a priceless wealth. Invest while you can.

Bryant McGill

What suggestions might you have regarding ergonomic products? Has anything helped you? We would love to hear your feedback! As always 🥂 to your good health. Until next time …

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Remote work, part 2

I work remotely 75% of the time so I am sharing tips from my “normal” as so many are adjusting to this current reality.

This week’s advice:

– show your manager that you are working by picking up a side project.

Yes, that may sound odd when you have your regular work responsibilities so let me give you my example. When I am not working from home, I travel a great deal, sometimes every week for months at a time. Since all of my travel has been canceled through at least the end of April, I have much more time to fill during work hours. I decided to work on a procedure manual for my role. The job that I hold never existed before so I know there is nothing written down documenting what I do, how things are accomplished, the appropriate contact people, etc.

Not only does this self-given project fill my work hours, it also demonstrates initiative, being a self-starter, makes a great use of time- and your manager will know that you have been working. You may not travel, but you could use the time typically spent on meetings that are now conducted via email.

I hope this helps. Any other suggestions that may assist others?

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Working Remotely

I work from home about 75% of the time so I’m sharing tips as a remote employee during coronavirus.

If your job has moved to remote working during this crisis, these tips may help-

  1. Keep a schedule closely aligned with your regular schedule;
  2. Do not work in the bedroom to keep work/life separate;
  3. Find time to exercise – a walk around the block to get fresh air and a change of scenery;
  4. Make time for lunch. Sometimes, I blow right through lunch without realizing it because it’s so easy to do at home;
  5. Keep in touch with others. Working at home can be isolating so I make sure to call, text or video chat with some one during work breaks. And it might brighten their day!
  6. Use your normal commute time to pursue something that you would love to do but usually don’t have time for;
  7. Get dressed. It seems simple but it helps put me in the mindset for work.

I hope this helps! Any other suggestions that may assist others? Add yours as we adjust to this new “normal.” It is a blessing to be able to have to the option to work from when so many in the service and hospitality industries have not been able to. Stay healthy, maintain social distancing and 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!! 🎊🥂🍾

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Mental preparation

I joined several PCOS groups on Facebook and often, the discussions center around weight loss. When you have PCOS, losing weight can be challenging, at best. And many ask for help in these forums, as do many family and friends. They all ask- can someone (or me in particular with family and friends) help me? Can you tell me what diet you’re on? After telling them I follow a paleo type plan (often AIP as well), I let them know what to do first.

Can you guess? It’s not throwing out junk food. Or the number of workouts to complete. Or how to change habits. None of that- well at least initially. No, the first thing that I tell people is that they have to get their minds right. They have to want to make this change more than anything and they need a reason to stick with it.

My reason? Well I had two reasons to make a dramatic change. One- to figure out a way to lessen joint pain. Losing weight is key so that there would be less pressure on my knees. Each pound that I dropped is the equivalent of getting rid of 4 pounds of pressure on my knees! So at 71 pounds, that’s 284 pounds of pressure! THAT’S INSANE!!! My second reason was that I just wanted to feel better. It seemed no matter what I did, I was getting worse and worse. And while I didn’t know exactly what to do at first, I knew that I couldn’t stay where I was.

How did I mentally prepare? I read ALOT. I came across a book entitled 8 steps to reverse your PCOS. I joined the groups on Facebook. I started reading more about alternative therapies and how food is a huge deal for PCOS. I came across Dr. Ken Berry and his YouTube channel about the keto diet. While keto is not the most appropriate plan for me, Dr. Berry’s knowledge and zeal made me do more research. I prayed and cried- the cry part is hard to admit because I’m usually seen as the super strong individual. And I got a new job in which I work remotely which allowed me to rest as needed on my not so well days.

All this prep work led to me finally make the decision to begin working with Robin’s program for PCOS. She is now my nutritionist and I work with her one on one. But what most don’t know is that I followed her email blasts for at least two years before taking the plunge to begin the work. I had to get rid of the old thought pattern that only birth control pills could effectively manage PCOS (as told to me by a PCOS specialist in Baltimore who shall remain nameless). I was floored when the specialist told me that and basically brushed off my questions about diet and alternative therapy.

And I still need my reasons why I continue on this journey, especially when I’m hangry or lacking sleep or feeling emotional or overworked- whatever the situation. I don’t always feel like cooking. I don’t always want to feel and process emotions. I don’t always get enough sleep. And who wants to workout when it’s cold? 🥶 BUT I also don’t want to go backward and be in the state that I was in 1.5 years ago. So I have to follow what I know works most days; I’m not perfect and everyday will not be perfect but I plan around early morning flights or being stuck in an airport with very limited food options. Planning? That’s mental preparation put into action.

I could go on and on but I’ll just say it IS doable. As much as I joke that I don’t do a lot in managing PCOS, most of the work is renewing my mind everyday to do what needs to be done. The journey is worth it. There is a light at the end of the tunnel – better health. And it’s a lifetime journey in which you’ll have to prepare yourself daily. Share with others or leave a note about how you had/have to make mental adjustments. 🥂 to your good health. Until next time…

Source: Instagram