Oxidative Stress and the Athlete


So what now? How do you take action?

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Easy and Free Ways to Raise Money for your Favorite Charity!

It's January! The streets (and internet) are a buzz with resolutions, power words goals and fitness! We are looking at how we can take better care of ourselves as well as others. That normally takes time or money. Both are resources that seem to be tight after a long holiday season. So how do you help the charities that are so near and dear to your heart? There are so many great causes out there, but we are often limited to helping one or two. Well, that is no longer the case! Two apps are here to help you give while you are doing other activities.

They are helping you multiply your time and that is a good thing!

Easy and Free Ways to Raise Money for your Favorite Charity - Charity Miles and Donate a Photo 1.png

Here at THLP we are all about simplifying and multiplying our efforts. Enter the Charity Miles and Donate a Photo apps! Each app allows you to support a charity of your choosing while already doing something that you normally do! Exercising and taking pictures! 

How do they work?

Charity Miles

 

  1. Download the app
  2. Create a profile
  3. Choose the Healthy Living Revolution Team
  4. Start raising money while you get fit!
  5. Feel great that you did something for you and someone else!

Large corporations, register as sponsors. You choose the charity and a corporation is assigned to sponsor your activity. There are ads that will pop up, but I just put my phone in my water bottle holder and I am on my way! 

Listed below are just a few of the charities that can benefit from your exercise!

Girls On The Run
– Empowering girls through running

Special Olympics
– Empower athletes with intellectual disabilities

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America
– Cure Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis

She’s the First
– Educate girls in low-income countries

Soles4Souls
– Provide shoes to fight poverty worldwide

Nothing But Nets
– Provide anti-malaria bednets

Back On My Feet
– Empower people experiencing homelessness

The Ironman Foundation
– Get kids active

Foundation of the NSNA
– Support our future nurses

The Michael J. Fox Foundation
– Cure Parkinson’s Disease

Autism Speaks
– Support Autism research

World Wildlife Fund
– Protect nature and wildlife

Stand Up To Cancer
– Fund cancer research

ASPCA
– Protect Animals

Alzheimer’s Association
– Support Alzheimer’s research

USO
– Support our service members

Team Red, White & Blue
– Enrich the lives of American veterans

Feeding America
– Fight hunger in America

ALS Association
– Fighting to treat and cure ALS

Habitat for Humanity
– Provide housing to people worldwide

National Multiple Sclerosis Society
– Move towards a world free of MS

Wounded Warrior Project
– Honor and empower wounded warriors

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
– Cure and treat childhood cancer

Charity: Water
– Provide clean and safe drinking water

National Park Foundation
– Protect our National parks


Our friends at Healthy Living Revolution, created a Charity Miles team and we have been having a great time being part of it and raising money while we get fit!

At the time of this post

our team has logged over 40,000 miles for charity!


Donate a Photo

  1. Download the app
  2. Create a profile
  3. Take a photo and share!
  4. Set the reminders for you to take a picture every day
  5. Feel great about your good deed!

It seems that Donate a Photo has a few different types of campaigns. Campaigns that help an unlimited amount of people, campaigns that will help a maximum number of people (you can tell by the __ of __ helped counter on the campaign, and inactive campaigns that we closed once the commitment was made. They layout their campaigns in categories and completed.

The categories are: 

  • Women's and Children's Health
  • Healthy Families
  • Health Workforce
  • Environmental Health
  • Global Disease Challenges
  • Essential Surgery
  • Education and Equality
  • Emergency Relief

If you join either app to start raising money, tag us on your social media shares or use the #thehealthylifeproject so we can celebrate you! 

F @thehealthylifeprojectblog   |  IG @thehealthylifeprojectblog   |  T  @thehealthylifep


Are you improving your health in 2018?

Click the button below to set a time to talk with Nikol about her favorite go-to nutritional product.

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Easy and Free Ways to Raise Money for your Favorite Charity - The Healthy Life Project.png

Healthy New Year's Eve Recipes

We will always be forever grateful for those who have talent and creativity in the kitchen! We both have many talents but unfortunately, they do not include any kind of natural talent for recipe creation.

But that is okay!

#1- Because that is not who God made us to be.

#2 - Food Bloggers

#3- Pinterest!

We scoured Pinterest for some great healthy and creative recipes for your special New Year's Eve party. 

I'm going to go ahead and say that I have my eye firmly planted on the Vegan Champagne "Jell-O" Shots by Morsels and Moonshine. Take a while and check out her delectable website for more recipes. They all look ah-mazing!

Salted Chocolate Dipped Mandarin Slices by Deliciously Yum look like a perfect treat that the kids can make AND eat!

I'm a sucker for buffalo wings, so these Buffalo Quinoa Bites by Betsy Life look perfecto and guilt free!

You can check out all the recipes we saved on our Healthy New Year's Eve Recipes Board.

Hope you enjoy!

Have a safe and lovely New Year's Eve!

If you make any of the recipes listed above or on the board, come back and let us know how you liked them in the comments!

NYE recipes Pinterest.png

How To Pick Your Word For The Year

I love new beginnings!

A new adventure energizes me and gets me excited for life. I get giddy just thinking about the possibility of a new beginning. What makes me even more excited than the actual new beginning is preparing for it! The week between Christmas and New Year’s is my JAM! I love all that it is. For me, it is the reflection of time past and the dreams of the future that gets me giddy.

 

A fresh start. Unlimited possibilities. #swoon

It is time to pick a word for the year!

I have a system that I go through and I thought I would share it with you incase you are not sure how people decide on their word/action, or you have chosen one that didn’t work well and you would like to “get it right” this year.

I have created a handy dandy printable for you so you can cozy up on the couch with your comfy socks, your favorite pen and a cup of something warm and delicious while you go through the exercise.

How To Pick Your Word Workbook

250 cover image  how to pick your word  workbook

Download this workbook and set yourself up for success for the upcoming year or as a reset at any time!!

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

 

Steps to choosing your word or action for the year.

What do you want to focus on?

Are you looking for something to weave in every part of your life or are you considering something specific like your finances?

Why do you want to choose this action?

Is this something your friend is doing and you thought it would be great for you? Or did you hear about it on a news report and it sounds glamorous?

Does this have a positive feeling?

Negative feelings from the past aren't necessarily a bad thing if they fuel you to make positive changes. But losing weight because you have always hated your thighs may not be the positive motivation you will need to uphold the action needed.

How could this action affect your life?

Will you be changing jobs? How does that affect your drive time? Will you travel more?

Do you want to read a book a week? Then you will be carving out an hour or so a day to read. Does that mean you have to cut back on the amount of tv you watch?

Are you going to train for a marathon? When will you run? How much do the shoes, gear and race entry cost?

What are the potential positive results?

You will earn more money in a new job and you will be able to start saving for a rainy day or to take a vacation.

You will be able to travel the world through books or learn about an unlimited amount of topics.

You will be more fit, cross off a bucket item and make new friends through your training clubs.

What are the potential negative results?

You may have a longer commute and end up spending your new salary on a new car needed for the commute.

Your friends may spoil the ending if your favorite show.

You may need messages or physical therapy during training. Does your insurance cover this? What would the financial cost be?

Can you incorporate it into all the aspects of your life?

Home, Family, Marriage, Work, Mental, Spiritual & Physical Health

Do you have mental space for this action?

Does it require you to learn something new? Are you starting a new position at work, but want to also learn a new skill?

Do you have space in your calendar for this action?

Will it require time? What will I say “no” to in order to say “yes” to this?

Do you have the physical ability for this action?

Are you 4’11”, but want to be a professional basketball player?

Do you have the money for this action?

If not, where will you get it from?

What will it mean if you do not carry out this action?

Are others affected if you do not do this? 

 

So tell me! Does your word hold up to the test?

This next part is like a pick your own adventure book.

If it does, congratulations!!!! Continue on and fill in the statement below.

If your word did not hold up to the test, look to see why it didn’t hold up and go through the process with a new word or action.

 

My word of action for this year is ________. I am excited for it to improve my _______ and I am okay to saying no to ________ in order to support my choice.

Write your statement out in several places (bathroom mirror, your planner, your phone, a sticky note on your computer) to keep it in the forefront of your mind!

I would LOVE to know what your word or action is.

Comment below or post your new statement on social media and tag us! 
Fb: @thehealthylifeprojectblog
IG: @thehealthylifeprojectblog

Wishing you the best year ever!

12 Endocrine Disruptors to Avoid

I have to admit, I used to roll my eyes at articles with headlines like this. I grew up with no allergies. No health issues. I didn't get it. I didn't understand that the tiny exposures add up over time and wreck havoc on your system.

Sadly, it took me getting severely sick to start paying attention.

I was also learning about things like toxins and endocrine disruptors through a new filter. The filter of a mom. Not only was I devastated that at barely 40 I was living the life of someone at the end of theirs, I was terrified of my children's future.  

For me, lists like these made it seem so overwhelming! Between what you can eat, and controlling the toxins that are surrounding me, it just seemed insane! I then felt sad that companies didn't seem to be looking out for the consumer, they were just looking out for their bottom line. So I started to look around for those companies doing good.

Of course, I didn't have to look very far with our own company. They operate at the highest standards that I can imagine and their products and support have helped me get my life back.

I then looked to skin care since make-up is something I use almost every day. That is how I found Andrea Price-Johnson and became fast friends with her. A girl on the same mission as ours partnering with a company dedicated to safe skin care. Not because they are mandated by laws, but because they know it is the right thing to do. Click here to learn more about Beauty Counter.  

12 Endocrine Disruptors to Avoid.png

My next step was our water supply. While we do have much better drinking water than some third-world countries, we do have harmful chemicals and bi-products in our water supply.

I chose this water filter to start with. The Adya Classic Water Filter

adyawaterfilter-01_1024x1024.png

My goal is a whole house filtration system. One day!

In my searching, I realized that I don't "have" to change everything at one time. I can just make one simple change at a time. So I printed the list provided by EWG and refer to it when I am shopping for new items or have time to tackle a new area to make safe. You can also bookmark it on your phone! For instance, when we needed new pans, I chose to purchase ceramic. It's a step in the right direction without going broke or losing your mind trying to change everything all at once.

click below to Check out the article over at EWG

and grab a printout for yourself!

DIRTY DOZEN ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS

12 Hormone-Altering Chemicals and How to Avoid Them

 


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Feeding the Good Guys

When we feed ourselves, we’re feeding a whole ecosystem inside us.

There is so much confusion about our health today- what we should eat or drink.

We have a health challenge on our hands. 

There is good news! Our DNA, is not our absolute destiny.  Switching on good genes and turning off problematic genes, which has greatly to do with nutrition, is one of the the most important of all.

This emerging field of science is called Epigenetics. 

“It’s NOT so much what our Genes ‘do to us’ It’s what WE DO to our Genes!” 

And it’s not just what happens to our genes but also what happens to our germs that live within us, specifically in our intestinal system. We called that our microbiota or microbiome, where all those tiny small germs live in our intestines.

Our immune system resides in the intestinal lining, about 70%. It is the chief regulator for our immune function in our body and brain.  What we feed our immune system or our gut matters so much more than we realized before.

We’ve been encouraged to eat our colors; to eat a wide range of plant foods. Now we’re learning that these food are not only anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer, but they’re working to support the healthy germs instead of the problematic germs in our intestine.

Our immunity is our lifeline and 70% of it resides in our gut.

What is the microbiome?  It’s the big picture of who is living in us! There are at least 10 times as many good germs living inside us, as there are human cells in our bodies. Scientists have only been able to be research them recently because they are so small and delicate that they cant’ be grown in a laboratory; they only grow in the special environment of the human body or animal host. These good germs do things for us that we can’t do: they make anti-cancer substances everyday, they make vitamins for us, and they even perform much of our digestion and keep the barrier healthy and strong so harmful things don’t leak into our bloodstream. 

Antibiotics are those drugs made to kill the infection germs so then our immune system can take over and fix the problem.

Probiotics is the good germs. We've heard about these a lot in recent years. But there is more to this...

Prebiotics is the foundational food that must be present to feed those good germs.  We must eat that foundational food in order for the probiotics to reproduce in our body and do what they should! 

Psychobiotics: or how gut bacteria messes with your mind. It is how some noxious germs can take over when the good germs have been harmed by things like antibiotics. The good news is that the good germs manufacture neurotransmitters, and make many more than we can make for ourselves. Psychologist are realizing that the microbiome is very important and they have to address feeding the good germs with good nutrition. 

How do we feed the good guys in our body?

Phytonutrients are what these good germs feed on, which are found in that rainbow of plant foods. 

Conditions Associated with Whole-Food Deficit:

  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • Altered Immune Fuction: allergies, asthma, auto-immune disorders
  • Cancer
  • Degenerative Joint Disease
  • Depression, cognitive disorders, learning & behavior disorders
  • Heart Disease & Hypertension
  • Vulnerability to infections
  • Pre-eclampsia of pregnancy
  • Protein and fat damage in athletes

New Dietary guidelines require 50% of your plate to be fruits and vegetables.

We can’t culture these good germs because they are so delicate they cannot be made in a lab; therefore, they can’t be put into probiotics we buy because those are created in labs. So, how do we get more of those good germs???! Those good germs are IN your body already and they are waiting to be fed the food they need to grow to the trillions in order to help our body. 

It’s difficult to get that rainbow color of plants everyday. Juice Plus+ is an easy button, containing the rainbow in 30 different fruits and vegetables. 

It’s uniquely studied with over 20 years and 36 different peer-reviewed, double gold standard, published, independent clinical research articles. All this research we can share with you, just contact us!

“Our chemistry is from plant chemistry.”

Even when we eat animals, those animals ate plants to get all their nutrients! 

Those good germs need the phytonutrients in plant foods to thrive and help our bodies. 


So what now? How do you take action?

You can simply share this post with your friends and loved ones.

Click the button below to set a time to talk with Nikol about her favorite go-to nutritional product.

Jump all in and click the button below join our project to live healthily and share it with the world!

This stuff sounds amazing! Just take my money!

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The Good News OR The Bad News? Dave's Report

Want to know what season is my husband's favorite? Hurricane season. Yup. Not winter, spring, summer or fall...  Why? Well, he's a surfer and when there are hurricanes off the coast they bring great waves. So, you can guess what he was doing before and after Irma. There was just one problem-- at the beginning of the session he crack his knee on the board. In pain but knowing the waves were fleeting, he continued to surf for another 2 hours until the pain unbearable. 

The Good News Or the Bad News Daves Report.png

I think you can guess that I leading to the bad news and not the good news. After weeks of RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) and not being able to do any of the training he was supposed to begin, he went to an Orthopedic. His meniscus is torn in his right knee. They don't know the extent of the damage yet but the only training he can do right now is swim.

So what is the good news about Dave's update? 

Dave has severe scoliosis. For the last few years he has struggled with the pain daily. He would have to wake up early just so he could stretch in bed and allow time to let the pain subside enough to get up and get ready. The pain would follow him all day and made certain activities almost impossible. Staying active by running and surfing helped but each day he woke to pain. When he began to add 30 different fruits and vegetables, he began to feel a lift in his pain. He then started to pay more attention to his diet and began to drink more water. Within a few months he realized he didn't have to stretch first before getting out of bed.  And then he realized he didn't feel pain at all in the mornings. And then the pain didn't even rise throughout the day! So, even though his knee is killing him right now, his back isn't! 

That is a HUGE win for him! He feels younger and it's one of the main reasons he signed up for the Ironman. Because without that daily pain, he believes he can push himself to do a race he never would have otherwise imagined. 

Hopefully his knee will heal quickly, and he'll literally be able to get ON the saddle... Although it will technically be for the first time.

The Swim: 

Since Dave has only been able to swim he is feeling much more confident. He continues to work on his form, finding that trying to breathe correctly is a bit harder than he anticipated. He loves the water and is itching to start swimming in the ocean. The part he hates the most is concentrating on his form inside a pool. Especially an indoor pool.  His blood runs salty from growing up on islands in south Florida and being the son of a fisherman. The ocean revives him and he's excited to be able to race in it. 

The Bike: 

Not able to ride yet. 

The Run: 

Not able to run yet.

Nutrition: 

Dave begins his day with a Complete shake with almond milk and berries. He also gets 30 fruits and vegetables in his Juice Plus+ capsules. We are a plant-based family but Dave also eats fish he catches when he fishes offshore. This week it was Trigger fish, yummy. He has not yet added ay specific training nutrition since he's slowly working up with swimming right now. 

Challenges:

Dave's main challenge now is to be able to jump start his Ironman training without being able to get on the bike or run. He's feeling very overwhelmed with a looming race date and a bit depressed that he can't go all in. He's the kind of person that wants to jump in and start strong when he decides to do something. He's thrilled with a big goal like Ironman and is in no way planning to let this hold him up.

Ironman is more than a physical challenge, it's a mental one. 

When you are training long hours and out there on a race course for 6-15 hours, it is your mind that can destroy you. You have to be able to push through the feelings of wanting to stop. You have to be able to push through physical pain and mental anguish when your mind is telling you there is no way you can do this "thing". The 'thing' could be a training run or a swim in a tiny lap pool. It is pushing through days of doing no training at all even when you want and know you need to. Mental strength is a challenge all it's own. 

I will be posting weekly updates on Dave's progress. What his challenges are for that week, what he's excited about, what bike he ends up getting, what gear we buy him, and so much more! Join our Facebook Group to follow along and watch Facebook Live events. 

Want to learn how Dave gets in 45 different vegetables and fruits every morning?

Easy fruits and veggies sound awesome and want to get them?

Want to join the Healthy Life Project? 

90 Days with NO Chick-fil-A?!

I want to talk to you about this unfortunate thing that happened to me the other day.

Have you ever been praying and you didn't know you were praying,

and you kind of got caught talking to the big guy,

but you didn't really mean to ask Him the thing?

I'm The Healthy Life Project, because I have an autoimmune disease called Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. I have totally stepped away from the diet that I'm supposed to be eating, and guess what? I have felt the huge ramifications of that.

Number one being brain fog. My energy's down. I can see and feel the inflammation coming back into me. I need to get back on track. So, I was just driving along, thinking to myself, and I said, "Gee, I really need to know what the first step back is." Then, I heard a voice. It was a familiar voice. It was God. We chat a lot. Sometimes I accidentally pray to Him. This day I heard, "No Chick-fil-A for 90 days." Now, for some of you, even the average person that might not be a big deal. 90 days, three months. What do you go? Once or twice a month?

I have gone ... now listen... before I tell you this, you should know that it has snuck back in slowly and then ever so quickly back into my diet where the week that I said, "I've got to know what to do," was after my fourth time going through the drive-through that week! So, it's definitely an issue. Definitely more than the average person. Anyway, that's it. I mean, that's just where we are right now. We, meaning me and my Chick-fil-A issue. So, no Chick-fil-A for 90 days. It was late in the week. I decided, "We're going to start this on Monday." I had one last Chick-fil-A meal. Today is day three of 90.

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I have not had Chick-fil-A. I accidentally had two bites of a chicken sandwich from a different place. I just naturally ordered it. I was ordering for somebody else, and I just got one for myself, two bites in, realized, "What am I doing?" Handed it to somebody else, asked them to eat it for me if they wanted it, otherwise just chuck it, but there we go. So, no Chick-fil-A for 90 days. When you are eating it two to four times a week, it's just kind of a habit. That is, I feel like, one of the hardest things to change when we're trying to lead a healthier life.


It's just habit. When it's habit, you don't think about it. When you don't think about it and you try to change that habit, you honestly don't remember what the other options are. Now, obviously, this might not be as drastic with the Chick-fil-A, but let me tell you as a busy mom how many times I am stuck out and about and I'm hungry. That is really where this is coming from. Our busy lifestyle, we're out and about all the time. For some reason, I always manage to have snacks and whatnot for the kids, but oops didn't pack anything for myself, and therefore we end up through the line, and we're grabbing something.

Real Food: Alongside with the no Chick-fil-A thing, I am working on adding more real food to my diet.

Micro Nutrients: I'm still on my Juice Plus Trio.

Macro Nutrients: I'm going to be upping my one shake a day to two shakes per day, because I need to get a lot of this yuckiness back out. The toxins and just the buildup ... I mean, this brain fog and the lack of energy that I have and the puffiness. Those are all signs of toxins building up in your system and they need to go, because eighth grade logic on a fuzzy brain is not a good, fun thing to do. We homeschool in case you didn't know. 

Hydration: I'm going to be upping my water. I don't remember to drink water, so I'll be trying to drink seven to eight glasses of water a day.

Recharge / Sleep: Getting more sleep. Now normally, an adult needs seven to eight hours of sleep. I really need about eight to nine, sometimes even 10 hours of sleep. That's hard. When you end the day and you want to have some alone time and just kind of chill, the time really does slip away from you. So, I've set an alarm on my phone for nine o'clock lights out. Hopefully, that will work.

Exercise: I hope to exercise 2-3 days a week. I have a random knee issue that I'm recovering from so that means walking.

Cutting from my plate: I will be re-eliminating gluten. That has definitely been something that has been sneaking in once in a while. I think, "It's just fine. I'll just have a little bite of gluten here and a little bit of gluten there and it won't make a big deal." Not true my friends! Eliminating dairy back out of my diet. No more ice cream at night. Eliminating the caffeine. When the toxins build up in your system, you get that three o'clock slump. That is not actually a normal thing. It is a sign that you have too much junk in your system and you make it through the whole day. So, caffeine has snuck back into my life. It needs to exit right. I don't drink alcohol right now so that is something that will stay away for at least 90 more days. Processed foods ... those are going. Artificial refined sugars, and no eating three hours before I go to bed, which if I stick to the nine o'clock thing will be 6:00 p.m.

Click here to follow me on this journey on Facebook.

No Chick-fil-A for 90 days, which ... I mean, it's sad but true. It's going to be a very hard challenge for me. Among all the other awesome changes that I'm going to be making, the other changes outside of the Chick-fil-A is part of our Shred 10 program. 

It's like a jumpstart, a restart, detox, to flush for your system. It's awesome. I don't understand why I don't eat like that all the time because I feel great and energetic and sharp, like sharp, sharp, sharp, sharp. My mind is so on point when I'm doing this. If you want details, you can just comment or contact me, and I can tell you all about that. We run it for 10 days at the beginning of every month. I'm going to be doing an extended 90 days of this probably with some tweaks, but we'll talk about it after these first 10 days are over.

I would love your support and your encouragement. Feel free to check in with me. See how I'm doing. Because Chick-fil-A and I, we're close, man. Love you, Chick-fil-A... It's going to be rough for these 90 days, but we (you know - Me and Jesus) can do it.


Do you want to join or support

me on this crazy ride?

You can simply share this post with your friends and loved ones.

You can click the button below to set a time to talk with Nikol about her favorite go-to nutritional product.

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How Vanessa Preps For the Shred

We have a 10 day health jump start program called the Shred that I absolutely love.

It has certain guidelines:

ADD--

  • More Real Food
  • Juice Plus+ Trio Capsules Daily
  • 2 Complete Shakes Daily
  • Plenty of Water
  • Sleep 7-8 Hours
  • Exercise Most Days

ELIMINATE--

  • Gluten
  • Dairy
  • Caffeine
  • Alcohol
  • Processed Foods
  • Refined Sugars
  • Eating After 6:00 pm*

*Pregnant or nursing mothers do not need to follow this.

These guidelines might seem strict but they are for only 10 days with 1 weekend! You can do anything for 10 days.

During the holidays I tend to fall off the wagon smack on my face for three months. It's a slippery slope that starts with everything pumpkin and ends with my skinny jeans not fitting by January! I love that for ten days at the beginning of each month I can take the time to focus on what I'm putting in my body. I can skip that drive thru and Starbucks and know that when I do enjoy those holiday meals it won't derail all the work I did to stay healthy the rest of the year. 

So, what do I do to make sure I'm successful during those 10 days? I spend the weekend shopping and prepping. 

How Vanessa preps for the shred (1).png

What do I buy?

All my favorite fruits & vegetables that are in season.

  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Butternut Squash
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Red Potatoes
  • Bell Peppers
  • Leaks
  • Rainbow Chard
  • Zucchini
  • Mushrooms
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Variety of all fruits and berries
  • Hummus

What do I make?

We have a Shred10 Pinterest Board with a variety of recipes we enjoy making. But I also have certain things I like to make in bulk so I can easily throw a lunch or dinner together with no meal prep or cooking.

  • Quinoa
  • Brown Rice
  • Overnight Oats
  • Protein Balls (Which we have a Pinterest Board For!)
  • A soup or stew of some kind. (I'm planning on Potato Leek Soup this week)
  • Lentils
  • Butternut Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Chick Peas
  • Vegetable medley cooked in the oven
  • Salads in a jar 

What I make might look a little different than you because I am plant-based, I don't bulk cook any meats like I used to. But I used to make 3 pounds of crockpot pulled chicken breast and skillet chicken thighs. Which I highly recommend if you like to have chicken with your salads in a jar or for easy dinners. 

What I love about having those key items cooked in bulk already is that all I might have to do is cook fresh vegetables or use the items I already cooked to create a meal like Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese. Or better yet, I just throw some quinoa, lentils, and veggies together for a quick lunch! 

If ten days of focusing on your nutrition and detoxing sounds like what you need contact us!

Ready to jump in? 

You Don't Need Anyone's Permission to Succeed!

You don't need anyone's permission

to be successful.

That is totally the truth.


 Let's talk about this for a second. From the time that we can remember, even as far back as preschool, we have been getting permission to be successful. I can remember back when I was in preschool and I needed to get permission to move up to the next level of reading books. I so wanted to get to that next level of reading books, but I needed permission from my teacher before she would let me go into the magical next level basket to pick out those reading books. 

We had grades. You needed permission to get into the AP classes. You needed to get permission to get into the special tracks. There was an architecture track in my high school that I probably would have done a lot better in math at if I had known it was there. But guess what: I didn't get permission to even try it out because numbers and I don't along too much.

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Your GPA. What does your GPA give you permission to do? To apply to different colleges. 

Experience. In the corporate world (almost any job really), you need experience in order to get permission to go into those positions. Your yearly review gives you permission to get a raise or a promotion.

When you're dealing with your health, it seems like everyone is trying to give you permission in different ways. You need to eat this way. You need to eat that way. You need to sleep this way. You need to do *this*. You need to drink *this*. You need to do *that*. You need to work out like *this*. Oh my goodness!

Parenting! Friendships! Marriage!

When we moved here I was told "you can't find a house for "that amount". Guess what? I didn't need anyone's permission to do something almost unheard of. I was able to do it.

Nobody needs to give you the permission to succeed. It has been ingrained in us for so long to get permission, that sometimes we don't even realize that we're waiting for it.

We're looking for it in different ways. In an article that tells us that we are parenting the "right way". That  article that tells me *this* is the best way to school my children. Nobody needs to give you permission. Well, okay, there are some laws but you know where I'm going with this.

People don't need to understand how you're going to do what you would like to do. They don't need to understand how you're going to get from A to B. They don't need to see how it's going to work. Sometimes YOU don't even need to see how it's going to work. You just need to have a tiny little bit of belief in yourself to take that step forward, and keep taking those steps, and not letting all of the "permission getting" get in your way.
                   

You've got your goal. You've got your dream. You've got your path. Step down that path one step at a time, and know that there are other ways than the standard option. Understand and acknowledge that there is the standard way, but don't let it sway you. Don't let it take you off the path. Remember that nobody (as long as you're not doing anything illegal or hurting anyone) needs to approve what you want to do. Only you. You do not need anyone's permission to succeed.


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You Can't Have Endurance Without Perseverance: Augusta 70.3

I was slumped over gasping for air holding on to my husband's shoulder while my coach, Skye, grabbed ice and Dan poured water on my head. I couldn't  catch my breath. Only 6 miles into the 13.1 mile run and I was hyperventilating on the side of the road. 

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I wish I could say I felt strong going into this race but sometimes life doesn't work that way. On Friday morning just hours before I left for Augusta, Georgia, I sat at the doctor's office while she told me I had sinusitis, bronchitis, and enteritis. Basically my whole body was "itis". She gave me three different medicines and told me I should not race on Sunday.

Yeah, right. I've been training for this race for six months. Unless I was in the hospital, I was going to Augusta.

I spent the next few hours packing and re-checking my bag. Hoping that in my cloud of sickness I hadn't forgotten a key item. I was already nervous because I had to get new shifters put on my bike just a few days earlier (one of my caps had popped off during Augusta Camp and with the delays from Hurricane Irma I didn't get my bike back in time to properly ride it before race day). Anyone will tell you that you should NEVER change anything for race day... 

I tried to push all the negativity aside and concentrate on what was ahead. This was my victory lap. For all the hard work. For all the hours on the weekends I gave up with family and friends. For every moment I told myself I could not stay in the ocean for another second, go that extra mile, push myself harder on that next lap around the track. 

This weekend was about "I Can."

So I went to the race expo and bought my mug that said "Augusta 70.3" and my t-shirt that already had my name printed on the back as a finisher. Because I was surrounded by women on my team that had and would persevere and I would join them. 

The Swim:

With friends by my side we walked down to the floating dock to get ready for our wave to start. I jumped in the water to swim out the nerves. With every stroke my breathing settled and I grabbed the dock in anticipation for our start. Women ages 35-39 poured around me, splashing, kicking and off we went! My goal for the swim was to use it as a warm up; swim solid but I knew it was key to not lose my breath. I needed to conserve. 

I finished in 35:45. My original goal was 35 minutes. I was off to a great start!

swim out augusta 70.3

The Bike:

Talking about perseverance-- Three weeks ago, during our Augusta Training Camp, one of my friends took a terrible fall on mile 50 of our practice ride. She ended up in an ambulance along with many stitches and patches of road rash. But she came right back to camp after the hospital and stayed the rest of the weekend to cheer us on. Teresa is also a firefighter and the next week was out working 24 hour shifts to help in Hurricane Irma. It is women like her that I meet in my race journey that humble me. That make me look at challenges in a whole new light.

So, why did I go so far off the topic of race day? Well, I was right behind her when she fell.  Every single bit of anxiety about my past bike accident reared it's ugly head. All I wanted was a safe ride for the race now.  

As I flew down the hills I braked. I knew better. I knew I was losing momentum to go up the next hill but I froze. I let fear get the best of me while people flew down next to me. I could not let go of my brakes. I prayed for a safe ride. I prayed that I would dismount that bike into a safe run. 

And then my chain fell off. 

And then it fell off again.

But I was not alone. Someone stopped to hold my bike while I wrestled for way too long to get it back on. We exchanged names and I thanked her profusely. But in my fog of nerves and sickness I cannot remember it for the life of me! I don't think I could have done it without her. I was in panic mode trying to understand how something so simple could keep happening! 

Less than ten miles away I rode into transition safely. 

In 3:26:41.

Who knows how much time I lost braking on those hills or trying to put my chain back on. But I was off the bike and running into transition. 

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The Run:

A half marathon. 13.1 miles ahead of me at 1:10 pm in Augusta, Georgia on September 24, 2017. It was hot. And although my sinusitis and bronchitis had not held me back in the swim and the bike, I would not be so lucky on the run.

I started with a decent pace of 11 minute miles, thinking that I was allowing myself to go slow. Oh, but I had no idea what pacing myself would mean. 

Around mile 4 I started to fall apart. All of a sudden I felt like every breath I took brought in less and less air. I started to get dizzy and began to walk. I made sure I was stopping at every Aid Station: drinking water, eating my nutrition, taking my salt, and grabbing ice to put in any place I could store it. I threw ice water on my head, down my back, on my chest. I told myself "only 9 more miles!" but then yelled at myself to shut up because that might as well be 50. 

I was not in a good place. 

Then I saw our team tent at mile 6 with Skye, Dan, and Dave waving and cheering me on and I began to cry. Dave came over as I totally fell apart. Knowing I wasn't even half way made every single doubt and emotion flow out of me as the little breaths I had got smaller. Skye and Dan talked me off the ledge. After ice, water, hugs, and words of encouragement I was off again. 

I realized I could breathe a little better if I inhaled through my nose and not my mouth. I focused on my breathing, my running form, and I even closed my eyes at points. Then my teammate, Jae, came upon me; lifting me up and I held on to her for many more miles. She talked to me even though I couldn't say anything back. She asked what I needed and if I had the ice for my chest to help me breathe easier. She helped me forget the miles we had to go. 

This is what team is about.

This is why I am part of a training group. 

I ran a 2:49:55. My longest time for a half marathon ever. My goal for an under 7 hour race was gone. 

I finished in 7:02:40. 

The Finish:

There were many tears at the finish line but not because I was upset at my time.

I was overwhelmed with emotions for finishing while each breath was a struggle. I was overwhelmed with emotions that someone took time to help me put my bike chain back on.

I was thankful for my husband, Dave, cheering at every step and for holding me up when I just wanted to break down. I was thankful for my friend and coach, Skye, for not letting me think for even a second that I could not do it. I was thankful for our team: Dan's smiles and encouragement, Jae's kind words and push during the race, and every single one of us that screamed out each other's names for our awesome accomplishment that was almost over. 

I love giving myself athletic goals for my health. But it is the journey with the people around me that make it worth it. It is seeing the perseverance of my friend Teresa who finished in her goal time even after her fall just weeks ago. It is the camaraderie of our team of women in Tri With Skye pushing each other, cheering for each other, being there for each other when it is most needed. 

Pushing yourself physically is hard. But it is the mental push of endurance sports that separates the "I Can" from the "I Will". 

finish augusta 70.3

Want to know what nutrition I used as my base that helped me finish?

I want some!

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Jumpstart and Re-energize Your Health Monthly

If you saw Nikol's video talking about some of her tell tale signs that she is in the need of a detox, you may be wondering what exactly the Shred10 is.

The Shred10 is a 4 month detox process with a 10 day kickstart or booster depending on where you are in the process. For us, it has become a way of life. After experiencing how good it feels to eat healthy, we aren't sure why we ever go back to eating poorly, but such is life and we do. Meaning we need to shred those toxins that built up again and again. Here is a quick video from the creators of the program.

What do I get?

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50 page             Shred Guide eBook:

  • Success Tips
  • Education
  • Health Care Professional Recommendations
  • Shred-Approved Recipes
  • Smoothie Ideas
  • On-The-Go Snack Lists
  • And More!

pop-up Private Facebook Group for Support

  • Daily encouragement
  • Friendship
  • Transparency
  • Meal Ideas
  • Accountability
  • Fun!

Daily Education & touch base texts

  • Text Message Accountability
  • Educational Shred10™ Success Videos
  • Support with just the tap of a finger

So what now? How do you take action?

click the box below to schedule a time to chat with

nikol or vanessa!


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Vegan Omega Blend

Raise your hand if you take a

fish oil Omega.

Mmmmmm...... Ew!

LOL! In all fairness, we were right there with you! I honestly didn't even know you could get your Omegas from anywhere else. I'm not sure why the majority of companies have chosen this way of producing Omegas or why the mainstream public has been educated to think this is the only way. It seems like if you had to choose between making a product from plants or animals, plants would seem to be the better choice. But I digress...

What we DO know is that we all know our brain, eyes, heart, joints, and skin benefit greatly from Omega fatty acids. It is why we take those nasty fish oil capsules in the first place. But now there is a better way!

Introducing...

Announcing Omega Blend

This is an Omega Complex!

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Benefits of Omega 3:

Helps with Depression. Help Baby's brain development, eye health, better skin & hair, treat & prevent wrinkles and reduce the symptoms of ADHD

Benefits of Omega 5:
Helps balance Weight, cardiovascular health, and blood sugar. Reduce symptoms of menopause.

Benefits of Omega 6:
Helps Reduce Nerve Pain, Fights Inflammation, Treats Rheumatoid Arthritis, May Help Reduce Symptoms of ADHD, Reduces High Blood Pressure, Lowers Risk of Heart Disease and Supports Bone Health

Benefits of Omega 7:
Aid in weight loss and promote bowel regularity.

Benefits of Omega 9:
Help Cardiovascular systems, healthy cholesterol levels, improved immune function, more energy, better mood and healthy blood sugar levels.

We are overjoyed that this amazing product has been added to our favorite product line and is now available to order!


Sounds awesome right?!

Simply click below to get your vegan Omega Complex!

Handling Stress and Negativity with an Autoimmune Disease

I want to talk to you today about handling stress as somebody that has an autoimmune disease.

Ever notice at the doctor's office, and the nurse is going through the list of questions and then they get to, "Are you stressed?" It's like, kind of laughable at this point, right? They're asking, but you both know, everyone's got a high level of stress these days. We used to wear that as a badge of honor, right? Like, "I'm so stressed because I'm so busy, because I'm so important, and I've got all these amazing cool things to do." Well, that little thing could have been a contributing factor to the reason why you have an autoimmune disease today.
                   

We don't like stress.

It needs to go hit the high road.

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Obviously, there's going to be stress in your life, but we need to learn how to manage it so that it doesn't knock you on your butt. The first thing that you need to do is learn what your triggers are. Everyone has different things that stress them out, and they're also on different levels. Is it the news? Is it a messy house? Is it a messy marriage? Is it messy money? Is it parenting? Tension in friendships? Is it that your schedule and your calendar are completely packed to the brim? So, you've got to take an audit of the stress that you're feeling and look at the ones that you can control. There are some that you can control easier than others, right? Like, you can control a packed calendar a lot more than you can control a major illness and your family. 
                   

Eliminate tasks from your day and calendar.

Start with the ones that you can control; hand over volunteer positions, cut out extra activities. Treat yourself to someone that cleans your house, or the online ordering at the grocery store. Start there. Start handing over chores to the children. That was my favorite one!

Control how and when you hear stressful information.

Then you want to move on to other areas, like news. Look for a buffer. Maybe have your significant other tell you the things that you really need to know. If you want to follow the news stories yourself, you need to control when and how they're delivered to you. Don't allow apps and websites to just ping you and alert you with news stories as they come along. When you're in a good space you look up the news or know you need to get into a good space before the evening news comes on. However, you digest tuff information, change it and pivot the way you're getting that information so that you're in control, and that you're in a good space to receive that news when it happens.

Pick your battles.

 
If you are an advocate for a lot of things, you might need to look at supporting one or two main causes. There are so many needs out in the world, and we all want to do so many things for so many different charities, non-profits, and just people that need help. Try to pick one or two areas that you're going to help with and stay there. Stay in that lane and do those well. It seems like it's kind of counterintuitive because you want to give to a lot of things, but this way you're preserving yourself and you're helping greatly in those one or two areas. It's the same old adage, you've got to put the oxygen mask on yourself first. So, if you spread yourself too thin, you're not going to be helping that much anyway, and it's going to stress you out and you don't want to do that.

Know how you will handle conflict

before it happens.


 The next area that you want to look at is how do you handle conflict? Some people really need to talk about it right away. They need to get the conflict talked about, handled, managed, and then move on. Some people need to sit, think about it, maybe stew, calm down, and then they can address it in a calm manner. Whatever side you're on with that, it's totally okay. That's just the way you handle things, but know that about yourself and honor it. If you are someone that really, really needs to just calm down and sit and think about things before you talk about it, and you have somebody that really, really, really wants to solve the conflict right away, just go ahead and say, "If you could really just hold on a minute and let me sit on this for a while, I'd love to settle this with you tomorrow," or vice versa. If you are somebody that really likes to handle things right away, just go ahead out and reach out to that person and say, "You know, this is something that I would love to handle right away. Is there any way we can talk about this right now?"

A big pro tip from me is handling the small things right away.

They might seem small. For example, "That was a weird comment. Was she joking? Did she really mean that? Like, was she offended? Did I do something?" Don't let that stuff stew. You might let it go in a couple of days, but you're spending time on that right now. Do yourself a favor, reach out to your friend and just clear it up. That way, number one, you are settling the issue and there's no stress, you know exactly where you stand. Number two, you are practicing for in case anything big comes up. You and that other person are practicing that dialogue of, "Hey, I've got an issue, let's talk about it," You get X, Y, and Z, fixed, so you're actually making that friendship and bond stronger instead of worrying about making it less stable. So again, it may seem counterintuitive but it totally makes sense in the end, and it saves you stress.

You may need to cut the cord on a relationship.

Then, understand that sometimes there are things in relationships that are just too toxic, and you might need to step away from that. It might be a friend, it might be someone you volunteer with, it might be a parent that is at an activity you go to a lot. It may be something as severe as your job. Just know that there's always another way. I know that when it gets to something as big as a job, or parenting, or marriage, it seems like, whoa, those are things that you're just kind of stuck in. Number one, you can replace a job. Number two, there are so many different ways to work on a marriage. Parenting, there are so many different techniques. So, reach out, find those resources, and work on those things instead of letting them be less than stellar, right? Nobody's perfect, nothing is perfect, but don't let it be a huge source of your stress.

What if stress has already hit or you have an unavoidable issue?

Fruits, veggies and berries baby! I have helped the physical toll that stress has taken on my body by flooding it with fruits, veggies, and berries. When I know a busy or stressful time is coming up or I find myself in the middle of one, I will up what I normally take. Do you want to know what the best thing about that is? IT'S JUST FOOD!

If you want help with this issue, click the button below to schedule a time to chat with me. I am here to serve you!


So what now? How do you take action?

You can simply share this post with your friends and loved ones.

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Jump all in and click the button below join our project to live healthily and share it with the world!

This stuff sounds amazing! Just take my money!

Make sure you know how to get your child's order for free!

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17 Pumpkin Spice Vegan Recipes for Fall!

Fall is right around the corner, so let's not pretend we all want to wear legging, boots, scarves and drink all the things pumpkin. Until the peppermint stuff comes out anyway... I'll will drop pumpkin anything in a hot second for peppermint flavored anything. But I digress... it is pumpkin's time to shine and shine it will.

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This year in an effort to stay as plant based as possible without missing out on the fun, I went hunting for vegan pumpkin recipes and I hit the jackpot! So instead of hoarding this fabulous information all to myself, I decided to gather it all up and share it with you!  

Because we "organize all the things" - we made a handy dandy Pinterest Board with all the recipes listed below! Simply click the image and follow the board to save.

FREE Health Roadmap! Your First 7 Steps to a Healthier Life!

There is nothing we love more than accurate, reliable information and a roadmap to success. All too often we can get lost in the thousands of articles on what is the best way to do <insert topic here>, being left with hours or even days lost in our lives and we are more confused than ever. While we researched this very topic, we noticed that there was a trend among all the health giants and our most trusted resources. One being, eat more fruits and vegetables. But outside of that, there were more common threads.

We have taken the lead from our most trusted sources and put together a simple formula for you to start on your health journey. Depending on where you are, this may seem super easy or completely overwhelming.

Your First 7 Steps to a Healthier Life! The Healthy Life Project

 

If you have already made some of the changes we suggest. Take an audit at how well you are doing. Since nobody is perfect, you will find room for improvement. Take this opportunity to level-up your health game.

If you are just trying to stay out of the fast food lane, breathe and certainly don't try to make all of these changes at once. Pick ONE and work on that for 30 days, then choose another to add. Pop into our FREE Facebook community and share your wins with us!

Fill out the form below to grab your FREE copy!

Your First 7 Steps to a Healthier Life!

Ready to get healthy, but don't know where to start? Grab this easy to follow 7 step roadmap to help you get started and to stay on track!

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