Regardless of who I'm working with and what their goals may be, I always start with the basics: eat a varied and nourishing diet, sleep well, get the right (and right amount) of exercise, and of course make sure detoxification is working. But on our journeys to find optimal wellness, along the way we may find we need a little...extra.
This is the fourth and final post in a series that highlights the four aspects of wellness that I have found come together to create an optimal You:
I already covered Nourishment, Movement, and Exploring untapped healing opportunities. Click on each above to catch up. I talk a lot about holistic nutrition and simple lifestyle changes to feel your best, but I'm also a realist.
NO- We can't get all the nutrients we need from food alone,
YES- Sometimes we need a little allopathy to just get rid of pesky symptoms and take the edge off. And...
OF COURSE- Trying new things can be just plain fun!
Enhancements are more like the icing on the cake of delicious you!
Tech apps and tools are so helpful when you're moving a few different factors and want to see how they are working for you. They are also great tools for keeping yourself accountable.
Cronometer is one of my favorites. This robust food-tracking app allows me to see what clients are eating, how often they are moving, and even coordinates with other tech like ketone and glucose monitors. I can also program in goals for clients to reach and make notes right onto their timeline.
Continuous Glucose Monitors are picking up speed as the new fitness-tracking darling. While it was mostly a tool used for diabetics originally, now average Joes and Janes are using them to see how they are reacting to specific meals, fasting protocols, and exercise. For non-Rx users, there aren't a ton of options, but I'm on the list to get Levels soon.
Ketone Monitors are also interesting tools if you're trying to move away from being a "sugar burner" to a fat-burning beast. My favorite right now is Keto-Mojo, as it's affordable, easy to use, syncs with tons of other apps, and also does blood-sugar readings.
Sleep and HRV (heart rate variability) tracking are very helpful when you need to be paying attention to how stress is affecting your fitness (hint: we all do!) I really like the Ōura ring for sleep tracking because it takes into account my heart rate, temperature, and HRV to help me see how good a night's sleep I had and how hard I should train (or not) the next day.
As for fitness-tracking, I personally use the iWatch. I like being able to track my workouts, listen to music or books, and leave my phone at home! I have plenty of clients that prefer the FitBit. Whatever works for you. I recommend you don't skimp on this purchase if you're going to have one at all. Cheap ones seem to break quickly and don't hold charges very long.
Most commonly "enhancing" your wellness routine means strategically adding in targeted supplementation. I am not a fan of popping a bunch of pills just because. Supplements are NOT benign. Depending on the herb, vitamin, or mineral, they can be very potent and effective. But they can also be detrimental to your health if you're taking the wrong thing, in the wrong combination, or of low quality.
Here are some examples of supplement intake gone wrong:
If you're taking a "fish oil" you have to be careful where it was sourced and how it's been stored. You don't want to end up swallowing rancid oils that only cause inflammation.
Probiotic supplements seems like a great idea, and they can be. But if you take the same one all the time, you run the risk of creating a "monoculture" of organisms in your gut.
Calcium is a very commonly taken mineral, but not commonly taken with the critical cofactors it needs for your body to deposit calcium where you want it to. Without sufficient vitamin K, magnesium, vitamin D, etc., you may end up with calcium clogging arteries, causing bone spurs, etc, and not strengthening your bones!
I help clients go through their supplement routine, streamline their purchases, and get rid of anything doing more harm than good. Even if that means just saving some money! Here is a link to my professional dispensary. But if you'd like to discuss personalized recommendations, please contact me for at least an introductory meeting.
Tools and Treats
I lump these together because there is a lot of overlap.
Massage! This one is a tool and treat that we all need. Whether you physically get a massage from a skilled practitioner (my go-to is the fabulous Diane Evans), or roll it out yourself with foam rollers, various balls, or a thera-gun, massage is critical to keeping your joints moving smoothly, and keeping the kinks out ;)
Walking/Standing desks are critical to the new world of working at home. If you are still working from your couch, enough already! It's time to get your home ergonomics on point.
Shoes and socks can even be specialized. Maybe you need some extra compression for recovery, some killer running shoes, or even a special brace for support. I can help you figure out what might benefit you and what might just be wasted cash.
I'm curious, what do you do to "enhance" your wellness? Do you need help figuring out what, if anything, you should add? Take away? I look forward to seeing your comments below!
~ Yours in Health