Tuesday, January 30, 2018

My Journey With Cycle Syncing-Part 1

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I've been Cycle Syncing for almost three weeks now. The main reason I chose to do Cycle Syncing was for my health as well as weight loss. I've been dealing with health issues for these past few years. And they started interfering with my daily life. Especially my stomach issues, fatigue, and my anxiety. After reading Womancode by Alisa Vitti it put a lot into perspective for me and made me think that maybe there was a correlation between these issues and my hormones. Plus, that I tend to have difficult periods which contrary to popular belief should not be the case. It actually is not normal to suffer during that time of the month according to Womancode and a few other books I have read on the topic. Of course, if you have health issues or female issues you should always check with a doctor and do your own research. 

Cycle Syncing and Flo living are about living as much as possible around your cycle. Obviously, for various reasons this is not always possible but if you can live as closely synched to your cycle as possible the better. This might mean changing your workouts (some points you will have more energy and other times you will be more tired), eating various foods depending on where you are at in your cycle, and spending more or less time on projects or more time on planning. 

I started Cycle Syncing towards the middle of my Follicular Phase which is right after the period. My energy was still pretty low at this point. But, my anxiety was less. It is recommended that you do light exercise and then gradually go into cardio as your energy picks up towards the middle or end of this phase. I admit I got out of my workout habit and still am struggling with getting back into it. However, I did sign up for DailyBurn and I am loving Barre Harmony with Becca Pace. I have always wanted to try Barre but couldn't find a class so it is so fun to be able to do it at home. Right now it is the perfect speed for me since I'm getting back into a workout routine. I was doing really yang type workouts that made me get out of breath and sweat like crazy. Don't get me wrong I still like those workouts and I hope to get back to it. But, Now that I know about Cycle Syncing I know that sometimes depending on my phase those workouts will be a little too much for me. It's really teaching me to listen to my body. 

The First week was not as hard as I thought it would be. I've eaten this way in the past the only thing that really changed was adding in more of certain foods depending on where I was in my cycle. I've mostly cut out Gluten, Dairy, and Soy. I might eat these foods occasionally now but I was getting into the habit of eating these foods almost every day. I don't think I have an allergy that is severe like celiac but I do notice that I am less bloated and generally feel better. I've also cut down on sugar except for occasionally or I'll have Stevia instead. I try to stay under 50g sugar which is not always the easiest. But, it is making me much more aware of what I am eating and putting into my body. 

One of the biggest changes for me was increasing my meals. That has always been hard for me. I would usually eat a small breakfast, a medium lunch, and no snacks then I would be starving at dinner and end up overeating. Especially if I'm eating in front of the tv and not paying attention. So, now I try my best to eat at least one or two snacks throughout the day. I notice a difference if I don't in my hunger level, energy level, and mood. In carb cycling, if you have followed that it suggests a similar eating pattern to cycle syncing. In cycle syncing, it suggests eating within an hour in a half upon waking and carb cycling suggests eating within 30 minutes of waking. 
 My Breakfast is typically oatmeal with fruit and some cinnamon, A protein shake, or eggs and some gluten-free toast with avocado or grass-fed butter. I try to have at least one carb with breakfast but keep it under 30g carbs as Womancode suggests. 

Lunch is typically a salad with the cycle syncing recommended foods. I usually have organic Chicken, Free-range hardboiled eggs, Avocado, and/or chickpeas depending on my cycle phase. 

I try to keep my dinner filled with more protein and fewer carbs except for some Quinoa or a sweet potato. But, it depends on the cycle I'm in. Currently, I'm in my menstrual/moon phase so I need more fat and protein. I've been under the weather this past week so I haven't been following the cycle syncing as well as I would like to and was earlier in the month. However, I'm already noticing changes. My cramps really have not been that bad like they usually are. I'm still really lethargic so I'm upping my protein, fat, and iron-rich foods like kale, spinach, beef, and beets. Although me being lethargic could also be due to having a nasty cold this week. So, it's hard to say for sure. 
In my luteal/PMS phase, I enjoyed some chocolate vegan gluten-free hummus that I found with fruit. I ate it was strawberries and raspberries and it was delish. 

It's called Brownie Batter Hummus and it is made by Delighted by Dessert Hummus. And it legit tastes like chocolate frosting. #notsponsored 

My goals for this month are to come up with some more creative recipes. So, if you have any recipe books you really like drop them in the comments below. I will be sure to check them out. 
Some good cookbooks I've found that I think would match up with cycle syncing well are 

My second goal for the new month is to start carb cycling and doing IIFYM If it Fits Your Macros. I've briefly done carb cycling but this time I am going to implement more high carb days. And count my macros. The past few days I've actually been tracking with My Fitness Pal. I'm thinking I will upgrade to the premium version of My Fitness Pal for better macro tracking. Once I'm well I plan on working out more including lifting weights and doing more cardio. 

So, we will see how month 2 goes with cycle syncing. I also noticed during my luteal phase/pms I usually get horrible monster headaches. I only got one headache that was a monster this month and it was during my ovulation phase. So, that is for sure progress. I also noticed my anxiety is 10X worse during my PMS phase and about 5X worse during ovulation. The other times I noticed slight anxiety. Between being sick and my PMS cravings I didn't follow the plan as well as I would have liked.

So my third goal for this next month is to be more vigilant about what I'm eating and to figure out why I'm having the cravings and overeating during my PMS phase. 

Progress, not perfection.
I am excited to see what month 2 holds. 

Monday, January 22, 2018

My Word Of The Year For 2018

We are officially in the New Year and I've been thinking a lot about my goals, hopes, and dreams for this current year. I've set some awesome goals that I fully intend to crush. I've come up with a plan for most of those goals and how to implement them into my daily life. I've been working on balance. But, I was thinking about what my word for the year will be. I first heard about having a word for the year from Miriam over at Farm Girl Miriam. I thought it was a brilliant idea. She chose joy this year. I was also thinking about how in Eat, Pray, Love Elizabeth Gilbert chose her word. Of course, I think our word can change and does not necessarily have to stay the same. So, I really liked the idea of picking a word for the year.

This year I chose the word FEARLESS. Fear has been a big part of my life and journey. I've struggled with fear most of my life. I have a lot of regrets because of letting my fear and anxiety hold me back. But, when I face my fears even though it is scary in the moment I know I really can't die from the fear. And when I push through it and crush a goal I always feel awesome after.

This year I don't want to let my fear and anxiety hold me back from pursuing my goals and dreams.  I want to choose love over fear. I want to push myself to be the best version of me and that girl is fearless, strong, confident, and is in pursuit of her goals and dreams. Fearless to me does not mean I will never have fear because I know that is impossible. Everyone has fear. But, to me fearless means that I will forge ahead even if the going gets tough. Even if I want to quit. Even if my anxiety gets's the best of me.

My mom recently bought me this necklace from Luna Norte. It's a quartz for power, energy, and clarity. I am all for crystals and love them. I've actually been wanting a crystal necklace for a really long time and this one came at the perfect time for me. This one is for increasing inspiration and creativity. This year I fully intend to reach my dreams one step at a time.

It's not always going to be easy and I know fears will come up along the way. Choosing to live authentically and putting myself out there is not the easiest thing for me. I still at times worry about what other people will think of me. Growing up I was the uncool kid and was often teased and bullied. My mom and granda were hoarders so I could never invite people over and when I did it would ultimately lead to me being bullied at school on Monday. So, I mostly just kept to myself and was labeled the weird kid. Even teachers were unkind to me because I was so quiet and shy.

I also was in a special education class (for math mostly) So teachers labeled me as the girl who would always need help and would never succeed. However, I ran into one lady who I will never forget. She did my IQ test and actually said I was smart, tenacious, and would probably end up on the cover of Time magazine one day. Well, I don't know about the whole time magazine thing but a girl can certainly dream. I am tenacious and once I set my mind to something I don't give up easily. I've fallen down quite a bit these past few years but I've always gotten back up and tried again.

I think my biggest obstacle has been letting my own fears and doubts get in the way and be my stumbling block. It's true when they say it's all about the mindset. Obviously, hard work also plays a part but the mind is a huge factor in success. The past few years I've really been working on mindset. Doing affirmations, journaling, reading personal development books, and facing my fears and chasing my dreams one step at a time.

This year probably won't be completely fearless but it doesn't need to be. But, I know that this will be my year for making my dreams come true, one day and one step at a time.

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Valentine's Day Gift Idea's For The Wildly Unique Woman

*This post contains affiliate links. This means that I  may receive a small commission if you decide to purchase any of the linked products or services. For more info,  please see my full disclosure policy. 

  Valentine's Day is only 3 1/2 weeks away. February is one of my favorite months of the year. Despite the cold weather. Maybe it's because it also happens to be my birthday month. And even if I am or am not in a relationship I think Valentine's day is awesome to celebrate. I think we women are all unique and we all have our own special qualities. So, we all have different ideas of what we would want for Valentine's Day or anytime. 😉 

 I always look forward to all the festive decorations and it's just an all-around great day to spoil yourself if you are single or even if you are in a relationship. We all need a little pampering and spoiling on occasion. And if you follow my blog you know I talk a lot about self-care. So why not start a self-care routine on Valentine's Day or take extra time for your routine if you already have one. 

If you follow my blog then you know that I am a spirit junkie. I believe in miracles and choosing love over fear. It hasn't always been an easy road for me but I'm all about finding tools that make that journey a little bit easier and that are fun too. Because let's admit it miracles are fun and totally cool. So, if you are a spirit junkie or know one then I think these are some rad items. Some of my tools are of course Spirit Junkie by Gabrielle Bernstein. My mala beads for meditating. A yoga mat. And of course, a t-shirt that says I believe in miracles because that is my slogan. If you've read my blog or even my bio you know that's what I'm all about. 

I've been practicing yoga for the past 5 years. The past three years have been for more spiritual then fitness reasons. I love Kundalini yoga. For the past two years, I've been into fitness off and on. But, I love it and feel so much better when I work out. If you are a yogi and/or fitness guru or know someone who is these are my picks for some gift ideas. I chose the Gaia purple yoga mat because it's a purple. My favorite color. And I love Gaia and their products. Of course, some water bottles that are stylish because it's always fun to gulp water down in something that is pretty. And no I'm not being sarcastic :) The "Don't Hate meditate" pullover because meditation is my go to and it's true. Hate less meditate more is always a good idea. And warrior pants because we women are all warriors in our own ways. 

I am a serious cat lady. I have three fur babies Harley Rose(the cat with the bow earrings remind me of her), Lucky (the black cat earrings remind me of him), and Ollie. You can see their pictures on my about me page and scattered throughout the blog. My mom will tell you I'm obsessed with anything that has cats on it. I have cat pajamas, cat jewelry, cat mugs, and even a cat umbrella. So here are some gift ideas if you are a cat lady like me or if you know someone who is. 

I am totally obsessed with unicorns and mermaid and fairies too. These creatures have captured my attention mythical or not. So, here are some gift ideas for the mythical (but, really who says they aren't real :) Creatures ) Lover. 

I love fashion but I don't write about it nearly as much as I want to. But, here are some of my favorite styles picks for the style maven. P.S. In the future there will be more fashion and style. 
I'm a self-proclaimed makeup hoarder. And I am constantly trying to add to my collection. These products I either own or they are on my wishlist for makeup products to buy. Here are some gift ideas for the makeup maven. I also included the red and pink lipsticks for Valentine's day. 

So, That's my list for Valentine's Day gift ideas for the wildly unique woman. I know I fall into all of these categories and handpicked all these items with love. This is not a sponsored post by the way. I only picked items I love and/or that are on my wishlist.  
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