Self Love Summer <3

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"Don't forget fall in love with yourself first!"

- Carrie Bradshaw

Summer time is one of the busiest times of the year for people. I can see why! Traveling all the time and weekends in the Hamptons - if you live near nyc.  

I feel like the only thing people want to focus on is how to have less responsibilities and less to-do lists. With the sunny weather and option for beach days, I find myself unmotivated to do much work let alone commit to my workout schedule.  Cooking has definitely been fine-tuned to salads and one-pot dishes to avoid being in a hot kitchen!

But what about your self-care rituals that you've been practicing all year long? Do they go out the window too? Do you just skip the workouts while on vacation and out drinking with friends while watching the sunset on the beach? Uh...yes!!! And it's ok to do so!!! I feel like people have this guilt around what they "have to do" and what they actually "want to do" to feel like themselves. It seems with our wellness oriented world that we live in, people don't feel like they are doing enough or they are made to feel guilty if they don't take yoga.

My advice to every single person...find what works for you. I know I have said this repeatedly and I want to make sure you understand that whatever self-care things you do for YOU is enough. You are enough! Self-love and feeling happy with your choices is the only thing that matters when it comes to what movement and lifestyle you're doing today.  You have to remember to love yourself and forgive yourself in order for your mind to catch up with your actions.

If you are out every weekend and only work out once a week in the summer so be it. Listen to your body. Don't feel obligated to try the keto diet or not eat breakfast because everyone you know if doing intermittent fasting.  Listen, I have an autoimmune disease so the guilt I feel for eating gluten sometimes is all on me. No one else.

5 Ways to Create Self-Love:

  1. Follow your heart: Listen to your hearts desires. Or as I like to say...listen to what your gut is telling you.  Do what makes you feel alive and at peace at the same time! If that's going to yoga or lifting weights than great. How you feel about yourself during and afterwards matters most.  Find what speaks to you heart <3.
  2. Gratefulness: Something I think works best for people to help them realize how amazing they are is to write down 3-5 things they are grateful for every morning.  Wake up and think about all that you have! It will totally change your whole day...I promise!
  3. Journal: This is an amazing way to find the voice within yourself. Writing helps you understand yourself better and helps to process all that we are thinking about every single day. I know certain days have more going on than others so writing it all down or typing it out in a document creates a space that you can open up. 
  4. Meditation: Something I have begun to absolutely love because there is nothing more important than being present. Especially when it comes to spending time with friends and loved ones. We all spend a ton of time on our phones trying to "connect" when we are in the presence of others, but the ironic thing is that we are already doing so when we spend time with people. Creating peace within you will help you connect more authentically.
  5. Stop comparing yourself: To anyone!!!! I mean it! You are doing enough. Please remember that whatever your goals are, is does not matter how long it takes for you to get there.  This is your life and you can be at whatever stage at whatever age you are. We are all beginners at one point or another. Figure out how to be yourself because authenticity is amazing! 

 

Life is short and you gotta do you!

I love myself every day as best I can!

 

How to Optimize Digestion

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We are all in this together! We all have issues. With our digestion I mean.  Either we talk about them and get to the bottom of the issue or we suppress it and it becomes a "norm" for you. What is your "norm" these days?! Don't worry! It's not a bad thing. The best thing you can do for yourself is pay attention to what's going on and fix anything that seems wrong. 

My "norm" changes for me. I've been experiencing digestive issues for as long as I can remember. Honestly, until I was diagnosed with MS I never gave my digestion a second thought. Whether I had a bowel movement that day or not was not something I payed attention to. Boy is today different! I don't see it as a stressor in my life to think about this stuff, but if something is off, I try to get to the bottom of it and pay attention to where my body needs attention.

Your gut is your second brain. What we eat gives our cells the knowledge it needs to keep our bodies functioning at its best. So why not make your digestion the best it can be? Healing your gut is the best thing you can do for yourself to prevent disease. Your digestive tract and gut impact every single function in your body from how well you sleep, handle stress and even your weight. Do your best to pay attention to any changes good or bad. Here's some advice to make the most of your amazing body. ;)

5 Ways to Optimize Digestion:

  1. Slow down: As Americans, we are known for 'grabbing' a bite, fast food and even eating 'on the go.' These are actually the complete opposite actions that our bodies need to thrive from the foods we are shoveling into our mouths. I want you to ask yourself, "Is this food nourishing me or just sustaining me?" Eating on the go creates an environment of stress on your digestion.  It's putting you into 'fight or flight' mode instead of 'rest and relaxation' that you need to process what you just ate. Taking your time eating is one of the best things you can do for your entire body! Also, take a seat and relax!
  2. Stop and smell: Did you know that digestion actually starts with your eyes?! Have you ever put more on your plate than you can eat because you thought you were that hungry? It happens to all of us. We use our senses to make choices for what we want to consume. So next time you are cooking a meal at home or being served at a restaurant, take a few seconds to smell the food in front of you. Think about the flavors you are about to enjoy and appreciate the food for how it makes you feel. :)
  3. Get help: Many of us have digestive issues. Depending on what's going on with you (bloating, constipation, SIBO, leaky gut) you could use help (I def do!). Digestive distress can cause a lack of enzymes which help you break down your food to gain its nutrients.  One of the best ways to do so is to incorporate digestive enzymes. They come in the form of pills or liquid bitters that you take before a meal to increase enzyme production. 
  4. Chew: Chew, chew, chew your food!!! It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to register that your stomach is even full. Also, the particle size of your food effects the bio-accessibility of the energy of it, so the more you chew the less is lost and the more nutrients you will gain from your food. My recommendation is to chew eat bite of food until it becomes mush or liquid. Put your fork and knife down in between each bite. Take the time to taste your food.
  5. Hydrate: You are drinking the right amount of water every day and keeping track so you stay properly hydrated. But...did you know that drinking too much liquid while eating can actually diminish the necessary enzymes needed to break down your food? Keep chugging that filtered water all day/everyday and before you eat but during mealtime, try to limit liquids to a total of 8 ounces (water or whatever else you're drinking).  

Next steps?! Keep a food journal. Write down what you're eating and pay attention to how it makes you feel. Track your water intake and sleep. Start listening to your body. You only have one and it should be here to help you feel your best!

Comment or send me a message and let me know how it's going for you! I want to know :)

 

How to be healthy on a budget

This whole leading a wellness lifestyle can be tricky. One day you're learning about protein powders and the next you're hearing that being vegan is the way to go if you want to be healthy. So what's the right info?? Well that's my job. I am here to help you navigate what and how to fit all of this fun and healthy stuff into your lifestyle. Wellness doesn't have to be crazy and overwhelming. That's actually the direct opposite effect that us in the industry are trying to do here! We want to help you. Not confuse you. 

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So...in an effort to help you in the best way I can, here are tips to help you lead a healthy lifestyle on a budget. Because I know we can't all afford to keep trying out the next new thing whenever it pops up! I may be leading a super healthy life these days, but I keep myself in check when spending. There are things worth splurging on for sure. We all have them no matter what we buy. Life ain't cheap, especially in NYC!

5 Ways to Be Healthy On A Budget:

1) Workout for free (or on the cheap):  There are tons of apps out there to help you get into shape. My favorite app is by Nike and these workouts kick my ass! They have plans you can make for weeks at a time, yoga, strength and endurance workouts. They also have a running app that keeps track for you! No, this is not a sponsored post, I just love it! You can also go to Yoga for The People or find a community class at a local studio, which is donation based. Running outside and getting that Vitamin D is still one of my all time fav workouts this time of year!!! It's free and you can bring a buddy to the park to do it ;)

2) Have likeminded friends: When you surround yourself with people that have similar hobbies and ways of living, it's easier to stick to a budget when planning things. Staying in, ya know "the new going out," won't seem lame with someone that enjoys doing that along with you. I love to cook and try new recipes on friends so I have people who come over and taste test for me and hang out!

3) Shop local: In regards to foods, shopping at farmers markets is way healthier because the foods haven't traveled very far and they are fresher and last longer. Generally, the portion sizes at markets are quite large and if you go at the end of the day, you can bargain with them for cheaper prices. #shoplocal 

4) Make a list: I can't stress this enough, but staying organized with what you need prior to shopping will help you spend less $$ overall. You will only buy what you need if you can keep track. I either write it down or create a list in 'notes' and cross the item out once I have it. 

5) Cook more to eat out less: Plan ahead and meal prep! Find time throughout your week to cook things in bulk. Things like making soups or rice dishes ahead of time will help you spend less $ during your lunch hour. I like to know what's in my food. This has helped me keep track of how certain foods make me feel, improve my digestion and save $! 

One thing I do splurge on is supplements. Quality is super important when taking a supplement! Its like organic and non organic meat. You don't want to buy something that has extra fillers in it. Message me for more info. 

Living a healthy life doesn't have to mean breaking the bank.  There are always ways to choose the best option for you. Listen to your mind and body and don't stress ;)

You got this!!!

xo,

Marielle

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Equinox!

SPRING!

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Now that we've gotten so close to the warmer weather and sunny days, despite the new snow that piled up yesterday here in NYC, I think we can all agree we have the same feeling...time to make some changes!

What does the season of Spring mean to you?! For me, it's cleaning house. Every spring, my mom would open the doors and all of the windows and let fresh air in and we would clean everything. Granted this happened whether it was spring or not but it helped that it was sunny and you could feel the new air coming in and making the whole house feel more fresh!  This is something I still do to this day!

Now I know the new year (NYE) is the time to make resolutions and goals so...that means that Spring is the time to make sure you are implementing these positive mindsets you've been talking about for 3 months! I've got some ideas to throw at you that I think will make this Spring even more enjoyable. 
 

 

5 Ways to 'Spring Clean' Your Health:

 

1) Throw it out: Get rid of the clutter in your bedroom, your cupboards, your fridge and even your life! Look around you and take inventory of the things you need in your day to day life. Do you really think you're going to wear that dress that doesn't fit anymore? One of my mottos is to "live minimally."

2) Make a list: Write out your goals, shopping lists, to-do's. Getting organized in your mind helps you do more with your time and if you have a list when you shop then you will be less likely to buy needless stuff/food.

3) Keep Track: Recording the foods your consume and how they make you feel will make a huge impact in your life! It will help you see if there is a food you are sensitive to. If you are going through digestive issues, like most people and my clients are, I highly suggest you start doing this asap. Email me for a copy of the journal I send to my clients to utilize.

4) Commit to Something: One thing I read a long time ago that has resonated with me in every single area of my life is "there is freedom in commitment." I hope this helps you to make a commitment to your health that will only help you in the long run!

5) Start Your Day: I know tons of people who don't even know how to get their day started. They ask questions like; "Do i eat breakfast?" "Do I fast?" "What should I be eating in the first place?" My suggestion is to try one thing at a time. If you want to try fasting, I can help you do that. If you want to just drink a cup of coffee, then I have suggestions on how to make that coffee amazing! If you want to eat eggs everyday (that's me) then I can help you make sure they are the healthiest eggs you can eat!

Just start your day. Get it going. Make that list. Throw away that muffin and eat a piece of fruit. Commit to your day because this day will never be here again and we are all here to help one another live our best lives <3

In health,
Marielle

Body Love ;)

Life is too short to not love your body!

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Sure there are days when my body just does not do what its supposed to and it definitely freaks me out...big time! As you all know, I have MS. I am in a constant fear that when something is wrong, it's related to that disease. And I feel like something is always wrong (I'm not a hypochondriac...trust me).  But, then I remember that I am human and having digestive issues is "normal" and that getting sick happens to the best of us.  I have to remember that this is just my body and I need to give it acceptance and love all at the same time while it's not being perfect.

There are so many reasons to love your body. So many reason to be thankful every single day that you are here and can do everything in your power to be happy.  What makes you different is soooo totally what makes you beautiful. ;) You have that control! It's up to you to make your life more than just about being sick or not the weight you'd like to be. 

Food is one of the best ways to show yourself some love...am I right? I mean, it's definitely the way to my heart! No doubt about that. The need to eat is the one thing every single person has in common. What you eat is the only thing you can actually control. I eat way more than people would think. I also exercise often because I know how much it benefits my body and makes me feel awesome! I do NOT exercise just so I can eat what I want. Everyday, I am very careful about what I consume. Having an autoimmune disease does not make me have free reign in the food department. Quite the opposite, actually. I am totally ok with having dietary restrictions. They don't bother me. I know they bother my friends and other people but (like I mentioned in my last post) it's not up to other people to make me feel my best day in and day out. Loving my body, my digestive system, my sleep patterns and my exercise routines has changed my life!

The standards of beauty that are out there are created by people that probably don't even look like that! And who cares if you have dimples on your thighs or rolls on your stomach when you sit down. You are made up of muscle and fat and we all have different proportions. It doesn't make you any more/less of a person if you have more/less than someone else. It just makes you YOU! So lets give yourself a break already and try smiling when you look in the mirror?! Think about the qualities you like about yourself and strive to be a better person. It'll make the world a way more fun place to be :)

5 ways to accept yourself and give your body love:

  1. Stop comparing yourself to others: If there's one thing you learn as you grow up it's that everyone has a different body for different reasons. We are all unique and we all have special qualities, shapes, sizes and amounts of cellulite. We have to accept our differences to love ourselves. One of the best ways to do this is also by deleting the instagram accounts that are not providing positive messages to you.

  2. You are not defined by your health issues: Having a sickness or health problems does not define you.  I am not my MS!!! It is just something I have to live with. I couldn't be more thankful this happened in the first place. It completely changed the way I treat and think of myself. One thing that helps is that if you look at someone who is sick, they don't always look sick. One in every two Americans have a chronic illness. Everyone is fighting something. #selflove ;)

  3. Be mindful: Self compassion--This is something I tell you guys all the time and it impacts so many areas of your life.  In regards to your body, pay attention to the areas that need more attention. Instead of cursing your gut for being constipated, why not try sending it some love and being nice to it. Maybe give it a massage in a clock wise position or ask me how to find relief naturally. It keeps you alive and is just doing it's job.

  4. Pay attention to you plate: Caring about what you put on your plate at every meal isn't for anyone but yourself. What you eat directly impacts how you feel physically every day. Each plate should consist of green veggies (fiber), protein, and raw fat (PFF). 

  5. Me time: Exercise is not always about losing weight. I do it to build muscle because I want to be able to do push ups and have strength as I get older. Finding some way to sweat that you enjoy becomes more of a hobby that you do for yourself. It's a time of the day that is "me time." Everyday, take some time for yourself to improve how you body functions and handles stress (running, strength training, yoga, meditation). You will start to look forward to feeling good!

 

It's hard. Life can be a challenge. Having health issues definitely sucks! But, we are in this together and you are not alone in the battle you are facing. I am interested in putting together a group program. Please reply yes if you are interested :)

 

In good health,

Marielle

 

Easy Ways to Boost Your Immune System!

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We all get sick...well most of us do. I know people who never get sick and I am secretly envious of how well their bodies work. I tend to get mad at myself when I come down with a cold, but then I have to remember that I am doing everything I can to stay healthy everyday. It happens and because I know what to do when it does, I am better in a couple days rather than a couple weeks.

So, now that we are heading into colder months and staying indoors more (i.e. getting less of the sunshine vitamin (D) we need to be sure we are making our 'self care' of the utmost importance! If you have an autoimmune disorder, your immune system needs you to stay on top of your self care now more than ever. We are exposed to viruses and bacteria everyday that can be harmful. All of those things can weaken your immune system. Here are a few ways to protect our bodies and stay healthy when that happens.

5 easy ways to boost your immune system:

  1.  Sleep Well: This is one of the most important things you can do for your mind, body and immune system every single day. Sleep deprivation is stress you are adding to your body that it cannot control. Lack of sleep causes a loss of white blood cells which your immune system needs to fight inflammation and infection. Sleep influences every aspect of your day to how you feel, how well you are mentally focused and how to fight a flu virus. Make sure you get the necessary 7-10 hours. If you think you need more, take a nap, get it in. 

  2. Improve your diet: When I say diet, I don't mean restricting calories. I mean the foods you consume for health. Foods that you like to eat and that actually make you feel good! One of the most important things you can do is pay attention to how certain foods make you feel. Healthy foods help build your bodies defense team up! Steer clear of processed foods. If you don't know what is in it, neither will your body! Try to eat foods that are natural to the earth and not made in a lab.

  3. Take your vitamins: The reason they are called 'supplements' is exactly that; they supplement the nutrients we need from our foods. Today's produce does not have as many vitamins and minerals as they once did. If you are sick or have a chronic illness, your body needs vitamins more than ever! It's not getting what it needs from your daily lifestyle and eating habits. Just remember, that that is ok! We all need help in certain areas of our daily lives. Making sure your body is functioning at its best is highly important.                               
  4. Exercise: Find something you enjoy. Exercise should never be a form of punishment for eating poorly or a way to out run a bad diet (not even possible). If you like yoga try pilates or gyrotonics. If you like running, try doing endurance training. What I am saying is, try something that makes your body move. You never know what you'll end up enjoying and when you enjoy doing something thats beneficial for you, you'll see results faster!                Exercise is also an effective way to reduce inflammation. As an individual with MS, I work out because I love it and because I know it is a powerful anti-inflammatory version of medicine I can do for myself. Sweating is your bodies way of detoxing. Try finding a way to sweat everyday! Just remember, any workout that is longer than an hour can actually cause your body to become inflamed.                                                                                                   
  5. Being Mindful: This is an important factor for every single aspect of you life! One of the main reasons I teach my clients to meditate is to practice being present. In a world where we are way over stimulated with technology, we need to remind ourselves to pay attention to the moments of days that pass by. When was the last time you ate food without any distractions?! It's hard, trust me. Take a second and lift your eyes away from your phone. Pay attention to where you are and what's happening. Maybe try reading a book on your commute instead of looking at Instragram. Make a list or start a notebook of things you are grateful for. You'll be surprised at the amazing things you've got in your everyday life!

In love and health,

Marielle

 

 

 

10 Ways to Do a Sugar DETOX!!!!

We are all guilty of it. It's something we think we have under control, but it creeps in at work, at parties and in your morning coffee. I'm talking about SUGAR!

It comes in many different forms; fructose (fruits, root veggies, cane sugar and honey), glucose (naturally occurs in fruits and plant juices) and sucrose (table sugar).  Sucrose is the bad stuff you want to stay away from. The added sugar in our diets gives you no benefit and can negatively impact our health (causing inflammation). You should consume no more than 20g of added sugar per day (not including the 2-3 servings of fruit you should be eating as part of a healthy diet).

Focus on cutting out the bad stuff. Candy, fruit filled yogurt, bottles smoothies and juices, white bread, boxed cereal, granola, that creamer you put in your coffee, and any form of 'fake' sugar (equal/sweet 'n low). These 'foods' do not help you or your gut on a daily basis and can only lead to health issues if consumed too often.

Here are 10 ways to start cutting added SUGAR out of your diet:

1) Stick to the real stuff. I mean food that grows from the earth. Eat foods that you can buy at a farmers market. Stop buying anything packaged!!!

2) Cook at home. Making your own food is the best way to know what you're putting in your body and to better understand how certain things make you feel. You'll save more $ by cooking more at home. Put together a food prep day with your family and make it fun!

3) Read the label! Trust me. I've said this before and I'll say it again, if you don't know what is in the packaged 'food' product you're about to eat, your body won't know either. Digestion starts with your eyes. Pay attention to what your consume. 

4) Try to get 20g or less of added sugar a day.  One teaspoon = 4 grams of sugar. Think about this when you make your morning coffee or tea.

5) Staying hydrated with water helps keep you full for longer and flushes things out of your system. Aim for 8 or more glasses of water a day. Even more if you are active.

6) Stay active! Sweating helps your body get rid of toxins and burn extra calories.

7) Encourage a friend or family member to cut down on sugar with you! Having someone to challenge you will make you more responsible.

8) Sleep! Make it a priority. Sleeping helps your body rest and recover so that you have enough energy for the day ahead. This will be especially helpful when your energy lulls (usually in the afternoon) and you want to snack or binge.

9) Savor it! If you do have dessert, stick to 3 bites. Take your time when you eat something sweet. Remember we call them 'treats' for a reason.

10) Keep a healthy snack on hand. This will help you curb your desire for those cookies in the office. Try having some nuts or an apple. 

This will only make you healthier and happier =)

xo,

Marielle