As those of you following us on Facebook have seen, I have had an incredibly busy summer, from following my oldest child who is 13 years old across the country to a coveted 10 day baseball tournament in Cooperstown New York, to attending the Firefighter Olympics in San Diego, all the while trying to manage family, health, and work while on the road, in unfamiliar beds, with no kitchen. The travel was often grueling, the temperatures were brutal, humidity was intense, and irregular sleep, diet, and stress made for a significant challenge.
I kept checking in with my body each day, each night….scanning myself for signs of relapse or illness and pinching myself each day when it seemed tired but still chugging along.
Despite the challenges I was able to hold my ground health-wise and I credit it to staying focused and committed to my wellness toolkit. It can be easy to let healthy patterns fall off the radar when we are busy or traveling. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Here is a peak into my toolbox – my core routines, supplements, and practices that I am committed to – and that in return have not only kept me afloat under extreme pressure, but that have kept me on a positive healing trajectory for months. Over the next few entries, I’ll be summarizing the different pieces of my toolkit. Later, I intend to delve deeper into them.
Daily “Core” routines: Here are 8 of my daily core routines. These are the things I strive to do without fail. They serve the most important inner part of me and support me on my healing journey by way of ritual and daily self-care. When I practice my core routines, I set the intention for HOW I want to live my days were they NOT defined by the illness I am dealing with. These practices are simple, take little time, and best of all are not expensive. Healing should not bankrupt us. I have collected these practice because they have huge positive impact – without the HUGE cost that we have gotten so accustomed to paying.
1. Lemon + Water – lemon water is my go to detox ritual. I like to start and end my day with lemon water for both it’s detox and alkalinizing properties.
2. Enzymes & Probiotics – Clinical studies have established many benefits of probiotic therapy. Probiotics can help treat several gastrointestinal ills, delay the development of allergies in children, and help maintain urogenital health. Enzymes help the body break down nutrients and clean house more efficiently.
3. Grounding / Sit Spot – Increasingly science is supporting that time in nature, especially contemplative time (i.e. quiet) in the great outdoors supports the immune system. When you are at your worst it’s hard to get outside, I know, but even just setting up a chair somewhere close to home outside with your bare feet on the ground (bring a blanket if you need to 🙂 can be super beneficial.
4. Quiet time – There are many reasons doctors and coaches support meditation and quiet for healing. For me, it’s all that…but mostly it’s about giving myself the time and space to listen to what my body is trying to tell me. It’s in the listening that we learn what is working for us, and what isn’t. So we can adjust our patterns accordingly.
5. Activity balanced with rest – I finally started “exercising” last November. This was a HUGE step for me, because just trying to show up for my life seemed to take all the energy that I had – let alone thinking about trying to find the energy to “work out.” I started really slow, and I was shocked at how little sense I had of my body as an active, functioning machine. I had no balance. No strength. No endurance. No coordination. I have made a lot of progress despite an internal voice that keeps trying to tell me “you don’t have the energy” to do this. By getting up and getting out, just by pushing through that internal resistance a little bit (I’m not talking about ignoring your body if you truly can’t….but in my case, I knew it was time to try to build in a little more) I have made huge progress. I can tell I’m waking up an important part of my brain and revving up my immune system in ways that have been dormant for far too long. Make sure you always make time for restorative practice and rest after your movement time. My trainer recommends at least one day off for every active day. I actually feel that I need more like 2 days of rest for every day of exercise. Find out what works for you and go gently.
6. Laughter – Laughter not only provides a boost to our immune system, it takes our minds off how our bodies are feeling.
7. Detox – Whether you choose internal cleanses, infrared sauna, lymphatic massage, or whatever feels good to you, pick some form of regular detox. Supporting our systems of elimination is vital as we move through treatment and asking so much of our detox organs like our kidneys and liver.
8. “Swishing” with Coconut OIl (aka Oil Pulling) – This is an ayurvedic practice that has helped me dramatically with detox. Rinse the mouth with approximately one tablespoon of oil (I use coconut oil) for 15–20 minutes on an empty stomach then spit it out and wash the teeth, gums, tongue and palate thoroughly.
I feel so thankful to have found my way to a process and a practice that actually works for me. I want that for all of you.
You never know where healing is going to creep in, but go ahead and grab hold of it when it does. Lindsay Pera ~ Chronic Wellness Tools
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