Do You Have a Wellness Plan?

Wendy in Weight Room 4.6.17

Do you have a wellness plan?  It’s a very important question, but even more important is what are you focused on?  You see, what you focus on expands.  So I decided to focus on what I wanted, not what I didn’t want.

Last year my wellness plan was focused on vitality.  I decided to spend the year focused on what I wanted most – vitality and a sense of well-being.  The outcome exceeded my expectations.  More about that in upcoming blog posts.  I plan to share what I learned and more as my plan moves forward through 2017.

Tonight in the free weight room Gabe, our trainer, had what looked like a simple 6 exercise plan for the class.  Only problem, the repetitions totaled 500.  Carrying around those weights for about 45 minutes was increasingly tiring.  I was glad to put them down for the abs/core workout and cool down.  But as I gingerly walked over to the TRAX stop to head home I realized that was two 10 lb dumbells = 20 pounds.  Over the last two years I’ve burned off 15 pounds by working out in my two favorite exercise places.  It would have been about 20 pounds except for the holidays.

Interesting, the thought of what it feels like to carry an extra 20 pounds around for just 45 minutes.  

Working my way down to my ideal weight, considering I’m 62 1/2, has to take into consideration a wellness plan for my entire body – not just a number on the scale.  Sometime in our 30’s we start to lose muscle mass and the older we get the harder it is to maintain and build.  Building muscle this past year has transformed my body and I’ve enjoyed watching where my body decided to burn off the fat.  While the number on the scale has slowly changed, I’m wearing clothes I haven’t fit in for years.

Next up will be my BOD POD experience this year, my wellness tracker, and why setting up a wellness plan is one of the best things you can do for yourself on a physical, mental, emotional, and energetic level.

Next time you look in the mirror ask yourself: “what one step can I take for my health and well-being this month?”


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D/W/PS our relationship is over . . . again



Haha what a great title for Valentine’s day!

That stands for  Dairy / Wheat / and Processed Sugar

In my ongoing quest for vibrant health and well-being, there are three players who repeatedly cause havoc in my body.  While I’ve released them in the past, one more than the other two, whenever they reappear it’s all bad.  But in some ways they are my old friends with wise insights.

So here is how it plays out in me:

Dairy: the casein protein causes asthma – the whey protein causes my ears to close up to the point I can’t hear after a couple weeks.

Wheat:  sinus congestion, brain fog, and my eyes don’t see things as bright and clear

Processed sugar:  let’s just not even go there.  I’m pretty sure my body laughs and immediately stores it around the middle.

All of the above create an inflammation in my body that over time goes on to cause all kinds of other problems, or so we are told.  I personally don’t feel like waiting around for that.

So in honor of Valentine’s Day (and why honor love just one day of the year), I’m going to spend the entire YEAR loving my body into a state of vibrant health and well-being.  Over the past two years I’ve posted a lot of pictures and inspiration on Facebook from the 30-day plank challenge, to my two days a week in the University of Utah free weight room as part of our fantastic Well U Program, to my happy place at the Bar Method SLC.  During this time I’ve transformed my body, gained strength and flexibility, lots of amazing muscles, even my “6-pack” abs are underneath that roll around the middle I’m going to be burning off this year.  I’ve shed 15 pounds of the 25 pounds I gained the year after I suffered two seizures out of the blue.  I’m down to the last 10 pounds (maybe I’ll go for 15) – you know that friend that keeps coming back around – no pun intended.  Maybe it’s time to pull up a comfy place to chat and find out what she has to say.  I’m sure it’s insightful, I’ve just been ignoring her wisdom.

So in the picture above that roll around the middle is the only place left to really burn.  At age 62 1/2 my body has seen every trick in the book, so it’s time to reconnect and listen.

I’ve decided to honor myself by creating a  year long body transformation program and put myself through it.  As a clinical herbalist, flower essence practitioner, and Quantum Touch/Reiki practitioner, I love to look at the biggest picture of what might be causing imbalances in the body that show up as “symptoms” that may or may not send you to the doctor.  Lifestyle choices are a big factor as well as nutritional deficiencies.  So I like to address it all, but not all at once.  I’ve even had a client whose health was affected by high electro-magnetic frequencies near his house/work.  So including the physical, emotional, energetic, spiritual/soul levels, and environmental factors all come into play.

Since the best thing we can all do to help keep health care costs down is prevention, I’m going to create a tribe of like-minded people.  Read along if you are so drawn.

I’ll share how my entire business, plus more, can be used for a more vibrant life.


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What’s a Bod Pod ?


Bod Pod - small sizeAbout 5 years ago I found a funky machine called the Bod Pod on the list of wellness options in my University of Utah Well U Program.  I love working for an institution that collaborates with its many programs to offer the most extensive array of health, wellness, fitness, nutrition, personal training, and even more programs to stay healthy, all in exchange for a fantastic discount on your health insurance.

The year I found the Bod Pod I was interested in losing about 25 pounds.  It seems like the older you get the weight slowly creeps on when you aren’t paying attention to yourself.   I had a group of friends that were joining me so I made an appointment for the Bod Pod – Body Composition Tracking System Analysis.  You sit in this machine for about 50 seconds and it analyzes almost every aspect of your body.  My main focus was my actual percentage of muscle versus fat, and my weight.  The two areas I was monitoring were broken down into two categories:

“Body Fat:  A certain amount is absolutely necessary for good health.  Fat plays an important role in protecting internal organs, providing energy, and regulating hormones. The minimal amount of “essential fat” is approximately 3-5% for men, and 12-15% for women.  If too much fat accumulates over time, health my be compromised.

Fat Free Mass:  Fat free mass is everything except fat.  It includes muscle, water, bone, and internal organs.  Muscle is the “metabolic engine” of the body that burns calories (fat) and plays an important role in maintaining strength and energy.  Healthy levels of fat-free mass contribute to physical fitness and may prevent conditions such as osteoporosis.”   (PEAK Fitness)

 I then proceeded to jump head first into a program that was nutrition and walking/cardio machines.  After 4 months I’d lost 24 pounds and maintained that weight over the year.

Very proud of myself, the next year I went back to be analyzed in the Bod Pod. What I found out was that I lost mostly muscle mass/weight and very little body fat percentage or pounds.  This was a bit distressing.  In talking with the PEAK Fitness office I decided to sign up for the free weight training program.  For those of you who know me, the rest is history.  For those of you who don’t, I fell in love with the free weight room — dumbells and barbells — for building strength/muscle, endurance, and transformed my body.  Over the years I’ve added muscle and burned off some fat.  Although my weight has hit a plateau, my clothes fit better.

However, I’m always experimenting on myself to be the healthiest and most fit I can be.  I still want to lose about 10-15 pounds, but only in the body fat department.  I’d like to see my body fat rating around 25%, the middle of the moderately lean category.  So back to the Bod Pod I went the other day.  I have my starting point and will be working on this from a holistic standpoint over the next 8 months.  The end of December I’m going back to check my progress.  Every couple weeks to a month I will add on and remove something as I tweak my way back to the vibrant health that will take me through my Sassy 60’s and beyond!

Stay tuned as I pull together my wellness plan from every angle and blog about my progress and insights along the way.

When you get on the scale do you really know what you are weighing ?  Check and see if there is a Bod Pod in your area.


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Oh POOP – The Great Colonoscopy Story

March was colon cancer awareness month.  However, this great blog post never got published.  I thought maybe it was to be more aligned with Spring cleaning.  But then it hit me . . . this is the fifth anniversary of my Great Colonoscopy Story!

So I must share and encourage – maybe even inspire you.

After losing a grandmother and then an uncle to colon cancer, at the same age, the cousins all decided we were getting colonoscopies.  In my case, I had been easing into it with those POOP SLIDES  :O  for several years before I knew my uncle would be diagnosed with colon cancer.  But once my uncle passed away, I decided the time was now.

I found a wonderful outpatient colonoscopy center really close to my home (this is key by the way), and what I liked most — the prep was liquid magnesium (there would be no magnesium deficiency for me) and Dulcolax (the ad says gentle and predictable-haha).  Somehow I liked the sound of this over some of those preps I’ve heard people mix up and gag down.  Believe it or not, that was the reason I delayed having the procedure in the first place.  Now that’s just sad.

I decided if I was going to spend so much time in the bathroom I might as well take all the magazines in my apartment with me.  So I was either in the bathroom . . . with the magazines or resting — or so I thought.  But it turned out in between bathroom breaks I was cleaning my apartment.  It was so effortless I didn’t even realize I was tidying up.

After finally getting a few hours of sleep, my alarm woke me.  I readied myself to be picked up and whisk off for the procedure (also key even at 9 city blocks away).  I reached for the door handle and stopped.

Something was different.  The energy was clear, smooth, fresh, creative, and so strikingly different I stopped and turned around to look at what I was feeling.  Was it my energetics or my apartment?  I toured my place slowly, one room at a time.  It was so clean, tidy, organized, and yes it had a beautiful flow of creativity.  When did all that happen?

After one last stop in the bathroom, I walked back to the door.  There were two stacks of magazines ready for recycling.

AWWWWW – clean on the inside – clean on the outside.

Luckily I had a good report from my colonoscopy.  RELIEF!! Was I holding onto a fear as well?

I asked my PCP if I should get another colonoscopy in 5 years instead of the recommended 10 years due to my family history?  Her response after hearing the above story, “I think 10 years is okay, unless your apartment needs another deep cleaning.”  But seriously we are considering the 6 year mark to make sure there are no changes.

Many lessons were learned from this experience, but the most profound was the experience of clean on the inside – clean on the outside.

If you want to see effortless change around you, start by looking inside yourself to see how you can make the shift personally and watch The Universe match you in the environment and people around you.  I would go on to use this lesson many times over.

Oh, and if you are 50+ talk to your PCP about that colonoscopy.  It’s not as bad as it sounds.

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Today this herbalist had Mohs Surgery

Hand with bandage 2.16.16As an herbalist I’m willing to try all sorts of experiments on myself, but sometimes intuition takes over and says “Wendy, I think you need a trained professional.”

Over the last six weeks I’d been observing a red bump on my hand.  I didn’t know what it was.  Yes I did try some DIY Dermatology, but it didn’t work and I must say I spent way too much time observing cells growing.  I work in Western Medicine by day and I did ask around, but in the end I’m glad I followed my intuition.  I remembered a wonderful dermatologist I went to about nine years ago.  He looked at it and said, “it could be XYZ but it could also be squamous cell skin cancer.  Let’s shave that bump off and get a biopsy so we know what we are dealing with.”

Thank you INTUITION and dermatologist, as it came back squamous cell skin cancer.  I was thanked for coming in so soon as it was more superficial.  Next I was scheduled for Mohs surgery.  Thank you Dr. Frederick Mohs for this ingenious tissue-sparing procedure!

I’d heard of it before because I had a client a few years ago who had a much deeper version than I did and needed stitches for a longer incision.  She came to me for energy medicine (Reiki and Quantum Touch) to help heal the incision.  It was fascinating to watch, and even her husband said he wished he’d taken pictures along the way (this story will be in another blog post).

So today I showed up very nervous in the Mohs Surgery section.  I love my skin and had really enjoyed watching the layers rebuild after the initial biopsy.  I humored this new dermatologist in an effort to remain calm.  As I described looking at the location of the bump and how it seemed too close to a vein and the tendons/ligaments that work my thumb (I use my hands all day/evening).  There was too much anatomy going on to waste time.  I also told him how much I enjoyed watching the skin layers rebuild.  My description was so detailed he laughed and said, “do you work here, anyone else would be grossed out and you are studying your skin.”  haha

So luckily for me they only had to take one micro layer and come back for a small margin.  Knowing how much I enjoyed watching my skin heal, the dermatologist told me it didn’t need any stitches and I would have another chance to watch my skin rebuild.

So I started doing energy medicine on it as I was waiting for the last sample to come back from pathology, and continued throughout the afternoon at work.  Whenever I would feel some aching I would send more healing energy with my other hand.  The aching would slowly dissipate.  What I love about energy medicine is that not only is the aching going away but my skin is healing at the same time.  I can’t take the bandage off for two days, but I will take pictures along the way.  The spot is much smaller than the bandage!!


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Adventures in Evolving

Be Brave Today

It wasn’t until the 5th person told me that I needed to start writing that I realized there was a theme circling.  Strange thing was none of them knew me or each other.  Other people saw it in and around me, and I even felt it.  It’s a weird feeling when you meet someone, and out of the blue they say, “start writing, NOW.”  But write what and where?  Well I did start a blog on my herbal website, but after experiencing two really bad seizures a little over two years ago, it went on the back burner.  I was going to write about my recovery, but that was like watching paint dry.  Funny my family doctor said she would have loved it.

Something else needed to enter into the picture.  The Universe always has Divine Timing.

2015 was the year for clues.  First came “The Desire Map” and my Core Desired Feelings (more on this later). And then came “the life-changing magic of tidying up.”  You know that decluttering book by Marie Kondo and the KonMari Method that’s going viral!!  “Now what,” you ask, “could a bunch of feelings and a decluttering book have to do with health and well-being?”  So much that I couldn’t move forward until all the pieces were in place.

When I told this to a 6th person who knew me she said, “Yes, yes, you speak in stories and metaphors.  Have fun with your blog.  It doesn’t have to be so academic.  It can be, but the fun side is really you.”

What has always amazed me about herbal medicine is the spirit of plants, how they know us better than we know ourselves, how they connect and communicate with us, and how they help us partner up for health, well-being, and vibrant health.  I love the spirit of my green friends and look forward to blogging about how all the pieces come together.

Today I think I’ll be brave and be vibrant!


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Insights from an Herbal Consultation

On Tuesday I had an herbal consultation with my herbalist (that’s ME!) to assess my current baseline on my health and well-being.

My main priority is to return to a state of vibrant health!

While I have an extensive intake form that gives me the bigger picture of what is going on in my clients health, when I went through the various sections at the end something stood out as missing.  I sat with it for a while and realized I do have a lot of areas to work on over the next 5 months, but where do I start and what is the missing section?

I had to put things on hold for a day as I moved into a house in one of my favorite parts of Salt Lake City (SLC) to stay with their dog for a few days.  The energy of the Salt Lake Valley is so different.  As someone who is very energy sensitive, I can literally feel the difference as I cross into different parts of town.  The house I am staying in is close to the mountains and in an area that I find mesmerizing.  The energy coming off this part of the mountains would make a great meditation area.

I’m sitting here realizing that the missing part on my intake form is more in depth information about “what’s going on in your life right now.”  For me I have a very busy life and it’s almost challenging to relax.  What stands out when I make a list of what I do on a daily/weekly basis I wonder how I get it all done.  I must be non-stop.  Yes–that’s true, how do I get it all done?

Makes me wonder if my seizure was on some strange level about the Universe saying SLOW DOWN NOW!  Especially along with it was a severely bruised and swollen ankle.  

How interesting I have this insight sitting in the mesmerizing energy coming off these mountains.  My “retreat” lasts another day.  I’m going to take full advantage of it while I design my wellness protocol which will start Monday, April 7th.  I will be looking at everything in my life/lifestyle/foods that is irritating to the nervous system.  Since the enteric nervous system is embedded in the lining of the gastrointestinal system, that means I need to look at the digestive system at the same time.

After all, it’s not fair to make the plants do all the work without stepping up to the plate and removing what is causing the issues in the first place.  Actually a plant told me that years ago!  😀

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