It has been 25 weeks since I embarked on a journey to heal my body of stage three Adrenal Fatigue. You can check out my story, HERE.
Ohhh the highs. Ohhh the lows.
I have been receiving countless emails asking about my experience and what I did to start feeling better. I am so very happy to share.
I know the struggle. I know the confusion. I have felt the frustration and the loss of energy and hope. My intention with this post is to encourage anyone suffering with AF to keep going. Learn as much as you can about your body, what makes you feel good and what doesn’t.
The most encouraging thing I read when I was researching Adrenal Fatigue is that you can heal. Your body wants balance and when given the correct tools it will completely balance out. Homeostasis, where we are meant to be living all along!
During the past 6 months I have had such inspired moments and I have also experienced some intense crashes. However, when I truly changed my mindset I started to feel a shift. I had to take my health into my own hands. It was my lifestyle and choices that brought me into this mess, it is going to be my lifestyle and choices that are going to bring me out.
Bring me back to myself.
So I started to read. READ read read. I flew through books, blogs and websites. I also started to work with a really great Holistic Chiropractor. So here we go! This is the consensus of what I have learned through experience and research:
1. REST. REST. REST. Seriously. That has made all the difference in the world. Whatever you have to do to make sure you are getting a good sleep and some time to relax, please DO! I was a runner/crossfitter/exercise maniac go go go type of person. I ceased ALL exercise in the first month. (No exercise, er what?) But really. Then, after the first month I started going for long walks and doing Yin/Restorative Yoga. Now, in the sixth month I started doing a bit of running but mostly stick to my light exercise routine. It was so hard for me at first but extremely helpful. You must do all you can to prevent stress on your adrenal glands. I have come to really enjoy my down time. We are meant to relax, I had really been missing out!
This is what I like to do to simply CHILL. <–
2. *Nutrition/Nourish* Balance. Wow. This is such a biggy and one I am still working on. What worked best for me was to load up on fresh, organic when possible, CLEAN food. Gluten and I do not jive so I cut that out. My body doesn’t do well on dairy either so I got rid of that. Most importantly I removed caffeine and sugar. Those were the two most beneficial and also the hardest. :D It was a rough start, but when I got going I felt *so much better*— I read that sugar and caffeine uber stimulate and stress the adrenal glands. I loved coffee so now I treat myself to a coffee (always decaf!) once in a while and that is ok for me. When I eat good and get good rest I don’t need caffeine to function anyways.
So if it comes from the earth, good. If it comes from a package, no good. When I was in stage three adrenal fatigue I craved sugar *so much*– so this was definitely not easy at first. Trust me though, it gets better. I guess I would say that when I am eating veggie based primal I feel the best. Also, lots and lots of water, but you don’t need AF to know that!
I still have crashes once in a while that really mess with my balance, especially nutritionally, but for the most part I am able to eat super clean. I have currently lost 20 of the 30ish lbs I gained over the past three years. Eehhkk. That weight was just STUCK, but I swear relaxing & eating good has allowed my body to regain its balance slowly but surely. *Halle-freakin’-lujah!*
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Slow down. Love Up. My Journey Through Adrenal Fatigue
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3. SUPPLEMENTS!- – First thing my mother did was send me a Shaklee box. I jumped right back into my high quality supplement routine. In the case of Adrenal Fatigue, I read that it is very important to get your Vitamin C and B vitamins. I take a Vitamin-C, B-complex, Multi-vitamin and Calcium Magnesium. I try not to go a day without them.
4. Awareness Practice.– Now this is important. I never realized how *tense* I always was… it was sad! My body was tense, my mind was tense and going going going. Yin/Restorative Yoga has really helped me to relax. I go for long walks of gratitude. Journal. Meditate a little bit– (although meditating can either be calming or torturous for me, hey just being honest!) I do all of this when I can. Sometimes one thing a day, sometimes none. I don’t force anything or regimen anything because that just stresses me out all over again! Just spend some time outside, reflecting and appreciating life & mother nature when I can. Make your “me time” a priority, it is SO very very important!
5. SUPPORT, Massage & a Super Dr.– a friend of mine recommended a great Dr. –(Dr. Demartino, Las Vegas). I was seeing him 2x a week for a micro-current treatment. Having a knowledgeable doctor that suffered with AF at one time in his life made all the difference in the world! I hope anyone suffering with AF is able to find themselves a good doc.
I know my bi-monthly massage and adjustment at the chiro made a positive impact too. Having bodywork is probably one of my favorite things in the world. So very very relaxing and also energy lifting. This is nonnegotiable for me.
Last but not least– SUPPORT. I don’t know how I could ever put this into words. My mom, dad & sisters were there for me always. I could never in a million years done this without them. Every phone call, Skype sesh, card and text during the good and the bad… I burst with gratitude. Round up those closest to you and ask them for help. You will be so grateful you did.
As of today I am feeling like my old self again. Confident (man, I missed that!) and healthy. Ready to take on the world. Don’t get me wrong, I still have days where it is difficult, but I have learned those times don’t last long. I feel so blessed to have this wake up call to really slow down and enjoy life a little bit more. I have realized that what I have and who I am now, in this moment is just right. That is a wondrous realization.
If you read this whole thing, I thank you. If you have AF I wish you strength, understanding and inner guidance. You can do it.
Be well, XO
Having hormonal issues? Check this post out! –>WomanCode
Follow up post 1 –> Eat Clean
Follow up post 2 –> Let go. Love up.
*Remember this is an account of my own personal experience. Please consult with your Dr. before making any lifestyle changes. TY!*