The Important Hormone That You Never Hear About

“You have an abundance of prolactin,” my doctor stated during my last appointment.  Prolactin, what?!  Don’t you mean progesterone, testosterone, thyroid????  Up until my 36th year, I had never heard of this hormone and certainly had no idea what it was for or the many issues it can cause in your body.

Wikipedia’s definition states that Prolactin “also known as luteotropic hormone or luteotropin, is a protein that is best known for its role in enabling mammals, usually females, to produce milk.”  Wikipedia goes on to state that it “is secreted from the pituitary gland in response to eating, mating, estrogen treatment, ovulation and nursing.”   Synopsis: it is responsible for lactation.  Well, as a woman who has never been pregnant, this shouldn’t be something I should be concerned about, right?!  Wrong!

An increased amount of prolactin can affect the body significantly.  In women too much prolactin can cause:

  •  Irregular menstrual periods/or no menstrual periods
  • Milky discharge from the breasts when not pregnant or breast-feeding
  • Acne and excessive body and facial hair growth
  • Infertility

Women, you aren’t alone.  Too much prolactin can affect the men in our lives as well.  In males it can cause:

  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Decreased body and facial hair
  • Uncommonly, enlarged breasts

In both sexes, it can cause:

  • Low bone density
  • Loss of interest in sexual activity
  • Headaches
  • Visual disturbances
  • Infertility

The body never ceases to amaze me and the craziest thing about too much prolactin is that it can be caused by tumors on your pituitary gland (you know, that small gland that sits at the base of your brain….that basically controls all of the other hormones in your body!!!).  Most of the time, the tumors are benign but need to be lessened with medication or surgical removal.

Long story short, if you have any of these symptoms, make sure to ask your doctor to check your prolactin levels with a simple blood test.  Listen to your body; it will tell you if something is wrong.

In the meantime, spread the awareness about this ignored, yet crucial, hormone…PROLACTIN!!!!!

 

My Loss and Tips on Dealing with Grief

Hello friends,

I hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday season and I wish you all a happy and healthy 2017!

I normally try to stay extremely upbeat and positive with my posts, and I promise that I will be back to those soon.  However, before I can move into this year I wanted to share this post with you.  Please forgive me 🙂

For me, as well as for many others, 2016 was a year filled with sadness and heartbreak.  There were many close to my heart who suffered great losses and I too lost a dear, loved one. I experienced my first real grips with death when losing my dog, Jake.  I know that some may be thinking, “come on, it’s just a dog!” But for me, Jake was my best friend.  He was in my life for over ten years and was honestly my child (since I haven’t been blessed with a human one yet).  We did absolutely everything together and no person will ever love me with the unconditional love that Jake did.  Plus, this was my first true experience with death and watching someone have their last moment on this planet.  It’s a tragedy that will take me a long time to get over.

I could go on and on about my Jakey but that is not why I am writing this.  I am here to give you my tips on how I am dealing with grief.  I share this with you for two reasons: 1) I know that so many people are suffering from grief right now.  If I can help you with even one of my tips, my job here is done. 2)  It’s cathartic.

Here are the tips that are helping me deal with grief:

  1.  Go Outside.  There is something about being outside that reminds me that the world is so much bigger than me.  It reminds me that there is good in the world, regardless of how sad I am in the moment.  Put your feet in the sand, look at the trees and flowers, breathe in the fresh air.  Staying inside and dwelling on our sadness never helps.
  2. Move Your Body.  For me the thought of doing a difficult workout during a period of grief is unbearable.  However, it is crucial to get out of your own mind and to move your body.  Increase those endorphins with some Yoga or go for a walk.
  3. Eat Healthy Food.  I know what you’re thinking, “all I want is comfort food when I am sad!”  I did too…pizza, soup, french fries!!  But did you know that some foods can actually make us more depressed?  Try to get in some veggies and healthy meals.  Also, try to throw in some grounding foods like sweet potatoes or beets.
  4. Talk to a Friend.  If you are lucky enough to have a good friend who will listen, talk to them about your feelings, experiences and memories.  Do not bottle it up.
  5. Take Care of Yourself.  Remember that grief can actually have a negative impact on our health.  We saw this through the passing of Debbie Reynolds after her daughter, Carrie Fisher, died.  Self care is crucial during this period.  Take baths, increase your vitamins, get extra sleep, journal, meditate, etc.
  6. Remember that You are Human.  This tip is the most important of all!  There are days where I forget that death is a part of being a human being.  I try to be strong and hide my feelings but it is crucial to allow ourselves to feel the way that we are feeling.  If you are sad, it’s okay…more than okay….to cry.  It’s okay to be angry, tired, confused, depressed, selfish.  Feel the way that you need to feel to get through this.

 

I hope that some of these tips can help you through your healing.  If you are suffering the loss of a loved one, please comment below and share your story.  We can get through it together 🙂

I hope that this can be a wonderful year for everyone and I will be back with some happiness and joy soon 🙂

My Struggle with Body Image

Hello friends,

Gabby Bernstein says that “Your wounds are your wisdom” and this is something that really resonates with me.  Over the last few weeks, well even years, I have had a major wake up call when it comes to my struggle with body image (body shaming, body hating).  In this very, vulnerable VLOG I share my story with you.

Please take a few moments to watch the video.  I never share my story with you to make you feel sorry for me.  My true purpose is to make an impact and to possibly change the way that we feel about our bodies.

Also, please share with anyone who you think could use it.  Thank you 🙂

Not Being Good Enough

Hello all of my lovely friends,

Over the last few weeks I have been doing a lot of transformation through meditation and manifestation (if you haven’t heard of Gabby Bernstein, check her out NOW!).  Something that I find that really resonates with me is body image and the feeling of not being good enough.

Have you ever felt this way in your life?! Maybe in your career, your home or even financially?

If so, please take a moment to watch my video.  Let’s take those negative thoughts and channel them into love and joy 🙂

**I will be doing weekly VLOGS so please take a moment to subscribe!  Also, please make sure to share your stories with me on Social Media using the #perfectlyme.

Thank you for all of your support.

No Gym Full Body Workout (quick)

Good morning and happy Workout Wednesday!

Are you ready for a quick, no gym, full body workout?! It’s only 7 minutes and will incorporate cardio, strength, and abs.  Plus, it’s only two moves so it’ll be easy on our minds.

I will do the entire workout with you. Let’s get started!!!

My Struggle with Being Perfectly Imperfect

For those of you who have been following my blog for the past year (thank you very much!), this post may look a little familiar to you.  It is something that I wrote last year after struggling from severe body image issues.  As bathing suit season quickly approaches, I find myself feeling this way again and I think it is important to share with you.  Please comment below if you have ever felt this way. I’d love to hear from you.

My Struggle with Being Perfectly Imperfect

It wasn’t until late last year when I realized that I was sick. No, I wasn’t sick in the way that most people would describe sickness. I didn’t have the flu, a cold, strep throat, or cancer. Instead, I was plagued with the sickness of hating my body!

I have had clients say to me that I am “lucky that I have never been fat or had to deal with body image issues” and I have wanted to scream from the rooftop about the years of calorie counting, obsessing and constant working out. They were right, I have never been “fat”, at least not to anyone else’s standards (although I did gain the “freshman fifteen” after graduating from college). However, there have been many times where I would look in the mirror and see a fat person, a person who wasn’t good enough.

I guess it all began in my teen years (let me preface this by saying that I have the most wonderful, supportive and loving parents and none of this was because of them. I completely blame it on the media’s portrayal of what a woman should look and be like). In high school I was a cheerleader and later became a dancer in my college years. I remember even then, at a size 0, thinking that I wasn’t thin enough. I would dance all day and still do crunches during every commercial break to get those “perfect” abs. My stomach was never flat enough, my thighs were never small enough.

My illness was only exasperated into my adult years as I became a personal trainer, got engaged and began planning for my wedding. At this point I was working out twice a day and eating about 500 calories. I would be in a class at the gym, going on my second hour of exercise, and shaking terribly. I had constant headaches and fatigue (not to mention the candida and leaky gut that followed for years to come). I didn’t care. I was going to be “perfect” for my wedding. The day that I got my dress altered the seamstress said to me that I had “the smallest waist she had ever seen” and that she was going to have to take in my Barbie Doll wedding dress even more. At the time, I thought this was the greatest compliment that I had ever heard. Little did I know that my body was crying for help.

The constant body image issues only continued throughout my career. Being a fitness professional can be brutally hard on your ego, especially when comparing yourself to every air-brushed beauty on fitness videos or magazines. There have been times where I haven’t wanted to film a video because I wasn’t skinny enough and crazy enough, there were times where I wouldn’t even buy workout clothes because I wanted to have the “perfect” figure first (are you kidding me?! To buy workout clothes?!). When I didn’t sleep for three weeks before my website photo shoot because I was obsessing over my weight, the carbs that I would eliminate from my diet and how I could make my abs look chiseled, I knew that I had a serious problem! This was when I decided to change my life.

It was finally during the last few months when I realized something (light bulb moment)…..no one is perfect!!! Every flaw of ours makes us unique, special, beautiful and imperfectly you. I am done with feeling like I cannot share my gifts because I’m not what media thinks I should be. Sure, I would love to have a 6 pack, a great butt, a perfect smile, grow a foot taller or erase the bags under my eyes. However, all of my imperfections make me who I am! Can you imagine a world where everyone was cookie cutterly (is that a word?) perfect?! How boring would life be?

So, let’s take a stand! Let’s love ourselves not despite our flaws but for our flaws. No more calorie counting. No more dieting. No more excessive exercise. No more missed opportunities. Let’s workout and eat right to be healthy and happy. Let’s decide that it’s enough to be #perfectlyme!!!