Adventures in Living a Natural Lifestyle

Sharing my adventures in living a more natural lifestyle, information about essential oils and natural home, health, and beauty recipes!


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Looking for a Gluten, Soy and Dairy Free Whole Foods Snack? Look no further! Forth Bars Do NOT Disappoint!!!

Since starting my fitness journey I’ve been experimenting with different healthy eating strategies (I refuse to say I’m dieting because this is a lifestyle change not a diet!).  Within the last couple months I’ve been loosely following the IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) program that focuses on finding a balance between the three main Macro Nutrient groups: Carbohydrates, Fats and Proteins. You can read more about it here on the IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) website.  They also have an awesome Macro Calculator and an IIFYM Official Facebook group for support.  A couple weeks ago I saw this promotion in the IIFYM Official Facebook group for a new gluten, soy and dairy free whole foods snack bar that I intrigued me.  So I entered the contest and was blessed to have been given the opportunity to review the new Forth bars as part of this contest!

So a little about this new company.  Forth was founded by Terri Mintz who has struggled with profound food allergies.  She lives an active lifestyle and became frustrated with not being able to find healthy, nutrient dense, whole food choices and thus decided to start making them herself.  As others took notice of her improving health, stamina and performance she decided to create a whole line of products designed for people with similar nutritional needs.  “Forth products are filled with FDA identified functional foods, superfoods, whole carbs, proteins and healthy fats. Made from minimally processed, plant based ingredients, Forth products leave you satisfied and energized.  Each Forth product contains targeted ingredients – whether functional food, traditional remedy or superfood – known to positively affect our body and mood. All Forth Bars and Bites are:

  • Gluten-free
  • Dairy Free
  • Soy Free
  • Plant Based
  • Minimally Processed
  • Very Low in Salt
  • Low Fat
  • Free of fillers, preservatives and unnecessary ingredients”

Needless to say that’s an impressive list so if I could find a wholesome, nutrient dense snack food that met the above requirements for my friends with dietary restrictions then I was excited to give them a try!  You can learn more about their products on the We Are Forth website and follow We Are Forth on Facebook and Instagram for special promotions.

I was lucky enough to get a variety pack to try so below you will find my reviews of each of the 7 varieties of Forth Bars that are currently available.

Calm Bar

Lavender + Vanilla + Honey + Berries

The first bar I tried out of my variety pack was the Calm Bar.  In the midst of kitchen renovations I figured I could use a little more calm in my life plus the essential oiler in me was super excited to see lavender as an ingredient! I absolutely love the unique flavor profile of this bar!!!  It is a little “herby,” for lack of a better description, due to the lavender buds.  While I truly appreciate the unique flavor it might be an acquired taste for some.  I was impressed that the bar was sweet enough without being overly sweet or filled with sugar or artificial sweeteners like most snack bars you can buy in the grocery store.  It does have 14g of Sugar and a total of 29g of Carbs so for those on a low-carb or keto diet this may not be for you.  But I’m trying to conquer my fear of carbs as they are necessary for sustained energy and to build strength and muscle and 29g of Carbs is about the equivalent of a slice of organic, whole wheat bread.  Plus, the Forth Bars are Gluten Free so those who need a little carb fueled energy boost but can’t eat gluten containing products will love Forth Bars!  I was also super impressed that all of the Forth Bars are low in Sodium.  Most snack bars like this are super high in sodium which is one of the main reasons I tend to avoid processed foods.  These seem like they will be a healthy, nutritional option for those who need a quick snack or energy boost throughout their day!  I’m looking forward to trying out the rest of the bars in the variety pack!!!

Macro Breakdown: 29 g Carbs (64%), 5 g Fat (25%), 5 g Protein (11%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Puffed Quinoa, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Date Paste, Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Freeze Dried Cherries, Hemp Protein Powder, Freeze Dried Mango, Honey, Spray Dried Lemon Juice, Acai Resveratrol (The only ingredient I didn’t recognize so I had to look it up.  Turns out this is an all natural and powerful antioxidant to help your body fight free radicals and support your immune system!), Lavender, Vanilla Powder, Lemon Balm, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Cherry Powder, Vanilla, Lavender, Spray Dried Lemon Juice, Honey

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Calm Bar Nutrition and Information

Body Bar

Chocolate + Molasses + Spices

The second bar I tried was the Body Bar.  Our routine has been super messed up by the kitchen renovations and the tiny human did not sleep well  the last couple hours of the night making it nearly impossible to get up and work out.  So I chose to sleep in which meant that I wanted to get in a good run on my lunch break to get in at least some exercise that day.  With back to back clients all morning I don’t have a lot of time to snack and knew my energy would be low by noon when I would finally get a chance to go for a run.  So around 10:50 am I decided to open up the Body Bar for a quick little pick me up and to provide some energy to help get me through my run.  My first impression was that it smelled amazing!!! The combination of molasses and spices was a beautiful balance of savory and just sweet enough.  I was pleasantly surprised on my lunch run how much energy I had.  The week prior I had allowed stress to get the better of me and hadn’t run much at all so I was really working on getting my stamina back up and I ran nearly a mile further than I had a couple days earlier without feeling as tired and run down.  So the Body Bar definitely gets a winning review from me!!! Might have to order a 12 pack of this one! 😉

Macro Breakdown: 32 g Carbs (66%), 5 g Fat (23%), 5 g Protein (10%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Puffed Quinoa, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Date Paste, Dried Cranberries, Undutched Cocoa Powder, Dark Chocolate (undutched cocoa powder and evaporated cane juice), Dried Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Molasses, Pumpkin Puree, Pea Protein Powder, Maca, Drum Dried Bananas, Acai Resveratrol, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Undutched Cocoa Powder, Maca, Pea Protein, Molasses, Coconut Electrolytes, Probiotics, Spices

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Body Bar Nutrition and Information

Belly Bar

Cranberry + Ginger + Lemon

The third bar I tried from the Forth variety pack was the Belly Bar.  My stomach was a little upset so I figured it would be a good time to try out their bar that was designed to help soothe the stomach. After all, keeping the gut and urinary tract healthy are important in maintaining overall health and wellness so we can use all the help we can get!  Let me just tell you guys, this bar is awesome!!! I love the ginger zing!  Ginger is one of my favorite flavors and this bar has just enough of the ginger spice and it balances beautifully with the citrusy flavor of the lemon and the sweetness of the dried cranberries!  A little higher on the carbs and lower on the protein than the first two bars I tried but overall a win and a really good mid-morning snack to help keep me energized until lunch.

Macro Breakdown: 33 g Carbs (68%), 5 g Fat (23%), 4 g Protein (8%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Quinoa Puffs, Date Paste, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Dried Apricots, Dried Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Dried Cranberries, Honey, Spray Dried Lemon, Acai Resveratrol, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Drum Dried Cranberry Powder, Maca, Honey, Spray Dried Lemon Juice, Probiotics, Spices

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Belly Bar Nutrition and Information

Heart Bar

Mango + Papaya + Coconut

Saturday, March 25 was the suggested race date for my 10K & S.P.E.W. race, sponsored by Hogwarts Running Club (yes, it’s a real thing!) so I wanted a snack that morning to help give me enough energy to help me run the entire race without weighing me down (because I wanted to help free house elves not lose my lunch! lol).  Naturally, I turned to my Forth bar variety pack and decided to give the Heart Bar a try.  Figured a little support for my cardiovascular system while running a 10K would be just what the doctor ordered!  Thankfully, it didn’t let me down!  This bar was a little sweeter than the others I had tried so far and had a nice tropical flavor profile with the mango, papaya and coconut.  There were also a few larger chunks of fruit in the bar which made for a nice little surprise when I would get one in my bite!  30 minutes later I went for my run and was pleased to know I shaved 2 minutes off my run time and finished the 10K in 1 hour flat!  While I can’t promise the Heart Bar will make you run faster I can say it did help provide the energy I needed to run the entire race without stopping to walk!  This and the Body Bar would be excellent choices for any of my runner friends looking for a healthy snack option before races!

Macro Breakdown: 32 g Carbs (61%), 7 g Fat (30%), 5 g Protein (9%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Quinoa Puffs, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Jungle Peanuts, Date Paste, Dried Blueberries, Freeze Dried Mango, Raisins, Freeze Dried Strawberries, Dried Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Coconut Flakes, Honey, Acai Resveratrol, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Honey, Drum Dried Mango, Drum Dried Banana, Coconut Electrolytes, Maca, Vitamin D Oil

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Heart Bar Nutrition and Information

O’Mama Bar

Berry + Figs + Ginger

After my race the day before, Sunday was my rest day and time to spend with my daughter.  So naturally the O’Mama Bar seemed like a good choice for my afternoon snack while she was napping!  Like the Belly Bar, the O’Mama Bar does have a bit of a ginger zing but it was more subtle and had a sweeter, richer flavor overall.   This bar is lower on the carbs so for days when you are less active or don’t need quite as much of an energy boost this would make for a great snack!

Macro Breakdown: 27 g Carbs (58%), 7 g Fat (34%), 4 g Protein (9%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Puffed Quinoa, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Sunflower Seeds, Date Paste, Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Drum Dried Bananas, Freeze Dried Strawberries, Dried Cranberries, Dried Blueberries, Dried Figs, Honey, Acai Resveratrol

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Drum Dried Banana Powder, Freeze Dried Strawberries, Freeze Dried Cranberries, Honey, Probiotics, Vitamin D Oil

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: O’Mama Bar Nutrition and Information

Sexy Bar

Spicy Chipotle + Chocolate + Jungle Peanuts

If you have been reading closely or follow me on Instagram then you know that I am in the middle of kitchen repairs and renovations.  I don’t know about you but I find new appliances super sexy (guess that’s a sign I’m officially an “adult,” whatever that means…) so it seemed apropos that I should choose the Sexy Bar to try out the day they were delivered!  It smelled super rich when I first pulled it out of the wrapping so I was excited to give it a try.  OMG!  It was like a flavor explosion in my mouth!  I loved the spicy chipotle and chocolate combo!!! It was so good I took extra small bites so I could enjoy it longer! Definitely had a little kick but oh so good!  Hands down, this is my FAVORITE Forth Bar!  I will be ordering more! ❤ 🙂 Plus, it has Goji berries in it and you all know how much I love my NingXia Red so any other healthy snack that includes the immune supporting Goji berry is a win in my book!

Macro Breakdown: 27 g Carbs (64%), 4.5 g Fat (24%), 5 g Protein (12%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Puffed Quinoa, Peanut butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Date Paste, Undutched Cocoa, Chocolate (undutched cocoa and evaporated cane juice), Jungle Peanuts, Freeze Dried Raspberries, Aronia Berries (sweetened with apple juice), Dried Cranberries, Goji, Berries, Maca, Honey, Acai Resveratrol, Chili Powder, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Undutched Cocoa, Freeze Dried Raspberries, Chili Powder, Spices

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Sexy Bar Nutrition and Information

Brain Bar

Espresso + Chocolate + Coconut

I was feeling a little sluggish when I returned to work after my 3 day weekend so I figured a little extra brainpower couldn’t hurt!  Thankfully, the Brain Bar was the last bar left in my variety pack for me to try.  It has a subtle espresso flavor with chunks of dark chocolate without being overly sweet.  A similar flavor profile to the Sexy Bar which I loved so much but without the chipotle kick.  So if spicy isn’t your thing or you just love coffee, then this bar is definitely for you!

Macro Breakdown: 35 g Carbs (70%), 5 g Fat (22%), 4 g Protein (8%)

Ingredients Bar: Gluten Free Oats, Quinoa Puffs, Peanut Butter, Sesame Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Date Paste, Freeze Dried Strawberries, Dried Blueberries, Dried Aronia Berries (apple juice sweetened), Undutched Cocoa Powder, Dark Chocolate (cocoa powder and evaporated cane juice), Coconut Flakes, Molasses, Acai Resveratrol, Maca, Dehydrated Coffee, Spices

Ingredients Topping: Date Paste, Drum Dried Blueberry Powder, Undutched Cocoa Powder, Coconut Electrolytes, Coffee Powder, Spices

You can check out the full Nutritional Information on their website: Brain Bar Nutrition and Information

Final Review

Overall I’m really impressed by all of the Forth Bars!  They taste great and provide sustained energy for workouts, chasing toddlers or to get through a grueling work day!  I love the unique flavor combinations and that they give me just enough of a hint of sweetness without being overly sweet.  But perhaps the biggest selling point to me is that they are all natural, with no artificial ingredients, are low sodium and are all gluten, soy and dairy free making them the perfect snack for those with dietary restrictions or who are just mindful of what they put into their bodies!

Pros

  • Taste great!
  • Unique flavor combinations
  • No artificial ingredients
  • Naturally sweetened with fruit juices or honey – just sweet enough without being overly sweet or triggering my sugar addiction!
  • Gluten, Soy and Dairy Free – perfect for those with dietary restrictions.  They are not nut free, however.  Most of the bars I tried have peanut butter in them so be mindful if you or a family member have a nut allergy.
  • Low Fat – ranging from 4.5-7 g per bar
  • Low Sodium
  • Reasonable Calories – ranging from 180 – 210 calories each, the Forth Bars are an excellent choice for a quick, nutrient dense snack to provide sustainable energy for an active lifestyle without adding unnecessary calories.  Plus, if you wanted slightly fewer calories to help you stick with your goals, you can also check out their “Bite” options, available in the same great flavor combinations but coming in at less than 100 calories each!
  • Available in packs of 12 in variety packs or single flavors if you find your favorite!

Cons

  • Cost – coming in at $47.40 per 12 pack these bars will run you $3.95 per bar.  However, this is comparable to buying other snack bar singles at your grocery store but without any of the nasty artificial ingredients, high sugar or insane sodium content of what you’re used to finding in the energy bar aisles!
  • Low(ish) Protein – these are not a high protein bar like you might want for post-workout recovery (grab the protein powder instead) but they do seem to provide the sustained energy that the company boasts making them ideal for snacks on the go for afternoon hikes or a pre-workout energy boost!

So overall, I highly recommend supporting this new company so that they can continue to bring healthy, nutrient dense, whole food snack options to the market!  So head on over to the We Are Forth website and order your Bars or Bites today!  And make sure to tell your friends!

 

Note: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. I am an aromatherapy student but I am not a medical doctor. Products and techniques mentioned here are to help support your specific areas of concern and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Information here is in no way intended to replace proper medical help. Consult with the health authorities of your choice for treatment.

Looking for a Gluten, Soy and Dairy Free Whole Foods Snack? Look no further! Forth Bars Do NOT Disappoint!!! was originally published on Naturally Oily Adventures

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Moving Through Grief with Essential Oils

Grief & Loss is a topic near and dear to my heart after having struggled with personal loss with the passing of my first husband in 2009.  Today marks the 8th Annivesary of his death.  Some years I pass by and don’t even realize what day it is.  Other years, I’m crippled with grief.  While I am grateful that I have been blessed with meeting and falling in love with someone who knew my late husband, who has been incredibly supportive and allowed me everything I needed to move forward after such a loss, very few days go by that I don’t think of my dear Rob at least once.  He may be gone but he will never be forgotten and I’m thankful of the short time we had together.

Today is one of those years that I struggle.  I didn’t sleep well, it’s rainy and dreary outside and there’s not enough coffee in the world to give me the get up and go I need to feel motivated.  I know several other friends and family members who have struggled with grief and loss of loved ones and thought maybe I would use this pain today as a way to reach out and share some of what I’ve learned with others.  So I’m taking a snippet of my class I taught last year on Mental Wellness and Emotional Support with Essential Oils to share with you today. I hope you find something of value in this post.

The class I taught back in May of 2016 referenced Dr. Carolyn Mein’s Releasing Emotional Patterns book and techniques.  I will not be reviewing her technique in detail so I highly encourage you to check out her book.  It is a must-have for any oily reference library, especially if you struggle with mental health issues.  As a licensed mental health counselor, I can tell you it has been an invaluable reference for helping to start to bring essential oils into my practice with clients.

Unfortunately, my go-to reference guide for all things oily, the Essential Oils Pocket Reference by Life Science Publishing, doesn’t really list oils specifically for grief.  They do have a section on emotional trauma but that was pretty vague.  So, I’ve included the graphic above from an online class I attended last year on Essential Oils and Emotions taught by Rosy Crescitelli.  I do not know the source of the image with oils added, but the original “Five Stages of Grief” image source credit belongs to Journey to Genius. You can use the oils listed aromatically, topically on VitaFlex emotional points on the ear (see picture below), or use in conjunction with Dr. Mein’s Releasing Emotional Patterns techniques.

For Denial – use Transformation to help start to accept your loss and move forward

For Anger – use Release to let go of anger and Forgiveness to help forgive yourself and others

For Bargaining – use Peppermint to help uplift and cleanse/purify your soul

For Depression – use Joy to bring peace to your heart

For Acceptance – use Acceptance to help move towards acceptance of your loss

Another of my favorite oily resources, the Reference Guide for Essential Oils app (on iTunes and Google Play for Android), which I love for the convenience of having right in my phone at all times, did have a few suggestions for using essential oils for grief and loss.  Here is what it suggested:

Usage Instructions from the Reference Guide for Essential Oils app:

  • Aromatic – diffuse into the air, inhale directly or apply to tissue
  • Topical – apply to auricular emotional points (see picture below). Dilute with V-6 or other carrier to create a massage oil and massage onto the skin.

Emotional Ear Chart from Essential Oils Pocket Reference Guide

I also found a really useful blog written by Mary Hyatt on how to help move through grief with essential oils.  She has a lot of great recipes for help dealing with the different stages of grief so I wanted to include it in addition to the oils and blends listed above.  She uses a different oil company so I have modified the recipes slightly to reflect the corresponding Young Living blends where appropriate.  Here is a link to her original blog if you would like to read it: http://marycrimmins.com/releasing-grief-with-essentials-oils/

To release – 25 drops of Bergamot + 15 drops of Roman Chamomile + 7 drops Cypress + 6 drops Marjoram. Mix up in a glass vial or empty glass bottle.  Add 5-7 drops to a diffuser and run for 15 minutes per hour while home.

For denial – Blend an equal ratio of Geranium and Lavender. Apply to the bones behind the ears from the tops of the jawline; inhale; apply to the back of the neck, rubbing up into the hairline.

For anger – Equal parts Peace & Calming and Roman Chamomile. Use an upward motion to apply from the center of the chest to the top of the throat; inhale; apply around, not in, the belly button.

For bargaining – Blend an equal ratio of Ginger and Peppermint. Dab on wrists, rub together, and inhale every two hours.

For sadness – 6 drops of Cypress + 4 drops of Frankincense + 4 drops of Joy. Mix up in a glass vial or empty glass bottle.  Diffuse for 15 minutes every hour.  Apply a few drops to the forearms, rub together, and inhale often.

For acceptance – Blend equal parts Coriander, Frankincense, and Orange. Apply around the core and across the heart ever two hours.

If you are stuck in old grief – 4 drops Valor* + 4 drops Orange + 2 drops Lavender + 2 drops Melissa. Mix up in a glass vial or empty glass bottle.  Diffuse for 15 minutes every hour.  Apply a few drops to the forearms, rub together, and inhale often.

And here’s another great blog with suggestions and experiences from other essential oil users on how essential oils and blends have helped them cope with their grief: http://transformwithessentialoils.com.au/essential-oils-support-grieving/

And lastly, I thought it might be useful to include my notes from the Grief Seminar I attended as part of my grief process group in 2009.  This doesn’t include any oily information but it would be easy to incorporate the oils discussed above during a discussion of the following topics.  If you are not my friend on Facebook you will need to send me a friend request to view the notes (please send me a Private Message first so I know who you are and why you are requesting to be my friend so I don’t ignore the request): https://www.facebook.com/notes/celia-helen-mckechnie/grief-seminar/140769630453

So there it is.  Today I’m diffusing Joy and Orange in my office and wearing Peace & Calming on my wrists to help find some peace and get through the day.  I hope that you too find peace today if you are struggling with grief and loss or any other emotional difficulty.

Love and Light to you my friend,

Celia

 

* Because of Young Living’s Seed to Seal Guarantee and commitment to sustainable farming practices, Valor and Peace & Calming essential oil blends are often out of stock.  You can substitute Valor II and Peace & Calming II for these oil blends when not available.  While slightly different oils go into these blends, they were designed by Gary Young to have similar energetic properties and to be used for the same purposes.  Just another reason why I love Young Living!

Note: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. I am an aromatherapy student but I am not a medical doctor. Products and techniques mentioned here are to help support your specific areas of concern and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Information here is in no way intended to replace proper medical help. Consult with the health authorities of your choice for treatment.

Moving Through Grief with Essential Oils was originally published on Naturally Oily Adventures


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2016 – My Year for Crushin’ Health & Fitness Goals! (Part 3: Oily Tips & Tricks to Help You Reach Your Goals!)

weight loss

Welcome back to Part 3 of my Health & Fitness blog series: Oily Tips & Tricks to Help You Reach Your Goals! I’ve enjoyed sharing my journey with you and have really appreciated all the supportive feedback I have gotten from family and friends.  It’s such a wonderful feeling to know that my journey has helped inspire so many others and I can only hope to continue to motivate and inspire as I move into 2017 with bigger and better fitness goals in mind.  But today I want to share with you a little bit about how my oily obsession has helped me meet my goals this year!  So read on!

For the Athlete on the Go: Active & Fit Kit

Perfect to throw in your gym bag or for the student athlete, the Active & Fit Kit was created by Young Living ambassadors and athletes to help you rev up your workout by combining the power of Cool Azul Sports Gel, plus Deep Relief, Peppermint Vitality, Copaiba, R.C., and Thieves essential oil blends. This kit is designed with convenience in mind with a carabiner for easy attachment to any gym bag, an exterior pocket that perfectly fits a Slique Bar, and an interior pocket sized just right for a tube of NingXia NITRO. As an added bonus, this kit will include three roller fitments to complement each topical essential oil. The Active & Fit Kit supports every fitness regimen, from elite competition to daily workouts.

This was on my wishlist for several months after it was released in 2016 and I’m super excited to have it as part of my on-the-go gym bag! I use this kit several times a week. I’ve added and changed a few things so below I’ll tell you how and why I use each of the oils in my Active & Fit Kit!

Copaiba (with roller fitment)Copaiba is one of those oils that I tend to forget about because its less commonly used or talked about but it has so many awesome uses!  Copaiba is distilled from resin harvested from the tree that grows native in South America.  In addition to all it’s amazing oral and digestive health benefits, Copaiba also helps support the body’s natural response to injury and irritation. It is a key ingredient in Young Living’s best-selling roll-on blends Breathe Again and Deep Relief.  I mentioned in Part 2 of my blog series about my knees showing signs of wear and tear from my increased physical activity this year, hence why I take a Glucosamin Chondroitin supplement each morning.  But for added benefit, I like to roll on a little Copaiba essential oil on and around my knee joints to help give them a little support before I start my exercise routine.  I find this especially beneficial before I go for a run!

R.C. (with roller fitment) – R.C. is a powerhouse blend of 10 essential oils, including Cypress, Spruce, Myrtle, Marjoram, Pine, Lavender, Peppermint and three species of Eucalyptus designed to support healthy respiratory function.  I like to apply R.C. to my chest before physical activity, especially running, to help open the airways and ensure that my respiratory system operating at its best during exercise!  I’ve noticed a big difference when running with R.C. vs the days I forget to apply it.  Especially during transitional months when the sniffles are so common!

ThievesThieves is probably Young Living’s best known blend, so named after the Legend of the 4 Thieves who used to rob from plague victims during the 5th century but never got sick.  Thieves is a blend of Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus Radiata, and Rosemary essential oils.  I apply Thieves to the bottoms of my feet before I exercise or go run. Not only does this help support my immune system it also keeps my sweaty feet from stinking up my gym shoes! lol I chose not to put my roller fitment attachment on my Thieves because I tend to diffuse this a lot at work to keep the germs away when I have clients in and out of my office all day.  I have to refill my Thieves for the diffuser so often that I have had to resort to pulling it out of my Active & Fit kit at times so it’s easier to keep it off so I can use it both ways.

Peppermint Vitality – Did you know there is actually a ton of research suggesting that Peppermint essential oil can enhance athletic performance by supporting your respiratory and circulatory systems so you can go faster and farther? Just cracking open and smelling that bottle of peppermint oil can reduce perceived effort, improve your mood and boost your brainpower!!! A recent study by the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that adding Peppermint essential oil to athlete’s drinks improved their performance, blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory functioning. In addition, the test subjects were able to increase their performance by 51% as well as increased their time until exhaustion by 25%!!!  Young Living’s Active & Fit Kit comes with a bottle of Peppermint Vitality for just this reason!  Same high quality, therapeutic grade essential oils but labeled as a dietary supplement!  I love adding a drop or two of Peppermint Vitality to my water before exercise to give me a little extra pep in my step!

Deep Relief – The ONLY way you can get a 5 ml bottle of Deep Relief is with the Active & Fit Kit.  It’s the same amazing blend of Peppermint, Lemon, Balsam Canada, Clove, Copaiba, Wintergreen, Helichrysum, Vetiver and Dorado Azul in a coconut oil carrier that you get in the 10 ml Deep Relief roll-on but in a dropper bottle.  I actually find it easier to use the roll-on for my purposes, which is for targeted relief on sore muscles or aching joints after workouts so I replaced my 5 ml bottle with the 10 ml roll-on for daily use.  However, I’m hoarding my 5 ml bottle for other purposes like making my own DIY Bath Salts or Massage Lotion!

Cool Azul Sports GelCool Azul Sports Gel is an aloe based gel with a cooling blend of Peppermint, Wintergreen, Sage, Copaiba, Oregano, Niaouli, Lavender, Blue Cypress, Elemi, Willow, Caraway, Dorado Azul and Vetiver essential oils with Menthol and Camphor as well as Arnica and Chamomile flower extracts making it the perfect choice to use before or after physical activity. Rub and massage generously onto skin targeting sore or overworked muscles.  I’ve actually pulled muscles in my back a couple times over the last several months (picking up my toddler and washing the dogs, not exercising, believe it or not) and I applied Cool Azul to my lower back before bed!  By morning it always feels so much better! But make sure to wash hands after use, especially my gentleman readers, if you catch my drift!

 

Fitness, Inspired by Oola

Another of my favorite oils that I’ve actually added to my Active & Fit Kit so I have it on-the-go with me at all times is the Fitness, Inspired by Oola blend.  Young Living teamed up with the Oola Guys, creators of Oola to develop 7 essential oil blends inspired by the 7 F’s of Oola (fitness, finance, family, field, faith, friends, and fun). I could do a whole class on Oola and essential oils but today I want to share with you the Fitness essential oil blend. Fitness, Inspired by Oola is a blend of Cypress, Copaiba, Basil, Cistus, Marjoram, Peppermint, Clary Sage, Idaho Blue Spruce, Balsam Canada, Nutmeg and Black Pepper in a Coconut oil carrier designed to help uplift, energize and give you the inspiration to take your workout to the next level! I like to apply a couple drops to my Solar Plexus and repeat the Oola Fitness Affirmation “I am fit, healthy, disciplined and strong” before my workout. It’s also lovely to diffuse in your home gym or living room while you work up a sweat!

Learn more about the 7 F’s and Oola Balance here from the Oola Guys http://www.oolalife.com

 

Runner’s Magic Recipe

This little gem has been a life saver!!! It’s a recipe I’ll be sharing during my 2017 New Year New You: Essential Oils for New Years Fitness Resolutions class but I’ll give you a little sneak peak!  Shin Splints, often thought of as a runner’s injury plague more than just the marathon racer.  Nearly every athlete will get shin splints at some point in their career and also quite common among dancers. But even just running to catch the bus or increasing your activity level as you try to get in shape can lead to shin splints.  But what are they?  Shin Splints can actually be caused by several things from flat feet to inflammation and irritation in the mucles surrounding the shin bones from being overworked to stress fractures in the tibia or fibula!  I added this roller bottle to my Active & Fit Kit and use it after running or plyometric (think jump training) workouts when my shins and calves tend to ache the most!

 

Runner’s Magic Roller
In a 10 ml roller bottle, combine
• 12 drops of PanAway
• 12 drops of Valor or Valor II
• Fill with Ortho Sport or Ortho Ease massage oil

Roll directly onto affected area for relief from shin splints or other discomfort from overactive workouts.

 

 

 

Post-Workout Relief

Sore muscles?  There’s an oil (well several actually!) for that!  The Active & Fit Kit comes with both Cool Azul Sports Gel as well as Deep Relief (see above) both of which are awesome at targeted relief.  But one of my all time favorite ways to soothe my muscles after a strenuous workout is to take a relaxing bath!  PanAway is one of my favorite oils to add to my post-workout bath.  It is a cooling blend of Peppermint, Wintergreen, Clove, and Helichrysum designed to provide relief from normal aches and pains.  You can also add to Young Living’s Ortho Sport or Ortho Ease massage oils to soothe sore muscles after a workout! Here is one of my favorite, simple DIY post-workout bath salts recipes!

Simple DIY Post-Workout Bath Salts Recipe

Ingredients

Directions
Mix ingredients and store in 8 oz glass jar. Throw handful in tub before sinking in and relaxing!  Trust me, your muscles will thank you!

Make sure to check out my 2017 New Year New You online essential oils for fitness class for a DIY Massage Lotion recipe and even more ideas for post-workout relief!

 

So there you have it.  The 3rd and final installment of my 2016 Health & Fitness blog series: Oily Tips & Tricks to Help You Reach Your Goals! Be on the look out for an invite to my 2017: New Year New You online class about using essential oils to help meet your health and fitness goals!  In the class I will be covering a holistic approach to meeting weight management and fitness goals using Young Living essential oils and supplements.  This post was just a precursor to all the information I will be sharing in that class!  So if you have health and fitness resolutions for the New Year you don’t want to miss it!!! If you’re not my friend on Facebook, or aren’t one of my usual suspects, and want an invite, comment below with your email and/or Facebook name or PM me on Facebook and I’ll be sure to add you to the guest list!

I hope you have enjoyed reading about my journey! In case you missed it, make sure to check out the other installments of my 2016 Health & Fitness blog series Part 1: Intro to my Diet and Exercise Routine and Part 2: My Supplement and Protein Shake Reviews.

Disclaimer:  I am not a health professional, certified trainer or nutritionist.  I am merely an average girl just like you who got sick and tired of being sick and tired.  I have been asked about what I’ve been doing to have the results I have been blessed with so wanted to share the love!  Please consult with your medical professional to ensure that you are healthy enough for increased activity levels and/or a nutritionist to ensure that any dietary needs you may have are being met by whatever nutritional program you choose. 

2016 – My Year for Crushin’ Health & Fitness Goals! (Part 3: Oily Tips & Tricks to Help You Reach Your Goals!) was originally published on Naturally Oily Adventures


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2016 – My Year for Crushin’ Health & Fitness Goals! (Part 2: My Supplement and Protein Shake Reviews)

2016 – My Year for Crushin’ Health & Fitness Goals! (Part 2: My Supplement and Protein Shake Reviews) was originally published on Naturally Oily Adventures