My 5 Favourite Podcasts on Self Development

5 Favourite Podcasts on Self Help and Development

5 self help podcasts

Are you a podcast junkie? I have my ups and downs. I like them running and driving to teach classes. Recently on my Instagram I was talking about a podcast I was listening to that sparked a curiosity, leading to me attempting a no sugar experiment. Then Of course I was asked, well what podcast was it and what am I listening to?

These podcasts are mostly about self development/improvement/help, whatever you want to call it. Depending on the mood I'm in or the title of course I will listen in. 

1.The Upgrade. First of all Melissa and Alice have similar sounding voices and I find that hilarious for some reason. But they both have really pleasant voices. In the description of their show they say "Look, you're doing great but quite frankly we think you can be a little better." I love this. 

2.Lewis Howes The School Of Greatness. I love that the people he has on his show are athletes, business people, celebrities and hearing their wild stories of how they came to their greatness. Lewis is pretty down to earth which makes it easy to bridge the gap between us regular Joes and the all stars he brings onto the show!

3. Lori Harder Earn Your Happiness. Well the name says it all. She's after happiness. How we get it, how we keep it, how we find ways to detach from things that prevent us from having it. 

4. Kelly Covert, In Her Voice. Kelly has a very calming tone to her voice. I love her podcasts for early morning walks and more chilled out activities. Her view is all about women finding their own authentic voice and living out  your own visions of your life. 

5. Jenna Kutcher, The Goal Digger. This one is certainly more business based, but I see it as more improving things about ourselves to be better at business. Like stepping outside of our comfort zones and being brave to get where we want to be in business. Her Instagram is pretty the bomb too.

Take Care, 

Jen

Jennifer Neilson Bitchin Housewife

Anti-Inflammatory Tumeric Mylk Recipe

Anti Inflammatory Tumeric Mylk Recipe

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If you follow along on Instagram you'll know I'm totally into studying Ayurveda. It's basically a very old traditional Indian style of medicine, using herbs and food and oils and practices to heal. I've been studying holistic nutrition methods for years as well. One of the big things I noticed as a cross over between the two is that they are both big on anti-inflammatories AND they both love ginger and tumeric as a key anti-inflammatory. 

I've been playing around with making Chai and even this yummy Digestive Tea for a long time, and I stepped up the game with this yummy Tumeric Mylk Recipe. 

Why "Mylk"? Well because its just a way of identifying that is milk from a non animal source. I used coconut milk, but almond milk, soy milk or even regular milk would work here. 

Additionally, don't worry about the spices being fresh or already ground in your cupboard. I like to have the whole spice and grind them myself, it's like a little ritual for me. 

RECIPE INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup of chosen milk or mylk.
  • tsp nutmeg
  • tsp tumeric
  • tsp cardamom (this is what makes a good chai for me personally!)
  • 1 stick of cinnamon (or 1 tsp cinnamon)
  • 2-3 pieces of star anise (or 1 tsp)
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger (or powdered)
  1. Put everything into a pot and let simmer 5-8 minutes. 
  2. Strain in to a mug with a fine mesh strainer. 
  3. Enjoy!

Seriously it is THAT simple. 

 

Spring Green Smoothie

We had some warmer whether here in Edmonton last week and now I'm on spring mode! Check out my smoothie from this morning. I'm all about the ginger kick lately!

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/2 cup kale (I used frozen chopped kale)
  • 1/2 cup avocado (I recently discovered the frozen stuff from PC)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein
  • Water to desired consistency. 

Love, 

Jen The Bitchin' Housewife.

Fit Chick Friday - Ginel Stephenson

We are an amazing community of Fit Chicks right here in Edmonton and I want to highlight that community. Each week I'll be featuring a new new Fit Chick on Friday's. Learn about trainers, teacher, instructors or you ladies who are just into a good ol workout!

This week I had to have my friend Ginel Stephenson on. We met in a moms group when our now almost 6 year olds were tiny 4/5 week old babies! She is one fit and fun mama!

 

Certifications:

Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology, CSEP CPT and CEP CrossFit Level 2

Where to find Ginel:

She has a garage converted into a amazing home gym where she takes clients through True Shape Fitness.

What are your specialties?

CrossFit style training, general nutrition, nutrition for endurance athletes, weightloss and chronic medical conditions. 

What got you into fitness?

Being a kid that couldn't sit still, I realizes that there was no way I could work in a career sitting behind a desk or behind a counter. I love moment and how it makes you feel.

What/Who is your biggest motivation?

Challenging myself is my biggest motivation. I am able to go out to my gym and work out on my own no problem, but there needs to be a reason for me to work out so it doesnt become mundane. Whether its getting a few kf's on a lift, decreasing my time in distance training or getting one more pullup. I enjoy fitness as a sport and tracking improvements and gains. I LOVE CrossFit competitions and ultramarathons. I have yet to complete one solo but am working on 120 km this year.

What got you into to training people?

It was a gradual process and many other instructors and coaches along the way. Wach different niche was foudn through different passions of others that I have been honoured to work with and for. 

What are some of your favourite exercises or equipment?

Olympic lifting, the squat rack and my incline trainer treadmill that goes 40% incline.

What is your favourite outdoor activity?

Trail running.

What is your favourite indoor activity?

Baking and reading the newspaper. (She said she's lame, but that sounds glorious to me)

Any advice you'd like to give to other women?

It's most imperative that you do NOt compare yourself to others. If we were all alike, earth would be a pretty boring place to be! You need to set your own goals and have accountability for those. 
Also, listening to our body. Mother Nature is pretty damn smart and had got us this far. Some days it's okay to sleep in past your 5am alarm set for a workout and just rest and recover. We actually don't make any gains in the gym, it's the rest, recovery and rebuilding time where that happens. 

Find Ginel at www.trueshapefitness.net on Facebook or her new Instagram account!

A shot of Ginel and her husband running together. 

A shot of Ginel and her husband running together. 

Chopped Leaf Turn Over A New Leaf Contest

New year, new leaf to turn over. I don't care what anyone says about resolutions and "New Year, New Me". I love a fresh year, fresh start with the intention of changing something for the better. 

January 1st The Chopped Leaf, launched their Turn Over a New Leaf program. For the month of January, offering healthy tips on their Facebook Twitter and Instagram pages with a chance to enter daily to win $15 gift certificates as well as be entered to win the grand prize worth $2500 including  $1000 Chopped Leaf gift card and a year membership to Goodlife and a spa and wellness package! 

So head on over to follow them and get in on the daily draws and  enter to win for the grand prize HERE.

22 Pushups for 22 Days Challenge

I've seen a few friends post about this challenge and finally a good friend said she wanted to do it and well... here we are. I donated my $22 at www.woundedwarriors.ca (you should too) and today I start the challenge. 

Suicide is a real threat to our Armed Forces personnel, veterans and first responders. Let's show them some love by having some fun and spreading the world. The more people that share what they are doing, the more exposure the people have to it, eventually prompting them to engage! Just like I did. You, as the one single human being you are can always make a difference.

To keep it fun, check out my Facebook page everyday for a new style of push up to try! 

Love, 

Jen The Bitchin' Housewife

Acupuncture and What You Need To Know

Have you ever wondered about acupuncture? I mean maybe you know a little bit about it, like the fact it's people sticking tiny needles in you and what you've seen in movies or from friends. I've heard acupuncture work for so many people I just had to know all about it. What is it exactly and why it works. So I sat down with Andrea Wingrave from Acupuncture Edmonton to learn all about it. 

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) modality that involves the insertion of hair-thin needles into specific points on the body. These points lie on meridians or pathways along which the body’s life-giving energy called Qi (pronounced “Chee”) circulates.  Disease is caused by an imbalance of the normal flow of Qi through these meridians, whether there is too much, too little or it is blocked from flowing altogether.  When the points are stimulated, the Qi flow regains its proper balance and the body begins to heal itself.

How does it work?

Acupuncture is based on the TCM theory that our vital energy (Qi) circulates in our body along defined paths or meridians. When this flow of Qi is out of balance due to trauma/injury, poor lifestyle, stress or improper diet, acupuncture helps restore the flow and allows your body to heal itself.  Modern science tells us that acupuncture stimulates certain areas of the brain, triggering: hormone production and secretion; inflammation reduction; blood circulation; pain reduction; appetite supression, etc.  There is so much more to learn in this area, you can read more here:

Does it help with stress?

Acupuncture stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which is induces a "rest-and-digest" state (the true opposite of the fight-or-flight state).  Patients usually feel very relaxed during and after their treatments.  Some fall asleep with the needles in, others report having a very good night's sleep on treatment days

What are some conditions you see typically or can treat?

  • Headache and Migraine
  • Trigeminal Neuralgias
  • Frozen Shoulder
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Sciatica
  • Jaw Pain
  • Chronic and Acute Low Back Pain
  • Neck and shoulder Pain
  • Hip Pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Knee Pain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Sports Injuries and Pains
  • Constipation/Diarrhea
  • Heartburn
  • Gastritis
  • Nausea
  • Sinusitis/Rhinitis
  • Common Cold and Flu
  • Bronchial asthma
  • Premenstrual Syndrome
  • Dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps)
  • Spotting and Excessive Menstrual Bleeding
  • Amenorrhea (Loss of Menstrual Period)
  • Pregnancy Support
  • Impotence
  • Infertility
  • Incontinence
  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • MS symptoms
  • Gout

Is acupuncture safe? Will it interfere with current medications?

Acupuncture is completely safe when administered by a Registered Acupuncturist. Acupuncturists are required to use only single-use needles which are disposed of after use. Any mild side effects such as bruising or dizziness is self correcting. Tell your acupuncturist about all the medications and supplements you are taking.  In some cases acupuncture can make your medication work better and/or lessen the side-effects caused by these drugs.   If you have a severe medical condition, or if you're not sure, always talk to your doctor before seeing any paramedical practitioner.

What to expect?

During your first visit I will ask you to sit and chat about your health history; I will ask you additional questions about your ailment(s), general health and lifestyle. You will be asked to show your tongue and I will take your pulse to complete my TCM diagnosis.

Next you will be asked to position yourself on a massage-type table either facing up or down or on your side depending on where the needles will be placed.  While you get settled I will leave the room to wash my hands.

To begin the treatment each point will be swabbed with alcohol then each needle is inserted to the correct depth. The needles used to stimulate acupuncture points are very slender; only the finest quality solid stainless steel, pre-sterilized, single-use, disposable needles are used. They are inserted beneath the skin’s surface into the muscle to a depth appropriate for each point. The sensation from the needle varies – you may feel nothing or you may feel heaviness, a mildly dull ache, a nervy sensation or tingle.

Once all of the needles are in place, you will be left to relax for several minutes (approximately 30). Many people fall asleep during this time since the treatment puts the body into a relaxed state.  When the treatment time has elapsed, the needles will be removed and any other complimentary therapies will be administered as needed. 

Will it hurt?

Getting acupuncture from a Registered Acupuncturist who uses TCM shouldn't hurt.  The odd time, you may feel a tiny poke which means the needle has come in contact with a very small blood vessel. Let your acupuncturist know and a simple re-direction of the needle will rectify this.

What is the cost?

When you see a registered acupuncturist, your first appointment will include a complete assessment during which you discuss your health history and your current complaint(s). This is followed by a full 1 hour treatment.  The initial appointment costs around $100.  Follow up treatments (typically 1 hour) usually cost between $60-80. Some clinics are set up to directly bill your insurance company on your behalf.  Most medium and large sized companies offer health benefits that include between $500 and $1000 that can be spent on acupuncture treatments.

Do you use other modalities other than acupuncture?

Depending on the condition being treated, electro-acupuncture, cupping, gua sha, basic massage, and/or diet therapy may be used.

Tonight I'm heading over to Acupuncture Edmonton for a treatment. I'll be tweeting my experience, but come back next week for a full blog post on how it went!

If you'd like more info on Andrea and her clinic you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram  and her website

Love, 

Jen

 

Nutrient Packed Smoothie

I'm a busy lady. As most of us are. I also love smoothies, but I sometimes despise pulling out 5 million ingredients to make a simple healthy and nutritious smoothie. 

So here is the easiest way to pack some nutrients into your day without the pain of finding and pulling out ingredients. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango
  • 1/2 - cup coconut water depending on if you like your smoothies thicker or not. If you do not have coconut water, plain ol tap water will suit you just fine. 
  • 1 scoop concentrated greens - I used the Balance Diet Spa Boost 

Blend everything together and back you go to your busy day!

I like to use this as a pick me up in the afternoon especially since I find myself liking something a little sweet mid day. If you wanted to make this more into a meal replacement I would add some protein powder and your favorite milk instead of water. 

I like using the concentrated greens since its an easy and quick way to get in a bunch of health benefits in one little drink! The pineapple is a great anti-inflammatory and the coconut water a wonderful hydrator, so drink them all summer long, staying full of energy.

Love, 

Jen

KVASS - The "New" Old Probiotic Drink?

I'm currently in the process of waiting for my Kombucha to ferment (watch for that blog post!) and some how Kvass came across my lap. Kvass is a very very old fermented drink originally from the Ukraine dating back as far as 996 A.D. they say. Traditionally made from beets and sourdough bread, it is very popular in slavic cultures and apparently it's found in barrels on the streets of Moscow. 

As with fermented foods and drinks there are probiotics and they help aid in digestion. Wonderful for people with digestion issues, leaky gut and so on. I find the more fermented food I enjoy, the more energy I have personally. 

So anyways, I came across Kvass and thought I would give it a try, especially since it seemed pretty simple, I had the stuff on hand and only 2-3 days for fermenting time!

What you need:

  • A large jar or container with a lid.
  • Filtered water (Okay I just used water I boiled and let cool).
  • 1 teaspoon salt. I used pink himalayan.
  • 1.5-2 cups fruit. I used apples, oranges and strawberries.
  • Strainer
  • Cheesecloth (not required but nice to get the small strawberry seeds out)

Directions:

  • Mix water, salt and fruit together in jar. Leaving about 1 inch of space at the top.
  • Shake the jar a few times a day. I left it on the counter in a spot I would see and remember. 
  • Open up the jar once or twice to let off the gases. 
  • Enjoy! 

I left mine for 2 days, since I am a bit impatient, but I feel like it could benefit from another day or two. Possibly making it a little bit more fizzy. Some describe the taste as similar to beer. I believe that's probably the one made with bread, but it's a very light and fruity, part sour taste. I wasn't sure at first but every day I drink a few ounces and I actually quite like the taste! 

I just popped it in the fridge and take a swig every day. I probably should put it in a glass, but I'm not sure my family is ready to try it so I'm saving having to wash an extra dish......

Use whatever fruit you have available or try some varieties. I hate beets personally so it's unlikely I will do the traditional version!

Pink Himalayn salt

Pink Himalayn salt

After two days the fruit looks "cooked".

After two days the fruit looks "cooked".

After shaking it you can see the fizzy bubbles happening!

After shaking it you can see the fizzy bubbles happening!

When it's ready remove the fruit and compost them!

When it's ready remove the fruit and compost them!

Extra step here to run it through the cheesecloth to filter further, removing strawberry seeds and small fragments of the orange that go through the funnel. 

Extra step here to run it through the cheesecloth to filter further, removing strawberry seeds and small fragments of the orange that go through the funnel. 

Will you give it a try? Let me know what flavours you are trying!

 

Love, 

Jen