The Best Things I Did For My Exhaustion
After feeling overwhelmingly exhausted for a month I asked my GP if I could have the following blood tests: hormonal panel, TSH (thyroid), adrenal panel, iron, and complete blood count. I’ve always been super pro-active when it comes to my health because I believe that feeling “average” is not good enough. If you don’t feel happy, healthy and full of energy than your body is telling you to dig a little deeper babes. That’s not medical advice that’s just common sense.
Anyway! The most significant piece of data that came back from my blood tests was dangerously low levels of iron. My GP said I had textbook exhaustion which was exacerbated by a complete lack of iron. Aside from the appropriate medication and holistic practices, I’ve spent the last ten days doing the following self-care rituals, and what I realised is that there’s really no reason why we shouldn’t be doing them every. single. day.
1. Studio Red Yoga. To be fair, I do this most days anyway but I really made a conscious effort to go as much as possible when I was in the pits of my exhaustion. Not only was it restorative for my central nervous system, but it helped me sleep better at night and is one of the best ways to practice mindfulness. I always think of yoga as one of the first steps towards meditation because it encourages you to be present. If you want to try Studio Red (let’s go together!!!), here’s the link.
2. Lypo-Spheric Vitamin C. So as it turns out, iron can’t be absorbed if you don’t have adequate vitamin C! Sadly I’m not talking about those yummy, chewy vitamins from the supermarket (how good though), I needed a vitamin C that would be absorbed into my bloodstream efficiently – I was so unwell that I didn’t have the luxury of time. Most New Zealand chemists stock an amazing brand called Lypo-Spheric Vitamin C which contains 1000mg liquid sachets that you take orally (the liquid means that it’s more bio-available). Aside from helping to absorb iron from food and supplements, vitamin C is incredible for skin and skin-tone.
3. Netflix Comedy Specials. I won’t tell you how many I actually watched because you’ll feel sorry for my soul but I will tell you that you need to watch Jerry Seinfeld’s “Jerry Before Seinfeld”, Amy Schumer’s “The Leather Special”, and Dave Chapelle’s “The Age Of Spin”.
4. A Cold Start To The Day. I went swimming in the freezing ocean at Matarangi and finished all of my showers with about 60 seconds of freezing cold water. It sounds like torture but it’s actually the opposite. Not only did it help wake me up – which I was struggling to do – but exposing our bodies to freezing temperatures stimulates the immune system and is often used by doctors for patients suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome.
5. Cuddling Babies (!!!). Show me a person who doesn’t instantly feel better after cuddling a baby and smelling the top of their head and I’ll show you a liar. Luckily I have two girlfriends who have bubba’s at the moment (hi Abs and George) and I cuddled both of them last week and it made me feel whole again.
6. Martha Stewart’s Apple Tarte Tatin. I’ll be honest. I burnt it. But in my defence, I can’t bake on the best of days so a little over-caramelised apple is really a win. This is one of my favourite recipes in the world to make, and no I did not use a store-bought crust and yes I made my own Pate Brisee from scratch TYSM. Here’s the recipe sorry I’m a food blogger now!
7. I Stopped For Lunch. Keeping on the topic of food, I made a conscious effort to actually stop for lunch every day instead of eating it at my desk, standing up, or in the car (is that gross by the way?). Taking the time to actually prepare a beautiful salad everyday with as many yummy ingredients as I could find was so rewarding. My dad even taught me how to make the best salad dressing which I think you might love. Mix together the following in a bowl babes: the juice and zest of an entire lemon, two dollops of real mayonnaise, finely chopped mint, parsley, dill and coriander, and ground pepper. Mix it all together and Bob’s your uncle and your auntie!
8. Podcasts. My favourites from the past two weeks: Modern Love ‘Nursing A Wound’ Narrated by Jack Gyllenhaal, Fashion: No Filter ‘Modern Muse’, Modern Love ‘One Bouquet Of Fleeting Beauty’ Narrated by Kerry Bishe, The Melissa Ambrosini Show ‘Conversations With God And Neale Donald Walsch’ (this one isn’t a religious conversation but it’s so fascinating), and How I Built This ‘Bumble: Whitney Wolfe’.
9. Four Sigmatic Mushroom Hot Cacao With Reishi. These drinks are so good oh my god. Reishi mushrooms are a natural anti-stress tonic, balance overactive hormone systems and improve sleep quality, and even if none of that means anything to you it tastes like hot chocolate so who cares! I make one before I go to bed and drink it while watching Netflix and it is L-I-V-I-N-G. Buy it here babes.