Michelle Tirmandi Pregnancy Update

Baby Bump Update (27 Weeks!)

When I first found out that I was pregnant, my intention was to write regular blog posts about the experience. I intended to share the things that I was doing to have a natural and healthy pregnancy, and all the little bumps and learnings along the way.

But…sometimes, even with the best of intentions, we just don’t do what we had hoped, simply because life gets in the way! So, here I am, two thirds of the way in to my pregnancy sharing all about how about my pregnancy journey and what I have learned have so far. Better late then never, right?! {I should also probably warn you that this is a looooonng post!}

Michelle Tirmandi Pregnancy Update

27 Weeks Pregnant

This past Wednesday marked 27 weeks pregnant. (For all of those reading this who have never been pregnant and don’t feel like talking in ‘weeks’, which I agree can be somewhat annoying, 27 weeks is almost 7 months pregnant).

7 months! It feels crazy that Baby T will arrive in less than 3 months (the due date is October 5th but with only 4% of babies arriving on their actual due date, he or she could make an appearance anywhere from Sept 14 – Oct 19).

Another intention I had when this journey began was to take those cute baby pictures week by week with fruits and vegetables corresponding to the size of the baby. But, again, that didn’t happen. Instead I have been taking random selfies of my belly for when friends demand pics. Here’s my latest bump shot.

Michelle Tirmandi 27 Weeks Pregnant

My intention for this post is to share what I have learned so far along this journey, so here goes!

There is no normal in pregnancy.

Through talking to the other women in my life who have had babies, I learned pretty quickly that everyone has a very different experience with pregnancy and that no two pregnancies are the same. And while of course there are similarities with others, I have really been focused on my own journey and on finding peace in trusting my own body that it is undergoing a process that it knows how to do. It’s also been extremely helpful to have a midwife and doula who adhere to a similar philosophy and treat me as an individual.

Listening to your body is key. 

It may seem obvious to most people that you should really listen to your body during pregnancy and respond to it’s needs. But, I will be the first to admit that I have had a difficult time having to change the way that I normally live my life! At the beginning stages of pregnancy when fatigue is extremely common I found myself fighting the urge to rest. I wanted to continue on at 100 miles an hour doing a million things a day, and when my body told me to stop I didn’t want to listen. For someone who usually has way too much energy for their own good and is slightly obsessive about keeping to a fairly regular routine, it was really, really hard to shut that part of my brain off! Now, heading in to the third trimester, I’m also finding it harder to do a lot of the physical excercise that I am used to and have found myself a little bummed when I realized I couldn’t go as fast or hard as I used to.  Reminding myself that I am growing a little human inside of me who needs me to slow down and remembering that this is all temporary has helped a lot.

Physical changes are just as big as emotional changes. 

Of course the physical changes in pregnancy are huge, but one thing that I have noticed is how impactful the emotional changes have been on me. I have done a lot of work around what being a mom will mean to me, how it will change me and how I will manage those changes in the most positive way possible. Seeing close friends, and recently my sister, make the transition to motherhood has been incredibly helpful and constantly reminds me of the importance of supporting yourself with other women (it takes a village!). I’ve also been battling with the idea of letting go of control in some areas of my life (not an easy task for a control freak!).

Pregnancy can be a very enjoyable experience! 

I write in a gratitude journal regularly and almost every single day I write about how grateful I am for my health and the health of my baby. I have been very blessed with an incredibly easy and enjoyable pregnancy and haven’t experienced any of the most common complaints of pregnancy (magical pregnancy unicorn?  maybe!). My energy is still high, my digestion and skin are great,  I have no aches and pains, I have no weird food cravings and hormonally I feel extremely balanced…so far, that is!

Grateful for Everything

Even though I completely acknowledge that everyone has a different experience with pregnancy and am incredibly grateful for my wonderful experience, I know that this isn’t the case for everyone! Through this journey I have been very passionate about sharing what I know to be true around having a healthy and enjoyable pregnancy with others. I’ve also had some realizations in my business and plan to offer more services around helping women prepare for their bodies for pregnancy and learn to nourish themselves during the process (very exciting!).

With this, I  figured that I would share a little about what I have been doing to feel and stay well.

My Pregnancy Diet

Truth be told, my diet hasn’t really changed much since becoming pregnant. Besides avoiding the common unpasteurized or risky foods (i.e. raw sushi, unpasteurized cheeses etc.) and eating way more bread and cheese then I would have ever thought, I have no weird food cravings or aversions to report! A typical of day of eating includes: a glass of lemon water upon waking, a smoothie or some oats for breakfast, fruits and nuts for a snack, a big salad or bowl with some type of protein for lunch and dinner plus some type of homemade sweet treat (check out my latest matcha superfood energy balls).

Natural Supplements

I make a point of taking my supplements everyday! I know how hard it can be to be compliant with supplements, but when you know that you’re building your baby’s health through every bite of food and supplement that you take it becomes a lot easier!

Everyone’s supplement regime will be different based on their unique needs, but here’s what has been keeping me feeling great these past two trimesters (above and beyond my regular supplement regime):

I’ve also been anemic since the second trimester and have been managing that successfully through this and this.

Excercise Routine 

I am so happy that being pregnant in the summer allows for long walks and outdoor excercise! My excercise regime has stayed pretty consistent but I am just making a point to listen to my body while I am being active which generally means less intensity. I’ve been enjoying 1-2 Barre3 classes a week along with shorter at home online workouts, and 2-3 pre-natal yoga classes at the amazing Toronto Yoga Mama’s studio. I truly believe that staying active has been huge in keeping my energy levels so high.

Natural Products 

Since I am such a big proponent of natural skincare products I would be remiss without including at least a few of my favourites!

Matter Company Belly Jelly (I rub this on my belly every day to help avoid stretch marks and keep my skin feeling soft!)

Bebe de Luxe Coconut & Oat Bath Milk (I add this to my bath to keep my skin soft and smooth and it’s also great for baby’s skin too so I plan to continue to use it!)

I also a have a bunch of other amazing products that I love right now but I will share in another post because this post is already so long!

Plans for a Natural Childbirth

The biggest piece of advice that I have received about natural childbirth is to be flexible and adaptable with the birth plan. So, although my full intention and wish is to have a natural home birth, the back of my brain is prepared to adjust to whatever comes our way. That said, I’ve been listening to birth meditations for a few weeks now and plan to continue to do so until Baby T decides to make his or her arrival. I strongly believe in the importance of mentally preparing for childbirth and have been doing a lot of reading on this topic. My absolute favourite book is Ina May’s guide to Childbirth (which I plan to re-read leading up to the birth!).

New and exciting updates!

I have two very exciting announcements that I am going to be sharing soon. One of them involves  my love for sharing natural, holistic and lifestyle products that I trust and love, and the other one is a project with an amazing partner focused all around making healthy meals simpler, cheaper and easier to incorporate in your busy life. Make sure that you’re following me over on Facebook and Instagram to get the updates over the next few weeks and months!

 

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2016 Wellness Trends (via Well + Good)

As you know, I’m a wellness junkie and can’t help but to share all things good health with you, so when I stumbled across this article on the website wellandgood.com I just had to share it with you!

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Here’s the full article for you to read.I’ve also taken the liberty to give you my thoughts, comments and tips on my favourite trends. I hope you enjoy the read! (Make sure you read ’til the end :))

#1 – Eating Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner out of a Bowl (From oatmeal, to salad, to soup and more – trust me, there will be loads of bowl recipes in the 10 Day Cleanse!)

• #3 Seaweed is the New Kale – Whether you eat is as part of your sushi roll, as a side salad or you sprinkle some of this on your food for salty flavour, seaweed is an excellent source of trace minerals and is especially helpful to support a healthy thyroid (which is responsible for a healthy metabolism!)

• #5 Minerals Get the Rockstar Treatment – If you have ever been a client of mine (or a member of one one of my group programs), you’ve likely heard me talk about the miracle mineral Magnesium (which, by the way, up to 80% of us are deficient in). It’s especially important if you’re stressed to the max or if you’re not getting your daily greens in. This is my go-to brand that I take a few nights a week before bed.

• #6 Intensive Fitness Programs Become Super Hot – I actually can’t believe that I am writing this (as you know, I’m not the biggest fitness buff). But, Barre3 is my absolute –  most favourite workout in the entire world! The online workouts and in studio classes (with great tunes & teachers) are a must try!

• #7 Beauty Products you Can Drink – I feel like I’ve been boasting this trend for some time — it’s about what you eat and drink – and not only what you put on your skin that gives you a healthy glow! My top go-to beauty supplements are all about getting your gut in shape with this supplement and your good fats in your diet via this and this.

• #9 Matcha Everything – Matcha green tea is powdered tea using the full leaf of the plant. It’s a fantastic alternative to coffee (and what is recommended as a the #1 replacement for coffee on the 10 Day Cleanse). It’s also got 137 times more antioxidants that regular green tea (hello glowing skin!). My favourite brand is Matcha Ninja.

• #11 Meet Adaptogens, the New Stress-fighting Superherbs – Yes, there are herbs that fight stress and they are AMAZING! Maca, Ashwagandha, Schizandra, Rhodiola just to name a few (more info on these in the daily educational emails during the 10 Day Cleanse)

• #14 Oil will Become your Cleanser of Choice – If you’re not already using natural skincare, 2016 is the year to embrace it! This cleanser/make up remover is one of my personal favs(+ Psssst….I’ve got a BIG secret coming in February and it includes tons of natural skincare products!)

• #15 Mainstream Diet Brands Go Anti-Diet – OK, this one is HUGE – big brands like Weight Watchers have finally realized that they need to move away from a calorie counting, fake-food promoting system to include more whole foods and quality ingredients (finally!). Top brands are even revamping their programs to de-emphasize weight loss, placing more of a focus on overall health (um, hello, weight loss is a side effect of good health!), feeling good, less calorie counting, fitness and self care. AMEN TO THAT.

About that last point, the one about the big brands going anti-diet….um, hello – weight loss is a side effect of good health! This is the underlying philosophy that Michelle Nutrition has been operating on since the beginning! As a nutritionist, I see weight loss, fewer cravings, glowing skin, more energy, clear thinking and feeling great as the results of changing your dietary habits.

And…because it’s January and so many of us are thinking about weight loss… why not try a new approach? Why not try empowering yourself with the strategic knowledge about….

•Metabolism boosting foods that will help with weight loss

•Lifestyle habits that help with weight loss

•How to support your body to naturally detox (because this is how you actually lose extra weight)

•How to banish cravings so you don’t need refined carbs or sugar to get you through the day

•How to actually have the mindset of required for long term weight loss and health (no self-sabotage)

This is all of the stuff you are going to learn during the Radiate & Revitalize 10 Day Cleanse!

When these exact principles are put in to action see for yourself what others have to say:

This challenge has been a wonderful experience! I am feeling fantastic, energetic, happy…and down about 8 pounds.You did a great job giving us the tools to do this. The shopping guide and meal/snack suggestions really helped. I still can’t believe I’m not craving the sugar and carbs that I always ate!  

– Hannah (Summer Slimdown Challenge)

This program has taught me what clean eating is and how to incorporate it into my life. I am more conscious of what I eat and drink now and have eliminated sugar, caffeine, and highly processed foods from my diet. I try to eat organic whole foods and follow a plant-based diet as much as possible.  

– Millie (Clean Eating Challenge)

Here are just a few of the comments from the last Radiate & Revitalize 10 Day Cleanse:

“I’m not hungry throughout the day”

“I have a clearer mind”

“I have more energy”

“I feel less bloated and my jeans feel looser”

“My skin is clear and soft”

I sincerely hope that you’ll join us! Click Here to Learn More.

Supine Twist Sara Lou Yoga Michelle Nutrition

7 Yoga Poses and Breathing Techniques for Detox

Today on the blog we have a very special guest post by Sara Lou. Sara is an amazing yoga instructor in Toronto. Her beautiful Instagram pictures inspire me every single morning (I suggest that you give her a follow!). I asked Sara to provide some expertise on how we can use Yoga to help us during our Radiate & Revitalize 10 Day Cleanse and here is what she came up with. I hope that you enjoy it and find some time this holiday season to take a moment for a few of these detoxifying poses!

 

Hi Beauties!

 

Congratulations, I am SO excited that so many of you are doing a  10 day cleanse! It’s such a neat way to reset our bodies right before the holidays. I remember my first cleanse a few years ago. I bought 5 days worth of fresh juices to drink throughout the day. I wasn’t supposed to eat anything else. The first day was ah-mazing, the second day was hard, the third day I wanted to kill everyone in sight and by the fourth day I was caved and started eating cooked veggies along with my juices. You don’t even want to know what happened the 5th day. Hanger is real, friends. I’m so glad that Michelle’s cleanse is much more nutritionally dense!

 

Although I barely made it through half of my juice cleanse I can say that I noticed lots of positive changes for my body. My acne issues finally got the kick in the butt they needed and my stomach ailments improved considerably. I really enjoyed the idea of treating my body differently too. Who knows– maybe I can woman up to only consuming the juices for the full 5 days next time!

 

As Michelle has likely been telling you, to achieve any great health strides we have to treat our bodies holistically. Physical and mental exercise can do wonders to complement your cleanse. Physical exercise, like yoga, helps your body to detoxify and release stress. Yogic twists in specific help to wring out your organs and compress your torso to facilitate in detoxification. Mental exercises like meditation have a positive effect on your ability to achieve a specific outcome in your cleanse as well as release mind body tension. Breathing patterns done in meditation help to bring more oxygen into your cells.

 

After speaking with Michelle, I wanted to give you the best yoga poses and breathing techniques to aid you in your cleanse. Here are 7 Yoga poses and breathing techniques that will help your body detox so that your true, authentic beauty can shine through!

 

7 Yoga Poses and Breathing Techniques for Detox

 

Cleansing Yoga Poses
Before you attempt these, I highly recommend you stretch and warm up the body. Sweating, even a little, helps to release toxins, too! Need a short video– check out my 10 minute yoga flow here. Then, your spine and torso will be nice and nimble for these next few poses.

Supine Twist Sara Lou Yoga Michelle Nutrition

Supine Twist

Lie down flat on a yoga mat or on a comfortable floor/ground. Inhale to bring your right knee in towards your chest and hug the knee in with your hands. On your exhale bring your right knee to the left side of your body. Extend your arms out beside you and bring your head to point to the right. Make sure that both shoulders are rooted into the mat. Enjoy the stretch and spinal release. When you feel ready, repeat on the other side!

Sara Lou Yoga Michelle Nutrition

Seated Twist

Find a comfortable seat. Bend your left leg so that your left foot is placed by the right sit bones. Now place cross your right leg over the left so that the sole of your right foot roots into the mat beside the left knee (on the left side). Inhale here and stretch your torso upwards. Exhale and twist to the right, placing both arms on the right side and against the right thigh if needed for leverage. Enjoy the stretch and spinal release. When you feel ready, repeat on the other side!

Chair Twist
Chair twist

Start with your feet planted beside each other, big toes touching. Inhale here and squeeze your inner thighs together. Exhale to send your sit bones back and bring your hands to touch in prayer position in front of your chest. Engage your core and make sure that you can see your toes– that’s a good indication that you are in alignment. Inhale to expressively lengthen your torso and exhale twist to the right, bringing your left tricep muscle onto your right thigh if possible. Enjoy the stretch and spinal release. When you feel ready, repeat on the other side!

high lunge twist michelle nutrition sara lou yoga
High lunge twist

Start with your feet hip distance apart, rooting into the mat and parallel to each other. Inhale to step your left foot back and come onto the ball of the left foot, bending the front knee so that the right leg is at a 90 degree angle. Spread your arms out wide. On your next exhale, twist your arms and torso to the right. Enjoy the stretch and spinal release. When you feel ready, repeat on the other side!

 

Cleansing Breath Techniques

breath of fire sara lou yoga michelle nutrition toronto
Breath of Fire

This is a technique where you inhale deeply and suck your lower ribs in. You would usually sit down with your legs crossed and have your sit bones propped up on a pillow. On your exhale you use your core muscles to quickly release air out of your nose consecutively until you have no more breath in your lungs. These typically last for about 30 exhales and each exhale is done for less than a second. It sounds silly, but this is a really popular breathing technique that helps to let your mind go of stress and stimulates your organs around your tummy.
Slow Full Exhales

Taking deep breaths in and then slowly releasing them for a count of 8 seconds or more trains your body to slow down and allow the breath to flow more naturally in and out. Fully exhaling also releases tension in the body. Try this technique for at least 5 breaths and feel your cells become more energized.
Slow Inhales, Full Quick Sighs

This breathing technique helps the body to release any negative tension. The quick release of the exhale forces your torso to relax while the deep long inhale helps to send oxygen to all of the cells in your body. Try this for 5-10 breaths so that you can begin to feel the effects.

 

And that’s it! Weave this poses into your cleanse and your body– and mind– will reap the benefits.

 

Need anything else? Hop on over to my blog for more inspiration to move your body and slow down your mind here
With light and presence,

Sara Lou

Barre3

3 Reasons to Love Barre3

 

Sometime in late 2014 I fell in love with Barre3, a workout that combines dance with yoga and pilates. Never before had it been so easy to love a workout. I mean, I did like working out, but it had always seemed like ‘work’. Excitingly, I quickly learned this is not the case with Barre3!

My first Barre3 class I was admittedly nervous. Despite doing regular semi-regular workouts I didn’t feel like I was in my best shape, and I had also heard rumors of how ‘Barre’ classes kicked butts in to shape, stat. I knew I needed something to push me, but I also knew it would need to be enjoyable. Too many years of grueling, forced and obsessive workouts had really turned me off being too hardcore about working out. I was looking to enjoy my workouts so that I could keep them going long term. I was, in essence, searching for an ever – elusive ‘balanced approach’ to my workouts.

On my first visit to Barre3 I was greeted with open arms by the studio owner Aimee and her lovely staff at the Toronto location. They asked if I had ever done a Barre3 class before and assured me that I would be able to take the class at whatever pace I needed. They took the time to show me around the studio, made sure I was comfortable, and even checked in on me during the class to ensure I was A-OK! Since my first foray, I’m happy to report that I have been back for regular weekly workouts (my abs are pretty happy about this too).  In fact, right now I am even participating in the Barre3 Anywhere Challenge! Here are 3 reasons why I can actually say that I love this workout.

b3_FormulaforSuccess_FBS

Reasons to LOVE Barre3:

1. Community

When you enter a Barre3 studio you are immediately welcomed by first name. Your business is appreciated, and because of this, it is so easy to enjoy spending time there. You are not a number on a key tag, you’re notably part of the  local studio community as well as the larger Barre3 community. I also love how Barre3 invites their clients to free educational classes and events. It is truly evident that they care about their members!

2. Energy & Music

This one is huge.  Music makes a massive difference in your workout, non? Have you ever tried a workout class where the music or the instructor simply sucked? (no fun!) This is definitely not the case at Barre3! Although I will say that each instructor has their own flare and favourite jams, all of the playlists have enough ump to get yourself out of your own head – helping you to push through those ‘shakes and quakes’!

3. Balanced Approach – Barre3 Formula for Success

Balance. Now, this speaks to me.  It’s something I think most of us are grasping for in this crazy world. I love the overall Barre3 approach – it’s all about taking things at your own pace, listening and honouring your body while at the same time challenging yourself to push to the edge (I work waaaaay harder in a class than I ever would at home working out on my own!). The overall foundation of the company, and even the name Barre3, refers to three important elements exercise, nourishment and connection. I don’t really know what could make me want to get behind a workout anymore than something that focuses on both the physical and mental nourishment for whole-body health!

So, there you have it. If you haven’t tried a Barre class, no matter where you are,  your age or fitness level (Even my  63 year old mama does Barre classes!) I highly encourage you to find one and give it a chance!

Enjoy!

xo Michy

Barre3 & Eucalyptus

P.S – I love to bring my Eucalyptus Essential Oil with me to rub on my chest pre-workout. It keeps me cool (literally), helps open my airways as well as combat any sweaty odours.

 

Fall Energy

Balancing Your Energy in the Fall

Fall Energy

 

With the days getting darker and cooler do you find yourself wanting to stay indoors, cozy up and make better friends with the couch or your bed? With the fall weather approaching (for real now), many of us begin to feel a little sluggish and tired.

 

But, did you know there are certain foods that you can eat, and simple lifestyle habits that will keep you zinging with energy throughout the coming months?

 

Here are 4 things that you can easily incorporate in to your life this Fall to ensure you feel mentally and physically energized.

 

 

#1 Balance Your Blood Sugar

The first and most important way to keep your energy levels high through the day is to ensure that your blood sugar is balanced. This means that every time you know that your body needs food you feed it (or preferably, before that point). If you tend to feel hungry or tired at certain points throughout the day, try to add a snack with protein, fats and carbs (ideas: carrots + hummus, apples + almond butter, smoothies, yogurt, nuts + seeds, hard boiled eggs). (Side Note: Keeping your blood sugar balanced is also a great way to lose or maintain your weight as increased insulin causes weight gain.)

 

#2 Balance Your Breakfast Routine

There are a few things that you can alter when your day begins that will have a HUGE impact on how you feel for the rest of the day. No big surprise here, it involves breakfast. The key points to a balanced breakfast involve: a minimum of 15g of protein (or more!), Low in Sugar! (ensure it is not an added ingredient), contains healthy fats (chia, flax, coconut oil, hemp) and is high in fibre (aim for 10g). Great options include: green smoothies, eggs, oatmeal with nuts & seeds. Also, replacing your coffee habit with green tea will give you more energy as it contains a super huge amount of antioxidants and L-Theanine which has an uplifting and calming effect (not a caffeine crash).

 

#3 Balance Your Diet

There are a few foods that contain phytonutrients that nourish us beyond just calories, vitamins and minerals. These foods contain phytonutrient compounds that actually provide the body with synergistic energetic benefits. Energizing reds (beets, grass fed red meat, kidney beans), energizing greens (kale, spinach, romaine) and energizing fats (coconut oil) are all key players in a healthy, energizing diet.

 

#4 Balance Your Life

Certain times of year offer our social lives different opportunities. Summer is great to get out and see everyone and fall is great to connect with family. It is also a great opportunity to look inward as we head in to 2015 to evaluate what is serving you and what isn’t. Take a little time to yourself in a peaceful setting and ask yourself the following questions: What is working for me now? What isn’t working for me right now? Do I have the power to change what isn’t working? How do I really want to feel? What decisions can I make that are aligned with the way that I want to feel? And, one thing that I find helpful is to write a “Stop Doing List” (alongside my ever-full “To Do List”!).

 

Combining all of these simple habits in to your fall routine will keep your energy levels high as we head in to the dark days of winter.

Michy xo