Personal Blog

  • Why Women Need Balanced Hormones. My Journey With Bio-Identical Hormonal Replacement Treatment.

    Every woman needs to understand the importance of having hormonal balance. Sadly this is not something that your primary care doctor or your typical OB/GYN is going to discuss with you- the concept of hormonal imbalance and how to address it. More often, what happens is, a woman will start to experience health issues like weight gain, headaches, body temperature changes, skin conditions, mood swings, trouble sleeping and more. She’ll ask her doctor “what is wrong with my body?“- or “why can’t I seem to lose weight like I used to“- and “why am I suddenly having problems falling asleep or staying asleep” – or “why am I having acne problems when I’m 38?” and maybe “I’m embarrassed at my lack of sex drive, what’s wrong with me?” etc. etc. Unfortunately, what I hear time and again (and it’s what I experienced before I made the big step to see a specialist!!) is that a doctor will often tell a woman who complains about these things that “Well, you ARE {insert whatever age she is here} years old, this is just nature…..your time is past, enjoy the golden years of getting older!!” – or they’ll suggest “Why don’t you try going on a diet and exercising more?” or they’ll say “It sounds like you are just depressed about aging. You need to accept that this is part of life. Here let me prescribe you some {insert anti-depressant here}” OR- some OB/GYNs or Endocrinologists are known to prescribe ONLY PROGESTERONE for women- often without doing any bloodwork. So they are just applying a bandaid to a gash that really needs surgery.

    The bottom line is this. None of the above are appropriate answers- and most women don’t know that. They’ll accept whatever line is given to them by the OB/GYN or primary care doctor because- that’s what we are conditioned to do; trust doctors. I’m not suggesting doctors are untrustworthy, mind you- not at all. What I will tell you is that the majority of them are not trained in integrative medicine and they are trained in prescribing drugs. Lots of drugs. They aren’t trained to find the source of your symptoms and solve the whole issue- they are trained to give you a prescription to address the symptom. Often, the prescription won’t do anything but make matters worse.

    All of this sounds depressing right?

    Don’t be depressed. Be excited. GET HOPEFUL. Why? Because I am publishing this blog post as the introduction to a series I am doing on this topic because it is now in the top 3 topics of all time that I get asked about- and it’s the area there is the least amount of easily accessible information about online or in books. Women are in the dark and so are a whole lot of medical professionals. The more we can spread the word on what to do when your body starts to seemingly revolt against you- the more women we can help.

    Who needs hormonal balance help? Guess what? This is no longer just a thing for “older” women. Far from it. More young women- even in their twenties, are experiencing hormonal imbalance- it can be due to many causes and combinations of causes. You should take a listen to my podcast interview with Laurie Christine King (click here to do so) — she’s an example of a healthy, fitness fanatic young woman who figured out her hormones were jacked and started getting the right help- she’s been on BHRT (bio identical hormonal replacement treatment) for some time now and doing really well.

    How do you get started on this journey- and how do you know you need to? Consider this post an introduction, a trailer of the series I’ll be publishing on this topic. And I’ll be going deep dive into these topics on my new Patreon Channel– launching officially next week (subscribe now over there to become my early patrons– this is a private member only community!) So- if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms on an ongoing basis: Weight Gain, Lack of Libido, Headaches, Migraines, Mood Swings and Irritability, Skin Rashes/Hives/Breakouts/Acne, Body Temperature Changes, Night Sweats, Heavy Bleeding, Lack of periods, Lack of Energy, Inability to lose weight, Insomnia, etc. — it’s likely you have some jacked hormones. If you have been on The Pill or any hormone altering birth control- your hormones are likely in trouble. If you’ve been a yo-yo dieter, overtrainer, experienced a high stress life, have been on a lot of antibiotics, have consumed a lot of packaged food– yup- those all contribute to hormone issues and poor health (duh).

    So, if you have experienced the above- and you are not getting anywhere with your current doc, it’s time to step up and as my business coach says “start driving the bus in your life, stop letting others drive your bus”. It’s time to become your own health advocate. It’s time to embrace the idea of learning and learning and learning because I will warn you and at the same time entice you: WARNING: hormones are COMPLICATED. There is no one solution for all women. It takes a lot of tweaking. It does not happen overnight at all. But it IS doable and when you start fixing your hormones, YOU WILL FEEL LIKE A NEW PERSON. You will be amazed at how much you look forward to LIVING again!! Trust me. Before I started getting bloodwork and started bio-identical hormonal replacement treatment I had most of the above symptoms. Now I am 51– 5 years later- and look and feel better than I did 20 years ago. I embrace my age and aging. I look forward to the decades to come. I’m not exaggerating.

    This is 51.

    Ladies, in my next post (live in 2 days) I’ll go into the first step of your journey– how to get started where you are- with your current doc or OB/GYN — what questions to ask, what to expect, what to request, and how to move forward if they don’t comply with what you need. We’ll talk about bloodwork- the right kind- because most docs won’t order the right ones – and then how to connect with the best integrative medicine practitioner who can help you.

    Until then- TELL ME WHAT QUESTIONS YOU HAVE. Leave a comment or fill out the contact me form. I’m here to help you in this series on balancing your hormones to get your body BACK and get your sex life thriving and get your sleep vibes in a happy place and more. Tell me about your symptoms, your experience, your confusion, ANYTHING. I’ll make sure I address it.

    In the meantime, I have a ton of episodes already on the podcast about hormones and cortisol– with my Austin doctor Dr. Lane Sebring, plus Dr. Anna Cabeca and others.

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  • Why I’m Using a Waist Trainer During My Workouts.

    Are Waist Trainers A Gimmick, or a Useful Tool for Weight Loss?

    Our bodies change where we store fat as we age.

    If you are over 35 and trying to lose weight, you probably have found yourself complaining about how much harder it is to lose weight around your “middle”. Most women find that their bodies change after having a baby, or after their hormones start getting all jacked up (which obviously happens after a baby but can also happen with being on The Pill and/or being on a lot of antibiotics and/or being exposed to a lot of toxic ingredients- all true for me – minus having a kid) and suddenly the areas where they gain weight or store fat- change. It certainly happened to me. I used to – when I was younger – store fat on my upper thighs, my butt and my boobs. I always had a very flat stomach and small waist. After my hormones starting shifting in perimenopause, I slowly noticed a shift happening. I was getting thicker in my middle. It’s like my whole core region- from front to back, became the Storage Facility for fat. Home base. And what made it all more frustrating is that I never gained weight in a obvious manner where I had fat rolls around my middle. It was more like the paper towel analogy you may have heard– I just got thicker vs. having big areas of fat ROLLS. Does it matter? Not sure. Either way, my body makeup changed and the way I lost weight changed. 

    As we age, the way we gain weight changes.

    In addition to where I stored fat, the way I gained fat changed. It used to be that when I was younger, I would gain weight all in one area, very noticeable to me, and then it was like a red alert to go diet. Now that I’m older – my body spreads the fat out all over. I don’t just gain in my thighs or my butt or my tummy — it’s everywhere. So in some cases, this might be viewed as a benefit– I don’t get a big huge tummy with rolls of fat. I don’t look like Santa Claus. I get curvier and just slightly bigger everywhere. The truth is even at my heaviest weights over the past 10 years, most people don’t see me as someone who needs to lose weight. That can be a blessing or a curse, I view it as a curse. 
    Why? Because the weight creeping on is insidious. It’s easy when one is in an “on the bench” season (I’ve had several over the past few years- one when I had adrenal burnout and was following the wrong advice of a dietitian for 7 months, the other was most recently – the end of 2019-January 2020 when I was having chronic headaches and migraines for 7+ months and couldn’t work out hardly at all) to not notice you are gaining fat when you don’t SEE it in the typical areas. When you are in a slump or on the bench you are typically not wearing your workout clothes daily- so you won’t know how tight they’ve become. I could go on an on about this but you get the point. As we get older, and before we become intentionally focused and always in tune with our bodies to keep them fit and healthy– we can be gaining fat and not necessarily realizing it until we hit a HOLY HECK WHAT HAPPENED moment. 

    Why Being Reminded Daily of Where You Are Is the Best Motivator For Weight Loss.

    This is my opinion. This whole post, well this whole blog is my opinion. I’m NOT writing this blog to say I am 100% right or that my way is the only way. I’m sharing what I’m doing and why it’s HELPING ME. You might totally disagree and I respect that. But I want to be clear before I give the details on why I’m using the waist trainer. 
    In my opinion, part of why any of us- men or women- get in a slump is that we’ve gotten out of touch with the state of our bodies. Bear with me. If you are the average American working 60 hours a week- and you haven’t been really working out or focused on weight loss or fitness– OR if you have fallen off the wagon for a while– you tend to dress in comfortable clothes. You naturally avoid wearing things that are too tight. You stay where you are comfortable and avoid confronting what troubles you. Think about it- how many times do average people stand naked in the mirror? Not much. 
    When I recently “came off the bench” in mid-February- finally able to work out again after being benched for 7+ months, I had to take it slow with my workouts to break back into it. I was self-aware enough to know- girl, you’ve been unable to work out for this long you are not going to be as strong, as cardio capable, and you’ve gained some fat and lost muscle-– accept that. I did. I was not hard on myself. 
    Well, as I progressed and leveled up a LITTLE BIT each week, I found myself getting into a groove. And with each week I added back in a lot of things I hadn’t been able to do in a while. It was like being reunited with an old friend, again and again. One of those things recently was cardio. I’d been avoiding cardio – a lot- for years- based on listening to stupid myths about “cardio is bad” and listening to some bad advice that cardio is bad for adrenal fatigue etc. I’m currently doing a workout program that I LOVE that focuses on heavy LIFTing 4x a week and then I do whatever cardio I want the other days. Then I started adding 20-30 minutes of HIIT training prior to my LIFT sessions since the LIFT sessions are typically only 35 minutes max. All this cardio was like a GIFT to me. You see, I LOVE a sweaty cardio session. I had missed it!! And so as I had a sweaty cardio sesh one day I remembered how I used to use this product Sweet Sweat– I think Valerie Waters told me about it. You apply this stuff to your skin around your core- and I add it to my arms and chest- and you sweat like a monster beast!! I LOVE IT!! So I ordered some. And they were out of stock on the waist wrap trainer that is ideal to use with it, so Ms. Impatient Me ordered one from a different brand. Here’s the deal- I know from experience when you apply the SS on your core and use their waist trainer belt, you sweat- and it’s pretty awesome when you take the belt off you can SEE a rainforest of sweat on the inside. The different brand belt I bought linked above – it more absorbs the sweat so you don’t see it as much. I didn’t care for that so I went back and ordered the Sweet Sweat waist trainer that I’ve used previously. It’s supposed to arrive later this week. 

    Why do I love using Sweet Sweat and the Waist Trainer for workouts?

    Ok so here is why I love this situation. First- as I mentioned above, it’s a personal preference for me that I LOVE to break a massive sweat during a workout. That’s the first reason I love the Sweet Sweat situation. Secondly, when you add their waist trainer or use theirs and/or another brand, here’s what happens that takes my fitness/diet/fat loss game up a notch. When you slather your core with the Sweet Sweat every day- you are acutely aware of the extra fat on your core. It’s a visceral reminder daily of “girl, you can get rid of this stuff”— it’s a reminder to your brain as you rub on the Sweet Sweat. It’s when we wear baggy clothes and avoid seeing our bodies that it’s easier to stay on the bench. That’s my opinion. 
    Why else do we freak out when it’s spring break time? Because we know we can’t hide! 
    Anyway- then you add a waist trainer- to whatever degree you put a waist thing with any level of tightness around your core- if you have fat around your core– you’ll be aware. The waist trainer will only zip or velcro or buckle up so far. And– it’s a bit unpleasant at first but you’ll probably see some fat at the top of your waist trainer and/or below it. For me, this is a visual and physical PUSH for me daily- it’s accountability to the max —I’m telling you people — whenever I’ve been off my game it’s because for whatever reason– either I’m not weighing and measuring myself or not working out- or maybe I’ve been sick- whatever the reason- if you are not physically in tune and confronting your body as it is now– it’s easy to take it easy. Ever since I took things up a notch and added the Sweet Sweat and the waist trainer situation back in — I am working out harder, I want that waist trainer belt to be able to be tighter and have the fat above it NOT THERE ANYMORE. I also love how that tight feeling around my core – well it helps my back when I train. The belt on makes me feel how I want my core to be naturally- tight and hard and strong. It’s daily motivation. 
    So this is why I love and swear by this combo. It’s not because I think I will cinch my waist and make it transform to Scarlett O’Hara size. Not at all. For me it’s a spotlight on my target zone. It’s a spotlight on my goals. It enhances my workouts and I am OBSESSED AND ON FIRE because of it. 
    So- what do you think? Remember, I’m not here to tell you what to do but to share why this is helping me in a big way. If you want to go for it GET YOURSELF SOME SWEET SWEAT and a waist trainer baby!! PS- I also had no idea until I ordered this stuff that Sports Research the company that makes SS also makes a ton of quality supplements– I ordered this collagen– it’s like 1/3 of the price of the Vital Proteins stuff I was ordering previously and it’s amazing. Check out all the great reviews on Amazon! FYI.


    Note: this blog contains affiliate links that allow you to find the items mentioned in this post and support this channel at no cost to you. While this channel may earn minimal sums when a viewer uses the links provided, the view is in NO WAY obligated to use these links. Thank you for your support.

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  • How to GET MOTIVATED and STAY that way!

    Want to get fit, but lack MOTIVATION?

    The Most Common Complaints About Motivation.

    “I want to lose weight, and I know what to do, but I just can’t seem to get MOTIVATED!”.

    “Kelly that’s great that YOU are seeing results, but you have that motivation thing going- it comes naturally to you! I’ve got {insert excuse here like 2 kids, a long commute, hormone problems, a bad marriage etc.} and it’s all I can do to not collapse at the end of the day!”

    “Kelly, how do you find the motivation to keep working out when you aren’t seeing results?” 

    “I always start strong whenever I start a new diet or workout program but I give up and then I can’t seem to get motivated to do it again!”

    The Real Truth About Motivation.

    Do any or all of those statements sound familiar to you? These are reflective of the top questions or comments I hear EVERY WEEK. And the truth that I tell to all of the women who write into me with these types of comments is – what I’ll tell you right now- MOTIVATION isn’t something outside of you. It’s not a package, wrapped in tissue paper, sitting in a box on a shelf somewhere. It’s not something that was only gifted via DNA to the exclusive “uber-fit” people. It’s not something that comes natural to everyone. It’s not something that is guaranteed to be a perpetual thing. Read that again. Being motivated- when you are- is not by any means guaranteed to last. Motivation is at its true core- unique to each one of us. What MY STATE OF MOTIVATION  looks and feels like to me may be totally different than what YOUR MOTIVATION state feels like in your skin. Further, what MOTIVATES ME is highly likely – totally different than what motivates YOU.

    Think about this.

    What DRIVES ME (motivates me) to do the work (diet + exercise) to get the result (fit body) is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT FOR ME than it is for you and for everyone out there that knows me and reads this blog and follows me on social media. And what the STATE OF BEING MOTIVATED feels like for me — well that’s totally unique to ME and me alone. So, if motivation- both internally and externally  — is so distinctive to each one of us- how can we look outside of ourselves for it??

    Yet, we do. When we complain about not being motivated, we suggest that we are helpless creatures and that “rats I can’t work out today, I don’t have any motivation”- as if someone could run through a drive- through for us and deliver it.

    Doesn’t work that way.

    The only way to GET MOTIVATION is to create it. To generate it. And the only one who can do that is you. Stop looking to outside forces to motivate you. Stop thinking motivation is something you were born with. It’s a SKILL and you can cultivate it and perfect it. Trust me.But the first step is ACCEPTANCE. You must accept that motivation is your responsibility and frankly- it’s only YOU who has the ABILITY to make the MOTIVATION thing happen. It’s all on you. And if you read that and get discouraged, don’t be– the fact that it’s all on you means YOU ARE IN CONTROL. You want to grab the missing motivation in your life and never let go? I’m here to show you how it’s done.

    Nothing Worth It Is Ever EASY To Achieve.

    There are a couple of assumptions I want you to agree with me on before we move on to specifics. It’s important for you, after you accept that MOTIVATION is your job and your job alone– to accept some universal truths about, in this case, getting fit. You can apply all of these truths and principles after reading this blog to other pursuits like work or love but for today we are talking motivation in the fitness realm.

    • Nothing worth it is ever EASY to achieve. Can we agree on this? Getting FIT and in a body that you have mad respect for isn’t easy. If it was, we wouldn’t have the obesity epidemic in this country. Our bodies are capable of amazing things but we have to WORK FOR IT. And I dare you to think about this: isn’t it more rewarding to work your ass off for something than to have it handed to you? I agree.
    • The WORK to get where you want to be is sometimes NO picnic. This photo above reminds me of so many training sessions with my favorite trainer Blaine in Austin. Rowing. Burpees. Wall-Balls. DURING THE WORK, I hate it. But after the work, I love the feeling of doing the hard thing. Later on I love the results. Embrace the fact up front that the WORK you have to do isn’t always going to be fun but it will be worth it.
    • The only way to fail is to quit. Because the only way to fail is to quit, then you know it is your top responsibility to keep your motivation working for you to KEEP GOING. That’s your goal. You are MOTIVATING YOURSELF TO NOT QUIT.

    The Secret to Getting Motivated and STAYING MOTIVATED.

    So we’ve accepted that motivation is our responsibility. We’ve opened our eyes to the work that is ahead of us and we know that the only way we fail is to quit. So– we know we have a hard road ahead of us– this is that MOMENT where the rub happens. Yup, this is the moment where the vast majority of people will allow intimidation and doubt to weasel their way into their brains and convince them that they don’t have what it takes to make this happen.

    That’s so wrong.

    We are ALL HUMAN- obvi, and we all doubt ourselves. It’s daunting to think about making big changes and attempting to achieve something that seems so far off from where we are. We think we need some magic skillset to do things that really aren’t that complicated. Rowing machine? Not complicated. Riding a bike? Running? going for a walk? Counting your calories? Sitting in the sauna? Doing some bicep curls? Nothing is that complicated. It’s just intimidating because- we haven’t made all these things WORK FOR US BEFORE.

    So- recognize as you begin your journey that – these feelings that will urge you to quit right away– they are natural, and they are your inner fear and doubt talking.

    RIGHT HERE, AT THIS MOMENT- THIS IS WHEN YOU NEED TO KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT MOTIVATION. In my opinion, your MOTIVATION at the beginning of the journey is not some warm fuzzy exciting FEELING or a sense of ENERGY. No- in the beginning of your journey to get fit, you have motivation. Your motivation is your DESIRE to no longer stay where you are physically- and to transform. You’ve had enough. You are tired of being tired, you are done not fitting in your clothes, you are through feeling embarrassed naked. THIS- AT THE BEGINNING- IS YOUR MOTIVATION. I encourage you to write down all the aspects of this motivation, good and bad, in a journal/notebook and read it each morning when you wake up and each night before bed.

    REMIND YOURSELF what you don’t want to be anymore- how awful it feels to not fit in your clothes anymore. REMIND YOURSELF of what you want- to be able to put on a bikini at the beach and feel GOOD about it.

    The more you have that MOTIVATION– what you want and don’t want– in the front of your brain, every day, you’ll feel drawn toward the activity. The work. Yes, drawn to it.

    NOTE: motivation doesn’t make you not feel tired. Motivation doesn’t make the workout easier. Motivation doesn’t make your day easier to fit in the workouts. Motivation is your GUIDE. That’s all. It’s your proverbial north star.

    You are either led by your motivation– or you are led by your fear and doubt. Who do you want to follow?

    When you let yourself be led by doubt and fear, you take the passive approach. When you are leading yourself by motivation, the motivation you create, you are the one in control. What sounds better?

    Here’s the kicker my friends. Once you START down the right path, once you’ve listened to that MOTIVATION each day- of what you don’t want to be anymore and what you want to be- and you’ve let that lead you to do the work- because it will- when you remind yourself daily “I’m going to go do this hard thing and it’s gonna kick my butt, but I’m going to be so proud of myself for doing it and when I’ve been at this for 30 days I will look and feel so much better…..”– then you keep showing up. A beautiful thing happens. It will.

    You will start to enjoy the process. You will start to enjoy the feelings of pride and accomplishment. You’ll start to see gains in strength and cardio capacity. You’ll start noticing your clothes fitting better. People will make comments about how you look.

    GUESS WHAT HAPPENS THEN? Your motivation has just been bolted up 100 notches. Now, you have MORE motivation pushing you. More reasons that fire you up.

    It builds and builds.

    **Truth is– the later feelings of motivation when you start experiencing results? They are cooler. They feel more exciting. They are motivation squared. But, as long as your eyes are open and you realize up front that the rewards ARE THERE just down the road– it makes the beginning more palatable. You can do it. You can create and generate your own motivation.

    ***Another thing. I’d be lying if I said that this is a linear line of only going up up up up up. We ALL- all of us- even the most seasoned fitness trainers and dietitians- EVERYONE goes through a slump. Everyone ends up sick or benched for a time. Everyone encounters an injury or personal tragedy and gets off course. It happens. But then — you recognize that and start at MOTIVATION ZERO. (ground zero) Start at the beginning knowing that you’ve been there done that. You’ve got this.

    It’s a beautiful cycle. And it works if you work it.

    So tell me, how motivated are you now?

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