Tag Archives: health

Journal Through Life Changes

This month I was the author of a feature article in Evolving Magazine. I’d love for you to read it here:


It’s Actually Not All About You

What happens when we don’t think we’re good enough? We don’t go for it! Maybe ‘it’ is dancing or painting, theater or music. ‘It’ might be counseling or writing. Whatever ‘it’ is, when we don’t express it, we rarely think about the impact on others, but if art and music, counseling or a good book can change a life then the lack of those things changes lives as well.

Is dancing the gift you’re not expressing? ballroomLet’s assume it’s ballroom dancing. So many people feel joy when they watch ballroom dancers! That joy would be absent if not shared. What about partners? Would there be one less person able to share their gift? And then there are the people who are inspired by those who showcase their talent. You might be the one who inspires others to step into the joy of expressing their gifts!

Does your heart sing when you get to organize something? Are your home and office totally organized? The garage? There are so many places who could use your talent … Volunteer! Schools, churches and other non-profits can often use the help of an organizer whether it’s for events or for office systems. You would be such a gift!

Are you a natural at interior design? Can you walk into a room and see exactly what it needs to create a fabulous look? Maybe you don’t want a career in interior design, but there are many ways to share your gift. You could offer to help battered women, just getting on their feet, create beautiful space on a garage sale budget. There are probably young families that are just starting out (ask around at work or church) who could use some help fixing up their homes. Even non-profits, churches, nurseries, etc., might be interested in your skills. Think of the difference it would make to a woman starting out on her own to be able to enjoy her home … What a gift!

writingIs your gift writing? Tell your stories! I have a friend that loves to write and she tells the funniest stories! Most of them are about her adventures with her best buddy; her autistic nephew. She adores him and they love spending time together. She feels blessed by the joy he brings to her world.

I beg her to share her stories in writing but so far she hasn’t done it. When I think about the parents and families that are hearing the diagnosis of autism for the first time, I wish I could hand each of them her book of stories celebrating the magic of one autistic child … Now, that would be a gift!

I cannot wait for the day that her book hits the bookstores … It will be a runaway best seller. (You can say you heard about it first!)

What gift are you holding back from the world? And, when you hold back, or push away thoughts of your gift, how is your health impacted? Trust me, it’s not good. Stress is often silent and deadly. It is the leading cause of chronic illness in the United States.

Expressing our gifts is not only good for the world, it’s integral to good health. You would be less tempted to eat that bag of chips, pint of ice cream, tub of popcorn or giant piece of cake if you were feeding your soul by finding and expressing your gifts. Eating numbs the call to action and allows us to sit in sameness. It requires little on our part. That temporary satisfaction will keep us coming back for more until we decide to break the cycle. Step off the junk food treadmill and express yourself … You’ll be bringing joy to the world!

Would you like help finding ways to identify what feeds your soul and improve your health? As a health coach, I can work with you to develop a plan that will move you forward. I’m currently offering a Strategy Session for $97. You’ll come away with at least two strategies to improve the state of your health and ideas on how to make them work in your life. Drop me an email: nancy@healthworkskc.com

Nancy Oglesby, the Practical Health Coach
Simplifying Healthy Lifestyle Choices


C.R.A.V.I.N.G.S. damn!


Chocolate CakeHow am I supposed to fight this feeling that DEMANDS that I eat that chocolate cake now … like RIGHT NOW!!?

Beats me.

No, that’s not true. I’ve got some ideas that will help you out a lot of the time. I’m not saying you’ll never give in again, but here’s some help.

First, breathe. That’s simple, right? Just taking that breath is the most important thing you can do. It’s about becoming aware of your actions. If you can catch yourself before you give in to the craving, by taking a deep breath, you have the opportunity to make a change.

Second, ask yourself if you’re hungry. If you are, eat something nourishing and get on with your day or night.

Not hungry? Drink a glass of water and wait ten minutes. Thirst often presents as a craving and that’s easily solved.

So, ten minutes have gone by and you are just barely holding yourself back from eating the cake. Time to look a little deeper.

If you’re not hungry or thirsty then chances are that you are falling prey to emotional eating. While not as easily solved as hunger and thirst, there are some tools you can use to achieve success.

The first thing you need to do is identify what’s going on. Are you bored, angry, happy, lonely, in need of comfort or frustrated? Once you identify the emotions that make you head for the ice cream or potato chips you can find other solutions.

When you’re not in the throes of a craving, list the emotions that cause you to eat. After each emotion identify other things that would address the feelings you’re experiencing. I call this my Nourishment Menu. You can add things that work for you, here are some examples from mine:

I created a project list consisting of small, medium and large projects so that there’s almost always something that can be done in the time I have to fill. I even have some of household chores on my list.

On my Nourishment Menu I have: Go to a coffee shop or call friends and family.

Sometimes there just isn’t anyone available to offer comfort so finding things that offer comfort is important. I enjoy a warm Epsom salt bath with a cup of tea and a good book. A client loved to snuggle under her grandmother’s quilt and watch old movies. Maybe there’s not time for a bath, in which case I’ll take ten minutes with a cup of tea and my journal or sit on the couch with a dog on my lap … finding solace in small things is a gift.

I hate to say it but this one is often solved through exercise. I’ll walk my dogs for a few miles and all of a sudden I’m not upset anymore. An alternative, an oldie but goodie, is to take it out on a pillow. I think beating up on a pillow works because after about 12 seconds you feel totally comical. You could try screaming at yourself in the mirror as well. That’s good for an attack of the sillies.

I have to say I haven’t found anything that really feels as right as food, but I have learned to switch from overeating chocolate, crème-filled cake to sharing a decadent dessert at a nice restaurant with friends. Two bites of the Chocolate Bag at McCormick & Schmick’s is plenty and gives me a genuine feeling of celebration rather than the guilt that occurs after overeating junk.

So, take a deep breath. Eat if you’re hungry. Drink for thirst. Then figure out what’s really going on and develop a menu of things that will nourish the true hunger.

Nancy Oglesby, the Practical Health Coach
Simplifying Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Do you enjoy reading the blog, think the ideas are good, but just don’t seem to make them happen in your life? You might be a perfect candidate for the coaching process. Contact me to schedule a FREE Strategy Session by visiting my website www.healthworkskc.com/forms. Fill out the appropriate form and when I receive it I’ll contact you to set up a time to talk. The session is done over the phone, lasts about 45 minutes and you will definitely have one or two strategies when the call is over.

PS: What does the acronym CRAVINGS stand for?
Crazy & Ravenous Advancing Viciously In a Nonstop Gastronomic Session



Chocolate Cake

Breakfast for Dinner?

Breakfast for Dinner?

Research overwhelmingly shows that a plant-based diet is the best choice in reducing and preventing chronic disease. In some cases, it can totally reverse existing disease. Being the Practical Health Coach, I understand that few of my clients, or their families, are willing to make the choice to eliminate meat from their diets, so my approach is to encourage and support them in reducing their reliance on meat-centered meals.

One popular suggestion is to have breakfast for dinner. Not only can breakfast be prepared quite easily and quickly, the ingredients are often inexpensive, and done properly can be quite healthy. Hearty cooked breakfasts bring back memories of relaxing weekend mornings or spending the night at Grandma’s … A nice way to ease some of the stress from a busy day!

My favorite is what I call a Scrambled Egg Omelet, fried potatoes

Photo by Jeremy Keith

Photo by Jeremy Keith

and fresh fruit. To make the omelet I caramelize onions, add in broccoli, snow peas, mushrooms and spinach (broccoli first as it takes a bit longer to cook). While they’re cooking, I whip up the eggs. After the veggies are cooked to the point that I like, I add the whipped eggs and stir until cooked. Season to taste and serve.

I cook thin sliced gold or red potatoes in a very small amount of coconut oil, over medium heat until browned on one side, then turn to brown on the other side.

Sometimes I cut and mix several fruits but if I’m in a hurry I slice and serve just one. If I’ve planned this out, I might have stopped at the salad bar or the veggies and fruit, then prep is simple! (See Get Yourself a Prep Cook)

If someone has to have bacon, or breakfast just doesn’t taste right without the smell of bacon cooking, crumble a half slice onto the top of their serving of either the omelet or the potatoes. (Buy nitrite/nitrate free bacon either from or Whole Foods or similar source near you.)

This is an inexpensive way to reduce your meal costs allowing you to use that money to buy a better, grass-fed, organic meat.

Next up: A meatless chili that leave no one asking, “Where’s the beef?”

Nancy Oglesby, The Practical Health Coach

Just a quick disclaimer: I make a small amount if you purchase from the links I provide. However, primarily I add links because it allows you to know exactly what product I’m talking about when I identify brands that I like and use.

Healthy & Fit Over 50 Happiness Tip #2

Good relationships are critical to your mental well-being, and it’s important to realize that not all relationships fit into that category.

I had a friend who would call up and just start right in on how miserable life was. Before the phone call I would be in a peaceful and contented place and then all of a sudden I was being harangued by misery without even a hello-how-are-you moment. I could feel my blood pressure rise!

One day my sister overheard my end of the conversation (me trying to instill, for the millionth time, some calm and practicality into the friend’s otherwise drama-laden life) and after I got off the phone she asked, “Why are you friends with that person?” Great question!

About a month or two later, after seriously mulling over the pros and cons, I walked away and haven’t looked back with regret once.

I don’t suggest ending a relationship without giving it the thought it deserves, but if a friendship is toxic, then it either has to change or you need to walk away. Your health depends on it!


Come One, Come All …To The Carnival of Well-Being

Everyone Loves a Carnival!
But…have you heard of a Blog Carnival? It’s an online magazine. Each edition of the carnival is one blog post that contains a series of links pointing to posts on other blogs, written on one particular topic by many authors.

On the first day of each month, our Carnival of Well-Being will proudly present fresh articles from local bloggers who are experts in one aspect of well-being. Each blog post is packed with information you can use immediately to enhance your well-being.

How to Play
Step 1. Click a link to a blog post that intrigues you. Read as many posts as you like!
Step 2. Support your local, free-range, organic bloggers by:
• Commenting on the posts you like
• Sharing your fave posts freely and liberally with your friends and family
• If you’re inclined to, contacting the blogger for more information about the services they offer.

On to the Carnival! Have fun!
This month, each blogger is serving up a post on this topic:
What’s the single most important thing you could STOP doing that would have the biggest impact on your well-being?

Posted by: Nancy Oglesby at HealthworksKC … ME!
Description: When I was asked to write about what people should stop doing, this came to mind: They should stop trying. What!? Stop trying to lose weight/quit smoking/quit drinking/quit eating sugar/get to bed on time? How will that improve my well-being?
Scroll down to the second post on this blog for more.

Posted by: Alicen at Former Fitness Flunky
Description: There’s one little thing you can stop doing today that may be holding you back from succeeding in your fitness routine. We’ll look at what that one little thing is and how you can overcome it once and for all.
Click here to read the entire post.

Posted by Linda Putthoff at Plaza Wellspring
Description: Stop letting fear rule your choices. Fear becomes a patterned response to many situations in our lives, but it is most often a response to what WAS in the past, or what we are afraid MIGHT BE in the future. Mind/Body practice is transformative because it brings us into the present moment. In the present moment, through listening (attention) and using our creative energy (intention) we can choose love and compassion to be the guiding forces in our decision making.
Click here to read the entire post.

Posted by Judy Widener at Inner Frontiers Life Coaching
Description: We all know that stress causes illness. So why do the majority of those surveyed say their stress is increasing instead of decreasing, with a sobering 25% saying they’re under extreme stress? Debunk the myths about stress and start permanently lowering your stress level today.
Click here to read the entire post.

The next Carnival of Well-Being will be July 1, with four more bloggers joining this group. Until then, Be Well!

My Neighborhood

My Street

I am truly blessed to have moved into such a nurturing neighborhood. My old house was on a busy street and I was younger than most of my neighbors who had already raised their children. I was a single parent and felt judged by some of them, but now wonder if that wasn’t partly my inherent distrust of the ‘establishment.’

I moved into my current house in May of 2006 and was promptly greeted by a tiny, elderly woman about 87 years old. She introduced herself (Jean) and told me about a group of single, widowed and/or divorced women who got together on holidays and birthdays to share a meal. I was invited to join them on Memorial Day and am so glad that I did.

Poor Stray Kitty

Jean passed on in 2009 leaving me fully in charge of the stray cat she fed and provided a heated garage for. Today, that cat sleeps on my bed since I don’t have a garage. Jean named her Gypsy and it’s still appropriate.

The cast of characters in our little group is: Kay (ageless), Margaret (91), Martha (73) and Sonya (74) and sometimes Rachel (ageless). I am the baby of the group at 62. We go to Taco Bell on Thursday nights … Margaret’s choice. Do I go for the food? Nope! I rarely eat anything and when I do it’s just beans without cheese. I go for the company and the good feeling I get when I spend time with my friends.

We learn so much from each other! I begin to move at a slower, friendlier pace and they get a little insight into the world of Facebook style communication. They give me flowers to plant (I’m certain they pray they’ll live.) and I hook up their televisions or figure out what’s going on with their phone. When I had my hip replaced they brought me food and went to the store. When Sonya dislocated her shoulder, I took her to the hospital, Martha took her to doctor appointments and we all got her groceries. We sing a song of thanks before we break bread at our birthday get togethers. It’s a very comfortable, warm place to be.

Another neighbor is closer to my age and also single but doesn’t often take part in the group activities. It’s been in the last year that we’ve connected and I am thrilled! We go to movies and out to dinner, we ran errands together the other day. She is a gardener and gives me perennials when she thins them out. She came over and helped me plant all of my new shrubs and replant the coral bells and dianthus that had been removed when they poured my new driveway and sidewalk. (I’m certain she did it for the plants’ sake!)

The neighbors up and down my street are all known by name and when I walk the dog we stop and chat as we make our way down the street. The neighborhood is getting some younger people: Ashley with her 10-year-old daughter and Jennifer, who moved into Jean’s old house, just had a lovely baby boy. There are new neighbors with a 13ish-year-old boy.

I know most of the dogs’ names on the whole block and if I don’t know them, I make one up! There’s Oliver and Bella, Riley, Rosco, Leaping Labrador and Squeaky Dog. There’s Casey, Cinnamon and Benny. Who can forget Spot, Spot and Spot, the three Dalmatians and Molly, the newest member who might be the oldest member. Zeker and Pattiane walk with Mikey the Wonder Dog and me. We let their mom, Sonya, join. Bella, a little Shih Tzu hears us coming, runs to the front door and stands up on her hind feet, pawing at the door. Of course, she’s my favorite!

This is my neighborhood … I am blessed. If you don’t have a warm, friendly neighborhood, do you see something in what we have that you could begin doing? Sharing plants? Hosting a neighborhood Potluck? Or start small and go for a daily walk, smile and say hello. Before you know it, it’ll take you forever to make it back to your house because you’ll be stopping and chatting just like me!