3 Ways to Eat What You Want and Lose Weight

You may be saying, “No Loren, you can’t eat anything and still lose weight!”

Maybe losing weight sends a picture of salads (no dressing) and raw carrot sticks.

Perhaps weight loss sends you into a nervous sweat when thinking about the gym.

Im here to change all of that! I eat pizza and drink beer every weekend.

I’m building my dream, skinny jeans-ready body too.

To truly lose weight we must adjust our lifestyle. No amount of starvation and deprivation will create lifelong change. That quick no carb, no chocolate diet will last a couple of weeks at best. It will also create a terrible relationship with food. Instead, I’ve learned how to eat all of the foods I want and still lose weight. Finally, no calorie counting, no elimination diets, no grumpiness.

 

Here’s how eat what you want and still lose weight.

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1. Get four servings of veggies daily

  • 85% of weight loss happens with changes in nutrition.
  • When I get all 4 servings of veggies in something amazing happens. I feel better. I stay full longer. It makes sure I’m getting essential nutrients.
  • Even better? I have zero guilt about indulging in that pizza and beer on Friday when I know I’ve had an amazing and healthy day.
  • How? I add spinach to my morning TrimShake. I have 2 greens at lunch. Finally, I meal prep veggies for dinner. There are endless ways to get them in daily. Message me for more ideas!
  • Adding in fruits is essential also! I aim for 4 veggies and 3 fruits a day.

2. Drink water

  • I divide my body weight in half and convert that number to the number of ounces I drink each day. Honestly, I go way over because of my health struggles
  • I keep a giant Yeti cup with water and lemon essential oil filled at all times. It’s a great flavor AND a great source of antioxidants.
  • Ditching soda is the best thing I ever did. They are filled with sugar and calories. I don’t want to drink my calories, I prefer to eat them 😜. Sodas are also known for toxic chemicals and questionable ingredients that hinder weight loss and muscle building. {Now, I still have my Dr. Pepper and whisky cokes every now and then. But, I’m not dependent on it. I’ve learned to love fruity water and sparkling water.}
  • So, flush those toxins, hydrate your body, and use a little self care with water.

3. Don’t starve, eat 6 times a day

  • Growing up, my family used to say your body needs fuel. It’s so true! People who do super low calorie and starvation diets actually hinder healthy weight loss. The body needs protein, carbs, and yes even fat. Without it, the body can’t build lean muscle and burn fat properly.
  • I was tired of yo-yo starvation diets that made me feel guilty. Instead, I found that eating six small meals (now, don’t have McDonald’s 6 times a day) gave my body constant fuel and nutrition it craved.
  • It makes me drop weight like no ones business!

Here’s an example  of my daily meals

  1. Breakfast: dōTERRA Trimshake with banana, spinach (can’t taste it), and almond milk
  2. Snack: Greek yogurt with friut
  3. Lunch: Veggie and Chicken Pasta Primavera
  4. Snack: OneBar (for protein around workout)
  5. Dinner: Fajita Bowl
  6. Snack: Chocolate peanut butter protein mug cake (recipe on my Instagram Story!)          with black berries and strawberries

flat lay photography of vegetable salad on plate

Find what works for you, we’re all unique!

At the end of the day, once I hit my gym goals and my nutrition goals, I comfortably indulge in my favorite foods without guilt. No one should live with guilt over food. In all honesty, every food has a certain place in any diet. It’s all about learning to get the right combinations and exercising along the way.

I help women with health challenges create confidence to rock those skinny jeans while eating pizza and beer by learning how to workout and eat on their own terms. If you feel stuck or are ready to get into those skinny jeans, send me a message or DM. I share tips daily on Instagram. Let’s follow each other and cheer each other on!

Loren Cooley 918200 Silver

Loren is a wellness advocate, a Special Education Teacher, a recent newlywed, and a hospice volunteer. Hiking, tea, visiting local breweries with her husband, photography, chocolate, and reading, are some of her favorites. 

Be sure to follow the blog and connect with me on Instagram and Facebook for daily tips and inspo! 

Three Things Mitochondrial Disease Taught Me

For the first 13 years of my life, I wondered if I really was a drama queen about pain or minor illnesses. I may be dramatic about somethings (just ask my husband), but this isn’t one of them. It was a huge relief just to know that there was indeed something happening in my body that was causing all of my issues. Finally, I was diagnosed with Mitochondrial Disease.

Through all of the days I was sick, when I missed sleepovers, exams, prom, and moved back home from college, I knew there was a purpose for it all. These are the three thing I learned from having Mitochondrial Disease.

What is Mitochondrial Disease?

Mitochondria are responsible for creating 90% of the energy needed to sustain life and support organ function. So, Mitochondrial disease (Mito) is the result of either inherited or spontaneous mutations in mtDNA or nDNA which lead to altered functions of the proteins or RNA molecules that normally reside in mitochondria.

Think about the mitochondria in cells as batteries. Each cell in our bodies is powered by its own battery. However, people with Mito have defective batteries. Our batteries can’t fully recharge themselves. You know when you’re iPhone warns you that the battery is at 20%? That is the level of Mito power some people live with daily. We have to go into “low power mode” and conserve what little energy is left.

It’s hard to say how many people are impacted by Mito, because many go their entire lives without a proper diagnosis. It is estimated that anywhere from 1 in 4,000 to 1 in 6,000 have a form of Mito.

Three Things Mito Taught Me

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1. I am Stronger Than I Ever Thought Possible…

First of all, strength is not a word most people associate with chronic illness. Say the words genetic disease to a “normal person” and watch them squirm with awkwardness. Their minds are filled with images of IVs, handicap stickers, and feeding tubes. However, it is true. With Mito, or any chronic illness, comes an entirely new level of strength. My brother, mother, and I all have Mito. It impacts us in unique ways and at different levels. I wrote about all of my challenges in this post last year.

So, back to strength. I had to endure countless hospital visits full of unpleasant tests (spinal taps aren’t fun y’all). I’ve had my blood drawn so many times that my veins started forming valves (bicuspid flap-like structures). During my junior year of high school, I had to leave all of my friends and my school of 16 years to be homeschooled due to illness. I had to learn how to be proactive with protecting my immune system and keeping cluster migraines in check. Many mornings I had to push through pain and fatigue to even take a shower.

More than physical strength, I also had to become mentally strong. It is so disheartening to be a child or teenager and not be able to join the “normal” things my peers did. Keeping the mentality that I have Mito to serve some greater purpose is a powerful way to live. Even in the most depressing situation, socially or physically, I kept that in mind. I truly believed it then, and I truly believe it now.

If you have Mito or are in a similar situation, you are strong. You are powerful. We fight for more on a daily basis than some people will fight in their entire lives. So what if I missed prom? Was I devastated at the time? Yes. Do I care now at the age of 24? Nope. In fact, I’m going to make a confession. I’m pretty glad I didn’t have to go through some of the temptations that most teenagers face and later regret. Be thankful for what you are missing. As weird as it sounds, you are better off because of it. We are totally unique people because of this. The world needs our special perspectives and experiences. Acknowledge the superhero strength we’ve been gifted.

2. I Know the Power of True friendships…

Isolation is a real thing. One of my mentors, someone who truly connected with me through the worst of my Mito, ministers to people who are ill. He said, a person undergoing many rounds of chemo asked him, “where are all of my people? Everyone left.” Thats a true statement. For people who are “normal,” this whole sick thing can be intimidating….Not everyone, but generally speaking. I can’t tell you the number of times in high school I thought about the phrase out of sight, out of mind. I was never at school. I couldn’t hang on the weekends. Forget about doing sports or extracurriculars. I was out of sight. Because of that, I left the minds of many people I thought of as friends. Sure, we texted every now and then. But, it just wasn’t the same.

However, instead of getting caught up in the loss of those “friendships,” I found comfort in my core group. I realized that I didn’t want those fake friendships. Why waste my time with people who didn’t care about things outside of their little bubble? I want true, deep, lasting, supportive friendships. The kind that lasts decades and crosses state lines. That’s exactly what I found. I discovered there are people whose hearts are unimaginably giving. My best friend, who was also my maid of honor in November, is one of those people, along with several other girls I have known since elementary and middle school. Three of them were my bridesmaids. It is so special to look at my wedding photos and think about how much they mean to me. They are patient. They understand that I can’t always go out, but that I still am here for them. They are always here for me. I wouldn’t trade my small group of true friends for a thousand phony friendships.

Find comfort in your people. There is real value in the statement quality over quantity. Don’t look on Instagram and compare yourself to people going out with a huge group every night. Instead, I choose to be thankful for the overwhelming love I have in my small tribe.

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3. I Can Still Impact and Inspire People…

There was a time I was living between my couch and my bed. The walk to the kitchen was even tiresome. How could I, the girl who is sick, possibly make a difference in the world? What is the purpose of these weird Mito symptoms? Surely it’s not just to make my daily life challenging. My family taught me from a young age that helping people is one of the most important things in life. It took some time and a lot of searching on my part, but I found small ways to make an impact.

First, I created an online jewelry business. When I made a sale, I included a handwritten note thanking and encouraging my customer. To my surprise, people left raving reviews about getting my tiny notes. I realized that making an impact doesn’t mean doing something huge. Even the tinniest gestures make people smile.

Next, I started sponsoring a child through Compassion International. Every other week, I would write a short letter with a coloring page or baseball card and pop it in the mail. I got so many replies from my sponsor child. Seeing his smiling face in photos with my letters made my weeks. I actually was able to see him through to his high school graduation. Something that is rare in his part of the world. Talk about feeling fulfilled. I’m pretty sure he brought ten times more happiness to me than I could ever give to him.

I also joined Facebook support groups of Mito. I posted and got support from people like me who understand the struggle. I made friends across the country. I lift them up in hard times and find ways to brighten their dark days.

All of this is to say, find a way to help someone. With so many apps and types of technology, it is super easy to find low commitment ways to communicate and support people. Find a passion and pursue it online. Make someone’s day brighter.

What About Today?

As I started using natural products, I started realizing my body was doing better. When I give it the things it needs for balance, I am able to do more things. Five years ago, I started to see the change. I slowly began a new healthier life. I work full time as a special education teacher. I found and married the love of my life. I’ve had six minor colds in five years. That’s it. Not hospital visits or long term illnesses. I’m training for a 5k. I walk half a mile every day with my blue tick hound puppy, Beau. These are things I never even imaged as possibilities.

Now, I see that those years of struggling have meaning. I still have days with Mito flares. However, I have more “normal” days. I use my past to reach out and help people who are in similar situations. I run a business where I focus on helping people with unique wellness challenges. I’m their friend, cheerleader, and confidant. More than that, I provide easy solutions for comfort and supporting the body. None of that would mean anything, if I didn’t personally have health struggles.

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The Bottom Line

There are blessings to be found in the struggles. None of these challenges are pointless. In fact, they are the most important lessons I’ve learned in my 24 years. I’m a better person today because of Mito. Yeah, I said it. So, go celebrate who you are. Find beauty in the pain. And, if you need a friend, I’m here! Nothing makes me happier than finding new friends. Let’s chat, laugh, cry, FaceTime with my puppy, and make the pain a little less severe. Even more of my crazy life is shared on Instagram and Facebook. Join up with my wellness family. Subscribe here, I’m sending out virtual hugs.

Loren Cooley 918200 Silver

Loren is a wellness advocate, a Special Education Teacher, a recent newlywed, and a hospice volunteer. Hiking, tea, visiting local breweries with her husband, photography, chocolate, and reading, are some of her favorites. 

Be sure to follow the blog and connect with me on Instagram and Facebook for daily tips and inspo! 

5 Benefits of Taking Lifelong Vitality Multivitamins

Raise your hand if you eat a perfectly balanced diet with ideal nutrients. How about the perfect amount of exercise? Anyone? No?

Me either! Thats why it is so so so important to take a multivitamin to balance things out. I’ve been taking dōTERRA’s Lifelong Vitality Pack for 5 years. I’ve never looked back. In fact, I’ve only looked forward. I’ve lost weight. I’ve given my body the amount of energy it needs. I’ve increased my goals at the gym and reached them. Continue reading “5 Benefits of Taking Lifelong Vitality Multivitamins”

How to Use Bergamot Essential Oil

Anyone else feeling super overwhelmed? I made this fabulous list of New Years resolutions. I’m going to workout harder, I’m going to plan more hands-on lesson plans for my students, I’m going to build my online presence like never before, I’m going to read more. The list goes on and on.

The New Year is causing me anxious feelings. Lukily, I have an oil for that! doTERRA Bergamot is a citrus oil with a light floral scent. It is unique because of it’s uplifting and calming properties. These unique properties make it ideal to help ease anxious or sad feelings. Today, I’m sharing how to use doTERRA’s Bergamot Essential Oil. Continue reading “How to Use Bergamot Essential Oil”

Our Engagement Story

‘Tis the season for engagements, falalalalala 🎼

My engagement story went something like this, “You look terrible. Will you marry me?” Ok, maybe something happened in between there. Christmas time is the perfect time for engagements, but I’m biased because I got engaged exactly one year and three days ago today. I’m here to remind you that engagements are not about the perfect proposal…Just look at the “fairytale” bachelor proposals that end up in tabloid flames. It’s about who you’re saying yes to spending the rest of your life with. Continue reading “Our Engagement Story”

7 Things You Should Know about German Christmas Markets

Christmas lights, fairytales, cute mugs, and holiday cheer. What more do you need? Jordan, my husband, and I just spent the best 4 days in Munich on our honeymoon. In the spirit on honesty, we spent 3 days at the Christmas market on Marienplatzalone. It is breathtaking and huge. Even on the last night, we found booths and items we hadn’t seen the previous days. However, it can be a lot to take in. Follow my 7 things you need to know about German Christmas Markets and you’ll be set for a Christmas winter wonderland good time.

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7 Things you need to know about the Munich Christmas Market

1. Check the dates, and then check again

We actually somewhat planned our honeymoon around going to the German Christmas markets. When we arrived, our taxi driver said the markets weren’t opening until the next week. We were bummed. Then, the next morning we accidentally walked straight thru the market. Spoiler alert, they were open! Double check your dates online and through a travel agent. We used Kris DeVogel and she literally thought of every detail!

2. Bring cash

Most of the vendors only accept Euros. They don’t accept credit or debit cards. Have the cash ready to go. There is a bank across the street from one entrance of the market. We went there twice to exchange money. It’s pretty convient. 

3. Price check before you buy

There are so many vendors! The limits are almost endless. At first, we decided to walk through to see what was for sale before buying anything. The next thing I knew, I saw items that were almost identical with a major price difference. Scope everything out. Price compare before you buy. Also, the wooden nativity vendors are limited there. This means they have steep prices at these booths with no competition. 

4. Stay at a nearby hotel 

Fourth, stay at a hotel close to the center of town. We started out our mornings with a four-minute walk to the markets and shopped. Then, we popped back to the drop off our finds and warm up. Finally, we headed back out for a second round of the markets in the afternoon. We stayed at Hotel Torbäu. It is gorgeous. They have excellent customer service and are centrally located. It’s a quick walk from the Christmas Market and the food market. I highly recommend it!

5. Eat everything

Not only does the market have Christmas decor, it also has Christmas food. Every few feet you’ll see booths overflowing with sweets. My personal favorite are Lebkuchen aka chocolate covered gingerbread. Secondly, they have special heart-shaped gingerbread only at Christmas time. You need this in your life. Thirdly, get the chocolate covered fruit. We didn’t know what we bought at first. However, it is the BEST sweet I’ve ever eaten. You won’t go hungry here. I promise. 

6. Be aware of crowds

I was at the market almost every time of the day. The first day, Wednesday, was pretty calm. I assume that weekdays, during the earlier hours are less crowded. Of course, Thursday it got a little more crowded. By Friday night, it was packed with a vibrant energy. It just depends on what type of experience you’re looking for. 

7. Gluwien, love it or hate it

I also saw Gluwein stands every few feet. Gluwein in a hot wine with winter spices. It sounds weird, I know. The first mug I had was….gross. I couldn’t finish it. Then, we found some nicer booths with uniquevariations. They have red wine and white wine versions. The best part? Most of them come in adorable, festive mugs. They gave me a token when I got a drink. I could take the mug and token back, and they would return my “deposit.” It is usually two or three Euros. Honestly, I kept every mug. They are the perfect souvenir.  

Go be festive

All of this being said, the German Christmas markets are pretty self-explanatory. I felt an immense sense of Christmas cheer and love. It will bring out the kid in even the grumpiest of Grinches. Check out my Instagram posts for a better glimpse at the market and its magic.

Merry Christmas loves! 

Continue reading “7 Things You Should Know about German Christmas Markets”

How to Use Grapefruit Essential Oil

Grapefruit Essential Oil

As the season heats up, it’s time to spotlight one of my favorite dōTERRA citrus oils, Grapefruit! The summer is generally a time to get organized, in shape, and ready for vacations.  I use doTERRA Grapefruit essential oil as part of a spring and summer detox routine. I also use it for everything from occasional blemishes to crushing sugar cravings and everything in between! Below are my top tips for loving summer with Grapefruit Essential Oil!

Continue reading “How to Use Grapefruit Essential Oil”

Living with Mitochondrial Disease

Living with Mitochondrial Disease

Living with Mitochondrial Disease has its challenges. I was the kid that was always sick in school. I missed countless days. In fact, one morning in elementary school the art teacher was taking attendance and called out my name. Before I could reply, a student across the room laughed and said, “Not here. She’s pretending to be sick as usual.” Ouch. My shy, introverted, 10 year old self somehow managed to raise Continue reading “Living with Mitochondrial Disease”

Top 5 Uses for Rosemary Essential Oil

Rosemary Essential Oil

Did you know Rosemary was considered sacred by the ancient Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Hebrew cultures? It turns out, there is a good reason for this! Rosemary essential oil supports healthy digestion and healthy respiratory function. Rosemary also helps reduce nervous tension and fatigue. The oil has also been shown to support improved memory and cognitive function. The best part? You can even cook with it! Read on for my top 5 uses for Rosemary Essential Oil.

Continue reading “Top 5 Uses for Rosemary Essential Oil”

Everything You Need To Know about Essential Oils

What are essential oils?

Have you ever heard someone talking about stopping to smell the roses? Turns out there’s a reason for that! When you smell the fragrance of a flower, you are also smelling its unique essential oil. Essential oils are naturally occurring aromatic compounds. They are found in every plant; in the seeds, bark, stems, leaves, flowers, or roots. Information about essential oils can be found all over the internet. They are at your local big box store. Everyone seems to either love or hate them. So what’s the deal? Here is my ultimate guide to essential oils. I’m sharing everything you need to know about dōTERRA essential oils and how to use them. This is my ultimate guide to sharing the power of oily wellness and science with you.

Why Should I Choose dōTERRA?

dōTERRA is the largest essential oil company and distributor in the world. Continue reading “Everything You Need To Know about Essential Oils”