Inspiration from So Cal

It’s been about six years since I last visited the beaches of Southern California. But once you visit this area of Northern America, you never forget it. The white sandy beaches warm your toes up through your soul and the beautiful sunsets falling behind the large crashing waves are visions you take home and dream about.

Day two in Anaheim was filled with inspiration. And we ended it with a trip to Huntington Beach where everyone just seems relaxed and happy.

Yesterday I learned about the 36th clinical research study done on Juice Plus and how it showed DNA was positively altered in over 1,600 genes in overweight adults that controlled metabolic health and inflammatory cells . But yesterday was more than research-based facts. It was a day filled with inspiration. A day that I listened to wives, moms, husbands, cancer survivors, doctors and researchers all share their stories of how and why they said yes to changing their lifestyle when they were at their most vulnerable moment, moments where they were filled with doubt, but acted anyways. Here are my top #OMW [oh my word!] inspirational takeaways from yesterday:

#OMW No. 1: Caring for others is hard work. It’s also heart work.
We kicked off the morning with a praise and worship breakfast. Yes, you read that right. There are thousands of Juice Plus representatives that are believers, and it warms my heart. Nicole Unice, author of Brave Enough, spoke about grace as the catalyst for bravery. From the crippled man who was lowered down into the home where Jesus was teaching [Luke 5: 17] to his fishermen disciples troubled in rough waters [Mark 4: 35] – we all have fear inside that is buried at different levels. But the more we let grace in the less room there is for fear. Unice reminded the crowd that we have one single ask from Jesus … to love others. When you love others, you care for them. And anyone who is a caretaker knows it is HARD work. But it’s also HEART work. When I think about why I’m even here, at this nutrition conference, that’s what it’s ultimately about – caring for others. If a friend knew of something that I should be doing [ahem, taking care of my temple of God] and ideas as to how, telling me and encouraging me is shows love.

#OMW No. 2: Long term vision, short term goals.
Dream big and believe. Sounds so easy, right? If you’re anything like me, I go from dreaming big to reality crashes and I know that’s because I still allow the enemy to inject fear. Jay Martin, founder and CEO of Juice Plus, is of my grandparent’s generation – in my opinion, the hardest working generation of our time. I find many millennials expect instant gratification. Now, I think there are various reasons as to why, some reasonable and some not, but that’s for another blog post. What I took from Martin and a beautiful wife and mother of four children who is a breast cancer survivor was that you absolutely have to have, write, and say your goals, and then you need to consistently put in work to get them. It’s an easy concept, but not many do it.

#OMW No. 3: Get a system.
When you know what you are going after, you have to get a system in place to achieve it. A system marries up well with the whole consistency thing. I think back to my college basketball days when I was told I needed to work on my lateral foot speed after my freshman year. I consistently jumped rope, did ladders and other exercises that summer. I vividly remember my coaches being impressed with my improvement when I got back on campus in the Fall. Whatever goals you have, you will surely fall short unless you get a system in place and consistently put in work toward achieving them.

Say yes, it just might be worth it

Well, I said yes when I usually would have said no. You all have that friend who sells that stuff. Ya … those people. Ten months ago, I was tired of my post-baby internal and external body and said yes to a free nutrition talk from a Miami-based pediatrician. Sixty minutes of hearing and seeing alarming, research-based healthcare and nutrition stats – was all it took for me to start asking people around my table, “So, do you guys take this Juice Plus stuff? And does it reallllllly work?”

Fast forward 10 months later, my entire family has increased our whole-food nutrition intake and decreased the processed junk that we were addicted to with the help of the Juice Plus mission – inspiring healthy living around the world. And now, I’m meeting men and women with miraculous stories from all walks of life in Anaheim, California at the Juice Plus national conference.

Here are my three health #OMW [oh my word] moments from day one:

#OMW No. 3: You can’t compete with what you eat.

I’m a former Division 1 college basketball player. I still play, and work out regularly – running, high-intensity circuit training, spinning, etc – and while I know the best nutrition to eat, I didn’t always chose it, and thought I could get away with that because I exercised hard. I had the honor of listening to Dr. David Phillips – a physician, Harvard graduate and former Ironman World Championship triathlete. Before taking JP and while on a strict nutrition regiment, he would struggle during the same parts of his training regiment and often got sick along with his training partners. When he finally got on Juice Plus, his next Ironman was a personal record and his muscle recovery was faster than he had every experienced. He started noticing he wasn’t getting sick anymore and his training got kicked up a notch. Because Juice Plus is predigested and gets into the blood stream within 20 minutes, it helped decrease his oxidative stress. Guys, if you’ve never heard about oxygen, free radicals and oxidative stress and how they affect the body, here’s an article with the easiest, shortest explanation.

Side note … How it’s made: Because Juice Plus is non GMO, NSF certified (better than organic!) and picked vine ripped from it’s own farms, it will always provide a health benefit that you can’t get through produce at your local grocery store.

#OMW No. 2: You aren’t held captive by your DNA

Research shows we have the power to change our DNA for up to two generations … seriously … just do a quick Google search! We’re only stuck with one-third of the genes our families gave us and the other two-thirds can be altered through lifestyle. Something we actually have a CHOICE over! I SO wish I would have known this during my three pregnancies. My diet would have been completely different. Juice Plus is the most researched nutrition product in the WORLD, with 37 clinical research studies, 20 of which are published in peer-reviewed medical journals with an average impact score approaching 110 (industry average impact score in this field ranges from 0-5!). As a personal skeptic of the universe, that was a game changer for me. This company has a narrow but deep focus on its mission which gives customers confidence that they, and those they surround themselves with, are the experts in this field.

#OMW No. 1: Research shows Omega fatty acid deficiency in diets

Juice Plus has been around 25 years, and for the first time in 15 years they are launching a new product – a plant-based Omega blend. Because research has shown a large deficiency of Omega fatty acids in diets, the company has spent the last two years researching and coming up with its newest product – the Omega Blend. This is a plant-based, oil-based blend of Omega 3, 5, 6 and 7. Think fish oil, without the fish, and with more Omegas. Because there have been so many chemicals found in fish, Juice Plus has taken out the “middle man” and gone straight to the source. The vegetarian capsule includes six whole food plant sources: algae, pomegranate seeds, sea buckthorn berries, raspberry seeds, tomato seeds and safflower seeds where the omega’s are found at their purest and most sustainable.

Saying yes was an uncomfortable answer 10 months ago, but it was the right one. Signing off from Anaheim, for now!