How I figured out my food intolerances
For my entire 20’s, I’ve struggled with food allergies, digestive issues, sinus issues, and brain fog. After trying different supplements, getting allergy tests at an ENT office, and trying different diets (paleo, vegan, vegetarian, etc), nothing was helping.
After a little more research, I stumbled upon a business that had just opened in Columbus, Ohio – Rock N Shock Fitness. Rock N Shock is an all-female community focused on getting you in the best shape of your life. The owner, Danielle Miranda, spent years developing a system that encompasses the entire body, internally and externally, to get you to your healthiest self. This is done with initial testing to find out what is really going on with your body – food & non-food intolerance tests, nutritional deficiencies, metal toxicity, V02, and RMR testing. There are other tests that can be done, like DNA testing, and oxygen therapy + infrared saunas for detoxification. After getting your results, you can choose to work with someone on your diet + begin a workout plan based on your fitness level.
**The intolerance testing (without metal toxicity) was $250, and the V02/RMR test (membership pricing included) was another $125.
To get started, I made an initial appointment with Rock N Shock to discuss my fitness/nutrition goals, and what I was looking to get out of working with them. After speaking with the owner, she gave me a tour of the facilities and explained my options based on what we talked about.
I chose the below services:
V02 testing – to measure my physical fitness level
RMR – to find my resting metabolic rate (how many calories am I burning just sitting here?)
Intolerance testing – what foods am I eating that are causing issues?
Nutritional deficiencies – what does my body need more of?
**I fully intended to begin the workout program after receiving my results, but ended up moving to Florida.
I booked a second appointment to get all of the testing done, and it took less than an hour – a few strands of hair were taken for the intolerance testing & nutritional deficiencies, and the RMR & V02 test took about 30 minutes. I also couldn’t eat 2 hours before the test, and minimal to no exercise is recommended the day before so your body is fully rested & ready for the test. (I went on a 16 mile hike the day before, so don’t be like me!)
To begin, I had to breathe into a tube hooked to a computer for 10-15 minutes for my RMR test.
You can only blow through the tube, so you have to wear a clip on your nose – see above :p
You can watch the screen while you are blowing to make sure that everything is being recorded properly – I am not sure exactly how it all works, but after blowing for 10-15 minutes, I was relieved to be done!
After the RMR test, I was hooked up to a mask, attached to a hose – think Bane from Batman. The hose was hooked up to a computer, and I had to run with the mask on. It looks a little scary, but you can breathe just fine.
The person running the test started the treadmill low, with a little incline. Over time, she did timed intervals for increasing my pace & the incline, then back down again. At any time, when you feel like you cannot go any farther, you can tell them to stop the treadmill. Depending on how in-shape you are, it can be anywhere from 4 minutes to 20 minutes before you throw in the towel. I lasted about 11-12 minutes, which was the point where I felt like my muscles had no juice left in them (I could still breathe ok!). Below was about the halfway point for me – I was up to 6 or 7 on the treadmill, and things were really starting to get tough!
Normally when you throw in the towel, it’s not because you can’t breathe – it’s because your muscles are being deprived of oxygen, and the V02 test basically measures how well your body uses oxygen. The RNS site describes what exactly the test measures:
…how effectively your body consumes and uses oxygen, your breathing patterns, recovery of heart and lungs, calorie expenditure at various heart rates, your aerobic and anaerobic thresholds. We will be able to identify the exact heartbeat your body turns anaerobic and exact heart rate zones for you to train and compete at in order to stop you from “hitting the wall “and then allow you to maximise every minute of every session and race.
After the test was complete, I had to wait a bit for my hair analysis to come back. After about a month, I went back in to take a look at my final results:
It was honestly a bit of a shock to learn that I had food intolerances to things I ate almost everyday – olives/olive oil, strawberries, sweet potatoes, carrots… basically, all things I thought were healthy, but were really things my body was rejecting! On top of that, I had amino acid and Vitamin B12 deficiencies. After talking over my results, I decided to cut out the foods on the list, as well as begin supplementing with a few vitamins. So, for the past 8 months, I’ve noticed an increase in energy, less brain fog, and less reactions to food after eating (I used to get mini panic attacks after eating sweet potatoes & anything with olive oil in it!).
As for the V02 & RMR test results, they basically just confirmed that I have a high metabolism, and I workout….a lot. If I had stayed in Ohio & started a workout plan with RNS, it would have been to increase strength & speed & make my training more efficient.
Depending on your results & your end goal, everyone will be different! There are no bad results – because once you know where you are physically & nutritionally, you can only improve from there!
If you are in the Columbus, OH area, check out RNS (for women only, sorry guys!)… If not, google intolerance testing/v02 test/RMR test & your city/state… there are places all over the US that can do this type of testing for you. If you are looking to lose weight, get in better shape, get on a food plan, figure out why you are tired, improve your physical performance, or get more energy, I recommend investing in some sort of testing.
Overall, I highly recommend getting some sort of nutritional & physical fitness testing done – it has been one of the best things I’ve ever done for my health! We can do what we think is the best for our bodies, but there might always be something that we are missing.
I hope this helps – if anyone has done anything similar, comment below on your experience & if/how it has helped!
**Please note I did not receive anything in return for this blog post – I am writing this from my own personal experience, and I paid for every service received. I am writing this post in hopes that it helps anyone else interested in finding answers for their health, or for improving their physical fitness!
Earlier this year, I signed up for Shana Meyerson’s handstand workshop at GoYoga in Columbus. Shana is a bubbly, fun instructor all the way out in California (btw – her name is pronounced Shawn-a, not shane-a…. a mistake I made the entire time she was here… sorry Shana!!!). While I’ve never taken a class from her before, I have watched a few of her youtube videos, and I loved her teaching style (check her out, she has a ton of great videos for beginners to advanced!). So, once I heard she was coming out to Ohio, I immediately signed up to take her workshop!
Shana is a little different than a lot of yoga instructors – she is passionate about yoga obviously, but has such a fun, quirky personality that you can’t help but instantly like her. She wears her hair in 2 long braids all the time, and is very engaging while teaching – you won’t get bored!
Her 2.5 hour workshop was a lot different than other workshops I’ve taken – Kino MacGregor focused on a lot of strengthening drills, and Matt Giordano was more focused on anatomy/technical skills. Shana emphasized the strength of your core, as well as hamstring flexibility. We used the wall for the first half of class, and then the last half we were able to work without a wall. There were a few people that were able to find their balance for a little bit, which just shows how well Shana can teach handstands 🙂
While I am not a newbie to handstands, I am always looking to refine & improve what I can already do. I always learn from every teacher I encounter, and Shana was no different!
Afterwards, I grabbed dinner with her & 2 other women who attended the workshop. Shana was very down to earth, and I loved being able to connect with everyone! If you ever get the chance to pop in for a class while out in Los Angeles, California, check her out!
What has been your favorite workshop that you have ever taken? And why was it your favorite? Leave a comment below!
After being MIA for most of the summer, I am finally making the time to sit down and write about my latest adventure in NYC!
I planned this trip about a month or so ago with a few other yoga teacher I work with, so this was the first non-solo yoga trip I’ve ever taken! We decided to fit in as many classes as possible in 3 days – 12 fitness classes, to be exact! We went to a few yoga studios I visited back in June, as well as a few new ones. Literally back-to-back classes, living-off-protein-bars-until-dinner busy!
7:30 am: Flight lands
9:30 am: The Class
Probably telling everyone to hurry up so we don’t miss our next class
Light Lunch @ by Chloe
Avocado toast… I’ve never been more happy to eat in my entire life after an intense 75 minute workout!
12 pm: Laughing Lotus
Still have some energy on the first day
3 pm: Jivamukti
light Snack @ Jiva Café
5:30 pm: Y7 Yoga (Union Square Location)
At this point, I separated from everyone & grabbed dinner with my friend in Brooklyn
Dinner @ Vinnie’s – Baby pizza slices on a Hawaiian pizza??! My stomach was so happy to eat this delicious pie!
10 am: Dharma Yoga Studio
All smiles after a sleepy yoga-nidra class with Dharma!
11:30 am: 2nd meditation class @ Dharma Yoga Studio
Quick lunch: Hu Kitchen
Rushing to get to Ishta post-lunch!
2 pm: Ishta Yoga w/ Marco Rojas
Best class of the weekend w/Marco!
5 pm: Tangerine Yoga in Brooklyn
10:30 pm: Dinner @ Catch Restaurant
Pre-dinner in meatpacking district
8:30 am: Iyengar Yoga
10:30 am: cycling class at Cyc Fitness w/Hunter, chelsea location
11:45 am: cycling class at Soul Cycle w/ Danny, union square location
Post- Soul Cycle!
2 pm – Barry’s Bootcamp w/ Shannon M, NOHO location
Grab lunch @ Los Tacos in Chelsea Market
Afterwards, my friends left for the airport, and I headed to Brooklyn to hang out with my friend for an extra day – meaning, sleeping in & trapezing along the hudson river on Monday!
The weekend was such a blur, and I am STILL processing everything! Overall, 12 fitness classes in 1 weekend = my body needs a massage! Planning for an entire weekend was a lot of work, and now I feel like I need a vacation from my vacation 🙂 I did learn a lot, and am so excited to implement a lot of new things into my classes!
So what’s next? Yoga Retreat in Thailand, backpacking in Barcelona, and a week of yoga & relaxation in Ibiza… 1 month away! Then… headed out to Cali to hang with Tony Robbins in November:)
Also – I’ll be back in NYC in the next few months… so if there is anything I missed this time around, let me know! I love taking new yoga classes in the city, and am always looking for amazing teachers!
After completing 8 fitness classes in 2 days, Iyengar yoga was # 9 on the list, bright and early on a Sunday morning. I had absolutely no idea what to expect, as I had never taken an Iyengar-style class or really done any research on what to expect. With that being said, I was thinking it might be an intense class, since the first thing you see is Iyengar (the man who created this style of yoga) doing some crazy advanced yoga pose as soon as you open the Iyengar website.
Upon arriving, me and my 3 friends walked up a flight of stairs to a very pristine-looking studio, with glass doors & a very open reception area. We were the first ones there, so we popped off our shoes and signed in at the front desk (we signed up for a level 2 class). The staff at the front desk was extremely nice and gave us a tour of the studio after we signed in.
We walked into the main studio, and lining the right wall were straps (see pic below). I have to admit, I freaked out a little. But, was also super excited – what the heck were we going to be doing in class??
photo credit: http://nyescapades.blogspot.com/2009/06/awe-inspiring-yogathon-at-iyengar-yoga.html
As far as security goes, we could bring our bags into the room with us, so there were no worries of theft. We grabbed a mat, blocks, a strap, bolster, and blankets for class – I don’t think I’ve ever used so many props in one class!
After talking with the teacher, Richard Jonas (sweetest person EVER!), he showed me an exercise to relieve my low back pain (My QL has had huge knots on it for the past year) & told me to hang out there and breathe into the stretch. Then, class began!
We started out with meditation, then went through a series of poses, in insane detail. While I love an intense yoga class, Iyengar was almost like taking an informative workshop that breaks down different yoga poses. You also use a ton of props to help you get into poses properly, which also helps with proprioception of different parts of your body. It was incredibly helpful as a teacher, as Richard broke down how to get in difficult poses in different ways – I’ve been incorporating a lot of what I learned in my own classes!
We did end up using the wall once, which was pretty cool. We took a middle rope and wrapped it just below the hip bones, leaning forward, and relaxing. It felt so. so. good. I wish we spent a little more time on the wall, but there wasn’t enough time. All the more reason to come back!
Before the end of class, we did a shoulder stand with a bunch of blankets & a bolster – I’ve never used props like this, and it made the inversion a lot easier & more comfortable!
pic credit: http://nyescapades.blogspot.com/2009/06/awe-inspiring-yogathon-at-iyengar-yoga.html
Overall, I think Iyengar yoga is an amazing practice for those looking to learn the correct technique for all yoga poses, but in extreme detail. It’s not like a normal vinyasa class where you are constantly moving – you are sitting a lot during class, listening & learning from the instructor before trying the pose yourself. So for all you yoga lovers out there wishing to deepen your practice or just learn how to do yoga poses correctly – I highly recommend checking Iyengar out!
Summary: Perfect for beginner yogis. Wide range of classes for beginners, to prenatal, injuries, etc. (free classes specifically for breast cancer & HIV students) Very welcoming, clean studio.
Pros: Lockers (bring your own lock!). Decent locker/bathroom space. A few toiletries provided. Awesome staff & teachers.
Cons: Not sure how clean the props were, as no one cleaned anything after class
Cost: $15 for a 1.5 hour single-class drop-in