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THE 5 BASICS OF SELF LOVE

 

The 5 basics of Self Love are essential in order to feel our optimum best.  It would be irresponsible of me to not mention these steps because aging sexy at any age begins with a conscious effort to take care of ourselves the best we can.  If you are not doing any of these steps then it is best to start with one, stick to it to create a consistent habit and then move on to the next.  These guidelines are called self-love because, when you are following these steps, then it is a clear message, to yourself that you love and care about the health of your body, mind and spirit.  It grows your confidence inside and out and allows your energy to be high and your mind to be clear. 

WATER

Water is the key to movement in the body. Water is life.  Water’s involved in every type of cellular process in your body, and when you’re dehydrated, they all run less efficiently -- and that includes your metabolism. Think of it like your car: if you have enough oil and gas, it will run more efficiently. It’s the same with your body.  You need 8 ounces of water for every 50 lbs. of body weight. The kidneys can filter approximately eight ounces of water every half hour so bring your favorite water bottle along with you where ever you go.  I like to add a lemon, orange or cucumber slice to my water to give it a fresh flavor.  This is number one on the list and it is a great place to begin if you are not a great water drinker now.   Carbonated water is ok as long as there is no added sugar.  I use the My Fitness Pal App on my phone to log food, exercise and water.  I like seeing my efforts right in front of me to it reminds me and motivates me at the same time.

 FOOD

The nutrition we choose every day can improve or reduce our energy level.  Some people find that gluten makes them tired or that they crave sugar several times a day.  A healthy serving portion of protein, fruits or veggies is the size of your fisted hand or the inside of your cupped-hand.  carbs is half that.  Avoid processed foods, sugar or high fat.  Choose organic produce and antibiotic- and hormone-free meat, fish and poultry. Proteins, vegetables, and fruit. Frequency:  Eat a serving of protein every two to three hours; a minimum of nine ounces a day.  The key to a consistent eating plan is to PLAN, PLAN, PLAN!  For some people this means spending a Sunday afternoon shopping, cooking and portioning food for the week.  Some people like to order meal kit delivery so the ingredients are delivered to them.  I like to have ingredients in my fridge at all times.  Ingredients that I LIKE to eat.  I have read eating plans (otherwise known as diets to some people) that require me to eat skinless, boneless chicken breasts twice a day.  I hate skinless, boneless chicken breasts so I am doomed to fail before I even begin.  I choose the fruits, veggies, meats and seasonings that I enjoy to eat.  It is different for everyone so fill your fridge with what you like and you will give yourself a chance to love your food while eating healthy.

7 Books that Will Change How You Think About Food- Visit www.nutritiouslife.com to gather more knowledge about conscious eating from many different perspectives as well as recipes and tips on how to live your best life. I love this website!

CLEAN EATING PLAN- (Click to down load) This eating plan was lovingly created to challenge the user to eat clean for 14 days. All food is prepared and gives your body a break from processed, heavy foods that stress out our organs and our systems. Always consult with a doctor before beginning any eating plan.

 SLEEP

It is no secret that sleep comes faster and easier when we are taking care of our whole selves.  If we are following eating guidelines like lighter foods at night, no caffeine after a certain time of day, practicing a nighttime ritual or moving our bodies during the day then we give ourselves a fighting chance to get the sleep we need to regenerate.  During sleep, we are processing the day’s activities and details including emotions and stress.  It is also a time our bodies are repairing cells and healing physically.  If we do not get enough sleep or quality sleep (waking up frequently) then we are not giving ourselves a chance to start the next day feeling refreshed and energetic.  According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults from 26-64 need 7-9 hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep.  One of the ways to help this happen is to create a nighttime ritual to signal to your mind and body that sleep is coming so every part will get ready to shut down for the day.  A nighttime ritual can be stretching or light yoga and deep breathing.  It can be a bath or shower and quiet time.  It can also be soft music and low lighting in your bedroom to ramp down your senses.  You will find that a nighttime ritual will be an amazing tool to help get you on the road to successful sleep.  If falling asleep is an issue, soothing guided meditations can also help.  You will find a free guided meditation on my website that you can download to help you even further.

GUIDED MEDITATION

Download this meditation to assist you in getting into a peaceful space at bedtime. It is perfectly ok to fall asleep during the meditation as the recording will stop after it is finished. You can listen with headphones or on a speaker in the room. You can listen during the day as well to recenter or refresh your mind and body. Please allow yourself 30 minutes for a full, relaxing meditation.

*Do not listen to this, or any meditation by Leslie Chiappetti, C.Ht., while driving or operating any kind of moving vehicle. For any questions, please contact Leslie by filling out the form on the Tools page.

EXERCISE 

Moving your body also affects your whole self in many ways and, similar to the food you choose to eat, exercise needs to be an activity you enjoy.  To some people that may mean the treadmill in their basement.  Some people love a hot and sweaty Bikram yoga session or country line dancing.  I personally follow workouts in my living room on an app I downloaded on my phone and long walks when the weather is nice.  It doesn’t matter what method of exercise that you choose, but choose something.  Exercise needs to be 3 to 6 days a week.  Once day of rest is essential even if you are hard core.  The goal is two-fold-- to raise your heart rate and work your muscles.  If that means a combo of walking and push ups then that’s a good workout.  30-45 minutes is good.  20 minutes is good if that is what you have time for. Moving your body is the key so start where you are, do what you can.

 ACCEPTANCE

I have saved the best for last.  This last basic of self love may be the most difficult to understand, but the most important to master.  This book is about aging sexy so that means feeling sexy about every part from top to bottom, inside and out.  To accept yourself for who you are right now is the key to unlocking that sexy goddess inside of you.  It may sound counter-intuitive to accept yourself right now when you are doing your best to change yourself, or parts of yourself right now.  You will find that this particular concept of accepting who you are and where you are right now may provide you with many aha moments that will shine the light on the truth.  Many of us have heard the phrase, “God grant me the serenity to accept the      things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”  This means that, when we accept the situations we are in, we can change it.  It definitely takes courage to move forward sometimes, but, once we are aware of what can be changed, we can create a solution.  As I discussed in Chapter 1, awareness is key.  Once we are aware of the issue, we can change it.  I think some of us hit a wall when we misperceive the meaning of acceptance.  Many of us believe that acceptance means to just get over it. This is far from the truth.  Accepting the death of a loved one doesn’t mean you don’t grieve or you need to constantly look “on the bright side.”  It means to acknowledge the situation for what it is and not denying it.  Confusion also happens when we morph acceptance with approval.  For instance, if you have a friend who treats you unkind or is always saying negative or judgmental things to you and, when you express how it hurts your feelings, they tell you that is just the way they are, you have a choice.  You can accept this personality trait, but not necessarily approve of it.  Approving of it would mean continuing in the relationship and allowing the behavior to continue as well.  You can accept them as they are and still choose to move on without that person in your life if/when they refuse to change.  You may find that denial brings about an underlying level of stress and anxiety that affects our whole selves.  Facing situations may be painful, but will bring on a higher level of healing.

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