Episode #71 – Dr Tracey Marks How To Move Beyond Burnout


your brain and fatIn this week’s episode, Dr Tracey Marks of BeyondBurnout.com talks to us about the body’s physical and mental reactions to stress and how overworking our minds can lead to health problems. Stress can manifest physically through insomnia, lack of energy, irritability and a struggle to enjoy activities. If you’re not feeling at your best, you’ll find it hard to stick to your fitness routine or you’ll find yourself slipping into bad habits. Discover how stress might be affecting you, and what you can do to fix the problem.

We discuss some of the ways that stress can be overcome. Taking a break during your busy day can be a great way to recharge your batteries and appreciate the moment you’re in, instead of worrying about what’s coming up next. Consider downloading a meditation app such as HeadSpace to guide you through some easy stress-busting exercises. By taking time to reset, your mind will be refreshed and you’ll be more ready to handle challenges.

We also take a look at the effects of processed sugar on the body and the best ways to detox from processed foods. Hidden sugars are everywhere, but there are great benefits to be had by taking the time to avoid them. Natural sugars can also be damaging to health too – limit intake of fruit and other high sugar items to avoid insulin spikes and to keep your body balanced and healthy.

Finally, this episode considers the small changes we can make in our day to day lives to ensure that we feel better and are prepared to tackle the challenge of wellness, forming good, positive habits for fitness and weight loss.

Visit Dr Tracey Marks at www.beyondburnout.com

Follow her on Twitter: @traceymarksmd

Find her on Facebook

Download the HeadSpace app here

Details on Diamond Dallas Page’s yoga program available here

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Melissa: Welcome Dr Tracey. Thanks so much for being on the program today.

Dr Tracey: Thanks for having me. I’m really looking forward to this.

Melissa: Now, Dr Tracey, on your website, well, first of all, the name of your site, which is in itself really good, Beyond Burnout Solutions for Working Moms, but what I would add to that is, Beyond Burnout Solutions for Working Everybody, because it seems everyone I meet today have family, work, and obligations and they’re totally stressed out. And with that in mind, what are some of the signs – the physical signs that you recommend people look out for to determine just how stressed they are and how much stress they have in their life.

Dr Tracey: Allrigh, well, a few – kind of quick things off the top of my head or probably most predominant things that people could see early on is the sense of just a lot of physical exhaustion or everything just seems really hard, they’re very tired all of the time and they can’t seem to get enough energy going even if, say, they are sleeping well. And then, in addition to that, so that could be one thing. Feeling tired all the time, or everything just seems very hard to do or frustrating. It could be three steps but it just seems so hard to do that.

Also, trouble sleeping, so, it may be a person who has always slept pretty well, but now they just can’t seem to sleep all the way through the night or it takes them a long time to fall asleep because sleep is a very sensitive barometer of your overall health, whether it be because of your diet and all of that or stress related. Sleep is like one of the early things that gets affected by that. Another thing that would be more psychological as opposed to physical would be feeling hopeless or just not getting a lot of pleasure out of where you are in life or where you are with your job. So, it may be that your job, even if it weren’t super exciting you still enjoy it and it wasn’t that hard to get through the day, whereas now, it’s kind of seems like what’s the point, you don’t feel like you’re going anywhere with it and just nothing seems to really satisfy you.

Melissa: Uh huh. Cool. And do you think that just putting sleep besides for a minute, do you think also your tolerance for things, something that may like be a bump on the road that really isn’t that big of a problem, sort of dissipates and that’s a sign that you’ve got built up stress. In other words, an ordinary slow down in traffic or something you might feel yourself getting really angry at when it’s something that happens everyday.

Dr Tracey: Absolutely! So, on the psychological side of the psychological jargon for that may be low frustration tolerance.

Melissa: Yes! I meet a lot of people that have that. [Laughs]

Dr Tracey: Yeah, that’s the nice way of putting it. But yeah, very irritable, hair trigger temper and it can even come out in things like – I think anyone can relate to road rage or road frustration but even little things like, if you have children and your child asking you something more than once and instead of you having the patience, or even your spouse, for that matter, instead of you having the patience to just answer the question a second time, it’s “You asked me that already”. I mean, why is that all that bad that you have to say that twice? But for whatever reasons, but because you’re stressed out, just that is just too much.

Melissa; Now, what are the steps to alleviate stress, physical stress and then mental stress. I had to put both in there.

Dr Tracey: Right, well, well, well, let’s see. Where do I start? [Laughs] You know, I think the first place that I talk to people about starting because there is such a – it’s like a big wheel and it’s like where in the circle do you actually just try and intersect?

Melissa: Right.

Dr Tracey: …decompressing your day. So, I tell people, the mind, even though it’s a whole lot more obvious that your body can get physically tired if you over exert yourself but your mind still has a similar reaction, I guess I’d say of getting overworked. So, if you get up in the morning and from the time you get up in the morning, until the time you turn off the light, you’re constantly going mentally and physically by the time you get try and lay down and go to bed, your mind can still be moving 100 miles an hour. And it really is hugely beneficial to press the reset button and decompress your day by taking 10 minutes, 15 minutes of a short break in the middle of the day just to reset. So, similar to having say, a computer that if you leave it on too long it starts acting weird and things. Your mind has a similar thing. If you keep it going all the time, all the time, all the time, you can become progressively less effective and efficient because you’ve just overworked yourself, mentally.

So, even doing something as small as taking a mental break in the middle of the day to just kind of empty your mind out is a good starting place.

Melissa: Now, would that be doing something like a short meditation or maybe a breathing exercise?

Dr Tracey: Yes. So, some people – I mean, the short answer is it doesn’t have to be all that complicated. It could be something as easy as straightforward as listening to music. I’m a big proponent of mindfulness meditation where it desn’t have to be anything complicated and you didn’t need to study in Japan or somewhere [laughs] to figure out how to do this because I live in the south and you mentioned meditation and a lot of people will associate it with eastern religion and they get turned off and they just seemed like something weird, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Yes, there are a lot of Buddhist’s derived meditations and things like that but kind of more Westernize non-spiritually based meditation is mindfulness which is all that is really is being present in the moment. And that might seem very self evident that, “Well, yeah, of course, I’m present in the moment, where am I going?” But most times, we are not present in the moment. You’re driving, you’re thinking about all these stuff you have to do at work or you’re thinking about all these stuff that you’ve got to do when you get home versus driving and taking in the fresh air, looking in the blue sky, thinking about how long the traffic light is. And I know I’m guilty myself of getting into traffic light and wanting to pick up my phone and see if I got a text. [Laughs]

Melissa: Uh oh.

Dr Tracey: I know. Texting and driving but I am on a pause.

Melissa: But you’re looking.

Dr Tracey: Instead of the traffic light, might only be 30 seconds, with that 30 seconds just seems so long. But once you get more into the habit being able to soak in the present moment, you just kind of slow down your whole demeanor, such that you don’t have to feel like you’re wasting time if you’re spending ten seconds unstimulated.

Melissa: Yeah, I found – now, I had a lot of trouble with meditation over the years. And then I found a little app called HeadSpace which is available for Android and iPhone and it’s 10 minutes of guided meditations and there’s just really nice English guy in there that takes you through very simple, no frills, and again no [inaudible 10:46] none of that. [Laughs] No Zen stuff, no woowoo. It’s just very simple. You sit very comfortably and it takes you through and before you know it, the 10 minutes is gone and it’s really quieted things down.

I started using it like early in the morning. I start the day pretty early, but before I started my work, so I would do it, then, I sort of added on and did another 10 minutes session in what I call a relaxation hour in the afternoon, which replaces the “cocktail hour” where I drink some tea and do it in corporation with that. I was really amazed. It takes you through so many steps for so many 10 minute sessions as you go forward but I was really amazed that just what you talked about, how that helped with the reducing stress, everyday stress, like you said. Being annoyed at someone asking you something again or being annoyed at the traffic light or being annoyed with things that happen and I found when something would happen, which I would have lost my temper or been really irritated about, I was like, “Eh, well, it could have been worse or it could have been this.” I was just taking, I noticed, after a week, I was taking a very laid back attitude toward things. And so I found it super helpful. I’ll put a link in the show notes to that one because people, I think their first 10 things they take you through the app for free and then you can subscribe to it if you want or not. But it has no, like I said, none of the Zen or Woowoo stuff attached to it. You don’t have to be religious if you’re not religious. If you are, that’s fine, but it doesn’t get into that. It’s just helping you to just let your mind relax a little bit. It’s a small step that I think can really help people.

Dr Tracey: Absolutely. I was in a building, not too long ago, kind of a highrise office building and I was surprised to see that when I got in the elevator there was a television screen there. And I thought, really? We have to be kept occupied just for the 30 seconds that’s going to take to get to my floor?

Melissa: I’ll tell you, you’ve hit on one of my pet peeves. [Laughs] I think the insidiousness of TV screens everywhere, I think is dangerous, ridiculous and a whole bunch of other things. And the reason I think this is is because it was brought to my own attention by myself and I was on a trip and I had a bunch of connections and planes, however I went through the airport, somehow I avoided these screens in the airport. I don’t know how but it was a miracle to do that because they’re all over the airports. But I avoided any kind of TV and I have gotten to my hotel so it was maybe 48 hours during this trip, I got to the hotel, it was late at night. I go to sleep. The next morning, I was catching up a flight to a different, few hours away, different weather and I was charging my phone.

I normally would look on my phone for the weather for that area, just tap it and have all the info. But I turned on the TV and I thought I’ll just go to the local weather cast here and see what they say and I’ll know how I should be dressed, take an umbrella, whatever. Within a minute of the TV being on, I have the local news station on, I felt myself becoming extremely agitated because of the pace of the news that was being given out. Out of all the negative stories that we’re just compiling it, I felt it immediately. It was just so obvious to me and I was like, this is awful. Turn this off. And I thought, imagine getting that, like you say, at every aspect of your day, at the gas station, in the elevator, all these things, it’s just continues to build a level of stress and anxiety into your psyche, I guess. That would be the term, maybe not the term, but people don’t realize how much that’s affecting you. But when you take a vacation from it like I had there for a period of hours, two days let’s say, the thing, it was just so obvious to me. It just hit me llike a ton of bricks that this was just not good.

Dr Tracey: Righ, I think we very much underestimate to a dangerous degree, like you said, the negative impact of over stimulating the mind and I think, it’s much easier to recognize when you are over doing it with exercise and in any other physical activity because you’re physically hurt, but the mind, we don’t protect ourselves from over stimulation. And of the things I see that – I’m a psychiatrist, I prescibe medication that is, I don’t see people trying to push and push, push themselves past their own limitations. So for example, they may say at 45, I’m having trouble focusing. I think I might have been ADD all my life. [Laughs]

Melissa: Another one of my pet peeves.

Dr Tracey: Oh, that don’t even get me started as a huge pet peeve of mine. And I’m trying to talk this people out and some of them leave annoyed with me because of that, and so be it. But, I’m trying – I feel like, I’m trying to protect you. You don’t want to start at 45 taking Adirol so that you can work like a machine up until 11 o’clock at night. Nobody should be working efficiently until 11 o’clock at night if you started at 5 o’clock in the morning.

Melissa: Yeah, and that was pretty much me a few years ago. And I would have taken anything that I could get my hands on to do that. Unfortunately, a lot of people are self medicating with some more things that are available over the counter and in quotes “offline or online” but without a prescription. And I think that is so dangerous and I know a lot of entrepreneurs I have a chance to go up into San Francisco a lot and that’s a place where you meet a lot of people that are doing that, self administering these things to push themselves and it’s completely bad, in my opinion and yours of course being a doctor. You see it. But it’s also sending you down a path of nervous breakdown and complete physical breakdown because you’re not – your body is not designed for that and you’re blocking the signals that are telling you to get away from that. And I think one of the big things I started to do too was to limit my sitting in front of the computer. I can’t stand  because I have injuries to my foot – is to keep my computer time to 25 minutes apart and then to take a break from that and get up and do something else or go away from it and come back. But, yeah, I think that’s definitely a danger zone and people looking in the wrong direction to correct that or to put a bandage on that.

Dr Tracey: Yes, so that goes full circle to your original question to me of how to reduce stress and part two of my answer is to not push your body past it’s own limitations. If you get to 7 o’clock at night and you’re having trouble staying focus on something, then stop, don’t work anymore.

Melissa: It seems obvious.

Dr Tracey: It seems obvious but, right, we know we’ve got this project, we’ve got whatever deadline is coming up, but you can’t just leave your job and yeah, I get that, but something has to give and eventually, it will and it will be your body, your body will eventually just say, I’m done.

Melissa: Right, and again too, I think on the physical side, I’m a big proponet of being careful with exercise and stuff because I had to come back from so many injuries and even today, in pushing myself to recover from osteoarthritis, again, you have to more and more pain is not where it route to go. That’s why your body is signalling you that things are hurting. And no pain, no gain, I think is the wrong way to look at things in that area as well because you want to be doing things that are strengthening and that are improving your physical self rather than destroying it by over exercising and over pushing yourself beyond the limits. And if you have to take a nap after your workout, you’re overdoing it. You’re definitely overdoing it. But now, we are on a good topic here which leads into something else I wanted to ask you and I’m sure you’re going to say, I think what you’are going to say is that this is a big contributor but, sugar, processed sugar and the fact that people don’t realize how that’s affecting them and how strong an effect it has.

To me, I had no, no clue until I began to look at my blood panels and realized what a big effect this was having on my overall health, but how do you help people or how do you help them recognize what sugar can and can’t do?

Dr Tracey: Yeah, uhm, sugar, it really is like poison.

Melissa: It’s cocaine.

Dr Tracey: It’s like crap. Yeah, it’s really bad and the biggest – my biggest problem with it or I think something that makes it such a huge problem, ubiquitous problem, I couldn’t help but use that word, but I think it’s appropriate – is just how it’s infused into almost everything we eat. And so, when you try – this idea of sugar detox or stop eating sugar, I think kind of the classic response is, “Okay, I’ll [19:37 inaudible] desserts, but you’re going to have trouble stopping the desserts because your going to continue to crave them because any kind of processed food and it’s hard to have a diet with zero processed foods in our American diets, but if you get those sugars other ways, you will still have the sugar. Sugar is sugar.

Melissa: Yeah. I found, again, by looking at my blood panels and stuff and realizing, I have of course massive insulin resistance when I first got started, but you cannot, with the level that I have which is off the charts, you can cut out as much processed food as you want but the craving will kill you because you just go crazy. It drives you nuts. You’re running around looking for something sweet to eat or sweet to drink.

Dr Tracey: Yeah, and so, it really takes a lot of vigilance if you’re trying to clean up your diet of looking at the hidden sugars in your food versus the obvious ones like a slice of cake.

Melissa: Right.

Dr Tracey: So even little things, small things like ketchup and soups and yoghurt.

Melissa: Yoghurt is such a nightmare. I know people will just gravitate toward that and think, “Oh, great yoghurt, but I haven’t seen yet in the store, in the regular supermarket, anywhere that doesn’t have at least 20 or 30 grams of sugar in all of them. And so, people just think that’s a healthy thing to be eating and it’s just feeding the craving.

Dr Tracey: Yeah, it is because you’re still getting it. It’s just hidden and – well, it’s not really hidden, it’s on the ingredient list but it’s subtle. And so, our taste buds get trained for things to have a sweet taste. So, no surprise, Greek yoghurt taste this good even though it still has some sugar in it. It doesn’t taste this good as Dana or Oreo. None of those food taste as good if you just completely went sugarless, but I know one of the ways that I’ve talked with people about trying to retrain their taste buds, other than just saying go cold turkey is, this is one of the benefits of green smoothies. I know, you and I have a thing about smoothies, but one of the ways it can be beneficial in moderation is it can help change your taste buds to  prefer more savory foods and to get over that artificial sweetener taste.

Melissa: Yeah, a lot of people too – I’m a big fan of my own, I should say, my own “version” of Paleo, but a lot of the Paleo folks mistakenly will do honey and also agave is a big thing and maple syrup and those are just as bad. Obviously, if they’re organic all natural stuff which is still giving yourself a dose of sugar and you have to be careful with that because you’re just filling that in. That’s filling in the blanks before you’re trying to take the sugar out and I had to be careful that I wasn’t – when I got going here, that I wasn’t constantly doing honey, lots of honey. One teaspoon [laughs] I needed more honey, and I was like, good for me, it’s organic honey. It’s the raw honey but you can get carried away on that and start putting on in smoothies and stuff. But smoothies you’re recommending are whole foods smoothies, I take.

Dr Tracey: Right, yeah, like, a whole two large handfuls of kale greens and maybe some superfoods that you might want to add to it like some anti-oxidants or some protein powders, things like that you can add to it for some additional nutrition but minimizing the fruits. So, most people probably would have a hard time getting down just blended greens all by themselves but instead of say, a typical – I’ve seen a lot of smoothie recipes where the ratio of fruit to greens is like 3:2 so you might have three servings of a fruit and then two of greens. Well, that’s way too much sugar for you.

Melissa: Right.

Dr Tracey: So, instead, just to be able to get it down and make it more palatable of having just one serving of a fruit because we still should eat fruits. It’s not like they’re off limits because they have natural sugars in them, but you want to minimize how many fruits you’re getting in your diet. So one serving of a fruit and then to two, a ratio of 1:2 or even 1;1 of the greens. And then, you’ve got much less a sugar bomb or insulin bomb from having all that blended up fruit.

Melissa: yeah, and the problem is what that does is it spikes your insulin and then if you are someone who’s trying to restore your health to reduce inflammtion which was my whole thing for quite some time and still is, you can’t do it because it’s pushing you out of your zone so your inslulin is spiking and then everything isn’t working and inflammation is staying the same. So, you don’t want to be taking three cups of berries and one cup of greens. That’s just not going to work out for you.

Dr Tracey: No, it’s not. [Laughs] You might as well have a slice of cake.

Melissa: Yeah, that’s the thing. I think one of the things people ask me a lot of times, what do you do, and I’d say, “I never say no to anything.” Obviously, if I feel like having a cookie or something that’s out there or at a holiday or at a party, whatever, I just do. I’m not going to say I’m not going to ever have one of these things again but just remember what choice you’re making there so that you’re going to throw yourself a little bit out of whack for a bit. But as long as you recover by eating healthy things the next day, as I say, if you do it 80-85% of the time, you should be in good shape. Unless you have massive insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and few other minor problems.

Dr Tracey: Right, right. When it comes to your taste buds and your cravings as well, if you’re 85% eating whole foods, minimizing the sugars and things like that, if you do go and then have a slice of cake or cookie or whatever, it’s just not going to taste the same. You might even feel sick.

Melissa: Yeah, I have reached a point, I was just talking to someone about this the other day, it’s been almost two years for me now and I really can’t eat any kind of processed food. It’s an automatic deterrent. I don’t need to worry about being too tempted because it’s sick making now. And I know I’ll feel bad. And I know I’ll feel kind of sick for a day or two, so I’m like, “Nah, I’d rather have something else.” I’d rather do something else. I’d rather make do. I’d rather get some water and maybe some – the best kind of nuts or something I could find or the best kind of whole fruit I could find, but eating a packaged processed food is just not at all appealing anymore and I just can’t. My body just won’t tolerate it and I also am very sensitive now to anything. I gave up gluten and dairy along the way so I’m very sensitive to anything that has either of those and I can tell you right away. All I ask at a restaurant is if it has gluten or dairy and if they lie to me, I could tell. I’ll start to get itchy or I’ll start to get sort of, my throat constricts a little bit and I know right away that there’s some component there within a couple of bites, so, I’ve got my own early warning system now.

Dr Tracey: Oh, that’s wonderful. That’s all of the, I guess, the discipline that you need. I mean, your body basically fixed the problem for you.

Melissa: It has done a lot. It has done a lot. My inflammation was off the charts. It’s up at 16.9 when I got going and now it’s down to – I’m trying to get a perfect score of zero, which is no inflammation, but it’s at 1.5 right so I’m getting closed.

Dr Tracey: Excellen! Congratulations.

Melissa: But the improvement has been by just eating the whole foods and also, as much as possible, trying to keep the sugar. It’s again, a big job for people who are in my category where, if you have massive insulin resistance, you got to really be careful with your vegetable ratios there throughout the day so that you’re always keeping those going through because that’s what’s going to help you balance the blood sugar and keep things away from spiking, away from insulin spikes. And also, if you’re concerned about getting to a healthy weight, same deal. That’s what’s going to prevent you from losing weight as you go forward in time and you may lose a lot upfront but then, as you go forward, your body needs to adjust and so being mindful of that will help you make some progress along those lines. But yeah, the body has recognized now what’s healthy.

Dr Tracey: After decades of abuse. That’s wonderful

Melissa: There’s hope out there for people. Now, here’s something I’ve been dying to ask you and I’m sure, because you do this everyday as your profession, but how do you talk – and this covers everything we’ve already talked about, stress, about mindfulness and sugar as well because you have to talk to people about sugar and not having sugar and having sugar. How do you talk so people listen?

Dr Tracey: Which I find to be a big frustration in life [Laughs] Well, you know, I did write an article about this on my website which had a lot of different tips to kind of keep it simple for this discussion, I would say that the kind of the overarching theme in influencing people when you are interacting with them is how you make them feel, making people feel good about themselves so that they walk away remembering you because of the way you made them feel. So, you may be, I think the temptation is to want to impress people with something about you whether it be because you’re smart or have a lot of money, whatever the case is, but that you boasting about whatever your accomplishment is doesn’t make them feel good. Not that the person on the receiving end has to be a hater but it’s just that you’re focus on you.

I talked about having charisma and that makes you memorable when people have charisma. So a couple of ways to create or generate charisma is smiling when you talk and that’s actually not that easy to do if it’s not natural for you. I know that when I talk, I’m thinking hard, most of the time, so, if I’m thinking, I’m not necessarily smiling. I’m concentrating. And so, when someone, when you’re talking with a pleasant look on your face or even a smile on your face, you look different than most everyone else and you stand out. Another thing that can draw people to you and make them want to talk to you and listen to what you have to say is being curious and interested in the other person. So someone, a very good way, when you get people talking about themselves, then they want to talk to you. So, someone says soemthing then you ask more questions about that. So they say, “You know, I really like car racing.” And instead of having one answer, you could have it as, “Oh yeah, I do too or my dad does too. He goes down to the place and watches the races every week. Another, response could be, “Really, what do you like about car racing?” What’s interesting about it. And then the person can then start talking, well, this and that and the other. The first response basically, shuts that person off, now, as you’ve moved over to talking about your dad and then now it’s a new topic. So when you show curiousity and interet in other people, even if they don’t reciprocate that interest like start asking you questions, they still walk away from the interaction feeling good about themselves that you are actually interested in what they had to say. And they may not consciously think, “I like him because he was interested in what I had to say.” It’s just this innate sense of wow, that felt good. That conversation.

Melissa: I think that’s a good tip overall because so many people are focused on themselves all the time and if you want to have an interesting converations and really interact with people and meeting new people, that’s the way to do it because it gives you a chance to broaden your relationships, friends, family, other people outside of your circle that you might meet that would be interesting. And also, business wise, if you are faced with networking lunches or dinners, that’s always an occasion to become a person who talks and people listen.

Dr Tracey: That’s right, because that’s even more applicable at say, a business networking thing. If people are meeting three or four or five even more people, you want to be memorable. And so, if you’re talking and if you attend this networking thing and you meet 10 people, you’ll probably not going to remember who just kind of left you feeling like they were talking about their business or whatever and that’s all that they did. But the person who had charisma, showed interest, smiled when they talked, looked at you in the face and made you feel like you’re the only person in the room that they’re talking to, instead of scanning the room and make sure that they’re not missing other people. That’s the person you’re going to remember. Whether you have their business card or not.

Melissa: Yeah, good tip. I think, like I said, you want to be definitely – obviously, one of the big things people ask me all the time is when you start to make changes in a way your lifestyle is, you sometimes have to branch out from of the friends you might currently have who may be are becoming toxic for you, in many ways.

Dr Tracey: Yes.

Melissa: And so, this is where you’d have a chance if you’re at party or get together event or something, you want to be practicing this, in my opinion, so that you could have good interaction with new people that might become new friends of yours and things like that.

Dr Tracey: Yes, absolutely!

Melissa: We’re almost out of time but I want to ask you, one of the big ones on your site is the Top 10 Small Changes That Can Have a Big Impact particularly for women, in lifestyle. What would those – I don’t know if we have time for all 10 but maybe the top five.

Dr Tracey: Sure, okay.

Melissa: We’ll have you back for the top 10. [Laughs]

Dr Tracey: Next time [laughs] So, a few of them, getting a new hello. I can’t tell you how…

Melissa: That’s a good one. I like that.

Dr Tracey: It’s huge because, we’ll first of all, a sign of a bad pillow or a broken pillow is one where when you fold it, it stays folded. So your pillow should not be able to – you should have to force it to close like a sandwich and then if yoiu let it go it spring back. That’s a pillow that you can still sleep on well. Why is that important? You need the support for your neck and without good support and good posture while you’re sleeping at night, even though you think of posture as standing, but a good body framework while you’re sleeping, that makes the difference. The quality of your sleep and how you feel physically all over. So having a fresh pillow can really kind of boost the comfort of your sleep.

Another thing is waking up 10 minutes earlier in the mornings just to give yourself some buffer. It is…

Melissa: Oh yeah. I agree with this whole heartedly.

Dr Tracey: Yeah, I mean it is so easy to get stressed out or even start your morning stressed because you are rushing. Rushing never feels good. That just doesn’t feel good for anybody. So, giving yourself an extra 10 minute buffer to just be able to move about in a relax manner can make a big difference.

Another one is taking – instead of doing your usual sit at your desk and eat thing or whatever you normally do for lunch is to take a walk during your lunch time. I was going to say hour but how many people get [crosstalk] for lunch.

Melissa: That’s true.

Dr Tracey: So, if you’re in the habit of not even really taking a lunch, take a two-minute walk around the perimeter of your building or the perimeter of your floor just to stretch. Along that lines too, another thing is to spend more time standing at work, if you can. I don’t know if you can’t. We spend so much time sitting driving, working, all of that. But to spend more time just standing and it doesn’t have to be exercise standing but just standing as opposed to sitting.

Melissa: Yeah, exactly. And get one of those, you can get it off Amazon, one of those little like the Chef shoes mat to put under where you’re standing which will help ease any stress on your feet or legs. They’re cheap. I think they’re like $2 or something but it’s well worth it if you’re going to do that.

Dr Tracey: Yeah, that’s like a consequential cost for a great benefit. And then, the last one that I’ll mention is stretching in the mornings. And you can do this especially if you wake up 10 minutes earlier but stretching your body just does wonders for not only waking you up but kind of getting your blood flowing and it just feels so good.

Melissa: Yeah, I was just going to say, I’ve had great benefit from doing a modified Yoga on just a DVD that I have. It’s Yoga for people with like me, with multiple injuries and osteoarthritis and all these stuff and you can do – instead of doing all these really advance poses which might be difficult for people, you can use a chair to help you and you do maybe four or five but you feel the benefit so much during the day. It seems like nothing when you’re doing it. It just seems like ridiculous waste of time. That’s what I use to think but then you see the benefit going forward in the day and again, if you have any kind of knee injuries or knee pain or back pain or anything like that particularly early in the morning, if you can just Google around, I’ll put a link in the show notes too. one of the ones I use which I think is still available on Amazon, and again it’s just very minimal things. We can use a chair, like a little folding chair or something to sit on to do some of the poses but has a huge effect later in the day and just going forward to make you feel better.

Dr Tracey: Absolutely. It’s a wonderful thing and I’m glad, I’d say this real quick. I’m glad you mentioned the Yoga thing because again, I’m in the South, kind of conservative where I am and Yoga just kind of for some people can be synonymous with weird, just out there, I’m not into Yoga, but really, there’s a lot to Yoga.The real basis of it is stretching and so even if you’re not into poses, just stretching is beneficial as far as increasing your energy, loosening up tight muscles and things and tight muscles throughout the day can lead to feeling tired even if it doesn’t feel painful, it can make you feel fatigued.

Melissa: Yes, yes, and I want to tell you for all those folks to the south, Diamond Dallas Page, who I’ve interviewed, who’s hilarious, has a great Yoga program. In fact, we’re giving one away. I’ll put a link for people to find this. I interviewed him and I believe he’s in – you’re in Atlanta, right? I believe – I kind of think he’s in Atalanta, if I’m not mistaken. I don’t know. I’ll have to double check that but he came out – he had a serious, very serious back injury, two back injuries and he then recovered his entire health and went back to wrestling and still competing now. I believe he’s 55 and all he does is Yoga and has some amazing results to show for. He calls it “Not Your Mama’s Yoga” [laughs] And he’s about as macho a guy as you can get and he can do like a hand stand. He told me off the interview when we were talking before we got started that he hasn’t done any weight lifting for years for something like, five years and all his strength and he’s totally ripped out. All his strength and all his body definition comes from doing his own version of Yoga. And so he totally had the same attitude that it was for sissies and crazies and folks. But he realized, I believed he worked for the physician to help him recover his strength and rather than do the surgery he did the strength training over a period of a year and was able to go back into the competition and compete successfully and then decided to put out the program to share it with other people. And he’s got a ton of success stories behind him. It’s not something out of the informercial world. It’s really helped a lot of people with serious injuries, I meanr eally serious injuries like he had.

I had to recommend that to people.

Dr Tracey: Oh yeah, I’d love to see that.

Melissa: We gave away a couple. He sent me a couple to give away and we gave a couple and I think we still have one but I’ll put a link in the show notes so people can find it online as well. But one of the things he said, that’s why I mentioned I think he is in Atlanta was he was saying he’s establishing a live streaming studio at his headquarters, which I think is Atlanta and he invited me to come by there and take a tour and have a visit if I ever pass through. I’ll have to just double check and see where his studio is, but I think it was Atlanta so it should be interesting for folks but I’ll put a link in the show notes. People might want to check that out.

Now, he has his program that’s for all levels and one of his great success stories was a veteran, I believe a Gulf War veteran who had really, really serious injuries and using canes and could hardly walk and really recovered his health, that’s pretty interesting story and I think also that that was the one that was featured on Shark Tank. He went on Shark Tank to promote his – what he was going to develop with his Yoga program which now has gone into a live streaming. I believe it’s going to be available this year or you can actually go on everyday and watch a live broadcast of things he’s doing and stuff, so it’s pretty cool.

Dr Tracey: Oh, I have to go and look up that episode on Shark Tank too. [Laughs]

Melissa: Yeah, it was last year, I believe and he did a documentary movie about another wrestler that he helped recover his health and he was promoting that on Shark Tank and he was talking about developing this live streaming of his from his TV studio and how he’s going to – instead of going the infomercial route to sell his product which I believe he did a little bit but he wanted to develop a live streaming broadcast daily or multiple times a day that he could reach out to his audience also to do some cooking and he’s also a big proponent of healthy eating and whole food eating and quite an interesting character. I mean, not at all what you would expect from seeing him in the WWE there. But very hugely motivational guy and great motivational speaker too. But we’re a little off topic there and we’re out of time but I hope you come back because I have a bunch of more things to ask you along with things we’ve been talking about today. But before we do, where can people find you, Dr Tracey, online.

Dr Tracey: They can find me at beyondburnout.com

Melissa: And also, your Facebook?

Dr Tracey: Oh, my Facebook is actually all of my handles, Facebook and Twitter are TraceyMarksMD. That’s T-R-A-C-E-Y and then marks, M-A-R-K-S and then MD for doctor.

Melissa: Okay, cool. Great, and I hope you’ll come back. I have another couple of topics I’d love to discuss with you which I think are also very prominent in today’s stressfull world for people, like I say, that are not only trying to recover their health but also for people who are focused on trying to reduce weight and become less stressed.

Dr Tracey: Sure, I’d love it. Just send me the invite.

Melissa: Allright. Thank you so much Dr Tracey.

Dr Tracey: Okay, thank you. Take care!



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