Thriving Magazine, April 2022, Issue 10

April is Stress Awareness Month. In this issue, we discuss a 360 degree approach to how you can become more aware of your own stress and how to reduce it.

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spring into feeling good

Thrive Talks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Massage Therapy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Restorative Fitness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Charity Workout - April 23 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Acupuncture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Energy Healing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Lifestyle Medicine Monthly Challenge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Breathing + Postural Restoration Therapy . . . . . . . . 10 Physical Therapy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Nutrition / Lifestyle Medicine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Client Love 15

please join us THURSDAYS 6PM

2830 Virginia Beach Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23452 Thrive-Talks

April 21

Stress Resilience + Overcoming Anxiety Jen Fedorowicz Reiki Master + B.E.S.T. Practitioner + E-RYT • Energy Medicine Specialist + Yoga Instructor Anxiety is considered a disorder characterized by excessive worry, uneasiness and apprehension. However, energetically, anxiety is a deep part of you that wants to awaken, come online and be realized. What if you could shift your mind and realize that experiencing feelings of anxiety actually means you are growing as a spirit being? We are spiritual beings ultimately here on earth to awaken to our truth. The real question then, is how do we shift what we feel and use the uncomfortable, often debilitating, feelings of anxiety to realize that there is an awakening happening from deep within? Better Sleep with Chinese Medicine Vivian Takafuji Ph.D., L.Ac., Dipl. OM • Acupuncturist Chronically disrupted sleep can affect many aspects of our lives. A focus on improving the quantity and quality of our time asleep is an important pillar of Lifestyle Medicine. This talk will explain how acupuncture and Chinese herbs can improve insomnia by describing common diagnostic patterns and treatment strategies based on the theories of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Self-acupressure sequences will be introduced in an informative and supportive setting. Men’s Health Dante Leone Physical Therapist + Market Square Clinical Director Though men and women have many of the same health conditions, there are unique diseases and disorders specific to men. Often, these are seen as taboo and not to be talked about in public. Men can be left to feel isolated, with little support to connect with others to talk about their common health issues, and usually just given medications to take for the rest of their lives. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are lifestyle choices you can start making today to help you live healthier and happier, become more resilient, and rise to the occasion. It’s time to take back your health and enjoy all of life’s pleasures. Aromatherapy Danielle Lambert CMT • Director Of Massage Therapy While the use of essential oils have been around for hundreds of years, most of us do not have an understanding of how they work or how to use them. In this Thrive Talk, we will break down the pathways essential oils go through to affect change in our bodies, show you how aromatherapy can impact your Lifestyle Medical journey, and help you choose the right blend. Starting with blending basics, everyone will make an epsom salt together with an essential oil blend formulated specifically for you. Manage Stress with Chinese Medicine Vivian Takafuji Ph.D., L.Ac., Dipl. OM • Acupuncturist Prolonged stress can manifest in a number of health-related problems. Stress management is an important pillar of Lifestyle Medicine. Ideally, we need to find more practical ways to dispel stress in our daily lives before they become internalized over time. This talk will explain how understanding the theories of Traditional Chinese Medicine can help to reframe how we manage stress. Interactive qigong (“chee-gong”) sequences will be introduced and practiced in a group setting to move stuck energies in the body and relieve stress.

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Healing Hands, Calm Minds Danielle Lambert • CMT • Director Of Massage Therapy

The last few years have been hard on us all in so many different ways. With shelter-in-place safety precautions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the world transitioned to a virtual one for most. Students’ interactions with teachers and each other were limited to screens, with co-workers communicating more with emails instead of face to face, and singing “Happy Birthday” to loved ones over Skype rather than in person, coupled with a long hug. Our biggest defense was to stay away and distance ourselves to prevent further spread.

Unfortunately, more than two years of all that extra caution has left some in our community with more social anxiety than before. Psychiatrist Dr. Arthur Bregman coined

the non-medical term “cave syndrome,” a persistent unwillingness to leave the relative safety and security of the home. I completely understand the feeling of uncertainty; I turned down more invitations over the last year than I have in my whole life. As things started to get back to normal, I decided I wanted to get back out into the world and off the couch. Feeling comfortable again was a journey, but one I am glad I went through.

So how do you get yourself out of the cave?

What worked best for me was to take it at my own pace. At Thrive, we are all about meeting you where you are on your health journey. Starting where you are comfortable and slowly pushing yourself to take that next step will eventually have you walking right out of that cave and straight into a full, healthy life. As a massage therapist, I’m always looking for more ways my passion can help others. Believe it or not, massage therapy can help you overcome your anxiety. In various trials, massage has been proven to stimulate the release of hormones, endorphins and enkephalins that reduce anxiety, stress, and pain. It also lowers levels of stress hormones norepinephrine, epinephrine and cortisol, which reduce heart rate, lower blood pressure, slow breathing, and relax muscles. Massage increases levels of oxytocin, which is a hormone that increases social bonding and behaviors such as trustworthiness, generosity, and empathy.

Along with benefits for specific pain, some people enjoy massage because it helps bring comfort and connection. When you’re ready, our team of massage therapists are here to help you feel calmer and more peaceful.


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Building Strength and Community Brian Grilli • Restorative Fitness Coach

With spring here and summer approaching, the opportunities to get outside and do outdoor activities are abundant. And while we still have COVID precautions to consider, it’s important to understand that social interaction is beneficial to our mental and emotional health. One of the things I’ve experienced, both before the pandemic and throughout it, is the important role the gym can play in developing fitness AND community. Small Group exercise especially can serve an invaluable role in accomplishing both. An exercise program that includes a well-rounded workout, focuses on resistance as well as endurance, and also creates camaraderie and builds relationships is a win-win-win for everybody involved.

AEROBIC ACTIVITY All healthy adults aged 18 to 65 years should participate in a minimum of either: • 30 minutes, five days per week of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity —OR— • 20 minutes, three days per week of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity. MUSCULAR STRENGTH & ENDURANCE Every adult should perform activities that maintain or increase muscular strength and endurance for a minimum of two days per week .

Small Group Fitness Classes Here at Thrive, our Small Group fitness classes are just that — small! We train up to four people per group; you’re not in a huge, intimidating space with more than 20 strangers in a closed-off room. It’s an intimate yet open environment you can work out in with friends, and even make new ones! And if you feel like you haven’t moved enough over the last several months, what better way to get back to it?

Sign up with Restorative Fitness to get started with your Small Group personal training session. And start feeling better — mind and body!


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Adjusting to a Post-Pandemic World Through the Energy of Wood Vivian Takafuji • Ph.D., L.Ac., Dipl. OM • Acupuncturist

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the five elemental energies of nature (metal, water, wood, fire and earth) and dualistic principles (Yin and Yang) are reflected in the organs of the human body. This time of the year is associated with the liver organ and the element of wood.

Spring days (corresponding to light and Yang energy) are lengthening while the nights (corresponding to darkness and Yin energy) are relatively shorter. We see nature in all of

her forms slowly emerge from the dead of winter, sprouting delicate young leaves and furry offspring.

Energies stored up in hibernation are mobilized for growth and new activity. A certain innocence is in the air as new possibilities and excitement for the year come into being. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced humanity into an extended season of winter and socialization paralysis. Due to prolonged health uncertainty, decisions on whether/how to interact with each other have been based on the fear of consequence rather than living with each other in the moment. According to TCM, the emotion corresponding to winter and imbalance in the associated water element is fear. Further, an imbalanced wood element corresponding to spring can show up as emotions of anger and rage. The interrelationship of these two elements has been disrupted with humankind not being able to move naturally from winter into spring over the last couple of years. Indeed, I have witnessed much unsettled anxiety, fear, depression, distrust and anger in my patients throughout the course of the pandemic, as well as within myself.Acupuncture and Chinese herbal remedies can be helpful to mitigate any imbalances between the water and wood elements that have manifested in health problems during this time. Fortunately, there seem to be indications of a safe return to familiar activities and communal events this year. Collectively, we have had time to process our fears and make plans to adapt to living with this virus as a part of our new reality.


We will need to continue to support each other through this delicate process of reclaiming life as individuals and as a species. Humans are social beings and need the Lifestyle Medicine pillar of “Community” to be truly healthy; virtual interactions, although a helpful compromise, just don’t offer the same depth of experiences that can feed the soul. Similar to a mighty oak tree, we have had the opportunity over the long winter to set deep roots into the ground, and now is the time to spread our branches up in the sky by relating to the energy of the wood element. Let’s find the excitement in life again by tapping into the energies of the season and realigning with the movement of nature.

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Are You Depressed? Or Compressed? Jen Fedorowicz • E-RYT, Energy Codes B.E.S.T. Certified Practitioner, Reiki Master • Energy Medicine and Emotional Healing

In Energy Medicine, we do not see depression as a diagnosis, but rather as a state of being energetically. Our energy becomes “depressed” when we repress our emotions. It’s the things we wanted to do or say or act upon, but we didn’t. We stuffed them down and the result is that the energy field around the body becomes depressed.

As energetic beings, all of our power is in the body. Try breathing and feeling the breath moving through the body. As you breathe deeper and more slowly, envision your energy field expanding and lightening up in all directions around you. Imagine blowing up a balloon inside of your body and as you inhale, the balloon continues to expand. Doing this begins to release the

pressure outside of the body. It releases the “gunk” in your energy field that is causing the compression from the outside in.

Everything is energy and when we get to the energy beneath the story, our energy starts moving differently. The result is

neutralizing the compression. And, of course, feeling better.

Feel Better with Energy Healing Jen Fedorowicz is a Reiki Master, B.E.S.T. ( Bio-energetic Synchronization Technique) practitioner, E-RYT (Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher). An energy session with Jen will remove blocks to get the energy flowing through your body. You will leave an energy session with easy tools you can incorporate into your life to keep your energy flowing.



1320 Kempsville Road



Stress Resilience Through Mindful Meditation Each month our Thrive team embarks on a challenge to improve our own health and wellness. We invite you to join us on our collective wellness journey.

The best coping strategy is to learn how to recognize stress, and minimize our reactivity to those stressors. Mindfulness meditation is a great tool to help you get out of your head and reduce negative emotions and stress. Our breathing is our life force. The more times you can create a focused attention to your conscious breath, you are strengthening your muscle of insight and perspective. Understanding that, you can gain awareness and control of your thoughts and emotions.

We recommend downloading the Insight Timer app for free guided meditations.

Our bioenergetics energy expert has pre-recorded meditations that are fantastic and complement work in between in-person energy sessions. Search for Teacher “Jen Fedorowicz” or “Jenergy” Playlist. See how many sessions per month and consecutive days can you achieve this month. You’ll find your stats in the app under your profile.

10 BENEFITS OF MEDITATION Reduces stress and anxiety Improves burnout symptoms Boosts focus and working memory

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Reduces emotional agitation Increases cognitive flexibility Improves recovery and resilience Modulates pain and improves medical symptoms Improves self-care and sense of wellbeing Loosens grips of negative habits and thinking Increases patience and tolerance

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Holding stress in your neck and shoulders? Julie Blandin • PT,ATC, CSCS, PRC, DipACLM • Posture and Movement Health Expert

Use breath work throughout the day to help re-balance your posture and relieve stress. So many people will overposture and default to a vertical accessory breathing pattern especially when they’re under stress. This is something most people aren’t even aware of. It’s important to remember that good posture is not chest up, shoulders back, and constantly squeezing your shoulder blades together. In fact, if you’re doing this you’re probably contributing to why you have excessive neck tension.

Good posture is effortless. You shouldn’t have to work to hold your chest, neck, and shoulders back to properly stack over your pelvis.

Additionally, if you’re over-posturing and under stress, you’re most likely defaulting to a vertical breath, sliding your shoulder blades up to your ears and over-activating your lower back muscles. Combine that with excessive sitting and perching forward at a desk, and we have a recipe for excessive neck tension. As April is Stress Awareness Month — let’s become mindful of how we can breathe into different parts of our posture to release tension.

Pay attention to your breath and how you pull your inhale low into your lower lobes of your lungs. Aim to expand the lower back half of the rib cage . Feel your breath draw down and expand more into a horizontal east to west direction so that your ribs and chest wall expand more three-dimensionally. Seated Prayer Stretch • Sit at desk/table with feet planted, knees pointed forward, elbows on the tabletop, hands in prayer formation • Tilt your pelvis under, creating the letter “C” with your spine • Concentrate on breathing slowly, with full exhalation — allow your breast bone to soften downward, let your ribcage lower in the front and round out in the back • Keep your back against the chair — feel your bra line (right under shoulder blades) to belt line press against the chair • Keep your breaths slow, pausing after each exhale; on the inhale, allow your lower ribcage to expand backward • Do this for 10 breaths

Incorporate these breathing activities into your daily life to help you unload the muscle tension in your neck, chest and shoulders...


Seated Elbows on Knees Stretch • Keeping the same back, knees and feet position as the Seated Prayer Stretch— place your elbows and forearms on your thighs, pressing into your thighs to achieve a “C” shape • Keep your head in a neutral position, with your ears stacking over your shoulders; as the tension in your neck and shoulders begins to release, you can tilt your head up and look at the horizon line • As you breathe, try to get your lower ribcage to expand backward • Keep your breaths slow, allowing your ribcage to expand and contract down and into your back • Do this for 10 breaths

Desk Reach Stretch • Sit at desk/table, feet planted, knees pointed forward, hands by your sides • On exhale, reach your left arm toward the corner of your desk as your right arm/elbow goes back • As you reach across, allow your sternum to rotate while keeping your gaze directly in front of you. • Hold this for 10 breaths, then repeat on the other side

Single Arm Pec Stretch • Stand in a doorway with the door open, slightly forward of the door frame • With one arm at a 90 degree angle, position your hand on the backside of the door frame • Place your other hand on your breastbone to monitor your ribcage — this shoulder should be lower than the other • As you exhale, you should feel your ribcage soften and move down toward the opposite side from the arm on the door frame • You should feel a stretch in your chest wall and no pain in your neck or shoulder • Do this for 10 breaths on each side

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Managing Stress Constructively Dante Leone • DPT, OCS, DipACLM, CSCS • Physical Therapy Clinical Director

April is both National Stress Awareness Month and National Alcohol Addiction Awareness Month, so it is a great opportunity to reflect on our personal life stressors and how we are managing these stressors. Stress is a part of everyday life.

We can have good stress, which is constructive, challenges us, and helps us grow. But we can also experience bad stress that can impact our mood negatively, feel overwhelming, and lead to destructive health behaviors. Our mindset in how we approach stress, and how we reflect and respond to our stressors makes the difference in how it impacts our health and well-being. Many of us can get stuck in a cycle of persistent bad stress and unhealthy coping behaviors. This includes poor food choices, inadequate sleep, and use and abuse of substances, including caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs. These negative health behaviors can significantly increase the risk of many chronic diseases and premature death. However, when you are ready, you can quit! Reversing these habits takes time and often many attempts, but it is worth the time and effort because we are talking about avoiding losing years of your life. How do we change our stress-coping behaviors? Well, first we need to change our mindset to see stress differently. Look at events or triggers from a different perspective. Focus on what you can control and change. Improve your mood by looking at what is going well in your life. Think about your accomplishments and all the things you have overcome in life. We also need to remember that health, including managing stress, is not isolated, and is dependent on other behaviors. To manage stress more effectively we need to make ourselves more resilient. This includes eating a health- promoting diet, getting regular movement and activity, ensuring adequate and restful sleep, and connecting with others to build strong, meaningful relationships. Check out the list for some ideas, and get started on improving your emotional well-being today.


Tips to Help You Manage Stress Minimize, and ultimately avoid caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs Take time to do things you love and that bring you joy Connect with others and have a genuine, meaningful conversation Fuel your body with lots of fruits and vegetables, and drink plenty of water Limit screen time and use of social media Aim for eight hours of sleep every night , going to bed and waking at the same times Give someone an authentic, honest compliment Get involved in community activities Get outside in nature

Try some movement or exercise Try other relaxation techniques music, reading, dance, yoga, meditation, mindfulness Get a massage

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Spring Out of the Dark and Into the Light Michelle Hilliard • Certified Nutritionist • Integrative Nutrition Health Coach

The winter months are hard already, but when we add a

FOODS TOAVOID INYOUR DIET • Foods filled with inflammatory oils such as vegetable oil • Drinks with aspartame can limit your neurotransmitters including serotonin • Foods filled with high fructose corn syrup and sugar can cause inflammation in the body • Processed foods usually contain little to no fiber, may have added chemicals, and feed the bad bugs in the gut FOODS TO ENCOURAGE INYOUR DIET • Foods with omega-3 nutrients: salmon, anchovies, flax seeds, chia seeds, avocados • Probiotic foods: fermented sauerkraut, kefir, kimchi, yogurt • Foods rich in vitamin B6: bananas, chickpeas, potatoes • Foods filled with folate: spinach, asparagus, broccoli, black-eyed peas • Foods with tryptophan: Brussels sprouts, pumpkin seeds, turkey breast LIFESTYLE CHANGES TO HELP FIGHT DEPRESSION • Move your body daily to detox and release “feel good” hormones • Increase fiber by adding fruits and vegetables to help maintain good bacteria in the gut • Prioritize sleep and aim for 7 to 9 hours each night; this is the time the body repairs and resets • Minimize stress and find healthy outlets such as prayer, meditation, counseling, or a gratitude journal to help reduce effects of stress • Try a cold shower or cryotherapy to help minimize inflammation and support the immune system • Try using a sauna to help detox the body • Do your best to get rid of outside toxins in the home such as toxic chemicals, candles and lotions that are full of endocrine-disrupting chemicals • Step into the light, get outside every day and absorb that vitamin D; this is a vitamin many people are low in and don’t even know it • Make time to connect with the ones you love; a simple hug or meaningful conversation can be just what your heart and head need

pandemic on top of them, months of isolation, and then chaos in the world, well, we’re depressed.

It’s hit our society hard, and it doesn’t discriminate among gender,

age, or ethnicity. There is no shame in these feelings, but it is important to know that healing is available. Depression is a symptom of many possible underlying root causes: inflammation, hormonal imbalances, thyroid issues, low vitamin D levels, gut dysbiosis, candida, and the list can go on. When you have these feelings of depression, it is usually a time to check in with your body and make some changes. Working with a doctor, therapist, or counselor to help find the root cause is so important. Check in with yourself and check in with your loved ones; talking about mental health shouldn’t be taboo or off limits. To get started, here is a list of some nutrition and lifestyle tips to try and put in place to help spring out of the dark and into the light.



Thrive Physical Therapists look at and treat the whole package and not only the original injury area. Sometimes an injury can stem from a completely different part of your body so they look for the cause instead of just treating the symptoms. Also we are not just a number, the staff knows your name and actually cares about your progress. + SANDIE G.

Felt comfortable right away. Heard of greatness with Vivian the acupuncturist and she was so sweet and walked you through the process. + DEE

First visit and assessment were beyond expectations. Friendly staff, smooth process, courtesy reminders, super professional therapist, caring and competent, thorough evaluation... So thankful. + JOHN G.

Amazing staff that listens and tailors exercises and therapy to individual needs and constraints. Thanks so much for wonderful service and treatment. + MICHELLE K.

I was treated well by staff upon arrival and was taken back for my massage promptly. Chantal asked about my areas of concern and gave me a great massage. I appreciated Chantal sharing her knowledge of a helpful exercise to do at home. She was both friendly and professional. Can’t wait to go back. Thanks! + ANN T.

Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your healing, health and wellness journey! If you enjoyed the content in this newsletter or loved your service from Thrive Proactive Health, we’d love to hear from you:

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