- Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® – Practitioner (FDN-P®)
- Metabolic Typing® Advisor (CMTA)
- C.H.E.K. Holistic Lifestyle Coach
- C.H.E.K. Practitioner
- B.S. in Health and Physical Education (Ursinus College)
My Story (abbreviated)
I have had to work hard to get my health to where it is today. I can honestly say that I have not felt this good in decades, if ever. My body/mind are functioning at a high level. I feel balanced and I can’t complain. Actually I can, but that will only cause distress; mine and anyone on the receiving end. And most people have enough to worry about. While I say that about myself, I am interested in your trials and tribulations, otherwise I would not do what I do.
2010 was a rough year. Everything came to a head and my health was suffering. I was exhausted, mentally, emotionally and physically. I was moody and easily brought to anger. My bodyweight was down, it was almost impossible to keep muscle on and strength up. I felt awful!
My wife is incredible in that she put up with my shenanigans. I was a mess, though I hid it well. I was eating organic, living clean and thought I was doing ALL the right things, but there was something missing. Something going on beyond what I could see.
As the universe often does, you get what you need when you are ready. What I needed was Reed Davis (Functional Diagnostic Nutrition®). I don’t believe, actually I know, I would not be here in this capacity if I did not sign up for the FDN® course on December 31, 2010. I remember the exact moment I made the choice as Michele and I were staying at the Inn at Vaucluse Spring in Virginia (very nice place by the way). I came to the realization that something needed to change. I couldn’t continue down the path I was going. A vacation should be a time to explore, to grow and learn, not merely an escape from the realities of one’s life. I decided to create a life worth living and regaining my health was where I started.
As part of the program, I ran functional labs on myself discovering a few important pieces of information:
- HPA Axis(Hypothalamus-Pituitary-Adrenal) was compromised resulting in inadequate and imbalanced stress hormones
- Sex hormones were off with low testosterone (no wonder I was losing muscle and strength).
- Poor digestion, and malabsorption with a severe dysbiosis
- Liver congestion along with hoarding heavy metals (especially mercury and cadmium) and other common toxins.
- Neurotransmitters were, not surprisingly, out of balance (that would explain the mental fragility.
No wonder I felt the way I did. One of the first things I allowed myself, was rest. I could not continue burning the candle at both ends. I took care of existing clients and I spent time resting, meditating, decongesting my liver and learning a holistic form of self-care. It was what my body needed. I was able to focus the energy I had into recovering and healing. It snowballed from there.
Progress was slow but steady. My health really took a turn for the better when my detox pathways cleared up and I started eliminating heavy metals and toxins. My body took advantage of this new found potential and without trying, I gained 25 lb., mostly muscle. Currently, I am hovering around a very strong & comfortable 185 (Summer ’18). The body is truly an amazing vehicle!
Looking back, there wasn’t ONE event which caused the downward shift in health. All the mental/emotional stress of my own business was the proverbial “straw that broke the camel’s back.” I now recognize past behavioral tendencies that were not ideal as far back as high school. I began fairly early in life depleting my vital reserves and setting myself up for future health challenges. It was not a matter of if, but when and how would it manifest.
It was years later that I discovered what I now understand was a significant catalyst for my health challenges. I have a physical aversion to working for others! Let’s just say I worked in a few environments which were out of sync with my core values. When you become physically ill thinking about your job, that’s a very strong message your body is communicating. It took too long for me to recognize it. While I heard my body, I wasn’t listening. I don’t mind working with others, I prefer not working for them. Or at least I have not yet found someone that is a good match for my quirks and idiosyncrasies.
I have no one to blame but myself. Sure, there are genetic health predispositions in the family, but that’s an excuse. It was my lifestyle choices that made the difference. I accepted responsibility for the state of was in. Blaming others was not going to help. I did what I needed to do and what worked within my system of values.
Being healthy is not something you stumble upon. It is something you work for. No one ever accidentally gets HEALTHY! My body was trying to teach me a lesson. This time I payed attention and took it to heart. The end result, so far has been well worth it.
Now that you know part of my backstory. You may be wondering why I am doing what I do. I have two primary motivations:
- To NOT manifest my family’s health history. I don’t come from the hardiest stock. Within my immediate family there exists cancer, cardiovascular disease (heart attacks, strokes and elevated blood pressure), hypo-thyroidism, unwanted weight issues, chemical sensitivity issues, etc. Just because it has happened to them, does not mean it must or will happen to me. I am breaking free of their path and creating my own trail.
- To be useful. This resource, my practice and how I approach life is me attempting to be useful. While I am not sure who originally wrote this, I agree with it 100%
“The greatest thing a man can do is find a way to be useful,
to be someone through which others are made better and kept safe,
so that when you leave this world, those who know you,
and indeed the world at large, is made better because you were alive.”
I believe you will learn at least a few beneficial tidbits from my attempt at usefulness!
Free Time Activities
Outside of his calling Michael can be found visiting Farmer’s Markets & local farms to source food that his garden does not provide. His personal fitness program allows him to perform his own hard landscaping and play with rocks. For Michael, getting his hands dirty is a “Zen-like experience that is both centering and relaxing.” When the urge arises, he and his wonderful wife, Michele will take off on a road trip enjoying the scenery and searching out good food.
In both ’15 and ’16 we have explored Nova Scotia and Newfoundland Canada. Beautiful scenery (Gros Morne Park is a must), incredible people and some out of this world local food. Most likely we will be back as there is still much to see.
If you require a location to relax and decompress, I suggest hanging out in the “swimmin’ hole” at the Fort Lewis Lodge in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. This location helped me tremendously on several occasions when doing nothing was exactly what I needed.
Life is meant to be lived. The world is meant to be explored, investigated and enjoyed. For many, their mind and body is not currently up to the task. What will you do, or better yet, how have you responded when your dreams and goals are put on hold because your health gets in the way? What is your health worth? If I can leave you with one final thought, it’s that your true health potential is within your grasp. Your purpose can be discovered and made to prosper.