It feels good to look in the mirror and think, “There she is!” This year I’ve been really focused on my health, and it’s the first time in my life that I’ve stayed committed and consistent.
It’s not so much about the “what” I’m doing or the “how” I’m doing it. For me… it’s all about the “why!” My why is bigger than a number on the scale or the way I look; it’s focused on how I want to feel in my skin, in my life, in my work. I knew this year — with two littles in tow as I launched my first-ever book — would require me to play at a higher level, to show up in bigger ways, and I knew I needed energy to not just survive but thrive through it all!
On top of consistent movement and focusing on my nutrition (see more on that here!), I’ve also been playing and experimenting with the notion of “biohacking.” In case you’re not familiar, biohacking is literally the idea of “hacking” (or boosting) your biology and cells to improve your health. Now, there are alllll kinds of different approaches, opinions, and methods of biohacking out there. I’ve found a few simple practices that I can fit into my everyday life, don’t take up a ton of time, and truly DO make me feel better mentally, physically, and beyond. I kind of look at it as an investment into my longevity, my energy, and my health. Is it cheap? Absolutely not! Do you need all of these things? Nope. Have they helped me on my health journey? Absolutely.
The one thing that sets apart biohacking from more traditional, long-term health improvement methods like exercise and diet (which I’m focusing on as well!) is that it creates an immediate improvement. Things like… more energy, better mood, improved blood circulation, or optimizing bodily functions, all felt pretty immediately! It’s amazing. These also compound over time to improve long-term health, but with most biohacking practices, you also feel some of the benefits right away, which is just plain cool! File all of these items under “things I swore I’d do someday when I could afford them” and now here I am using them daily.
My fav 5 biohacking tools for beginners
Here are a few biohacking tools I use and LOVE on a daily basis!
I use this little ball device that you hold in your hand, and it vibrates and keeps you present while you meditate. It also makes a game of meditation in a way by giving you a rating each time you meditate and letting you know how your body responds with the deeper breathing and focus. Tracking and receiving ratings for my meditation sessions has been so helpful in keeping up with it, especially for an achiever like me. At this point, meditation is something I crave, and I love that I can do it anywhere with this little gadget! And I feel noticeably calmer and more present throughout the day since picking up a steady meditation practice. I am on a 123 day streak without missing a single one.
I do red light therapy using this light set-up for 10 minutes on each side of my body every single day (often while I meditate, because I’m focusing on my health but your girl still loves efficiency, k?!). Red light acts as energy for your cells, and exposure to it allows your cells to function to their highest ability. I know, it sounds far fetched, but there are studies to support that red light therapy can help promote healthier sleep, healthier skin, reduced inflammation, and improved recovery from exercise! You simply turn it on and soak in the red light while your skin and cells absorb the light (minus harmful UV rays from the sun). It’s super quick, silly-easy to use, and SO relaxing. I also have this red light mask that I put on for 10 minutes daily right when I wake up (my kids think it’s hilarious). I attribute a lot of my skin changes to adding this to my life.
The other day, my super analytical brother told me he didn’t believe in this mat until he started researching it (in a quest to prove me wrong) and found a ton of data and research backing it. This is a super grounding practice, and I try to lay on my mat for about 20 minutes a day. (Sometimes, I’ll even work from it!) PEMF therapy releases electromagnetic waves similar to natural frequencies found in nature. They encourage and stimulate the body’s natural recovery process! Astronauts literally use PEMF to recover from debilitating space missions, if that tells you anything. I’m not heading to the moon any time soon, but I’ll still take all the feel-good hacks I can get! The main benefits include helping to ease chronic pain, recover from workouts, deepen your meditations, and experience full body (and mind) relaxation. This isn’t a low-cost biohacking practice but in my experience, FULLY worth while! We even got my mom one and it’s the highlight of her day!
#4. The right supplements for your body
I hesitate to share exactly what *I* take for supplements because this has been something I’ve learned is deeply personal. If you can, I would highly encourage getting some bloodwork and/or lab tests done to learn about any micronutrient deficiencies and DNA methylation you have. From there, you can discover which supplements your body actually needs to function to its highest ability! There are a lot of supplements out there that brilliantly market themselves as the cure-all to any number of issues, but really understanding my own personal nutrient needs based on my unique body system has been SO helpful to understand. I keep my vitamins and supplements in an ice cube tray, sorted by day, in our pantry so I see (and remember to take) them every day!
I come from a long line of Finnish people and if you know anything about the Finns, you know that taking a sauna is like going to church. Most of us can’t put an infrared sauna in our home, but this blanket is just as good! Infrared creates deeply penetrating heat that promotes full body detoxification, better circulation, reduced inflammation, and healing from the inside out. I also happen to think it’s incredibly relaxing and has helped my skin glow! I do it about 2x a week for a great sweat and to eliminate extra toxins, and I fully feel like a new person every time I emerge from the blanket.
I actually got served this as an ad and got really curious. Basically, it’s a device you breathe into and it will tell you if you’re burning carbs or fat based off of your CO2 levels. I was a bit skeptical but honestly, I love it. I’ve shared this before but I’m someone who needs to know exactly how my body is reacting to something versus generalized knowledge and so watching how what I eat for fuel changes what my body is using as energy has been like a fun game. I teased my nutritionist that this device alone might be my reason to not eat ice cream every night so that my body can actually switch into fat-burning mode while I sleep. One other thing I love about this is that based off of your score in the morning, it will give you prescribed macros for the day (carbs, protein, fat) and it helps me to see what my body needs to be fueled well. It also will tell you if you need more food/fuel before a workout and allows you to track in real-time how flexible your metabolism is in terms of how it’s processing your food!
I loved this so much I invested in the company. The first time I used a continuous glucose monitor (or CGM) I was amazed to see how my insulin and blood sugar reacted to the food I was eating. I’ve tracked my glucose a few different times over the years using this device and it connects to an app so that you can see how different meals spike or help you maintain glucose levels. As someone who struggled with extreme fatigue for over a decade, doing something like this helped me see how the food I was eating was spiking and crashing my blood sugar and that was resulting in high energy into straight-up exhaustion. I talk about my experience with this on my podcast episode with my nutritionist in case you’re curious how it works or why I love it.
I think I had bookmarked this item a million times before finally ordering and honestly, I am obsessed. I was unsure if I’d want to see what my sleep looked like on a nightly basis (I mean, I have two little kids!) but getting data like sleep tracking, my HRV, my body temp trends, and tracking my daily activity has helped me keep moving more and knowing what my body needs for each day based off of my recovery. In a season of life where sleeping through the night isn’t even a thing, it’s helped me prioritize getting to bed earlier and I even love how it can predict things like when my period is starting or if sickness is coming on. I wasn’t sure if I’d love it but I do! (And I also love that you can put the ring into airplane mode to turn off EMF’s and then when you switch it back on you can collect your data!) It’s cute, gold, and lightweight, I’m a fan!
I feel like I’m (potentially weirdly?) passionate about this world of biohacking, and have spent the year diving into and learning a lot about it! Some of it might sound hokey, and some of it can be pricey, but I’ve found each one of these practices to be enormously, wildly helpful and transformative on my own health journey, inside and out! Even if you pick one to try and end up sticking with it and loving it, that might be a win for your overall health! I hope you’ve gotten some fun ideas to incorporate biohacking into your own journey!
One easy biohack? Taking better care of your skin.