My bodywork and changework practice

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I provide massage and bodywork and other interesting activities (peripheral walking, yoga coaching, wellness coaching) at The Well, my downtown Austin, Texas, studio. My bodywork services include Swedish-based integrated massage, Ashiatsu barefoot massage and Ashi-Thai, TMJ treatment, craniosacral therapy, Extreme Yin-Yang (Ashiatsu + craniosacral), back/shoulders/neck/head sessions (choose your focus areas), and whatever modalities I’m currently studying.

To make an appointment, please click the Schedule Now menu to access my online booking site.

To subscribe to my occasional wellness newsletter, please send your email address to mareynolds27 at gmail dot com. Thank you!

Stay hydrated all the time, not just after a massage

I’ve written about this before. I tell my clients to stay hydrated, rather than asking them to drink “extra water” after a massage to “flush the toxins out.”

Water makes physiological processes, especially the brain, work better, so getting enough is important. Whatever measure you use – a gallon a day, half your body weight in ounces, until your pee is clear – most of us don’t drink enough, and we need extra to make up for sweating, diarrhea, etc.

Now New York Times health writer Gretchen Reynolds addresses the issue, interviewing an expertContinue reading

The best chicken liver paté recipe ever

I eat a Paleo diet, and right now I’m being rather strict about it: no grains, no dairy, no sugar, and lots of healthy meat and veggies. My energy levels are good!

My nutritionist, Olivia Honeycutt, tells me how good it is to eat liver. I’m pretty sure it was not one of my favorite childhood flavors (actually, my dad didn’t like it so my mom didn’t cook it, but she — having grown up on a ranch where they raised a lot of their own food — liked it).

As an adult I tried liver and onions and came to like it enough to eat occasionally, but not very often.

Liver is loaded with nutrients. One ounce (28 grams, or about 2 tablespoons) contains the following: Continue reading

Core Transformation is a process that amplifies well-being

Sometimes we believe we have to do something (or not do something) before we can experience a sweet state of being such as peace, love, feeling one with everything, etc.

If only I wasn’t so nervous, I’d feel more confident about a troublesome situation.

Core Transformation is a process where you can learn to experience a pleasant, desirable state of being (maybe even more pleasant and desirable than you can currently imagine!) without having to do something to get there.

rainbow, The Well, ATXThat’s right, you can experience these states regardless of what happens (or doesn’t happen) because your mind creates states of being. You can learn to work with your mind and be way more than 10 percent happier! Continue reading

Tight shoulders? You gotta try this Pressure Point Massager aka Spiky Roller Ball gadget!

As a massage therapist, I do lots of chair massage, and this tool, the Gaiam Pressure Point Massager (aka the spiky roller ball gadget), is so amazing, I must write a blog post about it!

Screen Shot 2015-05-05 at 10.02.31 PMI first discovered it when my trainer, Matt Fuhrmann at Tao Health & Fitness, bought one at a local store and brought it into the school. I tried it on myself and was impressed. Those little spiky points seem to activate the sensory nerves in a way that is pleasurable, and almost as a side effect, the muscles it rolls over release tension.

I used it lightly on myself and my chair massage clients until the day after a workout that I handed it to Matt to roll my tight, sore shoulders for me. He used a lot of pressure on my upper traps, shoulders, and upper back, more than I’d ever used on myself or anyone else. The sensations were intense, with that exquisite “hurts-so-good” feeling, and so was the tension release. I felt rushes up and down my whole body!

After that, I started checking in with my chair massage clients about how much pressure felt good to them. I use less pressure on bare skin than I do over clothing, and of course, every body is different, so checking in is critically important to avoid hurting them (in a hurts-so-bad way). Continue reading

Floss regularly for longevity, plus floss recommendations

Not kidding! Flossing regularly is an indicator of longevity. Of course it’s not a guarantee. It’s just that people who are knowledgeable about the benefits of flossing and who are motivated to get/keep their mouth in great shape floss — and are more likely to take care of their health in other ways.

Plus, flossing has been found to prevent heart disease.

Face it, flossing isn’t very much fun. About the most I’ve been able to get out of it is (1) being mindful about doing it daily and seeing improvements in gum health (no tenderness and bleeding is the goal), and (2) going to the dental hygienist and her barely needing to do any scraping. In fact, last time I went, I got to skip a scaling procedure, which would have been unpleasant. It also saved me $60. Continue reading

New finding: Sanitation practices may play a bigger role than antibiotics in gut microbial diversity

Just sharing a link to a story on NPR News covering new studies on the gut microbiome.

Here’s a summary: Modern Western guts are missing microbes that exist in the guts of hunter-gatherer people.

Western diets and modern-day hygiene have wiped a few dozen species right out of our digestive tracts. One missing microbe helps metabolize carbohydrates. Other bygone bacteria act as prebiotics. And another communicates with our immune system.

The big question is why.  Continue reading

Report on effective treatments for fibromyalgia

A few folks with fibromyalgia have come to me for bodywork. Fibromyalgia, if you don’t know, is a condition of chronic pain with tender points located in various places on the body.

There’s a lot of mystery about it. It used to be thought by doctors to be “all in the head” (which basically means they don’t know, so it must exist just in your mind), but we know better now. A couple of years ago, scientists pinpointed the cause.

In my bodyworker role, I’ve noticed that some fibromyalgia sufferers prefer very light touch, while others prefer medium pressure and don’t mind, in fact prefer it, if I do deep tissue work in the tensest, tightest places, such as the upper trapezius. Continue reading

Paleo breakfast salad: Greens with bacon, eggs, avocado

A few months ago, I bought these nifty little silicone cups (Poach Pods) designed to poach eggs. That they do, very well. Just spray with cooking spray, crack an egg, drop it in, and “float the boat” in a pan of boiling water (covered) for 3 minutes to cook the white and leave the yolk a little runny.

I’ve been experimenting with poached eggs atop a bowl of greens, dressed with olive oil and apple cider vinegar. Today I hit the jackpot!

A voice whispered, “Why not add crumbled bacon and avocado? And use the bacon grease as a dressing?”

IMG_4234 Continue reading

Healing bleeding, tender gums

I skipped going to the dentist for three years, and when I finally went, I had a few molar fillings that had decay underneath. They were old, from back when I was a teenager.

I also had several deep pockets. The worst one measured 6. One or 2 is considered good.

I got a couple of crowns to replace those decayed molars, and I got my teeth cleaned. My next appointment for cleaning was in 4 months. I was told to floss once daily and brush twice daily.

I vowed that I would floss every day. And I did. (I still usually just brush once, and again only if needed.)

Working with nutritionist/acupuncturist Olivia Honeycutt at Merritt Wellness, who was having me take Organically Bound Minerals, I also tightened my diet up — no grain, dairy,  or sugar.

When I went back four months later, the hygienist barely had any scraping to do because I had hardly any tartar.
Continue reading