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Weighing In: Making Strides

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leahcevoliA few years ago, I took some time off from Los Angeles, and for the most part acting, hosting, and voice over as well. It was a scary decision, as at that point I had lived and breathed LA and my budding career for about 12 years, never wanting to be gone for more than a week, afraid that I’d miss some amazing opportunity, audition, job, or meeting. Leaving town was something I needed to do, frankly for my own sanity.

I spent 10 months away, and began to really go deeper on this journey to self-love and taking care of me. Granted, home for me is a major city and I still auditioned in Philly and New York and appeared at some cons and festivals while I was out there, but not at the frenetic, every waking second is about trying to score that next audition or job, or refining my brand, or being seen at that networking event, pace that I had become accustomed to.

One of my very first pieces for Ms In the Biz, went into detail about my life-long journey to self-love, so I thought I’d update you on my progress. I wrote that first piece about a year and a half ago, and I’m happy to say, I feel this summer in particular, has seen some major shifts and improvements on that journey.

About 2 months ago, I signed up for a 7-day, all women, Radiant Cleanse/Yoga Workshop at Golden Bridge Yoga in Hollywood. The class was for 90 minutes at 7am for 7 days and as part of the program we were asked to stick to a Vegan/Alkaline diet.

Now, the one thing I’m good at, is sticking to a plan, when there are other people involved. If it’s just me, forget it; but if I even think there’s someone holding me accountable, than I am determined to get It right. And I did. For seven days, I chose my meals carefully, and purchased them on a daily basis from the Café inside of the Yoga studio. This way I was certain to be following the recommended eating plan.

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And I did it. Without a single wrong turn, or back slide. And just like that, I broke the intense hold (addiction) that sugar has had on me for about four years now.

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It wasn’t just the meal plan, although that was a huge part of it, but it was the loving community of women coming together every morning. A group of women, who had committed to spend this special time with each other each morning. The facilitators showered us with love and gifts daily.   It felt like a special initiation into the next phase of self-love.

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I lost about 6 pounds that week. Purely from letting go of sugar, carbs, grease, and meat.   Now this is not to say, that I am now strictly vegan, because I am not. In fact, since the class ended, I’ve been trying out all sorts of different menu plans, and activities to keep myself away from the sugar, and on target to getting back to a healthy weight, and a healthy me.

About a week after the class ended, not having put any sort of plan into action, I felt myself drifting back to a routine of daily stops at Starbucks. I immediately, made a detour and checked out my first Juicing Café, and purchased a 3-day all fruit/veggie detox.   It was great. Since then, I’ve tried a few others, as well as doing a 9-day Isagenix Cleanse.

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But it’s not just about the menu plan… I have also neglected regular doctor visits for a long time, and this summer I found myself taking care of that part of my life too.   I haven’t even had a regular doctor or any health practitioner for that matter for a long time. My “health records” are scattered about in local LA clinics, and various doctors here and there. When you move to LA alone, and you’re self-employed, and making pennies, one of the first things to go is Health Insurance.   This year, when the Affordable Care Act went into effect, I was able to afford Health Care for the first time in 15 years! So in the past 2 months, I’ve found a primary care provider, got myself a physical and all sorts of blood work taken. I’ve visited a gynecologist, and got all that stuff taken care of including my first mammogram (as a 40 yr old woman), is scheduled for next week.   I also went and saw a holistic doctor who did a live blood analysis panel (so neat!), and put me on daily Chlorophyll and Candida De-Tox Drops. This may be a bit TMI, but I’m also participating in a set of 6 visits for Colonic Hydrotherapy as well. (2 more to go!).

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I’ve also started to exercise again. Slowly. I bought a Groupon for some Pilates Reformers classes that were awesome. I woke up after 4 classes, thinking my appendix was bursting, and then realized that it was just my ABS beginning to come back to life after 4 years of lethargy and binge eating. I’ve also been dancing a lot, and recently signed up for a month of Fire Dancing Classes. Two classes actually, Level 1 Fire Fans, and Level 2 Fire Poi! I’m really excited about that.

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All of this to say, I feel good. I’m taking care of myself. I’m also being careful not to set myself up for failure (or worse yet, some crazy obsessive behavior), by setting up some strict menu plan or exercise regime. I’m switching it up, pretty much on a weekly basis. Whatever Groupon catches my eye, that’s the exercise I’ll do. If I’m in the mood for a juice cleanse I’ll do that. If I’m in the mood to eat alkaline that week, I’ll do that.

And it’s working. I’ve dropped 17 pounds in two months, and am now under 200 pounds for the first time in about a year.

But more importantly, I’m recognizing that we only get one body, and we only get so long on this planet. There’s so much more I want to do in this lifetime, including travel and adventures, and have a family. I’m really lucky that the way I’ve treated my body, hasn’t caused any serious damages, and that all of the exams and tests I’ve done in the past few months, have come up with minor concerns, if anything.

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I’m gonna keep rocking my way to a healthy body and mind, and I hope you are too. And guess what? In the past few months, not only has my health and energy improved, but I’m attracting great projects and great people into my life on a daily basis. Our inner world, truly does reflect our outer world. Like they say.. You are what you eat AND the company you keep!   Choose Wisely!

 

Leah Cevoli

About Leah Cevoli

Leah Cevoli is a multi-talented entertainment professional whose work stretches across many genres. She is a rock ‘n roll enthusiast, body image activist, a certified yoga teacher, and fan of all things horror, Leah's acting credits include appearances on high profile tv shows like HBO’s "Deadwood," and voice-over on the Cartoon Network hit "Robot Chicken". Leah is a contributing writer for Ms. In The Biz and the founder of AllShapesAndSizesWelcome.com: Body Image & Women’s Issues in Entertainment, a group of women who speak on panels and at conventions nationwide. Leah has a reputation for crowdfunding success and social media magic. To date, her company, GreenlightYourPassionProject.com has managed 50+ campaigns, and have been instrumental in raising over $5,000,000 for indie projects. Her latest projects include: the feature-length documentary "Remember The Sultana" narrated by Sean Astin, the gritty feature-length drama, "Girl Lost," distributed thru Cinema Epoch, and the light hearted comedy, "Dance Baby Dance". All three films were released in the spring of 2018.