Dugouts and Diapers

Jessica Starr Nichols


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A Keto Birthday

Following Thanksgiving, I knew the next major hurdle would be my birthday. Well, thanks in part to the freezing temperatures and my great disdain for cold weather, I spent the majority of my birthday weekend at home. Also, the older I get, the less I enjoy always having to go somewhere. I enjoy being at home with my manclan!

I found an incredible Pinterest recipe for Keto Broccoli and Cheese Soup, and it was delicious! When I got off work Friday, I went home and made this soup. I get tired of eating the same things over and over. So, this soup was a nice change of pace.

My manclan let me open my birthday presents early, and it was perfect timing for some comfy slippers, a new lunchbox (Banks told me my old one was ugly! Hahaha), a new journal, and a 2018 planner (I love organization and order). It really was the perfect, low-key weekend.

The best surprise was yesterday morning when I weighed! I have lost 50.1lbs since July 31. I had been praying I would reach 50 lbs by my birthday, and I was pumped to see 50.1 lost! As far as inches go, I’ve lost right at 62 total inches. At this point, I have 100 more pounds to go to reach my first “desired weight”. Maybe by this time next year, I will be there! I wish I would have thought to take a picture yesterday in my church clothes. They were certainly more flattering and accentuated my weight loss better than a pair of scrubs did this morning, but such is the life!

My mom called me first thing this morning to wish me a happy 36th birthday, and she asked me if I felt older. I told her, “No, I actually feel amazing! I haven’t felt this good since before Banks was born.” It’s true! Even better than the great treasures I received for my birthday, the greatest gift this year is my health. It’s a gift that I will NEVER take advantage of again. Today was probably the first and only birthday that I’ve ever spent exercising when I first woke up and not eating a piece of birthday cake. 🙄 I wouldn’t have it any other way! I am excited for year 36, and I am beyond ready to tackle a Keto Christmas in a couple of weeks! I probably won’t post again before then, because for the next two weeks, my schedule is INSANELY busy! I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas, and check back after Christmas to see my favorite Keto Christmas snacks and some adorable pictures of my manclan!

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A Keto Thanksgiving

Make it through Thanksgiving without cheating on my diet…✔️

Go out of town for five days and stay on my diet…✔️

I hope everyone else had as wonderful of a Thanksgiving as my family did. We went to Chattanooga to spend the holiday with my brother and his fiancé and her family. It was so relaxing, and it is going down in my book as the best Thanksgiving to date!

The general assumption is that it’s impossible to go out of town and stay on a diet, and you can’t go to a true Southern Thanksgiving without blowing your diet out of the water. WRONG! I knew it was going to be a challenge, but I also knew that I could stay on track with hard work and determination. Dr. Bart had forewarned me that these next two months were going to be the hardest yet. So, mentally, I had been preparing myself to resist temptation. I knew everything I ate in those five days wasn’t going to be organic. So, to ensure I had at least one clean meal each day, I prepped breakfast bowls of organic, free-range scrambled eggs, organic sausage, and organic spinach to eat for breakfast each morning in the hotel room. Hydration was key! I drank only water, just as I have for the past 130 days, approximately 200 ounces each day. That kept things filtered and my downstream track clean and clear. I had also mentally prepared myself to do some intermittent fasting throughout the five days to keep my body in Ketosis.

Jud and Hope’s house was beautiful! The company was amazing, and the food was delicious. Our dinner was served around 6pm. So, I fasted from lunch on Thanksgiving, and when I got hungry, I dug through the Homemade Chex Mix and nibbled on the almonds. I forgot to take a picture of my plate once I fixed it, but I ate turkey, ham, Brussel sprouts, shrimp, half of a baked sweet potato with butter, spinach salad, and one piece of Keto Pumpkin Cheesecake. It was not difficult for me to skip over the potatoes, dressing, cakes, etc… Best of all, I didn’t feel miserable the following morning from overindulging. The hotel had a great gym, and I did my Burst Workouts every other day just as I was scheduled to do. This helped keep my energy level up, because we did a lot of walking over the next few days.

Friday night, Jud and Hope invited our kids to spend the night with them, which freed Adam and I up for a much needed date night. My thoughtful husband had pre-arranged a reservation at a completely organic farm to table restaurant for the two of us. Tupelo Honey Cafe was ADORABLE!!!! Great atmosphere, great service, and outstanding food! They bring you a basket of homemade biscuits with Tupelo honey and homemade jam before your meal…just push the basket to the side. That’s what we did. Adam had pork with a muscadine chutney and Brussel sprouts. I had the flank steak and eggs with hominy and mixed greens. When you order steak and you don’t get a steak knife with your food, you know it’s cooked right. It was tender and juicy and the runny eggs sent this dish over the edge! 😋 Best of all, it was totally on the Keto diet!

Now that I’ve tackled Thanksgiving, bring on Christmas!!!! I’m looking forward to more laughter, Phase 10 trash talk, food, fellowship, and family time! Keeping the weight off during the holidays isn’t an exact science or impossible. It’s a mind game. Your either committed or your not. I’m committed, and after losing two more pounds over Thanksgiving (grand total of 44 pounds), I have no doubt that I will be at the 50 pound mark by Christmas! I am so incredibly thankful for this journey and for my health this year! I hope that all my readers had a wonderful Thanksgiving as well. ❤️


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Thanks and Giving

Family, food, a home, a job, clothing, etc…the general list of things for which we are thankful. This year my list is a bit different. The top of my list remains the same with my salvation in Jesus Christ being what I’m most thankful for, but definitely number two on my list is my health. Without my health, I could not be the wife or mother or daughter or sister or friend that God created me to be. I could not be my best version of myself. This journey to great health has only just begun, but I’m incredibly thankful that I am no longer where I was 110 days ago.

Now that I have completed the True Cellular Detox, I will begin the Cellular Vitality Phase. This phase is helping to keep the purified pathways from the detox open, and throughout this phase, my damaged cells from years of living an unhealthy lifestyle will continue to repair themselves. I will continue on the Ketogenic Diet, and my burst workout routine will stay the same.

While I know remaining committed throughout the holidays will be a true test, I’m committed, determined, and ready! As of today, I have lost a total of 40 pounds and 44 5/8 inches. I NEVER want to undo what I’ve worked so hard to accomplish, and I never want to feel the way I felt four months ago!

None of my accomplishments would have been possible without certain people giving their time, talents, gifts, encouragement, and support. The first two pictures are of my Balance 30a family. Yes, I consider them family. From the moment I walked in their doors on July 28, 2017, they opened their hearts to me. I don’t want to play the “poor fat girl card,” but honestly, more times than not, obese people are overlooked, ignored, and frowned upon when they walk into any type of health facility, gym, clothing store, etc… Not at Balance Health Studio! These beautiful souls embraced, loved, and supported me from the moment I walked in the door. They wanted to help me get healthy. Emma and Whitney (both in the top picture) greeted me with a hug and a smile on a day that I was so scared and broken. They have encouraged me throughout this journey, and I was SUPER excited to see them yesterday. The second picture is of THE MAN, Dr. Bart Precourt! I worked with physicians for years, and I’ve never met a doctor that truly wanted his patients to be healthy the way Dr. Bart does. He gave me answers, encouragement, and hope, and for that, I will forever be grateful. My family has given me so much support and encouragement that I am humbled by how blessed I am to call them mine. I have the best parents on earth! They want me to be healthy and love me enough to encourage me and invest in my life. My manclan is beyond words. They have adapted to the Ketogenic Diet without complaint, and they actually feel better themselves. Without my manclan, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. Because of the encouragement they have given me, I am able to be a better wife and mother.

As we enter this week of reflecting on what we are thankful for, why not consider your health? Why not be the best version of yourself? The holidays are hard. There are emotional highs and lows, financial strain, gluttony, and a very busy schedule, but there are other options. I am excited to, for the first time in my life, consider what I’m putting in my body and being still in those moments of emotion and allow myself to feel. Utilizing the tools Dr. Bart has given me is going to allow me to be the best version of myself this holiday season.

So to my Balance 30a family, thank you for loving and supporting me. I can never put into words just exactly how grateful I am to know you all. To my parents, you’re everything God instructs a parent to be. You’re loving, caring, and you invest in us. I’m beyond thankful for you both. To my manclan, you are my heart and my strength. The love I have for you three is beyond. Thank you! To all who read my blog, have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Be your best you this week.❤️


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Realization, Results, and Rewards

Yesterday was the completion of, what I view as, the first leg of this race to becoming my best. One hundred days of detox ( 10 day pre-cleanse and 90 days of True Cellular Detox) are behind me. My mind, body, and soul are clear and ready for the other changes that are coming.

The journey hasn’t always been easy. There has been a lot of soul searching, pep talks, and discipline involved. My parents always told me, “Nothing worthwhile is going to come easy.” This journey has definitely been worthwhile. To have hope again is indescribable! On July 28, 2017, I walked into Balance30a raw, hopeless, and exhausted. While others had formed the opinion that I was mean, hateful, or crazy, Dr. Bart Precourt and his staff saw someone that they could help. I was sick. I completely own my behavior choices, but I now know that my body couldn’t function normally. It was grossly toxic and incapable of normal performance. Grateful….it’s the only word I can come up with to describe how I feel. I’m so full of gratitude not only for the Balance 30a team but also for my family and the friends that believed in me and encouraged me. I’m grateful that I feel alive again. I’m especially humbled and grateful for the Holy Spirit’s gift of self-control and patience. Those are two that I did not possess prior to this journey.

Within this post, I’m going to outline three main areas of my journey: Realization, Results, and Rewards.

REALIZATION: The first step was for me to realize that I was unhealthy and despite my best efforts, I needed help. I was irritable, lacked self-control, exhausted, and emotional. I cried from the time I walked in Balance 30a until I got back to my parents condo that day in July. The realization that hormonal imbalance, weight gain, and the way I felt and acted was caused by the types of foods and beverages I had put in my body over the years was mind-blowing. Realizing that our bodies weren’t created to process anything except organic, clean foods was hard. It’s expensive, and it seems pretentious, but I am living proof that what you put in your body will either ruin you or rescue you. Realizing that everything from sleep, my complexion, energy, my epilepsy, and mood can be controlled and changed through what I eat is just more proof that there is a God and He is alive, real, and working!

RESULTS: The family photo above the previous section was a before picture of me, and that wasn’t even me at my heaviest. The two pictures above were taken last Friday. Over the course of these 100 days, I have lost 38 pounds and 40 5/8 total inches. Here’s a breakdown of inches lost on each section of my body….Calf- 5 1/2” Thigh- 5 1/4” Hips- 8” Waist- 5 1/2” Subcostal- 5” Chest- 5” Forearm- 2 1/4” Bicep- 3 5/8”.

Above are photos of the final results of my VCS Test, my Neurotoxicity questionnaire, and my MetaOxy Test. My original score on the VCS Test was 68%, which was extremely toxic and unhealthy. It revealed the presence of biotoxins as well as nutritional deficiency. Yesterday, I scored 90%, with NO presence of biotoxins, NO nutritional deficiency, and in the healthy range. The original score on the neurotoxicity questionnaire was 20, which revealed an unhealthy range of toxins in my body, and my score yesterday was 4, which is in the healthy range. My favorite test, the MetaOxy Test, is a urinalysis. The range is 0-7 as indicated on the test strip. My original results were 7+, and yesterday’s results revealed I was in the 0-1 range. I’m in awe and extremely humbled by these physical, visible results. There are also results that can’t be seen. They can only be felt. I feel so good now that I know I must have been on the brink of death before. Like I’ve said before, you never know just how sick you are until you feel better!

REWARDS: No, I’m not going out to eat or celebrating the end of the first leg of this race by undoing what I’ve worked so hard to achieve. Instead of being foolish, I baked a Keto Pumpkin Cheesecake. It is completely organic, contains no sugar or gluten, and has only 1.5 carbohydrates per slice. This recipe was a Pinterest find, and it is FINE! The intangible rewards are the amount of energy I have, the motivation to continue on this journey, and the compliments I receive on a daily basis from the people I come in contact with.

Again, gratitude is the word I keep reverting back to. I’m just so grateful for this experience and everyone that has helped me, loved me, and encouraged me along the way. I’m grateful for change. I’m grateful that the Ketogenic diet is easy to follow, delicious, and filling. Lastly, I want to encourage anyone who may feel hopeless with their weight and health to call Dr. Bart Precourt at Balance 30a and allow he and his staff to help you. This True Cellular Detox journey has been incredible, and I’m thankful for those of you that followed my blog throughout my journey. Don’t worry! It doesn’t end here. I will certainly continue to update you all on my progress as I continue to press on toward my ultimate goal.💕


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Brain Phase is for the Birds

I am sorry to report that the Brain Phase has not gotten any better. I am approaching the end of the third week of this phase, and I still feel weak and a bit deprived of energy. Despite not losing a pound in the past two weeks, I am still extremely motivated to reach my goals. It is very difficult to continue exercising, eating exactly what you are supposed to, and following the rules exactly when there are little to no results. I like results! I am doing my part, now my body needs to follow suit, or so it should according to my logic! 😜

Dr. Bart Precourt warned me that I would reach this TEMPORARY plateau. I am going to keep it real with you, there have been several times, I have wanted to say, “screw it!” The important thing is I haven’t! When everyone around me was eating a big juicy burger and fries at my granny’s birthday, I ate blackened salmon and a bowl of broccoli, or when my patient ate fried chicken and ice cream at lunch, I diligently cooked and ate my eggs and spinach. By nature, I am a rule follower. I do not like disappointing people, and so many people have invested time, money, and energy into helping me be healthy. That is why I haven’t given up. I also know if I go back to the lifestyle of poor eating habits, lack of exercise, and depression, I will never recover. I NEVER want to be that person again!

I do not want you all to think there has been absolutely no progress at all. Although the scales have not changed in two weeks, I have lost inches, and others are finally starting to comment on and notice my weight loss, and results are being seen in my clothes. As of this morning, I have lost 35 pounds, 34 5/8 inches, and my scrub pants are cinched above my belly button and baggy like clown pants. I have been wearing clothes that I have not been able to wear in years. Last night I went to a play with my granny, my sister, and my mom, and I wore a dress that I have not been able to wear in 4 years. I did reach my goal of weighing what I did when I found out I was pregnant with Weston, and my next goal is to lose 30 more pounds by Valentine’s Day. When I reach this goal, I will weigh what I did when I got married. I know the progress will continue to come as long as my dedication remains. It is just difficult to keep going when your body is clearly not receiving the message to get with the program. Hahaha!

Monday, I begin the final seven days of this 110 day journey. On November 17, I get to see Dr. Bart and the Balance 30a team. I cannot wait to see all these sweet souls that have been so encouraging and kind, and I cannot wait to see what Dr. Bart has planned for the next leg of my journey. This has been hard, and long, and I am not oblivious to the fact that it is still going to take a lot of time and dedication to get to where I want to be, and it is always going to be hard. I think what it comes down to is you have to ask yourself, “do you want to continue to be an unhealthy big tub of goo” or “do you want to be your best?” For me, I want to be my best! Next week I will be breaking down all the detailed results of my 110 day journey of True Cellular Detox. Come back, read all about it, and be inspired to be your best!


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Oh The Brain Phase

So far the True Cellular Detox has been a land of rainbows and butterflies, but the first week of the Brain Phase has been a doozie!

The Brain Phase involves a lot of steps. Every morning for the first seven days, I took a morning packet, a Brain packet, and the sublingual cytodetox. In the afternoon, I took an afternoon packet, a Brain packet, and the sublingual cytodetox. At bedtime, I took the night packet. The second week is back to just one packet every morning, afternoon, and night. I began week two today, and boy did my body need a break! The first five days, I was nauseated for about 3 hours every morning. The nausea subsided Saturday morning, but I’ve been EXTREMELY lethargic since beginning the Brain Phase as well. I’ve continued with my burst workouts, but I am going to be completely honest and let you know that I had to give myself a pep talk and make myself exercise last week. I am not sure if it was the intensity of the Brain Phase or if it is PMS or if it is how busy life is right now or a combination of the three, but I am so thankful for a week of fewer steps and rules to follow.

Following the Prep Phase, I posted the results of my toxicity testing, and I was blown away and amazed, but nothing compared to the results of my testing following the Body Phase! As I mentioned a few posts ago, when I first met with Dr. Bart Precourt and his Balance 30a staff, my Neurotoxic questionnaire score was over 20, and it is now down to an 8. HUGE improvement! My original MetaOxy urine test results were 7+. After the Prep Phase, my toxicity level was between a 5 and a 6, and as you can see in the photo above, the toxicity level has decreased to between a 1 and a 2. This was mind blowing! Lastly, the results of my VCS toxicity test have gone from 65% in July, which was highly toxic, to 89% at the end of the Body Phase, which is just 1% away from what the testing depicts as “healthy”. In the seventy-seven days since my initial consultation, I have lost 34.6 pounds and 32 inches. All of these results are the driving force behind my determination to keep going despite the tough times that came with the beginning of the Brain Phase.

My other three driving forces are my husband, my Banks, and my Weston. I want to be healthy for them. I want to enjoy every moment of this life with them. They are my heart and my loves. They are worth persevering for. So, as I begin week two of the Brain Phase, I am praying for renewed strength and energy, because life certainly is not going to slow down anytime soon. I would appreciate your prayers too. Thank you all for reading my little blog and for walking this journey with me. I am incredibly thankful and humbled.💕


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Body Phase Update

So, two weeks into the Body Phase of True Cellular Detox and the changes are crazy! Now, the first week was quite uneventful. I didn’t lose any weight, and I had only lost two inches. That was also a very emotional and stressful week due to multiple things, but I had been forewarned by Dr. Bart that my body would check to see if I was serious about the changes I’ve been making. He told me to stay focused and committed to eating well and exercising, and my body would catch up. Of course, he was right! This week I lost just over three pounds and three inches. In a total of nearly two months (one month and 24 days), I’ve lost 23 pounds and 23 7/8 inches! Yes, every 1/8 of an inch counts! Hahaha! To put that into perspective, my boys weighed about 23 pounds at 18 months old, and they felt heavy to tote around! I don’t say this to be conceited, because I’m truly a selfless person, but I’m so proud of myself. There’s such a sense of pride I feel as I look in the mirror everyday. I’m thankful for that, because I needed that self-confidence.My ultimate goal seems so much more achievable now. I also feel so great that I don’t want to stop or give up! While the results are incredible, it’s not always rainbows and butterflies! There have definitely been times I’ve felt like Regina from Mean Girls! I feel like I cook and eat the same meals over and over again, and it’s a bit monotonous. Praise Jesus for Pinterest!!!!! You can find a Keto version of every recipe known to man, and it’s been a complete game changer. We have, of course, continued using 100% organic products, and they make everything taste better. I’ve also experienced extreme thirst, especially since beginning the Body Phase. I’m not exaggerating when I tell you I’m consistently drinking a gallon and a half to two gallons of water each day. While the bathroom breaks become exhausting, it just reminds me that my body is indeed in that state of ketosis, and it is indeed burning fat! I’m literally a fat-burning machine! Thankfully, I haven’t really craved any carbs. About once a week, I will want something sweet, but one square of 78% dark chocolate hits the spot. Prior to my visit with Dr. Bart and his team at Balance 30a, it would not have phased me to eat half a pint of ice cream three nights/week or more. I’m just amazed at how my body isn’t craving the things it once did.Lastly I’m going to share with you how pumped I was this morning when I was trying to decide what to wear to church, and I was able to wear a cute little dress I bought two years ago and was never able to wear. I refused to take it back and get another size, because I told myself that it would fit someday, and that someday was today! Whoop whoop!!!! Stretch marks on my loose skin are beginning to appear, and they aren’t cute, but when I lose all my weight, I will find a plastic surgeon to fix all that nonsense. Hahaha. I honestly can’t find anything to complain about too much, because the way I feel and am beginning to look is just incredible. I pray and ask you to pray with me that when I post an update in mid-October, 3 weeks from now, I have lost 10 more pounds! I know it’s going to be tough, but it’s possible. The reason this is important is because October 16 is Weston’s 5th birthday, and if I lose ten pounds by then, I will be back at the weight I was when I became pregnant with him. It’s been a long five years since I’ve seen that number, and it will just be a personal victory for me. Thank you all for reading, and I will update again soon!