Meet Holistic Health Coach, Rayna McGinnis
Holistic Health Coach, Avid Rock Climber, Travel Addict, Lover of All Things Yoga, Animal Obsessed, Exercise + Nutrition Junky
But that just scratches the surface.
Over the last decade I’ve obtained two degrees in exercise science, built a successful wedding photography business in one of the most competitive markets in the US, got married, adopted six animals and all the while maintained a healthy diet, exercised a minimum of 200 days a year and traveled constantly. I was known as an overachiever, getting more done in a day that most people could get down in a week, a giver, constantly putting aside my needs to help out a friend, and a wine expert, consuming more than I’d like to admit most nights. I was trying to take the world by storm.
But I also battled chronic urinary tract infections, hypothyroidism, fatigue, panic disorder, severe anxiety, unexplained weight gain, systemic allergic reactions to medications as well as cold exposure, numerous food intolerances, leaky gut, candida overgrowth, multiple chemical sensitivity and most recently, heat intolerance, Celiac Disease and Dysautonomia.
With the right food choices and daily meditation, I was able to correct most of these things, but I still lived in fear of what was next. And it wasn’t until I was told I was healed, returned to my bad habits and collapsed while photographing a wedding that I realized that I hadn’t addressed the underlying issue. With five paramedics standing over me, all confused by my vitals and symptoms, I realized that life as I knew it was about to change.
I spent almost a month in bed, barely able to eat 500 calories each day and in constant fear of my life. I was 32 years old, my body was failing and none of my doctors knew what was happening to me or how to help. All of my test results were “normal” and my symptoms didn’t meet any western diagnosis. My head was spinning with anxiety and I hated myself. I hated my body. I hated my life. I was depressed, I was frustrated and I was pissed off.
But I wasn’t able to start healing until I realized the holistic nature of how the human body works and how STRESS, both good and bad, truly effects the body. My chronic illness was the result of constant stress caused by a chaotic life, the constant need to prove myself and the ever present toxins of western society. And I realized that in order to get better, I needed to take a holistic approach, and that in return I was going to have to go deep, work hard and learn to love and accept myself. And so I did. I turned to functional medicine, mindfulness and listening to my intuition.
My recovery consisted of only eating chicken and sweet potatoes for three months, and then slowly introducing one food back in at a time. It included supplementation that supported the various systems of my body. It consisted of starting to exercise very slowly, adding in one activity at a time, and learning to listen to my body. It consisted of embracing a mindful approach to life, incorporating in meditation, journaling and treasuring the “in between”. I detoxified my relationships, let go of activities that weren’t contributing to a positive life, retired the photography business I worked so hard to build and learned to breathe (apparently, when I am excited, I forget to do that…).
During this healing process I became in tune with my body in a way that I’d never been before, I built a support system of doctors, friends and family who I could truly depend on, I found strength inside of me that I never even knew I had. I found peace, happiness and hope for the future. I began to feel alive, healthy and EMPOWERED.
I’m still on my healing journey, but I can honestly say that I am healthier than I’ve been in a long time, and happier as well. I can eat a more balanced diet, I exercise almost every day, sometimes twice a day, and my energy levels are higher than they’ve been in over a decade. My anxiety has disappeared completely, my cold and heat intolerances have vanished, my gut has healed, my autonomic nervous system has recovered and I can even enjoy a glass of wine from time to time.
I am so grateful to have found functional medicine, mindfulness and the determination to take back my health. So grateful in fact that I want nothing more than to help others do the same. Which is why as soon as I started to feel better, I enrolled in a functional nutrition program and started building Luna Wellness Clinic. I’ve never felt so called to anything in my life.
I use to believe that I’d be sick for the rest of my life, but I am living proof that this isn’t true. If you’re ready to take control of your health, please get in touch. I’d love to support you on your health journey.