The Healing Dudes: Getting out of Long Covid and Chronic Lyme together

YouTube interview:

Written transcript:

Liz: All right. I’m so excited today to be with Josh and Joe, The Healing Dudes, as you might know them from Instagram, and they’re two friends who have both been on their own journeys with Chronic Lyme [and Long Covid] and now they’re helping others and sharing their wisdom. And I’m so honored guys that you’re chatting with me today about your stories.

[0:25] Joe: Yeah. Thanks so much. Appreciate you having us.

Liz: So I like to start off by asking my guests, what’s your purpose for sharing your stories and what got you to team up and to start the Healing Dudes?

Josh: Quite the journey. So Joe and I have known each other for about 16, 17 years. We’ve both had Chronic Lyme for about the same time and only known each other on Facebook.

I think we met once or twice. We both had an interest in cars and racing and music and all these different things, but it was kind of a fair-weather friendship. He gotten better and kind of went back to a normal life, and I stayed sick. And then he ended up getting Long Covid after being well for so many years, and our friendship kind of escalated to something where we were holding each other accountable.

Like he was my lifeline, and I was his lifeline. We were literally keeping each other alive during this time that I was feeling very sick and he was, too. And ultimately he got to the point where he couldn’t work, and I was struggling down here in Florida. And he didn’t have a job, and we’re like, “Dude, come down to Florida. Let’s try and heal together, man. Let’s try and make this work.”

I have a chaotic household full of four kids and a spouse and Joe’s a single guy, so it’s quite the dynamic shift, but he came down here and we began to start healing together to start applying a lot of the things that we’ve kind of done some research on finding people that have healed from chronic illness instead of going to support groups.

And within the first couple months, we saw this radical accountability really shift our lives. And from there, through meditation and visualization, and stuff, was birthed The Healing Dudes, where the whole idea was, let’s cultivate a community of people that want to heal together and completely change your lifestyle from one of identifying with a chronic illness, Lyme disease, mold, whatever it may be, to identifying as a group of people that are healing.

And here’s some healthy lifestyle changes. And here’s some visualizations that you guys can do. And I mean, there’s a whole myriad, and I’ll let Joe kind of hammer on that.

It’s been something that’s helped us heal.

Liz: So. Awesome. And did you, Joe, want to explain more about the purpose of the healing dudes?

[2:34] Joe: Yeah. So the purpose that we saw was a couple of things. One, there’s not a ton of guys that are sharing their healing journey on social media. You know, as males, we tend to sort of go introverted, become shameful of ourselves of having a chronic illness.

We hide all of that sort of stuff. And, you know, Josh and I, we both lost friends in the chronic illness community to suicide, and we saw a really big need to represent the male community in healing in general. But more than that, we also saw a need for us to share our own healing journey. You know, a lot of people in chronic Lyme communities, in chronic illness communities, they tend to sort of heal and then come back and be like, “This is how I healed.”

Well, because I’ve healed in the past a couple of times, and because we started seeing some progress, we were like, “Let’s just share our healing journey with people and help people as we’re healing.”

Because we see a value in showing people the healing journey as it’s going, not just coming back at the end and being like, “this is how I healed,” but like, “this is how I’m healing.” And this is what the journey is like. So those are the two things for sure that our purpose of why we really created the healing dudes.

[3:56] Josh: When we did specifically dive in to try and help males, but honestly, it’s grown into something that encompasses everybody.

We want to be able to try and help everybody heal and give people hope that spurs them towards belief that healing truly is indeed possible. That if you have a chronic illness that it’s not a death sentence, that you don’t have to attach it and literally sink to the bottom of the ocean with it.

We’ve seen ourselves make so much progress in healing. We’ve seen people heal in our classes and stuff like that, and that’s what we’re trying to share is that there is hope. It’s hard. But there is hope.


Liz: Yeah. And I just want to say way to go guys, because there is such a lack of men putting themselves out there and being vulnerable and saying, this is what I’m going through because we have such a culture that says men need to be so strong and keep it all in and put up that front.

And I know from just looking at my YouTube statistics, there are a lot of guys watching these videos, but the stories you hear are mostly women. And that’s a myth that it just happens to women because we do have that culture, which tells guys, “you just need to hold it all in and put up that front.”

Joe: Yeah, unfortunately, that’s been the case.

I mean, and both Josh and I have done that a lot over the years. We kind of held it in. We kind of just suffered in silence. You know, we spent time talking to one another. But yeah, I think a lot of guys, you know, they feel shameful about being chronically ill. 

And while we don’t like to attach to an illness or whatever, it’s really important to have that balance of like understanding that it’s okay to need help.

It’s okay to be sick and vulnerable. And like that as a guy, it doesn’t make you weak. It doesn’t make you less strong or whatever. If anything, the thing that we’re learning is that people resonate more with us being vulnerable and sharing our story, and doing it in a way that helps to empower other men and other people to speak up, but also do it in a way that’s empowering to them, and not in such a victim mentality.

You know, obviously we’re dealing with chronic illness. It sucks. But like now what can you do to help yourself heal and take your power back from the illness?

[06:05] Liz: Ooh, taking your power back from the illness.

Liz: So before we get to what has been helping you heal, I want to take it back and talk about some of your low points and experiences with the medical system and how bad things were.

Let’s start there with talking about the symptoms you guys faced.

[6:29] Josh: I think for Joe and I, a lot of our symptoms were very much the same. I felt completely failed by the medical community. Um, I went misdiagnosed for almost three years, and I mean, I went to John Hopkins, Mayo Clinic, all over. I mean, even traditional Lyme doctors, I’d saw multiple, and unfortunately I never gotten better.

And I, in the beginning became so sick, I was barely driving to work, and then I ended up having to leave work and went on disability. And the fatigue was so profound, I would either sleep 19 hours a day, or I would go two hours without sleeping. It just, it varied. The anxiety, the derealization, depersonalization, heart palpitations, agoraphobia, depression.

I mean, literally any symptom that could… and it’s been a long time. 17 years is a long time. And I was a figurehead in the Lyme community. I founded a non-profit. We marched on Capitol Hill. We protested CDC, the IDSA, and I got to really see just how sick people were.

How sick I was – at my worst, I had neuropathy from my waist down. I couldn’t feel anything. I was in a wheelchair. My son was homeschooled, so he could take care of me. So I’ve really been to the bottom of the barrel of this.

When I was 32, I’m 43 now, I was seeing an electrophysiologist. We were three weeks away from me getting a pacemaker. I mean, it was really, really, really bad.

And to be honest, I didn’t want to live anymore. I had no quality of life. I had no friends. Everybody from my former life, from my career, from all that, you know, I was an engineer for the federal government before. Joe was an art director. So we had these fulfilling lives and fulfilling careers. And when you just spiral down, and now you’re a sick person. And I got sick at 26, now I lost most of my twenties and my thirties to my illness.

And, you know, people will [be like] “silver lining, perspective.” I was like, “nah,” I didn’t have any of that. I was just sick all the time. I couldn’t get out of the house. I felt like I was constantly dying and being transparent, like many men in the chronic illness community and women, I tried to take my life because I just, I didn’t know how to be a father, how to be a spouse, how to be a friend.

I was sick in bed and literally just felt like I was a charity case. I didn’t have the support that I needed. And I just didn’t want to be a burden to anybody anymore. And I didn’t see any hope of me ever getting better unless there was some miracle pill.

I’d done all the treatments. I did IV ozone, IV antibiotics, hyperbaric oxygen, IV vitamin C, Myers cocktails.

Liz: I know all those [Liz note: I know about them, and tried the later two. Nothing we share is medical advice].

[9:00] Josh: All these different treatments and all these different cures that people come out with. And I just never felt better. And that’s kind of where I was at. And I really started to make a turn about seven or eight months ago when Joe came down here.

Liz: Wow. I just wanted to say that, yeah.

You’ve been the absolute rock bottom and now you’re here. I just want to honor that and just extend my heart out to anyone out there listening who is having those suicidal thoughts and feeling like you’re a charity case. No, you are not. Your life has value. There is so much hope for you, no matter how bad it is.

[9:42] Josh: And you’re not alone. 

[9:44] Joe: You’re not alone. And as sick as you are, there’s always hope, and you can get better. That’s the message. You know, I’ll touch on my story just briefly. I got sick at age 21 when I was in college, had to drop out of school, went undiagnosed for almost a year, and then spent several years trying all sorts of treatments.

For me, you know, it affected all parts of my body. Neurologically is where I was affected the most, like Josh talks about. Depersonalization, derealization, dizziness, vertigo, headaches, vision problems, numbness, tingling, muscle twitching, all of that sort of stuff, intense fatigue. And then I had a lot of GI issues, a lot of gut issues and things like that as well.

But kind of like Josh, I spent many, many years trying all sorts of treatments, some limited success here and there, but it wasn’t until I learned about sort of mind-body healing tactics, that really I started to get my health back.

Now it was not easy. It took some time, and it was very, very difficult But it was ultimately the way that I started to heal, and then healed myself.

Now obviously I relapsed after that when I got Covid again. All of the symptoms sort of came back. What I will say is to utter Josh’s sentiment where like we’ve been at the sickest of the sick, and just because you get there doesn’t mean you can’t get out of there.

I know a lot of people that become really sick, chronically ill, they feel like they’re just too far gone to heal. 

And that’s our message is you are not too far gone to heal. 

Even if you had, like Josh mentioned, he was in a wheelchair, neuropathy from the waist down, all of the neurological stuff. And when I’ve healed in the past, and how I’m healing now, all of the symptoms do resolve and you can get better.

[11:34] Liz: So I do want to ask Joe, so you had a recovery from Lyme after many years, then you get knocked down by Covid. You had said you used a mind body approach to heal from the Lyme initially. Did you see any old patterns come back maybe of stress before leading up to Covid?

[11:57] Joe: [Smiles.] Yep, that’s exactly what happened.

Covid was like just a straw that broke the camel’s back. Um, prior to that, I had been dealing with a ton of stress through work. Well, I went back to working in advertising, and I went back to drinking, and not putting the best stuff in my body, not taking care of my body as much. So I was adding a lot of external stress through work, through relationship stress, through trying to be a perfectionist through my work, putting so much stress on myself.

I was also getting my master’s degree at the same time as working. And it was, you know, just a combination of things. And then I finally got Covid, and that’s when it just crashed my immune system. I was getting sicker prior to that. I was having more flare ups and symptoms, and I was having more run down days, but it wasn’t like really, really full on relapse.

It wasn’t affecting my life completely. Until I got COVID. So yeah.

Liz: Yeah, I definitely relate. [Liz note: I never got Long Covid, but it relates in the sense how I was initially knocked down with ME/CFS.]

Liz: All right. So Josh, you had talked a little bit about how this affected your family. Can you describe more how this affected your family and how? This has made your family stronger now, but I’m sure it wasn’t always like that.

[13:20] Josh: Yeah, no. Chronic illness is something that wreaks havoc on a family. It will absolutely rip it to shreds if there is not a strong foundation.

When I’d gotten sick, I had one kid. I have four now. That’s why I have no hair. [Laughter.] It is been an incredible, it’s been a bittersweet journey. There’s been many highs and lows, some incredibly viral moments that led to being on talk shows and national media and stuff.

So at the very beginning, when I got sick, I was 26. I was at the peak of my career. I’d just been promoted to senior engineer. And my spouse didn’t have to work at the time. So everything was taken care of. Life was grand, you know, white picket fence. We just had a baby. Things couldn’t have been more perfect.

And then you hit the wall of chronic illness, and I was struggling to get out of bed. I was struggling at work. I played men’s travel basketball. I couldn’t do that anymore. I would literally go to work. I couldn’t even eat dinner. I would go face down on the bed as soon as I got home. I would wake up in the morning, shower, and do it again.

And so I eventually got so exhausted that I just could not work anymore. And obviously, mortgage, car payments, you know, bills don’t stop when chronic illness comes in. They’re still there. I worked in D.C., so it was a two hour commute to work and a two hour commute home, and that took everything. And I would get sick in the parking lot before work and driving home.

I don’t even remember the car drives most of the time. I was just that sick. And it started to put a wedge between my wife and I, because all the doctors that I was going to said, “You just have anxiety, you’re overworked, it’s depression. It’s all in your head.”

Yes, I was anxious, but I also was anxious because there was stuff going on inside of my body that was far more than anxiety that I just couldn’t quite explain.

And the last doctor that I had seen wrote on a piece of paper, he’s like, “You are healthy.” And he folded it up and he gave it to me, and he told my wife and my family that had gone to the doctor’s appointment with him. They’re like, anytime that he’s feeling sick, have him look at this. So I’m supposed to look at this piece of paper and it says “you are healthy.”

It’s going to make me feel great. It’s like, fantastic! He’s like, all your blood work’s been fine. Like all your workups are okay. And stuff like that. And, you know, ultimately I ended up meeting someone online that had me get tested through different labs for Lyme disease. Once I got those labs, I went back to that doctor, and I was banging on the counter.

I was like, “Look, dude, you ruined my life.” Like I’d lost it, but you know, I had to stop working. I went on disability. So my wife had to go back to school. So the whole dynamic of a relationship changed. And I’d become so sick that my then seven-year-old son was the one that was taking care of me. That transition to the neuropathy from the waist down, I’m in a wheelchair, so everything from going to the bathroom to getting food, like he’s bringing my supplements, my medications, and stuff that a kid shouldn’t have to.

And he was a seven and eight year old kid taking care of his sick father. And then, I mean, the incredible viral moments that happened like the Golden State Warriors and Steph Curry invited us out because [my son] had a video that went viral, and just everything just absolutely exploded. And after that, we had that brief moment of happiness.

And then I just crashed again. You know, it took everything to go out to San Francisco and to go there. And I mean, I’ve ruined trips to Disney World, like we’d buy the tickets, I’d get there, and I would just be so overwhelmed that we’d have to come back, and, you know, hospital say after hospital say, and literally next thing you know, the entire family’s identity revolves around being sick.

Doctors appointments, medications, bankruptcy – that happened way, way back in the early 2000s because of chronic illness. So it does put a huge stress on it. I now have four kids and it’s crazy to say the least, and it’s definitely had its challenges. It’s like there’s definitely been times that we all wanted to kill each other [jokingly said]. Not literally.

But at the end of the day, I know who has my back.

And now that I have the diagnosis, and now that I’m trying to heal and going through that, like my kids are all super aware of what’s going on.

You know, I push for them, they push for me, and that’s kind of it.

I’m not saying it’s easy at all. Like there’s definitely times where things blow up. But at the end of the day I’ve been married for 22 years. And I mean, I don’t know how I would have made it through this journey without them.

Now I will say, they weren’t enough for me to want to stay checked in. Like when I tried to take my life, I felt as if I wasn’t the provider that I needed to be, or I wasn’t the person that they needed to look up to.

So I want to encourage anybody, whatever spectrum you’re on, whether you’re single, whether you have family, it doesn’t matter. We have to have a purpose and getting better can be that purpose. So that’s kind of it in a very small nutshell.

[17:44] Liz: Wow. Thank you for that radical honesty and being honest that yes, sometimes we can blow up at our family, just the stress of being sick and not wanting to be a burden and just trying to go anywhere.

It does affect the whole family.

Liz: I want to talk about… It’s so interesting because all three of us and most of us who are healing or who have healed, we all had that medical PTSD of being told, “Oh, it’s just anxiety.”

Yet we are now healing through mind body methods. So when people, and I’m sure you’ve gotten some upset people, I’ve gotten some internet trolling of people saying, “You’re just one of them!

“You’re that doctor who I was like…” No, I experienced the same terrible gaslighting as you. Their one little comment, just dismissing it, versus all the mind body work we do, with the understanding of the nervous system, and how that intricately affects our entire bodily processes.

Yeah. So I want to talk now about your epiphany after having gone for years of medical PTSD like the rest of us.

So when did you realize, okay, this doctor was an a-h*le who just said I was anxious…but I mean anxiety is part of the whole nervous system…so when did you have that epiphany? That the mind and the state of my nervous system had a role in this?

[19:23] Joe: Yeah, so it’s kind of funny that you brought that up because so after I first got better, I actually ended up writing a book called “It’s all in my head.”

It was kind of, you know, taking that power back, but also kind of like mocking the doctors that kind of said that, because we get that right. But, you know, neurological Lyme and all that stuff it is in your head. It had several meanings, and I think one of the last lines in the book is like, “When doctors told me it was all in my head, maybe they were on to something.”

Not to mean that they were like, right in the way they were saying it was all in my head, but a lot of the healing that I experienced came from healing my mindset, came from healing my body through the power of neuroplasticity and things like that.

And we do get a lot of the hate sometimes, that you were talking about, that you experienced, where people think we’re spouting pseudoscience, but I think everyone has to go through that journey of like, let me try this, let me try these external things to get me well, IV antibiotics, you know, oral antibiotics, if it’s, ozone, and I’m not saying they don’t work in some cases, and they don’t help somewhat, but if that is your foundation for healing, it’s going to be hard to heal.

Mindset, the mind-body aspect of healing, I believe needs to be number one priority in your healing. This epiphany came to me after about four or five years of being sick, and I had gotten into sort of like meditating, and I’ve gotten into, honestly, I’d gotten into a little bit of like law of attraction type stuff. I’m like trying to like manifest my health or whatever, which, you know, it didn’t necessarily make an immediate impact.

But about four or five years into my healing journey, I realized, “Okay, I’ve been sick for four or five years, I tried all these treatments, I seem to get a little better, a little worse, and I just stay stuck.”

I basically said to myself, “If this illness was going to kill me, it would have already killed me. I am going to do my best to do everything in my power to heal, but I’m going to let go of everything that I cannot control.” And I began this thing where I said, I’m going to live my life, regardless of how I feel.

And I started implementing a new lifestyle, like radical lifestyle shift, where I started taking my power back. You know, I was obviously doing the meditation, and I was doing a lot of nervous system healing work. And I had always done a very healthy diet, but the last piece that was missing in my life was I had become a victim to the illness, and I had let the illness basically strip away everything in my life, and I just wasn’t going to let that happen anymore.

And that’s when I began to live my life, even while I was sick. And I was doing the nervous system, sort of healing, the mind-body healing stuff. And as I began to get out of my comfort zone of sickness and stop identifying with the illness and began to live my life and start doing things that I wanted to do.

I started a part time job. I started going back to school. My body began to heal, you know, people want to say like, “Oh, this is nonsense,” but it truly is…when you do all this type of work, and you begin to sort of live your life as though you were healing, your body will begin to heal. So that was sort of the epiphany for me.

And when I saw myself heal, I’m like, wow, again, like I’ll go back to what I wrote in the book. Maybe the doctors were on to something where it’s like, you know, not that the physiological illness is not there, but a big part of healing is not letting it completely destroy your life and completely stop you in your tracks, because that’s what happens with a lot of us.

And, you know, had I gone back, I wouldn’t have gotten so angry. I would have understood that, but also understood that to not stop my life. You know, Josh lost 15 to 16 years of his life. I lost like five years of my life in my early and mid 20s.

I eventually kind of learned that aspect through reading books, through all of this stuff of people who have healed, and they all had that component of changing their mindset and doing all of this type of work.

[23:51] Liz: There’s a couple of things that you said. First, the law of attraction. That’s where I actually started, too. It was the Abraham Hicks series, the Secret, those types of things, Louise Hay. And that was my introduction into this world. And that helped me just getting out of the resistance, too, because I was always fighting against things.

And that was a pattern in my entire life. Like I was the fighter, but learning to just surrender and then focus on what I did want.

Liz: I want to ask you Josh, because Joe, you had talked about going and living your life, but Josh, you would try to do that. Like you try to live your life and be a normal dad and go to Disneyland and that caused setbacks.

But Joe, you had said you had started part time. So I’m wondering your thoughts, both of you on that, when you say live your life. Well, we know what happens if we try to live our life, but do you think it was because of the gradual approach you took while doing all these other things that were supporting your lifestyle and your nervous system?

[Joe nods.]

[25:00] Josh: So what I’ve seen is the people that try to fight and just get through it and they don’t let go and surrender when you’re gritting your teeth, you’re signaling to yourself that you’re fighting a battle. So you’re telling your nervous system in your body that there’s clearly something wrong. You’re preparing it for this.

When I began to just let go, surrender and let it come as it comes, you know, realizing that I cannot control the timeline. I have zero control over time. And this is the biggest thing that pisses me off in the healing community.

There are so many pretty pictures of programs and people that just look healed and stuff like that. And they paint it as though it’s this easy thing and it’s not healing is hard work. But it’s not a battle that you fight. If you try to fight through this, if you try to grit your teeth, if you try to put your nose to the plow and go down, it’s just simply not going to work.

And when I realized that, you know, what I was doing is the whole time that I was going to Disney, I was like this [clenched up[, I was a mess. I am absolutely broadcasting into the future what exactly is going to happen when I get to Disney World. Oh my gosh, you’re going to pass out. Oh my gosh, you’re going to die.

You’re going to need to be in a wheelchair. How are you going to operate with all these people? Instead of… Visualizing and meditating on it being a successful and healing trip. So by the third month of our [healing dudes] class, one of the things I was scared of is flying and leaving the state. So I flew to Vegas and Utah, and I took all these trips that I had in 17 years to show myself that regardless of where I am at, I am safe when I am present.

So my surrounding area doesn’t matter. It is when I am with myself, when I am present, that is where I am safe.

So the difference is. I’ve seen people get better when they choose to just let go of the identity of being sick. And I know it sounds hooky, but there’s a lot of science that actually supports this.

And this is what’s great. I had a friend that was really sick. He was sicker than I was. And he just decided to get up and leave his toxic relationship, backpack across the country. Next thing I know, he’s like working on a farm in California and living in a beach hut down in Mexico. And he chose to live and to not fight. But to let go. And he didn’t get better instantly, but gradually over time.

All he would talk about his gratitude, and he wouldn’t focus so much on his symptoms. Yes, he was symptomatic, but he wasn’t talking about them all the time.

The step that we use is we visualize and then meditate on the life that we want to live. So if you want to be healthy, obviously we’ve got to begin acting as if there were healing and doing healing activities. So it’s gradual.

So for me, I was completely agoraphobic. I didn’t just jump out and go, you know, get on a plane, like I would go to Walmart. Sometimes I’d run out. But what I had to realize is Joe says this a lot. We had to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. So when I learned to be able to sit with everything that was going on and realize that it wasn’t going to harm me.

In 17 years, I hadn’t died, but I’d placed all these roadblocks and fears in my head that have completely limited my life and stopped my life completely.

So I believe that even though you’re chronically sick, you can still live a completely full life. It’s this idea that we completely surrender to our fears and symptoms and give them so much more power than they really have.

And we all know when our nervous system’s out of whack, our GI is out of whack, everything’s not operating in an optimal state. Of course, we’re going to feel like crap.

And normally to answer your first question, I was fighting through it. I was like, I am going to get through this. I’m going to pull my bootstraps up. I am going to win! I’m going to fight.

And that’s not it. It’s surrendering. It’s letting go. It’s taking moments. Sometimes instead where I would sit there, and I would literally like do this [hugs self]. It was letting go, it was tapping. It was meditating. It was breathing.

And when people used to tell me just breathe, I wanted to punch him in the face because I wasn’t going to get me through this.

But then I literally saw ways to regulate my nervous system and to calm things down and to come inward in my body. And then I realized, “Hey, look. I’m able to get through this.” And as I began to do these things, it’s not like we have this spontaneous healing, but we calm our nervous system down. We calm our brain down.

We begin to practice gratitude. And I think that’s really where the shift begins to happen. And when your body’s in an optimal state, and it’s regulated, the immune system begins to function as it’s supposed to. The digestive tract works as it should. All the neurotransmitters are getting to where they need to, you know, when we’re happier people, obviously, we’re producing serotonin instead of cortisol and adrenaline.

And I think that’s the difference, is when I would go to Disney World, I was full of adrenaline. I was ready for a fight. And now, if I were to go, I’ve told myself multiple times through affirmations, and it’s work, it’s hard work, that I’m going to be successful, that I’m going to be okay, that this is all going to turn out alright.

[29:33] Joe: Yeah, and I’ll touch on sort of my experience. It’s very similar.

Um, It is a gradual process and it was for me. So what I would do is when I began, you know, sort of living my life, there’s a lot of success and failure in there and Josh can attest that as well.

When you’re beginning to re-enter the world after you’ve been sick for so long and you’re kind of letting go of all of this stuff you can’t control and you’re still trying to live while you’re sick.

There are some failures throughout that, but like Josh said, I had to sort of accept where I was is something that I’ve really latched on to heal was this concept…it’s a therapy term called acceptance and commitment therapy.

And it’s basically acceptance of where you are and you know, radical acceptance. Like I am not where I want to be health wise, depression, anxiety, whatever you’re dealing with, but committing to do the things that you want to do.

Or once wanted to do or that you would love to do if you were healthy regardless. And so I started implementing this practice, but I did it little by little.

It was along with all of the mindset and mind body work. I did it little by little. That’s when I was like, let me start to just see if I can live. So I started, you know, I took a little part time job. I started going out and seeing friends and sometimes I would have to come back home if I wasn’t feeling well, but I never let it completely make me quit and just be like, “ah, I can’t do it.”

You know, I kept, I kept slowly introducing new things. And as I started to get more comfortable with being uncomfortable, you know, like Josh said, my body, my nervous system calmed down. My body slowly began healing. I was able to do more, then I went back and I slowly incorporated more. I went back and took a couple of community college classes.

And, you know, after about a year of slowly integrating all this stuff, I was like, man, I’m like getting pretty healthy. That’s when I moved and went back to school full time. Uh, got my college degree and went into the workforce and I was like, I’m healed. So it’s a slow process with all the mindset work and reintegrating back into life. [Joe is talking about how he initially healed from Chronic Lyme in his 20’s.]

It does take a lot of patience with yourself. So yeah, like Josh said, if you’re kind of just like, “I’m just going to fight my way through it.” It’s not the way to do it. Like, it’s going to be difficult. Your body’s going to create the cortisol adrenaline. You’re going to adding more stress to your body.

You got to induce stress, but in a healthy way, where you’re introducing stressors that you want in your life.

So like, I had a goal of getting back to college. So I know I needed to go back to get into school. It’s not that I was like, so gung-ho about getting you back to class, but it was a goal of mine.

And so I had to introduce that stress of like going back to class. But it was a good stress because once you accomplish these things, then that’s when you get the healing hormones, the serotonin, the endorphins, all of that sort of stuff.

When you accomplish these goals, when you’re sick and struggling, and that’s something that I really benefited from, and I know Josh has, and I know that something that we really talk about is going after goals and things that you want to do even while you’re sick.

[32:36] Liz: Yeah. And I just want to say that both the acceptance and going after goals. Normally it’s like one or the other in our culture. It’s like, we just radical acceptance and then just don’t do anything. Or it’s like achieve, achieve, grit.

But I think the harmony between these of accepting where you’re at, but also having a small goal, because I think it does keep us going, you know, it’s just that feeling of like, “Oh, I did something today. I’m proud of myself for that.”

And looking at our lives, whether you were wheelchair bound, like what are small tasks that we can feel proud of ourselves for? It could mean maybe a hobby.

It doesn’t always have to be something that’s like going back to school or achieving, but just to make yourself feel proud of yourself and creating something or doing something that you love.

[33:28] Joe: Absolutely. Yeah. Completely agree. Like you said, it’s not just about achieving. It’s about finding little bits of peace and joy, even while you’re struggling and you’re not where you want to be with your health. I think that goes a long way.

[:33:42] Liz: What are some of those things? Because for me, I mean, I would just like walk and I would notice the flowers more, or I talk with ladies a lot and sometimes it’s like doing some art or what have you.

So what were some of those things that brought you joy along the way?

[34:00] Josh: It’s so pivotal and healing to find something. There’s so much more than just the neuroplasticity part. You know, we talk about diet, movement, mindfulness and stuff like that. But we encourage people to find a hobby, something that they absolutely love.

And that could be crocheting, could be playing guitar, doing something that they’re using their mind, that takes their mind off of their symptoms. Cause you know, we’re going and we’re shifting from constant, “You’re going to die, you’re going to pass out. You need to go to the doctors, Lyme disease, mold, heavy metals, support group, support group, support group.”

That’s literally what we wake up with. And then you begin to shift towards gratitude. And then let me hop into a hobby. And a lot of the time we get people that come and say, “Well, I don’t know what I love.” Okay. And it’s so frustrating. “I don’t know.” Okay, so now you’re going to take time and you’re going to meditate.

And you’re going to try and visualize what is it that you used to enjoy before that. And maybe it looks completely different. As long as the hobby is something helpful and productive, not watching TV or scrolling on your phone or something like that, but picking up a guitar, like I said, crochet, and we tell people to create something.

So the whole healing dues thing came out of meditation. So the idea of creating, we’re creating a health food brand that’s actually really deep in the process that we’re super excited about [they’re developing a healthy snack food bar that everyone can eat]. And that has become literally our hobby. Joe and I have both raced and stuff like that. We haven’t gotten back into that, but literally this whole thing, while it’s stressful at times, like nine months ago, this whole healing dudes thing wasn’t even a thought.

But I feel like it’s been a magnet that’s kind of helped pull us out of our illness because it distracts the mind from the constant, “Oh my gosh, I feel like this, or I feel like that.” And what we’ve noticed is people that have like derealization, depersonalization, pain, fatigue, when they’re doing this hobby or they’re doing this thing.

You know, before it might be at a 10 and it drops down to like a 3 or to where they don’t even realize it because their brain is preoccupied with playing the guitar, painting. And I think for Joe and I, we both kind of share the same thing is going to the beach. Like if we’re feeling terrible, we go to the beach, we ground, he has a park that he sits in a hammock out every day and watches dolphins and manatees.

We’re right where hurricane Ian hit. So my beaches are completely destroyed, unfortunately, but out in nature is one that’s helped both him and I. And, working on this Healing Dudes stuff and developing this [healthy snack] bar that we’re coming out with. And those are things that have helped us.

And we encourage people to find something big and you don’t have to accomplish it all now, but if you dream big, it’s going to keep you occupied.

And if you just spend an hour to two hours a day working on it, then you have a vision of something that you want more than just getting better. So if we don’t have a purpose for getting better, what are we doing? You know.

[36:33] Liz: This is so important. I do want to touch on this… So a lot of the reason that like for me and then for other people I know that we don’t go after our purpose is because we’re afraid of failure.

And usually because we associate failure with criticism. Or, yeah, or at least that, that’s my child, one of my childhood issues [laughs].

Joe: Yeah.

[36:58] Liz: So for instance, like me and my friend Rorie, we want to start this silly podcast, but also talk about politics and stuff. And both of us had major hangups about that. With the people you work with and maybe yourselves. Can you talk about working through some of those inner demons or those parts of ourselves? That maybe say, “don’t go for your purpose.”

[37:22] Joe: Absolutely. This is something that Josh and I both dealt with a lot. So all of us have an inner critic, that feeling of putting ourselves out there to be seen and to be judged is hard for a lot of people.

I mean, the people that don’t have that, you know, I envy them in some sort of way. And when we started even just doing The Healing Dudes, just speaking on camera was so foreign to me. You know, I had spent all these years as an art director. It’s like, now I’m going to share my story with other people. So I had a lot of things to work through myself with not caring of what people thought about me because it is, you know, you’re putting yourself out there or you’re putting yourself out there to be judged, or there’s a potential things can fail.

You really have to find that sort of thing within that pulls you to it that says, I don’t care if it works out or if it doesn’t, I want to do it anyway.

I’d rather take that chance and fail rather than stay in something that’s safe and comfortable. And the thing that happened to me truthfully, and you know, I think it happens to a lot of people with chronic illness.

You know, the chronic illness comes and it basically just shatters your world. You lose friends, family, job, whatever. And while it’s very destructive, it is sometimes best place to create something new. So like, when I lost my job, well I didn’t lose it. I quit my job, actually. It wasn’t serving me any longer. I was really sick at the time.

I decided like, you know, I’ve spent all these years working, doing things that I don’t really truly always want to do. What is it that I actually want to do? And then I had to kind of push past these fears. And that’s a big thing that Josh and I both talk about, about healing, is getting past fears. Not only the fears of that you go out and drive and begin to reenter life again, but get past the fears that are limiting you from dreaming big and have creating a new life.

And it’s different for everyone. Some people don’t really actually truly want that. Some people don’t want to own their own business or go travel the world. They’re happy in that. So it’s different for everyone. But for me and Josh, we have this goal to help a lot of people, we feel like that we’ve dealt with such bad circumstances in a way.

And we’ve learned a lot about what it takes to heal through our own failures and stuff like that, that I don’t think it became an option in a way. It was like, all right, we could go back and Josh could be, you know, an engineer and I can be an art director, or we could just try to make this work and see where it goes.

We have big dreams of stuff like that. So when we work with people, we try to understand what limiting beliefs they have, what fears are keeping you from these things. And if you are dealing with these fears, how can you overcome them? And most of the time overcoming them is not some hard thing. It’s just starting to do the things that you fear.

And, I’ve realized that the more I’ve allowed myself to be seen and do the things that I really care about, I realized more and more that the fears are just an illusion and that’s kind of what we try to teach other people. And as they go through it, through a supportive community of people that are doing the same thing, it’s very empowering.

We get a lot of encouragement from people that are chronically ill, but want to start a business. And it’s like, we’re all for it, you know? So it’s something to work through and everyone has to go through it in their own way. There’s this kind of this dark quote that I, in one of my favorite movies, it’s Fight Club, and one of the quotes that I latched onto in that movie is like, “It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.”

And like, I had lost everything. I’d lost my job, you know, all of this stuff. And it was like, okay, well now I’m free to do whatever I want, you know what I mean? And so sometimes that darkness and losing all of the things that we thought brought us security and comfort in life, our jobs, our relationships, is a place to free to create whatever we really want.

And that’s kind of where The Healing Dudes and what we’re doing came from so.

[41:37] Liz: So I’d love to hear more about the healing dudes and it sounds like you have group coaching.

Josh: Yeah. So we have a 30 day bootcamp, which has been our bread and butter. We do offer individual one on one sessions, but the 30-day bootcamp spurred from the idea of going through neuroplasticity and healing by yourself.

You know, we tried different programs like DNRS and Gupta, and I’m sitting here with an app trying to help myself heal after I’ve been honestly suicidal and just sick for so many years. And I’m like, dude, how do I get the motivation to do this? And how do I even know it’s going to work? Here’s another treatment that I’m trying or another thing. And I’m just like, how am I going to do this?

And when Joe and I decided to try and do this stuff together. That’s really where we started to see the progress, is radical accountability.

Like, are you getting up? Are you walking every day? Are you doing yoga? Because it’s not just the mind, body neuroplasticity part.

Movement’s so important towards healing. When most become chronically sick, we go from the couch to the bed, to the bed, to the couch. And we get atrophy and our bodies were made to move. So we encourage each other to just start walking. The simplest thing is just walking, walking a mile in the morning and walking a mile at night.

And some people have to work up to that. [Liz note: Do what’s in your health zone. I had to work up to that myself.] And then we just started doing gentle yoga and we’re not sitting here holding crazy poses for 20 minutes or anything like that. No, just very basic things, creating new habits and rituals that aren’t waking up, scrolling on our phones, going to these support groups, talking to people that are talking about how terrible they feel and inundating our day with doom, gloom, and misery.

So, you know, we’re sitting there and we’re like, dude, like let’s create a community of people that want. To heal that want to leave that life behind. Hope is one thing, but hope is empty by itself. If hope does not spur you towards belief, it’s empty. You get nothing from hope. I hope I get better. Well, when you begin to believe that getting better as possible, guess what?

You’re more spurred towards action. You know, he was living in my son’s room. This is an art director in DC that had this expensive condo and now he’s coming down and he’s living there and we’re healing like we’re getting up. You know, Hey, let’s get up and walk. Hey, let’s get up and meditate. Hey, let’s get up and visualize. Let’s do this, dude.

Let’s get out of this hole together, man.

And literally, it happened pretty quick, two, three months in, and we’re like, we’re seeing some pretty big changes. So what we started doing is offering these 30 day bootcamps where we preach diet. Joe has his master’s in nutrition. So we feel that diet is such a pivotal part of getting better.

Like you cannot heal your body if you’re eating like garbage, then we entail movement. Like you have to move, you have to get back out. And another part of this is when we get chronically sick, life stops, we hit a wall, like life as we know it. We’re putting up all these fears and barriers and our life just stops.

So we encourage people that you’re safe, that you can go to the grocery store, you can go to Texas, you can go to California. You want to go to France? You’re not any more safe in your bed than you are in France. And that’s where it comes back to being safe in your presence. 

[Note: In our original chat before I edited it for length, Josh provides a disclaimer about consulting with a doctor regarding your abilities. We’re not encouraging anyone to push themselves.]

So everybody comes in. 30 people, we cap it at that. Everybody gets a partner for the next 30 days. That is your accountability partner. You’re gonna check in with them, and you guys are gonna heal together. We can’t always get the chemistry right, but you’re rowing the boat in the same direction because everybody ultimately wants to heal. And then, Joe and I encourage these people through videos every day, and what happens, what we’ve seen, is these 30 day groups were talking all day, and they’ve literally become family, and these people don’t just do 30 days.

We’ve had people that are in for six months now, and it’s the level of intimacy. We do Zooms on Wednesdays and Sundays where we all sit and we talk about where we’re at and what we can do and how we can hold each other accountable and you know, people laugh, people cry and the community in and of itself has not only helped those people, it’s helped Joe and I to be radically authentic.

And that’s the thing is we’re not completely healed now. We’ve seen incredible progress, but we feel like the last part of our healing journey is healing in front of people. So, I mean, you can easily talk to someone that’s better in their back living their life now. And it’s hard to relate to that person.

But when we have a bad day, we come into class, we don’t talk about our symptoms and stuff. We’re like, “Hey, look, I’m struggling today.” We’re letting you know, but we’re sticking to our routine because part of this healing journey is moving away from routines, habits, and rituals that aren’t productive to our healing.

We then begin to teach people to wake up and write down five things that you’re grateful for. Then we have them meditate in the morning, and then we have them take a walk and do yoga, and then at night they meditate and visualize the life that it is that they want. Now you might not feel better.automatically, but maybe there’s a career, maybe you wanted to go back to school or maybe you want buffaloes in Kentucky.

I don’t know what it is, but when we want to dream again, when we begin to have that excitement as we had his little kids, you know, the night before a field trip, we would wake up and we’re so excited to do it.

We lost that not only as chronically ill people, but as adults, we lose that. That zest for life, the desire to set your soul on fire.

And when we begin to pursue that while we’re healing and we find a desire to live above our spouses, above our partners, above our kids, because we have to have something for us. Something that isn’t us emptying ourselves because we’re pouring from empty cups.

So we find something that fills our soul that brings us joy that makes us happy and we begin pursuing that, that is where the magic happens and it doesn’t happen immediately. But we’ve seen people go and start businesses literally after a month and a half and their lives radically change.

Is it easy? No, we talk about doing the work and it pisses people off because they’re like, well, how do I get better if I’m doing the work? I’m chronically sick. Well, guess what? When your nervous system calms down and you’re happy instead of being sad, depressed, anxious, and all these things that we do have control over.

All these medications out there, don’t fix it. You end up stuck on them for however long. And that’s generally what we’re trying to show people. So in these 30 day bootcamps, it’s literally day in and day out. We have a chat that goes all throughout the day on Facebook group. so everybody’s talking, everybody’s checking in. Hey, did you do your yoga?

Did you go for a walk? What fear are you facing today? And it’s all productive. And by the end of 30 days, you’ve had 60 meditations and visualizations of creating a future. You’ve now walked 60 times, you’ve now done yoga 60 times, and we’re getting a lot of people in that are agoraphobic, that haven’t moved, you know, they’re celebrating victories like going to Walmart, or going to CVS, or going to the grocery store for an hour, or people that didn’t leave their house, they now go to the park, or they go to the beach, and they’re slowly getting their life back.

Do we say that people radically just get better and all the symptoms disappear? No. Regulating your nervous system is a process and healing is a process. And we all know that it’s not linear, that you might start to feel better one day and you’re going to crash the next, but it’s remembering and writing down when you feeling good.

And when you’re in a community of people, when you’ve celebrated your wins and then you go down and like, “Hey, do you remember last week when you went to the beach, we’re going to celebrate that with you again, because you weren’t able to do that a month ago.” 

We really haven’t advertised. It’s just been off word of mouth, and we don’t turn anybody away. It’s not like we’re sitting here trying to get rich. You know, people can’t afford the class, we try to work something out, but we’ve had people literally fly all over the country to meet their partner that they’re healing with because they’ve healed together.

They’ve laughed together. They’ve cried together. They’ve gotten on the phone when they’re facing these terrible fears and It’s just, it’s been such an incredible whirlwind of an experience. And we do offer one on ones as well. But like I said, our jam is definitely these 30 day bootcamps.

[48:48] Liz: Wow. This is so amazing.

And a lot of the things you’re talking about are the things that exactly I did. I started my day with the gratitude, writing in my journal, the three things I was grateful for or the five things, however many it was, meditating. Then I would start movement. It would be like a small walk. And then my walks got bigger.

I didn’t start with a mile. I started with like.. my radius [on a good day] was like 0. 3 miles and then I worked up to that, and I eventually was doing like four miles. But yeah, I had to work up to it. But so many of the things we’re talking about are what helped me, but I did not have the community support. I had a lone wolf it.

And. I think if early on, if I would have had a community, it would have been really helpful. And I’m grateful I have a really supportive husband, and he’s very emotionally supportive. So I had that, but a lot of people have no one or their partner might not get it or they just want that community. And I know so many people who want that community and want that accountability.

But I like how you do this in a setting that’s authentic and real, but it has that mindset of you’re not a victim. You can heal. There’s that belief because those support groups. Are terrible. And so I see people on Twitter. I went back on Twitter. I had left it for like four years, and then I got up back, and I just see people, and I see the harm they’re doing to themselves every day by looking at “Look what Covid is doing to the brain now.”

And I’m like, “Guys, you know, this is so bad for you!” but I don’t want to be… I know I can’t rescue them from Twitter or the support groups, but I just want to be like, “Guys, get out, get out!”

[50:38] Joe: Yeah, that’s actually something we pretty much tell…we can’t force everyone to do that. But when they come into the 30 day bootcamps, we give them like a little checklist of like, all right, guys, healing is your priority for the next 30 days, get out of all of the support groups that you’re in.

You know, you’re going to make healing your priority and it’s not going to be toxic healing. It’s not going to be checking in and googling your symptoms or checking in with your other friends and talking about symptoms throughout the day. It’s a radical change in a lifestyle shift. And yeah, I completely agree.

The community support is so, so critical in healing. When I healed the first time, I did not have that. I had to sort of lone wolf it like you. And it was difficult. It’s difficult to pull yourself up some days when you’re struggling. You know, like we said, healing is not linear, and it is an up and down journey.

And there’s a lot of times when you just want to quit, you know, let me just quit on this, and having a community support is so key in having that accountability, the encouragement from people that are in it, you get to see where people are beginning to heal and there giving you encouragement. Like, “No, don’t stop where you’re at, even if you’re struggling right now, you just got to keep going through it, and you’ll heal,” and all that sort of stuff.

And so that community support is so, so crucial in healing. And yeah, that’s the one thing that Josh and I really wanted to create. Ad the community, we all become really close. We all are friends, like, we’re all rooting for one another to heal, and seeing one another heal, and stuff like that.

It’s such a great thing that has helped both Josh and I, but it’s helped a lot of people as well, so.

[52:20] Liz: Awesome. I do want to talk about the diet aspect. Joe, you said you’ve got your master’s in nutrition. I want to talk about that aspect because I know there’s a lot of controversy around diet, and I know that a lot of went extreme down the diets.

Maybe we had a naturopath who told us we can only eat chicken and boiled leaves, or we went like the extreme keto or the medical mediums. So, what is your guys take on diet?

[52:52] Joe: Yeah, so yeah, I went and got my master’s in nutrition online. So we both believe diet has the power to heal your body or harm your chances to heal.

Now, both of us are not into any sort of fad diets into anything like that. We subscribe to what is known as like an anti-inflammatory diet. So we’re really just cutting out a lot of the things that produce inflammation in the body, refined sugars, for the most part, gluten. wheat products, cheese and dairy, which can be inflammatory for a lot of people.

But we don’t ever want to get into crazy restrictive diets because then that leads to disordered eating and stuff like that. So what we do is we guide people through replacing a lot of things in their diet that are probably contributing to poor gut health, which as a lot of people know, the gut-brain connection and your gut houses a lot of your neurotransmitters and things like that.

And what we saw was a lot of the programs, you know, DNRS and the neuroplasticity, they don’t talk about diet at all. Like they don’t.

[53:57] Liz: They don’t because their view on the diet is like they assume that everyone went too crazy with the diet and now it’s time to just like eat whatever and do your happy visualizations with your cheeseburger, but it’s a little more nuanced than that. But I get there are so many people who do need to really loosen the reins on diet because they went way, way too far, but that’s good that you guys are talking about an anti-inflammatory diet.

[Not medical advice, I’m not supporting one diet over another.]

Are there any other diet principles?

[54:30] Joe: Yes So we also there are people in our groups that have gone the extreme end where they have gone very very food restrictive. And that’s where we try to help them through food fears of, you know, because they had a reaction to this food now they don’t eat an entire class of food, so it’s kind of like finding that that balance of like, all right.

Do you actually have an allergy to something or are you restricting yourself because you believe you’re going to have a reaction because 10 years ago you ate a peanut and now you’re scared of almonds or whatever, you know, that sort of deal, there is that correlation.

[55:09] Josh: And we understand that when people come in, that a lot of people have food related trauma, and it takes a while to get over that.

So when someone does have a reaction, there’s a realistic trauma associated with that. And it takes some time to get through it. So diet, I think is such a difficult thing because people, if you’re thinking that you’re going to react to it, I’ll give you a perfect example. Cause Joe was taking a blow at me earlier. [Laughter.]

[55:31] Joe: I didn’t mean to, I didn’t mean to say…it was just the first thing that came to my mind.

Josh: I had anaphylaxis to peanuts. And, um, naturally when you’re chronically ill, you do develop histamine reactions and whatnot. But what happened is I began obsessing over it. So I had that one anaphylactic reaction to peanuts, and I stopped eating all high histamine foods because it was the trend.

It’s what these doctors told me to. And I convinced myself in my head that if I were to eat any of these things, I would die. And we see every class, there’s at least seven or eight people in there that have those same exact fears. So they’ve limited their diet. They’re not getting the nutrition that they need to feed their body to heal.

So, like I said, going back to Joe, is I feared that I would react to all tree nuts. So when he was living here, both of our milks, I drink coconut milk, he drinks almond milk and our cases look almost exactly alike. And I’ve got kids in the background, I don’t know what’s going on. So I make my bowl of cereal.

It’s like this grain-free cereal. So I pour my bowl of cereal, and I’m upstairs and I’m eating it. And I’m not thinking anything about it. Like I’m halfway through it.

And he comes up, and he’s like, “Bro, you realize you’re eating almond milk.”

And the moment, the very moment that he said that, I felt like my throat was closing, I felt like I was getting hot.

I was manifesting a reaction because I told myself for so long that if I ate these things, that I was going to die, that I was going to have that same initial reaction that I had. And that’s how powerful the brain is, is when we tell it something, of course, now I think that I’m in danger. It’s going to do everything that it can to tell me that that’s a bad food, that I shouldn’t eat that because I’ve told myself and I’ve read and I’ve been in these support groups, and I’ve had these doctors tell me “bad, bad, bad, bad, bad.”

So when I eat it, “bad, bad, bad, bad, bad.” And guess what? I didn’t die.

Nothing happened. I didn’t have to use an EpiPen. I was totally fine. Now, if someone’s having true anaphylaxis, and obviously we’re not doctors, we’re not giving medical advice, I’m just simply sharing my experience. I’ve gone through that where, oh my gosh, it is literally, you’ve now triggered fight or flight.

So you’re gonna feel all those very uncomfortable situations, because your body’s trying to preserve itself from eating something that it thinks is poison, because you’ve told yourself, this is poison.

And the same things go with mold, you know, mold is everywhere. I can’t go in this room because of mold.

Are these things real? Yes. But our brain becomes hyper-reactive to things, and then our body becomes hyper-reactive. And I think that a lot of people, when you talk about that, they get very offended because their identity is wrapped up in mold or Lyme or food sensitivities and stuff.

Liz: I had the mold, so yeah.

Josh: Yeah, I did, too. I slept in a tent in the July heat out here because I was so convinced that there was, and there was mold in my house, but I couldn’t go near my wife because her clothes were, you know, contaminated. And I couldn’t, I got rid of my car and my house and my, Oh my

[58:06] Liz: Gosh, I got, we got rid of everything.

And my husband, he was like, “I’m walking on eggshells.” Cause I was like [eek], yeah, but then I would get mad though when like family would be like, “I just don’t know why you can just be happy and eat what I made for you” or try to sneak it in or lie about what was in it. That would like make me crazy, like my mom made some lamb and she put breadcrumbs on it.

And she was like, “It’s not in the lamb. It’s on the lamb.” And I’m like, “What?!” I just lost it. Yeah, that was another one. But, um. So it has to be in the right setting, a safe setting when we’re doing these incremental introductions with the food. And it sounds like that’s what you guys teach.

[58:52] Joe: So we try to find the balance of both, you know, the people that have gone way too restrictive.

And then there’s a lot of people that are not restrictive at all that just will eat candy, they’ll eat whatever. And you can enjoy food, but we want you to understand that what you’re putting in your body is also going to help your chances to heal if you choose the right thing. So we kind of allow people a lot of freedom, but a lot of people need individual catering and stuff like that as well.

Liz: So you can help them with that. Yeah, but also I’m just thinking like with a group people are sharing ideas, too. Because I’m like, what do I make? And I’m not a chef or anything, but sometimes you run out of ideas.

Joe: Yeah, we provide a guide as well. We provide like a food guide, uh, simplified meal plans.

Josh: We share what eat as well. So people can kind of see it doesn’t have to be boring.

Liz: And you have a buddy system and you have your group Facebook chats and your group Zooms. So that all seems awesome. And I’m just so honored I could have you on my YouTube channel. And is there any final message you guys wanted to share with people listening?

[1:00:01] Joe: I’ll let Josh go first.

[1:00:02] Josh: Yeah, so I mean the 30 day boot camps, we have them every single month. Like I said, we want everybody to heal. We want to expand this community to where it reaches all throughout the chronic illness community. We really feel like there’s just so much life changing information in this and we don’t turn away anybody, even if they’re not able to pay.

We do have scholarships that are available, but every single month that we do this, and if you want to get in touch with us, all of our socials are at The Healing Dudes, the website is It has all the information about what we’re doing, the 30 day bootcamp, the one on ones, and pretty soon the health food brand that’s coming out and yeah, we appreciate your time, Liz.

And so grateful that you had us on today.

[1:00:45] Liz: Oh, it’s my pleasure.

[1:00:46] Joe: Yeah. So grateful Liz. And yeah, I just want to echo the first thing that I said at the beginning is that regardless of what people are going through, regardless of their symptoms, how sick they are, just to remind them that they’re not too far gone to heal.

Both Josh and I have been through some of the worst times, the sickest, and we never thought we’d get out of it. It takes a lot of work. It does take time. It takes patience and all that sort of stuff. But to not give up, you know, on yourself and not give up hope that you can get better because you really can get better if you do the work.

And hit us up. If you need help, you know, again, like, Josh and I, we do 1-on-1’s as well. We have bootcamps going every month. We’re just here to help as many people get the information that they need to get their lives back – and create new lives actually. Really. So, thank you so much for having us.

[1:01:39] Liz: That’s awesome. It’s my pleasure. I’m so glad I could have you guys on. Yeah. Have a good rest of your afternoon over there.

[1:01:47] Josh: Awesome. Thank you so much.

[1:01:49] Liz: Bye.

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