Monday, June 30, 2008

New Video

The Biggest Loser Workout: Power SculptI was really excited to get this DVD, (it came with my Columbia House sign on bonus) especially since you can pick your level and make it "last" for 6 weeks while adding new levels and new moves throughout the 6 weeks. Now let me preface this with saying, I am semi fit. I work out 4-6x a week doing cardio for 30-45 minutes at a time. (And when I do cardio the sweat is literally dripping off me in waves.) I also have been doing sculpting DVDs 2x a week for the past 6 months. This workout kicked my butt! Level one is definitely easy enough for intermediate, yet will still challenge those who are in good shape.

My only "criticism" is that I don't think this DVD is appropriate for beginners. You may get discouraged if you can do as many reps as the trainer & the group.  My advice to a beginner would be to concentrate on form before you concentrate on reps or how heavy your weights are. In the DVD a lot of the participants have really poor form. (Even though the trainers give them a thumbs up.) Watch the trainer and copy them. Once your form is perfect add weights and/or increase your reps. I'm sure any trainer will tell you they'd rather you do one really good move than 10 of the same move with poor form. That is any good trainer out there believes this! I would always tell my clients this.

If you want to loose weight and you stick with this DVD I can't imagine you wouldn't change your life and body. And on the same token, if you are already in shape this DVD will add variety and excitement to your workout as well as giving you a really challenging workout.

You can find this in most stores that sell workout videos (well on their web sites) but the cheapest place I have found it is at Amazon. They have new & used for under $10.

Now ... onto me! I didn't weigh in this morning cause I have an offical weigh in with my group tomorrow because it's the first day of our new challenge. Anyhow, I did get up this morning with DH & do a 40 minute yoga video. We both were zapped afterward but not energy wise ... this video killed our ankles and back. DH told me this morning he thinks he's rather try Pilates tomorrow because he doesn't really like yoga so much. I think I'm inclined to agree with him. Although similar ... it's different. I also did Biggest Loser Power Sculpt #1 with Jillian. Great workout, had me all sweaty before the warm up was even finished.

Food wise; I started the morning out with whole wheat cheerios, cup of coffee with ff creamer, and I've started on my 50 oz bottle of water. Lots of cardiot o do today so that bottle will probably be gone not long after lunch. Speaking of lunch, I'm thinking of a lean pocket with a fiber choice yogurt & apple. Dinner, I haven't decided ... it's not even lunch yet!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

New Video

The Biggest Loser Workout: Cardio Max I thought I was in semi good shape until I popped this DVD in. This is a crazy hard workout that will workout every fiber in your body.

Bob starts with Level 1 and gives you 20 minutes of heart pounding, lunge screaming and weight lifting Level 1?? My knees are killing me but OMG was it ever a great workout.

Jillian is next and she doesn't fail at delivering a 10 minute, high intensity level 2 cardio workout.  I've got a few of her other workout DVD's and this 10 minutes with her, is just as bad (good) as a few of the 20 minute DVD's I've got with her.

Bringing up the rear is Kim...and this one is a let down. For a level 3 cardio workout, she barely breaks even with Bob's Level 1. Now, if you do all 3 in a row like I do, then it does get a little tiring at the end with her, but if you just pop in her section for 10 minutes, I don't think you'd be pushing yourself very hard. In my own opinion, the workout difficulty would have gone Kim, Jillian and then those jumping lunges and tell me that's not Level 3 cardio!

All in all, this is a great workout DVD to add to your collection. The ability to customize your workouts is great and the some of the moves are new and I've never done them before.

Start July off right and lay down the cash for this. You won't be disappointed in the workout it gives you.

I got this for cheap ... I joined a video club & got this for 49 cents. Best money I have ever spent. Anyway, you can get it at most stored that sell videos for under $15 or get it at Amazon for under $10.

Watch for the next video I have to share ... it's the biggest loser power sculpt. I haven't done it yet so I don't know if it's bad or good.

New Challenge

walk 4 health

July Challenge

I'm changing up the rules this month cause I think we're all tired of looking at the scale every Friday morning & praying to the scale Gods for a loss big or small. This month we will be paying more attention to the activity we get in instead of a number on the scale. We all know by now that true fitness isn't measure by a number but rather the inches we have on our bodies. So what are we gonna do in place of the scales? We're gonna walk, jog, run, bike ... anything that gets us up & moving. Trust me, once those endorphis start kicking in you will love the changes your body is making. We can eat as healthy as we want but if we aren't getting in the activity then it's basically all for nothing.

Challenge Rules:
only 2 rules this month!

1. Weigh in on the first & last day of the month.
2. Log your miles into me daily or every Friday morning.

So how will this challenge be run?

This challenge will be based on the number of active members participating in the challenge. For each person in the challenge we will set a daily goal of 3-5 miles per person, per day for 5 days a week. This will bring us to a goal number. Example; a person walking 3 miles 5 days a week will reach 15 miles a week or 75 miles per month. A person walking 4 miles 5 days a week will have 20 miles a week or 100 miles a month and lastly if you choose 5 miles a day (you can walk the weekends to get in your miles) that's 25 miles a week or 125 miles for the month.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy! We can do this & believe me ... each & every one of us are so worth the effort to become more active.
Interested in joining in on this challenge? Click --> ThinChicks  Challenge starts July 1st & ends on the 31st. Should you join please let me know how many miles a day you will be able to commit to so I can start your miles chart. The top two walkers will be receiving prizes!!!

Recipe for Healthy PIZZA

Rainbow Pizza

Serves: 6
Serving Size: 1 pizza

Healthy toppings make this decorative dish full of nutrients. Reprinted with permission by Public Health - Seattle & King County.

3 whole wheat English muffins, split (6 halves)
1/2 cup pizza sauce
Pizza toppings (choose any 3):
grated carrots
sliced mushrooms
chopped broccoli
pineapple chunks
chopped green or red peppers
sliced zucchini
1/2 cup low fat mozzarella cheese, grated

1. Spread about one tablespoon sauce on each muffin half.
2. Arrange your favorite toppings on the "crust" in a single layer. Use at least three colors.
3. Sprinkle one tablespoon cheese on each pizza.
4. Place pizzas on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Calories: 114
Fat: 2.9 g
Carbohydrates: 18.2 g
Protein: 5.6 g

Saturday, June 28, 2008

New Workout Video

Bellydance Fitness for Beginners - Arms, Abs, Hips, Buns & ThighsBellydance Fitness Arms and Abs  is designed to tone your upper body using bellydance-inspired movements. In the first half of the workout, you will do a variety of arm movements, most of which require you to hold the arms at shoulder level or above. Although the voiceover instruction suggests that these moves will tone your biceps and triceps, I felt them mostly in my shoulders, which quickly became fatigued. Eventually, you move on to working the chest and ribs, mainly through isolation movements. The final ten minutes of this workout are performed on the floor. You'll start with several non-traditional abs exercises--eg, leg lifts while propped on your elbows--and then you'll work on more traditional crunches. The workout finishes with several yoga-inspired stretches, and the total time comes in at about 28 minutes.

Overall, I found this to be an okay light toning routine. However, because the workout concentrates on the upper body, there is no footwork, which removes the fun factor (as well as the cardio work) that exists in other videos of this series (eg, Basic Moves). If you're interested in toning the arms and abs and are looking for something a bit different, this workout might be for you, but if you want to experiment with some fun bellydance moves, you'll probably want to try one of the other videos in the Bellydance for Fitness series.

For me, I give this video a thumbs down & I'm thankful I got it for under $1.

Friday, June 27, 2008

How to cut 100's of Calories


1.        Scramble Your Breakfast Routine –
Start your morning with one-half cup of Egg Beaters. They’re just 60 calories, fat-free and packed with
protein and vitamins. And they contain no cholesterol.

2.        Eat Until You’re HARA HACHI BU -
This Japanese term means “eat until you’re 80% full.” It’s calorie-saving strategy used by the Okinawans,
who have one of the lowest rates of heart disease, cancer and stroke- and one of the highest life
expectancies- of any population in the world. Stop eating when you feel only slightly full; within 15 minutes,
you should be satisfied.

3.        Spray Calories Away –
Avoid a heavy hand with cooking oil: Use a sprayer like Misto ( or an olive- or canola-oil spray
from Pam. A two-second spritz is roughly one-half teaspoon of oil- 100 calories fewer than the three
teaspoons that could end up in your frying pan.

4.        Fill Up On Fiber Midday –
Munch on cereal for a hearty snack. Choose a healthy type, such as bran flakes. Add one-third cup of
antioxidant-rich blueberries and you’ll rack up a just 148 calories (without milk)

5.        Speak Up –
When you eat out. “Ask for foods mad with low-cal cooking methods, such as poached instead of fried,”
says Lisa Young, R. D., Ph.D., FITNESS advisory board member and author of The Portion Teller Plan.
That alone could save you 100 calories a dish.

6.        Eat Slowly –
Research shows that college women who wolfed down their pasta in nine mintues consumed 67 more
calories than when they savored their meal for about three times as long. “Eating mindfully gives you a
chance to realize you’re full,” says Barbara Rolls, Ph.D., a nutrition professor at Pennsylvania State
University and author of The Volumetrics Eating Plan. Do that at every meal and you could cut 200 calories
a day- or 21 pounds a year!

7.        Eat Lots of Whole Fruits –
You’ll get tons of nutrition for few calories. Try oranges, grapefruit, strawberries, bananas and grapes, says
Barbara Rolls. They’re loaded with vitamins and antioxidants, and they make great healthy portable snacks.
Bonus: Fruit is filled with fiber, which helps fill you up and keep you feeling satisfied longer.
8.        Downsize Your Snacks –
“Research shows the bigger the package, the more you’ll eat,” says Young. A whopping 45% more,
according to a study from Cornell University. Divvy up big bags of munchies into single serving sizes as
soon asyou get home from the store. Or buy 100-calories snack packs of your favorite treats, such as Oreo
Thin Crisps. Two regular Oreo cookies have 107 calories, and honestly, who can stop at just two?

9.        Start With a Salad –
Studies by Rolls show that people who munch on low-calorie, high-fiber foods like veggies and salad 15
minutes before a main course eat 64 to 107 fewer calories overall.

10.        Dress for Success –
Don’t sabotage your healthy greens by drowning them in high-fat dressings. For instance, two tablespoons
of Thousand Islands costs you nearly 100 calories more than reduced-fat Italian. “Always ask for dressing
on the side when eating out,” advises Young. Put just a little on your salad; you can always add a bid more
later if you need it.

11.        Wrap Your Sandwich
:Thin whole-grain tortillas have 60 – 80 fewer calories than two slices of hearty grain bread,” says Anne
VanBeber, R.D., Ph.D., a professor in the department of nutritional sciences at Texas Christian University in
Fort Worth, Texas. One to try: the 120-calorie La Tortilla Factory Whole Grain Wraps.

12.        Ask For What’s Not On The Menu –
Some restaurants offer small side orders, despite the fact that they’re not actually listed on the main menu.
Same goes for Starbucks, which will give you a “short” coffee if you ask. “Choosing from the child’s menu,
bringing half your entrée home or eating tow appetizers for your main course are other good ways to control
calories,” says Young.

13.        Take The Fat Out Of Your Frying Pan –
“Saute meats and vegetables in broth rather than oil or butter,” VanBeber recommends. Use two
tablespoons of broth instead of two tablespoons of olive oil and you’ll save more than 200 calories.

14.        Pump Up The Volume –
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, which contain lots of water, and you’ll consume 24% fewer calories a
day, according to a recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. One easy trick: Throw a cup of
vegetables into your pasta and cut back on the noodles; you’ll get more nutrients and fewer calories.

15.        Cook More, Eat Less –
A study at the University of Texas found that female dieters took in an extra 226 calories and 10 grams of
fat on the days they ate out. That’s because restaurant portions are up to five times larger than in the past,
says Lisa Young. Make meals to eat throughout the week.

16.        Do More Baking –
Dry-heat cooking methods, such as broiling, baking and roasting meat, cut the fat, says VanBeber. For
instance, broiling salmon can slash 120 calories from the pan-fried version. And remove the skin from
chicken after it’s cooked. “You’ll retain moisture yet chop 40 calories and 6 grams of fat,” she explains.

17.        Slim Down Your Sandwich –
Switch from tuna packed in oil to tuna in water and you’ll save 73 calories. Bonus: A study found that people
who had fish for lunch at 75 fewer calories at dinner than those who had beef.

Weigh In Day

The dreaded day that I hate most in each week ... weigh in day. It's not that I hate my scale, it's that he hates me. I am proud to say that I'm down to 203.2 however with all the activity I'm taking in I believe the scale should have been so much nicer to me. I had a goal to meet ... by the 30th I am supposed to be at 200 ... 199.9 would be even better. Uggg, guess I'll need to step things up even more.

Stepping up my cardio is gonna be pretty easy time wise. DH is working the 2nd shift for 2 weeks. He leaves at 10:30 am & doesn't get home until about 7:30. It makes it easy to really get int he cardio & not feel like I'm taking away from family time.

Speaking of family time, we won't be having much tonight. The kids are going to their friends house tonight around 4:30 so I will be alone until 7:30 ... already told DH we won't be going out to the movies or dinner cause we need to start cutting back on take out. We'll save a ton of money & even more importantly ... we'll save all the fat. Now that he isn't doing PT every morning he's getting a bit of a belly. Nothing to worry about but if he doesn't keep up with the morning walks his belly could pooch out a lot more.

Walking ... I got out there at 7 this morning with hubby next to me & did a 2.2 mile walk in 33.45 minutes. We cut our time by a little over a minute. I knew I wanted to make better time this morning & when he told me we were at 32 minutes at the bottom of the last hill I said we'll never make it under 35 minutes. He says well if ya really want it then we will. Something came over me & I said well the only way that will happen is if we run the rest of the way home ... so we did. OMG, I can't believe I ran up the stupid hill, it's no sissy hill either. I think it was actually easier on my knees to run it then try to walk it. Is that weird?

Food: uuuummmm, I don't have much of a plan. I had a yogurt with granola for breakfast ... of course my 34 oz bottle of water which is almost gone. Lunch I have no earthly idea ... suggestions welcomed. Dinner is Turkey Joes ... found a great recipe for that this morning & my snack will probably be fruit.

Cardio: Gotta get more miles in for the day. I'm thinking of turning on some fabulous music & getting on the stationary bike & riding for 30-40 minutes. That's at least 6 miles to add not to mention I burn a pretty good amount of calories if I use the arm portion of the bike.

So that's my day ... bottom up!

Recipe: Not-So-Sinful Brownies

Servings: 24
Preparation Time: 15 min.
Cooking Time: 25 min.
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 oz. unsweetened chocolate
  • 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 4 egg white\cooked, lightly beaten or 2 whole eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup quick or old fashioned oatmeal, uncooked
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt (necessary)
  • 2 Tbs. powdered sugar (optional)
Cooking Directions:
Preheat oven to 350° F. Lightly spray bottom only of a 13 x 9 inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Combine oil and chocolate in a saucepan over low heat. Simmer until chocolate is melted, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Add sugar and applesauce and mix well. Stir in egg whites or eggs and vanilla and mix well. Combine oatmeal and next 3 ingredients in a bowl. Add to applesauce mixture and mix well. Spread evenly in prepared pan. Bake 22-25 minutes or until center is almost set and edges pull away from sides of pan. Do not overbake. Cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving, if desired. Cut into bars. Store loosely covered.
Per Serving: calories 115, fat 4.4g, calories from fat 34%, protein 2.0g, cholesterol 0.0mg, dietary fiber 1.1g

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Walking for the Health of it

As you know from a previous entry I have decided that I need to have more activity in my life & walking is going to be a BIG part of that. I let DH know about my plans last night so he is now gonna get on the walking ban wagon so to speak & walk with me every morning before he heads off to work. This morning we did a 2.2 mile walk is about 35 minutes. It was in our neighborhood ... so many hills to go up ... wow was I out of breath but I felt amazing by the time we made it back home. We jumped into the car so we knew what the milage was ... I'm not a great guesstimator!!! We could have gotten another tenth of a mile in had we taken one of the cul-da-secs ... oh well, we'll know for tomorrow.

I've been on my eating plan all day ... I don't really have a plan so much as I'm just making for sure I don't eat to many calories. I'm trying to keep my calories somewhere between  1200-1300 each day. I do plan on taking in about 1600-1800 calories one day a week just so I can shock my body into believing I'm taking in enough calories. So far today I've had my morning fiber pill ... 4 grams for a serving =) 4 cups of coffee ... something I really should be giving up, a slim fast shake and 34 oz of water. Lunch was my fiber pill ... gotta get my fiber in somewhere ... a lean pocket and of course my 34oz of water. I'm thinking dinner will be another 34oz bottle of water steamed broccoli, carrots & cauliflower with ff cheese melted over the top and then grilled pork chops. I don't know what else to add with it. My snack will probably end up being the canteloupe (need to eat it before the sucker goes bad on me), with 34 oz of water which I have already started on. By nights end I will probably end up drinking another 34 oz on top of all the other water. I have been getting in 160-170 oz a day lately. I just seem to get enough water.  

After luch I felt like another workout so I pulled out one of my walk videos and started steppin. I completed a 3 mile. Let me tell ya what ... I didn't want to do that last mile but I kept thinking if I do finish it not only will I burn more calories but I'll be that much closer to my 4 month walking goal. I walked 5.2 miles today. I'm starting to fill my second wind coming on so who knows ... I might go for another walk. If I don't, no worries ... I've already put in my 10,000 steps for the day & burned over 500 calories doing it. I'd say that's a pretty darn good accomplishment.

Well, that's all for now. Til we meet again ... bottoms up to those water bottles. Water, it does the body good.

Oh, I almost forgot to say ... my scale doesn't hate me as much today as he did on Friday ... or even this morning. I'm now at 203.4! Not exactly where I wanted to be but all things considered ... I've very happy with where I am at.

Pig-Out Weekends: How to Undo Overindulgence

Pig-Out Weekends: How to Undo Overindulgence

It happens to the best of us -- the overindulgent weekend. And if your coming-attractions calendar doesn't already include at least one bachelorette bash, a big wedding, and a few summer cookouts, it soon will. So what's a person to do when these parties pop up in the middle of swimsuit season?

Go. Have a blast. Forget the diet. Just implement a before-and-after contingency plan "to help you get back on track, so that your lapse doesn't become a collapse," says British diet and fitness guru Joanna Hall.

In her new book, The Weight Loss Bible, Hall serves up a buffet of ideas perfect for getting you through a 48-hour bridal extravaganza, Labor Day weekend, or no-guilt getaway with your girlfriends -- and leaving you able to still fit into your jeans on Tuesday.

Eat less, sweat more the day before and after. "If you know you're heading for a weekend of excess," says Hall, "squeeze in a workout and eat 300 fewer calories the day before the partying begins." Same goes for the day after. But don't punish yourself by skipping a meal -- it'll just make you cranky and hungry. Limit portions or forgo a snack (a blueberry muffin or small bag of potato chips each have about 300 calories).

Curb carbs at lunch and dinner. Hall is known throughout the UK for her Carb Curfew diet, which means “no starchy carbs -- bread, pasta, rice, potatoes or cereal -- after 5 pm." And for food-filled weekends, she suggests turning the carb cutoff back to noon. Why? "Chances are your fat intake will be higher on these days, pushing up your calorie intake, and with party food, it's often easier to avoid carbs than fatty foods."

Drink up! Lots of water, that is. A boozy weekend can leave you dehydrated and too hungover to stomach your usual workout. Hall’s advice: Drink plenty of water during and after endless cocktail hours or a wild weekend. As for postparty exercise, go for a walk instead of doing a full workout, "especially if you have a sore head!"

Eat a big bowl of veggie soup. "Foods with a high water content help stave off hunger and make you feel full. Studies show that dieters who follow this advice tend to stick to their plan without feeling unsatisfied or deprived." So before you leave home, slurp up a big bowl of vegetable soup.

Shake your booty. "Sometimes you just have to go out and burn a little more energy," says Hall. But here's the good news: Dancing is one of the all-time best calorie burners. So get out there and cut yourself a big ol’ slice of rug. You'll wind up boogying away a few hundred calories before the night is through.

Get a sweet payback. Keeping your weight and BMI (body mass index) at a healthy level can make your RealAge as much as 6 years younger.

Assess your BMI and waist-to-height ratio with this convenient calculator.

An Exercise in Proper Breathing

Proper breathing is an underestimated, but critical building block of good health. Slow, deep breathing gets rid of carbon dioxide waste and takes plenty of clean, fresh oxygen to your brain and muscles. More blood cells get the new, oxygen-rich air instead of the same old stale stuff. Experts estimate that proper breathing helps your body eliminate toxins 15 times faster than poor, shallow breathing. You'll not only be healthier, but you'll be able to perform better (mentally and physically) and, of course, be less stressed and more relaxed.

Here's an exercise that will help you get the full benefits of good breathing. The techniques in this exercise are ones you should try to develop in your normal breathing, and that could take practice. Try to take about 10 minutes, but it can happen in five by cutting the time for each step in half. Most of it can be done anywhere you need to relax or clear your head:
  1. Get Ready (2 minutes) Make the room dark, or at least darker. Lie down flat on your back, or sit against a wall. Use a pillow for comfort. Make sure no part of your body is strained or supporting weight. Close your eyes. Just pay attention to your breathing for a minute or two. Don't try to change it, just notice how it feels. Imagine the fresh blood flowing through your body. Listen to your surroundings.
  2. Stage I (2 minutes) Practice breathing in and out of your nose. Exhaling through the mouth is okay for quick relaxation, but for normal breathing, in and out the nose is best. Take long breaths, not deep breaths. Try not to force it, you shouldn't hear your breath coming in or out. You're drawing slow breaths, not gulping it or blowing it out. Feel the rhythm of your breathing.
  3. Stage II (3 minutes) Good breathing is done through the lower torso, rather than the upper torso. Each breath should expand your belly, your lower back and ribs. Relax your shoulders and try not to breathe with your chest. Put your hands on your stomach and feel them rise and fall. If it's not working, push down gently with your hands for a few breaths and let go. Your stomach should start to move more freely. Relax your face, your neck, your cheeks, your jaw, your temples, even your tongue.
  4. Stage III (3 minutes) Feel the good air entering your lungs and feel the stale air leaving your body. "In with the good, out with the bad" is definitely true here. Make your exhale as long as your inhale to make sure all the bad air is gone. Remember, long slow breaths. Most people take 12-16 breaths per minute. Ideally, it should be 8-10. Now try to make your exhale a little longer than your inhale for a while. Pause after your exhale without taking a breath. Focus on the stillness and on not forcing an inhale. Your body will breathe when it needs to.
  5. Wake Up!!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Walking Goals

I've decided I need to really step up my cardio & walking is something that I know I can do no matter how much I don't feel like getting up. So I have a goal ... to reach 620 miles by the end of October . I'm pretty sure I can do it. That's an average of 4 miles every day. I like to cycle & walk on my treadmil so those miles will be added to this total as well.

So far for my first day I have logged in 4 miles, don't know if I will get in any more miles but it's a start & I do have 4 months to get there. I'm looing at this journey as "One Step at a Time."

Friday, June 20, 2008

What's Your Perfect Body Weight?

  • Over 40 is defined as extremely obese.
  • Over 30 is considered obese. People with BMIs of 30 or more are at higher risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight. People with BMIs in this range have an increased risk of heart and blood vessel disease.
  • Between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered a healthy BMI.
  • Under 18.5 is consider underweight.
Some people with dense muscle mass may have a high BMI score but very little body fat. For them, it may be more accurate to choose waist circumference or another direct method to measure body fat.

Being overweight or obese also increases your risk of dying from cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. In a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers determined that overweight and obesity may account for 20 percent of all cancer deaths in U.S. women and 14 percent in U.S. men. Their work also supported previous studies that linked overweight and obesity to cancers of the uterus, kidney, esophagus, gallbladder, colon and rectum, and breast (in postmenopausal women). The researchers also found that many types of cancer that were not previously linked to obesity were, in fact, affected by excess body weight. Those included cancers of the liver, pancreas, prostate, cervix, ovary, and stomach (in men), as well as non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and multiple myeloma.

To maintain a healthy body composition, the American Cancer Society is recommends balancing calorie intake with physical activity by eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables every day, choosing whole grains over processed grains, and limiting red meat. Individuals should engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity five days a week or more.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

7 most outrageous diet myths

Image You’ve been a yo-yo dieter your whole life, and you can’t figure out why it’s so hard to keep the weight off. Perhaps you’ve been following bad advice. The fact is, there are a lot of bogus claims out there—from misconceptions about carbs to falsehoods about fasting. Want to get the skinny? Read on as I reveal the seven most outrageous diet myths of all time.

1. All carbs are evil. With obesity and diabetes at an all-time high, carbohydrates have gotten a bad rap, mainly because dieters don’t distinguish between the two types: simple and complex. Although neither is inherently bad, complex carbs (found in whole grains, berries, and beans) are starches that cause a more gradual change in blood sugar than simple carbohydrates. Complex carbs keep you full for longer periods of time, contain more nutrients and don’t cause the crash associated with simple sugars, such as soda, candy, white bread, and processed snack foods.

2. Fat makes you fat. Like carbohydrates, fat has a bad reputation. Keep in mind, however, that not all fats are created equal. Saturated and trans fats can expand your waistline, raise your cholesterol, and increase your disease risk. But natural, unsaturated fats, found in foods such as olive oil, avocadoes, salmon, and nuts, are essential for good health and can help prevent certain diseases. When unsaturated fats are a part of daily meals, they can also help you feel fuller longer, decreasing the amount of calories that you consume.

3. As long as it’s healthy, you can eat ’til your heart’s content. A calorie is a calorie, despite the form that it takes. If you eat too much of anything, calories will add up and derail your weight-loss efforts. Watch out for foods labeled low-fat or low-calorie. A Cornell University study showed that people ate 28 to 45 percent more calories when eating low-fat foods because they thought it was acceptable to increase the amount they ate. Control your portions of all foods to keep the pounds off.

4. The scale is your savior. Depending on factors such as how much you’ve eaten and how hydrated you are, weight loss varies from day to day, so if you’re a slave to the scale, you could be doing yourself (and your sanity) a disservice. That said, if you want to shed pounds, most experts recommend hitting the scale once a week. In addition, you can monitor your progress with by other gauges, including how your clothes fit and the measurements of your waist, arms, thighs, and hips. If your favorite pants are looser and you’ve lost inches, you’re on the right track.

5. Fasting will jump-start your weight loss. No one can deny the fact that if you stop eating, you’ll lose weight. However, not only is crash dieting hazardous to your health; the results are only temporary—and you could actually impede your weight loss in the long run. Along with losing fat, fasting also removes lean muscle, and your body will start using fewer calories. As soon as you start eating again, your body will pile on these extra calories that it didn’t need before your fast. 

6. Exercise isn’t necessary as long as you’re dieting. There have been an overwhelming number of conflicting studies about exercise, ranging from how often you need to do it to the intensity required for benefits. Some people even question whether it’s actually a necessary component for weight loss. However, although diet alone may cause satisfactory weight loss, a regular exercise program (even if it’s as simple as a daily walk after dinner) can accelerate your efforts by burning more calories, building muscle, and increasing metabolism. Additional benefits include increased energy, decreased appetite, and improved digestion, all things that can help with long-term weight loss. (Personally when I exercise ... my body craves more food).

7. Snacking will sabotage your diet.  This is true—if your snacks of choice consist of large quantities of potato chips, candy bars, or leftover takeout. The good news is that snacking can actually help you lose weight if the foods (and portions) that you select are healthy. Research has shown that eating five or six small meals, or snacks, a day is more effective for weight loss than eating two or three larger ones. This method of grazing works by keeping your metabolism in a constantly active state, which can increase the amount of calories you burn and, ultimately, the number of pounds you can drop.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Kick A** Cardio

I had this entry all typed out yesterday … actually posted it to but something happened in cyber space … the aliens must have ate it before it got posted. Darn it anyway! I started to redo the entry & what do ya know … a storm blows in & not only knocks me off line right when I’m about to post it again but we lose our power. I’m done for the night.

Anyway, this morning I have it all planned out to post the entry again … ha ha ha … power goes out for almost an hour. No storms in site, beautiful sunny morning. So, now the power is restored & I’m using my head this time … I’m typing this entry up in Microsoft Word. If the power goes out again at least this will save as a temp file. At least it’s supposed to.

 Ok, so yesterday I was on a roll with my cardio … still have to tweak my portion control. I do fine all day long but when the night comes I want to snack on twizlers. Not a lot of fat but it is added calories that I just don’t need.  Anyway, back to my cardio … I pretended I had EVIL (Christina) on my heels the whole time. I started off on my treadmill, did a mile in 15 minutes. Not the greatest time but at least I’m up & moving. After that mile was over I hopped on my stationary bike for 15 minutes … I made it 6 miles & burned tons of calories. I made for sure I used the hand bars so I was sure to get in extra movement. I took my hands off for a couple of seconds but I had EVIL in my head saying you can’t burn as many calories that way. He he he!  Thanks Christina for getting into my head. I wasn’t done, I headed for my stepper … I love this little machine … I did a mile on this little baby to … then I went over to my trampoline … this baby is my favorite piece of equipment … I’m already getting better at it to. The key for me? Wearing shoes!!! It shows on the box that the girl is going without & I know on the bigger ones you should go bare feet but bare feet  doesn’t work for me … shoes do! Of course I only did 10 minutes on the thing but let me tell you … this was a kick ass workout for it only being 10 minutes.

Using spark people calculations I only burned 592 calories … using my equipment calculation I actually burned 620. I don’t know which to use … I guess either one is a lot of calories to burn. I worked so hard that I really thought I was gonna puke on myself. I probably would have if I had a weak stomach. Even when I’m majorly sick I can barely puke. =P



Treadmill - 15 min/mile




Cycling 16-19 mph (bicycling, biking, bike riding)




Stair Step Machine








Don’t know what’s on the agenda for today but I know it’s gonna have to be high calorie burning again today if I ever want to see the number on the scale drop. The scale did drop slightly from Friday’s weigh in but not like I had hoped. It looks like all the swelling is gone from my legs & my hands have even gone down cause I can wear my wedding band again. Oh well, just gonna keep plugging away at the cardio so I can see some results come Friday.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Never walk without a Goal

Walking shoes -- check. Pedometer -- got it. But do you have a goal?

No goal? Better set one. It doesn’t even matter if you hit the mark. People who put a target on their radar -- like walking 10,000 steps a day -- walk a whole lot more than people who don’t have a goal. Studies prove it.

The End Game
Walking 10,000 steps a day is an ideal physical activity goal, according to new guidelines. (Find out how many steps the average person really takes.) And in a large review of the research, scientists discovered that people with this goal -- or a personalized step plan -- literally walked the extra mile, logging about 2,000 extra steps a day. Plus, when people tracked their progress with a pedometer, they lost weight and improved their blood pressure. (Use this tool to learn what your ideal waist size should be.)

A Few More Motivators
In addition to your comfy shoes, your daily-steps goal, and your pedometer, here are a few more tools to help you keep on keeping on: No time to walk today? Try this.
RealAge Benefit: Losing excess weight by increasing physical activity can make your RealAge 3 to 9 years younger.

Friday, June 13, 2008

ThinChick progress


Way to go to all our losers ... I'm much impressed by all of you especially Sherry who's making a weight loss com back. Already 9.8 pounds gone this month.

How Much Should You Be Lifting?


For weight loss, science has found that lifting between 60-80% of your 1 rep max is the best way to stimulate muscle growth, which is what helps you lose fat. The problem is that most of us don't think much about how much weight we need, much less going through the process of figuring out 1 rep max for every exercise we're doing. In fact, I see many gym-goers lifting the same weights week after week, which is just one way to keep your body from changing.

So how do you figure out how much to lift if you don't know your 1 rep max? Typically, if you lift 60%-80% of max, you could do anywhere from 10-20 reps. Lifting at 80% and above takes you down to the lower rep range, which is where you'll be if you're trying to gain size. That means keeping your reps somewhere between 8-16, if you're lifting for weight loss and fitness. Your weights are determined by the number of reps you're doing.

For Beginners:

  • Choose a weight you can only lift 16 times. You don't need to go to complete failure, but make sure you're challenging your body.
  • Begin with 1 set of each exercise, slowly working your way up to 2-3 sets (i.e., adding a set each week)
  • When you've added sets and have a solid foundation (after 6-8 weeks), add more weight so that you can ONLY do 8-12 reps.
  • Continue to progress by adding a rep each week until you reach the max reps (no more than 16), increase your weight and drop your reps back down to 8-12.

For more on the specific guidelines of strength training, including choosing reps, sets and exercises, read Weight Training 101.

The important thing to remember when it comes to strength training is that you must give you your muscles more weight than they can handle--that's how muscles grow. The challenge of lifting heavy is just as much a mental game as it is a physical one and, if you haven't pushed your body's limits in a while, just the act of lifting weights may be all you can handle. If you're consistent with a basic program and build a solid foundation of strength, you'll be ready for the next step--lifting heavy and pushing your muscles to their limits. You'll be amazed at the changes in your body!

WI & Swelling

Photobucket Today is weigh in day for both weight loss groups that I'm a part of. All I have to say is $H*T .... I gained! I know what the problem is & it has nothing to do with not exercising (although I do need to bump up my time), it has nothing to do with not drinking my water or watching my portions. So what's left? TOM & a sunburn. All us ladies know that TOM can really add some weight to ya, well believe it or not ... getting a bad sunburn can add even more water weight to a person. I went to the Doc. on Tuesday cause I was so concerned about not having ankles. I took pics but it didn't come out all that great!

These pics are from Monday night ... this burn is 3 days old so you can just imagine how bad it was Friday night & Saturday morning.

Believe it or not ... by Tuesday night I was so swollen at the ankles that I had to remove the wrap that the doctor applied cause it was turning my foot purple. She didn't put the wrap on super tight but at night is when I swell up to the biggest so thus the swelling. Thank goodness DH came in to check on me because had he not mentioned my feet feeling like ice cubes I may have never realized it was from the wrap.

So, even though this is a rough weight to swallow, I'm not giving up. The burn is almost gone so with that the swelling should go & TOM will be outta here in a couple more days. Now if I am still up this high next Friday then I give you all permission to dog me out ... you can even come to my house & kick my arssss. I'll deserve it!

Off to take the kids to VBS. It's their last day ... they are doing their little program later this morning. Of course I'll have pics. =D


Easy way to eat 5 fruits & veggies a Day

"Eat your fruits and vegetables." We've heard it all of our lives. If only it were so simple.

Our bodies crave fruits and vegetables more than just about any other food because we tend to get far fewer of them than we need. We often think we'd survive just fine on 2-3 servings a day – or less. But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the USDA both recommend at least 5 servings per day! What you’re missing could be the difference between just surviving and all out thriving.

With just a little thought and a tiny bit of effort in snack preparation, you can make these nutritious foods more convenient and accessible.

Tips and Tricks
  • Add fruit to your cereal, oatmeal, waffles or pancakes at breakfast.
  • Create your own yogurt flavors with plain yogurt and different combinations of fresh fruit.
  • Snack on raw vegetables or fruits instead of chips or pretzels. Keep sugar snap peas, raisins or carrot sticks in your car, your office or your backpack.
  • Use chunky salsa instead of thick, creamy snack dips.
  • Drink 100% juice instead of addictive coffee, tea, or soda.
  • Going out to lunch? Take a trip to the grocery salad bar. Use lots of dark green leaves and other vegetables instead of piling on all of the extras like eggs, bacon and cheese.
  • Add frozen veggies to any pasta dish. It's an easy way to get in another serving of the good stuff.
  • Keep fruits and vegetables in line of sight. Grapes, oranges, bananas, and apples make a colorful bowl arrangement on the table. If you see them, you will eat them.
  • Dried fruit is just as portable as potato chips -- and less messy. It tastes especially good when added to basic trail mix.
  • When cooking vegetables, makes 2-3 times more than you need and immdiately store the extra away for tomorrow. It'll save you time later on.
  • Add your own beans and vegetables (tomatoes, spinach, peppers, cabbage) to canned and quick-serve soups.
  • If you must have pizza, load on extra veggies and pineapple instead of fatty meats and extra cheese.
  • Try berries, melons or dates for a naturally sweet dessert rather than the usual candy bar, cookie, or ice cream sandwich.
  • Frozen fruit and veggies are nearly as healthy as the fresh stuff, and only take minutes to prepare.
  • Combine fruit with your main meal courses. Raisins, apples and tangerine slices add sweet, crunchy variety to a salad. Apples complement pork, pineapple is great with fish, and orange slices are perfect with chicken.
Besides being packed full of nutrients, fruits and vegetables can also be quite filling. They may even ward off any empty calorie snacking that might follow! Don’t be discouraged by the recommended 5 servings a day. The guide below shows that one serving is less than what you might think.

One serving equals:
1 medium piece of fruit
1/2 cup fruit (raw, canned, or frozen)
1/2 cup cooked vegetables (canned or frozen)
1 cup raw vegetables
1/4 cup dried fruit
4-6 oz. of 100% juice (serving size depends on the type of juice)
1/2 cup cooked peas or beans

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

10 Reasons why you should eat Breakfast


Increased energy levels. Decreased disease risk. Bigger memory capability. Smaller waistline. When it comes to that first morning meal, the reasons to fuel your body are virtually endless. So, the next time you’re about to dash out the door on an empty stomach, remember these 10 reasons why breakfast really is the most important meal of the day:

• High Energy. A healthy breakfast provides you with enough nutrients to energize your body for hours.

• Smart Eating. Studies have shown that people who eat breakfast consume more vitamins, minerals, and fiber, and less fat and cholesterol.

 • Calorie Reduction. People who don’t eat breakfast are likely to eat more calories throughout the day than people who skip lunch, according to the Nemours Foundation’s Center for Children’s Health and Media.

• Decreased Diabetes Risk. People who eat breakfast are significantly less likely to be diabetic than those who usually don’t, according to the American Heart Association.

• Weight Control. A study by the National Weight Control Registry shows that eating breakfast actually helps keep people’s weight down.

• Full Focus. According to the American Dietetic Association, people who eat breakfast are better able to concentrate and be more productive throughout the morning.

• Making Memories. According to experts, eating breakfast improves memory and learning. In one study, college students who ate a morning meal scored 22 percent higher in a word-recall test than those who skipped breakfast.

• Urge to Exercise. Researchers believe that people who eat breakfast have higher energy levels and may engage in more physical activity than people who don’t.

• Happy Days. Skipping breakfast can make you feel tired, irritable, or sad. Even grabbing some fresh fruit or a bowl of cereal can help boost your mood.

• Stress Be Gone. The time you spend eating breakfast can be relaxing and help you to mentally prepare for the day. Eating breakfast also forces you to slow down, helping you to prioritize.

Keep in mind, however, that all breakfasts are not created equal—a healthy morning meal should be balanced and not too heavy. So, skip the eggs, bacon, sausage, and biscuits, and go for whole-grain cereals with fruit or juice instead. Or opt for an egg-white omelet filled with vegetables.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cardio Tunes!

Get your body Movin'!
“My uptown girl!  You know I’m in love with an uptown girl!”  As these lyrics pump through your headphones, it’s easy to forget that while Billy Joel sings to you, you’re actually running on the treadmill.  This is the power of music during a workout.  While Billy’s girl is looking for a “downtown man,” you’re busy burning calories as the minutes just fly by…
Music can be an important addition to your workout routine, something that can make a good workout great.  Often, if you are concentrating on music, you can workout at a higher intensity than normal.  Tunes can distract you from mild pain and muscle fatigue, allowing you to push your body harder.  Just like it is important to customize your workout routine, it is also beneficial to tailor your musical choices to fit your tastes.  If you are lucky enough to enjoy the music played in your gym, then it isn’t any extra effort to enjoy this source of motivation.  If, however, your gym’s choices leave much to be desired, simply create your own mix and tote your headset to your workout. 
If you don’t have a workout buddy, use your “mix tape” to psych yourself up and get the energy flowing.  You might try listening to fast-paced music on the way to the gym just to get into a better mindset.  Once you are there, that beat can help you ease into a comfortable rhythm while running, walking, or biking.  For some extra variety, switch-up the pace (or even machine!) every time the song changes.  Do this for 30 minutes, and you’ll have completed a great cardio workout.
There is a lot of technology that makes listening to custom music choices much easier.  From portable radios to CD players, you can bring an entire music library with you to the gym.  Perhaps the ultimate, however, is a personal MP3 player, which can often hold thousands of songs that you pick and legally download.  All you need to do is put on the earphones and hit play. 
There are countless CDs available that are specifically mixed for working out.  Some are specific for different workouts, from syncopated songs for kickboxing to disco-themed melodies for step aerobics.  Try one that fits both your musical and workout tastes.  80’s music might motivate you, while hip-hop is better for your workout buddy.  Expect to pay anywhere from $15-25 for any given CD, available online or even at your local music store.
Perhaps the best option is creating your own custom CD or MP3 playlist.  Start with a slower song, work up to several more up-tempo songs, and then include one or two tunes to cool down at the end.  Coordinate your workout intensity with each song, picking up pace as the beat speeds up.  Depending on the length of each song, expect to listen to around 10 different songs during a 30-minute cardio workout. 
The Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) scale will help you move through the following playlist, approximately a 30-minute cardio workout.  As the RPE moves with each song, you should adjust the intensity of your workout accordingly.  Feel free to create your own mixes to make your workout tunes truly your own.  Enjoy!

Click here to learn more about exercise intensity, including how to use the RPE scale.

 Title  Artist Duration  RPE
 The Sign  Ace of Base  3:12  4
 Caught Up  Usher  3:44  6
 Uptown Girl  Billy Joel  3:16  7
 Ain't Too Proud to Beg  The Temptations  2:33  8
 Lose My Breath  Destiny's Child  4:02  8
 Take Me Out  Franz Ferdinand  3:57  7
 Rock Your Body  Justin Timberlake  4:27  6
 Respect  Aretha Franklin  2:25  6
 When It's Over Sugar Ray   3:40  4

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

What's up with me

Do not Disturb I'm still here but not doing so well in the food or cardio department. I feel off the wagon & I'm having a really hard time climbing back up on it. My MIL is stressing me out ... I don't kow what I'm gonna do about her. I want to scream & yell but that wouldn't do me a bit of good. She'd just go scurring off running my ohone bill up letting everyone & their families what a biotch I'm being to her.

Wish me luck on getting my ars back on plan.

Today's food  ...

B: 2 chocolate glazed donuts, glass of milk, cup of coffee

L: peanut butter & jelly on a small wheat bagle, glass of milk

S: sonic banana split (I know ... really bad!)

D: 1 grilled hamburger with 1 slice cheese, bun, lettuce, tomato, onion & mustard. Probably a serving of baked fries

S: twizlers ... their fat free!

Exercise ... 1 lousy mile walked.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

14 Tips for Starting and Sticking With It

Stop Failure Before it Starts!

For some of us out there, if we could just convince ourselves that there is enough time in the day to exercise, we could be on track to a great fitness program. For others, we get started but quickly lose momentum and give up. To help get started and stay on track, here are a few tips:

  1. Throw away the bathing suit you wore in high school… and the memory too. It’s normal to have a mental image of yourself when you last exercised like a fiend. But if that image is from high school, you could be in big trouble. Even if it’s from last year, forget it. Remember as little as possible of what you used to look like. Starting today, make new memories.
  2. Prepare. We already know you don’t have the time, so write it down like an appointment every day. You wouldn’t cancel an appointment, why would you cancel on yourself? Aren’t you important too?
  3. Start slowly. Do much less than what you’re capable of. Take a 20-minute walk if you’re returning to exercise. You might feel like it’s not enough, but it’s a good start.
  4. Get the family involved. Run while your daughter rides her bike. Go to a local track and let the kids play their own games. Run with your spouse. Sign up for a local 10K. Walk with your son. Celebrate with a little something special after every activity.
  5. Where are your friends? Four words, four reasons – motivation, inspiration, determination, conversation. Surround yourself with friends who think positive and live large.
  6. Put the pain in perspective. When the going gets tough, remember that you have survived 600 carpools, 540 loads of laundry (this month), 41 baseball games, 230 dinners and one family vacation. What’s the big deal?
  7. Allow yourself to slow down. You’re driving this bus! For the first time today, you are in control.
  8. Sign up for a race. It’s a goal to strive for and adds a little meaning to your everyday workout.
  9. Run/walk in public. Be proud of your accomplishment. Take in all the sites and be an inspiration to others.
  10. Just show up. Go to the gym, class, or the park. Once you’re there, it’s hard to say no. 98% of life is showing up.
  11. Eat. Follow a healthy eating pattern. If you limit your calorie intake, you will not have enough energy to workout and your metabolism will slow down.
  12. Understand your energy cycle. There are peaks during our days. Even during the week. Try to complete your workout when you feel good about yourself.
  13. Wallow in your greatness. You can exercise to become a better exerciser, or you can exercise to become a better mother, a better father, doctor, teacher, or a better friend – or you can exercise to become BETTER. Be proud of that accomplishment.
  14. Have fun. Where’s your childlike spirit? When you can make workouts "playouts," you’ve got it made.

Don’t give up on yourself. After all, it’s never too late to be that healthy person you might have been.