Thursday, January 28, 2010

Shout-Out for Healthy Recipes!!! :)

OK everyone....I would love to get some of your yummy "low-calorie" recipes. I am getting stressed trying to figure out what to fix that doesn't kill my diet. We all have our favorite high-calorie recipes, but I would love to get some new healthy ones. C'mon everyone....Let's dig deep & see what we can find!!! :)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Yes, Jenn I am finally getting around to posting. It has been a very rough month. January 4th (I always wait until we go back to routines to start) I wake up and do my work out (30 day shred with Jillian Michaels) until this past Friday I hadn't workout since. Between my 18month old cutting teeth and my daughter getting up and my boys sneaking out of bed at all hours of the night, I wasn't getting much sleep. Other than a pound or two, luckily I haven't gained any weight back from my loss from last year. I got my workout in yesterday, but then the kids were up last night. Go figure - when you are trying to do something good for yourself, everything else interferes. Every workout and everytime won't be perfect. For me the key has been not to stress over it and to do my best to get it in. My challenge now is regaining control over my eating so that I can lose weight again. I did alright maintaining, but I have another 30 pounds to lose. (Maybe my 9 year old son will stop calling me fat. LOL) Good luck to all those out there. Oh, yeah! I am also doing Jillian's Jumpstart program to help me get going and clean my systems out. It is making things run a little better inside, but no side effects. I just feel better! Happy weight loss!

Does anyone know who won Biggest Looser last season?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The treadmill stole the show!

In 1996, the Journal of the American Medical Association published a study that compared energy expenditure and perceived exertion for six different indoor workout machines. Guess what? The treadmill stole the show. The study findings showed that a treadmill induces higher rates of energy expenditure (that means they help you burn more calories, more efficiently) than all the other machines included in the study.* Granted, the study is a bit older, but powerful nonetheless.

Treadmills reign supreme when it comes to workouts that actually work.

Often times, when people think of a treadmill, they think of two things: walk... and run. That's unfortunate, because with a treadmill, the options are endless; whether you are 9 or 90 years old, fit or unfit, a walker or a runner--treadmills have a variety of options that can help you achieve your health and fitness goals.

I've worked on treadmills for over 15 years, and I can't remember ever doing a boring "walk" workout. Treadmills are flexible, durable, efficient machines... a healthy investment for every home.

Here are my favorite treadmill workouts:

(Note! These workouts don't name a specific speed or incline because you should find the pace that works for you, your goals, and your fitness level. We are all different. If the recommendation is "fast walk" that feels "challenging, but comfortable" then simply find a speed/incline setting that feels like a "fast walk" to you. Listen to your body and check with your doctor if you have specific workout questions or limitations.

Favorite #1: The Shake-up:
1) Slow/moderate walking pace for 3 - 10 minutes to get warmed up. 2) Fast walk/run for 1 minute. The speed should feel challenging... like you could only maintain it for a few minutes at a time. 3) Climb for 1 minute. Drop your speed to a moderate walking pace and hike up the incline as high as you feel comfortable. 4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the remainder of the workout (10 times for 20-minutes of intense cardio, and so on) 5) Cool down for 2 - 5 minutes by walking at a moderate to slow pace with a little or no incline.

Favorite #2: The Pyramid Climb
1) Slow/moderate walking pace for 3 - 10 minutes to get warmed up.
2) Find a comfortable workout walking pace (somewhere between 2 - 5 mph, depending on your fitness level)
3) Increase the incline by 1% each minute of your workout. So start with 1% for one minute, then 2%, and so on. Doing this on a treadmill with inclines of 0-10% will take 20 minutes to do a complete pyramid climb from lowest to highest, then backing down, from highest to lowest. If your treadmill has higher incline capabilities, try skipping up by 2's or 5's.
4) Cool down for 2 - 5 minutes by walking at a moderate to slow pace with a little or no incline.

Favorite #3: The Accelerator
*This workout helps people who "hate to run" or who claim they "can't run" actually learn to run... and like it! If your knees are over running, no worries; this workout also helps push average walking paces to help you burn as many calories as possible.

1) Slow/moderate walking pace for 3 - 10 minutes to get warmed up.
2) Find your comfortable walking pace--a pace that feels like your heart is really pumping, that makes you feel like you are breathing deeply, and that you could maintain for 20-30 minutes.
3) Now find your "challenge pace" -- this is about speed! Try increasing your speed by 1 - 2 (maybe more) mph--to a pace that you feel like you could maintain no more than 60 seconds.
4) Now that you have a "comfortable pace" and a "challenge pace", try doing 2 minutes at your comfortable pace and 30-60 seconds at a your challenge pace. You can pyramid your challenge pace and play around with different speeds.
5) Cool down for 2 - 5 minutes by walking at a moderate to slow pace with a little or no incline.

Here's what works for me:
- 3-10 minute warm-up at 3 mph.
- 2 minutes at 4mph and 5% incline (my "comfortable" pace)
- 45 seconds at 8 mph and 0% incline (my "challenge" pace)
- I like jump anywhere around the 8mph range, some segments are at 7 mph, some 7.5 mph, some 8.5... just to keep my body guessing and challenged throughout the entire workout.
- 5 minute cool down at 3 mph.

Favorite #4: The Built-in Personal Trainer
This one is easy. Try using the pre-loaded workouts that are located right on the treadmill console and easily started by the push of a button! The NordicTrack Incline trainer has 9 "calorie goal" workout programs that were designed by a certified personal trainer. These programs are designed to help you burn a specific number of calories and automatically change the speed and incline of your treadmill to ensure your workout is efficient and results-oriented. It doesn't get any easier than that! (Well, let's not get carried away; you do have to do all physical work... but at least you won't be wasting time second-guessing yourself; rather, you'll feel confident and secure that you're doing what works.)
~Melanie Douglass (Studio 5 Health Contributor)

Monday, January 18, 2010

What are your favorite "low-calorie" snacks????

Please share with us your favorite "low-calorie" snacks. I LOVE snack foods, but if I don't choose healthy choices, then I get out of control. Here are some fairly new ones I saw on shelves this past weekend....give 'em a try!

Fiber One 90 Calorie Chewy Bars - HUGE news in the world of no-guilt snack bars! These are the perfect size for a quick chew and (as expected) taste AMAZING! In Chocolate and Chocolate Peanut Butter (both sooooo good!), each 90-calorie bar has 2 - 2.5g fat, 95mg sodium, 17g carbs, 5g fiber, 5g sugars, and 1g protein (POINTS® value 1*).

Nabisco 100 Cal Mister Salty Yogurt Flavored Pretzels - These pretzels ROCK. Each pack (about 13 pieces) has 100 calories, 4g fat, 160mg sodium, 16g carbs, 0g fiber, 7g sugars, and 1g protein (POINTS® value 2*).

DiGiorno 200 Calorie Portions Pizza - A 200-calorie serving has 9g fat, 440 - 520mg sodium, 21 - 22g carbs, 1g fiber, 2 - 3g sugars, and 9 - 11g protein (POINTS® value 5*). Try Chicken with Peppers & Onions, Pepperoni, Cheese & Tomato... or ALL of the above.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010


I have a newborn and a preschooler to care for during the day, making it hard to exercise. Add the fact that it's too cold to take them outside, plus, the air is too dirty for anyone to breathe anyway! What does everyone else do to fit in exercise during the winter?

Sunday, January 10, 2010


I need to know what you all eat for lunch when you are "dieting" or trying to be more healthy???? I keep eating the same things EVERY day & I'm getting bored! Please help me.....I need some yummy ideas!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

5 Steps to a Workable Goal

5 Steps to a Workable New Year's Resolution

Who hasn't spent a New Year's Eve resolving to be svelte by spring? Then by mid-February, you've sold your rowing machine and bought a new couch. Follow five steps to make this year your most successful yet.
For many people, a new year's resolution is a highly personal goal that, if fulfilled, becomes a "private victory." But whether you keep things quiet by accident or by design, you are giving yourself an out: You can fall off track, and no one will be the wiser.
On the other hand, you are more likely to follow through with your resolutions if you share them with the significant people in your life.
Which brings us to our five-step resolution-reaching plan.

1. Make your resolutions public
Share them with one or more people so they can help you stay on track. If you let your friends and family in on your dream, you can use their support to help you make it a reality.
2. Write down your resolution
But don't stop there: Also include the steps you will take to keep it. According to Laura Hess, a Nevada-based personal and business coach, having a clearly articulated goal and a plan of action is vital for success.
3. Keep things simple
Break a big goal into a series of smaller goals. Want to lose 50 pounds? Shoot for losing 5 percent of your body weight first, or set five 10-pound incremental weight-loss goals.
4. Mark your achievements
Each time you make a small lifestyle change aimed at reaching your goal — adding five minutes to your daily walk, for instance — put a star on your calendar so you can see your progress.
5. Make small changes
If weight loss or a healthier lifestyle is your goal, put a bowl of fruit or vegetable pieces front and center in the fridge, and hide the cookie jar behind the oatmeal. Each week, try a new low-fat cereal or an exotic fruit or a vegetable you haven't tasted before. Stash away your car keys for a weekend and challenge yourself to walk wherever you need to go. Lose the deep-fat fryer, too, and steam, bake or microwave your food.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


One day, while sitting at the kitchen table, my brother Jake said "Wow you have a lot of hair on your chin!" I ran downstairs to my bathroom. I was mortified to find that he was telling the truth. I quickly shaved it off.

Than at 18 I went to my Gyno because I was getting on Acutane for my Acne. During the exam my doctor said that I "may" have PCOS. After an ultrasound it was confirmed. I was given a small pamphlet and sent on my way with my birth control and Acutane. No other explanation given.

At 23 my husband and I decided to get off the birth control and start our family. After a year trying on our own - we decided fertility was the answer.
Once again the diagnosis - PCOS.

The fertility specialists told me to measure my temperature for 30 days, than clomed for the next 3 months, and then almost daily shots of Repronex in my stomach with 3 rounds of insemenations, and 15-20 days a month at the doctors office checking my ovaries. An emotional nightmare which did NOT result in pregnancy.

During this time I bought this book I pictured above. I actually bought 5 different books but this one helped me the most to really understand what PCOS was. I began using the information I read to help me get the weight off.

The doctors tell you that birth control helps, they tell you that fertility drugs help, they EVEN tell you weight loss helps. But not once - even to this day on shows such as "The Doctors" or "Dr. Oz" do they tell these women HOW to loose the weight.

I lost 55 lbs and the month after we stopped fertility treatments - I became pregnant all on my own.

My journey has been painful. Having facial hair, acne, weight problems, and just overall not feeling womanly.

Not being able to get pregnant does something to you that you just cannot explain. Especially when it feels like it's your fault.

But now I know you CAN do something about it. Without birth control, without fertility drugs, and without costly procedures which can leave you feeling drained and emotionally spent.

How To Start:
1. Buy books or go to the library and check them out. Read them. Learn about PCOS.

2. Get OFF the carbs. No more sugars (except fruit, brown rice & whole grains)

3. Get moving. Cardio and weights.

4. Be consistent. Never take a "day off". But treat yourself every once and while. Just remember that when you splurge your sugars are going to go off the chart and it will make it harder to keep going and not eat a whole bucket of red vines (if you have PCOS - you know exactly what I'm talking about).

5. Be positive. Changing the way you eat and live is hard to do. The day to day humdrum of eating healthy and finding time to exercise can be overwhelming. But when you get on the scale after that first months and you've lost 5-30 lbs it will make it all worth it.

I am not even sure if anybody wants to hear any of this. But this has honestly changed my life. I just wish I would have known about my insulin resistance, my PCOS, and my options years ago.


This conversation comes at a perfect time. I could probably write more than a page but am trying to hold back!

I've lost about 20 lbs (gain and lose 5) with more to go. I went to the gym the other day and was working out with skinny girls with boob jobs. I felt like dirt. After all the work I've done to lose I weight, I still felt like I wasn't good enough. Right then I realized everything I felt was in my head. I bet at least 5 out of 10 of those girls would point out something they didn't like about their body. I bet if we all sat down in a circle and just chatted, we would have all talked about something painful we are all going through. We all have some type of crutch we are searching for. That's when I realized, it's time to quit sabotaging myself. It's time to quit comparing myself to others because it doesn't do me any good. Please don't read this as if I am a pessimist, I am more of a realist. This is how I feel: it's time that we start embracing those parts of us where we feel we are lacking. One way to embrace those negative parts of ourselves is by sticking to our meal plan, no matter what. We can't hide behind food anymore. We can't give up and then call ourselves crappy names. No more self sabotaging!!! I say this to myself more than anyone.

I have learned a lot from my trainer, Neil Anderson, stud of the century!!! (don't tell him I said that, it would just go to his head. He has written some amazing articles. They were hard for me to accept but once I thought about it, his writing has helped me tremendously.

If you want to read his article you can click here. Just to warn you, he doesn't flat out say some 4-letter words but he does some **** so if you get offended by that, there's your warning. Also, he has a radio show and you can download it here. January 2nd it the interview about sabotaging and I still need to listen to it.

Oh, and my goal is to train for a triathlon I signed up for that will take place in April or May.

Getting the weight off my thighs AND my mind

I wanted to only write about my goals today until I read the posts by Jenn and Shelley. I can definitely relate to the negative thought patterns and poor body image. At my lowest adult weight (which was 15 pounds below my Weight Watchers goal), I didn't look any different to myself. I always thought I looked fat.
This morning I received an email from someone I used to date, though we haven't communicated in months. It was a link to a New York Times article titled, “Study Says Women With Mate Get Heavier.” He knew I have weight worries and perhaps thought that would be an easy way to take a jab at my new marriage. What the message really made me consider is that if everyone else knows the extent to which I worry about weight, I probably dwell on it way too much.
I had my fifth baby over seven weeks ago. My first goal is to get a battery for my scale. I have heard that a person should weigh weekly while trying to lose, but she should weigh daily when trying to maintain. That advice makes sense to me.
My next goal is to get to back to my pre-baby weight, which means I should lose 10 pounds. Unfortunately, my pre-baby weight is about 16 pounds over what I'd like to weigh. I also want to get back into running (ok, jogging) and start with a 5k this spring/summer.
Thank you, everyone, for sharing your's comforting and motivating.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

I need to figure out a way w/o the crutch!!!

Shelley....thanks so much for sharing this story with us. It made me realize that I'm not alone. When I was 18-27 yrs old....I had a different "form" of anorexia.....I was addicted to Diet Drugs. In high school, I weighed about 140 which is normal for someone that is 5'7.....but all my friends were I turned to diet drugs to lose weight. I took way too many & almost passed out a few times....I wouldn't eat much either. I got down to 110 lbs & looked horrible. At the time, I thought I looked great, but looking back now...I see how horrible I looked. When I was 26, they banned these diet drugs from the market because people were having heart attacks & dying. I was devastated w/o my diet drugs. I tried a bunch of other stuff I found in the grocery store & it didn't work & I started gaining weight back. That was my crutch...I couldn't lose weight on my own....I needed that crutch!!! Now I'm all grown-up with kids....I just can't seem to get down to the weight I want. I always have that crutch in the back of my mind & wish I could have it back. I'm afraid to say it, but if those diet drugs came back on the market, I'm positive I would buy them again! Crazy, I know! I have been trying so hard for 10 years to get back on track with my weight & feel good about myself again. I need to find a new crutch....something healthy or just find the courage to achieve my goals w/o the stupid crutch!!!! I am so happy that all of you are willing to contribute to this blog & help me with this battle. THANK YOU SO MUCH! This means so much to me! :0)

Eating Disorders and Negative Thoughts

I am writing this to share my experience because I don't think I am alone, and it is something that I am still dealing with! Here I sit, watching Biggest Loser. Eight and a half months pregnant...huge for a reason:)... and yet when I watch them weigh in and say how they feel, I feel like I am one of them. I feel larger than the rest, like I stick out, and very conspicuous in a group if that makes sense! To give a back ground- before my pregnancy I was a normal weight. To be honest- I started my pregnancy up 10 lbs from my normal weight which was 150- which is healthy for my height- 5'7". In jr. high and high school, I dealt with anorexia. Not to an extreme of being hospitalized, but it started in 7th grade and I lost 30 lbs. Like I said, when I sat with a group of kids I felt like a giant huge person filling the hall way. When in fact at that time I was a size 7!!!
I guess why I think sharing this is valid, is because even though I received help- and really felt I over came this- no matter what I do sometimes these thoughts and feelings still overwhelm me. I can go from a positive plan/program and feeling like I can do it! to so so negative and desperate! I have had one time that I really felt success and strong in this area. When I did Body For Life For Women. It was 3 1/2 years ago, I lost 30 lbs in 2 1/2 months and felt amazing! This program really works and is normal healthy eating with an exercise plan that is not too hard. The book was key to my motivation.
Tell me what you do when negative thoughts and desperate moments come to you! Like I said, mostly I am ok, but honestly these thoughts still come regularly. I hope everyone has the success they are seeking from this!

What are your goals???

What are your goals for 2010??? I like to call them goals instead of resolutions because I tend to keep them if they are goals! :) I'm with Emily on the "baby steps" protocol.....that is how I function also! My first goal of the year is to lose 5 lbs by my birthday (2/26). A bit conservative, but I will worry about losing more after that goal is achieved. OK....cute girls & guys (if any) at least ONE goal on here....even if it is NOT weight related...that's ok too! :) It is said that people achieve their goals more often if they are written down (or typed) & actually SAID ALOUD! Let's hear from you..........

Turkey Sandwich

I am sitting here eating a turkey sandwich. Two pieces of whole wheat bread, turkey and spinach. Typical lunch for one who wants to lose weight. I really don't like turkey sandwiches. The reason why I'm eating it is that it's on my weekly diet plan. A turkey sandwich every day for a week. Blah! But I am going to eat it. See, after years and years of diet plans, this program I'm doing works for me. If I were to do WW, I'd make those delicious muffins Jenn posted and put 10 in my mouth, justifying each one as a point. I'd crave carbs the rest of the day and I'd feel unbalanced all day long. Structured eating, 5 times a day, helps me feel balanced. I don't feel guilt, I feel like I've accomplished something healthy for myself. But what works for me doesn't work for everyone. What works for you?

The daily plate

I found this link on a friend of a friends weight loss blog. It's pretty cool. I am always having a hard time of keeping track of calories as well as what I eat...this I hope will keep me accountable!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Weight Watchers "1-point" Muffins

Weight Watchers “1-point” Muffins

3 C. All Bran Cereal
2.5 C. Water

Soak the cereal in the water for 10 mins.

Then add:
1 tsp Vanilla
1.5 tsp Baking Powder
1 Box Krusteaz Fat-Free Cranberry Orange Muffin Mix
Handful of dried cranberries—optional

Mix together & drop into muffin cups. Bake @ 350 for 20-25 mins.
Makes 24 muffins.
ONLY 1-point each!!!

These are great to put in the freezer & then when you need a filling snack, pull one out & pop it in the microwave for about 20 seconds. I like to put a tiny bit of jam or spray butter after they are warmed up. YUMMY! :0)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Cheap Subscriptions to Weight Watchers & Shape Magazines

Here are the links & promo codes to get some great magazines for very cheap! Just copy & paste these to get to the page.

Copy & paste this to get to the page:
Use this promo code: ac98

Copy & paste this to get to the page:
Use this promo code: 8249

Let me know if it doesn't work.....I just signed up for both of these & I'm way excited!! :)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Diets Don't Work...NOT!

Hi everyone! My name is Alison and I knew Jenn in our singles ward many moons ago.

I just wanted to share something with you I learned last year. You know how the books say that diets don't work? I believe that to be wrong. Diets do work. Nutrisystem, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, etc. You CAN lose weight by doing them. For so many years I have read books about emotional eating, hoping I'd find the secret to weight loss. If I could just nail "my problem", I'd be set for life. It never happened. Last year I did a Biggest Loser contest with some friends and I lost 20 lbs. It was harder than anything I have ever done, but I did it. So the truth is that dieting isn't easy, it's HARD, and it doesn't really matter because you still have to do it to lose weight. You have to battle the stress, the parties, the pain, fear, ups, and downs. To lose weight you have to eat less and move more, despite all the emotions and events that take place in life. There is no magic diet or magic pill.

I still want to lose 15-20 more pounds and in order to that I have to have a plan and stick with it (no matter what comes my way). I have a diet that I did last year that is a three month plan. It's by Total Health and Fitness. It's pretty structured and I need that. I can have two cheat meals a week. I will plan my cheat meals according to my week.

Thanks Jenn for starting this blog. I look forward to hearing from all of you! Good Luck!!!!

I'm officially starting on Monday!

Hopefully by Monday the 4th, I will have all the junk food cleared out of my house & will be able to start my "healthier eating" w/o too many temptations. I think I'm going to start out by doing Weight Watchers points for my eating because this has worked for me in the past. As for exercise, I'm going to alternate between incline walking on my treadmill & doing the DVD "Jillian Michaels--30 Day Shred". What has worked for you? What are you going to do now? I would love to hear from you. :0)