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Monday, October 10, 2011

I Like How It Feels

Wow! If you have not heard the Enrique Iglesias song  "I Like How It Feels" , you have got to listen to it. I think if ever there was a song that hit home with me, this would have to be it. I have to sit and think about my life and how I have always been just one step behind everyone else...their dreams, their plans, their life. Have you ever just sat there and wondered "what is my purpose?" 

I think that I've searched for that my entire life...just where do I belong? What is it that I can do to make a difference? You know I don't believe there are any random acts in our universe. Everything that happens to you is part of the person you are and the person you are meant to be. Every experience from the exhiliarating highs to the crashing lows. It is what makes you so unique. Every person is a story just waiting to be told. Some of you will journey on your own and others will reach out across cyberspace and meet people sharing the same experiences.

For those of you struggling with self-esteem issues because of where you are right now, I want to say YOU CAN CHANGE IT! I don't care if you have 300 lbs to lose or if you are so skinny the wind could blow you into next week...YOU CAN CHANGE IT! The only thing in life with an ironclad guarantee is death. Other than that, everything is possible. But the only person that is going to get you there is YOU!

Now I can come in here and tell you night after night exactly what I am doing to change my life. I can stand behind you and encourage you. I can support you and guide you. I can even inspire you. But when it comes to making it happen...IT'S ALL YOU! You have to reach down inside yourself and want it so bad that you will be willing to do whatever it takes to get there.That means when you have a setback, and you will, you have to have the courage to keep getting back up and pushing forward. For every person that says "you can't" you have to say "you can!"

I'm just very happy to have finally reached my goal weight and now changing my goal to "toning" instead of "weight loss." I can't even begin to tell you how much "I LIKE HOW IT FEELS!" It was a lot of stumbles to get here, but I was determined someday I would be here. And now, me the girl that was afraid of P90X ® is fighting like heck to do Asylum ® and LOVING IT! Am I perfect? Heck NO! But it doesn't matter...what matters is I keep raising the bar. I keep telling myself I can do better and I know I will.

I became a coach because I love it! I love how exciting it is to see people transform themselves. I love being there when they tell their story and then watching them come alive with their success. I'm a coach because "I LIKE HOW IT FEELS!" If you watch the video below, you will see ME! I have my five seconds of fame, but the real fame comes in "doing what I love and loving what I do!" You can be a part, too! Let's talk about YOU joining my TEAM!

But there are other ways to take part if you're not ready to coach. We are all doing a "Holiday Fat Blaster" on the Cinderella Pact thread over on the P90X ® Programs Message boards. We would love to have anyone that wants to join us, jump over and just get busy with us. I don't care what program you are doing, the girls in there have tons of experience and great information to share. So if you are looking for a group of really motivated people...we are definitely where you want to go!

Don't have an account? What is stopping you? Let's DO THIS!!! SIGN UP FOR FREE!

You know you want to "LIKE HOW IT FEELS!"


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I've checked into the Asylum

I just finished an Insanity ® / P90X ® Hybrid and absolutely LOVED it! Insanity ® has definitely raised the bar on my fitness level. I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE what Shaun T has done for me and so now I'm going to be paying it forward. I'm within 11 lbs of my goal weight and hoping the Asylum ® is my ticket to ride.

This was my end results with my hybrid. Not too bad for a girl! LOL ... a 47-year old girl!

I've been really skeptical about taking it to the next level. When I was at the Team Beachbody Coach's Summit in LA this year, I stood in line with Dallas Carter (yeah, the Dallas Carter: 2008 Team Beachbody Body Game Winner) to workout with Shaun T. I'm going to tell you, we were the middle of the line and I was nervous we might over exceed the head count. But I got in there. If you have ever been to a Super Saturday event and got to workout with one of the trainers, you will understand when I say the anticipation alone will get your heart rate up there.

There were people in there ranging from all levels of fitness. I'm 47 and a knee surgery survivor...but I've learned to modify where I need to and listen to my body to push when I can and back off where it needs be. First and most important thing you will learn when doing ANY extreme fitness program..."no pain, no gain" is the recipe for INJURY. You should push your muscles enough to feel the resistance and bring them to failure. But going to the point that you hurt yourself is NUTS, not Insanity ® . So if I begin to feel my form go or I feel like something is starting to bind...I don't PUSH. I stop, refocus and do it right. I listen because I want to be successful with the program. It's not about being a super hero, it's about doing my best to make my body the best it can be!

Anyway...that workout with Shaun definitely made it a no-brainer...I was coming home to the Asylum ® . I'd been to the water and I drank the koolaid! Yeah, I'm just like any other Team Beachbody Junkie - once you get started you can't help be become addicted to getting fit and pushing yourself to even higher levels. It's the challenge that hooks you and the results that keep you.

So my next journey has begun. Yesterday was Day 1. Speed & Agility. Definitely let me know "I am raising the bar." I thought I could bring the sweat with Insanity. OMG! I was in learning mode yesterday and soaked through and through! I LOVED IT!!!

And when it was over...I was like "HOOYEAH the next 30-days are going to be sweet!" I've got my day 1 photos. But think I will wait until next Monday to post so I can do weekly comparisons. A total way to keep myself accountable since it is afterall a 30-Day program..let's see what happens. "Momma needs her some abs!" I want a Shaun T belly!!!

This is one program I just know is going to bring my fitness exactly where I want it to be. This morning I had Day 2: Strength. This is a weight/resistance workout that literally had my body screaming. All I can say is WOW! You totally will not be disappointed. This is definitely the kind of strength training one would expect Shaun T Style. You go so fast you don't have time to think about your muscles getting's just boom, boom, boom. One move after another. And I could feel it.

I did the back flys with weights instead of the pullup bar. Not that I didn't want to do the pullup bar...just that meant hitting pause button to go to my bedroom (bar is in my closet opening) and since I had the option of the weights, I figured why not? Let me tell you, about an hour after the workout I had a major burn setting in between my shoulder blades. Yeah, this baby is going to work.

Now for all you ladies out there, I was using 10 and 15 pound weights throughout the workout. Seemed to work perfectly for me. I think the speed of the reps made that a good starting point for me, anyhow. The combination moves that lead into the pushups and the spiders were my favorite. Yeah, I'm thinking this is really going to get that fat to finally go "buh-bye". And absolutely love the weighted core work at the end. You can feel it target both your upper and lower girls all know THAT'S A GOOD thing.

So all I have to say is "I'M IN IT!" This is one time I really want to let them see me sweat!

Day 1 - Welcome to the Asylum!!!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Team Beachbody Summit 2011 - AMAZING!

All I can say is "WOW"! Team Beachbody Summit was everything I had hoped it would be and more. I absolutely had the time of my life. From getting onto an airplane for the very first time to attending the Super Workout with over 2,000 coaches. It was amazing.

If I had to use one word to describe the summit, it would be "ENERGY". Absolute unequivocal pure ENERGY! Never have I seen so many people united for one purpose and so passionate about what they are doing to "End the Trend of Obesity!" I could not help but be inspired by the stories of real people overcoming impossible odds to come out victorious in their own battles of the bulge. I'm not talking about dropping 5 or 10 pounds here, but actually losing a whole person in body weight. People that have literally stepped away from years of living unfulfilling lives to enjoying every single moment of every single day. People that are leading the way and paying it forward, because they have a message to share - that you are worth the effort! Definitely made me come away feeling proud to be a Team Beachbody Coach.

The truth is many of us have a story to share. Some of us are living those stories today. That's the real beauty of being a Team Beachbody Coach. We are real people with a real desire to get fit, stay fit and help others reach their fitness goals. Chances are we have been down many of the same detours and met the same road blocks many of you are struggling with today. We also know how critical it is to have a support system you can depend on, like our "Cinderella Pact." Unless you've been there - it's hard to even imagine what it is like. Some of us have struggled our whole lives and then some of us just woke up one morning and didn't even recognize the person starring back at us in the mirror. It's funny how we go along not realizing the extra weight we are carrying is actually threatening and depriving us of our very existence.

January 2005
I've been an active member of Team Beachbody since November 2007. I have struggled with the yo-yo weight loss game most of my adult life. However, it never really reached a critical point until after the birth of my last child. I will never forget actually leaving the hospital 6 pounds heavier than when I had been admitted - and that was after giving birth to a 7 pound healthy bouncing baby boy. How is that even possible? From that point on my roller coaster ride began. I sought professional help from a nutritionist, that pretty much handed me several pieces of plastic to demonstrate "portion" size and a carbon copied diet plan. That was it...and it cost me $40 for the 15 minutes of her time I was given, with no outlet for support. In other words I was basically given what a couple of seconds on Google would have found me. So my weight continued to climb and my self-esteem hit an all-time low. There is a period of my life you will find very few photos of me...those were my "hide and seek" years - "hide" from the camera or "seek" something or someone to position in front of me.

October 2005
No Carbs! Size 6
After about four years of convincing myself it was "ok" to be overweight a new reality hit me. I went in for my annual checkup and was put on high blood pressure medication and told I was "morbidly" obese and unless I did something fast, heading down a path to major health complications. Desperate for answers and the "quick-fix" solution I did the all popular "no carbs" diet. It was great - I lost 45 pounds in less than 3 months. WOW! Did that feel good. I went out, bought a whole new wardrobe, celebrated my success and then introduced carbs back into my diet. BAM! I don't even have to tell you what happened next. I blew up!!! I hit my all-time heaviest of 188 pounds. For a person that is 5'4" tall, it definitely wasn't pretty. And let me tell you, the weight that came back wasn't part of the muscle that I had lost - oh no - it was ALL fat! I was actually much worse off than I had been before.

January 2008
188 lbs
Sometimes I am really thankful for what happened next. It was right before Thanksgiving 2007. I saw an informercial for "Turbo Jam ® ". There was this cute blond dancing on my television telling me "I could do that." And the before and afters...WOW could that really be for real? So I bought it and made a promise to myself I was going to get healthy. Chalene Johnson is one of the most motivating trainers I've ever known and that was my introduction into the world of Team Beachbody. On the DVD it talked about WOWY and the community of people that were there for you. So I logged on and the message boards have been my support system ever since. And I am still going strong with those first encounters - they are no longer just my support system - they are my friends.

Summit 2011
Size 8
My journey has been a "slow and steady race," I'm not the 90-Day Success Story. But I am still nonetheless a success story. I've managed to average a weight loss of about 18 lbs a year. It's been a journey of stumbles here and there, but all the while a learning experience, which has taken me off of high blood pressure medication and back into a world worth living for. In February of 2010, I became a Team Beachbody Coach. My heart is in "paying it forward." I am giving back to a community that has literally given me back my life. I am doing something that has a real purpose and meaning that is close to my heart - I'm in the position now to "be there" for someone else just like me. That is something I am most proud of and being at summit this year was truly telling myself "I DID IT!"

Next year's summit will even be more spectacular than this year! We are going to Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Hotel. You better believe I am registered and will be there!!! So if you are ready to take that step to getting healthier and enjoying your life, I would love to hear from you! Let's get you heading down the path of a happier more fulfilling life! Just remember: DECIDE * COMMIT * SUCCEED! It can happen!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

P90X / Insanity Hybrid - IN IT to WIN IT!

WOW! I can't believe we are literally one week away from the event of the year! I'm so excited that this will be my very first Team Beachbody Summit. I've been waiting for this for since first becoming a member in 2007. My life has come completely full circle since that day. In November of 2007, I was majorly overweight and just desperate to get off the diet roller coaster. Now here I am 3 1/2 years later about to have the time of my life.

For some of you, 3 1/2 years probably sounds like an eternity. But for is a success! I've averaged a weight loss of about 18 pounds per year. From one program to the next, round after round, the results have been slow in comparison. But here is the deal...I've managed to continually lose weight and KEEP IT OFF! I've went from someone that was morbidly obese, to getting within a healthy weight range. I'm only 15 pounds from reaching my goal weight...and if history speaks for itself, I will definitely be there by next year's Team Beachbody Summit!

I've gotten rave reviews from both of my doctors this year! Not only do they approve my diet and exercise regiment - they totally support my continued success! The best part about what I am doing is ANYONE can do this. It is just a matter of chosing to "DECIDE - COMMIT - SUCCEED." Whether you are looking to lose weight or just eat healthier, Team Beachbody is definitely one of the best avenues to get you there. I so amazed at the HUGE SUPPORT I've gotten from all the people there...all the way from the corporate offices right down to fellow WOWY buddies. This has truly been a great experience and one I will continue to follow. For me, it is a lifelong journey. That's why I became a coach...I wanted to not only share with others how much this has changed my life, but to continue to be accountable. I want to make certain I stay on the path to "a healthier more fulfilling life."

I am now in my 11th week of the P90X ® / Insanity ® hybrid. I'm pleased with my progress. I've watched my clothing begin to fit better and actually seen "muscles" starting to emerge. That is a GREAT feeling...just knowing what I am doing is making a difference in helping me reach my goal and stay there.

I'm doing things now that I never imagined I would be able to do 3 1/2 years ago. And the real proof is in the photos...they may have been gradually changes as I was going along, but I never lost sight of the big picture. My small successes have led me to where I am today. So no doubt in my mind, I'm on the right path and LIFE is definitely GOOD.

Team Beachbody is continually looking for ordinary people just like you and me to be the frontline advocates for a healthier lifestyle. If you have ever considered the possibility of changing your life and have a real desire to help others along the way...this quite possibly could be the career path for you, too. I would love the opportunity to talk with you and would be happy to share how I be your Team Beachbody Coach or even add you to my line of Team Beachbody Coaches. Please feel free to email me with any questions you might have. You can also check out my Team Beachbody Coaching site at .

Digging Deeper and Pushing Play because I know I'm worth it! Keep Bringing It!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Struggling to be Thin - Time to Rethink the Madness!

First off, big thanks to everyone that supported my minor meltdown on facebook this past weekend with the Insanity ® . I so appreciate all the comments you posted. You guys totally ROCK and lets me know the street runs both ways...makes a HUGE impact just knowing there is support when I need it...Yes, us coaches are people, too. We'd like to believe we have it all figured out, but the truth of the matter is we are just ordinary people committed to living a healthier lifestyle. We don't always have all the answers - but we have a huge community of support.  We have our good days and bad days and those days in between.

I set a goal to get through the Insanity ® Pure Cardio without any added breaks. Anyone that has ever done this program and this specific workout knows they don't nickname it "PURE HELL" for no reason. The warm-up itself is like doing complete HIIT program. I sweat like CRAZY with just the warm-up session. But come to the workout part and Shaun T will tell you before you even start, "he is scared about what is fixing to happen". It is that intense.

Well I have myself super hyped on being at a particular "number" on the scales for the Team Beachbody Coach's Summit 2011. I know I should never obsess about the scales, but sometimes we do these crazy things to ourselves. I was all pumped Saturday and was cruising along with the Insanity ® Pure Cardio and just hit a wall about halfway through it. I had to stop and catch my breath and get back in there. Then had another break. I was so mad at myself that I didn't stop to take in that I had actually gotten further and better with the program than the last attempt. So instead of celebrating my improvement, I sulked over not hitting my goal. Sulk is putting it mildly. I broke into HUGE CROCODILE tears! I was so mad at myself. I grabbed a t-shirt and threw over my workout clothes and went outside and mowed both the front and back lawn with the iPod blasting!!!

January 2008
Then just kept beating myself up because I didn't see what I wanted to see in the mirror. It was only after I eventually cooled off and listened to the HUGE amount of support that I got that I realized..."what the heck is wrong with you???" OMG! I looked back at the 188 lbs I was when this journey first began. I'm 140 lbs right now. Wearing a size 8, not an 18. I just had in my head I was going to be a size 5 and 125 lbs by much so that I forget the whole point isn't about being a particular size or body weight. It's about being HEALTHY!!! Why I started this whole process to begin with. I mean, who really cares if I am a size 5 anyway? Me???

My fitness has come leaps and bounds since those days three years ago. And I continue to IMPROVE!!! You know my thought process was just not rational at all in that moment of defeat. And this is coming from someone that once upon a time was treated for an eating disorder. So I dug out my old photo album this weekend and found those pictures of me when I weighed 83 lbs...I seriously remember starving myself just to be a size 00. And looking in the mirror thinking I need to take more weight off.  That's when I snapped to reality...OMG! So never want to be that girl again either. Had I not had the best friend in the whole world at that point in my life, I would have probably starved myself to death trying to be what society has deemed "perfect".

May 2011
So here it is...I AM PERFECT! The PERFECT ME that is! Just as each and everyone of YOU are the PERFECT YOU! We are not a number on a scale or a certain dress size. We are human beings that are composed of much more than a particular body makeup. It doesn't matter what mold we fit into - it just matters we are healthy and making healthy choices to obtain and maintain a lifestyle of good health and fitness.

So yes, I am going to continue to push myself to do better...because being my personal best depends on my pushing my limits to be all I can be. But I also need to take more time remember how far I've come, too. I have a lot to be proud of.  
This is a lifestyle and not a race. I don't need to compete with anyone. I just need to continue to be the BEST POSSIBLE ME and that my friends is a lot to be proud of!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Bringing it with P90X and Insanity

Hi Everyone! Hope everything is going super fantastic with your workout regiments. I want to start this off by first of all apologizing for my bit of a hiatus from my weekly updates with you. I can assure you I have been bringing it harder than ever as I am getting prepared for the Team Beachbody Coach's Summit in June. It will be a simply amazing experience to get to workout with the best of the best in the business like Tony Horton, Chalene Johnson and Shaun T! I'm super excited and plan to bring back lots of great information to share with you guys about all the new and excited things that will be coming down the pipe for us this year!

One of the latest programs to hit the market is Shaun T's new Insanity: The Asylum ™ ! Happy to report I have this program on order and can't wait to sink my teeth into it and give you some great feedback on the program. This is specifically designed for agility training. You're probably wondering what I mean by that. "A really good agility training program includes a significant amount of core strengthening work as well as exercises that focus on quickness of the feet along with balance, speed and reflexes." Insanity: The Asylum ™ definite promises to bring out the inner athlete in you. So if you are looking for the next program to add to your Team Beachbody library, definitely check out the trailer below. As always, Team Beachbody is keeping your growing need for more challenging programs in mind. This is definitely going to take you to the next level!

Currently, I am in week 6 of a P90X/Insanity hybrid. I so much enjoyed how quickly the Insanity ®Insanity ® stripped away at the bodyfat. Let me tell you, if you are looking for a program to lean out, is definitly the way to go. I can't even begin to say enough about how quickly this program really took my fitness to all new heights I didn't think possible. It is a cardio - core - strength - endurance program like none on the market. It will challenge you not only on Day 1, but even as you finish your first round it will having gripping for more and digging deeper than you can imagine. So it was a natural progression for me to move right into a hybrid of two of my favorite programs: P90X ® and Insanity ® . I now have the best of both worlds working for me and loving every minute of it.

My son, Jason, is really tearing it up with the P90X ® , too. I've been following his progress and he is doing an amazing job and getting the transformation he was hoping for. I can hardly wait to get his 90-Day final results posted. It has been a thrilling journey to watch him go from "shrimp" to "champ". I definitely think his girlfriend is enjoying the transformation as well. He has been utilizing the P90X ® Results Recovery Formula, P90X ® Peak Performance Bars and Shakeology ® as his nutritionals. He is also following the Nutrition Guide as closely as possible. It is definitely having the impact and he is more than thrilled with his results. You will definitely have to check back to keep up with his progress. He is so hooked that he too is committed to following with the P90X/Insanity hybrid immediately following the completion of his first round with the P90X ® .

I also want to take a brief moment to remind you that Team Beachbody is always looking for people just like you to help with our campaign to "End the Trend of Obesity." You will be hearing a lot about this in the upcoming months ahead. We need persons just like yourself to help get the word out and encourage your friends, family, co-workers, etc. to adapt to a healthier lifestyle that includes regular exercise and healthy nutrition. If you have ever thought about coaching, now is a great time to jump on board. For the low startup cost you can be well on your way to having your own business, not to mention getting a 25% discount on all your program and supplement purchases, which includes Shakeology ® at a discounted price! As a coach, you will also earn a 25% commission on the products and supplements you sell! If you are interested or would like more information, please feel free to contact me through email at . I would be happy to send you the information and answer any questions you might have.

Also, don't forget I do shouts from Facebook. So if you need a little extra incentive, come and join me there, too! I'm always glad to make new friends and keep motivating each other. For me, it is all about developing lifelong friendships in fitness.

So keep "BRINGING IT!"

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Insanity - Done! Time to Step it Up

Very excited. Today I finished my first round of Insanity ® . Let's just say I am extremely thrilled with the progress. I have literally watched the inches melt away and getting myself into my "skinny" jeans has been a definite bonus. But now it is time to even dig deeper and push harder. I'm getting ready to dive back in there on Monday, March 28, 2011 with the next killer 13 weeks of a hybrid of P90X ® and Insanity ® . I'm getting ready to let Shaun T and Tony Horton help me sculpt this body for what I am hoping will be the Summer of My Life!!!

Team Beachbody's Coaches Summit 2011 is literally weeks away. I will be making my first airplane flight to Los Angeles, California during June 16-19! I'm so excited. This will be my first year to attend the event. I definitely want to go at my "goal weight!!!" So it is extremely important to me that I kick it up a notch and get ready to BRING IT like I have never brought it before! Sure don't want to go with all those other hard bodies and be a!

Sorry that the blog has drifted a bit, but I had a somewhat personal hiccup that needed a little attention. I am drifting into the SINGLE SCENE and learning that it is a lot more fun than I had anticipated. The nice thing about being single is you totally get to re-invent who you want to be. So time to drop all the baggage and move forward for a bigger brighter future. I absolutely have to admit I am having the time of my life. It has been so much fun to shop for a new and sexier wardrobe. Time to throw out all those "soccer mom" clothes and kick up my heels a bit! You know there are never ever any guarantees in life...but you always have the choice of the attitude you carry on with...for me "It's Full Speed Ahead" and time to be the ME I've always wanted to be!!! Life is just a bowl of cherries!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


It isn't everyday that you get the opportunity to start a family business. Team Beachbody is totally making that possible for my family. We are all on a mission to get in the best shapes of our lives and we are branching out across the states. My son, Jason or better known as Coach Cypher, is now knocking out those P90X ® workouts and going from scrawny to buff! It was absolutely amazing to have the opportunity to watch him BRING IT with Tony Horton in our basement this weekend.

So what is he doing for supplements? He is using the P90X ® Results and Recovery Formula and P90X ® Peak Performance bars. Then he is following the P90X ® Nutrition Plan that came with the P90X ® Program. Nothing like Tony Horton to turn this skinny little kid into one heck of a buff heartbreaker. We've been teasing him that everyone needs to get over the Team Edward/Team Jacob saga, there's a new kid in town - TEAM JASON! Sorry girls, this guy is off the market. But he is certainly going to give his sweetheart something to cling to. And will definitely be available to coach you to where you want to go!

Not bad for JUST 30 Days - He still has 60 to Go!

I also have another son, Ray or better known as Coach UpATone, that will shortly be kicking off his business as he is getting ready to take on the P90X ®, too. Yes this is definitely going to be a family business. And you know what the best part is? We are all getting fit and healthy together! I'm telling you there is nothing more that can make a mother proud than to watch her kids catch the fitness bug.

So I'm definitely going to be excited to bring you guys up to date on their progress as we watch their bodies totally transform. But this is not an exclusive club. You, too, can jump on board and join us and other Team Beachbody Coaches as we work together to End the Trend on Obesity!

Team Beachbody is a successful 10-year-old, $250+ million corporation based in Southern California. They create and sell the nation’s most popular in-home fitness and weight-loss products—high-quality, well-manufactured DVD workout programs, gear, and nutritional supplements that have been proven to work. You've all see the infomercials. There probably isn't a household out there that doesn't know what P90X ®, Insanity ® and TurboFire ® are! And that is just skimming the top of the programs they have to offer. When you become a Team Beachbody Coach, you’re teaming up with a solid, stable company and a best-selling brand.

What we're offering you is an opportunity to not only get in the best shape of your life, but to actually earn money while you do it! Now that is a pretty sweet deal! I see that as a WIN WIN! If you want to know more about Team Beachbody, just check out the following video. Then if you have any questions or would like to know more about how we can hook you up with a company that is definitely going places - shoot me an email and I would be happy to connect with you! You can also come and follow our Fan Page on Facebook at Fit Me X Cellence. We would definitely LOVE to have you on board!!! Let's BRING IT!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Week 8 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

Happy Sunday everyone! Hope you are feeling simply fantastic. I've had a great weekend catching up with my son and his girlfriend. Just like me, my kid has caught the Team Beachbody bug and is doing really terrific with the P90X ® . He just got done putting together his 30-Day results and is doing FABULOUS! We had a good time this weekend teasing him that they were going to have to forget about the Team Edward/Team Jacob hype and start talking about Team Jason! "Just sayin'." Anyway, a very proud parent moment was watching him workout this weekend. And even better that he is a Team Beachbody coach, too! Way to BRING IT, Coach Cypher!!!

30 Days with P90X

Now it is time for us to think about this week's challenge. This is going to be a real fun week for us. We are going to become "decorators" for our own interiors. So to speak anyway. When I think of an interior designer coming into my home, I think about how they will dazzle me with color. Color really matters. In your home it complements your mood and personality. But what about the colors we eat? What do they do for us?

This week we are going to explore the concept of interior design with the foods we eat. We are going to turn our plates into a canvas, ready for us to "paint" with splashes of deliciously vibrant colors. We are going to learn how to "design your plate." Color really matters in the food we eat. The more color in the foods you eat, the more likely it will contain higher concentrations of vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients your body needs.

Choosing food of color will not only make your plate look attractively appetizing to eat, but increases nutrients essential to good health without adding lots of calories and fat. In addition to vitamins, minerals, and fiber, fruits and vegetables contain phytochemicals, which are compounds that may protect us from disease.

Green: colored by natural plant pigment called "chlorophyll." Chlorophyll has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties. Along with other vitamins such as A, C and E, chlorophyll has been seen to help neutralize free radicals that do damage to healthy cells. Dark green leafy foods like spinach contain lutein, a powerful antioxidant that can also help protect against cataracts.

Fruits: Apple, Avocado, Grapes, Honeydew, Kiwi, Lime, Pear

Vegetables: Artichoke, Arugula, Asparagas, Beans, Broccoli, Brussel sprouts, Cabbage, Celery, Cucumber, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Olives, Green onions, Okra, Peas, Peppers, Spinach, Zucchini

Blue/Purple: colored by natural plant pigments called "anthocyanins." They are believed to help reduce cancer and heart disease risk and slow the aging process, in addition to having anti-inflammatory effects.

Fruits: Blackberries, Blueberries, Figs, Grapes, Raisins

Vegetables: Asparagus, Cabbage, Carrots, Eggplant

Red: colored by natural plant pigments called "lycopene" or "anthocyanins."Tomatoes and watermelon both have lycopene, which can help reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke.

Fruits: Apple, Cherries, Cranberries, Grapefruit, Pears, Pomegranate, Raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelon

Vegetables: Beet, Cabbage, Pepper, Radish, Onion, Tomato

Orange/Yellow: colored by natural plant pigments called "carotenoids." They contain powerful antioxidants such as vitamin C, in addition to the phytochemicals, carotenoids and bioflavonoids. Deep orange vegetables and fruit contain beta-carotene, a disease-fighting antioxidant. Beta-carotene is believed to play a role in reducing risk of cancer and heart disease, promoting good eyesight, boosting the immune system and slowing the aging process.

Fruits: Apricot, Cantalope, Lemon, Mango, Nectarine, Orange, Papaya, Peach, Pear, Persimmon, Pineapple, Tangerine

Vegetables: Carrots, Corn, Peppers, Pumpkin, Squash, Sweet potato

White: colored by pigments called "anthoxanthins." White vegetables from the onion family contain a phytochemical called allicin, which has been said to aid in reducing cholesterol, lowering blood pressure and increasing the body’s ability to fight infections.

Fruits: Banana, Pear

Vegetables: Cauliflower, Corn, Garlic, Ginger, Jicama, Mushrooms, Onion, Parsnip, Potatoes, Shallots, Turnip

A few helpful tips to keep color in your daily diet:

  • Decorate your kitchen counter or table with a bowl of fresh fruit. Make the choice of a healthy snack ready and available.
  • Prepare your vegetables by washing, dicing, cutting and placing in small airtight containers for your refrigerator. Make it easy to add these delicious enhancements to your salads, soups or casseroles.
  • Opt for mixed berries and grapes topped with non-dairy low-fat whipped topping instead of frozen ice cream.
  • Buy prepared mixed salad greans to add a quick and tasty salad with your favorite vinaigrette dressing to your meals. Nothing says color like a bed of fresh romaine hearts with strips of red cabbage and shredded carrot topped with garden fresh tomatoes. Yum!
  • Create veggie trays for the appetizer! Munching on raw vegetables is a great way to add color to your meal and extra fiber without the worry of excess wasted calories.
  • Make it a point to serve a variety of colors in each meal with at least one brightly colored vegetable.
  • Edible garnishes like radish roses or kiwi slices can also dress up an otherwise ordinary meal. Experiment with different cuts of raw vegetables and fruits to give your plate "nutrition appeal."
  • Buy frozen vegetables and fruit to keep on hand and have an ample supply of colorful nutrition without the worry of spoilage.

Part of eating healthier meals is also feeling good about what you are eating. No one likes boring meals that taste like cardboard. We want a variety of flavors that are both delicious and appealing. Adding the extra color is a great step in the right direction for proper nutrition. So have fun this week creating your edible masterpieces! Don't be surprised if you don't find the nutrional designer in you!

Have a great week and just make those meals count! Remember you plate is your canvas, so what colors will you be painting yours with?

Keep Bringing It!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Week 7 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

Hi everyone! Forgive me, I just realized that I forgot to post this week's challenge. Just remember you can always go to my YouTube Channel and get the weekly post, too. I'm also posting them to the Cinderella Pact thread on the P90X ® Programs Message Boards at Team Beachbody. Ok, now to catch up. This week's challenge is going to take some thinking outside of the box, but it is an important and sometimes overlooked aspect to ones personal growth, as well as our health and fitness. This week we are going to be working on our "spiritual" health. I'm not going to suggest that you devote yourself to any particular religious power. I believe our beliefs are of personal choice. I'm just asking that you at least consider and explore the following concept.

Spirituality is the part of the equation that gives our lives meaning and purpose. It is the most basic of the senses that a person develops with themselves and their inner thoughts. It is the relationship between oneself and their state of mind.

We all live in a world that is filled with "to-do" list and just the hussle and bussle of having to get things done. There will always be one more phone call to make, one more errand to run, one more email to get out and so on. Life is like's a neverending array of things to do, people to see and places to go. But somewhere in the midst of all the organized chaos, and in some cases not so organized, we have to have time to "recharge."

So what I am going to ask you to do is simply set aside 10 minutes everyday to do just that. More if you need it, but 10 minutes at minimum. Find a location, whether it be your car, your bedroom, your living room, the garden...wherever you can feel most serene.This 10 minutes is for total cell phone, no iPod, no radio...just you and your thoughts.

At first it might feel a little awkward, especially if you have never done this sort of exercise. But keep with it, your creating a new way to channel your energy. And just like everything else we have learned on this journey, change is sometimes difficult.

During this 10 minutes I want you to think about yourself and what it is that you can do to become a better person. What is it that will allow you to be the best possible person you can become?

Some people will use this exercise for prayer or meditation. Calling on a higher power to feel more connected. Or perhaps reading scripture and putting it into perspective with their daily lives.

Others may use this as a time to reflect or journal about their own lives. Sometimes reading previous entries gives us new perspective in our own journey. It can be empowering to see where we have come from and how we have grown.

Others may use this as a time to practice gratitude. It's funny how much we take for granted. Our homes, our food, our jobs...sometimes just the act of being 'thankful' is freeing in itself and allows us to see we are not as bad off as we sometimes believe ourselves to be.

And others may simple use this time to find peace with their thoughts - freeing and clearing the mind. Such as with yoga. Creating inner piece can be a very spiritual release.

Spirituality can help you develop a better sense of self and purpose. It is very important to your emotional wellbeing and mental wellbeing. We all want purpose in our lives. To know that what we do matters and that we aren't just living for the mere existence of living. Though it is a very personal exploration, in the end it provides a sense of connectedness with others as well.

If you are working to become a better person it tends to overflow in the life you create around you and other people. While you are developing your sense of purpose, most likely you will also be creating positive thoughts that will bring you inner happiness. A calm within the storm...truly winning not just at your weight loss of fitness success, but winning at life.

So 10 minutes each day to work on your spiritual health is this week's challenge!

Hope you are all getting better with our challenges and are developing some really good lifelong habits to carry you forward!

Keep Bringing It!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Week 6 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

This week's Challenge is going to be Balancing the Fat!

It is important to understand that you do need fat in your diet. But the real question is how much? The recommended daily allowance based on a 2,000 calorie diet, suggest 30% of those calories come from fat. So if you take 2000 and multiply it by .30 we will see that 600 of those daily calories need to come from fat. Seems like a lot, right? Here is the real misleading thing about fat. When it comes to calories - protein, carbohydrates and fat are not all created equally. As a matter of fact, by comparison in weight we can see the difference.

  • 1 gram of protein = approximately 4 calories
  • 1 gram of carbohydrates = approximately 4 calories
  • 1 gram of fat = approximately 9 calories

That's why you should exercise caution when eating fat...those calories can really add up with very little eaten. So be extra careful about eating those foods high in fat because you may be getting more than you bargained for.

Also it's good to remember all fat isn't created equally either.

Saturated fat (bad fat) are those fats that you would normally find in animal products and processed foods like meat, eggs, dairy products, cookies, donuts, chips, etc. At room temperature, the fat in these items will turn to a solid state. These are referred to the "bad fats" that are proven to raise your LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol).

Unsaturated fat (good fat) are those fats you will find in foods like fish, nuts, avocados and olives. At room temperature the fat in these items will remain liquid. These are referred to as the "heart-healthy fats" that actually have the ability to lower your LDL cholesterol and increase your HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol).

While an over excess of saturated fats can have unhealthy consequences, it is important to know that you still need a balance of both saturated and unsaturated fats in order for the body to function at optimum performance levels. Saturated fats help regulate fluidity of cellular membranes. If they are not available, the membranes will become too fluid prompting the body to produce more cholesterol in order to stiffen the membranes, which inadvertently can actually increase cholesterol levels.

Unsaturated fats are used to promote cardiovascular health. That is why these are promoted as "heart-healthy fats". These fats can actually lower your blood pressure if used in place of the saturated fats. There a two types of unsaturated fats:

Monounsaturated fats: olive oil, canola oil
Polyunsaturated fats: fish, safflower, sunflower, corn and soybeans

The most nutritional worst of fats is the "hydrogentated fat". You definitely need to watch those food labels for this guy. This is where unsaturated fats are pressed with hydrogen. It allows the unsaturated fat to be stored at a solid state. This is how they take vegetable oil and turn it into margarine. Basically it was a way for manufacturers to produce goods that were cheaper and had a longer shelf life. But the bad news is these fats are processed by the body like saturated fats and can actually raise your cholesterol levels. So consumers pay a much higher price in the long run. My advice...avoid foods that say "hydrogentated" or "partially hydrogentated."

The right balance of fat in our diets is necessary to promote energy, healthy cells, brain power, absorption of vitamins, making of hormones, healthier skin and to provide cushion and protection for our vital organs.

It isn't that we need a low-fat diet as much as we need a "balance-fat diet". About 10% of the 30% of recommended daily allowances of fat needs to come from saturated fat and the other 20% need to come from unsaturated fats.

So for a quick recap:

Unsaturated Fat - Heart Healthy Fat
20% of your daily caloric intake needs to come from foods such as:

  • Flax seed
  • Fish (cold water like tuna and salmon)
  • Seeds or Nuts
  • Canola oil
  • Olive oil
  • All Natural Peanut Butter
  • Hummus (made with Tahini Sauce)
  • Wheat germ

Saturated Fats - Membrane Builders
10 % of your daily caloric intake needs to come from foods such as:

  • Yogurt
  • 1%-2% Milk
  • Eggs
  • Lean Meats (sirloin, chicken, turkey)
  • Cocoa Butter

Hydrogentated Fats - Frankenstein of Fats
Eliminate these fats for a healthier YOU! Time to say "buh-bye" to foods like:

  • Cookies
  • French Fries
  • Shortening
  • Doughnuts
  • Potato chips
  • Candy bars
  • Margarine

So basically, if you are doing a 1400 calorie a day nutrition plan, approximately 420 calories need to come from fat (140 calories saturated and 280 calories unsaturated). This breaks down to about 46.67 grams a day (15.56 grams saturated and 31.11 grams unsaturated). Time to read those labels! Good luck with Week 6!

Let's get ready to BRING IT!!!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Week 5 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

We've already made it 4 weeks into our 12 Steps to Fitness Challenge. I hope you guys are enjoying the mini-challenges and developing healthy habits because of it. This week I have finally recovered enough from the back injury and minor setback with the stomach flu to get back on track with Insanity ® . I'm happy to report I have 1 week under my belt and pushing forward with week 2. So far I have nothing but high hopes of great results waiting at the end of the next 60 days.

I do have to admit, when I got to the Pure Cardio DVD, I was not quite prepared for the non-stop heart-pounding sweatfest I was getting into. Just getting through the warm-up had me reaching for my towel. But when my much anticipated break didn't come...I found myself chanting, "dig deeper." It is really amazing what our bodies are capable of when we push the limits. I actually saw 183 on my heart rate monitor. That, for me, is a personal record. By the end of the DVD I jokingly fell to the floor. Definitely fun...but most certainly challenging.

So now we just need to revisit the weeks passed in our challenge:

Week #1 Drink 64 oz. of water daily.
Week #2 Get at least 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night.
Week #3 Ingest at least 25 grams of fiber a day.
Week #4 Take a good quality daily multivitamin.

This week our Challenge is going to be getting the recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables. Since this would vary a lot depending on age, sex, level of activity and caloric needs - I just decided we would go with the standard 2 & 5.

Week #5 Getting the RDA of Fruits and Vegetables.

2 servings of Fruit
5 servings of Vegetables

Your fruit and vegetables can be fresh, frozen, canned or dried. Just be careful to read the label and watch that you are getting as close to whole foods as possible. Keep a close eye out for added sugars and sodium. If you do go with the canned fruits, try to stay with the ones packed in 100% pure juice and avoid those packed in syrup.

To get an idea of what a serving size might look like:

1 Cup Serving is approximately equal to 1 small apple, 1 large orange, 1 ear of corn or a large sweet potato.
1/2 Cup Serving is approximately equal to about 16 grapes, 5 broccoli florets or 6 baby carrots.

For those of you still struggling with the fiber challenge, this will probably help with that greatly as most fruits and vegetables are very nutrient dense and contain fiber.

I did make a recommendation for those of you who struggle with the concept of eating so many fruits and vegetables to perhaps consider using the Shakeology ® as a meal replacement. Shakeology ® is packed with over 70 healthy ingredients. As a matter of fact it is now being called the Ultra Premium Health Drink because it is loaded with goodness. So if you would like to include a Shakeology ® a day as part of this week's challenge, I will allow for it to count as 1 serving of fruit + 2 servings of vegetables.

I still want you to get use to eating those fruits and vegetables, but something as good as Shakeology ® definitely stands to merit on its own. So our challenge will be:

Photo credit: © Sophieso |
With Shakeology ®
1 serving of fruit and 3 servings of vegetables per day

Without Shakeology ®
2 servings of fruit and 5 servings of vegetables per day

Remember these challenges are designed to help benefit your fitness and nutrition regimen. I'm simply trying to make you aware of the things we can do in our lives to help develop those healthy lifelong habits to keep us bringing those results long after the 60 or 90 days of our program have ended.

I definitely would love to hear your comments. So please feel free to give me any comments you might want to share.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Week 4 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

Photo credit: © Philip Ruder |
Did you realize that most of us don't even come close to the recommended daily allowances of the vitamins and minerals we need? Even those of us that are carefully following our nutrition guides with our programs or that are trying to eat a very clean and healthy diet may fall short of the requirements. So this week our challenge is going to simply consist of finding a good daily multivitamin. For some of you, this may already be a good habit in progress and will just be a reminder of the benefits good habits bring to your fitness. But some of you may just be beginning your journey and this could prove a very important tip to helping you live a healthier lifestyle.

Of course, it is also very important to take in as many of the daily required nutrients by eating a very clean diet with the proper recommendations from the food groups. Making certain your daily intake consist of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats and lean proteins is a very effective way of getting you well on your way. But even doing all of this, we may fall short of our daily requirements. So a daily multivitamin is just the right preventative. And you know what that say about ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Taking a good daily multivitamin will help ensure:

  • You get the daily recommended allowance of nutrients.
  • You have a consistent nutrient intake.
  • You give your body the nutrients it needs to stay healthy.
  • It may lower the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.
  • It reduces the possibility of infection and many illnesses.

Multivitamins are the single most supplement you can take to enhance your daily fitness regimen. But remember not all multivitamins are alike. Be careful to read the label and buy from a trusted manufacturer. Sometimes the ones you pick up in the local grocery store may seem like a real bargain, but may lack in quality. Not saying all inexpensive vitamins are bad...just reminding you that we live in the day and age where quite frankly, "you get what you pay for."

For a complete list of the daily recommended allowances I would suggest you visit the USDA Food and Nutrition Information Center. The allowances will very depending on variables such as age and sex. There are great guides and tables available to help you make the right choice for you.

One of the things to help me get my daily dose of the recommended daily allowances of vitamins and minerals is a Shakeology ® a day! One Chocolate Shakeology ® gives me 100% or more of my RDA of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, and Manganese. It also provides me with at least half of what I need in Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Folic Acid, Calcium, Pantothenic Acid, and Chromium. Not to mention all the other nutrients it is packed with to help me feel energized and stay on track with my fitness.

So by eating a healthy balanced diet and having a Shakeology ® a day, I'm pretty confident I get my daily allowances. But I do take a daily multivitamin just for good measure. It is just one of the simplest and most important things I do for myself.

That puts us well on our way to developing some pretty important steps we can take daily to ensure we are getting the best from our daily fitness and nutrition regimens.

  • Step #1 - Drink at least 64 oz. of water daily.
  • Step #2 - Get at least 7-9 hours of sleep a night.
  • Step #3 - Ingest at least 25 grams per day of fiber.
  • Step #4 - Take a good quality multivitamin each day.

Good habits for lifelong success!

Let's Do This!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Oat Bran Pancakes

While looking for a great new recipe to try on my family, I came across a recipe for Oat Bran Pancakes. I decided to play with the recipe a bit to make it very Vegan-friendly and came up with the following recipe. This was so good that even my very picky 9 year old ate every bite. He had his with all natural peanut butter and sugarfree pancake syrup. I opted for warm sugarfree strawberry preserves and chopped banana. Either gets an A+ and my vote for a great breakfast option!

  • 1 cup Oat Bran Cereal
  • 1/2 cup All Purpose Gluten Free Baking Flour
  • 1/4 cup Flaxseed Meal
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tbsp Sucanat
  • 1/4 tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 tsp EnerG Egg Replacer
  • 1 1/4 cups Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1/4 cup Canola oil
Combine dry ingredients in mixing bowl and sift thoroughly. Add wet ingredients and blend together.

Heat griddle to 300 degrees. Drop spoonfuls onto hot griddle. Cook about 3-4 minutes on one side or until slightly golden, flip, press with spatula and then cook another 3-4 minutes.

Nutritional Information: 4 (2 pancake) servings
Calories: 292.2  Carbs: 33.8g  Fat: 19.2g  Fiber: 7.6g   Protein: 7.1g

Optional: Serve with warm sugarfree strawberry preserves and chopped banana.

Easy Vegan Cheesy Nachos

Nacho Sauce:
  • 1 (15 oz.) can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can Diced Tomatoes and Jalapeno Peppers, drained
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1/3 cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Garlic Salt
  • 1 tsp Dill Weed
  • 1 tsp Ground Mustard
  • 1 tsp Dried Cilantro
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
1 pkg Organic Tortilla Chips

  • 2 1/2 cups Romaine lettuce, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Red Onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Green Bell Pepper, chopped (or jalapenos)
  • 1 cup Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Toffuti Better than Sour Cream
  • 1 (4.5 oz.) can Chopped Black Olives
Warm Almond milk in microwave for 1 minute on high. Combine all ingredients for Nacho Sauce in large blender. Puree on high for about 1-2 minutes, until desired consistency. Pour sauce mixture over layer of tortilla chips and top with toppings. Makes about 8 servings.  

Nutritional: About 14 chips with toppings  
Calories: 263.5  Carbs: 36.6g  Fat: 9g  Fiber: 6.4g   Protein: 9.7g

Monday, January 17, 2011

Week 3 Challenge - 12 Steps to Fitness

The average American consumes approximately 10-15 grams of fiber a day. This falls really short of the recommended daily allowance.

Women 50 years old or less - 25 grams per day
Men 50 years old or less - 38 grams per day
Women over the age of 50 - 21 grams per day
Men over the age of 50 - 30 grams per day

So what's the big deal about fiber? Actually quite a lot when it comes to your health and weight loss goals. Studies have shown people that consume between 35 to 45 grams of fiber a day are more likely to feel less hunger and therefore actually lose more weight than those that consume less fiber. Fiber takes longer for the body to digest, which results in you feeling full for longer periods of time.

But it's not just good at helping you shed those unwanted pounds, it also packs some nice health benefits.

Fiber fights against colon cancer.
Fiber decreases your risk for diabetes.
Fiber lowers cholesterol and triglycerides. 

This is only a select few of the benefits and definitely makes this a challenge worthy step for our 12 Steps to Fitness Challenge. So this week we will be adding the challenge of consuming at least 25 grams of fiber per day. For those of you who haven't already been consuming much fiber, slowly increasing your fiber each day and gradually working your way up to the recommended daily allowance will probably help you avoid any discomfort such as gas and bloating. You might perhaps try increasing your fiber by adding in 1 or more servings fruits and vegetables each day.

Of course, don't forget to drink plenty of water. Water will aid with the digestive process and keep everything flowing regularly!

You can also get 3 grams of dietary fiber per serving of Shakeology ®! I mix mine with unsweetened almond milk, which gives me an additional 1 gram of added fiber...if I also throw in a chopped banana I can even get another 4 grams of fiber! WOW! That gives me almost a third of my daily recommend allowance in one terrific tasting shake!

Ok, so let's get out there and keep the challenge going!

Step #1 - Drink at least 64 oz. of water per day.
Step #2 - Get at least 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night.
Step #3 - Ingest a minimum of 25 grams of fiber per day.