Monday, November 30, 2009

It's OUR Responsibility

I sit here with ice packs on both shoulders and right groin after a grueling 3 hour work out: [which I highly recommend icing the “hot” spots (shoulders, knees and lower back) after a work such as this one.] 60 minutes on my personal spinning bike, 60 minutes on the punching bag with core work and 60 minutes of total body weight training. (It was a rough Thanksgiving!)

I was reminded of the intense workouts on the Biggest Loser. Speaking of which, this past weeks show was extraordinarily special because my fave financial goddess was on, Suze Orman. She brought with her some of the latest stats on OUR costs of being overweight or obese.

Each year just continues to get worse.......Here you can check them out:

*147 BILLION dollars is spent annually in the U.S on obesity related health illnesses like high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, type II diabetes.

*Obesity increases the expenses for the things that are essential like $500 to $1000 dollars per year for life insurance.... as well as health insurance.

*Obese employees earn 7 THOUSAND dollars less per year then their peers. If you are overweight or obese, you miss work because you are sick. This costs your employer money.... you lose money, especially if you have run out of sick days.

*If a family of four can swap one meal of eating out for eating at home, they can save $8760.00 in one year. Eating at home, one meal daily, you will save $24.00 per day above the cost of food.

*4.4 BILLION dollars is spent yearly by Americans on gastric bypass surgery.

*220,000 Americans get gastric bypass surgery a year and it costs them approximately $20,000.00 for each surgery. (and this is now covered by most insurance companies)

*We spend 90 BILLION dollars on cancer treatments yearly; and 57 BILLION more on obesity related treatments annually.

*If you lose back to your ideal weight, you can save up to a MILLION dollars over a 40 year period.

Let’s face this..... over weight and obesity costs everyone BIG money! Seriously BIG money.

As a health and fitness professional in the health industry for 30 years or so, I get asked my humble opinion on the VERY HEATED topic of the health insurance situation all the time. I don’t speak out on it much at all because it is futile and nobody wants to hear my position.. Because nobody wants to take responsibility for their own health.

It won’t matter what type of health care is finally decided upon and adopted if we as a nation continue to ignore our own personal health and the responsibility WE have for it... NOT the government and NOT the insurance companies. You read the stats above...... poor health is costly to you, your family, your employer, the insurance companies, and to those of us that are healthy.

In my humble opinion......We are entering thru the back door of this health care issue. We are taking a REactive stance and not a PROactive position. The focus for the people of this nation is to work at getting healthy by stopping smoking (for God's sake!) losing weight, partaking in daily exercise and stopping devouring fast foods and processed foods... which in themselves are billion dollar industries..... bound to keep us all driving thru and porking down nothing more then high trans fats, sodium, high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, high calories, & nutrient deficient “crap!” Instead of promoting the gastric by pass surgeries as a solution; money should be spent instead on educating people & teaching them how to “bypass” unhealthy eating habits and to subscribe to healthy eating void of fast “food,” “food” in a box, a jar or a can.

Ok, so I understand... we are all human. We naturally are driven to these high calorie, high dense, high fat foods and it is tough as our bodies become truly addicted to fats, sodium, fake sweeteners and sugars.....everything found in fast foods and processed foods. So, why not offer an incentive to all of us to get healthy and to stay healthy?

Corporate and government employers could give out end of the year bonuses, raises, time off, & extra vacation time if you, as an employee, have worked hard, lost the blubber and maintained your healthy weight, healthy blood sugar levels, healthy cholesterol levels and healthy blood pressure over the past year. Provide in-house fitness centers, offer gym memberships and sessions with personal trainers to help your employees achieve optimum health. In the long run, by providing the tools, access to education and offering incentives, this will save billions of dollars in sick days taken, insurance premiums, doctor bills, Rx costs and every other cost related to being unhealthy.

Get the people healthy.... keep them healthy..... and the only need for insurance will be if you have a car accident, fall off the roof, break your arm skiing, or for your annual checkup.

This is too simplistic, I realize, only because we are dealing with industries that make BILLIONS of dollars off the sick, the over weight and the obese. And there are a few exceptions as well. But.. because of this, sadly.....nothing is going to change. We will continue smoking, not exercising and eating and eating and eating until we become 50... 75.... 100.... 200.... 300 plus lbs over weight. We get sick, we need insurance. We get high blood pressure, type II diabetes, high cholesterol, cancer medications, we need insurance. We get gastric bypass or lap band surgery, we need insurance.

This is the reason I rarely voice my opinion when asked what I think should happen with the health care disaster...... no one wants to hear that in order to resolve this issue....we MUST take responsibility for our own health.

Ok, now that the ice has melted.... it’s time to hit the shower!!

Until next time.....


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Gearing Down

Now that the feast is devoured......

and the shop till you drop has ended.....

take some time to enjoy the rest of your Holiday weekend!

Until Next Time......

Good Health to All!!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

A Day Filled with "Thanks and Giving"

What are you thankful for today........

And what are you giving back in return......

Until Next Time......

GOOD (and thankful) Health to All!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Step Back in Time

A few days ago, I surprised the Hubby Bear with a little get away to what’s called, here in Texas, “the hill country.” Just west of Austin, the topography changes from the typical flat terrain of most of Texas, (with the exception of southwest Texas where there are a few smallish “mountains”) to hills.

Our destination was Fredericksburg. A quaint little German town with a main street lined for blocks with little shops, restaurants, bakeries and coffee houses. Driving from Austin to Fredericksburg, you could see that Fall finally made it to Texas as all the trees on the hill sides were turning their beautiful golds, oranges and reds. We had a nice cold front move through, so the temps were coolish. Although the one full day we were there, it rained and made it pretty miserable for walking main street and checking out the big Trade Days flea market just east of town. But, we managed ok.

We stayed at the coolest place called the Hanger Hotel. Truly a trip back to the 1940’s. Taking an old airplane hanger and turning it into a hotel, right there on the tarmac, was a brilliant idea. As soon as you walk thru the front door, you walk back into the 1940’s. Dressed in pilot’s shirts and pants, the staff at the front desk greeted us. You couldn’t help but notice the switchboard, rotary phone, and typewriter from the era. The decor was reminiscent of “Bogey and Bacall.” (much before our time!) Decorated with old suitcases, chairs, vases, tables, mirrors, a (non traditional) grandfather clock; and the bold sounds of big band music playing in the could sense how simple but, eloquent, the times must have been in that decade.

Hey, check out this giant size martini glass... ah.... brings back memories of my martini days.... long passed..... LOL!

The rooms were decorated in army green and cream colors. An army blanket lay across the bottom of the queen size bed. The bath was tiled in the traditional black and white tile of the era, with faucets that were popular in the 40’s..... the separate hot and cold that looked like airplane propellers. The cabinets had the bead board look with chrome pulls. The views from the rooms were not great at all. You had the choice of looking at the air conditioners or the diner and there was very little light in the rooms. But they were comfortable, warm and cozy. Nice for a couple of nights.

The only restaurant on the property was an authentic looking diner, opened only for 4 or 6 hours daily and closed at 2pm. Not very convenient; and not many cars, maybe one or two, around the joint the two days we stayed at the hotel. The Officers Club bar opened every afternoon at 5pm with live piano music. They served munchies.... blocks of cheese, crackers, chex mix and mixed nuts. Not much for this Vegan to choose from. However... the first night we wandered into the bar, they served up “vegetarian egg rolls.” Not bad at all. Something I might try my hand at some time soon.

The second night we dined at Bejas Grill on Main Street. It caught my eye because it was marketed as “Southwest Cuisine.” I thought... “Wow! I bet I can get a black bean soft taco there!” Well, I was sorely disappointed as the black beans were made with pork, (who puts pork in black beans?) and the Mexican rice was made with chicken stock. So, I ended up with a couple of tortillas, some guac and truly authentic, native New Mexican green chile sauce! Turns out the chef moved to Fredericksburg from Santa Fe just to work at the Bejas Grill. (But, has since moved back “home.”... I can understand that completely!) Bear had the New Mexican stacked green chile chicken enchiladas. He said they tasted just like the ones he gets in New Mexico.

On the second day, we took a short 24 mile trip to Kerrville to a custom made furniture show at the downtown Cultural Arts Center. WOW!! I mean WOW!! Be on the look out for my next blog as I take you on a tour of all the amazingly creative pieces of art that these talented furniture makers designed themselves. You will be very impressed!

So, that was out trip to the hill country. Great to get away and step back in time for a few days.

Until Next Time.....


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Vegan Clam Chowder

With the last few days of really enjoyable chilly-cool Fall weather, it got me in the mood for a new hot steamy soup. I used to love the clam chowder that Barbaras (AKA Biggies) on the coast of Half Moon Bay, California made. It was so hot and wonderful with very little sodium and NO cream or milk. Now that I am Vegan, I choose not to eat clam chowder. So, I came up with a Vegan chowder that tastes much like Biggies chowder.... minus the clams.
This tastes so great on a cold, sunny day.
As Always.... I DO Organic as much as Possible!

What you'll need (or determine your own amount)
*6 cups of my homemade soup stock (refer to my recipe)
*4 to 6 Irish or new potatoes (chopped in chunky pieces. I leave the skins on)
*2 to 3 large carrots (chopped)
*2 cups corn (fresh or frozen)
*6 stalks celery (chopped)
*2 cups mushrooms (sliced, fairly thick)
*1 cup Green onions (chopped)
*3 to 4 cups rice milk or almond milk (the almond milk gives
this soup a fabulously distinctive flavor.. but! you have to like
1/4 cup agave nectar
Seasoning: (adjust to your tastes)
LOTS of fresh pressed garlic
white pepper
black pepper
1 pinch cayenne, to taste
1 teaspoon marjoram
2 teaspoons fresh basil, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dill
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/8 cup fresh parsley, chopped

In a large pot Add:
veggie stock
potatoes and carrots
Rolling boil for about 10 minutes
Then Add:
Corn, celery, 'shrooms, and rice milk
Turn to a simmer for about 2 to 3 minutes
Add Green onions and all of the spices.
Simmer for about 3 minutes more.

Serve HOT over a slice of my Vegan cornbread!!

Now, go snuggle up with your favorite "Huggie" or a good book and enjoy the amazing fragrance of this delicious soup!!

Until Next Time........

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

God Bless Texas A&M University

In the very early morning hours of November 18th, 1999 at 2:42a.m., Texas A&M University and its family was brought to its knees in disbelief, shock, despair and horror. For it was at that moment the great two-million pound “stack”, known only as “Bonfire,” collapsed and crashed to the ground taking the lives of 12 men and women and injuring 27 others.

Let us always remember. Let us never forget that early morning and the lives lost. On this, the 10th anniversary of the horrific tragedy... let us pray for their families, their loved ones and their friends.

Until Next Time....


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What’s Eatin’ You......Can Get You Eatin' and Drinkin'

Ok... so I was sprinting down the stairs a couple of days ago.... landed crooked on my right foot and twisted the heck outta my ankle. I was out of the game for that day. Sat on the couch with endless ice packs & all I could think about was how much stuff I needed to get done, all the errands I had planned to do that day and what was gonna happen if I did not get all the stuff done and the errands finished. In a matter of about an hour, I had worked myself up into a tizzy and was having a stress and anxiety fit.

Well, like a lot of people, when this happens... I tend to turn to food to silence that little voice that kept nagging at me about what I could expect if I did not get my list of “to dos” done.. TODAY! I mean, what I ate was not unhealthy as I don’t keep “junk” in the house... but I ate too much of the good stuff. Wolfing down 3 slices of wholegrain bread slathered with natural unsalted almond butter in a matter of minutes. (and I am not a bread eater.) Then I inhaled about 2 to 2.5 cups of unsalted cashews and if that wasn’t enough.... had the hubby Bear bring home vegan fried rice from the local Chinese take out joint. (Ok, so this is not the healthiest request.. all that sodium and vegetable oil..) Those places give you enough for 5 servings...... but, I ate every last bite of it. All of this.. just trying to get rid of the stress and anxiety of not being able to get up and move about and move on with my hectic day.

Just today, I had a client tell me that she did fine for the first 3 days last week, but then Friday came and she got a phone call that really upset her and sent her into an anxiety tail spin. What did she do to calm her nerves? Food and alcohol.

Stress/emotional eating is one of the most difficult disorders to treat and to control as you never know when, where, why, or what is going to make you react. Other catalysts that can cause this type of emotional eating are lack of sleep and fatigue.

Looking and finding comfort in food is not only an emotional reaction; but also, a physiological reaction. When our bodies are stressed and anxious we can have uncontrollable cravings for sugar, sodium, fats and simple carbs, as these types of foods will increase the serotonin and dopamine levels in our brains and then what happens? We start to feel so much better....happy... and satisfied..... thus the meaning of “comfort foods.”

My advice to all of us that suffer from this issue is the next time we have this urge to “feed” our stress and anxiety... instead.... distance ourselves from that immediate environment if possible. Get out.. take a walk..... get in the car and drive away.... or go work out. If we can stay away for at least 20 minutes.... we can give ourselves the chance to work thru the issue and find a solution... WITHOUT the use of food or booze.

This sounds very simplistic, but I know had I been able to get to an aerobics class or go for a run or hop on my spinning bike instead of sitting around thinking about everything, I could have avoided my “crash and burn” feeding frenzy.

Until Next Time........


Monday, November 16, 2009

Chlorine Hazards Serious Health Danger

Lately, I've been reading about the dangers of chlorine and how it is found in many of our everyday uses..... paper products, drinking and bathing water, cleaning supplies, laundry bleaching products are just a few.

I ran across a blog by MY favorite personal trainer, Jillian Michaels of The Biggest Loser, on the dangers of chlorine. Here is what she had to share:

Clean Out the Chlorine (From Losing It with Jilliam Michaels)

There are more than 100,000 chemicals out there, and very few of them have been adequately studied to determine their toxicity or effect on hormonal activity. One endocrine-disrupting chemical, chlorine, is commonly found in laundry bleach, household cleaners, and pool cleaners. It's also found in drinking water and industrial waste, and it's used in everyday products that you keep in your kitchen, such as bleached paper towels, napkins, and coffee filters. We are so used to its presence that we probably don't even think about how toxic a chemical it is. Chlorine has the potential to cause respiratory problems (wheezing, coughing, constricted airways), lung pain and collapse, eye and skin irritation, and sore throats. And until we can find out exactly how damaging chlorine and chemicals like it are, be smart and protect yourself. It's easier than you think to rid your home of chlorine. You can start by making some of the following changes.

Paper products: Dioxins, which are by-products of the bleaching of pulp and paper with chlorine, are not only highly carcinogenic but also estrogenic. Choose paper towels, toilet paper, and napkins that are "processed chlorine-free," or PCF.

Coffee filters: Bleached coffee filters leach chlorine into your coffee and release dioxins with every drip. Choose unbleached or oxygen-bleached filters that use chlorine dioxide, a type of bleach that doesn't created dioxin residues.

Antibacterial soaps (or antibacterial anything!): In addition to the harm such products cause by encouraging antibiotic resistance, the triclosan they contain combines with chlorinated tap water to create the carcinogenic gas chloroform, as well as chlorinated dioxins, highly toxic forms of dioxin. Choose natural dishwashing and hand soaps without chlorine or phosphates. Good brands include Seventh Generation, Ecover, and Mrs. Meyer's.

One last tip: Keep the dishwasher closed during the wash cycle! That "whoosh" of steam releases toxic volatilized chlorine, which is formed by the combination of detergent and tap water.

To read more about what you can do to protect yourself from this major health risk, check out Naturally Speaking: Speaking About the Dangers of Chlorine

Until Next Time........


Sunday, November 15, 2009

“Tri” These Work Outs for Great Arms!!

Why is it that we can work every part of our bodies and really get great results... look good.... toned, buffed, muscular...... but our “under arms” (aka Triceps) always wave back at us? Even when our biceps look pretty dang good..... our tris are just “hanging there,” literally!

Well... here’s a great work out targeting the triceps area. It will burn... as it should... so just suck it up and do it! You will luv the results!

Remember to “Suck n Squeeze,” don’t hold your breath... and Breathe!

As always, if you have health issues, are deconditioned, have not worked out in awhile or lead a sedentary life check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Ok here goes!


*Tricep Pushups (place hands directly under your face with your thumbs touching. ELBOWS IN... do not “fly” them out to the side)

1 set of 50
rest 60 seconds
1 set of 30
rest 30 seconds
1 set of 15
rest 10 seconds
1 set of 10
rest 2:00 and move on to the next cycle

*Tricep Kickbacks (Elbow and upper arm should be parallel with the floor, start with arm bent in 90 degree angle and don't hang your head down... keep a neutral position)

1 set of 12 reps x 5 to 10 lbs (depending on your strength) (working the Medial head/Biggest muscle)
rest 10 seconds
1 set of 10 reps x 5 to 10 lbs (working the Lateral head/shortest muscle)
rest 10 seconds
1 set of 6 reps x 5 to 10 lbs (working the Long/Narrow head)
rest 1:00 and repeat this once. after 2nd repetition, rest 2:00 and move to the final cycle

Tricep Dips (use a bench, chair or tricep bench. Legs straight out in front with weight on heels. Hands and arms close your body; don’t “fly” those elbows out. Dip down to a 90 degree angle.. NO MORE THEN 90 DEGREES)

1 set of 10
rest 10 seconds
1 set of 15
rest 30 seconds
1 set of 30
rest 60 seconds
1 set of 50
rest 5:00 and start again with Tricep pushups and do the cycle again.

You may need to work up to the reps and the weight, but don’t give up and quit!

YOU CAN DO IT.... and your tris won’t be “waving back” anymore!!!

Good Luck and have fun!

Until Next Time.......


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Household Hazardous Waste Collection TODAY

November 14, 2009 7am - 2pm Located at University Services Building. Enter from Hwy 30 East pass Veterans park on the left.

The Brazos Valley Solid Waste Agency (BVSWMA), in conjunction with the cities of Bryan and College Station, sponsor a Household Hazardous Waste Collection (HHW) each year in the fall and spring.

This event allows all citizens in our area the opportunity to dispose, FREE of charge, household hazardous wastes, cleaners, aerosols, batteries, herbicides, pesticides and many other items.

BVSWMA has a 24-hour hotline for more information at (979) 764-3809.

This event is another means of keeping our community clean and safe. By diverting hazardous chemicals from our waste stream and landfill, we can keep our water, air and soil healthier for all of us.

For a list of acceptable items, go to the website.

Until Next Time.....


Friday, November 13, 2009

We Are Women... Hear Us R O A R!!!

“Don’t you forget ..... for every door that slams shut, there is an open door somewhere else!” For every no that you hear, remember, you are that much closer to a yes!”
The room just went wild with cheers, “rah-rah’s” and applauds. Suze Orman was in the house...and she was bigger then life.

I attended the Texas Conference for Women in Houston yesterday, thanks to my sweet Hubby Bear. He knew how much I LUV Suze O, so he surprised me with a registration to the event. I must admit, my focus was on seeing Ms Orman and no one else, really.
I had a really tough time getting her pic as she moved so quickly up and down the stage. But I got some pretty good shots.

She spoke to a lunch crowd of at least 1000 women by starting with her story of how she got where she is today. Here’s just a few of her many accomplishments:

*2 time pick of Time magazine's "100 Most Influential People in the World”
*She has her own CNBC weekly show
*She is on NY Times Best Seller list (many times over.)
*She is a multi-millionaire and travels in her own jet.

Suze grew up in the south side of Chicago, graduated University of Illinois with a bachelor’s in social work. She moved to Berkley, California in 1973 and lived in a VW bus for 3 months before landing a job at the Buttercup Bakery and finding an apartment. To read the rest of her story... click here.

“You are powerful and strong Texas Women!” she proudly boasted, moving about taking full use of the long stage. Just her presence made you feel that when you walked out of the conference you were ready to take on the world and the workforce. And speaking of the workforce and women, here are some surprising, interesting, and very sad stats that Suze shared about the women of today:

*In the U.S., 40% of the women make up the workforce
*48% of these women are working 2 or more jobs to support their families
*Women are working 60 hours-plus a week, in addition to their roles of taking care of their children, spouse, parents, grandchildren, cleaning, shopping, cooking and providing health care to family members.
*Women are now very close to being 50% of the bread winners in this nation
*Males are getting laid off more then women because MALES MAKE MORE MONEY then their female counter parts.
*Women are hired for some of these positions to replace the males at LESS MONEY
*Because of the economy, more and more we are allowing ourselves to be sold by lending money to our family members because we are afraid to say, “No, I am sorry, but I cannot afford to lend you money.” We feel we must say yes & risk jeopardizing our financial health for fear of losing their love.

“NOW... more then ever... is the time for all women to take control, take responsibility for their financial future, take measures to secure their financial strength and create a healthy financial environment!” Suze “roared” this out across this huge room as women stood and cheered.

“Get out those pens and paper and you better write down what I am about to tell you,” she ordered:

*get yourself completely out of credit card debt
*use credit cards only in emergencies
*if you don’t have the cash, you don’t buy it
*save up at least an 8 month emergency fund
*start saving NOW for your retirement, no matter what your age is

Suze shared that until 2015, this economy and the stock market will continue its roller coaster ride and that we must be prepared to ride it out.

We women are living as much as 20 years or more longer then our spouses, significant others or life partners, Suze shared. “You have to ask yourself, who will take care of me? How will I take care of me on my 70th birthday, on my 80th birthday, on my 90th birthday?” Here was her very stern and serious answer, “You cannot expect your children to take care of you; you can’t expect family members or friends to take care of you. YOU must make provisions and be prepared TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!”

Today’s women are still beaten, assaulted, raped, violated, robbed and abused by the people they love and thought who loved them. The only way this is going to change, is for today’s women to become financially independent and financially healthy. “Money is power... and power will set you free!” commands Suze as she finished up her presentation.

Suze Orman is the epitome of strength, power and self assurance. She sets a shining example for all women. The first 30 years of her life were nothing but struggles, slammed doors and endless “Nos!” Because of her determination, commitment and drive, she persevered into the international success she is today.

I highly recommend any of her books, but one in particular.... “Women and Money”.... is a must read considering these times and this economy.

Until Next Time.......

GOOD (Financial) HEALTH TO ALL!!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


I am headed off to Houston today, thanks to my amazing Hubby Bear, to the Texas Conference for Women to have lunch with Suze Orman... and about a million other women.... but, It's SUZE O!!! My mentor... my Goddess... my Guru of financial expertise and advice.

I am attending 2 morning sessions:

*Turning Passion into Profit.... (working on a little idea of mine .. need some direction...)
*Nurturing Innovation, Creativity and Profits ...(again.. expertise needed for this little idea)
And 1 afternoon session:
*What Happy Women Know (might pickup some innovative ideas...)

Hope to get close enough for a photo op with Suze O and get her to sign one of her many books that I own.

Enjoy your day!

Until Next Time.....


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Purple Slaw, Wehani Rice Mix, Tabouli Meal

WOW! if you like colorful meals.... you will LUV this one! And this is something you can make a lot of... ahead of time... and have multiple servings in your frig... just to dish out!

When you look over my recipe pics... you will notice I DO love color.... all of my recipes have wonderful color and texture to them... this will appeal to your vision.....if something looks really G O O D.... then you are more likely to try it!

What I like about this meal is you get a lot of great fiber with the red and white cabbage in the slaw and the spinach of the tabouli and you get a lot of good protein from the bulgar in the tabouli and the walnuts in the rice.

Ok, let's get started!

As Always, I DO as much ORGANIC as possible!

Go to my recipe for TABOULI


In a food processor add:

pieces of white and red cabbage and chop to a slaw consistency

Spoon out into a large bowl and add:
VERY thinly sliced red onions
Thinly sliced raw mushrooms.. or mushrooms lightly sauteed in veggie stock
1 can drained mandarin oranges (save the juice) (You can also use fresh pineapple or grapefruit. For the juice... use some apple cider vinegar! YUMM-OH!!)
Mix gently so the oranges don't get broken up too much

In the food processor or blender add:
the OJ from the oranges
4 or 5 cloves of fresh pressed garlic
a squirt of Agave Nectar
Mix and fold into the salad


Steam together:
1 cup Wehani
1 cup wild rice
1/2 cup brown rice

Mix with the rice in a large bowl
fresh chopped tomatoes
1 cup raisins
chopped raw walnuts
chopped raw jalapenos

There you have it!!! SO SIMPLE!! Just cut a head of iceburg lettuce in half, remove some of the center to make a bowl and serve your Tabouli in the lettuce bowl. Spoon out the rice and the slaw.. and you have a beautiful.... DEEEEE licious ......plate of low calorie, healthy goodness!!

Until Next Time......


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Back in Time with a Tune

Whether it’s the “shoop-shoop do wah” of the 50’s or the “yeah..yeah..yeah..” of the 60’s, just hearing a song from the past can take you back in time in less then a nano-second.

Perhaps it was the junior high school, high school, or college years; or the first date, first kiss, first job, or the day of your wedding..... hearing a song from the past is one of the most powerful triggers of memory that has the unique ability to transport us back in time.

I was channel surfing on Sirius XM radio this morning and came across a song that immediately whisked me away...back to my 4th year of life. There I was in front of my older brother’s (10 years older) closed bedroom door, with my little furry pink rabbit house shoes on my feet, wearing my little flannel jammies, my long hair braided, dancing to the blaring music coming from his AM radio, KQEO, Albuquerque.

This particular song was one of my favorites as KQEO played it every morning about the same time. And every school morning, I would get up and run to my brother’s closed door to dance to the music as he got ready to head out to school.

And then as I surfed a little more, I came across a song that had me headed back to the dorky days of Jr. High School. 7th grade. My best friend and I would go to the “sock hops” every Friday night. (These were dances held in the gym that you had to take your shoes off and dance in your socks... clever, huh? LOL!!) I never liked to go because I was just not into dating at that point in my life. But, not wanting to go alone, she would drag me along. As this sweet haunting melody played out across the dance floor... I remember cringing... afraid I would be asked to dance..... to a SLOW song....a SLOW dance!!! I would hide behind anybody in hopes no guy would approach me. Well.... out of all the dances I was drug to.... only about twice was I asked to slow dance.... Thank goodness!

I love taking trips back in time... just from hearing a familiar song of the past. Good memories, bad memories, good times, of days gone by.

Oh, and the two songs I was talking about? From the late 1950’s....Bobby Day’s “Rockin’ Robin” and from the 1960’s, “Cherish” by the Association.

What's that one song that can take you back in time?

Until Next Time.....


Monday, November 9, 2009

BOOK: Eating Animals

I've wanted to read this book by Jonathan Safran Foer ever since I heard it was out. It appears to be much like the movie Food, Inc. in that it is not so much about animal cruelty; although from excerpts I've read he does "take you there," but it is more about the BIG .. HUGE.. corrupt business of the livestock & poultry industries and what a power house it is up against the government.

I'll soon get the book and give it a read... in the meantime....Here's a bit from a writeup that a good bud of mine emailed to me. Check it out and for further reading go to Jonathen Safran Foer.

Jonathan Safran Foer is a strict vegetarian, but his most recent book, "Eating Animals," is not a screed against meat. It is, rather, an indictment of the corrupt, large-scale factory farming that dominates the American meat market. A journalistic work with a novelistic feel, the book is the result of three years investigating the U.S. meat industry, and it weaves together animal activist and farmer interviews with statistical research and even memoir to provide a sweeping account of Big Beef and its social, economical and environmental impact. Descriptions of animals suffering on the "kill floor" are enough to incite squirms from even non-animal lovers, but cruelty is not Foer's only grievance: There are health concerns and devastating environmental damage at issue as well.

"Eating Animals" may be Foer's first big swing at nonfiction, but primary themes hearken back to Foer's two critically polarizing novels, "Everything Is Illuminated" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close." Family folklore and ideas about the complexity of memory permeate each; "Eating Animals" begins with a section titled "Storytelling," about Foer's grandmother, a Holocaust survivor (and passionate carnivore). "The story of her relationship with food," he writes, "holds all of the other stories that could be told about her."

The book is not without controversy, of course. Food politics gets at the very heart of what it means to be American -- alas, human -- and the subject of how and if we eat meat stirs up intense feeling. Last week, Natalie Portman kicked up a tiny tempest when she wrote about "Eating Animals" in a column on Huffington Post, championing Foer's argument but adding her own painfully tone-deaf riff about rape. (The controversy took place after the Salon interview but when I reached him afterward via e-mail, Foer had this to say about Portman's column: "It was such a thoughtful and generous piece of writing. I felt gratefulness more than anything else.")

Until Next Time.......


Sunday, November 8, 2009

More H.I.I.T.

By now, I'm thinkin' maybe you have mastered the first H.I.I.T. program that I posted back in September...... true?

Just to refresh you on the benefits of High Intensity Interval Training:
*Increased fat loss
*Increases total calorie expenditure during your workout
*Increases fat utilization both during and after the workout
*Increases Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) aka... after burn which can last up to as much at 3 hours after your workout.
*Increases caloric burn during rest. Maybe as much as 10 to 160 calories over a 24 hour period

Ok, so.... if you weren’t ready for more H.I.I.T. before.... you should be now!

The duration is short, anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes. Combine HIIT with my Humble Core work out or Let's Get to the Core of the Matter work routines 3 times weekly (not consecutive days) and you'll see results.

As always, if you have health issues, are deconditioned, have not worked out in awhile or lead a sedentary life check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Ok then... let’s get started! Remember to “suck n squeeze!” (Suck in that gut nice and tight and squeeze that butt together... just like ya got a quarter back there!) Don’t forget to breathe..... do NOT hold your breath.

This program is for treadmill intervals. Incline and Speed training. Good luck and have fun!


Incline training
*3mph for 1 minute at 2% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 2 minutes at 4% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 4 minutes at 5% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 6 minutes at 6% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 5 minutes at 5% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 4 minutes at 4% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 3 minutes at 3% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 2 minutes at 2% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
*3mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 60 seconds at 0% grade

Speed Training
3mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
3.5 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
4 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
4.5 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
5 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
5.5 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 30 seconds at 0% grade
6 mph for 1 minute at 1% grade
Recovery for 3 minutes at 0% grade

Until Next Time....