Thursday, March 27, 2014

(Not So) Chance Meeting

My finger hovered over the enter key.

I had painstakingly looked at the VIP seats.

Tediously entered the digits from my credit card number.

Tenuously requested a parking ticket at extra cost.

But, I wasn't sure how much I wanted to commit. Sure, it's a meet and greet with Jillian Michaels. The Jillian Michaels from Biggest Loser and health and fitness books and work-out videos. But, the price was steep.

It was several years ago when a friend got me interested in The Biggest Loser. She was a Bob fan. I fell for Jillian and her no-excuse, no-nonsense, let's-get-this-done personality. We had many discussions (during massage sessions, no less) on why we thought out chosen trainer was better and what the show's results rendered but I was steadfast.

I even bought her 30 Day Shred DVD. That tiny disc managed to squeeze in all her no-nonsense attitude and spit it out in all the right places to kick my ass. Quite effectively, might I add.

Intrigued, I did some more interwebs research and discovered Master Your Metabolism. I bought it, along with more DVD's with her name on it. Her point of view and process was what I had been saying for years - in my dark little corner. Unnoticed. Finally, someone who thought like I did. I was impressed.

I read her book.

I was more impressed.

Fast forward a few years and I don't exclusively use her DVD's but I revert back to them regularly. In fact, I'm thinking another round of 30 Day Shred may be in order. Maybe....

My finger still hovering over the enter button, I asked my husband his opinion. He was his usual helpful self (Um, not very)....I hit the button.

I had a massive migraine - not completely positive what caused it - but her Maximize Your Life tour was phenomenal! Her views really haven't changed, if anything they've increased. I don't know that I "learned" anything new from her, its everything I've been saying since I was in my teens and the changes I try to make and live by each day of my life.

Still, every bit of vivacious, happy, and genuine-like characters you see in anything she's in is exactly how she is on stage and exactly how she is in person!

She gave me a hug when it was turn. I don't do hugs - ask anybody that truly knows me. Not my thing. She leaned back and demanded if I really called that a hug! I submitted with a real, arm-around-the-body hug then we posed. I would have loved to say there was more of a connection but my migraine was so bad it was taking all I had not to just lie on the floor or get sick.

Besides, I really didn't know what to say. I mean, I know a lot about her but I don't really know her. And she knows even less about me.

And, I'm just an awkward person by nature. True story.

Before I walked completely away she grabbed my hand and told me to have a safe drive home. It was actually very sweet.

I want to meet her again! And if I do, I finally thought of a question for her:
Jillian, how do I become your massage therapist?

Thursday, March 6, 2014

My Nutrition Wasn't Cut-Out with a Cookie Cutter

Nutrition. What a fun and enjoyable topic. Especially when referring to diet. And, not just any diet but, you know, diet-diet. Because technically a diet is the foods/nutrients consumed during a day for nutrition. But, over the course of who knows how many decades we've managed to twist it into this negative word limited to how we've altered it for the fastest, quickest weight-loss results.

And the information available on the world-wide web is endless.



Um, and not exactly fool proof.

My  personal preference is to start looking at food as a source of nutrition, energy, and optimum bodily function. If you want to lose weight then you need to ensure you burn more calories in a day then you consume. Obviously, for optimum health it’s better if those calories have valid nutrition and aren’t what we call empty calories. If done correctly you can lose weight without feel deprived or hungry all while nourishing your body as it continues to deal with the impacts of every day life (Chek 2014).
You know, a no-diet diet.

Of course, that means a one size-fits-all is not the best approach in nutrition for every individual! Getting a better understanding of each macronutrient - carbs, proteins, and fats - is important along with how your body specifically responds to consumption of each. Singularly, and in relation with each other.
I've never been one to conform in other parts of my life, so why start now...

Personally, I’m not a huge promoter or supporter for the MyPlate anymore than I had been of the pyramid scheme.
Ok, that last remark may have been a bit too snarky, but we have a tendency to misinterpret the specifics of where those calories come from and force this very detailed diet plan on every body.
No, not everybody but every body - because we are individuals with very individual cellular structures, metabolisms and demands.

I’ve been doing a little more reading on nutrition and diets in reference to long term choices that match a body’s needs and have discovered research regarding a body’s genetic make-up/ancestry. Wolcott and Fahey (2000) state:

Each cell in the body “knows” how to be a perfect cell – it’s designed to be healthy and to efficiently perform the functions for which it was created.
But, unless the genetically required raw materials are available at the right place, at the right time, and in the form that can be utilized inefficiency at a cellular level will result. (18)

This expounds upon the thought that a plan that is considered healthy for those in one part of the world can actually be disastrous and even lead to malnutrition or nutrient deficiencies to those who reside in another part of the world. They even reference what use to be the pyramid projections which has now been altered to MyPlate because it wasn’t exactly working, just like before it was the pyramid it was the 4-food-group.
(I admit, I do want to do more research on this topic as so far my knowledge is only limited to what this book as presented, but even a quick search will allot one information provided by the government showing it or "they" have been creating, changing and recreating nutrition advice for nearly a century.)

I personally have a problem with how it breaks down the foods into even smaller categories, adding to the confusion of what falls within which macronutrient.
For instance, the current MyPlate states the need for a section for fruit, a section for vegetable and a section for grain but they all fall within the carb-macronutrient category. I know the categories are supposed to make it simple for everyone to understand what needs to be consumed but it’s not.
I recently had to explain to my son that a fruit and vegetable are both carbs and his vegetable with supper was sufficient for his daily intake; and, most recently, I had a similar discussion on a personalized diet plan considering biochemical and physiological diversity with my husband who stated if he eats a starch or gluten/grain based carb at some point in the day he knows his body will not respond well if the choice is repeated so he has a different type of carb (vegetable/fruit) for supper.

These two examples follows the concepts are provided by Clark et. el., (2014) regarding consuming a percentage of each macronutrient over the course of the day. If you look at the percentages presented they are as follows:

Protein: 10-35%
Carbs: 45-65%
Fats:  20 – 35%

Now, if you were to add the lowest or highest percentage you would get 75% and 135%, respectively; which, in my interpretation means you can mix and match, in a way. Instead, the MyPlate presents a plate that nearly looks like 75% should be carbs and 25% protein.
Plus milk, which technically falls in the protein macronutrient, but I digress.

For my husband this is perfect, it is actually how he eats and if he consumes a higher percent of protein, from any source, he feels bogged-down. For me, I’ve discovered I feel better if my diet is more 35% protein, 25% fats and only 50% carbs with very little being gluten based. I feel healthiest and energized and my body functions at its best.

However, this actually goes against the MyPlate presentations. Wolcott and Fahey (2000) sums it up best with:

“We all need a full spectrum of nutrients. But different people have genetically programmed requirements for different amounts of various nutrients. It is these differing genetically based requirements that explain why a certain nutrient can case one person to feel good, have no effect on another, and cause a third person to feel worse.

Which is why you can have a person following a well-planned vegan diet and be absolutely radiant of health and another follow the exact plan and visibly show signs of inefficient nutrition; and, a person follow something similar to the Atkins diet and be at optimum health but another follow it and feel sluggish and bogged down. Ultimately, an Eskimo wouldn’t be meeting their genetic nutrient requirements if their diets became more fruit-carb based any more or less than someone south of the equator if they increased their consumption of fats/blubber.



A Brief History of USDA Food Guides. (2011, June). Retrieved from Choose My Plate:
Check, P. (2014). How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy!: Your personlized 4-step guide to looking and feeling great from the inside out. San Diego: A C.H.E.K. Institute Publication.
Clark, M. A., Sutton, B. G., & Lucett, S. C. (2014). NASM Essentials of Personal Fitness Training. Burlington, MA: Jones & Barlett Learning.
Wolcott, W. a. (2000). The Metabolic Typing Diet. New York, New York: Broadway Books.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

What's the Catch?

This is the all-time favorite question we like to ask when something seems to create a positive change - as it should be! I am completely in favor in questioning everything, one should always have all the facts possible to ensure making an educated decision.

So, when my sister actually asked this question after I promoted my products on my Facebook Biz page my response was:
There is no catch except it isn't cheap; but, it's natural products to aid in weight loss and creating internal balance. Most people just do the PlexusSlim and accelerator but I also utilize the bio cleanse and ProBio5 because I know my body is in such imbalance that it needs that little extra!  
I still have a long ways to go and I know it's not gonna happen overnight but success stories have shown women who managed to lose enough over the course of 12-18 months to go from Obesity to society's acceptable "normal" size but the true benefits are the health changes that occur. Mine specifically, aside from the weight loss, is no more sugar/carb cravings, lowered blood pressure, decreased anxiety and depression and irritability, no longer suffering from whole-body pain (I've never been diagnosed with Fibermyalgia, but I've wondered and so has my Dr. cause at one point he offered to send me to an endocrinologist; which, I declined until I can't handle it anymore - besides, there's not much that can be done even if one does have the Dx), increased energy levels including having an easier time waking in the morning than I've ever had since before my teens. 
The weight loss is nice but it's just a side-benefit for me (although, it roughly equates 5 pounds a month since I started the products!!
As I mentioned in the quote,  I recently discovered my BP is significantly lower than it has been in my entire life.

Mine was never high but always borderline at 120/80, which is considered average and possibly even "perfect" as long as a person's health doesn't indicate any other reasons to be concerned. Unfortunately, High Blood Pressure runs in my family so I personally have always been a little concerned that mine could potentially border and even cross the border to High Blood Pressure.

So, imagine my delight when I visited my doctor for another reason entirely and was told after the routine physical inventory that my BP was 100/72!!
This is a HUGE deal...even when I managed to lose weight and worked-out on an extremely regular basis I still never managed to get it this low! 

One more benefit of Plexus Products!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Week 4 Update

It's slow going, but at least it's going. Earlier this spring I did Chalean Extreme, faithfully, diligently and with maximum effort and with little to no results. This? is typical for me.

Several years ago I had managed to lose 30-40lbs and even though I had plateaued I was still happy with my results; so, you can imagine how unsettling it was to gain 10lbs in a month despite working out and increased physical outside activity! Despite my best efforts I continued to gain, and with my increased size came increased frustration.

I've said for years I feel as though something is out of balance but cannot prove it. I actually had additional symptoms that indicated thyroid issues. Alas, the test was negative! And, there was no explanation for what was going on in my body and I felt as though the dr more or less shrugged his shoulders. Thankfully, he just stated as long as you're active and healthy.

But active is one thing; everyone's definition of "healthy is a completely different basket of expectations, acceptances, and judgmental opinion.

Anyhow, I digress...

I discovered Plexus a month ago and I feel as though things are more in balance than it's been for years. Halfway through Week 3 I started to work out and for the first time in years it's actually effective. I can only hope to continue seeing these changes and eventually get to my goal weight/size/fitness!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Is the Struggle Over?

I've done Jillian Micheals DVD, Tony Horton's work outs, Turbofire, Chalean Extreme, Hip Hop Abs, and even Insanity. I've run several 5K's with decent timing (PR 34.11) and two half marathons. Yet, I look like I need to get off the couch and do something. On several occasions I've asked professionals for advice and once I've recounted my many physical endeavors their go-to response has always been:  "Well, what are you eating?" 

Seriously? I know diet is a factor but why is it important that I tell you what I eat when no one asks a skinny girl that while she's enjoying donuts, soda/pop and regular visits to fast food joints.

But, I'll play along...

I eat decently. Good helpings of fruits and vegetables, appropriate amounts of lean meats, dairy, whole wheat breads and pastas - and I read the labels! - and I'm not saying my eating habits are perfect, I enjoy sweets or salty pleasures now and again and occasionally play it lazy and hit a fast food joint or order pizza, but not on a regular basis. 

I've been using Supertracker to keep a more vigilant eye on my eating habits just in case I was lieing to myself as these many professionals insinuate is the case. I do not lie when tracking my food, I enter every amount of each food including if I splurge on pop, ice cream, cake, or whatever. This system lets me not only keep track of my calories but also how much of it is empty calories. Grant it, I do go over the recommended daily quota, but not by much. And, certainly not obesity-level over.

So, once again, hitting a frustrating wall of no answers. What's intriguing is I lose weight every time I'm pregnant! Not from sickness. Not from lack of eating. Not from avoiding foods. Not from any other change aside from being pregnant. I manage to keep it off until close to 3-4 months after having my baby then it usually comes in leaps and bounds. The last time was 10lbs in one month! I had the general thyroid test but to no avail then given shrugs and asked once again what I eat in a day. Obviously this is the only answer. And, once again I am insulted that since I'm heavy that automatically equates poor eating habits when I know for a fact that the opposite isn't true:  Being skinny DOES NOT equal good eating habits. If this can be applied to the skinny why can't the opposite be applied to the heavy?

So, I've tried a battering ram of things, continually subjecting myself to society's definition of healthy along with what they consider the solution and nearly buying into the concept that if nothing's working it is because I am so obviously doing something wrong.

Like I've said I've done some extreme work out programs and even managed to run 2 half marathons in the time span of less than 6 months. The fact is, I might look like I don't move much but I am actually a fairly physical person. So, what now?

Well, a friend, who seems to struggle pretty much the same way, had come across an all natural product which sole purpose is more for creating a better balance within the body but often results in weight loss for those who struggle. She didn't say much until after the first week then she posted pictures with results from day one to only one week later. Her results were amazing. I had questions!

Needless to say, less than a few days later I bought my own supply of Plexus and began my own journey. One of the main reasons I was interested was because the products mention candida, which is a non-contagious body yeast that is always present in the body but the body's own natural balance of bacteria keeps it in check. But, when there's an in-balance, for whatever reason, it can create havoc with symptoms that include sugar cravings, depression, fatigue, acne, joint and/or muscle pain and many more, and how it helps balance the body and get rid of it.

 I know I have candida, struggled with it since my teens.
So, I figured what do I have to lose? I'll give it a try and I'm not completely sold on thinness as much as getting balanced: which, I feel my body is so obviously in need.

The main product is Plexus Slim:

"Plexus Slim’s ingredients are all natural i.e. plant extracts, and they are completely safe. Ingredients are – Proprietary Health Blend*, Low Glycemic Index Maltodextrin, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Beet Root & Grape Skin extract, Stevia Extract, Lo Han Extract *Proprietary Health Blend: Chlorogenic Acid (plant extract), Citrin K (Garcinia Cambogia), Alpha Lipoic Acid, Oxypregnane Steroidal Glycoside (plant extract), Chromium (Amino Nicotinate GTF). All ingredients are natural with no artificial coloring or flavoring"

I've also been taking the Accelerator, Bio Cleanse, and Pro Bio5 and every one of the are made up of all natural ingredients.

I was going to wait one week, as so many others I've know have done, but I couldn't wait. Since taking a combination I lost a craving for sugar, have no desire for pop or coffee with water being sufficient, and even have woken in the morning, early. Without an alarm clock...and I hate mornings!! I was up on Saturday at 5:15 AM. If you know me you know this? is a BIG deal.

So, I'm here to share:

"Based on the feed-back from people who are taking Plexus Slim, we are hearing four pretty consistent things: first, people say they feel calmer throughout the day; second, people tell us they are sleeping much better at night: third, people notice their appetites are down; fourth, people tell us that they aren't snacking as often; some have told us their snacking, especially sweets like chocolate and candy, has totally stopped."

Yep, found this to be true. And, when I feel the need to snack a handful of grapes is sufficient and I actually crave it now. Only those who've experienced the same as I can fully understand when I state I've always wanted grapes to something I would feel fulfilled when snacking but no matter how hard I tried to train my body in the pattern it wouldn't conform. Now, I don't even have to try, it's it should be!!

So, can I eat whatever now?

"If you keep on doing what you have always been doing, you will keep on getting what you have always been getting. In reverse, if you want to lose weight permanently, you will need to eat differently than before. Plexus Slim is formulated to help you make a life-style change to your eating habits. Plexus Slim contains natural ingredients that have been shown to reduce appetite. However, some people just ignore their body’s new messages and keep on eating like before."

Again, I believe my eating habits weren't the best but neither were they deplorable...however, I'm still using the supertracker and my empty carb feasting has decreased..

"Most people are trained to eat with their eyes and eat by the clock. What do we mean by that? Has this ever happened to you? You look at the clock and realize it is supper time. You sit down to eat your supper and realize that you really aren’t hungry. But, because it is supper time, you eat your supper anyway. That’s what we mean by eating by the clock. Some people sit down for a meal and fill up their entire plate with food. Then, they eat until everything on the plate is gone. They are not listening to their bodies."

This is something I have been trying to retrain my body as well as raise my kids against. I've had an issue with the thought process of eating because it's noon and cleaning your plate because you were raised to do so. My kids are trained to stop eating once they are full. I honestly feel they have a better relationship with food than I ever did and let's face it, the habits and addiction associated with food can be akin to a drug yet unlike other drugs you can't just keep away from it - we need food daily to nourish and energize our bodies.

So, let's just use food to nourish and energize our bodies!

If you have any questions regarding Plexus you can visit my website or call, email, or even Facebook message me and I'll be happy to talk about it to the best of my abilities, I am a newbie afterall.
And, in a couple days I'll post my first week results.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Stats...and Set Backs

Well, I measure myself....okay, I had my husband do the measuring, and compared by before and after 30 stats. I wish I could say I had wonderful results but it's not all sunshine and roses for me despite all the hard work. I did not lose any weight when stepping on the scales, and according to the measurements I lost in some areas in half and full inches while gaining a quarter or half inch in other areas. Also, I was initially limited by the required stats on Beach Body but after some searching found another site that also includes measurements of fore arms, neck, calves, and shoulders.

So, I did a little math subtracting added inches from the lost inches and my grand total of inches loss is 3.75! My actual total loss was 6 for the month, but I gained a half inch here and there so I subtracted that to get the 3.75. Either way, it's pretty awesome.

And? even though the inches doesn't seem like a whole lot especially when figuring that the scales didn't move; but, I've noticed my clothes fit differently - better.

Unfortunately, I'm suffering from a little set-back right now. A virus, actually. It started as a cold and decided to bother my stomach so I didn't work out today. And I have a feeling I won't much feel like doing it tomorrow either. So, I think I'll start next week as week 5 if I can't work out this week. We'll see how I feel tomorrow. I just don't want to take too many days off but continue the program as if I didn't have a break. I'll know better tomorrow.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Week 4 Review

Another week over and gone, I can't believe it. I also, can't believe how far off my schedule I got this past week!

We visited my sister nearly 5 hours away and rocked my work-out schedule just a little bit. Okay, maybe not just a little bit; if I was to be completely honest the mini-vacation demolished my regime!

Because I like to have my house completely clean for my return I had last minute cleaning along with packing the morning of and didn't get to squeeze in a work out on Tuesday morning. I did work out on Wednesday while down there, which I was pretty impressed with myself for it.

I was also impressed that my little trip didn't completely destroy my eating habits. I'm not saying they were perfect, but they could've been a lot worse.

Thursday I played it lazy. Slept in, no work out, played a card game with my sister and eventually my husband joined in, and did a load of laundry (always nice to not have laundry to do when getting home). Eventually, we made the trip home...after a long delay in Harrisburg area.

Friday I returned to my regularly scheduled program and Saturday is a rest day.

Then, I caught a cold...

I'm supposed to work out today, but my nose is stuffy, my eyes are achy, my throat is scratchy, and I'm tired. I'm not sure if I'll get to it eventually or not, because I really feel like I  need some rest and I'm a big believer in good health means taking care of your body which sometimes may mean rest.

I'm supposed to measure myself tomorrow, I'm excited to see what kind of changes have happened and promise to post a report with possibly pictures...we'll see how it strikes my fancy.