Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Vision Board

As with a lot of things in life sometimes you just need a visual reminder of what you wish to achieve.  Hanging on my fridge is what I call my vision board!  I change it up every now and then to keep things fresh but basically what I do is hang up a photo of the way I am now and where I want to be in the future.  I use My Virtual Model as a reference.  I also clip out photos in magazines of woman that I feel are healthy looking and what I would like to see in the mirror one day.  I clip out inspiration sayings and quotes, anything that will remind me of my goals or give me a boost on any given day.

Create your own vision board!  There are lots of ways to decorate it.  Place photos of yourself at a slimmer weight, a photo of a loved one who inspires you, a measuring tape, a mirror, a picture of your goal out fit, inspiration sayings, funny weight loss cartoons, anything you want!  You can put it on your fridge, like me, or you can make it using Bristol board or corkboard, or even in book form laying on your desk.  Anything that is easy to glimpse and will inspire you!

This is my vision board right now….  I also have a bikini hanging from the handle of my fridge that you cant see.  ;)



Do you have a vision board?  What is on it or what would you put on one that you create? 

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Biggest Loser *Spoiler*

If you did not watch The Biggest Loser last night, I advice you stop reading this if you do not want to know the details.  ;)

Last night on the show my chin hit the floor when I heard that the contestants were going to be running a full marathon with 26 days notice.  People train for a YEAR or more to run a marathon.  To watch them go from doubt, to struggle, to success, it was amazing.  I sat rapt with attention through the entire race.  At the end of the race when all of the contestants and all of the previous TBL contestants gathered around Ron and helped him finish,  I welled up!  When I saw Mike standing at the end of the line with tears streaming down his face watching his father limp across the sand, I broke.  To watch a man at Ron’s age, and with all of his difficulties, walk 26.2 miles and not give up, it just floored me.

Tara is my girl.  She has been since Day 1!  Each season I pick someone that I think I would be able to best relate with and I choose Tara this time.  She is so going to be the next biggest loser.  *fingers crossed* (Some other faves were Michelle and Suzy)   Watching her cross that finish line last night, it sparked something in me.  I have been struggling with keeping myself eating healthy and exercising the last little while.  Watching last night really inspired me and I knew that today would be a good day.  I woke up to freezing temperatures and rain.  Normally I would have called Sean at work and asked him to take Connor to school for me but you know what I did?  I threw on my running clothes and off I went.  I did my 30 minutes and stretches when I got home.  I was wet!  But I was proud of myself.

It just goes to show that when you think you cant, you actually can!  Now, I dont plan on running any marathons any time soon but if they can go from not being able to walk a mile, to running 26 miles, surely I can push myself a little farther every day.

For those of you who may not have the time to get to a gym.  Or may be you cant afford the gym, there are many things out there that you can do at home and still lose weight!  Try going for a walk, or doing some yoga.  There are about…oh three billion exercise DVDs out there that you can try from dancing, to Pilates, to walking in your living room, aerobics, you name it, its out there.  If you are anything like me though, you like change so you dont get bored!  Try YouTube!  It is a wealth of information at your fingertips and you could try a new exercise daily!

Here is a good one that gives you some basic exercises that will target every muscle group.  If you want some real inspiration, check out her website at LiveOnce and click on the videos.  WOW!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Should We Eat Fats by Guest Blogger Maggie


Fats are bad and we should avoid them when trying to lose weight, right? The less fat the better off we will be, right? We’re trying to burn fat in our bodies, so why should we eat fat – won’t our body hang on to the belly fat instead?image

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may not be getting the amount of fats and oils that the body requires to run at optimum efficiency. Did you know that certain vitamins and nutrients are only fat soluble and a certain amount of oil is necessary to transport those vitamins. Some of the oil soluble vitamins are Vitamin A, D, E, K.

Healthy oils contain essential fatty acids such as Omega-3 and Omega-6 that are used to provide energy for the body. Healthy oils improve cell function because the cell wall is made up of fat. Healthy oils are necessary for healthy skin, nails and hair.

Fat and oils have gotten a bad reputation over the years because it’s assumed that high fat diets common in America help lead to heart disease. And that may be true because the average American diet may be as high as 50% in fat. Fat also contains twice the calories as carbohydrates and other foods – 9 calories per gram for fat compared to 4 calories per gram for proteins and carbohydrates.

The USDA recommends that a balanced diet should be 20-35% fat or the equivalent of about 2 Tablespoons oil per day. But there are “good” fats and not so good fats. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature. Most animal fats contain saturated fat. Shortening is a saturated fat.

Monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats are healthier choices. Canola oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, and olive oil are all considered healthy choices. Certain foods are rich in healthy fats – avocados, nuts, peanuts/peanut butter, sunflower seeds and olives all contain healthy oils.

So how can you get the healthy fats in while still focusing on lean meats, skim or low fat dairy, fruits, vegetables, and the whole grains? Do a stir fry, using olive oil or peanut oil to saut̩ chicken strips and vegetables. Use extra virgin olive oil or canola oil to make a vinaigrette dressing for your salad, or use oil and vinegar to dress your salad. Eat a handful of almonds for a snack Рalmonds also have protein, so the combination of fat and protein should satisfy your hunger and cravings. Add some avocado slices to your sandwich or salad, or make some guacamole to use as a dip for fresh veggies.

And as a conclusion, beware of low-fat or fat-free prepared foods in your grocery aisles. Because fats and oils make food taste better, improve the food texture and help make you feel full. So when fat is removed from food, fillers are taste enhancers that are high in sugar may be added to improve the texture and taste of the fat-free. So low-fat doesn’t necessarily mean low calorie.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

She Shoots! She SCOOOOOORES!


Goals!  They are IMPORTANT when you are trying to lose weight.  The first thing you should do is take a look at your current weight and find out what your ideal weight should be.  It is always a good idea to ask a professional for their opinion on this.  Now that you know what your weight is, what your weight should be, its time to write down your first goal.  The first goal is your overall outcome.  How much are you in it to lose?  20lbs? 30lbs?  More?  I am going to use myself as an example here…I started out at 196lbs *gasp*, while talking to a health care provider, I was told that for my age,  my height, my bone structure, etc., I should be no more then 130-135lbs.  So that is what I set my main goal as, I need to lose 66lbs.

Outcome Goal – Lose 66lbs

Wow, that seems a little daunting now, doesnt it?  SO!  Instead of walking head on full of trepidation, I decided that MINI goals were necessary.  Mini goals are the ones you set that work you up to your initial goal.  They help!  They really do!  What is harder to think about … losing 70lbs?  Or losing 10lbs?  Imagine the delight you will feel knowing that you are hitting those goals.  It is also good to reward yourself when you hit each mini goal and your final goal.  Something small to say, Hey, I did it!  I deserve it!  Now I am treating myself for all that hard work!  I joke that I celebrate my weight loss with ice cream and cheesecake.  lol  NOT a good idea to use junk food as your mini goal rewards.  Why?  That is what got you here in the first place, is it not?  ;)  Here are how I set my goals and rewards.

Mini Goals – Lose weight at 5 & 10lb Intervals

10lbs – HIT!

10 lbs (20 total)  - HIT!

5lbs (25lbs total)

5lbs (30 total)

10lbs (40 total)

10lbs (50 total)

10lbs (60 total)

5lbs (DONE!)

At each goal I have plans for small items.  When I lost 10lbs, I bought myself some new nail polish.  At 20lbs I gave myself $20 dollars to buy myself some treats, I bought a new scarf and a new shirt.  ( I am a bargain hunter.  ;))  At 25lbs I am treating myself to some clothing for summer, at 30lbs I am rewarding myself with a trip to Michael’s, etc..

So go ahead, sit down with paper, pen and get thinking.  Write them down and hang them somewhere you can see them!  Share them with a friend so they can help you hit them!  :)  What are YOUR goals?  What are YOUR rewards?  Remember, YOU DESERVE THIS!!!!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Easter Bunnies Beware!


Temptation is everywhere!  The stores are packed from aisle to aisle with chocolate bunnies, marshmallow candies, bubble gum, jellies, and everything else that is now associated with Easter time.  Each year the holidays seem to stray farther away from their true meaning and into commercialization.  Marketing tells us that as good mothers we should be buying MORE chocolate, bigger chocolate, giant baskets filled with sugar and plastic toys.   TRY to avoid the temptation, as hard as that seems.  Here are a few tips to help save your waistline this holiday weekend!  ;)

-ask relatives to bring gifts of non-food such as crayons and coloring books or a gift card for the older kids

-limit the chocolate to one bunny per kid so you aren't tempted to help them eat it all

-instead of baking everyone’s favourite treat, ask them which ONE treat they would like the most

-avoid the clearance sales where you think you are saving money by buying more

-have healthy snacks like carrots to keep with the bunny theme

-if you are going over to a family/friend’s for dinner, offer to bring a salad

-keep hydrated, water is our best friend

-have quick, easy Easter crafts ready for the children to play

-set a rule that they can only have one treat and ask them to brush their teeth directly afterwards to ward off more cravings and sugar bugs.  Put the treats out of sight, out of sight, out of mind.

Make a plan and stick with it!  Not only will you have a wonderful Easter but you wont hate yourself come Tuesday!

Happy Easter!!!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Flaxseed and A Smoothie!


Hhhmmmmm!  Smoothies!  Such a wonderful treat and they are jam packed with goodness for your body.  The above picture I just took to show you what a typical Amy smoothie looks like!  I like to try new things but I always tend to go back to this type.  It is truly yummy and nutritional.  It’s quick, and you can take it on the go.  The following is for one person and comes in at just under 200 calories.

Amy’s Tropical Berry Smoothie

200ml of pure orange juice

1 serving of  tropical flavoured yogurt

1tbsp of ground flaxseed

1 handful of frozen mixed berries

Simply blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth and enjoy!  Enjoy guilt free!!  This smooth has two servings of fruit, a serving of dairy and the flaxseed in itself is a goldmine of health.


It truly is a miracle food.  Flaxseed is loaded with fibre and omega fatty acids!  It will expand up to FIVE times its size when it is ingested so it helps reduce your caloric intake if you have some 30 minutes before a meal.  Flaxseed is know to help enhance your immune system, keeps your blood sugar in check, lowers the risk of heart disease, and even some cancers.  Flaxseed helps keep your digestive system clean and it has been proven to help lower blood pressure.  I was talking to my father about this two weeks ago and he said that is not taking anything like flaxseed until his doctor tells him too.  Guess what?  My father went to visit the doctor about his high blood pressure and you know what the doctor recommended?  Flaxseed!  LOL  My father was not impressed but I plan on buying him his own container of flaxseed today.  So go buy some, it could do wonders for your body!  If you would like to learn more about flaxseed, click here!

Hope you are having a great day!  Dont forget to weigh in today and let us know the results to post!!!!