Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Guest Post on Iamsucceeding.com!

My twitter pal Trish asked me to write my "success story" as a guest spot on her blog. When she asked me, I wasn't feeling terribly successful. The post allowed me to realize that I have accomplished a lot and that all my little accomplishments are as important as the bigger ones. So, thanks Trish for giving me a wake up call. YOU ARE AWESOME!

Check out Trish's blog here and her twitter feed here!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Dance Your A** Off- season 2/episode 12- "The Ultimate Dance Off- Part 1"

Yes, part 1. We couldn't have the finale in one episode. NO! And I was just complimenting Oxygen on fitting all the action into one neat hour sized package. . .

At the beginning of the episode, Mel B informs remaining contestants Adamme and Latoya that they will be going home for five weeks as their final challenge. No doctors, trainers, or professionals: They will have to fend for themselves and then come back for the final dance off. Adamme packs up his suitcase full of dream catchers and heads back to Vegas- Latoya goes wherever it is that she lives. I think the Bronx? Jersey? It looks really suburban!

Five weeks later all the previous contestants return to have a reunion at Runyon Canyon, the place they all had to run up the first day they arrived. Some people look like they have kept up the weight loss, other people look like they have eased up a bit. Michael, Katie, Erica, Corey, and Kiki seem like they have the most extreme transformations. Before the contestants run up the canyon, Briana announces she ended up having ACL surgery on her knee and Erica is pregnant with her third child. Get it, Erica! Michael also claims to be pregnant, if only to ride in the truck to the top of the canyon.

Once at the top, Mel B introduces the new Latoya and Adamme who have turned into lean mean dancing machines! Mel B also announces a TWIST--three former contestants will be put back into the competition for a dance off based on the amount of weight they have lost. One dancer will be chosen to join Latoya and Adamme for a last chance at the $100,000 prize. Michael, Corey, and Katie are the lucky three. . .which means we must endure watching Corey and Michael dance again. A strangely unique gift. Super surprise is Katie, who looks incredible and who's dancing has only gotten better with her weight loss.

So, how does everyone stack up? Here is their weight loss in order of their eliminations:
Caleb: 30.1 lbs
Meredith: 45.6 lbs
Sarah: 22.5 lbs
Erica: 50 .1 lbs
Kiki: 49.0 lbs
Briana: 61.4 lbs
Katie: 56.9 lbs
Stephanie: 34.7 lbs
Corey: 80.4 lbs
Michael: 85.8 lbs
and the final two. . .
Adamme: 105.7 lbs
Latoya: 58.6 lbs

The "wild cards" compete in their dance off, and although I really wanted Katie to be chosen, Michael takes the third place position. Corey may have done the most uncomfortable moonwalk I have ever seen. . .but Michael's face during the first finale dance earns this week's prize of making me scrunch down on my couch in horror. Or first prize in the tiger impression contest.

The dancing starts at 2:20 in the clip!

Next episode-- finale part two! Two more dances, the final weigh in, and the crowing of season two's champion ass off-er. WHO WILL IT BE? (Adamme, please be Adamme!)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sunday Funday!

Treadmills are more fun with dogs on them.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Way Back Wednesday

This PSA is about kids not resorting to food for comfort when they are hurt or upset. More importantly, it tells parents not to give food to their children but instead give them a hug.

The rate of childhood obesity in the 1980's compared to now? According to the CDC:

"Among preschool children aged 2–5, obesity increased from 5.0% to 10.4% between 1976–1980 and 2007–2008 and from 6.5% to 19.6% among those aged 6–11. Among adolescents aged 12–19, obesity increased from 5.0% to 18.1% during the same period. "

I think they need to start airing these PSA's again! I loved them when I was a kid. I am pretty sure they are the reason I didn't start smoking crack and why I love wagon wheels.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Money Hungry- episode 4- The Family vs. The Orphanage

When Josh signed onto Money Hungry with his "just friend" Melissa (What a chatterbox! Does this girl every shut up?) he probably didn't see the s$&t storm he would create when he fell for plus size model Jamie and changed his vote to the ladies of Grading Curves. They are a vengeful lot, those Curves. Josh begins this episode just wanting to stay safe for another episode!

I don't blame him. Have you seen the guys on this show? They are big and their mouths are even bigger.

Regulators David and Po worked last week's vote to their advantage, creating a new alliance in the house to break up the dreaded "Orphanage". "The Family" consists of the Slenderellas, Double Chocolate, No Excuses, Flabulous, and The Regulators. Their motto: "Family first. . .and stay humble." "The Orphanage" is now made up of Chicago Deep Dish, Mission Slimpossible, A Pair of Nuts, and Grading Curves. Five against four. I like those odds!

After David breaks for a quick poo, it is time for the weekly challenge. "Volcano: Fire on the Mountain" star Dan Cortese meets the contestants at the pool for a swimming challenge. "This is good s&#t people," he says. There are team colored balls floating in the pool, 16 for each team. The balls must be grabbed, swam over to a team's grid, and attached to the grid on the bottom of the pool. Whichever team gets all their balls on their grid first is eliminated. The final team will be crowned this week's Big Heavies and will have immunity. The first team eliminated will be on the chopping block at the weigh in.

The mighty Nuts are the first to be eliminated, followed by Flabulous, Mission Slimpossible, Grading Curves, and Deep Dish. All of the Orphans are out! The Regulators are chosen to be the last team standing and become the BIG HEAVIES!

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Mission Slimpossible begins to scramble for a way to keep themselves out of the bottom two with A Pair of Nuts. They try to recall a gentleman's agreement they had with the Regulators the first week when they each told each other they wouldn't vote for each other. The Regulators feel the deal dissolved when Mission Slimpossible threatened to have them eliminated last week.

So much drama you are probably wondering how anybody has anytime to lose weight. Trainer Richard wants to change things up at the gym and brings in a hip hop dance instructor (Phillip is pissed that it isn't Lady Gaga) to shake things up. The gauntlet is thrown by Joe-- he serves Phillip in a mother f'n dance off.

After Joe has been fully served, Mission Slimpossible is feeling miffed that no one seems to like them anymore. They decide to take out their aggressions in the gym. . .but that leads to them bumping into Po "by accident" and a HUGE argument ensues between Slimpossible and The Regulators that makes the producers have to step in. The show's producers. It does sound like the name of another team though, doesn't it?

Mission Slimpossible decides that they are going to pack up their toys and leave. . .and return 15 minutes later. No one can call them quitters! David feels bad that he flew off the handle and forms a shaky truce with the Slimpossibles. But will this new found camaraderie ruin all the hard work that the Regulators have put into "The Family" during the house vote? They give immunity to Double Chocolate (whew): How will the other teams size up?

The Regulators: From 781 lbs to 780 lbs- 1 lb lost- .13% BW (immune-what a game play move!)

Double Chocolate: From 423 lbs to 422 lbs- 1 lb lost- .24% BW (immune- C'mon!)

A Pair of Nuts: From 516 lbs to 500 lbs- 16 lbs lost- 3.10% BW A huge bar has been set! Will the Nuts be able to stay together another week? Or will they be snipped from the contest?

Slenderellas: From 574 lbs to 572 lbs- 2 lbs lost- .35% BW- SAFE

Flabulous: From 614 lbs to 609 lbs- 5 lbs lost- .81% BW- SAFE

Deep Dish: From 423 lbs to 419 lbs- 4 lbs lost- .95% BW- SAFE

Grading Curves: From 467 lbs to 468 lbs-1 lb gained- +.21% BW- SAFE

Dan announces that both No Excuses and Mission Slimpossible received votes, leading Joe and Mark to launch into an expletive filled rant. "I'm f'n livid!" shouts Joe.

No Excuses: From 595 lbs to 590 lbs- 5 lbs lost- .84% BW- SAFE Which means that. . .

Mission Slimpossible: From 475 lbs to 456 lbs- 19 lbs lost- 4.0% BW

. . .A Pair of Nuts is going home! "Nuts--out."

Mission Slimpossible vows to send everyone home. I am still wondering how these folks that really need to lose the weight are losing any at all. Their numbers are so small. . .maybe I'll learn next week?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Dance Your A** Off- season 2/episode 11- "Then There Were 3"

We have made it to the semifinals!!! It was a long journey, filled with many hours of sweat, tears, and monologues with gay country sayings the way only Michael could do it. The three remaining contestants are Michael, Latoya, and Adamme-- who, incidentally, I called out in my first blog post as my favorite. Do I watch a lot of TV or what? I can pick the winners in the beginning!

There is some strife in the DYAO household: Adamme and Latoya are snipping at each other about everything from gas to wiping your sweat off the elliptical machine. Sounds nasty. Michael hopes their arguing results in lower numbers on the scale and decreased dance ability. If only it worked that way, Michael. If only.

The three dancers meet Mel B on the beach to hear about their semifinal challenges. She announces that three is the magic number: A group dance, a jazz routine involving a prop and tricky turns, and a hip hop number. MORE HIP HOP FOR MICHAEL! He must be so thrilled.

After a recreation of Adamme and Latoya's bickering for their dance partners, the contestants are invited to dinner with Mel B. And surprise-- they have guests! Adamme's twin brother, Michael's best friend, and Latoya's mom. Her name is VELVET. I love it. We also learn that Michael used to work at Dollywood. OF COURSE.

After the introductions of the judges including SYTYCD guest judge Tabitha (from Nappy Tabs!), it is time for the dance break, suckas.

Everyone does so well, it is literally down to the scale to decide who will be continuing to the finals.

Adamme: From 225.9 lbs to 215.9 lbs- 10 lbs lost + dance score = 14.1

Latoya: From 170.2 lbs to 168.7 lbs- 1.5 lbs lost + dance score = 10.8

Michael: From 216.1 lbs to 212.0 lbs- 4.1 lbs + dance score = 9.9

Michael is heading home, but not without a great parting interview and a signature finger snap.

Next episode: PART 1 (what?) of the finals. So big it has to be divided into two parts like those Harry Potter movies.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sunday Funday!

Bravo makes it impossible for me to stop watching their shows. That's why I watch reality shows about housewives, house flipping, cooking, and stylists.

Now they join my ranks of reality show goodness with a weight loss reality show- THINTERVENTION with sexy hot Jackie Warner. It starts September 6th! Where? On Bravo. Watch what happens.

OKAY NBC AND BRAVO! Here is my pitch: Get Jackie Warner and Jillian Michaels together for a show called "I Will Kick Your Ass" or "Michaels and Warner". Like a fitness Cagney and Lacey.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Casual Friday

My blog equivalent to dress denim and a polo shirt. . .

WHAT A BUSY WEEK! I had a whirlwind trip to see my family in Oklahoma this past weekend. I feel an important part of health is taking the time to see the people that you love and give your body the ability to take a break! New York and Oklahoma are worlds apart and I love that.

When I got back home I got to try out a new spa courtesy of Spa Sally and http://www.25tuesdays.com/ . I was invited to get a 60 minute massage- which is always nice after being on an airplane! The name of the place is Pearl Beauty Clinic and Spa and is located on West 8th street in the heart of everything in the West Village! It is cute and clean and tucked away right next to MacDougal street. The owner was very nice and I enjoyed the massage-- but they also offer a whole host of other services. Next Tuesday, Spa Sally is offering the massage for $25! Make sure to CHECK IT OUT!

Look at these babies!

These are my nephews Caden Cole (on top) and Weston Marshall (on bottom) who live in Oklahoma. Aren't they sweet? What a great part of the trip!
My parents also took me out to a RAW food restaurant (very innovative for OK!) called 105 Degrees. IT WAS SO GOOD! If you live in Oklahoma you must must must support them.

Kimchee dumplings!

Fresh sake bloody marys!
I have other pics I took of the food but I am not that kind of blog. Trust me- it was delish.
Have a great weekend! Have a bloody mary, a massage, and squeeze on some cute babies if you get the chance!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Money Hungry- episode 3- "Roommate Traitor Filthy Pig!"

Remember when everyone in the Money Hungry household was friends? Yeah. That's all over now.

After a tense elimination that sent the Roll Models home, "The Orphanage" (Mission Slimpossible, Grading Curves, A Pair of Nuts, and Chicago Deep Dish) kick out No Excuses since team member Josh didn't vote against the Roll Models. Grading Curves calls Josh a "roommate traitor filthy pig" and Josh decides to sleep in Roll Models Jamie's empty bed. Wee woo.

Head of "The Orphanage" is Mission Slimpossible's Joe who has taken control of the reins and is basically bullying all teams to vote for No Excuses for not following orders. Joe's new nickname? The Godfather. They really like naming themselves on this show.

But this show is still about weight loss, right? Right. The teams meet Veronica's Closet star Dan Cortese for this week's challenge called "Chubby Chase". The offended teams who chose to be on a reality weight loss show called Money Hungry make a face and Dan quickly soothes them with a "I don't name 'em, I just explain 'em." The teams are tethered together and must run around a track trying to catch the team in front of them and pull off the team's flag while avoiding the team behind them who is also trying to get their flag. Sound confusing? Here's a clip sponsored by McDonald's. The irony isn't lost on me.

Mission Slimpossible are this week's Big Heavies and Flabulous is on the chopping block. Not the winner this week: All the breasts that don't have a proper sports bra- including Phillip's breasts.

Back at the house Rocker Mom Carrie reveals she has strained her hip flexor, A Pair of Nuts is in cahoots with Mission Slimpossible, and The Regulators don't take kindly to Mission Slimpossible telling them who they need to vote for. In fact, Po overhears "The Orphange" sitting in the hot tub talking smack and realizes that anyone that isn't in "The Orphanage" is going to be set up to be eliminated each week. Have I mentioned we are 23 minutes into the show and no one has worked out yet? I did spot the contestants eating some oatmeal. No Extra Sugar Free Gum or Lanacane Chaffing plugs.

After a commercial break, the contestants are FINALLY in the gym with trainer Richard doing some boxing and the injured Rocker Mom Carrie is having to find alternatives to her usual (I don't know what it was) workout like the rowing machine. Flabulous Phillip is feeling unmotivated to workout because it is such a struggle to compete against the other "fitter" contestants. He calls his grandfather who fronted the $10,000 for him and his pal Stephanie to be here and listens as his grandfather tells him that he is in the hospital AGAIN for congestive heart failure. Phillip is only 24 (!) and is already on the same path. The conversation is a wake up call and motivates him to pick up the pace.

On the drama front, Mission Slimpossible gets wind that The Regulators don't want to be bossed around, so they tell No Excuses Josh that they are going to vote for The Regulators instead of No Excuses. Josh runs and tells The Regulators, who get really pissed, and The Regulators talk to the outsiders (Double Chocolate, Slenderellas, Flabulous, and No Excuses) into voting for a member of "The Orphanage". Their choice? The newly hobbled Rocker Moms. If Mission Slimpossible loses one of their core alliances, they will lose their stronghold on the votes and voters.

At the house vote, Mission Slimpossible gives immunity to A Pair of Nuts. But who will be joining Flabulous in the bottom two at the third elimination ceremony?

Mission Slimpossible: From 484 lbs to 475 lbs- 9 lbs lost- 1.86% BW (immune AGAIN)

A Pair of Nuts: From 525 lbs to 516 lbs- 9 lbs lost- 1.71% BW (immune-and one funny joke this week!)

Flabulous: From 624 lbs to 614 lbs- 10 lbs lost- 1.60% BW The bar is set! Who's joining?

Deep Dish: From 428 lbs to 423 lbs- 5 lbs lost- 1.17% BW- SAFE

Slenderellas: From 581 lbs to 574 lbs- 7 lbs lost- 1.20% BW- SAFE

Double Chocolate: From 427 lbs to 423 lbs- 4 lbs lost- .94% BW- SAFE

Grading Curves: From 476 lbs to 467 lbs- 9 lbs lost- 1.89% BW- SAFE

The Regulators: From 799 lbs to 781 lbs- 18 lbs lost- 2.25% BW- SAFE (Mission Slimpossible states they were never really on the chopping block- they just wanted to scare them.)

No Excuses: From 607 lbs to 595 lbs- 12 lbs lost- 1.98%- Not Safe

BUT Dan reveals that there was a tie between No Excuses and The Rocker Moms and since No Excuses percentage of body weight was greater than Flabulous, they are SAFE. GAME PLAY!

Rocker Moms: From 456 lbs to 450 lbs- 6 lbs lost- 1.32% BW- Not Safe and not enough weight lost to beat Flabulous.

The Rocker Moms are rockin' back to Texas, and "The Orphanage" is broken up. Now there are some new sheriffs in town- "The Family". Mission Slimpossible and A Pair of Nuts have some serious Regulators to deal with. I get the feeling it won't be pretty.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dance Your A** Off- season 2/episode 10- "A (Big) Star is Born"

Really, Oxygen Network? A (Big) star? Oh, because we didn't know that the show was about fat people? Now that there are only two episodes left and everyone is feeling confident about themselves and all the weight they have lost, let's rub it in.

I hate that!


This week was all about Hollywood. Nothing screams Hollywood like a sequel, and Mel B tells the contestants they must revisit a dance style that they didn't perform so well the first go 'round.

Latoya: chacha

Adamme: salsa

Michael: jazz funk

Corey: pop jazz (the difference between jazz funk and pop jazz? anyone?)

The contestants also must live their lives like Hollywood stars. They get to have spray tans, funky workouts, prepackaged meals, and acupuncture. "I thought I almost pooped myself--but I didn't! It was just a sensation!" announced Michael after his treatment.

Mel B also announces the contestants will be performing solos this week and they will be judged by SYTYCD wunderkind Travis Wall (one of my fave past dancers and current choreographers!). I actually shrieked in my apartment when I saw him I was so excited.

Time to watch Corey get weird and Michael pull some face: DANCE BREAK!

How did the final four do in the weight loss category?

Latoya: From 175.3 lbs to 170.2 lbs- 5.1 lbs lost + dance score = 21.9
Adamme: From 232.5 lbs to 225.9 lbs- 6.6 lbs lost + dance score = 21.1
Michael: From 225.7 lbs to 216.1 lbs- 9.6 lbs lost + dance score = 21
Corey: From 263.1 lbs to 257.0 lbs- 6.1 lbs lost + dance score = 14.7

Corey is heading home, but he did lose 68.9 pounds in total. If he is a dance master. . .well. . .that remains to be seen.

Next episode is the semi finals where three is the magic number! Three contestants! Three dances! Three chances for Michael to wear leather jackets!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sunday Funday!

I don't know about you guys, but I could totes go for a Beersicle.

Spotted on UrbanDaddy.com, this treat is available at Diablo Royale Este here in NYC. But you can make them at home. Kids, don't try this. Adults, make it a light.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

A Truly Happy Meal!

This article on USAToday.com makes me rejoice! San Francisco is proposing restaurants that sell kids meals with toys must make healthier choices for the kids in regards to portion sizes, sodium content, and healthy options. FINALLY!

The good: You can let your kid get a Happy Meal and not feel terrible that you are contributing to the demise of your child's future health and well being by offering them a meal that is more than half of their daily caloric intake. (A 2-3 year old child should only be taking in 1000 calories daily according to the American Heart Association) A typical cheeseburger happy meal (with a diet soda, mind you) is 550 calories.

The bad: It's only in San Francisco. FOR NOW.

Just like the soda tax and calorie content on menus, this is just another small step to get us as Americans to get healthy--and starting with our children is a great place to be! The article states that only 16% of kids like the food and 36% like the toy that comes as a result of eating the food. If the toy is so important to the kids it is unfair for companies to be loading their meals up with extra fat and sodium because they are children.

Sidebar: I absolutely detest the fact that Froot Loops is advertising to moms right now that Froot Loops are a good source of fiber. FIBER? How many kids do you know have constipation? You know what the number one ingredient is in "Froot" Loops? SUGAR!!!! There are so many other fabulous options out there moms! DON'T BE FOOLED!
I couldn't find the current ad- but here is one that also pissed me off.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Working Out and Staying Cool

Although I love warm weather, I have an aversion to working out in it. I get super sweaty and I break out in heat rash behind my knees, the crooks of my elbows, and my neck! It is torture. I can't NOT workout, so I have my "go to" workouts that keep me trim, sane, and help me beat the heat. They are all based on small muscle movements, a ballet barre, resistance bands, pilates, and yoga. Similar, but different.

SQUEEZE: Created and led by Tracy Effinger, Squeeze is one of my favorite workout series. I own the original Squeeze, Squeeze Stronger, and Squeeze lower body challenge. It is a more athletic approach to small muscle movements: Tracy keeps a brisk pace throughout and doesn't spend a lot of time setting up the movements. She uses light weight and a lot of reps to tire out your muscles in a way that most heavy weight exercises can't. Her ab workout is one of the toughest around- you won't die but you'll want to!
Equipment: mat, light hand weights, a medium sized ball, a dance barre or high backed chair

THE LOTTE BERK METHOD: Lotte Berk was a famous Russian ballerina who created this pilates-esque workout that has been around since the 1950's. This version was created by Lydia Bach who opened a studio here in NYC and is similar to popular classes at Exhale (Core Fusion), Bar Method, and Physique 57. I own all four DVDs: Basic Essentials, Hip Hugger Abs, Muscle Eats Fat, and High Round Assets. Each video is about 30 minutes in length and is very instructional. Once you get past the over instruction it is a really great series and wonderful when I am short on time or don't have the energy for Squeeze.
Equipment: mat, light hand weights, a dance barre or high backed chair

FLUIDITY: I love infomercials and bought this series off of one. It came with four DVDs: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced and a Seat and Thigh video, two resistance bands, a rubber ball, and a beautiful ballet barre that sets up on it's own without being attached to a wall. I use the barre for all my ballet workouts! It was a great purchase even though it was pricey. Led by Michelle Austin, the workouts are very similar to Lotte Berk and Callanetics, but I feel they are a little more ballet inspired. I love the stretching after every move and feel these workouts made me better at my other workouts because of the control that I gained over my muscles. The ab workouts are TOUGH.
Equipment: Fluidity barre, resistance bands, rubber ball

I just bought Core Fusion Pure Abs and Arms and will be doing a separate post about it (I liked it!). All these workouts are proof that you don't have to jump around and sweat like silly to gain strength, muscle tone, and grace. I use them regularly in my rotation and find they help in all aspects of my fitness gains.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Not a sure bet. . .

When I am live tweeting during The Biggest Loser, one of the most common things I read are other twitterers saying if $250K was on the line they would have NO PROBLEM losing the weight and winning the competition. On new reality show Money Hungry, contestants put up $10,000 of their own dough to even compete on the show. If they lose, they lose their cash. If they win, they win everyone else's.

Everyone could use an extra buck, so I was surprised to read this article on AOL News that even cash incentives can't help people lose weight. If money is on the line, people can lose weight but then they eventually gain it back. Why?

"Humans are impatient," Lynham, an economics professor at the University of Hawaii, told AOL News. "And we have impulses that go against our long-term best interests -- even when those interests include money."

The article goes on to talk about websites that allow users to put up their own bucks to help them lose weight and the percentage of people that actually succeed. The statistics aren't all that great.

When I am watching these shows, I am always amazed at the big numbers the participants put up: 13 pounds in one week, 6 pounds the next. If someone puts up an average person's number, say 2 pounds, everyone looks on it like it is a failure. These shows make it seem like huge weight loss is the norm. If you were at a ranch isolated from your friends and family and you were working out six hours a day with all your healthy foods provided and no job to worry about, I am confident that you could lose major pounds.

I think of people like Erik Chopin who won season three of The Biggest Loser only to gain it all back. In a special about his weight gain, he felt that after the show his life was going to be completely different, that he would become a big celebrity. When he realized that he wasn't, he became depressed and all the weight came back on. Season one winner Ryan also gained all of his weight back. And Season two winner Matt.

Wait a sec. I see a trend here.

I tried over the years to lose weight for my family, for boyfriends, for teachers, for roles I wanted to play. Nothing worked until I made the decision for MYSELF to lose the weight. I don't think anyone could offer me enough money to lose weight and keep it off. It is not easy and it is something that I struggle with daily. The fact that it took me about six years to lose 60 pounds and not three months is not lost on me when I watch these shows. I am confident that the reason I can keep it off is because it took me years to figure out the strategies I could use to lose weight and keep it off while working and dealing with stress.

In the world of television, these contestants don't get that time to figure it out. There is the initial praise, the flash of lights and the confetti canons and the huge check with your name on it. But after the glitter is swept up, how do they keep going?

I applaud these shows for bringing awareness to the problem of obesity and using exercise to battle the bulge. Human nature proves, however, that it takes a lot more than money to beat this issue. Apparently, you can put your money where your mouth is. . .but if you eat it? Well, that just defeats the purpose.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Money Hungry- episode 2- Friends! Best Friends!

These weight loss reality shows always start out so well! Everyone loves each other! They are all in it to win it and nothing can stand in their way! No Excuses team member Melissa says "That's not going to change, no matter what!"

Cut to the first challenge day.

MTV Sports Dan meets the contestants at the top of a valley. At the bottom, 6-feet tall team colored balls. At the top of the other side of the valley, a finish line. Dan tells the team that losing weight is a "constant climb. . .a Sisyphean challenge." *crickets* Chicago Deep Dish's Bridget says "Did he say syphilis? I didn't sign up for that."

Sisyphus in mythology was a king who was condemned to forever roll a rock up a mountain without ever reaching the top, by the way.

Dan explains the rules of the game: The contestants must run down the hill, grab their ball, roll the ball up the hill and across the finish line. The winning team will be named the Big Heavy and will gain immunity for themselves and for one other team of their choice. The team in last place will be on the chopping block. "It's not a challenge, it's a death wish," says Roll Models' Jamie.

The teams start strong, but midway up the steep incline it is apparent that this is a bigger challenge than they all anticipated. Everyone is starting to fade, but one team is a clear winner and pulls ahead- A Pair of Nuts. They take the win and this week's immunity. Flabulous Phillip is dead last and looks like he is going to lose it for his team member Stephanie when the skies open up and a strong gust of win blows Double Chocolate's ball back down the hill. Phillip waddles past the finish line with some "assistance" from No Excuses' Josh (Josh runs down to greet Phillip and says "We can do it together!" and Phillip refuses to take his hand) and Double Chocolate's fate is sealed in the bottom two.

Dan then announces a TWIST: There will be a house vote to determine the other team joining Double Chocolate in the bottom two. After a montage of every team saying "THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING!" the teams decide to spend some time in the gym. Double Chocolate wants to make sure they beat whoever is voted opposite them and everyone else. . .well, everyone else is starting to flap their gums with some serious game play.

There have been some strong bonds formed between A Pair of Nuts, Mission Slimpossible, No Excuses, Grading Curves, and Chicago Deep Dish. The team they hate? Roll Models, especially Jamie, who spends most of her time Jazzercising and flipping her hair. "Her face already looks like puke to me," says Grading Curves Tricia. OUCH. No Excuses Josh is listening to the hating, but feels conflicted: "Why not get rid of someone who poses a threat to me?" Plus he really thinks Jamie cleans up well.

Jamie overhears the Regulators talking bad about her, so she begins her campaign to keep her team in the house by using the only thing she can- her feminine wiles. She climbs into the hot tub full of large, sweaty, and hairy men to flirt with them. After they tell her they are married or have girlfriends, she goes with the sympathy route- her team member Shante just lost her grandmother (ok, her husband's grandmother, but who is paying attention?) and she starts the tears.

Josh knows the house is not thinking strategically, so he launches a full on campaign against Grading Curves. The Rocker Moms tell Grading Curves, and the Curves confront Jamie full on.

Now would be a great time to mention that the teams haven't done very much working out this week. Except for Double Chocolate. I did see trainer Richard working some people out on the row machine. Does that count? How many calories does talking bad about other teams burn?

The house vote is held to determine who will be going head to head against Double Chocolate, and A Pair of Nuts reveal that Mission Slimpossible will be joining them in immunity. So how did everyone stack up this week?

Dan greets the teams for the elimination ceremony, and he asks about the house vote and everyone hating on Roll Models. "Jamie is a little annoying!" offers Deep Dish's Bridget. Everyone agrees. . .except Josh. Who would have thunk that sweet little Josh was such a major game player? Someone has watched a couple of seasons of The Biggest Loser! Josh could be the new Koli.

Back to the weigh-in:
A Pair of Nuts: From 529 lbs to 525 lbs- 4 lbs lost- .76% BW (immune- and game playing!)
Mission Slimpossible: From 485 lbs to 484 lbs- 1 lb lost- .21% BW (immune- pathetic.)

Double Chocolate: From 438 lbs to 427 lbs- 11 lbs lost- 2.51% BW They have set the bar- now what team has been voted in to compete against them?

Slenderellas: From 594 lbs to 581 lbs- 13 lbs lost- 2.19% BW- SAFE
Regulators: From 816 lbs to 799 lbs- 17 lbs lost- 2.08% BW- SAFE
Flabulous: From 631 lbs to 624 lbs- 7 lbs lost- 1.11% BW- SAFE
Rocker Moms: From 465 lbs to 456 lbs- 9 lbs lost 1.94% BW- SAFE
No Excuses: From 619 lbs to 607 lbs- 12 lbs lost- 1.94% BW- SAFE
Deep Dish: From 439 lbs to 428 lbs- 11 lbs lost- 2.51% BW- SAFE

The final two teams are Grading Curves and Roll Models. Dan reveals that one team got 5 votes and one team got 6 votes. After a "Holy S%$t" montage, Curves is surprised that the vote wasn't 11 to 1. Very surprised, indeed.

Grading Curves: From 490 lbs to 476 lbs- 14 lbs lost- 2.86% BW- SAFE
Roll Models: From 457 lbs to 446 lbs- 11 lbs lost- 2.41% BW- Not safe and not enough to beat Double Chocolate.

So Roll Models rolls out in a flourish of eyelashes and jazz hands. Double Chocolate is safe to fight another day. Josh is left heart broken. . .and he has to deal with the repercusions of playing the game.
God, I love this show.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Dance Your A** Off- season 2/episode 9- "Temptation City"

Better than "Temptation Island".

Unknown Pussycat Doll Ashley Roberts (I know you are thinking "Who?") greets the contestants at their home to tell the final 5 they will be going to Vegas to blow off some steam and try out their new found skills in healthy eating and exercising.

Mel B meets the dancers at their penthouse suite in Vegas to tell them that "temptation assumes many forms. . .your behavior is all up to you!" She also shares this week's dance challenge: Burlesque. Not to be confused with the new Christina Aguilera/Cher dance movie. The dancers will also have to use props in their dances:
Adamme: nightstick
Michael: blindfold and chair (I am scared.)
Stephanie: couch
Latoya: feather boa
Corey: hat

First Vegas temptation: Drinking at a nightclub. Mel B takes them to the VIP section of Haze (no pun intended) to see who is going to drink all that vodka. The winners are Michael and Stephanie.

Second Vegas temptation: The dreaded Vegas buffet. If you have ever been to a Vegas buffet, you know that there is every food under the sun and then some. Would the contestants be able to pass up the pizza and potatoes and hit up the salad bar? It looks like only one contestant found her Achilles Heel: Seaweed salad. One employee told Stephanie it had no oil, another said it did. Regardless, she ate three bowls. She may have been better served only having one bowl? I always say you can eat almost anything you want if it is in moderation. Or I steer clear of those buffets! They are just not natural!!!

After a quick visit to see last season's winner Ruben back stage at his job at Viva Elvis, it is back to the grind- literally- at a cardio strip tease class at Crunch gym to learn some burlesque moves. Then it is time for the show- DANCE BREAK!

After washing my eyes with bleach after Michael's dance (sorry Michael!), it is time for the weigh in.
Latoya: From 181.5 lbs to 175.3 lbs- 6.2 lbs lost + dance score = 12.4
Adamme: From 240.2 lbs to 232.5 lbs- 7.7 lbs lost + dance score = 11.9
Michael: From 231.9 lbs to 225.7 lbs- 6.2 lbs lost + dance score = 10
Corey: From 271.2 lbs to 263.1 lbs- 8.1 lbs lost + dance score = didn't mention
Stephanie: From 170.3 lbs to 171.3 lbs- 1 lb gained + dance score = 8.7

Stephanie is defeated by the horrible seaweed salad incident in Vegas- what happened there didn't stay there- and she is sent home.

Next episode: solo dances!!!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Funday!

I write a lot about childhood obesity . . . but this little kid is SO CUTE. Maybe I'll get him a Twinkie. I love the movie UP and I love this kid!!!! (Thanks HuffingtonPost.com!)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Don't REALLY buy these pants.

And if you do buy them, buy them with a sense of fun and whimsy. San Francisco based Chef Chris Cosentino has designed Gluttony Pants: adjustable buttons from piglet, sow, and boar, a color that is compatible with spilled food, and a portable napkin.
Yes, they are hilarious and I could imagine how amazingly comfortable it would be to eat a cheeseburger in them. Remember that Dr. Oz recommends pants that have NO STRETCH in them so you know when you are gaining weight!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Afternoon Delight

Thank you, The Daily What, for reminding me why Oklahoma is so kind-of nerdy. And why peanut butter cups are a delicious indulgence. Peanut butter cups and politics are two great tastes that shouldn't be together.


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Money Hungry- episode 1- MEET THE CONTESTANTS

As I said before during Bridal Boot Camp and Celebrity Fit Club, I don't know how much real life learning about weight loss there will be on a weight loss show on VH1. It's all about fun: It's not going to be a tear fest like The Biggest Loser. That being said, I think I am in for quite the ride on Money Hungry, a fabulous new weight loss show where the contestants put up $10,000 of their OWN money to compete. You lose, you get nothing. You win, you get $100,000.

Like The Biggest Loser, the contestants are in teams of various colors, they compete in challenges, they have a trainer (Richard Cascioli- he may suffocate you with his biceps), they all live together and train together. Unlike Loser, the contestants have an alcohol closet and team names (I love!).

They come from all walks of life, from meeting at fat camp to being mother and daughter. They are all very heavy and need to lose the weight. Nothing funny about that, but somehow the show has cast some of the biggest characters around that are a lot of fun to watch. So, let's meet them! (Warning- this post has some lists going on. Bear with me.)

Team: "Family Sized"- mother and daughter

Starting weight: Denise- 252 lbs Katie- 371 lbs Combined weight- 623 lbs

Team: "No Excuses"- just friends (what does that mean?)

Starting weight: Melissa- 289 lbs Josh- 354 lbs Combined weight- 643 lbs

Team: "Grading Curves"- teachers

Starting weight: Tricia- 193 lbs Missy- 309 lbs Combined weight- 502 lbs

Team: "Rocker Moms"- moms (very complicated. . .I know.)

Starting weight: Carrie- 256 lbs Beth- 220 lbs Combined weight- 476 lbs

Team: "Slenderellas"- friends from Fat Camp

Starting weight: Jackie- 213 lbs Kaitlin- 402 lbs Combined weight- 615 lbs

Team: "Roll Models"- plus size models

Starting weight: Shante- 229 lbs Jamie- 249 lbs Combined weight- 478 lbs

Team: "Mission Slimpossible"- gamblers

Starting weight: Joseph- 243 lbs Mark- 265 lbs Combined weight- 508 lbs

Team: "Double Chocolate"- friends (and yes, they are ladies of color)

Starting weight: Georgette- 249 lbs Tammy- 202 lbs Combined weight- 451 lbs

Team: "Flabulous"- friends (and Phillip is SUPER GAY.)

Starting weight: Stephanie- 216 lbs Phillip- 436 lbs Combined weight- 652 lbs

Team: "Chicago Deep Dish"- travelers

Starting weight: Marilu- 260 lbs Bridget- 200 lbs combined weight- 460 lbs

Team: "A Pair of Nuts"- a comedy duo (correction: the world's most unfunny comedy duo)

Starting weight: Yamil- 278 lbs Johnny- 266 lbs Combined weight- 544 lbs

Team: "The Regulators"- bouncers

Starting weight: Po- 383 lbs Dave- 467 lbs Combined weight- 850 lbs

There are all the usual trappings of a reality weight loss show: spirited host (MTV Sports' Dan Cortese- remember him?), lots of fights between team members trying to motivate themselves and hating on each other, and lots of drinking and puking. WHY IS THERE DRINKING ON A WEIGHT LOSS SHOW?!?!? Puking leads to the wrong kind of weight loss, ya dig?

There is also some working out. As far as diet and nutrition, the only eating that is shown is the last supper of fried foods and crap. Somehow, the contestants did lose some weight. At the final weigh in, the loser was determined by the least amount of body weight lost.

Chicago Deep Dish- From 460 lbs to 439 lbs- 21 lbs lost- 4.57 % BW

Mission Slimpossible- From 508 lbs to 485 lbs- 23 lbs lost- 4.53% BW

Roll Models- From 478 lbs to 457 lbs- 21 lbs lost- 4.39% BW

Regulators- From 850 lbs to 816 lbs- 34 lbs lost- 4% BW

No Excuses- From 643 lbs to 619 lbs- 24 lbs lost- 3.73% BW

Slenderellas- From 615 lbs to 594 lbs- 21 lbs lost- 3.41% BW

Flabulous- From 652 lbs to 631 lbs- 21 lbs lost- 3.22% BW

Double Chocolate- From 451 lbs to 438 lbs- 13 lbs lost- 2.88% BW

A Pair of Nuts- From 544 lbs to 529 lbs- 15 lbs lost- 2.76% BW

Grading Curves- From 502 lbs to 490 lbs- 12 lbs lost- 2.39% BW

Rocker Moms- From 476 lbs to 465 lbs- 11 lbs lost- 2.31% BW

Family Sized- From 623 lbs to 612 lbs- 11 lbs lost- 1.77% BW

So mother and daughter Family Sized are the first to go. Dan Cortese tells them that this is "just a starting point. Don't stop now."

I don't know how many days there were between the initial weigh in and the final weigh in. The numbers seemed low compared to the other shows that are out there. How many hours a day do they work out? What are they eating? Why is trainer Richard so veiny?

These questions and others I hope to uncover over the course of the season. One thing I do know is the show will be a ton of fun. (Get it? Ton? Sigh.)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


The banner says "Govenor Patterson's beverage tax would increase the price of your favorite beverages up to 50%! The last thing New Yorkers need is another tax."
Notice no diet beverages are pictured. And it is on the back of a Coke truck. Interesting how the banner doesn't say "We are sorry for making sugary beverages that have packed on the pounds, America. We promise to make all of our drinks healthier so you won't have to pay more money out of your pocket because we are scared you will wise up and stop buying our fine drinks."
They would need a bigger banner.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Dance Your A** Off- season 2/episode 8- "Prom Diggity!"

By the title, I thought the show was going to be an homage to the cheesy gowns and tuxes of our high school proms. Maybe the electric slide thrown in for good measure. Mel B tells the contestants it's a prom to celebrate their graduation into healthy new lives. Okay. . .so, why not make it graduation themed? What do I know? In addition, the contestants must master a trick into their jazz funk routines.

Latoya- Front walkover

Stephanie- Hitch kick

Katie- Triple pirouette (what?)

Adamme- Russian Leap a.k.a. Toe touch

Michael- Axel Jump

Corey- Barrel Turn

Still in a jazz funk, the dancers bump into their trainer, "General" Lee, who tells them they will be running a mile in weighted vests. After they complete the run, he reveals the vests represent how much weight they have lost thus far in the competition. Everyone is so proud of themselves that they can take the weight off and drop it in front of them.

At the dinner table later that night, the contestants tell front runner Latoya that they are tired of her bitching and moaning about everything. They are trying to be a family and be supportive of one another, to which Latoya replies, "I don't feel a family here period. I could really care less." OUCH. Adamme lays down the law: "Don't complain in my presence- it brings me down and it is a drag."

After announcing the aptly named Joey Fatone as the guest judge and a quick Lanacane anti-chafing gel plug, it is time for a DANCE BREAK!

And the weigh in. . .

Adamme: From 249.7 lbs to 240.2 lbs- 9.5 lbs lost + dance score = 12.1

Latoya: From 187.7 lbs to 181.5 lbs- 6.2 lbs lost + dance score = 12

Stephanie: From 174.8 lbs to 170.3 lbs- 4.5 lbs lost + dance score = 9.6

Corey: From 276.9 lbs to 271.2 lbs- 5.7 lbs lost + dance score = 9.1

Michael: From 235.9 lbs to 231.9 lbs- 4 lbs lost + dance score = 9

Katie: From 184.3 lbs to 181.1 lbs- 3.2 lbs lost + dance score = 8.7

Katie fall short, taking her disco stick and heading home. Mel B gives her boost, telling her "You were really sexy this week!"

Next week: Vegas trip- buffets and shots, oh my!