Friday, April 30, 2010

What I am "F'd Up!" about today! DO YOU WANT US SKINNY OR NOT?


I have to vent.


When writing and researching the Skinny Fat post, I discovered this article on the NBC website: "Lost Pounds Lead to Burst Fantasy". In short, the article puts a negative slant on losing weight, that somehow lost weigh equals happiness and many who have lost the weight realize that they are now a smaller person with the same issues.


What chaps my hide is the fact that the author of the piece makes the aesthetic part of losing weight the seeming goal of weight loss. The emphasis on health and well being is really diminished. And the main "character" of the piece is someone who used bariatric surgery to get results instead of trying to lose weight on her own. She is now writing a book about still being a fat person in a skinny person's body. She sounds miserable.


WHAT IS THE DEAL HERE? I don't understand the media, I really don't. On one hand they are shoving health and wellness down our throats and the other hand they don't want us to be healthy. They want the company to come with that misery. They want a plus size woman to advertise for bras and panties and the controversy that comes with not airing the ad. They want "TV's toughest trainer" Jillian Michaels to be rock hard and then crucify her when she says she would rather adopt than put her body through a pregnancy.


How is the average person supposed to respond? In a world so full of contradictions, the one thing we shouldn't be conflicted on is a universal message of health. That eating right and taking care of our bodies through exercise is GOOD. That starving ourselves and master cleanses to fit into a dress is BAD. Health isn't the enemy here.


I am not the thinnest person, nor the fattest person. But I have been large and I have been smaller. It took me years to work on the mental health aspect of health, that my brain had to realize that taking care of myself was a lifelong project and not "I will be happy when I weigh this much". Not every day is a good day. But every day is another opportunity to work on myself and be a better me. My wish is for authors to remember that the pen is mightier than the sword and to be more mindful when writing articles like the one I mentioned. We don't need anymore help to say no. We need all the help in the world to keep saying YES.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What I am "F'd Up!" about today! Squeeze Stronger with Tracy Effinger DVD


As my screaming glutes, legs, and arms will attest, Squeeze Stronger is an amazing fitness DVD that provides RESULTS. I own Tracy Effinger's original Squeeze which is a tough workout that has been in my DVD rotation for a couple of years, so I was ready to AMP IT UP with Squeeze Stronger. I didn't know what I was getting myself into!

I completed the 80 minute full workout, which seamlessly blends upper and lower body together with a killer ab routine. Upper body focuses on light weight/multi rep training that concentrates on the biceps, triceps, shoulders, and chest. If your shoulders aren't shaking and quaking by the end of this, then you are a super hero. I started with 3 pound dumbbells and had to drop to 1 pound and then my own resistance by the end! Tracy recommends as much as 8 pounds to work with. Yikes. Lower body has a pilates/ballet focus: plies, squats, tiny pulses that make your legs sing! You will be begging for mercy by the end of the ab section, which has a pilates flavor to it. I think time starting going backwards, I swear.

Tracy is the best part of the DVD. She is strong, smart, and sassy with a body that you hope can be attainable through this workout! I also love the music. It isn't your typical sounds- it is really cool, almost Zen like. I felt like I was in a real on-on-one session throughout the entire workout. I knew it was a keeper when I stood up after the final stretch and my legs felt like jelly. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Length: 80 minutes, with 2 shorter options of just Upper Body and Waist and just Lower Body and Waist. There are also shorter premixed workouts so you can mix and match.

Equipment: mat, 15-1 pound dumbbells, workout dowel or broomstick, ball or pillow, chair



Are You Skinny Fat?


Oh, you know the type. Lean and tall, croissant in one hand while the other hand is pulling up the skinny low rise jeans that are barely being held up by a non existent pot belly. Let's give her a cigarette, just to villainize her a little bit. Okay, take away the cigg. I'm just being jealous. A girl that slender must be healthy. Right?

Wee woo. Sorry, skinny. Turns out you can be fat on the inside, too.

This week's Today Show featured a segment called "Take it off Today!" (catchy, I know) that did a follow up story on an attractive middle aged woman named Nancy. Thin, blond, and tan and seemingly athletic, you would think by her appearance that she was 100% the picture of health. At 5'7", 140 lbs, and a BMI of 22, Nancy's body fat percentage was 27%. A normal body fat percentage should be at or below 25%. Nancy is considered obese by these standards.

Today show contributor Joy Bauer tested Nancy with body fat calipers, which you can find at your local gym or you can purchase yourself (you'll need some assistance to squeeze 'em), but she also recommends using hydrostatic weighing like you see on The Biggest Loser or buying a scale that tests body fat percentage. Testing yourself is important because having a high body fat percentage causes inflammation of your internal organs and can lead to such serious problems as metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and heart disease.

In 8 weeks, Nancy was put on a program of cardio for 30 minutes, 5 times a week that consisted of walking and Zumba classes that helped to burn body fat. She also did manageable, at-home weight training sessions for 15-20 minutes, 2 times a week that increased her lean muscle mass and helped burn more fat and tone her body. Joy also looked at Nancy's diet and helped her in making more mindful choices: More veggies, less pasta, smaller portions, and a little less dessert.
At the end of the 8 weeks, Nancy didn't just get to 25% body fat. She blew through to 22%! All by making simple, sustainable changes that cost little to nothing. Nancy says she feels stronger, more energetic, and more healthy.

Don't assume your weight is an end all indicator of your health! Healthful eating and exercise is the start to being healthy inside and out!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

BL9- week 14- The Codependents


Web MD defines codependency as "unhealthy dependencies and repressed anger", and "to anesthetize the emotional pain, codependent adults try whatever makes them feel better -- alcohol, drugs, food, sex, gambling. They become addicted to relationships and will do anything to hold onto them, fearing the emotional abandonment that happened during childhood. They put aside what they want to please the other person, remaining in harmful situations far too long."


I define codependency as the weird relationships between Sam, Koli, Sunshine, and O'Neal.


Week 14 begins with Ali and a temptation. A food room has been created on campus that is filled with tables of crap and tables of good things. The strategy is for one person to eat the most calories in one day to get control of the week's only elimination vote. The players must eat every meal in the food room because the kitchen is closed. If you decide to play and eat the most calories you must not fall below the yellow line or you lose the vote.


Koli decides that skinny Sam must stay on the ranch and eats a WHOPPING 4,164 calories, resulting in many disgusting shots of Koli unhinging his jaw and swallowing chili dogs whole and gorging on donuts. Really gross stuff. He wins the temptation, and then goes to work it out in the gym, releasing many disgusting belches punctuated with a "Can you smell that America?"


KOLI IS GROSS! Sorry all my twitter girlfriends that drool over him every week! He is yuckity yuck YUCK.


Bob and Jillian meet the Losers in the gym the next day, and punish Koli for his eating, including Bob coining his new nickname "Chicken Wings". During the workout, O'Neal decides he wants to be more like his codependent brethren and does some crazy push ups to inspire himself. I think he sort of forgot that he is an older male. . .


Cut to the challenge, where the Losers must "lay a foundation" of "building blocks to reach goals" and see "how they stack up to the competition". In other words, putting blocks together to make a staircase to a ladder that must be climbed to retrieve a flag. Whoever captures the flag first, wins a one pound advantage. Loser gets a one pound disadvantage.


Daris climbs like a monkey to win, but in an unfortunate turn of events, O'Neal forgets he is a little old daddy and falls. He rehurts his knee and he and Sunshine his daughter/girlfriend go to the hospital. He wins a trip to the hospital and the one pound disadvantage. Koli vows to save O'Neal if he falls below the yellow line. Koli is now on watch for Sam, O'Neal, and of course Sunshine. If you are outside the circle of trust (that's you Ashley, Mike, Daris, and Vicky) you better watch your back!


Adding insult to injury, O'Neal's brother passes away from cancer. It is the worst week ever for O'Neal, and it might have been worse if NBC made him pay for the exercycle he destroyed or if he had punched Jillian in the face. (It almost became Losing It with O'Neal for a minute.)


The final weigh in has some surprising results:

Koli: From 270 lbs to 260 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Daris: From 226 lbs to 219 lbs- 7 lbs lost (plus 1 pound advantage)

Mike: From 363 lbs to 358 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Ashley: From 258 lbs to 254 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Sam: From 252 lbs to 246 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Vicky: From 267 lbs to 266 lbs- 1 lb lost

O'Neal: From 278 lbs to 270 lbs- 8 lbs lost (plus 1 pound disadvantage)

Sunshine: From 192 lbs to 191 lbs- 1 lb lost


It is between Sunshine and Vicky. Koli walks to the elimination room with a single tray, revealing Victoria's name. SURPRISE! She is not one of the Codependents, ya hear? He then slaps her with a "You've got to pick it up."


Vicky serves Koli, going from 358 to an impressive 240. And she didn't have to sell anyone out or eat a chili dog to get that.

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episode 9- "Preparation K"



No fitness on the show this week, so I decided to list the activities Kirstie and Co. did that may have burned calories. Sorry, Kirstie. I love lemurs, but this is a fitness blog!
  1. Running to prepare for evacuation from a fire.


  2. Getting stuck in a tree.


  3. Making an animal scrapbook.


  4. Wrestling animals.


  5. Performing animal CPR and first aid.


  6. "martial arts" taught by Jim.


  7. Lowering animals in carriers out a second story window.


  8. Fishing.


  9. Staging a fire.


  10. Camping in your backyard.
I checked out Kirstie's show website, because I wanted to see if I was mistaken on thinking this show was about weight loss. This is the direct quote:

"A&E presents "KIRSTIE ALLEY'S BIG LIFE™," a new real-life series that chronicles the extraordinary life of Golden Globe and two-time Emmy winner Kirstie Alley from her journey with her weight loss program to her life as a single mother trying to raise two normal teenagers in the Hollywood spotlight.

Many people remember Kirstie as a Romulan-Vulcan officer in Star Trek II, a sexy Emmy-winner as Rebecca Howe in “Cheers,” the star of blockbuster films Look Who’s Talking and Drop Dead Gorgeous and of course, for her star turns in “Veronica's Closet” and “Fat Actress.” For three decades Kirstie has been making headlines and staying in the forefront of the American conscience. Now, she’s granting her fans unprecedented access inside her life…and what a life it is.

“This show has been cathartic for me...shown me who I really am...again,” says Alley, “And it’s really freaking funny.”

The series also chronicles Kirstie’s comedic and unique take on her battle with weight loss, which coincides with the launch of her new weight loss company. She's also producing a feature film, patenting multiple inventions, working hard to raise two normal Hollywood teenagers, True and Lillie, taking care of her many animals, and on top of everything, looking for love…nothing like a little pressure. "
Soooo. Hmm.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution: SEASON FINALE- "Anarchy in Brown Paper Bags"


The American Revolution lasted from 1763 until 1781. The French Revolution was from 1789-1799. Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution? Six episodes. Yes, season one of the Food Revolution is only six glorious, hour-long episodes documenting Jamie's three month stint in Huntington, WV to get people on the right track with their kids eating habits.

What happened in those three months? You can check out my other Oliver related posts, but in a nutshell Jamie worked on one elementary school, one high school, one public kitchen, one family, one radio DJ, and one hospital administrator. There are 27 total schools in the Huntington area. Jamie has his work cut out for him.

He is feeling good about where everything is before he leaves- he has family in England that needs some attention- and decides to throw the city of Huntington a Food Revolution Festival. Everyone that he has encountered on his journey is there, and money man Doug Shields presents Jamie with an $80,000 check to provide "sustainable food systems for all schools" and a $50,000 check for Jamie's Kitchen, which Jamie renames Huntington's Kitchen. Even mega country music group Rascal Flats performs for free because they believe in the revolution.

Jamie says goodbye to Huntington and hello to a cross country media blitz. He promotes the revolution on Oprah, Rachel Ray, Larry King, and David Letterman. He wins a TED prize for all of the work he has done and continues to do.







So, we can close this chapter and wait until next season, right?

Cut to April 12, 2010. A very sleepy Jamie gets off a plane, back in Huntington. Things in Huntington have taken a nose dive and Jamie has come back to try to stick his finger in the dam.

The problem? The USDA food that RD Rhonda had ordered for the 2009-2010 school year is becoming a massive stock pile because they have been serving Jamie's food in the schools. Rhonda wants to start "Processed Food Fridays" where the chicken fingers and pizza will be served only one day a week. Parents aren't buying the school lunch, and packing their children's meals. "Well, that should be a healthy option!" you might be thinking. Jamie discovers Lunchables, chips, cookies, candy, high sugar drinks, even MCDONALDS in the kids lunches. The pink and brown milk has returned.

WHAT HAPPENED?

The USDA creates the options that public, government funded schools must eat. Rhonda even says, "It's really cheap." Only $3 can buy an entire case of food that feeds a dozen kids. So what exactly are the USDA guidelines for the school lunch program? According to the website:


"School lunches must meet the applicable recommendations of the 1995 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend that no more than 30 percent of an individual's calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. Regulations also establish a standard for school lunches to provide one‐third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances of protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium, and calories.
School lunches must meet Federal nutrition requirements, but decisions about what specific foods to serve and how they are prepared are made by local school food authorities. "

1995? 15 years ago? Haven't things changed? And the Food Pyramid is all well and good, but I don't know how colored milks fit into that pyramid. And now for the conspiracy theory portion of my blog: The government wants us to be sick because everyone except the sick benefit from the money that is spent to try to keep us well. If we were healthy and well we would only have to worry about the REAL illnesses (cancer, MS, etc.) and not health related illness (obesity, type 2 diabetes).


After Jamie observes the brown paper bag situation and senses that the parents and other schools need to be informed and involved, actively involved in their children's health, Jamie utters something I never thought I would hear," I NEED ALICE."


Lunch Lady Alice has become a supporter of the revolution and realized that cooking fresh instead of frozen was not as hard as she had once thought. Jamie and the band of lunch ladies load into the car and drive to other schools to spread the word and invite everyone to a Revolution BOOT CAMP. Jamie needs to spread the word to not be afraid of change.


The boot camp, held at Pastor Steve's church, has an amazing turn out of teachers, principals, lunch ladies, parents and kids who want to learn. It is sad to see the amount of overweight families in the crowd. . .but also awesome because this is when true change can occur. Jamie urges everyone to "not give up on their kids". He also talks to Rhonda and convinces her to cancel her order for next school year's processed food and promises to help her swap out the stock pile of crap for healthy food. The USDA needs to change, and next season I think we will be seeing Jamie moving higher and higher up in the ranks to see that a lasting change can be made.


"This is not the end," Jamie promises. Are you convinced? Make sure to sign the petition and talk to your schools and your kids. GET INVOLVED.


I support the revolution.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

How I Beat the Big Bad ACE Exam


Greetings readers! I took a couple of days off from the blog to rest and recover after taking the ACE personal trainer exam. . .and I passed! WOO!


Quick back story: I got the materials for taking the exam 4 years ago. I have started studying for the exam about 3 or 4 times and quit every time, putting it on the back burner to other life endeavors. Plus the first 3 chapters are SUPER boring. It was only last August that I developed a 1 year plan for myself to get out of the restaurant industry and into an actual career in health and fitness. I cracked open the old text book, and over the next 8 months I read the whole thing cover to cover, did the vocabulary words, the two study guides, the book on CD, the flash cards, an on-line study course, AND a math fitness course.


I wanted to pass this thing.


Me passing the exam was validation that I was on the right path in my life. I have only my own experience in losing weight and staying in shape to prove that exercise and eating well does indeed work. I can't wait to ignite that fire and passion in others!


Planning on taking the exam? Here are some tips:


  1. Give yourself lots of time, and be consistent. Try to do little bit every day. I found it was helpful to sign up for weekly reminders on what I should be studying available at http://www.acefitness.org/.

  2. Use every resource available to you. The text book is king, but there is literally a different study tool for every study type. There is a book on CD, there are flash cards, there are study guides. Try every method to see which one works the best for you.

  3. Read the study blogs on the ACE website. They help to focus you because the amount of information is daunting.

  4. Anatomy is your friend. Know your muscles!

  5. Know all the different health screening techniques and protocol.

  6. Know how to read a food label.

  7. Know how to calculate body fat percentage.

  8. Use someone to help you with flash cards. It helps to say the information out loud.

  9. Reach out and ask someone who has taken the exam before!

The next step? To get out there and apply for gym jobs. Then take over the world.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

ACE Exam = Crazy Brains. POINTERS?

If there is anyone out there that knows the mountain of work that is studying for the exam. . .could you shed some light for me?

I am taking it this Friday morning and I want to know the essential knowledge. The MUST HAVES for my brain.

Thanks in advance for your insight. Now to study. More.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

BL9- week 13- See Drea Lose

See Drea and her dad Darrell.


See Drea cry.




See Drea run.



What you won't see? Drea lose. Because NBC and their awesome web page will only let you view photos on their site, no where else. So go to www.nbc.com and scroll through all the delightful rigmarole to find where Drea is now. Or click on this link for an exit interview.

(See Alison study for Ace exam and not have time for a full recap this week. See Alison say she is sorry.)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution: Cows Don't Produce Pink Milk


(Strawberry Milk by Ryan Smith)


Things are going well for Jamie Oliver in Huntington, WV. He has won over DJ Rod. He is known by the high school kids and elementary kids as Mr. Pea. He is making real head way!

One snag: Huntington's number one employer, Cabell Huntington Hospital, and it's person in charge Doug Shields, still need some convincing. If Jamie can make sure that Doug is on board he can get the financing necessary to sustain the program he has started. First Jamie has to convince them that not all reality television is bad. I have this conversation with my co-workers all the time. . .

Doug Shields hems and haws about Huntington being the "fattest city in America"- the survey and statistics were for five counties. Not just Huntington. HELLO! Huntington is there in the middle of it! Jamie didn't make up the statistics- the government did. He is actually trying to help, and they are just worried about their image. Not about the health of their community.

They ask Jamie "What help do you need?" and Jamie answers flatly, "$100,000." I expected that scene from the movie "Waiting for Guffman" where Corky St. Claire asks for money for his play.







The hospital "fat cats" seem to want to weigh his request. Now Jamie has to prove to them that his revolution is really working.

First Step: Changing the high school. Jamie calls a school assembly to apologize to the students for shutting down the french fry line. He tells them he wants them to be able to make the choice on their own. If they chose his food, he will be able to stay in the schools. If not, he will leave. He knows that teenagers, if told not to do something, will fight against it even more.

With fingers crossed, Jamie goes to the cafeteria. The line for his food is so long that the lunch ladies have to open a second line to keep up with the demand. The students have spoken. They are ready for change. Jamie gets to tell Rhonda, the RD, that he was a success! He wants to take over all four lunch lines and offer four different healthy choices. She agrees. "That's massive. That's epic!" he crows.

Second Step: Check on the elementary school. That means having to see his old nemesis, Alice. God, she is the WORST! I wonder if she is watching this and feeling like a heel. There are a lot of positive changes: The kids are using silver ware, the teachers are making sure the kids are eating their meals, and the food is fresh. Bad news: The pink and brown milks have reared their ugly, sugary mugs. Jamie counts the amount of kids that are drinking the sugar milk, and then goes to talk to Rhonda. She says the government just wants kids to drink the milk and get the calcium, regardless if it is sugary or not. Stoopid government.

One class going through the line only takes the white milk because their teacher told them that the white milk was the right milk. KIDS NEED TO BE TAUGHT THAT BEING HEALTHY IS THE RIGHT CHOICE! If you tell them, they will listen.


Jamie goes back to the high school for his big four line debut, only to be hit with some deep fried news. The fresh chicken he ordered for making BBQ chicken didn't arrive: Instead, the old school chicken fingers were delivered instead. Jamie has to think fast and decides to do Sloppy Joes instead. He is concerned that if the wrong food is sent to the school that the schools won't know what to do to fix the situation. But the four lines do well! Everything from nachos to macaroni were home made from scratch, down to the Ranch dressing. Jamie says his final goodbyes to the high school and his cooking gang, leaving on a high note.


Jamie's next stop is US Food Service to get to the bottom of where all the processed food comes from and what his options are. He meets Mark, who is the director and really nice guy. He wants to offer the schools healthier options and actually has those options available. All the school district has to do is CHOOSE the healthy stuff. The schools are buying the unhealthy things because they are cheaper. Cheaper=fatter. Jamie wants to work with US Food Service to get the right foods and under budget.


It is time to meet Doug Shields at the elementary school. . .so Jaime must make sure that everything is perfect! That means Alice is under control, the milk is under control, Rhonda is being helpful. Rhonda actually called the milk company to pick up the flavored milk, and even the delivery milk man says, "More sugar in flavored milk than there is in soda." Everyone knows!


To butter Doug's bread, he sends a local mobile food truck to the Huntington Hospital to fire up delicious and healthful lunches to the workers. The bison burgers looked amazing. . .my mouth is watering while I'm typing this. Doug seemed impressed with Jamie's efforts, and agrees to meet Jamie at the elementary school during the lunch rush. Now it's all up to Alice to not ruin it all.


Excited and scared, Jamie meets up with Doug at the school. All the kids laugh and smile, the healthy nachos are being eaten, the white milk is being drunk: It's going well! Even the school principle tells Doug that the children are BETTER BEHAVED with the new less processed menu. Then Doug goes into the kitchen to meet the lunch ladies. . .and they meet Alice. She sizes Doug up. She sizes Jamie up. She says some things the children won't eat. . .but Jamie has good ideas. The clouds opened up and a little ray of sunshine came out, forcing Alice's heart to grow three sizes bigger.


Jamie says goodbye to the ladies. . .and hopefully hello to a big fat check! The Revolution Continues!

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episode 8- "The Way We Weren't"


True to form, since this episode was the second half of two 30-minute blocks, this one was a little more focused on weight loss.

A little more focused.

Chubby Buddy Jim starts the episode working out with trainer J.T. on the pilates reformer (which is a wow moment), proving that pilates IS indeed hard. When Jim goes to check in with Kirstie, he is sniffling and sneezing. Kirstie uses her deductive reasoning skills to determining that Jim is 1.) Fat 2.) Under the weather. She puts Jim to bed in her bed (wha?) and takes his temperature: 101.6 degrees. Jim is officially out of commission.

Juggling Jim, household duties, and her own son proves to be quite the task. True is an engaged 17-year-old who is in high school and an aspiring rocker. Kirstie gives him the task of finding a gig in one week to prove he has the goods to be a husband. I know, I don't really understand the reasons either. How about getting a regular job? Or living off your mom? That house is huge!

True tells his band mates his mother's plan, and off they go in search of a venue that will accept them on short notice. They literally get laughed out of The Key Club, The Roxy, and The Viper Room. Clue: one of the band mates suggests they should change their band's name to T-Rex. True wisely knows that T-Rex is ALREADY a band. Hello!?! Glam rock? Someone needs to go back to rock n' roll high school. Props to True for knowing that.

Meanwhile, Jim is intercom interrupting every single aspect of Kirstie's day to ask for reading materials and scented candles. When he starts to feel better, Kirstie asks him what really is the matter. In Scientology, they believe that sickness comes about from having bad feelings. Jim admits he feels neglected as Kirstie's Chubby Buddy and Kirstie admits she usually neglects men. So they recommit to one another. Jim participates in Kirstie's Indian dance class ("We looked like those cartoon ballet hippos") and Kirstie ACTUALLY goes hiking. AND SHE LIKES IT!

On the True front, he and his band mates book a gig at The Cat Club, and they get their big break! Total money earned: $43. Split 3 ways. But it is a step in the right direction. His band is not bad, and True has a pretty good voice. I don't know why, but he kinda looks like John Travolta. I'm just sayin'. . .I'm just sayin'. Here's a clip!

I am still waiting for the show to focus more on Organic Liaison and Kirstie's weight loss. . .

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Funday!

Friday, April 16, 2010

GET AHOLD OF YOURSELF

Audition complete. Sang and danced. Had ONE little snafu- practiced the song in the wrong key. Sigh.

But it is done! I did a little yoga. . .a little breathing in and breathing out. . .and it's all Zen.


By the way. . . today is day 2 of the Million Minute Month at http://www.socialworkout.com/, a really cool site. Do your part! Chip in your minutes!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

I Can Do That. . .


When I moved to NYC I had all these grandiose dreams of becoming the next Kristin Chenoweth or Audra McDonald or Patti Lupone. I love musical theatre and I was raised listening to Barbara Streisand and Man of La Mancha and Jesus Christ Super Star. I have wanted to live in New York since I was 8 and my dad brought home a deck of cards with the Empire State Building on it from a business trip.


I have been so busy trying to change my career from actress/waitress to actress/trainer I have sort of neglected my other dream. I haven't been on an audition since November and I was okay with it until I got an e-mail from a theatre I worked at a year or so ago in Sarasota, Florida. They are doing a production that starts rehearsals in May. All of a sudden I had to start thinking about vocals and choreography and audition clothes. I was excited and scared too. What if I forgot how to be an actress?


Silly worries. I went in this morning for my audition, rocked it out, and was called back for tomorrow. WOO. I still gots it!


Even if I don't get the show, I have so many new and exciting things to be grateful for. I have my ACE exam a week from Friday, I have an awesome boyfriend and life here, I have my search for a gym job coming up. My old fatalistic feelings, the Chorus Line-esque "I really need this job!" are not resounding in my head. I have food on the table and I can pay my rent.


I am thankful. Life is good.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

I'm Not a Girl!

No, I am. I just wanted to quote a Britney Spear's song in the title. I promise, 100% lady parts on this chick. I saw this post on HuffingtonPost.com this morning:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/04/13/britney-spears-reveals-un_n_535981.html

Britney wants you to know that she is really real. And I appreciate that. Not that every model needs to look like me (Lord knows they don't) but it's nice to know that although people are famous they are not PERFECT. They have real butts and thighs.




When you've seen the amount of crazy this girl has, it's nice to have a moment of clarity.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I Support Death By Sandwich


BL9- week 12- The Box


Melissa keeps saying that no one on the ranch is into game play, but that is not true. The producers of The Biggest Loser find new and exciting ways to get the Losers to play the game every week: It's up to the contestants to chose to play it our not. But the producers WANT them to play real bad.
Ali meets the Losers in the gym in front of a Staples Easy Button where she states, "Nothing comes easy." If a contestant chooses to push the button, someone they don't know will die, they will receive a brief case filled with $1,000,000, the button will be retrieved, reset, and given to someone else that doesn't know them.
Or that's the plot to the movie "The Box", which I also watched this week.
The BL9 button, when pushed, emits an ear piercing tornado siren, lights start flashing, and the walls of the gym peel back to reveal a scale. The player that chooses to weigh themselves after pushing the button must lose 2% of their body fat to win immunity. You need to be sure, because you only get one shot to push that button. Fall below the 2% and wah-wah. You suck.
Bob and Jillian arrive, the Losers tell them the complicated rules to the game, everyone pretends to know what's going on, and they work out. Jillian focuses on the yellow and glowing Sunshine who can do no wrong, while Bob descends into the red team's hell to focus on Melissa. Bob gives Melissa many platitudes about not playing the game, but the words seem to go in one ear and out the other. Melissa is out for blood.
Dr. H and his mullet stop by for a visit, telling the Losers that they need to lose the weight safely or there could be serious consequences. So, no over exercising in sweat suits after midnight, right?
Cut to Koli and Sam working out in the gym alone wearing heavy sweatsuits.
On Day 2, new girl Vicky decides she has reached her 6 pound target, and hits the button causing Melissa to exclaim, "WHAT ARE YOU DOING? YOU HAVEN'T BEEN HERE LONG ENOUGH!" Plus, Melissa wanted to hit the button first. Vicky only loses 3 pounds. Wah-wah.
Day 3 is the challenge, and we're going pool side! There are 1,000 1 pound weights in the bottom of the pool in corresponding team colors. Each person has 100 weights they are responsible for retrieving, 2 weights at a time. Once they have gotten all of their colors they can move on and help another team member if they like. Melissa must have had a sinking feeling right then.
Sunshine is the front runner, winning a 2 week trip for 2 to the Biggest Loser Resort. What everyone wants after they have been to the actual ranch and have already lost the weight. All the contestants pitched in after they retrieved all their weights and got Mike to beat Melissa. Melissa won a 1-pound disadvantage at the weigh in.
Button, button. Who'll push the button? Will it be Melissa? Or will it be Sam and Koli?
After a montage of hidden camera footage and late night workouts, Sam finally pushes it. When he weighs in, not only did he hit his goal of 6 pounds but exceeds it, losing 10 pounds and 3.82% of his body weight. Sam is immune!
"Argh. It should've been me," fumed Melissa. Now she has no immunity, no friends, and a one pound disadvantage. She played the game and it bit her on the ass, to paraphrase Bob.
At the last chance workout, Jillian takes Sunshine aside and tells her to break up with her dad. Sunshine meets with O'Neal and tells him that it's not him, it's her.
And so, the WEIGH IN. Sam has already been accounted for, so. . .
Koli: From 281 lbs to 276 lbs- 5 lbs lost
Daris: From 237 lbs to 233 lbs- 4 lbs lost
Mike: From 381 lbs to 372 lbs- 9 lbs lost
Ashley: From 271 lbs to 264 lbs- 7 lbs lost
Sunshine: From 202 lbs to 195 lbs- 7 lbs lost
O'Neal: From 291 lbs to 283 lbs- 8 lbs lost
Vicky: From 283 lbs to 272 lbs- 11 lbs lost
Drea: From 227 lbs to 225 lbs- 2 lbs lost
Melissa: From 178 lbs to 175 lbs- 3 lbs lost + 1 lb disadvantage
Drea and Melissa are below the yellow line. In a surprising turn of events we discover that Melissa is a LAWYER and she comes to plead her case in the Loser's Court. "I'm your fairy godmother," she promises, offering each contestant the chance to pick off their opponents one by one when they are in the bottom two with her week after week. The Losers tell her what time it is- and it isn't time for game play. Melissa gets all of the votes and is sent packing. . .again.
Somewhere Lance is shaving his goatee and crying.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Afternoon Delight



http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/04/11/the-worlds-saddest-cookbo_n_533499.html

Thank you HuffingtonPost.com. You make my day.

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episode 7- "They Tried to Make Me Go to Twee-Hab. . ."


One 30-minute episode? How blissful! Not that I don't want the two episodes, but sometimes the blog fairy blesses me because she knows that I have to study and clean house and I don't have all day to spend on the computer.


Another person that spends too much time on the computer? Kirstie. A self-proclaimed "cyberwhore", Kirstie's fingers are "as fit as fiddles" because she spends so much time Twittering. So much so that it is starting to effect all the people around her. For example, assistant Kelly is single. Kirstie is constantly on her to find someone. So what does she do? Puts the description of Kelly's ultimate match on Twitter with HER PHONE NUMBER. Her real live phone number! Within seconds, Kelly's phone starts to ring with random randy men who want to chat.

When Kirstie's trip to the spa end up in the National Enquirer with true facts that only someone on her team would know, she sends apprentice Kyle into the house to uncover the mole. The mole is Kirstie: All her tweeting is giving the tabloids plenty of information that they can use.

Kyle reveals this information to Kirstie at a Twittervention. He reveals that her "twats" are effecting the house negatively. Kelly got over 200 calls from random guys and a picture of someone's junk. Now she has to get a new phone. Ashton Kutcher, number one tweeter, has 5,000 tweets: Kirstie has over 14,000. Jim claims Kirstie is more committed to tweeting than being his chubby buddy and working out. She forgot to pick up True from the mall, and Lillie says her mom would rather be on the computer than spend time with her.

Her family and staff challenge her to be Twitter free for one week.

Day 1: Sex talk with Lillie. "Do you need any help in that area?" Lillie says no. Kirstie says if she has any questions she can ask her. Or Kelly. Or a prostitute.

Day 2: Make overs! Kelly gets a make over and then has to man hunt at the local dog park with Kirstie and Kyle. "You guys are dicks," she states.

Day 3: Gay Lightsabers with Tracy. Stylist Tracy and Kirstie realize they don't have anything to talk to each other about other than clothes. Kirstie tries to get onto Tracy's computer to check her Twitter account and she mysteriously has no internet access. Kirstie then goes to see Magdelana to play Frisbee. The Frisbee gets thrown into the Lemur cage.

Day 4: Hang with Jim. Kirstie watches Jim skim the pool. She pushes him in. "I know where you sleep," he splutters.

Day 5: Pick up guys with Kelly. Kirstie makes Kelly pick up guys at the grocery store with classic pick up lines like "What cereal do you like?" and "Getting some honey?" DUD.

After one week without Twitter, Kirstie's team realizes that she has way too much time on her hands. They insist she gets back on Twitter as soon as possible. "Ah, Twitter. . ." she sighs.

No talk of weight loss this week. Maybe that would have been in the second 30 minutes? Still trying to figure out what it's all about, Alfie.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution: 1,000 People Cooking

More adversity in Huntington, WV for our poor chef Jamie Oliver this week! He makes a bet with crusty DJ Rod from the Dawg 93.7 radio station that he can get 1,000 people to cook in one week. The DJ is VERY confident that Jamie is going to fail. I'm confident that Rod and lunch lady Alice are married.

Jamie's first step: make a flash mob. Of course, that's everyone's first inclination when they need to solve a bet. Where to find a group of people that like to make a huge stir, be on television, and dig foreign guys? Marshall University. We the help of a choreographer and a tasty wok recipe, Jamie and a group of college students decide to put together a routine to get the citizens of Huntington fired up.




Very toe tapping and catchy! I love the girl who is grooving out and then realizes all the people around her are apart of the scene. It's this sense of fun and whimsy that seems to catch on, and Jamie's Kitchen is soon visited by eager participants that want Rod the DAWG to lose his bet.


The show closes off the streets around Jamie's Kitchen and hosts a cook off. All sorts of folks show up to cook and get their photo taken for Jamie's 1,000 people cooking board. We even have visits from the obese family that Jamie is helping, Pastor Steve, and some of his high school cooking group. Then Rod the DAWG shows up. He is not cooking. But he is surprised that people were actually interested and excited to be apart of the effort.

The most exciting part? Alice the lunch lady shows up with a bunch of other people from the elementary school to learn to cook. Is she softening up? Maybe I'll have to retract my bitchy comment from last post.


Jamie very wisely realizes that he needs all naysayers on his side to make a real difference, so he invites Rod to meet him for an intervention of sorts. At the local mortuary we are shown the darker side of the food revolution. Because Americans are dieing of obesity related causes, the mortician's are having to order coffins that are the size of queen size beds. They have to use a truck to transport the coffin to the cemetery because the casket won't fit in a hearse. The plus size casket won't fit in a traditional plot, so people are having to purchase two plots like airline seats. Even cremation is more difficult- the larger people have so much fat that they burn more slowly, like a candle. Creepy thoughts that I have never even thought about! Rod seems truly shocked.


Then Jamie takes him to the Kitchen to talk to the people that Jamie has already touched. The high school girl who's father died after he had gastric bypass surgery, the plus size teen who has liver issues and has been given 5 to 7 more years to live, the mom who made her kids donuts for breakfast and now the kid is showing symptoms of diabetes. Rod tears up after hearing their stories, and realizes that his crass comments about Jamie and his revolution weren't helpful. If anything, they were harmful.

Rod turns it around! The next morning they do their radio show at Jamie's Kitchen, and Rod is actually the 1,000 person to cook with Jamie. I really thought that Rod was going to be an adversary the entire season. I'm glad that he turned it around. Really, if he can get Rod to see the light, maybe Alice will follow suit. But the clip from next week shows she is still causing trouble. . .I'll keep watching to see.

Friday, April 9, 2010

What I'm "F'D Up" about Today!: Why Do We Do These Studies?


We live in a world of excuses. Honestly, if there is a reason not to do something I won't if I can attach a reasonable excuse to it. "I don't feel like working out today. . .because I have laryngitis." Last time I checked, unless I'm doing intenSati, there isn't a need to use my voice while I'm working out. I'm just being lazy.

I saw this study about fruits and veggies on The Huffington Post. Eating fruits and veggies don't have that big an affect on reducing cancer risks. But if you scroll down to the bottom of the article, it DOES say that fruits and veggies are helpful with stroke and heart disease. Well, those are kind of important to fight against too, right? But the way that the article is worded it seems to give credence that is is okay to not eat your veggies because they don't make that big of a difference to your health.

Why do we print reports like these? I know studies are important. Sure. They tell us what to do and what not to do. . .and then what to do and then what not to do. If I had to count the number of times I've read not to drink coffee and then it's okay to drink coffee I would NEED some coffee to stop the headache! Fruits and veggies are important. We need them. I would hate to think that some poor person reads this study and then decides to screw it and just get the fries.

Do these studies and the way they are worded do more harm than good? Are they really informative or are they adding to the collective consciousness that already doesn't like being told what do to and just gives fuel to the fire? Bob Harper mentioned this Time Magazine article at his yoga class I attended: "Why Exercise Won't Make You Thin." The author talks about how working out doesn't really help you lose weight because it makes you hungry and leads you to eat more. As you read you discover that it's WHAT you are eating and drinking after you work out that make the difference. If you choose a scone from Starbucks over an apple with peanut butter and a bottle of Gatorade over a bottle of water, the calorie expenditure from the exercise is negated by the heavy calorie content of the snack.


It took me a long time to realize that if I work out hard I shouldn't "reward" myself with something unhealthy to eat because I "earned" it. The working out is the reward, the gift of health! I am 5'4", I weight 158 pounds, I have a 30 inch waist and DDD boobs. I'm small, muscular, and curvy. I'm never going to be a size 4 (I'm a size 8). But I KNOW that working out and eating right works. I used to weigh over 200 pounds. I was a size 18! A study or an article that tells people it's okay not to take care of yourself because it's not going to make a difference really is just wrong. And it's not helpful to our country that really needs the not so gentle shove in the healthy direction.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Kirstie Alley on Late Night With David Letterman

David gets to the bottom of what's wrong with Kirstie. It's all about Leptin and Twittering.




Wednesday, April 7, 2010

What I'm "F'd Up!" about Today!: Freedom to be Fat?


I was walking the kid this morning and saw this article in the daily Metro New York: "Hands off my Big Mac, NYC". NYC council woman Christine Quinn is proposing a ban on fast food restaurants being built in areas where obesity is on the rise. No coincidence, these areas are also really poor parts of town. The article states that these fast food restaurants provide important jobs for these neighborhoods because many people don't have a proper education to get higher paying jobs.

There are so many things wrong with this situation!
1.) Fast food is a daily part of lower income families diets because of price.
2.) People in lower income neighborhoods aren't being educated to get out of the neighborhood and get better paying jobs.
3.) The city shouldn't have to ban restaurants to help people lose weight and get healthy.

I feel the first line of defense is the fast food chains themselves offering this type of fare. FOR EXAMPLE, have you heard about this new sandwich that KFC is launching? Take a look at this beauty, the new Double Down sandwich which is described like this on the website:

"The new KFC Double Down sandwich is real and it's coming April 12th! This one-of-a-kind sandwich features two thick and juicy boneless white meat chicken filets (Original Recipe® or Grilled), two pieces of bacon, two melted slices of Monterey Jack and pepper jack cheese and Colonel's Sauce. This product is so meaty, there’s no room for a bun!"

REALLY? THIS HAS TO BE A JOKE. But no, it's no joke. It says it's real so it must be. Apparently KFC hasn't gotten the fast food kills people memo. And if you are that stupid to eat this, well. . .wow. You probably aren't reading my blog. :)


If fast food restaurants weren't trying so hard to develop heart clogging menu items, people could keep their jobs. If we could educate our communities on the benefits of healthy eating, we could be the first line of defense in obesity. Convenience really is the enemy here. And education is the solution.


We can keep adding beverage taxes and trying to ban fast food, but the truth is we live in a country where you have the freedom to be fat and make stupid choices (I used to own a crimper and I used it with careless abandon). I don't feel it's right for people to lose jobs because we want them to be healthy. There has to be other measures in place!


And remember, the more you tell people NO, the more they want it. Telling people they can't eat fast food will make them walk a little further to the next burger joint. But, hey. At least they'll be walking. Right?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Stolen Video From Fitarella.Com- Bob Harper Yoga Class

I am the beginning! I am surprisingly alert for as early as it was. . .

Thanks Jacqueline from www.fitarella.com!

BL9- week 11- Don't Call It a Comeback


Seriously.

The Biggest Loser producers must love spending money on travel. How many times have people left and comeback and left again this season? How many Brita water bottles can we put end to end to demonstrate the amount of miles logged?

Ali announces that the remaining contestants will be competing as SINGLES! No more teams. She also reveals that an eliminated player will be rejoining them on campus, and the previous players are shown standing on a platform with their stink faces on. Unfortunately for Melissa, this is a popularity contest: The Losers currently on the ranch will vote on who they want to return. "GOSH THAT'S CRAZY!!!" Melissa screams.

The eliminated contestants each weigh in and plead their case:

Darrell: From 413 lbs to 309 lbs- 104 lbs lost
"Iron sharpens iron."

Sherry: From 218 lbs to 156 lbs- 62 lbs lost
"You make me young!"

Miggy: From 218 lbs to 191 lbs- 49 lbs lost
"I don't know how to ask."

Victoria: From 358 lbs to 285 lbs- 73 lbs lost
"I've packed my bags three times."

Melissa: From 233 lbs to 182 lbs- 51 lbs lost
"It ain't time for friends."

Lance: From 365 lbs to 274 lbs- 91 lbs lost
"I don't know what my purpose is."

Cheryl: From 227 lbs to 176 lbs- 51 lbs lost
"Anything but to clean the kitchen."

John: From 484 lbs to 399 lbs- 85 lbs lost
"I need to help inspire more."

Patty: From 243 lbs to 197 lbs- 46 lbs lost
"For the first time it's been about me."

Maria: From 281 lbs to 224 lbs- 57 lbs lost
"I've worked really hard."

James: From 485 lbs to 413 lbs- 72 lbs lost
"I fought for my brother. Now it's my turn."

Cherita: From 277 lbs to 230 lbs- 47 lbs lost
"Allow my baby to stay."

"We're playing God," Andrea says. And on that note, the votes are cast:
Ashley: John
O'Neal: Victoria
Daris: Darrell
Stephanie: James
Sam: John
Koli: John
Sunshine: Victoria
Andrea: Victoria
Mike: Victoria

Victoria is staying! And we're done, right? I felt a huge but coming. . .

BUT. There is a challenge for the rest of the eliminated players. Another chance. Melissa starts to drool, "IT'S MY DESTINY!" And Miggy says, "I got this." We know about the bitter rivalry between Melissa and Miggy from previous episodes. Apparently time has not healed this wound.


Ali tells the players what the rules of the challenge are: They must go up and down on a step 1,000 times. Whoever reaches 1,000 first, wins. The winner stays on the ranch. Simple as that. The contestants begin steppin'.


The clear front runners are Melissa, Miggy, and Sherry. The other contestants, like John and James, are struggling. But Melissa is a "monster" according to husband Lance, and she quickly takes the lead, yelling, "I WANT BACK!"


After 25:55 minutes, Melissa takes the prize. Ali announces that Melissa and Victoria have immunity for the week, and everyone says goodbye. . .again. The competitors head back to the gym to meet with Bob and Jillian and reintroduce Melissa and Victoria into the game. "They gave Victoria a gift," Bob says. Yeah. The gift of $250,000!


As Bob and Jillian predicted, going into the singles has started the competitors showing their true colors. And not just the colors of their shirts. There is some MAJOR GAME PLAY a brewin'. And it doesn't involve Melissa this week. Koli of all people plants the seed with Ashley and Andrea that Stephanie threw the weigh in the week that Sherry was voted off. He even says he doesn't have concrete proof of this. MY OPINION? Koli thinks that Sam is being blinded from his goal of winning by his blossoming relationship with Stephanie. Maybe he is jealous. Whatever the reason, it's totally shady.


At the Last Chance Workout, Victoria gets her first schooling by Jillian, O'Neal learns to walk up the stairs by Bob, and Stephanie has a melt down. She tells Jillian she is scared of going home not on her own terms. Jillian tells her she has to stop trying to control the game.


Cut to Ashley confronting Stephanie about throwing the weigh in. Stephanie looks so crushed and hurt. Then Andrea says she doesn't believe it, either. They have each others' backs and all is well, right? RIGHT?


The final weigh in feels as shaky as the scale the losers are standing on:

Victoria: From 285 lbs to 283 lbs- 2 lbs lost

Melissa: From 182 lbs to 178 lbs- 4 lbs lost

O'Neal: From 295 lbs to 291 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Ashley: From 276 lbs to 271 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Mike: From 389 lbs to 381 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Koli: From 287 lbs to 281 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Andrea: From 232 lbs to 227 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Daris: From 244 lbs to 237 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Sam: From 264 lbs to 262 lbs- 2 lbs lost

Sunshine: From 208 lbs to 202 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Stephanie: From 199 lbs to 198 lbs- 1 lb lost


In a terrible twist of fate, Sam and Stephanie have fallen below the yellow line. Like Romeo and Juliet if they were on a weight loss reality show. Everyone votes for Stephanie, and Ashley realizes, "I betrayed a good friend." Hopefully this won't come back and bite her in the butt later.


At the reveal, Stephanie looks beautiful, smiling, and confident. She has lost 96 lbs! I hope she is a serious contender for the at home prize of $100,000. She and Sam could go on a serious vacation with that dough!


Next episode looks like more Melissa drama. . .stay tuned.


Oh yeah. Wayne lost 418 pounds. Go Wayne!

Celebrity Fit Club Boot Camp- THE FINALE!

Finally. As much as I love my reality TV, I was getting supremely bored with this show. I am thankful that it ended the way I wanted it to!

JAY WON!!!!


He went from this:


To this:




The Blue Team won the overall prize- so, congrats to Sebastian, Kaycee, Tanisha, and K-Fed who I think deserved the prize over stupid Bobby Brown and bitchy Nicole. Shar looked great- I hope that Kevin decides to share some gifts with her.

Now to see if everyone's careers will take off and the weight stays off. Cheers to you.

And. . .scene.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Thoughts on The Food Revolution



I'll be honest- it's sometimes hard to write an in-depth account of every single reality show I love. Celebrity Fit Club Boot Camp ends this week, so I promise that I'll spend more time on Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. This is a GREAT show that is worth my time and yours. Here are some quick thoughts on the the first three episodes I have watched. . .

I was born in West Virginia and think it is a lovely state, very beautiful, full of nature! The fact that it is such an unhealthy place to live seems to not line up with the quaint appearance of Huntington, where the show takes place. But like many cities (like my beloved hometown of Oklahoma City) going out to eat is the main event and there are many chain restaurants that support this habit. Add to that the mega grocery stores filled with processed foods and it is no wonder that obesity is on the rise.

Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver has come to Huntington based on government reports that this city is the most unhealthy city in America. He managed to turn around school lunch programs in the UK and wants to apply those same principles here. I would think the people of America would be saying, "Thank you Jamie! We are fatty fatkins and want to break the cycle! How can we help you make this happen?"

Curiously, this isn't how he received. There is a huge (pardon my pun) backlash in the community from the local news, a real dickhead radio DJ, and this lunch lady at the school he is working on, Alice, who is really a nightmare. I have heard of contrary people, but Alice takes it to an entirely new level. She is a bitch. Plain and simple. Add to his troubles the school board's RN and the crazy USDA rules the schools must follow, and you wonder how Jamie is going to make this happen.

Outside of the schools, there is a little more leeway. Jamie speaks to a local minister who wants to work with him to get his congregation healthy. One of the church's families works one on one with Jamie to evaluate their food choices and it is HORRIFYING. Who makes freshly fried donuts for breakfast every day for their children? Who uses the Fry Daddy as a regular appliance? Jamie helps the mother to make every single item that they ate in one week, and the piles of disgusting food that was piled on the kitchen table made me want to throw up. Each member of the family was obese, including their 4-year-old daughter.

Jamie buys fresh local ingredients and gives the mother recipes to cook for one week. When he comes back to check on them, Jamie asks the family which meal was their favorite. "Pizza!" the little girl shouts. Pizza wasn't on the menu. And Jamie can't help but notice all the fast food beverage containers that are littered about the family's home. So, reality check time. Jamie takes the family to the hospital and tests the middle son for diabetes. He is predisposed, both sides of the family have a history of diabetes, and the family comes face to face that their bad eating choices are going to shorten their children's lives by about 30 years. A gruesome fact.

In the schools, Jamie must get the kids to eat his foods so he can stay in the schools and make some lasting changes. He must teach the kids what vegetables are first. Then he has to make eating the food fun. He has to teach the teachers to teach the students to use silverware, not just their hands, and to clean their plates.

When Jamie gets the parents involved by showing them the amount of fat their children are ingesting in one school year, I feel he really touched a nerve. No parent wants to be told that they are bad parents. Blindly letting the school program feed the children pizza for breakfast and tons of chicken nuggets and strawberry milk smacks of bad parenting. He gets a solid commitment from them to seek the change. Based on all these factors, Jamie is allowed to fight another week in the elementary school.

The third episode focuses on Jamie going to the high school, and seeing yet again the unhealthy choices available. Every teenager had fries on their plate. What Jamie has working for him was a cooperative lunch staff who liked his ideas. NO ALICE!

He devises a team of teenagers from all walks of life to become a sort of cooking club. He uses them to start raising the funds necessary to implement his program- a mere $80,000 is needed. Jamie gets all the movers and shakers from West Virginia to meet at a local eatery under the ruse he will be cooking them a meal. Imagine everyone's surprise when they see this rag tag group of teens prepped and cooked the entire event! Their stories are so touching that wallets were opened and the revolution is funded for another day.

I hope and pray for the health of our kids that this show spreads like wildfire across this great country of ours. Yes, we have the freedom to eat whatever we choose. It doesn't mean we should.

Watch the show! And make sure to sign Jamie's food petition!: www.jamiesfoodrevolution.com/petition

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episode 5 and 6- "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" and "Jimmy Pig"


I feel like I'm beginning to understand The Big Life. The first episode generally focuses on Kirstie and her staff. The second episode usually focuses on the weight loss. So it's something for everyone. At least each episode is only 30 minutes! What a relief from every 2 hour very special episode of The Biggest Loser that I follow.

Episode 5 focuses on Kirstie's BIG staff. She calls everyone into the kitchen for a meeting, and there are about 15-20 folks. My mom asked why did she need so many people? Good question. Kirstie says she is a busy gal, but not too busy to job swap with her staff for the week. She wants to show them that she can do their jobs better than they can because at some point in her life she has had a job like theirs. How hard could it be to stop twittering?

Monday-Magdelena

Kirstie was a housekeeper before she rocketed to stardom, so this task is in the bag. Housekeeper Magdelena makes an excellent Kirstie with a long blond wig and white house dress. And a heavy finger on the intercom button. Kirstie tells her apprentice Kyle about her early adventures while she cleans and is constantly interrupted by Magdelena's "Kirstie" requests to make lunch, do laundry, and keep cleaning the rooms all at the same time. "By the time this week is over I'm going to kill myself," Kirstie realizes.

Tuesday- Jim

Kirstie swaps places with slovenly chubby buddy Jim, who looks fetching in Kirstie's house dress. Jim's duties include lugging that huge tree that he left in the last episode and donning waders to unclog her pond. She and Kyle suffer through the task, only to have Kirstie fall into the putrid water and fill up her pants. Kyle worries they may get e-coli.

Wednesday-Kelly

The first part of their switch involves them making fun of each other's appearance. Kirstie for being too fat and Kelly for biting her nails and not having a boyfriend. You know, like how friends do it. Then Kirstie has to learn to operate a Blackberry and return calls, answer emails, go over paperwork, meet with the Organic Liaison team. . . Not as easy as she thought.

Thursday- Jack and Maddie

Someone has to take care of Kirstie's zoo. Today it's Kirstie and Kyle. They are on poop patrol. It's like it sounds.

Friday-Tracy

Being a stylist sounds easy, but when you have to lug a ton of outfits up a long driveway and many stairs only to have your client insult all your choices and then make you iron everything makes it seem not as easy. "I will never be a stylist. It's the worst job," Kirstie moans.
Overall, she and Kyle felt like they learned a lot from her merry band of men (and ladies) and she thanks them all for their hard work in making her big life run as smoothly as possible, or in her words, "My life that has expanded more than my ass."

Massages for all! Kirstie kneads Jim's belly like soft dough, which leads us to episode 6 entitled "Jimmy Pig".

Kirstie is busy putting the finishing touches on her weight loss line. Maybe she hasn't noticed Jim hasn't been keeping track of every calorie. Leave it to Jim to get busted: When turning in receipts for reimbursement to Kelly, she finds a receipt for Burger King. He swears it isn't his.

Time for some detective work. Knowing that Kirstie is nervous about promoting her line on the Oprah Winfrey show, Kelly and Kyle take matters into their own hands and put a hidden camera in Jim's car to catch him.

Meanwhile, Kirstie meets with Jim to show him the online component of her site which includes a food journal. Jim assures Kirstie that he is in it to win it and they can trust each other to win this losing battle.
Kirstie meets with Bart Simpson's voice Nancy Cartwright to record some voice overs for the cartoon characters on Kirstie's site. It reminds you what a talent Nancy is. It also reminds me that being a voice over artist is still on my bucket list (call me!). Kirstie's Organic Liaison site looks as fun and colorful as the actress. If it works or not is yet to be determined. . .

Kelly and Kyle bust Jim on hidden camera going through a drive through for burgers not once but TWICE in the same trip. They decide to bring their findings to Kirstie's attention. Kirstie is pissed that Jim isn't taking this endeavor seriously- this is her big comeback! When she confronts him and shows him the tape, he gets really angry and walks out. At least he burned some calories.

The next day Kirstie and Jim make up and reaffirm their commitment as chubby buddies. We discover that Jim is only 36 and is on blood pressure meds and has a family history of heart disease: He needs this not just so Kirstie doesn't look bad, but for his life. After they shake on it, it's time for a last chance workout with J.R. and off to Chicago.
I didn't watch Kirstie's product launch on Oprah, but they show it in brief. She looks lovely. I don't know if Oprah is going to try it or not. After the taping family and friends gather together to say congrats and good luck on the site. Now it's out there- who's gonna try it? Will it work? I'll keep watching to find out.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Back in the Saddle Again


Old country version or Aerosmith version- take your pick.


Happy Easter everyone! Hope you are limiting your Easter goody intake- I don't think that Cadbury Cream Eggs are in the dairy group or count as a protein. You know, I had one the other day and it wasn't as delicious as I remembered. I love the fancy organic super dark chocolate I get at Whole Foods, and the chocolate the egg was made of was a little. . .plastic. I was shocked! I love the egg! But I ate it and reminisced about being a kid and being obsessed with the gooey creamy center.


I wanted to check in with you all about my injury and let you know I successfully completed the Insanity Core Balance and Recovery week that I set out to do! I think the issue with my hip came from squatting too deeply. I really was getting down there, equating low squats with "success" and "progress", only to pull all the muscles. Way to go, Alison.


I was so afraid of hurting myself again! The first day I was so timid, but after the yoga day with Bob Harper (I felt amazing the next day after the class, it was like magic) I pushed through the week with more and more enthusiasm every day, culminating in the intenSati class in Central Park yesterday.


I am now ready to pick up where I left off and FINALLY finish that last week of Insanity! And get my "I finished Insanity and all I got was this lousy t-shirt" t-shirt.


Have a wonderful day whether you celebrate the holiday or not- and let's get ready to kick some Insanitail this week!

Friday, April 2, 2010

intenSatiday *boop* in the Park (I think it was the 4th of July. . .)


Chicago was the first thing to pop into my head! That is what a beautiful sunny day does to me, folks.

I wanted to extend an invitation on behalf of super intenSati leader Lindsay Davis to attend free intenSati classes in Central Park- starting tomorrow morning (Saturday April 3rd) at 9:45 am. The class will meet at the entrance of Central Park at 59th street/Columbus Circle and will walk into the park at 10 am sharp! Lindsay was chosen as NY1 New Yorker of the Week because of starting these classes. Click on the link to watch the really inspiring video!

http://www.ny1.com/1-all-boroughs-news-content/108568/-i-nyer-of-the-week---i--open-air-fitness-guru-lifts-city-spirits

If you have read my intenSati blog posts when I was participating in the Warrior Challenge in January, you know what a huge fan I am of the practice and how inspiring and motivating I think it is. These outdoor classes are a great opportunity to try it out for free!

Here is what Lindsay said when I asked her why people should come and work out in front of other people (gasp!): "Certainly, CP intenSati is an exciting way to think about spreading joy, positivity, an example of wellness and gratitude!! For students, we learn to get over caring what other people think and I've found that people who watch are doing it with such appreciation and amazement, like we're putting a show on! The FRESH AIR ROCKS!!!!!!! :)"

It promises to be a beautiful day tomorrow, so I hope you will come out and get intenSatisfied! For a full listing of classes and to find out more about the intenSati Method, check out http://www.satilife.com/

Thursday, April 1, 2010

S'Macked! Read Ya Labels, People!

I was craving mac n' cheese yesterday in a big way. I know it is because I woke up at 0 dark thirty to do the yoga class with Bob Harper, and when I am tired my body craves cheesy carbs. Instead of getting the old standby of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, I decided to go with a less naughty option and thought I would get some Amy's Mac n' Cheese.


I really like Amy's products and usually trust them, but I wanted to share why always reading labels even on "health" foods is important. The first box I grabbed was the low sodium mac.



I'm not fooled by "organic pasta" making it healthy, but I was impressed by the label. Not too bad. 400 calories, 16 grams of fat, and 290 mg of sodium. I knew and could identify all the ingredients, and there wasn't any added sugar.

Then I saw that Amy's had a new mac with gluten free pasta and a dairy free "cheese". Hmm, could this be the healthier choice? Doesn't gluten free and non-dairy mean healthy?



I was really surprised when I saw the label.


520 calories, 22 grams of fat, 740 mg of sodium, and about twice as many ingredients. If I hadn't been cautious and read the label, I would have ingested way more than I had bargained for.

Remember, never assume a product is healthy! Always read your labels, people.