Friday, April 20, 2012

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Is Sugar Toxic?

I saw this video posted on Black Girls Guide to Weight loss Blog and found it to be fascinating.  And, thought it would be great and very informative to share with you.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

The scale is no longer my "Frienemie"

It is so typical of me to take a negative situation and turn it into a positive one.  And, that is what I did when it came to the scale.  Up until last week I considered the scale as my "frienemie".  It was my BFF when the numbers on it were moving downward and my worst enemy when ever it didn't.  I soon realized that the scale was actually my friend, my own personal live-in trainer and, a great weight loss tool ever invented!  (Well maybe I won't go that far) LOL.

A few weeks ago I got very emotional because it felt like I was giving it my all but the scale hadn't move in a month.  Well that has all changed and the scale is definitely moving again!! :-)  I no longer allow the scale to take control over me in a negative way. Today,  I absolutely love and look forward to getting on the scale daily or weekly now.  It allows me to see if my weight loss plan is working or not. When the numbers on it aren't moving or steady creeping up (within a two week time frame), I know it is now time to change it up and take it to the next level.    Not only does it tell me when "it is time to change it up" but also "keep it up you are on to something" (like these last two weeks) or (hopefully soon rather then later) "it is now okay to cry and jump for joy, you have reached your goal!!!" :-)

I hope my experiences and now new understanding of the scale could better help you to reach your goal!! :-)

Best regards,

Keiyana :-)    

January 2012 
February 2012

Today, March 31, 2012 (-20 lbs)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Article: Interval Training for Weight Loss and Fitness

by Maia Appleby
The theory behind interval training is this: By mixing bursts of high intensity work with low intensity periods of recovery, you’re overloading both the aerobic and anaerobic systems at the same time, getting the benefits of both aspects of training simultaneously. You can realistically get a complete workout in thirty minutes with interval training.
How is it done?
Begin as you would on any other day. Start at an easy pace and gradually increase your heart rate for at least five minutes. You can monitor this by taking your pulse for fifteen seconds and multiplying it by four or using a heart rate monitor When you’re sufficiently warmed up, you’re ready for a burst of high intensity work. If you’re on a treadmill, break into a jog or a sprint, depending on what “high intensity” means to you.
During the high intensity periods, you’re decreasing your body’s ability to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide. You begin to feel the “burn” as your body eliminates lactic acid (a toxic by-product) and your muscles begin to lose their ability to contract. You wouldn’t physically be able to maintain this level of intensity for long.
When you begin to wear your muscles out, decrease the intensity level to something that you could maintain for a longer period. Don’t slow down so much that your pulse dips too low, though, or you will lose the aerobic effect completely. Now, you’re in the “active recovery period”. Your body’s ability to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide increases and it can deliver nutrients to your muscles. The burn goes away and your breathing and heart rate slow down slightly. You have completed one cycle.
Repeat this process of maxing out and recovering your anaerobic system for at least thirty minutes. The high intensity periods should be shorter than the active recovery periods, especially at first. You might walk for five minutes and then run for one when you begin to introduce your body to this type of training. As you become more adept, increase the time you spend in high intensity periods. Forcing yourself to sustain long periods of high intensity activity is dangerous, so do use caution and work yourself up gradually.
Why is it good? Here are four reasons:
  1. It saves time. If you normally spend an hour and a half in the gym following the traditional sequence, you’ll work yourself just as hard in 45 minutes with interval training. Finding time to exercise is a big problem for (I dare say) most people. Here’s a great solution.
  2. It’s a great way to get beyond a plateau. I’m by no means claiming that interval training is better than the traditional, tried-and-true warm-up, weight training, cool-down sequence, but when you stop seeing improvements in your physical condition, it’s time to do something new and different. Throwing a couple days of interval training into your exercise regimen each week tells your body that it’s time to get over the plateau and make additional progress.
  3. It combats monotony. Once a routine gets boring, you might decide to do different weight lifting exercises or change around your aerobic activities. You might stop using weight machines and switch exclusively to free weights. Interval training can help you during the transition period between one exercise program and another. It’s fun, and the time flies by during each session, because you’re working in cycles of high and low intensity work instead of spending a long period of time at any one activity.
  4. It’s easy! You can do an entire workout without moving from one spot. You set your own rules, using your body’s cues, so you feel completely in control of the workout. There’s no counting involved and the time seems to go by much more quickly.
We recommend: The Interval Training Workout: Build Muscle and Burn Fat with Anaerobic Exercise
How can it help me lose weight?
By challenging both you aerobic and anaerobic systems simultaneously, you’re improving your body’s ability to burn calories by leaps and bounds. You’re adding new muscle, which speeds up your metabolism of fat in general. You’re getting an aerobic workout that burns lots of calories. You’re pushing yourself beyond any plateaus that you may have hit doing the same thing over and over again. Your body is becoming a more efficient fat-burning machine.
What activities can I use for interval training?
The possibilities are endless, but the most practical are probably walking/running, other cardiovascular machines like stair steppers, elliptical trainers and stationary bikes, aerobic exercise, water exercise and things like that. You could even incorporate it into jumping rope or a sport like racquetball. If you want to be creative, you can really make fitness fun.
How often should I do it?
If you’re a beginner, throw in one session a week, along with your normal routine. If you’re more seasoned, two or three times a week is great. This is a demanding form of exercise, so use common sense and listen to your body.
When you’re finished with your workout (and you’ll be surprised at how quickly you get out of the gym doing this), your muscles have been taxed in a brand new way and need to be stretched. Don’t skip this part! You’ll feel great when you leave, and your body will thank you by improving its condition to prepare itself for the next time.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Never give up!

Recently, I had an emotional break down about my weight loss journey.  I started this journey back in January and felt I was giving it my all.  I had not had a cookie, slice of cake, lick of frosting, spoonful of ice cream at all, until last weekend.  I made sure I worked out at least 5-6 days a week, some weeks 7 days but the scale would not move beyond the already 15 pounds I lost up until last month.  I did realize my clothes were fitting extremely better, I understood muscle weight is more than fat but I wanted the scale to move.  I started to have these crazy thoughts come in my head like, "why do it the right or healthy way, just go on another liquid diet like last year and lose 15 pounds in 2 weeks, why, why, why".  Until, I went to the doctors and came to my senses.

1.  The liquid diet obviously didn't work!  Yes, I lost 15 pounds in 2 weeks but not only did I quit after 14 days, I gained not only the 15 pounds I lost but an additional 13 pounds back (what a waste).

2.  My body must have adapted to what I've been doing over these last few weeks and it was time to take it to another level.

3.  Nothing worth having does not come easy, I must work hard, stay focus, stay dedicated and, most importantly NEVER GIVE UP!!

4.  My visit to the doctor earlier this week I received some exciting news.  I learned my blood pressure in December was 130/80 (within normal range but high normal) was now 110/70 (WOW) that is considered VERY GOOD, almost athletic level which is 105/75 and considered EXCELLENT).

All the above plus more helped me to realize I must keep pushing forward, I will not quit, my body is not only changing on the outside but most importantly inside (my heart).

Here I am on day 81, the longest I have ever committed to any weight loss/ healthy lifestyle change and I have accomplished SO much. (I started off with long walks, that turned into me jogging and, now I am running intervals on 6mph!! That alone is a huge accomplishment for me and the list goes on).

I believe my body adapted to what I did to lose the first 15 pounds (I still have roughly 42 pounds to go) and it is now time to make changes.  I started using weight loss planner to track food log, I increased my cardio's duration, intensity and, decreased my daily calories (I no longer eat every 3 hours, now only the first half of my day I do).  Making those changes the scale already dropped 2 additional pounds, totaling 17 pound weight loss.  I am starting to feel the weight just coming off.

I guess what I am trying to say is Never give up!  I could have easily let those negative thoughts over power me but I didn't!!  I could have given up when the numbers on the scale didn't move but I didn't.  I came to my senses quickly, revisited why I started this journey in the first place, re-evaluated my weight loss plan, made the changes and, guess what it worked!!

Below you will find another great motivating message from JoePaulSpeak's blog.  I hope it is as meaningful and helps you as much as it has for me. :-)

Best wishes,


**(I will upload my March photos on 3/31/12)**


Morning Cup of Joe – Never Give Up

There is a man who lost his job the same year he was defeated during a run to serve in the legislature. A year later, after several attempts, his business failed. Shortly thereafter, his significant other passed away. Nearly a year after that, he had a severe nervous breakdown. This same man would experience over a dozen losses spanning over three decades. His tenacity and ability to stick with it despite his failures allowed him to become the 16th President of the United States of America.
President Abraham Lincoln’s attempts at success was rejected countless times before he finally heard his first YES! It may take you 10,000 times or 10 times to accomplish your dreams; either way, do not give up. We can only imagine what kind of world we’d be living in had he not persevered; the landscape of the world would be significantly different. The secret to his success was that he remained disciplined and committed enough to continue to keep trying until he received a favorable response. This is the recipe for success and exactly what you need to do.
The interesting thing about setting goals is that we really don’t know the exact date we’ll accomplish them; yet it is imperative that we continue to work diligently towards the accomplishment of said goals. Understand that we will never know the exact date that we will win simply because most people give up right before they get the thing they were working so feverishly for. Many people give up because they lack the necessary patience and perseverance required to accomplish any goal. You must stick with whatever it is you are doing, even if it seems like there is no end in sight. Your goals can and will be achieved if you simply choose not to throw in the towel. Quitting will never be an option for a winner.
Don’t give up 3 seconds before the miracle happens.
To The Top!
Joe Paul

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Now Jogging 3 miles

I wanted to share with you my latest accomplishment.  Earlier this month I started jogging again.  I was never the jogger type ever!  But I learned it is a great way to lose weight (fat), so of course I was willing to give it a try.

Two weeks ago I started out only able to jog 2 miles straight on the treadmill and 1/2 mile on the pavement.  Yesterday, for the first EVER in my life I jogged over 3 miles straight on pavement (hills included)!  My husband was very proud of me as much as I was proud of myself.  He jogs with me on the weekend and he sees how hard I tried to jog one mile with him.  But I finally did it!  I didn't quit!  I challenged myself and I did it!!  We can do anything we put our minds to it!  Just keep pushing and believe.

Below I will share with you a picture of me in the beginning of this year in January and me today.

January 2012

Today, February 26, 2012

I still have a long way to go but I am closer today, then I was 57 days ago!  :-)

Whatever It Takes!

Since I started my weight loss journey this year, I had several ups, downs, set backs, forth comings, victories and, challenges. However, I asked myself what is different from this time vs. the many other failed previous attempts.  And, I have one simply answer... I haven't quit!  I usually quit around day 14.  Today, makes day 57 on this journey, I will say it has not been easy at all.  However, I learned through the years and understand, "nothing worth having come easy".

Here is an encouraging message I once read on "JoePaul Speaks! Impoving Lives, One Person at a time!" blog :

Morning Cup of Joe – Whatever It Takes

Sometimes you have to do what you have to do in order to get what you need to get. I’m sure you understand by now and have countless examples confirming this fact and the understanding that nothing comes easy. Well, some things do but that certainly doesn’t mean that they’re worth having. In my opinion, anything that comes easy isn’t worth having. The things we work for, we tend to appreciate a little more.
Sometimes you’re going to have to go through extreme lengths to accomplish a particular goal; if you haven’t yet had to experience this. If you want something bad enough, you must be willing to do whatever it takes to get it. Whatever it is; whatever it takes. At all times, focus on the desired end result. In my lifetime, I have been forced to learn and understand that when the going gets tough, my breakthrough was right around the corner. If things are a little tough right now, hold on because your breakthrough is coming.
Arguably, the toughest part of any journey is neither the start nor the finish; it’s the expedition in between. Remember, you cannot finish if you don’t start; and if you don’t start you can’t win; and if you don’t win we all lose. We are counting on you to accomplish your dreams. Do what you have to do to get what you need to get. It’s already yours!
Without sacrifice and a reasonable amount of calculated risks, you will never know the joy of winning.
To The Top!
Joe Paul

  I hope it is as encouraging for you as it has been for me! :-)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Did you know drinking cold water or cold showers could help you lose weight?

Cold Water Lose Weight

Drinking cold water to lose weight is by far one of the most powerful things you can do for your metabolism. If you drink enough of it, it forces your body to work to stay warm. Some have even gone on to say that even the act of sitting in cold water will cause you to lose weight because your body works to warm it up. If you try this approach for just one or two weeks you will certainly find that you’ll lose unwanted weight.
This doesn’t happen due to some holy miracle, it happens because you are really working on losing weight and your body likes it very much. Studies have found that if you make absolutely no changes to your diet whatsoever other than start drinking a few glasses of cold water per day, then you will find you will lose up to five pounds in a year.
I know that this may not seem all that impressive. I can totally understand that. But it’s these little things that add up into the powerful type of metabolism boosters that lead to real results. There really is no such thing as a miracle pill. In order to get the results that you crave you’ve got to make a little of little changes.

Cold Water Lose Weight

cold water lose weightOf course there are plenty of other legitimate reasons to drink cold water to lose weight. First of all, drinking cold water before a meal will make you more full and less likely to eat as much. This is just a fact of life. The more your body is full (whether that be with fluids or foods) the less hungry you will be. Sure it does not have nutritional value but it will certainly get you full faster.
If you drink cold water after working out you will also find that it is refreshing and quenches your thirst. Everyone knows that after a workout your metabolism is in hyperdrive. You are burning more calories just by standing still. You may as well really take advantage of it by adding in the effect of drinking ice cold water.

Cold Water Lose Weight

Here is another fun fact about drinking cold water to lose weight. If you drink just 1 liter of ice cold water you can expect to burn an additional twenty calories. Remember friends, this really does add up over time. If you can burn an extra twenty calories by simply throwing a few more ice cubes in your glass, you can bet it is worth it to you.
When thinking and discussing the benefits of drinking cold water I really believe the fullness factor is of utmost important. It is often quoted that people should drink over 8 glasses a day to really come into the benefit of guzzling cold water. Although I can’t and won’t quote an exact number I can say for certain that it won’t do you harm. The feeling of being full (especially when trying to lose weight) is well worth all of the effort that it takes.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Flat Belly Diet Jump Start:How to De-Bloat Your Belly

Sassy Water: A Flat Belly Diet Staple

On the Flat Belly Diet you'll begin with a 4-day jumpstart, and one key ingredient is Sassy Water

The Sassy Water Recipe

Sassy Water
2 liters water (about 8 ½ cups)
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 medium cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
1 medium lemon, thinly sliced
12 small spearmint leaves.
Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher and let flavors blend overnight.
Drink the entire pitcher by the end of each day.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Just in case you missed it! The most talked about weight loss product this week is.....

                  RASPBERRY KETONES

Check it out for yourself on Doctor Oz

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Jogged 2.04 Miles

This week a participated in "Black Girls Run!" in Atlanta.  "Black Girls Run!" is an organization created in 2009, by two fabulous women Toni Carey and Ashley Hicks.  These ladies created "Black Girls RUN! in an effort to tackle the growing obesity epidemic in the African-American community and provide encouragement and resources to both new and veteran runners.  The mission of Black Girls RUN! is to encourage African-American women to make fitness and healthy living a priority. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 80% of African-American women are overweight. BGR! wants to create a movement to lower that percentage and subsequently, lower the number of women with chronic diseases associated with an unhealthy diet and sedentary lifestyle."

                                                                       Black Girls Run

I was so inspired by all these ladies who came together from many different walks of life for a common goal "making fitness and healthy living a priority. "  I decided to challenge myself to jog as long as I could non-stop and, yesterday for the first time in over a year I jogged 2.04 miles non-stop.  It did take me 30 minutes but I felt good!  I was truly amazed at what I could actually do, when I put my mind to it.  

I set some additional goals to help me reach my weight loss goal and to become a healthier me.  My goal's are to:  meet with these fabulous ladies at BGR! at least once a week, build up my endurance to jog faster and longer, a minimum of 10 miles each week and add 1 mile to each week there after, continue to challenge myself, and always have fun doing it!  

For those, interested in learning more about "Black Girls Run!" I encourage you to visit their website: or their Facebook page for a listed of schedule times in your area.

And, remember “If you can imagine it, you can create it. If you dream it, you can become it” –William Arthur Ward

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Not all diet foods are created equal

Dr. Oz’s 99 Diet Foods Shopping List

Added to Articles on Mon 01/30/2012
Print this list and bring it to the grocery story to avoid your biggest diet-food mistakes.

Note: While the list includes specific brands, if you find a similar product with the same nutritional value, feel free to use it.

Are hidden food allergies making you gain weight?

The Anti-Allergy Diet

Added to Articles on Fri 01/27/2012
Are you doing all the right things yet you are still unable to lose weight? A hidden food allergy could be the culprit. Dr.  Mark Hyman, New York Times best-selling author and an advocate for functional medicine, supports groundbreaking research linking food allergies to weight gain.

Sudden-onset vs. Slow-onset Food allergies
Most people think food-related allergic reactions are sudden and fast acting – such as peanut or shellfish allergies which can cause immediate inflammation (an IgE immune response), resulting in swelling or difficulty breathing and can be life-threatening. On the other hand, dairy, which can be hidden in many everyday foods causes a far less acute allergic reaction, creating inflammation hours or even days later (an IgG immune response). Up to 60% of the population could be affected by hidden sensitivities to foods such as dairy.

Dairy Allergy and Weight Gain
Foods with dairy can cause unhealthy bacteria to overgrow and produce toxins that cause systemic inflammation that swells the intestines and prevents normal digestion, causing weight gain, among other conditions such as irritable bowel. In fact, you can gain up to 30 pounds a year due to a dairy allergy. 

Lastly, a dairy allergy is tied to inflammation in the gut, as opposed to lactose intolerance, which is an inability to digest the milk sugar called lactose.

The first step to finding out if a dairy allergy is making you gain weight is to identify both the main and hidden sources of dairy in your diet.

Main Dairy Sources: Milk, butter, yogurt and cheese. 

Hidden Dairy Sources:

Desserts: Cakes, muffins, cookies and chocolate may contain basic dairy ingredients along with “hidden” dairy derivatives such as casein or whey, both milk proteins. Be sure to look for these ingredients on labels and avoid them.

Deli Meats and Fish: Processed meats often contain dairy products such as lactose, casein and caseinates that act as emulsifiers or flavor enhancers. Meats labeled “kosher” will be dairy-free. Be aware that some brands of canned tuna contain casein.

Bread: Both white and wheat bread often contain casein, whey or milk powder. Freshly baked yeast breads are sometimes prepared in buttered pans or brushed with butter as they bake. Ask your baker if this is the case.

Energy Bars: Countless brands of protein and energy bars consist primarily of whey protein. As with all of the above, remember to read these food labels very carefully as well.

The 3-Week Anti-Allergy Plan

To find out if you could be allergic to dairy, follow this plan based on the 3 “Rs”: Remove all dairy, repair your digestive track, and reboot your body.

Week 1: Remove All Dairy
Remove all the dairy from your diet for an entire week, which is how long your system needs for internal inflammation to settle down. Replace dairy milk with almond milk, which tastes good and has high quality protein and fat in it. In addition, replace butter with olive oil, a great source of good fat that contains oleic acid and anti-inflammatory properties.

Week 2: Repair Your Digestive Track
If your gut is damaged by dairy, repair it with healthy bacteria found in probiotics. Choose a probiotic supplement that contains both bifidobacterium and lactobacillus bacteria. Select a product in pill or powder form that has 10-50 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) and take that amount daily. Be wary of liquid-based products, which may not be as active, along with food products with added probiotics. Click here for a smart guide to purchasing probiotics. 

Week 3: Reboot Your Body
Now that you have a clean digestive slate, it’s time to reboot and see if dairy was causing your weight gain. Start by adding one dairy food back at a time and keep a food log of your body’s reactions. Ask yourself: Am I more tired? Am I bloated? Do I have fluid retention? All of these potential factors could be clues that you have a hidden food sensitivity to dairy.

If you think you’re allergic to dairy at the end of three weeks, see your doctor for a blood test, which can help determine if you have elevated levels of a certain antibody that could be causing inflammation. If you are indeed allergic, you can use the above plan stay allergy- and inflammation-free.