Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Carmen Fitness: Am I Fat?

Carmen Fitness: Am I Fat?: "If you follow me on facebook, you'll know that I sometimes complain that I just don't have time to watch television. Its takes lots of effo..."

Am I Fat?

If you follow me on facebook, you'll know that I sometimes complain that I just don't have time to watch television.  Its takes lots of effort and scheduling to sit down and watch a full season of any show.  With my 5 kids, my work schedule, home schedule, and making sure I get my full of hour of exercise everyday television takes a back seat.  Most of the time the shows that run in my TV are usually things like Kai-Lan, backyardigans, Dino Dan -- or any nick jr show ;)

I sometimes have the TV in the morning when I am prepping for work just as background noise.   Last week I had it on E (the local news was kinda depressing me) and one of the Kardashians show was on.  I forget exactly which one since they seem to have several, but truth be told the Kardashians are my guilty pleasure.  As I said I don't watch their shows very often, but this particular show, probably not a recent one since it was showing in the morning,  was about Kloe Kardashian, and how her mom Chris told her she needed to loose weight, and she had a photo shoot.  You could see the stress on Kloe's face, trying to make it as no big deal, saying that she was a bigger girl than normal...and really she is tall and voluptuous.  In my mind I am thinking really?   She is not overweight! not fat! why make it a big deal, and it got me a bit sad because for most of us women that is the reality.   The whole getting fit/eating low cal is because we have this image of how we must look like.  At one point in the show Kloe kinda finally broke crying to her husband (there was a back story about cleaning up for themselves) and she started crying, of course her husband thought it was because the kitchen was a mess, but that was just what tipped the iceberg.  The whole "weight issue" came up, and how she knows she can be a bit slimmer, but how she doesn't want to obsess with weight and be a good role model to girls out there.  Needless to say that this particular episode grabbed my attention and I was running 20min late! LOL

Now I understand the whole role model thing, I try my best to emphasize that my lifestyle of exercise and trying to eat better is not about having Shakira's abs! truth be told with 5 kids, it will be very difficult and its not something I want to beat myself up for.  We need to find an emotional balance with our weight/body image and how society might want us to look.  I can't remember if Kloe said this in between her sobs, or if it was my thinking about this while I listened to her, but at the end of the day is how comfortable you feel, do you feel good? do you have energy to keep up with your life? In the end we must happy and comfortable with our bodies without obsessing about being fat or going to the extreme and developing bulimia and keeping in mind that we must be healthy to take care of our families needs.   I think this is why having a support system is important, we keep each other in check ;)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Eating Healthy Part 2

Good morning guys!

Well as I mentioned last Monday, all last week I was going to be focusing on eating foods that were filled with nutrients, rather than focus on low calories.  Low calorie does not necessarily mean you are eating healthy, especially if one relies heavily and pre-packaged food.  Let me tell you that I ate A LOT! My salads were huge.   I did egg white veggie scrambles, and one of them I added spinach to them, and it was a pretty large portion.  Most of the time I felt like I over ate at lunch.  The way I was eating last week in conjunction with my Shakeology I felt awesome! I did a lot of work, both at the office, at home, and  with my beachbody business - I have some personal issues that I am working out as well and let me tell you that normally I would be stressed out with food in hand and in mouth to help me cope with my to-do's....I admit I am an emotional eater and normally when I feel stressed out I really don't think about what I am eating.  But this tactic that I did last week, really helped me a lot.  As I mentioned, after lunch I felt like I had eaten 2-3 bites too much, and it really helped curve those afternoon cravings.   I saw a difference in my work out performance and the length of my soreness.  Overall I must say it was a success.  So my advice, focus on food that has more nutrients, that are more in their natural state rather than obsessing with calories - and stay away from pre-packaged/processed food as much as you can.  I felt the difference.

This is Monday, so I say lets focus in taking care of ourselves because you know what that means? it will trickle down to our loved ones :) Happy Monday!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Cheesy Chicken Pasta - Eat Well

Rich and Creamy that even the kids will eat!

Cheesy Chicken Pasta - from Eatingwell.Com

Servings 6 (about 1 1/3 cups each)

Total Time: 35min


  1. 8 ounces of whole wheat penne
  2.  2 cups of cauliflower Florets
  3. 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil
  4. 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  5. 1/2 cup dry white wine
  6. 3 cups of low fat milk
  7. 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  8. 3/4 teaspoon salt (Taste)
  9. 1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper
  10. 1 Cup of shredded gruyere or swiss cheese
  11. 3 cups of cooked chicken (12 ounces)
  12. 1 teaspoon of Dijon Mustard
  13. 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or scallion greens

  1. Bring a large pot of of water to boil.  Add pasta and cook for 5 minutes.  Add cauliflower florets and cook until pasta and florets are tender (about 4 mint more) Drain, rinse and return to pot.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Add wine and cook until reduced slightly, about 1 minute. Whisk milk, flour, salt and pepper together in a medium bowl and add to the pan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Cook, stirring, until thickened, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to low and stir in cheese until smooth. Stir chicken (or turkey) and mustard into the cheese sauce; cook until heated through, about 2 minutes.
  3. Stir the sauce into the drained pasta and cauliflower. Serve sprinkled with chives (or scallion greens).


    Per serving: 433 calories; 13 g fat ( 5 g sat , 5 g mono ); 75 mg cholesterol; 42 g carbohydrates; 34 gprotein; 5 g fiber; 491 mg sodium; 483 mg potassium.
    Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (38% daily value), Calcium (35% dv), Potassium (20% dv).
    Carbohydrate Servings: 2 1

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Benefits of Exercise

"you don't drown by falling in the water; you drown by staying there" Edwin Louis Cole

At one point in our lives we tell ourselves that "we really should exercise" When it does we either get with the program, or come up with excuses to continue our life style until we give our family a health scare.  If you are lucky it will just be a health scare that can be reversed, if you are not then I am afraid you will not be reading this.

I don't like to get scolded or listen to lectures, so don't worry this post is not meant that way, just stating the facts.   For whatever reason we've found ourselves overweight, sluggish, not feeling very active...granted you might not feel depressed, you might actually like your life, like the people who surround you, enjoy going out with your friends and even enjoy an active sex life.  Or you might be on the other side of spectrum, you are depressed, you are unsatisfied, your family and friend might not be  very nice... the point is that you are now realizing that you are not as healthy as you can be, and you are looking for that push, for that click that will make you decide that enough is enough and you will start making an effort to get your health back in control.  I am here to tell you that no matter how many motivational quotes you read, how many affirmations you tell yourself, if you are not ready, if you don't have a very powerful why to get you active and start to eat healthy it will be very difficult for you, but not impossible!

Don't get me wrong you don't need that powerful "why" to get started.  For now you just need to decide to start.   You need to be prepared for good days, and bad days.  The key is to not let the bad days play with your mind.  If you fall down, have a bad day, made a bad meal choice, then know that you don't have to get stuck on that funk.  Move on and when the next meal comes around focus on that and don't dwell that you had chocolate muffin for breakfast, but focus on what your lunch choice will be.    When people say its a life style change, it really is, you probably won't start that way, but you will be amazed how your thought processes will evolved.  Be aware that you will have bad days, but keep on going and not quit.   You will be amazed not only on your new body, but on the strengths that your character will develop.  For extra support make me your coach!

"The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a man's determination" Tommy Lasorda

Monday, July 18, 2011

Eating to Loose Weight

We all know that nutrition is key to loosing weight.  We know to avoid sugars, flour, any unhealthy fats, we know the common sense approach.  However we are always searching quick fixes, have you noticed that?  Just give me a pill to control my appetite, but I'll still eat pizza, hamburgers, whatever.  The pill might curve your appetite but unfortunately it will do nothing for your overall wellness as you are still not feeding your body the nutrients it needs to run smoothly, help your metabolism and get the most out of your workouts.   We are too obsessed with low calorie foods.

When we were younger we were told to avoid Fats.  Guess what? in order for our body to melt fat away we now know that we need fat for our body to metabolize the fat our body has stored.  We were told to avoid all carbs, but guess what? we need carbs for energy.  We were told that too much protein would be bad for our kidneys, but guess what? but now know we need protein to help repair our muscle tissue and helps our bodies with enzymes and hormones.  We KNOW that we need a balance diet of Protein, Carbs, Fats.  Which means we need to eat lean meats, eggs, veggies, whole wheats, avocados, nuts, etc.  Don't get me wrong I know we are all different, our bodies respond to different foods differently.  For example, I know that when I go camping and have a high fat/high protein breakfast it won't do damage to my scale, however, have way too many smores and I retain water like crazy! I get all puffy!  Our bodies respond differently so having a food journal, to write down what we eat is important, not necessarily to record number of calories but to write how we felt when we had a certain foods.  Did we feel good? Did we have energy? how soon were you hungry after eating that meal/snack?

Eating low cal, while might help you to loose weight faster might not necessarily be good for your body.  Especially when we focus Low Cal and the food that we are eating is processed.  Like 100 calories snack packs.  Its important to read the ingredients.  I have 5 kids, work full time so eating 100% clean would be ideal, I have to be realistic.  Opening up the pasta sauce is a whole lot more efficient for me than making the sauce from scratch, however I am reading labels and going for smarter choices.

This week, I am going to focus more on high nutrient foods rather than obsessing on low cal foods.  Come back next Monday and I'll report back if it made a difference to my overall wellness!