Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Stuck!!!!


Sometimes there comes a time in our lives when we feel stuck. We become stagnant and comfortable and we no longer realize that we aren’t pursuing our goals/ hopes/ dreams at full throttle like we once did. Many things could trigger this stand still, the key is to realize that we are no longer moving forward or to realize that our speed and passion has dwindled and to reassess our current situation and be willing to make changes.

It’s moments like these that we need to review our goals and ask ourselves if they still make sense to us. This may require some prioritizing and shifting around on our part. This certainly requires an honest conversation with oneself as to why you have drifted from your goals and what is making you feel stuck. Once you find that answer its time to implement. Finding the answer is a lot easier than you think. It just requires some one on one quite time with yourself to sit and think.

You may be wondering what inspired this blog? Well recently I found myself in this very situation in regards to my weight loss. I’ve found that I allowed myself to get comfortable and I allowed circumstances and distractions to throw me off course just a little. Subconsciously, I allowed myself to think that I’ve come a long way; I am pleased with my results and have encountered many great experiences because of it however this mental attitude caused me to slow down along my journey. I had to realize that my journey is far from over. I still have a set amount of pounds I am looking to drop and more muscle I want to build not to mention other physical goals I want to meet.

Just how do you get back on track when your feeling stuck? Here is what I needed to do:

First, I had to go old school and pull out that pen and paper and jot down my goals again. Not only did I write down my goals but I had to write out how I plan to achieve them. For me this meant plotting out when I was going to meet with my trainer, when I was going to do my walking, and which exercise classes (dates/ times) I was planning on attending, and which days I was heading to the supermarket.

Next I had to sit down with the hubby to work out a schedule that worked for all of us – in the course of getting yourself healthy you don’t want to neglect those around you that love and support you.

The only thing left was implementation. I have come to learn that sticking to a schedule is the most effective and efficient mechanism for me. It ensures I am not frivolously wasting time or chasing my tail in circles, instead it helps me stick close to my goals and move forward.

So if anyone of YOU is feeling stuck or stagnant don’t be too hard on yourself. Instead, take a minute for yourself to think about what YOU want, make a plan and then run full throttle.

You Gal Stacy

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Lunch Learn & Latin Grooves

The First YOU Gal's Lunch Learn & Latin Grooves was AWESOME! We ate, we listened and boy did we dance. Click here to see the fun time we had with this sneak preview from pictures by our fave photographer Kimie James of IYQ Photography.

Special thanks to:

Kimie James - www.iyqphotography.com
Heather Toler - www.heathertoler.com
Mechelle Lewis - www.mechellelewis.com
Winsor "Flaco" Jewel - www.latinvintage.com

Richmond Marriott West and all of you who joined us for this great event. Stay tuned for our upcoming event Saturday, January 8th! Same great location and time!

Want to secure your spot? Click here.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Create A Smart Walking Plan

Each time you skip walking you cheat yourself of a chance to get fit. Surveys have confirmed that lack of time is the main reason for skipped workouts. Today we wish to share with you how to take advantage of the time you have but may not realize it. Once you discover what is holding you back and how to overcome it you are sure to be gearing up to walk each day.

Below we wish to share 8 ways that you can get your walking groove back or keep it on track.

1. Make a commitment. Think of walking like eating. It's required to live.

2. Forget the all or nothing philosophy. If your goal is 30 minutes but you don't have 30 to give at one time break up the walks with a goal of getting 30 minutes in throughout the day.

3. Eliminate negative thoughts. Stop listening to yourself with the "I'm not up to it", "I have other things to do" or "I'll do it tomorrow. Listening to these thoughts could cause you to give in and not walk.

4. Schedule your walks. Each week find times that will work for your schedule for that week making you a priority.

5. Go with the flow. So you scheduled the walk but something came up and you didn't get to go, that's okay create a new plan of action but be sure to get it in that day.

6. Slow and steady win the race. Don't start out thinking that you are going to walk 5 miles in the first setting on the first day. Take is slow and access your abilities and gradually increase the length, distance and time of your walk.

7. Walk with a friend. Finding time to walk with a friend helps to keep you accountable as well as pass the time away. Once you take the time to catch up with a friend you don't realize how far you have really gone.

8. Make it fun. You don't want this to feel like a chore so take this time to walk your dog, jam to the latest tunes or like we said at point 7 you can catch up with a friend.

Here at YOU Gals we believe that 10,000 steps is key to weight loss and healthy living, so lace up those sneakers and join us as we walk it out!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Stand Your Ground

Just recently I had a chance to enjoy some rest and relaxation with my husband on a cruise to the Bahamas. Many folk who have cruised before know about the mounds and mounds of food available while cruising. We particularly love to dine in the dining hall for dinner and can't wait until the Captain's night in hopes of shrimp, scallops and even lobster. Do you see two things on the menu that you want to try? Knock yourself out and order until your heart is content and all at no additional charge. Well many of us know unlimited food options are often a sign of pressure. Should I have this or should I stick with that. We say well it's tempura but it's not deep fried so I should be okay. Well should we really be thinking this way. Does having our food prepared for us without any say so give us a reason to go off plan? We often say well hey "I'm on vacation".

While on vacation I had to pleasure of dining with several other cruisers each night for dinner. The one that stood out to me the most was named Charlotte (I think). She showed up the first night with a list of demands, do's, don'ts and will not's. We were looking at her like "really". As the trip progressed and I began to prod, I found out that she was vegan. According to dictonary.com a vegan is: a strict vegetarian who consumes no animal food or dairy products; also : one who abstains from using animal products (as leather). So while I can attest to the fact that she doesn't eat any meat or dairy I'm not sure about her abstinence of animal products such as leather.

If the food options had milk, cream, eggs, dairy, pasta, meat and even sugar, she was not having it. She worked each night with the head waiter to ensure that there would be something suitable for her the next night. I'm sure you are wondering what exactly was she eating. There were nights when she would have lentils or steamed vegetables, salads topped with olive oil and vinegar or some Indian dish that were vegan tolerant. For desert she would have a fruit plate. We listened and watched in amazement each night as she stood her ground.

After witnessing this I thought about how the YOU Gals plan was far less stringent but at a moments notice with something like vacation, birthday's or other celebrations we look to go off plan. Just like being a vegan the YOU Gals plan is one that should be considered a lifestyle. It should consist of lean meats and proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole wheat and grains.

My tasks to you is to take on the approach of a vegan and make healthy living a lifestyle one that you don't turn on or off based on the occasion or time of year but one that you live with daily!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Rockstars

RichmondMom.com recognizes women in the Richmond, Virginia and surrounding community for their outstanding leadership, achievements, and contributions. Whether their passions are personal or professional, we want to hear about them!

Guess who has just been nominated! One half of the YOU Gals dynamic duo Toni Winston. Check her out here: Rockstars

Monday, September 6, 2010

There Can Be Success At Cookouts

Labor Day Weekend is upon us. It has traditionally been viewed by Americans as the symbolic end of summer. Celebrations range from picnics, barbecues, water sports, to firework displays. For those with school age children it's the last chance to travel before the little ones go back to school. For teenagers and young adults it's viewed as the last party weekend before hitting the books.

I am sure that many of you have been invited to all sorts of activities this weekend and are worried about steering away from your healthy habits. This is to be expected as there are tons of temptations lurking at social events. YOU Gals are not exempt to these temptations by any means. We too are aware of the pitfalls and have worked hard to prep ourselves prior to attending all these weekend activities.
Success comes with proper planning! On Sunday there was a huge gathering my family and I were to attend. Prior to attending I inquired about the menu so that I could begin to prepare myself. Knowing what was going to be on the menu allowed me to decide if I needed to eat prior to going or if there were going to be healthy options there that I could eat.

In my household planning for an event is very different. For me it means getting up and sticking to my normal schedule which includes getting in my steps early, eating breakfast and lunch as well as a snack in between. For my husband it means utter starvation leading up to the event. My husband is by no means a large man however in his mind skipping all meals up to the event means when the bells ring he can sit at the trough, pig out and enjoy each variety of food there. So not YOU Gal recommended!!

So how can you be successful at cookouts this Labor Day?

1. Skip the snacks and go straight to the dinner. Avoid the chips and head to the grill for some lean meats, healthy fixings and then step away from the food spread. Please don't be the salad eater at the party! You'll feel like your depriving yourself. Instead build a healthy plate with smart choices.

2. Keep your hands full. Studies have shown when people keep a drink in their hand they are less likely to graze. Grab some unsweetened tea, water, club soda or crystal light and get social.

3. Chew gum. Sometimes when we see others eat we feel the need to do the same avoid this pitfall by chewing on sugar free gum.

4. Plan ahead - eat before the party if you know no healthy options will be there.

5. Bring a dish. You can bring a healthy dish that way you know there will be something there that you can eat.

6. Enjoy the fellowship! You were invited to the party because they wanted YOU there so get social and have a great time!

YOU Gals is wishing everyone a safe and fun Memorial Day Weekend!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Meal Automation

Early on YOU Gals talked about automating your meals and how automation was key to successful weight loss and maintenance. Well anyone who knows me knows that I like to start off making sure that we are all on the same page so I want to start by first defining automation:

au·to·ma·tion

noun\
Definition of AUTOMATION
1
: the technique of making an apparatus, a process, or a system operate automatically
2
: the state of being operated automatically

In the book YOU: One a Diet I so love this statement as I can see myself. It suggests that you Pick, Stick and Automate then it goes onto say:

"Yeah, sure, variety may be the spice of life, but it can also be the death of dieting. When you sit down at diner and are presented with a menu that's the size of a phone book, it's easy to give in. One way to get away from fat bombs is to eliminate choices for at least one meal a day. Pick the one meal you rush through most and automate it. For most people, it's lunch. So find a healthy lunch you like - salad with grilled chicken and olive oil or turkey on whole grain bread - and have it for lunch every day. Every day. Yes, every day."

That' so my friend, mentor and coach Dr. Roizen speaking as I can hear the frankness in his message. I am one of those folk who like variety but I will say that variety has gotten me in trouble in a few ways, one being failure to plan ahead. The idea of automating will allow me to know what I'm eating at all times and will allow me to have the food available and on hand and eliminate the guess work. It would also eliminate the need for me to want to skip meals.

I often feel that I'm in a rush and I'm moving really fast trying to cover a lot of ground and recently I decided that instead of grabbing something bad that I would just not eat anything at all. Well I stand here today saying that one is no better than the other and this is why meal automation is important. Automating meals takes the guess work out of eating and eliminates feelings of angst, uncertainty, hunger and even failure. Meal automation is just like having a map it guides you through this journey and like GPS it's designed to not steer you wrong. If you are thinking that automation isn't for me because I like variety I suggest you pick up to three different items that are easy or similar that can help you maintain the plan. Here are some examples of my automated meals:

Breakfast:
2 boiled eggs
Egg white Omelet
Piece of fruit

Lunch:
Turkey Sandwich with mustard on whole wheat bread with a fruit cup
Salad with deli turkey and a fruit cup
Cup of chili

Dinners aren't meals that I don't wish to automate but my options are pretty consistent as they are lean meats like fish, chicken and turkey, veggies, whole grain and fruits. So as stated in the book, find that meal that you would consider on the go, on the run or not as important and automate it.

Remember planning is key, automating makes it easy and keeping it simple sets you up for success, so Pick, Stick & Automate!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Are YOU Accountable?

You often hear that no man is an island and that it takes a village to raise a child, but often times when challenges arise we responds with "I've got this!" We often feel that others have let us down so we have no choice but to do it ourselves because no one can do it quite like you right?

Well not so, everyone needs somebody. Here at YOU Gals we have learned that our greatest success has come from leaning on each other. As friends we often confide in each other and share dreams and goals. When you share you have someone that can help you with your goal and help you keep your focus to get there. Let's be clear that everyone isn't going to be on the same page as you so you will need to make sure that who you choose to share with is like minded, positive and goal oriented.

YOU Gals Stacy and I have always talked about wanting to lose weight, at one point we decided that we would join a weight loss group and attend the meetings separately. We would talk about it occasionally but hadn't committed to really participating together and with that our goal for weight loss dwindled until we decided to pick it up again.

Almost 12 months ago we decided to go on a weight loss journey together with the help of the Dr. Oz show and fellow showmate Brooke Page. Throughout our journey we had to check in daily with our food and steps and weekly with our weight and waist measurements. It was the same thing that we ask those of you who participate in our challenges and waist loss plans. It was accountability. Yes there were days when I may have been close to my goal and wanted to give up but because I knew that my mentor and coach Dr. Roizen was waiting to hear from me it pushed me to meet or exceed my goal. I was being accountable and Dr. Roizen had committed to be there for me until I reached my goal.

What I have come to learn is that accountability is key. Like they say when the cats away the mouse will play. What do I mean by that? Well when no one is asking how many steps, how much weight, how is that waist or what are you eating it's easy to slip back into old habits. What I do know is that at some point you must mature and hold yourself accountable for your actions and make this a lifestyle but until you can get to that point connect with someone that can help you get where you are going even if that takes a lifetime.

Do you want the YOU Gals to help you? Reach out to us as we are here to help YOU!

Happy Stepping Everyone!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Are you a Talker or a Doer?

Have you ever been engaged in a conversation where someone is talking about their plans to lose weight and become more active, they are so excited and have such detailed plans as to how they will be accomplishing their goals. This conversation is so inspiring that even you feed off their excitement and begin to craft your own plan on successful weight loss. You guys sit there and discuss the latest fad diets that you think may work for you, or maybe you consult the Internet for healthy living advice, or better yet you guys reach for your credit cards and and look to purchase a weight loss plan that have proven results as seen on TV.

Well here we are about a week or maybe a month later and you two are talking over a grease filled, highly caloric and artery clogging meal revisiting your initial conversation about your great weight loss plans. Oh but this time you guys were more health conscience and opted for that Diet Cola along with that 2000+ calorie meal.

Does that sound like YOU? At some point or another we have all been guilty of being talkers. It's wonderful to talk up a great plan and desire change yet it's another story to actually implement it and stick to it.

The truth is, it is not that difficult to evolve from being a talker to being a doer. What is necessary in order to switch over is to arm yourselves with the proper tools, an action plan and a positive attitude.

The day you decide to be a doer is the day you begin to implement healthy eating into your daily routine, you make the conscience effort to get physical activity in daily, and you decide that YOU are worth the change. As a doer you understand that the road ahead may be challenging however you do not quit at the sight of trouble instead you push through the hard times and revel in the good ones. As a doer you constantly seek guidance and learn from mistakes. You endure, push forward and never take no as an answer.

Are YOU a talker or a doer? Do You want help to transition from being a talker to a doer? If so, email us immediately and we promise to help you transition to being the doer YOU can be!

Let's no talk about it but be about it!!! The choice is yours.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Winning Over Portions

This week I was just thinking about how I had overcome my love of a lot of food. I use to tell folk that I was a food connoisseur because I have a great love for food but it has to be good food. Almost a year ago good food to me was deep fried, smothered, covered and saucy. Being full meant that I needed to sit at the table just a little while longer with my pants unbuttoned so that I could get myself together and catch my breath from that good meal but it also meant that after one good belch that there was room for some dessert.

At my job we have this place we call "The Lodge" it's in our meeting facility and if you have meetings scheduled in the facility your group can participate in "The Lodge Lunch" this lunch is like a buffet there are hot entrees, two chef stations, soup and salad bar, desert bar, sandwich bar, ice cream station and fountain drinks. You walk in and there are options galore and all you need is your free "to you" lunch ticket and your options are endless.

I remember the days when I would get my to go container which has 5 sections and I would fill each section to the top, fill a 12 oz cup with fresh fruit a 6 oz cup with two slices of lemon cake and get one cup of soda. How I was able to juggle all this food and bring it back to my desk, who knows but I was sure to get it there without one morsel being dropped. Well this week I was fortunate enough to go to the Lodge and I was happy about that free lunch but this time I noticed that my plan of attack had changed vastly. I walked around, accessed the menu options and prepared my to go container. This time I had brown rice from the buffet, chicken and peppers from the fajita station with guacamole and salsa and it was all in one section. I then visited the salad bar and got some fresh fruit which I often save for my afternoon snack. Once I prepared my lunch I closed the container and I was done. I was sitting at my desk thinking about all those times that I had filled that container to the max with who knows what and had eaten it all just because I could. When I looked back at my actions this time I was proud as it was a lesson learned, a lesson that I will be sure to repeat.

Please remember that just because you are at a buffet doesn't mean that you are slave to the options. Access the options, make great choices and and remember to eat to live, don't live to eat.
Happy eating everyone!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


This morning the strangest thing happened to me perhaps a hidden message to remind me how far I have come and a reminder to celebrate my success. I woke up this morning remembering a very sobering experience. It was the morning of our trip to NYC to tape our first segment as the Healthy Housewives of Oz. We all gathered at the airport and were overwhelmed with different emotions excitement, nervousness, and the reality of all that was getting ready to unfold. In my mind I was still nervous about sharing my story on national TV and felt sort of exploited. Next came a very uncomfortable feeling for me.

It was our turn to board the plane, as I walked down the "valley of despair" as I called it - you know the walk way from when you turn in your boarding pass to when you actually get on the plane. As I walked for what seemed like miles all I could think about was if I was going to be able to buckle that seat belt! Seems silly I know but it was a major deal to me. I walked down the very narrow aisle towards my seat as my hips and butt banged each seat along the way and thought what would happen if the seat belt would not buckle. I was becoming nervous and anxious, my heart was racing and I was anticipating pure embarrassment as the flight attendant would apologize and tell me to move to a row that had two vacant seats so that I would fit. The thought of sitting next to a stranger and having my thighs overspill into their seat and feeling their body heat and having them be disappointed that they were sitting next to the "big chick." It's amazing all the things that run through your mind!

So the moment of truth arrived! We were getting ready for take off and it was time to buckle up. I took a deep breath, wiggled in that seat, jammed that buckle together and just barely got that seat belt buckled. Whew!!! Sigh of relief. That was a very empowering moment for me - I knew it was now or never to make a change and to take advantage of the assistance that was being given me. I did not like this feeling and all the anxiety that came with it.

It was that moment really that made me wake up and move to action. They always say if there is something about your situation that you do not like then do something about it, we all have the power to change our circumstances. I chose to run full throttle on getting fit and healthy and vowed to never be in that situation again nor look back. I am so happy with the changes I made and the direction I am traveling in. My goals are many and I allow nothing to stand in my way of success.

I share this story because I know that there is someone out there that had the same experience and is embarrassed and upset with their situation. What I would tell that person is that it's ok. YOU have the power to change, do not allow yourself to be a victim of that seat belt buckle. Instead join YOU Gals on their journey to health, wellness, inspiration and motivation and buckle up for this amazing ride!!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

YOU Gals: Did YOU Miss Our Show?

YOU Gals: Did YOU Miss Our Show?

Did YOU Miss Our Show?

Were you unable to listen to the YOU Gals LIVE on the Sharvette Mitchelle Show? if so no worries the show has been archived for your listening enjoyment!


1) http://www.sharvette.com/ ( It starts playing right away)

2) http://www.ishoutforjoy.com/ Archive Page (direct link below- listeners need to click on the MP3 attachment)

http://www.ishoutforjoy.com/forum/topics/meet-you-gals-toni-winston

3) BlogTalkRadio.com (direct link below- it starts playing right away)

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/mitchell-productions/2010/06/23/the-sharvette-mitchell-radio-show

4) iTunes (Listeners must have an iPod or iTunes on their computer. It is a free download!)

http://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-sharvette-mitchell-radio/id281762250

Friday, June 18, 2010

YOU Gals Are Hitting the Airwaves

Grab a pen and paper and mark your calendars!!!

YOU Gals are bringing their high energy, sense of humor, sass and knowledge to the air waves!! Host Sharvette Mitchell and YOU Gals will be discussing health, wellness and what makes YOU Gals a group like no other. Listen online at www.iShoutForJoy.com at 6pm EST on 6/22/10.

Tune in!!!




Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Karlene Follow-up


We introduced Karlene 45 days into our first YOU Gals 90 weight loss challenge her weight loss success was great but check her out at the end of the first challenge. She was down approximately 40 lbs and 11 inches. She is now participating in the Sizzling Summer Slimdown and is still working hard. Let's congratulate her on her success and if you want to join in on the action email us at theyougals.gmail.com.


Happy Stepping!


YOU Gal Toni


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Embrace your Body

YOU Gals are about getting healthy both inside and out. We are all about making healthy food choices and helping you to achieve your optimal good health. We are about fighting obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.

This does not mean that we are on a mission to be the next size 2 models to grace the runways in Paris. Although I will say we are pretty hot!! LOL. I have come to realize that wherever you are in your journey love yourself for who you are in that moment of time. Embrace your curves that mimic an hourglass, love those thick thighs, and round buttocks and child rearing hips. Why you ask? Because all these things make up YOU. YOU are divine and unique, there is only one YOU and YOU are blessed to be alive. We spend way too much time complaining about the way we look and trying to achieve what society claims to be beautiful. This mentality has left us discouraged and depressed and feeling as though we cannot compare. Truth be told we are all beautiful in our own ways. Physical attributes do not and should not define us - it is the beauty within each of us that defines who we are and draws others in.

Think of all the hardwork each of you are putting in on your journey to health and wellness. YOU have all come such a long way and should be proud of where you stand in this moment of time. YOU have proven to yourselves that anything can be accomplished with a willing mind, YOU have tranformed your minds and bodies, YOU are beating the odds. Be proud and love the body you are currently in. Results take time to show, YOU will have the body you want in due time but at this moment take the time to love who you are and the body YOU have.

I have curves and swerves and I love them! I will continue on my weight loss journey but I am not looking to have a body that resembles a young boy - real women have curves embrace them, love them and love who you truly are.

One love
YOU Gal Stacy

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Cookout Survival Tips

Summer is here! As are endless cookout invites! The temptations can be great and overwhleming to say the least. However, there is hope and there are ways to avoid the pitfuls of summer cookouts.

If your plans involve attending a cookout try these tips below:

• Eat before going to the cookout. Leaving your house feeling satisfied will help cut down on over indulgences.

• Pack those snacks. Don't be embarrassed to pull out that bag of nuts and munch away. Nuts such as walnuts and almonds help to keep you feeling full.

• Reach for a bottle of H2O. The sun is in full force and you can easily get dehydrated - please stay hydrated. Need a little flavor? Try one of the many Crystal Light flavors and add it to your water bottle.

• Chew some sugar free gum. Sometimes when we see people grazing we feel like we need to join in. Chewing gum will keep your mouth moving and can help to curb your desire to eat junk.

• Opt for the healthier options available: salad, grilled chicken, turkey burgers, corn on the cob, fruits.

What happens if the cookout only has burgers and hotdogs? PANIC... NOT! This is what YOU Gal Stacy suggests:

• Grab the burger opt for no bun, no ketchup. Take the onions, tomatoes, lettuce, veggies that are available there and make a salad for yourself. Ask if the host has some balsamic vinegar and evoo and mix that with some Dijon Mustard - there you have a wonderful dressing.

• Afterwards enjoy some fruit salad and ditch the other no good desserts displayed.

• Is the cookout only having pizza? Then opt for a thin crust veggie pizza.

Remember cookouts are about socializing and enjoying the people around you not necessarily about who can eat the most food or which dish left you feeling the fullest.

I hope you see that we all have options to make this Memorial Day cookout weekend a success!

Enjoy yourselves, be safe, have fun and be fit!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Celebrating My Mother

On Sunday, May 9th all of us celebrated Mother's Day by acknowledging a woman that has bore a child, is a caretaker or just gave us love in some manner. Today I want to acknowledge my mom not just for the love that she continues to share with me but I would like to celebrate her weight loss accomplishments.

Often times we look to our moms for directions and guidance but in this instance I was the guidance for my dear mom. After seeing the success of myself and the other girls after appearing as the Healthy Housewives of Oz she decided that she would lean on me to help her achieve her waist loss goal. She signed up for our first 90 day Waist Loss Challenge which ended May 1st, strapped on her pedometer and started changing her eating habits.

To date my mom has lost 20 pounds and has gone from size 16/18 to a 10/12, YOU go Ma!

Mom thanks for always being my inspirationa and allowing me to inspire you.

Love ya!

Toni

Monday, May 3, 2010


The YOU Gals Sizzling Summer Slim down Challenge will be running from May 15, 2010 thru August 15, 2010. During this challenge you will work with your wellness coach to melt off pounds, trim your waistline, and prepare to bring sexy back for this upcoming summer.

To start off this challenge we recommend the following:

You: On A Diet: The Owner's Manual for Waist Management by Dr. Mehmet C. Oz & Dr. Michael Roizen


Pedometer
Measuring Tape
Journal
Scale
Sneakers
A willing mind
Close contact with your coach
How this Challenge will work:

We ask that each participant submit a recent photo, your current weight and waist measurements before May 15, 2010.

Each Monday you will submit your current waist and weight measurements to your coach throughout the 90 day challenge.

Each day you will submit your total steps to your coach. 10,000 steps is required for weight/waist loss.

At the half way mark (June 14th) we ask that you submit another current photo so that we can chart your progress.

Because we know that YOU have transformed your body and are sizzling hot you are invited to an "After" party, honoring YOU! At this party we invite you to come in for a make-up and photo session, so bring that new outfit displaying your new waistline or if you're daring enough bring along that new bathing suit and come ready to have a good time!

Have questions, need guidance or want to give up? Schedule time to chat with your coach so that we can get through this together. Please remember that we are here for each one of YOU and we understand the challenges involved in losing weight so don't be afraid to call or email us. We want each of you to be successful in your individual goals.

Things to remember:

Wear your pedometer every day all day because every step counts 1 mile is the equivalent of approximately 2000 steps.

Invest in a good pedometer. We recommend the OMRON brand


Drink plenty of water so that you stay hydrated. Drink a minimum of 64 ounces per day

If you are on medication for any reason please consult with your doctor throughout this process and monitor your blood pressure and/or blood sugar levels regularly as your medication needs may change as your body begins to shed those extra pounds.

Stay connected with your coach!
Want to participate in this challenge? Contact YOU Gal Stacy or YOU Gal Toni and sign up TODAY!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

So Many Reasons

This evening I decided to be alone with my thoughts on my nature walk. I listened to sounds around me and was able to get lost in my thoughts. This evening was about me and my strides.

As I walked I realized that there are so many reasons why we allow ourselves to become overweight and why we sabotage ourselves. We often tell ourselves that losing weight is too difficult and often failed diet after failed diet proves this to us. We often get so preoccupied in taking care of others that we put ourselves on the back burner. For some, weight gain is a result of a catastrophe or heartbreak they have dealt with in their life. Others go to food to fill a void within and to make them feel good. Let's face it some people gain weight simply because they enjoy eating. I can certainly understand that.

Some find reasons as to why they can't get moving. We just ended a harsh winter that made it difficult for some to get out and walk or even leave their homes because of the snow. Summer is approaching and pretty soon some will find that it is just too hot to be outside. At the end of a long day some people are just too tired to exercise or cook a healthy meal.

As you can see reasons can be endless. We can all find reasons not to do something - we can find them very easily.

On the other hand there are endless reasons for taking control of your life, and getting fit and healthy. Here are some reasons that came to me on my walk today:
  1. YOU are worth it!
  2. YOU deserve it
  3. Life is made to live to the fullest
  4. There are no limits to life except for the ones YOU create
  5. YOU are not alone - we are here to help YOU
  6. It's really not that difficult

Are you ready to take control now?

Love to all - xoxoxo

YOU Gal Stacy

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Fitness Friday


This is YOU Gal Toni, recently I decided that although late in the game, I needed to introduce weight training into my routine. I’ve lost 40 pounds, but notice that I’ve got a little jiggle going on and want to firm things up. When we appeared on the show the second time, Dr. Oz gave us resistance bands and suggested that we use them in addition to our 10,000 steps. Dr. Roizen had suggested via email that I do lunges and squats. Another Wellness Warrior, Bonnie, had a killer routine that she has posted on facebook, but I decided that I needed some real hands-on training.

What I did was schedule an appointment with a trainer named David at the fitness center at work. The session was only 30 minutes and it was free, so I left my desk, changed, let David know that I was there and I got on the treadmill as I arrived about 10 minutes early. As I ran, I thought, I’ve got this in the bag, 30 minutes, who can’t do 30 minutes?

David came and got me from the treadmill and we headed over to the dreaded free weight section of the gym. We talked and established exactly what it was that I wanted to accomplish. We finished the conversation understanding that I don’t want to be buff like my Olympian cousin, Mechelle Lewis of the 2008 US Olympics Track and Field team, although she is beautiful.

We started with form; my goal was to be approximately 1 inch away from a mirror moving my body into a seated position without ever touching the mirror. We practiced that several times and I got better, so I moved onto actual squats while holding a 35 pound bar. What I liked most about this exercise is that I had a target. I had to get my butt on the bench and get back up.

We moved onto leg presses, and for some odd reason David believed that I could press 160 pounds with my legs, and then he thought that I could press 90 pounds with just 1 leg. As I was working he said, “I’m going to work you today, tomorrow you’ll feel it and Saturday you won’t be able to walk!” Whoa! I explained that I needed to run a 10K on Saturday. David announced then that we needed to stop. Part of me said, Stop? We are just getting started! But the other part said, Thank you, lawd! Later that day, I posted my feelings on facebook. My friends and family said how proud they were of me, and they reassured me that I can do it. I knew that this was hard work.

I woke up the next day only to feel pain in my legs and neck, but this was good pain, the kind that you get when you know that you’ve been working. As I sit here and reflect, I would like to partially quote R. Kelly, who said, “My mind is telling me no, but my body is telling me yes.” My mind is telling me, Toni are you serious? Really?! But my body is saying, Let’s do this! For that reason I’m going to keep going.

When times get rough for you or starting seems to be difficult, remember that you can do it. Don’t forget to solicit help from friends and family that have your back. For those who are negative, I’ve always been told “let your haters be your motivators.” Work to prove them wrong, but most of all, work to accomplish your goal because YOU are worth it.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

YOU Gals Success - Karlene

YOU Gals believes that celebrating success is the key as celebrations often denote milestones in life. As we have ventured on our first 90 Day Waist Loss Challenge we want to celebrate Karlene who has been able to drop 21 pounds and 7 inches from her waist in the first 60 days of our 90 day challenge. Since Karlene was doing so well we wanted her to share her story with you:

How did you get started with YOU Gals?
I am a big fan of the Dr. Oz show I tape and watch the show all the time. Everyday I would tell myself that I was going to follow the program. The only problem was I would start and stop and I needed to get the new book and workout DVD. I decided to get started and while on the web site and reading the Dr. Oz blogs. I read the blogs from the housewives of Virginia when I got to Toni Winston I realize that she listed her e-mail address. At first I was a little hesitant but on January 28, 2010 I took the chance and sent an e-mail. And to my surprise she answered me right back I couldn't believe it. I was so excited after talking for a bit she told me that they were getting ready to start a 90 day challenge starting February 01, 2010 I was jumping with excitement and I said yes sign me up please. So I took a before picture got my weight and waist measurement and I was ready to get started.
What has helped you the most on the plan?
In watching the Dr. Oz show each day I see the result over and over again with the different guest that come on the show. So the fact that I have one of the show's success story now helping me walk through my journey is a big help talking with her makes me feel like I can definitely make it down this road and achieve my goals. The fact that I need to send in my food log daily and my steps of 10,000 every night keeps me going I can't just put it off and say that I will do it later. If during my food log I've eaten something that was not good for me, Toni will gently suggest a better option.


What has been your biggest obstacle?
My biggest obstacle as happen to me twice since I started this journey. Weeks 4 and 8 when I got on the scale the numbers didn't move and I was crushed to say the least. I have been working hard and just couldn't understand why the numbers on the scale or tape measure didn't move. When I turned in my daily report I was so disappointed and didn't even want to send it in.

How did you overcome that obstacle?
Well I sent in my report and Toni said not to worry because I didn't gain any weight either and just keep up the good job that I was doing. So I am not quiet over it just yet but I am working on it. I am determined not to let it hold me back I just plan to up the game even more, because stopping now would not allow me to reach my goals.

What advice do you have for others looking to lose weight?
The first thing that I will say is you have to be doing this for yourself, because it is what you want and need. There will always be temptation in your path sometimes daily or even more than that. If you're like me who has been talking about doing this for a long time or even started and stopped about a million times but something gets in the way. Since I have started this 90 day challenge I have told family and friends what I am doing like it says to do in the book YOU: One a Diet. But to me that seems to make things harder or even worse. In my family there is always food and drinks when we get together. I have a real bad sweet tooth and they have made it a point to put the cakes, pies, cookies ice cream right in my face and they even send me to the store to pick up the birthday cake then they need me to cut the cake. This is usually my weakness but not this time. I told myself that all the cakes, pies, cookies and ice cream will always be there and so will the weight if I let myself fall off the journey that am on just to eat something that I already know is no good for me. After all it was eating those things that got me in this position in the first place. So I say to myself that the sweets will always be there and so will this weight if I continue to eat the things that are no good for me. So loosing the weight is more important to me than the piece of cake. I can remember how good the sweets taste, but what I want to remember and feel is how good it will be not to struggle with finding something to wear and not shop in the plus size section and pay more for my clothes. So believe that if you want something then you can get it with hard work and determination. Any thing worth having is worth fighting for so go for it YOU are worth it.

Help us celebrate Karlene as she continues her journey. We'd like to celebrate a job well done!

Do you want to congratulate Karlene? If so reach out to her at Sexyreggaegrl@aol.com she'd love to hear from you.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Authorized YOU Turn

Many times in life we decide that today is the day and now is the time to start your journey to health and wellness. You are moving along and doing your thing and then you fall off track. Please know that falling off track doesn't mean that it's over. At the very point that you realize that you are going down the wrong road do something good for yourself and make a authorized YOU turn as you are worth it.

Do you believe that today is your day to make a YOU turn but you need just a little help? If so e-mail YOU Gal Toni or Stacy or join the YOU Gals community on facebook.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Fitness Fridays



This week You Gal Stacy decided to write about her strength training regime. I must admit that it has not always been a joyous occasion. I remember when I first started to meet with my trainer I thought he was killing me. I often wondered why I chose to pay for torture and why my trainer insisted on beating me down. Working out was certainly a love/ hate relationship.

I can remember giving my trainer dirty looks, cursing him out under my breath, panting for air, and thinking I was going to die. I would wake up in the middle of the night with pains all over my body and muscle cramps. I was feeling muscles in my body that I did not think ever existed.

I will never forget the first time we did an upper body workout - I was doing bicep curls, triceps pull downs, push ups, reverse curls and bench presses. The next morning I woke up in excruciating pain and I could not put my arms down. I literally spent the next day at work unable to stretch my arms and looked like I was holding a tray in my arms. It was so hilarious!

Now here I am 5 months later and loving my workouts! I eagerly look forward to my next session. I have become so much stronger, leaner and focused. What I appreciate about my trainer is that we never keep my workouts the same he often changes them up and includes interval sessions, he is also so encouraging and knows what he is doing. This has aided in my continual weight loss. Although my workouts are still very much challenging my attitude towards them have changed. When I am feeling like the workout is overwhelmingly hard I look in the mirror and focus on the changes in my body, I focus on the muscle group being worked and try to feel each contraction and I breathe through each movement.

Here I am 41lbs lighter, my muscles are pushing through the fat and my waistline is back - all because of the hard work and dedication I have put in.

Here's to sweat, pain and dedication!!!

Monday, March 1, 2010

YOU Gals at the 3rd Annual VCU/MCV Community Health Fair

Join YOU Gals at 3rd Annual VCU/MCV Campus Community Health Fair. The purpose of the Health Fair is to provide free basic care and health information to the Richmond Community

When: March 6, 2010
Where: Armstrong High School, 2300 Cool Lane, Richmond, VA 23223
Time: 10:00am to 3:00pm

Free Screenings offered for:
Blood Pressure
Cholesterol
Diabetes
Dental screening
HIV
H1N1 Shots

Health information regarding follow up visits and other important health issues will also be made available to those who attend.

Lunch will be provided for the first 400 people!

There is also a kids area with moon bounce and games!

Hope to see you there!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Fitness Fridays


As discovered last week I love to move and groove and shake my tail feather! These You Gals have some serious aerobic dance steps in us. Since dancing was such a success last week I decided this week’s Fitness Friday would be along the same lines - dancing!

Recently I purchased “Just Dance” for Wii. It’s an interactive game that contains 32 tracks that range from the disco 70’s to the grooving 80’s and up through the 90’s. Your job is to get a remote and mimic the dance moves the on screen silhouette demonstrates. The more moves you successfully mimic the more points you rack up.

Some of the dances you are required to do are the mashed potato, the whop, M.C. Hammer, and other classic steps. It cracks me up just to attempt some of these dance moves – I could only imagine what I look like. Here I am working up a sweat and panting attempting to rack up all my points and my kids are on the couch in pure hysterics.

The real fun comes in when there is a little friendly competition. Normally my daughter and I have a “dance off” she is just so determined to beat me and there is no way I can let her put me to shame. She would never let me live it down. So here I am panting away on the verge of passing out and I look over and she is not even getting ready to break a sweat. I think to myself, “my goodness this is track #3 and she is showing no signs of exhaustion!!!” I dig deep, grab some water and get to moving and grooving. Then my moment comes the next song is up – it’s my jam!!!! I look at my pedometer and realized in these past 40 minutes I racked up 4000 steps!!! Amazing! I feel re-energized and ready to get down with my song. It’s like a Zumba dance and is right up my alley. So the aching in my feet and sheer muscle fatigue can’t hold me back. I am pumping, dipping low, wailing my arms, shaking what my mama gave me, throwing in some Samba moves and getting into this dance. Oh my, the scores are off the charts my poor daughter does not have a chance and she realizes it but just like her mama she can’t give up. It’s a race to the finish. Songs over and the winner is ….. YOU Gal Stacy!!!!

The moral of my story is exercising should be fun. Have fun with it! Dance your heart away and enjoy every moment.

Oh and total steps for 50 minutes of fun was 6500!!! Whew not too bad!!!

Stay tuned to next week’s fitness adventure.

Before and After Pics - You Gal Stacy



You Gal Stacy started her weight loss journey September 15, 2009 when she appeared as a guest on the nationally televised Dr. Oz show. As she said on the first show "my big girl numbers are plastered all over the television" so she decided that she needed to make a change and she started down the road of waist loss following the principals in the book YOU: On a Diet, acquiring 10,000 steps daily and most importantly support from her family and friends.

As she lost the weight folk told her how great she looked but since she sees herself every day it was hard for her to notice the changes. YOU Gal Toni was complimenting Stacy on her success and how far she had come but she still didn't quite see it so we decided to have her take a picture so that we could compare her progress. So while Stacy is still on her journey her progress is definitely noticable.

Let's applaude her for her success of 36 lbs lost and 10 inches from her waist! YOU go Stacy!!!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Fitness Friday's

So YOU Gal Stacy and I decided that we would try and find new and exciting workouts that would generate steps and report out on it. Well our first venture was at Victory Lady Fitness at their West End location in Richmond, Virginia where we meet 3 new friends all named Brenda. We settled on this location based on the particular class that was being offered. We had just participated in the CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyles Expo and while there I heard someone on the mic sounding like a deejay and it intrigued me so that I walked over. They were moving and grooving and I liked what I saw. Well later that day the instructor came over to our booth and I introduced us and what were doing and inquired about his class and where he taught so he gave me the skinny on where we could find him and alerted me of his next class at Victory Lady Fitness. I got on the horn made the arrangements and notified YOU Gal Stacy and she was game!

So we show up take the tour and take our position in the class. This class filled up quick! There were lines and lines of women ready to get down. So while I’ve been telling folk that I was going to Hip Hop Aerobics the class is actually called Live, Love, Dance with Kemel. We started off just marching in place to the beat and in my mind I’m thinking I could do this at home although I was stepping a bit high because these women weren’t going to show me up. At the end of the song my hips were burning, but that’s a good thing. We move to the next song and boy does it have some choreography. We were moving, grooving and having a good time. During this class we did the electric slide, cupid shuffle and the bus stop just to name a few of the line dances that we did. I was sweating, smiling and having a good time. When the class was over I must admit I was whipped! I started the class with 4243 steps and I ended with 10442 that’s a total of 6199 step in one hour! Whew! Whoever thought that all that dancing would rack up so many steps and that’s with me trying to catch on.

When Toni told me about this class I was so excited. I often say these dance type aerobic classes are as close to partying/ clubbing that we can get to. This class had me working up a sweat, moving, shaking what my momma gave me and having fun. Having fun? That's right Kemel made this class seem like we were at a party! The atmosphere he managed to create was able to take my mind off the fact that my thighs were on fire and legs left felt like 200 pounds each.

What also impressed me about this class beyond the fact that it was not your normal Jane Fonda workout was that the instructor walked around. He was not on stage shouting out movements. Instead he mingles as we grooved, he stood right next to you when you had the steps all wrong (he was by me a few times!!!) and showed you what you needed to do and where you were going wrong. Once you got the moves down off he went to the next person. He certainly left no woman behind and allowed everyone to groove at their own pace.

I highly recommend this class to everyone. I have a bad knee which usually causes discomfort during these type of classes however, I am glad to say it was not an issue. The pain I felt was sadness when the class was over - ok I was a little excited that it was over also.

For those of you in the area looking for a good workout while having a good time check out Live, Love, Dance with Kemel it was a great time.

I’m hoping to get back to Victory Lady Fitness to check out that Walk It Off with Scott.

Until next time! Get to stepping!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo

YOU Gals was so honored to be invited to participate in the CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo with our fellow Housewife Brooke Page of A Healthier YOU. We were able to meet many new friends many of which already knew our names, faces, stories and voices. Enjoy the pics of our time there!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Join the Healthy Housewives of Oz at the CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo

Join YOU Gals, Toni & Stacy as we partner with our fellow Houswife Brooke Page of A Healthier YOU, Saturday, February 13th, 2010 from 10am - 4PM at the Richmond Convention Center where the special guest will be Chef Nathan Lyon.

The CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo provides a one-stop health care learning experience for metro Richmond. Promoting healthy living and total wellness, the expo features fitness and cooking demonstrations as well as health screenings, product demonstrations and and access to a multitude of health and wellness experts. Almost 5,000 central Virginians attended the 2009 show and the 2010 show promises to be the best yet!

We can't wait to see you there!

Toni & Stacy

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Who We are

Wordle: YOU Gals


Click on the image to enlarge.

Created on http://www.wordle.net/

Variety Is the Spice of Life

Ever wonder what that really means? This saying expresses the idea that it’s a good thing to try and do different things in life. Variety makes life more interesting and meaningful. The same is true for a food dish. Bland chicken and rice just won’t do, but add some herbs and seasonings and you’ve created heaven on a plate.

If we take so much effort in creating a wonderful meal to satisfy the senses, shouldn’t we put the same amount of effort into our workout routines? Variety in your workouts will help you to stay interested and motivated. How often have you been bored with doing the same thing over and over again? If you are anything like me, you get bored very easily. I need excitement to keep me interested.

How do you add variety to your workouts? For me, that entails enlisting the help of my friends and trainer. My fellow Healthy Housewife of Oz, Toni Winston is known as the walking guru. We walk almost every day on our lunch breaks. We try out different trails on the campus, while we laugh and talk along the way. Having her there keeps things interesting and fun. We have also become addicted to
Zumba. It’s a high impact aerobic class that introduces various Latin dance moves. Talk about having fun while you exercise!

When I need to step it up a notch, it’s time to see “No Mercy Mike.” He’s the best trainer I have ever worked with. What I really like about him is the variety he brings to the workouts. I never really know what awaits me when it’s time to meet. Sometimes he may have me doing rounds of boxing. Other times I may be like Rocky Balboa— running up a million flights of stairs. Sometimes I am greeted with a deck of cards and am at the mercy of the draw, and other times it’s traditional weights. These different techniques have helped me to continue to lose weight. I have not hit a plateau yet, and enjoy the intense training.

My challenge to you is to go out and find different work out routines. If you opt for walking then invite a friend or 2 to join along, perhaps you can visit a beautiful park, or maybe add a weight vest or ankle weights. If you have access to a gym, try the different classes they offer. If you are working with a trainer, ask them if you could incorporate interval training into your routine. The options are endless, you can be as creative as you want— the key is to keep moving and have fun while doing it.

Tell me about your experience! Feel free to drop me a line at
stacyryoudocs@gmail.com

Added to
Wellness Warrior, Fitness, Weight Loss on Fri 02/05/2010

Monday, February 1, 2010

YOU Gals First 90 Day Challenge

Monday, February 1, 2010 marks the YOU Gals first 90 Day Challenge. We are taking 20 people that want to take control of their future by focusing on waist management and put them on challenge similar to the one that we undertook as two of the members of the Healthy Housewives of Oz.

We so excited about this journey that we are embarking on over these next 90 days. Words simply cannot express how it feels to be able to share the same success with others and assist them in living longer.

Here are the details of our challenge:

We will be following the same principles as laid out in, "YOU On A Diet" by Michael F. Roizen and Mehmet C. Oz. In this challenge we are encouraging everyone to change their eating habits by eating whole grains, leans, meats, fruits and veggies. Another important aspect to this challenge is to keep it moving! The goal is 10,000 steps a day.

No person will be left behind in this challenge! Each member of this challenge has YOU Gals as their coach with the assistance of Dr. Michael F. Roizen. We are here every step of the way to encourage, motivate, share best practices and see everyone succeed.

Please follow us along on this journey of achieving overall health and wellness.

Remember, although this challenge is already under way it's never too late to start on your own challenge. Grab some friends, "YOU On A Diet" the book, some pedometers and challenge yourself to get fit and healthy as well.

-YOU Gals

Friday, January 29, 2010

Meet the YOU Gal - Stacy Rodriguez

I am a wife and mother of two very active children. Prior to having children I enjoyed a very active lifestyle. I loved working out, walking and being outdoors daily. Having good health was of the utmost importance to me. Some how, after child rearing those priorities shifted and were almost forgotten. Overtime the pounds started adding up and before I knew it I was overweight and unhappy.


Thanks to the help of Dr Oz and Dr. Roizen I learned that I could get back to being fit and fabulous with some hard work and a support team. This experience has proven to me that I can do anything I put my mind to. With the help of my trainer I have rediscovered my passion for exercise and physical fitness. As a result, I feel great about myself and the strides I am making towards a stronger and sleeker me. Dr. Oz and Roizen equipped me with lifesaving tools for longevity, youthfulness and overall good health and now I am so excited to share them with YOU.

Meet YOU Gal - Toni Winston

My name is Toni Winston and I'm a wife and mother of a beautiful almost 2 year old baby girl. Many of you may think I started this journey to drop the weight gained during my pregnancy, but truth be told, I only gained 14 pounds my entire pregnancy. It seemed that weighing in at 210 pounds as I began my journey on The Dr. Oz Show was no big deal. I wore the same 18W-sized clothing that I wore prior to my pregnancy, and life was good.

But was I really happy? For years I had desired to lose weight and even enlisted help from my friends, but to no avail. Upon becoming a Healthy Housewife of Oz, I learned that all the things I thought I could eat in moderation were totally wrong. After adopting the principals in YOU: On a Diet and with coaching from Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen, I dropped 2 dress sizes and 6 inches from my waist in 90 days. I'm so grateful for the help that I was afforded and can't wait to help others. For me the journey isn't over but I'm well on my way. So come along as I continue this journey currently weighing in at 174 pounds wearing a size 14!

Monday, January 25, 2010