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Thanks for sharing
Keep on track
So interesting! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for sharing.
co-leader of Love to Cook
Thanks for my sunday afternoon reading.
Once the game is over, the king and the pawn go back in the same box.
- Italian proverb
Reinforcing Healthy Competition
Competition is a natural part of life. We are faced with competition for jobs, a mate, and even the best parking spot at the store. Approaching these situations with grace is an important way to model good relationship skills--especially to our children. Often people get angry during competition, but try to be mindful of how this frustration is unleashed. No one wants to be on the receiving end of either a sore loser's lack of composure or a boastful winner's lack of grace. Don't gloat to your friend that your daughter can run faster or read at a higher level than her child. Remember, after the basketball game concludes she is still your friend and you don't want a moment of hot-headedness to interfere with what really matters--your relationship. Modesty can go a long way!
BLC News: Hearty Weekend Lunch
Have a hearty weekend lunch with this healthy burger
4 strips extra-lean turkey bacon, each cut in half
1 pound 96% lean ground beef
4 whole grain or whole wheat hamburger buns, split
1 cup chopped fresh spinach leaves
4 large or 8 to 12 small thin tomato slices
4 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
Preheat a grill to high heat.
Place a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add the bacon strips. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until crisp. Remove from the pan and cover to keep warm.
Divide the beef into 4 equal portions and shape into balls, packing them tightly as you do. Press each into a patty that is about 1/2" larger than the diameter of the buns.
Grill the burgers for about 2 minutes per side for medium rare, or until desired doneness (do not smash the burgers with a spatula). Place the bun halves, cut sides down, away from direct flame on the grill until toasted, about 20 seconds.
Place each toasted bun bottom on a plate. Top with the spinach, tomato, patties, then 2 pieces of bacon each. Spread 1 tablespoon mayonnaise evenly on each bun top, flip atop the patties, and serve.
Makes 4 servings
Per serving: 295 calories, 29 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 9 g fat (2 g saturated), 70 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber, 547 mg sodium
Adapted from The Biggest Loser Family Cookbook © 2008 by Universal Studios Licensing LLLP, The Biggest Loser™ and NBC Studios, Inc., and Reveille LLC. All rights reserved.
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"I'm a lot stronger mentally than I realized. I'm pushing myself harder. I know I have it in me. I've never reached for anything or worked as hard for anything in my life before."
Treat the Earth well. It was not given to you by your parents. It was loaned to you by your children.
- Kenyan proverb
Stewardship of the Earth
Reduce, reuse, and recycle sounds great, but do we really think about (and apply) earth management into our daily lives? You might not litter, but how often do you drive your own vehicle rather than carpooling? What about buying "green" products instead of commercial items made with harmful chemicals? It is easy to disregard the dangers to the environment because there are no immediate consequences to our lives. However, think about how the earth will be in 50 years if everyone lived as you are today. Set a good example to your children of stewardship for the earth by recycling, eating fresh fruits and vegetables, and generally appreciating nature. Instead of going to Disney World, go on a camping trip. Turn off the TV and pick some flowers. This world is not ours alone. It is communally shared with all of the generations before us, and all of those to come after us.
If it is to be, it is up to me.
- Author Unknown
Do you succumb to laziness?
We commonly procrastinate or put off an activity altogether by saying "It will get done eventually" or "Someone else will do it." Wrong! Being lazy and not taking responsibility are wastes of time. Often the power for change is within us, but without our efforts things would fail or go awry. You cannot rely on help from others, only what your own two hands accomplish on their own. Hard work is a habit that needs constant attention. But be mindful that you are giving your full effort to a project. Apply yourself, value your time, and don't squander it hoping for help.
Biggest Loser 11.5 Recap and Elimination
BLC News: Top 3 Weight Loss Tips
Top 3 Weight Loss Tips
Insights from BLC expert Michael Scholtz
1. Use Exercise to Get What You Want Out of Life
Many people look at exercise only as a way to burn calories. How boring! If that were the only reason to move, I'd skip it too. Think of exercise as a means to get other things you want in life; a walk on the beach, a trip to the museum, playing soccer with your kids. Then, as you get stronger, actually go out and DO those things. There are hundreds of rewards of being active that have nothing to do with calories and scales.
2. Seek Support
You can't do it alone. It's true that you have the power to make your own choices and only you can control your success. But having a great support network gives you two very powerful weapons. First, being accountable to someone helps you take an objective look at both your victories and your challenges. And second, having someone to lean on in the tough times is invaluable.
3. Quality Beats Quantity
More, more, more is a dead end road when it comes to exercise. Eventually you're going to run out of time in the day. Plus, there is some evidence that exercising more than an hour per day increases your chances of dropping your workout program altogether. If you're already exercising 30 — 60 minutes on 4 - 6 days per week, focus your attention on making your exercise more challenging instead of longer.
"I can reach workout goals that I never thought I could. Once I reach them, I reset them. I'm not nervous about workouts now but excited. I still know I'll get beat up; but know I can get through them."
They who give have all things; they who withhold have nothing.
- Hindu Proverb
What wealth do you possess?
There is a long-standing tradition for Buddhist monks to rise each morning very early and set out to collect alms bowls, and go out into their community to collect donations of food, usually merely rice or a simple curry. Surprisingly though, none of this food is eaten, as the monks are typically well-stocked at their monastery. Why? This age-old tradition is still in existence simply to allow the nearby townspeople to experience the joy of giving. Do you have resources or talent that you can use to help others? Hoarding what you have wastes opportunities and fails to leave a positive mark on the world. Whether you have money, talent, time, knowledge, or energy, each should be shared. No one is better off by keeping wealth--tangible or intangible--to himself or herself.
you are what you do
The Habits That Make You
What are your habits?
Do you eat the same thing for lunch, go through the same exercise routine, and fall into bed at the same time each night?
Or maybe you've made a habit out of eating whatever looks good, avoiding the gym, and staying up as late as possible.
John Dryden famously said, "We first make our habits, and then our habits make us."
Confucius said, "Men's natures are alike; it is their habits that separate them."
And Aristotle noticed that, "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit."
It's pretty clear that the habits you adopt will shape who you are.
When it comes to your body, the two habits that define your physique are your eating and exercise habits. In fact, everyone that you know who is in great shape has dialed in these two important habits.
If you aren't happy with your body, then simply adjust your eating and exercise habits. Here's how to adopt a habit:
Making a Habit
Use these seven steps to create a life-improving habit.
1) Decide on the ONE habit that you would like to develop. It's tempting to pick up 3 or 4 healthy habits, but choosing just one new habit is realistic and doable.
Here are some healthy habit ideas:
•Do not eat after 7pm each night.
•Bring your lunch to work instead of eating fast food.
•Exercise 4 times a week after work for 45 minutes each time.
•Only eat fruits and veggies as your afternoon snack.
•Get up early and exercise for an hour each morning.
•Work with a personal trainer 3 times a week.
2) Write your new habit down on paper. Also include your 3 main motivators for developing this new habit, the obstacles you'll face, and your strategies for overcoming these obstacles.
Here's an example:
•My new habit is to work with a personal trainer 3 times each week.
•My 3 main motivators are 1) to feel confident in my bathing suit this summer, 2) to have more energy, and 3) to fit into my skinny jeans.
•The obstacles I will face are 1) not having the energy to go to my session after work, 2) not having enough money to pay for sessions, and 3) not having my spouse's support.
•I will overcome these obstacles by 1) doing my workouts before work instead of after work, so I have more energy, 2) cutting down on frivolous spending to ensure that I can afford it, and 3) asking my spouse to join me so we can get in shape together.
3) Commit fully to your new habit, in a public way. This could mean posting it on facebook, or simply announcing it at the dinner table. Put yourself in a position where you'll be embarrassed to give up on your new habit.
4) Keep track of your progress. You could keep a detailed journal or simply make a check mark on each calendar day that you successfully exercise your new habit.
5) Keep yourself publically accountable. This means either status updates on facebook or verbal status updates at the dinner table. Your friends and family are in a position to offer you support, so don't shy away from those close to you.
6) When you fail, figure out what went wrong so that you can plan around it in the future.
7) Reward yourself for your success.
Once your new habit becomes second nature, usually in about 30 days, feel free to add a second habit by going through the same 7 steps.
Focusing on one goal at a time is the most powerful way to achieve it. Taking on more than one goal at a time spreads your time and energy out, making it impossible to accomplish anything. If you have more than one goal on your mind, write them all down and then go after them one and a time until they are all completed.
Easy Teriyaki Salmon
Salmon is filled with healthy omega 3 essential fatty acids, protein, and vitamin B12. This recipe is quick and tastes amazing. Serve it with a side of brown rice and steamed veggies.
Here's what you need:
•1 Tablespoon sesame oil
•1/4 cup lemon juice
•1/4 cup soy sauce
•1 teaspoon ground mustard
•1 teaspoon ground ginger
•1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
•4 (6oz) salmon steaks
1.In a large re-sealable plastic bag combine the first six ingredients; mix well.
2.Set aside 1/2 cup of marinade and refrigerate.
3.Add salmon to remaining marinade, cover and refrigerate for 1-1/2 hours, turning once. Drain and discard marinade.
4.Place the salmon on a broiler pan. Broil 3-4 in. from the heat for 5 minutes. Brush with reserved marinade; turn and broil for 5 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Brush with remaining marinade.
Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 392 calories, 19g fat, 2.6g carbohydrate, .2g fiber, and 38g protein.
Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That's why it's a comfort to go hand in hand.
- Emily Kimbrough
Shining your light on a friend's shade
You can't turn on a country music station without hearing a song about someone down on their luck. But what about those around you? Think about how much it means to you to receive a note in the mail from a caring friend when you're going through a hard time. Use those warm feelings to compel you to spread the love to others. We all need such encouragement and often we forget that it's okay not to be the pillar of strength when life has us by the tail. Throw your arms around someone today who might need a good squeeze, send a card to a co-worker who needs cheering up, or bake a special treat for your ill child. Friends are precious, not just in the sunshine of life, but especially in the shade.
Without forgiveness life is governed by...an endless cycle of resentment and retaliation.
- Roberto Assagioli
The positive cycle of forgiveness
OK, be honest. Do you hold grudges? Do you allow old drama to determine your behavior? Is there someone you just can't seem to forgive? Grudges and a non-forgiving attitude do nothing but harm both parties. You might feel like you're "winning" by not letting someone off the hook, but you're only increasing your own worry and stress. Bitterness can lead to hate, which can sour a life. Today, write a letter explaining your point of view to the person you feel resentful towards. Clear the air; forgiving him. Even if you don't send it, it is an excellent way to relieve tension. Forgiving someone does not absolve them of the wrong that you experienced. It can simply free you to live a life that isn't anchored to the hurt and resentment of past events.
BLC News: The Perfectionism Trap
The Perfectionism Trap
Why striving for perfection is not the path to weight loss
In this week's episode we watch one contestant teeter on the edge of being obsessive about food. Though mindfulness is a good thing when it comes to eating, obsession, which can lead to a tendency to try and be perfect, is not.
Some of characteristics of a perfectionistic dieter are:
•They typically begin a new diet on a Monday.
•They try to speed up the process by under-eating and over-exercising.
•They enjoy the thrill of eliminating certain foods.
•They battle strong urges to eat unhealthy foods and skip exercise.
•They use the words "good" or "bad" to describe certain foods and their eating behavior.
•They fall off the wagon after just one bad night and sometimes even after just making one bad food choice.
•They are convinced that past failed attempts were a lack of effort, or failing to stay focused.
The perfectionistic dieter typically sees great results and feels completely in control for a few weeks or months. If this is you, then you know how the bottom can fall out and how your motivation can disappear overnight.
How does the perfectionistic dieter break free of a pattern that simply doesn't work? The answer is to shift to the 80/20 approach, which means learning to make healthy choices 80% of the time. This approach leaves room in your weight loss program for both planned and surprise indulgences.
"I can actually do a pushup again. Haven't been able to do a pushup since high school!"
Instead of comparing our lot with that of those who are more fortunate than we are, we should compare it with the lot of the great majority of our fellow men. It then appears that we are among the privileged.
- Helen Keller
Is the grass truly greener on the other side?
Do you ever feel that you're always getting the short end of the stick? Or do you constantly compare your life to others' lives? We are bombarded with daily images of the posh lifestyles of celebrities. Their expensive wardrobes and status can entice even the happiest person to drool over such luxury. But by thinking about the world as a whole, you'll find that your own life is wealthy beyond compare. Make a short list of some of your overlooked privileges. Owning a car (or two!), having access to television, computers, drinkable water, a respectable wage at your job, and all of the freedoms you enjoy that are a foreign idea to many people around the world. Be grateful for your life and over time maybe you will see that your plot in life is someone else's "greener grass."
The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.
- Flora Whittemore, author
Small steps that lead us to achievement
There are natural consequences that accompany every choice we make in life. Some opportunities inevitably pass us by, but we can take advantage of others. Many people feel powerless, but this is rarely the case--some opportunities just require a little thinking outside the box. Today, reflect on the doors you are opening in your world and which ones are closing. You have the power to create the life you want if you are willing to set goals and take steps toward them. Rarely does fulfilling our hopes and dreams happen overnight, but you can take one tiny move towards them each day.
can feel the wind go by when I run. It feels good. It feels fast.
- Evelyn Ashford, American athlete
Are you setting the pace for your health?
Exercise can be extremely uplifting! Marathon runners often talk about a "runner's high." Not only does working out help your physical body become stronger and more resilient, but it also has many pluses for your mind. Taking time out of your day to exercise gives you a chance to let go of your worries, calm your mind, and concentrate on one thing--which seems impossible to most moms! Running works for most people, as you can set the pace and distance to suit your skill level. Start slowly by doing a combination of stretching, walking, and light jogging. Then gradually work up to a routine that elevates your heart rate. Be careful not to start out too fast--it might lead to discouragement and muscle soreness that will make you never want to put on your running shoes again. Pretty soon you'll be able to intensify your workout to incorporate quicker paces and longer sessions. Endurance and setting a healthy pace are keys to long-term success.
BLC News: Omelette of Champions
Omelette of Champions
Whip this up for breakfast tomorrow, then head for the gym!
4 tablespoons chopped broccoli
2 tablespoons chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped carrot
4 large egg whites
1 whole large egg
1/2 teaspoon Mrs Dash
1 ounce serving Light Laughing Cow cheese
2 tablespoons fat-free refried beans
Lightly coat a medium nonstick sauté pan with cooking oil spray. Heat pan over medium high heat and add vegetables. Sauté for about two minutes or until just tender, but still bright.
While the veggies are cooking, whip the eggs with a whisk or beater until they are foamy and light. Add seasoning. Pour eggs over the vegetables, cover and cook for about two minutes or until eggs are almost set.
Crumble cheese over the omelette. Distribute refried beans over cheese. Fold omelette in half and allow to cook two minutes longer over low heat.
If you're counting calories and you don't want to get in trouble with the salads, what you need to do is make your own dressings. All you need is a little bit of vinegar and a little bit of olive oil.
The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same.
- Stendhal, 19th century French writer
Leading a successful flock
Be mindful of who you are following. By no means develop a skeptical temperament towards authority, but consider the quality of the leadership before you. Are you allowing informed consent to be the rule of your actions rather than blindly following? If not, educate yourself, follow your instincts, and speak up! As a parent or friend, you have a great responsibility to lead your family and friends in the right direction. Take the initiative to review the path you're taking your loved ones down and revise it to make the healthiest and most mutually beneficial choices for everyone.
If at first you don't succeed, you're running about average.
Persevering through failure
Of course try, try again, but when you don't succeed at something it's best not to beat yourself up or hold yourself to an unrealistic standard of achievement. Feeling as if you're a failure, simply for not reaching a goal, is not who you truly are. Do you think you're the only one who fails? Of course not! Most problems involve steps to their solution, and solving each step along the way IS an accomplishment. If you become discouraged during your weight loss journey or find your financial aspirations out of reach, keep trying! Some of life's most rewarding experiences make you sweat and persevere through hard times, only to emerge on the other side victorious and wiser for having worked so hard.
Biggest Loser 11.4 Recap
Issue # 11.4 - No Elimination
BLC News: Top 3 Weight Loss Tips
Top 3 Weight Loss Tips
Insights from BLC expert Greg Hottinger
1. Decide That You Are In Charge
The first step is to reclaim your power. You—and only you—can make your weight loss journey happen. If you pretend that your life depends on meeting your Biggest Loser Club program goals each week, and you are determined to make yourself a #1 priority, you will be surprised at how great it feels to be in the driver's seat.
2. Fill Up Your Tank on High Fiber Food
Do what works. Studies show that eating higher fiber foods that are packed with nutrients, such as whole grains, beans, high fiber cereal, vegetables, and fruit, are essential for feeling satisfied on a lower calorie plan. You need to feel satisfied if you want to be successful. If you are stuffed on the Biggest Loser Club menu, a nutrition expert can help you gradually increase your fiber intake so that you feel great and are making steady progress on the scale.
3. Be Persistent
You can't fail unless you quit. If you are getting frustrated, then make sure that you are not under-eating, over-exercising, or expecting too much from the scale each week. Once you find the right balance with nutrition and exercise, you should feel strong and satisfied. The experts can help you with the details of your program. Even though losing a pound per week may seem disappointing to you, in just a year, this amounts to over 50 pounds which is a tremendous accomplishment.
Cara Castronuova Tips
Take five minutes to meditate after working out to unwind and relax.
Squeeze a lemon and sprinkle salt lightly on your salad. It is a delicious calorie free substitute for salad dressing.
The basic difference between being assertive and being aggressive is how our words and behaviors affect the rights and well being of others.
- Sharon Anthony Bower, author
Speak up and take back control!
Many people feel uncomfortable being assertive, which often leads others to take advantage of them. Do you ever feel like you shouldn't say something because you might hurt someone's feelings? Does your spouse shirk their responsibilities around the house and expect you to pick up the slack? While it is important to serve others often, being someone's lackey is unhealthy and it's up to you to break that cycle. Kindly address situations where you think someone is taking advantage of your meekness. Being aggressive is a negative quality that people respond to with hostility. Making your voice heard maturely and positively is a trait that will take you far and build respect among your peers.
If you have one true friend you have more than your share.
- Thomas Fuller, English clergyman & historian
The value of friendship
We all have a handful of acquaintances--those people with whom we work or see at the store and casually say hello to and move on. But a friend is someone you confide in, bring over for an afternoon cup of coffee, invite to your wedding, or cry with when a loved one passes away. You just feel a sense of safety with a friend. Don't wait until a rainy day to express how much a good friend means to you. Often we are unaware of how much we mean to others until they speak up, and likewise we never know how much another person might truly need to hear such affirmations. An approving, cheerful word of encouragement can thrill a heart. Be sure to always say kind words before you part, show sympathy during hard times and affection during wonderful ones. Life would not be the same without positive friendships. Express your gratitude to someone today who has made a difference in your world!
BLC News: A Room Full of Temptation
A Room Full of Temptation
What to do when your trigger foods beg you to take just a taste
It happens every Biggest Loser season. The contestants are led into a room full of food—just the kind of food that got them to the ranch in the first place—and asked to choose between it (gameplay) or not.
In our lives, the stakes to not give in to temptation may be more ordinary, but more important. We just have to say "no" because it's the better thing to do. "Clean heart, clean conscience, clean pantry" should be your mantra.
Don't even think about trying to co-exist with "the white stuff"— as Biggest Loser nutritionist Cheryl Forberg calls it—lingering in your home. That includes pasta, sugar, and white flour products—those highly processed snack and convenience foods that send your blood sugar soaring.
Forberg is insistent that all of the contestants who go home purge their pantries of white stuff. "We want them to see how easy this can be; how well it works; and how GOOD it feels once that happens. That it becomes completely seductive to stick with it."
If you feel the temptation to cheat coming on, do something proactive. Go for walk, read a book, or go to a support forum on BiggestLoserClub.com. But don't sit alone with those thoughts of temptation.
Brett Hoebel Tip
Take a break. Not getting enough rest in between exercises, in between days of training or just in general is a common mistake and can lead to injury and "over-training" and even weight-gain. Relax by listening to soothing music, take a yoga or meditation class, get a massage or simply take a few minutes of slow, deep breathing.
A great obstacle to happiness is expecting too much happiness.
- Bernard de Fontanelle, French writer
Happiness is a state of mind, not a way of life or a destination that you'll reach one day. Bumps in the road of life are to be expected, and we cannot let them ruin our days. We often think that if a combination of factors would just fall into place THEN we would finally be happy. Satisfaction can only come from within, through truly accepting yourself, your life, and your circumstances. During this life you'll have many hard days--long work days, sleepless nights, worrying about the future, etc. This week, think about the joys of your life. Find creative ways to enjoy the little bumps in the road.
I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.
- Bill Cosby, comedian
The dangers of people pleasing
No matter how hard you try, no matter how many hours you spend pondering and planning, and regardless of how hard you try, you absolutely cannot please everyone. It is impossible. So do yourself a favor and stop now, before you drive yourself farther toward insanity. There are many drawbacks to being a people-pleaser. A big one is that you often put yourself in a position of subservience. Sometimes you even put yourself last, which helps no one. Remember that helping yourself and doing what you feel is important should be valued. Find worth in your own opinions and viewpoint, and don't let your desire to please others compel you to keep yourself in the background. Falling short of perfection only proves that you are a normal human being.