Wednesday, February 26, 2014

On the Journey: To Juice or Not to Juice? That is the question of the day....

Hello again to one and all,

I have decided to tackle an issue that has been blogged about on message boards of my fitness pal, the free online calorie counter, exercise log and journal, that I use. 

Many people have commented that doing a three or five day juicing does not work for either short or long terms. It is my goal to explore this topic. 

With this being week one of the Biggest Loser at Work program, I decided to give juicing a try. For three days, I am juicing only fresh fruits and vegetables. Using a book of recipes, I choose juices geared towards weight loss/water retention. (My weigh in is on Friday, February 28, 2014 and I will let you know the results then). 

When inputting the information of the juices into my fitness pal personal recipe section, I noticed I had a large intake of carbohydrates compared to protein and fat. I altered my juicing to less fruits and more vegetables. In addition, I bought a protein powder that I add to my water that I drink and to the juices that I make. 

Furthermore, I have kept with my exercise regimen. In fact, I have increased the difficulty level. For those of you in shape, this may sound trite but I was able to run 3 miles in 42 minutes today. This is a great accomplishment for me - someone who hates to run. After a brief rest, I accomplished 20 minutes on the elliptical machine. Using my Striiv pedometer as a tracker, I walked/ran/ellipticalled 9,883 steps, 176 stair,4.9 miles and burned 1,049 calories in 111 minutes of activity. 

Back to the juicing. 

In research I found the following:
(online source)


  1.  juicing can reduce your risk of cancer, boost your immune system, help you remove toxins from your body, aid digestion and help you lose weight.
  2. if you don't enjoy eating fresh fruits and vegetables, juicing may be a fun way to add them to your diet or to try fruits and vegetables you normally wouldn't eat.
  3. Some juicing proponents say that juicing is better for you than is eating whole fruits and vegetables because your body can absorb the nutrients better and it gives your digestive system a rest from working on fiber. 
  1. keep in mind that juices may contain more sugar than you realize, and if you aren't careful, these extra calories can lead to weight gain.
  2. there's no sound scientific evidence that extracted juices are healthier than the juice you get by eating the fruit or vegetable itself.
  3. Juicing probably is not any healthier than eating whole fruits and vegetables.
The question is, do you think that juicing works long term? I think that in all things moderation should be observed and a long term liquid diet of any kind is not good.However, looking at the pros and cons in the lists above I don't see where it will really hurt to do a three or five day juicing and then supplement meals with the juices afterwards.

What do you think? Have you tried juicing? How did it affect you? 


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Age Happens, but it won’t stop #BiggestLoser at Work. Week One. #striiv #myfitnesspal

Hello! And welcome to my 16 week journey with the Biggest Loser at Work. Thank you to my partner’s #striiv and #myfitnesspal for your assistance.

Here I am at age 42: a mom, aircraft inspector, author, and battling the bulge. No, I haven’t always been overweight. For those who knew me way back yonder, I was an athlete. I think, to my parent’s despair, I joined every team available in high school except for football. Cross Country, Basketball, and Track were the main ones occupying my time in High School. I went on to play college basketball at a very small and unknown facility until I broke my foot and my basketball career ended.

While in college I married, had two children, and lost all the baby fat that I gained during the pregnancies. Then came the miscarriage, divorce, single parenting with a hostile ex, and long hours at work to make ends meet. But now, my children are adults, I no longer have to deal with my hostile ex, and my work load has eased...some. Although, now my time is spent sitting in front of a computer when I am not at work as an aircraft inspector.

That brings me to this: The Biggest Loser at Work challenge. 16 weeks.

I wasn’t going to sign up for several reasons, but I know I need to lose weight and get healthy. I didn’t want to pay the entry fee. I didn’t want to be held accountable. I didn't want to be embarrassed. I didn't and still don't want to be a failure.

Why, pray tell,  did I sign up then?

A couple of guys at work – each who has lost in excess of sixty pounds – told me they would “sponsor” me and so I joined. What did I do??? 

Knowing I will be facing the scale each week is frightening. Did I mention that the percentage of weight loss that each participant loses is displayed on a big screen television in every hangar. In addition, an email is sent out to every employee and they can see if you are doing the work or not. Oh, silly me for not mentioning that very important and potentially embarrassing fact. Now, there is motivation!

My first weigh in was Friday, February 21, 2014. The final will be June 19, 2014. When I saw the number displayed, disgust filled me. However, as my supportive sister pointed out – that is the largest number ever to show on the scale; from here on out, it will decrease. As most people know, you can’t succeed at anything without a plan. What is my plan, you ask?

Here is my plan:

1.) Juicing fruits and vegetables combined with lean protein.

2.) Exercising daily.

3.) Drink plenty of water – minimal 64 ounces a day.

4.) Cut out junk food. Goodbye for now chocolate...

5.) Decrease caffeine intake – Dr. Pepper, you are my weakness. I can go about 4 days without one and the caffeine withdrawals hit.

6.) Track my food intake to exercise output through using my Striiv pedometer, affectionately named Chuckleberry, and a website called my fitness pal. Want to join my on my fitness pal? We can be friends!

Is this enough? I don’t know. I sure hope so. Not only will my health benefit from this program if it works, there is an opportunity to win close to $1500. Money is great incentive!

I’ve decided to journal my progress and how I am doing each week. The good and the bad. I hope you will travel this journey with me and share insights along the way.

I decided I would share some photos along this journey. Here are some when I was much, much younger.

19 years old - size 5/6 dress

My grandmother, myself at 23 yrs old after having both my children, and shown is my youngest son at age 8 months. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Mary Ann Bernal: New Paul W.S. Anderson film 'Pompeii' explores fam...

Mary Ann Bernal, author of The Briton and the Dane novels, is an avid history buff whose area of interest focuses on Ninth Century Anglo-Saxon Britain during the Viking Age.

Mary Ann Bernal: New Paul W.S. Anderson film 'Pompeii' explores fam...: By Meaghan Murphy Published February 13, 2014   Corvus (Kiefer Sutherland) in the TriStar Pictures film "Pompeii...

Director Paul W.S. Anderson has a lifelong fascination with the killer volcano that inspired his new film, “Pompeii.”

Anderson became interested in the history of the Roman Empire when he was growing up in northern England, near the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall -- a 73-mile frontier built in 122 AD to protect Roman Britain from the Picts of Scotland.

“The idea of a city that was lost in time for 1,700 years and then rediscovered -- it just fascinated me,” Anderson said of his obsession with Pompeii, the port city in Italy’s Bay of Naples that was destroyed by a cataclysmic eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. “I’ve been actively trying to make the movie for six years now.”

Vesuvius erupted with such force that its top lost more than 2,000 feet, and a mile-wide lava flow rushed down toward Pompeii at almost 80 miles per hour, destroying the city in just 12 hours.
“What happens is that there is a lot of gas in the magma as it’s coming up, and the magma is very viscous, so that gas can’t get out easily. So the pressure builds and builds until it just explodes, and all the magma turns to ash and small bits,” Rosaly Lopes of NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab explained.

“It’s very scary! It goes up, as the movie showed, in an eruption column, but that eruption column can become so dense that it collapses. Once it collapses, that flow comes downwards.”
But the ash and mud that covered Pompeii also preserved the bodies of its population.

'The Pompeians were technologically the most advanced -- but in the face of nature, it didn’t mean anything.'- Director Paul W.S. Anderson

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An unlikely meeting...

Marrissa is running away, as fast as her feet can carry her. After enduring the abuse at the hands of her employer for years, she has finally found the strength to strike out on her own, and now she has been unceremoniously thrust into an adventure with a man she doesn't know. But things become more serious when she and her companion are taken in by the Cherokee. After enduring attempts on her life at the hands of a jealous wife, Marrissa must once again leave people behind and make her own way. But this time she might be leaving true love behind.

An undying devotion...

Greggory longs to be a free man. Facing the violent prejudices against him as a half breed, and running from the high price set on his head by the owner of the plantation he used to belong to, he never expected to find peace and happiness with the young woman at his side. But the more time he spends with Marrissa, the more he realizes she is the one for him, and when evidence points to her untimely demise, he vows to gain his freedom and love no one else. But fate might not be done with him yet, and Greggory may have a second chance at the life he first glimpsed in Marrissa's eyes.

A timeless love...

Set amid the tumultuous backdrop of the American Civil War, Journey to Freedom, chronicles the harrowing misadventures of two star-crossed lovers through nineteenth century America, battling violence, prejudice, and the inherent struggles of their time. Join author K-Trina Meador for a touching saga of love, faith, and survival.

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Sunday, February 2, 2014

Indie Scribe Magazine

Today I am thankful to be a featured author in the popular online magazine, Indie Scribe Magazine. Journey into lands full of fantasy, drama, and adventure in one of my five books. Click here to read all about it on the Indie Scribe Magazine.

Enjoy the article! Listen to the podcasts! and purchase on Amazon :)

And as always, thank you for stopping by!

Click here to read magazine