Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I'm Thick Like "DAMN"...Great Video

Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday's Wellness Check

So after having a horrible time last week I was able to get back on track. I got my eating under control and I am back to exercising. I am so happy that I am back on the right path. I definitely want to stick to it this time.

My eating habits have gotten better. Instead of cutting out everything I am taking baby steps with that. I did however eliminate sweets and other high fat and sugar foods. I still incorporate small things that aren't too bad. That way I don't feel like I'm depriving myself. I am still looking to find healthy alternatives to everything I eat and I am confident I will. It may lead to me making my own snack and other sides.

My exercise is on the right track. I'm trying to do at least 30 mins everyday that way I feel like I'm not slacking. I still do Zumba and a little on the treadmill. Today I will be starting Insanity. I really liked Insanity when I tried it and I definitely seen results. It gives me that hardcore workout I like.

I did end up gaining a couple pounds when I fell off last week but I was able to get back down to my starting weight of 270. I also signed up on www.sparkpeople.com. I like to track my exercise and get recipes from there. I don't track my food because they don't have a lot of things or brands of food I eat. I am going to start a food journal to keep a look on my food and calorie intake.

I hope all of you are continuing on your journeys to becoming healthy and not giving up. Nothing comes easy but hard work pays off. Again I am here for support and if you have questions just ask.

Peace & Love

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Women Rather Die Early or Go Blind Than Be Considered Fat

Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me. My parents repeated this idiom often to my sister and I, and for the most part, I had no problem shrugging off insults; matter of fact, I reveled in joshing with my buddies. Conversely, whenever my sister engaged in the same banter with her friends, she held onto the insults for months.

I never understood her suffering, but a new study suggests that my sister’s habit of watching her favorite television shows and reading fashion magazines contributed to her slow pace of getting over insults.

According to Science Daily, a research team at Arizona State University sought to understand how and why fat-stigma is distributed in the context of everyday interactions and relationships within the framework of social media.

This research sheds some much needed light into how Boris Kodjoe’s negative Twitter-rant #fatexcuses can trend all throughout the blogosphere, upsetting his fans who felt the actor went about motivating overweight people through shaming.

Alexandra Brewis, lead author of the study, biological anthropologist, and director of ASU’s Center for Global Health, thinks her team better understands what’s the source of women’s suffering and where negative feelings about their appearance originate, especially in regards to obesity. America’s overall stigma towards fat people appearantley can be traced to these two entities: pop culture and advertisers.

Some very discouraging quotes come from lead scientist Brewis, who sees the 112 women interviewed, aged 18-45, as walking zombies that have a system of internal checks based on the E! Channel and Weight Watchers commercials:
Fat is understood culturally to represent profound personal failing and the attendant moral messages attached to it include laziness, lack of self-control, and being undesirable or even repulsive … So powerful and salient are these anti-fact messages that some Americans say they would rather die years sooner or be completely blind than be thought of as obese.
Sinisterly, when folks shame overweight people, the psychic damage permeates throughout the culture. When television producers frame fat people as losers, meant only to provide comic relief or pity, it’s understandable that some women will do anything to not to be fat. Brewis suggests that this stigmatization leads “normal” women to fear fatness, resulting in fatness becoming an obstacle hindering them from enjoying their lives instead of a place where all forms of fatness invites growth and self-examination — physiologically and emotionally — leading one towards affirmations of positivity and love.

The time must arrive when the J-Huds, Janet Jacksons, and Kirstie Alleys of the weight loss world share how much losing weight doesn’t solve all their issues, but it compounds the stress to stay at a weight that is set by industry, not their bodies.

Admitting that she didn’t feel fat stigma as a size 16 in her native Chicago neighborhood, Jennifer Hudson says her real battle came when she was in Hollywood. But what is absent from the her mainstream dialogue is depth? What protected her from feeling stigmatized? Does she know the difference between protection and denial? Outside of the common sexualized and culinary reasons, what makes black women comfortable with their sizes?

It’s troubling when Brewis states, “media and pop cultural messages are so pervasive and powerful that even the most loving support of those closest to us provides only limited protection against them.”

Turn off the television, hug the next woman you see, tell her how much you love her, and then ask yourself, “How much do I love myself?” Maybe this will be the first step in ending shaming of all kinds.

Rticle courtesy of www.frugivoremag.com

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Returning to Your “Happy-Healthy” Place

Feeling discouraged? Defeated? Not in the “happy-healthy” place that you were when you first decided to change your health and change your life? Perhaps you are bored with your diet and workout, or you’re just feeling restricted. Maybe you have reached a plateau and over the last few weeks, you have not noticed any significant changes. Not going to lie. We say we are making all these dietary and workout changes for our health, and we are! But we still want to see results: toned muscles, loss of inches, and less weight. We look for it in our face when we brush our teeth in the mirror. We search for the extra room whenever we reach for a pair of pants. We keep trying on that dress hanging in the closet that still has the tags on it. Is that just me? Perhaps yours is the one from yester-year that you want to get back into. I won’t even ask how often some of the most eager find themselves jumping on a scale to see if there has been any change. And when the scale reads the same, the pants are just as snug, and the dress still can’t be worn, there looms over our heads a sense of defeat. Sometimes, that discouragement leads us back down a path to comforting junk food and a loss of motivation to keep working out.

You must know that you are already enough. You are doing amazing work in your life just by being on this amazing journey where you are exploring new options for yourself, often in ways that you never thought possible. As you recognize that change needs to be made on a regular basis, remember that you want to make lasting improvements on an already fantastic person: you! Progress is important, but they are add-on’s, not key parts. The goal is to enhance what you already have through progress. The fact that you went from zero workouts to two a week is progress; two to four per week is a step in the right direction. Removing iceberg lettuce from meals and adding spinach, romaine, and kale to your staple diet is a good decision. Being happier and healthier is not just about the physical aspects of life. It is about the mental and emotional stuff too. Healthy is NOT being physically fit but mentally miserable.

Looking for results? Try looking for different results! If you were once happy with your physical results but it’s recently affecting your attitude, you may have begun this process with a far too narrow view of what it means to be healthy. Let’s expand that view a bit and get some real perspective.
    • Check your motivation. Are you making these changes to look and feel good for your next birthday or for your 40th birthday? Don’t be just another person that is jumping on a bandwagon of some sort. It’s important to decide if you are making substantial changes for a real reason or just a season. I get it. It is summer and you want to look fabulously toned and fit when you go play at the beach, but are you ready to prioritize your health year around? If so, then take your journey off the clock and off the scale. Stop comparing yourself to other people’s progress, feeling like you have to hit some life altering goal by a certain time. Permanent change is consistent and incremental.
    • Get your blood work done. Weight and inches are not the only numbers that show results. Get your blood work done and find out more about your other numbers: cholesterol, heart rate, and blood pressure. Find out if these numbers have improved since your last check up; or use this visit as a benchmark to measure future success. These numbers are just as important, if not more important, than how much you have lost. They tell you how much you have gained with your health. Taking a more comprehensive look at your total body operation will give you a greater insight and a more accurate perspective of your health. Additionally, there could be a medical reason why your body is holding on to its weight and not responding to the changes you are making. Knowing is beautiful and helps you examine all the factors rather than putting yourself down.
    • Train and complete a marathon for a good cause. Whether it’s a 5k or a triathlon, the key to marathon running/walking/biking is endurance. This is an opportunity to build stamina in ways that a traditional workout may not provide. So challenge yourself to a task that puts your endurance to the test. It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to finish. Just finish! Choose a cause you deem worthy as it will help motivate you across the finish line. The sense of accomplishment is really rewarding when you take to task doing something you’ve never done or haven’t done in a while. It will also serve as a reminder that you are capable of more. You are stronger, and you are healthier than you were before. Those are real results! (Not feeling a marathon? Try hiking a mapped trail or climbing a rock wall. You can do it!)
    • Change up your workout routine. Don’t get bored with a workout. Introduce your body to different exercises. It may be as simple as going from yoga to Pilates. Not sure where to start? Trust the knowledge of experts. Take a class or get a personal trainer who is certified in a particular type of workout. And if you have tried a little change, perhaps you are ready for a lot of change. Gyms like Curves and other popular workouts are designed on a circuit training model where you spend a short amount of time on a set of reps, then move on to another activity. That means you may be working your muscles in a different way to get more results.
    • Stay active and engaged with your community. The real purpose of being “happier & healthier” is so that you can have the wealth of health and energy to live longer and do more in life. Take time to do things like that now. It can be as simple as having a dinner party with close friends where you can show off some of your favorite delicious (and nutritious) meals. Volunteer with a church or neighborhood group to deliver food to the elderly; or be a community team helper with a local kid’s weekend sports league.

Article courtesy of www.frugivoremag.com

There are No Bad Bodies

There are no bad bodies. The concept of “bad bodies” is a conspiracy.
On average, women see over 400 advertisements a day with glamorized images of what they should look like.
You know what all those images have in common?
They are selling something. Make up, a gym membership, clothes, hair products, restaurants, diet plans, razors, plastic surgery, etc.
There is a reason this ideal exists. It’s to make money. There is a reason that thin has been so culturally accepted as the way to have a “good” body. There is a reason that the beauty ideal - thin frame, even round breasts, long legs, smooth skin, long sleek hair, perfect complexion, made up, and wearing a certain style of clothing - exist for a reason.
The reason, is that if corporations can manage to convince women that they aren’t beautiful the way they are, they can convince them that they need certain things to make them beautiful.
Like diet pills and diet food and a gym membership and make up and cover up and nail polish and spanx and fancy clothes and more and more and more.
It is a conspiracy to make money.
And it’s one of the most successful conspiracies in the world.
You know what else those ads all have in common? They show those women as being happy and successful; having friends, going to parties, having men desiring them, being confident, smooth, and popular. This had led to an abundance of women who deeply believe, consciously or not, that the only way to achieve happiness, is to achieve a certain aesthetic.
It’s not just the media. because this has been so widely spread, and accepted, you hear it everywhere. from your peers, your parents, your teachers, even strangers.
Bodies have become such a taboo, and such a subject of shame for most women, that girls don’t grow up seeing real women’s bodies. Not represented by the media, and not even represented by the women in their lives. I think it’s pretty rare for a girl to grow up seeing all different shapes and sizes of women being represented proudly, and not in the context of “look how disgusting this part of me is.”
So who do they look to, to try to understand what women should look like?
Magazines, TV commercials, etc etc.
So they think that’s what all people should look like. So of COURSE they feel like something is wrong with them. Of course they do.
But there isn’t. There is nothing wrong with you.
The part of your body that you think is just *wrong*, and *deformed*, and *hideous.* Why? Your body is built exactly the way it’s meant to be. It’s your body. And anybody who tries to tell you there is something inherently bad about it is brainwashed.
There are no bad bodies. There are only bodies that are well taken care of, and bodies that are not. If you eat food that makes you feel good, and do things that make your body feel good, then your body will find the weight, the size, and the shape that is best for it.
That might be 90 pounds. 120 pounds. 180 pounds. 250 pounds. More or less. Anything.
So maybe, next time you’re sitting there just thinking about how fat, and ugly, and wrong you are, take a second to ask yourself, why do I think that?
The reason is, because you have been programmed to think that. You have grown up in a toxic environment, where that concept - the concept of good and bad bodies - is everywhere. And just knowing that won’t make those thoughts go away, but maybe, it will give you more perspective. Maybe then you can step back, and say, “okay. this isn’t real. This is actually complete and utter f*cking bullsh*t.”
Your body is a good body.
Your body is the perfect body.

Article courtesy of www.theplumpinay.com

5 Tips for Creating a Runway-Worthy Wardwrobe

Here are five tips for creating a runway-worthy wardrobe that is both chic and affordable.

Expand Your Horizons

No shade will be thrown here. Lane Bryant, Ashley Stewart, and my shopping heaven Torrid all have amazing and fashionable clothing options for curvy women. But, I discourage limiting clothing options strictly to these stores and others that cater specifically to us for several reasons. The foundation for fashion is individual creativity which can’t be created if you’re only selecting clothing from the Lane Bryant spring collection. Ever considered wearing a XL Forever 21 dress as a top or a XXL Old Navy dress as a tunic? You should. Don’t be deterred by a designer’s original intention. Boldness is essential to building a chic wardrobe, so channel that inner diva and waltz into a local straight size store. You’ll leave with a unique outfit and a new perspective on the limits of fashion.

Peruse the Internet

The world-wide-web is the greatest creation since…well ever, so use it! Outside of social networking and internet dating, the web should be used for online shopping. This is one of the best solutions for most of our fashion woes. Some of the greatest fashion jewels e.g. ASOS and Eloquii are solely produced online. Internet shopping allows us to see a store’s entire inventory at once. Who wouldn’t want to avoid the hassle of browsing racks in exchange for easier and savvier shopping? Oh and internet store coupons can sometimes cut the costs of shopping by 20 to 25 percent. For instance, Eloquii has a sale each week and always offer free shipping. That is unbeatable from a fashionista’s perspective.

Tailor Your Wardrobe

As I’ve followed blogger Gabi Fresh in recent months, I’ve noticed that she never allows the size on the label to deter her. She often has her clothes tailored to remove stitches; this gives her enough room to fit a size 8 shirt over her size 22 frame. I refer to this swift fashion move as the “Gabi Method” and I love it! Of course, all shirts and pants can’t be tailored and still maintain its original attractiveness, but cropped tunics and colored jeans is fabulous regardless of the season. Plus, tailored clothes seem much more polished and professional, so I encourage investing in a permanent local tailor!

Thrift Store Excursions

I am unashamed to admit that I am a thrifter. I make weekend excursions to local thrift stores and spend less than $100 on bags full of fashionable, chic, designer clothing. A vintage Chanel tote that would retail for $300 in a department store becomes mine for less than $20 and those popular lace blouses from the ‘80s that have resurfaced don’t leave a dent in my bank account. Don’t have too much pride. Thrift. You’ll find adorable pieces that are one-of-a-kind and save a few dollars. A win-win.

Confidence, Confidence, Confidence!
Despite what fashion blogs tell us, large rings and fierce wedges are not the perfect accessories to an outfit; confidence is. Regardless of what dress we’re strutting in, confidence is infectious. You want to command attention when walking into a room and that comes with how we wear our clothes rather than what we’re wearing. Be confident and the rest will align on its own.

Happy shopping!

Article courtesy of www.fullfiguredmag.com

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Fat Shaming and Racial Undertones

Apparently Wisconsin’s Republican representative Jim Sensenbrenner thinks Michelle Obama is a hypocrite for advocating a healthful diet and productive exercise plan through her “Let’s Move” campaign. A few months ago he said, “She lectures on us eating right while has a large posterior herself.” Though he later apologized for his inappropriate remarks, let’s deconstruct then.

Other blogs have attacked the fat shaming implicated in Sensenbrenner’s comments, so I’ll keep this brief. It is impossible to estimate a person’s health by looking at them. You can’t see high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease by glancing at someone. Bad health is related to poor lifestyle choices, not someone’s weight. Sensenbrenner, who isn’t a trained doctor, can’t judge First Lady Obama’s health because she has a little junk in the trunk. Besides, even if she were unhealthy, it doesn’t negate her desire to promote a healthier life for children.

Let’s be real; Michelle is not think and she certainly can’t pass for fat with those toned arms. So more than the fat shaming in Sensenbrenner’s thoughtless comment is the racial element involved. It is disturbing that a bunch of activists and feminists are focusing on the weight bias while ignoring the implications of Rep. Sensenbrenner’s statement, which is an obvious case of white privilege.

Having a big ass is a black girl stereotype that has been perpetuated for centuries. Our bodies have been compared to wild animals for their naturally large proportions and attention is constantly drawn to the size of our hips and asses. That has led to the jezebel images that sexualizes black women and forces us into the sexually deviant box. This stereotype excludes us from the cult of white womanhood and is evident in Rep. Sensenbrenner’s comment. His words automatically sexualized the first lady by calling attention to her body. Although Michelle Obama meets all standards for the white patriarchal beauty idealism, sans her complexion, all Sensenbrenner sees is her fat ass. Not even the premiere woman in our nation can escape the oppressive images and histories of our Hottentot Venus.

White men have ALWAYS looked at the bodies of black women with lust and a sense of ownership while also considering us hoes, whores, and moral deviants. Sensenbrenner’s comment polices First Lady Obama’s body while also recalling harmful images that have controlled our sexuality for ages. It is unacceptable for white feminists to disregard the underlying racial implications in his statement and the repercussions it will have on women of color who already feel inadequate because of their large thighs, asses, and hips.

This article is courtesy of blog: FatFemPinUp

Monday, July 23, 2012

5 Ways to Help You Love Your Body

Hey Curvy Girls All Over The World,

I feel like there is so much negativity when it comes to plus size women taking a stand and saying I love my body. It's as if the world likes us better when we are sitting at home crying our eyes out because some outdated BMI says that we are overweight or obese. The world would rather have us be ashamed of our fat instead of embracing it. I'm here to tell you today if you are a plus size woman who hasn't accepted your body or only takes pictures from the neck up, then it's time to stop and get real with yourself. It's time to start loving your plus size body. Believe it or not, there are plus size women who want to carry the torch of being plus sized and proud.

1. Talk To Your Body

Your body is not a fat suit. It honestly angers me when I hear people say this. Stop beating yourself up. Stand naked (Yes, naked!) in front of a full length mirror and stare your body down. Talk to your body and say "I accept you because you carry me through each day. I promise to never put you down and to treat you with care and respect and despite what anyone says about you, you're my body and I love you, flaws and all." Feel free to develop a more personal mantra that will aid you in accepting your curves.

2. Buy And Wear Clothes That Fit The Body You Have NOW

I can not say this enough. You have to own the body you have now and not the one you used to have or want to have. Go through your closets and get rid of all the things that no longer fit you. If it's too small, toss it. If it''s too big, toss it. When you take the right steps to obtaining a positive body image you have to buy clothes that fit you and make you feel as if you're the hottest woman in the entire world. No matter your size, as women we don't feel good in clothes that are too tight or clothes that are too big.

After cleansing your closet, take the time to find out your measurements and your shape. Utilize the Internet and go on fashion sites to find the best styles that work for your body type. Not your size, your body type. Those are two different things. Women can be the same weight and have two completely different shapes. Once you find out what yours is go out and buy yourself some new clothes to go with your newly found love for your curves. There are loads of plus size designers, boutiques, and retail brands that have stylish clothes for your curves.

*Sites like Eloquii and Shop your shape allow you to plug in your measurements to help determine your body shape.

3. Cut Out Pictures Of Positive Body Images

Cutting out pictures of positive images of other plus size women or celebrities will help you to become more confident with your body. We live in a time where plus size women are not ashamed of their body. Keep the pictures in a scrap book or use them as screen savers. Just make sure that they are visible for you to see everyday. They will become confidence builders. We all need them sometimes. Online magazines like Plus Model Magazine and Daily Venus Diva offer a myriad of photos of plus size models and plus size celebrities who aren't afraid to say they're plus and proud.

4. Surround Yourself With Positive People

If you have friends and family members who constantly use your weight as the topic of conversation then it's time to send them to the backseat. No one and I mean no one needs negative people in their lives. If you have a man that constantly puts you down because of your weight or you find yourself trying to lose weight to make him happy then it's time to let him know it's a new day and you're are no longer going to accept the negative comments from him. Young girls that goes for your friends too. If your friend can't appreciate you for who you are and what you look like, then it's time to trade then in for a new set of friends.

It's like I always say, I'm okay with my body. It's other people who aren't.

When someone really loves you and cares about you they will only do things to lift you up and make you better yourself. So make sure you're surrounding yourself with people who make you feel good about yourself.

5. Don't Wait to Lose Weight To Live The Life You Want

Last but not least, don't wait to lose weight to live the life you want. I can't stress enough how important it is to still maintain a high quality of life for yourself if you've gained some unwanted pounds. I remember on the last season of the Oprah show she kicked the season off by talking about her weight gain and how she felt like a failure for gaining her weight back. She went on to say how she stopped taking full body shots for her magazine covers because she couldn't fit some of the clothes for the shoot and she just wanted to hide. I myself years ago experienced the, I want to hide from the world feeling after putting on a significant amount of weight. Since then, I've learned that you must press on and live your best life no matter what. If you want to go to the beach in a swimsuit, then do it. Don't wait to lose weight to do it. If you want to rock a body con dress, throw on your Spanx (or not) and just do it.

It's important to live your life because its the only one you have. You don't want to look back and say I missed out in something or didn't do something because you allowed your weight to hold you back. Keep it real with yourself. Take the necessary steps to do what you need to to lose the unwanted pounds if you choose to. Don't allow your weight to dim your bright light. Live today like it's your last. Love your plus size body.

It takes time to develop self confidence and appreciation for your curves. I strongly believe that these tips can help you get to a place of love with your body.
Article courtesy of www.stylishcurves.net

Own Your Beauty.....It's Yours

We all know the impact that the media has on today’s society. From television shows, commercial and fashion magazines, we are constantly being fed a standard of what is considered “beautiful”. By definition we know that beauty is something that brings deep pleasure and satisfaction to the spirit and the mind but everyone perceives beauty differently; therefore the old cliché “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is most prevalent here.

The problem that I find today is that everyone is boxed into this certain “look”; fat, skinny, light, dark, old, young, etc. Fashion magazines tend to capitalize on plus sized women by using models as part of a body issue & older women as a way to sell skin cream etc. It is wonderful when we are promoting self love and awareness but sometimes the message gets lost in all of it. Why can’t they just be in the magazine exhibiting confidence and sharing it with the youth of today? Feeling good in the skin you are in regardless of anyone else’s opinion is something that we all owe to ourselves regardless of what we look like because we are all beautifully unique but it is easy to get caught up at times with the cookie-cutter image of what beauty is.

We know that for a while the models we were seeing in magazines and on runway were only stick thin and there was no way you would ever see a thick, curvy woman walking the runway but now we are seeing all shapes and sizes more and more and I am thankful to everyone that has a part in making a difference. I could list names here but I am sure that I will leave someone out but you know who you are. I extend a heartfelt thank you for those working so hard to make a difference in the world we live in and also for making it better for the future ladies and even gentlemen that have body or self esteem issues. We live in a photoshop world but we don’t come in photoshop in person! No matter how much makeup and designer clothes you put on if you can’t look at yourself raw and accept it, you will always be limiting your inherent potential and ability to change lives just by loving yourself. The important thing is that no matter what, you remember that what makes you beautiful is not what others think of you but what you think of yourself. There is power in knowing that, the confidence that comes with it allows you to step out on faith and do the unimaginable simply because you break the limitations that you may have set up for yourself in your own mind. It is up to you to own it and share it with the world for you make a difference!

Article courtesy of www.dailyvenusdiva.com

Monday Wellness Check

Sooooooo what a week I had. I completely feel off track. I know many of you can relate. I was doing good until Wednesday. Wednesday I began to binge eat. I was going through a field of emotion in the process. It was something I felt extremely bad for doing it but could not control it. I was absolutely embarrassed even though no one knew without me telling them. Binge eating lead me to not get in my daily exercise. It threw off the rest of my week. I did reach out to my sisters because I couldn't believe I had gotten that bad and I needed someone to talk to. So what I have to do is start over.

Do I think I have totally failed??? NO!!!

I know everything is trail and error. Eliminating all processed foods is not the way to go for me. I have learned that not allowing myself to eat certain foods leads me to over eat and crave the foods. I will be starting over. I have to find what I love and how I can make changes that I will stick to.

Food is the hardest thing to tackle for me. I have to find a common ground with eating healthy but allowing myself to eat certain foods. I will still stay away from normal sweets like cake, cookies and other high sugar foods. Instead I will eat things like nutrigrain bars and granola bars. That way I don't feel like I can never have a treat. Other foods I love I will bring back but in moderation, like mashed potatoes and other things. I just have to make sure I'm sticking to the correct serving size. That way I shouldn't stray from my diet. BUT, again its all trail in error and I will make changes as needed.

Exercising was going good. The only thing that I had an issues was that it didn't feel the same as going to a gym. I love and miss the gym atmosphere. What I have found is that majority of the gyms in my area offer 7 days for free. So I will be utilizing that while I can. I think going back to the gym will get me back on track. It helps me clear my mind and focus.

I feel like I'm starting over but at least I'm not giving up. I refuse to give up. I want a healthier life and I also want to live a healthy life for my children.

I know someone of you can relate and I am here if you need support or have questions.

I did not weigh myself because I didn't want to get discouraged.

Peace & Love

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Losing it While Keeping Your Curves

As you know I am, like others, currently on a weight lost journey. My main worry is losing my curves. I love having a nice shape and I definitely don't want to lose that when I lose the weight. Now I know I will lose a bit and that's fine but I would be horrified to lose everything. So I have been looking into fitness activities that can help me lose the weight but keep my curves.

There isn't much out there for us. I have not found many things focused on plus sized women. Everything is about being skinny and getting down to a specific body type. However, I did find out about a fitness class for plus sized women. Its called "Curvy Tease." The description include everything I would be interested in: "This class is specially designed for our plus-sized Divas who want to preserve their sexy while learning a combination of pole, chair, and floor moves that will sculpt, tone, and burn calories." Now how fun does that sound!!!

I want variety in my workouts, I want to have fun. We need more classes like this. Something women can enjoy and not even realize how many calories they are burning. The more fun the workout, the more we will want to actually workout.

One reason women are scared to work out is because they don't want to lose the nice frame they have. They like the size of their breast, butt, hips, even their thighs and I can't blame them. I don't want to lose my favorite parts either. That's why we need more fitness activities focused on this. I do find activities for a great butt, but what about everything else. Maybe that's something I need to look into. Make something that women would love, losing weight but keep their curves.
 I'll will keep my search going and inform you of any fun fitness activities for plus size women.

Peace & Love

Curvy Tease Fitness Class is at Vertical Tease Fitness Boutique in North Carolina. You can check out all the details and get information on all the other fun classes they provide at www.teasefitnessboutique.com

Black Girls Don't Have Eating Disorders??????

“Curvy. Thick. Brick house. Bootylicious. Voluptuous. Phat. These are some of the words commonly used to describe black women’s bodies, but rarely do we hear about black folks’ complicated relationship with food.”

These are the words of Clutch’s talented editor Britini Danielle, who posted a video from the thought-provoking Black Folks Don’t … series. This particular episode tackles the taboo issue of black folks and eating disorders.

Self-medicating with food is definitely an issue in all communities, especially in a society that subsidizes all the cheap, tasty salt-fat-sugar combinations, but — and there is a large “but” (no pun intended) — we are hearing the same discourse concerning eating disorders that perpetuates the myth of the weak woman that falls victim to a ever-encroaching white standard of beauty. (In the piece, apparently, the term “African-American” was an euphemism for black girls, as not one man admitted or was featured as suffering or recovering from an eating disorder.)

As we continue to exclude the myriad of differences and experiences in each eating disorder case for a more easily digested model, the roots of the problem will stay simplistic — “oh, I hung out with white people too much,” or my favorite, “we eat too much soul food.” This allows our cultural dialogue to be reactive instead of proactive.

No one broaches the subject of black psychology from a non-scientific or scholarly standpoint. Most black folks who will watch this type of video have already heard or read about W.E.B. DuBois’ groundbreaking theory of double consciousness, but when are we going to ask if our minds are inherently programmed for destructive, suicidal behavior? For heaven’s sake, we live under the constant, imminent threat of nuclear war: this proves without a shadow of a doubt humans are intrinsically psychotic on some level.

Additionally, as long as black folks dismiss that the importation of cheap, legal consumerist ideologies in the form of fast-food diners and bargain-based material depots bludgeons the fabric of black culture and communities, regardless of class or rural area or cityscape, we will continue to witness the disappearance of effective methods to stop the institutional assaults on our collective body.

Well, enough of my rant. Take a look at the video.


Do You Agree?????

(Sorry Embeding The Video Wouldnt Work)

Article and Video courtesy of www.frugivoremag.com

Breaking That Old Habit

Old habits die hard, but when they do, new and better ones rise up to replace them. If you’re having trouble kicking an old habit to the curb, consider this:

Your life may depend on it.

If you carry around bad habits, such as smoking, drinking often, or eating unhealthy, you could be sabotaging your health, and taking years off of your life. Good habits are really just promises that you make to yourself to keep your body energized and your body working properly.

Generally, it takes around 21 days for a new habit to form. But repetition keeps your body physically active and mentally motivated. So don’t feel bad if you think you can’t kick a habit today or even tomorrow. Keep working at it and eventually, good habits become routine. You’re in the process of breaking bad habits that will save your life.

This also applies to loving yourself and becoming healthier. Its all about taking baby steps.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Get Ready For Work It Wednesday!!!!!!

Charlotte, NC

Almost 24 Hours until "WORK IT WEDNESDAY"!!!!!!!! Kicking off at 6:30 - 7pm Ripped OFF & immediately following at 7PM Chair Flirt!!!! And its all going down at Tease Fitness Boutique!!!! Leave the treadmill to someone else, Lets have fun, while we burn calories!!!!

7 ways to Beat Body Image Issues in Business

Negative body image can hold us back in big ways in our careers. I’ve spent the past 4 years working with women entrepreneurs, and it’s amazing how body image issues can arise related to launching and growing a business.

It is not uncommon for women to avoid being photographed or video recorded, avoid making presentations, meeting new people, attending networking or other business development events, because of a negative self-perception. Even more disturbing, there are those who will delay even starting a business until they “lose some weight.”

Here are 7 ways I’ve used with myself and my clients to beat body image issues in business.

1. Identify times when body image issues arise related to your business.

Negative self-talk about the body can be so subtle and so common as to be overlooked. Notice it there are times that you are avoiding a business development task because of a body image issue (eg., avoiding being photographed, skipping an event because you have “nothing to wear,” fear around making a presentation, etc.)

2. Have a plan.

Once you’ve noticed where body image issues arise, work on countering (and hopefully replacing) negative beliefs with positive ones. Address the mental and emotional issues as well as the tangible, physical ones.

3. Treat self-care as part of your business plan.

In the hustle of starting and running a business, it’s easy to neglect taking care of yourself. Proper nutrition, regular exercise, and stress reduction must be part of your regular routine. When you are your business, your health and well-being is the health and well-being of your business.

4. Get help.

If you need support, don’t be afraid to get it. Talk to a trusted friend and ask for some positive reinforcement when needed. You may want to work with a coach or counselor to build positive body image and confidence. If you hate your wardrobe, engage the services of a stylist. Need a diet and exercise makeover? Consult a trainer or nutritionist. Most experts have low cost/no cost materials that can get you started without breaking the bank.

5. Invest in a quality headshot and visual materials.

Most women I’ve met have a hate/hate relationship with being photographed. We live in a visual age, and most entrepreneurs need at least a headshot for use in business. There’s a reason why famous people look good in magazines (other than extreme-Photoshopping)–they work with great photographers. Invest in a quality headshot with a photographer who understands lighting, angles, and all the things that go into creating a good photograph. When you are excited by how you look in your picture, you’ll be much more likely to share the photo.

6. Invest in a quality wardrobe (that you can wear NOW, not 20 lbs from now)

This is the same philosophy as investing in a headshot–when you feel like you look good (it’s all about the feeling), then you are going to carry yourself in a way that will energize every exchange. Again, this doesn’t have to break the bank, it just has to make you feel like your best, most powerful self.

7. Relax. No one is judging you, and if they are, who cares?

A great smile, enthusiasm, and confidence beat out a “perfect” look every time. All of those flaws we are obsessed with are usually overlooked by others. And if someone is judging you–what’s that to you? Why live your life controlled by the thoughts and perceptions of others?

So, when the group is lining up for a photo, jump in the front row. Don’t freak out when you get tagged in a Facebook picture. I personally think it’s great to have some bad pictures of myself floating around on the Internet. First, they make my good pictures look great, and second, it gives people a chance to tell me how great I look in person.

Of course, there’s always the “10 Years From Now” Game. It works like this: however you look today, whatever bad hair, lumps and rolls, wrinkles, etc. that are bothering you, will seem like nothing 10 years from now. 10 years from now, you’ll look at your worst picture from today and say: Look at how young I looked! So, why wait 10 years to enjoy what you’ve got today?

Article courtesy of www.curvylife.com

Monday, July 16, 2012

Self-Compassion: The New Secret to Being Slim, Fit, and Happy for Life

You ate a cupcake at the office birthday party (even though you swore you wouldn't). You skipped the gym to go home and watch TV (can't resist those Real Housewives!). And now you're beating yourself up for it, right? We know, because we've all been there. It's become far too common for us to mentally punish ourselves this way, thinking we'll feel shamed into better behavior, observes Kristin Neff, PhD, associate professor of educational psychology at the University of Texas at Austin.

But being our own worst Mean Girl is counterproductive. According to research in the burgeoning new field of self-compassion, a little TLC may go a lot further in motivating you to work out, lose weight, and get healthier overall. "Self-compassion means being kind to yourself, especially when you make a mistake," explains Neff, author of Self-Compassion: Stop Beating Yourself Up and Leave Insecurity Behind. "As it turns out, caring about yourself is one of the best possible motivators for doing what's healthy for you rather than what's harmful to you."

As you'd expect, quitting the trash talk makes you feel good. In fact, brain-imaging scans done on Buddhist monks by University of Wisconsin neuroscientists suggest that self-compassion lessens anxiety and depression. But surprisingly, being kind to yourself also has a concrete effect on your behavior and physical well-being. "Studies show that self-compassionate people are more proactive about looking after themselves," says Duke University professor of psychology and neuroscience Mark Leary, PhD, who's been involved with much of the research in this field. "They're more likely to take vitamins, practice safe sex, and go to the doctor when they're sick." Read on to see how you can score big health gains by giving yourself a break.

Boost motivation
Most people play drill sergeant with themselves: "I have to go to Spinning every day this week!" But using phrases like have to and setting too-strict goals are a recipe for falling short—and feeling lousy about it. In a study published in the journal Motivation and Emotion, participants who forgave themselves for failing at a task were more likely to pick themselves up and try again. "They didn't let that one failure define them," Neff says. "When you criticize yourself, you undermine your self-confidence, which is a huge part of motivation."

Try this: Encourage yourself the way you would a friend, with positive statements like: "If I go to Spinning, I'll feel great, and I'll probably fit into my jeans better, too." Neff says: "Motivate yourself to do the right thing not because you're inadequate, but because you want to be healthier, or land your dream job, or whatever your goal is. Keep your eyes on the prize, which is to be happy."

Lose weight
A 2007 study shows how going easier on yourself can actually help you drop pounds: In it, Leary and a co-author asked two groups of women to eat doughnuts. One group got a talk along the lines of "I hope you won't be hard on yourself. Everyone eats this stuff." A control group got no such pep talk. Next, both groups taste-tested candy. The result: Women who got the self-compassion speech ate fewer bonbons. "They didn't indulge in emotional eating like those left alone with their self-criticism," says Jean Fain, a psychotherapist, teaching associate at Harvard Medical School, and author of The Self-Compassion Diet. "Telling yourself mean things—'I shouldn't have eaten that,' 'I'm going to gain weight'—is a setup for overeating." That's because self-criticism stirs up negative emotions like anxiety and self-loathing, and we'll do whatever we can to get rid of them—like dipping into the Ben & Jerry's.

Try this: Next time you feel bad about scarfing down a brownie or snacking in front of the TV, let self-compassion give you some perspective. Instead of saying, "Screw it. What's the point'"—which could just lead you to eat three more brownies—try instead: "It's only one brownie. It's not the end of the world. I can go back to making healthier choices."

Article courtesy of www.health.com

5 Benefits of Cardio

1. Your Brain

As you lace up, your gray matter sends out get-ready signals: Without your even realizing it, breath and heart rates quicken. Once you're sweating, the brain delivers feel-good endorphins to help ease the ouch of an all-out workout. "Happy" chemicals, like dopamine, release during and after the workout to lift mood—aka the runner's high.

2. Your Heart

The second you start to Zumba, your heart begins beating progressively faster, pumping out more blood with each squeeze. Then it revs to about 160 to 180 beats per minute (60 to 80 at rest) during seriously strenuous bouts, like HIIT moves. The stronger your heart, the more blood it pumps when it contracts, which in turn lowers your resting heart rate—that way, it doesn't have to work as hard when you're not exercising. And a fitter ticker equals a healthier body.

3. Your Muscles

During low-intensity workouts, more slow-twitch (aerobic) fibers are firing because they have stamina. They're like the tortoise—contracting slowly but going and going. The fast-twitch (anaerobic) fibers that come alive when you sprint or do other vigorous activities are like the hare: They are powerful but fizzle out quickly.

4. Your Fat Cells

Your body uses more fat than carbs when you're in the long, slow zone. And because burning fat requires more oxygen, keep your breath nice and easy. Clocking long sessions is key because fat takes longer than carbs to break down. But doing them is worth it—fat has 9 calories per gram, and carbs have 4. Grab a friend and pass the time by catching up. It's a win-win.

5. Your Lungs

Oxygen is the ingredient muscles need to convert carbs and fat into fuel for muscles. The harder you go, the more oxygen it takes to remove carbon dioxide, a waste product made by muscles. To get more air, you start breathing faster, going from 12 to 15 breaths a minute at rest to up to 35 to 45 at max effort levels. Tell yourself it's all good because the harder you go at it, the faster you'll burn off calories.

Article courtesy of www.self.com

My Monday Wellness Check

Happy Monday Fabulous Ones,

I am feeling very good this morning. I am excited to be serious on my weight loss journey and I excited to encourage others to do the same. Last week I said I would start working out and I DID!!! I started doing Zumba at home everyday. I bought the complete set a month or so ago and I'm finally putting it to use.

To make sure I am able to workout I created a schedule for myself and the children. After I get off work at 5 p.m. I make sure we are home and eating dinner by no later than 6:30. That way I can clean the kitchen and start my work out no later than 7:30. Being that the twins are only one year old they can be a little demanding and I would have to stop working out to cater to their needs. However, I will continue my work out right away. I workout for at least 45 minutes.

I love doing Zumba, but this week I am going to switch things up a bit and get on my treadmill a few times throughout the week. Since I cant make it to the gym, I bought myself a treadmill earlier this year. To bad I haven't used it as much as I planned to. That is all about to change. I also have the Insanity workout set (my boyfriends, but he doesn't use it anymore), I want to incorporate that in to my plan probably next week. I think having a variety of workouts will keep me from getting bored.

My eating has gotten a whole lot better. I have started to eat five 300 calorie meals throughout the day. About every three hours. I have also stopped eating sweets and now only drinking water. My next step to eating is cutting out just about all processed foods. I have done this before and not only does it works excellent for weight loss but its very healthy for your body. I have purchased many books regarding "Clean Eating" over the years. They are great and they don't push weight loss. It's all about eating right.

Once I start cutting out all processed foods I know my weight loss will pick up speed. I will start that this week, which also means another trip to the grocery store. It is all worth it. I want to be healthy for my children and myself. Good luck on your journey and contact me if you have any questions or just need a weight loss support buddy.

My weigh-in today showed a loss of 2lbs

Peace & Love

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Think Body Positive

As you know, your brain is an incredibly powerful organ.  Scientists estimate that the average person has between 15,000 and 60,000 thoughts per day!  That's a lot of thinking.

But here's a thought -- how many of your thoughts are positive and affirming?  Even scarier -- how many negative thoughts about your body do you have each day?

So let's try something different today.  Just for today, I want you to practice thinking positively about your body.  Using thoughts like, "I am beautiful" and "I am gorgeous" is a great place to start.  Think these thoughts throughout your day, whenever you have a free moment or feel negative thoughts about your body coming on.  It will probably feel weird and false at first, but if you keep doing this consistently, positive thoughts about your body will become more reflexive.  In other words, you will start to know how how fabulous your body truly is!

I get these emailed to me everyday and though I would share

Friday, July 13, 2012

Confidence, Sex, and the Plus Size Woman pt.2

Some women are so caught up in what their bodies look like and how it moves that sometimes they forget to let go of their inhibitions. Do you feel afraid to step into a room, to be with someone you love in the most intimate way , or to feel the exhilaration of an orgasm? All because you were are too worried about how your body is going to betray you?

I won’t lie to you and say I have always felt confident. There were times when I worried about the jiggle in my butt and the roll on my waist. I worried about my breasts ; questioning if they were just as beautiful as a Victoria’s Secret model. I got so gosh darn tired of feeling bad about myself. Then one day I looked at my husband, a man I have been in love with since I was 19 and married to for eleven years. I was in a t-shirt and shorts, just finished working out and I looked (what I thought was) my absolute worst. All he could think about and talk about was how sexy and beautiful I looked!

Since THAT moment, I realized that even at my worst, I was still a fox. So! All inhibitions went out the window!

This moment reminded me of the book/movie Eat, Pray, Love. In the movie, Julia Roberts’s friend is terrified to eat another bite of pizza because she has gained ten pounds. Julia Roberts asks her if a man has ever walked out of a room right before they are going to make love? Her friend tells her no and Julia Roberts tells her that is because “he feels like the luckiest man in the world. He feels like he just won the lottery. He is in a room with a naked woman and about to make love to her.”

She hit the nail right on the head! Your partner does not care ( or should not) about all of your imperfections. Your partner is simply excited to be in the moment and YOU should be too!

For the continuation if part 2 visit http://thecurvyfashionista.mariedenee.com/2012/07/confidence-sex-and-the-plus-size-woman-pt-2/

Friday's From Me 2 You

Happy Friday Lovelies,

Cheers to the weekend. This past week I have been looking back at my life and how far I have come in my journey of having a positive body image. I can honestly say I'M HAPPY. I've had my highs and lows but I'm at a height that is unstoppable. That's how I want you to feel.

High school was when I started to have some insecurities about myself. I was the big girl of the crew, I felt guys didn't like me as much, and I though life like that would never change. BUT it did. I would say around 2005 I started to embrace my body. I honestly think one morning I woke up and just started to love myself more. I want that wake up call for you.

Its time to let the things overwhelming you and people hurting you go. I read a quote my bank had up today and it say,"You have to learn to let go of things you fear." How uplifting and positive is that! Life has pulled us in so many ways and we need to get back to self. I want you to take them time to think and create a plan to become happy. You should smile throughout day just because.

What do you need to do to get to your happy place? DO IT!!!! Be happy in the skin your in and embrace it.

Peace & Love

Thursday, July 12, 2012

12 Facts About Body Image You may Not Know

  1. Twenty years ago, models weighed 8% less than the average woman. Today, they weigh 23% less than the average woman.
  2. The average American woman is 5’4” tall and weighs 140 pounds. The average American model is 5’11” tall and weighs 117 pounds.
  3. If Barbie was a real woman, she’d have to walk on all fours due to her proportions.
  4. About 7% of 12th grade males have used steroids in order to become more muscular.
  5. If GI Joe were human, he’d have larger biceps than any bodybuilder in history.
  6. One out of every four college aged women has an eating disorder.
  7. It is estimated that 40 to 50% of American women are trying to lose weight at any point in time.
  8. Americans spend more than 40 billion dollars a year on dieting and diet-related products – that’s roughly equivalent to the amount the U.S. Federal Government spends on education each year!
  9. Almost half of all women smokers smoke because they see it as the best way to control their weight. Of these women, 25% will die of a disease caused by smoking.
  10. In 2007, there were about 11.7 million cosmetic procedures performed in the U.S. Ninety one percent of these were performed on women.
  11. A study found that 53% of thirteen-year-old American girls are unhappy with their bodies. This number grows to 78% by the time girls reach seventeen.
  12. According to the Girl Scouts Research Institute, one-third of all girls have a distorted idea about their weight.

UK's Body Image Campaign

The new report from the All Party Parliamentary Group on Body Image states that body image anxiety is damaging society and shows over half of the public suffer from negative body image. The problem is so acute that girls as young as five now worry about their size and appearance, half of girls and one quarter of boys believe their peers have body image problems, and appearance is the largest cause of bullying in schools.

The report was co-authored by a cross party group of MPs and health and education charity, Central YMCA. The response to the three-month public inquiry co-ordinated by the APPG was that media (43.5%), advertising (16.8%) and celebrity culture (12.5%) together account for almost three quarters of the influence on body image in society, yet the “body ideal” that they typically present was estimated to not be physically achievable by nearly 95% of the population[vi]. Central YMCA will now take forward the report’s recommendations in a national campaign, to be launched in the autumn in partnership with several other organisations. The campaign will include the creation of a brand, or “kite mark”, which will be awarded to socially responsible businesses taking action to tackle negative body image.

Jo Swinson MP, Chair of the APPG said:
“Body image dissatisfaction in the UK has reached an all time high and the pressure to conform to an unattainable body ideal is wreaking havoc on the self-esteem of many people. Our inquiry took evidence from academics, the public, industry, charities and other experts, whose submissions formed the basis for the recommendations in the report. I welcome the work of Central YMCA and other organisations in taking these recommendations forward.”

Rosi Prescott, CEO Central YMCA, said:
“It’s clear that there’s something seriously wrong in society when children as a young as five are worrying about their appearance, based on the messages they are seeing all around them. The findings of the report are shocking; body image has become more important in our culture than health, and children are mimicking their parents’ concerns about appearance. We all have a responsibility to act now to bring about the attitudinal and behavioural change that’s necessary to prevent damage to future generations and that is why we are urging the public to give us their views to help shape the campaign we will be launching this autumn.”
Feelings of dissatisfaction and inadequacy, often driven by weight stigmatisation and the desire to achieve the unattainable “body ideal” are causing many people to sacrifice health for appearance. The inquiry heard that:

• Getting rid of dieting could wipe out 70% of eating disorders.
• More than 95% of dieters regain the weight they lost
• By the age of 14 half of girls and one third of boys have been on a diet to change their body shape
• 1.6m people in the UK suffer from eating disorders, which have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness
• Up to 1 in 5 cosmetic surgery patients could suffer from Body Dysmorphic Disorder
• Girls who diet are 12 times more likely to binge eat
• One in three men would sacrifice a year of life to achieve their ideal body
• One in five people have been victimised because of their weight
The report makes a series of recommendations targeted at policy-makers, healthcare professionals, industry and the education sector, designed to change public perceptions, attitudes and behavioural patterns.

Its excellent when communities come together to tackle an important issue. Body image is a world wide issue and more regions like the U.S. need to join in the campaign.

Where Does Your Insecurities Come From?

So I had a conversation with someone and it got me thinking. What if you cant figure out where your insecurities come from. Is it possible that there really isn't a reason you feel this way or is there always a reason? I would have no idea. I'm not a doctor or a psychiatrist so I wouldn't know how to figure it out.In my opinion I think there is a trigger for feeling a certain way and having insecurities.

Usually it starts out as a kid. As you grow up and your body changes, you start to notice and realize things you never knew. Such as having larger or smaller breast, being heavier than your friends, the shape of your body and even the features on your face.  Not only do you notice them but others do as well and if you hate a specific part of your body that will start your insecurities. No one wants other people to see what they hate about themselves. As we get older we either grow out of those insecurities or they get worse.

When we get to the stage of wanting to date that can cause insecurities also. Feeling that we are good enough or lack certain qualities can damage our self esteem. Some women try to be what they feel that person wants. That leads them to not liking who they are and wanting to be someone else like a celebrity. Everyday we see images of what society says is beautiful and women are affected by it everyday.

As adults we should be at the point were nothing can shake our confidence, but its not always that easy. When you wake up in the mirror what do you see? You have to ask yourself that and if it's negative you need to figure out why. Comparing ourselves to other is the main culprit in  having insecurities. Why do we do it? I'm at the point where no one can make me feel less than and break my confidence, but why cant others be like me. I can admit I have my days when something bothers me, but I don't let it overwhelm me.

Looking back at our lives we should be able to see when our insecurities, lack of confidence and lower self esteem started. At the point you should be able to also see why it started. Was there a boy you liked that hurt your feelings? was your friend skinnier? were you teased at any point? Did family members hurt you? There has to be something.

My point is that we have to work on our inner selves. We can not be confident, powerful women if we don't believe it ourselves. I recommend starting a journal or talking to someone (anyone) to figure out how to become a confident, power and sexy woman. Wake up every morning and tell yourself one positive thing a day. Leave all negatives behind and love yourself. If you have no one to talk to I'm here, you can contact me.

Peace & Love

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hot Summer Looks of The Week From Target

My first look is my favorite. I have on black shorts with a sheer blue top. The shorts are just the right length and they also have buttons on the side to unfold them to make them longer. The waist very soft and stretch material. That's a great option in which you don't have to worry about a belt or the waist becoming to tight. The top is a great piece you can wear with anything. I like it without anything under it, but a tank top under it will look just find also. It is also very loose fitting and has elastic at the bottom. Both make the top very comfortable. I would wear this with sandals for just a day out but I would also put on heels with this and wear it out at night events.

I like the colors in this look. I have on green shorts and a salmon color top. The shorts are the same as the black shorts and the same description applies. They are just as comfortable. The top is very comfortable. Its stretch material and bunches on the sides to add a cute fit to your curves. The cut out design at the top is simple but cute. To my surprise, after I took it off, I found out this was a maternity shirt. I would still buy it though. Sometimes I shop in the maternity sections of stores. That's a trick to find shirts that have a longer length. Wearing a variety of colors is definitely the hype this summer. Sandals and heels works with this look too.

One thing about summer I love is dresses. I used to only wear long length summer dresses because I hated to show my legs. Now that I embrace my legs I have no problem showing them off. Why limit yourself and not buy the things you like because of small insecurities. The only thing I have to make sure of is if the dress is long enough on the back. I have a big butt so that's always a issues with any dresses, skirts and pants I wear. The only thing I would do with this dress its put a belt on in one of the colors on the dress. This look also can go from day to night.

Target Prices:
Shorts $24.99
Blue Top $21.99
Salmon Top $19.99
Dress $27.99

I will only show looks from places that I shop. I all about fashion but I want affordable fashion.

Acceptable Plus Sizes in Plus Size Media

So I've been looking through plus size magazines and although they cater to plus size women, the pictures of women they show are mainly on the slimmer end of the plus size scale. Can it be that smaller women still reign over bigger women, even in our own community?

I usually see women that look like they are around a size 18 and below. What about women who wear a size 22 and higher. Why don't we see more of them? Is smaller more beautiful in the plus size media too? Or am I the only one that thinks this is possible?

In no way do I think the larger women are not accepted, but I do think that displaying them comes with some restrictions. When I do see larger plus size women in the media its from them. Plus size women that have their own businesses, blogs or brands put themselves out there to be seen. They are featured in magazines and blogs but its usually not a major magazine in the industry.

Size acceptance is not the issue. Every magazine, blog, website promotes size acceptance. On the upside, they do include things for all plus size women. I am a size 20 with large hips, thighs and some stomach, when do I see someone like that regularly in magazines? Do I have to create my own magazine? I'm not talking about just featuring, I'm talking about full editorial spreads. That's what I want to see.

So I ask do you agree? Do you feel plus size media also caters to smaller size or do you think its 50/50? Lets get talking :)

Ignore the Naysayers

Full figured women are often caught in a fashion catch 22. Like all clothes and accessories fiends, curvy babes want to enhance their wardrobes with the fiercest trends and classic pieces that accentuate our shapes and put our best assets on full frontal display. But some of the chicest designers aren’t creating pieces that cater to our large hips and wide waists. So, what is a full figured woman supposed to do when society has developed standards for what is acceptable for us to wear?

Bend the fashion rules, as blogger Gabi has done with her website, Gabi Fresh. In a recent post, Gabi discussed the criticism she received when she decided to post photos of herself wearing a sheer chiffon blouse, one of her wardrobe staples this past summer. Being told that she should lose weight before showing her flubber was both disrespectful and a blatant stab at her self-esteem. But, what I respect about Gabi is that she refused to be silenced because she doesn’t fit into society’s perception of beauty. So, the next week, she posted again in another chiffon blouse. What Gabi represents is fashion at its core: risk taking, daring and willing to jump ahead of the curve to showcase individuality.

Fashion is an art form and fashionistas use clothing pieces and the perfect quilted leather handbag to represent the colorfulness of their personalities.

When I interviewed Leslie Medlik and Tiffany Bank, two of the stars of TLC’s smash hit mini-series, Big Sexy, both women were adamant in their refusal to limit their clothing options to stores designed for us. Both of these powerhouses were confident enough in their bodies to venture to straight size stores and ignore the label. They used dresses as shirts and removed the seams from blouses to create tunics.

That is the creativity that fashion allows us. You don’t have to conform to what society would have us wear. Channel that Big Sexy confidence and dare to be bold in your closet.

(Article Courtesy of www.fullfigurednews.com)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Exploring Thin Privilege & Size Acceptance

People are so offended when they see fat women with confidence. Fat women in form-fitting dresses, bathing suits, and any other revealing clothing that doesn’t hide their bodies from the world draw tons of attention. But why are people so offended to see fat women accepting their bodies? Well, it boils down to America’s value system that is used to rank women. Fat girls always seem to end up at the bottom of the totem pole.

Recently, I went on a Twitter rant explaining what it means to have “thin privilege,” a concept that is based solely on the size of a person’s frame. Thin privilege has several advantages; for instance, a thin woman is automatically perceived as healthy, active, desirable, sexy, and intelligent because in western civilization, thin equals beauty. In media and advertising, thin sells and we perpetuate this in our society over and over again.

Thin privilege allows skinnier women to make rude comments about size under the guise of concern – as if by virtue, having a thin frame makes someone a health expert and having a larger one means we can’t be trusted with our health. When you are thin, the world assumes that thinness is a virtue and fatness is a major characteristic deviancy. Wrong. Fat women aren’t ugly, lazy, and stupid and smaller women aren’t better.

One of the worst values in western societies is fat hatred which leads to the mistreatment of full-figured women. Fat women are the butts of the jokes in the dating world; we are the coyote uglies in the movies; and in the world, we are pitied for being outcasts or hated for developing meanness as a defense mechanism. There are tons of men who are attracted to larger women, but because of the way we’re portrayed in society, it is difficult for a man to commit to a fat woman in public – even when he loves her! Men aren’t interested in larger women because we’re not ideal trophies, but it is impossible for them to ignore their own personal attraction to us – so we’re objectified instead. Yes, thin women are objectified occasionally, but it’s frowned upon and doesn’t happen nearly as often as it does with us. After all, objectification occurs so much that it composes about 90 percent of our romantic relationships with the opposite sex.

But it doesn’t end there. Fat women are also discriminated against in the work environment, volunteer opportunities, and even club memberships. We are denied raises at our jobs and often, we make less in our lifetimes than thin people. For instance, I’ve ventured to public lakes to swim and caught three different people taking photos of me while my back was turned. All because I dared to wade into a lake, in a swimsuit, like everybody else.

Oh, and let’s venture into the weight loss corporations who profit off our pain and society’s fear of being overweight. These companies release commercials subliminally declaring that fat is ugly – while also making sure that there aren’t positive representations of full-figured women in the general area – before telling us how fat we are and that we should invest in losing weight. We are threatened with death, though NutritionJ.com has determined that size doesn’t deter health. These corporations have the nation believing that people are dropping like flies from the obesity epidemic. Yet, a thin woman can almost die from eating an unhealthful diet of chicken nuggets and the world is surprised! These weight loss campaigns have created a warped problem are making a killing from selling the solution; but they are selling thinness, not health and fat hatred is the culprit. Thin privilege is also an accomplice.

However, a solution is on the horizon. The fat/size acceptance movement is an awesome campaign that encourages women to embrace and love their bodies regardless of their size. It encourages fitness and healthiness without demanding women to lose weight or spend their whole lives unsuccessfully dieting. This powerful movement encouraged fat, chunky, and thick women to love their jiggle. It is doing wonders for the self-esteem, self-worth and overall mental and physical health of full-figured women.

On a personal tip, fat acceptance has helped me to sincerely love my body; I love all of my curves, my flab, and my cellulite. This movement has taught me that I am human and I deserve respect and love not “in spite” of my size but because of my size. I would love to see this movement spread further because it tells full-figured women that we are gorgeous without telling thin women that they aren’t. The fat/size acceptance movement doesn’t subtract beauty from one category of women for the sake of the other; it declares that every woman of every shape and size is physically attractive.
If you can convince yourself that you are beautiful, you will be the LAST person you EVER have to convince!

This article is courtesy of the blog FatFemPinUp!

Start With You!!!!

Everything that goes on in your life starts with you. Every change that is made starts with you. Why would you want someone else to make any decisions for you. Think to yourself, what do YOU want to do, say or change about yourself. Then ask yourself what are you waiting for?

Changing the way you think can help build your confidence and improve your self esteem. Having control can make you feel powerful. I know it does for me. I can admit that it may be a little scary to do something out of your normal day to day but changes can't be made without you. I'm still nervous venturing out and creating my brand and business but I know this is what I want and I have to go for it. Even if you fail AT LEAST YOU TRIED. Never allow yourself to say the should've, could've, would've.

If you want to change your wardrobe, then do it. Trying out things you've never worn before can actually make you love how beautiful you really are. It can help you appreciate and love your body. I recently started wearing eye make up and I was amazed at how it made me feel. Just remember when buying new clothes to make sure you by clothes that fit and complements your frame.

If Losing weight is what you want to do then do it. The first thing is to make sure your losing for the right reasons. Yes we all love our curves but we have to remember to be healthy. I'm on a weight loss journey as well so I cant relate to all of you. Remember to take it easy nothing happens over night.

I just want all of you to start doing everything you are scared to do. Don't let anyone stop you from your dreams because of you size, including yourself. Sometimes people can stand in their own way and that's what we need to overcome. Again I cant say it enough that nothing will change in your life without you making and committing to those changes.

Good luck on your journey :)

(Contact me for support or for any questions)

Love Your Body, She Found a Way To!

She didn't let what people told her or her insecurities stop her....AND YOU CAN DO THE SAME!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, July 9, 2012

My Monday Wellness Check

Good Afternoon Fabulous Ones,

So I don't want to call last week a failure but more of a stepping stone to get myself in the right direction. The only thing I focused on was portion control and serving sizes. That didn't go to well and the reason I think it didn't work well is because I still ate sweets, chips, soda and etc.

My main problem is that I'm an over eater when it comes to those types of things. The more I eat sweets the more I crave them. Although I did cut back, I still ate more than I should have. This just lets me know that I can not include them in my journey to getting healthier. I thought I would still be able to eat small treats here and there, but I was sadly mistaken. I actually don't fell bad about it either. Everything comes from trial and error. I tried to incorporate sweets and it did not work.

So over the weekend I went grocery shopping and I bought myself only healthy foods. The only problem is that my boyfriend, whom I live with, doesn't eat healthy in the slightest. I do however keep his snacks in the cabinet. This will be the hardest thing, not falling for temptation. That is something that I will be determined not to do. I know in order to change my eating habits it starts from me. I'm the only one that can control what I eat. I definitely think I can make it happen.

The goal for this week is to create a healthy eating plan and incorporate exercises. I will have to put the whole house on a schedule because I work and have three small children. I know its possible and I have to get serious in every aspect to make sure I get the results I want. Hopefully this can get you in gears as well. Please contact me if you have any questions about my weight loss plan.

Oh and if your wondering I didn't lose or gain this week.

Peace and Love

America's Perception of Fat and How To Change It.

America's Negative Perception of Fat

We asked national experts how to solve the split between how we think (make me skinny too!) and what we say (don't show us unhealthy models!) -- here's what they want you to know. Their main point: Never forget that feeling well and fit is the key to happiness. It's about movement, being able to do what you want, and maintaining good health. But we're not all there yet, say our experts: "Americans are in denial. We need to begin a journey of mental and physical transformation. We need to recognize that being fit or being a healthy weight is about wellness -- not about a number on the scale. Wellness is a gift you give yourself. Ask yourself, if not now, when are you going to stop searching outside for an answer to how you should look inside?" says Pamela Peeke, MD, a FITNESS advisory board member and author of Body for Life for Women and the new book Fit to Live.

Another problem experts identified: When it comes to our bodies, we're always reaching for that unrealistic brass ring. We can never achieve it, so we think, Why bother, right? "In the U.S. there's a tiny segment of the population -- the super-slim -- that has incredible ability to influence the rest of us. It shouldn't," Martin Binks, PhD, director of behavioral health at Duke University Diet & Fitness Center, told FITNESS. "When it comes to body image, the key is to focus on how you feel, not on the number on the scale. There's a broad range of numbers and weights that are healthy. Some skinny, some heavier. Not just one. Exercising and eating right -- if you do those things, then you're at your healthy weight," says Rene Zweig, PhD, director of eating disorders and weight management at the American Institute for Cognitive Therapy in New York City.

Experts that FITNESS spoke with said that we need to look inward and tackle the problem, mind and spirit. Start by giving yourself a simple definition of wellness and remind yourself of it daily. Wellness means being fit to live, not just to survive but to thrive: eating on a regular schedule, exercising daily (even for just 20 minutes), and not obsessing over the hot diet book or shockingly skinny celeb of the moment.

(Article courtesy of www.fitnessmag.com)

Know the Difference Between Fat and Healthy

American women are hyper-focused on extremes. Have we lost sight of the fact that being fit and healthy is what's important? FITNESS reports.

The Connection Between "Fat" and "Healthy"

We're a pretty sharp group of women in this country. But our ranks are suffering, it seems, from a lack of focus, particularly when it comes to our own health and happiness. Regardless of our size, we all seem to be staring into the mirror feeling too "this" or too "that." This extremism is zapping our ability to see ourselves for who we really are: strong, free to make choices, intelligent, creative, and beautiful. Sure, sometimes we idolize fit women -- Serena Williams and Gabrielle Reece and Hilary Swank -- but more often, we let red-carpet celebs and runway models set standards of beauty without really thinking about how they got the bodies they have. "We hear of beauty inside and out, but I tell you, beauty takes work. Having to work for my new body has made me a stronger person on all fronts. I have worked tirelessly to change my entire state of being -- spiritually," Kirstie Alley told FITNESS recently. "If we are not beautiful to ourselves it would be very difficult for others to view us that way."

This month, wipe your mind clean of your preconceived notions of skinny, fat, or obese -- and start thinking about calorie burning or slimming or toning (whatever your goal!) as crucial to your health. We need to help support the idea of healthy, fit women. There should be a stipulation that if you're healthy and fit, you're a role model. "Regular exercise can reduce stress, stabilize your mood, improve immune function, lower blood pressure, improve cardiac function, boost energy, and improve sleep. And did I mention it can make you feel sexy, strong, and powerful?" says Sarah Harding, Ms. Fitness USA (2004 and 2006) and spokesperson for the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress. "The aesthetic benefit is the icing on the cake."

While loving the way you look is a fine goal, we need to aim for our own personal best (not someone else's image), and recognize that beauty can come in all shapes and sizes. When FITNESS launched its real-women campaign last year, vowing not to put celebrities on the cover but to showcase, instead, real women and athletic models on our pages, we got overwhelmingly positive feedback. Feeling enlightened but in need of more information, FITNESS began further testing of images and headlines: We showed women "get healthy" messages alongside promises of quick weight loss and body toning. Guess what happened? Women overwhelmingly chose the quick fix. It's human nature. It's very American. But, it's a problem.

(Article courtesy of www.fitnessmag.com)