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Healthy Steps Giveaway: Nifty Tools for Healthy Eating!

mmm... citrusy water!

I recently had the good fortune of receiving some very nifty tools from the folks over at Healthy Steps. They sent me some cool serving utensils and also a water infuser, to make water taste yummy and interesting. The water infuser is basically a ball that snaps open, allowing you to put in whatever you want. I put it some tangerine and some Meyer lemon and then popped it into a pitcher of ice water. You can also put in cucumber, mint leaves, strawberries – whatever you can think of to give your H20 a hint of flavor.

Pretty much every spa I have ever gone to serves “fancy water.” It just gives it something special. I have no idea why it never occurred to me to do this at home, but the water infuser has now gotten me inspired. We all need to drink a good amount of water and I am probably among the guiltiest for not really doing this enough. Having fresh fancy water could really help me with this goal.

I also received some nifty serving utensils. They are designed to help you serve up the appropriate servings of food. There’s a protein spatula thing that is just about the same size as the ubiquitous “deck of cards” serving for proteins. There’s a biggish scoop for “vegetables” and a mediumish scoop for “starch.” (<<< I actually thought this word was kind of old school) It doesn’t have an amount like “half cup” or “cup” but it’s just a visual reminder – “This is about right.”

I have been given the opportunity to give away TWO (!) sets of these cool kitchen tools to my awesome blog readers. All you have to do is leave a comment for me here – tell me what you’d flavor YOUR water with – and go to Healthy Steps’ Facebook page. “Like” them and then write a post on their page telling them you came from @Foodie McBody’s giveaway on http://www.foodfoodbodybody.com.  A few words about how much you’d love to try their cool tools probably won’t hurt either! Please RT and spread the word!

Copy and paste this to Twitter:  GIVEAWAY on @foodiemcbody’s blog: Nifty Tools for Healthy Eating http://bit.ly/fY2OAX Please RT!

Deadline: April 1, 2011 Good luck!!!!!!!

 

these could be sitting in YOUR kitchen soon!

I’m climbing stairs. LOTS of them. You could win a quilt.

I’m doing the Fight for Air Stair Climb on Saturday, March 26th (this is going to be the most aerobic weekend of my life!). Part of the deal is that we raise money for the American Lung Assocation.

I have struggled with asthma on and off during my life. It has affected me when my allergies flare up, when I’m not in overall good condition, and just any old time. When my body is stressed, I get asthma.  Nothing is more frightening or upsetting to me than not being able to take a full breath. Which is why this challenge really hits home for me. I am so glad to be raising funds for this organization.

I would love to get support for this climb and this cause. To sweeten the deal, I am throwing in a quilt handmade by my mother, aka Mama McBody. She has been getting all fancy-ish in her latest quilts and this one is a real beauty, don’t you think?

So — everyone who donates at least $10 will be eligible in a random drawing for this quilt. For every $10, you get another chance at it. So if you donate $50 (!!) you get five chances. But as in any random drawing, it could be just one $10 ticket that wins it.  And if I get lots and lots of donations, I might just give away TWO quilts.

Here is my donation page. It’s looking pretty, um, empty right now. Please let’s fill it up! Let’s OVERfill! If you want a chance at the quilt, you have to include your name. (right?)

I used to get short of breath just taking a walk up a slight incline. So to think that I am taking on this physical challenge is a very, very, big deal. Please support me in this personal undertaking and please support the American Lung Assocation.

Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!! oxoxoxo

Homemade Sugary Pecan Goodness Holiday Giveaway!

One of my dearest traditions is making sugared pecans for friends, coworkers, family and random strangers during the holidays. (gave a bag away to a friendly post office worker last week)

I’m ready to send a bag of scrumptiousness to TWO readers TODAY!! They will be chosen tonight and mailed out tomorrow – probably not in time for Christmas, but before the new year.

And here’s the recipe for anybody who doesn’t win. It’s ridiculously easy.

  1. Combine one egg white and one TB water. Beat until foamy.
  2. Add 1 lb pecans (some people like to use walnuts) and coat them until wet.
  3. In separate bowl, combine one cup sugar, one TB cinnamon and one tsp salt.
  4. Pour sugar combo over the wet pecans to coat them.
  5. Spread on greased cookie sheet in shallow layer.
  6. Bake at 275 for 45 minutes. Turn once about halfway through.

VOILA! Yummy yummy amazing holiday goodness!!

To enter the giveaway, leave a comment about YOUR favorite holiday tradition, new or old, or one you’ve heard about and would like to try. Ready, set, go!!!!!

And the winners are….Ashley and Jessie! Send me your snail mail addresses right away and I’ll get your (New Years) nuts to you by next week!

And the winner is….

Emily! Congratulations!

For EVERYONE who entered, I am so incredibly sorry that I could not give one of these to each and every one of you. I truly am. I will be writing lots more about this giveaway later on but I wanted to let you know that I was so moved and compelled by all of your stories. This was a very difficult decision and it does not mean a thing about my belief in your ability to be active and fit. You can do this!!!!! Gadget or not.

Launch Week! Half Marathon Week! YOWWWWW!

He listens! He really listens!

What a week this is!! And it isn’t over! On Sunday, Weight Watchers launched its brand-spanking new PointsPlus program, which I am SO excited about. I have been so so many WW meetings this week and each one has been like a party. One of the most exciting ones was where I got to see the world’s most awesome CEO, aka Dave Kirchhoff, the CEO of Weight Watchers International. He’s been traveling around to different meetings durings launch week and I got wind (thank you Twitter) that he was headed for northern California. (can you say stalker? No, I’m not really- just a huge fan). The thing I admire most

me and the Big (lowfat) Cheese

about Dave K is that he is not only a giant big cheese executive, he is also a humble Weight Watchers member who attends meetings, tracks his food and HAS A HEALTHY LIVING BLOG. He *lives* Weight Watchers, day in and day out. He has struggles and victories. He shares them with us. He spent time really listening to the members in the room, and empathizing and telling us his thoughts. Here are his thoughts on the new PointsPlus program.

I got to launch my big meeting last night. I was SO HYPED UP on adrenaline that by the time the meeting was over, I was a totally limp noodle. My WWBFF and I staggered over to the sushi place next door and toasted the new plan with some miso soup and 007 Sushi roll. (<<< one point per piece! Yeah!)

A lot of people have had some very exciting and articulate responses to the new plan. I’m going to link them here, because I don’t have time to go into a lot of detail (let me just say I LOVE IT) and I also am not at liberty to go into the kind of detail that they do.

I’m excited to see peoples’ reactions after they’ve been following the plan for a while. I think they’re going to be very happy. My members didn’t have a ton of questions so I am very excited to hear their reactions next week.

And now my thoughts turn to Vegas. I’m leaving tomorrow! I have not really done a huge amount of workout since Sunday. I feel like I’ve sort of wrapped myself in bubble wrap because I so do not want to be injured for this race. My heel started some funny business yesterday and I was like Noooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!! and right now it’s doing okay. But I’m feeling aches and twinges and little pains that are jumping around my body in bizarre fashion. Just to freak me out I’m sure.  Anyway, it’s after midnight, I’m still doing laundry, I am not packed and well…. that’s just how it is.

I’m sure I will be checking in again from Vegas but in the meantime I wanted to post a link to Kenz’s 12 Days of Christmas Holiday Swap. I am a total cheeseball for things like this. I encourage any of you to participate as well. I’ve been putting together my dozen gifts and whoever gets paired up withe me is going to love their gift package. I love being a Secret Santa and a Secret Valentine and oh YEAH, a not-so-secret GIVER OF NIFTY FITNESS GADGETS! Remember? the DirectLife Activity monitor giveaway?? Are you in? Because I’m going to pick the winner on MONDAY when I get back from Vegas!

Who Wants a DirectLife monitor?

These people do! The entries for the DirectLife activity monitor giveaway have begun to roll in, and I will be posting/linking to them here. So excited!

I would love to have a DirectLife monitor because it sounds like a tool that truly would help me get healthy. This year I had a wake up call. I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Number one thing I need to do is manage the diabetes by diet and exercise. I have lost 35 pounds since June. But I still have a long ways to go. You may ask what makes me think I will be successful this time. Well in August my son, who is 11, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Along with this he also has epilepsy, tourette syndrome, and learning disabilties. So my wake up call is I need to be on this earth as long as I can so that I can assist him into adulthood. I am 52 years old, and I have to make a change. My son needs me. So, please consider me for a DirectLife monitor —Cindy

  • Emily sent me an email entry, and I’m posting it here.

I was in my best physical shape during high school (last century), and one reason is because I was on sports teams where I had a coach who motivated me daily, whether it was through threats of extra laps in the pool, or encouraging me through charting the progress of my race times.  After going to college, I thought I could be my own coach.  But the older I get, the more realistic I am, and realize things are much harder on my own, whereas with others, even the seemingly impossible is doable (like cleaning my garage, or getting through graduate school).

I’m thankful for the community and the coaching I already receive from my WW group and leader (Susan/Foodie!), as it’s helped me commit to sticking to the road to health no matter how long and winding that road is.  What with all the detours I’ve taken already, I know one thing that will help me stay on course all the more is the DirectLife Activity Monitor.  As a graduate student, I’m on a limited (translation: non-existent) budget, and so visiting a personal trainer at a gym isn’t something I can even consider.  I’ve experienced some success with a pedometer in the past, but what really excites me is that I can wear this while swimming (!!!).  Also, a year’s worth of coaching is something I sorely need, because there’s no fudging here and there, since someone else is looking at my numbers and holding me accountable in a way I know I can’t trust myself to do!  With the Activity Monitor, I hope to work towards my goals, starting with running a mile without stopping, and working towards completing a women’s triathlon before I’m 35.

Lastly, in what may come across as an attempt at shameless flattery, but doesn’t make it less true, if Susan uses a DirectLife Activity Monitor, loves it and recommends it, then I want to try it too!  Seriously, I’ve been inspired by her commitment to health, and come away from every WW meeting and blog entry challenged and excited to continue on this road, and the activity monitor is something I wanted to try, but due to my aforementioned budget (or lack thereof!), I I know I can’t on my own.  So, when I read about the giveaway, I promptly crossed my fingers and thought, “This is my chance!”

Colleen wrote in an email:

1-I’m a fitness instructor.  It would be so cool to wear it and report on my progress to the members I teach at the YMCA here in Eugene, OR.

2-I “removed” 70lbs using WW and now have come back to the program after being gone for 1.5 yrs.  I have tried various ways to track my food and activity, but when you teach aerobics and Pilates for a living, it is really hard to calculate what is your daily “job” activity points vs. what is your actual above and beyond activity points.  By that I mean, on some days I teach and am more energetic or sub for another teacher.  On those days I think I burn more calories.  On other days, I teach but don’t sub for anyone, so is it really a workout since it’s my job?  Should I be burning more calories doing something in addition to teaching?  The body is smart and I think it knows what it’s doing.  I always have trouble tracking activity points, therefore deciding whether I should eat them.  By working out a baseline with the monitor, I would be able to set some goals to increase or change my activity.

3-Health and wellness are my passion.  I am always spending money on shoes, trainings (which run from $100-$500), clothes, books, etc.  It would be awesome to get something for free that I would use to better my personal  health, but that I could share with others (well not let them borrow it or anything!) but talk about it, let them see how it works, etc.  It is such a great price point compared to the bodybugg that I think people could and would purchase one if they knew what it could do for them.

4-If I don’t win, I’ll still luv ya on twitter! J  Thanks for keeping us updated on Twitter about the new plan.  Your enthusiasm is contagious! — Colleen

 

Wow. These are all so compelling! I am not sure how I am going to choose.

DirectLife Activity Monitor GIVEAWAY! (including coaching!)

So you know I am pretty much in love with my DirectLife activity monitor as well as the awesome individual coaching I receive from Coach Jen. She has encouraged me, nudged me, checked up on me, and helped me to keep up with my activity goals. And I know that it has made a huge difference in my health and weight-maintenance life.

Well, the DirectLife folks are pleased that I’m pleased. And they have offered a free activity monitor including a year’s worth of individual coaching to one of my lucky blog readers!!

This is, hands down, the best giveaway I have ever had the opportunity to participate in. It’s HUGE, people! You think a box of ice cream is cool? Well, how about a year of Coach Jen (or one of her colleagues) and the best little piece of jewelry you can own???

Here’s how it will work. This prize is worth so very much more than a random comment. It’s going to take a little effort. This is what you need to do to be considered for this awesome prize.

  • Follow DirectLife (@directlife) on Twitter, and tell them, “I want to win an activity monitor from @foodiemcbody because…” (finish in 140 characters)
  • Visit the DirectLife website and determine if you think it really is a good fit for you. I don’t want to gift this item to anyone who is going to put it in their sock drawer and forget about it.
  • Then you have TWO ways to convince ME. You can record a 2-minute video, or if you are camera shy, write a 250-word blog post on WHY you think a DirectLife activity monitor with coaching will improve your health and life, and why we should choose you. Things you might include: Have you ever tried an activity gadget before? Why do you want this one? How do you intend to reach your daily activity goals?
  • Link to this post on your blog and/or your Facebook page.
  • Post a link to your video or your blog post in a comment HERE. If you do not have a blog, you can email your 250-word statement to foodiemcbody AT hot mail dot com.
  • ANYONE IN THE WORLD is eligible to win this prize! No geographical restrictions! How cool is that.
  • Deadline: Monday, December 6th, 2010 at midnight PST. I will review all entries after I get back from Las Vegas.

Hop, hop, brrrr! Blue Bunny Ice Cream GIVEAWAY!

I was fortunate enough to be contacted recently by the nice bunnies at Blue Bunny Ice Cream. They offered me a sampling of their no-sugar-added frozen yummies to try, given that I have diabetes. Isn’t that nice of them??

I received a giant styrofoam box a few days ago, and there were three packages of ice cream packed in dry ice. Woo! The fun we had with that! Juniorette remarked that the sound of dry ice melting “is comforting, like mermaids talking underwater.” My little poet.

And then came the ice cream. It had arrived on an evening when I’d already had my allotment of dessert goodness, so I didn’t try it. But Juniorette and my mom did. First thing they noticed is that ice cream packed in dry ice is as hard as diamonds.

Ow! Hard!

They could not bite it. They blew on it to try and thaw it out. 

They put it in the microwave for a few seconds, and it got holes in it. But they still gave it the thumbs up.

I waited three more days for it to temper in the freezer. Good plan. Today I took out the three boxes and had a sample of each.

My favorite was the simple, old-fashioned, chocolate ice cream. I don’t often eat chocolate ice cream because I am more a fan of vanilla or coffee (Blue Bunny? Do you have any of that lying around??). I thought this was really good chocolate ice cream: VERY chocolatey, and it didn’t taste nonsugarish weird. I give it a good two thumbs up.

I also got these two kinds of ice cream bars: the Fudge Lite bars and the Krunch Lites. I liked the Krunch Lites very much because I’m pretty much a fan of anything krunchy. The Fudge Lite Bars were pretty good, but out of the three, my least favorite. But I’m not a big fan of the original Fudsicle either, so.

Have you tried Blue Bunny’s no-sugar-added ice cream before? If not, or even if you have, here’s your chance to win some of them. The good folks over at Blue Bunny have offered to send a box of frozen treats out to one of my readers! Woo Hoo!! Here are the details for how you can enter:

  1. Mandatory entry – Leave a comment about your favorite ice cream flavor OR your favorite bunny.
  2. Additional entry if you “like” the Blue Bunny Facebook page and post the following comment on their wall: “I just entered to win some Blue Bunny ice cream at http://www.foodfoodbodybody.wordpress.com.”
  3. Additional entry for following Blue Bunny on Twitter and tweeting about the giveaway using the following text: “Enter to win some no-sugar-added ice cream from @Blue_Bunny & @foodiemcbody!  http://www.foodfoodbodybody.wordpress.com”
  4. Additional entry if you follow me on Twitter (@foodiemcbody) and “like” my Facebook page.

There is a total of 4 possible entries per person for this giveaway. Please leave a separate comment for each entry method you use. The deadline for entry is 9pm PT on Monday, November 15th. A winner will be selected using random.org. The winner will be notified via email, but I will also post the selected winner here on the blog. If the selected winner does not respond (I will need your address so that Blue Bunny can send you the big box!) within 24 hours, an alternate winner will be selected using random.org.

Good luck, bunnies!

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And the winner is…. according to Random.org…. (drum roll please!)

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*

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….. Brandie! Congratulations, Brandie, now please DM me at @foodiemcbody with your address, and I’ll notify Blue Bunny! And remember… LET IT THAW in your freezer for 24 hours before tasting! (I somehow did not see that note in the box! – LOL!)

Gone Fishin’

No, not really fishing. Mostly, teaching. But yes, I’ve been kind of scarce around here. I hope you won’t all forget about me! I’m doing well, just super super busy with my classes.  And other stuff.

  • Mr. McBody and I celebrate being married 21 years ago today! Woo!! Sometimes this just boggles my mind. Where did all that time go? I am thankful that it has been a good, sweet journey, not without its bumps, but we’ve ridden them all so far. I am grateful for his support and his always advocating for my health even when I didn’t advocate for it myself, in fact I was trying to toss it out the window with both hands.  I think we’ll probably go out to a nice dinner, and I will practice my appetizers + wine + 3 bites of dessert method of maintenance. I’ll let you know how that goes.  We also got tickets to a play that has gotten rave reviews and is allegedly romantic. We shall see!
  • I have been WANTING to write a post about the recent brouhaha about Michael Pollan and people accusing him of Fat Hatred. Unfortunately, this is not something I can just zip off in three minutes. I feel like in order to be coherent and really make any sense, I need to do a LOT of reading and then take a lot of time to formulate my thoughts. Of which I have many. If you’d like to read ahead, and get started on this conversation without me, just Google “Michael Pollan fat hatred.” You’ll be busy for a while.
  • I’m going to 4-day intensive WW Leader training starting October 15th! Without giving away any Big Secrets, I’d love to blog that experience.
  • I have a winner in the MizFit “unapologetically myself” T-shirt giveaway! It’s LND, who wrote:

Excuse: I cant work out because that work out scares the shileighleighs out of me.

Response: (Don’t look up the workout before going to the gym…CrossFit changes it daily)

Actually, the response is something along the lines of: If you don’t go you are just cheating yourself. Scale the workout if you have to, but results only happen if you do the work necessary to get there.

I just love that word, “shileighleighs.” OK LND, I’ve emailed you. Hit me up with your mailing address and you will have your MizFit shirt in no time!

I will really try and stop in but it will probably be kind of boring. “I ran.” “I went to Nia.” “I maintained my weight.” 🙂

Seriously though.  This blog has been my lifeline for MONTHS so I do not want to stay away too long. I know once I stop blogging, I might be tempted to get slacky in other ways. Don’t let me do that. Write me and let me know if there’s anything you want me to write about. I respond well to homework.

AND I’ll be here Tuesday night for Biggest Loser liveblogging, without fail.

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