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Archive for the ‘my life’ Category

Weight-Loss and Fitness: My “Choose You” Update

Posted by Catherine Morgan on June 29, 2010

Well, I’m here to admit that I was unsuccessful in my Choose You commitment.  I don’t really consider it a failure though, because I did meet most of my goals.  I’m very happy that I am finally at the point where I am not craving sweets and other junk foods.

I didn’t lose any weight, but I was successful in maintaining my healthier eating habits.  I wasn’t even tempted when my daughter brought back a plate full of deserts when we went out last week.

I have no plans of giving up.  My next Choose You commitment will be to continue my healthy eating while also integrating regular exercise (specifically swimming) into my plan.  Although I hope to lose some weight in conjunction with all of this, I’m not going to hold myself to any number on a scale.  If I lose five pounds that will be a great bonus, but I know the most important thing is that I am choosing a healthier lifestyle for myself.

I recently wrote a post about choosing to see the positive when we are working hard at weight-loss and fitness goals, but not seeing many results.

I find myself in the classic half-full or half-empty mark in my healthy eating plan. I can choose to see my plan as half empty, because I haven’t even lost one pound yet. Or I can choose to see my plan as half-full, because I have had success in eating healthier foods and avoiding sugar. In other words, I can choose to feel good about myself or choose to feel like a failure. It’s totally up to me. And I’ve decided to try something new, “choose” to feel good about myself and take a closer look at all the ways I’ve been successful.

Although I haven’t lost any weight yet, I have had the strength and willpower to maintain healthy eating habits (and give-up sugar) for over six weeks.  In my book, that’s success.

Anyway, that’s my story.  I’ll let you know more about my new commitment next week.

Posted in about me, body image, dieting, Health, life, my life, nutrition, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Win a $100 Visa Gift Card by Playing BlogHer’s Scavenger Hunt.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on April 14, 2010

Find out what BlogHer was a guest on Oprah, who played cards with Brad Pitt, and who had their first kiss with Scott Baio.    HINT:  One of them was me.

In the spirit of their newly launched Fun and Games section, BlogHer has cooked up a Scavenger Hunt using some of your jaw-dropping profile facts. Playing is fun and easy, and we’re giving away cash prizes, natch.

Here’s how it works:

  • Read (and marvel!) at each fun fact about a BlogHer.
  • Tell us which amazing BlogHer the fact belongs to. We make it easy by giving you just two links to BlogHer profiles. Follow each link, read both surprising facts and then answer (links will open in a new window, so you won’t lose your place on the entry form).

If you score 100 percent correct answers, you’ll be entered in a random drawing to win one of ten $100 Visa gift cards. Late to the game? No worries, we’re leaving this open until Tuesday, April 20th, at 5 p.m. Pacific. Read the official rules here.

Go here to playScavenger Hunt:  Scott Baio Was My First Kiss Edition

Posted in about me, bloggers, BlogHer, life, lifestyle, my life, personal, Women, women blogging | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

My Bday List: A resolution to better health in 2010.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on January 7, 2010

My new years resolution is about doing everything I can do to have more birthdays.  At the moment the one thing that could keep me from doing that, is my blood pressure.  I’ve had blood pressure and heart rate problems since my twenties, but now in my forties, I know I’m at a much greater risk for having a heart attack or stroke.  So this year I plan on taking specific steps to hopefully lower my blood pressure.  Like Morra Arrons-Mele, I would like to make these changes holistically.  I’m still planning to take my medications, but even on medication my blood pressure is still not controlled.

Here are the steps I plan to take in 2010…

1.  Continue to eat healthy, but kick it up a notch.

2.  Reduce stress by using meditation and Reiki on a regular basis.

3.  Get the Wii Fit and begin doing light exercising and yoga.

I’ll keep track of my progress by documenting my blood pressure and the days I’ve used any of the above steps.

Well, that’s my “more birthdays list.”  I hope you’ll join me at the American Cancer Society’s Official Birthday Blog, by sharing a list of your own.  You can also easily share you list on Facebook and Twitter here.

Posted in blog, blogging, blood pressure, cancer, chronic illness, empowerment, Health, heart disease, inspirational, life, my life, self-help, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Miley Cyrus Encouraging Youth To Do Good – video

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 29, 2009

My daughter Nicole, who is a big Miley Cyrus fan, heard about a project Miley was supporting called Get UR Good On.  As soon as she heard about it, she wanted to get involved.  The idea was to do something good in your community, video it, and then upload it onto the Get UR Good On website to encourage others to do the same.

*read full post and see video at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in current events, empowerment, family, feminism, inspirational, kids, life, media, motherhood, music, my life, news, personal, teens, Women, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Bloggers For More Birthdays – My Friend Becky

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 15, 2009

I’m honored to be a member of the American Cancer Society’s Blogger Advisory Council, a small group of volunteers that advises the Society on its social media strategy. Part of our mission is to help spread the word that we have power in the fight against cancer. And our first step is to build awareness and encourage women to get involved. Visibility equals power! So we have started a blog “chain” to spread the word among women bloggers. We call it Bloggers for More Birthdays.

You can help me…Join Bloggers for More Birthdays by dedicating a blog post to someone you love who’s been affected by cancer. It’s a simple way to celebrate those you love. Just write a post (like I’ve done here), host our badge, and know that whatever you write, you are helping to raise awareness and inspiring others to join American Cancer Society in the fight against cancer.

Here is my contribution to the Bloggers for More Birthdays Campaign…

Becky was my best friend.  A wonderful mother.  And a great mom-mom.  Even though she’s been gone for over seven years, a day rarely goes by that I don’t think of her and wish she were here.  Time has helped to replace some of my grief with many lovely memories, but it hasn’t healed my anger towards the disease that took her from us.  Cancer.

I hate cancer, and I hate that my friend didn’t get a chance to be a survivor.  Why her?  She deserved to be a survivor, she deserved to have more birthdays.  She fought this disease with every ounce of strength she had, but in the end cancer took away every ounce of strength she had.

Although I’m angry, I’m also grateful for the time I did have Becky in my life.  She was there for me during some very tough times.  I know I’m who I am today, partly because of her influence in my life.  I only wish I was able to thank her for that.

No matter how much time goes by, I will never forget the angel she was…and still is.

Becky

If you’ve posted, let The American Cancer Society know so they can feature it! Just put a link to your post in the comments section here, or email your post to bloggersubmit@officialbirthdayblog.com.  You’ll be showing your support for More Birthdays and bring visibility to your blog.

Posted in awareness, bloggers, breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, current events, friends, grief, Health, life, motherhood, my life, parenting, personal, reflections, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Diet: Tips For Avoiding Sugar During Halloween

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 15, 2009

Avoiding Candy Cravings During Halloween and Sticking To A Healthy Diet

halloween candyI have been successfully off of sugar since my post Conquering Sugar Addiction:  The First Step Towards A Healthy Diet (and the toughest), but I know I am always just one bite of a brownie away from falling off the wagon.  And now there is another huge temptation – Halloween.  It seems like everywhere I go I am faced with those giant bags of Halloween candy.  The next few weeks are going to be a real test of my new-found willpower.

It’s nice to know I’m not the only one struggling with Halloween candy temptations.

*Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in about me, body image, dieting, food, Health, kids, life, motherhood, my life, nutrition, parenting, personal, self-help, weight loss, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lose Weight, Boost Immune System, and Increase Energy with Isagenix

Posted by Catherine Morgan on September 24, 2009

I recently posted this on my Living With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome blog, but I thought it would be good here too.

I don’t normally recommend products on my blogs, but as a person suffering with chronic illness I know how important it is to share information that could benefit others. I started using these products about a year ago, in the hope of boosting my immune system, and increasing my energy. I believe it has done both of these things and more, I just feel so much better on the days that I use this product than on the days I don’t.

This product has the potential of benefiting your health in so many ways…And for anyone looking to generate an income, the company also offers a very simple way to do that too.

These products have really increased my quality of life.

It’s by a company called Isagenix. They have many products but I’ve been using three.

The first one is a nutritional shake. They come in Vanilla and Chocolate (and they actually taste good). Even though it is “technically” a meal replacement, I often use it as a supplement between healthy meals.

isagenix-isalean-shake

The shake contains 23 grams of the highest quality New Zealand whey and casein protein from grass-fed cows with no added hormones or antibiotics, as well as filling fiber, calcium and vitamins to support the body’s vital functions.

This perfectly balanced shake also contains Ionic Alfalfa™, our proprietary blend of 70 super-charged minerals, trace minerals and alfalfa juice. Active enzymes in each serving helps maximize the absorption of key nutrients.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in about me, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, dieting, food, Health, life, lifestyle, my life, nutrition, personal, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Birthdays: How Do They Make You Feel?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on September 22, 2009

birthdaycupcakeBirthdays:  How do they make you feel?

Today is my birthday.  Should I be stressed because I’m getting (and looking) older?  Or should I be grateful for the opportunity to have another year of life?

I know the politically correct answer is – be grateful.  But truthfully, it’s more of a mixed bag for me.  I admit that I like it when people tell me that I don’t look my age (even when I know they are probably lying).  But at the same time, I really am thankful for every day of my life.  And overall, I’m more grateful for turning 23 33 43 than stressed about getting older.

This summer I was honored to be asked to become part of The American Cancer Society’s Blogger CouncilThe American Cancer Society is trying to change the way women think about their birthdays through their More Birthdays Campaign

To most people, birthdays are just a reminder that they’re getting older. But at the American Cancer Society, “Happy Birthday” is a victory song, because a world with less cancer is a world with more birthdays. And that’s definitely something to celebrate.

More than 11 million Americans who have survived cancer—and countless others who have avoided it—will celebrate a birthday this year, thanks to the progress we’re making together to help people stay well and get well, to find cures, and fight back.

So I’ve declared The American Cancer Society the official sponsor of my birthday.  Here is the link to my American Cancer Society Birthday Page

http://main.acsevents.org/goto/catherinemorgan

Let me know what you think, and feel free to also leave a small donation to The American Cancer Society.

Women blogging about birthdays

READ FULL POST AT CATHERINE-MORGAN.COM

Posted in about me, BlogHer, body image, cancer, chronic illness, Health, life, my life, personal, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Tips For Avoiding Getting Sick at BlogHer or Whenever You Travel

Posted by Catherine Morgan on July 21, 2009

Are you going to BlogHer ’09?  Sadly, I won’t be able to make it this year.  But, if you’re planning on flying to Chicago (or anywhere else for that matter), you might be worried about getting sick.  If so, I can totally understand.  Because after my first BlogHer Conference in 2007 I ranted about how sick I got from flying, and in 2008 I blogged about coming down with the dreaded Post BlogHer Bola Virus.

It’s not just BlogHer, I seem to get sick whenever I travel. So even though I can’t make it to Chicago this year, I thought I would share my recently discovered tips about avoiding getting sick while flying.

Here goes.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in bloggers, BlogHer, current events, Health, life, my life, parenting, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Chronic Illness: Claims Of Cures Are Often Scams.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on May 18, 2009

Chronic Illness:  Claims Of Cures Are Often Scams.

Do you suffer from a chronic illness with no known cure?  Like Multiple Sclerosis, Lupus, or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?   If so, you probably wish every day that you could find a cure and finally be healthy and well.

Why is it that just about every illness without a medically proven cure, has loads of people “claiming” to know the cure?  Not only is it disingenuous to promote cures to desperate people suffering with chronic illness, but it also minimizes the seriousness of these conditions.

For instance, I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), and many people believe the cure for this condition is as simple as getting more sleep (and oddly enough, more exercise).  Guess what?  CFS has nothing to do with how much sleep someone gets, and exercise often exacerbates Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  There is no cure for what I have, but the Internet is full of sites that claim to have “sell” the cure.  Don’t get me wrong, I believe that there are many alternative modalities of  healing that can benefit the symptoms of this disease, but they should not be mistaken for (or touted as) cures.

From Pamela Rice Hahn – It’s All In Your Head

Anyone who copes with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) or Fibromyalgia (FM) knows there are people out there with all sorts of theories about what’s wrong with them. We’ve heard it all: You’re just depressed. If you’d exercise more, you’d feel better. The insulting “it’s all in your head.” And on and on.

The worst insult is probably: Everybody gets tired.

We know that! Before we got sick, we just got tired, too.

I’m not the only women suffering with chronic illness that is frustrated by false claims of cures.

Here is a quick video of what it is like to live with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome…

From MSMazeMultiple Sclerosis & Mutual Support

Apparently, I’m the voice of doom because I caution my fellow MSers to be wary of scams touting “cures“ for MS. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been offered the cure for MS, I could retire. Unfortunately, these scams are intended to make a buck off our hope. I don’t mean to rob anyone of hope. In fact, I’m filled with hope at recent medical breakthroughs. I stand by my advice… be wary of cures that land in your email inbox and always perform due diligence.

Kristie from X-Out MS – MS and My Diet

There is a LOT of information floating around the internet on miracle diet cures – and amazing detoxification methods that will supposedly ‘cure’ multiple sclerosis.

While it may be somewhat exciting and offer some much needed hope for people that live with this disease – I have to be honest and say that some of the things these people are touting are really quite scary and offers a very false sense of hope and expectation. I can assure you that if any one of the people actually had a true and viable cure for this disease – it would have a whole lot more attention than an occasional blip on an internet search engine! Additionally, they would be shouting their findings from the mountain top – eager to share it with everyone they could find – and not charge $29.95 for the ‘e-book’!

Quite honestly (if you can’t tell already) most of these people completely disgust me.

From Stacy Stone at Chronic Illness 101 – Lessons in Chronic Illness

If someone proclaims they have the cure, they would be famous and everyone would be cured. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

So…How do you protect yourself from false claims of medical cures?  You can start by knowing the signs of false health claims

To avoid becoming a victim of health fraud, consumers should learn how to evaluate health-related claims.

First, watch out for websites that offer quick and dramatic cures for serious diseases.

Consumers should be wary of statements that the product is a quick and effective cure-all or a diagnostic tool for a wide variety of ailments. For example, “Beneficial in treating cancer, ulcers, prostate problems, hepatitis, heart trouble and more…”

To be safe, avoid products that suggest the product can treat or cure diseases. “Shrinks tumors, cures impotency…”

Question promotions that use words like “scientific breakthrough,” “miraculous cure,” “secret ingredient” and “ancient remedy.”

–read full article at Haleakala Times

Also See:

From Fraud Files Blog – MLM Scheme, Mannatech Pays Millions For False Claims of Cures.

From The Daily WD – Daily Dose: Cheerios  and Cholesterol

One Lesson From A Decade of Fighting Chronic Illness

Don’t Be Fooled By Produces Claiming To Cure Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Posted in about me, BlogHer, cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, depression, Health, life, my life, opinion, thoughts, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Healthy Fast Food? Help…I’m Addicted To The Angry Whopper!

Posted by Catherine Morgan on April 23, 2009

Is there a such thing as “healthy” fast food?

I think if you work hard at it, it is possible to eat healthy at some fast food restaurants.  But to do this you also have to find the willpower to see those giant pictures of burgers and fries all around, and still choose to buy the less attractive healthy item.  It’s not always easy, and recently it’s become a real problem for me.

After doing well at making healthy food choices and even losing weight, a few weeks ago I fell off the wagon.  It’s so bad that I am actually afraid to get on the scale to see the extent of the damage.  The crazy thing is, I’m not a fast food junkie (or at least I never was), but something called an Angry Whopper is turning me into a total addict.   Seriously, I feel totally out of control.  The worst part is, it was just a whim that I even tried this stupid thing in the first place, and every day since I have been wishing I could turn back time and replay that decision.

angry-whopper

I really need to get a handle on this, and even though I know it is sooooo bad for me to eat these things, something is just not clicking.  Ironically, it was about two years ago that I developed a similar problem with a Natcho Cheese Chalupa at Taco Bell.  I think the turning point for me with the Chalupa was when I actually looked up the nutritional value (or lack there of).

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in about me, BlogHer, blood pressure, body image, chronic illness, dieting, food, Health, heart disease, life, lifestyle, my life, nutrition, thoughts, weight loss, Women, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Valerie Bertinelli Inspiring Women To Lose Weight At Any Age

Posted by Catherine Morgan on April 3, 2009

Valerie Bertinelli’s Weight Loss:  Inspiring or Controversial?

Last week I watched Valerie Bertinelli and Marie Osmond on the Oprah Winfrey Show talking about their personal weight loss success stories, and I found both stories to be very inspirational.  As most of you already know, I’ve been struggling with my weight for several years now.  And for that reason, I find myself easily able to relate to these two women.  After watching that show I felt more motivated then ever to continue eating healthy and losing weight.  I don’t think I was alone, but as always, there was also a backlash.

READ FULL POST HERE

Posted in about me, BlogHer, blood pressure, body image, chronic illness, coaching, daughters, dieting, empowerment, family, feminism, happiness, Health, heart disease, inspirational, life, lifestyle, my life, news, nutrition, opinion, personal, self-help, success, thoughts, weight loss, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

NuFace: Now anyone can look younger and reduce wrinkles.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on March 25, 2009

Did I Find The Fountain of Youth?

Do you “feel” your age?  What’s your age suppose to feel like anyway?  I’m not sure how I am suppose to be feeling at forty-something,  but I am feeling more and more like I’m “looking” my age.

The thing is…I don’t care enough about how I look to ever go under the knife and have plastic surgery, but I do care enough to wonder about other ways I might be able to maintain a youthful appearance as the years tick by.

Well, several weeks ago (January 1st to be exact), I decided to Google non-surgical face-lifts.  Most of what came up on that search were remedies and treatments available at spas and cosmetic surgery offices.  But I was really looking for something I could do myself and wouldn’t cost me a fortune to maintain.  I ended up becoming interested in a micro-current devise called NuFace.

What is a microcurrent facial?

Just how does microcurrent facial toning work? To understand that, we first need to understand what causes our facial skin to wrinkle and sag. As we age, our muscles become accustomed to certain expressions and tend to “stick” in these positions. A great example of this is the furrow between the eyebrows that many people get. At the same time, other muscles in our face are hardly ever used, and they begin to atrophy, which leads to sagging. An example of this can often be seen around our jaw lines, chins and necks where we tend to develop sagging or loss of definition as we get older.

Microcurrent facial toning machines sends safe, painless impulses to the muscles in your face that help overly-tightened muscles to relax and helps under worked muscles to regain strength. In essence, microcurrent facial toning “re-educates” the facial muscles and restores them back almost to their original shape.

When this happens the visible results are quite dramatic and the face is lifted, firmed and toned back to a much more youthful appearance. At the same time, the microcurrents improve circulation to your face which stimulates production of collagen, improves tone and texture, and improves or eliminates fine lines.

The NuFace seemed very easy to use and compared to the cost of having this type of treatment done at a spa or doctors office, reasonably priced.

So…I contacted a representative at NuFace, and they were kind enough to send me the product to try.  I had no idea what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised.  It was very simple to use, there was no discomfort at all, and my face really did feel firmer after the first time I used it.  Here are my before and after photos…

This is my before pic…

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in about me, BlogHer, body image, Health, life, lifestyle, my life, NuFace, opinion, personal, photos, reviews, self-help, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Is It Possible To Love Yourself Healthy?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on February 1, 2009

Do You Hate or Love Your Body?  Is It Possible To Love Yourself Healthy?

A long time ago I read a book called Love Yourself Thin.  The idea of the book was that if you love and appreciate your body, choosing to feed it healthy foods would come naturally.  It also emphasized the importance of loving our bodies just the way they are…even suggesting you stand naked in front of a mirror and replace negative self talk with positive self talk.  Even though I never tried that, it did make me notice how many times in one day I was passing my reflection and telling myself I was fat or ugly (more than I could count).

So the idea of loving ourselves healthy isn’t a new concept.  But it is something that most of us are neglecting to practice.

When we choose to eat healthy out of love for our bodies, we are able to let go of the negative aspects of weight and appearances.  We no longer have to hate our bodies into going on starvation diets.  Instead, we can love our bodies into making healthy food choices.

The first step in loving yourself healthy is to STOP JUDGING YOURSELF and your appearance.  If you can’t say something nice about yourself…Don’t say anything at all. This is a great opportunity to recognize your negative self talk and begin to practice positive affirmations.  Check out this website where you can randomly pick a wisdom card by Louise Hay.

The next step is to start treating your body like you love it (even if you don’t).  Try making food choices that reflect your desire to fuel your body with nourishing and healthy foods.

Leslie Karen Lobell – Learning To Love Yourself

One way to learn to love yourself is to act as if you already do (i.e., “Fake it till you make it”). An important way to love yourself is to nourish and care for your body: eat healthy foods and exercise regularly.

Healthy Eating Tips from Love Your Body Love Yourself at Women’s Healthcare Empowerment Now

  • Make stir-fry using a little chicken, some veggies, some seasoning all in one pan; and you have a healthy meal.
  • Carry nuts, fruit, string cheese (part skim mozzarella), low-fat yogurt, or hard-boiled eggs with you for healthy snacks.
  • If other people in the house eat junk food, put it all in one cabinet and start eating less of it.
  • Make a healthy grocery list and don’t buy the junk (chips, etc.).
  • Avoid foods with the word “hydrogenated” on the label, or look for foods that say “no trans fats”.
  • Avoid deep fat fried foods like french fries.
  • Eat throughout the day. If you don’t eat much all day you are more likely to binge at night.
  • Eat something with a lot of fiber, like a salad, before your meal; it will make you feel less hungry.
  • If you find you frequently eat for emotional comfort, think of other things you could substitute, like a warm bath, or your favorite music.
  • You can be a good example for your children and teach them to eat healthy foods along with you. This may change their lives for the better now, and help them be more likely to eat healthfully as adults.

Love and Health Go Hand in Hand

If we really and truly care for ourselves, we would take good care of these bodies that are taking us through life.This minor revelation helped me change my negative thoughts about myself as I was writing. I realized that I usually do love myself enough to eat healthy foods which contribute to my being exceptionally healthy most of the time.

Suzanne Reizman – Would The American Economy Collapse If Women Stopped Hating Their Natural Appearance?

How many companies rely on us feeling crappy about our bodies to sell more product? If we all loved our bodies the way they are, douche companies wouldn’t be the only ones going out of business–the diet, health & beauty, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic surgery industries would suffer as well!

Think of the money we could save if we loved ourselves and accepted our bodies in their natural state.

LoveYourBody.org

Thick thighs. Narrow hips. Thick lips. Thin ones. Big nose, small boobs. Flat butt, fat butt. Dark skin, light skin. You got what ya got. Can you find the courage to love it all…right now?

So…Do you see a connection between how you feel about your body and how you treat your body?    Do you love your body or hate it?

If you hate it, are you willing to try loving it for a little while?

Do you catch yourself saying judgmental and negative things to yourself all day?  Do you think you could stop?

Also See:

Contributing Editor Catherine Morgan
at Catherine-Morgan.com and  Women4Hope

Posted in BlogHer, blood pressure, body image, books, chronic illness, dieting, empowerment, family, food, happiness, Health, heart disease, inspirational, life, lifestyle, motherhood, my life, nutrition, self-help, success, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Tao of Good Health & Weight Loss

Posted by Catherine Morgan on January 15, 2009

A few weeks ago I was flipping through the million channels on my TV trying to find just one thing worth watching (which isn’t an easy task).  Luckily I found Dr. Wayne Dyer on PBS.

I read my first book by Dr. Wayne Dyer (Real Magic) about twelve years ago, and I’ve been hooked ever since.  So when I watched his seminar on PBS that was based on his latest book, of course I had to run out the next day and buy it.  This one is called Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life, and it’s his interpretation of the 81 verses of the Tao.

tao[The Tao Te Ching was written five hundred years before the birth of Jesus, and offers advice and guidance for living a balanced life.]

As I read, I came across aspects of this wisdom that are helpful in my quest for better health and weight loss.  So, even though I’m no philosopher (obviously), I thought I would share some verses that stood out for me.  They offer guidance for healthy living and even weight loss.  Here are three.

[Keep in mind that I am only pulling the parts of these verses that I find most relevant to good health, this is by no means a complete look at any of these verses.]

Verse 9Living HumilityTo keep on filling is not as good as stopping.

This verse is interesting in how it relates to healthy eating and weight loss.  It’s telling us to eat, but to stop when we’re full.  Eat until your hunger is satisfied, and no more.  That’s pretty good advice, I wonder how many of us actually follow it?

It also tells us that we should seek joy and pleasure in the activities we are doing.  In order to do this, we need to slow down and enjoy our lives (and our meals).

Here is a way you can begin to practice this idea during your next meal.  Enjoy each bite of your meal.  After a couple of bites take a moment to reflect on how you are feeling and determine if you are full.  Once your hunger is satisfied, stop eating.

Verse 63Living Without Difficulties Take on difficulties while they are still easy.

This verse can relate to how most of us see weight loss as being difficult or a struggle.  It encourages us to see the simplicity in the things we perceive to be hard.  You can do this by taking one day at a time, or one meal at a time, or one moment at a time.  Break down your biggest challenges into smaller, more manageable ones.

It also reminds us to tackle problems in our life before they become big problems.  In my case, it would have been better to begin eating healthy when I was only 10-20 pounds overweight.  Rather than waiting until I was 40+ pounds overweight and my blood pressure was so high that I required medication.

You can practice this idea by taking time to recognize whether your weight or eating habits are suffering because you fear the problem is too difficult to address.  If this is the case, believe in your ability to tackle the problem one day (or one meal) at a time…It need not be difficult.

Verse 71Living Without SicknessOnly when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick.

As someone who suffers with chronic illness, the notion of healing ourselves implies that we make a choice to be sick or to be well.  And I just don’t believe that.  But this verse isn’t about blame.  It’s about being aware.  Basically, our symptoms are our body’s way of talking to us, and we need to take the time to listen.

Could fatigue be a message to slow down and get more rest?  Could high blood pressure be a message to make healthier food choices and lose some weight?  Could a headache be a message that we are allowing stress and worry to steal moments of our life that we can never get back?

Possibly.

Each symptom may mean something different to each person.  The goal is simply awareness.

I think with chronic illness, it’s also about how we “perceive” it.  We may need to accept our illness, while still listening to our symptoms and striving to be the healthiest version of ourselves that we can be.  Remember that we are not our body, so we can stop seeing ourselves as our illness.

Practice this idea by taking some time to listen to what your symptoms may be trying to tell you.

So…What do you think?  Could the Tao help you find your way to better health?  Can changing your thoughts change your life? Let me know in comments.

Also See:

From The Goddess’s Daily Groove: Gratitude List

From My Life Coach Tara: The Tao of Inner Peace

Power of Focused Attention

Posted in awareness, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, dieting, empowerment, faith, food, happiness, Health, inspirational, life, lifestyle, my life, nutrition, self-help, spiritual, success, thoughts, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I Lost 29 Pounds, 15 More To Go…My Personal Diet and Exercise Plans For The New Year.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on January 8, 2009

Last year around this time I came to the realization that I was at my highest weight ever.  I knew I was overweight, but when I checked my BMI I was shocked to realize that I had actually tipped into the “obese” category.  My BMI was 30.8 and anything over 30 is considered obese. It was at that moment that I decided I needed to make a drastic lifestyle change.  But hardcore dieting really isn’t my thing, so I started a “pre-diet” to ease myself into weight loss.

By the end of the year, my healthy eating had paid off, and I had lost 29 pounds [insert happy dance here].  Anyway, it took almost a year, but my BMI is down to 25.7 (overweight is considered to be between 25 and 29.9).  So I’m still a few pounds away from being considered “normal weight”, but I’m more determined than ever to get there.

If I lose 15-20 more pounds, that will put me smack in the middle of what’s considered to be a normal and healthy weight (a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9).  So that’s my goal for the new year, and it’s time for me to start a real diet.  But what diet?  There are so many.

I decided to try using a Health Tracker that I found online.  Each day I can record my weight along with the food (calories) I eat, and keep track of every aspect of my diet.  I also decided that I would take advantage of the sales on pre-packaged diet meals that we always see right after the holidays.  I ended up getting Lean Cuisines for 50% off, and paid between $1.45 and $1.85 per meal.  This is working great for me because it’s easy to keep track of calories, quick to prepare when I’m hungry, and I have a lot of choices so I don’t feel deprived.  I’m also still using Isagenix supplements and shakes for added nutrition.

Since January 1st I’ve lost 3.5 pounds, and I’m now less than one pound away from not being overweight – woohoo.

I also found a great deal on a Bally Total Fitness – Core Sculpting System that was on a clearance table a few days after Christmas…Now I just have to watch the DVD and figure out how to use it.

So that’s my plan, and I’m sticking to it. Do you have a plan for healthy living in 2009?  Let me know in comments, or at the 2009 Good Health-A-Thon.

Contributing Editor Catherine Morgan
at Catherine-Morgan, Capessa Health, Women4Hope

Posted in body image, dieting, empowerment, food, happiness, Health, inspirational, life, my life, nutrition, personal, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Dieting & Weight-Loss: I have a love/hate relationship with my scale.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on May 31, 2008

I HAVE A LOVE/HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH MY SCALE — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

About eight weeks ago I posted about how I started a pre-diet. I was trying to get reacquainted with the taste of healthy foods, and wean myself off of sugar. As far as that goes, I feel like I’m doing pretty well, I’ve even lost some weight. At the time of the post I had lost about six pounds, and since then I have lost another six. I’m now down 12 pounds from my heaviest weight ever (not counting when I was pregnant), I know because that’s what my scale says. If it wasn’t for my scale I wouldn’t believe I’ve lost any weight at all, so for that reason, I love my scale. However, I also hate that the number is still so high. And, I hate that even after losing 12 pounds, I still have almost 30 to go.

But, it’s always a better idea to focus on the positive, so that’s what I’ll try to do.

First, I have finally gotten over the sugar hump, and I’m not craving sugar the way I used to. I even made my world famous chocolate brownie cake with my daughter, and wasn’t tempted to eat any of it. That’s a pretty big deal for me. I’ve also stopped eating junk food, and I’ve stopped eating late at night (for the most part). Another thing I do, is always keep several bags of vegetables, and microwavable diet entrees in my freezer, for when I need a quick meal.

My daughter has been a great help by not asking me to buy cookies and ice-cream when we go shopping. It’s amazing how much easier it is to avoid eating junk, when it’s not in the house. Instead of ice-cream with chocolate sauce, she is now happy to get no sugar added ice-pops, and low-fat granola bars. We also had the opportunity to try something new. Skinny Cow sent us two boxes of Skinny Dippers, and they are very yummy (and only 80 calories). We both love mint chocolate chip ice-cream, so the mint Skinny Dippers were are favorite.

So, that’s what I’ve been up to for the last several weeks. I’m not putting a lot of pressure on myself, and I’m not starving myself. I guess what I’m doing could be called a diet, but I’m sticking with calling it a pre-diet for now. Once I hit a plateau, and I’m not continuing to lose weight, I’ll kick it up a notch and go on an actual diet. For now, this is working for me, so why mess with it?

Have you been trying to lose some weight? How much do you want to lose? Have you been having any luck? What kind of things have been working for you? Are you calling it a diet?

Other bloggers dieting

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Posted in dieting, Health, life, my life, nutrition, RECIPES, thoughts, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , | 5 Comments »

Healthy Living: Motivation, Dieting, Yoga, and (hopefully) Success

Posted by Catherine Morgan on February 25, 2008

Healthy Living: Motivation, Dieting, Yoga, and (hopefully) Success – by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer Health and Wellness)

Successful Healthy Living – How I’ve change my life through motivation, dieting, and yoga.

Well, not really. It sounds like a good plan though. The truth is…I have no motivation, I haven’t been able to stick to a diet in years, and yoga is just another four letter word to me. When if comes to healthy living…I’m slowly but surly becoming the poster child (middle-aged woman) for unhealthy living.

So, I started this post thinking I might find some motivation to stop eating so much ice-cream and cookies. And then I came across this…

Big Fat DealDiet Motivation!

We all know there are people who bitch at their fat spouses for gaining weight, and gym owners who berate and shame fat people. And don’t forget random people on the street who yell things and throw garbage at the overweight and obese. In case that just isn’t motivating enough for you, we now have the talking “diet tile” that you put on the floor in front of the fridge.

Humiliation every time I take a step toward the refrigerator? Not exactly what I had in mind.

I do like the idea of changing my goal from losing weight, to living healthy to 100.

Diet PulpitChanging My Goal

I am changing my goal officially (see near top of right side bar under photo) from a goal of healthy weight of 140 lbs to a long term goal of Living Healthy to 100 and beyond.

Who wants to join me in setting their goal for a Fabulous, Awesome, Tenacious and Healthy life (a.k.a. F.A.T. Attitude) instead of worrying over numbers on the scale?

It’s an excellent idea. But, who am I kidding? I couldn’t even make it to 30 being healthy, and now (don’t tell anybody) I’m even older than that. I know…It’s hard to believe.

As I continued to surf the BlogHer Health and Wellness blogroll, I came across this post on yoga…

Sister SkinnyWhat’s Up With Yoga

So, anyone want to convince me yoga is the perfect thing for me right now? Want to tell me why you love it? Or have you (like me) had some not-so-fantastic experiences with the whole thing? I’m curious about the general yoga consensus among our readers…(see 40 comments on yoga)

And then, I remembered reading this interesting post…

Frances Ellen SpeaksHatha Yoga Or A Pedicure

I got it into my head that I should try yoga. Pretty much, the only things I know about yoga are, it’s a form of relaxation, it helps with flexibility, it’s good for one’s balance and it doesn’t require me to bounce around too much.

I had one problem with the yoga class; it’s held at my local hospital for the 55+ gang on Tuesday evenings and, as it happened, I had an appointment to get a pedicure last Tuesday. Pretty much, what I know about pedicures is it’s a form of relaxation, your feet and legs receive a massage and it, too, requires no bouncing.

Hmm. What to choose, what to choose…

What would you choose? A pedicure is sounding pretty good to me right now. I guess I’m not doing so great in the “motivation” area. And, isn’t that the only way I’ll ever be successful in my quest for health living? I know. I know. Maybe I’ll start being motivated on Monday.

For even more on yoga…

Yoga Chickie

Yoga Gumbo

What I really want to know is…

Can I do yoga while sitting on the couch with my lap-top? It sure would be nice if I could lose weight doing that too.

Contributing Editor Catherine Morgan
CatherineBlogs, The Political Voices of Women, Care2 Election Blog

Posted in about me, blogging, BlogHer, body image, chronic illness, dieting, food, Health, heart disease, life, lifestyle, my life, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health, yoga | 6 Comments »

Birthdays and Aging: Do they make you happy or sad?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on September 25, 2007

Birthdays and Aging — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

Every twelve months or so we all go through it, that time of year that some of us may loath and others may love…Yes, I’m talking about the “B” word. How do you feel on that one day a year? Are you happy? Depressed? Angry? Ambivalent? All of the above? Is every year different? Are some numbers easier to reach than others?

If it’s possible to be bi-polar when it comes to your birthday, then that’s my diagnosis. Sometimes I’m happy, sometimes I’m sad, sometimes I feel like I’m getting more mature, and sometimes I just feel like I’m getting more old. I imagine I’m not the only birthday girl that feels this way at times, so I thought we could take some time to examine the emotional side of birthdays and getting older.

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Posted in blogging, BlogHer, happiness, Health, life, my life, reflections, thoughts, Women | 6 Comments »

Braces: Vanity or Necessity?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on August 21, 2007

https://i1.wp.com/www.readexpress.com/read_freeride/photos/2006-10-24-Braces_II.jpg image from

Braces: Vanity or Necessity? — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

I have a feeling I am going to take a lot of heat for this post. I’m going to tell you about braces and orthodontics, but I’m also going to talk about my personal opinion, and that always seems to get me into some hot water.

I have been told on more than one occasion that both of my children need braces. But, I’ve never actually taken either of them to an Orthodontist. The reason I never took them was; I have heard from many friends that when you take your child to the Orthodontist it is “free”, but once you are there you are basically put on-the-spot to make a decision to get the braces, or be charged for the visit. So, if you decide to agree to a payment plan at that moment, you avoid having to pay the $150.00 (or so) consultation fee. Bargain. Personally, I don’t know one person that has taken their child to an Orthodontist and didn’t leave convinced they needed to get the braces. Since I didn’t have the money, even for payment plans, I figured avoidance of this particular office would be my best bet. I also think that even though my children’s teeth may not be considered “perfect”, they look just fine.

I’m not saying that I recommend this “avoidance” method for all parents, I know that there are many instances when braces are an “obvious” necessity. Basically, I have a two part problem with this whole “to get or not to get braces” thing. One, is the “money” factor, the other is the “guilt” factor.

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Posted in blogging, BlogHer, Blogroll, children, kids, motherhood, my life, opinion, teens, Women | 18 Comments »