Are you a Thelma or Louise?

Do you remember at the beginning of February, I asked if you were a Thelma or a Louise?


I am a Louise!


You are up front and take no prisoners! 

You will do whatever it takes to help a friend in need. There are some skeletons in your closet and you keep a tight lip on your past. You are a natural-born leader and take charge of the situation. 

Your life moto should be ‘men are pigs, and we are having a pig roast girls’
Never be taken alive!

Lucky for me my friend is Thelma!


Newly inhibition free and on the loose!

You are shy at first but open up when you get a little tipsy. It’s easy for you to get into trouble and when you do, you just end up making it worse for yourself. 

Your life moto should be ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’. 

Never be taken alive!

The two of us will be running the Thelma and Louise Half Marathon. 


It’s not too late for you to grab your Thelma or your Louise and join us on June 1 in Moab, Utah for a day of adventure.

Thelma and Louise Moab

Nothing is more attention getting than a woman in Red!


I had the opportunity to participate in our Go Red for Women lunch. Maria Anderson, MD, FACC Cardiologist and Sara Pereira, MD Cardiothoracic Surgeon shared insights about heart disease in women.

Go Red Docs(Maria Anderson, MD – Dan Prinster VP Planning – Sara Pereira, MD)

In 2003, the American Heart Association faced a challenge; Cardio vascular disease claimed the lives of nearly 500,000 American women each year, yet women were not paying attention. One out of two women is diagnosed with Cardio Vascular disease (CVD) and every minute of every day a women dies from CVD. Heart disease kills more women than all cancers combined.

Heart disease is the #1 killer of women 20 years and older.

In fact, many even dismissed it as an “older man’s disease.” To dispel these myths of heart disease as the # 1 killer of women, the American Heart Association, along with the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute created National Wear Red Day® to raise awareness of this critical issue. Each year, on the first Friday in February, millions of women and men come together to wear red, take action and commit to fighting this deadly disease.

Cardiovascular Disease and Women Facts

  • More women have strokes than men
  • More women over the age of 65 have high blood pressure
  • 2/3 women over the age of 20 are obese
  • Death rate is increasing in women ages 35-54 – likely due to obesity
  • Prevention is important in ALL women

What causes heart disease?

Poor Diet and Unhealthy Lifestyle lead to almost all atherosclerotic heart disease.

  • Excess calories
  • Foods that lead to inflammation
  • Overweight
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Blocked Arteries
  • Stress
  • Smoking
  • Inactivity
  • Blood Vessel Damage
  • Heart Attack
  • Heart Failure

Symptoms of poor diet and lifestyle: Even before heart disease is present.

  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling
  • Chest Pain
  • Joint Pain
  • Palpitations

Let’s talk a bit about the obesity epidemic in the United States. Colorado is the healthiest state! However, obesity trends have increased over 25% just in Colorado  since 1985. In 2011 20 -25% of Colorado residents had a BMI over 30.

go ACAnews39map

Know your BMI (Body Mass Index). BMI does have some limitations; very muscular people may have a high BMI. Measuring your Waist to hip ratio is another way to know your level of overweight, obesity or morbidly obese. A big gut syndrome  is worse than a high BMI up to 35 inches for women and 40 inches for men.

How to help prevent heart disease?

Diet and Exercise!

According to Dr. Anderson she believes a healthy diet made of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, lean proteins. She recommends our plates to look like this.


Dr. Pereira shared with us that we need 150 minutes of moderate activity each week. That translates to 30 minutes a day five days a week. Keeping your heart rate between 50 -65% of max. She also recommends 75 minutes a week of vigorous exercise keeping your heart rate between 65-85% of max.

I would recommend getting a heart rate monitor so you know exactly if you are in the proper %. I have a polar heart rate monitor and I set it on the % vs. the actual heart rate.

You are probably wondering how genetics fit into CVD. Genes predispose us to overweight, high cholesterol and developing early heart disease. However, genes themselves can be changed with a healthy lifestyle and diet.  If you have inherited “bad” genes, it may take big changes to diet and lifestyle to overcome them.


  • Do NOT smoke
  • Exercise
  • Diet
  • Weight/BMI
  • Omega 3 fatty acids

Are you at risk? Consult your physician for a screening.

Time to start bringing awareness to our sisters! Look for the Red Dress!

My Story

Recently I’ve had several friends tell me that a recent Facebook picture has been an inspiration and motivation for them. Wow what an awesome compliment. So I thought I would share my journey with all of you.

My journey to a life of health and wellness began in 2002!

I will never forget the day when I jumped out of the shower and took a look at myself in the full length mirror. I did not like the image looking back at me. I was a happy mom of a 3-year-old, I had an amazing husband and a great job but I just wasn’t happy with myself.

I had watched a Montel Williams episode when my daughter was a baby about the Body for Life program. I had purchased the book then put it on the shelf. It was this day in 2002 that book was taken off the shelf and I decided to make a change.

The episode that Michelle is referring to is the one I watched when I bought the Body for Life book.

In 2003 I was fortunate enough to attend an Energy Camp for Women in Denver at the EAS headquarters. What an experience I had! Here is a before and after picture of me back in 2001 pre BFL and 2003 after a 12 week challenge.


As we all know if you don’t stick to your health and wellness plan you gain back weight, lose muscle mass and your cardio capacity is limited. So in 2008 I decided that this was the year that I wanted to really learn for myself the “LIFE” part of the Body for Life. I had completed numerous 12 week challenges and never really did figure out what to do past the 12 week finish. Thinking in the back of my mind I knew I could do another 12 weeks. 2008 was the year designated for me to really move to the next level for “LIFE”.

A 26 week BFL marathon was an opportunity for me to continue my journey of learning about self-discipline, self motivation, determination and learning about my body not only physical but emotional as well. Planning each and every day and setting small achievable goals for the day, week, month and the year! Along with keeping positive thoughts about me each and every day helped for motivation!

Persistence is the key! I see so many people start out their challenge so strong and motivated and then they hit a life bump in their challenge and they give up. I think it is important to remember we all have life bumps but moving forward and keep persisting is a key attribute for “LIFE”. 2008 was a successful year for me on my health and wellness journey.

2009 brought more of BFL and finding balance in life of work, health and wellness. The first part of November in 2009 a good friend of mine asked me if I wanted to run the Winter Sun 10K with her. My response was “I am not a runner, but if you train me I will try.” She asked me how far and how long can you run for? Maybe a minute I replied. She said well we have some work to do. She gave me a training plan starting out running for 4 minutes then walking for 2 and I only had 6 weeks to train for this 10K (6.2 miles). What the heck was I thinking?

By week 2 I was running 11 minute intervals for an hour, completing about 5 miles or so. I thought ok I can do this. We ran the local 5K Turkey Trot to get me prepared for the 10K. Many lessons learned on this 5K. I did manage to complete the 10K in 17 degree weather and have been running since.


I was still on the runners’ high when my running friend found the Warrior Dash race and suggested we do this race. Due to the fact that I still was on major runners high I jumped all over this. Signed up and started the training phase.

I continued to run in January 2010 and joined a contest that the gym was holding for the New Year. In February I started my new-found love KICKBOXING. During my 3rd class I pulled my right hamstring. UUgghh! I was very disappointed in this set back. My running slowed down for about 6 weeks. During this time I did the step mill. I thought that I would not lose much doing this kind of activity. Boy was I wrong! When I could run again it was like starting all over again.

Towards the end of July I started getting bored with the workouts and not feeling gains in running or in my strength training. Started missing workouts and getting just plain lazy. I tried to set up a training schedule for the last 28 days to get myself motivated and prepared for race day. I did find that I love to run outside on a summer morning. Hearing the birds chirp, the sun to rise above the Mesa is just a relaxing and energizing way to start the day. I also loved trying to beat my time each week when on my outdoor run.


The week before the race I was on my outdoor run and my mind was just racing wondering if I could even do this race. Running hard and fast my heart just beating and my breath unable to be caught. I simply had a mental breakdown. Negative talk to myself thinking will I be able to do this. I am not ready for this race. As I peaked the top of the hill that morning I thought back to the Warrior Dash website and its training recommendations. It’s about your mental ability more than anything. I still didn’t convince myself that day that I was anywhere near being ready. I did however take 3 minutes off my run time that day. Ohhh something was working!

As race day approached I got more and more excited. I didn’t feel 100% prepared for the race. I could only do my best. So off we went to Copper Mountain. I just kept looking at that hill and thinking that it’s 9,700 feet above sea level and the oxygen is low up here. What am I going to do?

Shirt Good idea

As I look back now I have no idea how I made it over the fire or completed the Warrior Dash not only once but THREE times. It’s all a blur when the runner’s high kicks in. Each Warrior Dash presenting different challenges! Now on to new challenges in 2013.


I now know why people continue to sign up for races. The feeling after your done is AMAZING! The runners high and the sense of self achievement and accomplishment is one of its own.

Will run for beer! Will run for beer!

In 2012 I ran my first ½ Marathon. Read my race re-cap here.

So if you are ready to cross the abyss and get moving now’s the time! Let’s do it! 2013 is your year!

Fit February!

Time to set the monthly goals and make them happen!

February will continue the Paleo diet 6 days a week. Weigh and measure on Fridays to see if the BF% and inches decreasing.

I am going to measure my weights on Monday February 4 in Body Pump write them down so I don’t forget them and check my weight increases on March 1.

I am not currently running. I will continue my cardio a mim of 3x per week. Keeping my heart rate between 80-100% of max.

Mind, Body and Soul
One day a week I will do Body Flow to relax my brain and stretch my muscles. I am going to use these relaxation techniques when I get over active mind syndrome in the middle of the night.

Are you a Thelma or a Louise?


Take this quiz to find out! More to come!

I am Louise, I love the idea of freedom, I am strong and nobody will control my life.