Kickboxing with Keaira LaShae – Fittness Video Review (Drop That Fat Challenge Update)

KeairaAs a part of my “Drop That Fat” challenge, I have been experimenting with fitness videos. I need versatility, so a traditional run on the treadmill or a trip to the gym is getting a little boring. Today, I found Keaira LaShae on YouTube. She is a singer, dancer, and a fitness trainer.

I noticed that she created a lot of hip-hop dance workout videos. For those of you who do not know, I love to dance! I decided to give it a try. First, I tried the “Booty Pop and Body Roll” workout. I might say that I completely underestimated this workout! In less than 10 minutes, I was pumping, sweating, and trying to catch my breath!

After completing this video, I decided to try another entitled, “Kickboxing with Keaira LaShae.” This was GREAT! After I was done, I could feel it in my stomach, arms, thighs, and butt! It is official, I LOVE HER WORKOUTS!

If you are looking for high energy, great music, and challenging moves, give her a try and tell me what you think!




Photo Credit:


The Father I Have Never Had

ImageToday, I come to you on a very personal note.

I am an older woman (will not share my age) who has NEVER seen my father. As I child, I dealt with issues of resentment. I always wondered why my father chose not to be a part of my life. My mother thought that I was brilliant and invested a lot of time in me, but I always wondered what caused my father to be so distant. I remember talking to him, on the phone, two times in my life. I remember the year that I went to Florida to meet my father. He was supposed to come from New York to meet me, but he never came or called. During this time, GOD blessed me with the pleasure of meeting my grandmother, grandfather, three (3) aunts, and my baby brother. It was an experience that I will never forget and one that has actually kept them dear to my heart for years, BUT I never saw my father.

As a teenager, I was not lost or running around trying to find a man to love me and replace my father (stereotype of the fatherless child). I wasn’t bitter and full of hate; my mother’s love wouldn’t allow that. Yet, I wondered where he was. In my earlier years, I dreamed about what he looked like and what our first meeting would be like. Later in my teenage years, I managed to forget all about him. I mean…he forgot about me. Why should I care about who he was or where he was? After all, he abandoned me. My lack of understanding transitioned into not caring to understand the father that I never had.

As an adult, he was good as forgotten! I had moved on with my life. I didn’t have a long list of men that had used and abused me. I was not a weak woman who didn’t understand a man’s role. I had been introduced to great men throughout my life and they taught me about what a man was supposed to be, how a woman should be treated, and the standards required for a good woman (shout-out to all my male family members and friends of the family who made a difference in my life). I had to include that part because this is also a stereotype that people come up with. You have to understand that the stories of fatherless women are not all the same.

In my later years, I met a wonderful man who was in a similar situation, but had the strength to overcome it. He asked questions about my father and through this strength, I started thinking about my father more. Yet, I was determined that it was water under the bridge and not worth my time. One night, this man talked to me for hours and hours about the importance of connecting with my father. This wasn’t the first time that we spoke about it, but I believe that GOD was speaking through him that evening. GOD has a unique way of delivering messages, especially to a stubborn woman. That night, he led me down a road that forced me to reflect.

I reflected on the time that I went to Florida and almost drowned in a pool, but was saved by my grandfather. I reflected on the time when my grandmother sat me down, talked to me, and introduced me to her fashionable purses (I even remembered the design of my favorite purse). I reflected on the time that I met my little brother and we talked while riding in the back of the van. He was super skinny and full of life. I hated to see him leave although I had just met him. I reflected on dancing in the room with my aunt. She was only 16, but she was fly! I remember my other aunt coming from college and me admiring her dedication and to her education…even during the break. I remembered meeting my other aunt. She was cool, down-to-earth, and I swore I would visit her when I grew up. I reflected and reflected and reflected, but I had no good memories, no good feelings about my father.

I cried that night. All of the pain, all of my feelings, all of the disappointments hit me at one time. How could he? What did I do to deserve this? Why should I reach out to him? I even distanced myself from the man that asked me to reconsider reaching out to my father. I felt that no one understood this pain. This man would not give up on encouraging me to find my father. Our conversations caused me to think about my brother, aunts, and grandparents…the people who took the time to connect with me. Even though it was one time, it was an experience that lasted a lifetime. Finally, I cracked and begin the search. Thanks to the Internet I found them!

My aunt was full of live and love. My brother was a funny man with a great personality and a story. His story was one that provided understanding and encouraged me in a way that he will never know or understand. Hearing their voices caused a change in my heart…I decided to connect with my father.

Today, I have been talking to my father for 2 years and he is coming to see me tomorrow. I will be meeting him for the first time in my life.

Why did I decide to share this story? As you embark on your journey in life, there are some open books that you must close. There are a lot of people who are adopted, meeting family members for the first time, or full of regret for what has never been. These are things that we try to ignore or simply forget, but we can’t. If you have a grudge or feel like it is not worth investing in a relationship with an absent parent, I challenge you to change your way of thinking. We were all young once and at some point and time, we made mistakes. It is the game of life. Aren’t there things that you have done that you wish someone would just forgive you for? Be the bigger person and close the gap.

For the fathers who have been absent in your child’s life, for whatever reason. Now is your time to reach out. If you are a person, full of hate because of the way that your parental situation turned out, I challenge you to let it go. Start building. You cannot get missed time back, but you have the opportunity to embark on a new journey. You can find the missing piece of your puzzle. Go For It! Just remember that it takes two people. One can’t work to be forgiven if the other is not willing to forgive. The father that I never had now has the opportunity to be the best father that he can be.

Love & Peace!

Photo Credit:


Drop That Fat – Challenge

The people who know me have always asked how I lost weight. It is definitely a journey, but well worth the work. I am actually on a mission to lose 20 pounds by January 1, 2013 and would like to personally invite you on this journey with me.

Today marks the beginning of our mission. Are you ready to DROP THAT FAT??? If so, we can do it together. Here are the rules of engagement:

* You must work out 2 times a day!! If you say that you don’t have time, you are lying!!! Instead of talking on the phone, laying in bed, or cooking a large meal for the family, invest that time in yourself.

* Workouts must at least be 30 minutes. This means that you are doing a minimum of an hour a day. I don’t care how you get it, but make sure that it is an hour a day!! Also, you do not have to go to the gym to work out, so this is NOT an excuse!

* Do not plan to cheat on the weekend. If you have a craving, get what you want. Make sure that you decrease the portion size and punish yourself with an extra 10-15 minutes on your workout. If you want fries, get a small instead of a medium. If you want a piece of cake, split a cupcake with a friend.

* Cook instead of buying fast food. If you must eat out, grab a salad or a fresh sandwich. While cooking, check the amount of sodium in your seasoning. Too much is no good!!

* Decrease your portion size!! When you fill yourself getting full…STOP! Top it off with 2 cups a water and you will be fine.

* Do not starve yourself. You can’t burn calories that you are not eating. It causes your body to go into starvation mode.

* Drink water! If you do not like the taste of water, suck it up! It’s necessary! It helps you remove waste.

* Journal your journey! Include your current weight, goals, things that work, and things that do not work.

* Weigh yourself today, but do not weigh yourself again until December 31, 2012. Stay away from mirrors! In the beginning of your journey, YOU will not see your weight loss. Your vision will be slightly impaired. Sometimes, we want to drop the weight so bad that we do not see our small successes. Keep up the work and the compliments will come.

* Do not work out with a buddy!!!! Why? You have to get this thing down to a science on your own. It is easy to stop working out when your buddy decides that they are no longer invested in losing weight. THIS IS YOUR JOURNEY!!!

* Pray. Sometimes, you have to pray off the urge to eat that cheeseburger! You may be laughing, but I am very serious.

If you are interested in participating in the challenge, copy and paste the information below in the comment box:

 I, (YOUR NAME) agree to take the “Drop That Fat Challenge!” I understand that this is the beginning of a lifetime commitment to a healthy body and healthy living. If I cheat, I am only cheating myself. There is no one to stop me, no one to control my destiny, but me. I will not use my hair or lack of time as an excuse. Failure is not an option.

I will blog regularly about all that is taking place on this end and I invite you to do the same. Ask questions, show pictures, stay positive!!

** I am not a doctor, just a woman who knows how to move weight**


Embrace Your Beauty

I decided to write this blog because of the things that I have seen and personally experienced in my lifetime. Ladies, we have to make a decision to love ourselves! If we don’t like it, then we have to fix it! If there are things that we cannot fix, learn to love them as they are. There are enough people in the world working against you, don’t add yourself to that list.

5 months ago, I made the decision to be natural. For those of who you do not understand this language, it means that I stepped away from the chemicals (relaxers). I decided that I would no longer straighten my hair nor embrace things that were not a part of my natural beauty. I quit buying weave, quit paying for fake nails, and started loving me. Oh, what a wonderful time we (me, myself, and I) have had. A lot of people are doing the “natural thing” now and they feel that it is cool, but people rarely talk about the rough times…learning to love yourself in a natural state that is quite unnatural to everyone else.

I have a few tips for you:

1)    Only comb with water. A lot of times, we joke about having nappy hair. It’s actually not nappy, but a very think beautiful texture of curls. Before you touch it, spray it with pure water. Watch your hair become soft and beautiful.

2)    Don’t hide behind HUGE earrings and heavy make-up. Ladies, I am a fan of large earrings that scream sophistication, but I am not afraid to walk out with a pretty pair of pearls.

3)    If you feel fat, lose the weight! This is a very long and boring process. I am just being honest. I have lost over 50 pounds, learned the technique, and play with my weight constantly. The only reason that I haven’t dropped 100 is because I get lazy. You have to be true about your situation if you wish to change it. There is not a diet pill to save the day. All it takes is eating right and exercising. BORING, but healthy and necessary.

4)    Try colors!! I used to be the black and white Queen! Those were the only colors in my closet. Now, I love red, blue, green, pink, and tan. I am still experimenting. If you cannot buy a whole outfit, buy pieces. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

5)    Research ways to play with what you have. I have always had a problem with my eyebrows, so I hid them with different hairstyles or paid to get them professionally done. Thanks to YouTube, I arch my own eyebrows and know how to make them look great! I did the same thing with my clothes. I wanted a different look and I found it!

6)    When you get up in the morning, look at your eyes, skin, lips, nose, and teeth. SMILE! Love it!

Ladies, don’t let the rap songs and celebrities deter you from loving who you are. We all can’t be skinny, we all can’t have long hair, we all can’t have big butts, we all can’t have long nails, and we all do not have straight hair. Your skin, looks, and lifestyle don’t make you better than anyone else, but it is your uniqueness (whatever it may be) that makes you beautiful. We all CAN have high self-esteem! Love yourself!

Photo Credit: My friend sent me this picture. As soon as I find the author, I will let you know.

Election Day …November 6, 2012

I will be the first to admit that I did not participate in early voting, but today I made it happen! I voted! As I reflect of my voting experience this year, I noticed that the tension was very thick. People who picked up Republican voting sheets snarled at people who picked up Democratic voting sheets and Democrats snarled at people who picked up Republican voting sheets. Personally, I took them both. I didn’t want to end up in a fight outside of my assigned voting location because I took the wrong sheet.

When I went inside, no one smiled (except for the people working). I felt like the wrong words would have caused people to turn the place upside down. People rushed to complete their ballots, but I took my time. While I was in line, waiting to turn in my ballot, a lady worked hard to hide her ballot from me.

I walked out, not knowing if I was going to be sniped from a distance because of who people assumed that I voted for. When I returned to my car, I finally felt safe. Whew!

I want you to know that I love you, regardless of who you voted for. You have a right to your own opinion and so do I. I will not hate you, disrespect you, or curse you because of the what you believe in. It is called “agreeing to disagree.” We do not have to be hateful towards a group or race while expressing our opinions (voting). We all have different beliefs, different expectations, and different situations which cause us to vote the way that we do. We do not have to vote for the same people. Individually, we have a right to make our own decisions. In the process of making our own decisions, let’s show our young people that we do not have to hate each other while doing it.

The reality is…when the votes are in, we all have to work together the next day.