Friday, October 31, 2008


I am excited to post this article written by mother. She has decided to contribute to Nubian Fitness Goddess regularly. So there will be more articles to come. I also would like to apologize for not posting as regularly, I've been swamped with school, work, doctoral applications, etc. But I have still maintained my workout regime. I hope you all are still getting in your exercise as well.

Now for the post, ENJOY!

Cooking is not a Cuss Word!!!

Black women have this mentality that they carry heavier loads compared to their ancestors. I don’t know how this “ism” got started in the Black community. They seem to believe they are too busy to cook or to good to cook. They believe they work hard so they don’t have to cook. Many Black women over schedule their lives. Cooking is the first thing they take off their overcrowded plates. Eating out or on the run is the norm. Tell me how many black women out their had mothers, grandmothers, or great-grandmothers who did not work. Let’s take a poll.

My mother Eva Temple Wilburn was a cosmetologist. Early in her career she worked in White salons on the Northside of Chicago. She worked twelve hour days plus the time it took her to commute to work. She had my grandmother Jones move in and take care of us. My grandmother would cook during the week and my mother cooked on her days off. We would only dine out at fine restaurants for special occasions and fast food was a rare treat.

My Grandmother Willetta Temple who will be 99 years old on November 19th this year was a maid on the Northside for White folks as she would say. She would rise early in the morning to take public transportation. She would cook and clean for someone’s else family then come home and do again for her family. My father worked double shifts at the Western Electric factory in Hawthorne. She would prepare breakfast in the morning and pack lunches before leaving home for work. She would work all day. Then come home and prepare dinner. She learned her skills at the Stillman Institute. My grandmother attended classes in home economics where she was taught proper nutrition, cooking, cleaning, and running a household. During the late 1920’s in Tuscaloosa, AL the highest education that was available for my grandmother to attain was a 6th & 7th grade education. She was 19 years old in 7th grade at Stillman Institute training to be a maid. This is the same Stillman College which today is a Historical Black College. I believe that this nutrition education has blessed her with a healthy body and a long life.

She has taught me how to read a grocery store sales paper, budget, plan, shop, and cook healthy meals. This knowledge combined with my international background of living and cooking in France, Belgium, Venezuela, Argentina, and Turkey has given me a broad knowledge of healthy recipes from around the world. I am an excellent cook who has been practicing my skills for 25 years.

I am in perfect health at age 50. In 2006, I was working midnights and my weight ballooned to 210 lbs. I lost 40 lbs. in 4 mos. and have kept in off. Come and learn how to get your life back. You must find the time within yourself to stop the rat race long enough to think and plan. Cooking requires planning and preparation.

First change your mindset.

Women who cook healthy are empowering themselves and their families.

Women who cook healthy are nurturing themselves and their families.

Women who cook healthy are creating a longer and higher quality of life for themselves and their families.

In order for things to get better you have to get better. Come learn how to eat better.

Recognizing that our sisters need help and support in order to maintain healthier lives, I created a Weight Loss program here in Chicago. Please view the information below.

L.A. Shape Diet Weight Loss Program

Reading Club & Weight Loss Challenge Kickoff!

Your browser may not support display of this image.

Join our new L.A. Shape Diet Weight Loss Program. Get valuable tips on how to lose weight and keep it off! You'll also be eligible to win prizes while you take off the pounds!

Join our 12-week class for only $45. You will receive:

  • A copy of the book L.A. Shape Diet by Dr. David Heber
  • Personal coaching
  • FREE body analysis
  • Product samples
  • Group support and much, much more!
Classes: Sat. 1:00 - 3:00 p.m
Wed. 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Start Date: Saturday, Nov. 8th.
Location: Books Ink
1835 W. 103rd St.
Chicago, IL
Minimum Enrollment: 10
Additional classes and times will be added as needed.
Deadline for pre-registration is Sat. Nov. 1st.

For information and registration contact us at: or
773-656-5165 or 773-629-6919.
Check our website at


Do you Cook?
What are your excuses for not cooking?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Winter Workout Plan

I know it's getting cold outside and it's so tempting to stay inside your warm house and avoid trips to the gym. Don't lose motivation because of the cold. Your body still needs the same amount of physical activity. Plus do really want to see all your hard work from the summer go to waste???

The fall/winter can make things a little difficult, especially for people that like to run outside like me. But I've learned that with a few adjustments, I should be able to run outside until it starts snowing. My dedication stops when the snow starts. Then I will have to go back to my treadmill. I've put together a few suggestions for those you that want to continue your winter workouts and tips keep your Indoor workout exciting and economical.

Outdoor Workouts
*Dress for weather that is 20 degrees warmer than the actual temperature. That way, you'll be a little chilly when you first head out but toasty once you get moving.
-I picked up some so Nike Dri Fit pants with fleece lining for really chilly days when I'm running by the lake. Check out Marshalls and TJ-Max, they have a decent selection of winter workout gear.

*Dress in Layers so when you work up a sweat you can remove clothing.

* Warm Up before heading outside.
-Do two minutes of jumping jacks to get your heart pumping and your blood circulating.

* Keep your hands warm, Get gloves!

Indoor Workouts
Obviously the best option would be to head to your local gym, but I know that memberships can get a little expensive for some people. Here are a few economical suggestions.

*Keep it economical with cardio circuit DVD's or keep it free with these online Workouts
*Sign up for a Boot Camp or aerobics class
* Get moving in your community swimming pool.
* If the gym is too expensive consider purchasing a stationary bike or treadmill
-I came across some decent priced equipment at
Also try checking out craigslist.
* Sign up for a membership at the YMCA.
-The Y is much cheaper than most health clubs and they still have all the equipment you need.

*For those of you in Chicago consider joining a Weight Loss Challenge program to provide you with you support to lose weight and nutritional information.
Contact for more information.


How do you prepare for working out during the winter?
Does the winter discourage you from working out?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Hair Issue: Dealing with Hair and Sweat

So I've noticed that a lot of you all find my blog by searching for hair maintenance during and after exercise. I'm happy so many of you are past letting hair your prevent you from exercising. I wanted to make sure that I provided you all with adequate information here. Luckily my sister is licensed beautician and she was gracious us enough to come up with some tips for you all. If you have any specific questions feel free to comment with them and I'll get them to her.


Hi, My name is Dani I am a certified Cosmetologist. I work with all types of hair with Women and Men. When working with my clients I often find myself teaching them about maintenance and care for their hair. So I decided to jump on the bandwagon and help you guys on this blog.

Today, there are so many people that want to workout but also want maintain the fresh new hairstyle, and it seems impossible. Well, I am going to give you 5 tips to help maintain your hair while working out.

Sidebar: Your scalp has many holes in which is what hair(keratin) grows out of. You also have something called a sebaceous gland and when you are working out. The pores on your scalp open up and the sebaceous gland releases sebum (sweat). So yes your hair makes it's own sweat. AND THAT IS FINE! I know it sounds gross but you actually need the sebum. So if your scalp is dry. Try cutting down on shampooing so frequently. Let the sebum run down the hair strands.

Top 5
1. When working out, try to stay away from covering your head completely. You want your hair to breathe. Try using a sweatband or even a hairnet.
2. After working out and your hair feels dry and itchy, You may use a non-greasy light moisturizing lotion or serum and massage your scalp( with finger tips only).
3. If you work out very often and your hair becomes dry and brittle try a Deep Conditioner every two weeks. Still dry? up the Deep Conditioner to Once a week.
4. If you get a wrap or hair styled with curling irons. Next time try a RollerSet. Less heat and curls stay in longer.
5. NEVER NEVER NEVER before going to work out use an alcoholic product on your hair. Your hair makes it's own sebum which contains acid. Acid plus the alcohol will eat up your hair.

-Good Luck!

***I want to share one of my own tips. Do not touch your hair until it is dry. It takes my hair about 1 hr to dry after working out. While I'm in the gym or running outside I keep a sweat band on it and pull it into a loose ponytail so it can breathe. After I'm done I put a silk scarf on it and let dry. After it dries it is so much easier to manipulate. I usually just comb it down and wear it down. It took me while to learn that I shouldn't touch it until it dries. It seems like common sense but I wanted to share it anyway. So I get up a little earlier to make sure I have time to let it dry...if not it's up into a ponytail.****

Questions, Comments?
Please Share your tips!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Is your body inspiration realistic?

It seems that for as long as I can remember I’ve always wanted someone else’s body. Janet Jackson’s, Beyonce’s, Toni Braxton’s, Mary J Blige, Tyra Banks, the list goes on and on. I’ve taken dangerous diet pills, engaged in obsessive amounts of cardio and there were times that I actually convinced myself that I could go days without eating if only I let my mind win over my hunger. Pure crazy and ridiculous stuff because I was under the misconception that a thinner body would give me the ‘hot celebrity body of the moment’. I never considered the fact that my genetic make up would never allow me to look like any of these people; all that mattered is that I wanted what they had and then life would be splendid. HA! Fat chance (no pun intended). During those times, the thought never crossed my mind that maybe I should simply try to be healthy as opposed to trying to be someone else. Sure I lost weight doing some of that ridiculous nonsense but you better believe it always came back with a vengeance each and every time. I had no concept of “healthy”; all I was concerned with was not being fat. Being Janet Jackson, being Mary J.

I remember those times and I honestly feel that my obsessing over having someone else’s body kept me unhealthy for far too long. I’m not quite sure when the light bulb went off in my head that my body was good enough, all I needed to do was treat it with kindness and respect. It’s okay to see someone and admire their physique and such but if you have an athletic build you will never be Beyonce who is super curvy. But does that mean that you still can’t have a hot body? Of course not, it’ll just be your kinda hot. Don’t give up on yourself because in all your best efforts you still don’t look like Halle. You never will. If you have a picture of yourself when you were fitter or more trim use that as your motivation. Become obsessed with getting yourself back rather then becoming someone else.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Spotlight on Fit and Fabulous Women: Jennifer Hudson

I noticed Jennifer Hudson's significant weight loss a while ago. She looks great and I thought it was worth paying her a tribute. I've come across a few blogs that heavily critiqued her album cover because of airbrushing. Well, I've seen her several pictures and she looks great consistently.

Here's some background on Jennifer Hudson's Fitness story via

Before competing in 2004’s Idol, the 5-foot-9 Jennifer Hudson, 25, had already accomplished a major feat: losing 60 pounds!

“I used to wear size 22,” (who cut out fried foods and jogged to slim down) tells Us Weekly magazine.

Yet, for Dreamgirls, the Golden Globe nominee actually had regain 20 pounds, which she piled on with cakes, cookies and inactivity.

“It bothered me to not workout,” she tells Us.

As soon as filming wrapped in May, Hudson returned to her healthy habits – and her fighting weight.

Jennifer Hudson’s Diet

“It’s all about healthy living,” says Hudson, whose staples include green salads, fish, chicken and cranberry juice. Her stay-energized snacks: cashews, almonds and raisins.

Jennifer Hudson’s Workout

Chicago-based trainer La-Fonza Alston gave Hudson a plan she can do on the road: squats, pushups and abs (four sets of 25 each), plus running. “I never would have guessed I’d be up at 4 a.m. to run,” she says. “I love it!”

Jennifer Hudson also addressed those that suggested that she was airbrushed on her album cover in an article in the Chicago Sun Times.

Her response:

‘‘I’m totally comfortable with my size, and I’d never do anything to alter it. I get complimented by people every day on my ‘weight loss,’ and I tell them, ‘I just stepped out of the TV.’ The camera alters your image.’’

She also plans to start a clothing line in the near exciting. To me Jennifer Hudson is quite an inspiration.

Who inspires you?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

"You're Withering Away"

My morning rant.........

Okay, so it's great to hear people comment on how much weight I have lost. But I'm tired of comments like "You're withering away", or "If you lose anymore weight, you'll like a crackhead!" None of these things are true. I still have plenty of extra fat and I am still not in a healthy bmi range (I know the BMI is not perfect, but I think the measurement for me is pretty accurate)

Now I know my friends and family have great intentions when they make these comments. They just want to recognize my hard work. I appreciate that, but it becomes a problem when I hear this all the time. I know deep down in side that my body is not as healthy as it could be. It's not all about how I look on the outside. I am not even close to a point where people should be concerned. I'm still about 12 lbs away from a "healthy weight" and 20 lbs away from my goal weight.

Trust me I don't mind the compliments, it keeps me motivated. But the over-exaggerations get to be a bit much.

Now let me make my rant into something useful to you all:

My concern is that sometimes women may hear comments like this and end up maintaining an unhealthy weight.

One of my friends was telling me that in high school she was at a healthy weight. But everyone called her skinny and thought she had an eating disorder. She had a naturally small frame and she got a lot of exercise from cheerleading. Her doctor thought she was fine but the pressure from her peers and family got be to much. In college, she got very little exercise and ate whatever she wanted because everyone thought she was too skinny anyway. Now, 4 years later she has gained an overwhelming amount of weight. Now her friends and family are like "what happened the hell happened to you?." Anyway my point is that you can not always listen to your friends and family. Determine a healthy weight for yourself with the help of you doctor. You can also use this calculator here (still consult a doctor).

It's also important to remember that a healthy weight is about more than just looks. When your friends, family, man, etc. judge your weight/size it's more so focused on size. You need to be in a healthy weight range to reduce your risk of disease and for longevity.

Check out these links for more information about the importance of healthy weight and tips on how to achieve it:

*WEBMD-Healthy Weight
*Havard Health- Healthy Weight tips
* Risk Factors of Unhealthy Weight
*The benefits of a Healthy Weight


Have you ever experienced people commenting about your weight?
How did you figure out a healthy weight loss goal?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Ok ladies, the time has come for us to have the “beauty and health” discussion. Now no one is more into hair than me. I mean I just love hair, whether it’s the hair I was born with or someone else’s hair that I’m borrowing (tee hee!), I just love it! But more importantly I love it to look good. Now unfortunately it’ s a fact that many of us let our hair deter us from being healthy. This needs to stop! I do all kinds of things to my hair but I make sure that whatever is going on with my coif, it will not be something so elaborate that I say things like “oh no girl, I am not sweatin my hair out!” I just refuse to let hair get in the way of me being healthy and feeling good. That’s what we have to remember, that feeling good is more than keeping your every 2 week appointment with your hair stylist, feeling good is an inside out kind of thing. If you neglect your inside then you are missing the whole point of what feeling good about yourself is really about. I’ll be honest, it really disturbs me when I see severely obese black women in the nail salon getting ‘acrylics’ and other such nail adornments. I mean huh? What is having talons doing to improve your health? The fact that you are getting beautified is nice I suppose but it’s really skipping over the bigger issue. Should overweight or obese people not get their groom on? No, I’m not saying that at all but what I am saying is let’s groom everything. Groom your insides too by taking a brisk walk and throwing some fruits and veggies in your diet. Sacrificing health for beauty is just plain ole silly. What good is perfect hair and manicured nails when you have diabetes, hypertension or any of the other myriad of diseases that afflict us.

From now on reverse your thinking. Make your beauty regimen fit your healthy lifestyle instead of the other way around. After all, when you are your best you, that’s when your real beauty shines through.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Healthy food pick of the week: KEFIR

What is Kefir you ask? Some of you may know but for others like me I had no idea what it was until about 2 weeks ago. I was in Trader Joe’s with my BFF and I was talking out loud about ingredients to add to my morning smoothies and she said “hey try their Kefir”. I said “try their who?!” Kefir as it turns out is in the yogurt family and like yogurt has tons of the healthy bacteria stuff. Now I’ve never been a fan of yogurt, like ever, so of course hearing that description of it did nothing to sway me but I’m never one to say I don’t like something before I try it and boy am I glad I did! It makes the most delicious smoothies ever. It has a buttermilk like consistency so I also use rice milk or oat milk to sort of break up the thickness but boy oh boy what a yummy addition to my morning meal. But putting yummy aside, imagine my additional surprise of finding out just how super healthy this stuff is.

Kefir and Health

"Kefir has many reputed health benefits. It has antibiotic and antifungal properties. It's been used in the treatment of a variety of conditions, including metabolic disorders, atherosclerosis, and allergies, tuberculosis, cancer, poor digestion, candidiasis, osteoporosis, hypertension, HIV and heart disease. You might find it odd that that a drink containing yeasts would be good for treating candidiasis but it has been helpful to many people, both by restoring a better balance to the gut flora and because some elements of the microflora will kill off Candida Albicans. Not all yeasts are harmful.

In addition to beneficial bacteria and yeast, kefir contains many vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes. Particularly calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, B2 and B12, vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin D. Tryptophan, one of the essential amino acids abundant in kefir, is well known for its relaxing effect on the nervous system. Because kefir also has an abundance of calcium and magnesium, also important minerals for a healthy nervous system, kefir in the diet can have a particularly calming effect on the nerves.

The abundance of enzymes brings more health benefits, especially to lactose intolerant people, many of whom can tolerate kefir without difficulty, as long as the kefir is raw and not cooked (cooking destroys the enzymes)."

Everything you want to know about Kefir can be found here, This is the brand I've been drinking (I have since moved on from Trader Joe's version, not because it wasn't good but Lifeway's version has additional prohibitics). For those who are moving to a healthier lifestyle Kefir may just be what you're looking for especially is appetite control is a struggle for you. This stuff is super filling. So give it a shot and let me know what you think, I promise you will love it!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Cardio Kills

I came across this article called "Cardio Kills" in the Chicago Athlete Magazine (pg. 41). The article immediately caught my eye because I love my cardio (running) and couldn't believe that someone would write such an article. According to celebrity trainer Jim Karas, cardio breaks down muscle, injures joints and increases appetite without increasing metabolism, thereby leading to weight gain. He encourages his clients to focus on weight training and circuit training.

Here are a few quotes from the article:

“Excessive cardio breaks down the human body at an accelerated rate…Anyone running a marathon or preparing for a marathon is slowly killing themselves.”

“Cardio does nothing to improve the lean muscle to body fat ratio, and burning muscle diminishes your results…Beyond a certain point, marathon runners can go into starvation mode - the body becomes catabolic, burning muscle for fuel.”

“Consistent pounding of the body from traditional forms of cardio can lead to severe injuries in your back, knees, ankles and everything in between…Take a look at the Chicago marathon. Half to three-quarters of the runners have on knee braces.”

It's really hard for me to believe that cardio is not of benefit to our bodies. I know that running has made a huge difference in my life ( weight loss, energy, confidence, etc.) I recognize that strength training is important as well. I think it is important to encourage people to incorporate more strength training into their workouts but to take out cardio completely is ridiculous.


How important is Cardio to your workout?

What do you think about Caras plan?

*Read this article in Women's Health Magazine to get a better understanding about the differences between cardio and strength training.

I don't know about y'all but I plan to keep Running!