Many of you may have just started reading the Ellipse blogs, so I want to re-introduce myself. My name is Tiffany and in the past year I lost 110 pounds! My weight loss journey started in January of 2009 and by September of 2009, I had lost 100 pounds! By simply committing to 6 days of workouts at Ellipse, following the Ellipse Nutrition Program, and some self-healing, I am happy and healthy today! If you want more of my story, please feel free to look back at some of my earlier blogs.

Today my message to you is that you need to take time for yourself. This week I had the opportunity to listen to a very empowering speaker talk about life and how we need to remember to fill our lives with happiness and clear out all the “junk”. We work hard to take care of our families, feed the dog, do the laundry, call our friends, make dinner, eat right, workout, go to work, etc….. What about you?? Do you need a little “me time”?? I have to admit that I haven’t been sleeping well over the past week and was whining to my mom that I really needed to get some sleep. Being the wise woman she is, she suggested that I go home, take a hot bath, have a cup of hot tea, and go to bed early. Wow….what a concept! You mean I shouldn’t rush home, cook supper, do the laundry, dust, feed the dog, do the dishes, etc….. ?? I should actually have some “me time”? Between taking my wise Mother’s advice and listening to this empowering speaker this week, it renewed in me a sense that it is OK to take time for yourself, relax, pamper yourself! Life is TOO SHORT to worry about all the little stuff.

So this week, vow to yourself to find time for YOU! Pick out a great book at the bookstore or library and read one chapter each night, make a coffee date with a friend, soak in the tub, finish that scrapbook page you’ve been putting off, get a pedicure, get your hair done, go for a walk with your dog, watch an old movie, go out for dinner (healthy of course), play a board game with your kids, sit in your favorite chair and have a hot cup of tea, or take a nap! You get the picture….find some time and enjoy a little chunk of life! Clear out the “junk” from your life for just a few moments and you will be amazed how rejuvenated you will feel.

Tiffany’s Tip: Journal….journal….journal! Write down every single thing that you consume. Write down meals, calorie free drinks, gum, mints, 1 M&M, 2 potato chips, handful of carrots, snacks, alcohol consumption, water intake, vitamins, and so forth! Not only will you know your exact calorie intake for the day, you will soon know the calorie count on all your favorites! This has helped me learn what keeps me full longer, be accountable, and adjust my day if I mess up half way through. Journaling is first thing that I do EVERY day. I pre-plan my snacks and meals so that I don’t go off the deep end and eat something crazy “cause I didn’t know what else to eat”!!


Hi Everyone! So it is the start to a fresh new week! Did you have an OK week last week? Maybe you had a terrific week!! Maybe you ate like crap and it’s a good thing that it is the start of a new week?? No matter how good or bad you ate, no matter how much you worked out, no matter if you cheated or not……IT’S A NEW WEEK!

One thing that I had to accept throughout my weight loss journey is that there are times when life gets crazy and that it seems impossible to eat at the “right time”, get enough sleep, or workout at your favorite time of the day. There are times in our life, when we have to deal! So, did you have one of those weeks or do you think you’ll have “that week” this week? DO NOT SET YOURSELF UP FOR FAILURE! You can get through this by simply planning ahead.

Excuse: Will have to eat dinner out because I won’t get done with work until late.

Plan: I will put a turkey tenderloin in the crock-pot so that when I get home supper is done and I just have to add a vegetable to my plate!

Excuse: I cannot work out on Tuesday because I work until 6:00 PM.

Plan: Come to class at 5 AM or 6 AM!

Excuse: I cannot stick to my eating plan because I have to go to lunch with a friend or client.

Plan: YOU pick the place for lunch! That way you can go on-line and research the restaurant’s menu in advance so that you can stick to your plan! A grilled chicken salad without cheese and salsa as your dressing is a no-brainer! Most every restaurant in town will accommodate that request.

If you had a great week last week and you worked your butt off (literally) with your workouts, you ate like a champ, drank your water, and got plenty of rest……DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN THIS WEEK! There is nothing better than the feeling of true success and you are on the right track.

If you had a lousy week, you ate junk food, indulged in every sweet delight known to man over Valentine’s Day, drank soda and alcohol over the weekend, and didn’t get your rest…..IT’S A NEW WEEK! Start over….go back to start…..mentally check back in…..get your brain wrapped around your goals! You can do anything that you set your mind to. There is a saying on the wall at the Mayflower Ellipse that says “What will you do with the other 23?”! Make that saying stick in your head this week. You are at Ellipse for about 1 hour a day….so what will you do with the other 23 hours?? Will you make a commitment to yourself this week to think positive, stay focused, PLAN, and check back in! Remember that if life gets you out of “rhythm” with your schedule, make the best choice possible to keep yourself in stride with your goals and/or maintenance.

Tiffany’s Tip: Is there something in your pantry, refrigerator, or freezer that “bothers” you and that you just cannot leave alone? Is it bag of Doritos that you eat just one handful at a time? Is it that bucket of ice cream that you just have one spoonful of? Is it that box of chocolates? Whatever it is …..GET RID OF IT! If you cannot simply throw it in the garbage because you feel like that is wasting…..then give it to someone else. If it bothers you that much that you cannot keep your paws off of it…..then get it out of your house! All those “little” calories are the calories that sneak up on you and prohibit you from reaching your goals!

Fennel Pork Tenderloin by Ellipse Fitness

2 pork tenderloin fillets
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 can (12 ounces) reduced-sodium, reduced-fat chicken broth

Place pork between sheets of wax paper. Pound each with a rolling pin until about 1/4-inch thick.

In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the fennel seeds and stir about 3 minutes. Add the pork and cook until browned, about 3 minutes on each side. Remove the pork from the skillet and cover to keep warm.

Add onion slices to the skillet. Saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove onion and add to the pork; cover to keep warm.

Add the wine and chicken broth to the skillet. Boil for a few minutes.  Return the pork and onion to the skillet, cover and cook over low heat for 5 minutes.

Put yourself in a position of power. MARCH FORTH.

Those of you who follow boxinmama (Me!) on twitter have heard this phrase before. My fourteen year old son’s basketball coach uses it often. It’s such a profound statement. “Put yourself in a powerful position.”
“Don’t just stand there with your hands at your sides. Put your hands up. Get your game face on.” Why are you here? What do you want? Most importantly: What is your powerful position?
MY powerful position is one in guard. Hands up. Elbows in. Focused! Ready stance. I realize that I wear many hats in the world. I am a wife, mother, business woman, motivator, coach, trainer, and friend. My actions display positions offered to me just like a sports try out. If I constantly let my spouse, children, colleagues, clients, or friends down, they certainly will not call on me in the last minute of the game. I can keep my guard position tight and strong standing at a bag, waiting in the carpool line, or negotiating a big business deal. Whatever the hat you are wearing today, acknowledge it and put yourself in a powerful position.
“When you’re screwing up and nobody says anything to you anymore. That means they gave up. That is a very bad place to be. Your critics are the ones telling you they still love you and care.” Randy Pausch
Keep your arms in. Elbows tight. Focus. Stop talking and DO IT! Need help. ASK. My favorite day of the year is coming up. March 4th MARCH FORTH. Get it? You will as soon as you read the next Ellipse Fitness newsletter. Get ready and get your game face on! Right AMP’D cadets? It’s time to put yourself in a powerful position.

Superbowl Snacks by Ellipse Fitness

Chobani Ranch Dip and Crackers

1 (16 oz.) carton fat-free plain Chobani (or any kind of Greek) yogurt

2-3 tablespoons of Dry Ranch Seasoning

Mix it up and serve with veggies, Special K Tomato/Basil Crackers, or pretzels

Chicken Skewers

skinless, boneless chicken breasts


Lawry’s marinade (Teriyaki, Louisiana Red Pepper, Tequila Lime)

Marinade a few pounds of chicken breasts in a yummy Lawry’s marinade for 25 minutes.  Cut the chicken into strips and slide onto skewers.  Bake in a cooking pan at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes or grill until thoroughly cooked.

Classic Shrimp and Salsa


fresh pico de gallo or low-cal salsa dip

A great, high protein, low-fat combo to keep you on track…even at a party!

Little Changes In Your Diet = BIG RESULTS

Ok….so I’m back in the game with my blogging again. Over the Holidays, it seems that I fell off the blogging wagon! Good news….I didn’t fall off the weight loss/maintenance wagon!

Many of you have asked me what are the little changes that I made or that you can make in your diet to stay in control of the calories and make a difference in your waistline. I have come up with a list of items that I think many of you may use on a daily basis and some substitutes for those items as I have adjusted them in my diet.

1) COFFEE CREAMER – NO! Loaded with empty calories and fat that you simply do not need. Instead of coffee creamer, try using flavored protein powder. My favorite is the Vanilla Ice Cream Cone Whey Protein. Mix this with a little water in the bottom of your coffee cup and then add your coffee. This is considered your protein for breakfast, so there is no need to make yourself eggs or fuss with anything else. A full serving of protein is found in one scoop of the protein powder!!

2) BREAD – First of all…bread is not bad. Bread is a carbohydrate and your body does need carbohydrates for energy. However, it is a good idea to read the label on the bread you are eating because too many carbs can lead to stored energy and ultimately FAT! Stick with 2 slices of light bread (like Village Hearth Light or Sara Lee De-Light), which are only 80-90 calories for TWO pieces of bread and around 17-18 carbs for both slices!

3) POTATOES – Try a sweet potato instead of a regular white potato. I love to take a sweet potato, cut it up into small pieces, place it on a baking sheet, spray it with PAM cooking spray, sprinkle with a packet of Splenda and some cinnamon and roast it in the oven until tender. YUM! If you are going to have a white potato….make sure that you select a SMALL potato….if you eat a baking sized white potato with toppings….you will not lose weight!

4) CHEESE – Personally I think that eating cheese while trying to lose weight is self-sabotage! Cheese is processed and it is loaded with fat. If you must have cheese in a casserole or on a sandwich, switch to a low-fat or fat-free version. Sitting down to 2 oz. of regular cheese and 5-6 crackers will cost you about 350 calories!! Personally, I don’t even think that is that filling. That is like 6 dice and 5 crackers….seriously?? 350 calories for that?? You could have a ½ cup of cottage cheese and 2 Quaker large rice cakes for 170 calories instead!

5) MEAT AND POULTRY – Mmmmm…PROTEIN! Now we are talking! Yes, you must learn to love your protein if you want to build lean muscle, which ultimately burns more calories and allows you to digest a few extra calories on a daily basis. The biggest ticket to choosing your meat and poultry is to choose a cut that is less than 5 grams of fat for about a 4 oz. serving. If it has more fat than that….DON”T EAT IT! So, what are some suggestions you ask? Turkey tenderloin, pork tenderloin, Chicken breast, Jennie-O Turkey Burgers, Extra Lean Ground Turkey, Lean Sirloin. If you must eat red meat and/or steak, choose the leanest cuts and trim off the fat before you cook it. PROTEIN IS YOUR FRIEND….GET ENOUGH OF IT BECAUSE IT WILL FILL YOU UP AND LEAVE YOU SATISFIED!

6) DRESSINGS & OIL – This is something that I choose to avoid. I don’t use butter and I do not use regular mayo. When absolutely necessary, I just use light or fat free mayo. NO BUTTER! BUTTER = BAD! Again, personally I think it is self-sabotage. Why? Butter is fat! Fat sits on your butt and is hard to get off! Get the point? Try using seasonings instead of butter and oils. One of my favorites is McCormick’s spice called Vegetable Supreme…..excellent flavor. I put my veggies in a Ziplock Steamer bag, shake Vegetable Supreme in the bag on the veggies, microwave for 2 minutes, and WALAA….steamed veggies with no butter!

7) WATER – Water needs to be a common denominator in your diet. You need to drink LOTS and LOTS of water! Every drop of water that you put in your body helps push out the junk! Try substituting your afternoon soda with water enhanced by a Crystal Light- On The Go pack. This will give the water some flavor and you’re not adding a tone of calories to get this flavor. This eliminates the carbonation that you would have had in the soda. Carbonation = belly fat!!

8) LATE NIGHT SNACKS – Do you get a food craving right before bed? I sometimes do and I have had to find a way to curb this so that I don’t hit the cookie jar! Something that has worked for me is to have a cup of hot Oolong or Green Tea, or a cup of 25 calorie/ sugar free hot chocolate. IT MUST BE BOILING! This way you drink it slow and it leaves you satisfied. The biggest sabotage that you can make for yourself is to inhale 200-300 calories of junk food before you go to bed. Your body is going to have a tough time metabolizing that food and you are going to be frustrated with the results!

9) ALCOHOL – Oh yes ladies and gentlemen….you knew it was gonna be on my list! If you want to lose weight, you cannot inhale empty calories of alcohol. One glass of wine is around 150 calories, 2 oz of Whiskey is around 200 calories, 1 light beer is around 175 calories. If you have one and it is planned within your diet…you’re good. If you go out and have a 12 pack of beer, a bottle of wine, or 6 Whiskey and diet sodas….you are doomed! Alcohol will pack on the pounds! If you plan to have a few spirits, I suggest that you have one large glass of water in between drinks so that you help flush your system and the water will keep you fuller so that you are less likely to keep drinking!

Ok….so I’m a little “wordy”! I know, I know! However, I also know that you are looking for ways to improve your diet and I want to help you! Please comment on this blog with any ideas that you have used to help supplement your diet or questions that you’d like me to cover in upcoming blogs.

Tiffany’s Tip: Going to a Super Bowl Party? Watch out for the chicken wings….they’ll get ya! 4 chicken wings with BBQ sauce = 385 calories & 28 grams of fat! In comparison, one chicken breast topped with BBQ sauce = 170 calories and 3-4 grams of fat! CHOOSE WISELY!