Courageous, timid, inspirational, heart of gold, woman of God, and driven are words that come to mind when I think of Audrey Poisso, unstoppable would be another one.  Audrey and I grew up together in the same area of Grant Parish.  Little did I know that our paths would cross again , in a much different way, as adults. 


Audrey reached out to me for guidance with some health issues.  As many of you know, I was quick to ask what can I do to help.  I led her to a community of people I had just met at B22 Health club in Dry Prong, La.  She quickly found a family there. 

Audrey’s story is a lot like many of you.  It is full of challenges and heartache and the will to stay alive and be a better mom, wife and person.  She was spiraling with obesity, health issues, family illness, and the insecurities of where to begin change.

I have really gotten to know Audrey in the last year and gosh, I just adore her.  From B22 challenge, to Whole 30, to Paleo, to Strong with Mitzi Retreat (yoga was not her thing), dinners, and just some great interaction, she is one a kind. 

Enjoy this read and may you all find a little bit of Audrey in you.  

Audrey, thank you for sharing your story, as hard as it may have been.  You are enough my friend.

Love and Hugs, Mitzi

Audrey’s Story

When Mitzi asked me to share my story, I thought several things. My thoughts ran from… I wasn’t ready yet, to… I wasn’t sure what my story might even be.  Then I thought if it helps one person struggling, it was worth it. I started praying and thinking about what I would share. The truth is life is hard, it just is.  It is hard for everyone at times. My life is no different. I’m not really an athlete in my mind but other times, I feel like I’m an athlete trapped in a fat girl body.  I do like sports and being active, but never felt like I was fit. I don’t remember a time that I’ve not struggled with weight. My biggest challenge is comparing myself to others.  What I’ve learned the most from Mitzi is TO DO YOU!  Don’t worry about why someone else is on a journey, worry about your own journey. I’ve always been on some sort of plan.  I was never really satisfied with myself.  12 years ago, I was briefly married. It was not the best marriage and definitely not healthy for me mentally, physically, or emotionally. I rushed into it because I wanted to be married and be like others. I was living in my timeline and not Gods.  One of the many things I remembered my ex-husband telling me was that if I ever hit 300 pounds, he would divorce me. I think I was trying to get there just to get out but eventually, I realized, it was just not a healthy situation. I remarried my wonderful husband Joe who supports me in every way possible.

Currently, I’m a wife, teacher and mom of three boys.  I love snacks, treats, vending machines and canteen as much as the next person but had to realize those treats were not always good for me.  I had to learn to care more for myself than for food. Mindless eating was getting me in trouble and not allowing me to be the mom, wife, or teacher I needed to be. My heaviest weight was 318. I remember thinking I was over 300.  I was blessed with my wonderful husband who loved me no matter what.  We were also foster parents at the time, not knowing when our family dynamic would change. Eventually through foster care, we adopted 3 boys. We were truly blessed by the experience. Prayer, petition, and perseverance God saw us through.

Fast forward some, our first Christmas all 3 boys were legally adopted, and Joe was in the hospital.  We ended up having a major scare with Joe health wise on Christmas Day. I remember thinking I had to get stronger to be the best Mom I could be.  Life is short, we are not promised tomorrow. It was time for me to get healthy! I spent a lot of time doing lots of programs and exercises with my Beachbody coach and extremely close friend.  I would lose some weight but would never get below 260. I would usually stay the 280 mark never letting myself get over 300 again. My goal was under 250 but I just couldn’t do it until I made up my mind not to quit and that I was ready.  

 In 2018 I went to a breast cancer walk at B22 gym in Dry Prong.  I loved the atmosphere and the people at the walk. I knew the gym was a “one of kind” place.  In November, I saw where Mitzi was doing a step challenge in December.  She asked everyone to do 12000 steps a day for 21 days. I went through with a great friend and completed the challenge.  It was just what I needed. I asked Mitzi about any help she could give me, and it led me back to B22. This was the conversation:

ME:      Do you do any whole 30 or paleo challenges after the first of the year?  I am considering it and really need to make some changes. It’s past time.

HER:   I love this here.  Yes, when you know you know. There is a gym in Dry Prong that I am working with on a challenge.  If you are interested, I can make it happen. It’s paleo, not W30. That takes a mental capacity that I’m not in right now but if you wanted to do it, I would help you. 

ME:      Ok I would love too. Dry Prong would be perfect but is it ok to do after Christmas. I do not want to set myself for failure I really need to succeed.

At the end of the step challenge we were able to meet and have supper with Mitzi and other participants.  I wanted to change so I went. I remember halfway through the evening texting my 2 besties and saying here I am at this dinner and I am the fattest one I feel like a cow.  They text back about self-worth and how I needed a better image of myself. The thing is no one made me feel less or even thought less it was all in my head. God loves as I am, and I need to love myself.  I just kept showing up and not giving up and realizing it was just all in my head.

After talking to Mitzi about B22 and loving the atmosphere, I then asked my husband about joining the gym and the challenge for Christmas. Best present ever.  He agreed and our journey began.

We lost 50lbs combined in 6 weeks with the “Back to Square One” challenge!  We learned so much during the journey. We eat cleaner, cook healthier, and balance our lives better.  I went from 277 to 255. I then did a whole 30 with Mitzi and stayed working out with the gym. Yes, I finally got below 250, I finished weighing 246.  I loved the person I was becoming. Our family was just happier! The gym is like my 2nd home whether I just go to walk laps, cross fit or a dance class.  B22 has really changed our family! It is such a blessing to have in our community. When I talked to Mitzi and she mentioned it to me. It was definitely a God thing!  I was already interested but it gave me the extra push.

I just did another challenge with B22 gym and incorporated Whole 30 as my food plan.  I lost 17 lbs. with the gym program and 15 was on Whole 30.  I finished at 229.9. I’ve lost 48 since January. The best thing is knowing I can do it and feeling like I can succeed.  If I had to pick one thing, I like about myself it would be my desire to persevere.

My life verse is Jerimiah 29:11.

It has gotten me through some tough times knowing God has plans for me.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”


A scar, whether emotional or physical, is a sign of incomplete healing.

The emotional scars of relationships, childhood, friendships, envy, self-destruction, parents, anxiety, death, embarrassing moments or any other trauma internally left suppressed is critically related to your acceptance of love of others and yourself.  It also prohibits forgiveness of yourself.

The physical scars are most seen by others.  They hurt differently.  Some of these scars are caused by rape, abuse (as a child or/and adult), or more daunting physical trauma. 

Many people live in the moment of their scars instead of fighting through them.  Its power binds you until the burden is released.  Basically, you must learn from it and move forward.  I get it, some or worse than others.  Don’t start cursing me out over my words just yet.  We are all unique and our strengths vary in weak to powerful.  I believe that all experiences in life are meant to teach you something and you are meant to grow from them.  If not, it will deplete you of your self-worth and self-being. 

Those unseen scars affect everything in your life.  They are easy to hide from others, but most prominent to overcome.  

What are your scars? 

Are you dealing in an effective way?

I challenge you to write them down, both physical and mental.  Your job is to work through them.  Begin your road to letting go and never reopening your wound negatively. 

Build a platform and share your story with someone. 

Emotional scars run deep with me.

* I have always been a “grudge holder”.  True story, many of those in my family are.  It is so sad to me.  I have come to realize this in the recent years, about myself and others.  It is something that I am/was riding the struggle bus with.  It takes a lot for me to let things go and realize that the person that is winning (so to speak) is the other person.  You have no fight in some actions of others.  Learning to let it go is the biggest, most grown up feeling a person can have.  My boundaries run deep.  I set so many now and for me, it works.  I say no, a lot.  I don’t call or return text that get in my feels and I know will be negative on my soul.  Surrounding myself with positive, upbeat, loving, energized people is where my stance is.  I do not feel guilty about separation.  I told someone the other day that I have my “one on one friends” and then my “group friends”.  There is a big difference.  I love all but for my well-being, it’s just best this way. 

* Relationships have gone wrong.  As most, I’ve had bad break ups as a young adult.  You know the ones that you thought you could never live without that person and miraculously, you do.  I was divorced after 9 months of a failed marriage that should have never happened.  I’ve had heart wrenching deaths of friends, and close family.  I’ve lost the best of friends over stupid misunderstandings.  My relationship with my father was on the rocks for a very long time but repaired with much communication and forgiveness.   Embarrassing situations haunt me.  It is awful being the person being judged, talked about, slandered, and characterized by false truths.  The lessons were hard, but I wouldn’t change them for the person I have become.

*Struggles with bulimia has left a deep pit of my physical appearance and how I deal with it daily.  What I see is not what others do and as many know, you just smile and say thank you.  Shoulders back, head held high is my motto.  Some days, I’d really like to shove cupcakes down my throat and then throw them up.  I deal accordingly and I do not.  The person in my mirror is distorted for sure. 

Physical scars run just as deep on my body.

*I have one on my right arm from a tumor removed in the 9th grade.

*I have one near my rib cage from a hernia.

*I have 3 on my shins from box jumps.

*My most embarrassing… the one that haunts me… the ugliest, most disgusting scar I have ever seen in my life has been a part of me for 44 years.  I am really good at hiding it.  It is about 6 inches long and runs down my lower abdominal up my belly button.  I HATE IT.  As hard as I work out, I can’t overcome it.  Writing about it, makes me cry.  

I was 24 months old and my appendix ruptured.  It apparently was not my parents’ time to lose a child, because somehow, I survived.   That scar had to have been the length of my little body back then.  Today, it is still huge.  Fast forward 35 years later, I had to have a c-section with my twins.  Dr. Moran tells me that he will be going through that same scar so that I wouldn’t have two.  Thank God for those words, I don’t think I could have handled another.  As a matter of fact, I know not.   As that same scar was beginning to heal, my peace of mind with my body was horrific.  The scar that has haunted me my whole life was now reopened and exposed again.  UGHHHHHH! 

Fast forward 10 years from then, I went to The Wall Center to have a breast lift and augmentation.  I also asked them what it would take to remove the scar.  What a crazy decision that was!  Holly Wall went over every case scenario of how she could make it better.  It was a lot to process.  I decided to leave it.  It was not an easy decision.  In the end, it has made me.  It shows me I was given another chance at life.  It was a scar from two beautiful children.  It is my scar.  The one that keeps me from being confident of that portion of who I am.  It draws character and it is me.

Sharing this, I felt maybe someone needs to hear it.  We are ashamed of so many things we are or have or been subject to instead of embracing it.  Overcoming scars, both mentally and physically, are great barriers to becoming a stronger more beautiful you. 

I am transparent so that I can help someone else.  These pictures were taken by Nikki Bardwell.  She captured everything I wanted in this.  The struggle, the embarrassment, the courage and the will to pull up my shirt.

To your scars, I pray for peace and the acceptance to conquer your fears.  It only builds a better base for your heart.


Stay Strong, Mitzi

What type of runner are you?

Are you the turtle?

  • Back of the pack person.  You may brag about being slow or comment you’re really not a runner.  You may even have more potential than you have ever tapped in to.  You are just fine doing what you do. 

Are you the competitor?

  • You’ve sized up everyone around you.  You have already told yourself that you will die before someone beats you.  You can hear footsteps in any direction.  You are ready to pick up speed at any moment to keep from getting passed by man, woman, child, or stroller.  You are not willing to be on the course one second longer than your legs will let you – Haul ass and finish first.  It’s a race, everyone is a threat… no room for second place.  The suicide pace as Steve Prefontaine would call it.

Are you the trail runner?

  • These are like the secret runners.  You never see them in town or on a treadmill.  You may never know they run.  They are exploring a whole different world than the other runners.  It’s a very different terrain and mind set to hit those trails. 

Are you the “I can’t” runner?

  • “I tried, but I can’t”
  • “I wish I could”
  • “I couldn’t do that”
  • “I want to be, but I’m just not”
  • The truth is no one NEEDS to be a runner, so it’s ok.  It doesn’t give you cool point.  It doesn’t make people think differently of you just because you ran.  Just don’t be in denial of what your body could possibly do if you truly wanted it to.

Are you the “I need my friends” runner?

  • You need that accountability.  That person that calls you when you skip.  You love the conversations and community of running.  The fact that you just belong to a group with the same interest, keeps you coming back.

Are you the “I run alone runner”?

  • No headphones, no one else, just the pavement and your thoughts.  You pick your pace, you pick your subject matter, you tackle those miles one by one solo.  This is what I call peace.  Being alone is a hard place to be for many people.  Believe me, emotions get crazy!


Every day is a race!

I’m not sure if it’s the love of running that fuels my soul or my soles, or if it’s the clarity of being alone, outdoors, and present in my thoughts.

I think of the days when my running was more competitive, when I was running sub 7’s or steady at an 8 minutes pace for mile after mile.

My thoughts run back to the days I had a run group.  We never missed a Saturday and enjoyed coffee afterwards.  4 miles to 20 miles, it just depended on the day and how we felt.   It didn’t matter if you were training for the race or not, you always said yes to a training run.  Then, lives changed, jobs changed, paces changed, injuries happened, or extracurricular children activities took precedence. 

Signing up for a 5k, 10k, 13.1, or 26.2 was never a missed opportunity.  Toeing the line brought excitement, sickness, stomach cramps, anxiety and a thrill of leg turnover that hurt so bad afterwards. 

Everyone was like a book cover.  You just didn’t know the athleticism of the next person.  A roller coaster of feels on a course that took you in circles or out and back.  The world you could explore on your feet.

My last marathon, I ran a 3:49.  Fast to some, slow to others, to me… I was closer to Boston than I had ever been.  To get me to the finish line, it took 3 cortisone shots in 9 months, dry needling, fire hydrant stretching, patience, and more determination (or stupidity) to get myself through it.  That was 6 years ago.  My last half marathon was 3 years ago at a 1:42. The pain for even that in my piriformis was too painful. 

Today, I am a 4 miler every day.  This is mileage I can sustain pain free, and just enough distance to clear my head.  My pace is sustainable around 8:15 – 9:15, depending on the day.

I struggle with the phrase, “I am a runner.”  I’m not sure what determines that.  I also struggle with the phrase, “I hate to run”.  I’m not sure what determines that you should love it.

Running is more than lacing up a pair of new kicks and walking out the door.  Dig deep, find the love of yourself, find a meaning for your soles to hit the pavement or trails, change your thinking, change your life.

Whatever you want to call yourself, a runner or not, just continue to put one foot in front of the other.

My running route for you is to find what moves you.

Please share… What type are you?

Stay Strong,


Botox, Lash Boost and BOOBS!!!

When exercise and nutrition doesn’t cover it all, you step outside the box. 

“Elegance is when the inside is as beautiful as the outside”


This sounds so vain.  By far do I see myself as vain, but maybe others do.  I have no clue, nor do I focus on that.

I read an article not too long ago on Melissa Hartwig’s Insta page.  It was chastising her for getting Botox.  She is the guru, the mind behind Whole 30, and a fitness fanatic.  She was having to defend herself for getting injections to remove the unwanted wrinkles that diet and exercise would not get rid of.  It’s part of the aging process.  Until reading this, I never really thought how others would view you if they knew the truth about what you also do to keep looking your best. 

Time to come clean…  “be honest, Brutally honest.”  Lauren Hill


Yes, I get Botox.  I started about 3 years ago.  It was probably “the talk” at the time.   A friend of mine got it regularly (every 3 months) and I was like… “dang that looks good”.  I already have the “resting bitch face” so I was like it can’t hurt.  I also have this one horrible line over my left eye.  It was so deep, and this is was the only way I could fix it.   It was.  Why not?  I did it without telling a soul.  Ten days later, people started noticing something was different.  The lines began to smooth out and the thick sink-hole above my left eye was so much less noticeable.   I haven’t stopped since.  It not only makes me feel better about myself (which we all strive to do) but I love it.  Thank you, Teri, at Glo Med Spa, for being my person in this area.  I’m not ashamed. 


Everybody wants great lashes, so why not pay for them as well?  Lash Boost from Rodan and Fields has been my saving grace.  My lashes fall out.  They are thin.  They are scattered.  They are horrible.  Not only my lashes, but also my eyebrows.  I guess I just wasn’t born with those beautiful long thick lashes.  I have to work for them, well, really, I have to pay for them.  $135 a tube that last about 3 months, but it works.  Am I a consultant for R+F?  Yes.  Do I want to sell you a tube?  Absolutely, what consultant wouldn’t.   Does it work?  Yes.  Here is a pic of my friend, Katty, and, a consultant and her amazing lashes.   I never have taken a before and after of me, but I will. 


December 22, 2017, I went under the knife.  One of the hardest decisions of my life.  It took me over a year and two consultations at The Wall Center to make up my mind.  Why?  Because of what people would think of me, that is my reason.  The worst reason ever and the one thing I preach, I was worried about.  I exercise.  I eat right.  I do everything I can to live the life that I believe in and have a body that I am proud of (except my stomach).  I work so hard to be a role model for healthy living and doing the right thing and here I was contemplating cheating and getting a breast augmentation… hell, a boob job.  WTH?  I had breast fed twins for eight months.  I had been a yo-yo dieter for years.  My boobs were pancakes, droopy, tired and wilted.  There was absolutely no number of pushups, chest exercises, pull ups, or anything that was going to fix them.

And then a friend and I were talking about it, they said… “why not?  It’s the only way to fix them.   If they were going to go back in their right spot, it would have already happened.”   Words to live by, right?  Vanity… All my hard work and dedication to weight training and running, I am going the easy route.  I was seriously struggling. 

I went for my last consult with Dr. Holly Wall.  She asked if I wanted to get the scar on my stomach fixed as well.  I had had that consult previously with her father in law.  That was tough.  You see, I have a large scar on my tummy that I HATE.  I hate it.  She was wanting to do a complete tummy tuck to help the look of it.  That decision was by far the hardest.  That scar was left there as a 2-year-old when my appendix ruptured.  That scar is there because I lived to tell about it. 

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The scar that was re-opened to take my twins on 1-15-08.  That scar has built a lot of character in me, so let it stay.  I still hate it, but I leave it.  I wish I had the nerve to share a pic, but I don’t.  Maybe one day…  I stayed with the augmentation and lift.  DONE!

Would I love some Juvéderm?  Hell yeah.  That’s not happening right now.  I’ll let you know if I decide. 

“Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same.”

That’s my truth.  I continuously work every day to be my best self.  I will continue to help you find your best self.  I will also defend your decision to be a better you if it will truly make you feel better about yourself.  I will not defend your efforts of any of the above if you are not truly a happier person afterwards. 

I love my Botox; Lash boost and Boobs and I would do it all over again.  If anyone wants to call me vain, so be it. 

Live your best life. 

Stay Strong –

Mitzi sted-With”]=


“Be Strong and Courageous.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”  – Joshua 1:9

How did our paths cross?  God had a plan is all I can say.  I call it a “God Wink”.  You see, I had no plans of being in Colfax, Louisiana on November 3, 2018.  This is the weekend of the Annual LA Pecan Festival in my home town.  My mother took my children to the parade that morning and unexpectedly asked me to come get them because she wanted to hang out with some of her childhood friends.  When I got there, I decided to make one stroll down front street to see if I saw any familiar faces.  Oddly, I did not.  I mean NOT ONE friend, not one family member, not an acquaintance… no one.  As I am headed to my car, I see Debbie Futrell and my mom talking.  Debbie begins telling me about this gym that has opened in the old Dry Prong Jr High gymnasium.  My ears perk and I am captivated by this story.  She told me of a local woman that had opened a gym in her garage free to others had now purchased this huge piece of history of the parish to open a facility for health and community awareness of fitness.  WHAT?  Debbie said, “Mitzi, I think you should call her.”

It wasn’t ten minutes later, on my way out of town, I had Bonita Preuett-Armour on the other end of the phone.  We clicked.  It was instant.  The next day, I was headed to DPJH to see what this lady had created.  OH MY GOSH!

That gym from 1986 (my junior high years) was transformed to say the least.  The equipment is incredible.  The social area is remarkably welcoming.  The children’s area is better than my kids’ rooms.  The bathrooms are completely remodeled yet with tons of character.   If you are an alumna of DPJH, you have got to stop in and check it out. 

Bonita asked if I would help her with a “Back to Square 1” challenge for the gym.  She wanted me to be the nutrition coach for her 6-week program to change these peoples lives.  I don’t think they really understood what was going to happen to them when they signed up. 

Before I go any further…

This chick, Bonita, that I met back in November is one gem herself.  This woman puts everyone before herself.  She puts her blood, sweat and tears in everything she touches.  She is 110% of pure go get ‘em.  She has a drive and passion for healthy living.  She has built a community of health, fitness, strength, love, friends and family, all while she has a full-time job as an attorney and a wife.  She gives all the glory to God above…  This gym is built on faith and certainty and worship.   I am blessed to have found a friend in you.  Mucho Love!

The challenge consisted of…

5 Points in each category

Exercise – prayer/meditation – sleep – diet – 10,000 steps a day – attitude – water

7 groups of 13 athletes – 2 groups (65+ age) of 10 athletes 1 team leader of each group

Extra points to be awarded for nutrition challenges and exercise challenges at any given time.

6 weeks of a Life-Changing challenge for so many of these people.


The do’s and don’ts of your next 6 weeks eating habits is earth shattering.  When I told these Grant Parish Athletes, they could no longer have gravy, fried anything, sodas, dairy, grains, sugar, imitation sugar, peanut butter…  and I just didn’t stop.  I saw them crumble in front of me and every positive thought of that challenge had come to a screeching halt with the nutrition plan. 

You mean I can’t have…?  Yes, that’s exactly what I mean.

I handed out my phone number to over a hundred people and said text me at any time with a picture, ingredients, menu, or whatever you need I will guide you through.

MY PHONE BLEW UP.  BLEW UP.  It was a beautiful sound.  It meant they wanted to learn, to be educated, to gain knowledge, to succeed, and to take their life back.  Incredible to say the least.

There were many people that became increasingly aggravated at me telling them no and no again and again and again…  Ya’ll there were times I just wanted to say YES, so I wouldn’t have to say NO again.

Let me say this… They never quit.  They kept going back to the grocery.   They began experimenting with flipping recipes.  They became comfortable eating clean.  Their bodies began to reflect and respond.  There was no turning back now.

I read every text in all group post.  It got difficult.  I heard, “I’m ready for this to be over” numerous times.  For every time I heard that, I also heard those same people say, “I AM WORTH IT”.

6 weeks – The last Sunday, it was time to scan those bodies again.  What did I actually do for this body for 6 weeks?  The results are going to amaze you.

Please take in to account that they walked/ran 10,000 steps a day, drank 64oz of water a day, exercised, and completely changed their dietary guidelines.

Here are some pics of our journey to a new, STRONGER B22 Community…

A huge thank you to each and every one of you for trusting me in this endeavor.  Your results speak for themselves.  Stay the course…  You are only beginning.

Stay Strong!


Lloyd Whitman lost 29#
Joe Poisso lost 28.4#

This dynamic duo
Audrey and Joe Poisso lost a total of 48.4# and over 30 combined inches

The winning team “Dry Prong Strong” list a combined total of 140#

The Winning Losers came in 1st Overall place with a total loss of 138.1# and winning overall points. 

The winner of the most pounds lost was Stacia Walker Carpenter with 30#.
These are some of the “Coffee Club” members.  There is no stopping them.  They had a combined step total of 3,148,631.  A combined weight loss of 60.4#.   



As I am running this hot, humid Sunday morning, I notice the holiday decorations going up.  Some homes already lit, others decorating the lawn early this morn, trimming the house with lights, hauling things from the attic, and doing their obligatory duties of spraying Christmas joy throughout their home.


Because you’re supposed to, right?

Well, I did too.  I came home and put up the tree, decorated the mantle, put the nativity scenes out, spruced up the foyer, hung the stockings and placed the wreath upon the door.


Because I’m supposed to, right?

Black Friday…  Cyber Monday…  BUY BUY BUY…


Because you’re supposed to, right?

Well, I didn’t do that.

Family calling, “when are you coming?”, “what are you bringing?”, “what do you want for Christmas?”

My brother bought a new house in Lake Charles a few months ago, he asked everyone to come there for Christmas.  I said, no.  I got a little flack from that.  He has no young children, I do.  I am not dragging my kids everywhere on Christmas day.  I’m just not doing it and I don’t feel obligated to do so.

Let’s be honest, some of these people you don’t want to see nor speak to.  Some of these people you don’t even acknowledge on a birthday and now you are expected to buy them a Christmas gift.  All in while you are thinking, I could spend that money on myself or my kids.

I’m there too.  I promise.  I feel like it’s all a big obligation sometimes.  It’s almost like, call me on a random week day to go to lunch or send a text out of the blue, that’s special.  Having anxiety about being everywhere in 2 days, is not worth it.

When does it stop?

As all this is running through my head, I’m thinking why don’t they put this much effort in their health?

They aren’t complaining of their back or knees or hips hurting climbing in and out of that attic or going up and down that ladder.

Let’s talk about obligations:

The obligation of your health.

We get so wrapped up in seasons.  Decorating, buying, cooking, and making everyone else happy…  Where are you in your obligations?

When do you get time to put yourself first?  When do your excuses end?

Each day is a day farther and farther away from the person you are longing to become.   Your quality of sleep, your diet, your physical activity all plays a huge role in your mental game.

“you only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”  Mae West

Ask yourself:

what is my fear?

What is stopping me from my potential?

Why do I need to feel in control, when I’m really out of control?

Do I benefit from being the “yes” person?

Why do toxic people attract me?

How much time do I waste?

How can I change?

Be honest with your answers…

And now answer this,

Who could I become?

That, my friend, is your answer to your happy and your joy every season, 365 days a year.

At some point you will die, did you enrich your life and create a legacy?

Small steps can become really big steps.  Please, just take a step.

I am leading a 21 Day Challenge.  21 days of 12,000 steps each day.  That is about 6 miles a day.  It begins on Dec 1.  Join me If you’d like, it’s a great way to get through the holiday season and into the new year with a healthier lifestyle.  A challenge would not be a challenge if it were easy.

“Voice your ideas, don’t be afraid to fail, and certainly don’t be afraid to succeed.”  Zdravko





Running vs. Cross Training


A subject I have been weary to tackle. It’s so touchy to people. And fairly, no one really wants to hear what you have to say about doing more or working out on non-running days. The focus is 2-3 days short runs and one long run on the weekend. Right? Oh yeah – I know all too well.

On this amazing, sunny, beautiful, 57-degree day in Louisiana, I take off on my normal morning run. Legs, hips, ankles are a bit achy as usual until I get that first quarter mile under me and everything in this 45yo body starts to settle in. I start thinking, thank God I cross train. I am fortunate to be mostly a very healthy runner.

Think about your running form. Seriously… Review it now.

• Is your core engaged?
• Are your shoulders back? No slouching
• Are your feet coming off the ground? No shuffling
• Are your arms hanging low swinging out of control?
• Ladies, do you wear a good sports bra?
• Are your shoes the right shoes for you?

Core strength, yoga and weight training all help with these things (except shoes and bras).
Poor running form causes problems. If you’re going to do it, do it right or at least better.

Runners, especially beginners, are so afraid to pick up a weight or engage in some other activity other than stomping pavement. It’s all about mileage, or is it? Quality vs Quantity.

Running on tired legs… Do or Do not? Why not? It’s not race day. Get out there. When you are training, that’s what it’s about. I would rather run on tired legs any day and strengthen those bad boys up with a push. Training is the worst part. Race day… Is the easy day. You have one goal on that day… A finish line. You do not want to peak before the day of your race. Embrace every bad run you have.

Your legs are not the only part of your body that is doing the work. Think about your upper body and how much power it uses to move the lower half. Your shoulders, abs, obliques, lower back, chest, and even your arms. It’s an anatomy effort. Everything working together to move you forward. Strong core increases the stability of your hips, and pelvis.

Ladies, if you are chest heavy, I suggest you spend some extra money on a damn good sports bra.

If you are an overweight runner, your knees, hips, ankles, back and shoes should be priority. Running should NOT be your only preference of exercise.

I preach the words “full range of motion”. That means finish and end completely.

Squats – sit and stand. Extend your hips at the top. Just like you do when you are on the toilet.
Push-ups – lower your body in a plank position as low as you can get it to the ground and push yourself back up.
Sit ups – engage your core. Do not use your back to propel yourself up, use your core strength.
Lunges – do not fall forward into your lunge. Think about dropping that knee straight down, keeping that heel pressed into the ground and chest up.

Running is so much more than a 13.1 or 26.2 sticker for your car. It is respecting your body, the distance, and longevity of a healthy lifestyle.


Happy Trails,

w30 – DONE!!

Thank you! These 6 people listed under me are Rockstar’s. They said yes to a challenge I had no clue what was to bring. I just knew I wanted to do it. Proving a healthy lifestyle from different angles of people, lifestyles, physical levels, emotional needs, and mental toughness. People love groups and accountability. FIND A SUPPORTIVE FRIEND. These last 30 days have been a rollercoaster. There have been days I wanted to quit, days I felt like I could fly, days I wanted to go to bed at 5pm, days I had more energy than a 2 year old, days I wanted to cry, days I ran faster than I have in years and days I wanted to walk, days I slept like a baby and days I didn’t, days I wanted to hurt people and days I wanted to welcome everyone to my home… And then day 23 hit and it all leveled out. It was a magical moment. Cruise control is the best I can explain it. Your body finds it’s happy! All the toxins are gone. Your clarity has never been to vivid. There is then days 24-30, your cravings quit. The wine was like a thing of the past. I was ready to go to a restaurant without feeling like I wanted a fried green bean, or a French fry from my kids’ plate and water just seemed my norm. I liked it. It’s a place and feeling that gives you a sense of control of your body… Better yet… RESPECT!

6lbs. down 4 inches gone

We all weighed on the same scale before and after. Measurements were taken of chest, waist and hips.

For any of you out there wanting to do a W30, I will be glad to help. Do not hesitate to call me 318-792-9699. I will come speak to a group, inform, grocery shop, menu plan, or just simply support.

30 days is a long time! I was super glad that it was over today. Although I was not excited to have the final weigh in and measurements taken, I was glad that I had lost inches and weight. This journey was a winding one for me and I can’t say that I was %100 on my eating. A few times drinking when I shouldn’t have and a few slip ups later; I call them my whole 30 Weakends. I do feel good about where I’m at and have decided to continue on my journey to health and wellness. Can’t say I’m going to be sticking to the strict protocol that is the w30 but will definitely be paying more attention to the way food makes me feel and how my body reacts to different foods. Thanks to Mitzi and the rest of the crew for including me in this challenge.
9lbs down – 7.5 inches gone

So, we are officially done, now what? For me I’m going to try and continue eating clean. I like the results I’m seeing, and it just makes me feel so much better.
Shout out to Kate for the meals, I really liked the convenience, and to Mitzi for doing the study in the first place. And congrats to everyone for having a great 30 days!!

7lbs down – 5 inches gone

Best Whole 30 ever!!! It wasn’t easy but anything worth having doesn’t come easy! I feel cleaner, leaner, and healthier! I lost a total of 5.8 pounds and 3.5 inches! I have added back a bit of creamer to my morning coffee and an occasional glass of wine. I plan to continue eating as clean as possible. My sister, Linda and I will be meal prepping together on Sunday evenings to ensure that we are prepared for the week ahead!!! I know the foods that make me feel bad and plan to stay away from them. I would definitely recommend Whole 30 to anyone for a multitude of reasons! If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me. Go for it! You won’t regret it!!!

6 lbs down – 4 inches gone

Well this most recent 30-day journey is complete. It was challenging but also one of my favorite Whole30’s to date. I think my favorite thing was the small group setting and the accountability. I think anytime you want to do something great – it’s good to get people to stand with you. It’s the same way for me with my workouts – knowing I have my crew waiting on me every day – motivates me and helps me get up and going each morning!! For me the group was that.

It was also wonderful having meals prepared – but also interesting because I ate food I’ve never eaten before. You see, for me I thought kale was a garnish on a nice dinner plate or maybe threw in a very berry smoothie – not something you actually ate. Y’all we ate a lot of kale these past 30 days! And I went to the bathroom a lot also. But I also tried some stuff that I really really liked – so the meals were such a blessing!

Overall, I felt so good being on the plan. I didn’t have one bit of acid reflux and didn’t have to take any Tums the whole time. My energy was good overall especially after the first few days. One of my favorite things about this time – is on day 31 – I ate the exact same at the previous 30 days. It’s amazing when you feel so good and just want to continue. I lost weight which of course was wonderful. My clothes fit better which is always wonderful but just feeling healthy and knowing I disciplined myself and made a commitment to take care of my body. I want to continue on with that. God gave us these bodies, and this is the only body we get – I want to take care of what God has given me – and live a long and strong life!

Thank you, Mitzi, for leading the way for all of us and for your constant encouragement

14lbs down – 3.5 inches

WOW!! This W30 experience has been so different from the other 2 I have participated in. And these few days following the W30 have been quite interesting as well (I truly believe for me a huge part of the entire learning process). The last week of the challenge I was so VERY ready for the challenge to be done. Then those last few days brought a change I was not expecting…. I was actually wondering what I would do following the challenge. I was enjoying the energy, I was pleased with losing some weight and a few inches. And then there were the reasons I chose to participate in the challenge in the first place that were beginning to weigh in on my thoughts, my alcohol, my cholesterol, my overall health…. what was I going to do?? Well, we are 5 days post-challenge and I have maintained my good food choices and exercise. I had a couple cocktails but chose to simply sip & stop and that was good. Then came the big true & huge lesson. We had a family cookout at the house this weekend and decided I was going to drink as was everyone else. Then the morning came!!! I knew! I remembered! The main reason for the challenge was to feel better and quit the heavy alcohol. Lesson learned: I so remember how badly I felt regularly and know I am NOT going back there. I am NOT putting my weight back on. NOPE!!! It is odd how we do not realize how bad we feel until we push ourselves to change and feel good!! While I feel this W30 experience was a rough struggle, I am so very thankful to have had the struggle and know beyond a shadow of a doubt, it was worth it – every 30 days of it!!!

9lbs down – 5 inches gone

Wednesday night, yes, the very day after our challenge was over, I drank my J.D. and then went home and ate some banana pudding my good neighbor brought me and had a piece of pumpkin pie that had been brought to me a work that day. The challenge was over, and I was eating and drinking what I wanted! Yeah, well, Thursday morning I knew immediately that poor choices definitely bring poor results. I came in on Thursday evening just wanting to go to sleep so that day would be over. I know I want to continue eating more healthily and control my drink habit. I felt like a caged animal during the entire challenge, unable to socialize and participate in things I would have normally. But these few days since the challenge, (after suffering through Thursday) I am realizing that I can CHOOSE to eat healthy foods & control my drink and still socialize and participate in life. It is all about better choices.
16 lbs down

Whole 30 – Week 4 – Two More Days

Whole 30 – 2 MORE DAYS…
Menu for week 3:

Southwestern Chicken Vegetable Soup
Surf and Turf Grilled shrimp and steak, asparagus, butternut squash cubes

Sesame tuna salad with avocado, pineapple and Thai vinaigrette
Beef pot roast with mashed cauliflower and sautéed kale

Portobello pizza with turkey meatballs
Beef spaghetti squash bake

Turkey boat zucchini boats
Cabbage rolled enchiladas with queso and green beans

Beef and butternut chili
Salmon fajita wraps


We are at the finish line people. 30 days complete in 2 days. I can’t wait to hear results and share with you our struggles, focus areas, thoughts, and journey.

Me: Week 4 was good. Real good. I feel like I am coasting now. I have so much to say about a detox. Your body truly does not cleanse for at least 3 weeks. I will say it takes a solid 3 weeks to get right. Your emotions are crazy, your hunger is still in the form of nonsense eating, habit, and learning what you can and can not tolerate. Everyone should complete at least one. You have never felt so good about yourself. The wine craving that I have been so affixed to…has past. It took a while. Don’t get me wrong, I will enjoy a glass Thursday night, Ladies Night with my girls at The Levee. Sip and Savor is my moto with that.
Phyllis: 2 more days left and feeling great! My menopausal symptoms are barely noticeable. I feel very clean and healthy. I’m very excited to weigh on Wednesday morning and I’m going to have my cholesterol checked to compare with my January results! I will definitely keep on the whole 30/paleo path in the weeks and hopefully months to come!

Darcy: Wowsa! We are close to the end. This has been a very challenging whole30 for me but also a really good one. Honestly it feels so good knowing you have the ability to call the shots – and your body/hunger/cravings don’t always have to win. Taking care of your body is your choice! It can be done but requires discipline and good choices time after time. This week I had more energy that I had been having and get better overall. Excited to weigh and measure again and see how my body responded.
Linda: So, we are down to the last couple days, still feeling good. I’m curious to find out everyone’s results. One thing I would like to do is to keep going and make even more progress, keep eating clean, and keep these results going! I’ve enjoyed not having to cook much so now I’ll have to make an effort to cook more and make sure I stay away from junk!

Pam: This whole week has been pretty leveled out in many ways. I do not find myself hungry until it is meal time, and often after that before I realize that I need to eat. Snacking is almost gone completely, other than some this weekend, but only because of an event I attended where everyone was eating candy & chips – I brought a couple Lara Bars and mixed nuts.  My energy level has been good, and only dealt with a craving one time that sticks out in my mind. However, on the subject of cravings, I have spent quite a bit of time this week thinking about what happens on Wednesday when this challenge is over. I have much to think about…..WOW, 2 more days!!

Mark: Week 4 done. Ready for a drink.

Whole 30 – Week 3

Week 3 Whole 30:

Our Menu…


Teriyaki pork tenderloin, cabbage, and green beans

Turkey lettuce wraps (I added avocado and tomato)


Buffalo chicken spaghetti squash casserole

Tuna pad Thai


Chicken salad with W30 Vinaigrette

Shrimp patty over Ratatouille


Pork chop with green beans and squash/zucchini

Pulled pork, cubed sweet potato, coleslaw


Beef Shepard’s Pie (I could have eaten another helping)

Beef and broccoli


Week 3 – Almost Done…  Where am I?  This is definitely a different W30 than in the past.  As of food, I am past snacking.  I pretty much stick with 3 meals a day, except for breakfast.  Breakfast is odd for me because I go to work so early.  A half of a Lara bar and a cup of coffee fuels me at 4:00am.  I run at 6:30 every morning, take a quick gym shower and then eat again.  It usually consists of eggs and sausage or apple and almond butter.  The wine… well…  It’s better!  I will be honest and say that I have never done a W30 where I looked forward to finishing to have a glass.  This time, as of today, that is still the case.  About Wednesday hit and this incredible urge of a chocolate chip cookie punched me in the face.  I truly attribute that to “that time of the month”.  With saying that, I will also add that I did not have back pain this month or PMS of any kind.  INCREDIBLE.  Usually, you can bet I feel like I’m in kidney failure my back hurts so bad.  Fatigue continues to hit me around 7:30 every evening.  This may be the cause I have given up my 2pm cup of coffee.  Who knows!

Heading in to week 4, I am very positive and ready to continue feeling great.



Feeling pretty good, a little tired by end of week but overall good. Down to single digits, staying strong!

Linda, and she is killing her workouts…  and I have not been cursed out yet…


Week three of whole30 – it’s been pretty good for the most part. One thing Mitzi has asked from us for this 30-day study is to be honest. So here I go with some honesty. I think my stomach is tired of all these veggies! 🤦🏼‍♀️ I didn’t know it was possible to be so gassy! My stomach has been in somewhat distress on and off for about 10 days. Honestly, I think part of it has been the variety of veggies that I normally don’t eat – for instance I don’t normally eat butternut squash (never), broccoli, cabbage, squash, zucchini, and peppers. I really can’t say I don’t enjoy them, but my stomach is saying wait – what’s going on – too much new!!  Other than that, I’m trucking along good. I’ve enjoyed the group so much and the accountability.

Darcy, she too is killing her workouts…  I have smelt a woof of something here and there, is it her or me not sure!


Mon and Tues, I was just feeling as I had since the Fri before — energized, rested, you know with what Whole 30 refers to as “Tiger Blood”.  But Wed, whoa!!!  I had a hard workout that morning and then it was like I crashed.  No energy, foul, and very confused as to why I was not continuing my feel-good path.  Thursday & Friday were better, but by Friday afternoon, I was totally spent.  However, Saturday was awesome!  Slept so well on Friday and awoke ready for the day.  Was busy all day & felt great!!  Slept well again on Sat night and Sunday feels good!!  Week 4 — now this will be a challenge…all of the family has finally gone home, but I am going to be out of town Thurs – Sun.  Eeeek!  But it is the last week, so I have that incentive to keep me strong 🙂

Pam, Strong as strong can be…  I’m super proud of this gal.


Still fighting neck stiffness and headaches which seemed to have come on with this program.  I have not particularly noticed any energy change, and not sure what is up with that.  Sleep has been restless. and I still find myself having to pee during the night.  My proud time of the week was being out of town Thursday night.  All the buddies having drinks with dinner and then sitting around catching up & drinking that evening, yet I managed to refrain!!  However, let me tell you it is no fun when everyone else is drinking and you have to listen to them!  And, of course, I became the designated driver….  But, I was strong and maintained my plan.  Week 4…I hope you bring me better.

Mark, I wish I saw you more often.  You truly make these reads pleasurable for me.


feeling really good overall. I figured out that I had to add roasted sweet potatoes to my meal the night before I planned to run and workout. That helped tremendously! We had a big family gathering today with a lot non-whole 30 food but held strong!  At this moment, I have cheesecake, blueberry cake, chocolate cake, and banana bread sitting on my counter.   Looking forward to week 4.

Phyllis… the cake issue, very proud of that.  I would have taken out my 409 and sprayed the hell out of them.


Here ya go! Short and sweet

I fell off the wagon this week as I went on a long weekend trip to the beach with my friends. I regret nothing since I had this trip planned for months before I decided to do the w30. I tried to eat as clean as possible but there were Bundt cakes that were amazing! Anyways, lots of wine, booze, laughter and delicious food. Memories were made, and good times were had! I’m not the best at keeping to the rules so I kinda figure this is a part of it. I’m really glad that this is almost over!

Kate, I couldn’t have said it better myself.  I love this, and I love you.  Honestly, we all would have done the same.  Some things are just worth the laughter, tears and memories of a “Beaches Trip.”

So here you have it…  Real life in week 3!

We are day 22.  This has been a great experience so far.  I want to talk about food, portions, no snacking, exercise, accountability, and so much more.  It’s coming.

Stay Strong and Stay Tuned…