Tag Archives: health

Commit to a Happier, Healthier You: Take the Wellness Week Pledge

One day, after a grueling few hours at work on top all the things good and not-so-good going on in my life, I felt a bit overwhelmed. So, in the middle of the day, I decided to take a much needed break. Sitting under a tree eating a banana and cashews while listening to the birds chirp, my mind was able to empty out. I began to refocus and feel a real sense of calm. It was a moment where it was all about me, and nourishing my mind, body and soul. This week, March 19-25 is National Wellness Week presented by SpaFinder. Take charge of your mental and physical health. Discover simple, inexpensive ways you can take those “you” moments. Also, get amazing deals on spa, fitness and wellness services this week.
The Wellness Week Pledge 
I pledge to take charge of my health by taking these simple yet vital steps toward a happier and healthier life. By committing to achieve at least one of these activities each day of Wellness Week, I will make taking care of myself a priority, enabling me to do more, stay healthy, and live a longer, more vibrant and meaningful life. I pledge to:

  • Change my breakfast. I will kick off my day with a healthy meal that includes foods like oatmeal, yogurt, fruit, seeds, nuts, and whole grain cereals and toast. 
  • Choose to move. I will walk more by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, parking further from the store or taking a desk break to go for a five-minute stroll. 
  • Hydrate. I will drink a glass of water before breakfast, lunch or dinner. 
  • Make my sleep a priority. I will build boundaries around my sleep by sticking to a set bedtime, and by not eating or working in bed. 
  • Embrace the power of touch. I will recharge myself and others through the simple act of giving or receiving a hug, foot rub or five-minute massage. 
  • Give myself the gift of silence. I will find 10 minutes a day away from screens of any type – phone, TV or computer and enjoy the quiet. 
  • Connect with nature. I will walk outside, breath more deeply and enjoy the outdoors for a few minutes each day. 

Get Amazing Deals on Spa Services
All week long, hundreds of spas, fitness and wellness centers are offering exclusive deals and 50% off prices. Take advantage of this opportunity to recharge by visiting SpaFinder.com to find out more about Wellness Week 2012 and deals in your area. Give a gift certificate to friend who needs to “them” moment as well.

What steps will you take this week to commit to a happier, healthier you? Please share your comments below.

“I think my hair is giving me an allergy attack…”

Many women speak of the love/hate relationship they have with their natural hair. There are many things on the list of natural hair “hassles” from clogged drains to oily skin. Now, you may be able to add to that list, allergies. For the allergy sufferers like me any number things could set off an allergy attack. This time I really think it was my hair and I’ll tell you why.

Here’s what happened. I’m sitting at work, when my eyes begin to water and itch, before you know it, I’m into a full-blown allergy attack with uncontrollable sneezing. I was like, “Oh, God what is making me like this? I can’t even see!” The eye irritation was unbelievable. Then I thought about how minutes earlier I was playing around in my hair. I wondered if it could be my hair causing the attack. Please note that hair itself is not an allergen, which is, any substance that can cause an allergy attack. (So, stop blaming the dog or cat hair for your allergies.)

Now, since we know that the hair itself did not trigger the attack, what else could it be? I have a strong theory that it was the allergens trapped in my hair that caused the attack. My schedule got out of control, so I had not washed my hair in a while. Instead just washing and re-twisting my hair for a twistout, I did a big no-no. I put new product (in this case curly pudding, hair milk, etc) on top of dirty hair. I’m being very transparent about my missteps because this is real life. I noticed that my jacket was dusty and that the flakes were coming from my hair. Clearly, the product buildup (now dirt) was just falling from my head. Can you say embarrassing? I’m very certain that all the dust, products and dead skin that had built over a period of weeks is what was causing my allergic reaction.

I’m not trying to leave the impression that natural hair (and my hair) is nasty and dirty. Certainly, if you develop and maintain a routine to keep your hair clean at least once a week, and go no more than two weeks without washing, you will be fine. Also, be sure to wear a hair bonnet at night, not only protect the hair from breakage, but to keep lint and dust from flying into your hair at night. Lastly, don’t use hair products with harsh chemicals as they can trigger eye allergies. If you suffer from allergies like me, then keeping the hair clean and free of debris, chemicals and allergens is a must, no matter how crazy your schedule gets. Lesson learned.

Please share your thoughts or other hair hassles below.

Hanging at “New Year New You” Hosted by The Mane Source

Briana McCarthy of The Mane Source and me
What better way to start off the New Year than to realign your focus on personal lifestyle goals? Briana McCarthy and The Mane Sourcehosted, “New Year New You” last Saturday held at The Living Room Lounge, which featured a spectacular lineup of expert guests covering a wide range of lifestyle topics. Here are some of the tips that I found personally informative for anyone looking to start the New Year off right.

Dr. Kara Davis, author of Spiritual Secrets to Weight Loss, came with straight talk about what we should and should not be doing with our bodies. She noted that many diseases can be prevented through diet, exercise, proper rest and eliminating stress. Sounds simple enough, but many of us still do not apply these principles to our life. Dr. Davis gave sound wisdom like resting your fork while eating. Don’t scarf down your food. Give your body time to digest the food. In order to not over eat, learn your body and don’t eat until you are full, but eat until you have satisfied your hunger. That makes a difference.
Renisha James, Renewed Fitness
Renisha James of Renewed Fitness, a personal trainer and ambassador of Black Girls RUN!, got our blood going as we moved around the room in a fun quiz exercise.  The questions she asked us to answer helped us to dispel myths, like “if you do weight training, you will look like a body-builder.” Renisha emphasized the most important aspect of fitness is to just get moving. Try to workout at least 30 min a day, 3-4 times a week. We recalled many of the excuses we use to not exercise and found that there really are no excuses. Oh, and ladies…your hair is not a good excuse either. We came up with solutions for that too! 
Tamika Martell-Price, Rachel Odem
and Briana McCarthy
Rachel Odem of Makeup by Rachel O gave an insightful presentation on skincare and makeup.  She demonstrated on her live model the various types of facial treatments and makeup options one can use to maintain fabulous skin. Of course, this sparked a lot of questions from the audience on their most pressing concerns. As a licensed esthetician and makeup artist, Rachel was able to give us a wide range of tips for common skincare problems along with pro makeup tips and tricks. One of the best things you can do for your skin is to exfoliate at least twice a week to get rid of dead skin, blackheads and to help with hyperpigmentation.
Professional wardrobe stylist, Tamika Martell-Price, founder of A-line Style Services was on hand to share her style insight. There are two things that I personally took to heart  from her presentation. One of the takeaways is to do a closet audit. Throw out or giveaway anything that is worn or doesn’t fit. Make a list of the key items that every woman should have to complete her wardrobe before you go shopping. Tamika was even gracious enough to give us a copy of her list. The next takeaway was that your clothes represent your personal brand especially if you are an aspiring entrepreneur.
The Double Saving Divas
Last but not least, we have the Double Saving Divas, Tai and Tarin Perry. You may have seen them from the hit show, TLC’s Extreme Couponing. They not only gave us some of their best couponing tips, but practical things that you can start doing right now to save money. Things such as, take advantage of store’s rewards programs like, CVS Pharmacy’s Extra Care Bucks to pay for purchases. Or, how about paying yourself first by taking the amount you earn from the first hour of work every day and putting it into savings. Find an accountability partner to help you stick to a budget. 
But wait, there’s more…
Will Williams, Director of Education and New Product Development at M&M Products Company was there to introduce a new natural hair product line Nothing But from Sofn’free GroHealthy. He very passionately gave us some of  his best tips on natural hair care. One minute at his booth and you will be all smiles from ear to ear, ready to try his products. And guess, what? We each walked away with a swag bag of full-sized product to try of both Nothing But and Beautiful Textures. Subscribe and watch for product reviews!
Now, I can’t end this post without talking about the food. Yes, the food…vegan soul food!!! I’m super excited about this because my experience with vegan has not always been pleasant. All I can say is that I had a second helping of the greens, macaroni and cheese and black-eyed pea fritters catered by Majani Catering. Yummy!
Congrats to Briana and her team on another fabulous event. I definitely left with a wealth of knowledge that I will be referring back to all year long. Here’s to the new you (and me) in 2012!
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Event Alert: “New Year New You” Hosted by The Mane Source

Start off the New Year right with information that will empower you to transform your life! The Mane Source is hosting “New Year New You”. The guest list boasts a lineup of knowledgeable and influential, professional women in the health, finance, beauty and fashion arenas. I am personally excited to attend this event. Each person will receive swag bags with full-size products and refreshments. I can’t think of a better way to start the new year. The discussion will focus on:

Women’s Health & Nutrition
Fitness and Weight loss
Financial Responsibility and Creative Ways to Save Money
Skincare and Beauty Tips
How to dress for your body type and more!

Guests include:
Dr Kara Davis
Celeb Makeup Artist Tia Dantzler
Double Saving Divas
Celeb Stylist Tamika Martell
Renisha James Fitness Guru

Click here to grab your ticket today! Space is limited. Order by 1/10/12 to receive $5 off the regular price.