Project You Summer Edition is Here!

Sure it’s already July and we’re halfway through the summer, but that never stopped us! Project You, the Summer Edition is finally here. We are so proud of our latest issue which is filled with book reviews galore, amazing beauty, entertaining and health tips, funny essays, travel secrets and so much more. Thanks again to all of our amazing contributors!
Take a look, click on the links and enjoy what we’d like to call a labor of love!

Get Back your Mojo!

Finding and Fixing the Holes in Your Wellness Plan By Debi Silber, MS, RD, WHC The Mojo Coach®
Why is it that we may eat well, exercise and still struggle with our weight and health?
For many of us, making healthier food choices is a way of life. We read labels, we’re mindful of our portions, we limit the amount of junk and processed foods we eat, we limit our alcohol intake and we make a concerted effort to eat “clean” and healthy.
Many of us also commit to a consistent fitness schedule where we’re walking, running, doing classes, DVD’s, yoga, or organized sports regularly. We put in the time and effort necessary to create a lean, toned and fit body.
So with this kind of effort, why aren’t many of us looking, feeling and living our best?
While eating and exercise are huge steps in the right direction, they’re only a piece of the wellness puzzle. The rest has to do with our lifestyle, our mindset and so much more. But, even with healthy eating and exercise there may be a few “holes” in your plan so let’s look there first.
If your choices are healthy for the most part, it’s worth taking a look at the “why” of your eating. Are you eating when your body is hungry or do you eat based on the time, the size of the plate or the event around you? There’s a big difference between hunger and appetite and while the body thrives when eating because of hunger, the body can only store fat when eating because of appetite. Here’s how to tell the difference.
Hunger is a physiological response to the body needing food. Your stomach may rumble, you may feel lightheaded and you want food quickly. Often, it doesn’t really matter what you eat as long as you get something into your system quickly.
Appetite is much different. It’s triggered by emotions, by something you’ve just seen, thought about or even by a delicious smell. With appetite, you feel an immediate urge to eat something and typically, it’s something specific. Also, different textures are indicative of certain emotions when driven by appetite. For example, you may want something crunchy when you’re angry and something smooth and creamy when you’re sad. Responding to appetite vs. hunger is a recipe for weight gain because your body doesn’t need the food. When that’s the case, your body’s only option is to convert it to fat and store it for you.
It’s also helpful to see if you’re eating mindlessly. With mindless eating, you’re taking in much more than you need because you’re distracted while eating. Are you eating while cooking, passing food to others, or taking in too much because you’re reading or watching TV during a meal? We can take in thousands of excess calories through “mindless munching.”
Emotional eating may also be a factor where we eat to soothe, calm, numb and relax from our problems our pain. It’s a self-­‐soothing technique where we self-­‐medicate, using food as our drug of choice. Any of these food behaviors not only cause weight gain, but also can have us struggling with maintaining a healthy weight for years.
Just as we get bored with a fitness routine, if your body isn’t challenged it gets bored too. Are you doing the same routine consistently and has it gotten easier over time? If so, it’s time to shake things up and create some “muscle confusion.” That could mean varying your pace or throwing in some intervals or bursts of intense plyometric movements to dramatically increase the intensity for a short period of time. It can also mean using weights, resistance bands, machines, trying an organized sport, a new fitness class, DVD or different route to run.
Many of us have also become consistent with our cardio routines but neglect to do anything to build muscle. Building muscle is critical to any fitness plan because it fires up our metabolism, gives us a fit, toned body as well as improving our quality of life by simply making every day tasks easier to perform.
With fitness, it’s also important to look at the rest of your day. Sure you may be getting in that workout but are you sitting behind a desk for the rest of the day? While the workout may be great, it can’t make up for a lack of movement once your workout it through.
Another piece of the wellness puzzle can be found with the amount of sleep you’re getting each night. With adequate sleep we have more clarity, ability to focus, concentrate, and we have more energy to get us through the day. Without enough sleep, we’ll look for energy through sugar and caffeine; the perfect recipe for weight gain. The empty calories coming from sugar gives us a temporary energy surge and inevitable crash, which leaves us craving more sugar to pick us up again. This short-­‐lived fuel doesn’t sustain or nurture our bodies but the calories add up quickly. Also, without enough sleep, certain hormones and chemicals don’t have an opportunity to rebalance and replenish themselves. Unfortunately, these chemicals also promote fat storage and increased appetite.
We can be eating well and exercising but if we’re living with chronic, unmanaged stress, we’re suppressing our immune system as well as causing physical, mental and emotional wear and tear. For example, if you’re under constant stress and you’re an emotional eater, the stress you feel will trigger a binge. You also won’t be interested in healthy meal planning, label reading and portion control because you’re consumed by your stress. In addition, you may look for comfort foods, which are loaded in fat, sugar and calories.
When stress suppresses your immune system, we’re not as able to fight off bacterial and viral invasion so we’re more susceptible to illness. Under stress, we’re also keeping our bodies tight which leads to muscle aches, pulls, tears, headaches and more.
Chronic stress also affects our digestive, nervous and even reproductive system. Digestive disturbances such as irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, Chrohn’s disease and acid reflux can all be tied to stress.
Our relationships are either good or bad for our health. Supportive, loving, positive and nurturing relationships improve the immune system, flood our bodies with “feel good” hormones and chemicals while giving us a sense of connectedness. Negative, critical,
judgmental and pessimistic people suppress our immune systems, flood our bodies with stress hormones and discourage us from being, doing and having more.
Mindset is also a critical piece to the wellness puzzle. A lack of confidence, low self esteem, poor self image and a belief system that doesn’t serve us will prevent us from living the life we want…no matter how well we eat and how much we exercise. If we feel worthy and deserving of love, health, wellness and success, then our thoughts, behaviors and actions will support those goals. If we feel unworthy of love, health, wellness and success, unfortunately our actions and behaviors will support those beliefs too.
True health is being healthy from the inside, out. It’s not just a great body; it’s a healthy body thriving because of a healthy lifestyle, a healthy mind and a healthy spirit.
Debi Silber, MS, RD, WHC The Mojo Coach®, founder of is a leading health, fitness, wellness, lifestyle, self-­‐improvement expert and THE secret behind some of the healthiest, most dynamic, energetic and successful people today. Sign up for your “10 FREE Strategies to Get You Lean, Sleek and Sculpted”! (These are complete programs and videos) and take the FREE “Mojo Lifestyle Assessment” to see how you score.
Author of:
-The Lifestyle Fitness Program: A Six Part
Plan So Every Mom Can Look, Feel and Live Her Best
-A Pocket Full of Mojo: 365 Proven Strategies To Create
Your Ultimate Body, Mind, Image and Lifestyle

Get Fit & Lose Weight in just 15 minutes a day!

Fitness Guru Becky Winner shares three exercises that’ll help you get fit in time for summer!
iStock_000008268946XSmall.jpgAre you one of those people who wish they could lose weight but feel overwhelmed by your current cumbersome daily life schedule? Family, careers, children, pets, and household chores tend to create a schedule whereby time to exercise may seem like it is not an option. Not anymore! There is no need to block off 30-60 minute sessions to exercise. In just 15 minutes a day, you can get your heart pumping, build muscle with full body strength training moves, speed up your metabolism and lose weight!
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is the way to do it. This type of training is done for short periods of time because it is so intense, and it keeps your metabolism churning all day! When my schedule is jam packed I use this form of training to ensure I get the most out of my limited time at the gym. It also helps you remain consistent with your fitness program even on those days you think you have no time for exercise or are just not in the mood. I like this form of exercise for those days you just don’t feel like working out as the allure of 15-30 minute workout often motivates me to push through!
Here is how it is done:
Sprinting, Jump Rope, think short intervals of intense cardio training interlaced with recovery stages. So for instance, you can jump rope one minute, walk one minute, jump rope one minute, strength train one minute. Continue this interval for 15-30 minutes on and off.
Another example would be sprint 1 minute, walk 1 minute; continue to repeat intervals of sprinting and walking for 15-30 minutes.
Remember, you must exert a ton of energy then recover for a short time…..hence the title High Intensity Interval Training!
A great combo of exercises I like to put together that include full body strength training, and great intense cardio are mountain climbers and bicycle crunches. I will perform each exercise for one minute switching back and forth between the exercises each minute. See below for videos on how to properly perform these exercises.
Mountain Climber:

Bicycle Crunch:

Want to work out with me and try a HIIT workout? Check out my NEW IPHONE APP and give it a try! You will be addicted!
Becky Wenner is a highly qualified multi-level certified fitness instructor. She is certified as an Adventure Boot Camp Instructor and Fitness Nutrition Coach by the National Exercise and Sports Training Association (NESTA). Rebecca also holds other training certificates including Personal Training Certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, and Group Fitness Instruction from the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA). She also holds her certification in kickboxing from AFAA and she is CPR and AED certified.

What to Expect

Debi New Photo.jpgOne of the questions I’m asked on a regular basis is, “What’s it like to work with you as a personal coach?” And of course, the answer is that the experience will be different for everyone, because coaching, especially the way I do it, is a highly personalized experience.
But recently I was interviewed on this very topic and I thought it might be helpful to share the article so you can learn a little more about what it’s like to work with me.
Is a Personal Coach the Answer? An Interview with Debi Silber, The Mojo Coach®
by Kristen Bassick
If you are looking for help losing weight and improving your health, there are an endless array of programs available to you. From DVDs to video games, from exercise machines to meals delivered to your door, all of them promise to turn your life around and deliver a new you in the comfort of your own home.
But if you are like most women, you have probably tried many of these options and found that they didn’t work for you as you had hoped. The programs and products may be great, but unless you have the right encouragement and the right mindset, there may be lots of things standing in the way of your success.
This is where working with a personal trainer might be the answer for you. In order to understand the benefits of working with a personal trainer, I interviewed Debi Silber, known as The Mojo Coach®.Debi is a certified personal trainer, a Registered Dietitian with a master’s degree in nutrition and a certified Whole Health Coach. She is also the author of The Lifestyle Fitness Program: A Six Part Plan So Every Mom Can Look, Feel and Live Her Best, which has received high praise from Newsday and a recommendation from Parenting Magazine.
Debi, when a client starts working with you, what is the first meeting like?
When someone starts working with me, I try to find out as much about them as they’re ready to share. Because I’ve found that in seeing hundreds of clients over almost 20 years, issues fall within one of six key areas, I try to uncover as much as I can within those six areas so we can see where that specific client’s greatest struggles lie.
The six areas that I cover are nutrition/weight loss, fitness, stress control, emotional health, relationship wellness and spirituality. These areas are also the basis of my book.
Often, someone will come to me wanting to lose weight. Once we get to talking, she often finds that the weight issue has little to do with the food she’s eating but may have to do with her relationships, stress level, lack of sleep, etc. So, often the clients are not aware of the key issue that needs to be addressed until we discover it during our conversation. Only when I know what’s really going on and through mindfully and deeply listening and asking questions do I create a plan based on where they are, where they want to go, their readiness, what they were ready to share with me and other factors.

So diet and fitness aren’t always the focus of your work with your clients?

For many of my clients, beginning with diet or fitness is the easiest place to begin because it’s often the least personal. It’s easier for them to talk about which healthy snacks to choose or put them through a workout than it is to address something that’s really holding them back such as their levels or stress or toxic relationships that have done severe damage to their emotional health and self esteem. While clients still achieve great success when they focus on diet and fitness, lasting success occurs when we focus on where their greatest struggles are and what’s holding a client back the most. So yes, typically diet and fitness are areas of focus but clients who’ve achieved long term health, wellness and happiness focus on other lifestyle issues we cover in depth as well.
Once they are able to address the areas that are holding them back, they feel such success and pride in their ability to form new habits. The improvement in self esteem and confidence leads them to want to pursue the other areas to keep getting better!
Wow, it sounds like you really take the time to figure out what your clients need. What kind of guidance can a client expect from you in terms of diet/nutrition?

Grocery bag.jpgThe information I offer depends on what their obstacles are and what would work for them based on their personalities, preferences, lifestyles, and goals. Some clients prefer a very structured program, so we’ll work together to create specific recommendations with a food diary including emotions/hunger level while eating.
Others don’t work well with structure, but are looking for strategies to handle situations like late night or late afternoon eating. Some with a history of emotional eating need to understand why they’ve chosen that behavior and learn what need it’s fulfilled and how to stop.
I’ve found that most women want to leave with something in their hands so if they don’t leave with a personalized food diary around their obstacles we’ll often create a schedule that may involve things like when to fit in a workout, when to plan meals, even when to take time for business planning and their own self care!

So the nutritional advice is very personalized. Do you also make specific recommendations for what type of exercise each client should be doing?

My fitness recommendations depend on how often I’m seeing someone and what they’re (hopefully) doing without me. I see clients anywhere from 1-3 times per week. I have a fully equipped gym and I personalize every program around the specific needs of that particular client. Before we even begin though, it’s crucial for me to know their fitness and health level before suggesting anything!
Some do all of their exercise during their time with me. Often, while I am coaching someone and talking about how to handle their stress, relationships, and emotional health, I’ll put them on the treadmill while they talk so they get as much out of me and their time as possible!
Some clients may be getting in all of their strength training work with me, so I’ll suggest cardio and other workouts to do on their own. I also teach my clients how to monitor their workout routines so they get the most out of each session on their own. I also have 2 certifications in pre/post natal fitness so pregnant clients can work out safely and effectively with me too. After all, labor and delivery are endurance events!
Thumbnail image for woman-walking.jpgI’ll push someone as much as they want and as much as they’re ready for without turning them off to exercise. Some want to be sore the next day, some want to just feel like they’ve worked out a little bit. Some just want to know that they’re creating a new, healthy habit and haven taken the time for their own self-care. Some want to set and achieve a certain goal so I’ll often set one with them so they can see that I’m invested in it, too.
For example, I once had a client who was in remission from cancer. As her strength improved she wanted to prove she was back in the game so she signed up for a 5K race and we used a walk/run approach to slowly get her up to speed. Determined and ready, she vowed to finish and I signed up with her and vowed to win to show my commitment and support for her efforts. My clients know that I take our commitment seriously and I try do all I can to get them where they want to go.
You sound so committed to the success of your clients. What kind of commitment do they have to make?

I generally meet with clients anywhere from 1-3 times/week and I’ve seen some clients 3 times/week for 10 years! Programs are all different based on how often we see each other, and whether we are meeting in person or over the phone. If they’re not committed it’s best for both of us to not work together. I’ve actually dropped a few clients in the past because they hired me based on their spouse wanting them to lose weight or they weren’t willing to try. I’m not in this for the money but for their success so if they’re not ready or if the motivation isn’t there it’s best to wait.
I loved the story about the woman who built up the strength to run a 5K, what other success stories are you especially proud of?
One of my favorite stories is one I included in my book The Lifestyle Fitness Program, I love it and it shows the different levels of fitness and how milestones are unique from person to person.
I had a client who was morbidly obese. She was at least 100 pounds overweight and couldn’t come to me so I went to her. She wanted lose enough weight and become fit enough to comfortably walk to her mailbox at the end of her driveway.
We put a timer on her son’s ping pong table and she walked “laps” around the table. When we first met, she could walk for one minute and had to sit down because she was exhausted. We worked up minute by minute, week by week. Weeks later, not only did she get to her mailbox, but she saw her neighbor’s newspaper across the street. She crossed the street, picked up the paper and rang her neighbor’s doorbell to deliver the “news!”
And this is another story that shows that sometimes the initial challenge is not diet or exercise. A client came to me to lose 30 pounds. She had a history of losing around 10 pounds and then somehow sabotaged her weight loss. Through our talks, we uncovered marital issues which were leading her to subconsciously keep the weight on. I told her that until those issues were addressed and dealt with, seeing me was a waste of her time and money. She came back one year later and experienced a steady weight loss of 1-2 pounds/week. It turns out that she took the year to address her marriage, came to conclusions, made decisions and when we began this time, the weight practically fell off.
I have many more stories like this.
You have a new on-line program, The Mega Mojo Membership program. Does this on-line program include the same elements of personalization as a one-on-one coaching relationship?
Once a client signs up for the Mega Mojo Membership program, I will contact them to set up a time for their initial “Discover Your Fitness Personality” session. I’ll ask questions to find out where they are, what they want and see how I can help them.
Mega Mojo clients will be participating in a one-hour telesession with me each month, and can submit specific questions so that I’m sure to hit on the right topics each time. The online program will require someone who’s a little more self-motivated and able to keep herself moving forward between our sessions. But all of the tips and advice will be there, just like they are for my in-person clients.
After the monthly calls, they’ll walk away with their next steps – which could be a plan for their eating, strategies to combat emotional eating, a plan for fitness, a strategy to identify and reduce overwhelm, a plan for handling certain toxic relationships, a way for them to gain more clarity for why they’re doing what they’re doing or accepting something that doesn’t work.
The more honest clients are with me, the better my recommendations can be. I let them know that I don’t judge anything they say, I’ve probably heard it all before so don’t be embarrassed, and even if I were working with their best friend, they’ll never know unless it’s their friend who tells them. I am committed to 100% confidentiality and trust.

There are so many on-line fitness programs, how does yours differ? And how does the personal coaching element carry through in the on-going online program?

Because it’s me (as opposed to a huge network or service) I may give a quick call, send an email or find another way to let my clients know I’m thinking about them and their success. It helps them stay accountable and on track as well as building rapport and trust.
Of course, it’s more personalized if I see someone face to face, but even over the phone I listen for their mood, voice, tone and even facial expressions! I listen for all of it to know how my client is feeling, how they’re interpreting and receiving what I’m saying and how things are going with them.
I also encourage clients to “brag” to me. Often they feel uncomfortable sharing success with their friends because they don’t want to brag or fear their friends are jealous. I love hearing about their successes! I’ve had clients call me from restaurant rest rooms when they were proud of how they ate, called from vacation to tell me they actually used the sneakers they packed and had clients text me from work, asking me to remind them of how we discussed confronting an annoying coworker! I’m pretty sure you can’t get that kind of service from just anyone!
So, if you want to make positive changes in any area of your life, maybe working with a Personal Coach is the way to make the changes happen. It costs a little more than one of the cookie-cutter programs, but the personal attention and degree of customization just may be the key to changing that dream of a better lifestyle into a reality.
And to quote a famous commercial, “You’re worth it!”
Kristen Bassick is a freelance writer who submits articles to numerous on-line outlets.

Ready, Set, Slow

When it comes to lasting weight loss, slow and steady wins the race.
Although many people take on the latest diet program, quick fix or promise of immediate results, most only find themselves right back where they started in a relatively short period of time. In fact, most people who take drastic measures to lose weight not only gain back what they lost, but gain even more leaving them more discouraged and frustrated with each attempt.
Why do we continue to put our time, effort and energy into the “quick fix” and why doesn’t it work?
Dieting doesn’t work for many reasons. The first reason is that drastic steps are temporary…at best. It isn’t realistic to commit into a 7-day-a-week exercise program if we haven’t been exercising at all or to think that we can drastically reduce our calories for the long term if we have many eating behaviors that caused the weight gain in the first place. If the changes we make can’t comfortably be worked into our day, our routine, our lifestyles and our lives, whatever we take on isn’t likely to continue. We may be able to commit to an overhaul in food choices or eating behaviors for a short while but when confronted with something that triggers us to overeat or abandon our best efforts, we will immediately go back to what is familiar and comfortable.
What is familiar and comfortable? Our habits. Whether they’re good or bad they’re what we’re comfortable with. That’s why when we want to lose weight those habits which originally caused the weight gain must be changed. We’ve all heard the saying “habits are hard to break” and because that’s true, a slow and steady approach needs to be used to develop new, healthier habits to replace the old, unhealthy ones.
So how do we break the habits which lead us to gain weight?
One thing we need to look at is our “diet mentality.” For many moms, we’re either on or off a diet at any given time. If we have that “all or nothing” or “black or white” extreme behavior when it comes to weight loss, there’s no room for error and no way to recover from any mistakes made along the way. If the road to weight loss doesn’t allow for some imperfection, it is unrealistic to think that we can stick it out for the long haul.
Life throws us some curveballs from time to time, that’s a given. How we handle those curveballs may require some adjustments to our eating plan. If our eating plan doesn’t allow for those adjustments, where does that leave us?
It leaves us right off our diet. Angry, frustrated and discouraged, we revert right back to what is so deeply ingrained within us. Any progress made is abandoned and for many moms, here’s where the negative self talk takes us even further away from believing weight loss success is possible as we berate ourselves with every bite of foods we’ve sworn off for good. So, if this sounds so familiar and you’ve had enough of “yo-yo dieting”, weight cycling and diet behavior, what can you do?
1) Understand that each time you start an unrealistic diet, you chip away at your confidence and belief in your ability that you can lose weight. The more you chip away at that confidence, the less you trust yourself and the more powerless you become.
2) Understand that although it doesn’t sound as appealing as a “miracle cure” or “immediate solution”, weight loss is a journey. The more you discover why you gained the weight and understand that your habits can and need to be changed, the more weight loss success you’ll have.
3) Focus on the fact that each habit you change serves as a stepping stone to greater confidence, trust and belief in yourself. When we isolate a habit we want to change, put our efforts into finding a solution to turn that habit into one that better suits us, we feel proud and happy with our ability to take control of our eating and our behavior. That simply feels good and enables us to see that our choices and decisions are within our control. It brings about a feeling of strength and empowerment as well as increases our confidence and self esteem.
When we feel confident, strong and empowered, we’re proud of ourselves and realize that anything is within our grasp. While it may be more exciting to believe that drastic efforts bring huge results, when it comes to weight loss, the greatest results are found by making the most minimal…but consistent changes.
Do you have any tips or tricks that have worked for you to stay motivated on a slow, steady course toward a healthier lifestyle? Share them here in the comments or drop me a note!
Debi Silber, “The Mojo Coach”

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