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Eating Disorders & Body Image

Eating Disorders & Body Image

     While web researching tonight I stumbled across many blogs and articles relating to body image issues and eating disorders.  These articles focused on the two most well known of disorders Anorexia and Bulimia. From personal experience alone I know there are many people, self included, struggling with neither of the two BUT may get caught up in a cycle somewhere in between.       
      Food & body image issues have always had tremendous power over my life whether I was 234 pounds and obese or 147 pounds and fit.  When people come to me and tell me I don't know what alcohol or drug addition feels like I can confidently say bulls***.  Obesity and eating disorders KILL just as much as other addictions, it may be a slower kill but if not taken seriously can destroy life just as well.       
     Food has developed its own identity in my life, a split personality occupying the depths of my  psyche.  I don't mean in the way of obsessing on "what to eat" like some would imagine.  I don't think most people with eating disorders sit around obsessing on eating that piece of cake, ice cream etc...its almost the opposite having more of a mental confusion effect of what we can and can't eat, should or shouldn't' and EVERYTHING that goes into our mouths we shame ourselves for afterwards only to feel guilty later.      
      At points in my life I've completely disagreed with programs that focus on "counting" because of the focus and power they give to the food.  I believe doing so at a young age embedded in my brain"counting" everything as second nature as I do today.  Realistically as a fitness enthusiast and trainer I do know this method has been successful to many but for me probably was not the best method.  That is why with my clients I like to focus more so on "movement" getting up and moving period!  
     About 2 weeks ago my family and I were at Home Goods and I walked past what I thought was "fun-house skinny" mirror.   I loved the way I looked yet gaining about 50pds since opening TML I am by no means societies standard of "skinny". Regardless I still caught a glimpse and thought WOW when I saw myself "if only I really looked like this, I need this mirror".   Then I called my husband & daughter over and said "hey look how good this mirror makes me look" they both looked at each other a little startled and said "ummm that is the way you look!" I refused to believe them. I  made both of them step in front of the mirror.  Those that know me know I didn't stop there LOL.   Yes I called a store worker over and asked her if the mirror was a fun house mirror then insisted she too to step in front of the mirror as well, you can imagine how she looked at me.     
       I have a problem, I know this, I've met plenty of women that battle the same or similar issues with little information out there other then labeling us with "lack of discipline"  as we Yo Yo up and down.   I've also heard of people that have the opposite issue.   Delta Burke I can remember once saying she had the opposite of anorexia while gaining her weight she saw herself as much thinner when she looked in the mirror but obvious to others and media that was clearly not the case.  I've been there as well and woke up to my surprise asking how did this happen AGAIN! Unfortunately, there are A LOT of us out there.  My goal is to get the information I need to help myself as well as those I know and work with personally.  

Cassandra WyckoTML...Turn Me Loose Fitness LLCwww.tmlfitnessinfo.comtmlfitness@gmail.com

Change Your Perception on Your Path to Weight loss

Like most "average" women I have been  right there, with y'all Yo Yo dieting away LOL.  I'd loose weight...gain weight, but my quest was always to loose the weight to look FLYYYYYYY & to basically "get in shape". 
      First of all, I have to say certain word combinations in the English language shouldn't even be put together &  sometimes can backfire on our butts such as; "LOOSE" weight, "QUIT" smoking.  Odd when you think about it, words associated to achieve a  positive result yet have negative meanings in our society.  When was the last time you felt good about being a quitter or were stoked about loosing something?  The word "weight" alone can set me into a frenzy and losing something that had become a part of my character for so long well, lets face it psychologically puts a tad of a "negative" spin to losing it, its scary.  You may wonder everyday, can I do this?  What will I look like? Although funny now thinking about it my the biggest issue was where the heck would the fat go? Although I KNOW the whole process, I STILL couldn't wrap my head around 75pds, 50pds etc...I was sabotaging myself into failure. Giving the weight power over me psychologically.  Losing the weight for me seemed TO BIG, take too much time & way to far away for me.
      Then one day I finished a 1 mile run in boot camp class without falling down gasping for dear life and air LOL.  I had completed a mile run without stopping...it was PARTY TIME!!!! I was soooo happy, I called EVERYONE I knew I did the mile in 14 min, not even in junior high could I do that!  Then I told myself, I wanted to do the mile in 10 min so I worked my butt off.  I went to they gym after boot camp not to try to lose more weight but to build POWER in my legs to run faster. A couple of boot camp sessions later to my surprise I was at 9:10. The same applied for push-ups, sit-ups, I was in competition WITH MYSELF & I was having fun & felt GREAT, PROUD!!!!! Next thing I knew, the weight was coming off but that didn't even phase me, all I wanted and still want to do is get stronger & challenge myself.
      What I am saying is this; whether you have 10 pounds to go or 100 pounds don't focus on the number.  Focus on "what else is good", such as; "My legs are strong, I bet I can do 50 squats 3 times & jog 1/2 mile without stopping, then challenge yourself the same challenge a few days later adding a set or time. Work to change your perception on what you are trying to accomplish have fun with it! 

Pole Dance going Mainstream with Rules & Guidlines Article Link from Wall Street Journal

What do you all think? Me, I would like to see Pole Fitness get the credit it truly deserves mainstream. After all my child poles and she is 11. There are many different spectrum's to Pole Dance. Some complain it will take the "sexy out", to me its the "same difference" between natural pageants verses glitz. Rules change per competition the BIGGY's such as Miss America as well as Miss Universe are the eventual goal for some, so those competitors get as much competing in as possible to eventually "get there". The competitors learn what is and is not acceptable at each competition as there are many. I believe everything/everyone needs to have/know boundaries, guidelines so that we clearly know what is expected of us to achieve what it is we are trying to achieve. For those that want to keep the sexy "anything goes"..then compete in the clubs for those that are striving to make this an Olympic Sport then set your "rules and artistic standard" to gain nationwide recognition. For the ladies that enter my studio each have different set of goals, some are looking to step up their sexy so we have classes catered for them. We have other students looking to progress their skills to a different level as well. As an owner I see both sides to this, as a 40 year old wife, mother, not looking to be "the next big thing" I enjoy the sexy aspect, I enjoy helping women get back in tune with their inner sensuality because fitness is not just about hitting the gym for a woman to get there it means so much more. It starts in her brain and how she feels about herself. Then connecting her mind, body and spirit to help her achieve her goals. Great article.http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323971204578630070114556206.html?mod=ITP_AHED

Week 1 Exercises w/Kinetic Kraze

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Get Sweaty and Beach Ready Wk 1
Bicep Tricep session April 1st-7th



Kinetic Kraze's Giannina & Candice are 2 BFF's with 1 mission; to get you in better shape mentally & physically while having a total blast! Both teach classes at TML..Turn Me Loose Fitness in Raleigh NC.  They challenge you to get sweaty & beach ready by stay tuned weekly while they show you exercise & nutrition tips. 

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Get Sweaty and Beach Ready Week 1: Biceps & Triceps!
Workout focus: biceps and tricepsNutrition mini-challenge: nothing to drink but water!

Sonya's Blog Link- Journey Back to Me

Welcome to TML's Blog. Tonight, I have enclosed a link to a blog article written by one of the lovely "Faces of TML" Sonya. Sonya has come a long way in her fitness journey.  Sonya has inspired many at our studio. Sonya is strong, she is fit, she is beautiful and can out push up (mens push-up's that is) most reading this now.  Thank you Sonya for sharing your blog link. You are an amazing woman...keep pushing!  Click here to read Sonya's Journey Back to Me.  


cat beige, Cat Gennero


All work shops will be broken down between basic 1,2 as well as intermediate & advanced.  Basic 1 & 2 students will be in workshops together, while intermediate & advanced will be together.  Workshops will be tailored to each level.

1. BASIC MOVEMENTS: Learn the basic holds/grips, spins, dance, transitions, climbs, pole stance, even how to put together a sequence with fluidity, and body alignment. Basic 1 & 2 (60 min) $42  

  2. Tricks and Transitions: In this class Cat will cover any move that you are working with and give it a connecting move to get to the next. This class focuses on what really is key to a performance/routine and just in basic pole fitness classes. The execution of transitions and positioning of moves create the connection and balance that is the most important in taking yourself to a new level and feeling more comfortable in the movement.  *All Levels (90 min) $60

3. Just Dance: Over the years of performing, competing, instructing, and judging internationally, Cat always asks, wheres the dance? Either using a chair, floor work, going pole to pole, just dance on the pole, using your style and bring the accents and uniqueness out. Cat looks at  “ Just Dance ” as Pole Artistry. Dance is the foundation to making your pole work fun, and most of all you! Dance is expression of self, Cat can help you get there.  *All Levels (60 min) $60 

  4. Ms. Spinster:  Cat won the USPDF National Title Ms. Spinster in Oct 2011. Many call me Cat the goddess of the spinning pole. This class will help you with various techniques to control the pole, secure your grips, and NOT get dizzy! Many moves are much more enhanced with the spinning pole. Cat will teach you the grace and execution of the spinning pole offers.*Intermediate & Advanced (90 min) $60

5. Pole Aria:  Pole Aria fuses together the beauty of pole dance & aerial silks.  For those who have always wanted to learn the soft, fluid motions of silk, as well as the sensual art of the pole but have hesitated for whatever the reason this class is for you.  Pole Aria brings to you the best of both worlds. Pole Aria is an innovative approach to pole fitness allowing you to combine various different elements into your dance/fitness routine.  You don’t have to be an expert in either to begin your Pole Aria dance/fitness regime.  Remember, dance is an expression of self.  Cat will work with your level "hands on" to help you learn this new skill.  Basic 1 & 2 (60 min) $70 

 Intermediate & advanced (90 min. ) $80

* Pole-Aria:   Cat Gennaro, Pole-Aria is an innovative element to pole fitness. I have been using this apparatus for a year now feel it’s an entirely new approach in pole dance, for all levels, even people that never took an aerial class! After seeing students improve in all areas of strength, flexibility, and control on the pole I started classes just with the fabric. I saw girls find this whole new found confidence in their pole work!” Cat still finds, every day, new ways to use the fabric, it’s a unlimited exploration of the art! It’s beautiful and challenging, but it takes us to another genre of pole fitness.   One of the true pioneers of pole dancing, Caterina Gennaro helped introduce the world to this burgeoning sport in 2006 when she opened Poleates, an 8-pole dedicated pole dancing studio in Westlake Village California.  

Pole Aria, Cat Gennero

As a former competitive gymnast, Gennaro trained w/Shelia Kelly at the S factor in Hollywood, Bobbi’s Pole Studio in Australia, The Pole Studio in Vegas, among other studios quickly developing her own style and out-distancing her instructors with her incredible strength, grace and muscle control. Cat has been featured in the LA Times, Self magazine, Sports Illustrated,  ladies Home Journal, Your Health Connection, The Acorn, Ventura County Star, London times, Chicago Tribune, New York Times and has graced over 5 covers in the Pole Sport and Fitness magazines. Cat is also the North American Spokesperson for the International Federation Of Pole Fitness, setting the standards for the rules of conduct, safety codes, and ethical conduct within the sport. Always the competitor, Cat has appeared in numerous national and international pole fitness competitions in New York, Las Vegas, London, Holland, Brazil and Los Angeles, winning the National title of Miss Spinster at the USPDF US Championships.  Now retired from competition, Cat still performs and does workshops worldwide, recently completing a European Tour.  Currently, she is ranked in the world’s top 20 pole dancing performers. Her Poleates training has been recognized as one of the top 5 in the world according to over 1300 studios that voted in this years “The Best Of Issue” Pole Dance International.

 Contact Cassandra today for more info at tmlfitness@gmail.com or 805-402-9435 OR REGISTER ONLINE TODAY BY CLICKING HERE

Biosignature Modulation (Hormones & Fat Loss)

Biosignature Modulation
By Cassandra Wycko
To learn more about Poliquin or to look for a Poliquin Certified trainer in your area you can go to www.charlespoliquin.com
        Biosignature Modulation is the correlation between specific hormones, how they affect weight loss & where fat is stored on the body based on scientific evidence. Biosignature Modulation was discovered by Charles Poliquin a world renowned strength coach & founder of The Poliquin Strength Institute, in Rhode Island. Charles Poliquin has over 30 years of experience in the health/fitness industry training & designing programs for Olympic Medalist to professional athletes. He has written numerous articles as well as published books based on his expertise. During his years working with athletes he began to find similarities in the body as to where people store their fat & it’s relation to their hormonal profile. Based on testing, he also found the reasons why so many people have problematic fat stores due to hormonal imbalances within their body.
       There are 12 “overall” body fat sites in terms of Biosignature Modulation on the body that are to be tested with a quality caliper and by a “trained” professional. These sites are; the cheek, chin, pectoral, triceps, umbilical, supra iliac, sub scapular, mid auxiliary, quadriceps, hamstrings, knee & calf. Each site is directly linked to a specific hormone/hormonal site if one of the 12 is out of sorts, you can trace it back to the adrenal gland & the hormone that needs to be balanced in order to achieve or heal obtaining the results you want or need. Charles Poliquin states that it has been found that 80% of disease known to man is fixable by treating the adrenals & pancreas. This can be done by proper diet, exercise & supplements.
      One would think diet would be the easiest feat for a person to begin to balance, yet for most it can be the most difficult. Why, because food is everywhere & certain foods are addictive. Most of the foods we have been eating our bodies were never initially made to process, such as my personal fave pizza. In turn eating a slice of pizza for our body to process & break it down contributes to added stress on our pancreas. Added stress on the pancreas can cause inflammation thru out the body & insulin resistance which later can lead to Diabetes. Our brain may know what we are putting in our mouths but our body starts doing all sorts of “crazy” when pizza enters the scene. Over time this can lead to many different disease& ailments.
      In order to get rid of unwanted fat aside from adequate exercise we have to eliminate these foods from out diet, pretty much going back to the basics, to what some call a “Caveman type of diet” or the “Paleolithic diet”. Charles Poliquin’s dietary protocol is pretty basic, “if it does not fly, swim, or run and if it’s not green, don’t eat it!” He suggests starting off the day with a meat & nut breakfast which will keep blood sugar levels stable thru out the day, eat 6-7 small meals thru out the day making sure to include “good fats” to help control glycemia.
     For optimum fat loss the first 14 days keep fibrous carbohydrates to a minimum preferably fewer than 50 grams a day, completely doing away with grains. He adds that, “the fatter the patient, the more back in time you have to go for the diet.” This will help get your insulin levels back on track as well as help the body function more efficiently to burn fat.
    Poliquin allows for day 15 to be an “off” day. Why I am including this in my report is because I pretty much followed this dietary protocol per my ninja trainer’s advice; until I went off to work in California for a week & although I tried to stay on track I slipped here there, thinking, “Oh a little of this won’t hurt.”
     Well, Poliquin states that he gives clients the 15th day off to pretty much allow the client to eat whatever they want so they can “see & feel” the effects of what these foods REALLY do to the human body. He states that his clients typically report feeling horrible, puffy, swollen joints and their workouts on day 16 & 17 are always awful. This now explains why the Big Man held off on letting me view this material until I came back from Cali…lesson learned. When I came back from a week off, I weighed in 5 pounds heavier. I was completely swollen to where you could visibly see a finger mark dent pressed ½ deep into my leg. It took me a week to recover, I felt like hell!
Poliquin suggests that once you have had the joy of experiencing this anguish LOL. You continue your fat loss approach with a 4:1 system, which is 4 days of a strict Caveman Diet then the 5th day you are allowed 1 cheat meal having your protein first then your cheat foods.
       On the matter of exercise, I have yo yoed with my weight my entire life, going to the gym, not going to the gym. I spent countless hours on the dreaded treadmill; aerobic classes name it… always with little or no prevail in my weight loss efforts. I just got fatter as the years went by eventually giving up, thinking my body just didn’t work right I was destined to be fat. I figured I couldn’t beat it soooo hey, bring on the Pizza.
     What we know now with the help of the Biosignature concept is that is EXACTLY what is to be expected as a result of hours a week of “aerobic” activity. Yes, aerobics is popular with gyms because it burns calories from fat that we have stored & you do see some results BUT what has now been discovered is that POST-EXERCISE recovery is extremely crucial in the overall outcome of the training program. Aerobic activity has been proven to put stress on the human body which in turn brings up cortisol levels. Cortisol is a steroid hormone produced by the adrenal gland released in response to stress. An increase in cortisol levels can “bring on” unwanted body fat, especially in the belly region. Increased cortisol levels can also interfere with sleep patterns, suppresses thyroid function, blood sugar imbalances & muscle loss which all interfere with fat loss.
      It has been found for better fat loss results HIIT (High Intensity Intermittent Training) burns more body fat over time with less stress on the body afterward then aerobic activity showing that anaerobic training spares lean muscle mass keeping metabolism up.
      Last but not least I’m going to lightly go over supplements how can they can help with fat loss efforts & help prevent life threatening diseases. For years Eastern medicine has used herbs to treat certain ailments & conditions with success. They have known long before Western medicine that premature graying was an indication of osteoporosis in years to come so they used herbal remedies as a preventative measure.
       Western medicine has been known to treat the “symptoms” not to prevent disease. Using nutraceuticals, supplementation, botanicals typically are not the norm for modern day physicians & pharmaceutical companies yet according to an article by USA Today rising obesity rates in America will cost Americans $344 BILLION in medical related expenses by 2018! Yet, most “preventative” medical measures are still not covered by most insurance companies. Which means it is up to each one of us to be responsible for our health, our own preventative measures thru knowledge, supplementation and using the Biosignature Modulation to understand our bodies, what our fat stores mean and what’s going on hormonally.
       Case in point; Omega 3 deficient societies have the highest rate of alcohol & depression. Which to me explains why my trainer likes to beat up on my body, he’s allergic to Fish Oil, so I’m assuming he’s not so happy in the AM, probably lacking Omega 3, soooo he possibly finds some enjoyment taking out aggression by whooping people into shape. I don’t know, just a thought. LOL
      Omega 3 turns on the genes that burn fat, improves serotonin levels which decrease carb cravings. It also turns on carnitine enzymes which also burn fat & blocks sugar absorption. Omega’s improve insulin sensitivity & reduces inflammation in the body. Both inflammation & the insulin hormone have been linked to aging.
       L-Carnitine also another supplement that can be taken that plays a vital role in the metabolism of fat. It is a transporter of fatty acids into the mitochondria of the cell it also improves insulin sensitivity. The list goes on of different supplements, that can help assist with our goals. You have Fenugreek which is and herb that increases the number of insulin receptors and delays glucose absorption. Banaba Tree Extract, another herb which promotes glycogen synthesis directing glucose to” the right spots”.
     Biosignature Modulation is the latest understandable approach in fat loss supported by fact with countless proven examples of its success. I found this subject matter fascinating. I always thought of myself to be a professional “dieter” LOL. I have been dieting since I was 8, I’ve been a size 3 to a size 28, I have tried everything to lose weight at different points in my life right down to deadly measures using different forms of amphetamines, starving myself eating only lettuce… everything worked, for a minute, then BAM fat again & BIGGER each time. I created an endocrine problem within my body. I was medically diagnosed with hypothyroidism, at 25 and was told it was from abusing my endocrine system. A person’s “endocrine system” is a system of glands that release HORMONES into the bloodstream to regulate the body. I am eager to learn my ratios to my sites & see exactly what it is I need to do to try to create balance with in my body, the brain, mentally now…well… that’s a whole other story LOL.

Choose Cheats Wisely by Candice Qualls

This week's nutrition tip: Choose your "cheats" wisely!
First things first: DO NOT try to eliminate all "bad" foods for the rest of your life-it's simply not realistic, and you will most likely overdo it when you finally cave if you've deprived yourself for too long.

That being said, eating "clean" (basically eating unprocessed-fresh fruit & veggies, plenty of lean protein, whole grains and low-fat dairy) is one of the most fool-proof methods for every day eating. When you DO go out to dinner with friends or family, you can use a little tip I like to go by.
If the place you're going is all about the specific food (ie: The Melting Pot, Angus Barn, or places with special international dishes), go ahead and give yourself some room to indulge. However, if you're going out to dinner more for the company of your friends/family (ie: going out with a huge group of friends to Applebee's) stick with the healthiest option you can find & enjoy the PEOPLE.
I find this to be an easy way to distinguish whether I should go all out or give myself more strict boundaries. Life isn't about always saying "no" to the decadent cheesecake; it's all a great balancing act of finding when to splurge, and when to say "maybe next time."

Prepare Ahead of Time; Have a Plan

Did you make a plan this week to stick to healthy choices, to get out & exercise? Those with a plan are 100% more likely to stick to their plan than those with out a plan at all! ;)
Slip ups? We all have them! Try NOT to get caught up in a pity party beating yourself up  brush it off, get moving, our slip ups are opportunities to learn. Your current & future choices are where your focus should be...NOT the past!
What are some of your big OR mini-successes so far this week?
Personally, I was super tired yet still had to go shopping for stuff for my students last night after teaching kids all day as well as Zumba all evening. I REALLY wanted Chick-Fil-A, as much as it called out my name I resisted, came home making a conscious decision to stick to my plan cooking turkey sausage & vegetables. May seem small-but those little choices are BIG in the long-term! :)
How about you? What is something YOU'RE proud of accomplishing this week?

"If someone is too tired to give you a smile, leave one of your own with them because no one needs a smile as much as those who have none to give."
Thank you Candice...Candice is one of TML's Zumba Instructors, she has lost over 50 pounds and has a passion for fitness.