Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Back to Basics

There are so many theories on what to eat, what not to eat. So many diets -- I won't even go there. If you ever have been to my cooking classes or presentations you've heard me say it many of times.  I believe, at the end of the day, we are over-thinking food. We've made eating and preparing food way too complicated.

So, I've called for a return to the basics. Simple food made without a lot of fuss, but instead with love. Peasant dishes are great examples of using the bare essentials to create simple, delicious meals. Many peasant recipes have lived on to be a part of today's cuisines. One of my favorites is the Italian soup -- Pasta e Fagioli.

There I was in the kitchen, yesterday, creating a very basic garden salad. Relishing in just how simple it was to make. No kidding, it took me all of two minutes from start to finish to make this beautiful salad. I used romaine lettuce, cucumbers, mushrooms, and roma tomatoes. I chopped the romaine lettuce, sliced the cucumbers leaving the peel on(since they were organic), and sliced the tomatoes and mushrooms. I put all the ingredients in the colander and rinsed it really well. Bam! Just like that. Just that simple. No bagged lettuce, no bagged produce. I topped my salad with sunflower seeds and a Balsamic Vinaigrette (no doubt, made from scratch).

Creating meals using real food, whole food doesn't have to be complicated with basic essentials on hand -- you can create and whip up meals in a cinch. Some very basics I suggest everyone have on stock.

Pantry: Kosher or Sea salt, a pepper mill, garlic, olive oil, vinegars, grains, beans, stocks (make your own and then freeze), tomatoes (jar or can them yourself).

Fresh produce:  Lemons and limes (no bottles!), romaine lettuce or spinach for salads, bell peppers, carrots, celery, and onions.  Be careful some items should be bought only organic. Check out the Dirty Dozen list.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Up to the Challenge

Clark College! Whew. What an experience. It was so cool to be the lecturer in the very same room, OSC 204 I sat in as a student just over a year ago. Thanks Steve and Garet from the Thompson Fitness Center for inviting me.

Last week, I had the great pleasure and honor of holding four lectures over three days for Clark College's Biggest Loser Challenge. I believe I did what I sought to do -- encourage, inspire, and motivate. ""I've been asked by your trainers and professors to speak to you today because I have a story to tell that the textbooks can't. I have a story to tell that will resonate with you as you begin your journey to health and fitness. I am your real example. I am your real life Biggest Loser. I've been there, done that -- am doing that. That's why most of you can relate to me. I'm not a Biggest Loser contestant on TV being worked by a staff of personal trainers and fed by personal chefs. I'm not an airbrushed Weight Watchers celebrity spokesperson. I'm right here in the midst of life trying to figure it all out too. I'm your real example. I'm your Biggest Loser."

In turn, as often the case I was inspired as well. I really love the vibe on campus, the energy -- learning, thinking, growing. Professor Mosley? Hmm...maybe. I'll also be on campus seven times next month!

 Here's some of the photos from my time on campus.

Tuesday, January 22 -- Lecture 1 & 2

Thursday, January 24 -- Lecture 3

Friday, January 25 -- Lecture 4 -- The grand finale

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Exercise is Everywhere

Just in from a nice interval walk along the Columbia Waterfront Renaissance walking trail. Y'all know by now I'm a proponent of walking. It's such a good form of exercise. It's free. And all you have to do is put one foot in front of the other. Most everyone can do that. Best of all, you can do it anywhere. Everywhere. Come to think of it there are so many forms of exercise (squats, push-ups, planks) we can do anywhere.

Living in the Pacific NW makes exercising everywhere even easier with all the beautiful parks and sites to visit and see. So if you can't make it to the gym don't let that stop you. Exercise is everywhere you just have to have the desire to do it.

In between my sprints, I snapped a few photos. From the trails...

Friday, January 25, 2013

Gettin' SMART

In July, I formed a women's group -- 5 or 50" Women’s Sustainable Weight Loss & Healthy Lifestyle Group. A time for us gals to come together -- bond, share, encourage. To dispel negative thoughts of ourselves, of each other, and approach weight loss sustainably. Over the months, we've done just that.

At the year end meeting, I challenged the ladies to start looking forward to the new year. "Claim 2013 as your best year yet." Though I don't believe in new year's resolutions, I do agree that the new year is a great time to hit the refresh button. So we spent our final meeting of 2012 by discussing SMART goals. Their homework over the holidays was to fill out a SMART goal and Action plan packet.

To kick off 2013 we created our SMART goals with the help of Clark College Health Professor, Erin Staples! Erin was my Wellness Coach professor last fall and taught me what I know about SMART goals and coaching. Once I got the ladies started I thought It would be nice to have the guru step in.

Thanks again, Erin -- we appreciate you for helping us get SMART.

More about SMART GOALS---

A SMART goal is:

  • S is for SPECIFIC. Decide what you are going to do and how to do it.
  • M is for MEASURABLE. Keep track of how you are doing.
  • A is for ACHIEVABLE. Pick something you think you can do. Start with small changes. Is running a 4-minute mile possible for you?
  • R is for REALISTIC or (REWARD). Be realistic about the goals you set. Getting down to your high school weight after having 3 children may not be realistic. Set a goal that you can not only attain, but is in reason for you. You know yourself best.
  • T is for TIME-SPECIFIC. Give your goal a deadline.
SMART goals are to be written down in a certain way, it gives them even greater power. 

“Goals not written down are just wishes.”

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Purple Heart

The following is actually the first piece I wrote introducing myself on the blog and Facebook page (July 2010) -- it lives under the About Me page. I was perusing the blog this morning and I thought hmm...this would make for a good post or technically a repost.

I am a product – and now a survivor – of childhood obesity. As a child, my family always told me that my extra weight was merely baby fat and I’d eventually grow out of it. I never did. Instead, my childhood is filled with memories of not being able to ride a bike, flattening its training wheels from being over the recommended weight, and avoiding P.E. classes by any means necessary.

For years, I wore my fatness like a wounded soldier wears a Purple Heart - with pride. I owned the look. I dressed it up. I worked the room. There wasn't a skinny girl who intimidated me. I made sure my hair was laid just right. Nails polished. Outfits coordinated to the tee. Accessories to compliment every outfit. But everyone has a breaking point and mine came in the spring of 2004 when I tipped the scale at nearly 400 pounds 388 to be exact. I was MISERABLE trapped inside of that body. I no longer wore my Purple Heart with pride. Instead, I was ashamed and frightened. Ashamed that I had allowed food to become my everything – frightened I would die because of it. Drastic times called for drastic measures...

Today, I’m bound and determined to live a better, healthier, active lifestyle. I realize I’m no longer a passenger in my life, I’m the driver. I’m overcoming my inhibitions and I’m slowly but surely saying farewell to my old childhood nemesis, obesity. For once and for all, Farewell Fatso!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Meatless Monday's

Once upon a time meat was the largest portion on my plate. I'm proud to say that's changed. Now-a-days, my plate is heavy on the plants (vegetables and fruits). I've come to embrace this healthier option after taking health courses, reading, and watching documentaries. I've cut back on my animal protein considerably. And, honestly, I don't miss it.

Believe it or not, I'm not going to stand on my soapbox about meat consumption and how it effects our health and our environment. This is a HUGE topic that I've kinda tackled passively at least in a few previous blogs. I've reposted them below.

Anyhow, I do enjoy a meatless meal now and again. Today, I'll do just that. To celebrate Meatless Monday I whipped up a simple meatless dish that I ate for lunch and will reheat with ease for dinner. Sautéed mini bell peppers, red onions, spinach and garlic over a bed of brown rice with black beans and a drizzling of a Lime Vinaigrette (not shown). Delish! 

If I've piqued your interest here's some sites that may be helpful:

Meatless Monday
Forks Over Knives 
Dr. Joel Fuhrman

Past blog posts sorta related:

Meatless Monday
Retrain your brain
Fresh and far away
Disturbing trends
Like the Incas

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Young 'Uns: Outside of the Box

Again, I say, I love what I do!

Yesterday, I hosted my first ever cooking class for the kiddos. My goal is to teach 'em early how to use whole foods to make delicious simple snacks and meals. OUTSIDE of the Box! Yesterday's menu: Fresh fruit cups (apples, oranges, and bananas), Blueberry Banana Kale Smoothies, and Bean and Cheese Burritos.

Invaluable lessons --
I showed them basic kitchen techniques and utensils.
We talked about the importance of nourishing our bodies with real food and when the fun was over everyone pitched in to help clean

Here's a look-see at the delicious fun!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Your Biggest Loser

Honored. Humbled. A little apprehensive. I've been selected as the guest lecturer for Clark College's Biggest Loser Challenge.

Honored for a number of reasons. Humbled because the little fat girls' story does matter. Apprehensive because I'm not on my A-game right now. My eating habits are questionable so I feel icky and I haven't been working out so I feel sluggish!

So, what is it that I will say to motivate them? Resonate with them? What tricks will I pull from my bag?

As always, I'll just be honest. There's nothing to hide. Nothing to be ashamed of. For goodness sakes, I'm battling obesity. This isn't about me losing a few pounds that I gained after I got married or had kids. For as long as I can remember I've been overweight. So I can't expect that the weight and all of the bad habits disappear overnight. I know how to be obese. It's all I've ever been. The healthy, fit thing is new. It takes work. Constant work.

Again, I say, I can't wave a magic wand and make it disappear. Is that a cop out? No. It's the raw truth. The truth that no one wants to hear. Instead, they want to hear that they can make the weight go away in ten weeks: By following this plan, by eating this pre-packaged food, by eliminating fruits and grains out of their diet, by slipping this under their tongue. No one wants to hear the real gritty truth: It will take a conscious change to their diet combined with mindful eating, regular exercise, HARD WORK, and staying with it even if they slip up some.

Here's some of what I'll say:

"I've been asked by your trainers and professors to speak to you today because I have a story to tell that the textbooks can't. I have a story to tell that will resonate with you as you begin your journey to health and fitness. I am your real life Biggest Loser. I've been there, done that -- am doing that. That's why most of you can relate to me.  I'm not a Biggest Loser contestant on TV being worked by a staff of personal trainers and fed by personal chefs. I'm not an airbrushed Weight Watchers celebrity spokesperson. I'm not a health professional who has all the book smarts, but none of the real gritty insight of battling obesity and life at the same time. I'm your real example. I'm your Biggest Loser."

So, yup I'm not at the top of my game right now. But, such as life. No need in hanging my head and shying away from my calling. My calling to tell my story of weight loss and self-discovery. I say this often, there's plenty of other folks who have recorded large amounts of weight, but not everyone has the voice to tell the story, the passion to tell the story. I was given that voice and am filled with that passion. I'm your real life example. And, I'll keep sharing my story in hopes to motivate others. In hopes to drive home the point -- diet, exercise, hard work, dedication, commitment, and a never give up attitude is the route to successfully become healthy and fit. I got this!

I'll end the lecture like this, "170 pounds gone forever. I'm proof you can do anything you set your mind to."

Monday, January 14, 2013


I want to be better. Please don't misinterpret that to mean that I'm NOT proud of myself for what I've accomplished and I'm NOT grateful for all that I have and all that I am.

I realize in order to be better, I have to give more of myself. I can't stay in this safe place. I have to push myself out of my comfort zone. I repeat -- I have to push myself out of my comfort zone. For me, motivation comes from within. And if I'm honest with myself I can give more. I can do better.

Yesterday, I posted some photos (see above) on Facebook that showed me jogging the hills of Mt.Tabor Park. The photos are of me at my best. Physically, I was in a really good place. I was training to run my first half-marathon. One week later, I was KNOCKED off my axis and hit by a car while walking in a parking lot. I suffered a broken tibia, had surgery to repair it and was left  with 14 screws and a metal plate in my leg. I went through months of rehab and physical therapy. It was a very trying time for me. But, I made it through. I successfully rehabbed my fractured leg and did NOT gain one pound. Instead, I LOST 15 pounds the physical therapists and orthopedic doctors said that, that was unheard of. While I was able to successfully rehab my leg and lose weight while doing so. I feel like that accident did thwart my overall progress. It's been nearly two years now. I don't feel like I've been able to make the physical breakthroughs that I had hoped for. Partly some mental stuff going on (another blog post).

Anyhow, after I posted my photos a few of you made comments -- I appreciate you all. My story is an open diary for you all to read. And, I realize sometimes I'm quite contradictory in my comments and my posts. One minute, I'm telling you to ... and the next minute I'm ....  

I want to be better. And, sometimes I get frustrated with myself. Right now, I'm frustrated with myself. I try not to speak negative thoughts because you know my theory on that, but sometimes I slip up. 

I'm proud of and grateful for what I've accomplished it's because of that --  not in spite of that, that I know I can be better. Am I too hard on myself? Perhaps. Too honest? Nope.

"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."

Monday, January 7, 2013

Not a good fit

I'm a very observant person. I usually can read between the lines and I pick up on stuff really quick. It's the journalist in me. So, it was quite a surprise, a shock really when I was called into my manager's office that afternoon -- Friday, November 13th, 2009.

I was so engrossed in my work that day that I did not pick up on it. I was being dismissed. Let go. Fired. When I asked why. She explained the company was an at-will employer and didn't have to divulge why. As you can imagine, I was perplexed. I mean, I really didn't see this coming. So here I am in her office being let go and all she can say is "we're an at-will employer." Huh? I press further and further.  Her last and final answer, "You're just not a good fit."

So, I packed up my things and left. The next few months I found myself in quite a rut. An emotional, spiritual rut. Those were some dark moments. It's tough when you are forced to have to look at yourself. Really look at yourself. But, you know what? I am so grateful for that time.

I share this story when I give a presentation because it's a very important part of my story. It's how I come to find myself. Sure, day-by-day I was getting by as a marketing assistant and I was doing my best at it. But, I was so boxed in. No room for any creativity. No room for me to share with others. No room for me to help others. No room for me to inspire others.

You know what, Jill? You were right -- I am not a good fit. Thank you for recognizing it. Thank you for sending me on a path of self-discovery so that I could find my right fit. Today, I do all the things I love. Today, I'm completely outside of the box!

Author/Blogger/Speaker/Culinary Goddess
~Chrisetta Mosley

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Outside of the Box: Breakfast

Thanks to those who came out today to start 2013 OUTSIDE of the Box with me! As always it was delicious fun. On the menu: Fruit Seed Wheat Berry Bowls and Open Faced Egg Tomato Sandwiches. 

Oh, what a surprise to have Mary who I met at LA Fitness a couple of days ago, Donna a client from Northwest Personal Training, June and her daughter Jessica I met them in the store during my holiday promo, Ginger who I haven't seen in umpteen years and her son, and all of my loyal followers! 

Again, I say, I LOVE what I do!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Still Contract

I've lost a lot of weight, 170 pounds to be exact. I don't claim to be supernatural or anything. I know, I know. All this time you've been thinking I possessed some kind of supernatural powers. The truth is, anyone can do it. It's really just a matter of setting your mind to it. But there's the rub -- the hardest part is setting your mind to it.

For me, I was forced into this period of stillness by a series of unfortunate events -- the loss of my boyfriend, job, and car -- all in a six week period of time. So there I was all by my lonesome. Sitting still. During those still moments, I heard a nagging voice. A voice I probably would have otherwise never heard zipping around, multi-tasking in the everyday fast paced world. During those still moments, I made up my mind for once and for all (Get it--For once and for all, Farewell Fatso!).

I didn't squander this time. Instead, I recognized this time off as an opportunity and so I used the time to my advantage. I started taking walks around the neighborhood, in part, to keep me from going insane. Those walks, however, soon became my -- me time. When I wasn't out walking I spent a lot of time just sitting still. No TV, no computer, just quiet, still time to really mull things over. I envisioned the person I wanted to be. In retrospect, I was creating a mental vision board. Slowly, but surely, I started making small changes.

I'll admit, at first, I didn't really have a plan. I just took some random steps. But, overtime my steps, my actions became more deliberate. The more small successes I accomplished the bigger the steps I was able to take. I started believing in myself. Wellness coaches call that -- self-efficacy.

Once I started believing in myself. There was no stopping me, there is no stopping me. The way I see it, when I enter into a business arrangement with someone I take the time to mull over the contract. Then if I agree to the contract, I sign the contract. So that's what I've done to shed the pounds and find myself.

My word is my bond. I do what I say I'm going to do and if I can't do it best believe there is a really compelling reason why. I certainly don't go around just willy nilly breaking contracts with others. So the same holds true with the contracts I sign with myself. I sign on the dotted line and commit to myself. It's me first, not in a selfish way, but in a selfish way (a whole 'nother blog post for a whole 'nother time).

Hey, I'm proof...You can do anything you set your mind to. So if you have areas in your life that you are looking to change. Might I suggest -- sit still with yourself, sign a contract with yourself, and set your mind to it!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

What's Happening in January

Hello, 2013! I greet you with enthusiasm and purpose. I'm scheduled to be here, there, everywhere this month. Hope to see you somewhere in the mix!

- I spent the past couple of days at LA Fitness Vancouver East location promoting my cookbook -- just in time for the new year's resolution crowds. I'll also be there on the 31st. A new year! A healthy new you! See below for all the details.

- Wednesday, January 16th from 2:30 - 4:00 p.m., I'm super-excited to host my first ever cooking class for kids (nine and older). As a product of childhood obesity this class is near and dear to my heart. I want to reach back and help. My goal is to teach the young 'uns early how to prepare and cook whole natural foods at home. After all, they are our future generation. On the menu: Blueberry Smoothies, Bean & Cheese burritos, and fresh fruit cups. All the yummy details below.

- Another great honor! I've been asked to be the guest speaker for Clark College's Fitness Incentive Program. I'm scheduled to speak to four different groups the week of the 21st. This is a private event,however, open to Clark College students only. I know, I'm such a tease. Sorry. There's plenty more chances to see me.

- Portland! Get your library cards ready. Multnomah County Library ordered four copies of Shop, Cook, Eat: Outside of the Box late last month so they should be in circulation soon. Here's the link to their site to check the status MCL Catalog.

Happy New Year! Here's a full list of my upcoming events:

Sunday, January 6th
1:00 - 2:30 p.m.

Outside of the Box: Breakfast

Join Chrisetta as she helps you create some OUTSIDE of the Box breakfast recipes: Open Faced Egg Tomato Sandwich and Fruit Seed Wheat Berry Bowl.

  • Classes are F-R-E-E
  • Class size is limited to about 20
  • Please call store to sign up for class and reserve your seat

Chuck's Produce & Street Market
 13215 SE Mill Plain Blvd.


Tuesday, January 15th

4 -7:00 p.m.

Customer Appreciation Health & Wellness Event
For optimal health and weight loss. A healthy diet combined with exercise is key. Stop in by a copy of my cookbook -- Shop, Cook, Eat: Outside of the Box and get your workout on!

LA Fitness

Vancouver East
11505 NE Fourth Plain Rd
Vancouver, WA 98662


Wednesday, January 16th
2:30 - 4:00 p.m.

Outside of the Box for Young 'Uns

Kids age nine and older can learn OUTSIDE of the Box simple favorites using whole food ingredients: Blueberry Smoothies, Bean & Cheese burritos, and fresh fruit cups.

  • Classes are F-R-E-E
  • Class size is limited to about 15
  • Please call store to sign up for class and reserve your seat

Chuck's Produce & Street Market
13215 SE Mill Plain Blvd.


Wednesday, January 23rd
6-7:30 p.m.

"5 or 50" Women's Sustainable Weight Loss & Lifestyle Group
No matter if you have "5 or 50" pounds to lose. It's time to start seeing yourself as beautiful, strong, capable and look beyond physical attributes. I'll facilitate the meeting and share my tips for staying motivated. This will be a safe, inspiring environment to share and grow.
  • Motivation and tips for healthy, sustainable weight loss
  • Recipe sharing
  • Self-love and affirmation
Cascade Park Community Library
600 NE 136th Ave


Thursday, January 31st

4 -7 p.m.

Customer Appreciation Health & Wellness Event
For optimal health and weight loss. A healthy diet combined with exercise is key. Stop in by a copy of my cookbook -- Shop, Cook, Eat: Outside of the Box and get your workout on!

LA Fitness

Vancouver East
11505 NE Fourth Plain Rd
Vancouver, WA 98662

The Obesity Epidemic is REAL!

The evidence of an epidemic is everywhere.

· Two-thirds, more than 190 million Americans are
overweight or obese.

· Obesity-related diseases are a $147 billion dollar
medical burden every year.

· Childhood obesity has tripled in the last thirty years

Source: CBS News