Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Over Weight Lover's In the House!

Its funny.  I was SO gun-ho to handle things concerning this weight exorcism.  I still am in it to lose, but I am physically weary.  Honesty is my best policy, so here goes: I DID NOT GO TO THE GYM THE OTHER DAY...

I have been discouraged, (as I am sure we all get sometimes) even amongst the glory of victory.  I went to the doctor and low and behold my weight loss for the month of October is 10 pounds!  I know I should be happy with this...10 pounds is really no small feat.  But I will be honest in saying I do not feel excited.  I just feel like my energy pulling me toward the bed.  I don't want to do ANYTHING...

I spoke to my honey for a few moments and it was always.  He is peace for amidst an unjoyous existence.  I love hearing his voice and even if the entire day has been turbulent, once he enters via phone call or delivers himself to my door, I am elated as thought a leprochan delivered gold to my door or the mega million guy is waiting outside with my check.  He brings me THAT much joy.

One of the things I want to regain is my sexual prowess.  The extra weight has depleted my ability to own my sexual ability.  He gives me UNBELIEVABLE love-making.  I want to be able to give it back.  It's like the me inside wants to give him the best of myself and the weight tires me out.  I am determined to lose the weight.  I want to be in control of how I make love to him, just as he controls how he makes love to me.

Tomorrow my son will be going with his dad, and I think I will be going to the gym tomorrow.  I believe that I will use my man as the determination for going to the gym.  When I have reached my goal I am gonna SO put it on him!  LOL!!!

Barbequed Ribs

Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 3 Hours Ready In: 11 Hours 30 Minutes
Servings: 8
"These ribs require a double cooking process and an overnight bath in a marinade. The spicy rub and rich sauce make them worth the wait!"


4 pounds baby back ribs

4 cloves garlic, sliced

1 tablespoon white sugar (I chose to omit this)

1 tablespoon paprika

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

2 teaspoons chili powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/2 cup dark brown sugar 1/2 cup cider vinegar

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 cup chili sauce

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

1 clove crushed garlic


1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Place ribs on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Scatter 4 cloves of sliced garlic over ribs. Cover, and bake for 2 1/2 hours. Cool slightly.

2. In a small bowl, mix together white sugar, paprika, salt, black pepper, chili powder, and ground cumin. Rub spices over cooled ribs. Cover, and refrigerate overnight.

3. In a small saucepan, mix together brown sugar, cider vinegar, ketchup, chili sauce, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, onion, dry mustard, and 1 clove garlic. Simmer over medium-low heat, uncovered, for 1 hour. Reserve a small amount for basting; the remainder is a dipping sauce.

4. Preheat grill for medium heat.

5. Place ribs on grill. Grill, covered, for about 12 minutes, basting with the reserved sauce, until nicely browned and glazed. Serve with remaining sauce for dipping.

Enjoy it!!!!

Renee Michele

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Exorcize! (Does Running Away From the Gym Count?)

I am definately eating better.  I did not realize how much this blog would assit me in my food choices, but it has.  I was having a pity day yesterday (as a Piscean will often do) and decided I was going to eat what I wanted to.  Oh well.  I did get fried chicken wingettes, ate 4 and brought the rest home to my son.  Quite honestly, the vegan route is difficult and I am going to make the attempts to make the right choices.  I have to do more investigating for what works for my body, and I emplore you to DO THE SAME.

Since I do have PCOS, I realize I have to get my body back in order.  Randine Lewis, who is the author of the book I told you I am reading, has a site you should look into   Even if you don't have PCOS, she teaches on TCM (traditional chinese medicine) and ways of restoring balance back to your body.  Why should weight demise be any different?  Maybe applying the principles of what she teaches to what we are exorcizing will be what I need.

Speaking of exercise, you do know getting there - to the gym - is the battle I face.  I haven't been to the gym since the week before last and well my body feels the difference.  I have found 2 things I love the most at the gym: the eliptical and the treadmill.  I stayed away from the treadmill for a long time due to accidents I'd heard multiple friends had gotten into.  Well I am done with that.  No matter what time I get home tonight, I will find my way to the gym.  I have been exercising...sort of.  Lord knows, I have been running.  Away from the gym.  I know, I know...I'se going back!
Chicken Parmesan

8oz spagetti (cooked)

1 pkg Chicken-free Nuggets. (we used Health is Weath brand)

4-5 slices Mozzarella Alternative (We used Soymage)

Vegan Parmesian (Again, Soymage)

1 jar spagetti sauce

Unwrap and slice mozzarella into strips.

Bake nuggets according to directions on package. While they are cooking, cook spagetti according to directions.

When nuggets are done, cover with spagetti sauce. Liberally cover with parmesian. Arrange mozzarella strips in a cris-cross pattern on top of nuggets and sauce. Replace pan into oven and cook 3-5 mins or untill sauce is hot and cheeze gets a little melty.

Serve over spagetti.

Hint: This would work well with patties, but the nuggets let you control portions better.

Monday, October 26, 2009

"V" is for Vegan...Is It Good Enough for Me?

I did some serious investigating today. I began to mentally catalog the reasons behind my choice to lose weight. I have always been somewhat satisfied with myself, save for being 437 pounds. Quite honestly, there is no way to put a positive spin on hundreds of pounds of exccess weight. Once I had gastric bypass and had settled back in the 200s, I was mobile again, but my hormones were and are out of whack. My menstrual cycle only visited about twice a year. A lot of women were foolishly jealous and said so. Now with funeralization of 200 unhealthy pounds, my period returned every month, but only twice a month. These women thought me fortunate because they didn’t understand that NOT having a period was not a good thing. Now I am at 276 pounds. I have decided to do things differently.
After research, I realize the things I love the most (in the way of food) have to be done away with. No more 24oz. 7 eleven coffee. The pure thought of going vegan is spinning me crazy, but I have to do what I must to get my body in good health.
I purchased a book today called “The Infertility Cure: The Ancient Chinese Wellness Program for Getting Pregnant and Having Healthy Babies.” I know, I know…it may sound like that is my primary goal, but truly, it isn’t. Having PCOS (Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome) gives one a lot of limitations. It injects the system with great amounts of testosterone. It litters the face with hair; it literally pushes the eggs to grow outside of the ovaries instead of expressing it out of the system when not fertilized. As I leafed through the initial pages I realize one thing. I have to make a life change.
Will I have more children? I don’t know. Will I have the option? Absolutely.

Vegan JambalayaSo how does a meat eater follow a vegan diet? I found a cool website called If you’re trying to make a life change and you’re a heavy meat eater, try this site, it may jolt youon the road to wellness…

· 1 package Zatarain's Jambalaya Mix
· 1 package Green Giant brand fake hamburger
· 1/2 - 2/3 of a medium onion, chopped
· Badia Louisiana Hot spice.
· 2-3 cloves garlic, grated.
· Olive oil
Prepare the Jambalaya mix as per directions. Add some Louisiana Hot Sauce to the water when it comes to a boil.
Put oil in frying pan and heat, add garlic and sauté 'till fragrant. Add onions and spice. Sauté' until done. Add fake hamburger and cover with hot spice. Stir 'till the fake hamburger is hot.
When Jambalaya is done add to the hamburger/onion mix. Mix and eat. This recipe is simple and relatively quick.
Enjoy this guys! Happy Eating!!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Video or Bust!

This was my 1st attempt at a video know the damned thing would not load, right? Well one monkey don't stop no show. I designated Saturday as my I don't give a damn day, and even with all of that your girl still didn't do so bad (I guess practice makes perfect, huh?) I ate 3 meals....I barely touched those damned cookies! I traded them in for 3 real-life oatmeal raisans from a devune bakery called Eat My Cake. (You know my silly ass was just about to throw a link up in this mutha, but I thought better of setbacks don't have to be your setbacks!)

Well, I had (in all) 9 spoonfuls of wheat spaghetti and ground beef with tomato sauce and spinach. My drink of choice H2O!!! Yay Me!!!!!! I did have a cup of coffee (and yes it was no sugar, but full of the treacherous french vanilla creamer, yum!...I mean, I know it was a bad choice; I'm gonna have to get into a creamers anonymous program!)

So tomorrow is another day. I'm gonna keep trying the video until I get it. I think after the holidays I will try the lemonade diet. I already have the stuff, so I might as well, right? I will keep you posted!

Renee Michele



4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (3 oz is a serving!!!)

1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

2 teaspoons mixed italian herbs to taste

4 slices provolone cheese

10 tablespoons low sodium Spaghetti sauce

4 cups spaghetti noodles


Preheat oven to 425 F

pound chicken breast with flat side of meat mallet until flattened out and even thickness

(I didnt do this, i just bought skinnier peices of chicken...

which was better because its more like a serving size)

Mix bread crumbs and italian herbs, put on flat dish and press both sides of chicken into crumbs

Place chicken in baking dish, top with provolone cheese

Bake 20 minutes (or until cheese is golden and crispy around edges.

meanwhile put some water on for the pasta, it should be boiling by now and you can start to cook that according to directions on box

heat your spaghetti sauce in a small sauce pan

The best way to keep this recipe healthy is to use low sodium spaghetti sauce, and dont go overboard...its chicken parmesan, a couple tablespoons will do ; ) Also using something like wheat noodles will make it healthier as well. I didnt have the nutrition facts for low sodium sauce and wheat noodles, so really if you do those things the nutrition facts will be even better.

Number of Servings: 4

Friday, October 23, 2009

Coming Back to Myself...

The tsunami of emotions that flooded me just days ago is passing. Now that I have truly gotten to the root of the problem, I have taken the necessary steps to rip it out at the root. The first step was to chill out and take an Aleve or two. I was on an emotional spin that magnified everything by the square root of a thousand. The only thing that seemed to be working in my favor was that I had lost my appetite. I had to force myself to eat in the day and I could barely keep my head clear enough to eat at night. Yesterdays menu was left over wheat spaghetti with spinach and ground beef. After 3 spoonfuls I was done. Most of the time was spent in the bathroom shower listening to a sad playlist of what I call “soul purgers.”
I turned my Zune up to 20 and plugged it into my amplifier and cried like a newborn. I cried, sang, and wiped my own runny nose for the duration of 3 hours. I needed to cleanse myself of the demons that helped me believe that food was a comfort.
In truth all I wanted was to lie in the arms of the man I love and cry there. That lasted all of a few minutes before I wanted to choke him for being so connected to me and then choosing to remain disconnected.
 I spoke to him last night and upon hearing my voice he automatically assumes I was sleep. (In all actuality I'd been crying for 3 hours!) "I will talk to you tomorrow," he said before hanging up. I tucked my anger in because I know at that point, I was down right, truly homicidal. The menstral is a mutha!
I couldn’t find my morning weight loss pill for like 2 days, so my regimen was slightly off.

I am drinking more water and trying to keep visualizing the poster the Dept. of Health put out regarding soda and it being fattening. Every time I go to pick up a bottle or can of soda, I see that damned ad. Oh well.

Tonight, I think I will have the salad left over from lunch. I am not much in the cooking mood. I know my son will not want left over spaghetti again, but oh well, I can add garlic bread!  I am going to make this over the weekend.  Enjoy the grub!  I promise the videos will be coming soon!



2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium to large onion, diced

1/2 c bbq sauce

1/2 c sweet and sour sauce

salt and pepper to taste


Place chicken in the bottom of your slow cooker.

Mix remaining ingredients together, pour over chicken. Cook on low 6-8 hours until chicken is thoroughly cooked.
Serve with brown rice and a spinach salad - delicious!

Number of Servings: 8

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Upside of Emotional Dining

It's time.  If weight loss is to be an actuality then it's time to count up these things, this pain.  I have to address my reasons for my poor eating habits.  Lonely translates to hungry in "FAT-glish."  Fat-glish is this disgusting language where there is a food for EVERY emotion.  You learn to speak fat-glish at the beginning of your decline.  Please know there is a food for every emotion.  On many levels, food becomes spiritual.

I realize that the portion of my weight that is emotional is due to abandonment issues. I have parents who don't love me the way I want them to love me, but they love me with everything they have.  It would be nice if this were actually factual.  I have sat on the side lines as my mother's youngest child and my father's oldest and watched them both extend themselves for others.  I've watched them extend themselves for "adopted" children, natural siblings and godchildren.  There never seemed to be enough of them for me.  In my attempt to make them happy, I never complained much...I waited in a waiting room to be treated by with their love.

Their love, in the way I needed it.  In the way they were capable (as I saw them doing what I needed for other people).  While I waited, I got to experience the endorphins that are released in the brain when you eat food to "bandade your pain."  I have always been thick, but the moment I decided to become a mother (another attempt to find the "love" that eluded me)my weight ballooned.    It wasn't successful.  The connection between my son and I is undeniable, but the moment my mother laid eyes on him, she became his.  She gave Elijah a double portion of everything (including what she hadn't given me).Meanwhile, food and PCOS were wreaking  havoc on my body.

Regardless of how I silently abhorred my parents treatment of me (my father was notorius for 5-minute phone parenting), I fell into the same pattern. I gave up the reigns of parenting to my mother (more like she took them). I fell for men who were either my mother or my father.  They were verbally abusive or workaholics.  The one thing that was always present, the one thing that never let me down...was food.  The problem?  It blew me up.

It begins here.  I am working on myself right now.  I am facing me - sans their love and support.  Your parents will leave, your siblings will go, your children also....but you are always with yourself.  I am now telling myself how loved I am by myself.  Time to take myself out.  Spend time alone.  See the things I love about ME.  I have someone in my daddy he is a workaholic, but I have got to be enough, even in his absence.

Yesterday was good.  I didn't eat a lot.  I had six diet cookies, a tablespoon of brown rice and 2 baked chicken wingettes and 2 fork fulls of wheat sphaghetti with ground beef and spinach.  I had a minature bag of Skittles (like I needed that!)  The upside?  It's the Halloween season so minatures are available.  I had a small amount.  Lets not forget the water.

I have also been getting my rest.  I slept last night, and I am going back to bed for like an hour.  I am still sleepy. 

(Low Glycemic Recipe promotes wellness; It is not only for diabetics)

Lemony Salmon

This low GI salmon recipe is so quick to make, you will believe how great it tastes.


1 salmon fillet (approximately 4 oz)

1 tsp fat-free mayonnaise

1 tsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp dill weed

salt/pepper to taste


Using a pastry brush, spread mayonnaise over salmon fillet. Sprinkle with lemon juice, dill, salt and pepper.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until salmon easily flakes.

The road to success begins with the first step...if you haven't already done so, scribe the reasons behind the weight gain.  It's better to snatch a weed out by the root.

Love & Light,

Renee Michele

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Depression Diet...

Today was difficult.  Have you ever woken up, on the edge of morning and dression was sitting in your arm chair?  When I got up this morning, the air was heavy.  I was very weepy.  I was on the edge of a cry that would not come.  Today I decided I would look deeper than food.  Food is the drug.  The obvious would be to ask myself why am I using food as a form of escapism?  Well today I got up and I didn't want to face it.  I was more emotional than I'd been in a long time.  I thought it would pass.  In all honesty, I made a conscious decision to be sad.  Amazing, huh?  Ms. Do-Gooder, Ms. Spoon-Full-of-Sugar, Ms. Forget-the-Sun-Tomorrow-Bask-in-the-Rays-Today is kissing depression.  This depression is different.  He is not the type to take you out to eat, order everything on the menu and expect you to pay.  That's ED (Eating Depression).  This is his cousin.  This depression that has come to meet me today is SD (Sulking Depression).  Sometime intuition will tell you how to feel before something comes to give just cause.  I don't know how, but I made it out of the house.  I made it to the train and to my job.  It wasn't so bad intially, but goodness knows by the time I took refuge in my seat behind my desk, my face expressed my emotions and I just could not cover.  My father and I had an uncomfortable conversation.  I told him if he did not want me for a daughter to tell me and I will stop calling.  Of course he patronized me, went in to his "daddy's baby" voice, but I am fed up.  My parents for some reason feel that because I am independent I do not need them; and yes, I feel like a 35 year old orphan.  It does not matter what I fill my life with, lonely is always right there, making room for itself.  I did not forget the cookies today, and I snacked on them all day.  I did bring some of the soup I made in the crock pot (Split Pea) but I only consumed 1/2 of the small container.  I mindlessly shoved in the cookies whenever what I thought to be hunger emerged, but truth was I was so down I wasn't even hungry.  I went out to Sephora's ( at lunch to cheer myself up, but it did not work (I'd need at least 4 hours and $1,000 in there to go home happy.)  I retreated back to the office with a too expensive bottle of Bare Minerals Make-Up. (Mad as I was, I still was looking good.)  Save for the six cookies and 1/2 a small container (and I do mean small) of soup, water and of course my coffee, I did not eat.  Truth is, I won't eat when I get home.  I just want to sleep.  Since depression and loneliness have invited themselves in, hopefully they will bring the gift that's been eluding me for months - sleep. 


Thick and Hearty Split Pea Soup

2 medium onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 carrots, diced

3 ribs celery, chopped

2 cups dried split peas, checked carefully for debris and rinsed

6-8 cups water

2 medium potatoes, coarsely chopped

1 large bay leaf

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1-2 teaspoons liquid smoke

2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Lightly spray the bottom of a pressure cooker or Dutch oven with canola oil. Sauté the onions for about 5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan often, until they begin to caramelize. Add the garlic, carrots, and celery and cook for 2 more minutes.

Add the peas to the pot. If you're using a pressure cooker, add 6 cups of water; for regular cooking, add 8 cups water. Stir in the potatoes, bay leaf, celery seed, basil, and thyme.

For pressure cooking: Seal the cooker and bring to high pressure. Lower heat and cook at high pressure for 6 minutes. Remove from heat and allow the pressure to come down naturally. If beans are not completely cooked, cover loosely and cook (without pressure) until they reach the desired tenderness.

For regular cooking: Bring to a boil, cover, and cook over very low heat for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until peas are soft and disintegrate when stirred.

For both methods: When the beans are done, add the liquid smoke, salt, and pepper. Check the seasoning and add more herbs if necessary. Cook several minutes uncovered to thicken (or add water to thin). Serve with warm whole-grain bread.

Makes about 8 servings, and tastes even better the next day...
Love & Light,
Renee Michele

Monday, October 19, 2009

Just Another Manic Monday...

Well it is 2:46pm.  Please note this is the first time I have put something solid in my mouth.  What I did was follow my normal regimine of morning coffee.  You know the devil's in the details, right?  I have a 24oz. cup of coffee every morning , Monday-Friday.  I add NO sugar (yay!) but I always use an inch of the french vanilla creamer.  (God know what's in there!  I remember when I use to pour creamer in a cup and add hot water!) 

Here's the OTHER dilemma:  Not quite sure of what to eat, I ended up at a salad bar where I put about 4 thin strips of Italian grilled chicken into my container.  I really did not want to overload on the carbs, so I put in salad with grilled bell peppers.   Pretty good for a chick who left her cookies home!    (I swear to you, it was accidental!)  I thought to myself, "That's what up girl!  Handle your damn buisness!"  Then I remember that my supervisor asked me to grab her some lunch and I walked down to another salad bar.  Now this salad bar is rather small but lawd have murcy, their chicken is not to be played with!

From time to time they make changes to the menu and will include specialty dishes.  I really did not intend to look, but at THAT salad bar I saw baked chicken and brown rice. (yum!)  You do know I got a small container of that, don't you?  Well here is the upside of being a gastric bypass recepient.  Even 5 years after the surgery, my stomach has stretched but so much.  My eyes are most definately bigger than my stomach. 

Here goes that evil Darth Vader hunger swelling up inside me "Renee...I am your brown rice and chicken!"  I want to run in the other direction, but my hunger has been taken over by the darkside.  I pull out my inner lawyer to dispute my choice of buying more food.
"At least it's brown rice!" I say matter-of-factly.  "Besides, you only got a small portion!"

Damn, talk about drinking the kool-aid!  I fall for the crap, hook-line and sinker.  I throw down the extra $6.35 and walked out of the deli.  It was a good thing I am a generous heifer.  I gave away most of it, including a little bit of everything in the smaller container.  So it turned out better than I expected!  Well...I'm on the way home now to enjoy that black bean soup!

Here is your daily recipe!

Chicken Rojo

The great thing about this dish is that you can assemble your ingredients while the chicken simmers, so it cuts down on prep time. It only takes 30 minutes cooking time from start to finish.

Prep Time: :5

Cook Time: :30


3-5 chicken breasts or thighs

6 tomatoes, large

1/2 an onion, cut into quarters

3 tablespoons of oil

2 cups chicken broth mixed with 2 cups of water

1 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon garlic, peeled and crushed

1/2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tablespoon red chile powder or chile paste

salt to taste


Preheat broiler on high.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large pan over high heat. Brown the chicken pieces on each side. Cover chicken with chicken broth and bring to a boil. While it's coming to a boil, slice the top off of each tomato and place cut side down on a cookie sheet along with the onions. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of oil over them. Place in broiler and remove when tomato skins become very wrinkled and shriveled.

While the tomatoes are broiling, bring the chicken broth to a strong simmer and add in the chile, cumin, oregano, garlic and cocoa.

When the tomatoes are ready, remove from broiler and let cool for 1 minute.

While the tomatoes cool, turn the chicken

Peel the skin off of each tomato and use a spoon to remove the seeds from the middle. Using your fingers, mash the tomato a little and add into the sauce. Separate the onions and stir into the sauce. Let the sauce reduce while chicken finishes cooking.

If the liquid cooks off to fast, add water about a half cup each time, until the chicken reaches 170 degrees or is no longer pink inside.


Love & Light,

Renee Michele

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Surrendering to Sunday...

Enough excuses and you will swell on them.  My belly is full of them.  Being sore from the gym I waited in the bed until 11:38am.  I pushed myself up because Buddy, my minature maltese wanted food and water.  I had reasoned with myself that I would begin again today, but the sheer laziness, soreness in my unconditioned body and a straight up desire not to do this freaking diet today. UUUUGHHHHH!!!!!!

Ever been there?  At the point where you will do some crap that doesn't make any kind of sense?  You have starved yourself ALL DAY and then go out like a ravenous dog in search of food???
I had 2 fried chicken wings today....chinese restaurant chicken wings...with hot sauce and ketchup...(singing in my head): Lawd I want to lose this weight up off my thighs (off my thighs), Lawd I want to lose this weight up off my gutt (off my gutt)...

I am so fed up with being beautiful...from the neck up...
Relax, I don't feel that way everyday, but I will tell you, there are days when the mirror and I are no longer on speaking terms.  I have been wanting to share with you guys videos, which I will do soon, making the blog more interesting.  I plan to beat this habit.  A friend of mine taught me something.  She told me that she'd been on drugs.  What I found interesting is that she was determined not to be called a "recovering addict."  I asked her why.  She responded "'cause once it's over I ain't no addict.  I don't want to give drug addiction any stake in my life.  Why would I allow the drugs to have real estate in me?  They've been evicted."   Well I am really done.  I am so sick of this.  I am gonna finish these cookies because I spent like $50 on this box, but I am just gonna make healthier choices.  I am 35 years old and I would like the ability to have more children and not live in fear of losing the fetus due to the excess weight.  To date I have lost 3 pregnancies due to weight (and Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome).  I have to go out and get dinner for my son.  Why lie to you?  I am going to get something for myself also.  I just will make a better choice. 

I went to my weight loss doctor on Friday to pick up my weight loss meds to assist in the weight loss.  I see Dr. Stacy Title, who is as full of life as I am and I love her like cooked food!  (No pun intended...seriously!)  I am down 6 lbs.! (Brothers and Sisters...we are here today to funeralize 6 unhealthy pounds!  Asses to ashes...guts to dust!  AMEN!!!)  It cost about $93 every visit (because I go every 2 weeks), but the results are real.  I think I got to step my work out game up though. 

A good friend gave a tip last night that I am going to share with you.  She called it the "20 minute rule."  Most of us are used to drinking when we eat.  Her suggestion is to wait 20 minutes as water or a beverage will liquefy your food allowing you to eat MORE.  So here I go...(Thanks Amor!!! You are the truth my friend...the truth!)

It is getting cold outside in NYC VERY quickly, so there is a return to soups for me.  I will post below a recipe I am going to try tomorrow...I'd LOVE to know if you guys have tried it and if in fact worked for you.

Today's Recipe:
Black Bean Vegetarian Soup Recipe

I found an awesome black bean vegetarian soup recipe and wanted to share it with you. The nutrients on this recipe are pretty decent.
Protein - 12 grams, Fiber - 10 grams, Calories - 286

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium red onion finely chopped

< 1-2 jalapeños, depending on how spicy you prefer

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tablespoon ground cumin

2 cups dried black beans

2 cups vegetable stock

¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

< ½ teaspoon kosher salt

Clean and rinse the beans. Cover the beans with water and soak refrigerated overnight. When ready to prepare the soup, put the beans in a stockpot and cover with cold water and cook until tender. Do not salt the beans until they are almost finished cooking. After the beans are fully cooked add the beans and the bean broth to the sautéed mixture. Add vegetable stock if you want a thinner soup.

While the beans are cooking, heat the oil in a heavy, large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onions, jalapenos, garlic, salt and cumin. Sauté the onions until tender. Remove from the burner. When the beans are cooked, add the beans and bean stock to the sauté mix. Stir well to mix the flavors. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the flavors blend, approximately 15 minutes. Mix in the cilantro. Season with salt and pepper. This can be served with a spoonful of plain yogurt or sour cream and tortilla chips. Brown rice also makes a good addition to the soup.

Makes 4 eight-ounce servings.

Approximate values per serving: 286 calories, 10 g fat, 1 mg cholesterol, 12 g protein, 40 g carbohydrates, 10 g fiber, 1057 mg sodium, 32 percent calories from fat.

Happy Eating!!!!!  Love & Light,

Renee Michele

Saturday, October 17, 2009

HI...My Name is has been 20 minutes Since My Last Shrimp Roll...

Addiction is a mo' fo.I swear today I feel like Pookie in the crack house.  Y'all remember New Jack City when Pookie talked about his addiction? 

"It be callin' me man!  It be callin' me and I gotta go to it man.  I need some help man, help me." 
The irony is that I literally live right across the street from "The Carter," the fabled building in the movie.  (It's really called Graham Court.)  I felt bad for Pookie because the truth was he didn't wanna be a crackhead...that was just the long and short of it.  An addiction will have you doing just about anything to get it.  Food is no different.  "Anybody wanna buy a turkey?"

Man that turkey looked good!  I was doing SO well last night and this morning, but by the time I hit early afternoon; I was crashing.  You know when every food commercial in the world comes on. 
I had eaten ALL SIX of them damn cookies and I was feeling darn right carnivorous.  I lasted till 6:38pm on 6 cookies, a spring roll and water.
Without knowing quite how, I was inside of White Castle ordering 5 cheese burgers and a small order of clam strips.  Just my luck, the little ninny behind the counter rather upset over something keyed in the wrong items.  I walked out with fries instead of strips.  I HATE their fries.

Now I am back in the house.  I am suppose to go to a reading, right up the block, but I am exhausted.  I walked all over Harlem today (literally) and I just wanna sleep before my radio show.  Shall we try again tomorrow?  The score?  Me: 1, Demonic Fat: 2.
But stay tuned fat...I'm coming for ya!

(Maybe if I get drunk enough, I'll forget today...yeah, right!)

Drunken Chicken

4 servings

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts OR 4 split fryer breasts - skinned.

1 Tablespoons Butter

1/2 small onion, minced

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 Tablespoon parsley

1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar Twin

1 Tablespoon mustard

1/2 cup chicken stock

1/4 cup red wine

4 Tablespoons Gin

Preparation Method:
1 - Melt the butter and sauté the chicken until browned. Transfer to ovenproof dish. Cook onion until soft. Purée the remaining ingredients together then add to pan, heat through, pour over chicken and cover dish.

2 - Bake at 350ºF 15-20 minutes for boneless breasts and 30-40 minutes for bone-in split breasts.

EXTRA! EXTRA! The Cookie Monster Eats Something Other Than A Cookie!!!

What a difference a day makes.  I swear a chick was WAY dedicated last evening upon finishing the first blog!  As I told you last night, I was starting the Cookie diet today.  My curiosity got the best of me and YOU KNOW I opened a pack!

They advertised it on GMA and I was excited!  This girl who they featured lost 13 dress sizes!  In six months!WHAT!?! 

Y'all know I'm gonna keep it real with y'all right?  Well I will tell you a chick felt like a prisoner looking at the prospect of parole!  The thing is you eat these 6 cookies during the course of the day.  No specific time, just whenever you get hungry.  Then you come home and have yourself a sensible dinner(i.e. a salad with maybe a 4 oz. piece of chicken).  I ran right out to GNC and purchased a starter box. 

Honey listen, I walked in there and let me tell you, the sales people see a fat person in GNC and they start running around you like you were spouting blood coming in the ER!  No way you could possibly navigate your way around the store alone.

I got home and had two of the cookies.  The taste is just below ok, but my greedy ass is thinking - girl this is a damn cookie!  So the fact that he put this formula in a cookie blows me away and causes me to stick with it...until about 3 am.  Child listen...whatever is in the cookie makes you crave drink water.  You DO know as a big person sometimes we confuse the signal that say "I'm thirsty" for "I am hungry,"right? 

I made my way to the kitchen and looked at 2 spring rolls I failed to consume 2 nights ago.  When you have food addiction, you will mentally spar with yourself for your right to eat what you're longing for.  I reasoned with myself..."it's nothing but veggies! shouldn't be wasteful!...
Do you remember the old school excuse? "There are kids starving in Africa!" or "I'll just have one...I know I already had one, but I need to remove the temptation!"  I ate 2 spring rolls and took my fat ass back to bed.  DAMN! 

Well here goes nothing!  I emerge from my California King bed (just a mattress on the floor, I wanted this bed to make me feel smaller!) and I take my liquid B12 shot right in my stomach.  (Oh yeah, desperation will push one to do many things.)  I took my 2 morning pills, the appetite suppressant then the vitamin.  I am going to the gym.  I joined Planet Fitness at the end of September to kill any excuses.  Lucille Roberts was okay, but women are way too catty to take turns working out.  You have to "sign up" for a machine, then wait.  On top of that, they close way too early.  So this was my excuse for not going and I was basically tithing my $20 a month.  Now at Planet Fitness, 5 days a week they are 24 hours, and Saturday and Sunday they are 7am-7pm.

After I finish this blog, I am going to the gym.  I reallydo like it.  Once there, I do what I must.  Put on my Zune and I am gone, in a zone.  I LOVE to dance.  *Do what you it til' you satisfied!  So still eating my second cookie and drinking this water. Back in the saddle again!

Disclaimer - * I don't mean eat!  Go out and save your life!

Love & Light,

Renee Michele

Friday, October 16, 2009

An Abnormal Entity...

I swear this journey has been the HARDEST thing I ever had to put up with. Ever since I became a mom, I have had a weight problem. I have been various weights between 437 and 229 pounds. Sometimes it was due to eating, other reasons were medical.

My weight has been consistent in goal to consume me. At times it seemed to take on a life of its own. I remember being 437 pounds, living in one of the most beautiful and exclusive neighborhoods in Brooklyn and not being able to move. My son lived with my mother at the time; I felt like I couldn't be a good mother to him. I'd make the journey to Queens Village from Park Slope on Friday evenings. The 2 train to the LIRR to Queens Village and a cab to mom's. At 437, that round trip was straight torture. It would take me the ENTIRE weekend to recuperate. It did not help that Park Slope was filled to the absolute brim with my favorite restaurants and they ALL delivered. My son spent a large portion of his weekends being babysat by the 65 inch television in our sublet apartment as I slept and prepared for the journey back to my mothers house come Sunday. I was miserable.

It was the same summer my grandma died. Save for my son, she was the person I loved more than anything and weight had kept me from her. I shut down shop and moved back to my mother's house.

After moving back to my mom's, it became apparent that I could not continue like this. I had heard about a procedure that was just gaining notoriety called gastric bypass. Anyone who knows me knows that once I become focus, there is NO stopping me. I saw a doctor in Brooklyn who told me I'd need to pass a counseling session visit and a dietitian visit. Being the hustler that I am I finagled both appointments and had both practitioners give me a note clearing me for surgery (one I even wrote the note for and just had her sign). I was scheduled for surgery with 3 weeks of my first visit.

On November 2nd, 2004 I had the life-changing surgery. By my birthday of the next year, I was full-figured modeling, turning heads on any street I walked on. I never knew the weight was more than the eating. PCOS (Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome) attacks the body with imbalance. Your testosterone spikes and causes you to have side effects like facial hair growth, infertility and weight gain. Before I knew it, by September of 2005 I was back up 80 pounds. I was at 308 pounds when I decided I had to fight to get my health back.
So here I am at 279 pounds. I see a weight loss doctor since April 17th, 2009. I am down 29 pounds. I decided to blog the weight loss so you can journey WITH me, not AFTER me. I am not holding anything back. You will see my success and my failures. We are gonna work together and exorcise the demon of weight.
I also started the cookie diet, ( I will keep you posted. As of today's date, I am 279 pounds, 5'7 feet tall. Lets do this together. I will post recipes and the like...lets share and evict this tenant that's taken residence in our frames. All in the apartment and don't pay rent.
Love Ya,
Renee Michele

Grilled Marinated Shrimp

Prep Time: 30 Minutes

Cook Time: 10 Minutes Ready In: 2 Hours 40 Minutes

Servings: 2

"This makes the best shrimp! Remove from skewers and serve on a bed of pasta with sauce for a great meal."


1/3 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon chopped fresh


1/3 lemon, juiced

2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon tomato paste 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

11 ounces large shrimp, peeled and deveined

with tails attached



You have scaled this recipe's ingredients to yield a new amount (2). The directions below still refer to the original recipe yield (6).

1. In a mixing bowl, mix together olive oil, parsley, lemon juice, hot sauce, garlic, tomato paste, oregano, salt, and black pepper. Reserve a small amount for basting later. Pour remaining marinade into a large resealable plastic bag with shrimp. Seal, and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

2. Preheat grill for medium-low heat. Thread shrimp onto skewers, piercing once near the tail and once near the head. Discard marinade.

3. Lightly oil grill grate. Cook shrimp for 5 minutes per side, or until opaque, basting frequently with reserved marinade.