Monthly Archives: April 2011


I heart Dr. Bob

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I had a great session with Dr. Bob yesterday. He is my therapist. Yes, I said it, my therapist.
I know some of you gasp when you hear me say this, I don’t know why it’s such a taboo topic but I’m here to clear the air on this once and for all.

Everybody should have a Dr. Bob!! A mental check up 2 or 3 times a year should be recommended by all physicians. Just like an annual physical and twice a year dental.
Some of us trust our friends, spouses, family members or clergymen with issues we wish to sort out but everyone should have a professional where we can be completely honest without concerns of being judged or biased.

Don’t get me wrong, I do confide with a few chosen girlfriends, family members and my boyfriend, but it’s nice to talk to a professional I can be brutally honest with and know it will stay confidential.

Maybe I’m so adamant about this because my job requires me to always be positive, upbeat and energetic, I mean let’s face it, nobody wants a whiny fitness professional.
Could you imagine if I walked into class complaining, “OMG I’ve had such a crappy day, my kid threw up in the car, my dog bit the neighbor, my boyfriend is being a jerk and I’m so tired!! I really don’t wanna be here so let’s get this workout over with so I can go home and flop on my couch and eat ice cream!!”
Not very motivating is it?! But there are plenty of people in our lives like this. They’re the people the moment you see them you want to do an about face and run in the other direction….FAST! Perhaps it’s a coworker, a friend, relative or maybe it’s YOU!!
Let’s face it, it could be you. Do you spend your day griping about something or the other? Do you even realize it?

We all have problems. Believe me, the stories I could share being a Cubana living in Medway, Massachusetts, recently divorced mother of four, who lives far away from ANY family, starting my life over, opening a studio, launching an international website…I could seriously have a reality show that would give Kim Kardashian and all those “Real Housewives” a run for their money!! But I also know I wouldn’t be accomplishing half the stuff Im doing if I were spewing negative energy on everybody all day long either. I want to be a good role model for my children and help others achieve their best along the way.

I’m grateful for all the stumbles I’ve had in my life for they have made me who I am today. I’ve been able to turn negative situations into positive hurdles and I’m able to extend a helping hand to those in need along the way.
Whether its forgetting your troubles for just one hour during my cardio classes, or nutrition advice which has improved your health, or just maybe seeing my before and after pictures may have inspired you to say, “If she did it, I can too.”
For all of this I am eternally thankful to Dr. Bob. My sessions give me balance in my chaotic life so I’m able to give more to my children and those who need help.
After all, isn’t that why we’re all here on this earth? To be of service?


My experience with Aspartame

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I used Aspartame practically my entire life and always thought these zero calorie foods would help me lose weight, but the truth is those were my heaviest years and it wasn’t until I gave them up that I lost weight and kept it off!
In my years of eating clean and contest dieting I’ve seen with my own eyes the effects of aspartame and my body.
There are logical reasons to explain the fattening and bloating effects of aspartame which Ive confirmed with many doctors, dieticians and nutritionists.
When you ingest the toxic chemical aspartame it is absorbed from the intestines and passes immediately to the liver. The liver then breaks down or metabolizes aspartame to its toxic components – phenylalanine, aspartic acid and methanol. This process requires a lot of energy from the liver which means there will be less energy remaining in the liver cells. This means the liver cells will have less energy for fat burning and metabolism, which will result in fat storing. Excess fat may build up inside the liver cells causing “fatty liver” and when this starts to occur it is extremely difficult to lose weight. Any time you overload the liver you will increase the tendency to gain weight easily.

Aspartame also causes weight gain by destabilizing blood sugar levels, which increases appetite and causes cravings for sweets/sugar. It also causes fluid retention giving the body a puffy and bloated appearance. This makes people look fatter than they are and increases cellulite. ZOINKS!!

I experienced this first hand when I was dieting for my first show in 2007. I had lost a fair amount of weight already but was having a really hard time breaking the 5lb plateau….Im sure many of you know what im talking about.
No matter how hard I trained or how well I ate, my body was just gonna be stubborn and sit.
Then one day my trainer got sick and tired hearing me complain and whine about how much I wanted to eat a bagel with cream cheese and he said “I told you to get off that aspartame shit! It’s keeping you from losing body fat and making you crazy too!”
I didn’t want to believe him but he’d been right about everything else in my weight-loss journey. And I figured..well, he is a physiologist, let me try this.
So I took it all out. Cold turkey. Including my sugar-free gum!! I think I even had a memorial service for it! Yes, I’m quite dramatic!!
I couldnt believe this, within days I noticed I was retaining less water and was far less bloated! I also noticed I wasn’t craving sweets and carbs anymore….yet it was the reason I was consuming this stuff because I did have such a sweet tooth!! Crazy!!!
In time my body cooperated and I lost the extra stubborn body fat. More affirmation. Oh my gosh…this stuff really is the Devil!!!!!

So the next time you’re about to throw in the towel over the last 5-10lbs and say “I give up! I’ve tried Everything!!” I say to you… Have you really? Truly?


Fitness Atlantic 2011-Expect the Unexpected!!

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Expect the unexpected. Isn’t that what they say?? So true.
It takes 16 weeks to prepare for a show. (someone of average body fat) Kind of like preparing for a marathon except this requires workouts and a diet program which changes every 4 weeks. By the time you get to your show week diet, eating cold tilapia and asparagus out of a ziploc baggie seems quite normal when there’s so much to do! Who wants to be bothered with eating a hot meal when there’s waxing, tweezing, tanning, hair, manicure, pedicure, makeup, swimsuits, shoes, jewelry, theme wear, props, the T-walk!! OH-SO MUCH!!

This was my 10th show and I went in to the weekend hoping this would be my best presentation ever. My physique was not too hard or too soft, my swimsuit fit like a glove…a very tight glove but the cut was perfect for my body. And I loved my theme wear idea. Original and totally me!! My hair color was just right…took the color to a more deep red to enhance my skin color. Makeup was perfect, sophisticated and glamorous. Accessories were right on with my suits. My heels were perfect and my boots were ROCKN’! Looking back now I can say there’s nothing I would change at all…nothing.

Of course, I should’ve known to expect something! Nothing ever runs smoothly now, does it?!?!
I competed in two classes in the Bikini Model division. Masters and Tall. Theme wear was up first.
I loved my Pocahontas costume and couldn’t wait to strut my stuff on stage.
Masters class was up first and I was so nervous and excited waiting for my turn I could feel my knees shaking! Not good considering my boots were knee high, 5 inches tall and a 2 inch platform!!! OMG! What if I fall on stage!?!!? Id seen it happen before. Thank God I put no-slip grippers on the soles just in case the stage was slippery.

I was up next….”Competitor #79, Josette Puig!” I drew my shoulders back and exhaled and said, “C’mon Josette, You got this, the hard part is over. Be Sassy and Classy and Have Fun!!!”

I held my bow and arrow in my right hand and walked out, making sure I made eye contact with the judges and not walk to the beat of the music which was way too fast. “Listen to your own beat Josette…work it!”
I hit my first pose and it felt awesome!!!! Strut my stuff to stage right and just when I went to hit that pose, I felt damp in my booty shorts. At first I thought it’s nothing, just focus. Then I strut across the stage, I felt more dampness…I panicked and thought “NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! NOT NOW!!! YOU’RE FRIGGN KIDDING ME!?!?!!!? I’M NOT SUPPOSE TO GET MY PERIOD TIL NEXT WEEK!!!

I was able to stay composed but ran off to the bathroom and was shocked to discover IT had decided to pay me a visit during my show!! ARGH!! You’re kidding me?!!? Seriously!?!!? Some of you might think it’s no big deal but at this point hormonal changes make the body react drastically and just as I was about to walk out again for Tall division my abs starting pooching out and sagging!!! ZOINKS!!! NOT GOOD!!
I proceeded to walk out and suck in my stomach as much as possible. As I stood during comparisons next to dozens of tall, 20 and 30 something year old women, who’d never given birth before, I made eye contact with my trainer, Steve. in hopes he could read the S.O.S. look on my face. I needed his help ASAP before I had to come out in my bikini!!!
Phew…so glad that was over!!!! I found Steve in the audience, pulled up my t-shirt to show him my saggy gut and said “LOOK WHO DECIDED TO VISIT ME NOW!!” Steve exclaimed, “But you weren’t suppose to get it until next week!!!” (if you’re wondering why he would know this, it’s because they HAVE to know our menstrual cycle to the exact hour! These things affect how you prepare for a show.)
He looked in his cooler but wasn’t happy with his food options. “We need carbs and sodium to fill you out!” So off we went. One of the vendors was giving out samples of “Ostrim” ostrich jerky, which is loaded with sodium. We took one of those and also settled on a salted pretzel and ketchup packets!!

I ran backstage sipped on water and munched on half the pretzel an hour before going out in bikini. Sucked down the ketchup and ate the Ostrim about 20 minutes before and amazingly so, right before my eyes my saggy abs became full and tight! This is a temporary fix but it was exactly what I needed before taking the stage again.
I was able to walk confidently and nailed all my poses.

My previous show experiences and having Steve there definitely helped me handle this curveball. In the end, I placed 2nd in Masters and 4th in Tall. I couldn’t be more pleased with my performance. I did everything I could naturally and it paid off. I’m THRILLED!!! =D


48 hours to go

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This is where things get tricky. Timing is everything in a fitness show and not every body reacts the same way when getting stage ready. It takes many shows to figure out what works best for you.

In my case, my body loves to hold on to water, which is wonderful for the skin and slows down the aging process because the skin stays plump! Unfortunately its not so great for fitness shows when you’re trying to show off all your hard work in the weight room!

You might think, ok, easy, just cut out your carbs and sodium and youl’l be fine! That’s true but when you cut out something drastically the body works like a pendulum and will do the complete opposite 48 hours later. This is why timing is everything.

So it is today, 48 hours before contest that I cut out my carbs and sodium completely. I also lower my water intake. I was doing 2 gallons a day until last week. Then I did 1 1/2 until last night. Today Im having 3/4 gallon. Tomorrow it will be 1/2 gallon and Saturday I will just sip.

Then I have another issue I must deal with….elasticity of the skin…remember, I’ve had 4 children. Think of a balloon that is deflated. It never regains its original size and each time you blow up the balloon and deflate it, it gets more and more wrinkles! Well, imagine my stomach which expanded and deflated 4 times in 7 years!!!
I have to say it’s much better since I’ve been eating clean for 7 years and drink so much water but I also use Preparation H to help tighten that area and it works!! I can only imagine what it would look like if I had never changed my diet.

So today I look forward to 6 meals of tilapia and AsparaGAS (natural diuretic). No sodium. No sweeteners. And No gum. Gum chewing makes you swallow excess air and saliva which bloats the abs.
At this point in the game it’s no big deal. There’s so much primping to do I don’t even think about it. Between the waxing, tanning, manicure, pedicure, packing, getting hair done….there’s no time to think about eating cold tilapia and asparaGAS in my car as I run my errands and my kid to their activities. LOL!!!


Pre Contest Journey 3 days to go…

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I hit a wall last night. Figuratively speaking of course but to me it felt very physical.

Woke up early yesterday because the diet is messing with my sleep schedule. I felt pretty good though and got my kids ready for school and ran some errands before my 945 Turbo class. My brain felt surprisingly clear and my energy grew as I started my class. This group of ladies could light up a small city with their energy and intensity.
After class my endorphins pushed me through more errands.

Got home before the kids arrived from school and prepared dinner. Felt like I needed to lay down for just a few minutes but no time for that right now, kids had to eat and they needed help with their homework.
I was actually thankful they had an after-school activity cause it forced me to sit in my car for 30 min and decompress.
Now I rushed them home and off to my 530 Turbo class and 630 posing session with my fitness girls.
At this point I’d had about 5 meals and drank about a gallon and a half of water. Felt physically tired but not exhausted. My brain tho…was a complete fog. Couldn’t find my car keys, my phone, my music, where are my sneakers? Oh geez…just let me get through this day!!!

Started my class and thought, “ok…get through the warmup and your body will takeover. WRONG!! I couldn’t even get through my warmup! Thank goodness for my experienced front row girls who stepped it up for me and I was able to just cue the class with the occasional hip shakes and fist pumps! LOL!
Then my fitness girls arrived, ready to practice posing and a plethora of questions for the show. I looked at their very nervous and lost eyes as they looked to me for all their answers.
I remembered being that lost girl looking for guidance and reassurance. At this moment I dug deep into my heart, my soul and thought, “Ok Josette, you may be tired but these girls are tired, nervous and lost! So bite the bullet and help them!”
We had an awesome session and the realization that the show is a few short days away invigorated me.

Now I got in my truck and turned on my butt warmers since it’s still chilly here and I had a cold sweat all over me, The kind that gives you goosebumps from head to toe. When I got home and tried to unload my gym bag, contest suitcase, cooler, gallon of water…BAMM!!! I thought, “ok…I’m officially depleted.” Barely made it up the stairs.
My daughter Mackenzie looked at me and she just knew I was done. She ran upstairs, turned on the shower and put my towel on the heater.
As I stood in the shower washing my hair I didn’t even have enough strength to hold my arms up to lather it. I decided one wash and a quick rinse will do.
I climbed out of the shower and wrapped the warm towel around me….Ahhhhh…HEAVENLY!! I wanted to just lay on the bathroom floor on go to sleep.
I skipped my nightly application of preparation H to tighten the skin on my abs and arms…too much work. (yes it works to tighten skin. Believe me, I’ve had 4 children!!)
I still had one more meal but the thought of eating chicken and spinach felt like too much work, so I opted for a protein shake and 2 rice cakes with a tbsp of pb.

Now time to brush my teeth and thank God my toothbrush is electric cause there’s no way I’d get past my molars. I passed on the flossing though, there’s no way I could hold up my arms right now so figured I’ll do extra in the morning.
This is what it feels like to be officially depleted.
Woke up at 530 this morning and feel so much better but I know its important to listen to your body and proceed with caution.
A fitness competitor’s life isn’t easy, but doing it as a single mom of four who’s starting her own business is insane!!!! LOL!! I repeat to all of you this morning, DISCLAIMER! This part of the diet is not a lifestyle. This is one week before contest and under the strict supervision of my trainer and doctor.


OH NO! WHAT HAVE I DONE!!! 5 days to go….

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When I first started competing 4 years ago, I really wasnt aware of how my body reacts to certain foods. My trainer would look at me and say, “You look like you’re eating too much sodium.” Or “Looks like you hit the carbs up pretty hard over the weekend.”
My nickname soon became “SpongeBob”, for my body’s ability to retain water in a matter of hours.

Now I know my body very well and I am very aware of my issues with sodium. When I slip up and eat too much sodium, I immediately notice a bloated stomach. ugh!

I went into the weekend weighing 131lbs and REALLY lean already. I could’ve pretty much walked on stage last Friday.
Well…over the weekend I ate my fair share of egg whites and non-fat cottage cheese. Both very high in sodium! I also ate a grilled chicken salad from a local restaurant thinking it was healthy but turned out to be very high in sodium. Any other time this salad wouldn’t be an issue but 6 days pre-contest? T-R-O-U-B-L-E!! This morning I weighed 134lbs and my abs were sloppy!!
A solid reminder not to eat anything prepared by anyone else until after contest.

Thank goodness I have plenty of time to clean up this mess! Drinking distilled water to eliminate excess sodium and only having egg whites at breakfast tuesday and wednesday and that’s it! No Mas Salt after Wednesday.

We’ll see what tomorrow brings. ;)



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De que otra manera puede usted encontrar como los alimentos afectan su cuerpo, a no ser que usted lleve un record de su alimentacion? En vez de correr a la oficina de su medico cada vez para obtener una receta para una migraña, problemas con su estomago, presion arterial alta, depresion, etc., etc. Usted puede tomar control de su propia salud a traves de lo que usted come. Este record le ayudara a planificar sus comidas durante su ocupado dia. Ya sea usted una madre que cuida de su hogar y sus hijos, un ejecutivo corporativo, o un representante de venta siempre viajando, usted puede planificar su alimentacion semanal. Y solamente requiere un cambio de alimento a la semana.

Aqui les doy algunas ideas para cambiar sus habitos de alimentacion semanalmente. Recuerde, solamente cambie un alimento por semana. “Cambie la crema del café a leche al 1%; elimine el queso en su lunch; tome su desayuno durante los primeros 30 minutos despues de despertarse; beba mas agua; cambie su soda por agua; cambie el pan blanco por pan de trigo; cambie el arroz blanco por arroz Carmelita; cambie la pasta blanca por trigo; cambie la papa blanca por papa dulce; aderece sus ensaladas con aceite de oliva y balsamico; cambie la avena envasada por avena cruda; elimine sus potato chips y coma galleticas de trigo; cambie endulzadores artificiales por Truvia o Stevia; mida sus porciones; carnes/pescados a la plancha o al horno, en vez de fritos.

Nosotros sabemos que los alimentos afectan nuestro cuerpo como una droga. Diferentes tipos de alimentos realmente pueden causar diferentes tipos de efectos en nuestro cuerpo, incluyendo el cerebro. Muchos de estos cambios o “efectos como de drogas,” tienen que ver con los niveles de azucar en la sangre. Refuerce su compromiso con su buena salud y cambie su relacion con los alimentos.


Get Josette Bars

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Get Josette Bars

Use a 9 x 13” pan, sprayed with non-stick spray of your choice

In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients:
4 scoops of vanilla or chocolate JP+ Complete Protein Powder
4 cups (1 box) Nature’s Path “Organic Granola” hemp or pumpkin or other granola cereal
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1 cup dried cranberries or craisins (optional)

In a separate bowl, stir together wet ingredients:
1 cup all natural (or organic) maple syrup
12-18 oz organic natural almond butter or all-natural creamy peanut butter or almond butter

Combine wet and dry ingredients and hand mix it well to make sure all the dry is moistened.

Spray lightly a 9 x 13” pan, and press mixture into pan.
(Optional: Sprinkle with a layer of sesame seeds and press into the surface of bars)

Refrigerate for at least 1 hour bf serving. Cut into bars when mixture is solid. Keep refrigerated between servings.


Food Journaling

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Food journaling can actually change your life.
How else can you find out how food affects your body unless you journal it?
Instead of running to the Doctor every time and get a prescription for a migraine, a breakout, stomach issues, high blood pressure, depression, etc. You can actually take control of your own health through what you eat.
This journal will help you plan your meals around your crazy busy day.
Whether you’re a stay at home mom, a corporate executive or a sales rep on the go! All it takes is a little planning and requires one change a week.

Here are some ideas to change your habits on a weekly basis. Remember, just change one thing per week!
*coffee cream to 1% milk
*take cheese out of your lunch
*eat breakfast within 30 min of waking up
*drink more water
*switch soda to water
*switch white bread to whole wheat
*switch white rice to brown
*switch white pasta to wheat
*switch white potato to sweet potato
*switch dressing to balsamic & olive oil
*switch packaged oatmeal to old fashion oats
*potato chips to wheat crackers
*artificial sweeteners to Truvía or Stevia
*measure portions
*grill or bake instead of fry

We know food affects our body like a drug. Different types of food will actually cause different types of effects in our internal workings of the body including the brain. A lot of these changes or “drug like effects” have to do with blood sugar levels.
Strengthen your commitment to your health and change your relationship with food.