Well, another month has gone by, and the women are showing awesome results. So far, they have lost a combined 97.5 pounds, with participant Deborah Perrodin losing 25 pounds!
“Biggest loser” Perrodin is my inspirational story this month. Last year, her seemingly healthy-as-a-horse father underwent double-bypass and valve replacement surgery. That was a wake-up call for Deborah. “It took us all by surprise,” she says. “It scared us.” In 2007, she put on the pounds following her own surgery. The oldest of five girls, she felt a responsibility to set an example. So, she signed up for the challenge, both to be a role model for her siblings and, most important, to be there in the long haul for her 16-year-old son, Angelo Landry, her “pride and joy.”
Last year, the American Heart Association and Personally Fit for Women launched The Go Red for Women Personally Fit Challenge, a 12-week lifestyle management program combining weight loss, exercise and spirituality. At the beginning of the program, the participants had to forego bread, rice, cereal, pasta and potatoes. After two weeks, we were allowed to gradually add in one of those coveted carbs, substituted with a healthier version.
This month, our leader, Personally Fit owner and nutrition expert Dawn Foreman, asked everyone to bring a dish made with a whole grain to the weekly group nutrition session. With these creative cooks from south Louisiana, the usual bland-tasting whole wheat, barley, bulgur, quinoa, brown rice and wild rice were transformed into tasty dishes, like shrimp with wild rice and crawfish and brown rice casserole. My favorite was the beef pot roast with barley, crafted by Go Red challenger Carmon Simon. It was so delicious that I just had to share the recipe with you.
During the last two weeks of the challenge, Dawn took us grocery shopping to find the most nutrition-packed foods. We spent the most time in the produce section, where we learned that colorful veggies and fruits generally provide the most bang for your buck. So, dis the pale stuff and stock up on those papayas, sweet potatoes and red peppers.
As for me, I finally dragged myself to a small group exercise class — and I’m glad I did. Personal trainer Jill Woolfolk coached us through a 30-minute interval training session that was as tough as any hour-long workout I’ve ever tackled. After huffing and puffing through the class, I left red-faced and exhausted. But I definitely felt the “burn” two days later.
So far, this program is really working for me — and I’m not even an official participant. I’ve been following the group since Day 1 to report on its progress. My pants’ waistlines are no longer leaving squiggly lines on my middle. I’m not expecting to have the Bertinelli-bikini bod, but I would like to be able to walk the beach without too much jiggle.
And, try Carmon Simon’s dish below — it’s really terrific.
Pot Roast, Gravy and Barley
1. Thaw 3-pound beef bottom round roast overnight in refrigerator.
2. Place roast with 4 cups of low sodium beef broth into slow cooker for 7 hours on high. After 6 hours, add onions, carrots, etc., if desired.
3. Steam 1 cup dry barley in rice cooker or steamer with 2 cups water. Fluff barley when finished.
4. Serve 1/2 cup of barley cooked with 2 oz. of beef topped with 2 spoons of gravy.
To thicken gravy, add a little teff flour.
The Go Red for Women Personally Fit Challenge participants learn the ins and outs of healthy eating via a tour of Albertsons. Pictured from left are Dawn Foreman of Personally Fit, Kellee Charles, Raquel Zenon, Deborah Perrodin, Donna Baudoin, Amy Bolgiano and AHA’s Laura Broussard.
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, March 07, 2014:
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
Prepare yourselves for sun
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Conservatives have been losing their minds over this satirical bit on the Colbert Report.
Due to the chaos of Mardi Gras and the weather, the entry deadline for this year's INDesign Awards has been extended by one week.
The Lafayette Parish School Board leaves a lot to be desired, but is scrapping the election process in favor of an appointed board the answer?
Queen Evangline and King Gabriel ruled Tuesday night
The House approved legislation Tuesday night to roll back a recently enacted overhaul of the federal flood insurance program, after homeowners in flood-prone areas complained about sharp premium increases.
IND Style does Gabriel
Newsy bits for the fam
The NFL has formally designated New Orleans' Jimmy Graham as a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag value, which is now set at $7.05 million next season unless Graham and the Saints subsequently agree on a long-term deal.