Mary’s Promise – Live Well Tucson

MarysPromise‘Make a promise to me. Put yourself first for once…Lose the weight.’

After ten years of looking after her ailing mom, Mary Kmak’s own health had slid. Pre-diabetes, high blood pressure, spinal issues, and significant weight gain as a result of extended steroid treatments, Mary, a devout catholic, was unable even to help at mass anymore.

“I took care of my dying Mom, and those last years were devastating watching her suffer…I put her before my health, which I would still do over and over again if I could. It was my honor and pleasure, but in her final days she asked if I would promise her one thing, to lose the weight. Of course, I said yes. ”

After her mom passed away, Mary knew she needed support to keep her promise and so she reached out. A chance viewing of Rachel Tineo’s story on television inspired Mary to ask her physician whether the program Rachel had participated in was available to the public. Her physician put her in contact with a TMC Dietitian.

“I talked to one of the TMC Dietitians. At the time the program wasn’t available to the community, it was only available to TMC employees.” But within weeks of asking, Mary received a phone call from Laurie Ledford RD (aka the Nutritionista) inviting her to take part in a new program called Live Well Tucson for the community.

What is Live Well Tucson?

Live Well is a 10-week program that meets once a week for 2 hours.  During the 2-hour sessions participants hear from an expert the topic of the week (exercise physiologist, dietitian, physician, etc).  The topics covered are preventative care, nutrition, exercise, stress management, happiness, social networks, and sleep.  Participants work with experts to set goals, and how to maintain change.  In addition to the lectures, participants also have the opportunity to participate in a weekly exercise class.

The Lessons Mary took from Live Well Tucson

1. It’s not enough to hear the advice you have to take the advice

Mary took the lectures to heart, “I followed every single tip that Laurie gave, every single tip that Mary gave and every single tip Maria Luisa gave. For example, Mary Atkinson said ‘Get out and take a walk every day. 5 minutes is a great start.’ I started walk the parking lot. It started as just 5 minutes. Today, I walk 45 minutes every day. “

2. Make realistic, achievable goals

Live Well Tucson Intern Maria Luisa suggested making a smart goal. Mary’s response “I have an Exercycle. My smart goal started out as biking 12 minutes 4 times a week on my Exercycle. Now it’s 45 minutes six times a week along with the walking.”

3. Remind yourself daily what your motivation is.

Write what your motivation is on a 3 by 5 card and posting it somewhere you will see every day. Initially, Mary thought, ‘That’s not going to make a difference’ but she did it anyway. Her motivation? A single word – Promise.

“I’ve had set backs. I feel better when I exercise. I push myself. I see my promise card everyday and that pushes me.

4. Be conscious in what you eat, plan & track

“I track what I eat, I itemize my carbs, my calories, my fats. I used to eat out every day. I might get something thinking it was healthy, not counting the carbs or calories. Now, I make everything a head of time. I do all my shopping on the weekend and get everything prepared. I take breakfast and lunch to work. … It’s a big lifestyle change.”

5. Slow and Steady wins the Race

It took time to put it on, it’ll take time to take it off.

Mary’s Results:

Since January Mary has lost 44 lbs, but the success isn’t just measured by weight loss as Mary explains, “My blood pressure has dropped and I’ve been able to cut my blood pressure medication. Within 3 months my sugar level dropped…I appreciate food more. Instead of grabbing a candy bar I get a piece of fruit. I love frozen fruit.”

Mary’s enthusiasm for the program and life is infectious. Her friends and family have noticed an attitude change and greater energy. “She’s more bubbly. She’s coming out of her cocoon.” friend Mary L. shares.

Mary’s sister, Imelda says that Mary is much happier, that the pain Mary was in led her to be cranky on occasion.  Imelda has also been in the program and has lost 12 pounds, reduced her blood pressure, and her blood sugar has declined enough that she no longer needs insulin.

The next phase of the program starts August 22nd and Mary is raring to go, “The continued support from TMC has been helpful. I want to lose another 20 pounds before Phase 2 starts.”

Mary’s advice to other women:

“Put yourself first for one time and don’t quit. I had every reason to quit. I had no coordination, no strength, no endurance. Now, I walk that straight line. As a devout catholic, I attend mass. For years I couldn’t help, I was afraid I would drop the wafer and wine during communion. The church aisle is now my red carpet. I have the energy of a 34 year old. “

Update – May 5th, 2015

Mary has now lost a grand total of seventy pounds and it is not only reflected in the clothes she wears and her energy level, but also at the doctors office. She’ll be sharing her journey and experience on the Live Well program June 2nd at The Core at La Encantada.


  1. That is my God Mother! Very inspirational story! 🙂

  2. This is such an amazing story! I was so inspiring and motivating for me! It was also so awesome to read that you are also inspiring other in your family and circle of friends, how great is that! Keep up the great work and always remember your goals and why you started to begin with, so you never go back to that mindset.
    With Much Regards,

    • Rachel, Your story has helped me and I got inspiration from YOU! I NOW will be starting the exercises in the TMC GYM on Friday with the enhancement program and looking forward to fulfilling my PROMISE! Maybe one day I’ll run into you at the gym!
      Thank YOU!!! Mary

      • How’s it going Mary? You’ve totally inspired me to get moving everyday even if it’s just a little bit and move a little more. This morning I jog/walked a mile in 13minutes and 18 seconds. That was unthinkable a few months ago. My goal is to get to 12 minutes by the end of this month.

  3. Mary Laughlin says:

    Mary’s story is such an amazing story. I am so thankful to have meet and have her as my friend. She is someone I look up to and
    am very proud of.

    • Ohhh my friend Maria Luisa so good to hear from you! Thank you for your kind words and yes my sister Imelda and I remember you. Your enthusiasm was contagiousl and your topic of “SMART GOALS” stuck with me and will continue to until I reach goal weight. I want to thank you too Maria Luisa and glad you’re continuing with health teaching classes. NEVER KNOW I may come to one of them someday BUT I am alot thinner than the last time you saw me! 🙂 Continued success!

  4. It’s going GREAT Rachel. I’m GLAD you are doing GOOD! Since Jan I lost 50#s and want to lose 20 more at the end of the Enhancement 12 wk program. I did get bronchitis over the summer and was set back 4 weeks BUT DOING GREAT NOW and moving forward! I have NO doubt I will achieve my goal and fulfill my PROMISE! Each morning I feel my Moms arms around me ALL the way from heaven whispering KEEP GOING! So from ME to you Rachel KEEP GOING! Your HEART is strong & your will stronger!!!

    • Fabulous! Well done. Glad to hear you got back on the exercise after bronchitis, that can be so hard. Thanks so much for the encouragement and the bit about your mom’s arms gave me chills. I’m participating in the Miracle Marathon which is a mile a day for 27 days and that’s really helping me keep on track this month.

      • What you went thru Rachel a mile a day is NOTHING! YOU have your card to look at every day and you WILL stay strong & healthy for your daughter! I will keep you posted every second Friday of my weight loss. I weigh Fridays in the gym!

  5. Fabulous. I shared on TMC for Women Facebook your latest update!

  6. These are great motivation for everyone who wanted to live healthy. Nice to hear that you are doing better. Hope things are getting well for you.

    • Thank you Howie. I hope my determination can help others achieve their goals! I’m going ALL the WAY! I will fulfill my PROMISE!!!

  7. HAPPY HALLOWEEN RACHEL, I hope you are staying healthy and sticking with your PROMISE! I have hit my 60#s loss since Jan and feeling GREAT! 3 wks LEFT for The TMC enhancement program and I’m looking for another 10#s! NO CANDY FOR ME TONIGHT!!! I have a GREAT variety of Fresh and Frozen fruit!

  8. Hi Rachel I hope you had a wonderful Halloween with your son! It definitely is a children’s holiday. Well honestly for some adults like me too! 🙂 I wanted to tell you that this is the FIRST HALLOWEEN that I didn’t have any candy or sugars! At the end of the evening I realized that??? I had no appetite or desire to eat! I’m looking forward to my results next Friday when Laurie will weigh & measure me and I will let you KNOW. After Halloween I KNOW this holiday season WON’T be as difficult as I expected with ALL the goodies I’ll come across with famil & friends, work gatherings & dinners & parties because with my food lifestyle change I truly prefer living well & feeling GREAT OVER any sugar which always made me feel tired! Will be getting the TMC gym ALL wkend & next wk & would love to run into YOU! I will send you a pic & updates next Friday! Have a wonderful week & keep riding your bike!

    • Great to hear from you Mary! I’m going to quote this on our Facebook page and on Twitter a little later on. I am a bike riding queen! The other day I rode my son to school, then home, then to a doctor’s appointment and then to pick him up again. It was about 10miles in all. The weight might not be dropping off, but I’m feeling better and it’s getting easier. Can’t wait to get your update!

      • GOOD for you Rachel! That’s the BEST cardio for your heart! Keep it up! Ohhh I forgot to mention when I moved I had everything packed up including New clothes that I got for gifts that NEVER fit and I stumbled on a box full & they all fit NOW with the exception of 2 pairs of pants. These 2 pairs are sooo special & when I saw them I had a heavy heart because my Mom gave them to me for Christmas presents and they wouldn’t EVEN go over past my hips! I completely forgot about them. I am proud to say I need approx another 10# loss for them to fit! So with tears in my eyes I WILL fit into these by Christmas & give this honor & tribute to my beloved Mom! This Rachel is my NEXT smart goal! I will keep you updated during the holidays! 🙂

      • HI Rachel, I want to wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving! I DIDN’T get my updates YET cuz we ran out of time last week; however, I will on Monday Dec 1st & I get those to you! I’m planning a Healthy Thanksgiving dinner & looking forward to ALL the new changes in food choices! I feel GREAT & hope you do too! Continue to take GOOD care of yourself!

      • Merry Christmas Rachel! I want to wish you & yours a Happy Healthy Holiday! I told you I would give you an update and as of today I have lost 62#s since Jan! I also lost 2 inches in the hips & waist during the Life Enhancement Program! The Live Well class was an excellent start to begin my New Year and The LEP was more involved & helped me continue to lose & learn. I look forward to next year and use the information the Fabulous TMC Dieticians Mary Atkinson & Laurie Ledford have taught me! IF ANYONE out there have read my story & want to live a healthy lifestyle consider starting YOUR New Year out RIGHT & Join the Live Well Class this Feb 2015. You are taught soo much & are given EXCELLENT ideas & suggestions that work! I tried them, I learned & I’m feeling healthier! Take care Rachel & I’ll keep sending updates as I continue learning thru 2015 with TMC, Mary & Laurie!

  9. You, dear Mary, are an inspiration! I can’t wait to see the heights you’ll reach in 2015. Happy New Year.

    • Happy Healthy New Year Rachel!!!
      I HOPE you’re staying healthy & 2015 will be a GREAT one for you, yours & ME! I NOT ONLY maintained my 62#s loss BUT lost an additional 3#s this MONTH! 🙂 SO 65#s one year ago ALL from the Fabulous learning from the TMC programs! I’m looking forward to the New Year & more weight OFF & I’m READY to go full force with the ONLY way I was taught the HEALTHY WAY! Other than
      some aches & pains from the weather I FEEL GREAT! I DID fit into those jeans my beloved
      Mom bought me years AGO when at that time wouldn’t even go above my hips! I have a picture for YOU BUT my email has been down BUT will get it to you shortly. I am getting closer to MY PROMISE & feel NEXT year at this time I will fulfill it! Each morning I wake up & KNOW my Mom is smiling when she sees my results & continuous motivation to get to my goal! Thank you Mary & Laurie for your HELP. YOU 2 are the BEST nutritionists in the world!!! OK Rachel I will keep you posted & Happy Superbowl weekend!

      • Happy St Patrick’s Day Rachel!
        I hope you are staying healthy! Just a quick update. Feb was a busy month & I hit a plateau BUT I’m OK with that cuz we learned how to deal with that! March is GOOD so far & I lost an additional 2#s & looking forward to upcoming results! 🙂 I feel so positive & proud of what I learned from the TMC classes & MY results that I even put my story on my Facebook! I hope others who are serious ABOUT learning good health & changing their eating habits with a lifestyle change will join the NEXT class coming up I April & start their way towards living well & getting healthy. It’s such a GREAT program & I want everyone to have the same success that I’m experiencing! PERFECT Blood pressure, NO high cholesterol, more energy & STILL no date on Spinal Fusion surgery since I’m still NOT showing any signs & showing more endurance. IF & WHEN I NEED it I will bounce back QUICK & be much better shape! ALSO, which is sooo important to me is I’m getting closer to MY PROMISE to my beloved Mom! I KNOW she is proud & smiling from Heaven! So if anyone wants to START learning & living well sign up ASAP cuz TMCs NEXT class looks like in April! I will continue my updates Rachel & ck out my Facebook!!! STAY & HEALTHY & strong!!! 🙂

  10. Rachel, as promised another update! I hit my 70# loss & moving forward. Feeling GREAT moved to a new place & ready to go full force! Dr apts continue to go well, BP GREAT & endurance BETTER & BETTER! I will be talking June 2nd at the Wellness class with my journey thus far! Hope to see you there! Mary

  11. Mary , keep up the great work. Looking forward to your June update. You are truly amazing . Keep it up.

  12. Mary you are doing such a great job. I have joined the TMC live well program. You have inspired me to get healthy and lose weight.. Keep up the great work work.

    • Thank you Mary Laughlin! You are in GOOD hands with Mary and Laurie! YOU TOO will feel better, healthier & START living well!!! BEST of luck & MOST important stick with it! Keep me posted on your results TOO! 🙂

  13. mary laughlin says:

    Hi Mary just wanted to let you know that I lost 2 pounds. Thank you so much for getting me to join the TMC Living Well program . I have learned so much. and looking forward to the next stage. Laurie and Mary are really great Thanks again.

  14. mary laughlin says:

    Hi Mary, just wanted you to know that I lost 2 pounds. Thank you so much for getting me to join the TMC Living Well program. I have learned so much., and am looking forward to the next stage. Laurie and Mary are really great. I will keep you posted on my progress. This week two pounds maybe 2 more next week. , Thanks again

    • GREAT work Mary Laughlin!!! I KNOW Mary and Laurie are the BEST help we can get! YES the next class will even be better! 🙂 The Wellness programs teach us how to Take “Baby steps” & how to handle our every day issues like stress, hitting plateau’s, etc & what to do & try to handle our life situations. This is realistic life and NO fad quick loss weight where You get educated on nutrition and a healthy lifestyle change. I have learned so much including patience. I’m glad to hear you like BUT most importantly getting results! Please give me your updates too! Keep up the GOOD work!
      Mary Kmak

  15. Amazing work thus far! You have come a very long way and serve as an inspiration to many others! Keep up the great work and determination, and your goals WILL be achievable!

    • Thank you Godson Max! YES on a cold Wed night in late Jan 2014 was the beginning of a lifestyle change for me. The 70#s I lost so far is GREAT BUT my A1C is no longer in the pre diabetic range, my blood pressure is controlled with HALF of a pill rather than 1-1/2 pills, my endurance and strength is stronger with NO surgery date & I remain stable. ALSO Grandma is smiling and saying to Papa she’s keeping her promise to ME! This warms my heart and I haven’t felt this good and positive in years. I will reach my goals and thank you for being by and on my side during this journey!
      Aunt Mary

  16. mary laughlin says:

    Mary just wanted to say Thank You for encouraging me join the TMC Living Well Program.. Our last class is next week and I am sad to see it end. It has helped me so much I look forward to the next session . This past tuesday night was great , I had a terrible day and when I got to class it was on laughter, The doctor was a great speaker , I have never laughed so hard. I felt 100% better , when I left. Mary and Laurie put on a great program

    • GREAT! YES Dr Sethi’s class is FUN! The 2nd Wellness Program Enhancement is sooo GOOD & involves more one on one + you’re introduced to more exercises, speakers & our 2 favorite nutritionists give more information to giving a healthy lifestyle! This is a continuous program full of GREAT topics! Keep it up Mary Laughlin and watch for my monthly updates! I look forward to a GREAT summer taking off more weight and closer to my goals + living healthy & well! 🙂

  17. mary laughlin says:

    Mary I just wanted to let you know that your speech on Tuesday night at the living well class was great. Your story was very touching. You are really looking great. you have lost so much weight. Keep up the great work.

    • Thank you Mary Laughlin! I ONLY wished more people were there to see that by taking the Wellness programs they too can have health success! Whether you need to lose weight, lower your A1C or if you have high blood pressure & need to lower that or need your high cholesterol lowered these are the programs for you! By me losing weight I lowered all of these by learning the proper way to eat and exercise! All of my Drs are happy with my results and excited for me to reach my goals! I was happy to hear you lost 4#s & remember “Baby steps” are the ONLY way to go! By starting out easy your body adjusts & the slow weight loss will stay off. These programs teach you how to live a healthy well balanced life. Mine was a lifestyle change & I haven’t felt this GREAT in years! Look for my monthly update soon & watch me FLY this summer! 🙂
      Mary Kmak

      • May update I have is little weight loss & hit plateau BUT blood work done and ALL my totals are better. Lost more inches this month as well! June is starting to be a GOOD month so far weight wise and turned my plateau around and look for a big loss that I’ll be posting 1st week in July! Hoping the summer will bring me NO plateau’s and continue to move forward towards my goal weight! 🙂

  18. mary laughlin says:

    Hi Mary,
    I too hit a plateau. I have not lost any more weight just the 6 pounds, but have lost inches. What do I do now that I have hit a plateau??/ Thanks

    • I hit many and still will Mary BUT I NEVER give up that’s life and how your body is reacting to adjustments. What I did was reviewed what I did during that period of the plateau wuth food & exercise and change things around a little. I would add some extra exercise for the week and see if that helped. If not I would make changes food wise like add extra veggies & less protein or cut a few extra calories each day and go from there. Try these 2 adjustments for the next 2 weeks 1 wk food & 1 wk exercise & let me know next month how much you lost I’m certain you will! AND losing inches isn’t bad either during these times! 🙂 GOOD LUCK Mary Laughlin!

  19. mary laughlin says:

    Thank you , I will try this and keep you posted. You keep up the great work

    • Happy July 1st Mary, Rachel & Max! I’m
      Sooo excited about mx e results that I couldn’t wait to give my updates! The weight loss was good and I believe I’m over my plateau’s for NOW. I lost 8#s & looking for 10 #s as my smart goal for July.I changed things around with extra exercise one week & different food changes another and was able to lose 2#s weekly. This included going to Laughlin & Las Vegas for 4 days! See YOU can still lose while on vacation! Just kept with my food planning & walked instead of driving back and forth! I Also used the Casino swimming pools for laps daily! I will post a current picture later next MONTH BUT look for my updates on the 1st monthly going forward! I hope you ALL had a GREAT June as well! 🙂 Ohh yeah my A1C came down last week which continues to make my Drs & me Happy. Enjoy July and I look forward to hearing from you! 🙂

      • mary laughlin says:

        WOW that’s Great Mary!!! It sounds like you did break your plateau’s in June. I tried what you suggested and it helped. So far have lost 9#’s I want to lose 25#’s more and will have my own smart goals of #8 in July. I am starting Mary’s and Laurie’s 2nd. Wellness Class in a few weeks and I’m so excited!! You have done great with them and I’m looking forward to the same success. I will let you know . Any suggestions for July??? Have a great July!!!

      • Max Kmak says:

        You are doing great! You are sticking strong to your promise, which is all that anyone could possibly ask for. Some days are harder than others, and sometimes its easy to get discouraged if you don’t see exactly the loss you are looking for. Keep up the GREAT work! We have all made lifestyle choices in the last couple of years, mine with the Type 1 Diabetes, you with your promise to Grandma! Always remember, she is watching over you and is smiling more and more the farther you come along. You have proven that it is possible with a little hard work, determination, and the occasional treat to yourself is not the end of the world! Feel the warmth of your guardian angels looking over you, and keep walking that walk! Most inspirational Godmother in the world! 🙂

      • Thank you Max. I feel so much better and will continue working towards getting healthier. I know Grandma is watching over me I feel her strength every day especially on the hard ones. Whenever I’m tired and DON’T want to exercise I push myself and then feel much better and glad I did. Getting over my plateau’s for now are keeping me encouraged and seeing and feeling the weight loss is such a GREAT feeling! I am proud of you with the handling of your diagnosis with diabetes. You too have Grandma’s strength and GREAT attitude with acceptance and determination to move forward and live a GREAT life! You are my inspiration!!! Thank you for all of your support as you watch and see your Godmother continue to get healthy & fulfill a Promise to someone extremely important!!! 🙂 I love you Max!
        Aunt Mary

  20. Congrats Mary Laughlin! You made a GREAT choice to continue the Wellness classes. This one is
    More one on one help with personal ideas for your lifestyle changes very good speakers! You’ll be introduced to exercise idea’s with educated physical therapists which is Awesome! You will enjoy and I will see you at some of the classes I missed! Its important to have realistic goals and weekly & monthly SMART GOALS are the way to go! I’m sure you’ll achieve your goals cuz it sounds like you’re listening as well. Good luck and I’ll look forward to hearing your results! 🙂 Have a GREAT July! 🙂
    Mary Kmak

  21. Mary Laughlin and Rachel Miller good luck tomorrow with your Wellness Canyon Ranch class! I loved them and will see you at the ones I had to miss! You will learn MORE new healthy things and get to exercise and get excellent tips from the physical therapists! Enjoy and look for my JULY update soon which is better than my June success! :-).Thank you Wellness programs! These are the BEST and healthy ways to learn how to lose weight, lower your A1C counts, blood pressure, cholesterol and JUST living WELL! 🙂 I hear there are some seats LEFT! Move for more people who want to learn the RIGHT healthy ways!!! ALSO the Wellness evening classes start in January! What a GREAT time to get in those classes to start the New Years RIGHT! I’ll be posting current pictures shortly, look for end of August or beginning of September!
    Mary H Kmak

  22. mary laughlin says:

    Mary Just wanted to let you know that classes started today. I felt so great when class was done. I feel like I have all of TMC staff behind me. Mary A went over all the things we would be learning and doing. I feel like with TMC staff and you I can do anything.. Thank you for all your help and looking forward to working with you more . I am sure I will reach my goals. Good Luck on your goals. Sounds like you are doing a great job. Keep it up.

    • THAT’S GREAT Mary Laughlin! I’m glad to hear this and you are correct. Mary and Laurie are EXCELLENT and will really help you reach your goals. They give you all the tools to succeed and really want you to. I still send emails to both with questions and get the best answers and suggestions. BOTH will get healthy!!! 🙂 YES please send me your updates as well. Best of luck.

  23. I am employed at the same company as Mary for one year now and the transformation I have witnessed is nothing short of AMAZING! I love seeing how happy Mary is with her results and that she is in this for the long haul, in other words, she took the baby steps she was taught, knowing that this is a transformation she will enjoy long term. I have been so amazed that I asked Mary how she is doing it, because I have tried and failed to get a hold of my weight gain, her enthusiasm is motivating. So now, I too will soon be another success story! After hearing and seeing her results I have absolute faith that this is a very realist program to a healthy way of living. I am excited for not just Mary but for myself as well! Thanks Mary for leading by example!

  24. Not sure if my original comment got posted?

    I work at Mary’s place of employment for one year now and I have SEEN the results. So much so that I asked Mary how she is doing it as I too struggle with weight and making unhealthy choices, plus I have a sitting job. It is so awesome to see Mary’s enthusiasm and passion for her life and the program giving her life back! She has given me hope that I too will be a success story! Mary has applied the program and has seen the results. What’s even better is she is in this for the long haul, knowing that she has not only shed the pounds, but will keep them off! Mary is truly and inspiration. Thank you Mary for leading by example!!

    • Thank you Andrea! You made a GREAT choice by signing up for the next class. You will NOT be disappointed! YES you are correct I am VERY excited to reach my weight loss goals as well as my Drs. They are extremely happy with my results. The TMC Wellness & Life Enhancement classes helped me and educated me with the proper eating habits by professional nutritionists that coourage and support you with the tools to succeed. They have professional speakers & everyday topics that you experience and you look forward to
      each weekly class. This is NOT a diet but a lifestyle change where you learn to live healthy by taking realistic Baby steps to achieve your goals. Look.for my July results next week with current pictures following
      shortly and I’ll definitely continue until I reach
      my goals next year. I welcome you to my daily parking lot walks which will be a
      GREAT start for you! You will continue to see the pounds drop and ask me any questions I will be happy to help. What I don’t know I’ll ask the wonderful TMC nutritionists Mary Atkinson & Laurie Ledford who will ALWAYS help you out! 🙂

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        I’m proud to say August 1st I lost 83#s since I joined TMCs Wellness & Life Enhancement classes in late Jan 2014. I knew I wanted/needed a healthy alternative to all the diets I failed to achieve a healthy realistic weight loss and found EXACTLY what I had hoped for + much more. The weight loss is GREAT BUT my health results are much
        more appreciated. Just the simple walk on vacation without getting out of breath or having to sit down while others wait for you is a priceless feeling. I now out walk everyone & asked to slow down. I look to hit my 100# loss by end of Sept. If anyone of the thousands if viewers are considering these classes trust me you WON’T be disappointed so sign up! If not you will continue to see results & maybe then you will. I started with a PROMISE to my beloved Mother and will finish in the end for me!!! Watch for my pics shortly & A1C, BP, cholesterol & monthly weight loss totals until I reach goal weight.

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Mary you are doing a great job with your weight loss . My mom who is 95 , says you are doing so good on losing your weight. She loves to see you dance around and make her laugh . You have so much energy now. Keep up the great work

      • Those walks sound like a great idea! Lets do that. 🙂

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Thank you Mary Laughlin I love your Mom she’s 95 going on 45! I do have lots of energy now and love dancing in the streets! 🙂 My weight loss has made me feel GREAT and younger and makes me extremely happy! I KNOW you will do VERY well on the Wellness & Enchancement programs & you TOO will be doing the 2 step as well. Andrea come early and join me in my morning walks you are welcomed!
      Mary H Kmak

  25. I work with Mary and she is a great inspiration of what you can accomplish when you really set your mind to do it, She kept her promise to her mother to loose weight. She has really worked hard in accomplishing her goal and I am very proud of her.

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Thank you Jennie! I’m NOT done yet! I am keeping my PROMISE and KNOW my Mom is smiling from Heaven because I seen a rainbow this morning in the sky and feel her arms around my shoulder as I keep going forward. She has given me the BEST gift ever by making me give her this PROMISE. The TMC WELLNESS programs have helped me succeed in my health results. Thank you Laurie Ledford and Mary Atkinson for working hard and giving us the BEST help and knowledge thru your Wellness program!

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Mary thank you for coming to the living well class yesterday. You are doing a great job with the weight loss . You are looking great and you have so much energy . Keep up the great work. Keep us posted when you reach THE PROMISE total. Proud of you and yes your mom is watching and smiling

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Thank you Mary Laughlin! YES I missed yesterday’s wonderful topic on vitamins last year & glad I was able to make it. Thru my journey to Wellness I learned & lived thru everything that was discussed in the classes. The one topic of MANY that helped me was learning to work thru plateaus! I have so far this summer & I’m excited to post my August results. I have taken current pictures & will let Rachel review what she wants to post shortly. I will not reach my PROMISE until next year BUT this was the ONLY way I would/could of achieved it by taking the Baby steps that Laurie & Mary taught us. We CAN’T lose it in a hurry BUT ONLY the healthy way that they stress!!! Getting my Drs involved is GREAT and they agree with my decisions and happy with my process. I haven’t felt this good in years! I will continue putting my results monthly and current pictures & recommend anyone who wants a healthy lifestyle change to sign up next year for these EXCELLENT classes! Follow me to your road of good health!!! Mary L you’re looking good too. Continue with your lifestyle change & I KNOW you’ll be feeling BETTER as well! 🙂

  26. MARY H KMAK says:

    August went well and my weight loss continues with 6#s totalling 88#s! The summer was good to me and I was consistent with losing #s & inches & achieved results without plateaus. I added more exercises and look forward to the Fall & winter months with more additional weight loss & inches with increased exercises and food changes with the seasons. The clothes are getting bigger, the ones I received as gifts that NEVER fit now do and my health continues to improves greatly. Next month I’ll post my New A1C count with additional results. Looking forward to sharing pictures & hitting my 100# loss shortly. I plan to change some food choices now that summer is over with the Fall/Winter selections of fruits & veggies.
    I’m excited with my achievements so far and getting closer and closer to my goals & fulfilling my
    PROMISE! Wishing ALL who continue to follow me the BEST of health and happiness and let’s all look forward to a healthier New Year that’s just around the corner!!! 🙂 I hope I’m encouraging some of you and would love to hear from you!
    Mary H Kmak

    • My amazing Godmother! I am so proud of your accomplishments and taking control of YOUR life and YOUR health. It is OK to be selfish every once in awhile, especially when in a world that revolves around negativity! People everywhere will try to bring you down, but you have not let them, you push through and strive. Naturally, at times, it is OK to feel discouraged when it doesn’t seem to be happening quick enough, but patience is a virtue and comes with great practice and determination!

      You are determined to keep it going, you are determined to keep your PROMISE! And that is noble and I have high respect for you. I know I share a lot of my knowledge with you, but I also learn a lot from you, as well! Keep it pushing, your 100# LANDMARK is right around the corner! You will be hitting that sooner than you expect 🙂

      Much Love and Support,
      Your Godson, Max.

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Thank you Max. I keep positive and feel GREAT. You have ALWAYS been my #1 supporter and with you on my side I can accomplish everything! The Baby steps have been the most successful in my journey. When you think ohhh I have OVER 100#s to lose your 1st thought is I can NEVER do this? Then IF I can I want it off in a hurry like 5 months!!! YES I too was questionable until I FINALLY figured it OUT! It was NOT a diet BUT lifestyle change with proper nutrition and exercise to achieve good health. I will NOT go back to any of the bad habits AGAIN! I love the way I feel and look and knowing my health has improved is the BEST feeling in the world! I NOW enjoy living well and my goals are reachable & I will achieve and continue the Baby steps to my road of success! 🙂 I love you Max and thank you for all of your knowledge, wisdom & support. I’m proud to be your Godmother!
        Love, Aunt Mary

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Mary kmak you are doing such a great job . You work out at the gym and eat the right foods . You are losing the weight. You are keeping your promise to your mom and going above means beyond . You are looking great and have all kinds of energy. Thank you for helping me. I hit another plateau , and you helped me through it. Thank you thank you . You keep up the great work and please keeps us posted on your great success .

    • Yes, you are very encouraging. Even though I see you 5 days a week your weight loss is visible! Thanks for sharing and inspiring!!!

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        I feel honored to encourage & inspire you Andrea and others. I KNOW you signed up for the TMC WELLNESS CLASS in January and you too will do GREAT with your journey. BEST time of year is in Jan to start Lifestyle changes & NY resolutions. I’m excited continue towards my weight goals & getting GREAT health reports & fulfilling my PROMISE which began it ALL! Happy Fall/Winter everyone and YES YOU CAN watch what you eat this time of year! NEXT month my tips & suggestions! 🙂

  27. One of the best stories ever ! Even better when you get to see this wonderful person making this Awesome changes for good in front of your eyes , I am very proud of this lady she’s my Aunt and it’s amazing how far along she’s got in the past years , and I’m very happy and proud of her life changes and her amazing out comes ! You go girl , we all love you and will support you through your journey & don’t forget Mamma it’s extremely proud of you !

  28. Migdalia Day says:

    I know her and she is doing so great , she has lost so much weight. Every single time I see her she is looking gorgeous . Keep up with your story I know your mom it’s very proud of you as we are.:)

  29. Imelda Garcia says:

    My Baby sister you look so nice losing weight and Drs reports good. I am proud of you and you are feeling better and getting healthier. Keep going.

  30. MARY H KMAK says:

    Thank you Mary Laughlin I have had my share of plateau’s & understand how you feel when you work so hard BUT hang in there. As I said the Summer was GREAT for me & I stuck it out and overcame any plateau’s during this time. My body went thru changes with food & exercises so I kept going and NEVER gave up and here I am 88#s thinner and health reports GOOD just continue your determination and it will come/show. BEST of luck and I’m rooting for you! YES I will.keep posting my results which I’m looking forward to and excited about. I hope I can encourage some who need it! 🙂

  31. MARY H KMAK says:

    Thank you my sister Imelda & favorite Niece Karla! I am blest to have family like you on my team! Part of my success is the encouragement you give me and it’s appreciated! I had forgotten how GOOD it feels getting healthy AGAIN! What a wonderful feeling and I can hardly wait until I reach my goals including My PROMISE! I’ll say a million times OVER AGAIN the BEST gift Mama gave me was to make her this PROMISE knowing it will be the BEST thing I can do for myself! Wait til you see next month’s updates cuz September is starting OUT GREAT!!!
    Tia Maria! & Hermana Maria! 🙂

  32. MARY H KMAK says:

    Thanks Migdalia! It’s nice when people ask how I’m doing it and I’m proud to say the ONLY way by making a lifestyle change. At FIRST the most difficult part was breaking old bad habits BUT in 4-5 weeks I was on schedule & today it’s JUST natural! By learning to make the right choices is why I’m succeeding I feel GREAT! !

  33. Mary continues to work very hard in keeping her promise to her mother to lose weight for she has lost more weight. She is a great inspiration of what you can accomplish in life once you set your goals and stick to it. Very proud of you Mary!!!

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Thank you Jennie I feel humbled. I am keeping my PROMISE and feeling GREAT in the process! I took the approach of Baby steps and NEVER would have believed this was the BEST way to go until I seen the results. This ALL started with a 5 minute walk. At NO time did I giveu up and will continue to move forward and achieve my goals! I fought thru some plateau’s and excited witj September results so far. Even when I vacation I hit the gym! My body is used to the gym exercises. And I’m happy to do it. Shortly I will hit my 100# loss then continue for the balancet! Take care and thanks for your support!

  34. Mary laughlin says:

    Mary Kmak what are you going to treat yourself to when you lose 100#’s?

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Mary Laughlin “MY TREAT” is:
      1) Going to the Drs EXCITED to get weighed & NOT feeling embarrassed when I step on the scale. Getting GREAT results from Drs report’s with blood work regarding my A1C, cholesterol, blood pressure pills getting cut back on. Endurance getting better and stronger.
      2) Taking a vacation and NOT getting tired from walking and having to stop to catch my breath while others wait for me. Doing everything I want on vacation and NOT feeling restricted that I can’t.
      3) Fitting into clothes with the seasons and NOT having to wear the same limited clothing in my OLD sizes. Having more of a selection.
      Looking and wearing 6-8 sizes smaller.
      4) Feeling more confident and happy every day. Feeling lighter and enjoying exercising and the feel of getting healthier. Not feeling tired and feeling of energy.
      5) Knowing I’m fulfilling my last PROMISE that I’ll ever make/made to my beloved Mom. Started for my Mom and will finish the PROMISE to/for ME! 100#s ISN’T all I need BUT it will continue until I reach goal weight!
      Have MRI for spine next month, blood work this month so look for my results these next few months.
      The New Year’s will be here before we ALL know it and I will keep going and getting closer to my goals!
      These top TREATS Mary Laughlin are far better than ANY bad food choice I could EVER want!!! Those days are gone. I LOVE feeling and living WELL!

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Mary Kmak just wanted to let you know that I have lost another 2 pounds . I tried your suggestions and they worked . I enjoy going to TMC gym and working out with it. The buddy system really works. You are looking great , losing weight and full of energy. It is very hard to keep up with you . On our last trip to Laughlin you out walked me. Keep up the great work. Your Mom is all smiles because you are keeping your promise to her. Please keep letting us all know how well you are doing

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Congrats! I KNOW plateau’s are discouraging BUT NEVER GIVE UP! ALWAYS keep your thought process on “BABY STEPS”. I live by that. I have alot of energy from my weight loss and that I am no longer pre-diabetic. I feel GREAT! 1st time I EVER out walked you Mary Laughlin; but, DON’T cut yourself short since I am 5 years younger than you! 🙂 The buddy system I learned about in class & I agree 100% cuz you have that extra support & encourage each other. Some tips are to change around your food choices & add a few extra minutes daily exercising & remember lBABY STEPS & SMART GOALS” & you will succeed. YES I intend to update my results until I reach my goals or If Rachel Miller cuts me off! 🙂 I saw the most BEAUTIFUL rainbow yesterday & KNOW it’s my Mom smiling from Heaven and saying KEEP GOING!

      • Not going to cut you off, you’re an inspiration!

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        🙂 LOL! Thanks Rachel. I’m so EXCITED ABOUT my future updates! I love my enthusiasm!!!

      • Way to go Mary L!

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Thank you Rachel H Miller. Mary Kmak’s suggestions and encouragement is really helping me. Small steps. That is what she always tells me .

  35. MARY H KMAK says:

    HAPPY FALL READERS! Now that the cool weather is around the corner and the football season has begun ALL those “seasonal & limited edition” high calorie candy, cookies & treats are here!
    For those of you who are following me I would like to share a few healthy alternative snacks to try these next few months.
    1) BAKED APPLES & PEARS Core them and place in shallow water and spray the tops with cooking spray. Add together a little brown sugar & cinnamon and sprinkle on top with chopped walnuts or almonds. OR get the prepacked single serve oatmeal packs and sprinkle on top. Add almonds or walnuts if you choose. NOTE: plain apples & pears with a sprinkle of cinnamon and/or chopped nuts is yummy TOO!
    2) Add a sprinkle of maple syrup & dash of cinnamon to your plain oatmeal and top with some crushed walnuts and/or almonds.
    3) Add some pumpkin granola to your vanilla greek yogurt or take a half of BAKED apple or pear & top it off with vanilla greek yogurt. Optional walnuts and/or pecans.
    4) Pumpkin dip is my favorite for holiday gatherings and/or weekend desserts. Take 3 cups vanilla greek yogurt with 4 oz soft low fat cream cheese mix together with 1/4 cup pumpkin puree & a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon & nutmeg or pumpkin pie spice. Refrigerate 2-3 hours and garnish with sliced apples (Red & green), sliced pears and Graham crackers. This one is a keeper!
    5) Roasted pumpkin seeds. DON’T throw away your seeds from your carved Halloween pumpkin. They have magnesium, zinc (for your immune system) + protein. Dry the seeds with a cloth, spray cooking oil on top and add garlic powder, cumin or chili powder on top and bake for 20-25 minutes. Nice and crispy healthy snack!
    I LOVE this time of the year and will continue my journey without temptations. Look for my September weight loss & health updates this weekend + more of Mary’s alternatives thruout the season. LET’S ALL live well and make NO excuses to eat these “SEASONAL SUGARS” and avoid unwanted weight gains.
    HAPPY HEALTHY Fall and winter to ALL of YOU!
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Good morning Mary Kmak,
      I just read your post. Thank you for all the suggestions . The Pumpkin dip sounds so delicious . I am going to make it this weekend. I have never had baked apples or pears. They sound delicious. I guess I will be busy the next few weeks trying all these. I am also going to try the pumpkin seeds. I love garlic . So I will keep you posted on how things turn out. Thank you for all your help and suggestions. I am looking forward to seeing your results. I have to admit, when I start getting discourage , I bring up your page and reread all and it gets me back into the right mode . Thank You and please keep up the good work and keep all of us posted. Remember to send us suggestions on great things to eat
      Mary Laughlin

  36. MARY H KMAK says:

    Thank you Mary Laughlin. The baked apples and pears are Awesome and you can try them different ways. Sprinkle some honey and cinnamon ONLY on top and bake. That’s good too. I will be trying different alternatives and posting the good ones. I’m excited about losing weight this time of the year and NOT gaining as I have in the past. My alternatives are ways to curb your sweet tooth and stay away from the extra sugary treats out there NOW in abundance! I’ll also will be adding smoothies in my food choices and will be experimenting with those & post the ones I like for the smoothies lovers out there. The secret of success is changing your choices & having fun making new ones that are healthy. I feel proud that I’m encouraging you and hope I am/can for others. For those who have 100#s + to lose YOU can do it TOO! There is hope and you too can feel better & healthier NEXT year at this time! Look for the schedule of the Next Wellness programs in January and start your New Year’s out RIGHT. What better why to do so by learning the proper nutrition and exercise to NOT ONLY lose weight BUT help you with those health issues you are having. Have your Drs monitor you too and for ONCE be happy going on the scales! 🙂 Join me making lifestyle changes to better health!
    Mary Kmak

  37. MARY H KMAK says:

    HAPPY OCTOBER READERS! FIRST I would like to mention October is Breast Cancer awareness month & anyone battling breast cancer or any family members my thoughts & prayers are with ALL of you. Keep positive and FIGHT! NEVER GIVE UP! My Mom had breast cancer & had a radical mastectomy, 2 recurrences with one spreading to her ribs & she beat it with her Faith, determination, current treatments & excellent Drs. KEEP going, BEST of luck & good wishes. Sept went well with a 5# loss despite having bronchitis these past 10 days. Life gives us these bumps in the road; but, with patience & time we overcome them. This makes my total loss 93#s & I WILL hit my 100# loss this month and YOU my loyal readers will be the FIRST to know! Other than a little lingering cough I’m back on the mends & will resume my exercises this weekend. My physical went well & my A1C continues to come down and I’m in the 5s compared to 6.4 when I started the 1st Wellness class. These next 3 months I will be posting more alternatives, NEW Fall/Winter recipes I will be trying & “healthy snack fill ups” rather than the unhealthy sugary ones! For those of you following my story won’t you join me this season and lose weight rather than fall into the statistics of gaining 5+ #s during the holiday seasons? Let’s do this together get healthier and LIVE WELL! I will also post my current picture on TMCs Facebook when I hit my 100# loss this month. You will see my face NOW that’s behind the shadow of my PROMISE picture!
    Sincerely, Mary

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Mary Kmak, you have come a long way. You are keeping the promise you made to your mom and getting heathy. The doctor results were fantastic. You are so close to your goal. You are eating right and exercising everyday. Even when you are sick you still exercise and eat healthy . You are an inspiration to all of us. Thank you for your updates and I cannot wait to see the pictures . Keep up the great work and remember to send us all those great updates and great good choices . Mary Laughlin

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Thank you Mary Laughlin. I did walk only with bronchitis but I miss my other exercises. This is coming from a person who WAS a cough potatoe. I love to hear how I inspire people it makes me feel like I’m giving my Mom a tribute. My Drs are happy, my family & friends are happy BUT most importantly I AM. It started out with Baby steps & will continue with Baby steps. 100#s is my 1st goal. I have more after that. It can be done with changing habits, patience & learning proper nutrition no matter how much you need to lose. I will be trying out New food choices and posting my fav of the week on.Friday’s. I will NOT allow the change in season & holiday goodies stand in my way! My system now doesn’t even crave this stuff anymore. WHY eat & feel tired guilty & gain weight? Those days are LONG gone. Keep going and trying and you too will succeed and feel GREAT! The feeling of good health is your reward. Try my recipes out each week & let me know if you like! 🙂 Have a Happy HEALTHY October! 🙂

    • I love how you have become such a strong individual! You haven’t let any of life’s bumps get you down, which is so easy with the convenience and accessibility of the unhealthy options and the stigma of “if you aren’t feeling well, go to comfort foods.” I love how you are challenging us to step up and make a difference in our lives especially during the temptations of the holidays. You continue to be an admirable inspiration and even I can learn some things from you: your determination. I personally look forward to your fall/winter recipes that you will be posting! Aspire to Inspire. Much love! XOXO

      -Your Godson, Max-

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Thank you my Sweet Max. I am blest to have you as my Godson. Yes, thru my journey I have become a stronger person and I challenge cuz anyone who is following me & needs to lose we can do it too! “Been there & DOING it” and I know the struggles; but, it does get easier & when you see & feel the results you want to continue. The “comfort foods” for me now are a big plate of veggies or bake apple or pear with frozen fat & sugar free yogurt or vanilla greek yogurt with chopped walnuts. Also, there is nothing wrong with “1” piece of dark chocolate with a dab of natural peanut butter or with a backed apple or pear. The blend together is fabulous. This is a rrealistic lifestyle change that includes smart & portion change choices. I’m excited to share my Fall/Winter recipes & will post one every Friday that I enjoyed the most for that week. I feel so honored how proud and inspired you are of me! Now YOU know how I feel since you were born!!! 🙂 Lotsa love
        Your Godmother Aunt Mary XOXOXOXO

  38. Hi Mary, Your posts are very encouraging to others that you can lose weight and the reasons why it is so important to lose. That once you establish good habits to stick to it and your body will appreciate it. I know you will keep up the good work!!!!

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Thank you Jennie! I am excited about helping others because I know what a struggle it WAS to lose weight & it’s a honor for me to hear that I inspire. So if I can be an example to others I WON’T let anyone down. The 1st Wellness class was the beginning of a HUGE change for me. NOT JUST losing weight BUT teaching me how to live well and get healthy with the proper nutrition & importance of exercise. I’m doing it because I changed my lifestyle & ways of eating and it ALL started with BABY STEPS! Thank you Mary Atkinson & Laurie Ledford!

  39. Sorry to hear you got sick. Glad that you are feeling better and keeping on track with your goals!!!! Thanks for the update and inspiring words.

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Thanks for the kinds words about being inspiring Andrea. I feel honored whenever anyone tells me this. I’m better now and did my exercyle all weekend. I’ll continue where I left off before bronchitis with my increase in exercising tomorrow. We all get sick now and then BUT these set backs just have to take it’s course. Feels GREAT getting back on my journey and exercising!

  40. Imelda Garcia says:

    Maria my sister, You make Mama proud she is happy in Heaven smiling that you lose weight for your health and keeping your last promise to our Mom. You are doing excelente and look beautihermoso! Drs very happy and I so proud of you. I learn from you and see how hard you work. Felicidades!
    Hermana Imelda

    • MARY H KMAK says:

      Imelda I love how you put Spanish and English together cuz I KNOW how proud you are of your heritage & this means you’re proud of me. 🙂 YES, I saw a rainbow early this morning from Heaven & I know Mama sent it in the rains cuz she loved rainbows & is smiling cuz she sees I’m keeping my PROMISE to her! I remember ALL of her words of wisdom & encouragement in life & keep her words in my heart as my motivation. Thank you my sister for your support & continue losing weight & lowering your A1C with what you learned also from the Wellness classes. I’m happy your A1C is the lowest it’s ever been! I’m proud of you as well! 🙂

  41. MARY H KMAK says:

    HAPPY FRIDAY READERS! I hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful Fall weather. On my journey I eat alot of chicken soi try out different recipes so I don’t get tired of the same ones. Chicken is a GREAT source of protein and low carbs which helped with my weight loss. This week I tried Roasted Balsamic vinegar chicken and I love it and it will be a keeper. I use 1-1/2 to 2#s skinless boneless chicken breasts sprinkle with a little olive oil & top with fresh chopped garlic & ground black pepper. Can use Skin & bone breasts & put all underneath the skin; BUT, take the skin off before you eat. Bake approx 25 minutes per # until cooked all the way thru. Bone & skin will take longer.Then take 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar & add 1 teaspoon brown sugar & heat until the brown sugar dissolves. Pour over your chicken & “sample” a piece before you serve! 🙂 Simple, quick & delicious! This recipe is worth your try! For the broccoli lovers out there here’s a quick recipe that you can cook at the same time that you’ll love. Put fresh broccoli on a cooking sheet spinkle a little olive oil, fresh chopped garlic, a dash of garlic powder & ground black pepper. Takes approx 30 minutes and soooo GOOD & healthy & full of Vit B1, B2, B3, B6, iron & magnesium! B lieve this is a GOOD & tasty side! Tis the season to cook with garlic to keep the vampires away! 🙂 Have a HAPPY HEALTHY weekend!
    Mary H Kmak

  42. MARY H KMAK says:

    Wishing my readers a marvelous Monday! I see there are 96,000 views om my story & 90,000 views on my updates on Facebook. Whether you’re following me see when I fulfill my PROMISE when I reach goal weight, thinking about joining the Fabulous Wellness classes, encouragement if you’re losing weight or whatever. I give you this challenge! Walk 12 minutes every day this week. Remember I started out with 5 mins a day! If you can’t do the full 12 at once do twice 6 mins. For those who have regular exercise schedules add 12 minutes to your times. I will! Let’s ALL get a jump start this holiday season staying on top of our health! This Fridays recipe will be a Spooktacular dessert that you can use this time of year for your family & friends gatherings. Can be fun TOO! I use low fat & sugar substitute but you can use regular if you choose. There is one new sugar substitute that I’m anxious to try. Throughout my journey I test and try and change everything to make it healthy and delicious. I DON’T/WANT the fats and sugars NO more. There are plenty GREAT alternatives. Have a good healthy week and get out and walk those 12 minutes for YOU! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • It is hard to imagine at this point in your journey that you started off at only 5 minutes! Now you have more energy than me! I will take this challenge and I will add 12 minutes to my daily routine. I look forward to your recipe! Always something new and creative! You are so close to your target, and I am proud of you 🙂 Keep on challenging us to healthier lifestyles, as it creates awareness of those around us as well as ourselves. Lots of love and support! XOXO Max

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Thank you Max. I love how you continue to be my #1 supporter! I am certainly blest being your Godmother. I remember when Mary Atkinson said in class just start out with a 5 minute walk. I THOUGHT that’s NOT going to help me lose 100++ #s? BUT, I did it & it lead me to my 30 + minute walks, 40 minutes exercycle daily + my own challenge of an additional 12 min walk as soon as I get up! 🙂 This my Dear Godson is what is called taking “BABY STEPS”! You gradually increase at your own pace BUT near a starting point. Friday’s recipe is a sweet treat for the pumpkin lovers out there. I LOVE the thought of having more energy than my 28 yr old Godson!!! 🙂 LOVE YOU MAX!
        Aunt Mary XOXOXO

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Mary kmak I am accepting your challenge and adding an extra 12 minutes a day to my-exercise program. I am excited to take the next step . I am eating better and eating the right foods. Thanks to your suggestions . Keep up the great work . I am looking forward to your next update . Thank you for all your help on making this a fun and exciting life change

      • MARY H KMAK says:

        Good choice Mary L taking my challenge! It takes 3500 calories to burn OFF 1 # BUT by walking & exercising that goes towards that 3500. You are doing GREAT! You got discouraged at times BUT you stuck with it. NEVER give up & you will reach your goals! I’m glad my suggestions are helping. These next 3 months I hope to encourage others with my recipes, suggestions, alternatives & updates on weight loss & health results. I can keep GOING BUT Rachel Miller may say enough already! 🙂 I’m so excited to reach out to others! NEXT week I am going to post MARY’S BEST HIDDEN secret to succeed with weight loss! This is ONE of the many BUT has helped me the most! Continued success Mary L & definitely keep me posted.
        Mary H Kmak

  43. Imelda Garcia says:

    Maria My sister I take your challenge and walk 12 minutos extra every day. You are doing excelente losing weight and getting good Drs reports I am very happy for you. Keep losing weight and continúe feeling more good. Imelda

  44. MARY H KMAK says:

    YAY IT’S FRIDAY READERS! Before I started my weight loss journey I would eat too much sugar. Now with the proper planned meals and snacks the sweet cravings are far and few between. I enjoy at times BUT I modify the recipes to fit my lifestyle change using low fat & sugar substitutes. Here’s a recipe that I enjoy and you can change if you like accordingly if you choose. If you have children You can make it fun and put in character cups for family & friends gatherings. Tis the season for pumpkin lovers so I hope you give this recipe a try!
    CRUST: 9 low fat Graham crackers (Full sleeve) 4 TBSP unsalted butter 2 TBSP WHITE & 2 TB Brown sugar substitute.
    FILLING: 1 – 8 Oz package low fat cream cheese room temp
    1 – 15oz can pumpkin puree, 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
    1- package SF cheesecake flavor instant pudding
    GARISH – optional / 5 oz frozen whipped topping
    1) Crush Graham crackers into fine crumbs. 2) Add melted butter, white & brown sugar substitute mix together. 3) Spoon crumbs evenly into 10 cups – refigerate while you prepare filling.
    4) Beat cream cheese until creamy. 5) Add pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice & pudding mix. Bear until combined. 6) Add 1/4-1/2 cup of filling to each cup over crust.
    7) Refrigerate 1 hour before serving. 8) Add 1TB whipped topping if you choose.
    NEXT . . . ENJOY!!! Wishing ALL my readers a Happy Healthy weekend! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Wow! That recipe is a FANTASTIC and fun idea for the upcoming holiday! This is one I look forward to trying, and it sounds like it is great not just for Halloween time but Fall in general. Plus, who can resist a good cheesecake treat? 🙂 Which sugar substitute do you prefer?

      • Mary Kmak says:

        IT IS for Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas! Pumpkin actually is very good for you and has Vit E, Magnesium, Iron, Potassium & Zinc. Zinc is good for your immune system especially this time of year! This month you can take advantage of FRESH pumpkin. Little extra work BUT worth it! I used  Splenda but switch recently to Stevia. I also use low fat when I can. Enjoy & watch for my Friday recipes this holiday season! 🙂
        Mary H Kmak

  45. Mary Kmak says:

    It is PERFECT for Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas ALL of the Fall & Winter holidays! Pumpkin is actually VERY good for you and has Vit E, Magnesium, Iron, Potassium & Zinc. Zinc is also GOOD for your immune system especially this time of year! This month you can take advantage of FRESH pumpkin. It’s a little extra work; BUT, well worth it. I used to use Splenda; but, recently switched to Stevia. I also will use low fat when I can. This cuts back on calories & fats and for me tastes the same as regular. ENJOY and watch for my Friday recipes these next 3 months throughout the holiday seasons! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

  46. MARVELOUS MONDAY TO YOU READERS especially those who took my challenge! Congratulations!!! If you just started exercising EVEN walking I hope you will continue & increase accordingly to fit YOUR needs. If you added those 12 minutes to your exercise schedule I hope you feel like me & glad you did! With life’s stresses those extra 12 minutes JUST for yourself without any distractions or interruptions feels GREAT! As I approach my 100# loss I have NO DOUBT that I’ll continue until I reach my goal weight and NOT only fulfill my PROMISE to my beloved Mom BUT accomplish this for myself, my health and my life! I hope the ones who tried my Pumpkin recipe enjoyed it & can see you can make choices with alternatives. I will be using this all season long for my gatherings. Each Friday I will be posting a new recipe which I enjoy and used throughout my journey & will continue to use. Wishing ALL of you a Happy & Healthy Monday! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

  47. Mary Kmak says:

    IT’S a WET Wednesday Readers please be careful out there! Throughout my journey there were days that I felt hungry & I wanted to make sure I didn’t eat anything filled with sugar & set my self backwards. Sooo I found MY BEST HIDDEN SECRET! I make a HUGE salad EVERYDAY;BUT, you MUST be careful with the toppings.Switch your Fat & calorie toppings out with healthy low fat, low carb goodies. Here are some of MY alternatives I I use daily.
    1) REPLACE CROUTONS WITH NUTS. I like my salads a little crunchy and add walnuts & sunflower seeds.
    2) LITTLE amount of cheese!!! I ONLY use low fat & will add 2-3 times a week a small amount
    3) NO bacon or smoked meats. Replace with grilled, broiled or boiled shredded chicken. On on occasion you can add some lean beef.
    4) ADD fresh fruits NOT dried cuz dried has too much SUGAR. I use apples, oranges, pears & ALL berries.
    5) DRESSINGS – BE CAREFUL! This blows your healthy salads QUICK. I use olive oil & Balsamic vinegar (3 parts OO to 1 part BV) & a little cracked pepper. Low Fat low cal are other options.
    6) VEGGIES – Besides your tomatoes, switch off with cucumbers, sprouts, purple & green onions, avocados (small amount), spinach, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, etc. The list of healthy TOPPINGS is on going.
    Do what I do and “EAT A SALAD A DAY” filled with FRESH vegetables, low fat & calorie proteins and YOU too will fill full & satisfied. This readers is coming from a person who rarely ate salads & when I did they HAD to be filled with the WORSE possible choices! Once you establish good eating habits you no longer crave/want those bad choices! Have a Happy Healthy Wednesday! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning mary kmak. I have been waiting to hear what your secret was . I am blown away. I would of never thought of salad. I love salads but I put all the not so good choices on mine , so I have not been having them as much as I would like to. But after reading about what I can put on my salad to make it more healthy , I am going to start having them daily . Thank you for all your help. I have been trying all your suggestions and they are wonderful . Keep sending them . I am sure all of your followers love trying new things . Keep up the great work and keep all of us posted on your life journey . Cannot wait to see the next post

      • YES Mary Laughlin Salads are my SECRET! We ALL eat them; BUT, with the proper toppings salads are GREAT tasting GREAT stomach “FILL UPS” & full of LOTS of vitamins and nutrition! These are my favorite toppings; however, seafood toppings like salmon & tuna + hard boiled eggs & mushrooms are healthy alternatives as well. I didn’t list these cuz I’m allergic to them; BUT, throughout each individuals journey you make your own meal plans & recipes to fit your needs. OK I am off now on a 4 day roadtrip weekend with my lovely sister Imelda & Best buddy! I will post my roadtrip alternatives SOON! 🙂

  48. Mary Kmak says:

    Fantastic Friday Readers! I hope everyone enjoyed a GREAT week with exercise & are feeling GOOD! Today’s healthy recipe is SHREDDED CHICKEN & RICE STUFFED BELL PEPPERS Simple, quick and delicious. Keeping with the Halloween theme I am using Orange Bell peppers and cutting little eyes, nose & mouth like jack-o-latern pumpkins.
    PUT I crock pot 2 chicken breasts, 1tsp Garlic salt, 1/2 tsp blk pepper & 1 can diced tomatoes w/green chilies (can use tomatoes only if you don’t like GC)
    Place chicken on bottom add seasonings & cover with tomatoes. Cook on high 4-6 hrs or low 6-8 hrs. Shred chicken in sauce mixture.
    SUFFED PEPPERS Get 4 bell peppers cut top off & clean out seeds, 2 CUPS MEXICAN RICE & 1 CUP LOW FAT CHEDDAR CHEESE
    MIX chicken, rice & 1/2 cup ched cheese together. Fill 4 peppers up & top with the other 1/2 cheese. Bake at 350 for 20-30 min til peppers are soft in glass cooking pan with a little water on the bottom.
    OPTIONAL: Can add some black or pinto beans on the bottom of the peppers.
    I LOVE this recipe and will have for my Halloween dinner with the Orange peppers!
    Wishing you a GREAT weekend filled with good health! 🙂 TRY THIS!
    Mary H Kmak

  49. Mary Kmak says:

    MARVELOUS MONDAY to ALL my readers!
    This week will be filled with lots of sugary temptations. My tip of the week is whenever someone brings sweets at the office or your jobsite or home JUST walk away and take a walk. Go around the block or parking lot or wherever you are JUST get out and walk! I do!
    Have a healthy GREAT week and remember if you haven’t started walking YET do it now! What a wonderful time to start it’s so nice out!
    Mary H Kmak

  50. Maria Luisa Ruiz Luna says:

    Hi Mary!

    It makes me deeply happy to know that you are still engaged on your wellness journey, that you are inspiring others to feel healthier and happy, and that I was able to contribute to your journey a little bit! Thank you very much for reaching out to me. I remember you and Imelda fondly, and I always wish you peace and joy.

    I am offering a stress management workshop on Saturday, Nov. 7, 11-1pm, at the main library (downtown). It would be wonderful to have you there!


    Maria Luisa

    • Ohhh Maria Luisa so good to hear from you. YES my sister Imelda and I remember you! Your enthusiasm was contagious! I want to thank you too for your help and suggestions. Your idea’s about SMART GOALS still stick with me today. I do want to try and help others struggling with weight that’s causing health issues. The importance of eating a healthy diet is a MUST & will help those who NEED to lower their A1C, BP, cholesterol & other health issues. You NEVER KNOW Maria Luisa I just may pop into one of your classes! BUT I now am alot thinner NOW! Thank you for your kind words & I ALWAYS wish you the BEST and continued good health! 🙂

  51. Mary Laughlin says:

    Thank you Mary Kmak that is a great suggestion, Please keep posting these tips.

    • Mary Kmak says:

      Some simple changes & “BABY STEPS” make it possible to achieve your health goals. I’m excited about this weekend I JUST love this time of year. Halloween is fun & YOU don’t have to feel tired & GUILTY for eating lots of sugars & fats by making some healthy delicious meals & desserts. Tomorrow I’m posting a GREAT soup choice, Sat I will be telling you my fabulous readers my MOST memorable Halloween & Sunday I will be weighing to see IF I hit my 100# loss this month & will post my results Monday. I have been trying to share recipes, tips & giving challenges to ALL my readers to show you with the right education from the BEST nutritionists at TMC Mary & Laurie, determination & changes that YOU TOO can lose weight for whatever reason! I’m excited about my BP being perfect, no longer pre-diabetic, cholesterol EXCELLENT & NOT feeling tired! Big weekend coming up let’s all enjoy it the healthy way! 🙂
      Mary H Kmak

    • You’re welcome Mary Laughlin! I give the suggestions that worked for me! You MUST remember “BABY STEPS”! This thought helps you at the beginning, getting in routines, planning meals, scheduling exercises & thru plateaus! 🙂 DON’T EVER GIVE UP!!! IF you have to KEEP trying KEEP trying because ONE time you’ll continue!!! 🙂 JUST LIKE ME!

    • Awww thank you Mary Laughlin! I too am glad I met you. Thanks for your kind words of encouragement and support! 🙂

  52. HAPPY HOLLOWS EVE READERS! This month I shared my favorite recipes that I’ll be making for my Halloween dinner & desserts for my family & friends. I will also include of of my favorite old fashioned soups SPLIT PEA which is filled with potassium, Vitamin K, Vitamin B & full of fiber which fills you up. My Mom used to say the more vegetables you add to your food when cooking the more flavors you get! Here’s my quickest, easiest & tastiest SPLIT PEA SOUP recipe.
    1-16oz package dried green split peas (Rinsed & sorted)
    1-1# bag of carrots cut into 1/4″ slices
    3 stalks of celery sliced into 1/4″slices
    1 medium-large yello onion chopped
    2 cloves of minced garlic
    1 Teaspoon salt – 1/2 Teaspoon Blk pepper
    7 cups of water
    Put everything in crock pot (High 6-7 hrs Low 8-10 hrs)
    Because I’m making my Shredded chicken bell peppers too I’m making an all veggie Split Pea soup BUT you can add 2#s of LEAN cubed ham
    As you can see with these recipes they are NORMAL healthy food choices. This is NO fad diet BUT a healthy lifestyle change with portion control & better food choices. I modify some ingredients to fit my needs. I stay away from high fats and use low fat ingredients whenever I can with my cooking & baking. Be safe be careful with your food choices & put that candy down! Have plenty of alternative snacks around. I will have my baked apples & pears & unsalted mixed nuts. Saturday I will confide in you my most memorable Halloween & Monday I will let you know if I reached my 100# mark! Did I do it readers??? After a October filled month with all the bad choices out there & a 6 day vacation out of town surrounded with fancy high calorie foods & desserts??? Did any of this affect my daily routine and did I accomplish my desired loss? I will find out Sun morning & post Monday!

  53. MARY KMAK says:

    HAPPY HALLOWEEN READERS! I have GREAT Halloween memories growing up in Pittsburgh Pa as a child. Whether it be trick or treating with my siblings & friends in a group from the time we got out of school at 3 until 9 PM bringing home #s of candy, being rationed by my Mom & sneaking candy with my Dad or trick or treating in the snow it was ALL GREAT times and I wouldn’t change one thing! Halloween WAS ALWAYS a time/excuse to eat ALL the candy, cupcakes, cookies every possible bad choices of sugar without guilt cuz it’s HALLOWEEN a time to have a free for ALL with whatever you wanted. WELL, the food choices have NOW changed and Halloween is now a fun filled gathering of a healthy dinner followed by healthy dessert choices. MY memorable Halloween was last year! After taking the Live Well class & currently taking the Life Enhancement program last October I challenged myself NOT to eat any candy or sugars on Halloween day & night! My food changes were in place, my lifestyle change was being made, I had scheduled a different menu, did my exercises BUT could I stay away from SUGARS??? Afterall it was Halloween? I sure did! That was when I realized I have done it, I am going to make it and I felt PROUD for the first time! So my faithful readers I challenge you TODAY to grab fresh fruits, yogurts or mixed nuts in place of any candy! IF you feel you MUST have candy take ONLY one piece JUST ONE and take your time eating it. Enjoy this day and it can be a start for you to get going on a healthy lifestyle change. Remember what you eat today can take up to 2 weeks to lose! What do YOU really want??? Have a safe Healthy Halloween readers and Monday for those following me you will find out if I hit my 100# loss mark! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Happy Halloween to you mary kmak . I just wanted to say, thank you for all your great suggestions on making great meals. I am going to use some of them tonight . I also have some apples , nuts and cheese , ready for me to snack on if I get the urge to grab a candy bar . I am going to eat healthy tonight. This will also help me get ready for all the other holidays ahead of us . I will be watching your site for your big news on Monday. Thank you again. You have helped me . I am taking the small steps.

      • GREAT snack choices Mary Laughlin. Try my baked apple recipe and it’s JUST as delicious baked without anything on them. That’s actually how I eat them! Another suggestion would be to try low fat “reduced” cheese over regular cheese. I do & NO ONE knows the difference! Be careful with the cheese and nuts and read the calories & fat totals both have alot. One serving each + a baked apple or pear is plenty. It’s always a good dessert to add some fat free sugar free frozen or greek yogurt on your baked fruits with a couple of chopped walnuts on top! This would take the place of your cheese & mixed nut snacks. Portion control is the key. Too often we think ohhh cheese & nuts are GOOD snacks! YES they are BUT contain
        fats & calories & need to be controlled. Have a healthy Halloween Ms Mary & I’m glad you remember “BABY STEPS” that’s the key to success! 🙂

  54. MARY KMAK says:

    Happy November readers! I HOPE everyone took my challenge for Halloween and getting ready for more challenges for Thanksgiving & Christmas! It’s NOT too late to start watching. Today is a new day! October was a GREAT month for me. I lost EXACTLY 7#s to hit my 100# loss! I will continue & complete by goal by next year! I will find out EXACTLY how much more my Dr wants me to lose next
    month. 18 months ago I NEVER thought this would be possible BUT the “BABY STEPS” made it happen for me. I learned thru the Live Well Wellness classes the proper nutrition, calories, carbs, fats & the importance of exercising. I started out with a 5 minute walk each day! I have come a long way. For me it took alot of work. I was determined and I’m doing it. I won’t lie to you that it was easy because it wasn’t BUT after changing bad habits by eating correctly, making changes like taking lunches to work rather than eating out, eating breakfast, watching my portions, changing my eating choices & exercising it ALL came together and here I am today 100#s thinner & positive I will be at my goal weight next year! It can be done readers I am doing it! This month I’ll post more of my alternatives, recipes & suggestions. MY tip of the week is do NOT buy any Halloween candy that’s marked down 50-90% off!!! DON’T DO IT! By bringing it in your home it’s too tempting! Have a GREAT healthy day! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Let me be the first to say congratulations !!!!!!!!. You have been doing a great job and have proved that taking baby steps is the way to go. You have worked hard and it has paid off . Pat yourself on the back . YOU DID IT!!!!!!!! Your mom is smiling on you . Mary I have been watching you and know how hard this has been . Keep up the great work. TMC wellness program put you on the right track . Thank you for all your inspiration . I know you want to help others , I hope everyone reads your post and start those baby steps . Looking forward to your next post .😀

      • MARY KMAK says:

        THANK YOU Mary Laughlin BUT I’m doing it NOT did it YET. I KNOW I will!!! 🙂 YES the Wellness classes give you the tools to succeed. I ALWAYS wanted to lose this much + more BUT by dieting the WRONG ways I didn’t KNOW where to begin. I NEEDED a lifestyle change! It was hard at FIRST BUT now it’s natural. I LOVE the way I feel OVER any candy, cake, icecream, ETC. There are sooo MANY alternatives that I NEVER feel deprived. I will continue to try and help others with what I used to struggle with daily. YOU keep up your good work too! 🙂 YES you’re #1 to congratulate me! You beat my Max! 🙂

  55. HELLO READERS. They say November is a time to give thanks because of Thanksgiving. However, I like to thank all year long. Right now I’m feeling thankful, proud, excited about my 100#s loss + honorable cuz I’m getting closer to fulfilling my PROMISE to my beloved Mom. Everyone is calling, texting, Facebooking, emailing me with congratulations I feel humbled. BUT I MUST thank some VERY important people who helped make this possible for me to achieve. They are Mary Atkinson & Laurie Ledford at TMC for their LIVE WELL PROGRAMS! IF I didn’t take or BELIEVE in these programs I would NEVER have achieved this weight loss AND lower my A1C, blood pressure & cholesterol and placed on much medications. YES I worked hard BUT the tremendous help, encouragement and advice I received from Mary & Laurie allowed me to get this far! I have no doubt I’ll reach goal weight in 2016. These programs are more than a job to them. It’s a commitment to helping our community LIVE WELL with a healthy lifestyle. Their knowledge, patience and understanding is immeasurable! With that being said I hear there are 115,000 views on this blog & over 112,000 views on my story on TMCs women’s Facebook. So for all of you out there following my story who need help I recommend the 2 TMC LIVE WELL & LIFE ENHANCEMENTS programs!!! Do as I did and start your New Year’s out RIGHT by signing up. JUST “TRY IT” like I did BUT stick with it NEVER GIVE UP! No matter how many times you FALL just pick yourself up and TRY IT AGAIN & KEEP GOING! Because one day you TOO can have the health results I’m having no matter how much weight you need help with losing! TMC gives you the tools YOU make it happen!!! God Bless and THANK YOU for following my story and I’m NOT going anywhere! You will be with me all the way through! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • I would like to say “You made it” but your journey continues. You have reached a very important mile marker in your life. I am proud that you made it this far and know that you have the strength and determination to go the full distance! With the holidays upon us, I look forward to seeing your tips to surviving the temptations that bring on those extra pounds! Congratulations, Great job!


      • MARY KMAK says:

        Thank you Max my dearest Godson! It makes me feel GREAT knowing how proud you are of me. You are my hero and I learned from you watching how well you take your health so serious. You are my role model!!! When I was told I was pre diabetic I KNEW I NEEDED to change my eating habits. I see your struggles & remember Grandma with her diabetes so if I could prevent that by weight loss I was determined to make that happen. Learning the proper nutrition & snacks + the importance of exercising saved me from becoming diabetic. I will reach my goal next year and excited about that. My changes are now routine and part of my daily life. Planning meals & exercise schedule is like getting up & going to bed just a part of my day! Thank you for remaining to be my #1 supporter! Much love! 🙂
        Your Godmother XOXOXO

  56. Thanks for sharing your progress. I am getting excited to start in January, just around the corner! Keep inspiring!!!!!

    • Thanks Andrea. You will love the Wellness class when you go in Jan! Mary and Laurie are GREAT and these classes are the BEST hidden secrets. You will do well cuz you want to learn proper nutrition. Looking forward to hearing how well you’ll do. 🙂

  57. Congratulations Mary for accomplishing your goal and I knew you could do it, You have worked really hard reaching your goal and you look great!!! I know you will stick to the healthy habits and changes you have made for the better. Very proud of your accomplishment Mary!!!

    • MARY KMAK says:

      Thank you Jennie! I have more weight to lose and will continue to keep going until I reach goal weight. I have worked hard and proud of myself by doing it the correct way which was learning about nutrition and changing bad habits. I do things the old fashioned way with proper education, determination & NO pills NO shots JUST BABY STEPS to good health & here I am today 100#s thinner with good reports from my Drs! Thanks again for your kind words and support! 🙂
      Mary H Kmak

  58. Imelda Garcia says:

    Felicidades a Mi hermana Mery ella adelgaso 100 #s se mira hermosa y. Su mama le sonríe desde el cielo ella esta haciendo muy buen trabajo buena suerte Imelda

  59. Dora Carneiro says:

    Mary, your story is very inspirational to others that are on this difficult road to losing weight. You have been very committed to the promise you made to your mom. I know you will reach goal just hang onto that promise which is a very powerful anchor. Very happy for you my friend. 😊

    • MARY KMAK says:

      Thank you Dora. YES I myself been there many times and failed with dieting. This time was different cuz I’m NOT dieting BUT made a lifestyle change which is what I needed. YES I will NOT fail my PROMISE & fulfill it with honor!!! It started out with a PROMISE to my beloved Mom & will end with the BEST gift she ever gave me! I KNOW you are already signed up for the WELLNESS programs and you are in for a real treat. I look forward to seeing your results & cheering you on! 🙂

  60. MARY KMAK says:

    Gracias Imelda. YES I KNOW Mama is smiling and proud. I’m so honored to be fulfilling her last request and will NOT stop until I do!!! Thank you for all your support & I’m happy your A1C is BEST ever & you TOO are doing well! 🙂

  61. GOOD AFTERNOON READER’S! Just want to say it’s such a BEAUTIFUL day out today and the weather has been so PERFECT for walks. Whether it be in the morning, afternoon or after dinner JUST GO and talk a walk! Even if it’s ONLY a 5 minute walk JUST GO & do it. Here I am today 100#s thinner and it ALL started out with a 5 minute walk! 🙂 AND will continue all throughout my weight loss journey & maintenance. Tomorrow I’ll have a fun recipe that’s an everytime healthy snack NOT ONLY to keep around the Holiday season to avoid those unwanted calories & fats BUT to have all year round. IN fact this is MY #1 snack for ALL of my road trips TOO! 🙂 Have a GREAT healthy afternoon! Please enjoy this gorgeous day and take a walk no matter how long JUST GO!!!
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Mary kmak I took your suggestion and took a 30 min walk. It is very nice outside . I am looking forward to hearing what your #1 snack is . You come up with the greatest things. Keep up the great work . Tank you. Mary Laughlin

  62. MARY KMAK says:

    RECIPE FRIDAY READERS! Throughout my weight loss journey my biggest challenge was sweets. I NEVER thought I would be able to give up the sugar; but, being pre diabetic I KNEW & was told by my Dr IF I didn’t I would become diabetic & placed on medication. The Wellness classes taught me yo make healthy alternatives which I tried and now I’m hooked. I was never an apple eater but I find them my #1 favorite snack now. Here’s my Road trip snack & at home munchies. Simply delicious! HOMEMADE PUMPKIN SPICE APPLE CHIPS
    3 APPLES (I use Fuji)
    1) Wash & core the apples. Thinly slice the apples into rounds discharge the bottom slice. Place the rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
    2) Mix together the spices & lightly sprinkle over the apples. I use my fingertips.
    3) Bake the chips at 200 for 1-1/2 hrs. Remove & flip over & sprinkle the new side with more spices & bake for 1 more hour. This will get the crispiest crunchiest chips. I even leave them in the oven after I turn off for 15 more minutes. If you like them softer & chewier reduce the baking time. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to one week.
    Hope you’ll try this one out cuz the homemade chips compared to the package ones are sooo MUCH BETTER & fresher. NOT too mention cheaper! So many people claim “being on a diet is expensive” NOT TRUE! In fact “I” find it cheaper! Have a healthy happy weekend! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Mary kmak when you made these I was like no I do not think so. But after I tried them , OMG they are better then the ones you buy . It is true, homemade always much better . And you know what they are made with no added preservatives . You come up with some fantastic things to try and the are all healthy . Thank you thank you mary Laughlin

      • Everyone ALWAYS say Homemade is better Mary Laughlin and they have time to make the cakes, cookies & CANDY BUT it’s the #1 excuse that I hear when it comes to planning meals and snacks! YOU are correct & thanks for pointing out about NO preservatives. I’m ALL for that! 🙂

      • One more thing Mary Laughlin about planning & making your meals and snacks. For those of us making lifestyle changes we realize it takes time to get routines & schedules. In fact like I mentioned before experts claim 4 weeks; however, for me it was about 6 weeks. Everyone is different and I applaud those trying and encourage anyone who is to NEVER give up and JUST have patience cuz it is worth it! 🙂 I’m happy with your results Mary L and know the health issues you are going thru + your stresses in life BUT you are doing GREAT and I’m proud of you. Keep going friend! 🙂

    • Wow! I would have never thought of this! Fortunately I have all of the ingredients so I will be trying this one this weekend! You are right, though, the stigma is that eating healthy is so much more expensive, but that is not always true. Yes, the healthy products that are pre-packaged meals are higher in cost, typically, but buying fresh ingredients and making it all yourself ends up costing less in the long run. All in all, excellent suggestion! 🙂

      • Yes Max most of my healthy snacks & meals you have the ingredients at home already. In fact these apple chips are good plain without any spices; but, with the holidays I thought I would spice it up! 🙂 Actually, the BEST snack to serve at your holiday gatherings. The #1 excuse is “dieting is too expensive” & the #2 excuse is “I DON’T have the time”! WELL, I will tell you for ME I found preparing my own meals by planning ahead is cheaper! NOT too mention healthier cuz you know EXACTLY what you are putting in there and can use alternatives such as low fat or lean + quantity control. As far as time goes YOU know I work 10 hours days + some half days on Saturday and I plan ALL my meals and snacks! So I disagree with BOTH and say excuses are ONLY that and IF you want too bad enough you will!!! I did. 🙂

  63. Ohhhh my goodness readers . . .
    One of my co-workers birthday is today & they brought in a half sheet choc cake & fudge frosting topped with chopped peanut butter cups! It sure looks GOOD! BUT . . . Do you know what looks BETTER??? MY plain white sheet paper with MY blood work results showing my A1C coming down from 6.4 to 5.3 & my cholesterol coming down from 201 to 135 + NOT TO MENTION my blood pressure reading of 108/66/74 coming down from Heart attack & stroke levels!!! MY sheet is beautiful, appetizing & I want MORE! Soooo
    For MY alternative as they sing Happy Birthday & eat cake I am going to walk the parking lot twice on this beautiful Fall morning & come back to some freshly baked apple chips that I made last night. THOUGHT OF THE DAY? Which one would you choose???
    Have a wonderful Friday! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • It is hard to avoid those temptations, sometimes. But, health and longevity is a stronger temptation. Its not the end of the world to skip a piece of cake, however, the reward for staying healthy and avoiding any long term complications is priceless. Long ago, I would have chosen the cake, myself. Now, I know the apples and walk seems much more appetizing (especially with how beautiful the weather has been!)

  64. MARY KMAK says:

    YES Max it’s been only 1-1/2 years ago that I was eating cake with everyone for ALL their birthdays and there are ALOT! Its amazing NOW looking back & thinking IF ONLY I stopped then BUT I just ate it naturally cuz it “was a birthday”. Changes of bad habits were made & now in place & stopped so it’s NOW natural & routine to just say No thank you & choose my alternative. Like Mary Atkinson said in one of the Wellness classes it’s OK to take a piece of cake on a special occasion BUT a tiny piece and NOT the biggest slice & NOT 6-8 times a month! Changes can be made if you want them to be! 🙂

  65. MARY KMAK says:

    Hi Readers! Tis the season for candy, cookies, cakes, SPECIAL holiday donuts. Tip for the day is to STOCK up on fruits for your home and work place. Any kinds of fruits that you like and whenever your temptation of sweets hits you JUST grab a piece of fruit. I do! ANOTHER one of my TOP secrets to weight loss success! 🙂 Have a Happy Healthy Monday! BEAUTIFUL Fall Monday for some fresh air. WON’T you join me by taking some walks???
    Mary H Kmak

  66. Mary Laughlin says:

    You are right again Mary Kmak . I am surrounded by sweets all the time because everyone has been bringing my mom candies , cookies and cakes . So I went the store an purchased several different fruits. So when I see her eat those sugar snacks, I grab a fruit and it works. Thank You, for all your suggestions.

    Mary Laughlin

  67. Hello Readers, they say November is a month to give thanks because of Thanksgiving. I am very thankful for many things. The economy seems to be improving thou many still don’t have the job they studied for or lost during the recession. Some may have health issues they are battling and some financial burdens they are enduring. Yes, all of above are hard times for those going thru them; BUT, whatever you are experiencing there are some out there still worse off. I’m talking about our homeless people. During this season won’t you join me with a little kindness whenever you see a homeless person? Whether it be giving them a piece of your daily fruit, half of your sandwich or if you can buy them a hot cup of coffee especially when it’s cold out? Or simply say hi, how are you today? We go to bed every night in a warm home, wake up to fresh coffee and breakfast, take a lunch or go out to lunch to our job, whether it be the one we want or not it’s a job and come home to our safe environment to our loving families or resting watching TV or whatever; but, we come home. I guarantee you this holiday season by showing just a little kindness anyway you want will make you feel good inside! Some may continue to even after the holidays like myself. Yes, my blog is about health and idea’s for weight loss and my struggles & success with losing weight and a PROMISE I made my beloved Mom; but, this time of year I remember my Mom dearly for she would make lunch bags of food for the Homeless people and have me drop them off at the parks or wherever I saw a homeless person give them a bag. So in memory of my Mom I will continue her tradition and I’m thankful that I can. Thank you readers and have a wonderful Wednesday! 🙂
    Sincerely, Mary H Kmak

    • Life is full of ups and downs, and as you have shown through your journey, and even your start in your blog, there are things to be greatful for. Grandma was one of the most influential people in my life growing up, and I remember her generosity and genuine kindness. Not only would she do that for homeless, she would always make sure that I had something to donate to the schools food drive, made gifts for my teachers, and loved everyone equally! She was a strong woman with a bountiful spiritual and emotional wealth that she extended to everyone she could! I see so much of her kindness in your life, which is very evident in your determination to keeping your PROMISE. Some may say that it is selfish to think of yourself, but those are the ones who are of the wrong opinion, it takes selflessness to better your health, because it is something that you have to consider not JUST for yourself; family, friends and loved ones are ALSO affected by your health. What an amazing tribute and tradition to continue, especially in this fast paced world where people are more concerned about the material gains versus the spiritual ones.

      Much love, and Happy Thanksgiving (Although a bit early)
      XOXO Max XOXO

      • My dear Godson Max, YES every family has it’s ups & downs and we certainly have ours don’t we? My heart is filled with much love and pride on how you remember your Grandma. Everyone’s Mom & Grandmother are special BUT we were certainly Blest with Grandma Kmak! 🙂 I ALWAYS say the BEST gifts I got in life were the 2 most wonderful parents! Grandma certainly was everything you said + much more. I feel so honored to be compared to her with anything. Thank you that’s the best compliment I could ever get. I will see you on Thanksgiving & tomorrow is Recipe Friday and I’m sharing the healthy stuffing recipe that I will be making for our dinner. I KNOW that’s your favorite so I’ll be making extra JUST for you. 🙂
        Much love, Your Godmother XOXOXO

      • Absolutely! No one is perfect, and every family has their ups and downs. But now is a happy time of the year for making new memories and remembering the great memories that loved ones left for us. I could never fathom losing any memories of one of the most influential people in my upbringing, Grandma was, and is a saint. She instilled so many excellent values into all of us, down to us grandchildren. Everything I said in comparison is all truth! You are a very special person, and have taken the best values and lessons that Grandma left with all of us and you have kept that true to your life. I am really excited for Thanksgiving, and I have my insulin ready to go! Haha!

        Much love,
        XOXO Max XOXO

      • Thank you Max! You are my joy and are loved very much by your Godmother! Hello Readers During the holidays whether we think of the good memories or make new memories with our loved ones let’s keep those in our heart and thoughts who may be going through some rough times with health, financial or whatever. If you know someone in the hospital call them and ask how they are doing or share a good memory with them cuz not everyone will be having a happy holiday. A little kindness goes a long way readers!

  68. It’s Recipe Friday readers! I hope everyone had a GREAT week. In the past when I would DIET I thought I could NEVER eat this or that again. I was wrong. Throughout my journey I learned through the Live Well & Life Enhancement classes that a healthy lifestyle change doesn’t mean giving up your favorites. You learn proportion sizes, alternatives & my secret to success is changing some ingredients into favorite family recipes. Example is stuffing I changed white bread to wheat & sauteeding onions & celery from butter to a small amount of olive oil. Here’s my HARVEST STUFFING recipe.
    1# whole wheat bread cut into 1″ pieces, 3/4 Cup walnuts chopped, 2/3 Cup dried cranberries, 1 TB olive
    oil, 1 Granny Smith apple cored & diced, 2 TB poultry seasoning, 1 small onion chopped, 3 celery stalks including leaves chopped fine, 3 cups chicken broth (I use low sodium) & 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.
    1) Preheat oven to 350° Place bread, walnuts & cranberries into large bowl.
    2) In nonstick skillet sauteed onions & celery in Olive Oil until soft (approx 5 minutes) Add apples & cook another 5 minutes, add Poultry seasoning & pepper.
    3) Add onion mixture to bowl with bread, mix together & add enough broth to moisten.
    4) Spoon into 2 qt casserole dish cover with foil & bake 20 minutes then uncover & bake an additional 15 minutes. For those of us who put in the Turkey place half of the stuffing in the Turkey and the other half un a one qt baking dish or 8×8 baking pan. Bake the same amount of time.
    I learned to enjoy the different flavors by adding nuts & fruits to my dishes. If you choose NOT to use this recipe is good and simple to make by itself BUT I suggest trying it as is. It’s festive & healthy with portion control! Have A healthy & GREAT weekend readers! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning mary kmak. I was just making my list to go get the things I needed to make stuffing for thanksgiving. Now I am redoing my list and am going to try your way of making stuffing. It sounds very delicious . My family likes trying new things and my daughter-in- law will love because it is more of a heathy choice. My family is now eating better and they are losing weight also . I cannot thank you enough for telling me about the wellness program at TMC. After taking the class I now know how to make better choices and healthy ones. . It is baby steps but my family is coming around. Thank you for all the great ways to make different things. I look forward to hearing more. Thank you again You should do a cookbook. Have a great weekend and looking forward to reading all the fun things you come up with. Mary Laughlin

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Hello mary kmak, I was just reading your recipe for stuffing. That sounded sooo good. . I am going to try it for thanksgiving. My family loves to try new things. We are trying to eat healthy now. I am pushing healthy since I took the wellness class at TMC. My family is eating healthy now and losing weight. I have been trying all your recipes that you have posted. They have been all great. Cannot wait for your next one. Keep up the great work and keep posting Mary Laughlin

  69. I know your mother is very proud of you that you kept your promise in losing weight and that you are a great inspiration in helping others to living a healthier life style,

    • Thank you Jennie. I believe she is and I NEVER make a PROMISE lightly because I KEEP them!!! I hope to inspire others that would be the Best tribute I could give my Mom. The views on my stories make me happy & proud because it shows me others are following me. This blog has 130,000 & Facebook 128,000. My hope is to inspire and help others who struggle with weight. They can see that everyone can lose it the proper way with learning about nutrition and exercise. You DON’T need the fad diets or pills JUST patience, changing old habits and the BEST professional nutritionists Mary Atkinson and Laurie Ledford guidance and knowledge in the Wellness programs. These Live Well classes are TMCs BEST kept secrets!
      Mary H Kmak

  70. SATURDAY’S TIP . . . Hello Readers! Today is such a BEAUTIFUL day go out and take advantage of a walk. No matter how long JUST GO! We all KNOW walking is GREAT for your heart and lungs, weight loss, circulation, ETC. BUT, did you KNOW it’s good for your mind??? YES, it helps with positive mental health for your everyday stressful situations. TRY IT! Enjoy Tucson’s Fabulous Fall Saturday! You’ll be glad you did AND it will burn up some extra calories which is ALWAYS nice!!! 🙂

  71. Hello Readers, as the count increases of lost lives in Paris let us keep those in our thoughts and prayers. No one should be afraid to attend a sporting event or any everyday activity with the fear of being “attacked”. We all felt this on 9/11 so let’s extend our hearts to Paris and the victims of this senseless crime. Thank you.
    Sincerely, Mary H Kmak

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning mary kmak. You are so right .we should be able go out with our family and friends and enjoy yourself and not be scared you are not coming back home together. Life was so much better and safer when we were growing up. Mary laughlin

    • You are so very right Mary. We should not live in fear, but enjoy life. Prayers and thoughts to the families who lost loved ones in such as senseless crimes.

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Mary kmak you are right. It use to be when we were growing up you could go anywhere and only fear your parents if you did something wrong . Now days you cannot even go to the movies or grocery store , without fearing you will be shot . Let’s all prey for the ones in Paris . That was terrible. Mary Laughlin

  72. It’s a wet Monday readers and for those driving please be careful the roads are wet. I would like to share an exercise with you that I do whenever it’s raining or too cold to be walking. You can do this at home or in your office. Sit on a chair and put both of your legs straight & lift them up and down 10 times / 5 different times (TL 50 lifts) each leg. Then strength both arms straight out and move them forward ten times and backwards ten times / the same 5 different times TL 50. This is what I do and will do on the hour today if it doesn’t clear up by noon. As I stressed since day one please start out with BABY STEPS. It doesn’t matter if you do 5 / 1 or 2 times at LEAST you are trying. I have worked my way up for over a year
    now BUT remember this is coming from a person who started with a 5 minute daily walk. This blog has
    over 132,000 views & Facebook 130,000 on my PROMISE so I want to encourage those who are following
    me with different food choices and exercise choices that has helped me with my journey. I have more weight to lose and will continue to do so and find different recipes and exercises to help with and use the same ones that got me to this point. Making lifestyle changes are YOUR choices and you do what works for you BUT please “JUST DO”. Today is a new day if you haven’t started any exercises why NOT try a few of “Mary’s rainy day”ones? AT YOUR own pace! If it hurts you just stop! I KNOW with these simple strengthes FOR ME it helps with my stiffness and circulation. Have a GREAT Monday readers and thank you for following my story!
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning Mary Kmak. I was blown away with your exercise tip. I never thought of that. I have been real busy taking care of my mom , going to doctors and X-rays. And all those other places to get her back in good health, I have not been able to do the exercise like I want to. But theses I can do while I am waiting with her for her appointment. It may look strange to others in the waiting room but I am doing it for me and taking care of my mom at the same time . Who knows maybe others will start doing it as they wait with their parent. Thank you for that suggestion. I will try today and see how many people look at me 🙂 keep dry and keep up the great work

  73. READERS SORRY ABOUT ALL MY TYPO’S; BUT, I’M WORKING OFF MY BEATEN UP PHONE! That will change shortly! BUT, you guys are SMART you KNOW what I mean! 🙂
    Thank you! Mary

  74. Mary L any form of exercise is GREAT when you take care of a loved one or with any of life’s stresses in any capacity. We think that exercising is good for physical health ONLY; but as I said in my 11/14 post it’s also good for your mental health. These stretches are good anywhere including waiting in a Drs office, hospital or nursing facility. I get my shares of looks TOO! 🙂 BUT, I have also had people join me! Best wishes to your Mom and you! Just a little note to others out there who take care of a loved one. PLEASE don’t forget to take care of yourself. During rough times please eat properly and don’t binge on bad choices and have alot of fresh fruits, nuts & yogurts to grab for snacks. Also, take the time for a quick walk or some stretches or any form of exercise to keep you BOTH physically and mentally strong!
    Sincerely, Mary

  75. Hi Readers, Here’s my winter Wednesday tip!
    Now that the weather is starting to get cold some don’t like taking walks or we simply can’t. Sooo as my alternative to cold, windy & rainy days JUST GO to the mall closest to you or even a grocery store and go up and down each aisle and WALK. In fact I go to the grocery store closest to me and walk each aisle and then go back and get what I need. Have you taken your lunch break yet? If NOT how about a grocery store or mall walk? 🙂
    Friday recipe is a good one especially for the Sweet potato lovers out there! Have a wonderful Wednesday readers!
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Hello, Mary Kmak, I was just reading your Wednesday tip. But I did not to wait till Wednesday to do your tip of the week. I Started today and did EXACTLY what you do and walked each aisle then went back and did my shopping. Going to start doing every time I do my shopping now because any calories I can burn off add up.
      keep all these tips coming. I need them. Thank You
      Mary Laughlin


      • Mary L sometimes I can give a little notice sometimes I’ll say today BUT anytime you can take a walk or do any stretches you’re right it’s extra calories burned off. Especially this time of year they all add up. I said Wed cuz I know the new ads come out and some readers will be grocery shopping for their Thanksgiving dinner so why not go thru all the aisles first before you start your shopping? With the
        weather change some may not do the outdoors as much sooo take advantage of your grocery store. I do cuz I’m right there anyhow. In fact I try going on an off time to avoid alot of people. I know you like Sweet potatoes Mary L so wait til you see my Friday recipe. I’m sure you’ll make for your Thanksgiving! The weather did ease up some & I was able to take my 2nd 30 minute walk for the day. One of the many great things about Tucson is it won’t stay cold that long before the sun starts shining again! 🙂

      • definitely good advice

      • GOOD for you Jennie! You did the same as Mary L. Sooo much for waiting for the new ads. I give tips, recipes, exercises and “Mary’s” alternatives including diet “secrets” that helped me lose 100#s. EVERYTHING I post I do and will continue to do until I reach goal weight. I have all my Drs apts next month and so excited to find out how much more I need to lose and other health related results that keeps on getting better. It makes me happy whenever someone tries anything I post because that tells me they too are willing to make changes to better health. I have so many more idea’s & changes to share and hope everyone will continue to follow me on my road to reaching my goal weight and keeping my PROMISE. AND YES more SECRETS! Keeping up with the grocery tip I have ONE more to add on Winter Wednesday NOT ONLY for the season BUT ALL year round. DON’T waste time driving around looking for the closest parking space to any entrance. Park the furthest away and WALK to that entrance. It will take less time walking to the entrance than driving around looking. Remember every extra few calories we burn up ALL adds up. Try it and let this be your 1st changed habit towards the New Year if you aren’t doing it ALREADY! Simple changes adds up to better health. Let’s start our BABY STEPS towards a healthy happy New Year! 🙂
        Have a healthy day readers!

      • Mary laughlin says:

        Good morning Mary Kmak. I always look forward to your tips. You have some great ones. I have been parking as far away from the store as I can . When I go to the mall I will park at the other side so I have to walk the whole mall to get where I am going . This is really helping me. Thank you for your tips and looking forward to the next one. Have a great day and keep on walking . 😊

      • This is a very good tip Mary and I park far away so I get my exercise in walking. Walking is the easiest form of exercise and not hard on the body as running.

  76. “THURSDAY TRANSITION” Readers! How about getting rid of something old and starting something new? Are you seeing the commercials or getting your “reminders” to ORDER your “holiday pies, cakes & goodies”? Now is when people start BUT why don’t you “Reserve” the TIME you spend waiting on the phone to place your order and fighting traffic to pick it up NOT to mention those unwanted extra calories to “RESERVE” those 30 minutes just for yourself? Whether YOU choose to go on a walk, exercise, start some early Holiday shopping or JUST plain relax, spend that time on YOU for your own physical and mental well being during the most Stressful season & upcoming Holiday of the year! Just replace that dessert with a better healthy choice and make that Transition this year. In the past I would be FIRST on the list with my order; but, for my 30 minute transition I am going to walk thru one of our fine Farmer’s Markets and get some fresh Fall produce. The Farmer’s Markets are GREAT this time of the year and fun to shop. Won’t you join me? Have a GREAT Thursday and tomorrow is Friday recipe and I know all the Sweet potatoes lovers will enjoy this one. 🙂

    • I will join you! Happy Thursday, week is almost over so that is the best part! Farmers markets are a great resource that are definitely not utilized as often as they should be. I am glad that you mentioned those, they are a great alternative while supporting local growers and business. They’re always bringing in the fresh crops, which taste much better than the stuff bought in the standard grocery stores. Great alternative!!

      XOXO Max

      • Well then if my Fabulous Godson will be joining me it will JUST have to be longer than 30 minutes! 🙂 Since I would order 2 pies + stand in line waiting forever that’s at LEAST a full hour +++ at the Farmer’s market. You are correct Max there is definitely a taste difference & love supporting our local neighbors! 🙂 I CAN’T think of a better way to spend my time!!!
        Love you,
        XOXOXO Aunt Mary

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning Mark Kmak. I read your post and just as I finished my daughter-in law called and ask if she could bring pies . I said no, we are not having pies this year. But you can get a basket of fruits . This is healthier and I am really trying to lose weight . She was so excited, she said that she is trying to get her family away from sweets and that is a great ideal. So thank you again Mary. I am also looking forward to tomorrow’s post. I cannot wait. Have a great day. Mary laughlin

      • Mary L your typo’s are worse than mine! Haha GOOD for you with fresh fruits! Take out the Apple’s & Pears & bake them soooo much better and get some Fat free frozen or Greek yogurt to go with it.:-)

    • thank you Mary for the great advice

      • Your welcome Jennie. I KNOW you try hard to eat healthy and you’re doing a GREAT job. I recommend you going to the local Farmer’s Markets. You will definitely enjoy that! 🙂

      • thank you Mary and that is good advice – wishing you a great weekend

  77. IT’S RECIPE FRIDAY READERS! Throughout my journey the hardest part was giving up my sugary desserts. I have found so many alternatives especially during the holiday season that I not only find delicious and healthy; but, doesn’t leave me feeling tired from all the sugar in my system. Here’s a festive holiday keeper in my household which
    is also quick and easy.
    2#s Sweet potatoes (about 4 medium)
    1/2 cup skim milk
    1-1/2 tsp Light butter softened
    3/4 Cup brown sugar
    1 TBSP Sugar Free Maple Syrup
    2 Eggs
    1 tsp vanilla extract & 1 tsp cinnamon
    Whipped topping optional
    1) Preheat oven to 350° Spray 2 – 9″ pie pans with non stick cooking spray.
    2) Boil Sweet Potatoes for 40-45 minutes. Run cold water over them to cool. Remove skin.
    3) Add sweet potatoes to bowl and mash.
    4) Add light butter, skim milk, brown sugar, maple sugar, eggs, cinnamon & vanilla.
    5) Using a mixer beat on medium high speed until mixture is smooth. Pour filling into pie pans.
    6) Bake 45-50 minutes or until knife in center comes out clean. OPTIONAL: Top with whip topping
    Again, all my recipes are what I use with sugar free, low fat & light when available. You can substitute to your liking. Sweet potatoes are filled with potassium, Vit C, Vit B1,2,6 AND fiber. I hope you try this and enjoy as much as my family and I. Have a GREAT Friday and Good healthy weekend! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • sounds delicious!!!!

    • Mary Laughlin says:

      Good morning Mary Kmak. I just read your recipe for sweet potatoes. I love sweet potatoes . I have been thinking about how I could make a great dish out of sweet potatoes. Now I have a great recipe to try. With all your thanksgiving recipes , my family will think I am the greatest cook and. This will be the first year it will be the healthiest . With your help and the TMC wellness class I took I am eating healthier and feeling better and losing weight . Thank you Mary Kmak and TMC Welling program after 60 years I am finally eating right and healthy. So you can teach an old dog new tricks. 😋 Keep
      Up the great work. I cannot wait to see what you have in mind for left overs. I bet it is a great on . Mary Laughlin

  78. Mary L in the past I always made the sweet potatoes with marshmallows, pineapple, LOTS of brown sugar, butter, FATS & CALORIES. Now I no longer want; but, enjoy sweet potatoes different ways. In fact I have a VERY SPECIAL story that my Mom told me about when she was a little girl growing up in the depression days regarding Sweet potatoes that I still remember today. I will share that on Monday morning with you and the rest of my
    readers. You are NEVER too old to change and
    learn good eating habits. The BEST place to
    start is Tucson’s finest hospital here at TMC
    with their EXCELLENT Live Well classes & Life
    Enhancement Program. I say this several
    times because I believe in these classes and seeing is believing since I lost 100#s so far & I want everyone struggling to lose weight to be aware of these programs that TMC offers. I am putting myself out there with personal results and what worked for me to show others that you can do it to. I KNOW cuz I been there done it with the worse possible choices of diets and no knowledge of nutrition. So Ms Laughlin if you love sweet potatoes this is a good choice & alternative for the sugary desserts! I have many topics I will be talking about in the upcoming posts including Sugar which as I stated was the hardest to stay away from for ME and NOW I don’t really want! Enjoy your weekend friend! 🙂

  79. IT’S MEMORY MONDAY READERS! The holidays are a GREAT time to make memories that you will remember for the rest of your life. Thanksgiving is a day to give thanks and many believe a day of “FOOD” and overeating is OK! Eat everything OVER & OVER AGAIN! I used to think that; but, NOT ANY MORE!!! I make it a day to reminisce of old memories & make new ones. I remember my beloved Mom telling me a story about when she was 6 years old growing up in the depression days during the winter in Pittsburgh when it snowed. My Grandma would cook whole Sweet potatoes in their coal oven & wrap them up in foil then put one in her coat pocket to keep her warm and when she got to school she would eat for her breakfast. Now my Mom and Dad did very well in life for themselves; but, some of her fondest memories were during hard times as a little girl YET it was BEST times in her mind which she cherished. WON’T you join me this Thanksgiving and make a new memory that you will hold in your heart for yourself and share with your loved ones? Whether you’re having hard times or not this could be one that will be memorable and last a lifetime too. So readers lets make Thanksgiving a day of giving Thanks, enjoying family & friends, eating a healthy meal and making new memories and giving up the “Free for all” day of overeating! Have a marvelous Monday! 🙂
    Mary H Kmak

    • Mary Laughlin. says:

      Good morning Mary Kmak, what a wonderful story about your mom and making memories. Very heart warming . I love hearing stories like this. It is so heart warming. Those times were bad but it sounds like your grandmother made the best of them. Your mom had wonderful stories. I look forward to hearing more of them . I love sweet potatoes , my favorite potato. And the recipe you gave the other day sounds fantastic and I wil be trying it on thanksgiving. I plan on taking several walks on thanksgiving and drinking more water before meals , so to fill full before my meal . Thank you for your stories and recipes I am looking forward to the next story and recipe. Mary Laughlin

    • Mary laughlin says:

      Good morning Mary Kmak. I just read your post , what wonderful memory . Your mom had several good stories. Those memories are so precious . Your mom was a very very special lady. I love your post and recipes. You have such great ideals. I love the sweet potatoe recipe . I cannot wait to try it. I plan on walking several times on thanksgiving and drinking more water to fill me up before thanksgiving dinner . I am looking forward to your next recipe and I hope more memory ones also. Keep up the great work. Mary Laughlin

  80. Imelda Garcia says:

    I remember Mama telling that story AND how long IT took to cook those Sweet potatoes in a coal oven. Thanksgiving is a beautiful holiday with many memorias and you did very well with changes for dinner. I am happy to have good memorias of Mama AND know she is smiling from Heaven as you continúe to lose weight AND keep your Promise. I look forward to Thanksgiving dinner AND eating all healthy recipes that you make. Mucho better FOR everybody hermana. Continúe until you reach your goal you will do it.

    • It did take a long time Imelda. I remember Mom telling us they had to be put in to cook in the middle of the night to be ready for the morning. Actually I enjoy Baked Sweet potatoes by themselves and sooo GOOD for you + tasty! For the ones who use the canned pineapple, brown sugar, butter & marshmallows there is an alternate. Get fresh pineapple put in your food processor & light or Sugar free brown sugar & pour over your boiled sweet potatoes without the marshmallows. There are always alternatives; just try them readers and you may find you like them better than the sugary ones you been using. I do & I no longer feel tired after making better choices! 🙂

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