Monday, December 23, 2013

The Biggest Diet News of 2013

I feel like diet news is nothing new.  We all know what we need to do, right?

  • Eat real food: fruits, veggies, nuts, fish
  • Avoid the fake stuff loaded with sugar, white flour and processed crap 
  • Move more  
We know all this.  To paraphrase Nike: we just don't do it.



I'm right there with ya.  The season of holiday indulgence has left me with little extra muffin top and we're not even through Christmas!

Still there is always a new discovery or scientific data that might have us rethinking our approach to a healthful diet.

Health magazine (which is FABULOUS) profiled the "15 Biggest Diet and Weight Loss Stories of 2013."

Some of the Interesting Ones: 
Make sleep a major priority - Researchers at UT Southwestern Med Center determined that not enough sleep causes us to eat more and gain weight.  Think about it.  You just crave crap when you're sleep-deprived.

I am also hearing from more and more women that sleep is their "secret weapon" to staying beautiful.  {Shameless Plug Alert: Check out my new website TheBestBeautySecrets.com}.

Ditch the Diet Stuff - fake sweeteners might make you crave sugar even more.

Anti-inflammatory foods
Fight the Flame - focus on anti-inflammatory plant-based foods.  "Anti-inflammation is the key to disease protection, regardless of weight."  This is big news and might explain why some overweight adults remain healthy. What are anti-inflammatory foods?  All the stuff you think: fatty fish, dark leafy greens, berries, nuts.  Think colors of the rainbow.

The Takeaway
This is a great read if you're gearing up for "getting back on the wagon" in 2014.

I say, though, why wait?  Start now.

If you make plant-based foods a mainstay of your diet and indulge moderately (better said: when it's REALLY worth it) you can fit back into your skinny jeans on New Year's Eve....and won't have to start 2014 on a crash diet.

The best way to do this?  Adopt a Mediterranean approach to eating.  It works.
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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

How To Win Your Fantasy Football League

With apologies to fantasy experts, stat geeks and all wanna-be gm's, winning your fantasy football league isn't as difficult as you think.

Yep. I auto-drafted my players and didn't even spend a second thinking about my team and won my league.

The Back Story
I played fantasy football once before, when I worked in Knoxville at WBIR-TV in the late 90's.  This was in the pre-internet days.  Fantasy football was a freaking full-time job.  Setting lineups, making trades, you know how it goes. Beating.



Fast forward five years.  I'm working for the Dallas Cowboys and a local sports reporter approaches Emmitt Smith in the locker room.

"Hey Emmitt, how do you feel?" asked the reporter.

"Fine, man," Smith replied.

"Sweet!" the reporter almost shouted.  I'm trying to figure out whether to start or sit you against the Eagles this weekend."

If looks could kill, this reporter would have been dead.  Emmitt gave the reporter the ultimate visual "F-U".

Add to that, the constant fantasy football dialog I endured during football season year after year and, I'm sorry, I just thought it was dorky.

The Fantasy Football Project
In effort to create engaging, compelling content for The Fan Sports Show, the CBS11/TXA21 sports department created a fantasy football league this Fall for TV purposes.  We would briefly discuss it on the air and promote our website as a place to find exclusive content and expertise. Riveting, right?


I decided to get involved since, at the time, I was the host of The Fan Sports Show but I did it with a caveat: only if I didn't have to think about it and spend a single second focusing on lineups, trades, etc.

Our "commissioner", the great Mike Marshall AKA the Machine, ensured me I wouldn't have to put more than five minutes worth of thought into the entire process of managing my team, the Inarajan High Governors.  (named it after a village in Guam where I lived for six months out of college as the sports director for KUAM-TV).

Done.

I autodrafted my team.  I automatically set my lineup every week.  I don't think I made a trade.  I wouldn't know.  I never looked at my roster, league standings or who I was playing.

Turns out, my team didn't suck.  On the contrary, it kicked ass.  Or so I was told.  Remember, I didn't pay attention to it.

In fact, Steve Dennis had to text me Sunday morning to let me know that we were playing each other for the league championship.

And look what happened.

I won.  Or should I say the Inarajan High Governors and CBSSports.com's Auto-GM won the whole freaking thing for me but who gives a crap!  I WON!

Now, I no longer work at CBS11/TXA21.  I don't have the opportunity to rub my victory in my colleagues faces, except maybe on Twitter, but I do think the victory means something.

For one, it hurts the credibility of the services provided by many of the "fantasy football experts".  I know people who actually PAY MONEY to subscribe to expert newsletters and follow their advice.  You don't need to shell out a cent for expertise or spend so much time agonizing over lineups that it becomes a full-time job.

More importantly, it's a lesson: perhaps fantasy football IS about the camraderie, the verbal jabs, the celebration of the victory and, to steal from ABC Sports, the agony of defeat.  It's fun to play fantasy football, not so much the beatdown of the weekly game itself but fun to experience the season with your friends in your league. That is what makes the experience so rewarding.

Crap, I didn't even experience the majority of the season with my league after leaving CBS11/TXA21 but I still had fun rubbing my success in their faces.

So who did I have on my team?  Peyton Manning, Jamaal Charles and 4 kickers.

I think.
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Monday, December 9, 2013

Healthy Diets DO Cost More and Are Worth Every Extra Penny

Eating a well-balanced diet is more expensive and undoubtedly worth it.

A Harvard School of Public Health study recently determined eating a healthful diet full of fruit, vegetables, nuts and fish costs, on average, about $1.50 more per day than a diet constituted of processed foods, meats and refined grains.

At the end of the year, this can cost about $550 extra per year per person.  Undoubtedly, that can create a burden on some families but the price of consuming a well-balanced diet is nothing when compared to the cost of diet-related diseases (diabetes, heart disease, etc.).  In fact, the study points out that the cost of treating these diseases is about...wait for it....$393 BILLION per year in the U.S. or about $1200 per year per person. 


Remember this:
It is better (and easier) to prevent disease and illness than it is to treat it. 

Wouldn't you rather pay a bit more to consume delicious, quality food that nourishes your body than pay for expensive prescriptions and medical treatments? 



This study actually hints at a bigger issue indicating that "unhealthy diets may cost less because food policies have focused on the production of 'inexpensive, high volume commodities', which has led to 'a complex network of farming, storage, transportation, processing, manufacturing, and marketing capabilities that favor sales of highly processed food products for maximal industry profit.' Given this reality, they said that creating a similar infrastructure to support production of healthier foods might help increase the availability — and reduce the prices — of more healthful diets."

Fair enough but when it comes to our health, we're all going to pay one way or the other.  I would rather pay upfront for high-quality food items than go bankrupt treating an awful disease caused by a terrible diet.  

My grandmother was a Type 2 diabetic.  Her poor diet combined with inactivity led to a painful death for her and our entire family.  She was a wonderful, engaging woman who suffered, in large part, because of her diet which was dominated by processed food later in her life. 

The Takeaway
Healthful diets might cost more but the longterm benefit of potentially reduced healthcare costs and a life free of diet-induced medical issues make them worth every extra penny.

A typical day on the Mediterranean diet
I've said many times but I'll say it again: I LOVE the Mediterranean approach to eating.  It's a diet full of fish, vegetables, fruits, olive oil, chocolate and wine.  It's so abundant you don't feel deprived.

There's also the latest research from the UK that says eating the Mediterranean way is an effective way to fight dementia.

You can't go wrong eating this way.

Here is one of my favorite Mediterranean diet recipes: Halibut with Roasted Tomatoes & Balsamic Glaze.

*photos courtesy of Shutterstock








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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Why I'm a Working Mom Who Is NOT Guilty

Having gone through a wonderful professional transformation recently, I have had too many conversations to recount as to what my career change means for the time I spend with my daughter.

In short, now that I am working for myself, I have more control over my time.  My days and nights are not ruled by breaking news and sports schedules.  Unlike before, I am able to enjoy nights, holidays and weekends with her but I am busier than ever and loving it.

When I mention that to friends and colleagues they are shocked.
Thanksgiving 2013
"Didn't you want to spend more time with your daughter?" they ask.

"Sure, but I'm still working," I respond.

"Why?"

That simple question leads to lengthy discussions of career goals, working motherhood and choices.

Simply put, I enjoy working and love my "job".  Granted, having been a fulltime sportscaster for almost 20 years, I have had more fun on the job in one day than most people have throughout their careers.  Now that I am consulting for great clients like D&M Leasing and the Dallas Cowboys, the work is just as rewarding.

I am happiest when I am productive.  As a mother, I value the fact that I provide for my family and am setting an example for her.  The income I am able to contribute to our family enables us to travel and have experiences we wouldn't otherwise be able to enjoy.

I believe if more working mothers adopted this philosophy there would be less "guilt dialog".

Paris 2013
I am asked about feeling guilty.  Candidly, I haven't had an ounce.

Okay.  Check that.  It sucked when I had to miss her first birthday celebration in 2012 because a colleague called in sick and I had to work late on a Wednesday to do the 10pm news.  Sure, I missed the celebration that night but that weekend, we had an even better celebration that lasted two days.

Beyond that, there has been no guilt.  None.  In fact, I feel guilty when I am not working.  I want my daughter to realize that anyone, man or woman, can accomplish his or her goals through perseverance, hard work and dedication.  I want her to realize that she can achieve what she wants by working for it.  Trust me, I'm a testament to it.  Can you imagine the shock in 1992 when I told my parents I wanted to study to be a sportscaster?  Blank stares.

That's not to say working for an employer or running a business is right for every parent.  I have many friends who are fulfilled being at home fulltime, running their households and taking care of their families.  It works for them and that's fabulous.

The concept, though, of every working parent, particularly mothers, sitting at the office and saddled with guilt is false. There are plenty of us who are content balancing the challenges and rewards of working, being a parent AND taking time for ourselves.

We are out there.

And loving every minute of it.


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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

People Your Age Are on Instagram?!?!? Yes, We Are.

"People your age are on Instagram?!?!?!" asked the 13-year in front of me.

"How old do you think I am?" I asked a bit too aggressively, fighting my reporter's urge to raise me voice another decibel.

"I'm just kidding," I awkwardly said trying to soften the exchange.

She couldn't imagine someone my age (ugh) taking selfies.  I would argue that my approach to Instagram goes beyond the selfie or picture of my latest manicure but a recent review of my profile might prove otherwise.

I digress.

Selena Gomez and Gina Miller
People my age ARE on Instagram
I was speaking to a group of smart 8th graders at a local middle school for Career Day.  My focus was TV/Print/Radio/Web and the opportunities that the evolving media industry presents.

Some of the entrepreneurial teens were already making a career for themselves blogging, posting videos on YouTube and earning advertising revenue for their efforts.

Even more interesting was their social media habits. I asked the approximately 90 students about their social media consumption.  Across the board, they were on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.

When I asked them about Facebook.  Crickets.

A small sample size, yes, but my informal poll reiterates what experts are finding in much more scientific studies. Twitter is a young person's game and Facebook is for people, um, my age.  

Facebook acknowledged as much in their recent earnings report that it was seeing a "decrease in daily users, specifically among teens."

A recent study from comScore illustrates this.


The numbers are even more interesting when you look at the mobile usage numbers. 


Twitter has a larger share of younger users up to the age of about 24.

Teens and young people are also going messenger app crazy.  Platforms like WhatsApp, KakaoTalk and WeChat are gaining ground.

Scared yet?

Why Should You and Your Business Care? 
You know you need to be in the social media game, right?  You know you need to be Tweeting about product launches, sharing news germane to your industry and more, right?  You understand that your social media efforts are, many times, the first line of communication with your target customer, yes?

Well now you gotta really be in the game to connect with those tweens, teens and young professionals.

Scared now?

Don't be.  First and foremost you need to be where your customers are.  What demographic does your business focus on and appeal to?  That needs to be your main focus.

Does your business cater to women 35 and older, then Facebook and LinkedIn might be better suited for your content marketing campaign.  Trying to connect with kids?  Get on Twitter.

Confused by where to go to reach your target audience?  Don't be.  The team at That Sports Girl Media can help. We know how to talk to people, we know where they hang out and we know how to create a message that resonates with them.

We also won't waste your time or money creating a campaign on a platform that your key consumer isn't using.

Contact That Sports Girl Media to find out how we can ease your communication pain so you can focus on your business.

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Monday, December 2, 2013

Take the Pain Out of Home Juicing with This Easy Trick

Before juice bars became the 2013 version of the cupcake and yogurt shop boom, I was quite the home juicer. From kale blends and green lemonade to pineapple mint juice and a grape lemon medley, I could have opened my own juice bar with all the mixing I was doing.

green lemonade
Green Lemonade
Why did I stop doing it so religiously?  For one, the ubiquity of juice bars and offerings from Whole Foods made the process easier.  Mainly, I hated the beating of cleaning my Breville Juice Extractor.  It sounds lazy but cleaning the pulp out of the feeder chute and the blade is a pain.  The leftover pulp in the pulp collector can sometimes attract fruit flies if the weather is warm.  It's just a whip.

One way to ease the pain is to place a grocery store produce bag in the pulp collector.  This makes cleaning this portion of the juicer a breeze, serves as a great way to recycle those bags and collects the majority of the pulp in a bag that can be tied shut so it doesn't attract fruit flies.  The video illustrates how to use the bag.

video

You still have to clean the blade, which can be a challenge, but it makes one step of the process easier.

Looking for homemade juice ideas?  Try this one:

  • One bunch of kale - this provides vitamins A, C and K
  • One half a pear - vitamins A, B1, B2, C, E, folate and niacin
  • One entire celery heart, think about 6 stalks with leaves and all - this provides a bevy of vitamins B1, B2, and B6
That mixtures yields this tasty green juice:
kale, pear, celery juice
YUM! 
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Thursday, November 28, 2013

What I Am Thankful for Today and Every Day

We all have different reasons for being thankful this Thanksgiving holiday.  Trolling my social media feeds has been a treat and inspiration as friends are expressing their gratitude for life changes, career moves and more.

In the spirit of the season, here are a few things for which I am thankful.  Not just today but every day.
punta mita, casa de mita
Thanksgiving morning in Punta Mita, Mexico
  • I thankful for every day I wake up and am excited about the opportunities it presents. Having made quite the career change over the last two months, I am challenged and energized by my new endeavor.  I am also overwhelmed by the encouragement and support I receive from strangers, former viewers and friends every single day.  It's humbling.  Seriously, a FedEx driver brought me to tears on Tuesday with her kind words. 
  • I am thankful for my health.  I truly believe if you don't have good health, you don't have anything.  No amount of money or status can compensate for poor health.  I appreciate the fact I take responsibility for it and don't blame anyone else for weight gain, back pain or the like.  It's on me to improve it. Taking responsibility for your health is empowering. 
eiffel tower
June 2013
  • I am thankful for my daughter, her poopy diapers, her laugh, her snoring, her language development and curiosity.  Having a daughter is more fun than I ever thought it would be.  So many parents warned me about the work and drudgery that accompany having a child.  No one told me it would be so much fun. 
  • I am thankful for my husband, his patience with me and the bizarre bodily noises that emanate from him at all hours of the night.  They're not pretty but they're him.  As much as we sometimes want to strangle our spouses, those of us who have the right one are lucky.  He has every reason to strangle me but hasn't.  Yet.  God bless him. 
  • I am thankful for learning new technology.  Learning is fun.  Really.  
hermes les amoureux de paris scarf
Hermes Les Amoureux de Paris 
  • I am thankful for my obsession with Hermes scarves.  Collecting them has developed into a passion that I didn't know would bring me such joy.  Hunting for that vintage find is half the battle.  I am crushing on French-inspired scarves right now. 
  • I am thankful that I am rarely happy with the status quo.  I am someone who is always looking to do better, do more and get more out of life.  Many times it bites me in the ass and I fear my ambition outweighs my talent but when that hard work pays off, it's magnificent. 
  • I am thankful for The Mary Tyler Moore Show.  Genius TV that is still relevant today.  That and Veep make me laugh.  
  • I am thankful for the failures in my life of which there have been many.  They're the best learning experiences.  
casa batllo in barcelona
Casa Batllo, Barcelona
  • I am thankful for my love of travel.  The misery of waiting in long lines at an airport and dealing with a cramped middle seat is alleviated by the magic of discovering a new city or revisiting a favorite one.  I'll never tire of Paris, Barcelona, New Orleans, Montecito or any of the wonderfully remote Mexican towns.  Just thinking about them get that travel bug going.  
Arc de Triomphe circa 1940-something
  • I am thankful for the pictures my grandfather, George Mobley, took while he was stationed in Europe in the 1940's. The picture he took of the Arc de Triomphe is as timeless today as it was nearly a century ago.  I love the feeling of being in the same spot, taking a picture where he did.  He died in 1998.  My grandmother in 2001.  They had the travel bug, too. 
Childhood friends
  • I am thankful for lifelong friends who are the same as they were in second grade and new friends who bring wonderfully fresh perspectives into my life.
  • I am thankful for my wonderful, wacky diverse family.  
  • I am thankful for you: readers on this blog and my social media family.  
Again, thank you.  I hope that whatever your Thanksgiving Day holds it's full of good food, good football, parades, good friends, family and whatever makes you happy.

Enjoy! 

What are you thankful for in your lives right now?
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Monday, November 25, 2013

How to Bring a Breaking News Approach to Your Business

Launching a new product or service?  Calling a press conference to announce a new corporate initiative?  Have a celebrity in town to promote your company?  Is your industry convention introducing groundbreaking innovations?

All of that is news.  As a part of your overall event marketing strategy you need to treat it like a breaking news situation on relevant social media platforms to raise awareness for your brand.  Live-Tweet the details of the innovation.  Post photos to Instagram of the celebrity talking to the media and demonstrating your product.

This gets your company, product or service in the cultural conversation which raises awareness for your brand and will ultimately have a positive impact on your bottom line.

In Action 
Let's launch a hypothetical product: a new iPad case, that has a built-in stylus which prevents you from losing the pesky pen.  Here's a crash course in treating it as a breaking news situation with your original content.
Courtesy Target.com
Before the Event
A few days before the release, write a blog post "teasing" a new product launch.  Emphasize that it will solve one of mobile computing's biggest pains.  Share promotional posts with links back to the blog on all of your social media platforms.  This builds anticipation.

Your Facebook page will promote the news of the launch.  Your Twitter and Instagram feeds will ask "What's in this box and why will it change your iPad game?"  Both feeds will feature a photo with just a portion of the case, "teasing" your followers of what's to come.

At the Event
Twitter is the best vehicle during a breaking news situation and you should take advantage of that during your company's events.

Live-Tweet the news of the launch.  As it relates to our iPad case/stylus, you would Tweet the inspiration behind the product.  "54% of customers, including our CMO Gina Miller, complain of losing their stylus. #SaveYourStylus"  Tweet why this product will prevent that.  

Create a Twitter hashtag for your event incorporating the product name.  In this hypothetical case, #SaveYourStylus might work.  Create a giveaway offering the new case to a follower who uses #SaveYourStylus creatively in their Tweets.

Post gorgeous product photos to Instagram incorporating appropriate hashtags during the event.

After the Event
Produce a blog post, in the same vein as a news story detailing the Who, What, When, Where, Why & How of the event.  Include pictures.  Again, post to all the appropriate social media platforms.

The Takeaway
Social media is, more and more, becoming your first line of communication with new and existing customers.  You need an engaging content plan.  The thing is that it's not easy and it should not receive secondary treatment.

If you have a receptionist or busy account executive manning your Twitter feed or updating your company blog, your content plan won't receive the proper attention it deserves and will suffer in the process.


That Sports Girl Media is focused solely on raising your company's profile through original content.  We connect you with your core consumers, engage them in ways other content creators can't and share information with them that resonates and strengthens your brand.

We're news professionals. We know how to talk to people.  We also know how to use the news to help your business.  Contact That Sports Girl Media today to find out how we can ease your communication pain so you can focus on your business.
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Monday, November 18, 2013

How to Use Social Media to Raise Awareness for Your Fundraiser and Organization

As more corporations realize that investing in original content and social media is a necessity rather than luxury, the same philosophy should apply to your fundraiser for your nonprofit organization.
Paws in the City Dancing With the Stars
Top Hat & Tails Dancing with the Stars 2009
Whether it's the Cattle Baron's BallDIFFA Dallas' Masquerade Ball, Paws in the City's Top Hat & Tails, Fort Worth's Cowtown Ball  or New York's legendary Met Gala, multimedia content and social media can be a gamechanger.

Why?  Because social media grows your nonprofit's profile not only in your community but also globally.  The right message and right campaign can resonate beyond the city in which an event takes place.  As your organization's profile grows, this can have a positive effect on your bottom line and fundraising effort.

How do you do this?  Produce content before, during and after the event and promote it to all relevant social media platforms as well as your organization's website.

Before the Event
Have a marquee auction item?  Detail how awesome it is via a blog post or Instagram video and promote it to social media platforms in the weeks leading up to the event.
Courtesy TACA-Arts.org
Take, for instance, The TACA Custom Auction Gala.  It is an amazing evening that celebrated its 48th year in September and always has wonderfully decadent auction items.  2013 was no different.

Among the items offered this year was a trip to Art Basel in Miami with a private guided tour by a famed art curator.  Following that was a trip to the Caribbean with a two-night stay at Rosewood's Little Dix Bay in British Virgin Gorda.

An experience like this is a priceless, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  In the days leading up to the event, a well-crafted blog post detailing the experience and thanking the sponsors generates buzz for the auction items and the event itself.  It also offers an additional mention to key big ticket sponsors.  That mention can be a part of your sponsorship package.

Incorporate this strategy for a number of premiere auction items to help build anticipation.  It not only raises awareness but it can potentially generate early bids online which helps your bottom line and fundraising efforts.

During the Event
People love live events.  That is why sporting events are so popular on Twitter and social media.  Games are a way for people to participate in a real-time conversation online.  The same principle applies to a fundraiser as people are rarely without their smartphones.  Incorporating Twitter and Instagram into your overall event strategy is a smart and cost-effective way to engage guests and potential supporters.

Courtesy DIFFADallas.org
Think about it.  Each year DIFFA's House of DIFFA Masquerade Ball offers some of the most over-the-top, fabulous fashions on the Dallas social calendar.  Posting photos to Instagram and Twitter of the red carpet arrivals and the runway fashions featuring the relevant fashion designer hashtags is a great way to put the event in the social media conversation.  If a designer like Marc Jacobs or Oscar de la Renta retweets or likes a photo with your organization's name in it, that is a huge boost for your nonprofit's profile.

Another example: share the story of an individual impacted by the organization.  I emceed the Nexus Westapher Kickoff in September.  I posted a photo of former Nexus patient, Toni Lambert, sharing her inspirational story to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  This was not planned and was simply something I did because I was moved by her testimonial.  It received numerous retweets on Twitter and more than 30 combined likes on Facebook and Instagram.

Why?  Because people love good news.
Social media promotion of Nexus Westapher Kickoff
Note what Charlene Taylor said on Facebook: "There is a Nexus by me on Motley across from Eastfield College and I often wonder about what that center does."

With one simple photo, promoted to three different social media platforms, we helped educate one person about the Nexus Recovery Center.  Could it make a tangible impact?  Perhaps.  The thing is that it put Nexus in the conversation as the event was happening creating multiple social media impressions.

After the Event
Many organizations do a good job wrapping up the event and announcing the amount of money it raised on their websites via a blog post.  I suggest organizations take it a step further and produce a compelling video that details how wonderful the event was, how lively the auctions got and the positive impact the gala continues to make in the community.

Video is a powerful tool that can show emotion in ways a blog post can't.

How Gina Miller and That Sports Girl Media Can Help
While organizations already incorporate content and social media into their overall fundraising and event efforts, many times, it's a secondary consideration manned by an overworked volunteer or assistant.
Gina Miller at House of DIFFA's 2013 gala
Having a focused content and social media strategy can raise awareness for your nonprofit which can ultimately have a tangible effect on its bottom line.  Having a professional implement a targeted social media and content plan can alleviate the pain of doing this and let you, your volunteers and staff members focus on their primary roles.

Gina Miller has experience hosting and emceeing multiple events.  Ranging from 5k's and panel discussions to black tie galas, Gina is passionate about engaging your guests.  By having Gina and her That Sports Girl Media team at your event, you can also benefit from their social media and original content expertise.  Gina has more than 30,000 personal followers on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.  That's a lot of exposure for your organization.

Contact Gina Miller and That Sports Girl Media to find out how they can take your event to the next level.

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Friday, November 15, 2013

How to Stay Sane When Shopping for a New Car

If you Google "car buying tips for women", about 66 million results show up.  

A quick scan down the first page (let's be honest, who goes past the first page on Google anymore?) and you will see links to stories featuring the following titles: 
You get the idea.  Getting a car is tough enough.  Even tougher for many of us women.  It's a frustrating and often overwhelming process.  

Beth Anne Underwood told me on Twitter: "They thought I was shopping with Daddy's money." 

Ouch.

Beth Anne didn't feel like she was taken seriously when she was shopping for a car.  That is something no one should experience. 

The experience is remarkably different from Beth Anne's for clients, both male and female, who got their cars through D&M Leasing.  
D&M Leasing client Holly Kyle with her new 2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek
My own leasing experience was outstanding.  The thing is that my experience is the norm, not the exception. 

Thank you, Jared Smith, for restoring my faith in car guys! I felt like you really listened to what I needed and made it as stress-free as possible. I could not have asked for a better experience using D&M! When the hubs is ready for his new wheels, we'll definitely be giving you a call!  --Dee Hunt

That testimonial from client Dee Hunt sounds like hundred's of others you will find on D&M Leasing's Facebook page or Twitter feed

Getting a car is truly that easy.  D&M Leasing brings the car to you and makes the paperwork a snap. But don't make my word for it.  Read what other clients had to say via D&M Leasing's Facebook page:

Patricia Bossy-t Wright Bought two cars through D&M ... They will help restore your credit. Douglas Wright awesomeness wrapped in great personal service!

Kristin Pierson Payne My husband and I just bought a vehicle from D&M Leasing. This was the first time dealing with them and it was a great experience!! We definitely will be coming back and recommending all our friends too!!!!

A D&M Leasing Fan

Kristi Belden Darracq I have leased 5 cars through D&M Leasing. Call Keitha Munday....she's awesome!!

Tonya Cornelius Johnson I really like the relationship that we had with D&M Leasing our sale rep came to our home with a 2011 Cadillac SUV love it....I'm driving it now....this is a good avenue to go if you want to drive a luxury brand car....leasing is a better way too go!!!

Patti Koehler Hark Love love D&M Leasing. We love our new 2013 Chevy Impala! Raymond with D&M was amazing!!! 
D&M Leasing Testimonial
Another D&M Leasing Fan

Delores' story is one of remarkable customer service.  That's what everyone receives when using D&M Leasing.  

Still unsure about the process?  Give D&M Leasing a look on Facebook.  They're transparent, quick to respond to any question you might have and are ready to take the pain out of the car buying process.  

*This article is brought to you by D&M Leasing. Please visit DMAutoLeasing.com for more information.


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Thursday, November 14, 2013

4 Easy Ways to Exercise While Stuck at Your Desk All Day

You know the feeling.  That sloth-like, achy-back, sore-hips sense that grips you when you're stuck at your desk, in an uncomfortable chair for eight hours a day or more.

Studies repeatedly tells us that sitting at our desks for an extended period of time will kill us.  Nice.

So how you do combat the effects of sitting in a chair all day or prevent what I like to call "wide-ass desk booty"? I envision my booty getting wider and flatter, like a pancake, the longer I sit behind a desk.

lifespan treadmill desk
Treadmill Desk/Courtesy LifeSpan Fitness
If you don't have one of those fancy (or expensive!) treadmill desks, here are great ways to sneak in exercise:

  • Take the long way to get some water or use the restroom.  
  • Try to move for at least five minutes every hour.  For example: at 8:55 do 100 jumping jacks, 9:55 100 squats, 10:55 100 tricep dips, 11:55 100 desk pushups and so on.  Find a private space if you don't want co-workers to make fun of you. 
  • Don't laugh at this one: contract your abs while sitting at your desk.  If you don't want to get on the floor and do traditional situps, simply contract you're stomach muscles as if your bracing for a punch.  Do it for thirty seconds at a time throughout the day.  It's effective. 
  • Do a series of yoga poses and stretches.  A simple half moon stretch or cat cow pose feels amazing. 
cat cow pose
Cat Cow Pose/Courtesy LapBandSurgery.com

mountain pose
Mountain Pose/Courtesy: Yogr.com
Entrepreneur Magazine has some additional suggestions like visiting the park during your lunch hour, incorporating fitness into meetings AND working out at your desk.  Sound familiar? 

The mini-break you take to get the blood moving is worth it.  It will make you feel better and likely more productive when you plop back down. 


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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Is Getting Enough Protein the Key to Weight Loss?

After three incredibly indulgent days in New Orleans, I am focused on temperance and moderation.  I might have had about a dozen souffle potatoes from Antoine's on Sunday.  Might.  
antoine's souffle potatoes
Antoine's Souffle Potatoes
As I plan my meals for the week, protein and greens are a key component of them.   Apparently, not enough protein could be one of they key reasons why we overeat. 

An Australian study found that the instinctive appetite for protein in humans is so strong that people will keep eating until their bodies tell them they have had enough of it.  The problem tends to be in that we eat too much crap before we will fill up on protein. 

The University of Sydney's Charles Perkins Centre determined that as we eat foods high in carbohydrates, fats and sugar, we reduce the amount of protein we consume.  The New Zealand Herald examines the findings published in Obesity Reviews
grilled chicken
Courtesy: Beck's Prime
"We found that regardless of your age or body mass index, your appetite for protein is so strong that you will keep eating until you get enough protein, which could mean eating much more than you should,' said lead author Dr Alison Gosby.

When you consume things like soft drinks, which are fairly low in proportion of protein but high in calories, your energy intake will increase because you'll need to keep eating to get the protein you need,' Dr Gosby said."

Think about it, when you eat a lunch full of starches and sugars featuring potatoes, bread and cookies, you're not fully satiated.  You're likely to be reaching for that mid-afternoon snack.  

Worried about the expense of proteins like meat, fish or poultry?  Try less expensive sources such as beans, eggs, nut butters and tofu. 


lentil kale & sweet potato soup
Lentil, kale & sweet potato soup
It's easy to get protein at every meal.  Consider this: 

  • An egg or two at breakfast.  Worried about fat and cholesterol?  Try egg whites.  Short on time, hard boil a batch of eggs on Sunday to last you throughout the week.  Out on eggs?  Try some Greek yogurt. 
  • Add a tablespoon of peanut butter to your apple for a snack or pair that apple with a piece of string cheese. 
  • Have a veggie burger or put a protein like chicken, turkey, lean steak, canned tuna or salmon on your lunchtime salad. 
  • For dinner, make a big pot of veggie soup featuring lentils.  I'm partial to my lentil, kale and sweet potato soup.  Prepare a batch of chicken breasts for the week to have for dinner every night.   
Getting enough protein doesn't have to be expensive or time-consuming.  It's really quite simple and worth the effort when you consider the payoff. 
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Friday, November 8, 2013

The Babies, Puppies, Fire House and Starbucks Edition of Good News Friday

Good News Friday is about sharing all the awesome news that happened this week.  From cute babies birthdays to adorable puppies, fire house tours and more, you had a great one.  Check it out:

I love this commitment from Starbucks to hire at least 10,000 veterans and active-duty spouses over the next five years.  Thank you.

Locally, one of my favorite people in the world has this great news to share:
Tracy Kornet Gina...I am DYING...was just asked to fill in for the ailing singer of Ambrosia this Saturday night in 2 sold out shows! Get to sing my all-time fav song "Biggest Part of Me"...and with an amazing sax player Warren Hill! 
Tracy Kornet, on left, singing at a festival in Waxahachie, TX 
Tracy is an incredibly talented singer.  If you get the chance to hear her perform, do it.  She will blow you away.

Check out the little ones celebrating big birthdays: 
Abbi Fuchs Miller Macy is 2 years old today!

Andie Smith Liam turns 1 tomorrow!

How about little ones simply being adorable:

Doug Kojak Kacsir big brother taking baby sis shopping


My daughter, Jordan, toured the Dallas Fire Department's Station #11.
She loved it.  Big thanks to the DFD!  
And finally, the puppies: 
Gina Andrews Costanza sun spots for everyone!

Gina wins on another front, in my opinion, because she is marrying one of my favorite people in the world: the legendary Evan P. Grant. 

Stephanie Cook My Sweet Adorable Puppy Tinkerbell..I adopted her recently...she's my good news.. 


Sean Catherman My 10 month old bully...

Sophin Say The best wing man a guy could ever have.

Glenn Thorpe Oh, hello there...

Jay Rutherford My Corgi!


Love it all!  Thanks for reading.  
Have a great weekend! 
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