The Belly Dance Studio

Dee’s Diary. . .

Dee 1

How to Succeed at Weight Loss Without Really Trying!


September 6th. . .

This is the story of my transformation!  It chronicles my surprising, ongoing journey, not only of weight loss, but of learning how to accept and love myself. . .just as I am along the way!  Because, let’s face it, we all have to recognize that change on the outside goes hand-in-hand with change on the inside.


 And we begin. . .


Dee Diary 1

Simply put, I went from a size 18 to a 14 as the result of Belly Dance Fitness class, Cabaret class and LOTS of practice at home for both. . .PEOPLE, this was FUN!  And, yes, sometimes, torture can be disguised as fun (after all, dance can be a challenge) but, fun it was.  I was so not expecting to get in shape.  I took no measurements and did not weigh, so I have no data except my jeans size and photos to go by.  


Did I diet?  No, not really.  I stopped drinking Cokes as much and ate more veggies and salads.  Our dance troupe, The Daughters of Lydia, love to celebrate so alcohol consumption may have increased. . .just slightly.  Hhmmm, now I’m thinking, what if I actually put some effort into this?  Can I get into shape again at age 52?


With the love, acceptance and encouragement from my girlfriends at The Belly Dance Studio, I can’t fail!  Follow me here on my blog, join me for Belly Dance Fitness at the studio and let’s have FUN on this journey together!


 Keep Shimmying!


September 18th. . .

When the studio opened Melissa Cornwell, our nutritionist, analyzed my diet (without shaming me for all the Cokes, beer and chocolate by the way) and gave me a list of foods optimal for losing weight.  I’m getting that list back out and using it, choosing low carb options and giving myself a “cheat” day on Sunday.  I’ve been reading from various sources that cheat days help prevent the metabolic slowdown that comes from calorie restriction.  Yea for cheat day!  


As to exercise, we already know what works.  Belly Dance Fitness twice a week and Turkish Gypsy Fusion once a week this month with Dilara plus. . .practice at home.  Melissa also recommended strength training and interval training to maintain muscle and burn fat.  Sigh. . .  Okay, 15 minutes of each 3 days a week and I am NOT doing jumping jacks.   More on that in my next post.  


Measurements, weight and hard data will be posted at the end of September.  I’m so excited!  We’ll see what happens (smile on my face)!  


Keep Shimmying!


October 2 . . .

I was sitting on the couch trying to write this, wishing I were a more articulate person, when this commercial for cereal, of all things, came on television.   Formerly, their marketing strategy was how their delicious cereal would speed weightyou-are-wonderful-235253 loss.  This clip featured women, of normal to large size, shopping for jeans and before they could try any on they had to be measured with a tape measure.  The kicker was that instead of numbers, the tape measure had words such as, “fabulous,” “strong,” “wonderful.”   This cereal commercial captured how I feel about my body (myself?) since re-incorporating belly dance into my life.  I’m size wonderful!!  Not 2, 6, 10, 16, 14 whatever, but WONDERFUL!


GRACEFUL is any size in belly dance.  I promised hard data last post.  Waist size down 2inches from 39 to 37.  Upper hip went from 43 to 42 and 1/4 inches.  I am almost back in a size 12 and will be at the end of October for sure.


Belly dance works especially for the waist but is that all that matters?  I feel confident and  size WONDERFUL, not just because of the new muscle definition or less “bingo wave” but because these movements we practice bring a feeling of joy and accomplishment.  The weight and inch loss is a bonus.  So thanks cereal marketing geniuses for reminding us that size is also nothing but a number.  I may even go buy a box for cheat day.


The plan continues. . .belly dance fitness,  gypsy class and practice with belly dance intervals thrown in twice a week.  Will detail interval moves next post.  Keep those coin skirts shaking and. . .


Keep Shimmying!


October 24, 2013

tabata3About three weeks ago, Michelle (aka Dilara Sultan) called me and said,”Hey, I want you to go to Houston to be a certified Tabata FitnessTrainer with me!”  I said, “Sure.  What is Tabata anyway?  Sounds kind of drum-like!”  “It’s high intensity interval training (HIIT).” she said,  “Uh oh, sounds kind of…athletic like.” I replied.  See, I was never the hard bodied athletic type.  I was always picked last for teams in school, as far back as first grade.  Yep, it was me and the Special Ed kids waiting to be picked and they did not want to play with me either.   My best friend was on the tennis team in High School.  She would run while I drove the golf cart and smoked cigarettes to encourage her. I thought I was helping her pace.

Anyway, I told Michele I didn’t want to embarrass her, that I didn’t think I could keep up.  My last post described how good it feels to accept yourself and I was not eager to revist any painful childhood memories.   Anybody reading this ever meet Michelle?  If so, you know she did not let me stay all fearful and whiney.  She is good like that.  Then she hooked me, “It’s for real women who dont have hours to spend at a gym, or even a whole hour,” she says, “and the best part is that there is a behavioral modification component so that the changes people make in the bootcamp will last.”  This was exciting.  As a psych nurse, I try every day to help people make good choices, and struggle with those choices myself.  “C’mon,” she says, “You can do this.  Nobody in Beaumont has this.  This is what The Belly Dance Studio is all about!”  So off we go to Houston at the ungodly hour of 6:00 AM on a Sunday and it was FANTASTIC. I bought new workout pants that ended up giving me a serious case of muffin top and by the end of the experience I was so stoked I didn’t even care. Was it hard? Yes, but only for 20 seconds at a time.  You can do just about anything for 20 seconds. Are the movements complicated?  No.  The moves are challenging but not complicated at all.  Did we have to modify the moves or sometimes just fail out?  Yes, we did, but in Tabata Bootcamp every movement matters and you are EXPECTED to modify moves so you can continue to go at your own hardest pace.  Guess what? We weren’t the only ones who had to do that!  Really, fit people were having to do that, too.

The best part of Tabata is the online support and behavioral training to reframe how you think about eating and food.  This is huge!  It means that you don’t go to atabata1 class and get in shape, then get out of shape, then go to another bootcamp and get back in shape.  It means that by making small changes, you can get in shape and stay there.  The Tabata Trainer, and everybody that signs up for bootcamp supports each other through the process. The process itself is long enough (8 weeks) to make lasting behavioral changes and perhaps even some lasting friends. If you choose to be online through Tabata Bootcamp’s website, your trainer, myself, or Michelle, will be contacting you during the day to encourage you and work with you individually.

There is some real science behind Tabata.  Michelle is right.  This truly is what The Belly Dance Studio is all about. Any woman, any size, any fitness level can do this and see real, measurable results.  Wouldn’t it be nice to be in better shape before Christmas and not be scrambling to firm up before summer?  Wouldn’t it be nice to not be worried about that at all, since eating well and “working in” excercise, instead of “working out” would be as natural as brushing your teeth?

Sustainable change, more time for belly dance, I’m all about it.  First camp starts this Sunday at 1:00 PM!

Check out the FAQ’s HERE >>>

Also, read this article to learn more about the TABATA Fitness that starts this Sunday.  Check it out HERE >>>

Here’s a Discount Code for 25% off of the price of the 8-week camp:  fitnow  Use it HERE >>>

Keep Shimmying (and add some jumps in there while your at it)!     





Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

4335 Calder Ave, Beaumont 409-790-7669