OxygenD's Editor Blog with Diane Hart

Friday, October 29, 2010

What do You Think?

I have to say thanks to all the gals who have replied with their own inspirational stories on this blog about my disappointment in missing the half-marathon. Like many of you, I at least was gratified to know my donation was going to a good cause - diabetes prevention. But all your own stories of much more profound disappointments were really touching, so I thank you! I went for a run this week with the gang here at work and it went well - so well I even went to the gym to do back and bis that evening! (have to admit I ache a bit!). How long did it take you to get back to exercise once you were out? If you have any post-injury tips, I'd love to know! Have a great weekend and we'll chat next week.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Free as a bird!

Model Natalia Muntean takes to the air in this, her first sky-diving experience. Have a look.

Friday, October 22, 2010

She makes it look easy!

Make-up and hair expert Nancy Jambazian (right) on set working her magic with model Melissa Pittman. Check out Melissa in our latest special Off the Couch! (she's in the Exhale photo, showing off her great form!).

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Turning it around!

So you know when you get disappointed about something - or someone - and then you rebound by focusing on the positive? That's exactly what happened to me this weekend when I had to bail from the half-marathon: a bout of bronchitis kept me sidelined. Such a disappointment! And yet, after regrouping - and speaking to all the people I work with who are so inspiring - I've decided to try for it again this spring! Has that ever happened to you? Did you train hard for an event only to have illness get in the way? Let me know if you have a minute! I could use any tips you have!

Friday, October 15, 2010

We're on the road (literally) this weekend!

I tell you, my admiration for athletes of all kinds has grown exponentially in the past few months and here's why – the Eat Clean Diet Team here at RKPublishing, led by the New York Times best-selling author Tosca Reno, encouraged us to take on this half-marathon on Sunday (for diabetes) and the training has been fun, but challenging at times. And I have to say if you take on any kind of sport or challenge, kudos to you! It really does take tremendous focus to stick with it! So send all happy thoughts to our team for Sunday morning and let's hope the sun shines and the wind is at our back! I'll give you an update on Monday. In the meantime, let me know anything you've done that made you sit back and say "Wow! Now I get it!" Have you ever met a challenge head on and derived even more appreciation for those who do it all the time? Let me know! Talk soon.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Our Q&A with Jessica Putnam!

1. What is it about the fitness industry that you love and why?

I love the fitness industry because it is full of like minded passionate people that LOVE health and fitness just like I do!

2. Why did you decide to compete in bikini after being in figure for so long?

I always had a hard time building muscle (especially in my legs). I was never the most muscular, lean or hard figure competitor. When bikini came around it just seemed like it would be a natural fit for me and my body type. I love the look of bikini!

3. How does your husband support your fit lifestyle?

My husband is IFBB Pro bodybuilder Peter Putnam. It's great being married to someone in the industry because we really support each other – we are each other's biggest cheerleader and fan. It's nice because we both know what the other is going through when we prep for a show, we can train and do cardio together and we each pitch in on cooking the food.

4. What do you love most about Olympia?

The Olympia is amazing...its definitely not just another show. It is the Superbowl of the fitness industry! I love it because you get to see all of your friends in one place and it is an honor to compete on the Olympia stage.

5. How has your nutritional diet changed from preparation between figure and bikini?

I still eat six to eight small meals a day. I just add a little bit more good carbs and fats in my diet. I can also do a cheat almost every week, but it is a pretty clean cheat! (Usually it is sushi:)

Friday, October 8, 2010

Go ahead, indulge a little!

I have to tell you, we are getting a storm of controversy over a comment a reader made to our publisher Robert Kennedy in our recent Off the Couch! issue. She went so far as to say he was disgusting for giving in to a temptation and having the odd chocolate bar now and again. Well, here's what I think – so what? I agree that you don't want to make a habit of scarfing down huge boxes of chocolate...but now and again I think it's important to relax, indulge and treat yourself. Sure, stay active and eat well, but if you want a piece of chocolate, go ahead and have it. As an aside, thanks to reader Nanette Hoskins for this note: "I wanted to share an idea for clean Thanksgiving recipes. Instead of stuffing, this year we'll make a Waldorf salad with apples, celery and chestnuts. For dessert, we'll bake sweet potatoes with cinnamon and honey." Mmmmm! Sounds great! Thanks again Nanette!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Easing sore muscles!

We're counting down here at the office until our half-marathon and yesterday I tackled my first 12 km run! I'm not sure how you take on a new challenge, but I was determined – with only a couple of weeks to go, I knew I had to bump up the distance! I was lucky – nice and cool, no rain and quiet. A hot shower and cup of coffee afterwards and I was a new person! Plus, I bought myself a foam roller to ease my muscles – I highly recommend it! Any other tips I could use, please send my way! For instance, does anyone know a great tip for staying fueled for the race? Let me know! I'm all ears!

Friday, October 1, 2010

The inside scoop on Erin Stern

Oxygen cover girl Erin Stern placed first at the Olympia last weekend! We caught up with her this week...read on!

How does it feel to be the Olympia Figure champion?
It’s a dream come true. It’s something that when I first got my pro card I wanted to achieve...it’s been about two years in the making and it feels really good.

Where you surprised?
I was surprised, but on the other hand it was something that I had been visualizing that I wanted so badly so it was like things were happening just as I had envisioned they would. But then it’s always a surprise when it actually happens.

Did you have any of your family or friends there to support you?
Yes, actually I had some friends from Tampa who came out, and my little sister was there, and my cousins and father were there.

Leading up to the competition, what elements were critical to getting yourself ready?
Getting myself ready physically is always the easy part, but I have to get myself ready mentally. And I had four second-place pro finishes leading up to the Olympia and it was just because I didn’t want to win badly enough, and I didn’t present myself with confidence. And I really worked on being more confident on stage and it seemed to pay off.

What tactics did you use to make yourself more confident on stage?

Just telling myself that I deserve to be there, that I put in the hard work, to thinking of something that would make me smile onstage to have a genuine smile, to just working on my walk and having my shoulders back and something that would show off my physique without coming across as just being fit. So just the little things.

What did you envision to make you smile when you were on stage?
I was thinking, it was kind of funny...I usually think of stuff that my sister and I do because we always laugh...right before I went on stage this time I was thinking about trading my old truck in for a new Camaro and how nice that would be driving down Bayshore with the windows down...it made me smile. I probably won’t get the car, but it was a nice thought.

Now that you have the highly coveted Olympia Figure title under your belt, what’s next?
I have several goals and I’m actually sitting here writing some down. My next goal is to be the next Figure International at the Arnold classic, I’d like to find a high jump pit so I can train and finally clear six feet, and with practice I know I can do it and it’s been one of my goals since I was eighteen years old, so I want to do that this year. Also, I want to do something good with the title and it’s going to give me a platform to be able to reach out and talk to girls about moderation and training properly and building self-confidence and really making a positive impact on the sport.

Are you taking a week off?
I started lifting yesterday – I took a week off before the show when I was getting ready so I had my break and I think I ate my body weight in sushi on Sunday night...so I figured I probably should start working out.

When is your next competition?
It will be the Arnold Classic, and that’s usually the first week of March.