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Fitness and Nutrition


 Training for Fitness

There are many benefits that can occur as a result of using resistance training which include prevention of chronic diseases, weight control, increased strength, better sleep, increased energy and self-esteem, stress reduction and decreased risk of depression. In contrast, lack of physical activity can increase the risk of elevated blood pressure, elevated blood cholesterol, stroke, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.

As women age, resistance or weight training is beneficial for increased bone density and joint integrity.

Cardio or Weights for Weight Loss? BOTH! Dieting, without resistance training, often results in a loss of both fat and muscle mass. The decrease in muscle mass can have the effect of reducing your metabolic rate.


Fitness Walking – The Proper Technique

– Stand up straight

– Eyes up, chin parallel to the ground and looking to the horizon

– Lift and roll your shoulders back and down and relaxed

– Tighten your core. Keep pelvis neutral. Squeeze your glutes tight.

– Bend the elbows 80 to 90 degrees. This is essential to increasing walking speed.

(It also keeps your hands from swelling.)

– Keep your hands relaxed, cupped or in a handshake position

– Your arms/hands should not cross the body midline.

– Heel-down and toe-up foot placement facilitates a smooth heel to toe roll. Shorter strides.

– Drive elbows back and don’t punch forward


General Strength

Cardio            5-6 days, 30-45 minutes. Use cardio equipment of your choice.

Treadmill: vary incline (start at 2%) and speed. Do not hold onto handrail

Outdoor, vary intensity. Dress for weather conditions.


Resistance     3 days, 3 exercises per muscle, 2-3 sets, 10-15 repetitions

Specific large muscle group eg. chest/back, triceps/biceps, legs/shoulders.

Core, every other day.

Warm  up prior to resistance training and cool down after cardio and resistance. Peloton app has various warm up and cool down selections as well as cardio selections.


Ginger Chews – There is evidence to suggest that ginger may help reduce muscle soreness after exercise so if you suffer from delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) or want to nip it in the bud, try enjoying a few CHIMES’ Ginger Chews after your workout. Chimes’ has 5 flavors!  

Women’sHealth NO GYM REQUIRED, Special magazine. Great information and workouts! 

* I am not a paid sponsor of apps, books, magazines that I mention.


Based on my training and education of sports nutrition and whole plant-based nutrition, I will share what works for me. I have eliminated as many processed snacks/foods as possible from my diet. For example, crackers, cookies, tortilla chips, cereals, chocolate, desserts, candy.  Five years ago, I chose to eat vegan and did it “cold turkey”.  No meats, fish, dairy, eggs, oils, diet soda, desserts. This works for me but I have salmon occasionally. There are great plant-based cookbooks and recipes. Start out with a few meals. I will share a few favorite recipes of mine.

I include smoothies in my diet and you can find recipes on the internet. My favorites are Green Smoothie that includes a 3-day detox diet with a 21-day plan and The Vegan Inspiration. I also like the detox waters…Skinnyfit day detox blend and Zzz nighttime blend. Start your day with a cup of hot lemon water and drink plenty of water throughout the day.

Flat tummy water: 1/2 of lemon sliced, 1/2 of lime juice, 1 sliced cucumber, 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, 5-6 fresh mint leaves, 6 cups of water. Refrigerate overnight.

3-2-1 Dancing Dressing. I use this on salads and sautéing brussel sprouts and kale salad mixes.

Prep time: 2 minutes – Makes almost 1/2 cup dressing

3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar        2 Tbsp mustard, your choice              1 Tbsp pure maple syrup

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice        Chopped fresh dill (optional)

Combine vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, lemon juice in jar and shake well. Add chopped dill. Serve over salad or cooked greens. Also great in a quinoa bowl.

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Quesadillas

Prep time: 10 min  Cook time 6 min or so

1 large sweet potato

1 c. cooked brown rice                                   ¼ tsp onion powder

1 c.  salsa                                                        ¼ tsp chili powder

1 c. chopped fresh spinach                             ¼ tsp ground cumin

1 c. black beans, drained and rinsed              6-8 whole wheat tortillas

8 oz. vegetarian no added oil refried beans   1 jalapeno pepper, diced

Pre-made or home-made guacamole

Bake sweet potato in microwave, prepare rice.  In a mixing bowl, mash the sweet potato with the salsa, rice and fresh spinach. Place the sweet potato mash in a saucepan and mix in the black beans and refried beans and heat the mixture thoroughly over medium heat.  Add the onion powder, chili powder, and cumin to taste, and stir to incorporate.

Slather half of the tortilla with the sweet potato-bean mixture. Add jalapenos, a few fresh spinach leaves and fold in half. Place in a nonstick frying pan over medium heat and press down on the top with the spatula, then cook in the pan for 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook opposite side for 3 minutes more. Cut in 2 or 3 sections, serve with additional salsa and guacamole

Panana Cakes

Prep time: 25 min, Makes 1 dozen pancakes

2 c. whole wheat pastry flour                          1 c. water

1 tsp baking soda                                            1 c. nondairy milk

1 tsp baking powder                                       2 egg replacers (2 Tbsp ground flaxseed

½ tsp sea salt                                                      with 6 Tbsp water)

1 tsp cinnamon                                               2 Tbsp maple syrup

1 banana, mashed

  • Combine, flour, baking soda, baking powder, sea salt, and cinnamon in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, mix mashed banana, water, milk, egg replacers, and maple syrup.
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir just enough to remove any lumps. The batter should be pourable; if it seems too thick, add more milk.
  • Preheat a nonstick skillet or griddle
  • Using ¼ c. measure, pour small amounts of batter onto the heated surface, and cook until the top bubbles. Turn with spatula and cook the second side until golden brown. Serve immediately with fresh fruit, maple syrup or raspberry sauce.

Raspberry Sauce

10 ounces frozen raspberries, thawed           1 tsp balsamic vinegar, or more to taste

In food processor, combine both ingredients and process until smooth. Use immediately or refrigerate until ready to use.

Mindy’s Cacao Balls

½ c. walnuts

½ c. cashews or almonds

1 c. pitted dates

1 tsp. vanilla

½ c. Cacao Powder

  • Add nuts to food processor – pulse until chopped well
  • Add 1 c. dates, 1 tsp vanilla – grind until you can make a ball
  • Add ¼ c. cacao powder and mix well
  • Make balls – freeze

Great energy source before working out or needing a late afternoon pick-me-up.

My favorite vegan cookbooks:

The CHINA STUDY Cookbook, Leanne Campbell, PhD

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Ann Crile Esselstyn and Jane Esselstyn

PLANT-STRONG, Rip Esselstyn (Plant Strong food items available online)

Be a PLANT-BASED WOMAN WARRIOR, Jane Esselstyn and Ann Crile Esselstyn



In good health,

Rasa DeLafosse, rasadelafosse@gmail.com



Fitness and Nutrition2023-03-21T15:50:16+00:00

Are You Ready to Start Getting Healthy?


Are you ready to start a health and fitness program? Great! Let me help you get started.
Hi! My name is Rasa DeLafosse and I am certified through W.I.T.S as a personal fitness trainer and have 11 years experience. I also have experience in small group training and aqua fitness. It is my mission to help women achieve their level of fitness and feel more confident and happy. I’ve had my own struggles in food choices and exercise and know how challenging it can be to start again.

– Set a reachable short term goal. If you want to lose weight, start by losing five pounds. Eliminate some processed snacks (chips, chocolate, crackers), reduce the amount of alcohol beverages and sugar-filled sodas. Instead, eat more veges and fruits and healthier option snacks e.g. celery and hummus, have some dark chocolate.
-Prepare your own meals and eat out as a treat. Helps save money too.
– Prepare meals without beef, pork, chicken or fish a few times a week. Basically, if it has eyes, don’t eat it. I went vegan 5 yrs ago and it’s great but difficult too. Send me an email for recipes of quesadillas, cookies, and pancakes too.
– Drink half your weight in ounces. If your weight is 140 lbs, drink 70 oz. of water.

Start an exercise program but see your doctor first if you have medical issues.
– Start by walking. Get 30 minutes of activity each day. Break it into 15 minutes segments if time is short. Find a local 5k race and walk it.
– Find a real fitness app and not influencers. My favorite is the Peloton app. I’ve used it over 5 years. So many options and levels. It includes, strength, walking, running, mediation, cycling, cardio, boot camps as well as various programs. Walking will never be the same 🙂 I love my Peloton bike. Friend me on Facebook and you can get a 30 or 60 day free trial.

Fitness clothing.
– sports bras should support the girls
– for walking, I prefer Mizuno wave rider and ASICS gel Keyano. These both offer wide widths.
Socks – Wrightsock Double layer Coolmesh II. No blisters.
Pants – lululemon with side pockets. Great place to store your phone while walking using the Peloton app.

“Be motivated by what you can do, not defeated by what you can’t.” Remember, the best exercise is the one you can actually do.

In health, Rasa DeLafosse, rasadelafosse@gmail.com

Are You Ready to Start Getting Healthy?2023-01-23T02:02:39+00:00

Fantasy Photo Shoot – Princess and Warrior



Photo Shoot Collaboration: Jean Sweet gathered her friends, Tracey Stokes (owner of Navii Salon) and Jeanette Frost (makeup artist) to collaborate on a location shoot in the Detroit area. Jean wanted to create a “princess – warrior” theme, inspired by the Dark Ages. Jean engaged Marisa Choate to design the costumes and jewelry, and worked many long hours with Tracey Stokes to construct hairpieces prior to the shoot. The crown and headpieces incorporated in the hair are all made from human hair extensions. The team shot on location in a park and in the studio to be able to produce different hair collections for three different magazines. The Detroit Metropolitan Magazine and Dark Beauty (Online) featured some of the location images, and American Salon published an exclusive with the studio shots.

 Photography: Jean Sweet | Hair: Jean Sweet & Tracey Stokes | Makeup: Jeanette Frost | Fashion Styling: Marisa Choate

Metropolitan Detroit Magazine Editorial | Hair by Tracey Stokes, Navii Salon | Photography by Jean Sweet

Images featured in the Detroit Metropolitan Magazine

Fantasy Photo Shoot – Princess and Warrior2017-01-13T03:47:48+00:00

“Wedding Day Dos” – Published in Modern Salon


Photo Shoot Collaboration: Jean Sweet, photographer and Tracey Stokes (owner of Navii Salon) and Jessica Sawicki, owner of Bomber Betty Custom Cosmetics produced an editorial shoot featuring bridal hairstyles which was featured in the May 10, 2011 Modern Salon Magazine online.

 Photography: Jean Sweet | Hair: Jean Sweet & Tracey Stokes | Makeup: Jessica Sawicki 

“Wedding Day Dos” – Published in Modern Salon2017-01-13T03:47:48+00:00
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