6 Tips to Using Grocery Shopping As a Weight Loss Tool

In this week’s column for Organize Yourself Skinny, I share my tips for managing grocery shopping, and using my shopping to aid me in my weight loss journey!

I know it sounds counterintuitive to buy food to lose weight, but when done right, grocery shopping is a huuuuge tool for weight loss.
 OYS Grocery Shopping Column
I love grocery shopping. Always have. It’s fun for me to explore, to try different recipes and foods, and explore new cuisines. With that in mind, I’ve got these five tips for grocery shopping to lose weight, and then my go-to shopping list. Check them out HERE!

Check me out on the Half Size Me Podcast!

I am so grateful for the opportunity to do a podcast about my weight loss journey with Heather, the guru behind the nationally-acclaimed Half Size Me

Heather has truly inspired me (and so many others) to healthier, happier lives and it was fun to see how much we had in common despite using different programs to lose weight and get healthy! 

We talked about:

  • why no matter what plan you’re on you have to tweak it to make it work for you
  • how I learned to become patient with myself when starting a new program
  • what happened in Florida that made me realize I needed to lose weight and take control of my life
  • and much more!

Check it out HERE!

Twenty Questions with LAURA!

Each Tuesday we feature a different success story from the Trading Cardio for Cosmos community in a segment called “Twenty Questions With…” Young, young at heart, marathon runners and those who can’t exercise at all, vegetarians, pescatarians, working mommas, work-from-home professionals and retirees. We’re going to showcase them all, because when you read about someone like you succeeding, I think it gives you the confidence that you too can succeed! This week I want to introduce you to Laura!

I love Laura’s outlook on food and the tremendous variety she has in her menus – nothing is off the table for this lady, and it’s really working for her! In her fifties, Laura has lost more than 100lbs and just started to learn how to box – how cool is that?!

Now onto The Questions:

1. Give us the basics about you.
Hi, I’m Laura, 54 years old and live in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. Weight Watchers has changed my entire life. I’m going back to school to become a childhood dietician/nutritionist. I also applied to be a WW Leader, and my sister and I are taking classes to get our Real Estate License.

2. When did you start your weight loss journey? What was the “tipping point” that made you start?

laura 1
The first time I started WW was back in 1988! I lost 100 lbs but did not change my lifestyle and I gained back 160 lbs. I was having major knee issues and I knew I had to get healthy or never leave the house. I joined WW again on April 19, 2014.

3. What is the one piece of advice you wish you had known when you started out?
That it would be a long journey and along the way I would discover so much more about myself that I didn’t know I had inside of me.

4. How much weight have you lost? If you are done losing, and are on to maintaining? How long have you been maintaining your loss?

laura 2
I have lost 123.4 lbs so far and have 27 more to go for my personal goal.

5. How do you keep your motivation up?
To keep my motivation up, I think about all my non-scale victories. I have lost 7/8 sizes and I am stronger than I have ever been. I look at all my before pictures and think about how far I have come. My sister is my biggest cheerleader, and she joined WW two months ago and that motives me to stay on track, too.

6. How do you handle cravings?
When I have a craving, I decide if it is really worth the points. Sometimes it is, and I enjoy the treat. No guilt eating!

7. What are your top three tips for success?
I attend a WW meeting every Saturday morning. In 2 years I have only missed 6 meetings. I couldn’t do it without the support and accountability from my meetings. I have met so many great people who have supported and encouraged me.

laura 6
I track everything! I am a pencil and paper girl, so I use the WW 3 Month Journal. I am on my 10 th one! I keep track of my points, recipes, and my schedule for the week. I always have it with me.
Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. Take it one day at a time.

8. Do you exercise? If so, how often, for how long and what type of exercises do you do?

laura 3.jpg
I workout with a trainer one hour a week. He is teaching me to box, too, which I love. I take Zumba classes twice a week and other days I walk/jog. I took my first spin class and am looking forward to buying a bike.

9. What is your favorite breakfast?
For breakfast, I usually have a protein shake blended with frozen bananas or berries. I also enjoy avocado toast topped with sliced radishes. For the toast. I use Trader Joe’s Sprouted Bread which is only 1 SmartPoint per slice and delicious!

10. What is your go-to lunch?
My go-to lunch is usually quinoa mixed with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, chopped black olives, and a little feta. I also like Trader Joe’s Chile Lime Chicken Burgers. Eating a lunch that is high in protein keeps me going through the afternoon.

11. What does a typical week night dinner look like? What about a weekend dinner?
I don’t have a typical week night dinner. Usually I have some grilled chicken or fish with a big salad and sometimes a sweet potato. On the weekends I like to try new recipes. I recently made the Spaghetti Squash Enchilada Bowl from SkinnyTaste and it was so good!

laura 4

12. What kind of snacks do you like?
For snacks, I like Fage Plain Greek Yogurt and add my own fresh fruit. Also, string cheese with an apple, or jicama with a squeeze of lime and sea salt.

13. What kind of desserts do you eat?
I don’t eat too many desserts which is really hard to believe since I had a serious sugar addiction! I never thought I would conquer that one. I do enjoy Dove Dark Chocolate bites, and if I go out to dinner, I usually share a dessert.

14. What kind of adult beverages do you enjoy?
I enjoy wine, cosmopolitans, Prosecco, and margaritas.

15. What is your favorite meal to eat in a restaurant?
Sushi is my favorite restaurant meal.

16. Do you have a favorite fast food/casual dining meal?
I don’t really eat too much fast food. About every month or so, I might have some fast food French fries and a cheeseburger. My taste buds have really changed!

17. Do you have a favorite weight loss blog/website/FB group that you visit for inspiration?
For inspiration I sign-on to the WW App and click on Connect. All the WW members sharing their stories is very motivating and inspiring.

18. Do you have a favorite website for healthy recipes?
All the recipes I have made from SkinnyTaste and Emily Bites have been great!

19. Do you have a quote, meme or thought that keeps you motivated?
laura 5

20. What’s one final thought you can share with someone who’s interested in losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight?
You are worth it! Embrace the process and a whole new world will open up to you!


Thank you so much for sharing your amazing story and your GREAT inspiration with us, Laura! Have questions for Laura? Share them in the comments below!

The Seriously Amazing, Totally Awesome #TradingCardioforCosmos20K Giveaway! 

Welcome to the #TradingCardioforCosmos20K Giveaway! 

I can’t thank you enough for being here and being part of the Trading Cardio for Cosmos community!

What we started together in April 2015, sharing our motivation (and our struggles), support and recipes, has grown into “Twenty Questions With,” “A Day in the Life,” “Recipe Roundups,” weekly columns with Organize Yourself Skinny and so much more! 

I draw so much inspiration and comfort from having you join me on my journey, and this week particularly you gave so much love and support and comfort to me while I was struggling, and I hope I can do the same for you.  

Last week we reached 20,000 Fans on Facebook, and that’s all thanks to you sharing, inviting your friends and truly making this a community, not just a Facebook page! Nothing gives me more joy than to see you share, encourage and support one another through the community because it reminds us we’re all in this together, and no one is alone on their journey. No one.

So to celebrate our 20,000 Fans, I’ve been working with some brands we LOVE to create the #TradingCardioforCosmos20k Giveaway for Facebook AND one for Instagram! For both the Facebook AND Instagram giveaway we have 10 individual prizes and one mother of a grand prize from our GREAT friends at Weight Watchers! Best of all, all you have to do to enter is be yourselves! 

For Instagram:

Regram a photo from @TradingCardioforCosmos OR tag us in a photo of your meals, workouts, inspiration,etc with the hashtags #tradingcardioforcosmos and #tradingcardioforcosmos20k and you could WIN! If you share or regram the following photo, we’ll double your chances to WIN:


For Facebook:

Comment on a post or photo, tag your friends, post your own photos or recipes on the TCFC wall, and SHARE the Trading Cardio for Cosmos Facebook page (make sure your settings are set to share to public so we can see it, too!). When we see a share or tag, or something inspiring, happy, funny, delicious or someone in need of a pick-me-up, we’ll comment on your post or comment with this photo, which means, you’re officially entered to WIN:


You can enter as many times as you comment, tag and share, so the more you engage the greater your chances are to win! 

The giveaway will run now through June 30th, and is open to US residents residing in the continental 48 states. Brits, Canucks and Aussies, I love you and I’m so sorry I can’t ship to you for this contest. 🙁 On June 30th we’ll put all the entries we’ve collected into a random generator and pick the individual prizes and then one big grand prize winner, which we’ll announce on Friday, July 1st! 

The Individual Prizes are:

2 Leslie Sansone DVDs

compliments of Anchor Bay Entertainment
Skinnytaste cookbook (autographed by Gina)

compliments of SkinnyTaste

Skinnytaste meal planner

compliments of SkinnyTaste

Trading Cardio For Cosmos T-shirt and Trading Cardio for Cosmos Tote Bag

compliments of Alexis 

Never Miss A Monday T-shirt and Trading Cardio for Cosmos Tote Bag

compliments of Mr. Big 

Edible Arrangements gift certificate
compliments of Edible Arrangements of Orange County

16pc Fitpacker Container set

compliments of Fitpacker

Organize Yourself Skinny E-Book- “Organize Yourself Skinny: 5 Strategies from Help Busy People Create a Healthier Life and Lose Weight” and Make Ahead Meal Plan

compliments of Tammy at Organize Yourself Skinny

Enlightened Crisps Sampler Pack & Ice Cream Coupons

compliments of Enlightened Foods 

Perfectly Posh “Posh to Meet You” pampering set

compliments of April from Perfectly Posh

And I cannot even BEGIN to tell you how excited I am about our Grand Prize, provided by our GREAT friends at Weight Watchers. I have benefitted so much from my membership, the program and the company has provided so much support to me and our community on our journeys! I would not be -115lbs lighter without them, and I am (as always) grateful. 

Weight Watchers provided the following INSANELY AWESOME Grand Prize: 

It is a Weight Watcher Glow Tote Bag FILLED with goodies like:

  • A WW Journal
  • A WW Cookbook
  • A WW Margarita mix and a COSMO mix
  • Popped Sea Salt hummus chips
  • Jolly Time Popcorn
  • A WW Digital Scale
  • A WW Punch Weighted Gloves + Workout
  • A WW Coloring Book & Colored Pencils
  • An Ultimate Belly Kit w/ Stability Ball
  • A WW Salad Dressing Cruet
  • WW Vanilla Bean + Mucho Mocha Café Creations
  • A WW Portion Control Wine Glass
  • A #TrackOnFleek Bag
  • A H2Glow Water Bottle
  • A Glow Box

*All of these products, except for the glow totes and #trackonfleek bags can be purchased on the Weight Watchers Shop.

Friends, you are what make Trading Cardio for Cosmos possible, and we could not be more thankful and proud to share the journey with you! Thank you!




The Fine Print: 

I received no financial support for this contest. All items were donated for this giveaway as listed above. All postage is paid by Trading Cardio for Cosmos, LLC.   

One winner per household, per 30 days. All winners have 30 days to claim their prizes by emailing their FB screenname/Instagram handle and mailing address to tradingcardioforcosmos@gmail.com. All winners must live in the continental United States. 

Thank you to Weight Watchers, Anchor Bay Entertainment, SkinnyTaste, Edible Arrangements, Fitpacker, Organize Yourself Skinny, Enlightened Foods and Perfectly Posh for providing some of the items in this giveaway. 

Weight Watchers, Anchor Bay Entertainment, SkinnyTaste, Edible Arrangements, Fitpacker, Enlightened Foods and Perfectly Posh are not affiliated with Trading Cardio for Cosmos.

Trading Cardio for Cosmos is compensated for blog posts posted on Organize Yourself Skinny, but was not compensated for featuring OYS in this contest on Trading Cardio for Cosmos.

10 Habits That Can Make or Break Your Weight Loss

I love this week’s column for Organize Yourself Skinny because it’s all the fundamental habits that help make us successful, and those bad habits we really need to ditch on our weight loss journey.

I know what you are thinking. “This is when she’s going to tell us we have to meal prep,” and you’re right! That is the #1 piece of advice I give anyone on their weight-loss journey. But we’ll skip it for today, and check out these ten habits that can make or break your weight loss: 

Check it out HERE!