Thursday, November 18, 2010

Isagenix - Network Marketing/Pyramid Scheme?

Alright, so I've been doing Isagenix now for 3 months. I feel great, the product works and I want to share it because I really want everyone to feel this good! It's like finding an incredible restaurant that serves the most incredible Chocolate Fondue! You want to tell all your friends and take them back there. Of course, in that situation, you're not getting anything out of it, other then the enjoyment of your friends sharing the dessert with you. Isagenix is setup as a Network Marketing program, where if, for example, I sign someone up under me to do the program, I get money in return, as sort of a partnership/thank you. I went to a mini Isagenix conference/talk a month or so ago, and they talked a lot about the business, and how if you just "Sign up 2 people you're ready to start earning money! It's that simple" Don't get me wrong, the idea of finding an incredible health program/diet that I can also benefit from financially? Sounds like a dream come true! However I was skeptical, it looked like a pyramid scheme to me. How so you ask? Well let me paint the picture, I sight up 2 people, then those 2 people each sign up 2 people and before you know it, everyone is benefiting from the business! Looks like a pyramid to me.... It was just a bit confusing to me, and just repeating the lines that the they told us during the Isagenix talk didn't feel right b/c I didn't even fulling understand/believe what I was saying. See, everyone at Isagenix says "It's not a pyramid scheme, it's Network Marketing" but what does that mean? What's the difference? For all I could tell, they could just be saying that to sucker people into their pyramid scheme. I wasn't about to just follow a flock of lemmings, so I decided to do some research!

I first started out by looking up "What is a Pyramid Scheme". That was both helpful and not, because by the end, it still had a lot of similarities to Isagenix's Network Marketing system and I really din't understand how it was different. Did it fall into "One of the many forms" of a pyramid scheme that just weren't fleshed out in the descriptions I was reading? So I decided to look up "Network Marking vs Pyramid Schemes" and started to get a lot more clarity. First thing I learned is that there are MANY SIMILARITIES, even though they are NOT THE SAME! This made me feel a lot better, and I continued to read. Turns out that when you break it down, the basic pyramid structure, seen predominantly in the pyramid scheme, is actually the most generic look at how business is setup in our daily lives. I found the visual aid bellow particularly helpful. As you can see, everything from school to business to the government is setup in a pyramid style mindset. Suddenly I was feeling a lot more open minded about network marketing and what it was!

This image has been borrowed from the following article:
Network Marketing Business School

So next up I learned that what makes pyramid schemes different from network marketing is not only that one is illegal, but that in particular, pyramid schemes are based around the fraudulent practices of making money through a non-sustainable business model. As in most of the money comes from the "enrollment fees" of new members that "invest" except there's nothing really their to invest in other then expecting to make money based on the people you "enroll" under you. Eventually you run out of people to recruit and the system collapses. There is no actual exchange of a viable product or service, just the promise of this "unseen investment". No wonder it's illegal!!!

Network marketing on the other hand, is the process of the company getting it's product out to the consumer. Instead of them investing in ad space, commercials or other forms of product sales, they rely heavily on word of mouth via the consumer. In return the consumer reaps the benefits of sharing the product and thus can be incredibly rewarded by continued loyalty to the company. This can happen on various levels of seriousness. Obviously, the more time you put into marketing the product, the more successful your business will be. Ultimately, by becoming part of a network marketing team, you become part of the company yourself! It's a really neat opportunity if that's a road you're wanting to take. It definitely requires time and energy to really see the fruits of your labor, but it also can become a new career for those looking for a new path. It's totally legal, and especially when you use and believe in the product, it can be a really rewarding way to bring in some extra money.

In conclusion, I'm still figuring out my approach to the marketing side of Isagenix. I believe in the product, and I absolutely love how I feel and live now having the ease of it in my life. At the same time, I absolutely love my full time job, so I'm not really looking for a full on career change. I'm happy to share this product though, and would love to see more people out their getting their nutrition in order! Heck, that's why I started all this to begin with, it's not about the business or the money, it's about GOOD HEALTH! The rest is just a bonus. As I wrap this up, I would like to end with saying that I am in no way claiming to be an expert on this marketing stuff, but I wanted to share what I learned! There's still tons more information out there, and if you don't feel like what I discussed is enough, then I encourage you to do your own research as well!! When you take the time to really find things out for yourself, it really makes diving into new opportunities much more rewarding! I LOVE being in the know! I really hope this has helped you to understand, even a little better, what the differences between a pyramid scheme and network marketing. Have a great day!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Strawberry Shakes and 10 lbs to go!

I know I know, long time no post....sorry. I've been moving, and honestly, not really having the greatest success keeping up with shakes when it's so easy to drive through Taco Bell on the way to an from dropping off boxes at my new place. However, I've been having at least 1 shake a day, still hitting the gym regularly, and even when I do go through the Taco Bell Drive-Thru, I have been ordering off the Fresco Menu to at least watch my calorie intake. So as my move is finally winding down, I have found myself needing to jazz things up a bit. So lately I've been trying new things when it comes to my shakes! Last week I sliced up a bunch of strawberries and blended them in, I also have tried the Pumpkin Pie shake that was recommended on the Isagenix facebook page! Maybe tonight I'll give the Eggnog Shake recipe a whirl! Today was fun, because my friend Marcy gave me a sample of IsaFruits, and I blended it into my chocolate shake, which made for a wonderful chocolate berry smoothy sort of experience! I feel like I'm getting re-hooked all over again! On top of everything, I'm finally down to 115 lbs, which means I'm only 10 away from my goal! I know I'm building muscle, so I'm expecting the process to take a little more time, but I'm excited about the journey and loving how I feel! More soon!! Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Isagenix Day 45

Well, I fell off the wagon. Yes, that's right, I totally fell off the wagon! On Sunday I didn't have one shake.... I'm not proud of this at all, but I wanted to be honest with everyone. I woke up with the full intent of having a shake for lunch and dinner. Josh and I made pancakes, which I haven't had in forever, and I filled myself with a whole bunch! It was awesome. I think it is good to indulge once in awhile, and I really haven't in over a month, so I don't think one day will hurt. The important thing was that I followed it up with a cleanse day yesterday and then am back on my shakes today. I also made a batch of tuna salad from one of the Hungry Girl Recipes! So I'll have healthy meals for this week. Usually I'm not so proactive on my meal prep, so it felt really good to take care of all of this ahead of time. I'm working more and more on streamlining my life, starting with my nutrition. I want my healthy choices to become second nature to me, I don't like feeling lost and confused when I am grocery shopping and trying to consider what would constitute a healthy meal. Everyday is a new step, and I'm learning, both on my own research as well as from my wonderfully supportive friends, better ways to live. I'm questioning myself less on healthy alternatives, and even beginning to crave the more nutritious meal. I hope that one day I can pass on good nutrition to my loved ones, so I have to work hard now to learn what that means. Sure I had a less then perfect day Sunday, but I'm not going to let that slow me down. I'm on a mission! A mission for a healthier tomorrow! There's nothing that can stop me now!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Isagenix Day 40

So, today is pretty much like any other Isagenix day, as far as nutrition is concerned. At lunch I went to my work gym and Lauren taught me how to use the machines that I was unfamiliar with, as well as teaching me a few more exercises to target certain areas of my body. I definitely need to start getting more Cardio in. Perhaps once things cool down a bit (we're having a massive heat wave) I'll try and fit in at least 2 skating days a week. Also, if I keep going to Krav Maga, that'll be a reat source of Cardio and Strength training! I'm very excited, I feel like I'm finally starting to live the sort of lifestyle I want to have. Sure it's "healthy" to exercise, but for the first time in my adult life, I'm actually really having fun doing it. I'm switching up routines at the gym, which make going and pin pointing areas more exciting. I'm becoming involved in more extracurricular activities like Softball, Krav Maga, and skating. Working out has gone from being a stressful chore to being my playtime/recess from life. I enjoy doing it, I enjoy how it makes me feel, and I especially am enjoying the results I'm seeing. I do feel that Isagenix is a huge part of this too. Taking the step to get my nutrition in order put me on a more focused path. I knew my results would be more fulfilling if I coupled it with exercise. It like Isagenix helped me flip the switch in my brain saying "I'm worth the time and effort it will take to do this" and I finally feel like I'm becoming the person I'm meant to be because of it. Don't get me wrong, I still want to enjoy a good helping of Smores next time I go camping, but I also want to have the strength and energy to backpack my way to the site and still have some left over to enjoy the scenery. So while I still have a ways to go in meeting my goals, I'm feeling very happy with where I'm at today.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Isagenix Day 37

The cleanse days are starting to become refreshing. Plus I've found myself becoming way more consistently active over the past month, and it's good to give myself a day to rest. Originally I had scheduled for cleanse days to be on Sundays, but it quickly became an issue as I started playing Softball on Sundays, as well as just having the option to hang out with friends and share a meal. Thus it was moved to Monday. I admit, it's hard to be at work and smell the amazing food people have brought in for lunch, but it's also a nice start to the week. It's simple, and I feel like I'm freshly cleansed for the new week! So just wanted to share, it's going well and I'm actually enjoying the simplicity of my nutrition in my life right now. Tomorrow will be good, I'm going to Krav Maga at lunch for an intense full body workout. This week is off to a good start!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Isagenix Day 33

This week has felt amazing! I've been in the Gym everyday, having my shakes, and being both healthy and thrifty about my meals choices! I feel fit, and between the energy levels and the level of toneness I'm starting to see, it's just very encouraging. I weighed myself at the gym the other day, and I am roughly 4 lbs lighter then when I started Isagenix. Sure, that doesn't sound like much, but for me it's huge! I don't have a lot of weight to loose, I started this program not because I was overweight, I'm actually in my healthy weight range (just the higher end of it was all) so my ultimate goal is not to drop a lot of weight, but to feel healthier and fit. I think if I had dropped a ton of weight right away, I would have been nervous, because when you don't have much to loose, it should take a little while, or else it's likely to come back with a vengeance! Between building up more muscle and loosing fat, I feel that 4 lbs is a very encouraging place to be! I'm almost 1/3 or the way to my goal! The best part is really being able to see the toneness of my muscles starting to come through. So all in all I feel even more motivated as I continue into month 2!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Isagenix Day 30!

I finished my first 30 days of Isagenix! You know what? I feel pretty darn good! Overall I feel like I have more natural energy and like I'm actually awake. I remember more things during the day, and have definitely been able to step up my productivity and focus. I also FINALLY did a successful cleanse day yesterday. It really helps to have the IsaSnacks and drink the proper amounts of the cleanse too. I found myself much more able to handle the day without massively craving food. Today I'm back on the shakes and starting out month 2! I took my measurements today, and I have lost a total of 3.5 inches off my waist and a total of 10 whole inches off my entire body! As in, they have you take all these measurements of your whole body at the beginning, like around to arms, chest, rib cage, thighs, waist, hips, butt, calves, knee and neck, then you total it up and feel depressed about how many inches it all combines too. So my original total was 297.75 inches. My total after a month is 287.75 inches! And the best part is that with my calve actually getting bigger!!! (I've been working them out hahaha) So even with appropriate areas gaining, I'm still losing inches. I will weigh myself later, but am happy that as of last week I was down 3 lbs from my starting weight, which I've been stuck at for over a year. I'm just feeling really good. I'm hoping that by the end of this next month I'll fit happily in my "skinny jeans". I think the best part about using this product for me has been that it keeps me in check. I know I need to have 2 shakes a day, and because that's how I start my day, when I start feeling snacky, I have been better about reaching for healthier options, instead of the community donuts, or visiting super sugary snack cabinet across the hall. I have held myself more accountable when it comes to working out! I go to the gym almost every day, and the days I don't I do at least a 20 minute workout at home. So I know a bit part of the success I'm having is from my own dedication, but it helps to have this regime to follow and keep me on track. It also helps that I still have some level of energy when I get home. I used to want to just pass out every night after the commute home, and believe me, it's still incredibly exhausting!!! But now I actually feel like I have a good couple of hours still in my system once I'm home and have been better about putting it to good use. So I'm sticking with it for another month. I'm excited to see how I'm doing on day 60! haha Wish me luck!

PS: Sorry for my terrible delay in posting. Life got busy, but I was happy I was still staying consistant on Isagenix! It made it easy!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Isagenix Days 13 &14

It's the weekend! Haha So This weekend, Josh and I went to Auto Club Speedway for his race weekend. We drove out Friday night, I packed my blender, shake mixes and rollerblades. The weekend itself was awesome, we camped on an air mattress in the bed of Josh's truck and beat out the heat during the day. Saturday was the worst! Temperatures hitting 109 on Saturday, and no shade was safe. I didn't run any laps on Saturday, the most I did was walk around the pits handing out business cards for a photographer that was there. It was fun meeting so many motorcycle enthusiasts, but I totally passed out in a camping chair in the garage once I finished. I did my shakes with ice blended in to make them more refreshing, and BOY did it make a HUGE refreshing difference on such a hot weekend. On Sunday it was similar, except that instead of being 109 degrees, it was only 97, hahaha. It was much more bearable though. and I even threw my skates on and zoomed around for a bit. I may have been bad though, I totally inhaled a cheese danish prior to my shake on Sunday. Then we went to dinner at Hooters, where I got Buffalo Shrimp, which is deep fried shrimp seasoned with the buffalo sauce of your choice. Although, they were only 300 for 10, as opposed to like, the 700+ calories for the 5 strips of buffalo chicken wings. So at least I was well within my calories for my "meal of the day", but between skating and sweating all weekend, I think it was ok to fudge a bit of the weekend. Despite my not ideal eating habits for the weekend, I did drink plenty of water, and considering the weekends situation, I don't feel guilty one bit for my choices!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Isagenix Day 10

So the past couple days I brought my Vanilla Shake mix with me to work, and today I brought the Chocolate and I am SO HAPPY to be on the chocolate again. I'm a chocoholic though, so it's much more satisfying to me, although the vanilla is nice for a change of pace. I did a Shake for breakfast and lunch again today since I was having dinner at a friends. I snacked healthy, and was excited since this particular friend usually makes really healthy meals. So unfortunately I had a very carb heavy dinner, as it was Pizza on Sourdough Rolls. It was amazing and delicious, but not what I was anticipating for my dinner. Oh well, I just have to be better about the rest of my meals, especially the ones I choose for myself. I think I've been more conscious, but it also seems so easy to slip up. I think one of the nice things about being on Isagenix is I know my other 2 meals are covered even if I slip up on the one I pick for myself. I've also been much better about healthy snacking, so that's definitely a huge step. I'm not going to let myself feel guilty about a meal, especially one someone else generously cooked for me. As long as I continue working on a better mindset for my overall general diet I know I'll be fine. Also, I feel like continuing to drink plenty of water has been helpful!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Isagenix Day 9

Today was good, I still feel a bit sleep lagged, but not as bad as yesterday. I did my shakes for Breakfast and Lunch, and I've come to the conclusion that while the vanilla is fine, I love the chocolate shakes! This day was fairly unexciting, I hit the gym at lunch, it seems Owen Wilson had the same idea, go figure, and continued to snack on my healthy options! For dinner, Josh and I went to Red Lobster and I had snow crab!! It was soooooo incredible and delicious. I probably shouldn't have used do much butter, but it was really good. I'm getting better and healthy ordering I think. Just takes time, and it's a total mind switch to flip that's really hard when you're used to indulging and craving something completely different. I do feel like I'm making progress though and little steps are still steps.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Isagenix Day 8

So, today I am supposed to weigh and measure myself. As I mentioned earlier, I believe around day 4 or so, I am sadly having my lady week, which means extra weight and bloating. I am purposely skipping the weight and measure step this week purely on the principle that I refuse to let my lady week discourage me more then it normally does. Haha However, measuring or not, I DO feel great. I even feel a little bit leaner, if that's possible. I actually feel like I'm finding my waist. I'm still working on hitting the gym regularly, but overall I am feeling like my happy figure is slowly starting to reappear. I'll admit I've been a bit more snacky then last week though. I'm pretty sure it's because of Lady Week though, and I've been really good about eating my healthy snacks and not a bunch of junk food from the snack closet. Sadly, I may have eaten 2 Dark Chocolate Criss from Trader Joe's....I was craving chocolate, and at least these aren't OVERLY calorie heavy. I should really look into getting some Isa Delights, b/c they look/sound amazing and supposably help with appetite! At any rate, I'm doing well, Shake for breakfast, shake for lunch and then dinner with Josh. I got Chicken Curry with brown rice, not amazing, but I'll step it up! I've still be snacking on healthy things, and avoiding the tempting delicious sweets. I actually feel like the shakes help me not feel like I'm missing out on as much when it comes to sweets. So that's good! Yay!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Isagenix Days 6 & 7

I decided to lump these days together since they are after all the weekend! Saturday, I woke up, made my shake, and got ready for the early pool session of my SCUBA training. I definitely was energized through the pool session, but I'll admit that the smell from the breakfast cafe, less then 50 yards away, did make me crave French toast and waffles. After the pool session I was starving, so I got a multi grain muffin from the cafe with tons of fruits in it. Probably not the healthiest choice, but I was soooooooooo hungry at that point! We hit up our classroom session then Josh and I went to grab lunch. We ate at TGIFridays and I ordered the Shrimp Key West. OMG! I love this dish so much! It's just deliciously seasoned shrimp on a skewer with a side of broccoli. After lunch it was back to the pool where we finished going over all our diving skills with our gear in the pool. After that Josh took me to see John Williams in concert!!! AMAZING! I had a couple bites of a chicken caesar wrap, but wasn't feeling super hungry. Once we got home though I made my 2nds shake for the day, which was very satisfying. Then it was off to bed.

Sunday was supposed to be my first cleanse day. This means I would spend the day drinking tons of water and occasionally mixing in these various nutrients to keep my body going. However, this was also my final SCUBA day to get my certification, meaning tons of strenuous activity all day, not to mention, my fun monthly visitor which always manages to take WAY more out of me then I'd like. So I felt it was better to actually make it a shake day. Little did I know there were not any outlets available for my blender. On top of all this, the boat was rocking so very much I ended up spending all day horribly seasick. I munched on some carrots and broccoli and a piece or two of watermelon all day. The only time I felt alright was while I was SCUBA~ing. I got my certification, and was never more excited to see land! Josh was amazing too and both dropped me off and picked me up from the pier, then took me to dinner with our friends at BJs. Having regained a small amount of appetite, I ordered their Ahi Poke, which is sushi grade Tuna served with some sauce. It was perfect, a nice lite meal that finally put something in my stomach. I had to laugh a little b/c on a day when I was supposed to cleanse, but didn't, I eneded up practically fasting anyway. Hahaha Back to shakes tomorrow, I'll just worry about my first official fast next weekend. ^_^

Friday, August 27, 2010

Isagenix Day 5

So today has been a bit tough. I started out the day with a shake, and was going strong until lunch. I tried to be healthy, but we ate Brazilian for a coworkers baby shower and I didn't quite realize my soft shell crabs would be so....deep fried. whoops. At least it was delicious! So I'm not proud of my lunch choice, although I haven't felt snacky since, maybe it's the guilt! Haha Just kidding. I'll have a shake for dinner tonight and maybe a hard boiled egg as a snack before bed. I feel like not having the isa plush yesterday made me not so tooty....yeah, I've been pretty tooty since starting this, but I am also having a lot more fluids then solids. I think I'll try upping my fiber a bit though, that's always been a weak part of my diet anyway. The exciting news is, I've noticed my body's energy being at a much higher level! For awhile the only way I felt I was getting any natural energy was from taking an iron pill every morning, since starting this program I have not taken a single dose of iron, so this level of energy is refreshing!!! I've done my best to get exercise daily, although I did miss a day. I'm also considering moving my "cleanse" day to Monday, as I really don't think it's a good idea to be fasting while diving O_o I'll consult Marcy about this though and see what she thinks. All in all it's going well. I'll try the isa flush again tonight to see if there really is a noticeable tooty difference.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Isagenix Day 4

I'm going to keep today brief. It's not much different then yesterday, but I do feel a little more hungry/snacky then yesterday. It could be b/c I'm about to start mistreating....idk. Overall though I ate well, snacked on my healthy snacks and even tried to choose a healthy lunch option. Josh and I hung out with Katrina and Justin for some softball throwing and batting cages after work. It was actually a really fun workout! I forgot to take my isa flush though, so we'll see how day 5 goes.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Isagenix Day 3

So I realized something today....I picked the WORST week to start this program. Hahaha Why you might ask? It's quite simple, once a month I, like most women, have a menstrual cycle. This means a whole week of fun, like bloating, water retention, cramps and oh yes, the additional 5 lbs and couple inches I put on that immediately goes away once the cycle is complete. I know what you're thinking "If it's just a temporary thing, why the big deal?" Well, this program prides itself on you being able to see the effects of your hard work and measure it ever 8 days. I started this program on Monday, took measurements of my body and weighed myself. So this coming Monday, the program asks that I do it again, however I'll be right in the middle of my cycle, and likely an extra few inches more bloated and a good 3-5 lbs heavier then normal, meaning it will be almost a mute point in measuring my progress on that day. I still will, but it was just funny to think about. On the bright side, when I weight and measure myself on day 16 I'm bound to see some improvement! Hahaha So all in all it works out, but I'm less looking forward to day 8 then I was when I started. Otherwise day 3 is going well. I Did both Shakes for breakfast and lunch since I'm out to dinner with friends tonight. I also hit up the gym for a good ab focused work out followed by cardio and a good stretch. Now I'm finishing off the work day before heading to Disneyland. I doubt I'll be eating organic, but I'll do my best to stick to lean meats or fish and stay away from the carbs as much as possible. Wish me luck!

EDIT: Also! I wanted to say I was good and steered clear of the donuts this morning, and have been keeping my appetite at bay with the yummy healthy snacks I picked up yesterday. I've also been working on not over indulging in them. It's easy for me to get caught up in thinking "This is healthy for me so I can have as much as I want!" When really, everything in moderation is better. I have actually noticed feeling full more though, which has been really nice! I'll snack a little bit, but quickly feel content and have been feeling content for longer then normal. I feel like I've built up the bad habit of snacking when I'm bored, and now I'm not feeling it as much. Like I'll have a moment of thinking "This is when I usually need a snack" and I think about it for a second and realize "I'm not hungry" and go back to working. So yay for that! Thank you Isagenix! <3