We get so excited whenever we see other authors posting about major life changes for a more healthy lifestyle. Today we’re thrilled to welcome Jambrea Jo Jones, who accepted a challenge, stuck with it, and just keeps on going:
Adriana: Welcome, Jambrea, and thanks so much for joining us to talk about staying sexy and healthy! As you know, hubs and I launched our weekly column, Stay Sexy, in February. Both of us have faced some health challenges, and we’ve thrown ourselves into learning and doing whatever’s in our power to maximize our health and our future.
Over the last year we’ve noticed other erotic romance authors posting about weight loss, diet issues, workouts and health challenges, so we decided it would be great to involve you and others like you in the conversation and give our readers a chance to benefit from what you’ve learned.
My first question is, what are the health-related changes you’ve been focused on recently – what are your goals?
Jambrea: First, thanks for having me. 🙂 Second, I was diagnosed with diabetes a few years ago. I also found out that I have high blood pressure and high cholesterol. I don’t want to be on meds. I’ve tried starting before but took a big break. The last time I was at my doctors I was told I was controlling my issues with diet. I know during my big break I was getting back up there with my weight and knew I had to start again and find a way it would hopefully stick.
Adriana: I’m familiar with how it can creep back up, even when you think you’re not doing things all that differently. Suddenly there you are, and the scales, the mirror, and the clothing all deliver the same (unwelcome) story :).
So clearly you’d had motivation and worked at this in the past – what, specifically, prompted you to take it back up this time?
Jambrea: Someone on Facebook issued a 100 day challenge. On the first day I decided—I need to do this right. So I stopped drinking pop and started watching what I eat.
Adriana: I love that – someone issues a challenge, and you step right up to the plate. And bat it out of the park, I might add :).
Those are two of the smartest moves anyone can make – simply cutting out pop makes a huge impact. It’s not just the calorie difference, it’s the fructose, which actually creates a craving for sugar. It’s so much easier to avoid high/simple carbs altogether once we cut back on fructose.
Is there a particular person or event that serves as inspiration and motivation for you?
Jambrea: My motivation was the challenge. It was issued and I thought—this is something I can do. It will be easy and I can do it at home. Also, posting to Facebook. It’s like I’m accountable for what I’m doing.
Adriana: I hadn’t thought of that. Some of the first tips successful people recommend are being accountable to someone and having a support person, but by using Facebook, you have a vast network of them. Plus, that’s how I found out you were doing this – now you can count me in as part of your support team!
What about these changes has been most difficult for you?
Jambrea: Making sure I do my exercise every day. One thing I’m proud of is the fact that I have stuck with what I set out to do. I’ve added things and subtracted things, but my core three exercises I have stuck to.
Adriana: Good for you! That’s a tough one for me, too, and I’ll admit to skipping a workout here and there. Some mornings I just don’t feel like it – and those are the mornings I probably need it most. Usually just knowing how much better I’m going to feel afterwards gets me started.
When you bump up against one of these hurdles, what are your most tried and true tactics for overcoming it? What works for you?
Jambrea: Knowing that I won’t be able to post on Facebook that I completed my day. And the PM’s I’ve received asking what I’m doing. Having people tell me I inspire them. Those things keep me going and I hope it will keep up past the 100 day challenge.
Adriana: I love it – not just the accountability, but the awareness you’re helping and inspiring others.
What do you find most rewarding so far?
Jambrea: How I feel. It isn’t just the inches and weight lost, it’s feeling good and not muddled.
Adriana: Perfect – you probably know by now, that’s a source of motivation that will last a lifetime. It’s so clear that for you, this time it’s not a “diet,” it’s a lifestyle change – one that leads to not just health but vibrancy.
Sometimes we start out with one purpose and goal, and as we get going, we find that the changes we’re making spill over into other areas of our lives, hopefully in a good way. Has anything like that been happening for you?
Jambrea: It hasn’t happened yet, but here is hoping it will spill over into my housework. J
Adriana: LOL. I haven’t found it makes housework any more inviting, but actually it has made housework less exhausting, so that’s a good thing. Also, I think probably the “feeling good and not muddled” is a way it’s spilled over from your first goals.
What has been the reaction of other people you’re close to? (family, friends; support? Any undermining?)
Jambrea: Everyone has been SO supportive. I’ve even got my son thinking about what he is doing and eating. That is a big plus for me.
Adriana: How fabulous! Changes in diet often do impact an entire household, so it’s neat that the response is positive.
Have you written a character who faces any of these same issues? Tell us about him or her.
Jambrea: I did. Kind of. My book Annihilation, which is an m/m sci-fi story, has a character who starts the story out of shape and overweight. He was out of the military and his health went downhill, but something happens that forces him to get into shape. He has no choice. And it really correlates with me because I was in the military and was medically discharged and let myself go.
Adriana: Sorry to hear about the medical discharge, and also, kudos to you, for serving. It can be difficult to move from such a structured environment into one where we have to create and stick to our own self-imposed structure, even when we’re healthy, so your situation was even more of a challenge.
What advice or tips would you like to pass on to our wonderful readers?
Jambrea: Stick with it. If you have a day when you cave and eat something you shouldn’t, don’t beat yourself up about it. It’s a lifestyle change, NOT a diet. I let myself have what I want, I just don’t do it ALL the time. If you’re on a diet you feel like you are restricting yourself and that is when people fall off the wagon. Don’t be so hard on yourself.
Adriana: That’s great advice, especially about not beating ourselves up for a slip here and there. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Thanks so much for stopping by and chatting with us today. And please do share with us the blurb for Annihilation – and could we hope for an excerpt, too? Also, don’t forget to give us links to your presence on the web.
A government agency isn’t a place you’d expect to find love.
Not all are soldiers, but the Alliance has a long arm and touches many lives. The Galaxy may just be big enough for espionage, murder, science and honour among men.
by Jambrea Jo Jones
Book five in the Alliance Series
If you enjoyed Steamroller by Mary Calmes, or Mate Healer by Amber Kell, then this book might just be for you! Make this one of your top romance novels of the year!
It’s the end of the world as they know it…
Ricardo Clark is ex-military working a nine to five job on Earth, a planet that was almost wiped out by the big flood of 2050. The world was changing and trying to regroup under a new government called the Alliance. For most it was business as usual. That is until the old government tries to take back over.
Gilliland Carter was tired of living on the streets. He took a job at a bakery hoping to put some normal back into his life. There was no need for his kind anymore, an undercover cop. The Alliance had a lock down on things and if you weren’t military, you weren’t needed. He didn’t exactly have the look of someone who’d fit into the soldier lifestyle with his tattoos and piercings.
Ricardo and Gilliland take a journey neither of them were prepared for. It will bring them to the brink of death, but can it also bring love?
‘I WANT YOU.’
The old vintage recruitment sign with the image of Uncle Sam on it mocked Ricardo Clark. The finger pointed in his direction. Someone had marked out the part that said ‘for the U.S. Army’ and written over it with ‘for the Alliance’, some new form of government that had taken over power when the old government had crumbled.
Not that he had to worry. He’d been discharged years ago because of some stupid asthma thing and now he was a hundred pounds overweight, give or take a few pounds. Who would really ‘want’ him? He should have been able to stay in, but the military was overcrowded. They’d stopped recruiting after they pulled out of the Middle East and were looking at reasons to let go soldiers. Hell, with all the advancements in medicine he could have had his asthma cleared up in no time, but he didn’t fight it. Not like he should have done. He had a place to go, others didn’t, and they needed the stability of working for the government.
Rico continued his walk to the bakery. The only thing he was good for was eating a few doughnuts before going to his boring data entry job. After the big flood in 2050 there were tons of data that needed re-entering and a lot more of it lost. With his military career he had the necessary clearances to process the sensitive data so he was pretty secure in his job, unlike some others. It sucked, but it paid the bills. The homeless population was bigger than ever. It also kept his mom off his back. She was always asking him when he was going to find a nice boy and settle down. She’d bring up the old ‘I helped fight for your right to marry whoever you want, now do something about it and make me proud. I want grandkids!’ Rico didn’t even know if he liked kids, not that it was an option now anyway. He was single and barely making ends meet. The job might have been steady, but it wasn’t high-paying.
Before he was born there had been a big fight over government involvement in same-sex marriage and his parents had been in the ‘trenches’ as it were, fighting to make changes. Finally the government had passed a bill stating that it would take no part in deciding who a person could or could not marry and that each state had to abide by this bill, allowing people to marry whoever they wanted to. Or something like that. Rico couldn’t remember the exact wording, but the gist of it was that same-sex couples could get married and have that marriage recognised wherever they went.
There had been a big outcry and some churches had taken a big stand, but, all in all, after a few years, no one really cared and it was business as usual. Still, there were the hatemongers out there, but as time passed they faded away from the spotlight. When Rico had hit puberty it was all old news and there were different things to fight over. The churches prayed over the state of the world and blamed the rest of the nation for the coming apocalypse. Turned out it was a flood, not zombies taking over. The church still took credit saying their God was bringing down the sinners of the world. They never could come up with an explanation for how their congregations weren’t spared.
Rico didn’t really care because faith didn’t really fit into what he wanted out of his life. He had big plans, like with his military career. It was supposed to be his ticket to law enforcement. He was thinking CIA or FBI. Now he was a glamorous clerk sitting behind a desk and clacking away at a keyboard all day.
He finally reached the shop and walked in.
“Rico! Your usual?” The owner winked at him.
Rico nodded and bellied up to the counter to wait for his order. It should’ve made him sad that the pastry people knew him, but he was hungry and running late. He didn’t have time to be upset about a predicament of his own making. No one let him get so out of shape. That was all on him.
There was a new guy behind the counter and Rico couldn’t stop staring. He was rugged and lean with short blond hair that stood on end and bright green eyes. He had scruff on his face and a shiner, like he’d gone a couple of rounds in a fight. But that wasn’t what caught Rico’s gaze. It was the black plugs in his ears and the tattoos running up and down each arm. They were colourful and he wanted a closer look, even leaned over the counter a bit before he caught himself. He could make out some sort of creature’s head on his right shoulder in a dark red with black horns and it looked like wisps of smoke tied everything together. There were a few other things, but he couldn’t make them out without getting closer. On the other arm were a koi fish and cherry blossoms and other small tattoos.
But a man like that wouldn’t look twice at the fat blob he’d become. Maybe when he was still in the military Rico’d have had the balls to approach him. Now he just took his sweets and left the bakery.
The city looked better than it had in years and he enjoyed his walk, taking a big bite of the gooey confection. The weather was nice, the sun shining. He was actually sweating a bit, the hazard of his extra pounds. For the first time he thought maybe he should do something about it. He thought back to the blond with those tattoos and threw his doughnuts into the next trash bin he found, but that didn’t stop him from licking his fingers.
The day was the same old, same old. The only exception was that his thoughts drifted back to the hot guy at the bakery. He knew what his spank fantasies would be about that night. It wasn’t like his job forced him to think. He looked at papers and entered information into the central system that the Alliance had hooked back up after the flood. If it wasn’t for them, the United States would probably still be in the dark.
So he’d enter some top-secret data while picturing himself licking those tattoos. He wondered what the guy’s cock looked like. Hell, he wondered what name he should be screaming.
His supervisor, Mr Jordan, walked over while he was in the middle of a daydream, his cock rock-hard in his pants while he gazed off into nothingness.
“Mr Clark, is there a problem with your computer?”
“No, sir.” Rico sat up straighter.
Desk work sucked the life out of him and his boss was a prick, but he had to do something.
“Good. Back to it then.” Mr Jordan clasped him on the shoulder and walked away.
With a sigh he got back to the daily grind. His dick deflated and he wanted to keep it that way until he got home. Then all bets were off.
FIND JAMBREA ON LINE