Dad’s Motivation – Weight of the Nation


MARIA LAUREN (aka: Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio)

Our life’s values start with our family and what is valued by our parents.

I was fortunate to have parents that taught their nine children, “How to”… How to eat healthfully, How to be fit, How to have good work ethics, How to pray…

When I was growing up, every morning I saw my mom preparing natural foods and my father on the porch doing exercises. In the picture above, I am about 19 years old and frequently used dad’s exercise cables for better muscle conditioning and jumped on our family trampoline for the health benefits of aerobic activity. I was so lucky to have parents who taught their children how important health and fitness was for a good quality of life.

As Fathers Day approaches, I am grateful to my dad for his motivation that has inspired me all of my life. Also blessed to have a husband who is always on the job as dad to our daughter, now a young woman but still our baby.

What are your favorite memories of your dad? Our dads are important. How was your dad a motivation to you? Remember him on Fathers Day!

As many of my blogger friends know, I presently work as a Lifestyle Educator/ Fitness Instructor  at Kaiser Permanente. I’m proud to be part of the Health Education department as they provide patients with the knowledge to have a better quality of life.

The Weight of the Nation: an HBO program partnering with Kaiser Permanente. The Weight of the Nation films include case studies; uplifting personal stories of people, families, and community members who are tackling weight issues; and interviews with our nation’s leading experts.

  • Episode 1 — Consequences: Examines the scope of the obesity epidemic and explores the serious health consequences of being overweight or obese.
  • Episode 2 — Choices: Shares scientific insights into how to lose weight and explores what needs to change in people’s lives, including where they work, eat, learn and play, while spotlighting individuals who are waging the battle successfully.
  • Episode 3 — Children in Crisis: Tells the heart-wrenching stories of young people struggling with excess weight and facing serious medical complications at an early age, and examines how marketing shapes food choices.
  • Episode 4 — Challenges: Examines the driving forces behind the obesity epidemic, including agriculture, economics, evolutionary biology, racial and socioeconomic disparities, and physical inactivity. 
  • HBO’s site for community activation kits and more

Kudos to HBO, Kaiser Permanente and the many professionals who help launch Weight of the Nation, as well as our First Lady, Michelle Obama for her Let’s Move campaign and her good example of promoting fitness and stopping obesity in our nation.

Fitness: You can start being more fit by adding 15 minutes a day of exercise to your lifestyle. Do something you enjoy! Mix it up! Strengthen your muscles by doing resistance training and strengthen your heart by doing aerobic training. Exercise is a prescription for health

Entertainment: Dancing is a good exercise and another season of Dancing with the Stars has ended. I must admit, the highlight for me was seeing the Chmerkovskiy Brothers, Maksim and Val break a sweat and strut their stuff! Isn’t it time for you to move your body, break a sweat and have fun doing it? Dance like a star! (Past Dancing with the Stars moments etc…)

Sexy! Melissa Gilbert with Maksim Chmerkovskiy & Val Chmerkovskiy dance a Trio Samba in Week 8 of 2012:

Last but not least…

Memorial Day: Take a moment with me to remember those who have known the perils of combat… thinking of my father-in-law, Anthony Riccio who was awarded the purple heart.

God bless America and God bless you,

Maria Lauren – yourpowerfullife

(AKA: Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio)


Fitness and Entertainment, Contact:

  • Keynote Speaker: “You Got The Power”
  • Entertainer and Producer: “Showstoppers”
  • Book Signings
  • Singing or Fitness Coach…

Book by the Alberici Sisters, Maria Lauren and her sister Linda Eichberg: Beyond Our Wildest Dreams tells backstage stories about the Entertainment Icons of the 20th Century!

WOMEN ARE POWERFUL! Maria has the distinct honor of being the first woman in body-building to win two national championships in one year.

Maria’s Website  

Kaiser Permanente’s Health Education fitness classes 

DISCLAIMER: This is a personal Blog, produced in my own time and solely reflecting my personal opinions. Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of my employer, past or present, or any other organization with which I may be affiliated. All content is copyrighted.

Up Close: Dancing with the Stars

Marianna mingling with Maksim and Val of “Dancing with the Stars”

Yes, that would be the Chmerkovskiy Brothers of “Dancing with the Stars!” My daughter, Marianna Riccio is happy to be sandwiched between Valentin (known as Val) and older brother, Maksim. Her friend, Jade looks happy too! 

Bring on the glamour! I’m a fan of “Dancing with the Stars.” I love the energetic frenzy of dancing, live music, personalities and sparkling performances, beginning with the parade of costumes at the start of the show. As my eyes follow the rainbow line-up of glittering color I think of myself walking on stage in one of those costumes. For me, that is a vicarious moment of fun and imagination, a type of window shopping to a Diva fashion show. After a day at work, I welcome this diversion of fantasy.

In reality, these past few months Marianna has bumped into Maksim at special events. His brother is also a talented dancer and a rap artist, so Marianna shared some of the songs she wrote with them. Last year, when my daughter was invited to Mya’s birthday party with the “Dancing of the Stars” cast, she took her parents along too. Lucky us!! It was a treat to chat with some of the cast, like Cheryl Burke and see them interacting together. It was a familiar vibe and I felt like I was back in time, hanging out with my fellow performers of The Dean Martin Golddggers. At any rate, I thought Mya was a sure winner, but Donny Osmond surprised everyone with a spectacular last dance and took the coveted mirror trophy home. It was a sweet moment when his sister, Marie joined him at the finale. This made me reminisce on a time when my sisters (The Alberici Sisters) performed on a Telethon that Donny & Marie hosted. The Osmonds are such an inspirational and talented family!

Enjoy this “retro” TV footage of the Alberici Sisters on the “Children’s Miracle Network” Telethon singing “In the Mood”

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Who will take home the “Dancing With The Stars” trophy this season?

Nicole Scherzinger, lead singer of the Pussy Cat Dolls has been a front-runner, dazzling us with her stunning performances. She has shown much dedication and has been a joy to watch. Maksim has worked well with ESPN reporter, Erin Andrews. She has shown much improvement but I think our Olympic gold medal winner, Evan Lysacek will surprise us with his athleticism during the final free-style dance.

Of course we can’t forget the entertainment of the hosts and expert judges, who are humorous and dramatic while each contestant strives to do their best. The chemistry between the judges, Carrie Anne Inaba, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli is a good mix. Bruno’s demonstrative explanations is a complement to the hosts, Tom Bergeron’s dry wit and Brooke Burke’s poised beauty. Sometimes, I even get mesmerized by the magic of a performance and if the spirit moves me, I call in a vote.

On some occasions, I take out my high-heeled dance shoes to dance with my husband, Carmine. We never took serious dance lessons together but we find it fun and romantic to do our own thing on the dance floor!

DANCE & EXERCISE: As a Lifestyle Educator at Kaiser Permanente, every week I teach a Dance Exercise class where we sweat and burn fat while moving our bodies to salsa music and then sculpt our bodies with some Pilates. This week as a representative of KP, I demonstrated various types of fitness at the Princess Cruises headquarters as part of their “Princess Healthy Living” campaign. During their lunch break, employees were in the flow as they participated in Tai-Chi techniques, Yoga three-part breathing and learned how to strengthen their core muscles. Then, I put on some Latin music as they moved their hips with simple cha, cha, and rumba steps. From my view, it was a grand site!

Put on some music and when no one is watching let your body move and groove with a sense of freedom and joy. Breathe and find your own rhythm, get your circulation going, de-stress and feel alive. Why not? It’s your moment and you’re the Star!

Healthfully yours,

Maria Lauren (AKA) Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio

Your Powerful LIFE blog



Alberici Sisters

Marianna Riccio is currently entertaining as a solo artist and with the Alberici Sisters in “Showstoppers.” The Alberici Sisters, Maria Lauren and Linda Eichberg are authors of the book, “Beyond Our Wildest Dreams” about the Icons of the 20th Century and that includes the legendary Rat Pack!


Marianna’s Website    My Website

Exercise Schedule at Kaiser Permanente


Maria-Lauren-Alberici-Riccio-You-Got-The-PowerThis is a blog about LIFE: Living, Inspiration, Fitness, Entertainment. It is produced in my own time and solely reflects my personal opinions. Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of my employer, past or present, or any other organization with which I may be affiliated. All content is copyrighted.