Play Your Cards Right and Win the Game of Life! WWB’s ‘Ideal Find’ Makes Fitness Simple for Everyone…

Aug 26, 2014 by




IDEAL FIND: Workout Labs Exercise Cards and Digital Programs

FOUNDER: William Artamon

AUTHENTIC DEDICATION: To make fitness simple for everyone, through high quality, intuitive, and accessible products and on-line resources.







Lauroly Opening: Welcome William, to World Wise Beauty. I am so excited to share your Workout Labs product line with our readers. World Wise Beauty celebrates wellness culture and exercise is the key ingredient to achieving optimal health. We talk so much about food and nutrition and I think we forget that food is ‘fuel’ to ‘move’ the body! What’s important to note before we get started is many people don’t hate exercise, they just can’t find time to do it enough. I loved to exercise my entire life, but then I developed a career which entailed frequent international business travel and long hours at the office. I really had to make an effort and find the time to exercise. Everyone can see where I am going with this. We are now more than ever a mobile society and business travelers aren’t the only people trying to fit in exercise time. This is why I love your Exercise Cards William! It is the perfect fitness solution for our busy lifestyles and designed for anyone to use. How did you conceptualize your product line? Tell us how Workout Labs came to life…

William Artamon: So many of our users are in a similar situation Lauroly – they want to be healthier, to be fitter, but face various obstacles in making exercise a part of their life – they lack time or money for the gym, they are intimidated by all that equipment and don’t know where to start, they just find it all too hard and often give up. This is where Workout Labs comes in. Our goal is to make fitness simple and accessible to everyone though the tools we offer online and our Exercise Cards. Workout Labs launched with only our online custom workout builder in January of 2013 and the idea for the concept came out of my own need to create visual workout plans that I could take with me to the gym. Not finding any good resources to do this, I set out to create one. Our website and offerings grew since then based on what our users were asking for and the Exercise Cards is just another simple tool to make it easy to start exercising anywhere anytime.



Lauroly Q- Find a need and fill it! It’s amazing how creative and resourceful we humans are when we encounter obstacles and challenges. The other great feature of your cards is they are customized for both women and men. How many of us use machines in a gym and wonder if we are doing the workout right?  I think the educational element of your line is just as important as the convenience of your products. How do we know if we are doing our exercises correctly on our own?

Workout Labs Exercise Card Deck


William Artamon: Our exercise illustrations, which are done in-house, are a key ingredient in our online products and the Exercise Cards. We take great care to make sure the illustrations are clear and show correct form and movement so that there is rarely a need to reference the written instructions.

Lauroly Q- I began this Q&A talking about the importance of fitness and nutrition and I am thrilled you have included nutrition plans with your workout programs. Everyone will be happy to discover that you offer customized workout programs on-line. What are the programs you offer and how do we take advantage of them? I just signed up for you 6 minute morning workout which also comes up with a training schedule. Tell us more about your Workout Builder and your Workout Plans. How do they work and how much do they cost?


Workout Labs Exercise Cards, Plans & Programs

William Artamon: Yes, the Exercise Cards is just a small part of what we offer – most of our resources are on our website. The unique thing that we offer is our illustrated workout builder that lets you create custom printable routines with exercise illustrations in seconds via a simple drag-and-drop interface. You have a choice of about 190 exercises and stretches (a number that is growing every month) and our workout builder is free to use. If you are just getting started and aren’t sure how to structure your routine, we have a several free workout plans designed by our trainers that you can download or customize to your liking. We also have a dozen workout packs for various fitness goals that consist of three workouts, warm-up and stretches routines, training calendar and some essential training tips – these are $4.95 downloads.

If you are looking for a transformation, we have two 8-week training programs – one for home, one for use at the gym – designed to help you lose 10-15 pounds with a simple exercise program and an easy-to-follow nutrition guide that will help you adjust your diet without having to follow a strict meal plan that is often too difficult to follow. Hundreds of our customers have followed these programs, priced at $27 to $29, to great results and the number one comment we receive is about how simple our programs are compared with what they have tried before. All of these resources are based on our exercise illustrations and are designed to be very simple and accessible to anyone.


Lauroly Closing: Thanks so much William for being innovative and creating your company Workout Labs. I mean that! Workout Labs is an ‘ideal find’ and I think your cards will be the perfect stocking stuffer this year for the holidays. I’ll be sure to include you in the WWB ‘Ideal Finds’ Holiday Gift Guide this year! 

No more excuses Word Wise Beauties! Let’s make the time to exercise!

Truly Herself,


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In Remembrance of Robin Williams: Connecting the Parts and Treating the Whole

Aug 12, 2014 by

Creative brilliance yes, but Robin Williams had lived for a long time with a darkness at the periphery of his vision. Some call it Bipolar disorder, others call it Major Depression. Both psychiatric conditions can lead to suicide when not treated. Life’s crushing blows and heartaches, crossed wires in the brain, imbalanced chemistry, missing serotonin, improper nutrition–now couple this with alcohol and drugs. This is a lethal mix. Some say psychotherapy helps, others say pharmaceutical drugs will help and many others say ‘snap out of it and get a little exercise’. An afflicted person may try all of the above and still SUFFER. So they think to themselves ‘maybe this drink will help’ (self-medicating).

The TRUTH is we are complex human beings and there is no one magic bullet to treat any DIS-EASE. Our mind, body and spirit are parts of the beautiful WHOLE. When we finally come to this, and treat the PERSON and all their CONNECTED parts ‘holistically’, we will have embraced true wellness culture.

I could pontificate on the many topics related to Robin’s suicide but perhaps the best way to honor him, now that he is gone, is to celebrate wellness culture. I will continue to talk to the many wellness professionals and experts around the world, so we can all “synthesize’ wisdom and the many helpful ‘approaches’ to caring for our mind, body and spirits. Our aim together as ‘World Wise Beauties’ is to be WHOLE and comfortable in our own skin. This is a worthy aspiration, this we can try to do, because we are ALIVE. We’ll deeply miss your Robin.


Truly Herself,





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The Lost ‘Art’ of Practicing Medicine: A Q&A with Dr. Leana Wen author of ‘When Doctors Don’t Listen’ –How to Avoid Misdiagnoses and Unnecessary Tests

Aug 6, 2014 by

WWB’s ‘Book Wise’ Pick

WWB’s  ‘Book Wise’  Club Pick: When Doctors Don’t Listen–How to Avoid Misdiagnoses and Unnecessary Tests

WWB’s Wise Guru/Author Bio: Dr. Leana Wen is a Harvard-educated emergency physician, Rhodes Scholar, TED speaker, and author of the best-selling book,When Doctors Don’t Listen: How to Avoid Misdiagnoses and Unnecessary Tests  (Co-authored with Dr. Joshua Kosowsky, M.D.)

Dr. Wen is a practicing attending physician and Director of Patient-Centered Care in the Department of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University. A professor of emergency medicine and health policy, she co-leads a new national collaboration on health policy and social mission, and serves as founding director of Who’s My Doctor, a campaign calling for radical transparency in medicine.

In addition to World Wise Beauty, she has been featured in TimeNewsweekABC News, NPR, CNN, The New York TimesThe Washington Post, and the award-winning HBO documentary Reporter. A professional speaker for ten years, she has given three popular TED talks, and lectures around the U.S. and internationally on patient-centered care and healthcare reform.



Lauroly Opening: Welcome Dr. Wen to World Wise Beauty. I am honored to have you join us and I’m such an admirer of your work. It takes courage to step out of the “tribe’ you run with, and in your case the tribe is the medical establishment you are a part of. After I read your book, I likened it to another great book I read called ‘Emperor of All Maladies’ and then I noticed the author was one of your top reviewers on your back cover! I say your book is ‘great’ because I think it is incredibly hard to step back and be objective about what we are doing when we are in the ‘trenches’ of our work. It’s must be so hard to critique your own field of expertise when to an extent you are ‘indoctrinated’ with training and conditioning from the moment you enter medical school.  I commend you for your personal insight and your bravery to step up and challenge your own peers.

I am also thrilled to announce your book has been chosen as the first WWB ‘Book Wise’ club pick. While there are many excellent books out there, I select books that speak to my two important missions for World Wise Beauty. The first one is to advance wellness culture through enlightenment and education. The second one is to help women embrace beauty from the inside out and to encourage them to be comfortable in their own skin. Your very important book has been selected because you are clearly determined to advance wellness culture. There is so much information to glean from your book, so let’s  get started!  

Lauroly Q- Some people refer to your work as ‘disruptive’ which is a trendy, mostly positive term used today when alternative options and ideas are introduced. I see your book as simply enlightening because you really try to get at the real problem in today’s medical practice for both doctors and patients. You give us the full balanced picture of how the practice of medicine has advanced in some areas but also has lost its way, and particularly when it comes to listening to the patient and making a diagnosis. Why is it more important than ever for patients to be their own strong advocate when interacting with medical professionals? I do want to point out that your book is not about fear or blame, it’s about knowledge and empowerment for both medical practitioners and patients.


Dr. Leana Wen


Dr. Leana Wen: Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this important issue, and I appreciate your recognition of this being about knowledge and empowerment, rather than blame. Over the years, I have worked with many excellent doctors and nurses, and not one person intends to misdiagnose or contribute to unnecessary testing. What I’d add is this: making a diagnosis requires a partnership between you and your doctor. The doctor is the expert when it comes to medicine, but you are the expert when it comes to your body–the two of you together need to come up with your diagnosis. Patients can’t be passive recipients of healthcare.

Lauroly Q- Your medical experience and wisdom comes from working as a doctor in the ER of a hospital. I think working the ER is hard-core training for any doctor, and really tests your communication abilities because you interact with so many people from all walks of life. Yet lack of communication seems to be the big problem and is exactly where things are going wrong for many patients right? Your book illustrates the problems by highlighting three patient stories who fell victim to ‘Cookbook Medicine’. You also share numerous tips throughout the book on how to avoid falling into the wrong ‘pathway of diagnosis’ ( using ‘pathways’ is a common practice today in hospitals). What is cookbook medicine and explain how it is practiced?


New Yorker, Cartoon Editor, Bob Mankoff


Dr. Leana Wen: Cookbook medicine is what happens when patients are given the same treatment no matter who they are or what they present with. So if you have a chest pain and you fell into a wall, you get the same treatment as if you are in your 80s and have crushing chest pain–that’s practicing medicine by a recipe, not personalizing treatment to the individual patient. We know from numerous studies that 80% of diagnoses can be made based on the history, yet doctors today are under a lot of pressure to see more people in less time. In fact, studies show that doctors will interrupt patients in 10-12 seconds after they begin speaking. It becomes tempting to practice this form of cookbook medicine, which might save time, but patients will suffer the consequences. That’s why it’s so important for patients to advocate for themselves to make sure they get the best care possible.



Lauroly Q- Throughout the book you have ‘911 Action Tips’ and ‘911 reviews’ after each chapter. It’s so informative and I believe the most important one you share is on page 152– ‘Be Involved in your personal exam’. I do have to say, when you’re in pain and distress, it isn’t always easy to think and communicate clearly! As you just mentioned, doctors today are under more pressure to see more patients in less time. This is a big issue you cover comprehensively from all sides of the fence.

The only area I didn’t find you covered is my next important question. You are asking your own field to essentially stop giving unnecessary tests but aren’t hospitals ‘for profit’ centers and isn’t their technology and tests a huge part of their profit centers? I couldn’t help but think about this big elephant in the room. Is a doctor’s end goal to heal or make profits for their hospital and practice? Perhaps there is a ‘value crisis’ in the practice of medicine? I don’t think doctors think like this from day to day, but as you point out so well in your book, they are conditioned from the moment they enter med school. I know this is a difficult question to tackle but I believe you are up to the challenge!


Dr. Leana Wen: This is a really excellent question, and I’m so glad you mentioned it. We do have a big problem in medicine: that more is considered better. This is a problem with many causes, including patient expectations, media perceptions, and the profit motives that you mentioned. A 2008 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that 94% of doctors have some affiliation with drug companies or medical device companies. Subsequent studies have shown that these affiliations do change prescription habits. There is a growing movement of doctors who know this is a problem: we have to make sure our best interests are always the patients’ best interests, and in fact that’s why we entered this practice of medicine–to heal and to serve. I started a campaign last year called Who’s My Doctor,, that aims for total transparency in medicine. We want to assure our patients that we will be totally open with them, that we have nothing to hide from them. And all of us, as patients and providers, need to come together to address this larger issue of “more is better” medicine, and to focus on what’s actually good for people, not just for profit.


Lauroly Closing: Thank you so much for stopping by Dr. Wen. I am recommending that EVERYONE read your book “When Doctors Don’t Listen’. I  know my followers will see why it has been selected as the first WWB ‘Book Wise’ pick. I look forward to seeing you out there advocating for us! WWB will do its best to promote your book because it teaches us, enlightens us, and most importantly empowers us to become ‘wise’ about our own health and medical care. We all have to be wise gurus for ourselves and our families. Go wisely my friends…

Truly Herself,






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WWB WATCH: Not So Fast! Can Fast Food Chains Really Be Healthy?

Aug 4, 2014 by


THE WATCH: I hope you enjoy WWB’s new department designed to keep you informed about major developments in wellness culture. I know how busy we all are and sometimes we miss or gloss over important news stories. ‘The Watch’ will only feature major developments in the beauty, health and wellness sectors and my mission with this department is to keep the ‘news that matters’ on your radar. We also seek to provide context to the developments we share. No definitive conclusions are made by Word Wise Beauty, and we only strive to encourage ‘deeper inquiry’ so you can be your own ‘wise guru’ and make informed decisions for your individual wellness lifestyle. Today we are watching a new trend in fast food chains, to be specific the increase of new “healthy’ fast food chains available to us…

~Truly Herself, Lauroly

                         ‘WATCH’ NEWS STORY: Hold the Regret? Fast Food Seeks Virtuous Side

CONTEXT: For those who are not familiar with the LOHAS term. LOHAS is a marketing research term used to identify conscious lifestyle trends and is short for ‘Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability’.  It also is used to describe a particular type of consumer. There are many segments in this burgeoning category in the U.S and they are referenced in the NYT story we’re discussing as vegan, pescatarian, and pro-organic. What is important to note is LOHAS consumers shop with their values and are usually well-informed about food manufacturing and ingredients. They want to know where the food came from, the composition of the ingredients and they expect it to be transparent. Another interesting note is the focus on ‘psycho/demographics’ in this news story. It seems as though the Millennium generation is embracing and demanding a healthier fast food chain perhaps because they have been privileged to grow up in a more transparent society which has resulted from the rise of technology and the information age. Baby Boomers had been pushing for this change for years but within the confines of a LOHAS community which was a smaller percentage of the overall consumer market. These times they are a changin…


Photo Credit: Mark Perlstein/NYT

WHAT MATTERS: It is exciting to see new fast food chains attempting a healthier and organic approach to fast food. But it is important for the main stream consumer to understand what the new chains are marketing and hold these chains to transparent accountability as well.  When it comes to smart food choices in a ‘Healthy” fast food chain, we consumers still have to consider the amount of salt, sugar, natural flavors ( chemicals), and preservatives which are often the culprits behind many chronic health conditions. For example, when we do try the new fast chains, we will still have to consider the ‘tasty delicious sauces’ we love in our fast foods as they are usually high in fat, salt or sugar. This leads us back to the big questions ‘what’s in the food and how much’?” I suspect most LOHAS oriented consumers don’t eat in a fast food chains too often, but in reality many Americans eat out several times a week because of convenience. I admit to eating a little Qdoba ( veggie selections) myself  when ‘on the go’ but I have to carefully choose what I order. Are we now to believe eating fast food is healthy? 

The NYT article does a good job overviewing the virtues and positive improvements the new fast food models are bringing to the consumer and our culture.  From an environmental perspective and for humane animal treatment, the new fast food chains represent a positive culture shift in which their business models introduce  ‘socially conscious values’ into their sourcing and operations. This is the most significant progress in my opinion and truly represents an ‘upgrade’ in Fast Food retailing.

WISE TAKE AWAY: So can fast food really be healthy? Well–the answer needs context like most important questions do. Hope I have given you some here. Always seeking wisdom, I have reached out to one of  my highly respected WWB wise gurus, Dr. David L. Katz, a board certified specialist in preventative medicine and on the forefront of integrative medicine. Let’s get his thoughts on the new Fast Food Chains. See my recent interview with him at the Wise Guru department  and learn more about his latest book ‘Disease Proof  The Remarkable Truth About What Makes Us Well’.

Dr. David L.Katz, MD, MPH

“This is a trend I am delighted to see. I believe we can love food that loves us back- but for that to happen, we need the same kind of access to tasty, healthful food that we now have to the dubious offerings of fast food. Widespread, convenient, economical access to wholesome foods can meaningfully improve the typical American diet. I expect these new ventures to thrive, constituting a win/win for those investing in them, and the public health. If we reward the early innovators with our patronage, others will follow- and the modern American foodscape will be transformed for the better. May it be so, and the sooner, the better.” ~Dr. David L. Katz, MD, MPH

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