Episode 002 – 1/8/20

From Podcast Mansfield Recording Studio, welcome to About Mansfield. I’m Steve Cosio and I’m glad that you’re here. Coming up on the show today: news, weather and sports, I’ll talk in-studio with a local rock star who has an amazing story to tell, as well as the Mansfield Events Calendar, listener comments and we will conclude with your chance to win a $25 gift card to Steven’s Garden & Grill with the trivia question of the week.

Taking a look at the headlines we are covering this week:
• Mayoral candidates in Mansfield have doubled in the past week
• The city council has an opening and that race has begun
• Countywide vote centers for Tarrant County have been approved
• Two area mayors team up to help Mansfield residents get healthy
• Mansfield is home to the first baby born in 2020 in the D/FW Metroplex
• Who retires after six years of service? We’ll tell you who
• When is the best time to take down your Christmas decorations? We have the answers along with your weekly weather forecast and local sports. The news starts in 30 seconds. This is About Mansfield.

Welcome back to About Mansfield.

Mansfield resident Terry Moore has thrown his hat into the mayoral race announcing on social media that he intends to seek the mayor’s seat.

Moore, who stated on his Facebook page that he is “Committed to Represent All Citizens of Mansfield,” served three years on the Mansfield City Council and nine years on the Mansfield ISD School Board of Trustees.

Moore’s announcement brings the mayoral candidate count to two and that number is expected to rise in the next week or so.

With Moore relinquishing his council seat, entrepreneur Todd Tonore has announced this week that he is running for city council. Tonore currently serves on several boards locally including the Mansfield Methodist Hospital board, MISD Education Foundation, and Why Not Bless, and, among other ventures, is the owner of El Primo’s Mexican Restaurant.

The Texas Secretary of State has permanently approved countywide vote centers for Tarrant County, which allow voters to cast ballots at any polling place on Election Day.

According to Secretary of State’s Director of Elections Keith Ingram, Tarrant County conducted a successful countywide polling place program in the November 2019 election. Tarrant County is authorized to continue to hold its elections using countywide polling places subject to the approval of the county commissioners court.

The November 2019 constitutional amendment election in Tarrant County produced its highest voter turnout since 2005.

Mansfield Mayor David Cook will be teaming up with Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price on Friday January 10 for the “Healthy This Way 2020 KICK-OFF Event.” The purpose of the project is to help the Mansfield community residents live a more healthy lifestyle. The City of Mansfield, The Mansfield ISD, and The Mansfield Area Chamber of Commerce are partnering on this initiative with a five year plan. The free event starts at 6PM at El Primo’s and you can get more information at www.healthythisway.com.

The first birth of the New Year in D-FW goes to Methodist Mansfield Medical Center. Dr. Heather Havener delivered a healthy, beautiful 6-pound, 12-ounce Emma Leigh Petermeier on January first at 12:01 AM, just one minute past midnight! Emily and Austin Petermeier are the proud parents of the baby girl.

Mansfield Police K9 Officer Oso is retiring after six years of helping apprehend bad guys and getting illegal drugs off the streets.

Mansfield Police Chief Tracy Aaron said in a tweet, “K9 Oso, what can we say? You have served our citizens and protected our officers since 2013. Today is a sad but also happy day. Thank you, Oso, for your service.”

The newly retired Oso will live with his handler, Alejandro. Six years on the job may not seem like a long time to celebrate retirement but, in this case, it’s well deserved. After all, six dog years equates to 42 human years.

In this week’s unscientific poll, Podcast Mansfield Recording Studio took to social media and asked: “When is the best time to take down your Christmas decorations?

Some of the more humorous responses—although not in the top three—include: Spring Break; when the HOA sends me a letter; and, after the Cowboys win a Super Bowl.

The top three answers were: 3. New Year’s Day; 2. The first weekend after Christmas; and the number one answer to “When is the best time to take down your Christmas decorations?” When I feel like it!

We’ll have the results of another unscientific poll next week.

Looking at the “National Day of…” for the week ahead:
Wed. January 8 – National Bubble Bath Day
Thur. January 9 – National Play God Day
Fri. January 10 – Peculiar People Day
Sat. January 11 – Learn Your Name in Morse Code Day
Sun. January 12 – Feast of Fabulous Wild Men Day
Mon. January 13 – International Skeptics Day
Tues. January 14 – National Dress Up Your Pet Day

Let’s check the area forecast for the next week. Alexa, what’s the seven day forecast for Mansfield, Texas for the next seven days?
ALEXA: The next seven days: Wednesday 66ºF and partly sunny weather; Thursday 71º and showers; Friday 72º and thunderstorms; Saturday 50º mostly sunny weather; Sunday 59º and intermittent clouds; Monday 66º and mostly sunny weather; Tuesday 65º and intermittent clouds.

Taking a look at the local sports calendar:
Thursday January 9
Lake Ridge plays a three-day soccer tournament at Wichita Falls High School

Friday January 10
Men’s Basketball
Lake Ridge vs Waxahachie @ home
Summit @ Cedar Hill HS
Legacy vs. Everman @ home
Women’s Basketball
The Mansfield Lady Tigers vs. DeSoto @ home
Summit @ Cedar Hill HS
Legacy vs. Everman @ home
Girls and Boys District Basketball Games @ MHS Gymnasiums
Legacy Women’s @ Mansfield High School
Legacy Men’s @ Newman Smith in Carrollton

Tuesday January 14
Men’s Basketball
Lake Ridge vs Cedar Hill @ home
Summit @ South Grand Prairie HS
Legacy @ Granbury High School
Women’s Basketball
The Mansfield Lady Tigers @ Waxahachie High School
Summit @ South Grand Prairie HS
Legacy @ Granbury High School
Men’s Soccer
Lake Ridge Men’s vs Mesquite Poteet @ home
Legacy Men’s vs. Waxahachie @ home

That’s a look at news, weather and sports. One correction from last week’s podcast. Mansfield Mayor David Cook is running for Texas State HOUSE, not the Senate. We regret the error.

January is the month where we put our New Years resolutions into action and, of course, one of those resolutions is usually to lose weight. When we come back from the break we’ll talk with a Mansfield resident about her amazing, rock star transformation. We’re back in 30 seconds. You’re listening to About Mansfield.

ABOUT MANSFIELD: Welcome back to another segment of about Mansfield. I’m Steve Cosio broadcasting from the studios of podcast Mansfield in Mansfield, Texas and in the studio today is a Mansfield resident and a local rock star. Now, she’s not your typical rock star because you’re not going to see her on stage, playing a guitar or, well, maybe a tambourine in her husband’s band, but in the studio today, Ashley Russell, thank you and welcome to About Mansfield.

ASHLEY RUSSELL: I’m so excited. This is fun.

AM: We’re going to get very, very personal with you. You’ve already agreed to that. And just so our listeners know that “oh my gosh, that’s a very personal question,” but

AR: I’m ready.

AM: All right. Let’s jump right into it. Your current age is…

AR: I am 38 years old.

AM: You’re 38 years old. You’ve got a husband Brad and three boys.

AR: Yes, they are 11, 13 and 16.

AM: What is your current height?

AR: I’m 5’4″.

AM: You’re five foot four, and your weight is…

AR: I am 130.

AM: 130. Do you know what your BMI is?

AR: I know my body fat percent is 20 right now.

AM: You weigh 130 pounds. This is not the most you’ve ever weighed, though.

AR: No, absolutely not.

AM: At what weight was your peak?

AR: When I was at my peak, I don’t think I weighed myself but when I first started my weight loss journey I was at 246 pounds.

AM: 246!?

AR: Yes, yes, sir. I probably weighed more than that at some point, but I avoided the scale.

AM: That’s more than I thought. I’ve seen before and after photos of you, and this is actually the first time you’ve ever told me the the peak of your weight, 246. I was guessing a little over 200, but 246. At what age did you start your your weight loss journey?

AR: I was 32 years old so it has been about six years now.

AM: And you’ve lost 120 pounds.

AR: Yes.

AM: You’ve lost an entire Ashley.

AR: That’s insane to think about. Yes, it is.

AM: Describe a typical day of 246-pound Ashley.

AR: Well, I was a mom of three younger kids. And a lot of my time was obviously spent taking care of my kids and just feeding them and playing with them, but I didn’t really focus on my own health and well being. I was just all about the kids all the time. And I didn’t work out or anything back then. I didn’t really eat to be healthy. I just ate whatever was easy and simple and quick. So…

AM: Like most moms…

AR: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

AM: When you’re taking care of the little ones, you don’t pay attention to yourself.

AR: Right. You start eating their leftover chicken nuggets or whatever.

AM: Obviously something inside you said, I need to change. What happened?

AR: So it’s funny when people ask me about my weight loss journey because it really didn’t have anything to do with weight at the beginning. At the beginning, I went to a self-help program that was written by Dr. Phil McGraw and that’s where it really clicked for me. That’s where things started changing in my heart and in my mind. I feel like I kind of needed to get rid of the junk inside before I started working on my outside appearance and my body and my health. So it really started with just finding my own worth, honestly. And knowing that I am worth taking some time out of my day to exercise or to make healthier meals or it’s not always just all about the kids. They need a healthy mom. And so it really started out inside rather than physically for my weight loss.

AM: So it had a lot to do with self confidence in yourself. How long did it take you to get from 246 to 130?

AR: It’s been a journey. I have had times where it’s been up a little bit and down a little bit. It’s really a forever journey. Honestly, it took me about 10 months to lose 100 pounds.

AM: That’s fast!

AR: It happened super fast and then I kind of leveled out a little bit. And then I gained a little back and then I lost a little so it’s just it’s a forever rollercoaster and I’m just trying to do the best I can every day get a little bit better every single day. I think when people say “how long did it take?” It’s forever really. I mean, you always can be a little bit better than you were the day before. So I feel like I’m forever growing and learning things still but the first year I lost a lot of weight pretty quick

AM: And so the hundred pounds over 10 months; no surgery.

AR: No. No.

AM: No. How’d you do it?

AM: I started simple. I started walking and then I did that for a couple months. And then I went into Zumba and yoga, some group classes like that. And then I found weight training. So I thought lifting weights was super fun and I felt strong. And then now I’m into CrossFit. So it’s kind of been like, it started super simple with just walking, taking the first step, literally, just taking the first step and then started moving up from there.

AM: Do you have a trainer right now?

AR: I don’t, I go to CrossFit. So they kind of write your exercises for you. And we have a coach is what they call them.

AM: And CrossFit’s here in Mansfield?

AR: Yes.

AM: You wanna give a little shout out?

AR: Yeah! CrossFit Mansfield!

AM: Where are they located ?

AR: They are right downtown by The LOT, actually. It’s fun times. You should try it. You should try it!

AM: I should try it. How do you stay motivated?

AR: Oh, man, everybody asks this.

AM: Because you don’t obviously want to go back to where you were, right? But you still have to maintain what you have.

AR: The thing is, I don’t stay motivated. I really don’t. I was not motivated to get out in this freezing weather this morning and go to the gym, and I was not motivated to make healthy choices for lunch today but I’m dedicated, is what I am. That’s because motivation fades, you know what I’m saying? So if there’s some motivation, feeling good, because I didn’t even realize when I was 245 pounds, I didn’t realize how bad I felt. And now that I feel good and feel healthy and energized and strong, that’s motivation. Once you know you start seeing progress: that’s motivation, but that’s going to fade. I mean, your motivation’s going to fade it’s just you have to be dedicated to being the best version of yourself.

AM: The transformation not only involves the weight training and the CrossFit but it also heavily involves diet.

AR: Yes for sure. Yes.

AM: You mentioned eating the kids the leftover chicken nuggets and the “before” Ashley. What’s your diet like nowadays?

AR: Well, it’s really, when you break it down to the simplest form it’s calories in versus calories out. Like, you have if you want to lose weight you need to be in a deficit, right? So whatever diet works for whoever it that will keep you in a deficit is what’s going to work for you. So, I have done a lot of things. I started out just counting calories and making sure I was burning more calories than I was eating. And then I got into counting macros, which is a whole ‘nother ballgame. It’s like carbs, fats and protein. It’s crazy, but now I know what to eat. So I just kind of eat what I know fuels my body, fuels my workouts and makes me feel good.

AM: And this lifestyle; has it transformed over to your husband and your kids?

AR: It has, it has. It took a while though, it really did. It was a struggle for me because I would go on a date night with my husband and he would get like, an appetizer and a meal and a dessert and I’m like, “Oh, I want to eat all that.” But, you can enjoy things in moderation, but now they are a lot more active with me. Brad started coming to CrossFit with me, and, they see me feeling good. And they’ve started making better choices themselves too. So that’s good.

AM: Undoubtedly somewhere out there is a woman, or perhaps a man, that may be struggling with with their weight right now. What’s the best advice that you can give someone who is struggling right now?

AR: Well, my favorite thing that I’ve learned throughout this whole thing, and it’s a quote, I think it’s on shirts or memes or something like that, but it’s: “Fall down seven times and stand up eight.” And that’s because we’re all going to fail. Yeah, sometimes I have more than two cookies after dinner. The thing is, you have to just stand back up and start fresh the next meal. Don’t wait ’til the next Monday or the next day. That’s why diets fail. Because people make one bad choice and then are filled with guilt, so they’re just like, screw it. I’ve ruined the whole day anyway, so I might as well just eat whatever. But if you just make a better choice the next time and just don’t quit, that’s all it is. Because I’ve failed a million times I’ve ate the wrong things. I’ve went to the fair and got all the fried foods but then the next meal, I eat something healthy that I know will nourish my body and make me feel good. So my biggest advice is to give yourself grace, honestly, because we’re all going to mess up. It’s just starting the next meal fresh, you know?

AM: So I don’t have to give up Blue Bell ice cream?

AR: No. Never.

AM: Moo-lennium Crunch with a squirt of Hershey’s chocolate syrup on top.

AR: No caramel?

AM: No.

AR: What about a cherry?

AM: No. No cherry on top.

AM: But, also, when I’m putting the syrup back in the refrigerator? First I get a little squirt in the mouth.

AR: Of course.

AM: You have an online presence on YouTube. Do you know you have a YouTube channel?

AR: Yes, I do. It’s fun.

AM: Talk about it.

AR: Okay, I so whenever I started losing weight, honestly, I had never worn makeup or really fixed myself up or anything. When I started losing weight and feeling good, I wanted to be kind of girly. So I started a space just for other women to talk about girly things — makeup and weight loss and food and all the fun stuff that us girls like to chit chat about so that’s what I do on YouTube.

AM: And how can people find it?

AR: It’s TX Mommy of Boys. So, Texas mommy of boys.

AM: TX mommy of boys is the YouTube channel where they can find out all about Ashley Russell.

AM: Yes!

AM: Not only are you a rock star locally, but your husband’s a rock star, too.

AR: He is.

AM: Your husband is Brad Russell and he, in town, plays not only around Mansfield but around the Metroplex and Fort Worth and whatnot. The Brad Russell Band. And he’s a rock star in himself.

AR: It’s super cool, because his dad plays the bass and then our 16 year old plays the drums. So it’s kind of like the three generations of Russell boys, it’s cute.

AM: And your boys… So while you were going through this transformation, your boys are home-schooled.

AR: They are, yes.

AM: And you’re the teacher.

AR: Yes, we’re on year 10 actually.

AM: 10 years of homeschooling. And were you finding any any roadblocks while you’re trying and focusing on losing weight and getting fit? Because you also have to focus on your boys being home-schooled.

AR: It is hard to juggle it all. But I think setting aside one hour of my day — and I do it before the boys wake up — so I work out early in the morning, and I also meal prep on the weekend so I don’t really have to cook a lot during the week. But I think just finding a little bit of time has actually helped our relationship. I’m not as stressed and it honestly helps me let go of some anxiety to work out. And I don’t know, it’s just making yourself important. You have to take care of yourself in order to take care of others. Right?

AM: Ashley Russell, as I mentioned at the top of the broadcast, you’re a rock star.

AR: Thank you.

AM: I appreciate you coming on About Mansfield today.

AR: This is awesome. I love it.

AM: We’ll be right back.

Wednesday January 8
Life-Line Screening at Mansfield ISD Center for the Performing Arts starts at 9 AM
Party Like You are 3! 3:30 PM · The Little Gym of Arlington/Mansfield
Artist Development Interest Meeting 6:30PM at Destiny Voice & Music Studio
RunUnited’s Birthday Run and Celebration – 6:30PM at RunUnited
Pub Glass Painting class at Dirty Job Brewing 7 PM
Trivia Night @ Big D BBQ at 7pm
FREE Adult Hip Hop Class 7 PM · Dance Academy of Mansfield

Thursday January 9
Steve Cosio
6:30 PM · Market Street Taphouse 16
Jim Bourneman 6:30 PM · Dirty Job Brewing
Free Adult Class, 7 PM · Dance Academy of Mansfield
Local Yoakam 8 PM · Fat Daddy’s

Friday January 10
KINETIX Soccer Skills Program 7-13 ages 4:45 PM · Fieldhouse USA
Joshua Ingram – Fat Fridays Happy Hour at 5 PM · Fat Daddy’s
Dodgeball Throwdown for Tweens 6 PM · Life Time Fitness
Friday Night Magic 7 PM · Oblivion Games
Trivia Night @ Dirty Job Brewing at 7pm
Le Freak 9:30 PM · Fat Daddy’s Mansfield

Saturday January 11
2020 Snowman Run 5k · 9 AM · Rose Park
Weekend Wellness Health Screenings Starting at 9 AM · Market Street
Return of the Saturday Watercolor Workshops 10 AM · Gensheer’s Art Studio
Medical Trauma, CPR and AED training 10 AM · Arlington Sportmans Club in Mansfield
HUGE Second Saturday Adoption Event 12 PM · Mansfield Animal Shelter
Saturday Pokemon 1 PM · Oblivion Games
Parent’s Night Out: Chalet Getaway 6 PM · Life Time Fitness
Breaking Southwest performs 9:30 PM · Fat Daddy’s

Monday January 13
Breast Cancer support group 7 PM · Care Ministry First Methodist Mansfield
City Council Meeting – 7PM – Mansfield City Hall

Tuesday January 14
Bark Ranger (15+) 11:30 AM · Oliver Nature Park
Hide Tide Scuba January Social- 6 PM · Fish City Grill
Essential Oils Basics 6:30 PM · Poured
Podcast Dallas Meetup 7 PM · Podcast Mansfield Recording Studio

If you have an event coming up that you’d like to include on our calendar, submit by email to events@aboutmansfield.com. Again, events@aboutmansfield.com.

We appreciate all feedback about the program, whether it’s about a specific news story or feature that you heard or the show itself. Feel free to chime-in by email at comments@aboutmansfield.com or by voicemail at 817-435-9238. We’ll read or play back some of the comments next week.

Coming up after the break, the trivia question of the week. I’m Steve Cosio and this is About Mansfield.

Welcome back to About Mansfield. Last week we asked the question “In what year was David Cook elected as mayor of Mansfield?” Congratulations to Scot Bowman who was the first to email the correct answer to us. And, the correct answer was? Well, let’s go to the source.

DAVID COOK: Hi, this is Mayor David Cook and the answer to About Mansfield’s trivia question of the week is: I was elected as mayor in the year 2008.

The first person to email the correct answer to trivia@aboutmansfield.com will receive a $25 gift card to Steven’s Garden and Grill located at 223 Depot Street in historic Downtown Mansfield. You can find them on the Internet at www.stevensgardenandgrill.com.


Email your answer to trivia@aboutmansfield.com and again, the first person to correctly answer the trivia question receives a $25 gift card to Steven’s Garden and Grill and thanks to Jan and John Cox at Steven’s for the gift card.

Coming up next week on About Mansfield we’ll talk with a local entrepreneur about cleansing your heart, body and soul inside and out! We’ll see you on Wednesday January 15. Until then, thanks for listening. I’m Steve Cosio and this… is About Mansfield.