Programming note: CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta follows Denise Rampolla's progress on American Morning's "New You Resolution," Tuesdays, 6-10 a.m. ET.
Military mom combats history of heart disease
Denise Rampolla is focusing on cardio exercise to help strengthen her heart muscles.
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(CNN) -- Denise Rampolla is looking forward to finding ways to improve her family's health by participating in CNN's "New You Resolution."
Rampolla's military family of six includes four children, ages 7 to 14. The 36-year-old puts in a number of hours of work in her Cheyenne, Wyoming, home before heading to her job, supporting military families through deployment and separation.
Here are Rampolla's goals for the "New You Resolution":
1. Keep a diary to figure out food pitfalls.
2. Teach the family healthy eating habits between car pools.
3. Slow down family activity and start exercising more.
March 7 update
Despite having a hectic schedule, Rampolla and her "New You" partner and husband, Pedro, found a way to fit a new health plan into their lives.
The military mom embraced tips for eating better and for exercising more to help combat a family history of heart disease.
"That's definitely going to decrease the ... issues ... that we will have," Rampolla said. "If we do have issues, it's not going to be triple-bypass."
February 28 update
Throughout "New You," one of Denise and Pedro Rampollas' challenges has been getting their kids to eat the healthy food they've been serving.
They got a little help recently, when Chef Billy of Cooking Light magazine shared some words of encouragement with their kids.
" 'Eat smart,' " he said. "Let's do it. And Dr. Sanjay's not going away. He's going to be back to check on you guys. And you don't want to mess with the doctor."
February 21 update
Rampolla has been trying to find time to eat during the day by bringing snacks like oranges to work, but it hasn't been easy for the military mom.
"It's still been a challenge," Rampolla said. "It's been very difficult to find time to work it in."
The 36-year-old has found some time to work out, though, and has dropped to a size 10.
February 14 update
Rampolla and her husband have been doing well in their fitness goals but have had problems eating the right foods regularly.
"If one of us forgets, the other just guilts the other one into it," Rampolla said.
Trying to fight a family history of heart disease is what motivates the Rampollas' new eating habits and workouts.
Their trainer, Mary Holte, is making sure that they focus on cardio exercise to strengthen heart muscles.
"[I] Definitely do feel healthier [and I] do feel that my clothes fit better," Rampolla said.
February 7 update
Rampolla's hectic schedule is catching up with her, as she struggles to find time for breakfast and lunch.
"I'm just multi-tasked all the time," the busy mother of four said.
Rampolla's dietician, Marsha Siegel, had a tip for her: "Eat six small meals a day and [you'll] lose weight. Keep feeding the system [and] you keep ... burning [the calories]."
We'll see how Rampolla handles fitting eating into her schedule as we enter the last few weeks of the "New You Resolution."
January 31 update
Rampolla is a mother on the go, and it had been hard for her to fit eating into her busy schedule.
As of late, though, she has been eating a healthy lunch.
She also has been trying to fit in the gym between her other activities. Holte has some advice for her: "Baby steps. Baby steps are huge, especially for anybody starting out an exercise program. You want to be able to wash your hair the next day."
January 24 update
Denise and Pedro Rampolla are finding that preparing healthy food can be a lot more work than serving pre-prepared fare.
"I'm hoping it becomes fun. It's a little tedious right now, to be honest with you, because I'm just used to getting everything together and getting it out," she said.
But at least her husband has offered to help in the kitchen, an offer that drew a skeptical response: "Huh? You'll cook?"
January 17 update
The Rampollas were in New York to start their "New You Resolution" goals.
Denise Rampolla laid out a fitness plan with her trainer, who had her doing lunges and push-ups.
"I told Mary not to be easy on me and not on us as a couple," Rampolla said.
In addition to learning ways to stay in shape in the gym, Rampolla also met with Chef Billy from Cooking Light magazine, for tips on how to improve things in her kitchen. He suggested an easy and affordable lasagna recipe, which was music to Rampolla's ears.
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