The SparkPeople Blog

10 Ways to Socialize Without Food

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/22/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  2 comments   :  2,667 views

If you’re someone who likes to go out frequently with family and friends, you know that most outings revolve around food.  It’s easy to say “Hey, let’s meet for lunch!” or “Want to join me for a few drinks after work?”  Whether you’ve just started making improvements to your diet or you’ve stuck to a healthy eating plan for years, you know how tempting these situations can become.  Your friend orders a plate of French fries and you start munching on them without even realizing, or your mom asks if you want to split a dessert you weren’t planning on ordering.  In most cases, it’s best not to avoid these events completely.  Avoidance can help you stick to your plan, but it’s not a long-term solution.  Eventually you’re going to be in situations where food is involved, so you have to learn how to deal with temptations.  This helps change your new habits into permanent lifestyle changes, instead of a “diet” that you are on and off periodically. 
  
Although it’s certainly possible to stay on track with your diet in social situations, sometimes it’s nice to have alternatives that don’t revolve around food.  If it’s your turn to make the plans, choose something fun and different!  You might find that one of the activities below sparks a new way to socialize with those you love.

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The 100 Best Workout Songs of 2014

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/19/2014  5:00:00 AM   :  7 comments   :  11,965 views

It's the most wonderful time of the year...the time when we release the best booty-shaking, iron-pumping, fat-burning songs you exercised to during the past year.
For the past 12 months, we compiled a list of new and popular songs worth working out to. Then we asked members of SparkPeople.com, America's #1 weight-loss and fitness website, to vote on their favorites.

Find out which song most people worked out to this past year,  whether any of your own favorites made the list, and how you can download a brand new 60-minute cardio remix of the top 15 songs (as voted on by exercisers like you)! 

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New Feature Round-Up: Enhanced Streaks and Photos With Status Updates

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/16/2014  10:00:00 AM   :  16 comments   :  3,341 views

Hi, Everyone! We launched a few changes today that you will notice on your Start page and other places on the site.
 
The first is that we launched a number of enhancements to our ''Streaks'' feature, where we encourage members to set small goals every day, creating a ''streak'' of as many days as they can. Many members have found this to be a great way to stay consistent with reaching their goals. Now with Streaks, you can see your progress on the Start page, plus see some big ''Award'' images for your streak. You can save your Award to your SparkPage, and also share to Facebook or Pinterest to help motivate your friends. Click here to learn more.
 
The second update is that we now let members upload a photo along with their Status Updates. You can upload from the Start page, your SparkPage, and also our Android SparkPeople Mobile app (coming soon to iPhone). You can then see photos uploaded by your friends and leave comments or ''likes'' in your friend feed.
 
If you have any questions, comments, or problems with these features, please leave a comment below. Thanks!

We’re All a Work In Progress

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/15/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  16 comments   :  7,458 views

I will never forget the day one of the dads at school came up to me and said ''We’ve been thinking about having a fourth, especially after watching you.  You seem like you really have it together, you’re relaxed about having four kids and you just kind of go with the flow.''  I told him that was the most hilarious thing I’d ever heard in my life, because it couldn’t be further from the truth.  ''Go with the flow'' is not a term anyone who really knows me would use to describe my personality.  It made me realize that appearances are not always what they seem.  I’m the first to admit that most days, I’m just trying to keep my head above water.  I’m busy, I get stressed out easily, and I wish I could find better ways to relax.  At the end of the day, I’m doing my best, and that’s all I can ask of myself. 

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The Most Popular Low-Carb Recipe on SparkRecipes

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/14/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  0 comments   :  1,607 views

Hello, SparkPeople Members!

I hope you are having a good start to December! I'm back this week to share fun recipe information with you.

SparkRecipes.com History

A guiding principle at SparkPeople is to build features that will authentically help people reach their goals. That's exactly how we came to build SparkRecipes into one of the larger recipe websites on the Internet. In our early days, we realized that many people didn't like to or didn't know how to cook healthy meals. We knew that it was possible to learn how to cook simple dishes that both taste great AND provide your body with the nutrition needed to reach your goals.

This is why we started SparkRecipes.com. The site now has more than 500,000 recipes with millions of ratings by members. The recipes are both searchable and grouped in major categories to help you easily find what you need.

I personally love slow-cooker recipes. Slow-cooker meals are a triple-win because they are simple to prepare, taste amazing, and can be very nutritious. As a bonus, they make for great leftovers that you can even freeze. My family puts our slow cooker to regular use. 

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4 Ways to Stay Focused This Holiday Season

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
12/12/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  6 comments   :  11,082 views

At this point in the year, holiday parties and special events are in full swing.  It makes this time of year especially hectic, with many of these activities likely revolving around food.  Is it possible to stay on track with your eating plan when you’re surrounded by temptation and have no clue what’s in the dish someone else has prepared?  Is it possible to stay on track with your fitness plan when you’ve got other commitments and can’t attend your regular gym class?  The answer is ''yes''! Just like anything else, if you make your health a priority, you’ll find the time and motivation to exercise and make good food choices.  Here are some simple tips to help you stay focused this holiday season.

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