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JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (76,282)
Fitness Minutes: (69,369)
Posts: 2,489
12/6/12 8:55 A

I know it probably all sounds a bit overwhelming right now but it's just about making small changes that snowball into big changes. So take it in baby steps. Choose a few goals for yourself you want to focus on to improve your diet per week.

Some ideas;

Trying to get 5-7 servings of fresh veggies and fruit a day
Having a healthy and balanced breakfast every morning
Eat at home 1-2 days the first week and keep increasing that number every week
Learn a new healthy recipe 1x a week (this was a big one for me, I couldn't cook for the life of me when I started Spark, now I make all my meals from scratch). You can use sparkrecipes.
Have a complex carb, healthy fat and lean protein with every meal/snack (you could start by just concentrating on one meal per day per week, like I mentioned, starting with breakfast).
Read a nutrition article every day.

Write down your goals for the week and post them to your fridge and check off the days you achieved that goal. Once you feel you've mastered a goal, add a new goal to conquer.

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (135,416)
Fitness Minutes: (33,020)
Posts: 21,783
12/6/12 3:46 A

You don't really need a diet, per se - just healthy choices. Lots of fruit/veges without the sauces/dressing, other than using lemon/lime/orange or a little drizzle of good balsamic vinegar or a little olive oil. With some things you can also use cottage cheese or plain Greek yoghurt with lemon pepper, or a little chilly or herbs, as the dressing. Get quality protein - not from processed or deep-fried meats, include a few nuts into your diet, and good carbs. Perhaps something like Rolled Oats with milk not water, for breakfast with a piece of banana and some yoghurt. I know that sets me up well for the day - it keeps me fuller than any other breakfast I have AND it is really cheap. Use lentils and other pulses to help replace some meat - that way you reduce the saturated fat in your diet, but still keep the protein up. I ALWAYS have lentils added to my casseroles. Add chopped up veges to casseroles - if you work, take one to work and heat it there. Make soups with lots of veges and lentils. Puree them and have them as a first course, or with toast and fruit for a main meal. I often cook a couple skinless chicken drums in with the soup mix, and hubby and I will have that along with the soup as our main.

As was suggested earlier, have a look at some of the long-time Sparkers Nutrition Trackers to get an idea of what you can do. You are more than welcome to look at mine if you want. I have lost a lot of weight but not done anywhere near the exercise because of skeletal issues (and fatigue).

There are lots of things that you can do, but you need to think about it and then apply it. Perhaps one of the easiest ways to start would be to make lists of the foods that you like, and put them in groups - meats/protein; dairy; fruit; veges; carbs (potato, sweet potato, brown rice; Wholemeal pasta) then work on that.


JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (76,282)
Fitness Minutes: (69,369)
Posts: 2,489
12/5/12 3:24 P

The clean eating diet is pretty simple. It's eating as nature intended and cutting out (or way back) on processed foods. It's avoiding anything in a box, can, container (other than a few exceptions) and shopping the perimeter of your grocery store where all the fresh foods/produce is located. Choosing complex carbs over simple (refined) carbs, healthy fats (polyunsaturated, monounsaturated and Omega 3s) and lean protein. Limiting saturated fats, avoiding trans fats and lowering your sodium intake (which will happen naturally when you eat clean). It also doesn't involve cutting out any nutrients or food groups. Just google it and you should find some more info.

There are tons of nutrition articles on Spark's people as well as all over the internet. Add it to your weekly goals to read one nutrition article 1x a day. You don't necessarily need a diet, you need to learn to make healthy food choices. The problem with diets is that many of them are just to get the weight off, they are not something you can keep up for the rest of your life. The clean eating diet is better that way because it's more of a healthy lifestyle, not just about losing weight.

A good way to start would be just trying to follow to the food pyramid. Start with that.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 12/5/2012 (15:31)
PINKFIT2011 SparkPoints: (2,316)
Fitness Minutes: (2,012)
Posts: 40
12/5/12 2:44 P

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I will take all of this into consideration!!! I am on a very tight budget and have slacked off with what im eating and try to eat thinking of going back on Atkins but with limitations this time {last time I passed out at work from starvation} If anyone can point me to a really good diet plan that would be awesome!! Atkins is my go to tho bc its simple and I have all the books already.

Im thinking yoga and Pilates too maybe vamp those up some will help since its getting colder here now and it will snow soon. I want this to go right just need the kick in the A$$ lol

TIEDYED69PEACE SparkPoints: (6,717)
Fitness Minutes: (2,694)
Posts: 165
12/5/12 2:04 P

I agree with Archimedes. My experience with fruits and veggies is that they have kept me fuller, and in a way, more hydrated. I found that I can replace other foods with them, or eat smaller portions of the higher calorie foods. I started eating more veggies and fruits by eating raw ones at work. I like to have celery, carrots, pea pods, clementines, sliced apples... They are all easy in the office. I also was big on Materne's Gogo Squeeze Applesauce, which now comes in more adult sizes and flavors. There's no added sugars or any of that stuff, just fruit purees and juices, and you can really go purish and have the apple or apple cinnamon flavored ones, which are also the lowest in calories. Gradually, I added more. My fav veggie to work with right now is bagged coleslaw mix. I love it in a stir fry! And it is so low cal. I think the entire bag (which to me anyway would be nearly impossible for one person to finish on their own) is like 40 calories.

MSANITAL SparkPoints: (73,851)
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Posts: 7,702
12/5/12 1:51 P

Online Now  • ))
I agree with what everyone has said..
what I want to add is your body is adjusting.. I know when my body does a stand still
I beef up my protien, (no pun intended) and water intake
also add some strength traning too..
hope that helps.. good luck keep pushing you can do it..


ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (141,820)
Fitness Minutes: (212,120)
Posts: 20,869
12/5/12 11:35 A


I hope you don't mind, but I took a quick look at your food diary. One thing I would suggest is that you do your best to eat more fresh fruits and veggies. According to your diary, there are some days when you barely have 1-2 servings. That's no good. For optimum health (and weight loss), a person should be eating 6-9 servings of fresh fruit and veggies each and every day.

Also, do you do any of your own cooking or do you find yourself eating out a lot ? Another thing you can do is try to do more home cooking. Fast food may be quick, but it's also high in saturated fat, sugar and salt. A person has to watch those because studies have shown that a diet high in saturated fat can lead to heart disease. So, if you do find yourself eating out, do try to opt for things like grilled chicken. Try to avoid fried foods. They are too high in calories and saturated fat.

If you find yourself eating out a lot, then I'm going to recommend a book for you to buy. It's called, EAT THIS, NOT THAT. it's on all the best seller lists. you can find it anywhere including your local library. What it is, is a book that will help you make better choices when eating out. Here's an example.

Do your best to try to track everything and definitely try to eat more fresh veggies. Start with 2-3 servings a day. Each week, add a serving until you're eating 6-9. If I were to go back in time and give myself one piece of advice that would help me to lose... it would be to eat 6-9 servings of fresh fruit and veggies each and every day.

As others noted, when it comes to weight loss, what matters most is what we eat. Good nutrition is what takes the weight off and keeps it off. Exercise is what keeps our bodies fit and healthy.

KANDOLAKER Posts: 1,902
12/5/12 9:32 A

Just a note of encouragement - keep moving and keep tracking that food. Stay within your calorie range, and that scale will change. Keep making the right choices - and best wishes! Kathy

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (76,282)
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Posts: 2,489
12/5/12 7:10 A

Diet is 80% of weight loss. You cannot out train a poor diet. I would take a hard look there first before worrying about how much and what you're doing for exercise.

It may be helpful to check out other members who have been successful with weight loss and are long time members' shared nutrition trackers and see what they're eating. That's what I did. Also, read lots of articles on healthy nutrition. Research the "clean eating diet".

Make sure you are tracking and measuring everything and stay in the calorie range given to you by Spark.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 12/5/2012 (07:13)
SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (135,416)
Fitness Minutes: (33,020)
Posts: 21,783
12/4/12 5:12 P

Being able to walk faster and it not hurting as much indicates that you ARE improving.

I have a bad back, too - Arthritis of the hip, spine and scoliosis, so I understand limitations, but also know from experience that there are plenty of things that we can do. I suggest you ask your Dr for a referral to a Physiotherapist so that you can be properly assessed (take any x-rays and reports that you have), and given the appropriate exercises for you and YOUR condition, and also steered away from doing inappropriate exercises or doing them incorrectly which can cause more harm.

I was referred to a Physiotherapist who is also a qualified Pilates Instructor, who takes small classes. That was wonderful. Initially it was just me and Physio getting my back and deep abdominal strength up, and then into the class. It might be worth your looking into. Be aware that a lot of Gyms don't have the people fully qualified to deal with specific problems, and unfortunately some are out of their depth except in the normal physical health setting. I know that one day at my Pilates class a relief qualified Pilates Instructor took it. I was having a problem with pain in the hip, so I mentioned it to her, asking what exercise was best. . She came straight out and told me that she couldn't advise me because it needed more qualified input and suggested I ask the Physiotherapist/Instructor, and also suggested I not do a couple of the exercises they were doing that day so I remained safe.

As far as weight-loss is concerned, I had times where I never lost weight at all in that time frame, and even gained a pound or two, but overall I lost. I am now at my goal after having been overweight for about 30 years. It WILL happen :-)

Take care,

PINKFIT2011 SparkPoints: (2,316)
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Posts: 40
12/4/12 4:13 P

Its been 2 months and yes i can walk faster now than before and it doesnt hurt as bad.

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (141,820)
Fitness Minutes: (212,120)
Posts: 20,869
12/4/12 4:05 P


Take a deep breathe. Everything is going to be okay. How long has it been since you've seen a loss ? While a safe weekly weight loss would be 1-2 pounds per week, there may be weeks you don't lose. There may even be weeks you gain ! And that doesn't mean you're doing anything wrong. This isn't the Biggest Loser. the weight doesn't magically drop off the minute we decide we need to lose. There really will be weeks the scale doesn't move. And that's perfectly normal.

Remember, there are changes to your body that you can't see on a scale. Do you know that if your blood pressure has dropped in the last month your doctor would be thrilled even if the scale didn't budge. Lowering your blood pressure or cholesterol or blood sugar are all signs of success that don't show up on a scale. What are other signs of success ? Do your clothes fit a bit better ? Do you have a bit more energy ? Can you walk upstairs without getting winded ? Can you walk a mile faster today than you could a month ago ? If so, these are all signs of improving health.

Will the scale move ? Eventually IF you continue to eat right, watch your portions and get some regular exercise that includes some strength training.

Patience, it's a virtue.

PINKFIT2011 SparkPoints: (2,316)
Fitness Minutes: (2,012)
Posts: 40
12/4/12 3:55 P

I was doing ok but now I have stopped losing weight :( I need help please!!!

I dont have a gym membership or anything I walk about 2 1/2-3 miles a day. I do have back problems so I cant do many things but there has to be something.

Please Help!!!

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