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    emoticon Greetings and emoticon - I'm really glad you've joined us!!

    Congrats on getting active with SparkPeople - it's a great community, wonderful resources and fantastic support- it's also lots of fun and easy to make friends because we're all in this together.
    Sometimes the best way to start is to just pick a small goal such as drinking 8 glasses of water a day or eating 5 fruits and veggies plus a small exercise goal such as increasing whatever you've been doing by 10% - I like the way a HEALTHY LIFESTYLE is emphasized here instead of a 'quick fix wonder diet' and another nice thing about SparkPeople is that we have permission to be human - we don't have to change everything at once or be in a hurry to reach our goals. Take a few baby steps and then a few more and before you know it, you'll have completed a long journey - I hope you enjoy this community as much as I have - it teaches us how to make positive lifetime changes because that's the only thing that will work over time!
    Please check out SparkTeams - you can choose them by age group, lifestyle or interests, geographic location, common goals such as a certain weight loss or several other ways. I'd also like to invite you to join the Virtual Walk/Run/Cycle Thru the US @ SparkTeam - it's a really fun way to track your walking while you travel 'virtually' across America from Virginia to Oregon. Go to the SparkTeam page at
    ndividual.asp?gid=19805 for more information. If you're a fan of The Biggest Loser reality television show, you might enjoy the Biggest Loser Fans SparkTeam - you can find it at
    roups_individual.asp?gid=3822 - whatever you choose to do, I hope you find teams of people who share your interests!
    If you ever need any help using features of the site, there are tutorial videos under the HELP section that can show you how to use the features of the site and great FAQs for many topics. You can also find them on the START page and several other places on the site. I wish you the best on your journey!!!

    1612 days ago
  • v RG_DFW
    emoticon Welcome to SparkPeople!

    1615 days ago
    emoticon on taking the first steps to a healthier you. A emoticon toast to a healthier and more enjoyable life! emoticon emoticon emoticon And emoticon prayerfully you will find that you can enjoy it more than you would ever imagine!!!
    Some thoughts and suggestions as I say emoticon to Spark People.
    emoticon This sight has so much to offer! One of the easiest ways to learn a lot about what it has to offer is to go to your "My SparkPoints" tracking Page. Next to each opportunity to earn Sparkpoints there is a link that will take you to the place on the site that helps you complete the task. Some are one time opportunities, others are daily tasks. Complete as many tasks as possible per day.
    emoticon don't emoticon to the temptation of making the journey all about the numbers. It is not about pounds taken off or inches trimmed, it is all about creating a healthier and more fit you. emoticon
    emoticon Be on the lookout for the many, many, many non-scale non-tape measure victories you will achieve. Feeling healthier, breathing easier, enjoying activities that were once a drudgery, trying something new and enjoying it, choosing a healthy snack versus an unhealthy option, choosing a less than healthy food option over a decadent food option! The possibilities for non-scale victories are ENDLESS. emoticon
    Some things to remember: emoticon drink plenty of water every day!
    emoticon sleep well, it is probably more important than you know. emoticon healthier every day. emoticon Don't go the way of total deprivation, it is apt to set you up for failure and a binge that will leave you feeling devastated. Look for opportunities to emoticon every day. emoticon when you need to --it is healthier than emotional eating! Find ways to emoticon emoticon emoticon exercise that you ENJOY. The right form of exercise is the one you can stick with regularly!!! Something else may burn more calories in a shorter time, but if it makes you give up you won't burn any calories! emoticon
    emoticon MAKE EVERY STEP COUNT. Even steps that seem to move you backwards or to the side have a purpose. Sometimes it is just to get another look at something you passed by without noticing.
    Perhaps most importantly from my perspective DONíT LOSE weight or inchesÖTAKE THEM OFF, emoticon KICK THEM TO THE CURB. You arenít interested in FINDING them again. GET RID OF THEM through hard work, determination, accountability, whatever it takes!!!
    Finally, join teams, make friends, encourage others, be encouraged, take challenges, write out SMART goals regularly and track! Track! TRACK!!! It will help with both accountability and motivation, and You will be glad you did!!!
    Feel free to stop by my page, let me know if there is anything I can do to help you in the journey!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon

    1616 days ago
  • v LUVS2BIKE101
    By joining SP you made the first step on your journey to better health!
    Tracking your nutrition and exercise/activities on the "my Nutrition" and "myFitiness" trackers is key to success. Familiarize yourself with it and use it daily. Also, get active! Join a SparkPeople team of your interest for great challenges to get you started. Team members offer an abundance of support, encouragement, and advice. I invite you to visit my SparkPage. I'm confident you will succeed in reaching your goals!
    1616 days ago
  • v RFJSJ50
    emoticon Welcome to Spark. You have taken an important step on your journey by joining!
    I've been a member a little more than two years. I made fantastic progress and lost 100 pounds in the first year BUT I became careless about nutrition and exercise and have gained a lot of the pounds back! I became disgusted with myself and closed my Spark account, but soon realized I NEEDED to be here. I'm back using the nutrition and exercise trackers now - they are so important. The sense of community and the friendships I have made here keep me going!
    Explore the site, make your Sparkpage if you havenít, join teams, and make friends. You will find this site an amazing place full of encouragement, inspiration, advice, and support.
    Please let me know if there is anything I can help you with.
    Good luck!

    1616 days ago