This is a great place to be with down to earth people with realistic goals and ideas. People who want to help and People who have been there and know what you're going through. Sparks offers a good "getting started" article. You can check it out here: www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/get_star ted.asp
When your busy, or when you get discouraged, Try doing some small things to keep you on track.
Post-it notes with taped on pencils.... On the cupboard where your plates are.... put up a post-it note and a pencil...and put a mark for every serving of vegetables or fruits you have each day. Put a post-it on the fridge and mark off waters, juices or sodas, and other one for "moving your body".
Hash marks are a quick and easy way to keep some kind of track of what you're are doing and eating. and it's not as complicated or time consuming as logging all the foods and calories. It's not as "good" as keeping a full account, but when time is scarce, or your just having a bad spell, it's better than nothing. † And another thing you can do is to do what this article suggests, (this is what I'm doing- I have 135# to lose)...Now this article, suggests to break down your weight lose into 10% at a time. (Which is what I did) And I finally lost some weight. It is SOOOOOOO nice to see that weight lost ticker move which motivates me even more. Instead of saying...I have 150 pounds to reach my goal... by setting your "1st" goal at 10%, your closer to your goal. It's reachable - it's manage-able, it's doable.
Here is the link to the article: The second page really gets to the heart of the article... www.sparkpeople.com/resource/motivat ion_articles.asp?id=454
Congrats on taking the next step to reaching a healthier you by getting active with SparkPeople - it's a great community, wonderful resources and fantastic support.
Please check out the SparkTeams - I think you will find a lot of others 'just like you' there. You can choose SparkTeams by age group, lifestyle or interests, geographic location or several other ways - some of the teams you might like include the Official 10-minute Daily Exercise Streak Challenge, Starting Over Weekly Mini-Challenge Team, 10k Steps A Day and Motivation & Positive Attitude Plan but there are so many to choose from, you can have a great time looking for the ones that seem to fit you best! In fact, I suggest joining more than one group, post your intro there and write blogs as often as you can - you will find tons of friends and support that way, I promise!!
In my experience, SparkPeople is like a in some ways - it's lots of fun and easy to make friends because we're all in this together. I like the way a HEALTHY LIFESTYLE is emphasized instead of a 'quick fix wonder diet' so it's good for people wanting to lose weight, maintain a previous loss, get healthier, improve fitness and many other goals - it's about waaaaaay more than 'just' losing weight so you have definitely come to the right place!
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. You can also find them on the START page and several other places on the site.
If you haven't already discovered The Spark book and/or the SparkDiet linked at the bottom of the START page, check them out - the program is simple but extremely effective. There is a TON of information on this site - so much it might even seem overwhelming but fortunately we don't have to 'digest' everything at once! The FastBreak program is a good way to start.
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 do - it teaches us how to make positive lifetime changes because that's the only thing that will work over time!
Hi! I just stopped on your page to say "HI" and welcome you to Spark. You're in the right place to reach your goals, but promise that you'll stop in every day and log your water, log your veggies and fruit, log your food, log your exercise, and read, and post, and log your water, and write on someoneís page, and read some more, and blog, and log your water, and LEARN that you are not alone, and we're all right here with you! Did I mention that you should log your water?
WHEW! Ok, I know you're overwhelmed getting to know this site, but use those buttons up there, especially the MY TRACKERS drop down list, and then either the START or MY SPARKPOINTS. Both of these helped me learn about the site, gain momentum and meet new friends.
Speaking of meeting new friends, this place is like a cocktail party. If you stand in the corner, you won't have as much fun. Make eye contact (or in this place, leave a message on someone's page, or add your opinion to the bazillion conversations going on) to say HI, and you'll meet new friends quick. Oh, yeah, WRITE A BLOG TOO! Itís the catchy title that brings folks to your page and you'll meet new friends even faster!
Stick around and come back every day! I was here, and left, and came back when I got serious, and I'm so glad I did. Don't procrastinate like I did, dig in now while you're here! Coming here every day adds a great level of support and accountability. Explore, learn, and never be afraid to reach out for help. We're all in this together! Stop by at my page and introduce yourself around to some of my friends too! You'll be glad you did!