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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Recent Blog Entries

Kayaking burns calories, even in a pool, LOL

Monday, March 08, 2010

Continuing the kayak practice in pools in preparation for spring melt...

Total burn yesterday for two hours:
424 calories!
max HR 122
avg HR 93

I burned more while paddling around practicing my edging than I did in the rolling, but the rolling is more interesting - hence the choice of video, LOL

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAINBOWFALLS 3/9/2010 3:16PM

    Very Interesting. I didn't know people practiced in a pool, but it sure makes sense.

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GEE-KNEE 3/9/2010 7:48AM

    That looks like fun.

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DDOORN 3/8/2010 9:29PM

    Bet this weather has you pumped up for getting back outside into the water...!

Can't believe all the long-term expeditions I'm hearing about on the IKC!

Don't know if I'd ever be up for something like that...all day maybe, but multiple days...? Whew! I'm saving THAT for working up my biking trips...lol!


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SWEETPEA92 3/8/2010 2:40PM

    Cool, that looks like fun!! That is what I look for when I exercise the fun factor. Makes exercise less boring!!! Way to go, enjoy your Kayaking!! emoticon

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Maintenance Goals

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

I have been struggling with the transition to maintenance. My BMI dropped below 25 in December and my moving average BMI at physicsdiet.com dropped below 25 on January 9. While I've reached two goals (body fat less than 25% - in fact it's under 20% and BMI under 25), I still have one goal to go and that's to get my moving average weight to 150. That will give me a comfortable buffer between where I'm trying to stay and the boundary of a BMI under 25.

On the one hand I don't have my weight LOSS goals as hard in my mind anymore, and on the other hand I haven't started the maintenance clock yet. So I'm in a sort of limbo. This is a problem because I am highly goal-oriented and now that I'm off the hardcore weight-loss fast track, I'm not sure what to do with myself. I've been halfheartedly trying to get to 150 but have been experiencing episodes where I eat more than I need to, and sometimes don't even log it.

Today I decided to declare myself officially on maintenance for the purposes of keeping my BMI below 25 in order to give myself a pat on the back for keeping it there for two months. And in two days I will get a REWARD. I get to pick out TWO of the buffs I've been saving for the purpose.

That's 56 days, 8 weeks, 17% of a year, and 3 1/3 % to my goal of keeping it there for five years.

In other words, I have 58 months to go on my 60-month countdown clock.

Why five years?

Because according to the research studies
(McGuire 1999 psycnet.apa.org/index.cfm?fa=buy.opt
that's when I'll have the opportunity to be among a fortunate 70+% in the NWCR who are likely to stay within 5 lbs of goal for another year. Below 2 years of maintenance only 50% of NWCR subjects are likely to stay at goal weight.

Of people who have maintained their weight for 15-20 years, 80% are likely to stay at goal in the following year. So you see, the longer you stay at goal, the better you get at it, and the more likely you will be able to stay there. And despite the odds, I plan on being one of those that do.

I am not in maintenance yet for the purposes of lowering my average weight to 150 and will get a big ole' reward for that when I get there - probably a wetsuit and a brand new sea kayak.

Once I get my average weight to 150 my "scream weight" will be 153 for the average and 155 for the actual number on the scale. I will continue to weigh myself every day. If I go over either of those numbers under any circumstances it will be time to punch the numbers down by eating more carefully and exercising more diligently.

And the maintenance clock will continue to tick. Every month that I maintain I will get another reward. At the 2 year mark I will get something Really Nice. Maybe a trip, or something. I will start saving now.

At the 5 year mark I'm going to get something really really really nice. I don't know what, yet, but it's going to be Good.

3/5/10 - woo-hoo! I did it! 2 months down. 58 to go...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

L3DESIGNS 3/16/2010 1:03PM

    Thanks for this! I am now reaching maintenance - although I`d like to lose another 10lbs, I`m definitely starting to thing about maintenance and what it means and how to achieve it.

Great work.

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PEGETSMALLER 3/7/2010 12:05AM

    Amazing thought process! Thank you for being a role model and sharing your thoughts.

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LKG9999 3/6/2010 10:58AM

    Thanks for posting this blog. Like you I am pretty close to my final goal weight and struggling with motivation for these last few pounds. Limbo is definitely a good way to describe it! Like you I want some "wiggle room" from the top of my BMI range, but I'm not aiming to go much more than 10 pounds below it. But I think you have a good point about maintenance starting when we crossed over into a healthy BMI.

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LAFTERSFREE 3/4/2010 9:56PM

    i really really like your strategy for the countdown for maintenance. it makes it very real that maintenance is CONTINUOUS hard work TOWARDS a goal. I'm a while away from maintenance, but I haven't heard anyone discuss it quite this way before. I've always thought of maintenance as the easy part when you don't have to work as hard, but as it turns out, maintaining weight loss can be the hardest part of the process. Being aware of those success percentages and viewing maintenance as a time-frame oriented goal definitely puts it into focus and makes it more concrete. Yes, yes, yes, u will certainly deserve something Really Really Good. Thanks for sharing this insightful post! emoticon

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GRACEFULIFE 3/4/2010 1:56PM

    I've a ways to go before maintenance but I suspect that there is a stronger (or at least more useful) correlation between commitment to monitoring than there is to time of maintenance, and the same with motivation. My feeling is that once you learn how to bring your weight / BF% down, you still need to track the output in order to know how much of those skills to apply and verify you aren't sliding. Higher time probably correlates well with those who are very committed to monitoring and to those who set up their lives to support their commitment and maintain their motivation.

Personally in the past, my weight slides down when I am watching it and usually though not always up when I am not. And I don't see how I could watch myself gain weight unless I'd lost all commitment and motivation - which has happened before. So I feel like my task now is to figure out how not to lose commitment and motivation, and to keep monitoring. The skills to support that are key of course, but should become pretty habitual by the time I get to maintenance.

Of course there is a huge discussion here somewhere about studies / numbers in the aggregate vs. individual cases, etc etc etc. That's a discussion for another place, but suffice it to say that when anyone says to me "oh that's normal" my answer is "my goal is NOT to be normal, my goal is to excel".

Thanks for posting the research, and great job on your loss, research, commitment, and all!

And might I say, hooray for the Oxford comma. *grin*

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FLYFIGHTER 3/4/2010 9:47AM

    thanks--i just learned something new!!!

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DAMOTIVATION 3/4/2010 8:09AM

    Hey, you have come such a long way! Fantastic achievement.

I share your desire to maintain for the long haul. I don't get too hung up on the failure statistics. Every person is different. I also like the "keep it in check" approach. It's so easy to let all that hard work slip away. Constant reminders of where I was are the best motivators for me.

I hope to waltz into my 50s right around where I am now (or even better!). Whatever works for you -- go for it.

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CARRIE1948 3/4/2010 8:02AM

    I love the fact that you're so focused. I need to start thinking about some of this and just can't bring myself to yet.

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MOM5INFL 3/4/2010 7:18AM

    Congratulations on reaching maintenance!!! I needed to stop the madness as well. Getting fixated on a number that is difficult to reach can lead to additional stress, which obviously not good for getting to your goal of 150. If 150 happens great, if not then it's ok because you are more than healthy!!! Again, congratulations!!! You ARE at maintenance!!! Yay! Birdie.

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BAGGYPANTS5 3/4/2010 3:41AM

    Wow! your before and after pics are fantastic! You should have a real sense of achievement. You look lovely now. You certainly deserve those wings!I look forward to being a maintainer. After all, we didn't do all this work for nothing.
Well done you!

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TELERIE 3/4/2010 2:08AM

    I love it! So good to have you leading the way for the rest of us! I'm going to borrow some of your ideas when I get there.

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JAY75REY 3/4/2010 2:07AM

    Good strategy and thoughts. Thanks for sharing them.

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KAELIE 3/3/2010 11:28PM

  Thank you so much for posting this. I'm a newbie on my healthy lifestyle journey, but I have noticed that a lot of research numbers and percentages get thrown around about maintenance - even though I have a way to go - my mind had gone to that place and I knew that eventually I would need to address a plan for maintenance. I'm highly motivated by the numbers on the scale going down right now, and by just how much better I feel, but I'm no dummy - I know I will reach a point where I'll be wondering "what next". I'm goal-oriented, and was wondering how to adjust and what to do then - again, it is not something I need to address right now, but I do appreciate your insight. I applaud you for reaching your goals *and* for addressing how you are going to continue to monitor, adjust, and reward yourself. I also selfishly hope you will stick around Sparkpeople to pass on your knowledge and wisdom to those of us who are where you have already been :)

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DDOORN 3/3/2010 11:21PM

    Great to keep setting one's sights on bigger and better goals and rewards...!

Maintenance is surely THE MARATHON to end ALL marathons...!

We're all in this to WIN, for SURE! :-)


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Be your own superhero!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

...my mother always DID say that I was impossible... LOL

Seriously, though, I actually put this image on my iPod's wallpaper so it's the first thing I see when I turn it on to log anything (food, weight, exercise). It helps me remember that I have a soul inside my machine (body) and that soul has an identity and it can soar.

The body itself can do a lot of things it couldn't before, not the least of which is sitting with my legs crossed! LOL

I can fit into a bathtub now, and have rediscovered the Long Soak as a non-food reward. I highly recommend Kneipp herbal baths - lots of fragrance and no weird residue on me or the bathtub. My favorites are lavender, hops, and melissa.
There's almost nothing better than listening to Pandora streaming new age instrumental while submerging in a hot, fragrant bath... Almost makes me feel like I'm back home in CA, LOL

I'm going XC skiing this afternoon with CARRIE1948 and DDOORN and maybe some others from the Binghamton and Finger Lakes teams. I couldn't have done that comfortably a year ago.

And I've got MUSCLE. Lots and lots of MUSCLE. Yesterday I was working with my trainer at the YMCA and we noticed that I have definition in my shoulders now that even SHE doesn't have!

So I've replaced the "security" of my fat suit with a muscle suit, and it feels familiar and protective, but SO MUCH BETTER. And it looks a whole lot better, too! hehehe

When I joined Spark People last March I never got around to creating a vision collage. So after reading the Spark Book (TM) I made an electronic one on flickr, in the form of a photoset.

Like my iPod wallpaper, it helps remind me of where I am, and where I'd like to be. And that helps keep me motivated to continue starring in my very own personal graphic novel.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WOLFKITTY 3/9/2010 9:52PM

    Traded a fat suit for muscle suit - - - I LOVE that thought.
You're awesome.

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GRACEFULIFE 3/4/2010 2:04PM

    Linda Hamilton from T2... love it! Great set!

I just made a collage yesterday, it's in my pictures! :)

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    Don shared this link with me. You're among his super heros! Now, mine too. I really resonate with your hot herbal soaks (thanks for that link!) and feeling MUSCLE and seeing DEFINITION! Even after I'd lost weight, for the longest time I was still as soft as the Pillsbury Dough Boy. No longer! emoticon

Your Vision Collage is fabulous. I do hope you consider joining the team, for you would benefit others, not only in who you are, but the process by which you made your Vision Collage. (I am continually impressed with the creativity on Spark!) I also wanted to share a SoulCollage card I made a couple of years ago, because it SO reminds me of your iPod wallpaper. Here's the link:
emoticon for sharing your journey!

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TDEMJANEC 3/3/2010 9:12AM

    Hi. Loved your success story. Kudos to you for such an accomplishment, that being such a transformative and wonderfully healthy lifestyle change! Not to mention that you look fab!

Came across your profile while I was searching for people in the Ithaca area. My daughter and I spent last summer up there and are planning to do the same this summer. Would love to meet up with a fellow Sparker!


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    That's a great title for a book!

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TELERIE 2/28/2010 8:16AM

    I haven't done a vision collage yet, but a slide show sounds like a cool idea! Loved yours! Thanks for sharing. I became The Amazing Whipped Lash! :) emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 2/27/2010 8:51PM

    I want to be like you!!! I've now replaced the fat suit with a flab suit, but I want a muscle suit like you!! Thanks for the inspiration. -Marsha

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KAYOTIC 2/27/2010 6:52PM

    What a fun blog! I got to make a superhero, and watched the slide show, great ideas!

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JAY75REY 2/27/2010 4:39PM

    the slideshow was awesome, just like you! thanks.

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LAFTERSFREE 2/27/2010 1:58PM

    ur slideshow was cool, thanks for sharing. and congrats to you on forming those shoulder muscles!! hard work pays off, definitely :)

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BAGGYPANTS5 2/27/2010 11:53AM

    Liked your slideshow. How do you go about growing wings? I've always wanted to fly.

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CARRIE1948 2/27/2010 10:16AM

    Cool slide show.

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FLYFIGHTER 2/27/2010 10:10AM

    thanks for sharing the herbal bath and flickr ideas! i loved your slide show.


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DDOORN 2/27/2010 9:46AM

    What a crazy cool way to do a Vision Collage!

Love your thoughts, love the idea of a slideshow collage...I think you might have given me an idea on how I might at long last attempt a vision collage for myself!



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GEE-KNEE 2/27/2010 9:16AM

    It's cool to have muscle, and it probably is better than a fat suit for protection. You are a superhero. Have fun skiing.

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FRECKS96 2/27/2010 8:09AM

    Awesome! I love your photos, especially the kayak one. Be sure to let me know when you plan a trip there!

Have fun today!

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Wow, I'm really dense!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Yeah, we already KNOW I can be dense in the mental arena, LOL.

But what I'm talking about is my mass/volume ratio.

Because tonight I was swimming my laps after water aerobics and wondered why, sometimes in the shallow end, when I was slow on my flip turn, why I would sometimes find myself sitting on my butt on the bottom of the pool after exhaling.

So once I finished I did a little experiment. I laid on the surface and let out my air. Woosh. I landed on the bottom. I held my breath down there for a little bit to see if I'd come back up. Nope. So I stood up.

And then I told the lifeguard I was going to try this in the deep end, just to find out if I really was sinking.

And I went down there over by the ladder and did the same thing. And I sank like a stone. It was so fast I actually got a little scared and started swimming back up before I hit the bottom (12 ft). My ears were even feeling the pressure.

Dang. Now I think I understand why some people are afraid of water, especially deep water. It would be kind of scary to find myself at the bottom down there and what if I didn't have the energy to pull myself back up to the top and wanted to breathe? Yikes.

Last time I was that deep (about 18 months ago) I swam down to retrieve a piece of the underwater vacuum for the lifeguard. I was so buoyant that they had to put down a pole so I could pull myself down the last few feet using my arms, because I just couldn't swim against my own tendency to bob back up.

This time I think if I went down there again, I'd ask for a pole so I could pull myself UP, if necessary! Heck, if I could hold my breath long enough, I could probably walk around down there.

Bizarre. This whole physical metamorphosis is just bizarre. In some ways it's almost as weird as waking up one morning shaped as a cockroach. LOL

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAREN_01 3/15/2010 1:26PM

    I am really buoyant and have always been. Always joked the reason being is that fat floats on water!! :P
I can't imagine reaching goal and going back into the water and finding myself sinking.

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ALYFITN 3/8/2010 4:31PM

    i went through swim lessons with my four kids and my boys had a dread of the water. the instructor claimed 'everyone can deadman's float' - but not my boys. i explained to them the instructor was wrong - they had no fat.

nice blog--archy and m

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STEVIECAT4 2/25/2010 4:18PM

    Hey! I never thought about that!!! Not enough fat to float. No wonder I had trouble floating in our pool when I was in my teens. I was very slender. You're amazing the stuff you figure out!!!

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GRACEFULIFE 2/24/2010 4:37AM

    Yeah! I had this for a long time in my life, including when I learned to swim! I never figured it out until I was in college, though, and someone didn't believe me when I told them I was darn near negatively buoyant. So I blew out my breath, and just sat on the bottom of the pool for about 20 secs (shallow end). It was uncanny how I could just blow out and sink like a stone.

In recent years it got so that I was just barely negatively buoyant if at all, and I had to expel all my air very hard to get enough out to be even slightly negatively buoyant. I may have turned that around by now, though - I rarely swim these days.

Another childhood memory of mine... at the YWCA in swimming class, where I had a rather rotund female swimming instructor who was trying to teach me to tread water. I was in single digit ages, a little runty kid. We went to the deep end and she held her legs motionless beneath her, fingers pointing up just out of the water... and floated with her entire face above water. "See? Look how easy.. no problem!" There I was... just barely able to keep my face above water if I didn't use my arms like crazy. That's why to this day I like to tread water with a frog kick rather than a flutter kick ... much more propulsive force to keep my darn head above water! I was always much more powerful at the frog kick anyway... who knows why. Then there's this whole matter of them telling me to do frog kick differently as an early teen... but that's a whole other story.

Congratulations on your transformation, and just remember that you might not float as well alone now, but you sure couldn't have done an endo in that boat before. Hooray for kayak tricks! Check out this crazy paddle throw move: http://www.youtube.com/watch#&v=KDn

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KAYOTIC 2/23/2010 10:29PM

    It is a strange feeling not to float easily! Used to be quite buoyant myself, not anymore!

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LIFE-OF-LEISURE 2/23/2010 9:30AM

    That's the first Kafka reference I've seen here at SP! Is it odd that when I hear the word metamorphosis, I think of cockroaches?

Hmm, I'm planning on going snorkeling when my DD2 comes down to visit later this week. It will be interesting to see if I can dive down to pick up a shell. I used to not quite make it to the shell before I would bob back up. emoticon

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DACIUS 2/23/2010 9:21AM

    You are sinking like a lead weight.

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GEE-KNEE 2/23/2010 7:54AM

    I know what you mean. I noticed last summer how much harder it was to float. I could have fallen to sleep back floating before, and it would all be cool. I had a really hard time with that during the summer. I get the how odd all these changes can feel. It's almost surreal sometimes.

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CARRIE1948 2/23/2010 7:30AM

    Funny the weird changes this brings about. Who would have thought about bouyancy?

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_RAMONA 2/23/2010 1:05AM

    Okay... I need an explanation.... I actually sink like a stone even now. Does that mean I likely still have pretty good muscle mass? If this is an acurate indicator, it supports what I've always believed... my BMI isn't as high as my weight might indicate. I need to get this professionally assessed!

Shaped like a cockroach?!!! How about a butterfly, or a praying mantis? Something lovely and colourful, lol!

I do agree with you about the journey, though.... it is one heck of a ride!

{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

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DDOORN 2/22/2010 10:33PM

    Yep, noticed that very thing also the last time I was swimming. It is strange after a lifetime of being so buoyant, sinking like a stone....!


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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 2/22/2010 10:32PM

    LOL. Not so weird that Kafka didn't think of it first...

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MEESHPEZ 2/22/2010 10:30PM

    Hey body change is good and it sounds like you are working hard. Way to go. A cockroach would be weird. emoticon

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Dissecting the weight management literature at Second Helping Online

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I've started writing columns over at secondhelpingonline.com, that will look at the scientific articles regarding management of weight post-loss.

With RUSSLANE's help the writing over there is much more polished and concise than the raw uncut versions of what you see here....

The first "intro" column just went up today!


Next up over there: a tour of the concepts and terminology of weight management and illustration of them using a sample dataset of former Biggest Loser contestants.

EDIT: You can read the column here:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 2/24/2010 6:47PM

    Great first column! RUSSLANE is a hero: he totally gets that MAINTENANCE is what it has to be all about. I'm determined to stay in the 6% group and want all the info I can get about how to do just that.

And: wish that SP -- as wonderful as it is -- devoted just a little more focus to MAINtaining (the main thing) and not just losing!

Comment edited on: 2/24/2010 6:48:18 PM

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WALKINGANNIE 2/24/2010 5:21PM

    Thanks. It's great that someone is writing about this issue. There's a real need for it. I'll be checking on updates and hoping that I never need to put the weight loss theories into practice again.

Congratulations on your achievements.

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CAROLJEAN64 2/23/2010 12:35PM

    I love that we have taking maintenance as seriously as we took weight loss. I realized that many of the focus and goal setting that was part of the loss needs to be revamped for maintenance. For instance, six months from now I will weigh between 125 and 130. Steps along the way: Alter my exercise routines so my body stays healthy. It's not just not eating the doughnut, it's maybe sometimes eating 1/2 of the doughnut and still loving yourself.

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RUSSLANE 2/23/2010 8:12AM

    Guys, I can't tell you how excited I am for Angela to be on board the Team. We've been talking all the time. The energy is just amazing, let alone the finished product -- it's a blast editing someone as driven as Ms. Angela. We've got something really special going.

By the way, if you're tired of the way weight loss is *usually* discussed, or realize it's not helping people's lives in the long term (which is what truly matters, IMHO), give Angela or myself a holler.

Second Helping Online was created not because we're internet/cooking/weight loss experts, but because it simply needed doing. And The Actual Experts, for whatever reason, just weren't doing it.

The Team is just banding together and pooling our individual skills toward a larger goal. It's criminal to us that there's so much support for weight loss, only then to be ignored when you've hit goal and you're "cured."

Maintenance is not to be trifled with. There's not only figuring out exactly *how* to maintain your weight, there's all the adjustments/transitions of thinking of yourself and your life differently -- and how differently even loved ones can treat you. Once you hit goal, where do you go from there?

So no matter what you think you can or can't do, give us a holler and come play. :-)

Grats to Ang, and thank you to everyone checking out what Second Helping is up to!

Comment edited on: 2/23/2010 8:30:18 AM

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4MYBOYSANDSELF 2/18/2010 7:58AM

    Thanks! I've bookmarked this site for when I do need it!

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DDOORN 2/17/2010 8:49PM

    Can't have TOO many maintenance resources...thx for pointing the way AND contributing to their collective efforts! :-)


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KIMBEEJ16 2/17/2010 10:26AM

    Interesting site! I signed up for it and will check it out. With about 10 lbs to go, I want to start thinking about maintenance NOW and getting my mind set established early. I am so determined to be in the 6% who keep this off permanently. Thanks for the extra help and motivation.

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KAYOTIC 2/17/2010 9:49AM

    Can't wait to check this out!

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DIAMONDFOOLER 2/17/2010 9:36AM

    This is great. Being just 20 pounds from my goal, i was wondering how I keep it off this time...maybe you can give me some insights and plans...
Can't wait!
emoticon emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 2/17/2010 8:52AM

    Fascintating! I'll go check it out. Best of luck with this undertaking. I want to know so much more about how to keep off this 80 pounds. I've reached goal 8 times, and want this to be the last time. Thanks for your efforts!

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