BESSHAILE   51,855
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Choices and Habits - we need them both to be healthy

Friday, March 08, 2013

It's been 2 weeks since I decided to follow fellow Sparker Pixi-licious' example

and start a spark streak of living each day as healthily as I possibly can. Two weeks. 2/3's of that magical, habit forming, 21 days.

This has been a wonderful 2 weeks and I'm looking forward to a time when the conscious choice of a healthy day has become a habit. Right now it's still VERY deliberate but it's still interesting and fun. Because I'm really emphasizing healthy over "good" or even "good for you", this little commitment is influencing me to make different choices - to even give up old habits that aren't actually bad habits but perhaps, not the choice for today. It's pushing me to write definitions about what is healthy. Not just what won't hurt me, but what is positively actively forward moving healthy.

That's why I asked, the other day, for some feedback about the Sunday cookie cooking day. I was so glad to get different viewpoints. I knew the day was "not bad for me" in the numerical sense of exceeding a caloric max for the week. I've built in wiggle room for days like Sunday. But it was good to read JLITT62's

thoughts on choice vs habit. It really helped me come up with a way to measure - for myself - what I consider a healthy day. On a day when I make more healthy choices than UNhealthy ones - it's a healthy day.

This discussion of what is healthy vs what is UNhealthy and it's companion discussion - what is UNhealthy vs what is just NotParticularly healthy - are all helping me get where I want to be - which is ... to be as healthy as I can - to age gracefully - to live fully.

Oh yes.

And to reach my ideal weight.

And my little victory yesterday was to CHOOSE between a tamale and ice cream. Either of them fit within my calorie (points) limit - but not both. I always have a small bit of ice cream at the end of the day. It makes me feel like the eating for the day is over. But that's just a habit I have. It isn't mandatory. I really wanted the heartiness of corn meal (we make our own tamales) and not the sweetness of the ice cream. (my favorite in all the whole wide world sweet)

I made the choice and rejoiced with it. Now THAT'S living a healthy life! emoticon

Hope your day is healthy too.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOTUSBURGER 3/8/2013 2:12PM

    emoticon Fantastic! What a GREAT job you are doing!
PIXI is a great motivator! emoticon

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JLITT62 3/8/2013 7:55AM

    "I made the choice and rejoiced with it. Now THAT'S living a healthy life"


ny, my WW leader is
Ike you - ends her day with ice cream. I only want ice cream whenit's warm out!

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Healthy Doesn't Mean Perfect

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Whole lotta bloggin' going on here this month. That's because I am trying to maintain a streak - a personal streak - of living each day as healthily as I possibly can. I'm making a claim every day and I want it to be true. Of course - there's no Truth Police who will arrest me for saying I made healthy choices when I didn't. Spark People won't kick me off the website. I doubt anybody here would even point out to me that "hey girl - if you're so healthy why are you X pounds?"

But I need to be honest with this claim - for some reason, making it written, posted, stated here - is driving me to hold myself to a truthful claim. I'm actually finding this little morning claim - that is a wee bit of a boast - stays in my consciousness throughout the day. I'm more likely to ask myself if I'm making the right choice, now that I have to 'fess up to that choice the next morning. I feel accountable. For that I must thank You - and Spark People - and my sparkbuddy Pixi-licious. Don't know how this came about - but it did and I'm grateful for it.

But now that it's been almost 2 weeks I realize I have to come up with some definitions - because some days are really healthier than others and I want a set of guidelines for claiming any given day as a healthy one. Because I am not going to be perfect every day but that may not mean I am not making healthy choices. Healthy doesn't mean Perfect.

Take yesterday for instance. I was utterly wiped out after a day that started at 6 and contained a huge work project that kept me out till 10 o'clock. I live on the east coast and if you watched the weather channel at all yesterday you know we had terrifically bad weather. I work 7 miles south of the snow line - so it was torrential rain with snow mixed in the whole day long - but it never got bad enough to close up shop and go home - for a nap. It was raw, bitter, and wet. There was not going to be my normal early morning walk but I did 15 minutes of step aerobics in the living room. That's one for the Healthy Day team.

I went to lunch with a colleague to talk over the previous day's big event and ordered a sandwich - which when it came - had obviously been fried in butter. Ooops. Not a healthy choice.


I cut it in thirds and only ate 1/3, taking the rest home in a box. It was delicious, too. I wasn't able to just let the waitress take it back to the kitchen but I know now I won't eat the rest of it - I'll give it to my dogs. That's two for the Healthy Day team.

At 5 I made that left turn out of the parking lot - the one that takes me to the gym - and lo - it was CLOSED. And by the time I got home I knew my day was done. I didn't even cook dinner. I had an apple and a banana - another for the Healthy Day Team but I followed that by cheese and crackers. A measured amount of cheese and crackers - but really I didn't need the fat or the dairy and would have done much better with some broccoli or a green smoothie - because I knew I hadn't had enough green vegetables yesterday and I'd had dairy with my greasy lunch. So that's my bad for the Not Healthy Day.

so. Of the 5 obvious choices I had yesterday - I made 3 healthy ones and 2 unhealthy ones. Mind now - ALL of these actions were CHOICES. I didn't mindlessly eat or forget to exercise. I assessed where I was, how I felt, what was going on at each moment - and then made a choice. And on a day when I make more healthy choices than unhealthy choices - unless there is some additional issue involved - I am going to call it a Healthy Day and add it to the streak.

Because this is MY PERSONAL HEALTHY STREAK - not a theoretical definition of healthy streak. And in my book - healthy doesn't mean perfect.

Happy Healthy Day to each and every one of you.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOTUSBURGER 3/7/2013 3:18PM

    Good job after a frustrating day.
I let myself get down when stuff like that happens
so I have the excuse to eat MORE mindlessly!
Good for you for being so AWARE and listing it
to make it a lasting HABIT emoticon emoticon

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JLITT62 3/7/2013 7:39AM

    I totally agree with everything you've written. The only reason I felt the other day ended up unhealthy was because the ice cream wasn't really a choice, it was habit.

But here's tbe thing: it really doesn't matter what I think. It only matters what you think!

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    those sound like good choices - and if crackers and cheese are your unhealthy ones - you have made some great changes that you should be proud of

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MSLZZY 3/7/2013 7:21AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WELLNESSME09 3/7/2013 7:08AM

    Great healthy choices! emoticon

Happy healthy day to you also! emoticon

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DMEYER4 3/7/2013 6:53AM

  congrats on your healthy choices and I hope today will be filled with healthy choices for you emoticon emoticon

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Like Manna from (SparkPeople) Heaven

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Man - SparkPeople is really lobbing direct hits at me today. First came the cool article about treating your health account like your bank account. I loved it - I plan to share it with my buddies at Weight Watcher next week. And that bit about "a little at a time over time" really touched my On Button. It's dreadful weather outdoors today. Wind to knock down trees. And I'm really wiped from a late night event yesterday that kept me so pumped I didn't get enough sleep. I was wired well past midnight. And I thought ... oh. I think I can skip that little 15 minute workout - the indoor one I picked so I could do it when the weather was like this. After all - it's "ONLY" 15 minutes.


That article reminded me that it's the 15 minutes I do today that shows up tomorrow. So as soon as I'm done with this I'm off to do the 15 minutes on my step and so there. yah!

And what do you know - the very next article was a bunch of recipes for lentils. I was just wishing I had something new to eat - a different sort of bean recipe and here are a whole page of them.

Thank you Spark People! How kind of you to make today all about me. emoticon emoticon

And now - the exciting news. As of yesterday I am at a weight I haven't seen since September 2004. Is somebody doing the happy dance? I think so. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 3/7/2013 7:22AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/7/2013 7:22:21 AM

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LOTUSBURGER 3/6/2013 2:20PM

    Love when that happens...
Off to read those articles..... emoticon

and CONGRATS on the weight loss emoticon emoticon

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Was It A Healthy Day?

Monday, March 04, 2013

Well my friends - I'm hoping I'll get lots of responses because I'd like a consensus about this one. Yesterday I had to bake lots of cookies. 200, I thought at first but then realized that I actually had to make about double that. These are for an event so they are not my labor intensive, butter rich cookies, but slice and bake Nestle toll house cookies. Just a lot of them.

I had a slightly higher calorie breakfast ... mostly because I craved it, but it was a healthy one = Kashi go lean with lite almond milk - coming in at 450 calories or so.

Just before lunch I began the baking - and since the package shrieks "DO NOT EAT RAW DOUGH" and since I haven't any idea how long those rolls of cookie dough were lying about in some warehouse before they were trucked to another warehouse and then lay in the bin at the grocery store .... you get the picture ... I had no trouble not eating the dough.

but I did eat some of the cookies. maybe 250 calories worth of them - because I had 2 at the end of the day too.

Lunch was a tiny sliver of left over homemade pizza - so I do know what's baked into this. But only a slim slice ... maybe 100 calories worth - and a lovely fresh and huge apple.

A nice 3 mile walk with husband and dogs was all the exercise I did yesterday. I had intended to get in either 15 minutes of step or another mile of strolling in the a.m. but I didn't. But remember - that extra walking is not a chore for me - it's easy - I just sort of didn't do it and sort of forgot to do it.

There was a late afternoon snack of half a cup of cherry tomatoes and a banana .. not at the same time, of course. This was boredom eating because I was not hungry - but they were also intentional eating because I also figured I needed those nutrients.

Dinner was some curried tofu which I made from scratch - again - good ingredients - lots of veggies. @ 200 calories.

Movie time included 200 calories worth of oil popped pop corn. I know, but Himself makes it and that's the only way he will make it. I never crave pop corn but when it's in the house, hot and salty, I will eat some. Two cereal bowls full = about 200 calories.

At the end of the day I had a weight watcher light ice cream bar that comes in at 150 calories. This is my End Of The Day Chocolate that puts a period to the day's eating. It would be wonderful if I'd thought of that before the movie time popcorn - but there it is.

counting the calories in the bananas and tomatoes the day probably held 1,550 calories.

Now - most of what I ate yesterday was not just healthy but was the right portion size. What I'm questioning is how many 'treats' there were in that day. The chocolate ice cream at the end of the day, the oil popped pop corn in the middle, and those cookies - all added up to 600 calories. Yikes. more than 1/3 of the calories I ate were 'treat' foods. I think this needs to be addressed. Maybe limit the % of calories I can devote to treats. I wonder.

So. Was it a healthy day? I'm claiming it as one - but would you?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 3/8/2013 10:08AM

    A gentleman at the coffee table today noted that different
foods have different calories. Okay. But I understood his
point when he said you could either drink that can of cola
or eat this huge pile of broccoli. The same amount of
calories. Hmmm! Made more sense when you look at
it that way. So I will be eatinb broccoli and leave the
soda for someone else.

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JLITT62 3/5/2013 5:42AM

    I will disagree with the other posters. No, it's not a bad day by any means, but I wouldn't call it a healthy one, either. I think if you'd skipped the ice cream it would have qualified. That is simply habit & therefore oh so hard to break, of course.

Now I'll soften the blow by saying I think you did incredibly well!

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PAMDAQTPI 3/4/2013 10:29AM

    Healthy is all in the eye of the beholder. Without knowing what caloric intake your body needs I'd say your calorie count wasn't that bad. You did exercise. Period. That's more than a lot of people do and that was healthy. I can see why you're looking for opinions because it wasn't an uber-healthy day, but it really wasn't a 'bad' day either. I say go ahead and claim just, just aim for slightly more healthy the next day.

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CELIAMINER 3/4/2013 8:01AM

    I'd absolutely claim it! I'm amazed you didn't have more cookies. Or more popcorn. But those are trigger foods for me, so I try not to have them around. And you DID exercise. Three miles of walking, even if it's "easy," is nothing to sneeze at, and if you enjoyed it, that doesn't make it less of an exercise. In the face of all that temptation, I'd say you did GREAT!

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Putting It Out Into The Universe

Saturday, March 02, 2013

This month I will reach my goal. This month is the last month I will pay to go to a Weight Watchers meeting. This isn't something I want. This is something I am going to do. Just like I am going to send in my taxes, pay the electric bill, vacuum the living room rugs, I am going to lose these last 4 pounds I've been playing with for 6 months. And I'm putting it out into the universe and claiming this fact. It's not a wish. It's not a want. It's a 'going to do it'. That's why I'm telling you all here.

Putting it out there isn't just some airy fairy juju MagicSpeak.

At least it's not if you don't happen to like airy fairy juju MagicSpeak.

So what IS putting it out there?

It's the last statement in a plan. It's the destination I'm going to. If exercise, carefully tracking what I eat, drinking lots of water, asking myself if what I'm about to do is a healthy action are the baby (or even big girl) steps I'm taking - putting that last statement out there tells the world ... but more importantly tells ME where those steps are taking me - to a goal weight - with money at the end. emoticon emoticon

I realize that I haven't believed I was actually going anywhere for a long time. You see - I'm pretty durn happy where I am. I love it that my smallest clothes are loose on me. I love it that I can shop in any department now when I look for new clothes. I love it that I'm stronger on my legs and can pick up heavier objects. I really love it that I go to the gym 4 days out of almost every week.

I'm proud of what I see in the mirror - even excited. I'm proud of the fact I went to the gym every week in December - several times every week - for the first time since I joined that gym in 1998! I like the compliments people give me. I like almost everything about where I am.

But I know I haven't gotten 'there' and this week I realized ... I really want to go there.

There are practical reasons - like - the cost for a personal trainer went up this month and I'd like to use that WW money to help pay for it.

And there are ephemeral reasons - like - I want to be one of the Lifetime-At-Goal women who come to the meetings and inspire me.

So here I am - with 2 pounds to get to free meetings and 4 to get to goal. Where I will be in March. I'm putting it out there for the universe to see so it won't be surprised when I ignore its other distractions. I'm putting it out there for you to see so you can check up on me. I'm putting it out there - out loud - so I can remember that I'm not just wandering in the desert - I've stopped and smelled a zillion roses - now it's time to get where I'm going.

This month.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANSASROSE67 3/4/2013 4:20PM

    I'm loving your positive vibes!!!


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CELIAMINER 3/3/2013 10:23AM

    I believe in the power of the Universe. May the Universe bolster your resolve and bless you with the power to make these wonderful things happen in your life!

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JLITT62 3/2/2013 4:11PM

    Good luck! I have the same amt of weight to lose, but I KNOW it will take me longer. It just does. But I'll get there, too!

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SHEILA1505 3/2/2013 10:14AM

big hugs, Bess xx

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