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Countdown to the 5% Spring Challenge - Assignment 5

Monday, March 12, 2012

Current Weight: 219 pounds
Target Weight: 208 pounds
By When: May 12, 2012

Daily Calorie Requirements:

Calories Eaten: Eat between 1,290 - 1,640 calories per day
Calories Burned: Burn 1040 calories per week
Weight Progress: Go from 229 to 209 by 05/12/2012

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEATTLE58 3/12/2012 10:39AM

    Good for you in making this commitment! It really is a mind over matter, isn't it?! emoticon emoticon

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Thursday, March 08, 2012

I just finished a novel called The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes where the main character has rheumatoid arthritis (RA). So, I sent the following email to the author:

Good afternoon.

I just finished reading The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes by you and it was the first novel that I've ever read by you. I was intrigued to see that the main character has RA as I do as well. Recently, the Rheumatoid Arthritis Warrior (rawarrior.com) has spearheaded possibly changing the name of RA to Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease (RAD) because as long as "arthritis" is part of the name, people aren't going to understand that we don't have what their grandparents have. Here's the blog about it in case you're interested:


If you're swayed and if you have characters in future novels with RA, perhaps you could use the proposed name (RAD) instead of RA. Just a thought.

I'm looking forward to reading more by you.

I hope you are having a good and pain-free day.


And, here is her response:

Joanna, thanks for writing. You probably know that I also have RA. I love the idea of this name change. it's much more appropriate. I'll do a little more reading on the RA warrior site to see how I feel about it after educating myself to the pros and cons. Doubt I'll ever write another character with RA, but I do have a public forum through my blog and FB page and am happy to soeak up publicly once I've explored the issue a bit further.

Thanks for the heads up!


Cool, eh?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ELISOS 3/13/2012 3:38PM

    emoticon emoticon

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SEATTLE58 3/9/2012 3:11PM

    Yes, very cool, so glad that you could suggest that! emoticon

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DEDICATED2HIM 3/9/2012 1:06PM

    Hi Joanna,
Great blog....good for you to approach the author of the book! It sounds like one I would like to read. I'll have to check it out...
BTW I LOVE your back ground and color choices for your page...Beautiful...
Come Spring, Quickly!

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SERENEMOM71 3/9/2012 12:52PM

  I believe that people might understand the disease a little better if it was RAD instead of RA. People think it is like OA and it takes a lot of explaining to educate them. If the word autoimmune was already in the name of the disease, it would be so much easier. Take it from the word of this tired "old" RN who would like help from the very beginning when educating family/friends about the illness! emoticon

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CAPTHAMMER 3/8/2012 2:59PM

    I hadn't yet heard of this proposal but I also highly agree with the value of the change.

I was first diagnosed at age 18. Like you mention, when told I had Rheumatoid Arthritis I assumed it would be like the sore joints my Grandmother complained about. If it had been more clearly defined to me as an autoimmune disease I might have been more aware of potential health issues down the road.

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Spring 5% Challenge Commitment

Thursday, March 08, 2012

The new 5% Challenge starts Saturday, March 17th.

Exercise - I promise to exercise for at least 30 minutes 5 times a week, which will include exercise DVDs incorporating strength-training and cardio and lunchtime walks.

Food - I promise to eat following the calorie range that SP has given me and I will eat within my calories for a minimum of 6 days a week every week.

I also promise to drink at least 6 cups of water every day that I'm not traveling or in meetings (for obvious reasons).

I promise to eat lots of fruits and veggies and minimise my bad fats/junk food.

I promise I will check in with my team daily and leave a comment on the Discussion Board a minimum of 4 times a week.

I promise that I will read and comment on team members' blogs when I have time.

I am committed to this challenge and I promise to do the best that I can and my hope is that I will lose my 5% permanently or at least significant inches!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NYKIMMIE 3/9/2012 3:04PM


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SEATTLE58 3/8/2012 10:34PM

    So excellent, awesome and all that other good stuff! They say that it really helps to write goals down and you did! emoticon

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CAPTHAMMER 3/8/2012 12:15PM

    Double post because I meant it soooo much!

Comment edited on: 3/8/2012 12:16:39 PM

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CAPTHAMMER 3/8/2012 12:15PM

    Go Daisies! emoticon Go Daisies! emoticon
Welcome aboard. You've set up a good plan. Can't tell you how much I agree with your last point that inches are every bit as important as pounds.

I hope you find The Daisies to be the supportive, encouraging team that we attempt to be. And by the by, Loooove your new wallpaper. Gor•gee•ous!

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Montego Bay, Jamaica

Saturday, February 25, 2012

I can't believe it's only been a week since I got home from Jamaica. It feels like a month at least especially since the weather has turned cold here. Yuck!

I had a good time once we were there a couple of days but the first day was a write-off. I was thinking it would be great since we were due to arrive by noon. I figured we'd have the whole afternoon by the pool and I was really looking forward to it. But, although we were there by noon, they wouldn't let us check in until 3 p.m. They did offer us change rooms and showers to use but my dad was grumpy because he was suffering from a head cold and he wasn't dressed for Jamaica (he was wearing black dress pants and a black mock turtleneck) and said he didn't want to go to the bother of digging through his suitcase for his swimsuit, sandals and sunblock so we ended up getting some lunch and then sitting in the lobby for almost 3 hours reading. We were both exhausted by the time we got our room at 3 since we'd been up since 2:30 a.m. so we both crashed for an hour and then we got dressed in summer clothes and went out to tour the resort.

Our first impressions was that the resort looked dated and a bit tawdry. The chaise lounge chairs looked grimey but it may have just been that they were black and charcoal grey striped.

But, by the end of the week, we decided that it wasn't as bad as we had initially thought. It had 5 pools but the deepest one was only 4 feet deep in the middle. That's the pool that I ended up using for most of the week. Although, I initially chose that one because the pool by our room blared loud music all day and it annoyed me. The deep pool was pretty quiet most of the time and it was deep enough that I could do lengths when I went in. I tried to do a minimum of 6 lengths each time I went in and on the last two days, I did 10 lengths each time.

I was disappointed in our oceanfront cabana room. It wasn't at all like the oceanfront room I had in Grand Cayman in October. There I had the best sleeps on the balcony because the sound of the waves was very soothing. Here, I couldn't hear the waves over the loud music that was almost non-stop. Not only did they play loud music at the pool two doors down from our room but the entertainment area and stage were in the building beside the pool and it also was very loud from 8 p.m. on.

But, overall we had a nice time. I read 3 books (Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins, The Rook by Steven James and As Good As Dead by Beverly Barton). I also started reading Silence in the Sanctuary by Deanna Raybourn but didn't finish it until after I got home.

Every day, we would get up between 6:30 and 7 and my dad would go for a run or a hike and I would pick an exercise DVD to do in the room (I always bring my portable DVD player and an assortment of exercise DVDs with me when I travel). Then we'd go and have breakfast together. Every morning, I had French Toast, an omelette, bacon and fruit. Then we'd go back to the room and change into our swimsuits and get slathered up and my dad would head for the beach and I would go to the pool (I did go in the ocean twice while there but I preferred the pool).

I'd read and swim and doze until about 11:30 when I would head inside to get out of the sun for a couple of hours. I'd read or go on the internet until about 1:30 when I would back out to the pool for a few more hours. Around 2:30, I'd eat the banana I picked up at breakfast and some nuts to tide me over until dinner.

Around 4, I'd head back to the room for my shower and to change for dinner and around 4:30, my dad would come back to the room for his shower. Around 5, we would grab the Scrabble game and Scrabble dictionary and go and find a quiet and hopefully well-lit spot to play a couple of games until dinner. The first hour was usually okay but it was hard to find a well-lit spot between 6 and 7.

My dad was a much better Scrabble player this year than last year. He played much more strategically this year. He was an English professor most of his life so it's good that he's getting better at it. We had about the same number of wins and losses during the week, which was good.

At 7, we'd go to dinner and talk about our days and after dinner, we'd check out the stage show. It was usually pretty lame but we usually stuck it out for at least half an hour. And, then we'd head back to our room. We were usually in bed with the lights out by 10 p.m.

Here are the very few photos I took while there. I hope you enjoy them. The first two are views in each direction from our balcony.

These two are views from poolside and show my painted toes as well:

This is a sandcastle that someone built on the beach by our room the previous day (I think it's pretty good):

This is the pool that I frequented:

And, this is the view from the dining room our last morning there:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEDICATED2HIM 2/27/2012 2:37AM

    nice blog..! It sounds like a relaxing time.....I hope you came back rested and ready to go back to your normal schedule.

Nice painted toes! emoticon

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ELISOS 2/26/2012 8:42PM


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Thursday, February 02, 2012

I just received this email and liked it so much, I thought I would share:

Me (in a tizzy) : God, can I ask you something?

GOD: Sure.

Me: Promise you won't get mad?

GOD: I promise.

Me (frustrated): Why did you let so much stuff happen to me today?

GOD: What do you mean?

Me: Well I woke up late,

GOD: Yes

Me: My car took forever to start,

GOD: Okay....

Me (growling): At lunch, they made my sandwich wrong and I had to wait

GOD: Hmmmm..

Me: On the way home, my phone went dead, just as I picked up a call

GOD: All right

Me (loudly): And to top it all off, when I got home, I just wanted to soak my feet in my foot massager and relax, but it wouldn't work. Nothing went right today! Why did you do that?

GOD: Well let me see..... the death angel was at your bed this morning and I had to send one of the other angels to battle him for your life. I let you sleep through that.

Me (humbled): Oh...

GOD: I didn't let your car start because there was a drunk driver on your route that might have hit you if you were on the road

Me (ashamed): ............

GOD: The first person who made your sandwich today was sick and I didn't want you to catch what they have, I knew you couldn't afford to miss work

Me (embarrassed): Oh.....

GOD: Your phone went dead because the person that was calling was going to give a false witness about what you said on that call, I didn't even let you talk to them so you would be covered

Me (softly): I see God

GOD: Oh and that foot massager, it had a short that was going to throw out all of the power in your house tonight. I didn't think you wanted to be in the dark.

Me: I'm sorry God.

GOD: Don't be sorry, just learn to trust me.........in all things, the good and the bad

Me: I WILL trust you God

GOD: And don't doubt that my plan for your day is always better than your plan

Me: I won't God. And let me just tell you God, thank you for everything today !!!!!!!!

GOD: You're welcome child. It was just another day being your God and I love looking after my children.

Scriptural References: II Samuel 22:31, Proverbs 3:5, Hebrews 2:13
"The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.. .." (Proverbs 11:25)

Jeremiah 32:27 “Behold I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: Is there any thing too hard for me?”

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Even though this was posted 5 days ago, I haven't seen it until today. I needed to see it today. It wouldn't have meant the same thing to me 5 days ago, and I believe God knew all along that you would post it 5 days ago and I would see it on the day I needed it most. Thanks for your part Joanna.

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DEDICATED2HIM 2/4/2012 6:25AM

    I really liked this Joanna, '
Thanks for sharing it....i've had similar thoughts someitimes when things don't go " my way" if is because "There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is death."
We need to trust God to make that distinction for us and to protect us from harms' way....Great message. Thanks.

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BEACHBARB2 2/2/2012 1:25PM

  Oh, I truly believe this! When I'm driving down the highway and I get stuck behind someone going just a bit slower than me, I just settle in behind them, figuring that whatever higher power it is that looks after me, is keeping me out of harm's way.

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JAZZEJR 2/2/2012 11:51AM

    Powerful message. Thank you.

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