CALLIKIA   23,452
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Just Once

Monday, September 13, 2010

Thanks to ECLECKTIC1 I realized that this new challenge to stop smoking can be treated much like my new challenge of a healthy lifestyle was treated with Spark. Small steps of habit change. And it all started with logging and asking yourself tough questions about why you wanted to change and what emotions led to overeating, right?

All day I've spent every break asking myself those tough questions...

How does this make me feel?
Why do I feel I need/want it in my life?
What would I do if I weren't doing this?
What are my reasons for quitting?

And a thought occurred to me. Seven days can seem like a long time sometimes. Even 3 days can seem daunting. Three days of being on target, of being "perfect?" That's HARD! I know what you're thinking, 3 days is nothing! But when you're facing big challenges, 3 days can be rough. So I wondered how I managed this Spark thing when I started. I didn't jump on with the intent to lose 60 pounds in 5 months. No way, no how! I jumped in with a thought of, "Let's see what happens for one day."

Certainly it was in the back of my mind that this day could be the start of something big. But I left in there, firmly in the BACK of my mind. Just once. Just one meal. Just one day of being on. See what that feels like. See what happens.

And there was another thing I did that was different...it wasn't about "tomorrow" at all. You know the saying -- The problem with diets is Mondays. We all have those weekends where we say, "I've got to eat everything because Monday I start my diet." We eat our Big Macs and Super Size Fries on Sunday night at 11pm because "This is the last time I can have this!" But with Spark I didn't think that way. Nothing is off limits. I can have a Big Mac if I want to. I can even have some french fries. (Yep, I said it.) So not treating the weekend before like a last hurrah was a huge milestone. I started fresh on day one. I didn't expect perfection, and I didn't achieve it either. I just started logging what I was eating. I noticed I was making healthy choices anyways because I was logging and I didn't want to log a Big Mac and Super Size Fries. I wanted to log healthier options...even if it was a McChicken Sandwich and a Diet Coke instead of a Big Mac meal. Progress is progress right?

So instead of thinking, "If I can just get through those first 3 days..." (I've always heard that when you quit smoking the first 3 days are the most difficult) I'm going to start thinking, "If I can just get through this one time." All it takes is once. So starting right now, I'm going to say no to just ONE smoke break. Just one. I'll see how that feels and then see if I really want to smoke the next time or just say no to one more.

It works with all my goals actually. The idea of being on target all week was scaring me earlier. I'm coming off a weekend of rest...a weekend of doing pretty much nothing in the way of exercise. And what seems most daunting to me all the time is getting up early to get a workout in before work. So I made a decision. Just ONE DAY this week, I will get up early and workout before work. Just once. That's it. Just one day this week I will NOT turn my alarm off and go back to sleep. And every day I put it off, I'll be facing the daunting task of having to start over again tomorrow. Usually I have this attitude of, "If I don't do it now, I'm just going to have to do it later..." and that gets me going, because I want my later to be free of "have to"s.

As for today, I needed to buy something at the store. It's something I always buy name brand of because, well, it's better and it doesn't ever fail me. But I can put up with a little tiny issue when I'll save 3 dollars...that's what I told myself as I was pouting my way to the front with the on-sale generic brand. 3.99 vs. 6.99. I bought the cheap kind. So I can take comfort in knowing that just once today I saved myself 3 dollars. (And, if I want to get really picky, another 5 when I didn't buy the magazine I wanted, and another buck and a half when I passed by the Vitamin Water I wanted.) Take the small hits, make the small sacrifices, and it will add up in the end.

Just this once...

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHICAT63 9/14/2010 4:59PM

    One day at a time and you can do it. I know it is difficult lots of my family members and good friends smoke, some have succeeded in giving it up and some haven't. I have to say though, I was really impressed by your determination and I was not aware you were a smoker....so I am even more impressed because Sista you are determined ! emoticon emoticon

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JEREMY723 9/14/2010 2:02PM

    One day at a time for sure. And if you have one, don't stress and start right over again. Same as spark, one piece of pizza for sure better than two. Best of luck!

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ATROTTIER 9/14/2010 1:39PM

    Good luck!! I'm rooting for ya!!!!! emoticon

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FLWRCHLD97 9/14/2010 1:14PM

    Good luck, you can do it!

It's hard (I smoked for over 10 years) but it's worth it!

You can do it because you are emoticon...

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REBECCAMA 9/14/2010 11:54AM

  emoticon

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NUMD97 9/14/2010 3:26AM

    Very well written and executed. Thanks for posting this blog.

Much continued success. emoticon

Nu

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EMILY98683 9/14/2010 12:25AM

    Esther, I quit smoking 5 years ago (after smoking on and off for 10 years), and I totally agree with the three-day thing. After 72 hours you'll still have cravings, but they won't be nearly as intense. Every now and again I still think a cigarette would be kinda good, but I know it won't taste as good as I think it will. You can do it!

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THREEE 9/13/2010 11:06PM

    and if you DID NOT smoke today, how many $ did you also save?

i agree with using the SPARK approach...that's what i'm trying with negotiating with myself to more reasonable amount of TV watching...i'm TRACKING first...THEN seeing where it is mindless TV on time and THEN weaning myself from it...today, just because i am at least being more aware, when 1 of my normal shows wasn't on, i USUALLY would find a 'next best'...instead, i TURNED IT OFF and CONCENTRATED on what i was doing ... and it felt calmer in my house... emoticon

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BAYBELIEVER 9/13/2010 10:57PM

    Very insightful! I think this is something we all should learn, slowly, as we do Spark. It doesn't have to be overnight that we are suddenly perfect. Heck, we don't even ever have to be perfect! I had pizza on Sunday. It killed me. It is only the 2nd time I have had pizza since April 26th because once I had to track it once I didn't want to again. But I knew I would have it again. What bothers me about it was that I didn't have it because I REALLY wanted it this time, but because it was just easier. It was my choice, but the reasoning was not the reason I want to make those kind of choices, and that bothers me.

Good luck with your "just this one"-avoided smoke break. It won't be easy, but neither is losing weight. So, just missing one, once in a while, might make it a little more bearable!

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LINOVER 9/13/2010 10:06PM

    You can do it! Just take it one day at a time! Think of all the money you'll save by not buying cigarettes and what nice things you can buy with that money!! Just hang in there!! emoticon

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KIMMAS82 9/13/2010 4:24PM

    You can do it!! Quitting smoking is one of the hardest things a person can do!! Especially while you're trying to lose weight!! But you will love yourself for nothing more than you love yourself for quitting!! Someday you'll even wonder how the heck you ever did it to begin with!!

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 9/13/2010 3:53PM

    You can do it honey. One day at a time. One moment at a time. Once choice at a time.

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RAVENSONG37 9/13/2010 3:44PM

    WooHoo!! So smart. Geez, you are awesome!

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CHAOTICMOM4 9/13/2010 3:40PM

    Good for you, tackling this one step at a time. Quitting smoking was the hardest thing I've ever done. I found that when I wanted a cigarette or when I was fighting a symptom/craving, reading on line at Quitforgood.org or various other smoking cessation websites helped me cope and recognize that what I was experiencing was part of the process. Just like reading articles and blogs on Sparkpeople has helped me with my nutrition and fitness goals.
Good Luck!
Kathy
emoticon

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1BIGDREAM 9/13/2010 3:29PM

    You are soooooo right!

Here's how I quit smoking (somewhat similar, but a little different): I figured out how many cigs I was smoking a day, divided by the number of hours I was awake, which told me how frequently I was having a cig. Then I pushed it to 15 minutes longer. I would time between smokes, adding another 15 minutes each week. It took me like 3 months to totally quit. At the end, I went away for the weekend, completely out of my routine and normal environment, and went cold turkey. By that time, I was down to like 3 a day, so it wasn't that big a deal. That's what worked for me. I couldn't just quit all at once, had to do it nice and slow, but I did it! 6 years smoke free!

No matter what, good for you! Do it girl!
emoticon

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SUELICIOUS 9/13/2010 3:17PM

   
Lovely post!!

regards, Sue

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The Three F's of Goal Setting

Monday, September 13, 2010

When I think about my goals for the week or month, they tend to be centered around the three major "F" ideas.

emoticon Food
emoticon Fitness
emoticon Funds

So as I spent yesterday, last night, and this morning thinking about what goals I wanted to set for this week, these three made major appearances.

emoticon Food
I wasn't able to do any batch cooking this weekend. Let's face it, my weekend was pretty well packed, plus money is tight so cooking for the week seemed a little out of reach. Last night my mom solved a few problems by sending us home with some food from Ponderosa (my oldest son's choice for his third birthday event) so I have a couple baked potatoes, a chopped steak, and some grilled chicken for some lunches. I also have some salmon in the freezer, as well as some chicken that can be thawed out for meals. Add to that the peas and mushrooms I picked up at the market last week, and I'm pretty sure we'll have no problem making it through until payday (Wednesday). That being said, I'm starting my batch cooking plans for this weekend a little early. I spent most of the morning filtering through old blogs and writing down some meals the family loved that I had forgotten about. Later I'll trudge through the SparkRecipes I've saved and see what I've forgotten. With enough planning I hope to make it as cost-effective, and time-efficient as possible for me and the family.

emoticon Fitness
The plan is simple (*HAHA!*), I'd like to get back to my regular workouts, and that involves burning about 600-700 calories a day. With the right machines and classes, I can get this in easily. But also in my mind is the fact that I have new shoes headed my way. No clue when they'll be here, but when they come I hope to try another bout of C25K with fast walking and jogging segments intertwined within the program. Even if I can do this once a week to start, maybe eventually I can move up.

Other fitness things I'd like to focus on:
Planks and Push-ups
Crunches and other Core work
Boxing and Rowing (my two little fun things for myself)

emoticon Funds
This is a constant problem for us. I'm still looking for higher-paid jobs, both internally and externally, but nothing seems to be happening. I've floated the idea of giving plasma as well as the idea of taking on a third job on the weekends, neither of which sound at all appealing. I feel like I'm doing enough already...but sometimes we have to work harder than we think we should for what we want. And our needs are plentiful! Needs: a new home, a new car for me, eventually a new car for Hubs, living room furniture, new bedroom furniture for the boys, and clothes for me are constantly needed (because as much as I love losing weight, it sucks not having the money to update the wardrobe!).

I know you've heard me say it before, but the easiest way for me to get more money is to simply stop smoking. I'm working through the mental barriers and will let you know how it goes. I keep reminding myself that I'm a formerly 400-pound woman who has somehow managed to walk both a 5k and a 10k, to hike 5.5 hours, and to completely change her eating habits from crap to good for me food! There should be NOTHING I can't conquer. One day, one smoke break at a time...right? I just keep telling myself, "If you stop now, you can have 400 bucks saved by Christmas!" Just think of that! 400 bucks! It's stupid and rediculous to waste money on this horrible habit when I've made such great changes for my health. (For the record, I hate admitting this to all of you. Somehow it's okay for me to admit how fat I am or how much I eat when I binge, but this stupid habit makes me feel like scum...still ...there it is, for all - including and especially me - to see.)

Goals for Week 22:
emoticon Cut it out!
emoticon Burn 600-700 calories per day.
emoticon Do planks Mon-Wed-Fri with ST routine.
emoticon Do 100 crunches Mon-Wed-Fri with ST routine.
emoticon Save every penny possible!
emoticon Get at least 2 boxing/rowing sessions in.
emoticon Bring back morning Yoga.
emoticon Plan grocery list for weekend batch cooking.
emoticon Use healthy ad-libs until shopping can be done.
emoticon Eat fruits and veggies this week! Like a LOT!

Weight goal for next week: 353.8 (-2 pounds)
FYI - Seems the 355 wasn't a fluke as I saw it (355.4) today again. If I can transition right back into what I know I could have a very successful week. Just a little over 5 more pounds and I'll be under 350!!! So exciting! I'm already considering goals for post 349.9! (It will likely be to get under 330 so I can finally go up and try my MIL's new Wii Fit.)

I have to say that one thing that held me together during these rest days is that I'm starting to see a change in the people around me. Both of my in-laws have started exercising and seem to like talking to me about it! *lol* We discuss things they can do and the benefits to their health (they are both dealing with blood pressure problems right now). I also had a long talk last week with my boss about her inability to lose any more weight even though she workouts every single day. Her problem? No switching it up. That's right, boys and girls, my boss has hit a major plateau and never considered that a change in the routine might jumpstart her weight loss again. She walks on a treadmill and I told her to start by changing just the incline for a bit, work her way up. We'll see how it goes!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BETH7CAM 9/15/2010 10:53AM

    Good job getting your goals out there & holding yourself accountable!!

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RAVENSONG37 9/13/2010 2:56PM

    I know you can totally do this...all of this great stuff lady. And if you make at least some of it...it's progress right? Great goals Esther. Quitting smoking will be such a success for you!!

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SANDBBAR 9/13/2010 1:30PM

    I'd like to share my "quit smoking " story with you. I was about 2 1/2 months pregnant with my son (shouldn't have been smoking anyway, I know) It was January and I got the flu. About three days later it became pneumonia...first in one lung, then the other. I was so sick I couldn't smoke, but a couple weeks later I was walking across my kitchen and could hardly breathe...I thought to myself, this must be what it's like to have emphysema...and that thought, plus the fact that I shouldn't have been smoking anyway at the time...helped me to never go back. I like to say it was the silver lining in a big black cloud! Everything turned out okay with my son BTW, who is now 20 years old!
But...and this is the part I want you to consider...I told myself I would save the cost of a carton a week (then $20) and about four years later DH, DS, DD and I went to Disneyworld, and stayed at the Polynesian for a week on one of those all inclusive plans where meals are included and all...we had the best time! I see you have young children, so maybe something like this could be an incentive.


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BOGUSANNIE 9/13/2010 1:26PM

    Don't you find it awesome when you SPARK someone in your everyday life's life...? it's awesome to inspiring them!

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MNGIRLIE 9/13/2010 1:25PM

    Great blog post! Thanks for sharing.

So I'll throw my two cents in about the smoking. When I decided to quit I was at least a pack a day smoker. When I'd go out and drink with friends I could smoke up to almost 2 packs. I LOVED smoking. Seriously. I had said that more than once. After I had smoked for 10 years I decided to quit. A combination of Chantix and a book called "The Easy Way to Stop Smoking" by Allen Carr was the magical trick for me. The Chantix helped with the cravings and the book helped with the mental switch to being a non-smoker. When I read the reviews for the book I thought, "What a load of bull! A book isn't going to help me quit." But I decided to give it a try anyway. So here I am... 3 1/2 years later and not a single cigarette has touched my lips since I quit. I needed my inhaler all the time previously and now only use it when I get sick.

Ok I'm done with the smoking bit. Neither Chantix nor Carr paid me to write that.

I've been trying to get into batch cooking on the weekends. It'd be so much easier than trying to figure out what to eat daily. Also, when I work out in the evenings after work I get so lazy and don't feel like cooking. Batch cooking would solve that. I just need to give it a try.

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MAGPIE17 9/13/2010 1:09PM

    I think those are awesome goals. $$ is an issue for me too, especially for clothing that fits! I'm hoping to make some headway there ASAP!

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LEAN-N-LEXY 9/13/2010 12:22PM

    I hope the sparks around you keep your flame lit.

Food and funds is a big one for me too. We get paid once a month with our disability checks, but it's still a challenge to plan it all out.

Best of luck with kicking the smoking habit. It seems to me that now there are so many nicotine replacement gums, etc. that I hardly ever hear of quitting programs like what my dad went through when I was a kid (SmokEnders).

One of the first things the behavior change plan made him do was like Spark People: list your motivations. Then it was change brands, then it was change the habits associated with the smoking (can't smoke the usual places or times... ie if you're used to having the smoke right after dinner, wait 15 minutes).

Hah... I looked them up. They are still out there, but selling a self-help program as well as group thing like my dad did in the 70s. They have a form for finding out if they have a community seminar in your area too.

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Sunday Weigh-In - Week 22

Sunday, September 12, 2010

emoticon
Weigh-in Day

Starting Weight: 466.6
SP SW: 416.2
Last Week: 356.2
This Week: 355.8
Loss/Gain: -0.4
SP Total Loss: 60.4
Total Loss: 110.8

Quote of the Day:
“Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop.”

Ethan Quote of the Day:
When asked, "Why should Mommy eat healthy and exercise today?"
"Uhm...because you ate cake yesterday..."

Logan Quote of the Day:
When I asked Logan the same thing he said...
"To lose weight!" I asked, "But why today? Why don't I just do it tomorrow?"
Answer: "Because you've already lost weight! You ate cake yesterday and lost weight."
So I asked him why I can't just keep eating cake and lose weight and Ethan butted in,
"Cause it's fattening!"

*lol* It was a funny conversation. It was like the voices in my head but voiced between the three of us, and their thought was simple - there's no excuse I can come up with that will beat the "you'll lose weight" answer. They're right. They are.

Friday I went home and admitted to my husband that I used some of our savings to buy running shoes. He didn't put up much of a fight, just did a "hmph" kind of response. (MUCH better than what I expected.) I spent the rest of the night watching a nail-biting game between WVU and Marshall...a game WVU should have easily won but went in to too cocky and had to make it all up in the 4th quarter. I also baked cakes in between commercials and half-time. I did find out that Pillsbury now makes a sugar-free boxed cake mix (and it tastes wonderful!). I got to bed late after cake baking and frosting. I'll come back and post a pic of the Earth & Moon cake I made for my son. CRAZY! We had pizza for dinner because it was quick and cheap and already prepared. I'm not gonna lie, It tasted GREAT!! But I didn't feel so great the next day...

EDIT: I totally forgot, after I posted about my rest week on Friday, I walked to the farmer's market. It's not much of a workout anymore, but I had to go quick because I had short lunches last week. My body hated me and it reinforced my need for rest this weekend. Still, it was great to see all the fall stuff and I bought some WV-grown plums and 2 onions.



Then went inside to the whole foods market and restocked on granola, peas, and mushrooms and got a couple fig bars for the week.



Saturday we headed over to the park at 10:30am to grab a shelter for his party. I was completely bummed that only 2 kids out of the 24 invited actually showed up...but Logan had fun anyhow riding bikes with the two girls that did show up. His grandparents also came, and great-grandpa and they all seemed to enjoy themselves at the park. It was a nice day. Cool, no rain. Nice. We all sat around and ate veggies and fruit and then had some cake. I ate a small piece, with a tiny bit of chocolate (not sugar-free) and some of the yellow (sugar-free) cake. I tried to eat more but my stomach protested! Have NO CLUE how half the people at the party finished TWO WHOLE PIECES! (I probably would've done the same 5 months ago, though.) I ate a few chips for lunch while trying to prep for the party...I admit it. It was there, it was quick, and I was busy as heck. I did feed half of the small Doritos bag to the dog though. *lol* He had nacho cheese breath all afternoon and it cracked me up that I was sitting there sharing chips with the dog. After the party we rushed home for the OSU v. Miami game, which started off just as surprising as the WVU game. WTF, guys? Thankfully OSU pulled it out in the end and all was well. At halftime Hubs agreed to go out and get us something to eat...but I said "nevermind!" and had tuna sandwiches and vegetarian bean dip (with too much cheese! EEP!). Let's just say I ate halfway healthy (and much better than sending him out for Taco Bell or Pizza or McDonald's or something...) until I decided I should have another piece of cake. I couldn't eat all of it and didn't eat most of the frosting, but the damage was done. I don't feel so good today.




My body is trying to heal, but the more I rested the more ailments I noticed:
- my right thumb hurts. It's been hurting for weeks. No clue why.
- my right foot still hurts from the blister in early August at the 5k, which blistered in the new skin on the 10k even with the moleskin on it. It's getting better, though.
- my thighs were screaming, but they finally started feeling better yesterday.
- my hip is healing (finally!!). So far today no real complaints from it.
- there's a sore spot/bruise under my chin. WTF?
- my shoulder was hurting too on Friday...but it was feeling better yesterday.

The only exercise I did was prepping the cake (frosting a cake that big might've been the problem with the shoulder), decorating for the party, a small bike ride around the parking lot at the park (but Hubs' bike's seat hurts my hoo-hah!), a small jog back from the bathroom at the park (I wanted to know if my body liked jogging on grass better...it does), and about 70 crunches when I ended up on the floor of the living room for one of the games we watched (I got bored *lol*).

What I learned this rest weekend:
- No food I ate this week made my body feel good. I've felt like crap for 2 days and I'm totally done with that feeling! It's back to health foods as much as possible. I want my good tummy feeling back.
- It felt so good to just chill on the couch with the kitty and not feel overly guilty for not doing something. I was tired and worn out, and my body loved the rest.
- Skinny kids eat like skinny people. Overweight kids eat like me. Yeah, I learned that lesson and I'm gonna go back to eating like a skinny kid.
- Friend parties for my sons are overrated. I'd much rather save the $90 I spent on that party that 2 kids showed up to on the family. I kept thinking, "We could've taken a small trip or gone to the movies or gone hiking or something!" I think I'll be doing it differently next year.
- I still want to run. Yep, the desire is still there, and when my shoes get here I'm going to try them out...but I'm compromising with myself. C25k and C2F5k will combine. 1 jog segment, 1 fast walk segment, 1 jog segment, 1 fast walk segment. Let's try that and see if I still need to dial it back some.
- I miss my Sparkies! *lol* I stalked you all but I was so busy I wasn't able to really make the rounds and comment. I missed it.



Today is Ethan's game. I also get to see my Momma! YAY! She's coming down and wants to do lunch with Logan for his birthday after the game. I'm hoping Logan picks some place good where I can portion-control and not go crazy. I want to feel tummy-good on Monday morning! I also hope to get a small walk in later. If the weather holds out I'm thinking of taking the dog to the park and giving him some walk time. He's restless now that the weather is cooler and he really wants to go run around and play with us. But the other part of me is thinking SLEEP, SLEEP, SLEEP. We'll see what happens.

I'm also going to be thinking about my goals for this week. I know that I want to get back to the gym and really start working out...but I want to change my focus from fitness minutes to calories burned. I want to get the best bang for my buck from the machines. I can put 30 minutes in on the elliptical and burn a ton more calories than an 3 mile walk. I hope my shoes come soon so I can try them out, but if they take all week I'll just hold off on the C25k stuff until they get here.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAVENSONG37 9/13/2010 9:02AM

    Sounds like a decent weekend, love. :)

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THREEE 9/13/2010 2:12AM

    it sounds like you might be a little relieved that this birthday-filled week is over...

the earth and moon cake was fun--i bet your son enjoyed it...
emoticon emoticon emoticon

i admire your commitment to set weekly goals...that's ANOTHER of the habits i want to acquire emoticon

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MAMADWARF 9/13/2010 1:35AM

    damn you made me tired just reading about all the stuff you did. The cake was super cute! Your kitty looks exactly like one of ours, her name is Saki. Congrats on all your weight loss too, that is amazing!!

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ABETTERCHERYL 9/12/2010 10:37PM

    Mmmmmmm... cake. That cake turned out awesome but yeah, I agree with you, that $90 could have been spent on an awesome little day trip with the fam. I hate when I go to the trouble of throwing a party and then only a few people show... irratating. At least you tried though dear.

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BOGUSANNIE 9/12/2010 5:05PM

    great looking cake...you are very talented...I could never do something like that. You kitty looks just like one of ours...

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MAGPIE17 9/12/2010 4:30PM

    Sounds like your weekend went well, and you learned some good stuff! WTG Esther!

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Rest Week?

Friday, September 10, 2010

So this week has been crazy emotional for me. After walking that 10k on Sunday, then dealing with the lack of finisher medals for walkers for my son, and then my oldest son's birthday party, I've just been all over the place. This morning I came in ready to sit down and really set out my September training calendar full of workouts for the month, much like I did last month, and I kept having to put these big fat zeros on days this week for exercise. And the thought hit me that I'm going to have to look at this calendar all month, and this week's lack of motivation and progress are going to pull me down all month (and here I thought September was going to totally rock!)...and I decided that instead of having those big zeros staring me down all month, I was going to write one thing for this entire week - REST.

Sunday I attempted the Couch to 5k program and hurt my hip in the third running segment. It was demoralizing, especially considering how awfully bad I want to run and how boring just walking has become.

Monday I rested. I wasn't feeling it.
Tuesday was much the same.

Then Wednesday I found this fire in me. I did 3 workouts, one in the morning, one midday and one after work, and tacked on another try at that Couch to 5k program again...this time my hip hurt in all three running segments, and even though I took them very slow and made it through three of them, I was still feeling awful. I tried to just fast walk the rest of the running segments, but I felt like my program was mocking me everytime it told me to run and I couldn't. I finished a 20 minute workout (this was after a ride on the elliptical and some ST at the gym) but I didn't feel great about myself, about my workout, or about anything.

Yesterday I was sore. I was wrapped up in my son's birthday and while my eating was fine all day, by the time the kids went to bed I was starting to feel guilty about my lack of exercise minutes for the day and I ate not 1, not 2, but 3 hot dogs, 2 of them with bread. And that just made me even more sad and guilty. I also didn't sleep last night worrying about all the party plans, about what kind of cake I needed to make and when I was going to fit in cake making to my Friday plans because, unlike most weeks, I have to work on a Friday this week.

I was sitting here staring at that calendar trying to figure out how to figure it all in this morning. I'm still store in my legs and hip and I didn't want to attempt anything today as far as a big workout is concerned. Well, that's not true, I want to...badly...but the timing and the actual doing of it keeps getting groans from my body. I also got hit with some bad news that my best friend lost her grandmother yesterday and the viewing is tonight at 5pm and the funeral is tomorrow. Oh, and did I mention that there's a WVU game on tonight that hubs and Ethan are super excited to watch (and so am I dangit!). *sigh* There's too much to do and too little time and I'm stressing out completely.

So instead of pushing myself to the brink and making myself sick this week, I'm using this week as a rest period. Things come up that we don't expect, and while I try to be superwoman and supermom and do it all, sometimes I simply have to learn to say no. I'm still not sure if I can make it to the viewing tonight, but I texted my friend and let her know that I'm here for her if she needs me and apologized for not being able to come tomorrow to the funeral because of Logan's birthday party. She said it was alright and that her Sitti would actually want me to celebrate his birthday instead. (Even though I never met her grandmother, I know from all I've heard that she was a wonderful woman, full of joy and life, who would rather throw a party at her funeral than have people be sad.)

Today's schedule looks like this:
Work until 4:30pm
Possibly make an appearance at the viewing at 5pm
Get gas
Head to Wal-Mart to pick up cake supplies
Make cake while watching WVU game
Make signs and get favors together for the party tomorrow

Saturday is Logan's birthday party at 2pm, but I have to get to the park early in order to grab a pavilion and reserve it. Not sure if I'm going to be able to get Hubs to take some shifts at the shelter, so I may just be up there by myself with my laptop and a book for a few hours. Hubs' bike will be up there, so maybe I can get some bike riding in and learn what that feels like again...or maybe not. I have a ton of decorating to do and things to get ready for the party before the kids start arriving around 2pm. At 4pm his party officially ends and the rest of the night I still need to somehow get to the grocery store and start batch cooking for next week.

Sunday is Ethan's game and (perhaps) a lunch with my mom for Logan's birthday (since she can't be here tomorrow because she's in charge of a float in her town's Corn Festival Parade). The game starts at 1pm but we usually have to be there at least an hour early. I really hope their team can pull out a win this week. They're a good team but the past two weeks the other teams have just been better.

So my choices were to sit around feeling guilty about spending time doing things OTHER than exercising, or to simply give myself a blanket pass and not expect that from me for a few more days. On the upside, it should give my body time to heal, and should also give my shoes time to get here (I just ordered some Nike Pegasus +27 shoes online after researching a bunch, and a Nike strap thing and sensor to work with my iPhone's Nike + iPod app. (I can't wait for that! It's supposed to shuffle your music for you and all you have to do is pick your run/walk distance or time. I don't know everything about it, but at least I'll have all the gear I need to use it. Plus the strap can be used as a watch so no more having to use my iPhone to time me because that's getting tedious pulling it out of my bra to check the time! *lol*)

So here is my very own free pass to myself. I will not stress about workouts for the next 3 days. I will take care of the things in life that call for my attention. I will use any extra time to plan for next week. I will not worry about tracking that much, but will watch my portions and food choices. And I will not stress over what the scale says Sunday, even though I will still weigh in so I have a good judge for next week. Because the more and more I try to find motivation here on blogs and articles, the more clear one message came through -- this is not a sprint, it's a long distance marathon journey. Not every day is going to be stellar, but who cares? Your life is changing, so take the time to learn how to fit family and work obligations into your new life without giving into stress (and, thus, stress eating and ANTs - automatic negative thoughts). (BTW - I don't remember who came up with ANTs but it's awesome!)

So if the next 3 days you see blogs from me on life stuff and not healthy living stuff, understand that this is what important to me right now. This is where my focus has to be for the next three days. I'm not jumping off the bandwagon, I'm just riding on the side with my gaze in another direction. And if it happens that I don't get time to blog, just understand that I'm taking care of me and mine. I don't plan on staying away from Spark completely, because I'm hoping that this rest will only help to fuel my fire and reSpark what carried me through August with such success, but I wanted to give you all a heads-up at least. Because the truth is, what is healthy living without the living part? I'm not crash dieting, I'm building a new life for myself, and sometimes rest and reSparking is so important to keep the journey going. THAT'S the difference between everything I've done before and what I'm doing now here with all of you. I'm learning to live healthier while still living my own life.

Finally, thank you all for all of your support and encouragement, both in the past and much more recently. You have all been a tremendous help and support to me, from advice on things to do, to support to just keep going, the amount of positivity I get from all of you helps bury those ANTs every single day! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Upcoming possible blogs (a note to remind me what else is on my mind): Questions about Running and Running Stance/Posture, Sparking a Wildfire Around Me, Batch Food Blogs and/or Food Blogs, Spark-Member Organized Convention (see ~Indygirl's blog if you want to learn about this now), and The Problems with Goals and Rewards

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALLTHNGSPOSSBLE 9/10/2010 4:49PM

    Sounds like you are going to be busy. Enjoy it all and don't worry about taking a week off for yourself to rest. We all need rest times to recharge and recoup.

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KITHKINCAID 9/10/2010 2:48PM

    oh - p.s. do you have a crockpot? I can give you a ton of amazingly healthy and fast and cheap recipes that will feed the whole family for a couple of days - serious time saver so you aren't so stressed about prepping your meals.

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KITHKINCAID 9/10/2010 2:45PM

    I'm so glad you came to the decision to rest this week. Cause honestly, by the sounds of your weekend, you AREN'T going to be resting! I certainly can't exercise every day yet - I love my exercise days, but I also love my rest days. And when I'm on a rest day, I darn well REST! It hasn't reflected negatively at all in terms of the scale, and I actually think that my body is appreciating me more because of it. No reason to be hard on yourself for this, or feel like you're accountable to us to stay positive, perky and on track every single day. You wouldn't be human if you did!

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THREEE 9/10/2010 2:23PM

    you DO make me smile...
hey, before you berate or negate the party and other activities that you have participated in as lack of calorie-butning choices...i dare say, the 2-hour birthday party will mostly be standing and moving...more calories burned than sitting and vegetating in front of the tube...
and, you said it before i got to remind you...you are getting healthier to LIVE not just as a hobby...so, you must LIVE THAT LIFE...being busy is good...just minimize the stress because you don't want any of that protective fat finding its way to your body...
and, aren't you proud of yourself for talking yourself thru what you FIRST thought was going to drag you down this month?--rest week...and, it's true, it's a rest and recovery it sounds like...
WEIGH to go!!! you have developed what i think are some of the most important tools that SPARK encourages us to work on...keep at it emoticon emoticon

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RAVENSONG37 9/10/2010 2:16PM

    Rest is JUST as important as working hard...and recognizing the need for rest is the next step in your journey. Awesome job at focussing on what you need to do and what will make you happy! You are so freaking great.

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BOGUSANNIE 9/10/2010 2:02PM

    Gotta love that FIRE WITHIN!!!

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ATROTTIER 9/10/2010 1:14PM

    You are doing it right girl! Rest period right now sounds perfect for what you have going on and to at least say you will watch your portions is perfect when not exercising. It's a lifestyle and you are not giving up, but you are living in the NOW and that is precious for your children! Have fun this weekend, don't STRESS!! Easier said than done I'm sure! :)

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ERIN1128 9/10/2010 12:27PM

    Hey, it's about a healthy lifestyle, and that means the whole picture...good that you're keeping your priorities straight!

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KARVY09 9/10/2010 12:13PM

    OK, I started C25K at 275 lbs and it hurt at first. So I can imagine that at a higher weight, it's even tougher. So please please please please please don't be so hard on yourself, sweetie. Try doing speedwalking on the run intervals to start!

And enjoy your three days!!! You deserve them.

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NEWYORKORCHIDS 9/10/2010 12:13PM

  You know you're supposed to take a rest week every now and again, right? It does your body good, and you might even lose weight doing it.

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_TRIXIE_ 9/10/2010 12:08PM

    You are NOT here to entertain us (but you do a great job of it!). You are here to find and incorporate a new healthy lifestyle. Emphasis there on "LIFE."

Go out, enjoy the party. Enjoy the football games. Enjoy your weekend and DO NOT WORRY ABOUT FITNESS MINUTES! Really, there are so many more important things and it sounds like you are going to have a great time focusing on those this weekend.

All that being said, I am proud of you for having the inner strength to see you need to rest, recharge, and regroup. I hope you have a great weekend and we'll see you on the flip side. Mkay?

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CHICAT63 9/10/2010 12:01PM

    Hey you, resting is as important than training ! Your body/mind/soul needs to have at least one complete day of rest in a certain period even more important when nursing an injury. Hmm, even not working out this weekend you have lots on your plate so family is first, enjoy & have fun ! emoticon

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MAGPIE17 9/10/2010 11:50AM

    Enjoy your weekend, and come back next week refreshed(ish) and ready to own your workouts and eating! Woot!

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-SHIMMER-ANN- 9/10/2010 11:44AM

    Good for you!! That's so smart haha. Have a good weekend!

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_DASH_ 9/10/2010 11:33AM

    you are an inspiration, so truly, even when you feel like you are getting "big fat zeros" for exercising. quit-it.

you have such a deep and articulate understanding of LIFE. i love all these things youre doing and the fact that you recognize how busy, complex, motivated, exciting, dynamic you are. keep doing what you are doing - every thing is just one little piece of it - and all together you look pretty damn good my friend!

not too many people inspire me just by the mere fact that they are LIVING aka balancing all these life things. but you do. and it's because you're shining! hehe!


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40PLUSANDFIT 9/10/2010 11:33AM

    Rest weeks can be a good thing to jump start everything. When you get back to it.. and your hip still hurts, don't shy away from the elliptical. It's still keeping your cardiovascular in shape with less stress. Believe me, I kept a weight loss program going on in a boot on the elliptical because I couldn't run/walk in the boot. Let yourself heal. emoticon

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JESTERSTAR 9/10/2010 11:29AM

    Sounds to me like you absolutely need a "rest" week - though it doesn't sound much like resting really. You absolutely need to take the energy you have about working out and apply it to your son's birthday, and other family gatherings. They are worth it and you deserve to enjoy them! I'd take a boombox while you're babysitting the pavilion and dance it out as you're decorating and setting up for the party. Gets you in a good mood and have fun while moving!
I brought up the ANTs - but I got that from Dr. Amen who is a Psychologist who studies brains. I'm still reading his book but it's excellent! Change your Brain Change your Body.

Have a Maaahvoulous time this weekend!!

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FLWRCHLD97 9/10/2010 11:25AM

    emoticon what you said is so true, what is healthly living without the living part????

I hope you have a great weekend and that your son has a wonderful time at his party!

I am interested in the upcoming blogs about the batch food cooking (or just about food in general). This is something I can't wait to read because I've tried OAMC (once a month cooking) but can't seem to fit in THAT much cooking in one weekend (especially with working full time, taking care of the family, etc.). I would love to read how you have been able to schedule this with family and work, and what kinds of food you make... emoticon

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TIKI Challenge Endplate

Thursday, September 09, 2010

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~*~ TIKI CHALLENGE ENDPLATE! ~*~ (DUE SEPTEMBER 9)
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STARTING WEIGHT: 380.8
ENDING WEIGHT: 358.4
TOTAL LOSS/GAIN: -22.4

STARTING MEASUREMENTS:
waist: 53.25"
hips: 66.5"
thigh: 29.5"
calf: 23.25"
boobnage: 52"
upper arm: 19.5" (loose) 17.5" (tight)
back fat/abs: 55"
knee: 21"

ENDING MEASUREMENTS:
waist: 49.25"
hips: 62"
thigh: 26"
calf: 21.5"
boobnage: ack! left this at work
upper arm: 17" (loose) 16.5" (tight)
back fat/abs: ack! left this at work
knee: ack! left this at work

TOTAL INCHES LOST/GAINED: -21

STARTING BMI or HIP TO WAIST Ratio:
hip:waist= .8
BMI: 57.9 - pear, decreased risk of heart disease, diabetes

CURRENT BMI or HIP TO WAIST Ratio:
hip:waist= .79 -pear, decreased risk
BMI: 54.4


MY BEFORE/AFTER PICS WILL BE POSTED IN TEAM PHOTOS.


During the TIKI Challenge, my cardio was mostly focused on TRAINING FOR RACES and it worked well for me because IT KEPT ME TO A SCHEDULE. I feel that I improved MY ENDURANCE. I want to stick with it because SCHEDULES KEEP ME ON TRACK, but I also want to change it up because I DON'T WANT TO GET BORED. I feel that I have the ability to ANYTHING I PUT MY MIND TO now.


During the TIKI Challenge, my strength training was mostly focused on STARTING STRENGTH TRAINING and it worked well for me because MY ARMS ARE FINALLY SHRINKING, AS IS MY WAIST AND HIPS. I feel that I improved MY STRENGTH AND STAMINA. I want to stick with it up because I KNOW IT WORKS, IT MAKES ME FEEL POWERFUL AND STRONG, AND I JUST PLAIN LIKE IT. I feel that I have the ability to PLANKS!! now.


During the TIKI Challenge, my flexibility and rest work was mostly focused on LEARNING ABOUT ACTIVE REST, TAKING TIME FOR MYSELF AND NOT FEELING GUILTY, AND USING YOGA AS STRETCHING and it worked well for me because I AM MORE FLEXIBLE AND MY MIND IS BETTER ADJUSTED (MOST DAYS). I feel that I improved MY OVERALL FLEXIBILITY. I want to stick with it because I KNOW NOW THAT STRETCHING IS SUPER IMPORTANT AND REST SETTLES MY HEAD. I feel that I have the ability to MORE DIFFICULT YOGA MOVES now.


During the TIKI Challenge, my nutrition was mostly KEEPING WITHIN MY CALORIES, LEARNING GOOD FALL BACK FOODS, AND BATCH COOKING ON THE WEEKENDS. I feel that I improved on BATCH COOKING and could use some more work when it comes to BUDGETING AND STICKING TO MY CALORIE GOALS MORE CONSISTENTLY.


What I learned about myself in the last two months was I CAN DO MORE THAN I THOUGHT I COULD, BUT MY EMOTIONAL BAGGAGE FOLLOWS ME WHEREVER I GO. I NEED TO LEARN TO DEAL WITH IT AND SETTLE THE DEMONS.

I learned that when it comes to motivation, HELPING OTHERS OR TALKING OUT THE MESS IN MY HEAD REALLY HELPS BRING MY FOCUS BACK.

I learned that the best way to get myself moving is TO HAVE SOMETHING TO WORK TOWARD AND/OR TO JUST GET OFF MY ARSE AND DO IT.

I learned that I am STRONG.

I learned that I can MOVE OTHERS JUST BY BEING HONEST.

I knew all along that I COULD TACKLE WALKING LONGER DISTANCES and now I have proved it to myself.

My next big goal is LEARNING TO RUN OR GETTING TO A SEMI-COMFORTABLE 15-MINUTE MILE WALKING PACE.

In the next challenge, I need more focus placed on NUTRITION and would like to see EVERYONE LEARN (INCLUDING ME) TO FORGIVE OURSELVES AND MOVE ON.

What I am most proud of from my TIKI challenge is I STUCK WITH IT! (AND COMPLETED BOTH A 5K AND 10K RACE!!) and I can't wait to see what I am capable of doing next.

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And for all of you...my boy with his "official" medal from the race.

He wore it to school today and showed everyone. He also told them, "My mom complained so much that they sent me a medal! I'm the only one who got one!" *lol*

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEAN-N-LEXY 9/11/2010 10:52AM

    you rock! 22 lbs, great mom, all that!

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KITHKINCAID 9/10/2010 2:46PM

    I love that picture! You're such a great mom for doing that for him.

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BOGUSANNIE 9/10/2010 12:55PM

    Tell your Boss she's a saint for doing that!!! SWEET!!!

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FLWRCHLD97 9/10/2010 11:10AM

    emoticon

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BEATLES34 9/10/2010 6:01AM

    holy. moly. guacamole.
YOU ARE AWESOME.

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MAGPIE17 9/9/2010 9:46PM

    Holy cr@p, girl! 22.4 lbs?! 21"?! Way to go!! We are going to OWN the WTF!? challenge :D....and I love the pic at the end of your blog!

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THREEE 9/9/2010 9:10PM

    ANOTHER lovely blog--and the hits just keep coming...

i love how in 2 months you lost almost 4 inches on each of your measuring points...i need to take my measurements because that is an excellent way to see not just how much you've lost, but also how much you've TIGHTENED...you are doing GREAT...keep it up--and, please, keep blogging -- you might be surprised how many are benefiting from your blogs...even the few times you are 'woe-is-me'ing because you are real, not all roses always up but a real, believable fellow SPARKER...thank you for that emoticon

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JEREMY723 9/9/2010 8:37PM

    I'd like to know more about this challenge as well. Just curious, I don't want to join but I see it mentioned all the time.

I searched teams for Tiki and googled Tiki and came up empty both times.

Someone please clue me in. Thanks!

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MEGSFITNESS 9/9/2010 8:18PM

    Where did you find this challenge? It's awesome :)

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LINDA! 9/9/2010 8:17PM

    You are doing a great job!! emoticon

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