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half way there

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I am committed to losing 50 pounds. As of several days ago, I reached my half-way mark. Coincidentally (or serendipitously, as I prefer to look at it) the same weight that brought me to the half-way point also officially brought me out of the "obese" category and into the less frightening "overweight" status. I am not spending too much energy celebrating my milestones because I do not want to become overly pleased with this, lest I be tempted to settle in here. Losing 50 pounds (as if I have to tell all of you) requires commitment and energy and determination. With this in mind, I have recently decided against pursuing other things that would require a lot out of me - running a Ragnar relay (200 miles split among 12 team members, requiring each runner to do three legs over approximately 30 hours, which means running one leg in the middle of the night and one on very little sleep). I am the captain of the team, which means a lot of time spent organizing runners, supplies, money, food, and logistics in general. I did this last year so at least I have some valuable experience to use this year. Last year I determined I wanted to run this year, not be on the sidelines. I set three goals for myself before I would allow myself to commit to being a runner: 1. lose 20 lbs (done) 2. run a 5k in 31 minutes so I knew I could do consistent 10 minutes miles (done) 3. recreate the race conditions by doing the equivalent of three 5-ks in a 30 hour time span (did not do). The first of my three trial runs went very well. The second is where I gained the clarity (which is often the best side-effect of running) to know it would not be prudent for me to commit to running in the race. I have a lot going on in my life, I am already struggling with fatigue and feeling overwhelmed, and, the deciding factor: the aforementioned commitment to losing the rest of this 50 lbs. I do not want to drain off my energy and dedication, already in short supply some days, to pursue a lesser goal at the expense of the greater goal. If it is meant to be, I can hand the captaining off to someone else next year, and just focus on being a runner. Shedding the burden of obesity and figuring out how to live at my "God-intended" size, has been at the forefront of my hopes and prayers for well over a decade. I need to do whatever it takes to see this through. I am very grateful to be half-way. When I began this journey in January of this year, I was coming off a period of increased depression and anxiety which made everything, especially losing weight and gaining some distance from binge-eating, seem hopeless. I feel so much better, I look better, and I move more easily. I don't get a lot of comments about the fact that I have lost weight, and it is a relief to me to realize I don't need a lot of comments (though I certainly enjoy those that I do receive). I still struggle with my disorderly eating, with my avoidance of things like making dinner and shopping for food, with eating too many processed foods, with over-eating at times, and on rare occasions, an outright binge. This is where I remember "progress, not perfection". I have a long way to go - this is an area of anxiety and deeply entrenched habits and I am getting better slowly. This is not the same journey as when I put down alcohol and cigarettes on the same day and have never relapsed. That was a miracle I am still grateful for on a daily basis. Improving my health via weight loss and better eating habits is a series of tiny miracles and incremental successes. I eat less poorly, I take in more nutrients, I consume less calories, and I put food in my mouth less often. As I venture in to the second half of the journey, I know I will need to find the willingness to make more changes. I am so appreciative of SParkfriends who are always willing to offer a suggestion, or encouragement, or share their own experience. I would not have come this far without you, and I cannot imagine going the rest of the way by myself. While I am responsible for all my choices and ultimately have to answer to myself, I don't operate well in isolation and I am very grateful I don't have to.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KELLYD1958 6/2/2011 8:05PM

    Hey Cannie! Happy Halfway point! So glad for you. This week took me to Harrisburg, glad to be back home for 10 days. My air force boy will be home Saturday for more than a week.
Keep up the great progress!

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ZOOKEEPERMAMA 6/1/2011 6:37PM

    Congratulations! How fantastic to be half way there! And also, good job in staying focused on the main goal. Next year, you'll kick that race's tail! =) You are a great supporter of mine, thank you for that. Keep your eyes on the prize! You can do it, chica!
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SUNRIZING 6/1/2011 12:05PM

    this is amazing and you should be sooo proud of yourself! Keep these wonderful changes, cherish the better you! You are worth it friend! This is a new better life! HUGS!

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RYDERB 6/1/2011 10:16AM

    Congratulations on reaching your halfway mark! emoticon and on firmly dedicating yourself to the next half of your journey. emoticon Being able to take pride in yourself for "progress, not perfection" is such an important step on this journey, and in life period. I've learned so much from your accomplishments and your struggles, and the graceful way you handle them. The honesty and deep insights that you have shared through your blogs, has often helped me put my own journey in perspective. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MARIOLATRY 5/31/2011 9:11PM

    You are so impressive to me! emoticon

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SUZWARNR 5/31/2011 6:40PM

    This is a journey and you will always learn and discover new things along the way. You can't change everything overnight. You are not expected to do a 180 and change everything about you all at once. When this happens, the changes don't stick because it's too much, too fast. Like what you're doing now, slowly introduce small changes until it starts to become a regular part of your routine. Resolve to say, eat one less processed meal a week, add a fruit or vegetable, etc. I've been out of control with snacking lately. So now, before I eat something I don't need, I pose the question, what would Keena do? (My trainer). I'm hoping this helps me. Try to figure out what might help you. Great job on getting to the half-way point. There are only much better things from this side. Congrats on what you've achieved so far!

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MAMADWARF 5/31/2011 5:53PM

    Ya know, Cannie. I found you a little later in your journey but I sure am glad I did. You are doing soo well and the best part? You know who you are. You know what it is gonna take for you. You are solid. You are commited. You are reasonable. You are gonna make it. LOVE IT!

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DOODIE59 5/31/2011 5:50PM

    Hi Carole
You've already had my "steps of the ladder" peptalk, but I forgot to mention that B vitamins are good for combating stress. The most useful form is the liquid drops under the tongue (sublingual).

I used to joke that food is the worst vice because you have to have it 3x a day ... can't just ban it from your life forever:) For that reason, it is important for all us Sparkers to truly adopt a new way of living. In the end, this is what you are striving for. It will be wonderful to lose the next 25 pounds but the real victory will occur when you put food in its place. Eat for energy, exercise for joy ('cause you're already fit), and sleep for rejuvenation:)

You are on your way. Imagine the freedom once you figure everything out! You will be living the life you were meant to live.

Be good to yourself --
Deirdre emoticon emoticon

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MRSSCHENCK 5/31/2011 3:53PM

    emoticon It must be an awesome feeling knowing that you are halfway to completing your goal.

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SBATES63 5/31/2011 3:22PM

    First of all you are so wise about the running. Committing to the race will take all the joy out of it. At least it does for me. Your attitude is wonderful. Keep it up and sooner rather than later you will be at the 3/4 way mark.

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MARTY728 5/31/2011 2:06PM

    Congratulations and keep going. You will get there!

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DAISY443 5/31/2011 1:53PM

    Half way is a wonderful place to be. The second half takes even more commitment than the first half, so stick with the plan and you will succeed! Congrats!

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three things

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Three things - this is the phrase I repeat to myself when I am overwhelmed and under-motivated. I blogged in the past about using timers, telling myself just clean for 10 minutes, or just run for 30 minutes, etc. "Three things" is what I tell myself so that I can get started in the first place. Today, one of the "three things" mantras I told myself: "get dressed, make the bed, eat something". I experienced a rough day yesterday, food and mood wise. I don't spend a lot of time figuring out the why of it all anymore - I spent/wasted too much time on that in the past. I shared with a Sparkler friend I am now spending more energy on the "GET OVER IT AND GET ON WITH IT!" part. So, getting on with it means just that. Get off the couch, shut off the t.v., log on to Spark to blog and track my food, eat something nutritious, go exercise, run errands, return phones calls. The opposite of getting on with it is being overly concerned with taking my emotional temperature, not eating anything today because I overate yesterday, not going near SP because I don't want to face up, or 'fess up. I can turn my attention to others rather than just thinking about myself. The fact is I am very tired, for a variety of reasons, so I am not feeling productive, or energetic or motivated. The nice thing about committing, whether it be to losing 50 lbs, or being married, or raising children, is that feelings are not the main driver. I need to step back and take a look at the bigger picture, rather than focusing on one bad day. If the bad days begin to add up, I will need to reassess. Overall, however, I have made good changes over the past months that I have been committed to SP. I will never approach perfection in my eating habits, or any of my habits. I have always been a struggler so there are few things I do that are smooth or easy. Even if I am struggling, I can struggle forward so that I can gain some momentum. For today, for now, I will focus on the next three things: exercise, errands, and eating nutritiously afterwards. I don't feel like doing any of these things, but I am committed so that will drive me to do these three things, and then three more, in the hopes of re-gaining some energy and momentum to move forward a little more quickly. For now, I will just move forward.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REBELBLITZ 6/9/2011 9:53AM

    I like the "3 things" approach. I am going to start working on that idea. Thanks! emoticon

Cheryl

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MRSSCHENCK 5/31/2011 4:07PM

    Awesome blog! I'm definitely going to try my own 3 things phrase. I just got up and turned off the tv. That's one. I'm going to go get myself a glass of water. I haven't had one glass ALL day. That's two. And when the sun goes down, I'm going to meditate in my garden while tending to the weeds. That's three.

Thanks.

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MAMADWARF 5/28/2011 9:28AM

    Makes perfect sense. Thanks for talking about that today. When things are overwhelming, we need to SIMPLIFY!

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ZOOKEEPERMAMA 5/27/2011 3:21PM

    Thanks for this post. I really needed this today. I'm straddling the limits of "Screw it" town and "I can do this" ville. Just three little steps in the right direction will get me off the border at least...

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KACYBEE15 5/27/2011 11:10AM

    This sounds like an excellent plan. I have found that I'm a lot more at ease when I repeat the phrase "Life only comes at you one second at a time" to myself. It reminds me that I can handle anything for one second, and it's never coming at me faster than that.

I really like your "three things" mantra. I may have to borrow that!!

Hope you have a wonderful and productive day!

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ON2GOALS 5/27/2011 11:01AM

    Thanks for sharing this - oh, I am such an over-analyzer too... Here's to more DOING instead.... "I'm over it! Urban Dictionary definition: The indication that a negative event (aka a bad day) is no longer bothersome to someone."
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DAISY443 5/27/2011 7:50AM

    You mentioned "perfect". Not possible, not a goal to strive for, and not rational! You are certainly approaching Spark and life in a wonderful and realistic way. Way to go!

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RYDERB 5/26/2011 11:30PM

    Love your 3 things. I'm going to use them! Maybe it's just something in the air these last couple of days. Everyone I know is feeling angry or emotional. I'm both! emoticon No idea why. Luckily, I've used that anger to fuel my workouts. Hang in there!

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DOODIE59 5/26/2011 10:56PM

    Hi Carole,
I'm struggling myself so I'm right where you are. To go along with your "three things" strategy -- I write them down, because the act of scratching them off the list when done is very motivating. You know to keep going ... because ... what IS the alternative? Sometimes that's what it's all about ... Just Keeping Going:) A new day will come and you'll be ready for it. Just hang in!

You're in my thoughts:) --
Deirdre

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JENNSWIMS 5/26/2011 9:51PM

    I love your three things philosophy. Awesome. I think I could really put this to work.

I'm sorry that you are having such a challenging time, but you seem to be handling it with grace and courage!

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STORMYZCAT 5/26/2011 8:33PM

    None of us are perfect so we can not expect perfection from ourselves. I haven't met anyone yet on this earth that can walk on water! Now you just make 3 more little goals for tomorrow and see how that makes you feel. Make them goals you KNOW you can achieve. Girl one day at a time sometimes means starting with one hour at a time. I restarted this week based on advise someone sparked me....minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day. I now have day 4 under my belt and it is slowly building my confidence. I have to say the support I have received from SP is amazing. Even though I do not personally know any of these Spark Friends, somehow it means so much to know they care enough to share words of encouragement and support.
Reflect on how far you've come...we will all be there to support you at the finish line and hydrate you along the way! emoticon emoticon

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TWO-TOO-MUCH 5/26/2011 8:31PM

    Oh, I so understand what you mean about spending so much time trying to figure out the "why's" when it really doesn't matter -- one just needs to carry on. My last blog post touched on this very thing and I've come to accept that this is likely the way my entire weight loss journey is going to go...get off track, get on track. Repeat as necessary. Or as Nike says, "Just do it." Hugs!

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JITZUROE 5/26/2011 5:37PM

    It looks to me like you are focusing well on the "E's" today from your blog. YAAAAAAY!
Proud of you. It could be so much worse, like, the M&M's.... Right?
Keep it up! You certainly make a lot of our days shine! emoticon

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DEBRA0818 5/26/2011 5:10PM

    I'm sorry you're coming out of a struggling phase -- just more proof that "no matter how far down the road you are, you're always the same distance from the ditch," (a famous OA phrase). I like the way you approach this kind of distress; it seems very kind to yourself. I am also a struggler and a stagger around a lot too, sometimes in the wrong direction, but I, like you, have committed to this and feelings are not the main driver. I feel them, I acknowledge them and I do what I need to do ... anyway.

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fight or flight

Monday, May 23, 2011

I recently had an encounter at an end-of-year picnic that my youngest son and I attended to mark the end (yippee) of one of his sports. There were a number of families there that I had never met because this is a sport (rugby) that has a number of teams of all different age groups. We had no sooner arrived than I practically bumped into a man who was screaming obscenities in the face of his young son, who looked to be about 11 years old. My own 7 y.o. happily ran off to play with some teammates and was oblivious to the ugly encounter, but I stood frozen for a second, shocked at what I was witnessing. The father was a burly guy with a shaved head and a beard - he had a menacing look but that could have been because he was enraged. Most people look a bit intimidating (and, honestly, often foolish) when they are engulfed in anger. The child's crime? He was not participating in a skills drill. I will be the first to admit, I get frustrated with my children on a daily basis. I have sworn around my children. I have spoken to them harshly, and thusly, have apologized many times when I have let my temper and impatience get the better of me. I have great empathy for parents who are having a bad day with their kids and I have reminded myself, at times, when I am tempted to judge someone for speaking harshly to a a child, "I have no idea what they have been going through". This was beyond frustration. This was bullying, plain and simple. I very quietly, so the child, whose back was to me, would not hear, said to the father "please stop that". He immediately turned on me, which enabled his son to make a quick getaway which was the whole point of me butting into the tirade. He screamed at me to mind my own business (a valid point) to which I reminded him that it became my business when it occurred inches from me. It isn't as if I broke down their door (though, if I had heard what he was screaming coming from behind closed doors, it would have been tempting to do something, anything - it was awful). He told me "I say whatever I want" to which I replied "well, clearly, you do" and, as you can tell, this was not a confrontation that would turn into a useful conversation, and so, it ended - him glaring at me, me glaring back - but no more words exchanged. Believe me, it occurs to me that he may have then taken it out on his wife (who was there but showed no sign of responding) or the son, but I have no control over that and bullies count on people remaining too fearful to act. I pray it never goes beyond screaming, and that they seek help, especially for the children so they know that it is not normal be treated like that. I have no idea what others' were thinking, or observing. For that one awful moment it was just he and I and, for a split second I braced myself for a blow because he was furious and I was now the object of his fury and I was within striking distance. I escaped an abusive marriage when I was a teenager. It was long ago, long forgiven, and taught me many useful lessons, once I had some safe distance. It was interesting to me that such a long forgotten response would come roaring back inside my body. He knew, though, that hitting me would be an instant "do not pass go, proceed straight to jail" card for him. Not too much time passed (with us at opposite ends of the picnic grounds) that I was in front of the buffet table. I chose spinach salad, no chips, no brats, and three tiny desserts. I was aware, when I was eating those petite little sugar-bombs, that I was taking them in much like, many years ago, I would inhale deeply from a cigarette, or take a pull off a bottle of liquor. They offered momentary pleasure, and then, minutes later, I felt like Dorothy in the poppy field on her way to OZ - I was so tired, I just wanted to lie down and sleep. I spoke to a friend later in the day, about what had gone on earlier. She (who is far smarter and better educated than I) said "oh, of course - you had a fight or flight response, and when the body has an acute episode of this the liver dumps glucose and goes looking for more, so the sugar is exactly what your body and brain were searching for". Well, hello, you just described much of my life, especially the past few years. I have had a lot of "fight or flight" for reasons I won't go into here (though I have touched on some of it in previous blogs). My liver has been on a glucose dumping mission for many years and I have accomodated it by being a very accomplished glucose replenisher. This was a lightbulb moment for me. I had known this to some degree, but the incident yesterday put it in stark relief. In order to truly overhaul my eating habits, and restore my body to it's God-intended size, I have to be diligent about examining and treating stressors, both small and large. This has never been more obvious to me. I have some tools that are very useful - prayer, exercise, reading, more exercise, friends, Sparkfriends, blogging, tv (a great diversion if not overused), family (when they aren't providing me new sources of stress, that is). However, I am always looking for new suggestions and willing to learn lessons from my wise Sparklers: what is your most helpful tool for reducing stress? Please share it with me - I will be grateful to lean on your experience and wisdom. Bless you.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KACYBEE15 5/25/2011 1:09PM

    Wow! Thank you for stepping in and sparing that poor child from his verbal thrashing. It makes me sad to think that he will probably continue this pattern with his kids, and it makes me even more sad to think that his father probably endured the same thing. What a tragic cycle!

I, too, think I am a glucose dumper/replenisher. I've noticed a pattern after my husband and I have arguments: I am ravenously hungry after the vast majority of them. The reason for this probably varies; I'm sure that sometimes I'm eating out of spite (especially if the argument involves my weight), but I experienced this very reaction after we resolved an argument last night. I felt a lot better about the fight that occurred a few days ago, but I then felt like I was starving (despite the fact that I had eaten a generous dinner). Perhaps your friend is right - I will keep this in mind the next time I have a reaction like this!!

Great blog! Thanks for sharing your story!! Hope you have a wonderful day!
~ Kayli

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TK421BETH 5/24/2011 6:10PM

    Cannie! Wow-that took a lot, confronting that dude. You have to remember to be careful, though...there are a lot of crazy people out there! Then again, you weren't alone.

I'm proud of you with your food choices at the buffet table. Keep up the good work! emoticon

I eat when I'm: stressed, happy, sad, excited, etc... LoL!

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STORMYZCAT 5/24/2011 5:55PM

    GOOD for you for intervening in this mans tirade on his child. Physical wounds heal much faster than the emotional abuse he was dishing out. Emotional abuse is something he very well may be trying to overcome his whole life. I am non confrontational by nature but can not stand to see a child abused in any manner. Unfortunately it is impossible to have a constructive dialogue with this type of individual.
Wish I could say I have a useful mechanism for dealing with stress....eating hasn't worked so well for me! emoticon

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ON2GOALS 5/24/2011 2:44PM

    THANK YOU for speaking up! emoticon
This kind of child abuse just kills me. I know you well enough to know you would not be able to NOT say something in the face of something like this. (Ok that was not a great sentence but you know what I mean.) Very good insight from your friend re: the Fight or Flight response! Some of my favorite relaxation go-to's are relaxing music, scented candles (not food scents though, for obvious reasons) and playing with the dog. Oh, and the ocean! That's number one, though I don't get to see it often enough.


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ZOOKEEPERMAMA 5/24/2011 10:32AM

    It has always amazed me to see these Dads at sporting events. Normally level-headed individuals totally losing their sh*t over a "bad" call or perceived imperfection by their kids. I'm glad you spoke up. I don't think I'd have the guts. As far as stress relief goes, sunny days are great for me. I love to sit outside and smell the grass and listen to the trees. That gets rid of about a year's worth of stress for me. We don't get enough of those out here... *sigh*

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JITZUROE 5/23/2011 10:16PM

    You really put yourself out there, and I am sure that will be keeping this dad awake and/or give him a HUGE reality check (let's hope!). I'll bet you anything that his wife is thankful for your actions as well. Maybe she can pull some strength from you. I am sure she knew where your heart was.
You're my hero!

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JAMJOJAM 5/23/2011 8:53PM

    The father was being verbally abusive to his child and when you spoke up, you were that small child's champion. Bravo. emoticon

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KSFITNESS1 5/23/2011 7:42PM

  Your response to that father was so magnificent! You are very brave! As a teacher, I take my hat off to you for standing up to him and giving the child a chance to get away from his tirade. Believe me, the little ones remember when people do such actions for them...I hear about stories like that at work from the children and it makes a positive impact. I applaud you and your courage! I never thought about the body's fight or flight reponses like that...makes sense and worth keeping in mind with stress. As far as stress relief goes, I am such a radio channel surfer, esp. on my way to and from work. Also, set up a little safe "haven" for yourself at home. I have a recliner chair, from it I can see a little decorative table upon which I rotate my favorite decoration--stained glass vases, angle figurines, candles, etc. I also have an end table next to the recliner with scented candles etc. and scrapbooks handy of fun family events. Hate to admit it, but I can see the TV from there also. (reality tv destresses) I top it off with a certain favorite blanet that is incredibly soft! It's all sensory comforting--the rest to the room may have load of laundry, need to be vacuumed etc. but I have a little haven that is peaceful!Good luck!

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PANDARAECASH 5/23/2011 7:39PM

    That totally explains why I am always craving sugary foods!! I am constantly in fight or flight mode at work! I am an auditor and the managers don't like being told that they are doing things wrong so there are usually always arguments of some sort (or they are just plain annoying and driving me insane). Figuring out a different way to deal with this stress on my body sounds like something I need to work on...

You're the best!!

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SUZWARNR 5/23/2011 6:11PM

    Wow, that poor little boy. So glad you were able to divert the attention from him, at least for a little while. What a brave thing for you to do. I'm glad he did not get violent in the physical sense (be safe!). It's interesting what you said about the liver/glucose thing. I will have to keep this in mind the next time I am stressed out. I never thought one way or the other how food plays into this. As far as stress relief, I think this varies greatly from person to person. Maybe make a list of the things that calms you down and relaxes you? Then you can refer to this anytime instead of trying to think of something on the spot.

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DAISY443 5/23/2011 5:28PM

    Stress relief??? Being retired, having a feisty little dog, single, my children safely miles away so that visits are relaxing, let me count the ways! BUT I honestly believe that I created stress in my life for the adrenaline rush it gave me in the past. Now the things that stress me are, for the most part, inept customer service people on the phone! I admire that you took the part of the bullied child. I don't believe I could have been so brave. How sad that that child will probably grow up to bully his children. And on it goes!

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RYDERB 5/23/2011 5:08PM

    I'm so proud of you for speaking up! How many other people, just ignored what that man was doing? Crazy! I would have butt in too, but I would not have done with as much grace as you did. I wish I had a trick to dealing with stress. Sadly, I'm still searching. Pulling a blanket over my head and screaming really hasn't done much good. emoticon

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when you fall out, step back in

Saturday, May 21, 2011

I just returned from a yoga class. The instructor reminds us, at different times during the class, especially when he sees some of us struggling to hold a pose, "if you fall out, step back in". Not, "you obviously can't do this so why are you even trying?" Not, "well, you've fallen out, you may as well just stay out and feel badly about yourself for awhile". Nor does he mean, "you have fallen out, so why don't you just leave and stay out?". What he says, and what he infers, is that we have struggled, and it is understandable, so regroup and, right now, resume the effort. I fell out, yesterday, food-wise. I was out of balance, and I stumbled, and basically did the equivalent of falling on my face. Did I stay on the floor, in shame? Did I slink away, embarrassed? No. I faced the facts. I was out of balance because I went to bed at 11pm and got up at 5:30 am - simple math reveals this is not enough sleep. I ran in the morning for nearly an hour, and hiked in the afternoon for over an hour. This amount of exercise requires a certain amount of fuel. I ate an okay breakfast, a tiny lunch, no dinner, and a WHOLE lot of calories in the evening. This is not a balanced way to eat. Among other random bits and bites, I ate 3 slices of banana bread, and two bowls of Cheerios. I logged all my food because not logging it would have been silly - who would I be fooling? 3 slices of banana bread with one pat of butter between them, and two bowls of Cheerios (cups - I did measure) + milk equals about 1000 calories, which is about the amount over my SP calorie range. I do not do "cash register" food vs. exercise, but I suppose that is probably what I burned, or close to, but I do not exercise to lose weight. My body does not lose weight because of exercise, though it seems to slow dow weight gain. I exercise to be stronger and gain a host of other health benefits. In any event, I was simply out of balance and my balance had been listing for days. I felt so strong after getting through a day of acute emotional distress (see previous blog) that I let my guard down a bit and found myself having a cookie here, a brownie there. This is not a disaster, just a signal to slow down and pay attention. Focusing and paying attention, slowing down and following directions, quieting the internal chatter and outward distractions, trusting my strength and choosing a focal point - these are all things I find challenging both in yoga, and life in general, especially on this journey to better health and healthier habits. I got through the hour of yoga, returning again and again despite falling out of poses, having to remind myself to breathe, struggling with some of the movements, and the endless "yap yap yap yap" of my doubting mind. I fell out on my Sparkplan, and I stepped back in. I went to bed at reasonable hour last night, and stayed in bed a bit longer than normal so that I could repay some of my sleep debt. I sought out time with my husband because he has been working for so many hours that I missed him. I fixed myself a breakfast heavy on protein, and despite any number of obstacles (kids, dog, chores etc etc) I stole an hour and a half and went to yoga to focus on strength, and breathing, and, well, focus. I also hydrated and was not patting myself on the back for that because during the downward facing dog poses I was practically sniffing around for a fire hydrant. So, my next big SParkgoal is meeting my "half-way to 50 lbs shed" mark, but it remains just out of reach. It is not personal, it is not a sign to give up, it is just reality. I fell out, I have stepped right back in. emoticon emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KSFITNESS1 5/23/2011 7:54PM

  Great blog! so encouraging! such good points! Your ability to step back in so quickly and realize why the fall out is impressive. Good luck!

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MRSSCHENCK 5/23/2011 6:49AM

    Great blog!

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KELLYD1958 5/23/2011 4:43AM

    Interesting blog. Good job recognizing triggers and for measuring!
For me a week of travel made it very difficult at times to eat - let alone eat well! I got stranded in Cincinnati Wednesday (trust me - there are worse places to be stranded than the Marriott!) and I ended up flying on 4 out of 5 days. Then the food in first class (upgrades, love 'em) was mostly gluten/sugar-ful. So one day I'd get 1200, the next 1700.
So Saturday I just felt hungry (and not very energetic!) I ate more often and allowed my calories to go over 1900. It actually felt pretty good - you know - listening to my body and enjoying the food.
You know what? We can do this!
Go get 'em Spark Sister!

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JAMJOJAM 5/22/2011 10:48PM

    Great analogy. Good for you for getting right back to your Spark program. I am so glad that we always have Spark People right here and ready for us any time. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ON2GOALS 5/22/2011 7:50PM

    Wonderful blog - so important that we don't allow the negative talk inside our head to take us down when we've fallen out for whatever reason. Love the fire hydrant reference - did you make it to the end of class or did you need to take a quick break?
emoticon

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CRYSMYS 5/22/2011 2:53PM

    Well said.

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TK421BETH 5/22/2011 12:08PM

    Hey, i know how you feel. I totally lost my Spark, but got it back this last Tuesday...I found my Mojo!

I too went over my calories yesterday...but you know what? I did that five mile walk, and my body needed that extra food. No candy, no fast food...but I didn't feel guilty.

Today is another day, Cannie! We can do this-we GOT this, girl! You keep it up! And kudos to you for sleeping well last night and together we can have a wonderful Sunday!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/22/2011 12:08:21 PM

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SBATES63 5/22/2011 7:46AM

    I will keep trying to step back in as quickly as possible when I do fall out. Sounds like you are getting a handle on that stinking thinking our brains insist on.

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JITZUROE 5/21/2011 9:06PM

    hoorah for you nabbing some extra Z's, extra face time with your other 1/2, and practically being able to give yourself a pedicure while scratching your ears with your polished toesies at Yoga!
I can hear your calmed Om exhale from here - back on track!

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DAISY443 5/21/2011 5:35PM

    We all fall out sometimes, but the step back in thing is a great solution. Thanks!

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GRANDMAMAOF3 5/21/2011 4:01PM

    I fall in and out so much I feel like a yoyo sometimes, but I keep trying, as we all do. We find our strength together, knowing we are all trying and doing the best we can at that time...and stepping back in is the key to success.
Good luck to you!

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SUZWARNR 5/21/2011 3:41PM

    Good job with stepping back in. It can be tough sometimes. My snacking has been too much lately and I need to get that back in control. I've been stuck inside the house all day and that never helps. The thing about this journey with weight loss is that there's always going to be ups and downs. It's not always easy. But you can appreciate the hard work and effort you put in to get past the roadblocks. You will succeed. I have no doubt about that.

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MAMADWARF 5/21/2011 3:30PM

    awesome! you are very smart to notice the triggers and get back on track.. good job!!

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FREEDAWN 5/21/2011 3:13PM

    Thanks for the blog. Good for you. And a wonderful reminder for me. We are going to fall out, but we always have the choice to step back in. I ate cookies and ice cream last night, and feeling not okay with it. But you hit the nail on the head. What good will beating myself up do. TODAY I have the opportunity to step back in. Or not. My choice. You have helped me make a good one.

Thanks. Dawn

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ZOOKEEPERMAMA 5/21/2011 2:57PM

    Very nice post! A great reminder to take a deep breath and grit your teeth and forge ahead! I also do the same thing with my food diary. Sigh, and write it down anyway. Though occasionally, the entry reads "Horrible, terrible, very high calorie day" (like when I've been eating airplane food and living off the kindness of strangers during travel) usually, I am honest and try to calculate my calories as closely as I can. It can be annoying, but I have learned without fail, I need some sort of accountability. Otherwise, I end up justifying food I don't need. Thanks again!

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heartache, Spark-style

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I recently blogged about a heartache I was suffering, which was more acute on this particular day. I received comments from Sparklers filled with wisdom, compassion, encouragement, suggestions, and kindness. I received Sparkmail, and Sparkgoodies, and notes on my Sparkpage. All these Sparks came together to warm my heart on a day that I truly needed some warmth. I am a recovering binge eater, especially sugar. On that painful day I ate NO sugar - none. There was candy in my house yet none of it entered my body. I did not zone out in front of the t.v. in an attempt to divert my attention from my life. I did not skip my workout, or take to my bed. I wept but, as a wise Sparkler pointed out, tears release stress hormones so they are a healthy release. I ate a few small meals - I ate for fuel that painful day, not for numbness or in a misguided attempt to find comfort.

I had a painful conversation with my husband when he arrived home, since I felt his absence that day and could have used some support from him. He admitted that, because he did not know what to do in the face of my pain, he did nothing. He does not like feeling powerless, and because he cannot fix the situation that is causing me so much distress, he incorrectly feels that he has nothing to offer, so he offers nothing. I have once again reminded him, and he does now seem to understand, that I just need acknowledgement of my sadness, and a kind gesture. My best friend was also unavailable for most of that day, and, because of how sad and vulnerable I was, I did not want to reach out to too many people until I had had a chance to work through the rawest of my emotions. Sparkfriends really came through for me and helped me to get through most of the worst of the pain. The day ended with joy, when I received news that my beautiful grandson was born, and that he and his mother were well. Joy and sorrow truly do co-exist.

The next day, while still sad, I was feeling more hopeful. My husband apologized again for his insensitivity (his word) and I assured him that I am coping. I am not in my bed with a bottle of pills or booze, I am not eating myself into a sugar-stupor, I am showing up for my life - this IS me coping, I told him. "You can cry while you do the dishes." I learned this when I got sober many years ago and I have always remembered it. Sadness does not stop life - it just slows it down, makes everything more tender. My best friend, and other friends, showed up for me, happy about the birth of a beautiful boy, but ever mindful of the circumstances. I was so tired the next day, despite sleeping a number of hours, and I realized it was emotional exhaustion. But, I just kept putting one foot in front of the other because life goes on. Everyone carries some degree of heartache at some point. I was able to carry mine, on a day it weighed particularly heavy on me, because I had a lot of help. My faith carried some of the weight for me, my children and other members of my family showed up in the evening to lift some of the weight off of me, but, on that lonely day when I was by myself in a house full of sadness and sugar, it was my Sparkfriends who reached out their arms and lifted me up. I will never forget - you are all far sweeter than sugar, and your kind words were the loveliest of distractions for my aching heart. Bless you all. Cannie aka Carole aka Grandma Cha-Cha emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JENNSWIMS 5/21/2011 9:04AM

    Wow.

You are an amazing woman! The inner strength... wow!

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KELLYD1958 5/21/2011 7:06AM

    Good Morning - home from a week full of travel and glad to see you're bloggin' through...
You sound HEALTHY. High fives all around.
Had my first hot flash Thursday - couldn't figure out how I got hot so quick and sweating buckets. Duh!
Love your new pic, you look Welsh!

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RYDERB 5/20/2011 8:21PM

    I love your new profile pic! emoticon Your smile, is as vibrant and your eyes are as kind, as your wonderful words. emoticon I'm so glad you've made it through such a happy & sad time, with your sense of self still intact! You're amazing, and I'm lucky to have you as a SP friend, on the crazy journey! emoticon

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MAMADWARF 5/19/2011 8:44PM

    good job, carole.....im proud of you. I really am.


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CANNIE50 5/19/2011 8:25PM

    Cannie's note: I hope I did not alarm anyone by the "bottle of pills" reference. I was not referring to suicide, just temporary "vacation by medication" which is just not something I can risk. Sorry, I knew what I meant but when I read this over again while reading your wonderful comments, it occurred to me I could have worded it a bit better.

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THISYEARSMODEL 5/19/2011 4:35PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JITZUROE 5/19/2011 12:55PM

    This was a huge hurdle that you climbed and clawed and flung yourself over. Not easy, very painful, and left you raw and exposed.

You not only uncovered feelings, but did not fall into the trap of old coping mechanisms, and stuck to what you've re-learned.

I'm so proud of you.
Big virtual squeezes from me to you!
Bren


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SBATES63 5/19/2011 12:42PM

    Congratulations on a new grandson. I am very inspired by your words. This is truly a wonderful community.

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ON2GOALS 5/19/2011 12:23PM

    Sigh! Now I am tearing up again, thinking of you going through all this. Yes, this an amazing community here. So proud of you for not looking for the easy escape, but taking the high road instead.
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KACYBEE15 5/19/2011 11:30AM

    First of all, congrats on the healthy new grandson! How wonderful! Now...

... I can't help but feel that the subtitle of this blog should be "VICTORY!!!".

You encountered sadness, processed it, and dealt with it in a constructive manner. Challenge encountered, Challenge conquered!

VICTORY!



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LKEITHO 5/19/2011 10:50AM

    Glad you got the support you needed, and that you were so strong in the face of your issues!

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DOODIE59 5/19/2011 8:49AM

    I'm glad you made it through the day intact, and without succumbing to the numbing comfort of sugar. We're all lucky to have the support of the Spark community. One day at a time ...

BTW, I agree w something someone else here said: Your blog sounded more about joy than sadness, so maybe you're working things out slowly but surely:)

Here's hoping each day is a little easier:)
Deirdre

Comment edited on: 5/19/2011 8:50:01 AM

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SUNRIZING 5/19/2011 8:06AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STANBUSH 5/19/2011 7:32AM

    This is the first blog I've ever read by you... but it won't be the last. This is really great stuff here. I read more about joy here than heartache. Thanks for sharing this. It is what Sparks is about IMHO.

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DEBRA0818 5/19/2011 7:10AM

    Congratulations on the arrival of Jude. I was glad to hear you received the support you were looking for and that you were able to manage yourself in the face of great stress. That is quite an accomplishment well worth feelings of pride.

emoticon emoticon

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SUZWARNR 5/19/2011 7:02AM

    I'm so sorry you're going through a difficult time. I'm glad you weren't totally alone though. This community is so great for support, comfort and encouragement. You can always find someone around when you need them. I hope you start to feel better soon. Congrats on that wonderful grandson. I hope you get to meet him soon.

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DAISY443 5/19/2011 4:29AM

    Spark is an amazing community! I am so glad your virtual and real world have reached out to you and given you some ease! Hugs!

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TK421BETH 5/19/2011 12:28AM

    I feel horrible, because I have not read any of your blogs in SO LONG! Forgive me??? emoticon

I feel the same way you do...put one foot in front of the other...that is SO true!!

Together we can do it!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TWO-TOO-MUCH 5/18/2011 11:49PM

    Congratulations on your shiny new grandson! My Sparkling friends have helped me through more than one dark day and I'm so pleased you've found the same comfort. I hope your tomorrows look much brighter. :)
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Comment edited on: 5/18/2011 11:49:24 PM

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VENISEW1 5/18/2011 11:35PM

    emoticonon the birth of your grandchild! emoticonto hear you are going through a difficult time emoticon

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