CHEENY   5,639
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CHEENY's Recent Blog Entries

I joined a Weight Loss Competition!

Friday, October 17, 2014

I wrote a while ago about whether money and team competition could result in weight loss. Well, I'm about to find out!

I have a team of 5 people at work and we've joined a weight loss competition. The grand prize is $10,000. Second place is $5,000 and Third Place is $3,000.

The competition started today and runs through January 8.

We plan to use Sparkpeople as our "virtual meeting" place and the tools to count calories, exercise, etc.

I'll keep you posted on how we are doing, but it sure is going to keep us all on track through the upcoming holiday season!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PIXIE-LICIOUS 10/18/2014 8:11AM

    Good luck! emoticon emoticon

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LILSUZY1057 10/17/2014 8:19PM

    Ooooh, sounds exciting! My bet's on you!!!!!

emoticon Ready, set, go......

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NHES220 10/17/2014 4:07PM

    Wow, that is some real money! Good luck to you and your friends!

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MSHEL7 10/17/2014 3:43PM

    Sounds awesome, keep us posted.

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LUCYCAN7 10/17/2014 3:31PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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THANK YOU Sparkfriends

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Was very busy today and so didn't blog but I did read all of your comments to my blog yesterday and all I can say is THANK YOU! You are the best! Will blog tomorrow but you all made me feel much better!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LILSUZY1057 10/17/2014 8:20PM


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MEWHENRYSMAMA 10/16/2014 11:16PM

    Your welcome,
Have a great day tomorrow!

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People who don't struggle with their weight can be hurtful

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I had a pretty bad night last night. I called a family member to debrief on a wedding I attended two week-ends ago. About 8 months ago, I had told this family member that I planned to lose 50 lbs before the wedding. Well, of course, all of you know how that went. I didn't lose an ounce. And the dress I wanted to wear was tight.

BUT I went out and bought a gorgeous dress, matching shoes, got new jewelry, had my hair done really nicely, a mani and pedi too. I was disappointed I had not lost the weight I wanted but also thought I gone to great lengths to look great.

The conversation went like this:

Me: So have things settled down from the wedding?
FM: Oh, yea. But hey, I was meaning to ask you what happened to that 50 lbs you were supposed to lose (followed by laughing).

I didn't know what to say. I was hurt and surprised. And embarrassed. I felt like I did when I was 6 years old and the kids in school called me "fatso." Amazing how at my age I can still let people make me feel so bad about myself. I'm sure I'm not alone.

I love this family member and I'm sure he loves me too (no my husband didn't say it). I have no doubt he had no idea that what he said was so hurtful and how bad it made me feel about myself.

All I said was "yea, I know. That didn't happen but I'm starting again and working on it." His response was "No matter what I do I can't GAIN weight." And he is right. He is as skinny as a twig, which made the comment that much more awful.

People who do not struggle with their weight have no idea how those of us who do (and I have struggled with my weight all of my life) struggle every day. How difficult it is when we can't lose the weight or when we trip up or go on a binge or gain the weight back or hardly get the scale to budge after eating well and working out. And they can be cruel without realizing it. I guess I thought if anything, this family member would have not said anything and instead focused on the fact that I looked great at the wedding. Well, I thought I did until I realized he never even noticed.

I know we are not supposed to let these things define us. I know we are not supposed to let stuff like this make us feel bad for ourselves. Well, that's all well and good, but I think we all know how hard that really is.

So today I got up and tried to push the whole thing away and focus on the good things I've done for myself since I started over 2 and a half weeks ago. I'm going to try to focus on me, but I do have to tell you I really don't have any desire to go to any family dinners at this point for the holidays unless I've lost some significant weight by then.....


Thanks for listening friends. The great thing about Sparkpeople is I think we have all been there at one time or another and know how these things affect us. Nice to have people who do know the struggles.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LILSUZY1057 10/17/2014 8:36PM

    Yes, I have had those kind of comments made to me also and they are very hurtful. I haven't been to a class reunion (my 40th is next year) because I was the "skinny" one back then at 115 lbs and I am now the one weighing 256 pounds and that's after losing some. I am just sure all the fingers will be pointing at me behind my back saying "how could she let herself go like that?"

Unfortunately, this attitude has kept me from doing many enjoyable things in my life and that is one of the reasons I decided to start this journey. Mind you, the weight loss is only one of the reasons because I also want to get healthy too.

The thing is, I know that I cannot let other people's opinions control my life. I know, easier said than done, but the only thing I can do is to control my reaction to them. I also need to look and see where the comment might be coming from. You said this family member really cares about you. The comment may have been out of love and concern or without any thought at all. I agree that men don't always understand how women can be hurt by offhand comments like this. In my humble opinion, I think I would go to this family member and let them know how his comments made you feel and let him know that you would appreciate any support he could give you. I'm sure his understanding of being overweight is about like our understanding of how it is to be too thin.

I know you can do this. Do try to view this as an overall commitment to your health, not just weight loss. This is something else you can tell this family member when you are asking for encouragement.

Heads up, stand strong and know that all your Spark People friends are right here for you whenever you need us!

emoticon emoticon emoticon together!

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LUCYCAN7 10/16/2014 12:50PM

  emoticon with HOLLYM48 except our weight DOES NOT define
whom we are.The weight will come off the same way we put it on.It is
odd isn't people will sure notice when we gain weight but NOT when we
lose the weight!Just take it one day at a time one step at a time which is
the right way and the best for keeping it off in the long run.You will do it! emoticon

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TWESTEN1 10/16/2014 9:48AM

    Ah sweet girl - those words are like knives, just slicing through our soul. And what a shame that instead of focusing on you as the person- he had to mention weight. People can be so frickin' stupid.

Yes, it hurts like no other, but you are working on yourself and making changes. Just focus on that & let that be the balm that heals. You're going to get there - you've made a commitment and you will succeed.

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BUMBLEBEE-RN 10/16/2014 9:10AM

    Ack! Have you considered having a difficult conversation with this family member? Instead of being the "good little girl," be a strong woman! Tell him that his words were hurtful. It is possible he didn't think about the power of his words. You will feel better if you address this. And, your relative won't make this mistake again. Take your power back!

We are on a journey. We will become healthier. We will lose weight. We will become stronger. We're on our way!

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FRAN0426 10/16/2014 12:06AM

    Do this journey for you, nor everyone makes their goal the first try. People without weight to lose are insensitive as they really don't realize what those who do go through. Your family member may put some weight one one day and only then will he maybe realize haw tough it can be. Somehow though it seems like men can lose weight quicker than us women. Wishing you much success this time.

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COFFEYANGEL 10/15/2014 11:03PM

    I wish I could say I didn't understand exactly what you were saying, but I do. As you mentioned, we've all been there in one way or another. For what it's worth, whether you lose 1 pound, 10 pounds or no should go to those holiday family dinners w/ your held held high, knowing that you are doing everything you possibly can to get yourself on track to where you want to be. You have such a great attitude, & you offer so many of us kind words & encouragement. From personal perspective, especially when dealing w/ the males in my family...they truly are quite obtuse when it comes to grasping that their comments can cut to the quick. They'd say that kind of thing to a buddy & it likely would be out there, over & done after a bit of ribbing. Now, some guys do this too, but it's mostly us ladies who internalize & let comments beat us up. One can only hope he didn't mean it the way it sounded. But, even so, you do what you need to do for YOU. THAT'S who & what matters most. You're recommitted & you're making a wonderful effort. The chips will fall where they want to, in their own time. (Kind of ironic, coming from me, isn't it? LOL)
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/15/2014 11:04:04 PM

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MSHEL7 10/15/2014 10:31PM

    Wow, that was really awful. I don't think I would be speaking to that person for a while. For one thing, we don't need people around us who can hurt our efforts by derailing us with their insensitivity. I have several people who I just don't talk to much because they derail me. I'm sorry that you had to go through that. Totally understand, totally been there. You just keep working your goals and make it great!

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HOLLYM48 10/15/2014 8:32PM

    I am sure that comment was very hurtful but I hope it does not make you skip family gatherings and being with those that you love even if you don't lose weight. It is hard but you have to live each day and not let the weight define you. Hold your head high and know that you are trying your best each day. Eventually the weight will come off and you will look even more beautiful than you did before

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NHES220 10/15/2014 8:31PM

    People can be so insensitive. You would just love to record it and play it back to them and explain how it made you feel. Even then, I don't know if they would get it. Sorry you had to go through it. But you are strong! Hang in there!

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MEWHENRYSMAMA 10/15/2014 8:13PM

    Oh, I so understand! Have struggled with my weight my entire life...have had so
Many hurtful names and things said to me, too! But here is my take on some of it...
Things like that can make you feel bad, dig up the past and hurt! You can feel that as it is your reaction BUT... it is what you do with it from there that counts! You need to process it, understand where it belongs, and decide how you could deal with it next time! First, I would stop telling anyone what I planned to do...if I lose weight I will lose it...for myself, to feel better and be healthier! Others approval is not necessary because that is not why you are doing it! And give it up, as I found you are still subject to these opinions...such as them saying keep up the good work (in other need to lose more!) or even comments about your clothes are now to big, you look too thin, too gaunt, etc., etc. Let it go and do what is right for you! Next time tell your friend...I decided I was fine and dazzling just the way I was! I am not sure he understood you hurt think about weight so differently than woman...for him to be skinny has got to be a bummer for ABs, strong body, etc. So I wonder if he wasn't just understanding in a guy way....?
Hang in are not alone!
You can do this...for you!

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KBEAR9963 10/15/2014 8:06PM

    I completely understand. When I was young, I was called "beanpole" and "stickgirl" cuz I was tall and skinny as a rail. I ran into an old friend I hadn't seen in many years and got the same reaction you got. It was "oh my goodness, you're much fatter than I remember." Yeah, it cuts right through you. I learned to look at it this way: yes, I gained weight but I also gained a sensitivity toward other's feelings and compassion that I haven't gone through the same trials and tribulations as some so I'm not in a position to judge. You will lose your weight, in your time. I believe in you. emoticon

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Portion control tools help us refocus on how much to eat

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Last night I posted a blog about a wonderful dinner I made using the dinner meal plan provided in the SparkPeople nutritiontracker. I posted a picture and had a blog comment and several emails asking about the plate I used for my dinner. So I promised to blog today about my "portion control" tools at home...besides measuring cups and spoons, of course.

The Diet Plate is a tool I bought moons ago when I tried to lose weight--about 5 years or so ago. In all honesty, the center portion is the size of a regular small dinner plate (not the larger ones we use now). However, the inscription on the border is very motivating.

The neat thing, though, as you can see in the close-up is that it is marked and divided for portion control. So when I am in a hurry and/or don't want to measure everything out, I can use The Diet Plate to portion out my food. Some of the spaces overlap, which is actually good because when you have salad you can have more of it (and a larger marking is provided for it) than if you are having a potato. It even has a marking for cheese cubes for you to know how much is too much.

Today, they have a female version of the plate (which is the original one I have), a male version of the plate (a bit bigger plate with larger portions), and a children's plate.

They also have a Breakfast Bowl.

If you look closely you will see there are colored markings within the bowl. The first from the bottom is 1/4 c., then 1/2 c. etc. Again, an easy way to measure out your breakfast cereal or other foods without reaching for a measuring cup.

They have added a soup bowl and a dessert bowl as well, but I don't have those.

I'd suggest two places to go if you are interested. is the original site, but it is located in the UK (where the plate was invented). At first it will show you the cost in pounds, but when you put something in the basket, you select your country, and it will then show you the cost in US dollars for that item. As you continue searching, the cost will then continue to come up in US dollars.

This site offers packages such as a male plate, a female plate, and a children's plate together. Two male plates as a package. Two female plates as a package. etc.

Now, Amazon has single plates and bowls, and they are cheaper because you don't have to pay the shipping fees all the way from the UK. But they don't offer packages or the children's plate. They do have the male plate, the female plate, and the breakfast bowl. Just go to and search for "the diet plate female" or "the diet plate male" and they will come up.

I also love my MESU bowls. The 1/2 c. one was in the dishwasher. :--) Each bowl is marked on the inside with how much it holds--1/2 c. through 2 cups. Again, I love them because I can easily grab them and know immediately what portion I'm having. So if I want 1/2 c of vanilla yogurt, I grab the 1/2 c bowl, fill it, and eat from it. 1 c. of pasta? I grab the 1 cup bowl, etc.

I looked online because I bought these years ago as well and found out that they no longer make the porcelain ones. The owner of the company reformed the company, and now they are offered in plastic with lids in several colors and types. Very nice because you can use them for work and taking food with you using the lids. You can find them at

Hope this was helpful. I still measure almost all of what I eat, but when I'm in a rush or just don't want to go to the trouble or when it is easier to measure and eat out of the same bowl or on the same plate, then these tools are wonderful. There are other "portion control" options out there now too that weren't available years ago. Just do a google search for "portion control"

Charlene emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

COFFEYANGEL 10/15/2014 11:08PM

    Totally cool, thank you for sharing!

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MAMABEARANGIE 10/14/2014 10:50PM

    I love those! I'll have to put them on my wish list!

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MSHEL7 10/14/2014 8:38PM

    That is great, thank you for posting this, I'll for sure be looking in to them. Those measuring cup bowls are awesome, especially for that sweet evening treat.

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LUCYCAN7 10/14/2014 7:29PM


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KBEAR9963 10/14/2014 7:04PM

    I need a set of dishes like that. I use a dessert plate for my major meals so I can cut down on my portions. Great blog!

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CHANGING-TURTLE 10/14/2014 3:28PM

    Thank you I will look in to get ones for my hubby and me

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Look at what I had for dinner!

Monday, October 13, 2014

When I started Sparkpeople in earnest two weeks ago, I decided to give the menu plans a try so I could learn to eat healthily again. Plus, the system makes it so easy to swap meal items or entire meal plans.

Anyhow this was my meal plan for supper: 1 cup whole wheat spaghetti, 2 tbsps. cream cheese (I used light cream cheese) and 1 tbsp. grated parmesan---to make a low-cal alfredo sauce, 1/2 c spinach, 1/2 cup white beans. Instead of a dinner roll, I had some extra calories for the day so made myself a small salad, added a portabella mushroom to the spaghetti, and had some fresh strawberries for dessert.

Very easy. My meatless meal for the week. Delicious. And plenty to eat. In fact, I was full with half the food leftover so it went in the fridge.

Many times people get worked up over the portion sizes we are supposed to eat, but if you eat a healthy breakfast and lunch in the right portions, then the portion sizes for dinner are plenty! My problem before was I wouldn't eat breakfast or lunch. Then, I'd get home and for dinner weigh out 3 oz. of chicken and say, "Are you kidding???"

I think the real challenge for me is to re-learn how to eat again. In my twenties I ate 3 meals, exercised all the time. Then, as I got older my job got busier and more stressful, and I stopped putting me first. Well, now I am putting me first!

I have a healthy breakfast and lunch ready for tomorrow from my Sparkpeople meal plan and I'm sure dinner will be scrumptious!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MAMABEARANGIE 10/14/2014 12:27PM

    Hi Cheeny, thanks for telling me you can't see my Spark Page. My settings were set to friends only. I changed it. I would like to make NEW friends too! I'm new to SP. :)

I can't wait to see the plate and other tools you've used.

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NHES220 10/14/2014 10:38AM

    Good for you for making yourself a priority again! You really cannot take care of anyone else unless you are healthy enough to do it. That is what I came to realize. I have aging parents and inlaws and they need more help these days. I want to be able to do it, so I need to be physically able.

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PIXIE-LICIOUS 10/14/2014 8:38AM

    that looks good! emoticon

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TWESTEN1 10/14/2014 7:46AM

    It looks delicious & I'm so happy to read that you're putting you first! That is awesome, I'm glad you're taking care of yourself :)

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MSHEL7 10/14/2014 1:09AM

    Can't wait to see that plate blog, please include where you got it, or if you had it made special. That sounds really neat.

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CHEENY 10/13/2014 10:36PM

    Mamabearangie, the plate is great! You don't have a sparkpage so I can't respond on your page. It says around the edge. The Diet Plate...You can do it... Portion Control..Exercise daily...Diet with a Friend...Think lowfat.

What you don't see is that underneath the food, the plate is marked for portion control. Tomorrow I'll do a blog about it and a few other items that I bought that really help with portion control. I'll post pictures too.

Comment edited on: 10/13/2014 10:37:23 PM

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MSHEL7 10/13/2014 10:19PM

    Looks yummy, I have to say I just looked at your shared tracker just before you posted and wondered how you put all of that together for dinner. I might try the meal plan, it's worth a try and if it looks that good on the plate, then the palate will be happy.

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WINDYCITYCYNDEE 10/13/2014 10:12PM

    Looks yummy! emoticon

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MAMABEARANGIE 10/13/2014 10:08PM

    Looks great! Cute plate - what does it say all the way around?

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UKNOWITNOW 10/13/2014 10:07PM


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