Thursday, August 04, 2011
It's been a good week. My weight has dropped a couple of pounds. For me, that's good. My weight has only been dropping about a half to one pound a week...and sometimes nothing. I've been tracking my deficit via the By The Numbers team and the Deficit Report. I had been averaging about a 500-calorie deficit...and yet my weight was not moving. So, I decided to up the deficit via more exercise. Now, I am shooting for a 1,000-calorie deficit/day. I can't go any lower on my eating...so increasing the exercise was the only way to get the higher deficit. I figure that, since the 500-calorie/day deficit was not making the weight move, SP figuring must be off a little for me...like maybe my body is more efficient than they anticipated.
So, I upped my exercise...and the scale began to move again...yay!
I'm loving my new hobby...beading. And here are some pics to share...
This is my desk. I converted the closet in my sewing room to be my beading area. It's nice to be able to keep everything together and have a nice place to sit and create. We took the doors off the closet and moved this little desk in there. I still need to hang my pictures and do more organizing. But, it's a start.
This is a pair of earrings that I made to go with my "spark" bracelet that I made...which is what got me started on the beading fun. But now, I consider all my bracelets that I'm making to be "spark" bracelets. I look at them throughout the day...and remember the journey that I am on...and plan activities and good eating to keep me moving forward.
I made this bracelet for July...Red, White, and Blue...celebrating our great country.
I made this blue set...earrings...bracelet...necklace. Thought it would be good to wear with my jeans during days off.
I made this pink set to wear with my scrubs at work...we currently have pink scrubs...and these are cute and fun to wear to brighten them uup a little bit.
I made this set last night. The big heart I picked up at the thrift store...it was actually a part of a keyring! No more. I really like it. It says...Live Laugh Love. I'm looking forward to wearing it today with my fitted Mickey T-shirt...it's a non-scrub day.
Hope you all are having a great week. Find something fun to do. Lose yourself and your cares in a great project. Last night, I used my "beading time" as a reward for getting my kitchen all cleaned up. It had gotten very cluttered. No more! And rather than promising myself a food reward or eating my way through the work...I put this "carrot" in front of my "nose." It was more fun...and didn't add fat to my thighs! And now I have this cute stuff to wear today! Woo hoo! Spark on!
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
I have been thinking the last few days about this journey. I have been trying to respond to everyone who encouraged me on my one-year Sparkversary blog. I had 303 responses...so that was a lot of "thank you's"...but I was glad to do it...everyone on here is SO NICE! I got a lot of responses that said I look younger...that was nice for a 48 year old to hear...we always love that.
There were some who congratulated me on my will power. That made me think about all of this. Is it will power? It doesn't feel like will power. SP is different from dieting. If I had been dieting for a year, then, yes, I would have been using will power to stick to it. To me, a diet has a lot of do's and don'ts and alloweds and non-alloweds. SP doesn't have that. They suggest drinking water, exercising, getting your sleep, and eating in a calorie range. And you shoot for those things for your own good. But it doesn't dictate do's and don'ts or alloweds and non-alloweds. So there is not the problem with deprivation that there is with dieting...so will power does not really come into play.
I was talking to DD about this yesterday...trying to find a way to put it into words. I know we commonly call it a lifestyle change...and I totally agree with that. But I was trying to think of a parallel that would explain it. I am still the same person...but different. I guess that it's like when we become anything else different in our lives. Like when we become a mother or a wife...etc. I am still me...but being a SparkPerson...I strive to drink my water, get my sleep, exercise, and eat in range everyday. And somehow, in doing this, it has totally changed my relationship with food...to a good, healthy relationship. I'm not eating food to cover things up, to deal with things, to try to find happiness. For all those things, new methods have been introduced as I've needed them.
I deal with things as they come up. I don't let a bunch of stuff build up. I seek activities that make me happy. And the biggest thing that has changed is that I let myself off the hook. Before, I would always push myself to do more more more. So many of us on here are that Type A personality. Me, too. But, now, I am only Type A to a point. Especially, in the evenings...if I am trying to make myself accomplish "one more thing" and start to crave food to get me through it...I question whether I really "have" to do that or not. Maybe it's just time to be done for the day and go to bed. 99% of the time, I don't do it, and I go to bed now.
So, my new SP lifestyle has me enjoying life...still being really productive...but not pushing myself beyond what I can do with a reasonable amount of "happiness." If the task is going to push me out of my "happy zone" and I feel a need for food to try to recapture my happiness during the task and "get through it"...then forget it. I'm not going there. I lived there for years and years and years. I was not happy...I am now! That was another comment that I saw repeatedly in my comments. So many people said that I look happier. They are right...I do look happier...because I am. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh...happiness...I like it!
I plan to resume C25K soon. I have had some leg issues for the past several days. I am seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. I had some swelling in the lower part of my right thigh that made it very tight and I could not do a complete bend in my leg due to the swelling and the bend caused pain due to compression. I've been icing it and started taking ibuprofen. After this morning's icing, it feels the best it has felt in several days. So, fingers crossed, the swelling is on its way out, and I can go back to training soon. I'm looking forward to it. I plan to ice my knees/thighs after training next time so that I hopefully don't get this again. It's been hard to get rid of. Prevention would definitely be a better option.
Hope you all are having a great week! Spark on!
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
So, I'm doing this new challenge on the By The Numbers team. It's the Jack LaLane challenge. I'm on a team of 3 people...me, Merle, and Karen. Together, we have to accumulate 4 hrs of exercise, then we get to pick a number between 1 and 40. I picked #9...since my Sparkversary is the 9th. Our challenge was...Jack said: Anything in life is possible and you can make it happen. Each team member must do something that you thought wasnt possible today. This could be doing something that you were afraid to do like ride a bike or complete an hour workout with Jillian Michael.
My thing was running. I've had a mental block against running for awhile now. When I think about running, I have my doubts that I "can" do it. So, this was my opportunity. If I was going to be honest about it...this was the thing that I thought wasn't possible. While I have aspired to be able to run...I truly had my doubts about it. So, with that in mind, I decided to start the C25K (Couch to 5K) today for this challenge.
C25K is a progressive training program that moves you from being a non-runner to being able to run for 30 minutes. Day 1's C25K program is to warm up for 5 minutes (walking)...then do 1 minute of running...then 1.5 minutes of walking...then 1 minute of running...then 1.5 minutes of walking...etc...where you end up running 8 times for 1 minute each...then a 5 minute walk cool down at the end. This is the treadmill version of Day 1.
I thought about this all day at work. By the time I got home, I was ready to tackle the Day 1 of C25K. I knew that, in the past, I had tried to start this program. I did Day 1 and it about "killed" me...I did it...but it was HARD...and I knew I could not do it. :( That was MANY pounds and months ago. Recently, when I went to give blood, they asked me if I was a runner. My pulse was low and my blood pressure was excellent...like a runner's. So, now, I knew my heart/lungs were ready.
I downloaded an app for my Android that has the treadmill version of C25K programmed in (if you're interested...it's available in the Android Marketplace (C25K)...I paid $1.99 for the pro version). I played with it a little bit to understand how it works...and I was ready with that. I got my shorts on...pulled my hair up...filled my water bottle...and headed downstairs to my treadmill. I turned on a fan that is over my treadmill (it's REALLY hot today)...and I was ready. I listened to music on my phone and let the app instruct me when to walk and when to run. It shows up visually on my phone screen as well...which is really nice...and it shows you where you're at as far as how many runs you've done of the 8...very nice.
I focused on my breathing. I tried to do breathing in for 4 steps and breathing out for 4 steps to keep things even. When I was running, I could start out that way, but then as the minute wore on, I would have to move to 3 steps for in and out...then 2 steps...then it would be time to walk again and I would work my way back up to the 4 steps...elongating my breathing. I think this made a BIG difference in accomplishing this task this time. Concentrating on my breathing and keeping things even and strong and deep kept me going and comfortable. Plus, having the app keep track of when I should change was really nice, because I didn't have to focus on the clock at all.
I DID IT! I made it through the whole workout...100% complete. I was so excited...and still am! I can run. It doesn't kill me. And I got that wonderful after-run high! Woo hoo! I recorded it on the thread for the challenge. And the other cool thing is...I knew I could have even done more! I had my supper and decided to do it again! I did Day 2 of the C25K program after supper! And during the second session, I was able to keep my breathing at the 4 steps pace both during walking and running...the whole way through! I'm so happy! I can run! My legs and butt are feeling it...in a good way! I'm so excited.
I know I'm babbling on. I just wanted to record this accomplishment for this day. I am SO thankful for SP! It's pushing me and encouraging me to try things that I am "afraid" of...and that I think I "cannot" do. Wow. I can! Now, I know that I will become a runner as I go through this program. And I will be able to do an ultimate running aerobic workout to further the condition of my cardiovascular system. I am so psyched about this. I know...you can't tell...right? Okay...stopping my babble now...Yaaaaaaaaaaaaay! Spark on!
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Well, I've ended up with an unexpected 4-day weekend! Pretty cool! My boss is going out of town for the weekend and not coming back until Tuesday. We didn't find out until the last minute, so I couldn't really plan to go anywhere. But, I am looking forward to the extra free time and hoping to get a lot of cleaning and organizing done at home. That would be SO nice.
Me and DD are giving blood tomorrow morning. I am going to work for a couple of hours before that...then should be free for the rest of the weekend.
We had a little scare with our big dog today. She was having problems urinating. She would "go" a little...then take a few steps...then "go"...then take a few steps...etc. I made a doctor's appt for her. While I was at work and DH was with her, she finally really went...and there was a pea-size stone in the middle of it. She passed a bladder stone! We were told that dogs form stones in their bladder rather than their kidney. So now she has some special food to eat. It will be a bit challenging...getting her to eat it and not having my pug eating it. Hmmm.
I am SO enjoying my new hobby of beading. It is SO much fun! I love finding new beads and "findings" for the bracelets and necklaces and earrings. And it is so much fun to figure out new ways to put them together and design them. Then, I get to wear them! More fun! I got a BIG jar of beads at the thrift store for $4! It was $8, but DH got a 1/2-off discount. And it was full of a WIDE variety of beads and clasps, etc...and it even had a jewelers tool in it! ...one that I did not have. So cool. Tonight, I discovered that our Walmart has a great selection of beads and findings and EXCELLENT prices...I got some on clearance....really good buys.
AND I found material for the next smock tops that I want to make for DD and me for work. She loves pink...and I love designs and peace signs...so this material was perfect. AND I got some peace signs that I want to make earrings out of and they came with a flower/peace sign medallion that I can make a necklace out of. They will go great with this new smock.
It's been a really good Spark week. My One-Year Sparkversary blog went "popular" and it's been really fun reading all the encouraging comments that were left. Wow! SP's are the best! I've done better with my freggies this week...and my water. And I'm doing better at getting my Y workouts in. So, things are headed in the right direction. Much as I'd love to stay up and spark and craft all night, I plan to get to bed at a decent hour and get my sleep, so I will be "healthy" and ready for my blood donation tomorrow. Hope you all are having a GREAT week! (One of my SP calendar tips this week was to start a hobby..."People who engage in captivating activities are more satisfied with life. Lose yourself (and your worries) by sewing, writing, cooking or dancing." I apparently have really taken this tip to heart! Love it!) Spark on!
Saturday, July 09, 2011
Here's me, today! (And a comparison picture of "old me.") I'm now at 176 lbs 67 lbs down...56 to go. And it's all due to SP...eating in range...tracking my food...and being more active! Lifestyle changes work!
It's my one-year Sparkversary. I am SO excited! I have a theory that...anything you can do for one day, you can do for two days...anything you can do for one week, you can do for two weeks...anything you can do for one month, you can do for two months...sooooo...anything you can do for one year, you can do for two years! Now, I have done SparkPeople for one year...and I'm ready for year two. I've been through every holiday, birthdays, anniversaries, major life changes, exciting times, distressing times, financial ups and downs, even a couple of weddings in the last year...and through it all, I have Sparked on. Now, I feel like I've done it before...and I can do it again with the upcoming year and events of that year...and lose my remaining 56 lbs.
I've lost 46 total inches. Here's the breakdown:
Neck Was 15 Now 13 (-2)
Waist Was 43 Now 34.5 (-8.5)
Hips Was 52.5 Now 44 (-8.5)
Upper Arm Was 15 Now 12.5 (-2.5x2)
Thigh Was 33 Now 24 (-9x2)
Calf Was 18 Now 16 (-2x2)
I've gone from wearing 2x and 3x tops to wearing size L...and from wearing size 22w/24w/2x/3x pants to wearing size 14/16/L. I've gone from weighing 243 lbs to weighing 176 lbs.
So, in looking back over the last year, what do I see? I see a woman who has transformed her body from 243 lbs...morbidly obese...to 176...overweight. I see a woman who has gone from wearing a size 3x...to a woman who is wearing a size L...14/16. I see a woman whose "junk in the trunk" has REALLY diminished. I see a woman who can fit easily in the bathtub and who can easily sit down into the bathtub and rise from the bathtub. I see a woman who can give herself a nice pedicure. I see a woman who embraces chances to move and walk and exhaust herself. I see a woman who helps with the yard work. I see a woman who is working to transform her house into her home. I see a woman who is finding a good balance between work and home. I see a woman who is managing to be alone in the world...without her parents. I see a woman who is making family a priority and giving to her husband and children...the best that she has. I see a woman who has cleaned out her closet of all her old/fat clothes. I see a woman who love clothes shopping again. I see a woman who enjoys sewing and beading and making jewelry and clothes. I see a woman who is willing to be open with her spark friends and encourage them and share her journey. I see a woman who has participated in 5K's (walking) with her daughter and her husband. I see a woman who has opted to change her desk at work to a standing desk so that she is not sitting for 8 hours a day. I see a woman who makes good choices at the grocery and brings home bags of groceries that fit easily within her eating budget. I see a woman who loves her dogs and takes excellent care of them and enjoys their company. I see a woman who is making the best of opposite schedules with her spouse...having lunch with him daily and spending all weekend with him. I see a woman who loves being a part of SparkPeople. I see a woman who is over halfway to goal. I see a woman who is ready for another year with SparkPeople...taking her closer to her final goal. I see a woman who is not afraid of chairs with side arms...she fits! I see a woman who loves going to the movies...she can fit in the theater seat and even has room to tuck her arms inside the seat, too. I see a woman who has found her place, her community, her friends at SP. I see a woman who is going to be a lifetime member of SP. I see a woman who is going to recommend SP to anyone who will listen or who asks. I see a woman who is happy and content. I see a woman who thinks she can do this...which is the "hardest" thing she's ever done...so she must be able to do anything. I see a woman who feels that the boundaries of life have been removed. I see myself...a new person...molded anew...mind renewed...spirit renewed...free to be all that I can be.
My goals for the coming year...
1. Lose the remaining 56 lbs (becoming a normal BMI!)
2. Become a water drinker (drinking 8 or more glasses of water a day)
3. Become a freggie eater (eating 4 or more servings per day)
4. Incorporate a new exercise routine that works with my schedule and that I can be consistent with that includes strength and cardio exercise
5. Complete the couch to 5K program and RUN a 5K.
6. Work on my swimming strokes and Join Masters Swimming
7. Begin bike riding and participate in a tri-athlon.
So, the plan for Year 2...continue to track everything 100%. Allow the diet cola's as desired. Pursue more water, freggies, and exercise. Reward myself for accomplishments in these and other areas. Be good to myself. Spark on...let the remaining weight drop off...it will happen...I have to stay on the SP train...it is headed to my destination. www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
Today, I am CELEBRATING! I stayed up until midnight to ring in the new year. I am going to go on a celebratory walk this afternoon. And I am going to do a full gym workout this morning...BECAUSE I CAN! I'm going to go to the movies...and fit in my seat with room to spare! And I am going to finish going through all my clothes and bag up the unwanteds/too big clothes and get them donated. Thanks to SP, I can do so many things. I can move, move, move, and enjoy my life! Life is good! I love SP! Sparkin' on!
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