DDOORN   238,963
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Losing My Spark!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Lately, despite all my success, I feel like I've run out of steam. My Spark has been flickering for reasons I can't quite pinpoint. As many of you know, I would REALLY like to break into ONE-ville someday, but lately I just haven't been able to muster the food intake control nor the exercise UPtake control to accomplish this. And the plateau continues. As does my whining...

I know my trouble spots...not getting enough sleep, which handicaps my energy levels...but mostly I just can't seem to muster whatever it takes to bump up my workouts and kick down my food intake...I know late night eating is sometimes the culprit, but just don't seem care enough to do something about it. My schedule of work has been more demanding ("crazy / busy"!) than usual and I really "feel" it by the time Friday roles around!

I'm even getting a bit bored with my treadmill routine and my 'mill has been my best buddy throughout the past 19 months since I've joined SparkPeople! I have been varying my speed from 4.0 to 5.0 on faster songs, sometimes 6.0 for a bit. My incline is always set @ 9. I TRY to get on my 'mill every day first thing in the morning, but lately have been missing some days. My sessions are 35-50 mins. depending on my time available.

This summer I LOVED jumping into the wonderful world of biking longer distances to nearby towns for round trips of 20-25 miles. But now we are in the "dark" months and biking will be very hit or miss. And I'm missing it BIGTIME! I have a plan to check out cross-country skiing if and when we ever get enough snow here in southern upstate New York!

I'm just not ready for the long nights, short days of fall / winter...more than a dash of SAD going down here...! The blahs are running rampant!

Any ideas out there...? I'm getting tired of my own whining...lol!


ps...I have to admit also, that success makes it tough to come clean when troubles crop up! Even if I KNOW that's what we're all here for...! :-)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OUTDOORGIRL70 11/9/2008 7:01PM

    Don... I know you won't give up. You are a survivor. You have always told me to not give up.

You have the power to do it.

God Bless

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MOV4WARD 11/9/2008 1:30PM

    i've been at this every day now since 1/1/06, and i know what you mean. i tend to lose internal motivation every 6 - 8 weeks or so and get a case of the i don't wannas. what has worked for me, is to keep making a daily commitment mentally and just focusing on basic minimum things, doing the best i can each meal, snack, chance to fit in alternative exercise, or even choosing a day or 2 of rest. and usually as i keep walking, the enthusiasm and motivation will well up from deep down inside again and it becomes easier again, and i can whistle while i work again (so to speak ;)

hopefully yours will return sooner, than later :)

in the meantime, be gentle with yourself, but keep your new, healthy you a daily priority :)

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BXLIBRA 11/9/2008 11:50AM

    thanks for the comment on my blog....Just don't give up and keep going (i should heed (sp?) my own words right hahaha) but yeah don't give up...as for the treadmill...I just started HIIT maybe you could look into that, its actually kick my butt on the treadmill...I just started changing it up cause i was getting a little bored of the same ol' treadmill routine

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DDOORN 11/9/2008 8:27AM

    You know...I KNOW all of the steps I could take to ramp myself up again and sometimes I catch myself beginning to attempt to rev myself up with pep talk, but it's always so half-hearted and I lose steam so quickly. I keep hoping I'll find a figurative stick of dynamite to blow up beneath me to get me going again...even knowing that is "waiting for Santa Claus" thinking...which the bad-old-self used all the time!


Comment edited on: 11/9/2008 8:24:42 AM

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ZELLAZM 11/9/2008 7:58AM

    Check out itrain.com. They have canned workouts you can download for the treadmill that can really help you change up your routine. I think you can do a package deal, or maybe even a subscription. As for me, I've just bought a couple of "a la carte" workouts.

Keep Sparking, Don!

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    Gotta agree, sleep is a big problem and will effect mood and energy levels in a big way, I exercise a lot while watching television at night, and do wall pushups when I go to the bathroom.

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TRAINOF4 11/8/2008 9:44PM

    Well, I have to say, as you probably already know, sleep is the biggest factor affecting your mood & everything else. There has been a lot of research done that shows that people who don't sleep well (not enough hours or very broken sleep) are heavier than people who get a decent night's sleep every night.

Wish I could do something to help! At least know that I've got a shoulder to lean on - I have strong shoulders BTW.

Thanks for your comment at my blog as well, I'm very happy to feel more energized & focused! I'll send those positive vibes your way, OK!? emoticon

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CRIT524 11/8/2008 9:43PM

    can you afford to add an elliptical or stationary bike? Maybe then you can mix it up. obviously your capable of sticking with the machines since you have had the treadmill so long (and used it). I am with you on the darkness. I just started my antidepressant again because of SAD. HOpe you get back in the groove soon. In the meantime force yourself to stay in gear!!

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Niagara Falls, CA / Letchworth State Park, NY

Saturday, October 25, 2008

My wife and I had a mini-vacation (Tues through Thurs.) to Niagara Falls and took a stupendous detour on our way home through Letchworth State Park, our own New York State waterfall wonder!

Unfortunately the wind was knocked from my sails the first day as I had come down with some weird fever and probable infection of some sort which made some of my hair follicles very tender and left a sore, quarter-sized lump on the back of my neck near the base of the skull. I just zoned out, slept a lot and bounced back on Weds. No cardio for me on Tues. tho! I enjoyed using the hotel's Star-Trac Edge for an hour on Weds. & Thurs.

Saw the doc yesterday and he believes this lump was a lymph node, put me on antibiotic and today it appears to have gone away entirely...go figure!

Needless to say, my one day of fever and listlessness did little to detract from our good times out and about!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRAINOF4 11/8/2008 9:46PM

    I have a great photo taken at Niagara Falls. The Canada side has a beautiful park... I went there once in the fall - lots of roses & beautiful maple trees. I had a great time, it is very pretty.

I will have to remember the State Park tho, in case I'm up that way some time. I love being outside!

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    Niagra Falls is so beautiful! At least as I remember, I have not been there since I was a little girl! Sorry you were not feeling better to enjoy it!

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MOV4WARD 10/27/2008 3:09PM

    go figure! sorry u were under the weather on your special trip, rotten luck. but am so glad u r feeling better!

have been enjoying your gorgeous pics! someday, we'd like to see Niagra, it just seems spectacular!

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DDOORN 10/25/2008 10:19PM

    The Star-Trac Edge is a variation of elliptical, although without the handles for upper body. I found the stride worked for me much better than some ellipticals...very smooth and effortless, yet jacked my HR up like any other elliptical!

Here's a review @ Epinions:


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ANDALEX 10/25/2008 9:40PM

    mmm, gorgeous! i'm glad you were feeling well enough to get out and see those sights. that's a truly beautiful area of the country.

what's a star-trac edge? sounds hi tech and exciting!

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Another Year Younger...!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Yesterday was my 52nd birthday and a great way I've found to celebrate which I've been doing over the past couple of years has been to complete ALL the questions at


Last year I was growing younger by scoring 49.5 years as my "REAL" age.

This year I grew another year younger by scoring 48.4!

Woo hoo! Thank you SparkPeople and all the WONDERFUL support from everyone who has made this such a super place to grow YOUNGER! :-)


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANGELNOOK 10/21/2008 9:55AM

  emoticonYou keep getting younger and younger! That's great!


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ANDALEX 10/17/2008 3:14PM

    happy "un"birthday! that's awesome!

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MOV4WARD 10/17/2008 1:44PM

    that's a gr8 trend! emoticon
emoticonHappy Birthday!

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KARITIGER 10/17/2008 12:56PM

    Wow! That is inspiring and awesome! Amazing weight loss.. and the pictures to prove it! Nice Job!!!

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ZELLAZM 10/17/2008 12:47PM

    Congratulations and a belated happy birthday --- at this rate, you'll be a teenager again in no time! Blessings, Michelle

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Freewheelin' Skinny Santa!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Got out for the bike ride I've been yearning for! Had my bright red t-shirt on for visibility and a pair of biking gloves which my sister gave me for my upcoming birthday. Thing is, they're bright kelly green as they are Michigan State University (my alma mater) gloves with a big "M" on them. Couldn't help but feel like I was celebrating the season a little early... :-)

What a most glorious, stupendous day it was! Glad I had those gloves on as it was pretty chilly as I rode through the lifting fog. Funny I didn't mind the cold wearing a t-shirt and shorts, but my fingers could definitely feel that cold!

Riding my bike through the fog lifting to reveal such a wondrous array of colors across the hillsides...surely this must be the peak of the fall foliage colors! In time I could see the clear expanse of blue skies unmarked by a single cloud and the sun shining over it all like a maestro orchestrating this perfect symphony on which my senses feasted!

I dared to challenge myself right away to the huge hill nearby my home, probably less than a mile away. It has stopped me from heading southward into the Binghamton area, which is much more bicycle-friendly with wide biking lanes on the side of the road.

I've attempted before a number of times, humbled each time, being forced to get off the bike and walk up to the top.

But not today! Made it to the very top and beyond without getting off the bike! Woo Hoo! What a feeling as I soared down the other side! Each time I have a victory of this sort it feels like I "own" the road in a whole new way! My heart was pounding and I was huffing and puffing like I had never done before...!

After a bit I pulled over to a bench where I called my DW to announce my victory and savored the sun beaming down.

I wanted to cruise forever today! After all, most of the area south of that hill is relatively flat. I breezed through Otsiningo Park, then headed downtown for a bit, crossing over the Washington St. bridge and finding another sunny bench to take a water break and call a few friends and chat for a bit.

On my return trip I headed up Front St., stopping at Starbucks for my Venti Bold Flavor of the Day, sipping outdoors in the sun. just savoring the moment and the splendid view of the surrounding brilliant hills aglow with the colors of fall.

Now, since I'd already succeeded in biking up this hill once, I told myself that I really didn't HAVE to tackle it one more time on my return trip. However, as I biked up much further than I ever thought I would after being on the road from 9 am till it was approaching 1 pm. My excitement over possibly succeeding yet one more time pushed me further than I should and I zigged where I should have zagged and went off the relatively narrow shoulder, which had a couple inch drop...just enough to tumble me off my bike onto my knee and came to rest on my butt, humbled yet once again...lol! It was just a scrape, had my tissue in my pocket to sop up the blood some and got back on to walk up the rest of the way and the thrill of the ride down the other side on to my home.

All in all this day was just stupendous!

Hope everyone is finding their SPARK during these beautiful autumn days!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOV4WARD 10/13/2008 4:08PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon quite a milestone there! Sounds like a glorious day! Bet you'll take that hill both ways, sooner than later :)

emoticonu makes me want a bike for Christmas! lol ;)

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ANDALEX 10/13/2008 12:37PM

    what a great post! i almost feel the wind blowing past my face just from reading it. thanks! congrats on making it up that big hill....next thing you know, you're going to cruise up it without even realizing it's there. great work!!

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ZELLAZM 10/13/2008 12:19PM

    WTG - sounds like a great day all around! Michelle

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No Matter What: I'm Gonna Get Out and RIDE!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Although I have been crazy / busy with:

my 60 hour work week,

no water in our house for 3 days,

mastering the art of shampooing, scrubbing up and rinsing with only a half gallon of water... :-) ,

a well that appears to be drying up (I believe our area is experiencing a never-mentioned drought...we live only hundreds of yards from the Chenango River! I am becoming HIGHLY concerned about our local / global water resources! For a frightening glimpse into the coming water crisis I HIGHLY recommend folks see this new documentary: Flow, For Love of Water www.flowthefilm.com/ "Water is the sleeping giant issue of the 21st Century and we all need to wake up about it. FLOW opens our eyes about the greatest threat of our time - the global water crisis. It is a compelling and passionate film. Its engaging narrative will grip the viewer."
Robert Redford),

arranging for a pellet stove installation to avoid $500 / month fuel oil bills year round,

having six replacement windows installed,

and preparing for a mini-trip to Niagara Falls, Canada to visit our Canadian friends the week of 10/20

Despite all of this I WILL get out on my bike this long weekend of what promises to be stupendous weather at least TWICE for LONNNNNGGGGG travels to restore my equilibrium. If I DON'T, I'm going to be pretty unbearable to be around! GRRRR!

Can you tell I've spent too much time away from my bike? :-)


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDALEX 10/12/2008 9:01PM

    man, your schedule sounds insane! are you getting enough "you" time? hope you get to squeeze in a bike ride soon!

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ZELLAZM 10/11/2008 5:27AM

    Super weather here, too --- loving the days of "golden October" which is what they call it here in Germany and perfect for Nordic walking or jogging. Leaves are at their peak, weather is foggy in the morning, sunny and cool in the afternoon - YES! Will check back to see if you got those rides in.

Blessings, Michelle.

P.S Thanks for the link to the film - have just started to read more about the water crisis.

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    I hear ya about spending too much time away from my bike! I finally did get on for a couple hours last weekend for a beautiful and restorative ride with the kiddos. I've been counting the minutes until my work day is over so I can get out again this afternoon. Hopefully it won't be the only ride! Have a great weekend on your bike, Don!

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