Sunday, August 22, 2010
You've heard the phrase "Use it OR lose it." Absolutely true. It applies to abilities, muscles, memory.
I'm finding I have to Use it TO Lose it - the more active I am, the more fat I lose and the smaller my measurements become. Before, when I'd spend hours on the computer playing games from boredom, the consequences included "an expanded rear view."
But now that I am walking , running , biking , weight training , and stretching
I'm SHRINKING! This allows me to fit into clothes that used to be too tight (I call it "shopping in my closet"), move with less effort and fewer aches and pains, and have more energy.
Have you ever seen examples of what 5lb of fat looks like? It takes up so much more space than 5lb of muscle! So losing fat means losing inches. It's frustrating when people (especially women) say they don't want to weight train because "they don't want to get big." The weight training actually makes us smaller, by reducing excess fat. And it's easier on your heart!
Have you picked up a 5lb bag of flour, a 10lb bag of ice, or a 20lb bag of potatoes? Have you thought about the effort it would take to carry that around all day? Or the relief of NOT having to carry it around all day? Gives us a whole new perspective...
So USE IT...by being more active!
to LOSE IT... like the lyrics in "Honky Tonk BaDonkaDonk" - "you hate to see her go but you love to watch her leave"
and in the process you may find your true self.
I'm loving the changes I see in the mirror!
How about you?
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Life can teach us lessons in the every day things that happen.
I was so excited yesterday, my new smart phone arrived! I'd been waiting a few weeks because it was backordered, so I was content not to jump right in and try to use it by myself. I knew it was going to be complicated. So I simply put it together and plugged it in to charge up. This morning I took everything to the Verizon store and had the customer service folk help me get set up and oriented to the features. Good thing, too! I used to be with AllTel, so I wasn't even able to activate it (boy, wouldn't I have been frustrated and mad, punching the same numbers over and over and wondering why they weren't working?!) The sales guy tried to put features he liked on it, and I'd say, "I don't use that." Weather forecast? "I look out the window." Location? "I'm in a different zip code." Email? "I don't want my entire number of regular emails to be downloaded to my phone, just a separate account that a few select people have access to." We are all different, and as soon as someone starts using phones or computers, they become personalized.
Well, our diet program is the same way. There are basics that people need to consider - what you eat, what type of exercise and activity you are going to do daily, the support you have to keep you motivated, education on how to make better choices and what has worked for others... but in the end, each of us is personalizing our own plan. It has to fit us, our real lives, and if we don't know how to use it, we won't stick with it.
When I signed up for SparkPeople I quickly saw there was "too much" information, where I could easily spend hours online (hours I do not have). So as I got more familiar with the site, I found there were things that made it more manageable. By aiming to earn SparkPoints, I was able to try out different parts of the site a little at a time, once or twice a day. I found teams with interests of mine. I can see my calorie count and the amount of fat I eat each day. When I exercise, the amount of time has a great impact on how many points I can earn. And occasionally there is that surprise bonus - the wheel is kind.
So just as I'm starting from scratch with my new phone, personalizing it to my needs,
the same way we are able to use Spark People. Each of us can make it work for us, we just need to try the different features and see which ones consistently move us toward our goal and fit into our lives.
We are starting from scratch - writing our own futures!
What are the SP features you love the most?
Monday, August 16, 2010
My Mom sent me the link for a short 3 minute video to remind us that it is that little extra effort, that one additional degree, that makes the difference between staying where we are or finding real power and making change in our lives. I liked it, hope you do as well!
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Went to see the new Julia Roberts film Eat Love Pray (based on Elizabeth Gilbert's book) today with my daughter - LOVED IT! I had listened to the book on tape some years ago, but the performances were excellent and even better was seeing the different global locations. I love to travel and experience different cultures, and when I was in college, after taking Spanish in high school and German for my BS, I took Italian with the intention of traveling to Italy. I haven't made it there yet, but this reawakened the desire.
If you've read the book or seen the movie, what did you think?
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
The importance of putting together a string of active days has been proven to me since joining SparkPeople. I have been trying to lose weight for a verrrrry long time, but stayed in the same 10 lb range. I've been trying to comfort myself that at least my body fat was slowly creeping downward. Frustrated, I set a goal to complete a half marathon, knowing the training needs would force me to be active on a more consistent basis. However, once I was MENTALLY ready to DO WHAT IT TAKES to get at least 30 lbs off, I looked for a way to make that a reality. SparkPeople was the method, and it's working! In 2 weeks I've lost 8 lbs, and I have been eating well, people! This is nothing short of a minor miracle.
So I wanted to share an example of how to visualize your fitness that has helped me. The USE-IT-OR-LOSE-IT principle is very real. I used to be very active, but after my divorce and other life changes I suffered such depression that I literally could spend days in bed. So my muscles suffered, and the fat accumulated.
When you exercise, imagine it as putting water into a container. You want to fill the container. However, as you pour a cup in, you discover a leak in the bottom of the container. When you add the water steadily, you can raise the level - but if you were to stop, your container would slowly empty out.
It's the same with your body and fitness. When you have a regular routine (it doesn't have to be EVERY day, rest is important to the process), you are adding to the level of your fitness. But if you stop, you will lose some of those abilities and accomplishments. You container will run dry. If it were a bank account, you'd eventually go bankrupt.
So being more active has been a huge part of getting these pounds off, and believe me! I DON'T WANT THEM BACK! I SURE don't want to carry the extra weight 13.1 miles on November 7!
May you reach all your fitness goals and make regular exercise part of your life.
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