Sunday, September 16, 2012
12. Post a picture of your inspiration. Thinspiration if that's your thing. Fitspiration if that's what you're after. Heathspiration if that's your primary goal. Why is this person inspiring to you?
This is a picture of me with one of my sorority sisters, Pat. She and her husband were our witnesses when Bob and I married. I'm sure you can tell she is on the left.
Pat is a nurse for our area Head Start program. She has been encouraging to me about changing to a healthy lifestyle for many years before i finally did so. She was with me the night my mother passed away and gave me words of encouragement to tell mama to help her on her next journey. As you can tell she has been a good friend and by example she has shown me how much better it is to live in a better manner than I had. She knew about my cancers, but i hadn't seen her for a long while until a few weeks ago. She didn't recognize me! She had nothing but praise for me especially now that I have a healthy BMI. I have always admired Pat for giving all that she does for her friends whenever they have any problems, especially if it concerns their health.
13. What has been the hardest life style change you've made for the sake of losing weight, getting fit, or becoming healthier? Any tips for making that change easier?
The most difficult thing for me was just doing it!! I had before until I hurt my knee. After that I was afraid to try things. I mean once you get injured so badly at the gym no less, it does something to you! Finally I was to the point I knew if i didn't do something, I wouldn't be around long and the amount of time would be miserable because of my husband and family having to care for me, not being able to leave the house without a great deal of help, etc.
My best tips would be:
#1 Once you make up your mind, just go ahead and do it.
#2 If you have trouble moving around and/or with range of motion, please checkout the Chair Exercise Team here on Spark. There is a lot of information there. Also be sure to check out Coach Nicole's videos for chair exercises.
#3 Try to find a good support system for yourself. If your family or friends try to sabotage what you are doing for yourself to become healthy, limit talking about your journey and try to locate a Buddy here on SP. IF there is no one in your area - like mine - see if your buddy can advise you on problems you may have that you could use help, encouragement, motivation, etc.
#4 Teams here are filled with wonderful people that are so encouraging, try to find some that fit your interests and goals.
#5 Take the challenge on the Spark Point page for making a collage of things you want to accomplish, foods, people who look empowered, clothes, hairstyles, and makeup you like. My first one I have by my computer. I made a second one that is up next to my mirror in my bathroom so that I see it while I "fix" my face, brush my teeth, etc.
6. TRACK your food and exercise every day. It is very important to keep yourself accountable. Be honest about everything, too. If you aren't, you are only cheating yourself.
7. Keep track of your journey on a Spark blog or a journal or even both. It really does help.
8. Be sure to visit your friends' blogs, pages, and leave comments and send goodies to them. You will feel so much better yourself if you can encourage someone else.
9. Listen to others and try what they used, but ultimately you have to find what works best for YOU!! No two of us are alike and what works for me may not work for you. But then again, it might.
10. Read as many of the articles here on SP to get the very best and latest information on health, wellness, motivation, and nutrition.
Those are my tips. For just going ahead on your journey and DO IT!!
14. What life style changes have been easier than you expected? Why do you think that was?
When I was a child my Aunt had a farm and grew so many veggies and fruit she would share with each of her brothers and sisters. My mother also grew tomatoes, radishes, and cucumbers. She would can the tomatoes and make juice which she canned. She would also make pickles. So I had a very good beginning on fresh healthy food. But I had done so much emotional eating, I wasn't sure if I could change that and get back to what I knew was better. Also, my hubby loves things like spare ribs, hamburgers, lunch meat, etc. We eat so differently. He could never do what I do of going with veggies, fruit, pasta, for weeks and not even notice i haven't had meat or poultry or fish at all. But it all came back as though I had always eaten that way. I think my childhood background was what made it so much easier than I ever thought it could be.
15. What is your favorite weight loss, fitness, or wellness blog (or website or magazine) outside of sparkpeople?
I have three or four magazines and their corresponding websites that I enjoy. They are pretty traditional, but more and more they are changing recipes up to be more healthy and adding a lot more fitness articles. These are: Better Homes and Garden, Women's Day, Family Circle, Every Day With Rachel Ray, and the Food Network magazine and web site, too.
16. Do you follow an eating 'plan'? (Vegetarian, paleo, South Beach, Atkins, yada yada yada) How has this helped you live a healthier life?
No, I don't follow any of those. I had followed Atkins when it was first out and the same with Weight Watchers. Both have changed a lot since i followed them. BUT, and here's the rub, most call for you giving up something and loading up on something else. None of that can be healthy for you. You really need to read books and articles and you'll soon learn what works best for you. We all need good fats, good carbs, and good protein to survive. Why is that? For one thing, those all feed our organs in many ways and if we don't get the proper amount, our organs shut down and I'm sure you know what happens then. My belief is the more we eat from the land the more healthy we shall be. A good example for myself on one of these things that I was going to do was all wrong for ME: I thought the gluten free would be a good way to go, so I did a lot of research reading books and articles. Almost every single one said unless you have celiac disease, your body needs gluten. There were two of the the nine that I read that said they (the authors) needed to see more studies before they could make up their minds. Rather than take a chance, I didn't even start with it.
I should now be caught up. Bob and I have both had doctor's appointments and I have not had time to get much written. To be honest, it is almost like starting over!!
Love, Peace, and friendship to all my Buds. You are so dear to me, each and everyone of you.
Here is a Kentucky red rose for each of you. Bob grew this himself.
Sunday, September 09, 2012
9. How old are you and do you think your thoughts about weight loss, fitness, and wellness have changed over time?
Well, a lady never tells her true age, but I think in this instance it would be OK. I am 65 and it turns to 66 next month. Seeing that on the page makes me feel old. Gee whiz, I still feel 35!!
Yes, my thoughts about weight loss, fitness, and wellness have changed over the years. I have said before, I have always known what needed to be done to eat better, but I needed support and help to get me to actually do it. I have really received this from my Spark Buds. When I was younger, I never thought much about portion size and that has been one of the most difficult for me to learn and do over the past few years. I think I have it down pretty good now.
On fitness, I was working out at the Y when I injured my leg on the elliptical. It was a little sore as i continued on the tread machine and all the others. But when i finished and had my shower, then sat to put on clothes and shoes and socks, I hurt so bad I couldn't stand by myself and had to call for help. Bob had to help me get to the car. When we got home, I was in tears. I ended up having to have surgery. Since the bone in my knee was weakened from the doc drilling into it, it can't be done again. It didn't help that the therapist gave me the wrong exercises in rehab and blew out what the doctor was trying to accomplish! Thinking about it, I would have been more active over the years to keep something like that from ever happening.
As for wellness, I am so fortunate I have always had my screenings for breast cancer every year as the mammo is what found the tumor. I also have a colonoscopy every 5 years. I didn't realize how much our minds and physical health were so closely related. And I was a psych minor in college!! Perhaps I did know it. but shoved it to the back of my mind. Since starting my lifestyle change journey, I have also tried to get rid of negative around me and smile everyday no matter how I feel. That attitude has changed a lot as I have grown older. Before I always thought I had to let others say or do pretty much as they wanted even though I knew it wasn't right. That no longer happens. For my own wellness, I had to change or lose the fight. I worked so hard, i wasn't about to do that. Because of doing so, I have become a lot better mentally. Those who try to sabotage my weight loss are also gone.
This was a great question for this challenge.
Thanks to everyone who has been posting on these entries and giving so much support, It really helps and is very special to me.
Here's to wishing all of my Spark Buds a happy day. I love each one of you.
Peace, love, and hope for the future that we are all well.
Saturday, September 08, 2012
7. How do you measure progress towards or maintenance? Scale weight? Body fat percentage? How your clothes fit? Other?
How I have always measured from the start of my journey. When I started at SP in 2008, my goal was a healthy lifestyle. That never changed, even while I was away for 2 years. I mean, I KNEW, what needed to be done to achieve that, I really needed the help to be able to accomplish it and reach my goal. Once I came back seriously, I found that additionally by changing habits, there would be the extra advantage of weight loss. All through discovery and making those changes that would be life long, I would weigh myself once a week (I still do that), know how I was feeling, moving,etc, and how things fitted. It was more a combination that I used to tell my progress. I feel the same now that I reached goal weight. I need to be vigilant to stay on track forever, so I'll continue my weekly weigh in along with how I feel and how I move. I'll consider myself successful when everything becomes automatic, my weight stays within a several pound range either way, and I feel and move really well without having to use my chair, walker, or cane very often.
8. What do you think will be different when you reach your goal weight? If you are in maintenance, what did you think would be different? What actually was different?
My initial weight loss goal was to get under 200 pounds into the 190's. I really didn't expect too much to be different other than my clothes would feel better and so would I. But I think almost everyone knows, after being on mark for 3 months, I had the breast cancer diagnosis. When I continued to lose after the cancer was all removed and into treatment, I felt better. Before I could think about it, the tonsil cancer was diagnosed and I was told to keep my weight at 215 (where I was) for as long as possible. That was in May. By August when I finished all my treatments and the scan showed all that cancer was gone, I was at 206 - only 11 pounds from goal. When I reached that mark, I decided to see if I continued changing my eating, portions, and exercising if I could lose more. I set my next goal for 35 less and happily reached it with little setbacks at all. Of course during these times, I had a poisoning that turned to infection and I was being poisoned to death, but hey! It only took three months for the doctors to figure that one out! At the end of December 2011 I started PT and OT with new sets of exercises to help me regain strength and balance. I also joined a lot of the challenges and by February of this year I was at 149 which was 96 pounds lost. From February until July I was able to meet my 120 goal. But I kept on until I was 117 and stayed. That's when the radiation oncologist fussed at me and wanted me to gain. So yesterday I was up to 118.5. Once again, during that time, I had no expectations of what would change other than my clothes size. I had been wearing 4 pairs of leggings that went from just that to looking like regular jeans. At 145, they fell off and I had no choice but to get new pants. I had T-shirts in 2X and that was what I wore for tops! Anyway, the jeans that had been tight, but I kept, fell off me, too! I had no idea what size I'd be. I tried a 16 and it was so loose, I went to a 12. The fit ok, but were still large, but I bought some. Then at 135, I thought, OK, these are sagging, time to go shopping again. i got 2 pairs of 10's. When they started to bag at 125, I thought, ok, I'll go again and get some 8's. Didn't happen. I was a 6!! I was amazed. My tummy was nearly flat and my hind side looked like it did when I was a young adult!! What amazed me was the 4 I got at goal! I would never ever imagined that happening no matter what! But it did!! After buying 3X and 4X tops for the past 10 years, My new tops were now a L with a few M's! Those old 2X that I wore before? The arm openings are so big, even with my bat wings under arms, I swim in them!! Other things that occurred that surprised me were, #1 how good it felt to have my seat belt go on so easily and not be a tight fit. #2 How I fit in chairs and seats I couldn't have before. Then I would have to sit on a love seat or make sure I had my walker or chair to be sure I had a place to sit. It was so humiliating to me to be in a crowded waiting room somewhere and get up when I was called only to have the chair go with me because I was too fat to get out of it without help!! #3 I can tuck shirts in!! #4 Being able to walk without much help - mostly my cane. My knee will never be the same unless I have further surgery for a complete replacement so I still can't stand in one position very long to be able to do things and drive, as it locks and is my right one where I have to use the gas. I'm still afraid it might lock in place and I won't be able to stop in time to avoid an accident. Then there are the days which get fewer and fewer where the knee is so stiff and hurting so bad I can't get out of bed. #5 The most changed thing - which I shouldn't do, but it has been sooooooooo long since I could I do it anyway, is I can cross my legs with no problem. I can even move one foot around the other while they are crossed! That said, I can't do it when my knee is hurting or still, but the rest of the time I can, so I do, just because I can. Then I go back to normal sitting!!
I hope all my Spark Buds are enjoying their weekends. I'm so happy my Gators now have two W's!! I didn't leave the house after my walk, so I didn't wear my game day duds. (For those too young to know that word - it means clothes!) I appreciate each of you!
Peace, love, and happiness for each of you in all your endeavors.
Friday, September 07, 2012
Hi everyone! I'm so glad to be here and with everyone again. The day before yesterday, someone was digging and cut into the water and AT&T lines. We have AT&T dsl lines and through that our phone service and Netflix over the TV. It was crazy enough not having water, but Bob and I had so much trouble not to have phone or internet service. And we couldn't even watch movies!! lol!! We had gotten into the habit of in the afternoon when exercise and outdoor chores were over, to sit and watch a movie. We like a lot the same, so it has been a nice time. our four furry boys enjoy being with both of us at the same time, too. I hated not being able to be here and comment, blog, visit my teams, etc. By that evening we had our water back, but we were in the boil water mode. We never did get our AT&T back until late yesterday afternoon. Oh, my!! We both had so much email to catch up with, it was amazing. Then when I got here, it seemed like so many things had changed! I know that really they hadn't, but it sure seemed that way.
Today I had my health evaluation with the nursing service. She thought i looked ok and that i am within my weight range along with having a good BMI. We are going to start with the same thing we do here in tracking food, but she wants me to add the time i eat. She agreed with me that since my radiation oncologist who called in her service for me wants me to gain that I changed my goal weight from 120 to 125. She thinks that is a good amount for me. She even told me if I stay between 120 and 125 I should be just fine. She also wants me to see my primary doctor as she feels I may be anemic which wouldn't be strange for someone who had been through all of treatments I had. She is having a social worker come in, too, as she believes things will move faster for us as far as getting aid from several different organizations such as Meals on Wheels. I have never heard of it being in this county, but hopefully she'll know. We attempted to get help through the state when we had so much to travel each day for my treatments, but they denied us as making too much and owning too much. We are learning to make do, but it sure has been hard on Bob. He still does most everything both outdoors and indoors. I still do most of the laundry and pick up some, but it is mostly up to him.
I had told Dr. K that I was following Spark. He hadn't heard of it, so he made a note to the nursing service to find out more. I talked to my nurse all about it. She didn't have time to look over the site as much as wanted to, but she took the addy and said she was going to check it thoroughly and if it was all I said, she might suggest it to other clients. She said she is really a stickler about healthy living and told me a lot that are in her beliefs. They seem to parallel SparkPeople.
So now everyone is up to date on what has been happening at our house.
Everyone take good care and enjoy your weekend.
Peace, love, and rock 'n' roll...........at least from my day!!!
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