HEALTHYASHLEY   20,867
SparkPoints
20,000-24,999 SparkPoints
 
 
HEALTHYASHLEY's Recent Blog Entries

Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Food Journaling Experiment Week 1 Results

Thursday, March 03, 2011

I had mentioned in a blog last week that I was done counting calories. The reaction I got to that blog was interesting. For the most part people understood where I was coming from and some very much agreed with me that journaling was a system that worked really well for them. Some said they loved the tracker and can't live without it. I was not condemning the tracker. I think it is an awesome tool and when I started I couldn't live without it. If it works for you that is awesome. It is one of the great things about SP and I was not saying I don't like it. What I was saying is that there has come a point, for me personally, that I feel like I know what foods are right and wrong and how much I need to eat of them etc and that I had been focusing too much on the calories instead of what the foods do for my body. Journaling allows me to be accountable without obsessing about how I have 200 calories left today etc. At night I enter the day in the tracker to make sure I am staying on course without it influencing my food choices. I do not believe there is a one size fits all approach to a healthy lifestyle. For me when I count calories all day it makes me feel like I am on a diet. That is a feeling I want to avoid. By journaling I am still accountable for what I eat and it keeps me mindful of my food choices. I do not lie to my journal because a promise I made to myself when I started this all was there would be no more excuses and no more lies. Excuses are just lies. The truth hurts but I will not change my behavior unless I am uncomfortable and so by being honest with myself I am changing those negative behaviors. That is what this truly is about for me. Acknowledging and changing my negative attitude and behaviors at the root of all of this. I realized yesterday after reading my journal that exhaustion plays a very very big part in my hunger and stress eating. When I am tired all I want to do it eat and I noticed it is particularly when I want sugar. Spark people has great articles about why lack of sleep does this to the body and I am looking for ways to be able to change my schedule to allow for the rest I need. Mid week is always the hardest for me. It is when I am burned out and ready for the weekend working 10+ hour days and trying to work out etc and drive my fiancÚ to work because he doesn't drive. Yes, I need to drive him and I am happy to do it. It is not a burden it is just a fact of my life at this time. When I started out I never thought my biggest struggle would be I am doing too many healthy things and can't fit it all in lol. SCHENPOSSIBLE said it well in her recent blog when she equated being healthy with a part time job. Sometimes it truly feels that way but for me it is something I am unwilling to give up. I will not go back to morbid obesity. It is worth it even if it is harder. Being lazy and complacent is what got me so unhappy to begin with. So for now journaling is working for me. As long as I am tracking my food somehow I think it will workout for me. It is when I don't track at all I get in trouble and start to get off track.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MCHILSTR 3/23/2011 11:24AM

  The important things are to do what works for you - to be honest about it, and to be flexible enough to change your strategy. You are doing all these these, and I applaud you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ELLE_WAGS 3/21/2011 4:16PM

    I am so trying this...I cannot stand riding every up, down, and fluctuation in my calorie journal and then watch my scale like a hawk without having a nervous condition. I'm so adding you! Thanks for this!

Report Inappropriate Comment
THEIS58 3/21/2011 7:36AM

    Doing what works for each of us is important. For me, it's important to keep track because I can easily misjudge how much I am eating throughout the day.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SWINKIE57 3/6/2011 9:29PM

    I like your thinking. I typically track breakfast and lunch and adjust dinner accordingly. If I am "short" on calories so be it. I don't "dumpster dive" into the cabinets or frig looking for something to fill the last 100-200 calories I might be short. I just take a look at what I had that day adjust and move forward.

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
PRIMAVERA_81 3/6/2011 7:08PM

    Hi Ashley!!! I really like your blogs!!! I am just starting and its really inspiring to hear someone say," I am gradutating from food/calorie tracking"......For me I want to lose about 35 lbs, so Im tracking what I eat this week to see what it is that im putting in my mouth. I want to lose weight but also increase my endurance, improve my health , and just live life that way!!!!t So me small stepping stones towards my goals are to making some lifestyle changes...

Its nice to hear that you graduated from calorie tracking!!!! It s one way to say "Im ready"

Good luck and let us know how you are doing emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/6/2011 7:12:14 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
HJMALCOLM 3/6/2011 12:33AM

    This is a great idea! I like how you just journal during the day then track it all at once in the evening. I want to eventually get to a point where I don't need to calculate calories at all. If I could get to a point where I don't even have to journal but just eat healthy and exercise regularly that would be amazing!! I think it is so great that you have learned to eat what is healthy and what portion sizes you need. I hope you continue to be successful in your healthy living. Thank you for writing so honestly about your struggles and your triumphs. It's very inspiring, and I love seeing others succeed!

Report Inappropriate Comment
AARONSGIRL420 3/5/2011 10:04PM

    I have a comment. I experienced something like this recently in my 5K training. I really got a bit annoyed with the whole run 1.5 minutes walk 3 minutes because I do not own a stop watch and trying to be exact when you are looking for 90 seconds...that is kind of insane.

I am not KNOCKING the 5K program at all, in fact I have gained much endurance because of it. Instead I decided today to just run the whole 36 minutes and see if I can make it. Make my own intervals if I can not.

For those of us who understand our bodies and are in tune with what we need, maybe we can step back a bit and use the tools we are given as such...tools, not shackles. I am sure most of us are here to regain freedom, and that includes not being tied to any one gadget, instead to learn to apply what we have gained here to the REAL world and live a full, healthy, happy life without having to measure, track and count everything.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MELLYBEANS0919 3/5/2011 5:57PM

    Agree you should do as you please - if it works for you, that is what matters. Everyone can make their own choices.

I personally should be using the tracker or writing it down at least in my blog like I was before. I need accountability...

Report Inappropriate Comment
AMANDA_AGAIN 3/5/2011 2:23PM

    I was thinking the same-ish thing this morning on my run. I was trying really hard to get exactly 4 minutes running, 1 minute walking. Which isn't so easy when you're outside with your ipod. And I was checking it like every 20 seconds to see if I was at 4 minutes yet or not. And while right now I need the time check to push me out of my comfort zone, I was thinking how important it was just to be out running, regardless of if I make 8 5-minute intervals or not. And that in my future healthy life I will run until I cannot and then I will walk a bit and then I will run again. Regardless of what the timer says.

And I think in my healthy future food will be similar. I know what to eat. I know how much. I just need to put it in action.

Right now I still need the tracker to keep me honest. And for me it's easier to enter things pretty much immediately pre- or post-meal, otherwise I tend to "forget" little bites here and there.

Do you find that you are getting the right carbs/protein/fat with journaling? Something I do like about using the tracker throughout the day is that I can see what I might be lacking a bit on and base a snack on that or add or sub something in dinner to get things back to a healthy ratio. So I'm curious how that is working with journaling.

Great job!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MAGGIEROSEBOWL 3/5/2011 12:22PM

    You are very brave to give up food journaling. I don't think I will ever get there. GOOD LUCK!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRSBERTA_69 3/4/2011 9:41PM

    Great blog! I really need to be consistent with my journaling too, i have really been slacking and it's affecting my weight...it's going nowhere!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BIGSLINK 3/4/2011 4:35PM

    You go!! Stick with what works for you - and it is obviously working, because you look great!! I like the fact the you are not constantly tracking, yet still journaling your days. It does feel like a part-time job sometimes. :)

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
NEEBREW 3/3/2011 9:52PM

    I think you are so SMART to do what works for YOU. The reason a lot of people fall off track is because of the pressure to conform instead of really listening to their instincts. You are going to succeed no matter what as long as you make yourself top priority :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
KAMAPERRY 3/3/2011 9:43PM

    You have to do what is right and works for you. This is a lifestyle change, and you have to make it livable!

Report Inappropriate Comment
HANNAH_CALM 3/3/2011 8:32PM

    I really like what you are doing. I'm thinking of doing that myself, because I'm feeling somewhat tethered to the computer, always waiting for my turn to track my food. And I think maybe it's causing me to be online too much. I need to get back to reading more. I love to read, but I haven't been to my book club for months and months! I miss everyone, so I'm going to have to get my act together somehow.

Report Inappropriate Comment
REDHEADMOM2U 3/3/2011 7:16PM

    I can understand just journaling at the end.

Good for you for tailoring the program to work for you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GIANTMICROBE 3/3/2011 5:47PM

    Counting calories is the worst. I hate thinking of food as a number.

Report Inappropriate Comment
HEALTHYONE2008 3/3/2011 5:43PM

    I'm with you 100% on this one Ashley. first do what you are comfortable in doing and what you feel works best for you.

My feeling is even if you are counting the calories and are in your range, you can still be making poor choices. In keeping a journal you are more likely to see this.

That is why I like the SP food tracking, I can see where I need to make the changes.



Report Inappropriate Comment
CORDIA72 3/3/2011 4:56PM

    I think that you should definitely do what you feel is best for you! You know how your body feels during the day, week, or month so you should choose the best way to account for what you eat and how you eat it. I'm new to SparkPeople and I do rely on the tracker and, so far, I've lost 6 pounds by paying attention to my calorie intake, etc. It's working for me because it makes me accountable for what I'm eating. I also have a pretty stressful job where I work 8-10 hours a day with a boss who drives me nuts each day. I used to go home at the end of the day grab a bag of powdered doughnuts, a bag of doritos, and a coke and sit in front of my tv until the noise and the food had drowned out her voice in my head. That's destructive, that's just not logical! Now that I'm a member of SparkPeople I pay closer attention to what I'm eating and when she does trigger my emotions I don't let them get the better of the good things that I'm doing for myself by eating healthier and getting exercise. To each their own, I say!

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DSJB9999 3/3/2011 4:05PM

    I am trying to keep a food diary as I know I can keep a better track of my eating that way! I've lost the most and not put it on when I'm tracking it.

I love your blog it makes a lot of sense.
emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
MARLARELLA 3/3/2011 4:00PM

    I hope no one in your last post tried to make you feel bad about choosing not to count calories! Everyone has to figure out what works and since most of this is mental you need to do what makes you feel like you aren't on a diet. I hope that someday down the road when I am as far along as you, I will feel comfortable enough to not count the calories!

Report Inappropriate Comment
LKEITHO 3/3/2011 3:06PM

    I agree with you that we each have to find what works for us. Congrats on finding yours!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MINENA1 3/3/2011 2:38PM

    I dislike having to track everything for the exact same reasons you gave. I think it's great that you're doing what works for you. That's awesome!!! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
ROCKMAN6797 3/3/2011 2:32PM

    Agreed.
Whatever works for you is best.
I love data! So I love the food tracker because it allows me to the opportunity to create it! I guess I am nerd about that. emoticon
Thanks for sharing once again!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SHERRYJVP 3/3/2011 2:05PM

    I totally agree that you must do what works for you. And at the time it works. I was tired of tracking calories and, just knew I needed a change. My change was only tracking WW points instead. I still track, but I mixed things up a it. SOmeday I hope a journal will do it for me...and then who knows, I might have to start tracking calories again...life is every changing. GOod for you...glad it is working.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MACLEEEEE 3/3/2011 2:01PM

    I admire you for going off your food tracker. I hate the fact that I am always logging my food and calories (if not on here then in my head). I want to be able to listen to my body and its hunger signals but not become obsessed with counting calories. I think its great that you are doing what's right for you and hopefully I will be able to distance myself from tracking when the time is right for me. keep it up :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
DUSTYGIRL25 3/3/2011 1:37PM

    Very well said. I love the tracker because it because it really lets me know where I'm at calorie wise. However, I can see what you mean about feeling like a diet. It does feel like that and it's not supposed to be a diet. We're supposed to be learning about eating healthy food and portion control.
I have learned so many tips from the articles here on SP, like using smaller plates, that I may start weaning my self off the tracker throughout the day. I tend to forget about some of the snacks I eat throughout the day so keeping a little notebook would help.
Thanks for the lovely blog as always! emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/3/2011 1:38:39 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
MARATHONBOUND 3/3/2011 1:31PM

    I hear ya and I agree. Keeping the journal this last week has really helped me stay accountable without making me obsess! Great idea!

Report Inappropriate Comment
NETTIEDEE 3/3/2011 1:28PM

    I think we are all on a path to greater self awareness - and that this path is the only permanent way out of an unhealthy lifestyle.

I commend you for continuing to look at yourself, your behaviours, what is working and what is not. Asking important questions and adjusting to your current life is the best way to get to your goals. GOOD FOR YOU!

Keep up the great work!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KT-NICHOLS-13 3/3/2011 12:02PM

    "I do not believe there is a one size fits all approach to a healthy lifestyle." Well said.

Report Inappropriate Comment
RIVERDLC 3/3/2011 11:32AM

    I think the whole concept of feeling like you are on a diet is where I am at. I know when I eat something I should not and I try to make up for it by adding a few minutes exercising or eating less at dinner. I think I may keep a journal for a week or too. I know I snack alot at night and I hate it. Thanks for the post.

Report Inappropriate Comment
NANHBH 3/3/2011 11:28AM

    Ash,

Great connection you made between exhaustion and eating. You are doing great! I like the analogy of doing healthy things as being a part-time job -- and think about the payback in the long term! You can't put a price on health.
emoticon
Nancy

Report Inappropriate Comment
MIRACLELOVE77 3/3/2011 11:23AM

    that's huge that you were able to make the connection between being tired and eating! That's something that the nutrition tracker won't tell you :) And congrats on learning how to have a healthy outlook on food! That's what many of us want eventually, right?

Report Inappropriate Comment
PIXIECN 3/3/2011 10:49AM

  Sometimes I think people get so caught up in how things are "supposed" to be done and forget that this is a lifestyle and should therefore be customized to our personalities and daily lives. Good luck with the journaling, I hope it works out well!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SKYEPHOENIX 3/3/2011 10:35AM

    When I first started I used the tracker fastidiously--but I've gotten to the point now that I've learned enough about my food that I don't need to meticulously track every single thing. I log my food at the end of the day from time to time to make sure I'm not getting a little too generous with myself (which I tend to do). Your system sounds great for you, and really, takes the emphasis off calories and puts it where it should be, eating for health and well being. I like it. :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
BROOKDOESLIFE 3/3/2011 10:19AM

    I totally agree with you 100%. It has to be something that works for you. Everyone is different and can find their own approach. What works for me might not work for someone else. You are doing great finding your own balance. Keep up the great work.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MADEMCHE 3/3/2011 10:07AM

    I agree with you Ash. I have to track it at least somehow. Whether that be the tracker, a journal, random slips of paper. Whatever. The act of writing it down is what does it for me. Good for you for realizing what works for you, and working towards it. In an healthy way. That is what is important.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEEDEE1102 3/3/2011 10:04AM

    You have been doing this long enough where you are able to hopefully "easily" choose the right foods. I hope to get to that point, but for now I will stay dependent upon my nutrition tracker. I feel what you are doing is a natural progression. We will never be able to stop being aware of what we are putting in our mouths, but after a while I would hope we can self-monitor. Let us know how it goes. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SHELLEY147 3/3/2011 10:00AM

    Finding what works for you is the key to success. YOU have to be comfortable with what you're doing....I use the tracker for now, but at some point, my find that journaling works better for me. It's all about choices....glad you're making you're own decision to find what's best for you my friend! ~hugs~

Report Inappropriate Comment
SACGIRL 3/3/2011 9:41AM

    Your blog hit home with me today. I too feel like living healthy can be a part time job cause we put so much effort into it, but just like you said...I dont want to go back to the way I was, so I will put in the effort, no matter how hard. I think sleep has been a big issue for me as well, I work 10 hour days and for the last 2 months have been working overtime (which has has been wonderful financially), but has been hurting my sleep patterns. I havent lost weight in 2 months and my sugar has increased. So I think there is direct correlation there. Anyways, thanks for blogging about all this and keeping us informed about your journaling efforts...I might give it a try too!

Report Inappropriate Comment
WILLIAMV3 3/3/2011 9:22AM

    Do your thing my friend. You do have to do what works for you. There are many times at the end of the day when I find that I have not eaten enough calories or fat but I know that I have eaten good, clean, healthy foods and I've gotten my protein, so I just don't worry about it.

Have a blessed day! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SMOCKON 3/3/2011 9:20AM

    Please keep updating us on how well this is working for you. Right now, I need the tracker, but I can see already that I will not want to be entering foods in the tracker for the rest of my life.

Report Inappropriate Comment
PHEFEY 3/3/2011 9:20AM

    You are very inspiring! I love that you are on your own journey and figuring out what works for you and sharing it with others. I can gaurentee that you are helping people realize that there is no one rule fixes all when it comes to a healthy lifestyle. That is helping people! You are awesome!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SPOOKYTHECAT 3/3/2011 9:12AM

    Absolutely, it's all in what works for You. emoticon

Cheering you on from RI!! Spooky aka Allysen

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALOFA0509 3/3/2011 9:05AM

   
Your doing soo great Ash!! Finding "Your" Balance, is the secret to this weight loss success.. You've found it ;)

Hugs 2U sista!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
AUNTIELES53 3/3/2011 8:57AM

    great job for doing what works for you. The same things are not going to work for everyone.

Report Inappropriate Comment
RACHELRUNS26 3/3/2011 8:56AM

    I am happy that is working for you! When I get further along I will want to try that. I definitely agree that counting calories makes it feel like more of a diet. And, I can totally relate on healthy habits feeling like a part time job. Sometimes I just want to give up because it feels like there are not enough hours in the day to do everything I need to do, but I am trying to keep it all in perspective and not beat myself up too much when I don't have time to pack a healthy lunch or dinner to eat on the go, spend more than 30 minutes exercising, etc.

Report Inappropriate Comment
WEDDLEACE 3/3/2011 8:47AM

    I think it's great that journaling it working for you and I think it's awesome that you're mindful enough to know that a tool that was once very helpful also has the potential of causing harm/at least not helping. Good for you! Keep up the great work!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KERSTIN814 3/3/2011 8:39AM

    Awesome insight. I think we all want to get to where you are, I know I do.

Report Inappropriate Comment
PELESJEWEL 3/3/2011 8:33AM

    You are creating ASHLEY'S success formula for life, making tweaks along the way when you feel you need to. What is awesome to see is the connection you continue to make holistically -- body, mind, spirit = balance!

PS - join the official spark 30 Day sleep challenge w/me! Happy emoticon!!

Comment edited on: 3/3/2011 8:34:35 AM

Report Inappropriate Comment


Sesame-Honey Tempeh with Quinoa

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

I told RAVENSONG37 I would give her this recipe and then I thought why not share it so everyone could have it. It is Vegan except for the honey so you can replace that however you wish or leave it out entirely.

Quinoa & Carrots
1 1/2 c water
3/4 c quinoa, rinsed
2 c grated carrots (~3 large)
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
2 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce

Sesame-Honey Tempeh
2 Tbsp Sesame Oil
2 (8 oz) packages tempeh, crumbled into bite size pieces
3 Tbsp honey
3 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp cornstarch
2 scallions, sliced

1. For quinoa boil 1 1/2 cup water in a small pan. Add quinoa and return to boil. Reduce to low simmer, cover and cook until the water is absorbed, 10-14 minutes. Uncover and let stand.
2. Combine carrots, rice vinegar, sesame seeds, 1 Tbsp oil and 1 Tbsp soy sauce in a medium bowl and set aside.
3. Heat 2 Tbsp oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add tempeh and cook, stirring frequently, until beginning to brown, 7 to 9 minutes.
4. Combine honey, 3 Tbsp soy sauce, 2 Tbsp water and cornstarch in a bowl. Add to the pan and cook, stirring, until the sauce has thickened and coats the tempeh, about a minute.
5. Divide quinoa into 4 bowls, tops with 1/2 cup carrot mixture, and 3/4 cup tempeh mixture. Sprinkle with scallions.

Servings: 4
536 calories, 27 g fat, 5 sat, 9 mono, 53 g Carbs, 28 g protein, 5 g fiber, 588 mg sodium

I think that you could certainly cut down the amount of oil in this recipe and the sesame seeds and reduce the fat and calories a lot. I hope someone likes it!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VALERIEMAHA 3/24/2011 11:51PM

    YUM! YUM! YUM!

Thanks,
Maha

Report Inappropriate Comment
SIMPLE_TAILOR 3/21/2011 11:05AM

    Looks fantastic. Is this in SparkRecipes?

Report Inappropriate Comment
MAMADWARF 3/6/2011 11:07PM

    You and your recipes! You are INSANE! You think people like this stuff??????rofl... Love you ash!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
COOKWITHME65 3/6/2011 10:40PM

    Sounds good. Have never tried to make tempeh before. I will have to give it try. Thanks.

Report Inappropriate Comment
TIMS4FISHING 3/5/2011 3:15PM

    This looks delicious. Thank you for sharing.

Report Inappropriate Comment
LETIZIA5 3/4/2011 8:23AM

  You hit the nail on the head. What works "now" for one, doesn't mean it will work "now" for another. We are all different and constantly changing. You know best. I do agree, eating healthy is like a part-time job. I've never heard it put so well.

Thanks for sharing

Report Inappropriate Comment
SM-ARTGIRL 3/2/2011 10:01PM

    Ooh, yum! Thank you!

Comment edited on: 3/3/2011 1:42:41 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
LKEITHO 3/2/2011 9:37PM

    Sounds great!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KAMAPERRY 3/2/2011 9:01PM

    YUM!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ECONLADY 3/2/2011 8:58PM

    It has a few too many calories for me.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SHERLYN-WILL 3/2/2011 3:06PM

    THANK you for posting this.. I was not sure how to eat Tempeh... Sounds good here and I have never had quinoa!

ALSO sounds good!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MADEMCHE 3/2/2011 10:47AM

    I LOVE that you like tempeh! This seems like something we would make at home all the time, I will totally give it a try!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GODZYFAN 3/2/2011 10:23AM

    ooh that looks good! I'll have to get my girl to make that one! LOL

Report Inappropriate Comment
HEALTHYASHLEY 3/2/2011 10:10AM

    From the package

Report Inappropriate Comment
RAVENSONG37 3/2/2011 9:58AM

    Thank you thank you! This looks scrumptious!

Question: did you steam the tempeh first or just use it from the package?

Comment edited on: 3/2/2011 9:59:31 AM

Report Inappropriate Comment
HEALTHYASHLEY 3/2/2011 9:46AM

    Sure, I will take a pic.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SARAHNICOLE__17 3/2/2011 9:45AM

    Can you take a pic next time you make it?

Report Inappropriate Comment
YELLOWDAHLIA 3/2/2011 9:43AM

    That sounds delicious!! I love tempeh and quinoa!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KERSTIN814 3/2/2011 8:52AM

    Thanks Ashley! I love quinoa, having it for lunch today. Always looking for recipes!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MARATHONBOUND 3/2/2011 8:39AM

    NOMS!!!! MUST. HAVE. NOW. Thanks for sharing! While tempeh can be higher in calories..it is SO good for you and a complete protein so I say go for it! emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
GHK1962 3/2/2011 8:18AM

    Mmmmm...the sesame honey tempeh sounds yummy. I keep reading about quinoa....I have to investigate this. Thanks for a nice recipe :-)

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHLOW 3/2/2011 8:09AM

    must try that, thanks!

Report Inappropriate Comment


Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Who is that person in the mirror?

Monday, February 28, 2011

I have reached a point that I look significantly different than I did when I started. I have crossed the line from looking obese to looking semi-normal depending on your definition :). However, I would say very few but the hypercritical would call me "fat" looking anymore. I am more in the land of chunky. However, my mind is still working on adjusting to that person.

You see I lived in my 300+ body for so long that now when I look in the mirror I am still surprised. Almost everyday actually. Do you still avoid mirrors? I did, for oh around 14 years. Denial is easier to live in when you have no reflection and no photographic evidence. Yesterday I was washing my hands and looked at myself and it was hard to believe so instead of walking away I forced myself to look at me. To appreciate how much better I look. I feel better all the time. Last night my fiancÚ was snuggling me and I realized he can reach all the way around me and touch the other side with both hands. When I got out of the shower this morning I noticed you can see my abs on the upper part of my stomach. That made me really happy. I know the tummy will be the last to go but I am starting to get pretty ripped. My legs are looking awesome. My bat wings are shrinking. I even was browsing bathing suits, willingly, yesterday.

This morning my fiancÚ picked me up for the first time. He was just joking around and he grabbed me around the waist and picked up off the ground. It shocked us both. You should have seen the grin on his face. One of my biggest goals through all this was to weigh less than him. That will be a long way from now but I am so much muscle now I look much smaller than I should for this weight. I am starting to finally reach the point where the number is just a number. I am pretty convinced my body slowed down the weight loss to allow my mind time to catch up to all this. It can be bit of a trip to see a different person in the mirror.

Attention from the opposite sex is probably the most shocking to me. I got out of the car to get my nails done. It was one of those days I made no effort and did not feel cute and 2 guys blatantly checked me out and after I walked by turned around to watch me. It was funny to me because men are black and white. If they think you are cute they look. If they don't, they don't look. To them I wasn't the fat girl, I was just a girl. I am letting the fat girl go and thinking of this no longer as just I have lost 85 pounds but that I 87 to go. I am just 1 pound from my halfway point and if I did it once I sure as heck can do it again.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FATOUNA424 3/12/2011 1:36PM

  amazingly great post ! thanks for sharing this with us
ur words touched me a lot
specially that saying :
i let the fat girl go !
yeah that s wt i would have done too :S
but ok nevr too late i ll be starting now

Comment edited on: 3/12/2011 1:37:56 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
ANGELJEWEL 3/7/2011 3:05PM

    Weigh to go...I love this blog and feel the same...and am lovin that new me

Report Inappropriate Comment
HPEFUL25 3/7/2011 9:08AM

  I love that you shared your thoughts with us! You are doing so great. I think how a person feels about themselves is more important than the number they put on the scale. It sounds like your on the right track! thanks for sharing :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
BLUEDROSE 3/7/2011 12:11AM

    Although it is a shock (I lose 5pounds and I feel like my face looks so different) I'm so happy for you. Look in the mirror all you want because you deserve to recognize who you have become!

Report Inappropriate Comment
VINGRAM 3/6/2011 10:30AM

    Great job....I am having some of the same issues with the weight gone and still not looking in mirrors!

Report Inappropriate Comment
HJMALCOLM 3/6/2011 12:34AM

    I'm halfway to my goal, too! Great job, Ashley!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CSMARTIE 3/6/2011 12:13AM

    You go girl - I am at my halfway point too and it feels great!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEBSHAW55 3/5/2011 10:58PM

    loved your blog! Keep it up! I am looking forward to eventually hitting my halfway mark. I have a long way to go but blogs like yours inspire me! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SPMOM2 3/5/2011 9:24PM

    WOW, congrats.


Report Inappropriate Comment
MY4SWEETONES 3/5/2011 5:32PM

    This was very inspirational and motivating, you seem like a wonderful person that is beating the struggle with losing! Good luck and keep up the good work

Report Inappropriate Comment
ECOVEG 3/5/2011 4:19PM

    Absolutely awesome! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
KRISTINASHLEY2 3/5/2011 3:16PM

    so inspirational you have come so far! good luck on your journey, you can do it! I hope to have as much success as you :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
SLUDERCATS 3/5/2011 2:40PM

    A well written blog that inspired me.

Gayle

Report Inappropriate Comment
SEDONACAT 3/5/2011 7:36AM

    emoticon You are seeing results from all your hard work!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
COURTNEYPAIGE1 3/5/2011 1:32AM

    Congratulations! This post was so inspirational and nice to read (: Keep up the good work girl!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MISSCURVY24 3/5/2011 1:30AM

    Amazing story, such an inspiration to me and to others - congratulations!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ROBINS78 3/4/2011 11:11PM

    Congratulations!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SAC200 3/4/2011 9:22PM

    emoticon on all the weight lost.
emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
THEWEIGHTSOVER 3/4/2011 8:24PM

    YOu are amazing! What a great attitude, you know you are going to kill the other half! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SLIMTHICK2 3/4/2011 7:44PM

    Congratulations on your accomplishments. Great that the new you is emerging all the best. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
BLEGNER1 3/4/2011 7:11PM

    Isn't it amazing to see the new you appear?

Report Inappropriate Comment
HOPE2011 3/4/2011 6:56PM

    You are AWESOME!! I am inspired by every blog I read of yours. Thank you for sharing with us!

I'm so proud of you!! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CRYSSYP101 3/4/2011 6:16PM

    You did it once. You can do it again! Best of luck to you. Keep up the good work! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LPAOLI 3/4/2011 4:42PM

    Congratulations, I am impressed!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALASKAPSYCH 3/4/2011 3:57PM

    Good for you! I need to know that one day, I will be shocked by my own body. Thank you.

Report Inappropriate Comment
CHRYSTALD3 3/4/2011 3:31PM

  This was inspiring! Thank you so much for sharing!

Report Inappropriate Comment
46SHADOW 3/4/2011 2:01PM

    So cool!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BIONICMONARCH 3/4/2011 2:00PM

    I've been struggling with this very thing! When I talk about my weightloss and how I'm still going with friends they comment "anymore and you'll dissapear" but to me I still feel like I looked 40 pounds ago.

Report Inappropriate Comment
UTSKI7 3/4/2011 11:58AM

    Great work! Super inspirational!

Report Inappropriate Comment
EMMYLUROSE 3/4/2011 11:25AM

    emoticonThank you for your uplifting story!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GRNBTL 3/4/2011 9:02AM

  Keep Going...you got this, girl : )

Report Inappropriate Comment
THENEWFRIVLAS 3/4/2011 4:04AM

    What a fabulous attitude! Thanks for sharing your story.

Report Inappropriate Comment
CM_GARDNER78 3/4/2011 12:00AM

    Awesome!! This is fantastic!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KRAWRS 3/3/2011 11:51PM

    This was an AMAZING blog. Loved it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
NATNAT8465 3/3/2011 10:43PM

  Amazing! Congratulations!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KRISTI2661 3/3/2011 9:25PM

    Congrats. You are so right - you can do this, you've done it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
JENN03275 3/3/2011 7:45PM

    Congratulations on your accomplishment and being able to love yourself and your new body! We, women in general, are do hard on ourselves. Keep up the good work and keep looking in those mirrors!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ADVENTURE-GIRL 3/3/2011 7:02PM

    AWESOME!! I can totally relate to this, avoiding mirrors and photos. Now I can look at myself in the mirror and feel proud. Also, my husband does that he picks me up all the time now :D

Report Inappropriate Comment
GIANTMICROBE 3/3/2011 6:03PM

    I love that last line... "If I did it once I can do it again." AWESOME. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SCAZARES39 3/3/2011 4:44PM

    Thank you for sharing! I love the blog.. it is amazing how our bodies change when we work really hard... Good job! keep up the hard work, you are worth it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GRAMPIAN 3/3/2011 4:41PM

  Well done! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
ADDYSGETTINFIT 3/3/2011 4:11PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Love it!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CAROL5250 3/3/2011 4:03PM

    Great job! Keep it up! You are an inspiration. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LADYBIRD82 3/3/2011 3:17PM

    Loved the blog. Keep up the good work, you will achieve your goal! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
APRILE74 3/3/2011 2:44PM

    Thanks for sharing this blog post today.. I enjoyed it and found it very inspirational! Good for you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BAILYM 3/3/2011 2:43PM

    Wow, congrats, this is soooo inspiring!! I am slowing starting to love what I see in the mirror. Keep it up!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DARCI_1 3/3/2011 2:26PM

    wow, congrats on all you have accomplished! Your story is so inspiring, thank you for sharing.

Report Inappropriate Comment
GVILORIA1 3/3/2011 2:22PM

    Hello!

I want to congratulate you no only for loosing the weight, but for such inspirational blog you post.
I have read them and the way you right them really touch me and inspire me to keep up and continue my journey..So congratulation again and keep loosing,and keep inspiring us with your wonderful post... emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
READYTOLOSE70 3/3/2011 1:46PM

  Thank you for sharing this! It was so inspiring! Keep up the amazing work! :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
LALA0123 3/3/2011 12:38PM

    emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment


Rookie Running W2 D3 and response to my last blog

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Today was the last day of week 2-A, my personal modification of the plan to run 90 second intervals. I felt AWESOME! Today was my first day I really felt like I am a runner. There is something about running that connects me to my body in a way that is totally unlike anything else. I think it is freedom from a machine. I can rock that elliptical but with running it is just me fighting against myself and it is intoxicating. The way I feel as I push through the difficult parts. The self satisfaction when I finish. This is what it is all about. Today was the first day I had NO PAIN of any kind in my legs and feet. Well tired pain in a good way but no aches and pains. My feet and ankles felt strong. I did my strength training and abs as well as a good stretch after. I have finally admitted I am over 30 and need to really stretch. I think my pride was allowing to be a short half ass stretch before and I have accepted I need to do it a lot now. I ordered a foam roller at the suggestion of PELESJEWEL. Look it up on here if you haven't heard of it. There is a great video by SP Coach Nicole. I can't wait for it to arrive!

Onto my last blog. I am completely shocked by the response. It is funny how sometimes I write one that I feel is so deep and will be well received and I put a lot of effort into it and it kind of flops. Then I write something rather quickly purely based on emotion that I don't think anyone will care about and people love it. The responses I got made me think a lot. For the most part people really got my point. A few didn't. Just because I miss a friend it doesn't mean I was going to quit SP or stop caring. Nothing and no one is going to take me off course. Many people had stepped away themselves and had great reflections on it which made me happy. I love when I can make anyone think emoticon. There were some who seemed to think I didn't understand it. Yes, I do get it. When my grandmother died in November I took a brief break after telling everyone on here. I did read all the amazing messages people sent me everyday and it is what kept me on course through it all. It was the love that I got on here that allowed me to accept I needed to straighten out and get back to it. It meant a lot to me that so many people expressed such love for their sparkfriends. This is a truly unique community. I have always left sites in the past because of the negativity and SP is mostly free of that kind of behavior. I love that we respect each other. Thank you all for the amazing response. It really touched me.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AGCUNNIN 3/1/2011 10:48PM

    I made the decision days ago that I was going to sign up for a 5K in May with my friend/coworker, Rick. The C25K plan is printed and ready to go. When I look ahead and see "Jog 18 minutes" it makes me pretty darn nervous. I have never run in my life, but that makes it all the more a worthy goal.

Good luck to you! I'm glad that you're enjoying it. I hope to be right behind you.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALOFA0509 3/1/2011 5:44PM

   
Running is soo mental,, I'm gearing up for my run tonight and I'm pretty excited.. I need to release some aggression, and nothing does that better then running. I love how your run was pain free!!! love that-- Oh and I'm awaiting my roller too!! Pele told me abt the AXIS,, I got the black one!! I cant wait, since hubby bought me a swimming noodle the first time around.. Dork! Uugghh- lol

Keep up the GR8 wrk!! Hugs 2U sista

Report Inappropriate Comment
MOUNTAINKATIE 3/1/2011 12:33PM

    I agree, spark is a fantastic tool, in large part from all the support and others who are going through the same thing as you are, weather they are ahead or behind you on their path. I love to help others, and give support. When I am feeling down or weak, Someone is always there to give me kind supportive words.
I am so happy for you with your first pain free run! I wish I could really run. I had back surgery and will never be able to stand the impact, but when I am on the elliptical I close my eyes and picture myself running through the forest. It feels so good! Congratulations!
!Katie

Report Inappropriate Comment
TURTLEMOMMA1 2/28/2011 6:32PM

  Way to go on the running! I finished the C25K program last year and loved it! I love that it's making you feel so accomplished! Keep up the good work.

Report Inappropriate Comment
RIGBY31 2/28/2011 5:58PM

    No pain?! My biggest fear. You have just torn down my biggest hurdle. I am going for it.
emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
PRETTYLILHEFFER 2/28/2011 3:33PM

    Woo hoo on no pain! I love reading your blogs, giving me some serious inspiration! Love your attitude!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SEESTARS 2/28/2011 3:09PM

    Glad to hear you had your first pain free run. Very exciting!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KAMAPERRY 2/28/2011 2:29PM

    Congrats!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TRACEEAST 2/28/2011 2:24PM

    I hope to start running sometime. You are very motivating to me!

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CHRISTINECAN 2/28/2011 1:13PM

    I went through C25K at nearly 60, and the feelings I felt sound just like yours. I really hate the word empowering but that is exactly what the program did for me. Over the course of many diets, I have never felt like a thin person no matter what weight I achieved. This time, however, I feel like a fit person and a runner, and that is so much better for me. I have a healthy identity that I believe in.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ERIKA05 2/28/2011 1:06PM

    Sing it! I read this post right after the one on friends leaving Spark, and found it resonated all the more. There are a million valid and important reasons to step away from focusing on health and lifestyle, but it's such a wonderful thing to have people around you to pull you back into the fold.

A couple of years ago, I took a few months off work, off excercising, off LIFE, really, to look after someone I loved dearly during her final illness. People were very understanding about my withdrawal from the world, but once things had reached their inevitable conclusion, many of my friends seemed so intent on giving me my space that it felt like space and distance were all I had. Finally, after I had spent about a month holed up in the house grieving and avoiding the world, my best friend came over, chucked a pair of brand new runners at me and said "Lace up, jacka$$, you can't live on the couch for the rest of your life." In a 10-year friendship, it was one of the nicest things she's ever done for me.

And after all, that's why we let people in, isn't it? So that we can pick each other up. So that we have an anchor to bring us back when we lose sight of our course. Because sometimes someone else will know what you need better than you will, and will care enough to show you what that is.

Report Inappropriate Comment
PELESJEWEL 2/28/2011 11:56AM

    emoticon Isn't it amazing how your last blog did illicit so many reactions! I love it! I see it also brought your MIA back to Sparking and that my dear is powerful!

emoticon I so enjoy reading your running blogs and blogs of other runners too. The running journey is a journey of connection. Without connecting to the YOU that believes you can do this, it is or can be a struggle, between the mental & the physcial.

BTW, did you see that Alofa asked her husband to buy her a roller and he came home with one of those noodle floaties?!!

Comment edited on: 2/28/2011 12:09:31 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
NOT_BIG_BONED 2/28/2011 11:51AM

    That made me so happy reading that you are feeling like a runner. It makes you feel so strong and proud knowing that you are running a little more each day huh? Good for you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
WORTHEYMOM 2/28/2011 11:44AM

    exactly! I can't wait for the weather to get better in IL too! Running is my stress release! working out is good, but running is better for me. No one can call, email, text me when I am running. Its just me and the road! I love it and miss something extraordinary! Just signed up for my 1st 5K of the year on March 19th! Time to get my feet moving!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KIRANICSMOM 2/28/2011 11:22AM

    I love the C25K program. At 39 last year, I completed the program and went from not running for 20 years to running six 5K, a 10 miler and walking a 1/2 marathon (my running partner was injured so we decided to walk it together)

When I am running I am just able to forget about everything else except running...it is such a huge stress reliever for me. I can't wait till the snow and ice are gone in Illinois so I can get back on the road!

Good luck and keep up the great work! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
RUNTRILAUGH 2/28/2011 10:31AM

    Congrats RUNNER GIRL!!!! I agree with you on this site! There are a few that "don't get it" but mostly its a wonderful group!

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
HANNAH_CALM 2/28/2011 4:52AM

    Congratulations on running, free of pain!!! That sounds like true independence, and you deserve it for all your hard work!!!! I remember running a lot in grade school, and I really loved it then. Now, it's very hard for me, because of my asthma. But I want to be that runner again, and every so often I try again.

Also, I don't think I was able to comment on your last blog, but I think you're right. People here are real, even though we're in the cyber-world, using pixels and a standard font to communicate. I like that you told us what you were going through when your grandmother died, and it didn't just get all quiet on your end. That was very considerate of you!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHLOW 2/28/2011 3:33AM

    allright for painless running (well, as painless as it can be).

Report Inappropriate Comment
ROCKMAN6797 2/28/2011 12:36AM

    Very cool news with regards to your running experience. Wait till you actually run outside! The scenery and the little things you encounter will be amazing!
Congratulations Ashley, I am so happy for you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
RAVENSONG37 2/28/2011 12:11AM

    Love that you're a runner now!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DUSTYGIRL25 2/27/2011 11:53PM

    Good for you for "going for it" with running. I'm happy that you really like it and that it makes you feel good. It takes a lot of stamina to be a runner and I'm sure you'll do great things for yourself with it.

emoticon You emoticon Me

Report Inappropriate Comment
NANHBH 2/27/2011 10:39PM

    Ash,

I love the way you describe running as a way to connect to your body. I wish I could experience that - but running is not in my near future! Gotta get these toes healed first! Keep up the good work.
emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
REM-CYCLES 2/27/2011 10:30PM

    Ashley - great discipline in your running - sounds like you're making some great progress and strength in running :)

I too am finding I have to stretch more after long-endurance cycling (or actually, cycling in general). I used to run serious cross-country a lifetime ago, at one time, I ran about 12 miles a day 5 times a week. I remember having to stretch a lot.

I've found sparkpeople folks to be really supportive, but I did have to lock down my page after someone out of the blue said some uncalled for things. However, overwhelmingly, the people here rock - like you and our MIH team.

Have a great week - your dedication is surely paying off

RJ

Report Inappropriate Comment
AMANDA_AGAIN 2/27/2011 10:08PM

    I just finished my run too! And I'm 29 (almost not quite 30), but I LOVE stretching. I get to breathe and re-connect my mind to the "real world" before jumping back into family stuff and chores and whatever.

Report Inappropriate Comment


Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

When sparkfriends disappear

Friday, February 25, 2011

As I get farther along in my journey on SP I have found that there seems to be stages to this just as there are in life. Interest and dedication increases and decreases. New friends come daily and old friends, well some just disappear. Never to be seen again. I read a blog once in which the person stated. "Well these are internet friends, it is not like they are real or anything." That statement really annoyed me. I don't spend a good portion of time a day supporting people I don't consider "real". My best friend on here just faded away and I have to be honest, I am very sad and very hurt. When I share myself with people it is genuine and real. I do care. I think about their struggles even after I have read their blogs. I do my best to send support their way whenever possible. It is hard for me to open up and trust people and I was really sad.
Just yesterday I was looking through my friends for people who had gone MIA and one in particular stood out. I was just about to click on her page but got distracted and had to deal with something. Today her page is gone. Poof, just like that. Maybe it is shame? Maybe they just don't care? I don't know but to me if I was going to leave for good, I guess I would say goodbye. Acknowledge the friends I had made and all of their support and sacrifice. Yes, this is a personal journey but it is a lonely one without support. The farther I get along the more people I will lose. How many people give in and give up? Lots I suppose.
So I had to say to the friends who are still sticking in this with me. I appreciate and care about each of you. I care about what you are going through and just because we haven't met doesn't mean you aren't a real person to me. We can do this together.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SIMPLE_TAILOR 3/17/2011 2:28PM

    I agree that all of my spark friends are valuable to me. I know that most of my prayer book is filled with requests from Sparkland.

Report Inappropriate Comment
BADASSBLONDIE 3/9/2011 7:12PM

    I really appreciate this blog. Since I've moved across the country, I have most of my friends online. I've been this way for awhile, actually, using livejournal and such to find people and gain long lasting friendships. And for people to act like that's not real.... big pet peeve. *hugs*

Report Inappropriate Comment
LINDAMARIEZ1 3/6/2011 8:03PM

    I had 2 friends disappear as well! It hurt me as I valued their friendship! I must say; I am scared that it will happen again! Some are here for the friendship not just the weight loss! I must say that I am a bit jealous that they can keep the 2 separate! They are not losing soooo pfoof they leave! with me you have a friend for life (if you want it) linda

Report Inappropriate Comment
NOW2DAY 3/5/2011 2:42PM

    I agree. One spark friend changed her name but did'nt clear out the old one. I miss them.

Report Inappropriate Comment
PEWTERBUNNY 3/5/2011 1:11AM

    Than you for putting this into words for us. I've had this happen with a few of my closer SP friends and it's too bad that they don't say goodbye. Maybe SP should have an ettiquite section to read when we first join?

Report Inappropriate Comment
CATHIMOMMY 3/4/2011 1:10PM

    Here for you....and I am in this for the long haul. My clothes are falling off and my ticker doesn't budge, but I am way healthier than when I began....and so are you!

Can't wait to run a 10K or my second half marathon and meet up with Sparkbuddies....makes it even more exciting!

Hugs, and happy weekend!
Cathimommy

Report Inappropriate Comment
MADABOUTCATS 3/4/2011 12:19PM

    I have to admit to sometimes being a disappearing friend myself. I've been on SP quite a while now and have gone AWOL a few times. Mainly it's because I get down on myself for not being perfect, and then am embarrassed to admit I've failed. One of the things I've finally learned along this journey is to forgive myself. Perhaps some of your lost friends are dealing with issues like that. I have depression, and sometimes I can get into a pit so deep it's hard to dig myself back out. I too have lost Sparkfriends whom I really miss. I've emailed them without answer, and it does hurt. A couple of my lost friends have returned briefly only to leave again. This lifestyle change is hard business and we all deal with it in our own ways. Try to take comfort in the Sparkfriends who are still here. From my experience, most people here don't think of our online friends as "only internet friends." We truly care for one another. Just reach out and someone will be there for you. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
MSHUFFNPUFFN 3/4/2011 2:03AM

    I am sorry that you're missing your friends. I know how that feels. I have been on SP for less than a year and have noticed that some of the friends that I have made have gone MIA. I agree with you that a 'goodbye' would be nice, if it is at all possible. Because, you can't help but worry about them and wonder why they no longer post or no longer have a link that is accessible.

I try not to think the worst case scenario. I also try not to get annoyed because, I know that life happens and you have to prioritize. For my own peace of mind, I remember them in prayer. My hope is that no matter what challenges they may be facing, they'll make it through them okay to the other side.

Sometimes, even after praying for them, I am still left with feelings of frustration by the fact that this was my only connection to these folks that I had come to care about, a lot. When I realize that I've done all that I can do,I try to make myself accept this as the closure that I need.

In the meantime, I wonder....

What if there was a 'Lost and Found SparkFriends' page or team? --Or-- Can you email SparkGuy and ask him if he's heard anything from or about your missing buddy. Would that be too much to ask or would it be considered prying?

Hmmm... ?

Let's all try to keep positive thoughts about these forever friends.


emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
100LBLIGHTER 3/4/2011 1:57AM

    When I first started here on Spark People I was scarred to death...I knew nothing about a computer and I sure did not know about blogging or anything else for that matter. One of the first people who took me under her wing was, DLBROWNJACKSON ....she and I hit-it-off from the start. I knew she was having trouble with her computer...then on day she had cleared out her goodie points...gave me a treadmill with them and said goodbye. I missed her so much...I still have her name on my friends list.and the goodies she gave me are still in my box. I still miss her. I would never have believed that people could touch each others heart by clicking a few keys but they do. I lost another good friend on here and I go back and read messages they have sent and remember how they touched my life. My friends are real weather I ever see them.

Report Inappropriate Comment
GJERSEYGIRL 3/4/2011 12:21AM

    I've only been on SparkPeople for a couple of months, but I've been reluctant to even make Spark friends in the first place for fear that I'll be an AWOL friend. I have a hard time maintaining relationships with my family and friends in my daily life.

It's hard for me to develop the social aspect of SparkPeople. I've had concerns about getting too "sucked in" on SparkPeople, i.e., have it begin to become all-consuming and require more time to be a real friend than I can give. There are only so many hours in the day, especially with working full time, busy teenagers and a just generally a hectic life much of the time. Maybe there are sparkpeople who get into that same situation that I'm fearing and decide it's too much to maintain.

I feel sad for you that your friend vanished though. I, too, would say goodbye rather than just deleting my page (if I had any close SparkFriends). Not everyone is able to stick with it long-term. Probably the majority don't. So, I can understand your reluctance to trust now.

Hang in there!

emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/4/2011 12:23:22 AM

Report Inappropriate Comment
JOYCERN12 3/4/2011 12:16AM

    emoticonI'M LOVING SP AND HOPE I KEEP IT UP. IT IS TIME CONSUMING SOMETIMES BUT ALL THINGS IN LIFE WORTH HAVING ARE WORTH WORKING FOR RIGHT?JOYCE

Report Inappropriate Comment
JIMDAB 3/4/2011 12:14AM

    Thank you for sharing that. I have a tendency to get discouraged and "drop out" from time to time. When I do that I hear about it from my Spark buddies via email notices that I have sparkmail from them. This and appreciation of our relationships have actually inspired me to get back on track.

My spark friends are from many walks of life, sex, age, race, religion, political ideation, and interests--folks I would not have met any other way. I feel closer to some of these "virtual" friends than to many of my "real" ones.

One of the reasons I slack off on my sparking is that it I strongly feel that honesty is very important with the folks I like and respect and am embarrassed when I fall flat on my face. But the truth of the matter is that in every instance all I get is understanding and support from them. So...

I too have felt hurt when someone I have invested a lot of time and heart into just disappears. I console myself remembering that they were doing what they felt they had to do--whatever the reason, they were doing the best they could and it is no reflection on me or our relationship. And who knows, one day when they have it more together they may remember and return. It was great while it lasted.

Report Inappropriate Comment
KRAWRS 3/3/2011 11:48PM

    I get annoyed at disappearing friends too. I haven't been incredibly present lately, but I'm still here! ((hugs))

Report Inappropriate Comment
FITMOMOF7 3/3/2011 10:31PM

    you are a sweetie!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KITTYF54 3/3/2011 9:57PM

    This is an important issue with me as well. I know some people delete their old page and come back with a new name for varying reasons, maybe your friend will come back some time. I hope so for your sake. Remember, just as you cared about her, others here care about you. Kitty

Report Inappropriate Comment
MOTIVATIONFOUND 3/3/2011 6:58PM

    My SparkFriends are some of the most important people in my life. They are instrumental in the success I have had here on SP. In fact, there are some that I honestly couldn't stand to lose. They are definitely "real." I couldn't agree with you more.

Report Inappropriate Comment
NIKKIG3 3/3/2011 6:52PM

    You do bring up some valid points and yes I hate losing friends as anyone else. But sometimes people have things in their lives that force them to "disappear".

I just had a friend that I have not talked to in over a year contact me recently and when she told me what had happened to her it made me realize that it had nothing to do with me.

Report Inappropriate Comment
BABYGURLJRL 3/3/2011 6:29PM

    I just want to remind people that sometimes when people disappear, it is beyond their control. I am not saying that there aren't people who just don't really care or are not committed, but if someone is around everyday and very active on a website and then they just vanish, there is probably more to it then meets the eye. I was very close with several people on a few blogs that i frequented, and then one morning I went to log on as usual and I couldn't. Well come to find out that my internet was disconnected without warning suddenly due to financial trouble, and I simply did not have the necessary payment to get it reconnected right away. I felt so detached from the world for that month or so, and I did not have access to another computer so I simply disappeared. When I finally was able to get it hooked back up almost a month later, my inbox ws flooded with questions and comments from my internet friends, some of which weren't too nice. So the point is, do not assume that because someone disappears that they are being ignorant or don't value your friendship or have "given up" or cannot commit, because many of those times, it is for reasons beyond their control, whether it be financial, or a family emergency or they are going through a hard time, just send them a little note in their inbox, do NOT flood it with questions and accusations about why they left, which will only make them feel worse about an already difficult time. More then likely once things get straightened out, if they truly do value you as a friend, you will hear from them again in the near future and they will have a very good reason for their absence. So please, try not to jump to any conclusions if you do not know the full story:)

Report Inappropriate Comment
LISA1101 3/3/2011 6:04PM

    I agree that the people on SP are friends to me and people that I rely on to support me and vice versa. I write blogs and get 1 person's response. Why make the effort? But I do and I keep going because then there are people like you!! emoticon I think I am going to take someone else's idea and weed out my friends list. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
NIELSENSLADY 3/3/2011 5:25PM

    I wrote a blog just like this a couple weeks ago. I don't get much response as you did because half my friends are gone. I guess life gets in the way. Even successful sparkers are taking breaks. I'm here but I get disappointed because I don't get much feedback except from one or two people. Usually the same people each time but I'm happy they've been there for me.

I don't know. I haven't been very inspired myself lately and have seen myself slowly backing away but today I've read some of the best blogs of women who are fighting for their lives.....They are happy and thankful and they keep fighting despite hardships. It just puts things in perspective. I wanna try again. I wanna pick up again where I left off.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SUGARBEHONEYPIE 3/3/2011 5:16PM

    Great Blog! I agree totally. I'm a "fairly newbie" here, but made REAL friends on another internet venue, and to this day (8 years later) a few of us still telephone each other, send REAL Birthday cards in the mail, etc. Of course we didn't share personal information publicly or until we knew each other really well (as in exchange telephone number etc) I think we all knew each other over a year before we went there. Anyway, every single person who posts is indeed real. The people who refer to "real life" just slay me too. If sitting at the computer reading and writing isn't REAL LIFE then I guess they must be comatose LOL. You seem like a very caring person. Best success to you on your journey now and for all time~ emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
INTHELOOP 3/3/2011 4:11PM

    I sometime read the old message boards and feel encouraged by the energy of a member and then look for the sparkpage - only to find her "poof" gone. I guess it's hard to admit when you don't make a goal -

I guess I'll just assume they are conquering their goal in another way - or off on a beach somewhere...in a two piece! :-)

Great Thoughts in your blog!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
2BEHEALTHYAGAIN 3/3/2011 2:06PM

    Awesome blog! I know exactly what you mean. I went through and "weeded out" my SparkFriends list recently. (If there hadn't been any communication or activity on their page in 200 days or more) Maybe it's not the way to feel, but I want to give my goodies, support and encouragement to those who are with me on this journey and who support and encourage me.



Report Inappropriate Comment
CHRISSTAMPER 3/3/2011 2:04PM

  Amen to that! emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FARFROMASAINT 3/3/2011 2:03PM

    emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
GINA7249 3/3/2011 2:01PM

    It may not be there fault. Sometimes the account gets deleted. My mom somehow that happened too.

Report Inappropriate Comment
AUNTKITTY 3/3/2011 1:31PM

    A few years ago, I did WW online - had a GREAT group of supportive friends, and they all withered away . . . and it HURT so badly. So I get what you're saying. Truthfully, I've avoided a lot of contact on SP because I don't want that hurt again. But I'm glad you have a support group. (and I love your background picture, BTW)

Report Inappropriate Comment
AMANDADAY63 3/3/2011 12:34PM

    Ashley
You hit the nail right on the head with your well-written comments...in my Sparks journey i would have failed had it not been for some pretty special people along the way who believed in me, encouraged me, and set me straight when i needed it....my Spark friends are more real in many ways than people i mingle with on a daily or weekly basis in my everyday life...I hope you can meet many more special people during your Sparks journey and they continue to be a support and connection for you as you work towards, and maintain, your goals...
Have a beautiful, friend-filled day...
Amanda

Report Inappropriate Comment
CMCMATH 3/3/2011 12:11PM

    This is a wonderful post. Thank you for sharing! I agree with you completely. I don't support people who aren't "real friends" as well. Thank you for so eloquently writing down what a lot of us feel.

Report Inappropriate Comment
HOBBETTES_MOMMY 3/3/2011 11:39AM

    Thank you for this awesome post! It means so much to me when my sparkfriends encourage me on this journey and no it's not easy!!!! And Yes we ARE real people!

My beautiful seven year old was on my computer and spilled 7-up all over it. So for several weeks, I had no access to the Sparkworld, while I worked on saving the money for a new computer.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
TIMS4FISHING 3/3/2011 11:27AM

    Very well put. It happens all the time unfortunately. But on the plus side, there are friends here that will remain friends for good. Some you may get to meet, some you may not. Either way, they are real, and they are true, and they support you in your struggles, and they cheer for you when you've done good. They are friends.

Report Inappropriate Comment
THE_BLUE_CRAB 3/3/2011 11:23AM

  I feel the same way. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FLUFFYFLOUNDER 3/3/2011 11:19AM

    emoticon very well said! I too feel this is very real!

Report Inappropriate Comment
FLUFFYFLOUNDER 3/3/2011 11:19AM

    emoticon very well said! I too feel this is very real!

Report Inappropriate Comment
FLUFFYFLOUNDER 3/3/2011 11:17AM

    emoticon very well said! I too feel this is very real!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ELENA_DIEM 3/3/2011 11:12AM

    I have experienced this too and it's strange when you feel like you're just left "hanging" without knowing "why". A site like this really brings people together in a unique way, with common goals, and an overall sense of really positive motivation. To lose a piece of the puzzle is sad. It is certainly real, and worth the time to say "bye".

emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FIERCESTCALM 3/3/2011 11:10AM

    well said!

Report Inappropriate Comment
JGROVE23 3/3/2011 10:48AM

    Fabulous and well said!

Someone once said: You get out of it what you put into it. Although, I must disagree: I get SO MUCH MORE out of this than I put in.

I am encouraged by this - and if I find myself starting to "drift," I will remember your words.

Thank you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
RSWIFE 3/3/2011 8:29AM

    I can relate to your feelings. I too have been wondering what happened to a great sparkfriend. I am shocked by her disappearance because she was so focused and so motivating. I really miss her. I can only send messages and hope she is okay and will return. As for me, I will be here sparking and moving along. Thanks to all those that are right here with me.

Report Inappropriate Comment
7WORSHIPS 3/3/2011 8:04AM

  You definitely touched a nerve here. One of the very first persons to make an impact on me when I joined sparkpeople just disappeared into thin air three or four months ago. Because she was suffering from numerous health issues, I cannot help but be worried about her. Her page is still active and I sometimes send an e-mail to let her know I am thinking about her and praying for her. But you are so right - it is difficult when friends just disappear with no warning. emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CJPJHM 3/3/2011 7:59AM

    I totally agree with this blog and I feel the same way. Are we wrong to think of Spark Friends as "real friends," or are they just internet friends as my SIL calls them--she says they are "pen pals" but I disagree. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
MALVYN 3/3/2011 3:29AM

    Perhaps they don't say good bye because they hope to return someday? If they had to formally say good bye they would be putting in writing that they were giving up. That's something not a lot of people face face. I'm sorry you lost your friend. I'm sure your journey will hold many more.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ROZZALYN 3/3/2011 2:18AM

    WOW...you have said everything that I have often thought...but couldn't express! I take things so personally, because I care. It is so disappointing to be the only person to look at your own sparkpage. I am inspired by your sensitivity. Thank you for this very touching blog.

emoticon emoticon

Roz

Report Inappropriate Comment
EGGBASKET1 3/3/2011 12:52AM

    I AGREE, MY SPARKFRIENDS ARE REAL !!! I HOPE WE CAN STAY CLOSE AND AT LEAST CHECK IN OFTEN. I AM DUE TO HAVE HEART SURGERY AND GOD FORBID IF SOMETHING SHOULD HAPPEN I HOPE THEY KNOW THAT WOULD BE THE ONLY WAY I WOULD NOT STAY IN TOUCH. HERE'S TO GREAT SPARK FRIENDSHIPS !!!! HAVE A GREAT DAY...EVERY DAY !!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
AJM1997 3/2/2011 10:54PM

    I was very involved when I first started SP, and met a wonderful person, we grew very close. I dropped off SP, I just got busy with work, life, etc, but I didn't delete my page or anything. Months passed and when I finally logged back in, she had been supporting me via comments all along and I tried to contact her and couldn't click on her page. I was upset, I thought she deleted me. I couldn't find her. That was a few weeks ago, and then, this evening, while reading a blog, I noticed a familiar face on a profile picture...there she was. She's still here, and active, she just must have got a new profile. I have sent her a message and hope she replies b/c I sure have missed her. I am still not as involved as I was in the beginning. In the beginning I was obsessed, but my life has changed a lot since then and I just don't have the time to be on here like I used to. I still value every one of my sparkfriends though, because without them, these pounds would still be on me.. I only have 8 friends on here, so she and a few others were really all I had. I shouldn't have left, I should have at least checked in, and I didn't. I regret that now, but I can't change it. Good Luck to you hun. emoticon

Comment edited on: 3/2/2011 10:58:47 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
TGRSBIGPAPA 3/2/2011 10:47PM

  :(

Comment edited on: 3/2/2011 10:50:20 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
PONYFARMER 3/2/2011 10:17PM

    I so agree with you on this subject and yes it has happened to me, more than once. Your right, I invest my time on SP and in the people who I become close to and to have them just "go away" or worse, just never come on but still have a page, WHAT IS THE POINT??

I guess all we can do is to love them and let them go, but it is hurtful and leaves an empty space in your heart.

Report Inappropriate Comment
BECKYAD 3/2/2011 9:56PM

    WOW...I just seen your blog from someone else's feed...Holy Cow...Very touching and sooo true...I once started to fade away from Spark People but,I honestly have to say...Because of some of my Spark friends...I didn't go for to long...They still showed intrest in me and my journey and that ment alot to me...My Spark friends are AmAzInG! They give me sooo much strength, motivation and inspiration...

Becky

Report Inappropriate Comment
RUNNINGOLLIE 3/2/2011 9:23PM

    I think the support here on Sparkpeople is what really makes it work so well. While some friends here seem geographically far away they are all right beside us as we tackle the same struggles. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CHERRYJONES66 3/2/2011 9:22PM

  I am with you again on this one. You are very right. It is sad.
Urgh.

Cherry

Report Inappropriate Comment


First Page  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 Last Page