IMIN2GENES   79,993
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IMIN2GENES's Recent Blog Entries

Sharing an insight...

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Friends on one of the teams I'm on (One for All) posted an interesting article today that I thought I'd share. It's about artificial sweeteners "Sweeteners Trick More Than Just Your Tastebuds" - here's the link:

I think it's worth sharing. It also reminded me of a personal experience which I think is worth sharing too.

There came a time when I noticed I was getting hungry all the time. It sort of happened slowly. So, I started thinking about it. That's when I realized what happened.

In trying to limit calories, I switched my 1 sugar packet in my morning coffee to 1 Splenda packet. Next thing I realized, I had upped it to 2 packets in the coffee and 1 packet in to my greek yogurt in the morning. Hmm... All of a sudden I realized how much I was using. At one point, I was using as much as 5 packets a day. I was using more Splenda than I had been using sugar and adding it to more things - like yogurt and applesauce.

So, I went cold turkey and stopped using Splenda. I didn't avoid foods that had Splenda in them; I just stopped adding it to things. I had some issues for the first few days with headaches; but once I got over those the constant hunger went away. I haven't added it to anything since.

Just some food for thought... it might not effect everyone the same way; but the more I learn the more I'm just going back to limited amounts of real food - like raw sugar - rather than "calorie empty" artificial or processed things.

Just trying to keep it real...

Hope y'all are having a great week! Happy hump day to you!!


What is a blog?

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

I was pondering this question...

I'm always curious. Why do some blogs get selected as "Featured" or "Popular"? Why do some get noticed and others not? What makes a good blog?

That when I realized that it just doesn't matter...

I'm not writing a blog to move mountains. I don't have all the answers for anyone. Heck I'm lucky if I can find an answer for myself sometimes...
I don't need to write a blog so eloquent that the sky opens up, the sun shines on me and the angels sing a chorus. I need to write a blog to help me on my journey.

After all, as much as I need and appreciate all the support I've found here; it's still my journey.

*I need to write to be honest.
*I need to write to be accountable.
*I need to write to document my journey - the good, the bad, the ugly, the happy, the sad... you get the idea.
*I need to write for ME.

Nothing about it will be perfect. I will stumble, I will fall, I WILL get back up and I WILL persevere.

It's okay to judge. I'm only expressing my opinions... and those are part of my journey too. I always feel like I have to have something important to say in order to blog. But really, that's just not true. Looking back over my journey so far, I realized that I've been most successful when I journal daily. Even if it's only posting a motivational quote, something silly or something serious. I think it boils down to being present in the moment and staying focused.

I haven't worked out all the kinks in my journey yet. I've had some new stumbling blocks thrown in my path; but as always, I'm educating myself, making the best choices I can and moving forward. Sometimes I beat myself up going over the mistakes of the past or dwell too long on what has happened before; but that's just not going to help. What's done is done.

So, my new goal is going to be:
1. to get help to set up a modified fitness program
2. to focus on what I can do
3. to let go of the past
4. to keep up with the clean eating
5. to continue tracking EVERYTHING
6. to blog daily again (or at least as close to daily as I can)

Okay, so that's a lot of goals. I like a good challenge though!
So, I hope you'll stick with me. Some of you have become good friends and I don't know what I'd do without your support.

Feel free to tag along on my journey. Maybe I'll be able to share something along the way that can help you. Maybe I'll be able to share some motivation. Maybe I'll even be able to share a laugh with you... in fact, I can probably guarantee that!

Thanks for reading and listening my friends! Hope your week is a spectacular one!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LASARRE 7/9/2014 2:02PM

    Awesome blog! I have thought the exact same things. Some days, when I have nothing of importance to write, I think I should still write to remind me of the fact that I am here and I have something to accomplish!

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ADRIENALINE 7/9/2014 1:51PM

    You are a smartie. Thanks for being my friend!

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BBONET 7/9/2014 10:58AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

You have said it all so eloquent! Count on my support and lots of luck on your journey!

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NEW-CAZ 7/9/2014 3:00AM

    Quite right, great blog Christine, take this journey for you and your future health and happiness emoticon emoticon

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SVELTEWARRIOR 7/8/2014 11:27PM

    I believe you nailed it my dear

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    In it to win it... right next to you - stay strong!


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WINDY01 7/8/2014 9:42PM

    emoticon emoticon
I think you are right on the money! I, too, am doing this for me, and anyone who comes along my path to encourage me is welcome. I am trying to be more of an active participant in the community of SP. I have been a member for a long time, and lost some weight at the beginning, and regained it all! So, I really need to do this for me.

Good luck on your journey! And thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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1CRAZYDOG 7/8/2014 8:20PM

    You've nailed it! It is all about doing it for YOU, documenting YOUR perception of your path, being accountable for YOU. All those things. And if by chance even one other person is pushed to think, BONUS POINTS!

Awesome work here.

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SQUIRRELMOMMA1 7/8/2014 8:17PM

    I used to wonder about those same things and then came to the same conclusion. It doesn't matter to me if my blog is picked because I'm only writing it for myself

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Little bit of a scare...

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

I realize I've been MIA for a little bit. Sorry about that!

First, I was trying desperately to clean out my closet and bedroom to make space for our new bed. Then we were trying to get ready for vacation last week.

We were supposed to leave for the beach 2 Sunday's ago (6/22). Notice I said supposed to leave...
Well, all was good on Thursday before our departure. I was wrapping things up at work so I wouldn't have anything to worry about over vacation. We were packing, I was gabbing with our neighbors, everything just like normal. That night, I woke up coughing badly. Not just coughing, I was coughing up fluid. I was worried; but not so much that I wanted to rush to the doc. Needless to say, I didn't sleep well, but I did get to sleep eventually.

When I woke up, I felt good enough that I decided to go to work. I had 2 more manuscripts to review before vacation. I didn't want to go without doing that. So off I went... I figured after I got done I'd swing by the docs office so I didn't have to go on vacation with a cold.

Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans...

Yeah... they never work out quite the way you planned.

By 9 am, I knew I was in trouble. I was able to get into the docs office at 11:30 am. I got myself to the office at 10:30 am. I figured it wasn't worth going home at that point anyway. The doc took one look at me and said "Oh boy"...

She took one quick listen and had the nurse in there with a nebulizer in seconds. My blood oxygen was down to 96 and I was in full distress. She said she's never heard me so bad. I've never quite felt so bad either. I was convinced I was drowning with an elephant on my chest. I don't think I was very coherent at that point...

She told me that she very nearly sent me to the hospital. As it was, she put me on bed rest for 2 days and told me not to travel. I tried to argue - she informed me that I am in fact an adult and can do what I want; but she strongly advised me to stay in bed. I was given a shot in my butt - steroids; inhaled steroids; really high dose antibiotics; a new emergency inhaler; my own personal nebulizer and orders to use it every 4 hours until I could come back in on Monday. Yes, even if it meant setting an alarm and getting up at night. Every 4 hours. Along with a stern talking to about waiting too long to come in to see her. I explained what happened - once I could breathe - and that's when she realized that this had happened before. She wasn't overly worried about the why just then, just that we get ahead of the problem.

So, first thing Monday I went back. Unofficially, I have been diagnosed as acute, reactive asthmatic. What the heck does that mean... well, according to my doc, I'm the easiest kind to treat because I'm either okay or I'm not. I won't require any kind of daily meds or anything like that. I am however; apparently the most dangerous kind because I'm either fine or full out in distress and the most likely to end up in the hospital or dead.
Yep, he really said that. Umm... thanks? No middle gear...

Imagine that...
I was given the all clear to leave for vacation that morning. However, I've been given some restrictions for a bit. I'm still pretty exhausted. Not being able to breathe is pretty rough! The good news is that the respiratory infection (which is what the doc thinks triggered the asthma attack) is under control. My airways are pretty clear at the moment. Next week I get to start weaning off of the inhaled steroids (~2 weeks). According to my docs, it will likely be August before I'm back to feeling "normal". I have an appointment middle of august for a full work-up on breathing. At that point, they're hoping to confirm their diagnosis based on my history and to identify the triggers. As long as I avoid triggers I should be okay.

I spent a little bit of time wallowing and being frustrated. Why me? I suck. What next... You know what I mean... Then I smacked myself upside my head. I mean really... it sucks, it hurts and I don't like it very much. But in reality, my health problems are all treatable. Things could be much worse.

Although... I think I'll have to shoot the doc if I hear the words "it's the least common..." one more time. I swear, all the things "wrong" with me have been "the least common (fill in the blank)". I suppose that just confirms my uniqueness!
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So, for now, I'm still using the nebulizer 2 - 3 times per day. I'm hoping to get down to only as needed. I've got some physical restrictions until my lungs heal. So my fitness numbers are down. I had a rough time on a flight of stairs today. It was my first day back at work, and I was struggling a little bit a lunch, so I took a treatment. Now that I'm home, I can feel it a little bit again, so I'll take 1 more as soon as I finish. I'll get it worked out! I know I can do it. It's just going to be a matter of educating myself, staying in touch with myself and watching for warning signs then avoiding triggers.

I didn't track last week. Mainly because I was pretty off kilter from the meds and being sick. I was more or less just eating when I felt hungry and sleeping. So this week, I'm back to tracking again. I'll have to work carefully to build back up to full workouts. I'm going to look into working with a trainer so that I'm less likely to overdo it but still make progress. It will be an extra cost; but I don't want to make myself worse or have more setbacks. In the end, I'm worth that investment.

I'll keep you all posted. I'm trying to play catch-up a little from being sick then on vacation; but you should see me around a bit more.

To all my Sparkfriends who have been checking on me... many, many thanks! I love you guys and your support means the world to me. Sorry I was so quiet for so long; but I really didn't have the energy for much of anything.

Hope you all are doing well! Take care of yourselves!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARDEG918 7/8/2014 10:02PM

    OMG Chris, as an asthma person myself, I know how scary that can be. Take care of yourself. Remember- steroids are my friend.....

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JAZZEJR 7/7/2014 5:34PM

    OMG -- What a scare! So glad you got a clear diagnosis though, and I hope by now you are feeling right as rain!

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ADRIENALINE 7/2/2014 3:44PM

    Not being being able to breathe has to be the scariest thing going. I'm so sorry that you have to go thru this. Especially, it was really unfortunate to have it all land right on your travel plans. But once you know your triggers it will definitely go better. Sounds like your doctor really knows what is going on. That is a real plus!

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GRACEOMALLEY 7/2/2014 2:04PM

    Oh My Goodness! That does not sound pleasant at all! So sorry you had to go through that, but at least you're on the mend now. Take care and continue to heal.
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BBONET 7/2/2014 1:13PM

    emoticon mm emoticon WOW! Gald to hear your doing better but what a scare. Take care of yourself and do listen to your body- sometimes we just want to push ourselves more than what we should! Have fun but be very careful and do follow your instincts!! emoticon m emoticon emoticon

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WILSONWR 7/2/2014 10:47AM

    It may have meant a late start on the vacation but at least you had it seen about! Take care of yourself and only do what you feel that you can do. You can be our "designated cheerleader" while you are recovering!

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EJOY-EVELYN 7/2/2014 9:19AM

    Yes, indeed ... you're worth the investment! Have a great summer, my friend.

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NEW-CAZ 7/2/2014 3:00AM

    Thank heaven you saw your doctor Chris, take care of yourself hun emoticon

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SVELTEWARRIOR 7/1/2014 11:16PM

    Wow!!!!!!!!!! I am so glad you went to the doctors!!!! Please listen to the doc and take care of yourself!!!!!!!!!

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RDEE22 7/1/2014 9:11PM

    Take care of YOU! emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 7/1/2014 8:48PM

    ((((HUGS)))) Glad you went to the Dr. and are taking care of yourself! Bummer, but better to know what's going on and take care of yourself. **SIGH**

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Still here, still streaking...

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Just really stressed out this week...
I've had better weeks and I've had worse, so I'm not complaining. So far, despite being stressed out, I haven't gone for the comfort foods and I haven't binged on anything. In fact, when I got home from work yesterday, I was starving. I had missed my late afternoon snack (planned in my menu) because of work. Instead of reaching for something "quick and easy", I had a plate of celery with a little bit of peanut butter.
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I'd say that's still moving in the right direction! I've also been in range or less than 100 calories over all week. That's definitely an improvement! Now I've just got to keep the ball rolling.

Hope you all are having a great week! Mine's been stressful but not all bad, so never fear.

Keep on Sparkin my friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 6/30/2014 12:33AM

    Hope you're keeping up your streak this week! That's a Healthy Habit jackpot for you and the summer challenge team.

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FLORIDASUN 6/21/2014 10:59AM

    Fantastic....I can identify to the stress you talk about...BOY can I.

Try a cashew nut butter...yum, yum, YUMMY!

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SICOSH 6/6/2014 2:10PM

    Keep it up, seems like you are psychologically in control now, and that is a big PLUS in order to loose or maintain your weight.

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NEW-CAZ 6/6/2014 2:42AM

    emoticon emoticon

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WIZKEY 6/6/2014 12:37AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SVELTEWARRIOR 6/5/2014 11:21PM

    You are doing great!!!! About the stress......... you know how to reach me......I am willing to listen

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LYNCHD05 6/5/2014 10:33PM

    Hope your weekend is stress free!!! You are doing great!!!!

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56ROSE 6/5/2014 10:28PM

    emoticon emoticon You are doing great! emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 6/5/2014 10:27PM

    Deep breaths. Sending peaceful vibes!

Hope tomorrow's a good day.

✲ 。* ✰ ˛★* 。 ✲。* ★ *˚。*。✰
This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man. *Shakespeare*
。˚★˚ 。
★ *˚ ✰ 。* ✲˚。✰* ˚。✰ * ˚ ✲。* ˚。

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WINDY01 6/5/2014 9:51PM

    Sorry to hear about your stress! Good job on staying in your range. Your snack sounds really good too!

Thanks for sharing!

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Food, food, food...

Monday, June 02, 2014

Still tracking... that's a 15 day streak!!
Some days are better than others. I'm in range more often than not which is good. It's just making me realize how out of whack I was after I stopped tracking. So, I've had a little bit of adjustment going on right now. And, DH & I are both working on changing habits. We're slowly eliminating the "junk" food around the house in favor of better quality foods. Things like rice for example, we're replacing the white with brown or wild. Sometimes we'll even get a little crazy and eat black rice or jasmine.
We're learning more and planning better. So, I'm hoping this is a trend we can keep going! It's easier when he's focusing on it too. He's a little bit bummed because he gained weight and his clothes are tight. I've noticed it's harder to stick with plans when your partner wants to eat fast food or too much food. But, for now, he's definitely interested in trying what I've been trying to con him in to trying. Although I don't think I'll ever win the war on tomatoes.
The "jelly" part creeps him out...

Tonight, we had shrimp with asparagus. The asparagus was fabulous! It only took about 30 minutes to prep too, so it fits in with our crazy schedule. Yay! I call that a win!

I've got a full week this week. It's mommy-daughter date night tomorrow, so you probably won't hear from me. It's always such a fun - but LONG - night!

Hope you are having a great week! Spark on my friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLORIDASUN 6/21/2014 10:57AM

    I LOVE black rice...heard about it on Dr. Oz...and it's now a big fav for the hubs and I! Too funny about tomatoes and your husband...I love to take cherry tomatoes and bath them in a little EVOO and then spice em up with garlic and fresh basil, dill, and rosemary, a little salt and pepper and throw them in the oven at 350 for about 20-25 minutes...fantastic over a pasta...I use gluten free brown rice variety. Easier on the digestion and not as many carbs. emoticon emoticon

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    Too cute. You wild and crazy rice eaters lol

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NEW-CAZ 6/3/2014 2:35AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 6/2/2014 9:45PM

    Glad you have "company" on the journey. That does make it easier.

I know too that it is so important to eat in proper portions and in range, and it's not always easy. But you're on the right path.

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