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Weekend Roundup~Pumpkin Patch, Neighborhood Cleanup and Snow!

Monday, October 25, 2010

This weekend started off with a bang! I left work and headed straight home to grab the girls and head to the pumpkin patch by our home. I had invited my sistser as this is an annual event (tradition) for our family. Rain had been predicted for the day. I was a little worried as we headed out that we would get the worst of it. As it turned out it was a balmy 65 degrees and the rain held off until later that night!
We have a great time at this particular pumpkin patch. It is close to home and they offer a variety of activities for a fair deal. First we hit the corn maze. It is a hoot with little halloween riddles placed throughout the maze. We enjoy following the path and getting thoroughtly lost. We we emerged from the corn, we are greeted by a barnyard of animals. Goats, bunnies, and a variety of fowl greet us in their cages. They are fun to look at! Next, the kids get a chance to run through a mini obstacle course on their way to the playgroud, the huge Pumpkin Slide, and the light alley ( think nonscary spook alley, very cute and with light displays to enjoy). As we leave the light alley we are greeted by the pumpkins ready for picking out and taking home. After spending several minutes picking just the perfect pumpkins I spy a deal on some fresh tomatoes. The last of the harvest and the gardens "seconds" for $3 a 1/2 bushell. The "seconds" are just not washed. I pick through them and determine it is well worth the $3. We can make salsa galour and have fresh tomaotes. My garden was planted a little late and I didn't really get much from it this year so I am thrilled with the "deal".
After finishing up at the Pumpkin patch we headed home for a quiet evening.
Saturday we had neighborhood cleanup. I love my neighborhood for this very reason. Everyone pitches in and does all the necessary yardwork that hasn't been done all summer or that needs attending before the fall weather gets too bad. All the men gather with the trucks and shovels and go from home to home and dig up old stumps, cut down trees or do some pruning and help get the junk out of the garage or basement. We usually get two industrial dumpsters from the city and have them filled within a few hours. We were able to get rid of some clutter and all the trash trees in our yard within an hour! It was fun to see all the neighbors helping each other out and cleaning up our neighborhood at the same time.
The rest of Saturday was filled with running errands and getting all the last minute items for Halloween costumes. Then the rain started to come down! I was so happy we had actually gotten everything done!
Sunday arrived way to early, as always. We made it to church, visited DH's mother, and made it home. For some reason Sunday is not always a day of rest for us. We started on a few projects which should have been short and sweet but ended up taking most of the day. I was in the middle of helping my daughter with a homework project when we noticed water all over the basement floor! and all of our pictures were sitting in a cardboard box in a few inches of water, YIKES!
We spent the rest of the afternoon trying to salvage the pictures which were all glued together. Thanks to my husbands expertise we were able to save almost all of the prints but our house had pictures laid out drying for hours. So off to find a quick dinner and early bed!
This morning I awoke to snow in the forecast! What happened to fall?
I did feel a sense of accomlishment,though. We did quite a bit of needed work around the house. It feels good to be on the right path even if the rest time was minimal. Maybe next weekend I will get a chance for some R&R! But what am I saying? Next weekend is Halloween!! Oh well, some day I will look back at all this and think those were the good 'ol days!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANG76H 11/1/2010 9:59PM

  Sounds like you had a great weekend! Sorry about the pics, good you able to salvage them. Your neighborhood sounds awesome! Thanks for the goodie!

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CHOESCH 10/26/2010 11:11AM

    I wish I had gotten more done in my yard this past weekend. I am feeling the crunch to get my garden cleaned out and everything ready for winter. It kind of snuck up on us this year. I guess it is like everything we need to be more aware so we can be prepared. The Pumpkin Patch sounds great - so much family fun! I'm so glad that you have a good neighborhood that works together and takes care of each other - that is HUGE! Hope your week is productive, happy, and dry.

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If You Fail To Plan, Then You Plan To Fail! And How To Eat An Elephant

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

This morning I got up like every morning and low and behold. I had gone to bed without laying out my workout clothes or deciding on my workout dvd beforehand. So, as it happens, things didn't go as planned. I didn't get up on time, I lay in bed a little longer than normal. When I did get up, I had to search for my clothes. Then I headed for the coffeepot, This I did do last night, so just had to turn it on,yay!
I went down stairs and planned on starting my exercise on the computer with a little sparkpeople Coach Nicole dvd. Nope! Computer decided to reek havoc with my routine! I ended up wasting a lot of time trying to get the internet up and finally gave up and went for the 30 Day Shred. It had been awhile so I hurriedly popped it in and did the first level. I was pleasantly surprised I flew through it! I have been trying to increase my ST time, so after the 25 mins I was done. I had run out of time as well. So if you fail to plan, then you most definitely plan to fail.
I have a lot of Sparkbuddie comment on how I always have a plan, and this is why.
If I don't plan, its doesn't happen, just doesn't! I do feel grateful that I did have an option and so although things didn't go the way I wanted them to go, I did get in some exercise.

On a different note, I have been basically maintaining my weigh between 146-150ish for the last year. I had decided it was time to get my finances in order. This has been on my mind a lot lately so first things first.

For years my husband and I had been lamenting the fact that we just didn't have enough. Not enough money to do all the things that needed to be done. Sometimes we just barely had enough to keep the roof over our heads and pay the bills ( and not always on time!)
Now we both have jobs. We are both smart people. I would say we were in the middle class, probably the lower half, but still. Probably make more than a lot of people and not so much we aren't continually humbled.
Anyway, I digress. We have both known couples with similar incomes who have done so much better than us financially. I just kept thinking we were missing something. We didn't go out to eat a lot, we didn't buy extravagant things. We could barely go on vacation and then it was something fairly inexpensive like camping. Well, we had missed something.
We had not figured out how to manage our money. How could we both be well educated and make an ok income and still not have anything to show for it? So for the last few months we have talked a lot about finding someone who could help us manage our money better.
It finally started clicking for me when a dear friend had her home foreclosed on. This friend comes from a very wealthy family and I thought her parents had taught her all the secrets that I had not learned, all the things Robert Kiyosaki talks about in his Rich Dad, Poor Dad books. But apparently she was a poor manager of her money as well. She said she was going to take a look at Dave Ramsey's program.
For years I have heard that name and had never really taken a look at his program. I mentioned it to my husband and we subscribed to his daily podcast/radio show. Just listening to a few minutes of his show has really shed some light on all of our financial wows.
I took a quick look at his website yesterday and he had a section outlined on there called Babysteps. After looking it over, it dawned on my. I had plenty of money to get my finances in order. Especially if someone with a similar income had gotten out of debt and paid off their home within two years! i had heard of the Latte Factor years ago and had been living a frugal lifestyle so that really wasn't the problem. I just needed to focus on one thing at a time and whittle away at this mountain of debt one piece at a time. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. My mountain of debt had become the elephant in the room!
After deliberating with my husband on the best way to eat this elephant, I found some money in various spots. I had put extra money in our W4 in anticipation of paying taxes. This year we received a return, so that money isn't needed there. The next spot was my savings. Yes, I still think I needed savings, but I tend to dip into it every month so its really not a savings. Its just in another account. I found this money and it was in plain view the whole time! Next, I am going to apply it to my credit cards and all my little medical bills so I should be able to pay it all off by the end of the year! Yay!
This has been really hard for me to write and lay it all out there. It is embarrassing to have debt and not be able to pay your bills but it feels good to finally be on the right path. I can tell this time, just like with my weight loss, it will stick. No more unnecessary debt. I need to treat this like I did my weight loss process. With deliberation and determination. It is true once you get your weight under control, the rest of your life seems to fall into place. It takes hard work and dedication. Just like it takes hard work and dedication to lose the weight and to keep it off in the long run.
Good Luck to you,my spark friends in finding your path on this lifelong journey! Paige

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIVINGPRESENT 10/24/2010 3:42PM

    I love your positive attitude. emoticon I have these same struggles and I find that weight and money and time issues all stem from the same place. Now if I could just resolve the base issues I know it would all fall in place. Good luck on your journey. emoticon

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    I'm a total planner too. I set out my workout clothes and pick my DVD the night before as well. That way in the morning, I can be on auto-pilot for the first ten minutes or so. It helps me so much.

Thanks for mentioning Dave Ramsey - I'm going to check his stuff out. I don't have debt, but saving money every week and financial planning for our future is something that hasn't been going very well the past couple of years. We had twins in college, so that was a big part of it. They've graduated now and we only have our 17 year old that we need to worry about financially. I'd welcome some advice from an expert. Thanks for sharing.

Have a great week!

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CHOESCH 10/15/2010 6:26PM

    Thanks for sharing your experience - I know we can all do better when it comes to our finances. I also know that planning definitely makes a huge difference. I'm with you...if I don't plan ahead I totally fail! I'm going to check out that website and hopefully I can put some new things into practice as well. You are the BEST!

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46SHADOW 10/13/2010 5:39PM

    Well done. Your facing the elephant in the room and whittling it down. So proud of you!

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KGRIMES371 10/13/2010 3:42PM

    How encouraging. I am so glad you shared. I for one KNOW exactly what you are talking about. I think it is a great way to look at managing finances. Just like a diet. I am having success so far with the diet, I hope I can be successful with the finances as well.

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LAURA9021 10/13/2010 3:00PM

  You are exactly right, managing your money and your weight loss is very similar and you definitely need a plan when it comes to both!

emoticon emoticon

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Provo River Parkway Bike Ride

Monday, October 04, 2010

Yay, my cold is gone! I was pretty active over the weekend. Saturday was a beautiful day and my husband and I went down to the track early and walked 2 miles with the dogs, then I ran the last mile. We stayed busy all day but mainly relaxed and had fun.

We purchased some fun season passes that are being promoted locally~ The Pass of All Passes. You get a season pass for the local water park, two local mini golf/arcade type centers, a season pass to our local Owls baseball team ( minor league) and a season pass to our local D league basketball team ( The Utah Flash). It was a great deal we couldn't pass up and the whole family gets to enjoy it. It doesn't hurt that the Events Center and baseball field where most of the games are going to be help are within a few miles of our home.
It was a beautiful day Sunday. I had wanted to get in a hike on Saturday or Sunday but the hubby had decided to get in some work this weekend so it was a no go.
After church, I did take my girls to the Provo River Parkway Trail and go for a bike ride. It wasn't too long, about 2.5 miles. We have had bikes for years but haven't been using them. My eldest daughter just got a new bike for her birthday so she wanted to go out and get in some riding. My younger girl hasn't ridden a bike for a while so I had to do some finagaling and some quick fixing of her bike. I pumped the tires, adjusted the seat and had her take it for a spin. She said it was ok, so I loaded all of the bikes into the car and off we went ( while hubby went to the office.)
We arrived at the mouth of the Canyon at Canyon View Park. there are several little parks up and down the Parkway so it is easy to take a quick little trip without feeling you have to do the whole trail. I told the older daughter to go ahead and we would catch up but to wait at the next park for us. ( Canyon Glenn).
The younger daughter and I started out and everything was going fine until she got tired. She is 11. She is pretty big for 11. I really feel her bike is too small for her. Her legs were pedalling very quickly but she wasn't making much progress. I asked her if she thought she could ride my bike ( she has tried it out at home. It was a little big for her but I thought she could make it work). We were very close to the Canyon Glenn Park and I figured I could walk the rest of the way.
As I started out walking her bike I thought maybe I could give it a try. It was obviously too small but I tried it anyway. Imagine a grown woman of 5'6' riding a child's bike. Can you say circus clown? But amazingly the bike held my weight and I didn't pop the tires,LOL!
Elder daughter had made it to the park and back and was ready to head back so I told the girls to go ahead and I would catch up. I was actually very surprised. Even though the bike ride wasn't very long, I sure got a workout in pumping that little bike( and the ride back was mainly downhill)! I am sure I looked like a complete dork but you know what? It was actually really fun. We had a great time as a family and I had a blast! Where there is a will, there is a way!
Next weekend I am planning another girls day out. We are going to hit the mall for some See's candy ( I have been promising my daughter she can try one of their amazing suckers, a memory for me from my childhood), then we are hitting the dollar movie ( Ramona and Beezuz) and on Saturday we are all going for haircuts. I love girl's day out with my kiddos. We have a good time and enjoy each other's company.
I know its just Monday but do you have any plans for the coming weekend?

Keep Sparking, Paige emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHOESCH 10/6/2010 12:09PM

    I caught your cold! LOL! So glad you are feeling better and that you had such a fun weekend with your girls. I love girl's day out as well. Sounds like you are not only doing something good for you but for your girls as well. Good Job mom! Way to go riding the smaller bike - isn't it funny the things we do for our kids? Have a wonderful Wednesday!

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LILY_SPARK 10/5/2010 9:45AM

    Dollar movie? Cool! We have a place (quite far away but STL area) that has like $6 matinees of movies that are so old you can rent them but it's still a "theatre experience." I love the theatre!

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LADYFOLDER 10/5/2010 8:31AM

    Great going, Paige!

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CARLA-216 10/4/2010 3:59PM

    I'm glad you had a great weekend and that your cold is gone. The bike ride sounds fun, especially riding back downhill! Wheeeeeee!

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BURGHGIRL 10/4/2010 1:51PM

    Sounds like a fun weekend!!!

Plans for this week include a field trip with my youngest to a pumpkin patch, going to see a play and trying to organize/donate the kids toys.....a huge task in itself.

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Fighting a cold and staying active

Thursday, September 30, 2010

I have been fighting a cold for the past few days. Needless to say it has been hard to get in any kind of workout.
On Monday I did ST and a Zumba workout. I wasn't feeling really bad yet and couldnt' decide if i had a cold or allergies.
By Tuesday it was obviously a cold. No morning run since I couldn't get out of bed but I did get in a few walks. One home from work and an hour long walk with the dogs but that is all I could manage.
Last night I had planned to get to Zumba but we had some lat minute things to do last night, so no Zumba. I did walk home from work again. I have also been getting in my lunchtime walks so that accounts for a little light activity.
I was supposed to weigh in today but I skipped it. Just call me chicken! It probably wasn't bad since I have still stayed in my cals and have been active. I did weigh in on Sunday night after spending the weekend camping and being uber active with hiking several times and being on my feet for the better part of each day and really watching what I was eating. It showed a loss of 1.5 lbs but I don't know if that was accurate. My pants do fit a little looser. emoticon so maybe it was.
I hate being sick and not being able to hit the workouts like I had planned but a little activity is better than nothing.
Hopefully, this cold will be gone by tomorrow and I can get in a good workout and a nice run on the weekend.
Have a great Thursday all and keep sparking!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHOESCH 10/1/2010 10:45AM

    Hate a cold! Sorry you have to go through that. Maybe it will be good for your body to get some much needed rest. I'm sure the scale will be good to you - you have been diligent to say the least! Hope your weekend is great!

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LILY_SPARK 10/1/2010 8:43AM

    Colds suck but you'll be well soon! Take good care of your precious self and it'll be raring to go again :)

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CARLA-216 9/30/2010 1:12PM

    Sorry about that cold. I hope it's history real soon! Good on you for trying to stay as active as you can under the circumstances. It's hard to stay with it when you don't feel 100%, so you get an A for effort! :-)

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SUSIEWHITE1109 9/30/2010 12:10PM

    I hope you get over your cold really quickly! I was just telling a co-worker that today is my 2-week anniversary from when mine started! Craziness!! Saying a quick prayer for you that you'll heal up and feel 100% again soon.
Keep sparking!

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Drat that darn scale!! :( Trying to turn my frown upside down. :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

UGh! Needless to say I was less than pleased with the scale today. emoticon
I need to remind myself that the scale is just feedback. Unfortunately I don't like the feedback!! What can I do about it? Change it!!

I will be the first to admit that I am a lazy tracker when it comes to tracking my food but I think when I do track that I am pretty accurate. I could be better but I have never been a perfect tracker over the course of the last 3-4 years on this weight loss journey.

I am just so fustrated that these 5 lbs that I found won't get lost again!! I have been pretty diligent about exercise. I have tried to watch what I have been eating, but it just won't go away. And I don't really like the way my clothes are fitting. emoticon

I have been pretty good at maintaining my goal weight over the last year, but over the course of the summer these dratted 5 lbs snuck up on me and now they are an unwelcome guest on my rear-end. And you know what? It took me a while to figure out where they were hiding. I was measuring and everything seemed to be about the same except my waiste. Now my waiste is back to normal but my pants still feel tight. So since I can't really see behind me I figured they sneaked up on me from behind, quite literally!

So I guess I need to evaluate what I have been doing and what I have been eating and do some adjustments.
1. I have been working out as much as I can. I do circuit training with a dvd on Monday and Wednesday morning and Zumba on Monday and Wednesday night. On Tuesday and Thursday I get in my run of 1-3 miles and Friday I have been slacking off a little, so I will add a full 40 min workout on Friday mornings. I also try and run at least 4 miles on Saturday morning and sometimes Sunday is a day of rest ( sometimes it isn't, it is usually just an active day, no planned exercise). So I get in about 5-6 hrs of exercise ( that I count) a week. I am not counting the lawn mowing, the walks to my husbands office or the mile long lunch time walks as these are just what I am used to. Not sure how I can add more. One of the reasons I added running is because it burns more cals in a shorter period of time than walking, which is how I lost the majority of my 70 lbs. I switch things up quite a bit with the circuit training since I get bored easily and today my inner thighs are sore!! Would you do anything different? Any suggestions?

2. After evaluating my workout I think its my nutrition. I am a notorious grazer. I do really well during the day but once I get home I graze before and after dinner. I think this is my downfall, but I do try and watch it and when I catch myself doing it I stop.

I eat clean most of the time. I try and get in enough fiber and protein. I noticed that I haven't been eating enough veggies so have concentrated on this this week. Eating more veggies. I also used to eat a lot of soup and during the summer I stopped. That has worked well for me so I need to get back to it.

I do wonder if part of my problem is that I just passed my 46th birthday. I don't want to blame my slowing metabolism but I am not sure what else to do. I have had a hysterectomy in the last year. I know that the absence of menses means that I need to account for those cals that I am no longer burning, but from all I have read it is only about 500 cals a month, which I try to account for.

I have a friend who is doing a nutrition plan done by a group called Kristi Approved. Kristi is a nutritionist and a personal trainer. She has a whole program worked up and I think after I get back from camping this weekend I will give her eating plan a try. It is what I typically eat anyway, but it is pretty restrictive and I haven't been willing to do it because I don't think I can sustain it for a lifetime but I am willing to try anything to get this extra weight off.

It is a pretty balanced plan with protein and carbs and such. The hardest part for me will be giving up the caffeine. They don't allow any caffeine, but other than that it is doable for a week to try out.
Ok, so what do you think of my plan? Am I off base? What else could I do? Any and all suggestions are appreciated!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHOESCH 9/27/2010 10:41AM

You are an amazing woman - always working towards bigger and better goals and getting stronger and healthier every day. I know you are making good choices and your exercise schedule wears me out just reading it. I did notice that you don't do a lot of strength training - I have noticed that fitting in at least 3 ST regimines a week has helped me to lose those difficult pounds and inches...and I love it! I love the way I feel after a good weight training workout. I also added some extra protein in my diet - you know I am eating more eggs (thanks to the chickens) - I gained 5 lbs on my vacation and in less than a week I have regained my goal weight. I know you are committed to keeping the weight off and you have a good plan. Keep eating those fruits and veggies, and don't forget that sometimes your body needs rest to recuperate. I know those pesky pounds will be gone before you know it!

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KIRSTENRPH 9/25/2010 7:27PM

You look awesome!! But yes, i understand how those few lbs can drag you down emotionally and sap your motivation. I think LilySpark is right about ST.(I need to get back into that myself--flabby abs and batwings!!in spite of the few lbs of wt lost..) And you can always add more Zumba!! LOL!! That's MY solution--why cut calories when you can add Zumba??!! I DON'T "Diet"!! I HATE diets!!!
It sounds like you're doing everything right. Hmmmmm...?
Just need to tweak your plan a little. Personally, I would add more exercise and avoid restrictive diets like the plague!!! emoticon

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DORYH20 9/24/2010 8:50AM

    Instead of grazing after work, enjoy a decaffeinated green tea while you prepare dinner.
Actually, have one every day, along with the recommended 8 glasses of water.

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LILY_SPARK 9/24/2010 8:30AM

    You are amazing and I understand the creeping back of some and not fitting into those hard-earned clothes!!

I'm not sure how much strength training you do but you should do.

I mean never less than 3x/ week. If you have an auto-immune disease (like I do), then maybe less due to healing issues but any normally healthy person can benefit from ST. Any WOMAN, esp after menopause needs to be lifting. Period.

You like having bones. You like having energy. You like being able to keep going to the end of the day. You'll like what ST can give you.

Most women won't build, afraid to bulk up (which is almost impossible to do unless you have testosterone, are taking steroids or have a weirdo medical condition).

An extra benefit is you'll drop sizes even if you stay the same weight.

Your ideas about veg and soup make GREAT sense, too! It's mostly about nutrition but by our THIRTIES, we need to be lifting. Why "get old" before you have to? Remember those tough old birds who kept working (maybe you didn't know any but growing up, women in their 70s could wear out a youngun)? It's cos they were LIFTING heavy stuff (stock feed, WET LAUNDRY BASKETS over-stuffed and hauled all.the.way out to the lines?, hauling water/ wood?). No wonder.

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DRB13_1 9/23/2010 9:36PM

    Remember to congratulate yourself for the 70 you got rid of, and return to the things that works before (like the soup and vegetables). Take up a new challenge since running has worked for you, maybe sign up for a 5K this fall - lots of Turkey Trots and Reindeer Runs on the schedule. You'll do it - and you'll be able to fit in your pants just like you want to.

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TEENY_BIKINI 9/23/2010 4:18PM

    I love how you always snap into an action plan! Hang in there, gorgeous.


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CARLA-216 9/23/2010 4:16PM

    Are you hungry when you get home before it's dinnertime? If so, eat a light snack before you leave work or on your way home. Maybe that will help with the grazing. I'd also track diligently for a week or two, just to be sure of your intake.

Good luck getting that pesky 5 to take a hike!

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NHGRL68 9/23/2010 4:04PM

    It sounds like you are doing everything that you should be doing. It seems like you just hit a plateau. Sometimes they can last a while. I always tell people to switch things up, but you said you are doing that. It sounds like you are eating well. Maybe you should try the tracking again for a while and see if that does make a difference? And you're taking your measurements, which is good. Sorry I can't be of any help:-( The only thing that I will say is TRY to just be patient with yourself and trying different things. Eventually the last 5 lbs should come off. emoticon emoticon

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LADYFOLDER 9/23/2010 1:13PM

It's best to keep to reasonable plans and avoid the extremes. It is good to avoid caffeine. I used to drink a lot of Mountain Dew. I was under a lot of stress where I worked, and I didn't sleep well and I had a lot of headaches. Since I left that job, I've had maybe 2 or 3 Mountain Dews in a year, usually when I needed to stay alert while driving home late at night from Salt Lake. I feel much better without the caffeine. I was addicted, and it was very hard to quit, but I did it and I lost 20 pounds within the first year of stopping. That was without any other plan to lose weight.
You know that I have a long way to go in my weight loss journey, but I need to do better at my tracking to help me stay on track!
And just remember, that plateaus do happen. Just keep on doing what is right, and you will start losing again.

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