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My 5K Adventure: Another One Bites The Dust

Saturday, August 28, 2010

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AKATUJE 9/1/2010 3:58PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon i am so proud of you!!!!1

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HLPRATT 8/30/2010 9:16AM

    Congratulations You will really enjoy running with everyone else and getting a tshirt. And you don't have to wait until you consider yourself a real runner. (I know I'll never be a real runner) Just get out there and do whatever you can. Whenever I'm in a race I just plan on not being last and getting done as soon as I can. And I always enjoy myself!

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TRISH2229 8/29/2010 10:27PM

    I love that song John! Love the new springlike spark page too! Congratulations on your run at the 5K race. The time doesn't matter much to me 5k is a 5k - something to be proud of. You didn't pass out! You didn't give up! You didn't quit! The progress you're making is amazing! You'll meet your goal by Christmas if not sooner. Keep up the good work even when its hard, even when it burns because in the end you'll be standing trim and proud of your accomplishment! emoticon

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EDWINA172 8/29/2010 8:04PM

    I wish I could have been there to run with you too! Awesome job! emoticon

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HICKOK-HALEY 8/29/2010 12:13AM

    Hey, good for you. emoticon

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KATRIONAH 8/28/2010 9:50PM

    a big ole WOO HOO!! I love your blogs. Congrats on is HUGE!! You must be so happy....and proud of yourself. And, well you should be. emoticon

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GETFIT2LIVE 8/28/2010 9:38PM

    John, I am SO excited for you--quite a high, isn't it?! You already ran a 5K indoors, but now your sons can't say squat about you NOT having run a 5K. Awesome, my friend; can't wait for the first time you run a 5K in a race, you are gonna have such a blast! I'm running a 2 mile fun run next weekend and then a 5K at the end of September; the races are a bit addictive, but in a good way. WOO HOO for you!


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BRYLIA 8/28/2010 5:21PM

    Love the music intro... and GO JOHN! This past weekend we had a local 5k and while I didnt run it, because I dont think I am ready yet, it sure was exciting to watch. Maybe next year when it comes around!

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P0KERS0PH 8/28/2010 3:54PM

    Way to go!
I was going to run my 3rd 5k next week, but unfortunately I can't get to the city it's I am going to run my own 5k on the treadmill :)

A 5k is a 5k wherever you run it! Awesome!

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SLY_REDUX 8/28/2010 2:01PM

    That is so fantastic! There's only one thing I have to disagree with. Our best days are not either behind us. Our best days are the ones that we consciously create. And you had a BIG hand in this one!

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HDHAWK 8/28/2010 1:18PM

    Way to go John! You must be so proud of yourself. The tshirt is next for you!

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KT-NICHOLS-13 8/28/2010 1:01PM

    Congratulations John!
I don't understand why your son(s) said this ... "You didn't really run a 5K because you didn't run it outdoors."
You'll love running a race, the people & energy is amazing!

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DOLLBABE56 8/28/2010 11:55AM

    Another One Bites The Dust, yay John!

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The Challenge of Not Forgetting

Saturday, August 28, 2010

When I rounded the corner towards my locker it all came home to me. He was sitting on the bench trying to get one of his shoes off the floor. In his mid-twenties, he would have made me look small at my largest. His face was red and when he turned to look at me he became redder from the embarrassment of the situation.

“What’s up?” I asked in that conversational locker room lingo sort of voice.

“Just finished swimming in the therapy pool.” He answered. They won’t let me in the regular pool because there is no ramp to get in and out. They’re afraid I’ll have a heart attack.”

“You got heart trouble?” I asked him.

“No, it’s this.” He grabbed his belly and pulled.

He struggled to get his shoes on while I got undressed in front of my locker. I was going back in forth in my mind whether I should say something to him or not. Then I remembered that was me not to very long ago. That was me, alone on the bench, struggling to get my shoes on, feeling huge and absolutely intimidated in this locker room loaded with alleged buff studs.

“Hang in there, okay?” I said to him.

He just looked at me.

“I know it might not mean much to ya, but I lost seventy four pounds in about nine months. I’m not saying it’s easy but you have to be here every day and you have to wanna be healthy. But you can do it.”

“You lost that much?” he asked me.

“Yeah and I’m fifty seven dude. You’re younger and so it may come off quicker for you. Do you ever walk?” I asked him.

He said no. He told me he ran out of breath to easy. I told him to start with one lap upstairs and he said he couldn’t make it up the stairs. I told him they had an elevator. He grinned at me.

“You got an answer for everything don’t you” he said laughing.

“That’s because I have had an excuse for everything.” I laughed back at him.
I told him to check with the people at the front desk to see if I was there when he checked in and if I was have them page me and I’d walk with him. I told him it goes a lot easier when you have someone else with you. Joan walked with me when I first started exercising and I know she had to slow down but she walked with me and it made those first few weeks bearable.

We forget. We forget in our joy over running 5k’s and half marathons. We forget because we drop a pants size or a dress size. We forget because we have the confidence and courage to do things we never did before.

We forget that we sat on that bench struggling to put our shoes on. We forget the shame of obesity at times and mostly we forget there are still people out there who haven’t found the right combination, YET, to start on the road to being healthier. We forget we were once them.
Yeah, you are who you hang around with. Yeah, I want to be challenged by people healthier than I to be better but not at the price of losing the compassion I have that someone once had for me.

So as I get ready to run this morning, I take a print a piece of paper and put it in my pocket. It has the Spark names of friends who either are struggling to exercise or who for physical reasons can’t exercise right now. It has the names of those who have encouraged me to run and told me I could do it. I have to print it out every time I run because it gets all sweaty. I run for me and I run for them. It helps motivate me.

I challenge myself to never forget that in all my success I sat on that bench once, huffing and puffing, hoping no one noticed. Of all the challenges, I wish they whole world would remember this one.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FANAMAMA 8/31/2010 8:40AM

    You did it John. You finally did it. Your blog made me cry. I have had a pretty rough summer, and haven't been able to exercise due to physical injury and demands on my time. I don't know if my name was on that paper of yours, but I'm going to pretend it is and say thanks. Really - thank you.

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MUSTANG_SALLY2 8/29/2010 11:36AM

    God sent you an angel to help you finish the outdoor 5k (btw, indoor 5k counts in my book!) but he sent you as acting angel to a young guy who was struggling. God accepts our service to Him by often giving it away to another human who needs it. You encourage me everyday. Most my days start with a John-blog (vlog) and I find it helpful. The young man in the locker room got your gift of encouragement in person.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to help those of us who struggle. God bless you for it!


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_AIYANNA_ 8/29/2010 9:21AM

    What an inspirational and moving story! I am glad you decided to talk to him in the end. You should be very proud of yourself :)

Take care, Elen from Greece emoticon

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TIME4AFITME 8/29/2010 8:25AM

    Great blog and that was so kind of you and probably meant the world to him

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MARCYNA 8/29/2010 7:24AM

    Great, it seems me sometimes being fat now can be equivalent to being affected with leprosy in the Bible - an outcast - and it was great of you to lend a hand emoticon

Comment edited on: 8/29/2010 7:24:57 AM

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STORMTMB 8/28/2010 7:13PM

    You'll never know how much that encouragement meant to him.

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ZURDTA- 8/28/2010 2:56PM

    emoticon A great way to reach out and I sincerely hope he keeps going...

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MYOWNHERO 8/28/2010 2:08PM

    That is a beautiful story, John. You have a great heart!

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HDHAWK 8/28/2010 1:12PM

    Wonderful John! I know you have inspired this young man. I hope he begins the journey to health. Sharing the "spark" is one of the best parts of this journey.

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TORNADO40 8/28/2010 12:33PM

    Great blog. I hope you have inspired him to get healthy and get his weight off. You are an inspiration to us at spark. emoticon

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CERIUSLY 8/28/2010 12:01PM

    What an amazing blog! I hope he pages you to walk with him. If you have to slow your pace, just remember, it has been written, (somewhere), interval walking burns more calories. You have shown the true meaning of spreading the spark, and besides making a new friend, you ARE a great friend!

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WEIGHTOSUCCESS 8/28/2010 11:39AM

    Awesome blog!! So very true to .. we all needed someone to encourage us. My motto is.. "Pass it on".. You're doing an awesome job of it emoticon

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CARTOONB 8/28/2010 10:47AM

    Great blog and a great reminder!

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ISHIIGIRL 8/28/2010 10:24AM

    I like your perspective on this.; I often see people struggling and want to give them words of encouragement. Thanks for sharing. Next time I see someone struggling I will remember this story.

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NJMATTICE 8/28/2010 10:19AM

    Thanks for the kindly reminder to remember our connections.

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SOLONGSUE 8/28/2010 9:52AM

    Thank you for sharing this story. It's easy to forget the shame attached to being overweight, because no one wants to dwell on a memory that makes you sad. I hope the man at the gym takes you up on your offer and pages you to join him for a walk. Everyone can use a little encouragement.

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MKPRINCESS007 8/28/2010 9:51AM

    John, that took alot of courage for you to reach out to him. Mainly because we reach back inside ourselves and remember what this feels like. That is the blessing and curse. Remembering the need but remembering the pain. You did a wonderful thing for him, and for yourself. I hope he takes you up on the offer you extended. Please do keep us informed..........

Have an awesome day..........

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GETFIT2LIVE 8/28/2010 9:47AM

    Right on, John. It is easy to forget and not reach out to those who are where we used to be, but we MUST remember. I wouldn't be here today if it weren't for people who had reached back and given me a hand when I needed it; I want to do the same for others.


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JECKIE 8/28/2010 9:45AM

    John, yesterday in your Vlog post you answered a question about your best quality. You said charming, and you ARE charming. But I think more than that, your compassion is an amazingly wonderful thing. Those words you said to that young man may just save his life. We never know what that word of encouragement will be that sinks into someone's thoughts and finally DOES it.

So for all of us who struggle day in and day out - thank you. You are an inspiration.


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KAT573 8/28/2010 9:45AM

    ABSOLUTELY WONDERMOST blog, John; I loved, loved, LOVED this! Let us hope that the reaching out you did is completed, growing into not nurturing just him, and not just you, but all those who experience the consequences of this channeling of God through Love!
Rock on! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DOLLMAKER4HIM 8/28/2010 9:38AM

    emoticonThis is an absolutely GREAT Post!! Thank You!!

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CAHUNO2 8/28/2010 9:24AM

    Good for you John!!! I hope you see him often! emoticon

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ANDARIEL 8/28/2010 9:04AM

    Oh wow, been a long time since a blog has reduced me to tears. Beautiful post, and so so true.

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THAMLEY 8/28/2010 8:03AM

    Nothing's more powerful than words of encouragement. We all have to do our part. Way to go, You are a Champ! I too, hope he confides in you for support. Have a wonderful weekend.

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TEDYBEAR2838 8/28/2010 7:58AM

    emoticon John, you are a very compassionate man. I'm proud to call you Friend!

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EDWINA172 8/28/2010 7:36AM

    Way to go John! You are a good soul. This brought me to tears. I was there also. It feels good to help someone else. We were never meant to go it alone.
Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.

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TRAVELGRRL 8/28/2010 7:36AM

    Thank you so much for sharing this touching story. I hope the young man takes you up on your offer. Will you let us know?

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Vloggers Challenge Week One Questions

Friday, August 27, 2010


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EDWINA172 8/29/2010 8:16PM

    John! Stomach?! Say, "Abs, abdomen". Its just a little pet peeve of mine. While I was in nursing school, our instructor would not permit us to say stomach unless it pertained to the organ that digests our food. Therefore, I have passed that on to our clients. 5 Push ups for saying stomach when you mean abdomen!
By the way, you are charming! (I don't know if you mentioned that.) LOL!
My favorite sound is a child laughing.

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YOGINI_JACKIE 8/28/2010 12:59AM

    Wow, 6 kids! Holy Cow :)

I love freshly mowed grass too!

I think you did pretty well on time! I'm working on my part three!

Karaoke contest! You should do a singing vlog :)

Thanks for sharing, hooray

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MIBELLALUNA 8/27/2010 11:21PM

    I'll add my 2cents, your charm is a special talent! hahah

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SPACELION 8/27/2010 10:03PM

    Awhh I loved this, it made me smile a lot and I agree with the other sparkers, definitely charming! :D

I love this challenge, it's so interesting to see other peoples answers :)

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WANDAH3 8/27/2010 8:11PM

    Again you made me smile and chuckle. Thank you for being a bright spot in my day.

Congratulations on your trainers remarks. Woo Hoo! Definition!

Have a fantastic weekend.

Give Joan a hello from me.


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SPCLLADY02 8/27/2010 7:29PM

    So nice to learn all about you. Would be nice to meet you in person. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KSGROTHE 8/27/2010 2:41PM

    How fun! Thanks for sharing!

- Karen

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MKPRINCESS007 8/27/2010 11:16AM

    Totally charming! Yes you are! :)

Loved it!

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ROGUE_RUNNER 8/27/2010 10:43AM

    Yay! I was hoping you would participate! It was fun hearing all of those things about you :o)

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DANAB1106 8/27/2010 10:25AM

    I love veggie pizza. I love learning new things about you. I am so glad you decided to participate!

I love your favorite sound haha. Charming does count and you are! will definitely be up for singing then!

That is awesome you know exactly how long you have been married.

Good Job John!!!

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DOLLBABE56 8/27/2010 10:14AM

    This was so "insightful". emoticon

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Food and Customer Service (This One I Have Never Quite Figured Out)

Friday, August 27, 2010

The part of training that I most enjoy is the training event itself. It has always been a form of performance art. If you are entertained in you will be likely to remember what you learned. I use story telling as a vehicle to impart a message. That’s the fun part. Then there is all the preparation that goes into making a program effective. There is making all the physical arrangements with hotels and conference centers and catering groups. If those experiences go as they should eighty percent of the time I am usually ecstatic. I have never done a public training event that everything has gone as it should have. That’s life.

This past week I had more challenges than normal and I was unhappy with some of the changes that were made at the hotel, without anyone calling and saying, “Hey John………..” While we had a break on Tuesday the catering manager sat down with me and gave me the “It’s my entire fault John.” Speech complete with sack cloth and ashes.

The hotel neglected to tell the restaurant that there would be twenty five people for lunch on Tuesday at 11:30. They only had one server. We didn’t get our food for close to an hour. The hotel usually cuts back on staff when they are below forty percent occupancy. I wouldn’t have had an issue with any of this had someone told me up front. I would have adjusted earlier in the day. And BTW don’t blame it on the new person who’s been out of school for two months. She’s the trainee!
If something goes wrong and it is past fixing I’d like to know what measures are going to be put in place to make sure it’s not going to happen again. If it’s going to happen again then I am going to go elsewhere. I don’t get upset, angry or bent out of shape. I don’t expect to be pampered or waited on. I just expect to get I was told I was going to get.

The catering manager says “What can we do to make this right, John?”

Nothing. What are going to do in the future? I am pretty much a pragmatist.

That’s when the catering managers smiles and says “I know what!!! We’ll send up a big plate of cookies!!!

No you won’t. I was preaching health and well-being as part of the success equation. People in the class who knew me asked what I had done to start getting healthy. I was spreading the Spark in a covert manner. I was telling them about all the epiphanies I’d had in the past nine months or so. A plate of cookies? No thanks. Just make sure it doesn’t happen again.

An hour later there is a rap on the conference room door. I open it and there stands the poor trainee carrying a massive tray, (I’m not exaggerating here.) laden with brownies, cookies and chocolate covered strawberries. I wouldn’t be stretching the truth a bit if I told you that the tray may have weighed more than poor little trainee Kara. She looked at me with one of those “This wasn’t my idea looks,” smiled set the tray down on the table and made a quick exit. Everyone is looking at me and at least I am wise enough to know when I have lost control of a situation. To my credit I didn’t eat any of the goodies. I was tempted, but I didn’t.

So I ramble on to raise this question: Why do people think food solves a problem? Give them a massive sugar rush and they will be okay? Is it any wonder we face an obesity crisis in this country? If things go awry shove a cookie in their mouth and at least the near diabetic coma will mask their frustration?

Thank you Spark. I mean that sincerely. Nine months ago this stuff never would have crossed my mind. Now I’ll take my business elsewhere. A friend who used to work at that venue moved to another venue and she’s already emailed me. Bad news travels fast.

We need to stand up. I have zero credibility with my students if I preach the values of self-worth, the value of deserving success and the importance of who you hang around with and then allow my actions to show the exact opposite. When I endorse a product, a company or a venue whose actions go directly against what I am trying to do, what does that say about me?

You may think I need to chill, but then I have to ask, where do we draw the line? This stuff isn’t easy by a long shot, but when it works and works the way it should work, then it is well worth it. I still do not understand why food is the “great equalizer.”

Have a great day

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CATHERINEL66 8/29/2010 2:39PM

    Ugh, I think it's because, in the hospitality business, it's what they CAN give without having to explain to higher-up corporate management about why they screwed up and had to comp part of the bill.

I do events as part of my job (used to do many more and on a much larger scale) and it's frustrating from a professional perspective when you have to worry about the venue/caterers doing their job (which is often the biggest part of the event expense). I understand your frustration. I want to be able to focus on my guests experience and what they're *supposed* to get out of it, not babysit the venue (which comes with its own professional staff).

Next time, ask for the cash discount when they suggest cookies. :0
"Cookies? How about cash?"


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    I think that I would told the caterer that when I told him no cookies I meant no cookies. What was wrong with this man??? Very rude.

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    That is so true! I don't know why people can't understand when we say "no cookies," that's what we mean.

Great blog, John. Thank you for sharing this.

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AJDOVER1 8/27/2010 12:14PM

    I just attended an Emergency Responders Class where a lot of emphasis was placed on keeping "familiar comfort food" in our emergency food supply. If there's an earthquake we may lose everything but weight!

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CARTOONB 8/27/2010 12:06PM

    Can't tell you why food is the great equalizer, but I do agree with your decision to change venues. The manager obviously didn't listen to you or your wishes. Sounds like it's time to move on.

Great job, btw, living what you teach.

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LOOKY-LOU 8/27/2010 11:05AM

    Huh, I would have never thought of that if you hadn't blogged it!

I however have found's like treasure hunting with a GPS...I keep telling people about it because all age groups can do it, it involves at least walking and more strenuous hikes if you want to, but mostly....THERE IS NO FOOD INVOLVED!!!

Blog on my friend!

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MUSTANG_SALLY2 8/27/2010 11:03AM

    I was raised in a family where food was the “great equalizer.” That same family then got upset when the “great equalizer” started walking around with me as body fat. Um, 2 and 2 is 4 right???

I hated the teasing and the nasty names but I hated them most from a certain brother. I though family was suppose to be on your side? Ugh!

The “great equalizer” and I are learning to live on the same playing field and not be enemies. I want the world to learn this too.

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TXRMOM 8/27/2010 10:00AM

    Great story. Thanks for sharing it, and good for you for realizing what was going on. Food is the great comforter- whenever I had a disappointment in school, mom made cookies or ice cream. No wonder I have a problem today!

Like you, I have been affected by what I've read on SparkPeople, and as a middle school teacher, I no longer give out candy or other edible treats as rewards. I keep granola bars for kids who haven't had breakfast, and I hand out stickers as treats. The scratch and sniff kind are particularly popular:)

It really is amazing to realize how deeply ingrained some of this stuff is!

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STORMTMB 8/27/2010 9:40AM

    Well John, most "comfort foods" aren't great for us. As a society we've learned to make food a part of every bonding activity, whether it's a loss like a funeral or a celebration like a birth or wedding. I particularly like the phrase that says if food is not part of the solution, why am I looking in the fridge? I do that waaaaaay too often. As a culture, we need to change our way of thinking (and comforting ourselves).

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MKPRINCESS007 8/27/2010 9:21AM

    Life does not ever cease to amaze me. My first thought, since this is the way this rolls out now with "customer service" is that even a massive sweet tray is cheaper for them to "offer" you than some kind of reduction in the fees you were being charged or anything like that. That just doesn't happen these days. Since it was the catering manager, my guess is that was all the cards he had to play. Sad. If he had been listening to you, he could have made it a fabulous fruit tray and call it a day. Sigh. That would be thinking outside the box.

Customer service is a rare, rare event these days. I get an attitude at the drive through when I am trying to get an unsweetened iced tea. People talk like heck to others, who are paying for the privilege. So, I would love to say I am surprised by what you went through, but I am not really.

Food is the great equalizer, in my opinion, because it is a basic human need that culturally is equated with hospitality. A good friend of my mine is Irish, born and raised in Belfast. It is highly insulting to not accept a specially prepared cup of tea in her world. Highly insulting. So, I think the equation goes back from the beginning of time. Now, to just change the mindset to healthy sharing. That is the challenge.

As always, you are awesome!

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NICOLEMC2 8/27/2010 9:12AM

I never really thought of it that way but it does happen.
When something happens, the first thing we think to do is throw food at it!!

I work for a bank and when we've made a mistake (which we will gladly admit when it happens) we give them a gift card for for a grocery store or a basket of goodies...

Wow now that it's in my head....that's all I will focus on *G*

Thanks for a great blog!!

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DOLLBABE56 8/27/2010 9:10AM

    One of the earliest memories I have is when I was sick with measles and my mom brought me a pastry to help me feel better. Food was always the comforter.

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HDHAWK 8/27/2010 9:02AM

    I think you did the right thing. If more people did that sort of thing, we may not have such an obesity epidemic as a country. We treat our kids when they do something right or when they have a bad day. We do the same with ourselves. Every time I'm with friends, it seems there's food involved somehow.

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ELIZABETH525 8/27/2010 8:55AM

    Awesome job on sticking to things!! I think people as a whole seem to think food will fix things. It is just how society thinks...which is why we as a society are obese. Think about scrape your knee as a child...mommy gives you a cookie. You go to the get a sucker. A resturant messes up, they give you a free meal. It just seems that food equals making life better. So you end up with emotional eaters, stress eaters. But by being on Sparkpeople, you are breaking that cycle. We all are. We just have to keep spreading the word and hopefully, if enough of us do this, the world will not be as obese as before.

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JECKIE 8/27/2010 8:40AM

    Great post!

Food is the "problem solver" because we are less likely to be angry when we get that sugar rush. It makes us feel good, in turn making us more amenable towards those who "wronged" us. Same reason we go out for drinks/dinner on a first date - it relaxes us.

NOT a great thing for our waistlines or more importantly our hearts! I'm with you - I'd rather know what the plan of action is to ensure the event never occurs again. I don't want an apology, I want a plan!

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YOGINI_JACKIE 8/27/2010 8:28AM

    "A plate of cookies! No you won't" A little LOL to that one. The same thing would happen to me every Christmas when all of my students would bake me something. At least it gave me something to bring to parties.

I don't have a problem with food for celebratory purposes, but as an apology? Poor form. I think it's amazing that you were able to hold off on temptation and practice what you preach. Here's to a great weekend!

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EDWINA172 8/27/2010 8:23AM

    One of my favorite quotes is-

"If my actions don't align with my words, I have no idea who I am." Coach Joe Downie

I don't know why food is "the equalizer". I'm thinking it started when we were infants. Our crying promted mom to try everything to soothe us? The bottle worked. (how could we cry with a bottle in our mouths anyway?)

Great blog John. Stick to your guns. You are a man to be proud of. I am proud that you are my friend.

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Goals and Success

Thursday, August 26, 2010


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DOLLBABE56 8/27/2010 7:15AM

    John, I have been pondering the question "what makes me successful" since yesterday? I still have no idea. I suppose I will keep pondering.... emoticon

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HDHAWK 8/26/2010 11:29PM

    John, you sure do throw out some tough questions. Don't get me wrong, they make me think! I appreciate your insight.

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AQUABUNNY 8/26/2010 3:52PM

    Great vlog, John! I decided my answer to that question is: Success for me is accomplished if I use my experience and knowledge to benefit myself (such as knowing how to make my workouts more challenging based on what I have learned from fitness trainers and sparkpeople) and in turn at least one other person (helping a friend, colleague, student, etc.) EVERY day of my life.
Thanks for posting this, great things to think about!

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EDWINA172 8/26/2010 3:11PM

    You sure do make me think! I guess my definition of success would be that I learn daily or do something that is a little scary, challenging. I love goals and achieving something new feels like success to me. I want to be a little bit better than the me of yesterday.

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STORMTMB 8/26/2010 3:05PM

    For me, success is mainly about using my talents and strengths to make a contribution where ever I am, whether it's at work, at home or in other activities or helping my friends. I haven't felt successful at work in a long time because I haven't been allowed to use my strengths - and my boss knows that!!! I stay in thejob for reasons much more important than money (yes, a conscious decision). I know when I've done a good job, whether it's a project, a work-out or doing something to help someone else. I feel good about it and almost always others do too. That's success to me.

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JPRICE217 8/26/2010 1:51PM

    enjoyed your blog John. It really made me stop and think about what success really is and how I am successful

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LUVMYK9S 8/26/2010 11:58AM

    What a great blog John! And what a difficult exercise of defining success.

I'm sure the definition is different for everyone, but to me it would be learning something every day, being inquisitive and still being able to find wonder in life.

I guess this is something I will have to really ponder for a while ...

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MIBELLALUNA 8/26/2010 10:15AM

    Hey, be sure and pick up an air/filter/white noise machine for the wife before she has to stay in the noisy hotel!! My sister carries a desktop/table side sized one but I'd be inclined to bring my giant one if it meant getting better sleep! :)

"To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is to have succeeded."- Emerson

The above was my fave quote that made me exhale and feel proud of our animal rescue work. I think I felt relieved that 'success' didn't have to mean saving EVERY animal, b/c no one can. HOWEVER..hmm..I think the fact I am still curious about life everyday is equal to success, as long as one is living and learning and growing, you are successful, imo. Like they always say, if you aren't GROWING you are dying...just ask my plants! :)

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YOGINI_JACKIE 8/26/2010 8:35AM

    I am also an early riser, so trash trucks (and the occasional ambulance) don't bother me!

I really like your success exercise. I feel as though success and learning are intertwined. If you never change or evaluate the way you do things, you will experience less success. In other words--as a teacher, I want to continue to be innovative; if I am still spouting out the same lesson plan 30 plans from now, it will not be as far reaching.

Hehe, you being the 7th child. Joan must be a patient woman :-P 57 is not old in my book.

Hope you have a good day as well!

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TEDYBEAR2838 8/26/2010 8:25AM

    emoticon I enjoy your video blogs, John. You are doing Great!

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