JUNEAU2010   150,740
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Balance is Everything

Monday, February 22, 2010

Happy Birthday, George Washington! (I just had to say that - I'm still not used to the consolidation for Presidents Day of Washington's and Lincoln's birthdays...)

Yesterday, I logged in very little exercise. I was still sore from earlier in the week. I did go shopping and was actually in turbo mode, walking very fast, which, I think surprised my partner. I felt very negative towards me because I didn't get the energy going. But, I did find one of those fitness balls at a huge discount. Now I have to inflate it.

As per usual, I was within range on most of the food metrics, but just a hair below in two. It is hard to find the right balance. I was thrown off by the values of my breakfast.

I went to bed hungry, but not starving.

Today, I was measuring my breakfast at work and two people commented that they needed to do that and that I was an inspiration. Me! What a great way to start the day!

Despite being discouraged about the nagging pain, I have walked today and am no worse for wear. My morning walk loosened things up, I think. The lunchtime walk was interesting. I walked the same circuit around campus except I added time and distance. I did not feel my heartrate climb until later in the walk, my lower back did not hurt until just about the end, but I was still embarrassingly winded! Again, I was reminded that, as it starts to warm up, I will need to walk early or late or bring a change of clothes. It gets warm up on the hill in the late spring, summer and fall.

Today was the first time I noticed how many exercise SparkPoints are possible! I have 8 so far! A landmark day! I almost feel silly making the observation when I read what other SparkPeople can do...

Midterm tonight - I hope the post lunch fatique doesn't strike. It's hard to strike the right balance for lunch - fuel for the day but not nap-inducing.

I felt really clumsy yesterday and did not realize until this morning as it continued that this is the center-of-gravity shift that happens when my weight changes. After I lose about 2 more pounds, that stability will return until I lose about 10 more.

Already I wish I could hug some of my SparkPeople friends! They are always right there with the encouragement, support and wisdom I need. I am humbled by this whole experience. Besides everything else, I find myself wanting to do the same, not just with them, but everyone. It is as if my rough edges are being polished.

Still on the hunt for a pedometer. I found one I like, but am not willing to pay the $$$!

I'm going to gather my courage and ask a coworker about starting training for a marathon. Maybe tomorrow...

Have a Marvelous Monday, Everyone!
emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CGRESS2 2/24/2010 10:46AM

    I am hoping your midterm exam went well.
Great job on exercising! I desire it, but I haven't got back into walking 1.5 miles a day. Hoping that once I get started again I won't quit until it becomes a habit.

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ANDASI 2/22/2010 6:16PM

    Happiness wears away the rough edges that sometimes we didnt evern realize were there.

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JAKEANDNELLIE 2/22/2010 5:07PM

    I use an Omron pedometer also. I've tried several different ones and I did pay a little more for this one, but it works better than any of the others.
It sounds like you are definitely making progress in all areas - nutrition, food, and motivation.
Keep up the good work.

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GAILRUU 2/22/2010 4:56PM

    Good luck with your exercise. I have an Omron pedometer that works very well. It seems to be quite accurate.

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Focus: How to Manage a Lot of To Do Items

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Now that I am exercising more, my energy level and attitude are sustainable in an UP mode, which is something I had not anticipated this early in my SparkPeople journey.

grocery shopping on a shoestring
do my 2009 taxes
study for my Monday night midterm
strength training
laundry (I WISH for the zillionth time that I had facilities at home - laundromats get old!)
prep food for the week
get in the water and food

Set some longer term goals and some medium goals:
I want to run a marathon or half in March 2011
(I am not currently a runner and my partner doesn't think I can...)
I want to wear a swimsuit this summer so I can swim
(I don't have illusions about appearance in a suit, so it's not ego driven)

I can't figure out how to set my Other Fitness goals so that it reflects calories, if any, burned. I am not yet able to use the SparkPeople fitness plan. So I guess I need to increase my walking on those days or I won't burn enough calories for the daily or yearly goal.

I want to get a pedometer, an exercise mat that's thicker than my Pilates mat, some exercise DVDs but all those desires are on hold for the foreseeable future. The money situation is actually more depressing than the health/fitness situation! That's actually funny!

Making Progress:
I lost 1.8 lbs and 2.25 inches this week, slower than I want, but still moving the right direction. The disappointment is minor and I suspect I'll move my target date out because it's not about the number, it's about the life changes. Imperceptibly, my energy level and attitude have gone up and stay that way. What a wonderful feeling!

I'm actually looking forward to moving today - I might take a walk AND do some strength training. No danger of overdoing it, however. LOL!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CGRESS2 2/24/2010 10:42AM

    I used to be a laundromat girl, too. If the one you go to isn't crowded, it makes a great indoor track and exercise station. You never know when someone might join you. Turn on your music and get working out.

Not sure what type of community you have, but I could walk a few blocks outside why my laundry was going.

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NONIE_C 2/21/2010 7:39PM

    I too have a similar to-do list, and I am so inspired by seeing yours out there, and written with such determination!!! You Rock!!!

You will do this...ALL OF IT!!!!

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SHERRY666 2/21/2010 2:20PM

    Great motivation........... I think you should try the marathon....... why not you never know...... Your positive thinking....... and staying on track will work for you.... I mean you already lost 1.8 lbs.....and inches....... Whoohoo keep moving forward.... emoticon

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RBRUNER 2/21/2010 1:07PM

    Wow! Your motivation inspires me! My to-do list looks very similar to yours but I will probably only accomplish 1/4 of it. I'm a HUGE procrastinator! Keep it up!

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Mindful Walking and Other Thoughts

Saturday, February 20, 2010

"Mindful walking" is my term for what I am trying to do now and, for you SP folks, it has nothing to do with exercise, so feel free to move on if that is a disappointment. emoticon
I did not learn to walk until I was nearly 4 and spent the next 12 years wearing a leg brace, nearly daily therapy and surgery when I was 14. After the surgery, I was able to stand with my feet flat on the floor for the first time in my life. Walk around on your toes for a while. Then stand with your feet flat and you'll have an idea what that was like. It felt as if the earth shifted! That was more years ago than I can imagine, but I still remember the sensation.

I learned how to fall without hurting myself (most of the time). As I've gotten older, the falls have sometimes been pretty dramatic. It does not matter what kind of shoes I wear or what the surface is. I can and have tripped on air! Last year, I had the most serious concussion of my life after a fall.

Where I work, they have spent considerable money improving the ramps, filling in the sidewalk joints and generally making it an easier place to walk. Unfortunately, they are not going to do anything about the cheap carpet. It's glued down in squares and the squares start to come up. They do fix the edges, but the other problem is the design. I have one far sighted eye and one near sighted eye with wonderful astigmatism, so I see at different levels and different distances. Level ground looks uneven, certain stairs (depending on material) look level AND I have very little peripheral vision looking straight down. All this time, I thought I could not see my feet because my chest is so big! HA~! The carpet design has swirls, lines and blocks, so, even though I know it's flat, it does not look that way.

But their investment made me look at myself and think about what I needed to do as an investment in ME. Part of that journey is how I found SparkPeople and part of if is this Mindful Walking. It takes concentration right now. I wear a really good pair of shoes and I practice stepping in a heel-to-toe motion instead of just slapping my feet down and not picking them up properly. It also gives a slight calf stretch for each step. I hope the concentration need drops off and this becomes routine because I would much rather enjoy the scenery than look at every step I take!

Losing weight is also part of this. Every time I gain or lose even just a little bit, it changes my center of balance and it's precarious until I drop or gain more. It's worth losing the weight, though! I'm looking forward to the absence of joint and lower back pain as the tonnage goes away. emoticon

Reading SparkPeople blogs and SparkPages has inspired me. I am going to wear a swimsuit this summer, even if it is a one piece that hides my weak and sagging abdomen and I am going to start training for a marathon that will be in March 2011. I welcome milestone suggestions and other ideas.

Today, I am going to look for a pedometer and an exercise mat. I have a pilates one, but I read an article that suggests I need a slightly thicker one with more support for some of the exercises I want to try. The fact that I am even seriously considering movement of any kind is a huge, huge, huge step forward - literally and figuratively! THAT alone shows the power of SparkPeople!

This morning, I read a message board thread that was initiated by someone who wanted to lose a lot of weight quickly using some sort of supplement. My heart went out to this person because I fully know that thinking! I encouraged him/her to consider the longterm effects of that choice, mostly for heatlh but also for lifestyle. I am learning that anything that deprives you in a meaningful way, that is hard to continue doing and does a number on your self esteem is not the right path. I encouraged the poster to consider the fact that such a path is not sustainable for a lifetime and that that in itself is the kernel of the recipe for failure. I just hurt thinking of the negative self talk, the weight gain and the further cycling down. Been there, done that and would love to prevent anyone else from having to live through that negativity again!

Time to get off the couch and get moving! Have a Superb Saturday, everyone! Thank you for energizing my lifestyle-changing journey! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CGRESS2 2/24/2010 10:37AM

    Hey, I'm just now catching up with your blog. You have really overcome lots of obstacles to start "mindful walking". It is wonderful that your employer sees such great things in you to invest so much in makings things safer for you.

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NONIE_C 2/20/2010 4:03PM

    You should be very proud of yourself. The way you deal with life's obstacles is inspiring, and I thank you so much for sharing.

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SHERRY666 2/20/2010 2:39PM

    It sounds like you doing a great job.......Keep up with the positive thinking...... and keep moving forward...... going after what you want..... emoticon

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IXCHEL23 2/20/2010 2:17PM

    I like my Omron pedometer I got on amazon alot! Let me know if you want me to give you more details. That's so great that you are 'sparked' and inspired!


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Friday: On Track

Friday, February 19, 2010

What a wonderful day! A good day at work, on track with food and water and exercise! I am slowly starting to see that my energy level is improving. After I walk, I have sustained energy for a longer period of time. However, I still get very sleepy later........

I really enjoyed my walks today!

I've been thinking about establishing some longterm fitness goals, but I am a bit afraid of doing so. I've never been able to achieve a big fitness goal in my life. Thinking about learning to ride a bike and also thinking about learning to run. A couple of friends at work are leading a marathon in a few months, if they get enough people. I wouldn't be ready for that, but the announcement said that if they don't get enough people this year, they'll start a team for next year...

I'm also thinking about setting a short term goal of being able to wear a swimsuit this summer. There's a pool in the complex, but I have not been in it for a few years, despite knowing swimming is so good for me. I am not a strong swimmer and the children playing make me nervous! More than that, I am so self-conscious that I can't stand the looks from people who are so much more slender than I am....Who knows? Living the SparkPeople life between now and then might reveal that my attitude has changed!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JAKEANDNELLIE 2/19/2010 8:49PM

    You are really thinking about the future!
I'd say go for the swimming, but I feel the same way you do. Someday I'm going to be brave enough to face the suit and the looks!
Your day sounded great!
Stay positive.

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Today is a Victory!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The fact that today was a very nice day for me highlights the difference that SparkPeople (website and community) have made in my life. I was so tempted to eat everything in sight and not be accountable yesterday - take the day off as it were. I was over on calories and I did not exercise, but I did not "blow" it.

Today did not start out nor has it been a continuation of yesterday. Some really caring SP people reached out to me yesterday and their contact not only helped me not jump off the cliff of calories, but gave me enough of a Spark that, when today dawned, I was not beaten down.

Today is not at the opposite end of the spectrum, not overly "up", but it has been a balanced day. I am on track for all metrics - food, water and, despite some soreness, walking.

I walked some earlier today, not as fast as I have been, but the hills at work gave just enough of a gentle stretch that it actually eased some of the soreness. I was almost flinching as I started up the hill and was AMAZED to find that that walk was just the antidote!

I will walk this evening when I get home - all level terrain, which I would not otherwise prefer, but at least I am moving instead of using yesterday's bleakness and that soreness as an excuse to be a couch potato. Who would've thought?!

I share this victory with SparkPeople - it is just a small measure of the attitude change that is taking place in my life!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MVHALEY 2/18/2010 9:02PM

  Isn't it great when you realize that exercise can make you feel better, not worse? Keep it up! :)

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GROOVYGRAN3 2/18/2010 7:00PM

    Balance is a good word. I have been reading THE SPARK book and he started with like 10 minutes of something a day and then realized that WOW, I see success.

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SONNYG1 2/18/2010 6:54PM


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