KIWIANN   83,574
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Standing in Hope!

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Today I changed my profile image. I chose another butterfly picture. emoticon Butterflies are beautiful, and beauty is always uplifting for me. Usually when I am looking for something beautiful, the first images to catch my eye are things breathtakingly majestic - mountains, oceans, sunsets, etc.


The slideshows for my desktop background and screensaver are filled with images like that. When I am looking for images for my SparkPage, it seems I am more attracted to the delicate beauty of flowers and butterflies. As much as I love majesty and grandeur in nature, I long for serenity, peace and gentleness in my personal life.
Images of butterflies remind me of hope and promise, and standing at the beginning of 2013 that is what I see for this year. I certainly didn't leave 2012 barreling forward with great momentum, but I did have a stretch of positive momentum from August through October which gives me confidence that it is possible! I look forward to the days ahead with the hope that I can rekindle that momentum and stretch it through the year!
I recently celebrated my 4-year Spark Anniversary. Today I spent some time looking through my Spark History. It has been through its ups and downs, times when I have been faithful and times I have completely neglected it for long stretches.
I started 4 years ago weighing in at 235. I start 2013 weighing in at 236. So that makes a 4-year progress of +1!
The lowest weight I have achieved to date with Sparkpeople was 210 in the fall of 2009. I started 2012 weighing 243, and reached a life-time high of 249 in June 2012. My lowest weigh-in for 2012 was 232 on Oct. 30 and was back to 238 by Dec. 1.
With all of the good and the bad that 2012 held - all of the ups and downs not just in weight but in all of the threads that make up the fabric of my life - I ended the year with a net loss of 7 pounds for the year and a much better understanding of myself.
One of the big lessons I learned in 2012, is that this sight is infinitely better when you take advantage of the community aspect! I spent the first three and a half years on SP with a private page and no interaction with other members. Making my profile public in August and taking the time to get to know other members, to encourage and be encouraged, was the best decision I have made with SP. Incidentally, in the two months that my weight has crept up again, I have barely made time for my SP friends.
Thank you to all of my SparkFriends for being with me through these ups and downs, and I look forward to celebrating lots of victories together in 2013!!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBPRE16 1/3/2013 3:50PM

    You can do it! You never threw in the towel and gave up and that is great!

Debbie

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SAINTBETH 1/3/2013 10:08AM

    I'm glad we have you here on SP, too!

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GINNJEN1974 1/3/2013 8:59AM

    We all struggle here. I know how that is and hope that in this coming year I too can do better and not slip away as I tend too.

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LWADE1963 1/2/2013 11:55PM

    beautiful pictures. i also love butterflies. it reminds me of when my dad died 4 yrs ago. i went to the cemetary to visit him. as i was standing there crying, i look up and saw 2 beautiful butterflies fluttering above the grave. it was great and gave me hope that my life will go on always remembering my dad in my thoughts.

i havent been very successful in my spark journey either. it is my own fault though. this is gonna be the year of success for me. '

together we can do this

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MATTEROFHEART 1/2/2013 11:50PM

    So proud of you for your honesty and perseverance! I am glad to be your Spark Friend and look forward to making great progress with you in the new year! I am here for you, SparkFriend!
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ESCHLETZ 1/2/2013 11:43PM

    We are all in this together, and I believe, like you realized this year, that support from others who understand what you're trying to do, makes the biggest impact on what you are working on.
Like you I have had those ups and downs, and as you said as well I'm using them as a learning curve. Those downs don't mean we failed, it just means we needed to be reminded about what didn't work for us. If you run into a brick wall over and over again eventually you've got to figure it out that you have to find a different way around it.
Here's to building bridges, digging tunnels, growing wings or whatever other way we can bypass that wall.
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GR8ERJOY 1/2/2013 11:06PM

    Good luck to you. It sounds as if you've learned so much and made the type of progress you can't see on the scale. You've persevered even though it's not been easy and you're still here. Not giving up. Be proud of that and search for the peace within you that can bring the calm you seek in life. emoticon

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Stress busters

Monday, November 12, 2012

This evening I was looking over my calendar for the next few months - it is quite full!! Between my personal life commitments and my professional life travel and/or after-hours events there are exactly 4 days with nothing written in between now and January 6! Here are my "free" days: tomorrow, Nov. 20, Dec. 23 and Dec. 27.

Some of the things that are planned will be very enjoyable, but at the end of this long day, I am rather discouraged by how much is still on the agenda...

I am in some serious need of stress-busting strategies!

At work we have been working on budgeting. Today we met through lunch, so a meal was provided - hamburgers, onion rings and a cup of fruit salad... I know interesting combo! The meal started fine. I ate the hamburger plain - skipped on the mayo and cheese and divided the onion rings on my plate so that 4 of them were separated from the pile and I intended to eat the 4 and leave the rest on the plate. I pushed the plate away when I had finished the fruit salad, about 2/3 of the hamburger and the 4 onion rings. emoticon , right? Victory you might say... but it didn't stay that way! emoticon Unfortunately the meeting got rather heated. In an effort to keep my mouth shut, emoticon I started grabbing onion rings... by the end of the meeting there were only 4 left on the plate - there were probably about 20 to start with so I was kind of disgusted with myself when I realized what I had done. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
That definitely wouldn't qualify as a good response to stress, and it definitely broke my streak for the month of only eating when hungry! Grrr.... At least the rest of my food today was nutritious and well portioned, so I will count that as a victory! I didn't let one bad meal blow the day!

After meetings like the one we had today, I like to take walks to calm myself down but today the weather was not cooperating. I compensated for my disappointment by pacing around my office while reading some materials to prepare for meetings later this week. I even got some squats and lunges in while I was at it. Not an intense workout but much better than sitting at my desk!! emoticon

And writing this blog was a stress relief, too - I am definitely feeling more peaceful now than I was when I started! emoticon

Now for some ST emoticon emoticon and then bed!! emoticon

Any stress-busting suggestions you have would be be greatly appreciated!! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDAMARIEZ1 12/5/2012 5:42PM

    when finished eating have the server take the restg away...or package it up for home and for later?

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TEALHAWK 11/16/2012 8:24PM

  emoticon emoticon

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ALEXSGIRL1 11/15/2012 6:47PM

    writing is a great stress reducer and walking is great too. Hope things get easier for you soon.

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DEBPRE16 11/14/2012 1:42PM

    Walking helps me - really any kind of exercise esp. when you get busy and don't feel like you have the time - it's the time when you need it most.

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LUVLYLORELEI 11/12/2012 10:38PM

    I try to slip in some meditation and journaling. I sometimes just slip the meditation in before bed and just when I get up. It helps me relieve the stress at the end of the day and avoid some right from the start. When I am really stressed, I try to think about the things that are bothering me, why, what I can do to make the better, what positives there are about the situation and sometimes I just sit quietly after that or something. I do the same kind of thing when I journal, but I get a lot more detailed and cover a lot more stuff, not just stuff from the day. The nice thing about these blogs though, is in a way, they are a journal and it does feel good to write them and that is definitely a start! emoticon

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BRAVELUTE 11/12/2012 9:53PM

    1. Massage. Today's health article was on the stress busting AND weight loss benefits of massage. Know anyone who could help you out?

2. You need to bounce on my rebounder. It's great for everything that ails you.

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Time to create some positive momentum!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

We are 10 days into November (1/3 of the month over already!) and I have spent most of it stressed and feeling crummy! It is not a good place to be. Today is better, but that may be a reflection of not having to go into work! emoticon I have plenty of positive thinking exercises that I can manage to pull myself together enough to do in the morning, but lately by the end of the day I am just wiped out and tired of the ins and outs of daily life. I have been slacking on exercise and making poor food choices. The one positive that stands out is that I haven't been stuffing myself silly with junk food - there have been no binges or eating too much (volume-wise, not necessarily calorie-wise).

So on to my November goals recap:

1. To weigh 224 by November 30, 2012
emoticon Current weight 232 - same weight as the beginning of the month, so no progress on that score!

2. To faithfully log everything I eat.
emoticon (I love that emoticon emoticon )
There have been several meals that were part of meetings at work, so I have had to guesstimate some meals. I have been over my total calorie range 3/10 days. I have stayed close to the lower limit of my calorie range on the days I have prepared my own meals. My average calorie intake is still 100 calories below my calorie range upper limit for the 10 days. 4/10 days I was too low on my protein intake. Usually when I am exercising enough I crave protein-rich foods, so I think this is a symptom of my lack of exercise!

3. To only eat when I am hungry, and only enough to satisfy that hunger.
emoticon but as I said above, I need to improve my food choices!

4. To walk/jog at least 75 miles for the month.
emoticon 16.6/75 so far, so I am short of the 1/3 mark (25 miles) for the first third of the month! (4.2 miles for today - like I said, today is a better day!)

5. To log at least 2000 fitness minutes for the month.
emoticon 456/2000 (165 of those minutes are from today!) not even a 1/4 of the goal met so far... definitely need to push myself to exercise even when I don't feel like it! I have felt stressed and in a bad mood for most of this month, those two problems could only improve with more exercise. I know this, but I still lack the discipline to push myself.

6. To get out of bed every morning without snoozing the alarm!
7/10 - This is not as good as I would like, but better still an improvement over last month.

7. Progress report periodically (at least once/week) via blog.
10 days is definitely more than a week! emoticon

Life at work is crazy this month, not an excuse for my slacking, but true nonetheless. The last 10 days of the month will be even more crazy, so I really need to buckle down and make some serious progress for the next ten days! Hopefully I can build some momentum that will keep me going through the end of the month.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MATTEROFHEART 11/10/2012 10:49PM

    I think you're doing emoticon I am trying to work on forgiving myself and moving on when I don't meet my goals. I tend to have an all or nothing attitude, so when I mess up I have a hard time not using it as an excuse to go ahead and mess up REALLY big!!! You sound like you have a really healthy attitude about your goals! emoticon

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ALEXSGIRL1 11/10/2012 8:45PM

    good goals and a just a little tweeking and you are on your way to suceess it is just around the corner

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DEBPRE16 11/10/2012 7:57PM

    Great goals and it seems to me you are making progress with a lot of them. Hang in there. Here's a little butterfly of motivation from me.

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Debbie

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Virtual 5K completed!

Friday, November 02, 2012

This morning I completed the Trick-or-Treat Trot Virtual 5K race. I used the odometer on my car to map out the route and my lovely Timex watch to measure my time - 48 minutes! emoticon That is no where near the fastest times posted, but it is certainly much better than I could have done 2 months ago!! emoticon

When I signed up originally I had planned to do a walk/run but in the course of the "training" for the race, I realized that I can't walk/jog as fast as I can walk, so I timed myself walking this morning. It seems funny to me that this is the case - isn't the point of running to move faster? It certainly wears me out more than the fast walking does! emoticon Eventually I hope to build up enough endurance to jog/run the entire 5K, but I am still far from that!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SAINTBETH 11/9/2012 11:20AM

    Good for you!

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VENDOSSIS 11/2/2012 7:37PM

    How awesome! I know, sometimes, when I jog, I just feel like I'm slower than when I walk. I don't know what gives about that...maybe jogging is just harder on the body so we slow down? But awesome time! You rock!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PJBONARRIGO 11/2/2012 3:35PM

    Woo Hoo! Congrats on your first 5K! I think I walk faster than I jog too- you are not alone :-) emoticon

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November goals!

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Let me start by saying that I have a crazy month ahead of me, so my goals needed be adjusted to fit the situation:

1. To weigh 224 by November 30, 2012
This would be an 8 pound weight loss for the month, my current best for a month is 5 so this is a stretch, but I would rather stretch and not quite make it than aim lower... that said, in August I had hoped to be 220 by the end of November, so I am feeling behind as it is. If I can manage lose 12 lb this month and meet that original goal, I will do the happy dance - maybe even vlog it for all to see. emoticon

2. To faithfully log everything I eat.
There are several days that I will need to log retroactively, but I will do that. Also there are lots of days this month when I will not be preparing the food that I eat, so I can not be sure that my logging will be accurate. So, instead of a goal of staying in my ranges each day (I will still aim for that) but I will keep track of a new goal for me -

3. To only eat when I am hungry, and only enough to satisfy that hunger.
I am already anticipating that there will be times when I feel that politeness requires that I eat something, so I am going to try to go into those situations prepared either with actual hunger (i.e. eating less before the situation) or great excuses to pass on food offered! Even when I can not control what food is served, I can control how much of enters my body!!

4. To walk/jog at least 75 miles for the month.
I can't count on being as consistent as I would like with weekly goals, but this averages out to about the 18/week that was my goal for October.

5. To log at least 2000 fitness minutes for the month.

6. To get out of bed every morning without snoozing the alarm!
This just makes the start of the day so much less stressful, I don't know why it is so hard for me to accomplish!

7. Progress report periodically via blog.
Can't set a particular day that will work each week, but at least once per week I will post my update... if I am feeling ambitious, maybe more!

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Wishing everyone a very happy and healthy November! emoticon emoticon emoticon
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MATTEROFHEART 11/8/2012 3:27PM

    Great plan! emoticon You got this!

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BUFFYSMOM2 11/2/2012 1:31PM

    I know you can do it! You have such GREAT plans outlined. Go, Sparkgirl, go!!!
Hugs!
Patti emoticon

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NAYKNITS 11/2/2012 11:35AM

    emoticon emoticon

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KELLY19770 11/2/2012 9:09AM

    Have a great November!! I know you can meet those goals! emoticon

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JENAE954 11/2/2012 9:06AM

  emoticon

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GINNJEN1974 11/2/2012 6:35AM

    Great goals for this month.

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