LADYBUG1943   96,358
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The Spark Solution

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Today's post is in answer to some questions about the new Spark Solution Program

What made you decide to try The Spark Solution Program?
- I needed a "new start," and was determined to follow it exactly [which I've been unable to do]. Over the last 6 months, I've gained about 5 pounds instead of losing, even though I have a very nutritious diet. I no longer eat chips, and almost no processed foods. Desserts, especially homemade ones, come into my radar just frequently enough to derail loss of weight.

Have you seen or felt any results in this first week?
-The exercise is definitely making me feel better. I cranked my compost bin (It's a rotating unit off the ground) the other day with one hand, something that used to take both hands.

What do you like the most about the program?
- Contrary to what you'll see below, the recipes. I'm going to have to start using them just every other day, though

What was your favorite meal from this week? The spinach omelet in a wrap. I used a chipata instead of a tortilla, but that meal is in my repertoire permanently.

Here is the problem with the eating program for me: The recipes, although I love the variety and appreciate the "do over" from traditionally higher calorie meals, require too many groceries and too much wasted food when there's only one person at home. I always utilize left overs in subsequent meals, and it bothers me a lot to have different foods for every day. For example... the 1/4 avocado in one of the recipes (snack on day 3). Without another person in the house, or a subsequent use of the avocado, 3/4 of it is thrown away. (Even though in my house it goes into the worm or compost bin)

Looking at the problem from the authors' point of view, I'm sure they are just trying to show us all the alternative ways of cooking that will help us lose weight. I'm just going to have to alter the plans to fit my situation, and I know that's okay with SP.

Which Insider Tip motivated you the most this week?
-Day 2: it's the little things that add up to more activity.

What is your goal for next week?
- To be more consistent with the food plan. This week has been very stressful; we had to make a quick trip to Austin in a day (about 500 miles total), and I could neither eat right nor get my water in consistently through the day. I completely went off the program. My husband and I ate a really nice tea place on the way home, which included a sandwich and soup, which for me was a "strawberry soup." Delicious, but I couldn't tell if the creamy taste came from yoghurt or cream -- big difference in the calories. Then two cookies, because I wanted to take advantage of being away from home. Looking back on my lack of will power, the traffic was extremely stressful (The highway between Austin and Dallas has sometimes been referred to as "the long parking lot," because sometimes you don't move very fast, and the two cookies reflects a life long habit of never turning down a good dessert. Candy bars, ice cream, and most sweets are not a challenge for me, but homemade things... "Katie bar the door." (Do people still say that?)

My DH will be out of town again next week, so I should be able to be more consistent then. Today I walked the Fort Worth Arboreturm, so I'm hoping it balances out all the sitting and stress eating yesterday.

Here's a link to the book. The only "fad" diet I've ever tried was the Atkins diet, years ago. All the others have been full nutrition eating plans, like Weight Watchers. In my view, the Spark Solutions book has the best and most realistic approach to a eating habit that you can use the rest of your life. Despite my wish for a more workable use of food, I love this book (and the exercise routines) and am reading it thoroughly. The pairing of eating well with exercise is very balanced and do-able.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

8HABIT 5/20/2013 4:58PM

    I liked the fact that you recognized that you could modify the plan to fit your life. I am glad you are making this work for you and not just giving up because it did not fit your life perfectly.
- Ellen

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TRUCKERSMRS 5/20/2013 4:13AM

    I agree with you regarding the food waste. My husband is away for a week at a time frequently and, like you, I hate having food in the house that only bits are going to be made use of. I've even found myself having the same meal several days on the trot to get it all used up.
Try to take inspiration from their plans but adjust it to suit your situation that week.
Keep pressing forward - you'll soon lose those 5lbs.

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CT-FL-SNOWBIRD 5/19/2013 8:40AM

    Hi Yvonne, Thank you for this info on the Solution. I also have a problem with recipes or food plans that are wasteful. I used to buy ingredients and end up throwing away what didn't get used in the recipe. I don't do that anymore.

I perked up when I saw that you have a compost bin ! I'm a composter, as well. So much so, that my family makes fun of me. One of my sons bought me a T- shirt that says "Compost Happens" .
I cringe when I see food scraps in the garbage can. When company throws banana peels in my kitchen trash can, I will "fish" them out to put them in my compost bucket.

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LADYLUCK72 5/18/2013 7:04PM

  I enjoyed reading this message because it hit home for me on some many points. And the menus I have tried are fantastic, looking forward to trying more. They are not difficult to make I like that . Great reading!! emoticon emoticon

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A good week

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Walked a 10K this past Tuesday, then 4 miles today.... no additional pain in my knees. This is a great step forward.

Thursday, my husband and I traveled to Houston and back for a two hour visit with my ailing sister in law. This was a twelve hour trip altogether. Although we got some rain, it was a good day for traveling, we found a "back road" through the country and fields of bluebonnets, and had a good day of high quality family discussions.

For dessert, there was a perfect day on Friday at the Dallas Arboretum with a long time good friend, where we enjoyed the idyllic weather, a fantastic lunch outside watching the birds and the squirrels and smelling the fresh air. Sigh.... one of life's highs.

Then the whipped cream and cherry (don't we think about food a lot?)... a Mother's day bouquet from our San Diego son. In the package was a tiny box of chocolates and a gift pack of lavender bath products. I'm blessed beyond what I deserve.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAB7801 5/15/2013 12:13PM

    You are blessed!

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CT-FL-SNOWBIRD 5/13/2013 8:34AM

    I'm so happy for your great week! Let's pray that this week is just as good or even better! emoticon

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8HABIT 5/12/2013 5:44PM

    Great news on your knee! I love the back roads in Texas, especially when the bluebonnets are blooming.

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TRUCKERSMRS 5/12/2013 5:31AM


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CJJANISS 5/11/2013 11:05PM


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SISTERPRETTY 5/11/2013 10:51PM

    emoticon on completing the 10k emoticon

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SISTERPRETTY 5/11/2013 10:50PM


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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

I've been more active lately; little time for lots of exercise, but just in general moving around more than usual... gardening, more shopping, etc.

Today I'm celebrating how much better my body feels when I do that. Remember the old chant "No more monkeys jumping on the bed?" My new chant.... "No more sittin' in the chair all day!"

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDREA0301 5/6/2013 12:32PM

    You're doing GREAT!


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TRUCKERSMRS 5/6/2013 2:37AM


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CT-FL-SNOWBIRD 4/26/2013 8:23PM

    I love your positive attitude! Keep up the good work !
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANDREA0301 4/23/2013 12:04PM

    Great manta! Haha

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SEWINGMAMACDS 4/23/2013 11:57AM

    emoticon Love your new chant!

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Trying to relax

Saturday, April 06, 2013

...and be a little easier on myself. I'm finding that when I just quit nagging myself all the time, as if to a rebellious teen, the rebellious teen within myself cooperates and does what she is supposed to do a lot more freely. Anyone know what I mean?

I even allowed myself to break my 10 minute a day streak. Now, I regret that, but at the time I just didn't want to do anything. Now I have to start all over.

What a learning curve this is!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEWINGMAMACDS 4/8/2013 11:05AM

    Balance is such a big key. Also, another key, is getting back on the streak and not letting one day derail you.

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SILLYHP1953 4/7/2013 12:06PM

    Progress not perfection...something I must keep remembering.

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TRUCKERSMRS 4/7/2013 4:28AM

    I agree with QUILTINGB52.
In order to succeed we need to keep relearning points and adapting. Our busy lives have a habit of taking over. I had a good week last week because I gave myself "permission" not to be so "perfect" in other areas. I'm taking that forward into this week too.
Together, we can do this.

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QUILTINGB52 4/7/2013 2:00AM

    This whole journey has been a learning experience about finding balance. It just not in making healthier food choices - but balancing the exercises as well. I told myself long ago that all I had to do was 10 minutes of exercise per day. It became the beginning of learning to push myself a bit harder each day, yet find some balance so I was able to repeat the process the next day.

It's a lesson I relearn - over and over and over again. We just need to keep taking those baby steps forward, arms linked together and we WILL succeed!

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EVIE4NOW 4/6/2013 9:56PM

  emoticon emoticon

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The wonder of animals

Saturday, March 23, 2013

This morning when I was doing Yoga, my elderly cat came running in to do HER yoga thing.... using my body as a petting agency. Whenever a hand or body part is close enough, she rubs against me, even nuzzling her nose under my hand so I can stroke her back. I could never figure out how she knew when I was doing yoga in our bedroom, till I realized I get a belt (yoga strap) out of a chest there, and she hears the sound of the lid closing.

We had a poodle one time that went into his "bed" every time we were thinking about going somewhere, with not a word spoken. We finally noticed he did it when we started putting our shoes on. Anyone else have uncanny behavior from their animals? They're experts on body language.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SILLYHP1953 3/28/2013 11:37AM

    I'm getting ready to catch up on your blogs, usually start with the oldest one I missed, but had to answer this one first. Our huge black cat, Harley, comes running every time he hears my husband's lazy boy shut because he knows he will get some extra petting.

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THINAGIN2 3/23/2013 3:31PM

    We cage two of our dogs when we are going to be gone for awhile. When they hear me get into the dog biscuit jar they go to their cages and always get the right one. The other two dogs come to get their cookie, too.

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TRUCKERSMRS 3/23/2013 2:00PM

    Although I don't have any animals at the moment, I used to have a lovely black cat - Sid - who was always waiting in the window for me when I came home from work. He also slept on the bed, stretched out lengthways, with his head on the pillow - he snored too!

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STONECOT 3/23/2013 1:20PM

    Chopping onions. It always brings my elderly cat Twinkle for a few morsels if liver, mince or whichever meat is going with the onions!

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SCOTMAMA 3/23/2013 12:44PM

    First of all your cat has the MOST beautiful eyes I've ever seen!! We recently adopted a 3-yr. old female tabby -- who is still not trusting enough to let me pick her up and hold her, even though she loves to be petted. Trying to get me to give her more food, she taps me on the shoulder as I sit at the computer, then runs over to her food dish. It doesn't work of course as the Vet wants her to lose a bit of weight, so she only gets a certain amount. lol

My dog gets very excited when I put on tennis shoes -- that signals "walk time." She also comes running if she hears the microwave or the refrigerator -- anything that may signal that DH or I may be eating something!

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ALICIA214 3/23/2013 12:35PM


My girl Chica knows the difference between going for a walk or staying home.. if it is
walkies time the whole body goes into action at the back door with squeaks and
squeals....and when I turn on the radio in the kitchen she goes into her crate with some
little treats{ I have to crate her when I go out because she gets into mischief when left
alone} when I first got her I lost a couple of pairs of shoes one of each pair of course..

You have a very pretty cat. emoticon

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SUSANELAINE1956 3/23/2013 12:32PM

    We used to have 3 golden retrievers. No matter how careful we would be to not give off a signal they always figured out when we were getting ready for a walk, and they would go crazy - running as fast as they could between us and the front door, back and forth, until it was time to leave. They were so excited it was difficult to even get their collars and leashes attached. Your blog brought back that memory. emoticon

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