LDRICHEL   47,525
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Encouraging Changes

Sunday, March 18, 2012

I'm very encouraged as I write this, because even though I wasn't perfect calorie-wise today, I finished C25K Week 2 Day 1 and I made significant improvements to my interval times. So I felt really great about that.

And tonight, it seems that my husband is FINALLY getting on board with the healthy eating/correct portion sizes kick that I have been on for the past few weeks. I can't even tell you how much that helps me mentally. Also, we are preparing the kids to go back to school tomorrow (they've been on Spring Break all week) and we have them laying out their clothes and choosing the food they want in their lunches. They refuse to eat school lunch now because they saw the news story on "pink slime" that turns into chicken nuggets. Frankly, I love that...because the kids at school are all talking about it and I think that the voice of the students is SO much more powerful than a bunch of "nagging parents". The kids could bring their own change!!! That's so exciting!

Anyway, back to our house tonight...the kids are really trying to choose healthy options because they are so grossed out by the pink slime. So they are having a great dialogue with us about what is healthy and what is not. It's not a huge deal, because they won't necessarily EAT the healthy stuff yet...but it's a start.

And, you know what? I will TAKE baby steps over no steps at all!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ADJQUILTER 3/19/2012 6:42AM

    A happy and blessed Monday, Leah! You are the Spark that will change yourself and those around you! How exciting that your DH and kids are beginning to come around. What a precious gift you are giving them all.
How exciting to be training for a 5K. I felt good about myself when I walked my first 5K.
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ON2VICTORY 3/18/2012 9:33PM

    Hi Leah! I am so glad to hear that hubby is getting on board. Lead with gentleness and set a good example, he is counting on you! Just think, your healthy journey is the spark for the whole family...wow, what an example you are :)

how awesome to hear about your 5k training improvements, it is going to be a great day indeed when you do your first race...you will be so proud, and we will too :)

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So, yeah. I guess I had a breakthrough today. Or something.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Today was just...well...instead of boring you with all the details, let's do something fun and I'll tell my story in pictures.

Yesterday, work rocked and I felt on top of the world and I was all...

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Today, work was really rough and I felt like...

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At lunch, which was an hour and half later than usual because things had been SO busy, I really wanted to go to a buffet and eat...a LOT.

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But, I knew in my heart that I should have this instead:

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And do you know what happened THEN???? Sitting at my desk...this literally happened....

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That's when I realized...there has never been a more CLEAR example of the fact that I am an emotional eater and that my trigger is stress.


So, I had an entire inner dialogue with myself. "OK, I want to eat because I'm upset. I feel....???"

Not Good Enough
Out of Control

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And I chose the salad. It was delicious. But I still didn't feel better. So, the breakthrough was that I recognized, in the moment, what exactly was happening and I did the right thing.

But I'm still left with this icky, frustrated, anxious, jittery feeling. It's like...now how do I actually HANDLE all these yucky emotions if I can't just eat and stuff them down?

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRESKA 3/22/2012 6:36AM

    wow, cute way to do the blog. i wanna try that sometime! :) i think actually crying was a great way to get your mind and emotions releasing that stress. and not associating the comfort food with relief. by grabbing a quick fix. i think you got a lot of good advise already :) and of course i will say, get a massage and a chiropractic adjustment! get help releasing all that stress in your bones and muscles!

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ADJQUILTER 3/17/2012 9:24AM

    When I'm faced with a situation like that, I pull out my book "Made to Crave" and read over the Healthy Eating Go-To Scripts, like "I was made for more than to be stuck in a vicious cycle of defeat." You have circled this mountain long enough. Now turn north. Deuteronomy 2:3
-or "When I am considering a compromise, I will think past this moment and ask myself, How will I feel about this choice tomorrow morning?"
-or "When tempted, I either remove the temptation or remove myself from the temptation."
The other ladies have also given some excellent advice-do something to distract yourself.
Don't let it become a pity party. Turn over the controls of your eating to the Lord.
Pray to Him that you're just not strong enough in yourself to handle all of these feelings and situations, but He is all powerful, and there to help get you through it.
I know I could never hope to do this on my own. Turning over control is one of the hardest things for me to do, but it is so empowering and freeing. God is strong, you are not. Turn to Him in faith, and you will achieve victory.
Your team mates are praying for you too! I am praying that God will strengthen and guide you into making good choices. Remember, it is always a choice. You can choose to have the healthy and fit life that you want to have.
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MARVEEME 3/17/2012 6:22AM


Take a walk to clear your head...yes, even at work. Go to your car for that "forgotten" item that fell out of your purse. Change up your surroundings if even for just a few minutes. It will make a difference.

Breathing exercises along with chair exercises right at your desk can help too. Move the darn chair to the opposite side of the desk for a few minutes too....don't just sit in the chairs that are there, move them around for awhile....blame it on the need to stretch your back or legs, but switch it up.

Create a focus on a hobby or neglected task when these moments hit you at home. Keep a list of neglected tasks (like cleaning out your makeup drawer or organizing your linen closet). Something that will take more than a minute for you to complete will change your focus and will create new habits that will help you to re-prioritize stress.

While implementing the important "If it wasn't food 100 years ago, it still isn't, so don't eat it" philosophy, ask yourself one question about those non-food related stressful situations: Will what I do now matter in 5 years? Ahhhhhhhhh........it's not as important as you thought, eh?


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EXPAT_EMMA 3/17/2012 4:31AM

    Sorry work was rough. I know someone who lost a lot of weight and she was an emotional eater. I asked her how she did it. She told she learnt to not let the emotions fester inside of her - she wrote them down, told a friend, exercised them away. She also realised that not everything is her fault.
So why not try writing a journal (doing this blog is great as well). It is a good way to see if there are any patterns or triggers to the way you feel.
I have found exercise is also a great way of dealing with a bad day - kickboxing is especially good for dealing with stress!
Anyway, well done on making the right decision despite of everything!


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LOLOSMOMMY 3/16/2012 11:41PM

    I don't have an answer to your question but I'm an emotional eater too. I applaud you for recognizing it and then making a good decision.

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Anyone lost a lot of weight walking?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

I have seen a lot of runners that have lost extraordinary amounts of weight. But, after yesterday's workout, I'm worried that I might not be quite ready for running. I woke up this morning with the WORST knee pain. And I have never had knee issues before.

I have this friend, Eugene, who lost over 100 lbs in just over a year and ALL he does is WALK. Well...and eat healthy. Duh. Granted, he has a very structured program and he was out there walking EVERY day with everything in him. He could walk a mile faster than many people could run it.

My question is...has anyone on SP lost a lot of weight WALKING and not running? I feel like I could go a lot longer with less injury if I stick to walking. I like it a lot and I do believe in the health benefits. I know that I would need to push myself, the same way I would if I were training for running races. And, I do intend to train for races.

In fact, my boss has knee problems and her doctor told her that she only had so many steps left (running) with her knees in the condition they are in. He gave her the choice between running til her knees quit or walking instead for much longer. She chose walking. In 2 weeks, she will fast-walk a half marathon. Today she told me to pay attention to her Facebook statuses because, if I notice, she never says, "I RAN 8 miles today." Instead, she says, "I DID 8 miles today." Haha. Never did notice that before. Clever.

I don't know. This blog is kind of meandering...just putting down some thoughts I've been having. The last thing I need is to get injured and gain even MORE weight! Ugh!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RELISA4HEALTH 3/16/2012 9:58PM

    Walking works. My husband used to be a runner. He always tells me it is not good on the joints of the knees.
If you continue to be consistent with your walking routine, watch what you eat, I know that you can lose the weight.
Weights for strength training is another good way to tone up and if you like to dance, peiople encourage one another to do Zumba.
All in all any actitivity is better than sitting down.
Keep up the wonderful work.

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IAMFRANSGIRL 3/16/2012 12:11PM

    Walking works!! I'm 200+ pounds lighter because of it. As I lost weight I added other types of workouts, but walking remains my favorite. Hope your knees feel better, it's discouraging when they hurt.

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MARVEEME 3/16/2012 5:43AM

    Walking works. I'm proof!

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BITTYGIRL51 3/16/2012 12:12AM

    Walking works! A brisk pace and a consistent regimen will get you there as long as you are also exercising portion control! emoticon

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COUPONS0216 3/15/2012 10:16PM

    I like the DVD's called "Walk Away The Pounds." They are low impact and you don't have to worry about the weather or need special shoes or clothes. So far I've lost 20 pounds in 10 weeks.

Elevate your leg and ice your knee, you don't want to have issues down the road. Take care and be well. emoticon

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ADJQUILTER 3/15/2012 10:05PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon Walking works for me when the weather permits. What is important is that you find something you are comfortable with that you can stick with. Be kind to your body. When you heal, start walking. You'll enjoy it!
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GETTINGFIT4HIM 3/15/2012 10:02PM

  Sorry to hear about your knee pain. Hoping it is temporary and the result of something easily fixed. How are your shoes for example? I went to a running store and had them evaluate me so I knew what shoes were the right ones for me. Turns out I pronate a little so I need to get stability shoes. Did you do any other type of exercise that might have put your knee in a vulnerable place? If you want to continue to run, I've heard that a good method to follow (and I am going to be trying it hopefully next week!) is the Jeff Galloway method. He firmly believes that by run/walking rather than all out running you can avoid burnout and injury. None of this is to say you should or shouldn't still run. Just trying to think of things that might need to be considered before giving up on it.

Now to answer your question on walking and losing a lot of weight. I have not lost a lot of weight by walking but I've heard of MANY who have. A friend of mine walked outside 6 miles almost every day of the week in about an hour and a half (15 min mile) and she SHED weight very quickly. I'm also just now getting consistent in any sort of walking routine which is part of it for my results. It is also a great cross training workout for running so I am definitely incorporating it. I just read on Leslie Sansone's blog that walking one of her miles w/o a "booster" is about 100 calories per mile. Using a booster bumps it to 125 to 150 calories per mile.

Hopefully I've offered some sort of help with my answer! Here to support you!! emoticon

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ON2VICTORY 3/15/2012 9:50PM

    let me tell you that walking is an extremely powerful weapon at your disposal. I lost 30+ pounds doing nothing but walking, then i switched up to cycling THEN started jogging. There are TONS of walkers in events from 5k's to half marathons, some even walk marathons.

What im saying is make it happen, the running will always be there when you build up enough to be able to start. It takes alot of time for your body to make the adaptations to withstand the pounding that the joints and connective tissues will take..

Fyi... Due to issues with my leg and a foot injury, i will be walking the vast majority of my upcoming half marathon and im happy to be able to do it, it gets me out there..

Walk my friend and make ut happen...

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CALI_POPPY 3/15/2012 9:49PM

    Prior to my pregnancies, I lost 65 lbs and all I did was walk and watch my calorie intake. I would walk about an hour and 30 minutes each day, not even a crazy fast paced but I didn't take the time to smell the roses either. So it was a steady pace and I had to walk about 5 days a week but it did work for me.

Walk for now, gain some momentum and then add in some jogging. It doesn't have to be all or nothing...even 5 minutes of jogging in between walking will be a great start.

I also discovered pain when I ran. But if I get adjusted by the chiropractor (they can adjust your knee as well) and stick to a treadmill, I had absolutely no pain at any time.

Hoping to get back into running soon but its a process that you kind of have to build up too. Good Luck and keep on keeping on!!!!

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Make It Happen!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Oh, SparkFriends! I have had a series of small victories today! Some of you might have seen the video blog by ON2VICTORY yesterday that dealt with making small goals and sticking to them. I have watched that blog a few times already and it is, quite possibly, the most inspiring thing I've ever seen related to health and weight loss. Robert has already lost 115 lbs and he has about 40 lbs left to reach his goal weight. I'd sent him a message asking him HOW he stuck to the plan for so long and didn't give up. And my answer was that video blog yesterday.

Basically, Robert says, "Make small goals for yourself and keep them. Every time you keep a small goal, you prove to yourself that you can do this." He also talked about how the only two things we have control over are our diet and our fitness. Everything else is totally on our body's timetable, so we can't worry about a timetable. Instead, we do what we KNOW to do and control what we CAN control and let our body work everything else (health, weight, healing) out in time. Robert said a couple of times, "Make it happen!"

Well, today I did just that. Came home from a long day of work and didn't FEEL like cooking at all. Was actually kinda pissed that my hubby (who'd been home ALL DAY) hadn't thought to make dinner. It would have been SO easy to order pizza, but I couldn't shake my CRAVING for a HEALTHY dinner. And, more than that, the craving for that feeling of victory that I would have after eating a healthy meal (my body celebrating a tiny goal achieved). So, I assembled a delicious little plate for myself (and everyone else in my family): grilled turkey burgers, steak fries, peas and skim milk. I had a very small serving of fries (still within my calorie limit) and I'll be honest...I was still fuming about having to make dinner the entire time I was eating. Emotionally, I wanted to fly off the handle and eat the entire leftover pan of fries. And, you know what? I could have. But I forced myself to be done with dinner. Because, in the back of my mind, I remembered Robert's words from his blog last night and thought, "I can do this." And, wouldn't you know...that translated into a financial victory as well (no spending $40 on pizza!) SWEET!

Then, it was close to 7pm and I STILL hadn't got my workout in. It was still light out and I thought, "I'll go for a walk on the trail." But, alas, no clean workout clothes and it was getting darker by the minute and, quite honestly, I've been feeling a little guilty about being gone and away from my kids so much on the trail. ALMOST said, "Screw it. I won't do a workout today. It's just ONE day."

But then I heard Robert's voice saying, "Make it happen! You don't KNOW where you will be in two years if you stick to your small goals." And do you know what I did next? I went to my handy dandy SparkPeople app on my phone and calculated the number of minutes I'd need to climb stairs to burn my goal of 285 calories. 23 minutes. Set my timer and did stairs and brisk walking all around my house. Around minute 8, I was ready to collapse and I could envision my calves locking up. I thought, "If I just make it to 10 minutes, I'll quit. That's good enough." Then, I made it to 10 and thought, "I've got a chance to prove to myself that I CAN DO THIS and, by golly, I'm gonna prove it!" So I kept going. The entire 23 minutes. More sweat poured off of me than I have seen in a long time! And, when it was all said and done, I felt AWESOME! Physically...and mentally. Because I achieved a small goal.

One day at a time. Heck, one MINUTE at a time, people. I finally believe that I CAN do this!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRESKA 3/15/2012 3:46AM

    thats right! soo awesome! i "pysch" myself out all the time. i dont know HOW i keep falling for it! hahhahaha. but yeh, i will say, its only x amount of minutes. you can do ANYTHING for x amount of minutes.. then i break it down.. ok 5 down 25 to go.. you can do this. and sometimes i say the same thing, just make it to 15 then you can stop if you want to.. then 15 comes and i say, your HALF way through, you can do anything for 15 more minutes, 10 more minutes 5 more minutes etc.. he's right. keep small goals. is definatly the way to go. if i say I HAVE TO LOSE 75 POUNDS thats just too much to get to in a reasonable time. (what i would want to be "resasonable i mean) lol
so THIS round i have a DATE in mind. no goal weight this time.. i just want to see WHERE i can be by this date, IF i am trying hard to lose weight and watch my nutrition and excercise. where could i be by then.. i'm excited to see !!
and i'm excited to see where you'll be as you keep up your "make it happen" attitude :)

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ON2VICTORY 3/14/2012 10:17PM

    oh wow, that is so awesome! Way to go!!!! Over time you will slowly hone a routine to where things will gel a little bit better. Life has a way of happening doesnt it? But you did such a great job in overcoming the 'fuming moments'

you are well on your way :)

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ADJQUILTER 3/14/2012 9:40PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
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IMAJEAN0178 3/14/2012 9:11PM

    Great blog, thanks for sharing.

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Not familiar with this craving...to go running.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I have never been athletic. I once tried to join the track team in high school, but promptly gave up when I was introduced to the concept of "conditioning". There was a short period of one semester my senior year of high school where my friend got me to run a mile with her every other day after school and it was torturous. This was back when I was 120 lbs and in perfect shape and never worried about what I ate. In fact, I was too skinny. I don't even know WHY I ran with her...I guess just because she asked me to. Haha.

Since then, 15 years have passed and college happened (adding a healthy 25 lbs to my girlish physique). But after college, I got married and had 3 kids and gained 106 more pounds. Now, I'm well over 200 and just praying I can find it in me to get this weight off so I don't die before my kids have kids.

I have had some successful forays at working out. A couple years ago, I was working out 6 days a week for an hour every morning and I had lost 15 lbs over 2-3 months. That was 2 years ago and that was when I had my accident (practicing to try out for roller derby) and I broke both bones in my wrist, shattered my elbow and snapped my ankle. The extent of my injuries made it difficult to even operate a wheelchair. I was completely out of commission for 3 months and bones weren't totally healed for about a year.

It's been a full year since my docs declared my bones "fully healed", but I have not engaged in a real workout program, because I was afraid. Pure and simple. I'm afraid of so many things, not the least of which is re-breaks...in particular, my ankle. I twist my ankle a lot now if I'm not on perfectly flat, level ground. The thought of jogging was terrifying to me. Until I challenged myself to do it one day and found that I actually could! After that, I just wanted to keep doing more!

I bought brand new running shoes (and I thought I had researched the right type, etc) and I ran the first day of Couch 2 5K on Saturday. I was ridiculously proud of myself! But yesterday was terrible...the shoes hurt my feet SO badly, I could barely eek out the 2 mile walk and I literally had to remove them and walk home two blocks in my socks. There was THAT much pain in my feet.

So, a lot of runner friends have told me that I probably have the wrong shoes. Dammit, I paid $75 for these! Grrr. But, I ordered them online. Not smart. Apparently, there's a runners' store in town that will do all the measurements on my feet and even watch me run and figure out the perfect shoe for me.

The real shocker here is this...WHY do I want to spend so much time to do this? WHY do I want to go to this store and have some stranger watch me shake my fatness and have him fit me with what is sure to be a SUPER expensive shoe that I probably can't afford and then WHY do I WANT to do this Couch 2 5K so badly and eventually sign up for a 5K and, later on, who knows what? I HATE running. Right????

It is shocking even to me. I don't know where this desire came from. I can only think of 2 possible explanations:

1. I have so many runner friends now, not to mention a LOT of SparkFriends that have lost a ton of weight and this is how they have done it - 5Ks, Marathons, etc. I suppose I'm just ridiculously inspired by all of them.

2. I know what it's like to not be able to use my legs at all. And I know what a tremendous gift it is to be able to simply walk. Or run. Perhaps it's just a matter of actually using the gifts I've been given.

Whatever it is, it's kind of a pleasant surprise. I hope it lasts and, more importantly, I'd give anything to feel truly HEALTHY again.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRESKA 3/14/2012 5:30PM

    sounds like a hard day in those shoes the other day! :( they seemed like awesome shoes to me to. and i already have that brand and love it. but i found a store in town i can buy them from. my feet are so picky! i have to try on shoes first!
maybe you could also buy a nice insert. just a 10 or 20 dollar one will work. i have found those make a TON of difference. and also break in your shoes by just wearing them around a few days.
with a good insert (no need to pay big $$ for a good insert) and breaking them in you might be able to still use them for the running stuff. :)

thanks for sharing! its cute that your liking running now! i hope that you continue to do what makes you happy and gives you results :)


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DOTTIEJANE1 3/14/2012 8:25AM

    I agree with you running seems to be the way most Spark's people are loosing weight . Hope you find the shoes you need at a good price. Have a blessed week .

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BITTYGIRL51 3/13/2012 7:12PM

    Boy oh boy, do I relate to what you are saying. A few years ago I was asking myself the same questions. My answer was that "I love a challenge". Now, after 3 5k's, I'm just a walker.

Regarding shoes: I went to Racquet and Jog - they are the ones that came highly recommended on here. I have been very satisfied.

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BECKYLIVES 3/13/2012 3:33PM

    Oooh I love this blog! I know exactly how you're feeling! I hope that you get the right running shoes and get things figured out!

I'm getting ready to jump into the same team on SP so I can start doing what I need to do in order to accomplish the 5k!



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ADJQUILTER 3/13/2012 2:42PM

    I pray that you overcome this hurdle and can get back to your running. Such freedom!
And, it's the perfect time of year!
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ON2VICTORY 3/13/2012 1:32PM

    we all have the hurdles we have to jump through but you have so much heart that you will overcome them all. Just curious, did you break your shoes in first? That is kinda tough on the feet so its understandable that you had some issues. Im on my phone and its hard to comment on it. Sp mail me if u need any help or questions..

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RICHELLEMASON 3/13/2012 1:05PM

    Congrats on Running...I loved to run, but I moved and lost my running buddies, so I'm slowly getting back into it.....=) Can't wait to be like you a Runner again... =)

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