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I Once Was a Fat Girl, Who Knew Nothing of the Thin Girl I Would Become.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Today I am celebrating being one year older.
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Normally this might be a cause for being sad. One more year has passed, I am getting older, and with that comes more wrinkles, less energy and more hair dye.


This is not the case.

Not for me.

I am 36 now and feel BETTER than I did at 26. emoticon

At 26 I weighed in at 298. Once I saw that number on the scale I stayed away from the scale for a long time. Who knows it I went over 300 lbs. It doesn’t matter. Not now.

At 26 I was depressed, I was tired, I had no passion, no direction in life. I lived by my past and my past said that THIS was the girl I had become. THIS was my destiny. I had a husband who was devoted and loved me – no matter what my size or what the number on the scale said. Life was good. Right?

At 26 I had no kids. I lived like a hermit, staying indoors whenever possible. I could totally relate to those people who are seriously afraid to leave their homes. I actually envied them this disease because it was a valid reason to stay indoors, and had I truly suffered from this disease I would be medicated.

I had seen therapists, counselors for my depression – they all recommended drugs. Drugs that I tried and may work for some, but in my case made me feel, well, not like myself. Not that myself was great, but it was better than feeling NOTHING.

I tried every diet known to man. Weight Watchers, Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig, diet pills, diet scams, fad diets. I once ate nothing but chicken soup for a week and another time starved myself to try to cleanse my system. I even visited a Chinese healer and took pills he gave me that looked like rat poo. I have no idea what they were, but at least they gave me energy. When I was younger I was anorexic and bulimic and messed up my metabolism and body with nothing but Slim-Fast and pretzels for two years of my life. Sure, I looked good. I looked sick, but I could fit into size 6 jeans no problem.

Fast forward four years. I am pregnant with my first child, a daughter. I know now that things need to change. I can’t give her anything, any love, if I don’t love myself. And I needed to face the fact that I didn’t love myself. I began to eat healthy, began to work out. My daughter changed my life. She saved my life, actually. I discovered Sparkpeople and all the great tools and starting sparkin’ – slowly, but surely.

Then three years later I have another daughter. I was motivated and driven and determined to be a good mother to these precious girls. I began to LOVE working out and eating right. I began to FEEL GOOD about myself. I began to love more, love myself, my husband, my daughters. I embraced Christ into my life and felt his love.

So today, 10 years from the worst darkness of my life, I see the light. I see that hope that I’ve always heard is at the end of the tunnel. I’ve lost 70 lbs. and have 50 lbs. more to lose to reach my goal weight. And I know I’ll get there. No rush, but by my next wedding anniversary would be nice. And that girl from long ago? Well…

THIS is the girl I was supposed to be. I can see her emerging from within. THIS was God’s plan for me all along, I just needed to believe it. And you know what? I kind of like THIS girl, this strong, inspiring, motivating, determined and kind girl. THIS girl has amazed me with what she can do. Running 2 5ks when previously she had never left the couch, never even liked going outside in the summer as a child to play. THIS girl who has shed 70 lbs. of her former self, breaking through any stigma of being morbidly obese. THIS girl who didn’t listen to doctors’ recommendations to perhaps get bariatric surgery because the amount of weight I had to lose was just TOO MUCH.

I ended my last day as a 35 yr. old with a run. Today I started the day off getting up early with my baby, now 1 yr. old, and danced.

And I can’t think of any better way to start the day. Or the year.

So to sum the story up, this is a story about a girl who was once a fat girl, who knew nothing of the girl she would become. Then, she met HOPE.

Thank you everyone, for your support. If you are where I was, please know that there IS hope for you too. There is enough hope to go around.



Me and my husband on my birthday 10 yrs. ago vs. today.

A different view: me and my husband on my birthday 10 yrs. ago vs. today.

The Girl I would become (298 on the left, 228 on the right - 70 lbs. down)

The Girl I would become (298 on the left, 228 on the right - 70 lbs. down)

Me this morning with my daughter, Lucy, now 4. The girl who changed my life. OR rather, helped ME change my life.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TINNATEE 9/15/2010 11:45AM

    Great Pictures and great blog! Comparing your pictures, you can tell how much healthier you look and feel now, you are positively radiant! Way to go! emoticon

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VIRGOGURL4 9/14/2010 10:04PM


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TRABOLD8567 9/7/2010 12:14AM

  emoticon emoticon

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JULIENURSE 9/6/2010 6:32PM

    AMAZING... Congrats on your hard work and lifestyle change.

An inspiration... thank you very much!

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HELMS321 9/6/2010 4:53PM

  I can totally relate to staying indoors all the time. I used to spend my entire day laying on the couch watching TV, only getting up to eat or use the bathroom.

I am proud of and inspired by you!! We choose this life instead! emoticon

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MARTELLA3 9/6/2010 4:08PM

    Jesus said, "Behold I make all things new." Congratulations on your spiritual rebirth as well as your physical rebirth. You are experiencing His abundant life.

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SOPHIETR 9/6/2010 9:10AM

    emoticon continued Good luck! and many blessings on your journey to success.

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ANGELIKI110 9/6/2010 7:41AM

    Need I say that you also look ten years younger!!!!

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LADYBUG1061 9/6/2010 1:21AM

  Nice ...good for you!!Great job

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ANNROBERTS54 9/5/2010 9:37AM

    What a blessed journey. With out it, you would not be who you are today. A great woman, wife, mommy and all around human being!!

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LIBBYL1 9/5/2010 1:08AM


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SACGIRL 9/4/2010 9:24PM

    You are true inspiration!! What a beautifully written blog and what a beautiful family you have. Thank you for sharing your story :)

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ASHLAU2403 9/4/2010 8:29PM

    I just got chills reading your blog! My daughters changed my life for me also. They continue to be my biggest source of encourgement and motivation. Great Job! I know that you will meet your goal.

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K__IERRA123 9/4/2010 6:09PM

    Congratulations! You have worked hard, and it is nice to see you can see aging positively!



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A-M-CARDIOCAT 9/4/2010 5:16PM

    Congratulations on finding true happiness and the strength within yourself to do what you are doing.

Keep up the emoticon work!!!

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INTOTHESOUTH 9/4/2010 3:45PM

    Congratulations and Happy Birthday!

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LAURIE404 9/4/2010 8:15AM

    Happy Birthday! Thank you for sharing your uplifting story. You have inspired me. Wow you look younger in your today picture!! I look forward to reading more.. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CAZADORES 9/4/2010 7:46AM

    A very touching post. Congratulations! I have no doubt you will reach your goals!

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CHICAT63 9/3/2010 9:52PM

    Congratulations and Happy Birthday !!!!

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CAROLYN1213 9/3/2010 9:47PM

    You are amazing!!!!! My transformation started in a similar way in that it was a spiritual journey and realizing the girl that God created me to be and I never want to be anything less than the beautiful, fun loving, joy sharing woman he designed me to be. Happy Birthday beautiful!

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CMAXSON 9/3/2010 9:30PM


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JEREMY723 9/3/2010 8:42PM

    You should be soooo proud of your self! What a wonderful life change. Keep enjoying it!:)

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WEMINICH 9/3/2010 8:13PM


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SIA33444 9/3/2010 4:34PM

  That is an amazing transformation. I am so proud of what you have become the last ten years.

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POLLKAT 9/3/2010 3:16PM

    Congratulations and Happy Birthday

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AQUABUNNY 9/3/2010 3:05PM


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JCWATL 9/3/2010 2:00PM

    You look not one day older! In fact, you might look younger this year than you did pack then. You also look healthier. I can see it in your face.

Congratualtions! What a great birthday.

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KIMH239 9/3/2010 11:37AM

    So so so so happy for you! For you and your family! You and they are trully blessed. Your story brought tears to my eyes. I love a happy ending!!!!

Good luck on the rest of your journey!

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KARENE10 9/2/2010 6:52PM

    Happy Birthday! Great Blog! You are doing awesome:)

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HOTTIE41465 9/2/2010 12:13PM

    Really great blog and congrats on your weight loss! emoticon

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FINDING_MELISSA 9/2/2010 11:09AM

    Your blog really hit home for me. I have two little girls- a 3.5 year old and a 1 year old. I want to be healthy for them. I lost 25 lbs. from January to June but really stalled out over the summer. Your blog reminded me of why I chose to take this journey. You reminded me that my two beautiful little girls are counting on me to be healthy. THANK YOU!!!!

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SKINNYMINNIE25 9/2/2010 10:27AM

    Thanks so much for sharing your story. The future starts w TODAY! (my new mantra). Keep up the work and the writing. You are inspirational and will have many followers.


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MISSANTHROPY15 8/30/2010 1:45PM

    Lovely blog! Thank you for sharing and thank you for loving yourself!

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TEDDYBEARGIRL 8/27/2010 11:48PM

    Happy B-Day!!!!!!!

What a great blog!

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TEMPEST272002 8/27/2010 12:56PM

    What a beautiful way to celebrate your birthday - by remembering and recognizing how far you have come! I think it's wonderful that your daughters were the inspiration to be fit and fabulous! You love your daughters so much & now you can express that love more fully with them. Play with them, run with them, laugh with them. What a wonderful gift you have given to them & yourself. Bravo!
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    beautiful and inspiring. God is good :)

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ANGELWENDYMAMA 8/27/2010 11:18AM

    Happy Birthday!! Love your post! Congrats on your progress and success!!! :)
If it wasn't for wanting a child so much I might never have started on a weight loss journey I needed for my own health, too. Now he's 3.5 and I have more to lose so I'm at it again. Never stopped trying and did maintain off 40 lbs of the 60 I lost before conceiving.. and then I went up 10 lbs this summer and had to stop it!

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SIDKROSE 8/27/2010 10:56AM

    You are so amazing, your blog actually made me tear up! Thank you for sharing your journey and just know, you inspired me!

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SHERLYN-WILL 8/27/2010 9:35AM

    You are an incredible person... I love your smile. I love your energy you convey on your blogs and your status feeds. You are the woman God intended to be and His love shines through you!

What an absulutely amazing journey you have been on. You have a wonderful supportive daughter and 2 beautiful children God has blesses you with. You are doing this for them and God used Lucy to get you started.

BUT YOU ARE DOING THIS FOR YOU and you obviously have learned so many things along the way that you WILL keep this weight off. Praise God for his sweet love and ways that he uses to change us.

We serve an awesome God.

You celebrating your birthday morning by dancing with you baby is just so sweet!

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PRETTYPITHY 8/27/2010 1:49AM

    This is awesome! Congrats and happy birthday! Thanks for the inspiration.

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TRAVELGRRL 8/26/2010 11:26PM

    You look AWESOME, and your daughter is beautiful. She is lucky to have a Mom who cares enough about her to take care of HERSELF. You will be around to see Lucy's children, and maybe even her children's children.

What an awesome birthday you had, and a perfect time for a look back. Thank you for sharing it with us.


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SGTSUNNY 8/26/2010 10:12PM

    Great blog, wonderful story, looking forward to seeing the blog where you are at goal! Best wishes, hope you get there for your anniversary! And your DH reminds me of mine, sounds like a real sweetie. And Lucy is so very cute.

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MOMTO6PLUS2 8/26/2010 9:08PM

    Fabulous blog! Thank you for sharing :)

and happy birthday to you, dear!

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UNICORN212 8/26/2010 8:50PM

    I have tears in my eyes. Awesome story.

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KATRIONAH 8/26/2010 8:39PM

    Happy Birthday, wonderful pictures. Sure was a lovely uplifting blog. emoticon

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LOOZINITNOW 8/26/2010 8:20PM

    Truly inspirational! You look fabulous and glowing!

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SONGOFJOY27 8/26/2010 8:08PM

    Happy birthday! And congrats on how far you've come! Not just the weight loss (amazing!) but also how much you have changed from the inside out! Keep it up! You can reach your goals!

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 8/26/2010 7:58PM

    Yay! Congrats :)

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DAISYDIVA74 8/26/2010 7:40PM

    That is a AWESOME blog!! Congrats on your sucess. You deserve all the happiness. This is a journey we are on and no the weight is not going to come off over night. God knows we put it there one bite at a time. You will reach your goal!! Happy Birthday again....And just think how many more you will have now that you are active and healthy!! What a wonderful gift for your husband and daughters!!!

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KAYLAP101 8/26/2010 7:21PM

    Amazing, so inspiring! :)
Congratulations and Happy Birthday!

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This Weekend I Felt Like a Skinny Person

Monday, August 23, 2010

I had a great weekend; it was full of healthy things.

It started on Friday night. I was invited to go to a chocolate party at my neighbor’s house, but I had worked late and just wanted to get home to see my family. So I told her I couldn’t make it, which was a healthy choice for me (usually I would go anyway even though I was tired and missing the family). Plus I avoided all of that chocolate.

Then on Saturday I headed to the city with my daughter, Lucy. I met up with a girlfriend of mine, La Tannya on the train, then met two of my sisters, Kara and Kris, and my cousin Kim in Millennium Park in Chicago for ZUMBA! It was so much fun! I’ve never worked out like that in a crowd and outside.

It was a BLAST! It was very humid out, but it had rained earlier that morning so it wasn’t TOO hot. I got everyone into Zumba and now they want to find a class and La Tannya, who was already into Zumba, is considering becoming an instructor (she would rock at this!). She also agreed to running the Hot Chocolate 5k with me, I sent her the Couch to 5k information.

After Zumba we went out to lunch and I ordered the Killarney salad, but with grilled chicken. La Tannya ordered it with crispy and we both got chicken on the side so that we could mix and match and it wouldn't be too unhealthy for either of us. It's all about healthy choices!

Sunday my family and I headed again to the city to Lincoln Park Zoo for the WTTW 3k Fun Walk. It was a lot of fun, I logged in 12,000 steps, burned over 500 calories and spent quality time with my family. When I signed up for the walk, I ordered an XL shirt. Boy, was this shirt too big on me! I had to tie a knot in the side of it just so that it wasn't swimming on me. I am officially in a Large size shirt!

Lucy and I did a sprint sponsored by Fleet Feet. Jim and the girls did it, too. I would not have done this a year ago. I would have looked at the sprint area that was set up and said “no thanks”. I let her win and she was so excited that she was faster than Mommy!

Me and Lucy running to the finish line!

Jim and Marlo

Come to think of it, I wouldn’t have done either the Zumba or the 3k last year. I would have wanted to stay indoors in the air conditioning. I was very depressed at almost 300 lbs. As a child I would stay inside all summer long, watching TV and eating Cheetos and chunks of cheese. I never worked out, I never played like the other kids did. Now that I'm a parent to two daughters, one of my main motivations is to be able to PLAY with them. And the reality of it is, they are teaching ME how to play. I never knew how to do it. But I'm learning now.

I can’t tell you how much it means to me that I can actually PLAY with my daughters now. I can actually run. I am finally LIVING.

My two gorgeous daughters!

My family

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUST_GAIL 8/24/2010 7:44PM

    Congratulations on your early birthday present! You have earned it! You really do have a beautiful family.

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DELORENZO74 8/24/2010 5:50PM

    How emoticon! What a great post to read about all the positives in your life! Your family is beautiful!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KSGROTHE 8/24/2010 4:58PM

    emoticon on all the family fitness you got in this weekend! I love that not only did you do a lot of exercise, but you included your family, too!

Keep up the good work! emoticon

- Karen

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DCAMPBELL8 8/24/2010 12:33PM

    What a lovely family you have, BEAUTIFUL! Blessings to you today and always! emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 8/24/2010 12:33:59 PM

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MISSANTHROPY15 8/24/2010 11:22AM

    You are active and amazing! Thank you for sharing!

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TEDDYBEARGIRL 8/23/2010 9:42PM

    Looked like it was a ton of fun!!!!!!

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KITHKINCAID 8/23/2010 6:29PM

    So much fun! Way to go - Zumba looked awesome.

Pass on the word - my Zumba studio is doing a Zumbathon for Breast Cancer on September 19th I think - maybe 26th - I have to double check, at 6pm. You can buy cute pink ribbon Zumba tanks and most of the proceeds go to Breast Cancer Awareness. Then we get to do an hour plus of Zumba with everyone. Should be awesome.

Your kids are stinkin CUTE!!!

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COLT2008 8/23/2010 5:56PM

    What a emoticonweekend and such beautiful pictures!! emoticonfor sharing it with us.

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JESSSPARK 8/23/2010 4:45PM

    This looks like great fun. I'll be at Hot Chocolate this year, I hope we get good weather for it ! :) Go team Chi-town!

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DONNAORLENE 8/23/2010 2:32PM

    How special! This is what it's all about! God blessed us with friends and families for a reason! Your weekend sounds absolutely amazing and full of precious moments to remember! The pictures are great! You have a beautiful family!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Donna Orlene

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LUNADRAGON 8/23/2010 2:23PM

    What a great weekend! Your photos are fabulous! You are looking terrific, and the zumba looked like you had a blast! Thank you for sharing!

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LOOZINITNOW 8/23/2010 1:51PM

    Wow! That's a weekend to be remembered!

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GOGOMAMA 8/23/2010 1:50PM

    Sounds like so much fun! Great for you! You look soooo good and I can tell you are out enjoying life! So inspiring!

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STARLIGHT615 8/23/2010 1:38PM

    Oh what a fantastic weekend!! You are doing amazing and look fabulous as well!!!

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YATMAMA 8/23/2010 1:32PM

    You are all so beautiful. What a GRAND weekend!!! It's a brave new world, isn't it?!!! What wonderful, healthy memories you are building into your babies.


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POSITIVE-FORCE 8/23/2010 1:31PM

    Love your weekend! So glad that you had a healthy and happy weekend with your family!

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KANSASROSE67 8/23/2010 12:29PM

    Great blog! Your kids are lucky to have such an involved, fun mom and dad!

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BESTLIFE79 8/23/2010 12:14PM

    Way to go on your healthy choices! What a wonderful feeling!! :):)

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CASSARM1 8/23/2010 11:59AM

    Awesome!!!! You should be so proud of yourself!

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THENEWDARLENE 8/23/2010 11:44AM

    Way to Go! Look at you living life to the fullest and enjoying things that you never thought would be possible. Keep up all your hard work. It looks like you and your family are having a blast on this new health journey. And SKINNY??? That must be an awesome feeling. I haven't felt it yet, but I know that I will one day.

Thanks for all the encouragement.


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CAROLYN1213 8/23/2010 11:44AM

    You are gorgeous!!!! I love your playful winning spirit!!! Keep up the Zumba! It is a blast! I might have to make a trip to Chicago for some outdoor Zumba!

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6 Reasons to Run

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I received this email from Women's Healh Magazine this morning and wanted to share it. As I can't share the entire article per copyright law, I've summarized it below and have provided the link to the full article as well.


Why Run?
by Amy Van Deusen

It'll help you stress less, fight cancer, and boost your bones. Here's why you should hit the road

1. It's so easy
2. Yet so hard
3. Your knees will thank you
4. You'll stress less
5. It can prevent disease
6. You'll probably live longer

1. It's so easy

True, some high-tech gear will make your run more fun, but really, all you need is a good pair of shoes, and a supportive sports bra. It couldn't be simpler.

And everyone knows how to run. You may not have perfect form yet, but you already know how to place one foot in front of the other and settle into a comfortable pace.

2. Yet so hard

No other exercise matches running for its ability to soak that sports bra. The stair-stepper, bike, and other gym staples work you hard, but running blasts the most calories: In a study done by the Medical College of Wisconsin and the VA Medical Center, the treadmill (used at a "hard" exertion level) torched an average of 705-865 calories in an hour. The stair-stepper (637-746), rower (606-739), cross-country ski machine (595-678) and stationary bike (498-604) were all lower in overall caloric burn.

3. Your knees will thank you

Contrary to what your mom says, running doesn't wreck your joints. Osteoarthritis (the most common type of arthritis), occurs when joint-cushioning cartilage starts to break down. The biggest osteoarthritis risk factor besides age? Body weight. A National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that obese women had nearly four times the risk of knee osteoarthritis than non-obese women; for men, it was five times the risk. Runners are much more likely to be at a normal weight than members of the sedentary population, significantly decreasing their risk of osteoarthritis.

4. You'll stress less

Runners can provide tons of anecdotes about the stress-busting powers of their regular jog. "Nothing beats that feeling when you settle into a strong stride with a powerful rhythm," says Brooke Stevens, a four-time NYC marathoner, "The tension in my neck, back, and shoulders starts to loosen up, and I can think more clearly too."

5. It can prevent disease

Most experts agree that regular exercise reduces the risk of many kinds of cancer, including some of the scariest: colon, breast, endometrial, and lung. One recent study in the British Journal of Cancer calculated that the "most active" (e.g. walked briskly 5-6 hours/week) people were 24 percent less likely to develop colon cancer than the "least active" people (e.g. 30 minutes of walking/week). In a study by the National Cancer Institute, women of a normal weight who reported the highest levels of "vigorous activity" (running, tennis, aerobics) had about a 30 percent lower risk of breast cancer when compared with women who did no vigorous activity. Becoming a regular runner may help you cancer-proof your life.

6. You'll probably live longer

In perhaps the most surprising study done on the health benefits of running, a team at the Stanford University School of Medicine studied 538 runners and 423 healthy non-runners from 1984 until 2005. All of the subjects were over 50 and were asked to take a disability questionnaire each year measuring simple tasks like cutting meat, shampooing hair, and opening a milk carton.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOGOMAMA 8/23/2010 1:52PM

    Great motivation to keep building up my running! Thanks!

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HARRINGTON5 8/20/2010 8:42AM

    Thank you for this blog. I recently read that article and I am so proud to be doing something good for myself.

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SKFEREBEE 8/18/2010 2:24PM

    I started running for the calorie burning benefits and it seemed a natural progression from a fast-paced walk. I never thought I would actually enjoy it, but it is truly exhilarating & provides such a sense of accomplishment that nothing else compares to it. emoticon

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TEMPEST272002 8/18/2010 10:55AM

    I read this article recently too. What surprised me most is that running is good for your knees... compared to being obsese. This makes sense to me as 3 women in my life - all obese between 40 & 60 - have or need knee surgery this year... and none of them are runners! I'm glad to have this info so that now when someone asks me if it isn't bad for my knees, I can answer that being obese is 4 times worse!

One thing that I thought wasn't given enough emphasis is the emotional benefit of running. There is nothing like a hard run to work off anger, depression and stress!

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ZURDTA- 8/16/2010 3:23PM

    Great article


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YATMAMA 8/14/2010 3:28PM

    I can't run, yet, but I absolutely WILL one of these days, and I know you'll be rejoicing with me when I do!

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    I am not sure if I can run, but I might try to jog. Right now, though, I am pushing for walk fast LOL. I have to start somewhere :)

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MADDEELOU 8/12/2010 8:15PM

    Thanks for sharing this. My husband is convinced that running is bad for me because he knows "lots of people who have been injured." I can't get him to understand that you can't get an overuse injury if you don't overuse.

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RED_WRITINGHOOD 8/12/2010 8:01PM

    All great reasons too! Thanks for sharing that with us.

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KITHKINCAID 8/12/2010 1:35PM

    All the more reason to get out there and do it!

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BUTTERFLYBLUE67 8/12/2010 1:28PM

    Great info, thanks for sharing.

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Elvis is Alive 5K results (and Pictures of the King!)

Friday, August 06, 2010

Last night I RAN, let me say that again, I RAN my second 5k, and this time I didn't stop at all - my first one I had to walk for a minute, but this time I ran it all, and the awesome part of that is that my best friend came into town to run it with me, and it was her FIRST 5k, and she RAN the whole thing too!!!

I am SO very proud of us!!! It gives me chills just even thinking about it!!!

This was the 13th Annual Elvis Is Alive 5K, which is a non-competitive event and takes place on Chicago's lakefront. The race benefits Girls On the Run, a non-profit prevention program that encourages preteen girls to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles through running.

After getting fully dressed in our Elvis attire, which my best friend sewed that day, and our iron-on "E" letters, we took the train into the city. We then took a cab from the train station, but with President Obama in town the traffic was so bad that we hopped out of the cab and walked/ran to Grant Park so we wouldn't be late.

We started off in the front of the pack - normally only the fastest runners start off in the front corral, but if you were dressed head to toe as Elvis, as we were, you could get the honorary place at the front. I have to admit, I was scared to be up front. I am a slow runner, and I knew the people would blow past me, and the fast runners were ready right behind the Elvises! But my best friend Cheri wanted to be up front (better chances of getting on the evening news, lol) so I did it. It wasn't as scary as I thought, everyone was very nice and we kept our pace. It was a perfect night for a run, lately the Chicago weather has been very humid but it cooled down a bit and there was a nice breeze. The run was along the lakefront, so the view was gorgeous. I didn't think I would finish without walking as the other 5k I did was in the morning and so it wasn't as hot out, and this time I WAS dressed as Elvis, but I did it! I ran the whole thing with my best friend at my side! How cool is THAT!!!

My sister, Kris, and her boyfriend Ben ran it too and my sister made us all capes to wear. She also pinched my butt as she passed me, and her boyfriend didn't pass me until the end, so that made me feel like I was sort of in shape :)

This was a fun run, so it wasn't timed, but my finish time was right about 40 minutes, about what I did last time. I am so proud!!! There were a LOT of people walking, more than I've ever seen, and I think it might have been the heat, but we kept on going! People cheered us along the way saying "Go Elvis!" Cheri was even dancing AS she was running toward the end, and she didn't want it to end, she was having so much fun.

There was a great after party with peanut butter and banana bagels and Goose Island beer. I danced my butt off, and pushed "start" on my HRM and burned 250 calories dancing alone! We also entered the Elvis contest, and while we didn't win, we got lots of cheers.

Also I ordered an XL shirt in my race packet as I signed up a few months ago, and it is WAY too big! I'm now officially a Large!

Then since we had time we walked back to the train station, a workout in itself as well!

I had so much fun and am so thankful to my best friend Cheri for coming into town to run this race with me, and for my sister Kris for inspiring me to run. I am hoping to make a trip out to Kansas City to run a 5k out there with Cheri!

I thank the Lord for giving me the strength to finish and thank all of my Spark friends for your continued love and support!!

Before the race (I'm on the left)

Us practicing our moves beforehand (I'm on the left)

Waiting for the train (I'm on the right)

Right before heading onto the start corral!

Elvis has LEFT the building!

Running with the Elvises

Running with the Elvises

Running along the Chicago lakefront

The finish line!

High five!

After the race (I'm on the left)

After the race with Elvis

After the race drinking our beers

Entered in the Elvis costume contest

Me with my cape on, trying to get the crowd to cheer (and my arms don't look too bad here!)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEMEEMEEE 8/23/2010 8:45PM

    That looks like so much fun!

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BKNOCK 8/14/2010 8:22AM

    Awesome blog, thanks for sharing it!

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MINDYJ1 8/12/2010 11:39PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MADDEELOU 8/12/2010 8:18PM

    Very, very cool. Congratulations!

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DONNAORLENE 8/12/2010 7:47PM

    WOW!!! That's fantastic!! Good for you!! Such determination proved you to be stronger than you thought! And what a great friend you have to come and share this with you! You are blessed and you are a blessing!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Donna Orlene

Comment edited on: 8/12/2010 7:48:20 PM

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DEE107 8/12/2010 4:40PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

sounds like a blast and glad you did well you FINISH great job

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CALIMAN1 8/12/2010 3:37PM

    Y'know, I actually came to your page to read another of your blogs, but this one caught my attention and it is sooooooooooo joyful...you make me want to run to the bathroom, slick up my hair, shake my pelvis and go run around the park! Seriously, this is a wonderful blog and I am very happy that you, your friend and your family had such a wonderful time.....


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IHEARTK 8/12/2010 11:41AM

    This looks like so much fun!! Never thought I'd say that about a race... Congratulations on doing it and having a great time, too. You both look awesome!! emoticon

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SKFEREBEE 8/9/2010 3:49PM

    What a blast!!!!!!!!!!

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    That is just awesome. I love the pics and am so proud!!!! I just love this!!!! That is such a fun idea. Was there walking allowed? Maybe I could do a walk/jog thing if we had something fun like that in the area.

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    Amazing! You're making me super excited to run my first 5k. It looks like you guys had an incredibly fun time. Congrats!

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PELESJEWEL 8/7/2010 10:07PM

    emoticon LOVE this blog!! You look so happy!! Congrats on 1) Running the entire race 2) Swimming in an XL..hah! It's official, our gal is a size LARGE!!!3) You look FANTASTIC!

You look like you are ready to take life by the balls! emoticon YOU GO GIRL!!

Comment edited on: 8/7/2010 10:07:58 PM

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LYNNA7499 8/7/2010 8:56PM

  Great costume!!!!! Love the cape!!!! Congrats on a successful race!!! emoticon emoticon

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    That looks like it was so much fun!!! Love it when you get to just let loose and have a little fun!

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CM_GARDNER78 8/7/2010 6:00PM

    WAY TO GO!!!!!!!! emoticon Love the pictures!!! Looks like it was an awesome time!! You should be so proud!!! emoticon

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MARY1618 8/7/2010 11:34AM

    WooHoo,So glad you could have a blast doing a race. It looked like a lot of fun and dressed as Elvis! The pic's are great! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SEYMOORE 8/7/2010 10:48AM

    Yay for you!!!! That is so exciting and I'm so proud of you! You go girl!!!!!

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    I am so proud of you and you had fun doing it too made it all that much easier I bet!

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YATMAMA 8/6/2010 10:41PM

    Woooooooooohooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!! I am SO proud of you!!!! The photos were a blast. Thank you for sharing them!!

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JAN1031 8/6/2010 10:10PM

    way to go girl, so proud of you. I still have to walk during my 5K run but one of things days I'll do it just like you. You are doing great..

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PEPPERLEAH 8/6/2010 9:19PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TEMPEST272002 8/6/2010 8:40PM

    Way too much fun! Congrats on running the 5K. You looked great!

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BUTTERFLYBLUE67 8/6/2010 6:57PM


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STARDUSTD 8/6/2010 5:32PM

  emoticon job emoticon the whole way! emoticon emoticon emoticon It looks like you had a load of fun with your friend as well.

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    That race looks AWESOME!

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    That is cool. It looks like you had a blast. Congrats on running it and with your time. Keep running.

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KARVY09 8/6/2010 4:39PM

    Awesome job! It sounds like such a fun race! You look great!

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RR1_RR1 8/6/2010 4:38PM

    Who doesn't love Elvis..afterall- he's the KING! I didn't know he was working out these days emoticon emoticon

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LAGREBE 8/6/2010 4:33PM

    WooHoo! Well done!

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KITHKINCAID 8/6/2010 4:31PM

    You look FANTASTIC! This looks like so much fun. I'm getting there. Looking forward to race season NEXT year. I think I'll sign up for a few. We might have to meet up to run one together!

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HAMMLIN 8/6/2010 4:24PM

    That is so awesome! love the sideburns too!!!

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Monday, August 02, 2010

I joined a spark team whose goal it is to lose 8 lbs. in August. Since I average one measly pound a week, I thought this would be a great challenge to try to double my weight loss, especially since it's my birthday month!


Starting weight: 230
Goal weight: 222
8/4 Goal: 228 (70 lbs. GONE!)
8/11 Goal: 226
8/18 Goal: 224
8/25 Goal: 223 (25% of total body weight, 75 lbs. total)
9/1 Goal: 222

emoticonStaying in the SP range for me. 1410 - 1760 cal. daily
emoticonTracking all food, even on the weekends.
emoticonGetting all my freggies in.

*Blog daily accountability blogs
*Visit motivational spark pages for inspiration. Read inspiring blogs

Fun Goals:

ELVIS RUN - Lose 70 lbs. (228)

BDAY LUAU BASH: Lose 75 lbs. and wear a tube top and look good! (223)


emoticon Work out EVERY day for 20 minutes
emoticonFinish C25K Training
emoticonRun 2nd 5K
emoticonFinish 15 days of the 30 Day Shred, alternating days.
emoticonReach 1,000 Fitness Minutes

8/1 – Heavy cleaning – 60 min. cardio - DONE!
8/2 – 30 Day Shred (Day 1) - DONE!
8/3 – C25K training (W9D2)
8/4 – 30 Day Shred (Day 2)
8/5 – 2nd 5K
8/6 – Run/30 Day Shred (Day 3)
8/7 – Strength class
8/8 – C25K training (W9D3) – Finish!
8/9 - Zumba
8/10 - 30 Day Shred (Day 4)
8/11 - Run
8/12 - 30 Day Shred (Day 5)
8/13 – Run/30 Day Shred (Day 6)
8/14 - Strength class
8/15 - 30 Day Shred (Day 7)
8/16 - Zumba
8/17 - 30 Day Shred (Day 8)
8/18 - Run
8/19 - 30 Day Shred (Day 9)
8/20 – Run/30 Day Shred (Day 10)
8/21 – Workout in the Park!
8/22 - 30 Day Shred (Day 11)
8/23 - Zumba
8/24 - 30 Day Shred (Day 12)
8/25 - Run
8/26 – Birthday workout of choice! (yoga?)
8/27 – Run/30 Day Shred (Day 13)
8/28 - Strength class
8/29- 30 Day Shred (Day 14)
8/30 - Zumba
8/31 - 30 Day Shred (Day 15)


Fitness Goals:

emoticonWork out EVERY day for 20 minutes – Sushi night with hubby!
emoticonRun 2nd 5K – running this with my best friend is reward enough!
emoticonFinish C25K/Reward: workout top from the shop at my gym
emoticonFinish ½ of the 30 Day Shred Reward: Date Night out at the movies - no kids
emoticonReach 1,000 Fitness Minutes: new book

Weight Goal:
emoticonLose 8 pounds/Reward: Hair makeover! New consultation and hair cut

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    i love you goals/plans. :)

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DZINE4KING 8/5/2010 8:54AM

    Wow....great plan! So detailed! Way to go! You are an inspiration...70 pounds gone! Wow!

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YATMAMA 8/3/2010 9:09PM

    Awesome plan you have. Go get 'em, kiddo!!!! *applause*

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IHEARTK 8/3/2010 1:38PM

    You always have the most motivating goals/ plans/ rewards. It's a good thing this isn't school... I'd be in sooo much trouble for always copying your ideas!! Thanks and Good Luck!

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CARILOUIE 8/3/2010 8:04AM

    I love your goal rewards.
August is going to be super!

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HOOPDANCER 8/2/2010 11:47PM

    Hi. I just joined the lose 8 pounds in August team too. From reading your blog I see we have some fitness goals in common. I look forward to hearing about your successes!

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PEPPERLEAH 8/2/2010 10:08PM

    I have no doubt that you will meet your goals, and leave them in the dust! What a great plan you have in place! And I KNOW emoticon

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    Wow! You got everything all planned out!!!! You can do it!!!!!!!!

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    wowwwww great plan

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BGOOCH56 8/2/2010 6:33PM

    You have spelled everything out you have a very clear picture so I have no doubt you will rock the challenge.

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THEEXERCISER 8/2/2010 6:08PM

    You have great goals set up for yourself. I know that you can do it!!!

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MICHELLEXOX 8/2/2010 5:43PM

Awesome! I'm doing C25K and JM 30 day shred as well.

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KITHKINCAID 8/2/2010 5:32PM

    Not only do I believe that you're going to do this, but I think you're going to KICK IT IN THE PANTS!!! Woo!

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