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Saving the Best for Last (100 lbs. lost)

Monday, October 17, 2011

And the last pound goes to...

After losing 99 lbs. on my birthday I was inspired to write a blog about 99 things I’ve learned, or are blessed with.


One very important thing was left out of that list. Something I was saving for the last pound that would bring me into the club of those who have lost 100 lbs.

At the time I had no idea that to lose this last pound would take 2 months. A 2 month plateau!

On the verge of greatness, on the edge of passing through and being able to say I’ve lost 100 lbs. So many people these past couple of months have asked me how much weight I’ve lost. To have to say ALMOST 100 lbs (seems less crazy than to say 99 lbs. exactly) was so frustrating to me. What was holding me back? I was doing everything “right”…working out, tracking my food…well I believe I was holding myself back. Afraid to go into that unknown territory. When I would find myself touching my stomach that gets flatter each day…I seemed foreign to myself. An alien. Better eat some more.

But through working with these feelings, and through prayer, and trying to remain grounded in who I AM, not what I look like, I was able to hopefully, finally break through this fear of being thin. I’m through with my fat cushioning me from the world. I don’t need that anymore. I’m ready to live now.

But back to what this blog is really about. Out of 100 things that have blessed me on this journey, the #1 most important thing, other than God, is my FAMILY. My family is – in a word – amazing. Yes, I might be biased. Heck, I AM biased. But I do believe that I have one of the best families there is. A family who never – ever – made me feel like I was “fat”. Like I was not right. On the contrary, they made me feel loved, accepted. Funny and smart. Like the belle of the ball. I can be introverted at first around people I don’t know. But my family – that was always my comfort zone. I always love being around my family. Close friends, too.

Now you may say that my family not telling me “Hey, you need to lose weight” was a disservice. I disagree. I see your point, yes, but I ask you – in how many situations in life do you have COMPLETE, utter UNCONDITIONAL LOVE other than from God up high? How often do you get that? How rare that is! But I’ve been blessed with that. With a place I could go to when I was 300 lbs….a place that was separate from the world and all of its conditions it puts on people. A place where I was LOVED – despite all of my faults. When I was at my heaviest, I didn’t go out much. I blew off friends. I hibernated in my cozy world with my husband and the only times I DID want to go out was to see – MY FAMILY.

Now if this family told me “Hey, you’re overweight, you are hurting yourself with this overeating. Possibly even killing yourself.” That wouldn’t have made one lick of difference. I knew I had a problem. Had they done that I would possibly have stayed in that dark place and just never come out. See, they loved me and took me for what I was. (Now I do feel my dr. should have said something, and she never mentioned it).

And really, the decision to want to lose weight has to come from within.

Once I had Lucy, I knew things had to change.

Then once Marlo was born, I decided TO change.



So this blog is dedicated to that last pound to reach 100, and to my family. Who is amazing in and of themselves. See for yourself. (In no particular order and I am sure I’m missing some people and I apologize for that).

My husband, Jim. Has always been there for me. We will be married 13 yrs. Next year. He never EVER made me feel less than or fat. He IS the man. He is an amazing husband, too.

My wonderful princesses, Lucy and Marlo. They show me each and every day that we should take the time to laugh, to listen, to have fun, to be patient, and that there is always something new to learn.

My Dad. He is always there for me, and it’s on his bucket list to run a race with me someday. Isn’t that cool? He cheers me on and is there for me during races. We trudged through the 2010 Shamrock Shuffle together and he just inspires me every day. He is the best dad ever. And he makes amazing award-winning chili.

My Mom. She raised 4 (that’s right, 4) girls and always puts herself last. She is the sort of person to cut out newspaper articles she thinks one of her daughter’s (or their husbands/boyfriends) may find interesting and she is always encouraging.

My sister Kris. She inspired me to run my first 5k and has always cheered me on. She is there for me in the drop of a hat, even once when I called her at 10 p.m. and begged her to run a race with me the following morning at 7 a.m. because I was afraid to do it alone. She didn’t even ask a question. She is now the proud Mama to a baby girl, Stella.

Her boyfriend Ben ran in my first 5k with me and has always encouraged me with my running.

My sister Kara. Being my fellow middle sister, Kara and I have always been close. She is a big encourager and always wants to read the blogs I write, and any creative writing I do also. She ran the Hot Chocolate last year with me, with her boyfriend Jan, and plans to run it again this year. She also goes running with me in Michigan when I’m sure she’d rather be playing Scrabble or drinking wine.

Her boyfriend, Jan, is also like one of the family.

My sister Missy. She is my baby sister and some days (ok, most) she shows me more about how to be a good parent than I ever thought possible. I call her for advice, and being a mom of 4 – two boys and TWIN girls, she continues to amaze me every day. It’s her dream to run the Hot Chocolate and I’m holding her to it for next year – 2012 baby!

Missy doing Leslie Sansone with me and our kids - WHILE pregnant with twins!

My brother-in-law Tony

He is an amazing dad to 4 kids and is a computer genius and always knows more about literature than I do. I've never seen him lose his cool, and that is a trait I highly admire, especially with 4 kids age 4 and under! He always helps w/ computer issues too.

My best friend Cheri. To say she has always been there for me is an understatement. Ever since we were in freshman year IPS class and she stood up to Cassandra Scott for me (who would whisper in my ear things I will not repeat) we have been stuck together like glue. She has always accepted me for who I am, quirks and all. In fact, I think she prefers the quirks! One of the best years of my life was when we were both single and lived together in an amazing apartment in Chicago with a sun room and all. When I asked her if she wanted to run the Elvis run with me, she surprised me by not even hesitating. She was on board!

Me and Cheri crossing the finishing line

My brother-in-law Mike. He is one of the funniest guys I know and always knows how to make me laugh. Last year he decided – a few DAYS before the Susan Komen Race for the Cure – that he would RUN it. He is not a runner. I run it in honor of his mother who lost her life to breast cancer and he wanted to honor her, and others, who have lost their lives to cancer. He finished the race just a few short minutes after me – and I had been training for 12 weeks! He had 0 training and he worked it out. He amazes me! He has the biggest heart, too. On the outside he’s a Harley guy, but on the inside he’s all marshmallows. Love you Mike!

My niece, Sydney. I was lucky enough to have experience Syd from being a baby and beyond. She was my first niece and always will hold a special place in my heart. It was through her first that I realized what it was to be an Aunt, and also realized I needed to lose weight – I had no kids of my own yet, but loved to have her sleepover and we would have dance parties and just have fun. But I didn’t have as much energy as I would have liked. She is a teenager now, and I still can’t quite believe it. She’s a talented photographer and has a big future ahead of her.

My Aunt Barb – she has lost almost 100 lbs. on WW and has had some health issues, but doesn’t let that hold her back from scrapping amazing cookbooks for the entire family and also scrapbooks of the cousins/kids.

(Kim is on the left)
My cousin Kim – she recently ran a 5k and said that I inspired her to! She has run 5ks and 8ks but since her second son, Nick, was born she hadn’t ran and wanted to get back into it. I’m so proud of her!

My cousin's son, Ryan is an amazing photographer and artist.

My nephews!

Tony makes me realize we shouldn’t be afraid to jump into anything and

Owen just plain makes me smile.

My nieces!

Rachel and Paige


I have an uncle who is winning the fight against addiction (on the right)

And a cousin who has been sober for years (and has lost a ton of weight in the process). He was also my rock when I was younger, and protected me from Bozo the clown when I was (and still am) so fearful of clowns! (I’m the one in the picture crying).

(I'm on the top right)

My step-mother-in-law Jane served as a nurse and then moved back home to care for her parents. She is a woman of faith and always encourages me and inspires me.

My cousin John is building a business from rehabbing houses and is an amazing dad to Nick.

My cousin, Sheryl encouraged me to see a naturalist dr. and start eating clean.

Her husband, John has lost 55 lbs. so far and they have an amazing daughter.

My cousin, George, and his wife Erika are both doctors, and are raising two kids. My Aunt Sheryl has been successful in her own Ebay business and my Uncle George is a successful banker.

My Uncle Danny and his wife Marte are amazing people and it's always good to see them. They are so supportive.

My sister-in-law Kim went to school later in life, after raising 3 kids, and is going to be a nurse.

My sister-in-law's son, Danny serves in the Army and protects our country. (left)

My cousin Kim's mother-in-law, Mary, treats me and my sisters like we were family. She is a big advocate for finding a cure for breast cancer. She is always cheering me on.

My husband's cousin, Cheryl is always so kind and supportive and is going back to school. I'm so proud of her. She is an amazing mother and has a wonderful family.

My husband's cousin, Tina, who is a strong woman of faith and is a wonderful mother. Her daughter, Emily, suffers from Pulmonary Atresia and is an open-heart surgery survivor. They are always in my prayers.

My friend LaTannya who has always been there for me and makes me laugh so hard I sometimes cry. She also is a role model for me as a mother. She has an amazing daughter, Taria, and she is a single mom and is going back to school. In a word, she rocks.

My friend Karoline! I used to work with her and miss it so much.
My friend Tom (Dotes) who always makes me laugh.
Danielle who is a mom to two girls as well and I love talking to her as it makes me feel like I'm not the only one going through whatever I'm going through.
(In this picture Danielle on the far right, then Dotes, then Karoline, or "KC" as I call her)

My friend Kimmah, who is a certified trainer (aka the "Fitness Mistress") and also owns her own business, Get Tight Get Right, with her friend Akilah (also an amazing woman). She is a woman of faith who is always cheering me on. She always says she's on "Team Kate"!

My friend Oyster who is also an amazing mother. She is a good friend to our family and helps us out with hand-me-down clothes from her daughter.

And the list goes on. My brother-in-law Kirk follows his dream and is working on painting race cars and has his own business. He doesn’t let anything stand in his way. My Uncle Charlie followed his dream and moved to New Zealand. I have so many other friends and family not named here who support me and I am so blessed for that. I am also in a group of writers that I love, too, the Sweethearts.

Also I had two grandmothers who I miss very much. They helped shape and mold the woman I became today.

My Gram Keller with my mom and her sisters.

I never met either of my grandfathers, unfortunately...

And my husband's mom, Carm, and Dad, James, whose passing all too soon from cancer have driven me to support causes such as Susan Komen foundation to help find a cure.

Jim's mom is the top right.

And many Sparkers have become my family, too.

Blaize (DANCINGEARTHMOM) is a woman of deep spiritual roots and is always exploring herself to go even further into her journey. She is a single mother to an amazing daughter, Azali, and is getting her Doctorate while supporting her daughter and losing weight. She has run a half marathon and she continues to amaze me every day!

Jenn (KITHKINCAID) is my wonderful amazing Chicago spark friend who has lost 120 lbs. and has run several races with me, she has run 5ks, an 8k, a 10k and will be running the Hot Chocolate 15k next month!! She is a Zumba lover, a runner, an athlete and a creative woman who produces plays too!

Shelly (GLITTERGIRL69) is my rock, she keeps me rooted in faith and I can tell her anything! She keeps me accountable to my faith.

And my Sunny Gals are more like a family than a team!! I love you all!!!

I also have an amazing church family that is always accepting of everyone, including me.

Yes, family is the thing dreams are created through. Family is our soil that supports our roots as we grow. And family is the people who are there when we succeed – and when we fall.

Family makes us wish…and dream.

Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.
~ Jane Howard ~

Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible -- the kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family.
~ Virginia Satir ~

I'm on the very right - much heavier here, maybe 278

Me on the far left, then my cousin Kim, then my sister Kris

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CRYSALLIS1 12/26/2011 5:43PM

    Very nice blog. So much success realized with some great people to support and share your work and dreams. emoticon

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STARFIRE125 10/29/2011 12:05AM

    How touching! Thank you for sharing so much of your life and family with us!

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ROEANDGO 10/28/2011 11:34PM

    Wonderful blog Kathy!! Amazing!!

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KROLES55 10/20/2011 9:32AM

    What a beautiful journey.. Thank you for sharing with us. You are doing an awesome job.

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TULIPAN2 10/20/2011 9:08AM

    emoticon You are so lucky to have amazingly loving and huge support of your family, relatives and friends... emoticon

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KATHSDEV 10/19/2011 11:24AM

    You and your family are AMAZING! Thank you so much for sharing them! You just inspired me to get out there and start running again emoticon

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TAZIAH 10/18/2011 9:48PM

    Kathy - to love and be loved like that is truly a gift from above! Congratulations on your amazing success. I'm so proud of you!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IGSBETH 10/18/2011 5:51PM


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THEADMIRAL 10/18/2011 5:06PM

    Love it! emoticon pictures and family and friends! emoticon

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KESHA1975 10/18/2011 11:55AM

    Awesome Inspiration! What a support system you have! You are truly a blessed woman! You are amazing!! emoticon

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PAANDRUS 10/18/2011 11:12AM

    What an amazing family & such support! I wish I could meet them. Maybe they could adopt me? LOL I am an only child sooo support??? Not a whole lot there! I envy your family ties. Congratulations on your 100 lbs!

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SMALLERMELORIE 10/18/2011 7:52AM

    Kathy, what a wonderful journey. Thank you for sharing this with us. You are so lucky to have such a wonderful support system.

Your right the Sunny Gals are so special.

Thank you for being such an inspiration.

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HSMOM2FOUR 10/18/2011 7:37AM

    Congrats on your 100lb loss! An amazing blog to celebrate!!

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UNIBLONDER 10/18/2011 7:22AM

    You are an inspiration!!!!!!

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MOMFAN 10/18/2011 3:09AM

    You are an amazing inspiration!

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NUOVAELLE 10/18/2011 1:59AM

    You brought tears to my eyes! People who have such strong bonds with their families are blessed! And you have a really nice family. Congratulations on your weight loss and on being such a thoughtful and thankful person who took the time to thank the people who helped her through this blog. You forgot one person, though. Yourself! None of this would have happened if you weren't strong enough to leave your dark but safe corner and embark on this journey. You deserve lots of praise.
As you said, you're done with fat cushioning you from the world! (I liked that.) Now LIVE!

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TEDDYBEARGIRL 10/18/2011 1:27AM

    Thanks for shareing your family and support system with all of us!!!!!!

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INSPIREBYNATURE 10/17/2011 11:28PM

    This is so beautiful and remarkable! You are such an amazing woman Kathy and I am so incredibly blessed to know you. I am SO proud of you!!!!!

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UNICORN212 10/17/2011 11:07PM

    You have come so far, and you are so richly blessed.

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GRACEISENUF 10/17/2011 10:44PM

    What a beautiful family you have. I could almost feel the love "jumping" off the page as I looked at the pictures of you and your family.

You are such an inspiration to me, so proud of all you have accomplishment spark friend.

Lucy and Marlo are adorable and what an awesome gift you are giving them by taking care of yourself and kicking booty on your spark journey!

Glad to call you friend!

Love in Christ,

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MAGGIENCALI 10/17/2011 9:36PM

    Just an amazing blog and an amazing journey. I had some tears while reading it. Very moving. Congratulations on your 100 lbs loss!

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SAC-6582 10/17/2011 8:45PM

    emoticon on the 100lbs. Great blog and great pictures.

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SGTSUNNY 10/17/2011 8:34PM

    What a remarkable story and family you have! So proud of you,

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MARTHAWILL 10/17/2011 8:11PM

    Nice blog. A big congrats on your success so far.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TEMPEST272002 10/17/2011 8:02PM

    Congratulations on the 100lbs lost. Well done pushing through that long plateau. You really are the most fortunate person to have so many loving & encouraging people in your life. I love how you can see the role each has played in your success & also how your successes push them towards their goals too. Thanks for sharing your beautiful tribute.

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JENJESS48 10/17/2011 7:34PM

    What a gorgeous and amazing family! Just like you! emoticon

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LETTINGGO85 10/17/2011 7:09PM

    What a beautiful dedication to your family and friends. Congrats on your loss! You are an amazing lady!

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KITHKINCAID 10/17/2011 6:41PM

    I feel so blessed that you would consider me like family. I am just awed and so thankful to be a part of this incredible group of people that you have in your life.

I cannot tell you how proud I am of you for the 100 pounds lost. And I know you've got more in you too. Fit and fabulous females we are. All the way to the end with you babe!

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MOMONTHERUN1 10/17/2011 6:17PM

    Amazing, inspiring and motivating. You are truly blessed and congrats on losing 100 pounds.


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GETFIT2LIVE 10/17/2011 6:00PM

    You have been truly blessed, and you have come so very far. Congratulations on all you have accomplished. I know how hard that last bit of weight can be to get off as I'm in the 'almost 100 pounds lost' place right now (97 pounds gone). It is not the physical weight that is hard to lose; it's the mental weight that holds us back the most. WOO HOO for you on getting past that!

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CHELAGETSFIT 10/17/2011 5:51PM

    Wow!! You have an AMAZING support system! Great job on your 100lb weight loss! You ROCK!!! Keep on your healthy lifestyle journey and pay it forward to others that need such amazing support as you are blessed with.

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SARAHJG33 10/17/2011 5:47PM

    You are inspiring emoticon emoticon

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 10/17/2011 5:46PM

    Congratulations on losing 100 pounds, that's amazing! You have a phenomenal support system and that makes all the difference. Beautiful blog : )

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14JESUSGIRL 10/17/2011 5:32PM

    Beautiful family and wonderful blog. Congratulations on your amazing journey and for never giving up.
Love in Christ,
Lee emoticon emoticon

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LOOZINITNOW 10/17/2011 5:11PM

    Beautiful blog and what an amazing journey!

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RONIREDD 10/17/2011 4:51PM


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HEATHIELAUREN 10/17/2011 4:45PM

    Super Sweet!!!

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CHICAT63 10/17/2011 4:32PM

    Oh, my what a beautiful, beautiful blog. Your family, your friends their strengths & weakness, and their pride. This blog is an ode to them all in being your support as well as contributing to who you are today ! Congratulations on your 100 pounds and all of your accomplishments !

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BELLALUCIA 10/17/2011 4:25PM

    Great blog! Congrats!

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ROCKINMOM77 10/17/2011 4:25PM

    Simply Amazing!!! You are very blessed with lots of great family and friends!! emoticon

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AMBER281 10/17/2011 4:18PM

    What a wonderful blog!!!
Thanks for sharing.
You are an amazing person and I am glad you have so many amazing people in your life!!
I am so proud of you.

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KKINNEA 10/17/2011 4:17PM

    Huge support system - that's awesome!!

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INSPIRE Food Blog Day 3

Saturday, October 01, 2011


Cheesy Egg wrap using egg substitute with La Tortilla tortilla (only 45 calories and has fiber and flax)

Morning snack:

Low sodium cashews (pre-proportioned into a quarter cup serving)


Not the best choice, 4 pc. chicken nuggets from McD's. My husband asked me if I wanted something, I said NO, but here is what I got, and I was so rushed and busy I ate them.

Afternoon snack:

I was hungry later because the chicken nuggets weren't very filling or nutritional, so I had a half slice of cheesecake from Aldi (this is a great trick if you really want something rich but don't want all the calories).

Later I was still hungry and instead of eating the other half of the cheesecake like I wanted to, I made myself a nutritious, protein-filled snack. Peanut butter toast on whole grain with milk.


My Ya-Ya Black Bean soup! Recipe link is below.



A sundae with light cookie-dough ice cream and one Oreo cookie.

TOTAL: 1,432 calories. I was within my range at the lower end.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GLITTERGIRL69 10/10/2011 4:06AM

    Cool idea! I do the same thing with nuts, otherwise I eat too many of them. I measure out one serving size using my digital scale. I can tell that you only used about 1 tbsp of peanut butter, perhaps a little less. I can tell cause I almost always measure my food out, especially when it comes to peanut butter! Looks like a good eating day for you!!! emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/10/2011 4:08:45 AM

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LOOZINITNOW 10/3/2011 10:45PM

    I love how you keep such great variety and no deprivation and still stay on target. I need some lessons in not restricting myself.

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AMBER281 10/3/2011 12:49PM

    Looks yummy!
Great job staying in your range!!

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    Yum!! :)

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JENJESS48 10/2/2011 9:23AM

    I love it when good choices balance out the less spectacular choices and you still wind up in range. emoticon

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ROEANDGO 10/1/2011 11:56PM

    Great job passing up the other 1/2 of the cheescake and having the whole wheat toast!! Wonderful Kathy!!!

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BABY_GIRL69 10/1/2011 9:26PM

    Good pics & food choices! I had raisin bran, 1%milk, portillo's burger & edy's ice cream for lunch/dinner. Dot candy as snack.

God bless & I am too full now!

Way to go & Woohoo!


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TAZIAH 10/1/2011 7:08PM

    I love, love, LOVE pb on toast with milk for a snack! emoticon

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MARCH_ 10/1/2011 6:30PM

    Love the pictures! visuals of what success looks like :)

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TEMPEST272002 10/1/2011 3:21PM

    Good job choosing a healthier option than a 2nd serving of the super-yummy looking cheesecake! Great tip on 1/2ing the dessert. Now I eat sweets less often, it takes a lot less to satisfy my sweet tooth. Well, most days anyhow. lol

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CMPEARL 10/1/2011 1:38PM

    Great job! I think you have to go into your recipe box to make an edit...it is off to the right of the recipe in green. Thanks for sharing!!

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    proud of you!

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PASTORMIKE7 10/1/2011 12:08PM

You got me thinking!!
I have to try some of those food items!!
Of course, not the nuggets!
I think those are deep fried in lard!
Not sure though!!

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LETTINGGO85 10/1/2011 11:43AM

    I love La Tortilla Factory tortillas. Have you tried their corn tortilla - very yummy. Also I wrote to them and they sent me coupons.

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INSPIRE Food Blogs - Days 1 & 2

Friday, September 30, 2011



1 cup scrambled eggs

Morning Snack:

1/4 cup of Trader Joe's amazing trail mix, I think it's called "Indulge"


An awesome salad from deli at work with grilled chicken and lots of good stuff.

Afternoon Snacks:

2 Hershey minis

Greek yogurt


My husband made an amazing pot roast with butternut squash in our crockpot.
Added a bit of brown rice and broccoli to it on the side.


Fresh pineapple with a dollop of whipped cream and caramel sauce.

Later my hubby had some Edy's Dibs and I had a few, I would say 5 - the whole CONTAINER is a serving at something like 350 cals, so I coulnted it as 130 cals.

TOTALS: Stayed within my range, 1,651 calories. Stayed within range for fat and got enough protein in.




Had two eggs with coffee while I read the book recommended by Deanna, "You Are Your Own Gym". My daughter Lucy made me a waffle and put a bit of Smart Balance margarine and agave nectar on it. (I took a picture of her waffle as I ate mine before remembering to take a pic).


A banana and some yummy cashews (low sodium) from TJ's. I portion out 1/4 cup when I get the bag home because or else I would have 3-4 servings thinking it was only 1.


A ham and cheese with avocado wrap along with a side salad which I added some string cheese to and avocado as well.

Afternoon snacks:

An apple

Baby carrots with hummus

Protein bar (I was SO hungry!)


Whole wheat angel hair pasta, 3/4 cup, with just 1 tbsp. of spaghetti sauce and with roasted garlic. Had one meatball on the side.

Evening snack:

Bowl of homemade popcorn (movie night):

TOTALS: Calories: 1,809, about 100 over my range. I was really hungry today, nothing seemed to satisfy me! I had plenty of protein...not sure what's going on. Only had a few hundred left for dinner and went over calories by about 100.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROEANDGO 10/1/2011 11:55PM

    Great food choice Kathy!! Love the photo of your daughter! So cute!!

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    This is very helpful to actually look at. I'm still over serving myself. Thanks for giving all this visual.

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    Wow--that all looks great. I'm trying to keep myself between 1500-1700 calories to maintain my 145ish weight. I was lower and now am back up, although back down to 145 this morning. Not sure what it takes to maintain, but I'm trying to figure it out. Your diet looks great--I like the idea of apportioning out the nuts and trail mix at the very beginning. Like you, otherwise I would be tempted to eat the whole bag or can at one sitting!

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TEMPEST272002 9/30/2011 4:04PM

    So nice to see all of the variety in your food - different colours, textures & tastes. Eating healthy can be tasty!

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KITHKINCAID 9/30/2011 2:35PM

    Makin me hungry girl! Gotta go eat some lunch :)

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GRACEISENUF 9/30/2011 12:31PM

    Can I come over and eat at your house?



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HAMMLIN 9/30/2011 11:58AM

    Can you share the crock pot recipe!? I love my Crock! And that roast looks yummy!!!

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AMBER281 9/30/2011 11:26AM

    Looks yummy!

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    I am SO proud of you!

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VICKILYN4 9/30/2011 11:13AM

    Everything looks so good. When I go over by a 100 (now..before I just said oh well..lol) I try to burn that off. I look at my fitness tracker and see what I can do to get as close to it as possible. This is only a suggestion. Maybe after dinner you can dance around. It might not burn 100 calories but it will be less then 100 that you are left with. How about a walk around the block? Hope I'm not being pushy..just a few suggestions that I try when I go over. Have a wonderful Friday and a cool weekend. (:

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Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure – Race Report - 9.25.11

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Last year I ran the 5k of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. This year I planned to run the 10k. My plan was to beat my 10k time from my first 10k. However, that was not in the cards. What happened? I got sick. Then I got sicker. I ended up not running at all for weeks. The only running I did was a mile here and there. A week away from the race I decided to switch from the 10k to the 5k.

I felt bad about this because I didn’t want to let myself, or anyone else, down. I didn’t want to second guess my capabilities. Could I have run the 10k? Probably. But after a month of not running I didn’t really want to find out that day. I have (knock on wood) never had a running injury and I never want to. I know my body and I didn’t want to push it that day.

Last year I raised $200 for the cause, and this year I wanted to double that as I had planned on doubling my distance. I ended up tripling my donation amount, raising over $600 for the Susan G. Komen Foundation, most of that money staying locally in Chicago to help those who have the disease and the rest going to fund research. Does it mean any less that I only ran 3.1 miles vs. 6.2? I don’t think so. Was my mother-in-law, who lost her life to breast cancer, any less in my thoughts? No.

I had to let my pride take a backseat to what really was the important thing on this day.

I wanted to honor those who have lost their lives. This was NOT about me. Just looking out at all of the ribbons honoring those who have gone before and fought the good fight but lost it….well, me running less that I had wanted to doesn’t really matter anymore.

My husband made the most amazing shirt to honor his mother and all the angels we've lost to cancer much too soon. Too many to count. It said "Running for our angels" on the front and had angel wings on the back.

We got to the race later than I would have liked, I rushed to the fundraising tent to give my additional cash donations I had received and then got some free goodies and rushed to find my family before the race. This year the race seemed like it had doubled or tripled in capacity, which is awesome.

Lucy and I put on some New Balance stickers on our face to raise awareness for breast cancer. My youngest, Marlo, would have nothing to do with it, lol.

My husband with our girls.

Then I got into line and we warmed up with some stretches. I have no idea where I am in this crowd, but I'm there somewhere :)

And then we were off!

I remembered where I was at physically and mentally last year. Last year I was signed up to run the 5k alone, and was scared to death. Last year I called my sister at 10 p.m. the night before the race and begged her to run it with me. (She did – she is awesome like that). Last year I barely made it across the finish line, I was dying halfway through.

This year, I ran it alone (same awesome sister just gave birth to my beautiful niece, Stella). I was not afraid, I have run several times since then alone, an 8k and a 10k along with 5ks.

This year, the shirt I had custom-made last year to honor my husband’s mom, didn’t fit me. It was so big I couldn’t run in it.

This year, it was EASY for me. At the halfway point I was like, already? This year I beat my own time, finishing the race in 35 minutes, 29 seconds.

After crossing the finish line. I think my legs actually look "skinny" here!

Checking my time on my Garmin.

After finishing!

This year, I made myself proud.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TME4ME 10/9/2011 7:28AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticonYOU ARE emoticon!!!!!!!!!!!

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JENNIFER_67 9/29/2011 6:18PM

    emoticon Way to go!!

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GRACEISENUF 9/29/2011 4:11PM

    Simply AWESOME! I am so proud of you spark friend. What a wonderful, selfless way to help others.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GETFIT2LIVE 9/29/2011 1:12PM

    So proud of you for doing this for all the right reasons! This is one of those races where the distance and the time it takes to do it are the least important things. Awesome job on making a wise decision to do the 5K, on tripling your fund-raising, and on a great race. LOVE the shirt--and your legs do look skinny!


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CHICAT63 9/29/2011 12:54PM

    How GREAT is that *sniff*, awesome blog & pictures. A beautiful tribute to your Mother-in-law. I am running for the CIBC Run for the Cure on Sunday, Oct. 2 for my Mom who has been breast cancer free for 23 years now. This is my second year running the 5K again with my best girlfriend. Awesome T-shirt by the way:)

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KATHIERAE 9/29/2011 10:32AM

    I cried reading this. For so many reasons, but mostly for what you accomplished in honor of your beloved mother in law and for yourself! God bless you!
emoticon(closest to angel wings I could find!)

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SWAZY33 9/29/2011 10:26AM

    Love the shirt and this blog :)
So proud of you!
I'm currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer so also want to THANK YOU for running so our future will not have to deal with this disease!

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    this is my neice and how she is winning. I do not know how to make it link correctly but there are cures that the public doesn't know about. She is using her own blood, creating a vaccine with the blood and re-injecting into her body. The blood has cells of the cancer in it that have been made to kill the cancer.


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REENSKI 9/29/2011 9:27AM

    You are wonderful! Congratulations on the race-and love the shirt.

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LOOZINITNOW 9/28/2011 10:15PM

    Way to go on the fundraising for such a great cause! You rock!

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TEDDYBEARGIRL 9/28/2011 10:00PM

    Love that glowing smile at the end of the race!

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TAZIAH 9/28/2011 9:46PM

    Beautiful blog, Kathy! I'm got the same race here on Saturday and I'm going with my SP buddy again! We love that race. The atmosphere really makes it something special. emoticon

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    Looks like you had an awesome time! I have on coming up, the first for one (of 2) of my hometowns, and I'm super excited. It'll be my second one.

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KARVY09 9/28/2011 8:11PM

    Great pics! Great race!

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GOGOMAMA 9/28/2011 6:45PM

    How inspiring!!! You are awesome!! Love the shirt and am amazed at how much you raised!! Way to go!

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TEMPEST272002 9/28/2011 5:29PM

    We're so proud of you too! You've really come into your own this past year. I just keep thinking how beautiful you look. I agree with Blaize - you just glow. Love the shirt! Very special way for hubby to participate in your run & honour his Mum too.

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KITHKINCAID 9/28/2011 4:57PM

    Great job girl - 5K vs 10K? Whatever - at least you DID it! And the shirt is totally awesome. I was thinking your legs looked totally skinny in the shot of you and Lucy with the ribbon. Hot mama!

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KT-NICHOLS-13 9/28/2011 4:50PM

    Great fundraising and an amazing day. You must be very proud to have helped so many.
Thank you.

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HAMMLIN 9/28/2011 4:28PM

    You are awesome and inspiring. Thank you for sharing your journey!!!

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HEATHIELAUREN 9/28/2011 4:22PM

    Congrats to you and THANK YOU for supporting a wonderful cause. You are amazing!

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AMBER281 9/28/2011 4:21PM

    Looks and sounds like you had an amazing and fun time!!!

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    Awesome blog, by an awesome woman!! Way to go!! You kept positive & kept it in perspective! You are an inspiration!!! Great fundraising too!!

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 9/28/2011 3:56PM

    Congratulations, that's fantastic!

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KKINNEA 9/28/2011 3:48PM

    Fantastic! Your MIL would have been honored regardless of the distance you did. The shirt is great and last year's shirt sounds like a happy problem - may need to put it into a shadow box to preserve since it's too big!

Great, great job on such a worthy race.

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    That shirt is AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!! He is so talented and artistic!

And no, running 3.1 makes it no less powerful and amazing! You are amazing!

I love the pictures..you are so fit and beautiful. GLOWING!

YOU ARE AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Run the Pier Race Report (my 5 yr. old daughter's first race!)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

I would like to first TIFFYFANNY for inspiring me - she ran a 5k with her 6 yr. old daughter. I have a 5 yr. old daughter, Lucy, and would love to run a race with her. In the past she's indicated interest, so I've signed her up for the free kids' dashes they have during races, but each time she faltered and ended up not running. The whistle would scare her, or she would be afraid to leave my side. My daughter is an amazing girl, and sometimes she gets shy. She's a lot like me, actually. When she was first learning to talk she would whisper in her darkened bedroom words she was sounding out. I only knew because of the baby monitor, but I knew what she was doing. She wanted to be sure that when she said a word, it would come out correctly. My daughter was a perfectionist - like her mother.

She is a thinker and likes to know every aspect of something before it happens. Lately she had been asking if she could run a race with me. That plus the inspiration provided by TIFFANYFANNY was like a spark ignited. If she were to run a race WITH me, perhaps she wouldn't get scared. When I saw a Groupon for the Race the Pier, which is a 1-mile race, I thought it was perfect.

Since I know she's like me, we went for practice runs. On the last run Friday night we did a mile in about 20 minutes, running and walking. Here are some pictures from that last trial run.

She was so proud of herself after we finished. Just look at her face.

On the way home from that last run, she said from the backseat of the car, in a soft voice, "I don't think I can do it."

I looked back at her and said "What do you mean? You just did it. You did it and that's all we are going to do Sunday, the same thing we did today." I saw in the rear view mirror that she sort of smiled to herself. I went on, "There are no rules, we stop and start when you say. We run and walk when you say, and we can do this. All we need to do is finish." Now she has a full smile on her face, so I add "And I don't want to hear any more of this "I can't do it nonsense, you CAN and you DID!"

After a nice cup of hot cocoa and a good nights' sleep and a day off, she is feeling good. She is excited for the race. We get up early today, we need to get downtown by 7:30 a.m. Not the easiest thing with a 5 and 2 yr. old, but we do it.

Lucy signing in

The race worked out perfectly for us because there were 5 heats before ours, and so we got to see them all go, and hear the loud blowhorn, so Lucy was comfortable with it all. The only bad part is it was a rainy morning and it was getting worse with each heat.

We took some pictures as we waited.

Our cheering squad, my husband Jim and our daughter Marlo.

The professional picture taken of us.

Finally it was our turn to line up. Lucy holds my hand.

And we're off!

After about 5 minutes in, Lucy looked at me and said "Ok, can we stop now?" I looked at her and said "The only way to finish is to go through, we can do this." And so I tell her that we can walk now. The rain is pouring down and I make sure her hood is up over her head. We are still holding hands and we talk about how beautiful Lake Michigan looks, and I tell her how this is really amazing to have the road blocked off, no tourists, it's like we have the Pier to ourselves. It was very cool.

A few minutes in, Lucy wants to run again. So we run. Then we walk, and run and go like that for a while. Then we turn the curve and there's people cheering and ringing bells, it's the halfway mark. Lucy is excited, but I can tell the rain is getting to her.

One of the stories we like is the Little Engine that could. I ask her what does the little engine say as it thinks it can't get up the hill? And she says, "I think I can, I think I can." So I tell her let's say that right now, I think it might help.

And do you know what? I believe it did.

As we headed toward the finish line people that weren't even involved in the race were calling out Lucy's number, "Number 77! Number 77, go, go!" She looked at them wondering how can you know me? It was so cute.

And as we crossed the finish line there was a group of the runners who went before all cheering for us, it was so awesome!! The announcer said our names as we crossed, too, Lucy and Kathy! It was very cool. One of the benefits of a smaller race.

I hugged Lucy after we finished.

We finished at about 19 minutes, I believe, and it was the best feeling to cross the finish line with her. I never knew how proud that would make me. And to see her own pride was an even better feeling. It was an awesome day. And I am one proud Mama.

I don't often wonder what kind of influence I would have on her had I not lost this weight. I don't like to think about that. I like to just look forward and as I make positive choices it influences her own life and her own choices, too. I just love her so much, and want to continue to try to be the best, healthiest, mom I can be for my girls.

As I tucked Lucy in tonight, she asked "Did we win? The race, did we win?" I smiled at her and said "Honey, we sure did."

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SURGENBERD 10/13/2011 12:55PM

  Very nice! My kids took my bib after a 10K race and put it on and ran around our house. I will definitely look forward to running their first races with them! Thanks for the inspiring blog!

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PCOLAGATOR 10/13/2011 10:10AM

    Very sweet. I have the urge to go running with my 6 year old cousin now

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BARBIE779 10/12/2011 11:25PM

    She's adorable. My daughter will be five next month. I may see if she'd run a race with me.

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PAXAPUNCH 10/12/2011 6:21PM

    Im signing up right now!! I was going to run a 5k oct 22nd. But have officially decided that it will be even better to celebrate my birthday (oct21st) with a 1 mile fun run. With my husband and son....gonna save that 5k for Nov !! Thanks for the inspiration :)

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MCHILSTR 10/10/2011 10:21AM

  how very sweet - and love the Chicago pictures!

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ROOSTER72 10/10/2011 12:01AM

    Must have something in my eye. A bit teary!!

Gorgeous story - and just shows how you can be motivating to your kids. Every time she does something like that, it will give her a little more confidence - a great start towards a healthy life. Well done.
World's greatest mum award for that day!

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HSMOM2FOUR 10/9/2011 4:50PM

    Awwww!! You had me crying!!!

Thank you so much for sharing! I'm so proud of you! I'm so INSPIRED by you!!!!


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JENNIFER_67 9/27/2011 11:42AM

    That's fantastic!! I'm doing my first race in a couple of weeks, and my son is running in it too. But he's 18, and I'm sure I won't see him for long after the starting line. But I know he'll be cheering me on when I finish.

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FITFUNKYMAMA1 9/26/2011 10:10PM

    that is so freaking awesome,my heart just smiled!!! I was just talking to a friend about maybe getting my kids involved one day.I just did my first 5k and there was a 8 or 9 year old there running.So fun!!!

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LOOZINITNOW 9/26/2011 2:11PM

    Very heart warming blog!

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CARILOUIE 9/25/2011 5:47PM

    Oh, this is just the most beautiful post! I am grinning from ear to ear.

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JENNFIELDS4 9/21/2011 9:38PM

    You guys look so cute!! WTG...

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TEACHLIZARD 9/20/2011 10:01PM

    So Awesome! I cannot wait until I can do a race with my son ... hoping he will want too!
Congratulations both of you!

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AMANDA-129 9/20/2011 8:59PM

    How wonderful. This post made me cry. Congratulations Lucy! You are definitely a winner!

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TIFFYFANNY 9/20/2011 4:01PM

    This brought tears to my eyes!! Tell Lucy I'm SOOOO proud of her!!! Awesome. Thank you for sharing. :)

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    That is soooo awesome!! Yay Lucy!!!!!! Way to go!!!!! And yay Mom! Leading by example emoticon

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    she is too cute! I am so proud of you both!!!! SO PROUD!!!!!!!!!!! I love you!

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TEDDYBEARGIRL 9/20/2011 1:56AM

    That is awesome!

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WYND10 9/19/2011 10:55PM

    I love this. Just love it. And I have to say, the first picture, my initial thought was...who is that with her daughter? HOLY CRAP that's Lotusflower!! You look UH-MAZE-ING!!!!!!

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ASMITH3B 9/19/2011 10:40PM

    This is the best race report I've ever read. I can tell that you're so proud of her! I think that inspiring our kids to live healthy lives is one of the best side effects of SparkPeople.

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REENSKI 9/19/2011 7:53PM

    So Beautiful! You made me cry too!
What a wonderful story! What a wonderful Day! What a wonderful memory for you & Lucy!

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THEADMIRAL 9/19/2011 7:26PM

    That is totally emoticon What a wonderful achievement for both of you! And what a healthy legacy you're handing down to your children! ATTA GIRL!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KESHA1975 9/19/2011 7:19PM

    Love it! Awesome inspiring story!

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CELLISTA1 9/19/2011 4:44PM

    Yep, me too. Tears rolling down - This is just a GREAT, GREAT story. I have a 5-yr-old grand-daughter and you've inspired me.

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CAALAN23 9/19/2011 3:47PM

    Bah! How dare you make me cry at my work station! LOL!

Seriously, if there is one thing that is the most powerful about losing weight and gaining health it is that it leaves such a massive impression on the youth.

You are a rockin' mom!

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OFFDREA 9/19/2011 3:39PM

    I am sitting here at my desk fighting back the tears. Your daughters are so very lucky to have such an amazing Mom. You are an inspiration to them and a great role model.

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PCOH051610 9/19/2011 3:33PM

    Such an amazing story and what an experience for the both of you! I'm so glad Tempest272002 suggested that I read this blog as it really touched my heart and soul.

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ONE*BUSY*MOM 9/19/2011 3:26PM

    This is such an amazing story. Thanks for sharing!

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GODDESSELLIE07 9/19/2011 2:51PM

    Absolutely wonderful! Congrats to Lucy!

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KITHKINCAID 9/19/2011 1:58PM

    I LOVE THIS BLOG!!! You are such a proud, healthy, WONDERFUL mama to that little girl. She is one lucky kid. And she did amazing! Congrats on being such an incredible role model to your little girls.

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LESLIES537 9/19/2011 1:47PM

    I was led here by TEMPEST and oh my gosh, am I inspired!! I'm not just sobbing, I've got the ugly cry going on I'm so moved! lol I love that you raced with your daughter--I am looking at signing up for my first 5k and think it would be extra special to do it together with my young daughter, too. Thank you for inspiring me! What an awesome experience it must have been. I loved the pictures! You can see the joy and sense of accomplishment on your cutie's face. Congrats ladies, on WINNING that race!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 9/19/2011 1:28PM

    I am sobbing at my desk right now. I was looking at your little girl and of course thought of my own who's 6. It's so great that you do these things with her. She will always remember her first race with mom. My kids have their numbers on their walls and still talk about it! We're making great memories for them : )

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LIVIN2LOVE1 9/19/2011 1:07PM

    I love it! You've done a truly wonderful thing for your daughter. Amazing and inspirational!

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TEMPEST272002 9/19/2011 12:56PM

    Tears, tears & more tears. I'm so moved I'm wiping them off my face as I read. Really, it's just so incredibly inspiring to see how you the changes you made towards health are being passed down to your children and future grandchildren. Changing the course not just of your life, but theirs as well. And could Lucy possibly be any cuter?! The proud bridge pic is my favourite.

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ROEANDGO 9/19/2011 12:10PM

    Okay....I'm boohooing right now! Do you know what you did for your daughter??!! You gave her the foundation for being a strong, independent woman! Way to go MOM!!!

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-ICANDOIT- 9/19/2011 11:38AM

    You are THE BEST mom! What a beautiful day with your family! You are AWESOME!!!!!!

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AMBER281 9/19/2011 10:56AM

    That is so awesome and such a cute story.
You are a great example for your children!!!

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JENJESS48 9/19/2011 10:08AM

    What a lovely moment and story! I'm so proud of both of you! You have truly met your goal of being a fit mom and setting a great example for your girls, Kathy. Congrats!

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MG3KDZ 9/19/2011 9:49AM


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CHICAT63 9/19/2011 9:16AM

    Oh, so cute and totally AWESOME. Please tell Lucy congratulations for her 1st race with Mom !!!!! Fantastic photos, way to go !

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SHERLYN-WILL 9/19/2011 8:48AM

    Talk about sittin' on the edge of the seat waiting for the finish of this blog... you had me there.... I knew she would finish... but the crowd saying her number and cheerin' her on... "NOW THAT GOT ME!"... Tears!

You literally are so small now you can hide behind your tiny daughter... do you see that? SERIOUSLY (the pic. right above the one of your dh and daughter)... you are BEHIND her and I can't see your hip... YOU LOOK AMAZING...

That is a cute pic of your DH and Daughter too! I like it!


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    Well written and great insite. Lucy will always be one step ahead now because you both won. Go girls.

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TODAYIAM 9/19/2011 12:53AM

    So way cute!!

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HICKOK-HALEY 9/19/2011 12:39AM

    Oh my goodness, she is just a doll. I love how she poses for the camera. Good for the both of you. emoticon

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STARFIRE125 9/19/2011 12:34AM

    I am so proud of you and Lucy! You are such an inspiration and such a great mom! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SGTSUNNY 9/19/2011 12:02AM

    Wow, you two are the most beautiful finishers I have ever seen! Hugs

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UNICORN212 9/18/2011 11:46PM

    Yup. You sure did win. Both of you.

Your blog brought me to tears and that got my puppy worried. She was wondering why I was crying....

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MELLY3183 9/18/2011 11:28PM

    great pictures!! great inspiriation. love it

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ANUSCHKA9 9/18/2011 11:27PM

    Congratulations! What a great way to spend the day with your daughter and what an inspiration you are as mother.

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ANNEKATHLEEN 9/18/2011 11:18PM

    What an inspiration you are! Your story made me cry a little bit because it was so sweet and inspiring. I can only hope one day, when I'm blessed with children, that I'm as good and supportive a mother as you are.

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