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How very cool!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Did you get the e-mail about the Spark convention in May?? That is awesome! I would LOVE to go. Unfortunately, I don't think I will be able to. It's too far away. But I hope they have more of them — I want to meet my fellow Sparkies and the coaches someday. Thanks, Spark, for doing this. So cool!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DNJEN471 3/8/2009 6:09PM

    That is cool! Way to far away from me.. but very cool~!

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    I didn't know about the convention. It sounds like it will be a fun, informative convention! SP is really growing and touching more lives. Long lives SP!

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    I wasn't invited. emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 3/5/2009 8:49PM

    I AGREE! Hopefully they will have one on the EAST COAST sometime maybe?

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No more chicken tikka :(

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I'm so sad! I LOVE Indian food, and unfortunately this type of food is not easy to duplicate at home, so when we do go out to get it, it's worth it to me.

Anyway...there is a restaurant near our house (maybe a 20-minute walk) that had really awesome food. They had a lunch buffet every day and a dinner buffet Wednesday nights. We've been to many other Indian places in Baltimore, but this was not only the closest but also had the best-tasting food. Plus, we could get a little bit of a workout before and after gorging on the food by walking there and back.

Earlier today hubby called to tell me that he and some co-workers had planned to go there for lunch today. When they got to the place, the tables were there but that was about it. No yummy buffet. The door was wide open because people were moving things out. The economy claims another victim. Our favorite Indian restaurant is closed!! emoticon

The bright side to this (if there is a bright side) is that there will be fewer temptations to load up on calories with yummy Indian food.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DNJEN471 3/1/2009 4:22PM

    I hate this economy! It is slowly killing us all!

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STARTSPARKING 2/28/2009 6:10AM

    What a shame! The effects of this economy is so profound that it is truly scary. Since you have been such a loyal customer, can you try to contact the owner to see if they cater for special events? Maybe they'll part with the recipe of your favorite Chicken Tikka?

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 2/27/2009 12:07PM

    My small city has no Indian restaurants whatsoever, so why not join me in trying to cook it at home? On the upside you can control the ingredients that way.


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BINEMELLES 2/27/2009 6:19AM

    too bad for you!
my bf cooks chicken tikka about once or twice a month, using a brand called "geeta's". they make a couple of different spice mixes, sauces, chutneys and preserves. we frequently use the sauce called "geeta's makhani tikka", it's okay on the sodium and has no added glutamate, preservatives or anything, just the tomato and spices mix. you just add it to your lightly browned chicken and it tastes just like at my favorite indian restaurant!

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ASTER2606 2/26/2009 7:38PM

    Boo! I love Indian Food too and I've never decided to try making it at home. A couple that we know has learned to make samosas really well and another friend is having about 6 people for Indian Food on Friday. Sadly, I'm looking forward to this more because we have no kitchen rather than the fact that we've been invited somewhere and I'm sure it will be awesome. There still has to be good Indian Food out there somewhere in Baltimore and I hope you find it. Too bad you won't be able to walk to it. I don't know what we would do if the Mexican place or the sushi place that we can walk to would close. The Applebee's could close though and it would be no big loss. We never go there...

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ZIRCADIA 2/26/2009 7:35PM

    NO!!!!! WHAT A BUMMER!!!!! Also -- there are a few REALLY GOOD Indian food recipes on SparkRecipes by this one user... I have the Chicken Tikka Masala one favorited and I made it a bit ago for myself and friends and it was SO GOOD. Also naan. MMMMMMM. AND Target has some amazing Indian food stuff if you have a SuperTarget anywhere near you. I've been buying some of the box dinner thingies they have stocked that are microwave ready. SO GOOD ALSO. I haven't yet tried the target brand premade sauces -- they have some premade sauces to add to dishes to make stuff like Chicken Tikka Masala. Haven't looked at the nutrition facts even. :)

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Water, water everywhere but my tummy

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Today I have water on my mind. I know it's important to drink lots of water and to stay hydrated. But I've never been able to drink all the water that Spark recommends. I am just not that thirsty and I don't like living in the bathroom for most of the day, either.

I am famous for filling up my water bottle with good intentions. It sits on the table next to me. I end up taking a few sips and then the rest of it gets warm before I can drink it all.

The problem is that I don't LOVE water. I am trying to love it, but it's just so tasteless. I gave up soda and nasty chemical powders like Crystal Lite, which was a GREAT decision. However, I prefer iced tea, milk or 100% fruit juice to water. I do drink water every day, but not ALL day and it's not always my beverage of choice with every meal. I've heard all the suggestions about adding lemon, lime, orange, mint, cucumber, etc. Unfortunately, it's not realistic for me b/c I don't always have these things on hand.

For a while, I gave up trying to drink 8 cups of water every day. If I'm not thirsty, why waterlog myself? But I am realizing that I really should give it another honest try. It's important for my health. So, starting today, I'm going to fill up my pretty blue Amazing Race water bottle, make a conscious effort to glug it down throughout the day, then refill it and ... well, we'll see how I do.

Any suggestions from you water guzzlers out there?

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PINK-LADYBUG 2/28/2009 12:56PM

    I've been reading more and more about 8 glasses of water a day being a myth. I Googled "8 glasses a day myth" and here are just a couple articles, both from different University studies:




It's even made it's way onto Snopes:

I personally have decided to roll with this new information. First, I've always been confused by the claim that generally seems to follow the "8 x 8" rule - that it must be water - tea, coffee and juice doesn't count. Ummm, tea and coffee are just pretty much just flavored water, IMO. And the "caffeine dehydrates" argument against coffee and tea are fine and dandy, but what does that have to do with anything if you drink decaf/caffeine-free?? And juice - I'm no juice fanatic or expert, but aren't you just basically removing all the water from a fruit and drinking it? I mean, I know it has natural sugar and other aspects of the fruit as well, but it's still basically fruit water.
Bottom line for me? I still drink plenty of plain old water most days, and I keep track of what I do drink, but I've decided not to worry about the 8 x 8 guideline. I drink when I'm thirsty, or just feel like a drink, but I pay less attention to "how much?" and more attention to making sure that what I do drink is primarily healthful and low- or no-calorie.

One of the articles actually says something like - 8 x 8 is great for the person who likes to go to the bathroom alot. Since you don't like living in the bathroom, maybe it isn't for you!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/28/2009 1:00:26 PM

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    I often have bottles of warm water sitting around my desk too!

If you like fruit juice, you could dilute it a little to get some extra water in. Sometimes I also have a glass of water with some Emergen-C, getting some water and vitamins at the same time.

The best way I can force myself to drink water probably doesn't apply to anyone else: I put a straw in it. For some reason, if I can suck on a straw rather than tip up the glass, I'll suck it down 3x as fast. It's weird, but maybe it'll help :)

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SIMPLEJOYS 2/25/2009 7:23PM

  I am a lover of copious amounts of water, so I routinely drink more than 8 glasses in a day. With things I have trouble doing - I try and break it down into more manageable chunks (fish comes to mind!). Maybe you can fool your mind (and perhaps your gag reflex!) by drinking smaller amounts - say 4 ounces or so at a time.

I don't keep a big 64 ounce jug on my counter - and I seldom drink more than 5 ounces in a sitting...but I do drink all day, just in those smaller increments. And maybe you just need to work up to it - one teeny glass at a time!

Cheers! glug glug glug Good Luck!


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SPARKNMOM 2/25/2009 4:28PM

    No suggestions here, as I'm in your same boat...I just don't care to drink water :( I've tried several times, and succeeded, at drinking 6-8/day, but I fizzle out after a day or two... You'll have to let me know if you find something that works for ya!!

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ZIRCADIA 2/25/2009 3:52PM

    I LOVE WATER. So it's hard for me to think of any suggestions, because it's natural to me to love drinking water. I keep 2 20oz water bottles at work and I keep one in the fridge at all times, and fill the one I drink and trade out. I usually go through 3 of these while at work, and that's in addition to the water I drink before/during/after working out, and at night w/ dinner. I pretty much don't drink anything BUT water. Fruit juice to me is super sweet and not worth the calories usually -- I'll have a glass on the rare occasion, but I don't normally buy it. Soda is like a dessert to me now. :) And after I drink anything like that, I still need water afterward to clear out the sweetness from my mouth. Sounds like some of the other commenters are water drinkers who aren't also water fanatics like me, so they have some actual USEFUL suggestions. ;)

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BINEMELLES 2/25/2009 3:15PM

    my boyfriend is another person who dislikes the non-taste of plain water. i like the cool neutrality sometimes, but less during the winter than in the summer. i try to add variety - have a glass of water in the morning, then a cup of coffee, another glass of water, a cup of herbal tea, then a glass of half-and-half fruit juice and water with my lunch, then another glass of water, then more herbal tea etc.
i usually end up with more than 64 oz during a regular day, not counting the liquids from juicy fruits. i feel much better since i've been getting in so much water, but i don't think it's absolutely essential. opinions on this differ. i would suggest go "by feel". if you manage to stick to it for a while and you notice you feel better, you should make the effort to make it a habit. if you're just annoyed that you are constantly visiting the bathroom, stay aware of your water consumption and stick to what you feel comfortable with!
emoticon emoticon

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    I don't care for plain water, either. I do drink poison (artificially coloured and sweetened Crystal Light), but at half strength and it makes the water go down so easy. For me, herbal tea would be a healthier choice. There are many teas I enjoy with no sweetener. Just last night I was saying to Hubby that the idea of our bodies adjusting to all the extra water we should be drinking is a myth. I got up three times in an hour to pee before I finally fell asleep -- I had been drinking tea -- and I was up twice through the night, too.


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MOM2ACAT 2/25/2009 2:23PM

    I very rarely drink 8 cups in a day, I'm just in the bathroom too much if I do that. If I can get 6 cups in, that's good for me. The only times I drink more is if I'm fighting off the cold or flu, or out in really hot weather; I also have to drink a lot of water after a Zometa treatment to flush it out of my kidneys.

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ASTER2606 2/25/2009 2:14PM

    I know this isn't exactly what you were looking for, but I'm not sure you need to knock yourself out to drink 8 cups of water. I remember reading this article in Cooking Light last year and I found it online today:


Besides that, you're a fairly tiny person now and the one size fits all recommendation for 8 cups of water might not be completely reasonable for you. If you really think you need to drink more water, why not mix some fruit juice with water (if you already have that on hand and you like it).

As for my water consumption, I usually drink tea or coffee in the morning, I eat a few servings of raw fruit or vegetables (water rich food), I fill a 32 oz bottle around lunch time often but not always go through it in the course of an afternoon and I drink more water, though I've never attempted to count how much in the evening. Of course, some of the evening water is often counteracted by a glass of wine with dinner. I also think I care less about the temperature of water than most people do. Miles of hiking in the desert southwest will do that to a person.

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Zumba!! Ole!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Ok, yes, it's 2:30 a.m. but I have insomnia! It sucks!!! But what a great time for a blog, huh? LOL! gym is da bomb! I found out this morning that they will start offering a Zumba class starting at the end of March! Woo hoo!! I own the Zumba DVD but I've long wished to take it in a fitness class setting. It's just more fun for me that way, plus I don't have a lot of space in my house. I'm not the best at it b/c you have to be somewhat coordinated, but it's still fun.

For those who don't know, Zumba is a workout based on Latin dance moves. I got sucked into the infomercial probably like 8 years ago, after which my BIL bought it for me for the holidays. It's one of two fitness DVDs I own (yes, I still have the Leslie Sansone DVD). Now that they will be offering Zumba at the gym I'm hoping that I get better at all the moves, and then the DVD will be even more fun when I decide to work out at home.

Now, if the gym would just offer Krav Magda...

Hope everyone's having a nice weekend!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ZIRCADIA 2/23/2009 1:11PM

    I would LOVE to take a Zumba class. Don't want to do the DVD. :P haha

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 2/23/2009 10:17AM

    Gee... . I should have gone online last night. I was woken by a sick kid at 3 and couldn't get back to sleep til 5. I'm not sure if we are in the same time zone or not (I'm Mountain Time), but I'm sure there was a point at which you and I were awake simulatneously. It must have been the Oscars that stirred our brains to the point of restlessness. Anyhow, I'm sitting here with my decaf coffee (I've switched) hoping it has just enough caffeine in it to wake me, otherwise I'll need a hit of the real stuff. Zumba, hmm? I'll have to see if there are examples on Youtube. Or maybe you can just ask your teacher to record it again?


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SIMPLEJOYS 2/22/2009 10:07PM

  I DO hope you sign the video waiver! emoticon

(I was up at 5:30AM...not a time I usually see...maybe it was something in the air?!!)

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SPARKNMOM 2/22/2009 9:05PM

    Wow...that sounds cool!! No wonder you do so well consistently do FUN exercising!! And look at the look wonderful!! Keep up the great work :)

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PUPPYWHISPERS 2/22/2009 4:01PM

    You'll have to let me know how you like the Zumba class. There is a gym in my area offering it too, and I've been debating signing up for the class. It seems like a lot of fun, but I'm concerned that my lack of coordination might be too much of an embarrassment in a group setting. emoticon

Hope you enjoy the class!

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KARALVS2SCRAP 2/22/2009 6:53AM

    Zumba sounds fun- my mom actually takes zumba! That's awesome that you try different workouts- you'll never get bored.

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Yesterday's workout and cool magazine discovery

Thursday, February 19, 2009

So yesterday was a nasty kind of day. I skipped my noon cycle class because I couldn't bring myself to get out and walk to the gym. Around 3 p.m. I started to feel guilty, so I decided to go to the 5:15 bosu class. I cheated a little bit because I only had to walk one way, then my husband picked me up from the gym at 6 after work. The walk actually wasn't bad. It had stopped flurrying by that point, it was not too cold and kind of misty. I enjoyed the walk.

This bosu class was INTENSE. I usually go on Tuesday mornings. I didn't know this instructor, but the class was different from the one on Tuesday. It was more Jillian Michaels-like, with burpee type moves and torso twists, etc. I have to take it easy right now, so I modified a lot of the moves or just didn't do them. :) But it was fun.

Also, I recently found out about an AWESOME magazine called Clean Eating. I am a member of the Eating Clean Spark Team, and although I don't like diets and diet books, I like the idea of clean eating: simple, natural ingredients, no HFCS or trans fats, no artificial sweeteners. This just makes sense to me.

I found out about this magazine from posts on the Eating Clean team. I saw it at Costco over the weekend and bought a copy. OMG, where the heck have I been???? I wish I would have seen this magazine sooner. Full of amazing, healthy recipes that seem easy to prepare. It doesn't appear to be affiliated with Tosca Reno's books, but I'm not sure. I don't even know much about her or the books. But this magazine is the BOMB. I'm going to subscribe. It's a little pricey, but I think it will be worth it.

Have a wonderful day, Sparkfriends!

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PINK-LADYBUG 2/22/2009 1:25PM

    Clean Eating is awesome! I've picked up a copy or two in the past, and the only reason I haven't subscribed yet is that I already had a couple of cooking magazines coming. I'm a huge magazine junkie,which is easy to let get out of hand, so I've learned to cycle my subscriptions so I'm only getting one or two of any type at a time. I had Eating Well and Cooking Light coming - both great! - but both have lapsed. I'm debating between renewing either of those, getting Clean Eating or giving the Taste of Home Healthy Cooking one a try.... So many great mags, so little time! emoticon

I may have to check out your Eating Clean team...

I'm looking forward to TAR tonight! emoticon


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SPARKNMOM 2/19/2009 10:02PM just rock :) You're doing so very well.

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KARALVS2SCRAP 2/19/2009 7:02PM

    Way to go on the Bosu class- you stuck with it and didn't wimp out! I love Clean Eating Magazine!

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ZIRCADIA 2/19/2009 3:34PM

    I WANT TO GO TO THAT BOSU CLASS! :D hehehe. I'd like to get the Clean Eating Mag sometime, I tried to look for it not that long ago but couldn't find it. Maybe I'll be able to gift myself a subscription sometime.

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 2/19/2009 11:11AM


Boho is the magazine:>

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PRAIRIEDAWNPAM 2/19/2009 11:09AM

    Another magazine was mentioned on tv last night that I'd enjoy checking out, I think. You might, too, but I cannot remember the name of it. It is new, Neve Cambpell is on the cover this month, and its devoted to green beauty, health and living. Does it sound familiar?


Comment edited on: 2/19/2009 11:10:01 AM

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ASTER2606 2/19/2009 10:36AM

    I'll see if I can find that magazine too. Sounds like it is right in line with the type of food I like to eat. Thanks for mentioning it.

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