MISSG180   112,840
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MISSG180's Recent Blog Entries

That one word thing

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Answer every question with just one word

Where is your cell phone?


Your hair?

Your mother?

Your father?

Your favourite thing?

Your dream last night?

Favourite drink?

What room are you in?

Your hobby?

Your fear?

Where do you want to be in 6 years?

Where were you last night?

Something that you aren't?


Wish list item?

Last thing you did?

What are you wearing?

Your pets?


Your life?

Your mood?

Missing someone?


Your car?

Something you're not wearing?

Your favorite store?

Your favorite color?

When is the last time you cried?

Where do you go over and over?

Five people who email me regularly?

Favorite place to eat?

Favorite place I'd like to be right now?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TATTER3 10/26/2012 6:42AM


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CORNERKICK 10/24/2012 7:28PM


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MILPAM3 10/24/2012 2:53PM

  Do I like simple, forthright answers?

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HONBAD 10/24/2012 2:31PM

    I was in Napa one year ago and it was so amazing!! Also, do you call Heinen's Heini's?! Or was that just a typo? My mother-in-law from out of town always calls it that and I can never tell if she's doing it to be funny or if she really thinks that is the name. Now we do affectionately refer to it as Heini's sometimes!

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Health At Every Size

Friday, October 12, 2012

There's a lot of debate going on regarding the Health At Every Size (HAES) movement. Most of it seems to focus on the idea that HAES is just a way of giving fat people permission to stay fat, or that it encourages people to get fat by not shaming them for not being perfect.

Setting aside the absurdity of thinking that HAES makes people get fat on purpose, let me explain *my* understanding of what it means. I'm not the expert, and other people may have differing views of it, but here's what I take from it.

First of all, the success of long-term weight loss is pretty miniscule: 90-95% of people who lose weight regain it within 5 years. Programs like Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig are *required* to put that "Results not typical" disclaimer on their ads because, hey, the success stories they are touting are NOT the usual outcome of the program.

Now, no one WANTS to regain the weight they fought to lose. Kirstie Alley had the additional incentive of a million-dollar salary, and she still couldn't keep the weight off. So assuming that Joe and Jane Average regain their weight only because they are lazy and gluttonous is pretty naive and arrogant. The shame and pain of being overweight would be enough to keep people thin, if it was the least be effective.

But research has shown that weight is not the predictive factor for health. Fitness is. Yes, obese and unfit people have a much higher mortality rate than normal weight, fit people. But for obese, fit people? That mortality rate drops down to almost the same as normal weight, fit people. And it's half the mortality rate of normal weight but unfit people. The link to the study is at the end of this entry, but this graph really illustrates the differences:

So instead of trying to sell us on all being thin, a goal that eludes most the people who attempt it, HAES emphasized being FIT, a goal that is within the grasp of many more people, and that will actually improve their health.

Most of the time, overweight people are sold on exercise and fitness as part of the whole "get thin" package: "You should work out and eat healthy food AND THEN you'll get thin!" Fitness is treated as a means to reach the Holy Grail of a size 4 dress, instead of something that is an inherent good in and of itself. HAES is about unlinking fitness from thinness and emphasizing overall health, rather than an elusive goal weight.

Why is this important? Because most people won't succeed at getting thin, but CAN succeed at getting healthy. And if people only associate exercise and fitness with "the time that I'm on a diet" then they don't learn to think of it as something good on its own, only as something that they have to suffer through when they are in the dieting phase of their lives.

Furthermore, HAES is about saying that it's okay, and safe, and *fun* to work out even when you don't look like a magazine cover. It's about providing a supportive environment where people can work on their fitness without feeling embarrassed or pressured into conforming with someone else's ideal of beauty. It's about encouraging people to get moving and enjoy the body they have, without some hidden agenda that judges them if they don't lose weight.

Do people practicing HAES lose weight? Some of them do. Some of them don't. I have, over the last year, and I will probably lose more. But if the Weight Fairy came to me and said that I wasn't going to lose another ounce, I would keep on living like I'm living because this is about my health and how good I feel. It takes disconnecting fitness from the "...and then you'll lose weight!" message in order to make it something that discouraged, unfit people can learn to practice and enjoy.

And that, to me, is what HAES is all about.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MISSUSRIVERRAT 11/15/2012 4:53PM

    Great blog! Thank you for taking the time to put it all together and express the ideas so clearly.

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A*L*P* 11/15/2012 8:11AM

    I know that you posted this awhile back and I stumbled across your page from one of the message boards that you posted on intuitive eating. I am HUGE on the HAES and IE movements. The anti-diet, diet movement. I am one that has struggled with body image issues, food issues, exercisee issues and it has not made me a better person, in fact just the opposite. I am not obese, but rather I am 10 stupid pounds (at least I was the last time I weighed which has been awhile as I have given up the scale) away from my pre pregnancy weight. I have let 10 pounds destroy my life, my image of myself, my self esteem, my ability to laugh and I am through. I turned to intuitive eating over 2 years ago and it was the most amazing process, I got distorted thinking after my baby was born and started weighing myself (the scale does it tome every time) and I got wrapped up in the obsessive thinking, tracking, weighing, over exercising again. I read the Health at Every Size book and it really opened my eyes on a lot of things. I dug my intuitive eating book back out and re-read it and I got more out of it the second time through.
I love this blog post, I wish there were more like this.......

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MOTLEM 10/15/2012 11:48PM

    Top blog! Health is everything! Without health, you are nothing.

emoticon emoticon

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SIMPLYABUNDANT 10/15/2012 1:56PM

    I needed the balanced viewpoint in this blog after a few hours of obsessive surfing from one "healthy" website to another this morning.

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HONBAD 10/15/2012 1:12PM

    Another awesome blog!! I try to explain to people all the time it's about overall health, not a number on a scale or a dress size. I was technically under my ideal weight a few years ago, but a DEXA scan and a trip into a Bod Pod showed that my body fat was 29-30.5% - not a healthy level! I realized I was tricking myself thinking that I was healthy even without working out.

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RICHILA 10/12/2012 10:18PM

    Thank you for sharing this and the link to the study.
Spark On! We Got Ths! emoticon

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KATHYSCOLLIES 10/12/2012 9:27PM

    MISS G - I am so glad that I saw this blog and took the time to not only read it, but also to 'digest' what you are saying. I believe this is something so very important for us to understand.

Those who struggle on a daily/ lifetime basis with their 'weight problems' as perceived by all around them need to be encouraged to realize that fit and thin are not always the same thing!

But knowing and believing are not always equal in our minds and hearts, sadly. too many of just see the fat person exterior. The person who has already lost even just 10% of their body weight and who is perhaps exercising for the first time in their whole lives is still perceived to be very unhealthy - perhaps even morbidly obese - rather than someone who is working at becoming a healthier more fit person , especially by that wonderful tiny little 5 year old stick person running on the next treadmill.......

Well said, well thought out, well done!

Thank you so much for sharing this information about the HAES perspective!

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MZMELISSA2007 10/12/2012 4:23PM

    Very insightful. This made me smile :-)

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KIRKCARP11 10/12/2012 1:44PM

    What an insightful post. I agree wholeheartedly. But *knowing* something and *believing* it are two different things. I can know that I am doing the right thing by exercising even when everything jiggles and bounces, but the belief in my heart is still that being smaller is better. It takes some serious work to move beyond that "thin-is-best" mentality.

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CHEFSOPHIE 10/12/2012 1:09PM

    I agree with you. The reality is even if you don't end up thin, you will probably still weigh less and drop inches because you will be exercising and paying attention to what you are eating.

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Even Sparkers have bad days

Sunday, September 30, 2012

I've had a pretty successful year, and I am pleased with my progress. But Friday and yesterday were the kinds of days that fill me with frustration. If it wasn't nailed down or actively running away, I was eating it.

I'm not sure what set off this raving hunger, but it was definitely a bad couple days. Now I'm all jazzed up on sugar and will have a couple rough days getting it worked back out of my system.

But I made myself do the two things I most didn't want to do: record it all in my food journal, and get on the scale. When I do that, I feel like I still have some control over my life and my decisions, and that I'm being accountable.

Today? There will be ice cream. Very special, limited edition ice cream. But I will be biking 30 miles to get it, so I'm okay with that!

EDIT: Oops, no ice cream trip after all. DD is not feeling well enough to ride, and I don't want to go out there alone. Ah well, next weekend.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KATHYSCOLLIES 9/30/2012 11:35PM

    Sounds like you are a pretty normal human to me - not a perfect one, but someone who works hard at doing things the 'right way'!!

Awesome that you still tracked and wrote in your journal - bet that would not have happened before you got the SPARKle in your life!

Tomorrow is a new day, don't take the time to beat yourself up about a little straying from the path.


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TATTER3 9/30/2012 9:58PM

    Like it that you're normal!!!

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 9/30/2012 8:33PM

    I'm impressed you tracked your food! I'm not very good at that when overeating. That is awesome that you tracked it!

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GOLDENRODGIRL 9/30/2012 8:13PM

    I think that counts as "normal life"! Good for you for getting back on track, though.

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BLUE42DOWN 9/30/2012 2:49PM

    Such a very true lesson - no one of us is perfect, no one of us will avoid having a bad day (or two) here and there. So rather than bemoan it and let it become a week of bad days or worse, you brought it to a halt, faced the worst of the consequences and know that the good days you can create today, tomorrow and moving forward are more important.


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CAKEMAKERMOM 9/30/2012 12:46PM

    I feel that way when candy finds it's way into the house, whether it's mine or not. You'll get through this hungry time and eventually it will go back to a normal amount of hunger. Enjoy your bike ride!

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CHEFSOPHIE 9/30/2012 12:08PM

    I think ice cream with 30 miles of biking is just fine. In fact it might justify two servings. Enjoy!

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SLUNDQUIS 9/30/2012 12:03PM

    no too bad

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Not Broken

Friday, September 28, 2012

I fell off my bike yesterday.

Actually, I sort of tipped over on my bike. Rather like Artie Johnson and his tricycle back in the Laugh-In days. I had to come to a stop when a car stopped in front of me, and I was trying to gear down with the last bit of speed I had available, and then my weight was on the wrong foot and I started tipping that way and there was no way for me to get my foot off the pedal to stop myself.

Ergo, plop.

I banged my elbow pretty hard, and as it was the thing hurting the most it wasn't until later that I realized I'd also smacked my knee and scraped and bruised the inside of my thigh. I was mildly shaken up, but able to get back on my bike and have a good ride. Today I am a bit stiff and sore in my back and neck, in addition to being bruised and scraped, but it's really not that bad.

And in a way, it was strangely liberating. No one likes to take a fall on a bike, but I have been experiencing a phobia of it that was out of proportion. I was absolutely certain that a fall on my bike would equate badly breaking myself in such a way that I would not recover quickly. I certainly am not looking forward to any kind of repeat performance, but I am gratified to learn that I'm at least a little sturdier than I feared.

Tonight is a 40+ mile ride. I am going to be a little creaky when I first get on that bike, but I am going to enjoy it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SIMPLELIFE4REAL 9/30/2012 8:32PM

    I hope you are feeling better by the time you read this. I'm like you and have had a bit of a phobia about falling on my bike. I haven't done it yet. It's one reason why I've always held of on getting clipless pedals.

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KATHYSCOLLIES 9/28/2012 11:34PM

    So good to hear that you are mostly OKAY, and not broken, just a little battered!

Good for you planning on such a long ride again tonight, while still being sore - actually good for you just for doing the long ride period! I would hope that I might be so brave myself someday!


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LADYGSC 9/28/2012 11:14PM

    It's good you're ok. Enjoy your riding!!

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RICHILA 9/28/2012 4:52PM

    I so glad it was only scrapes and bruises. Good job getting on and enjoying your ride!

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BLUE42DOWN 9/28/2012 4:43PM

    Whew, definitely a relief that you're mostly okay with just some dings and bangs. I'm glad it's helped free you from the excess of fear and let you ride knowing you CAN get back up and get back on your way!

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    Falling becomes a bigger deal as we age as we worry about the longer term effects. When we were young, we were "more pliable" and flexible and, though we fell then, we were less likely to be hurt from it. I understand your worries, but you are right, you survived and are fine.

Stiff goes away as do bruises. Keep riding. You are my hero.

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CHEFSOPHIE 9/28/2012 3:24PM

    Hope you heal quickly. Glad there were no serious injuries. Be careful riding tonight.

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One year on Spark People

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Today is my first SparkVersary. In some ways it seems like a long time coming, in others I can hardly believe a year has passed.

A year ago I was teetering on the brink of 300 pounds and horrified with myself. I suffered a lot of back pain, and though I could still walk a mile, I often paid for it severely the rest of the day.

Moreover, I wasn't walking that mile. I wasn't doing much of anything except stuffing my face and feeling sorry for myself.

Last month, I biked 81 miles in one day. I regularly bike commute 20 miles a day. Walking the three miles roundtrip into our downtown is something I do without even thinking about it. My next goal is to participate in triathlons.

I've lost 73 pounds, and I've done it on my own terms. I don't deprive myself of anything, I just make sound decisions about what I'm going to eat. When I make stroganoff or paprikash, I use full-fat sour cream--but I don't "taste" my way through one serving, sit down and eat another serving for dinner, and then "nibble" another serving's worth of leftovers throughout the evening.

It wasn't quality food that was making me gain weight. It was the simple quantity of it that I was shoveling into my mouth.

It used to be that when I was stressed I would eat a tub of frosting. Now I take a bath and read a book.

And if I really have a craving for frosting? Well, I can have it. But I can have it without guilt, because I account for it in my daily calorie count. And because I've given myself permission to have it, it doesn't get all wrapped up in guilt and self-recrimination. Which means I can have--and enjoy--a spoonful without telling myself I'm a failure and eating the whole tub despite the fact that it's making me sick and miserable.

My relationship with food is healthier. And I am healthier.

I still have a way to go. But even if I never lost another pound, I love living like I'm living now. And I love the support I get here on Spark People.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CRISTALITE 9/22/2012 8:53AM

    Happy spark a versary, Happy spark a versary, Happy spark a versary, HAPPY SPARK A VERSARY. felt like singing lol....

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HONBAD 9/21/2012 3:39PM


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K1TT3N 9/21/2012 12:08PM

    Great Job , Happy Spark Anniversary. You have done an awesome job

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    Happy Sparkaversary. That was inspiring. I'm so glad you are taking such a healthy approach to food. This is what I think should be our relationship with food. Not deprivation but learning to eat appropriately.

Hope your day is a good one.

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CHEFSOPHIE 9/20/2012 8:30PM

    Congrats on the sparkversiary! You have done a lot in one year. Good job.

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DOGLADY13 9/20/2012 8:16PM

    Happy Sparkversary! Your journey is so inspiring. You have so much to be proud of. So many people don't even have those types of insights into themselves, let alone act on them and make healthy changes. Congratulations!


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LOWFATFOODIE 9/20/2012 5:23PM

    The perfect blog post! Great job with your accomplishments and creating a lifestyle of health! Fantastic inspiration!

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CAKEMAKERMOM 9/20/2012 4:44PM

    Happy emoticon !

Real food tastes so much better than half food, low calorie "diet" stuff anyhow.

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APPLESBANANAS 9/20/2012 4:20PM

    Wow MissG, this makes me smile. Congrats on your accomplishments, and keep them coming. Your strategies are wonderful and are proof that consistent gradual change is the best.

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BARBARASDIET 9/20/2012 3:27PM


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IRONBLOSSOM 9/20/2012 1:16PM

    Wow, very awesome, very impresive! Go you!

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RICHILA 9/20/2012 1:08PM

    Congratulations on your first year Sparkvesary! I wish you many more years of joyous good health!
Spark On! We Got This! emoticon

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 9/20/2012 11:49AM

    I'm so impressed with what you have done! That is amazing. I'm glad to be getting to know you.

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OPTIMIST1948 9/20/2012 11:37AM

    hurrah! diet without deprivation is so much nicer.

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ERICADAWN1986 9/20/2012 11:35AM

    Congrats! 73lbs is a HUGE loss! Happy Anniversary and I can't wait to see your future success!

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