MKELLY72   28,761
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MKELLY72's Recent Blog Entries

30 Day Blog Challenge 13-15

Monday, September 17, 2012

You can find the blog on the challenge here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5051162

The questions are here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5038746

emoticon 13. What has been the hardest life style change you've made for the sake of losing weight, getting fit, or becoming healthier? Any tips for making that change easier?
I didnít find anything more difficult than I expected this time around. It was more difficult in previous attempts at healthy lifestyle changes to increase my activity and sustain it for the long haul. In the past, it had been so hard for me to make the commitment to more activity. I had just jumped in full force, and I ramped up my sessions/duration before I was ready, and I burned out and quit. I was pretty attached to an all or nothing mindset. This time, however, I decided to just do things a little at a time, be happy with slower progress and my new, healthy habits I was building. I also know myself well enough to admit that I will not likely ever love planned exercise enough to commit to more than 3 days a week. Some weeks I get more, and thatís just a bonus. The key is that I can SUSTAIN this habit....being able to sustain the habits is so important!
emoticon14. What life style changes have been easier than you expected? Why do you think that was?
It was so easy for me to track my food this time, since I was able to finally find a method that was a good fit for me. I like paper and pencil, and I keep a small notebook tucked in my purse- itís always with me, and I have tricked myself out of having any excuses. If I have to track on the run, I use the note feature on my cell phone (I donít have a smartphone...Iím kind of old school), and I track it later. I fell in love with the WW points system for calculating food intake and activity. It was really easy for me to learn, and that has been my rock! I track as I eat it/ pack it, and if something happens to delay me, I get it all caught up by the end of the day.
emoticon15. What is your favorite weight loss, fitness, or wellness blog (or website or magazine) outside of sparkpeople?
I really like manmeetsscale.com- it is written by the CEO of Weight Watchers International, and he covers a lot of issues/ concerns that are specific to weight maintenance. He uses WW lingo here and there, but I really like how his message is universal to all maintainers/weight losers no matter what the ďprogramĒ (as long as itís based on good health guidelines)
Another one that I have recently discovered while doing some researching in preparation of this question is called Healthy Food For Living. I like reading about new ways to eat a healthy diet, and so far, it looks like a good one. I had to actually do some research on this, because I rarely consult other online resources outside of Spark.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAYOTIC 9/20/2012 10:16AM

    You are so right about the healthy lifestyle really sinking in by taking it slowly...well said!

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GORIANA 9/17/2012 9:49PM

    I just found your new blogs. I'm looking forward to reading them and learning 'how you did it.'

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IRISHEI 9/17/2012 5:43PM

    #13.
I think eating out with friends or going to parties is the hardest part of my change, as far as CUTTING back on portions and certain foods. I always eat better at home with my planned meals and this helps me so much. Now, I also check the online menu before I eat out, if not familiar with the menu.
Also, not buying sweets and salty snacks when I shop. This does help me stay away from the snacks if not in the house.
As far as activity, making sure I work out OFTEN. At times it has been only
3x a week and I know that is not enough to help me lose my weight. I am trying harder to do this 5x a week.
#14. I think it has been easier to track my meals, this time. I went to WW off and on for years and know if I track it, it really pays off. I also use a notebook, one page for each day and it helps so much. If I'm out, I mark it on a small notebook in my purse and record it later when I get home.
#15. I log into Spark daily. I don't have much time to check other websites. I do however, receive www.kim bensen.com about her journey. I read her book and that really motivated me. I did not join her site as far as a profile, I just get lots of ideas from her articles and the book, called "Finally Thin!" She lost over 200 pounds and has kept it off. Great book to own, so it can be referred to often. Also has over 70 recipes in it. I am sure there are others I have looked at, but not enough time to stay on the computer for so much each day.
Thanks Michelle.
hugs, Ei emoticon
I hope this response is in the correct place. Let me know it it is suppose to be put someplace else. (-:

Comment edited on: 9/17/2012 5:47:14 PM

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30 Day Blog Challenge: 10-12

Saturday, September 15, 2012

You can find the blog on the challenge here: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5051162

The questions are here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5038746


emoticon Why are you working towards the goal you talked about on Day 1? Particular health goal? Size goal? Activity goal? Vanity goal?
My initial goal was to lower my risks of weight related health problems, but as the compliments started coming in, vanity became a part of my motivation, and when I started replacing my wardrobe, I became increasingly excited when I got to a point where I had never worn a size that small in my life! I never dreamed I would wear a 6 or 7- and that is where I am now. I was never smaller than an 11/12 when I started wearing womenís clothes- and that was in junior high. I still have a hard time believing I am as small as I am. To begin with- I just figured it was a fluke...mismarked size or something...but I now have several pairs of pants/shorts from different brands that are 6-8.
emoticon What do you like most about your body? Has what you like most about your body changed as you've progressed towards your goals?
I have really loved seeing my face slim down. I was pretty self conscious about my round pudgy face before...but I used to love my larger bust line- itís not so large anymore:( but I donít mind the sacrifice- Iím healthier now, and itís amazing what a good bra will do :) I canít say what I like has changed at all though.

emoticon Post a picture of your inspiration. Thinspiration if that's your thing. Fitspiration if that's what you're after. Heathspiration if that's your primary goal. Why is this person inspiring to you?
My boyfriend has been so wonderful and supportive along this entire journey, and I have NEVER felt judged by him. He has been naturally and easily thin his whole life, until he met me....and now he has returned to where he was before...without really trying mind you :)

I also have discovered that I love running, so here is another one:

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GORIANA 9/24/2012 1:49PM

    emoticon I'm enjoying looking better in clothes too. I can't wait to chisel through these last 10-15 pounds and not have the softness around my middle. I actually enjoy the smaller bust size because it makes physical activity easier.

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30 Day Blog Challenge 7-9

Friday, September 14, 2012

You can find the blog on the challenge here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5051162

The questions for the challenge are here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5038746

7. How do you measure progress towards or maintenance? Scale weight? Body fat percentage? How your clothes fit? Other?

Scale weight was my main progress measuring tool, but when plateaus hit, itís important to have other tools to consult otherwise it can get discouraging. Body measurements and clothing fit helped to fill in this gap. It was also great to make lists of physical activities that I could do/do better as I got in better shape and closer to my goal. These types of lists were the best for keeping me motivated when all other things had come to what appeared a standstill. It kept me grounded and appreciative of all the hard work Iíd done and kept me from wanting to give up. The scale still remains my first tool of measurement. I weigh myself almost daily now that Iím in maintenance, so I can get right back to work if I stray too far from my goal window.

8. What do you think will be different when you reach your goal weight? If you are in maintenance, what did you think would be different? What actually was different?

I knew it would be something that I would need to stay on top of it- that has turned out to be true, but I had a hard time believing that I could begin to eat more. I still have a hard time with that sometimes. I continue to track everything, even though I have taken a one week vacation from tracking and discovered that I was ok. I think I could do that more often than I do, but I donít fully trust myself yet to keep my portions in check, so I will only do that occasionally and for only a week or so at a time.

9. How old are you and do you think your thoughts about weight loss, fitness, and wellness have changed over time?

Iím 40, and when I was younger my focus was all about just being thinner and looking better physically. I didnít care at all about overall physical condition and endurance. Now I think about reducing my risk of heart disease and diabetes, especially since I have a family history of both. My mom is now dealing with high blood pressure and high cholesterol too. I also aim to be more physically active as I age, because I have realized that experiencing life to the fullest for me requires more active involvement with others who are important to me, and I want to enjoy my time with them for as long as possible.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GORIANA 9/24/2012 2:02PM

    It's great to have people like you and others that are in maintence show us how to model winning behaviors. Thanks.

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30 Day Blog Challenge, 4-6

Thursday, September 13, 2012

You can find the blog on the challenge here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5051162

The questions for the challenge are here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5038746

4. What are (or were) your fears about weight loss?

I have always been afraid that I would work really hard, not see the results I want or as fast as I want, give up before I get there or throw it all down the toilet once I did get there. These fears are pretty real to me, as I have actually experienced all but one of them. The only thing I have not done yet (and plan not to ever do with the help of you and Spark and my support team at home) is throw it all away now that I got here. I had never made it all the way to goal in any of my previous 7 or 8 attempts in the past. I had lost 20, or 30 or 50 pounds before...never making it to the ultimate goal and never even maintaining any of those significant losses for more than a week before gaining every pound lost and then some. Something else that has always been in the back of my mind is -how will people who arenít particularly close to me assume I have done this? Will people compliment me to my face, but trash talk me behind my back out of jealousy assuming I took some magic pill or something? Will people think Iíve now suddenly shifted from one eating disorder to another (binge eating to binge starving) ? In the big scheme of things, I couldnít care less what these people really think, because I -and the people who really count- know the hard truth- that it took dedication and hard, slow work to put my health into perspective and make it come first and stay first.


5. What is your weight history like? How old where you when you first 'went on a diet'? Have you lost and regained? How is this time different from others?

Between 1993 and 2010 my weight ranged from 160-248. It would swing back and forth in 20-50 pound shifts about 6 or 7 times during this time period. I used a variety of methods to try to gain control of my weight from meal shakes to carb reduction to excessive exercise (only short lived on that one...I have never been able to maintain excessive exercise for any significant period of time), weight loss pills- of which in and of themselves there were a variety of types/brands. What is significantly different about this time around is that the gradual shift to a healthy lifestyle changes-balanced meals (high in vegetables, fruits, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats), sustainable exercise levels of activities that are fun for me, better time management skills, better planning of my meals and foods available to me, and my internalization that I am worth taking good care of has made all the difference in making this time around sustainable for the long haul. It has only been just over 6 months, but I have to keep telling myself that this is my ďnew normalĒ. This is also the first time I have appropriately rewarded myself for reaching small goals, big goals, and sometimes just for staying the course. Staying engaged in this community and spreading the Spark in my personal circle has also been incredibly effective in maintaining my accountability and in turn helps me to maintain my health and all that entails.


6. What has been most challenging about maintaining a weight loss (now or in the past)?

The most challenging thing in the past for me considering maintenance has been making the connection between what needs to be done to get to the goal needs to be something that I am willing to commit to when I reach the goal too. You canít just leave the game once you arrive at the goal. You have to stay in there and keep working it. When I had made the mistake in the past of severe calorie reduction of huge increases in activity over a short period of time- it was too hard to sustain even long enough to reach my ultimate weight goal, so there was no way Iíd be able to maintain it once I reached the final prize. Is it a slower journey when you make choices that you can live with forever? Of course it is, but when you take the slow, steady path of progress, you are given an opportunity to more firmly root the new behaviors into your life routine and make them permanent changes. That kind of acceptance has been the biggest difference for this leg of my journey, and the most difficult thing for me to wrap my head around.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GORIANA 9/24/2012 1:57PM

    "You canít just leave the game once you arrive at the goal."

Enlightening incites!

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MJZHERE 9/13/2012 12:52PM

  Very insightful blog. Thinking about people's reactions to once you've lost the weight maybe very helpful. I never even considered any negatives and was taken by surprise - I wish I had been better prepared in this area. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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30 Day Blog Challenge: 1-3

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

You can find the blog on the challenge here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5051162

The questions for the challenge are here:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5038746

1: Your stats. Starting stats, current stats, goal stats. Are you currently trying to lose weight, gain weight, or maintain weight or something else? Do you have a goal for the month of September?

I started at 248 pounds in July 2010,and I met my goal of 148 on Feb 23, 2012. I have been maintaining for 6 months to date. My goals for September are to improve my endurance for running by improving my pace. Currently I average about 12 minutes/mile. I would like to improve this by 10 seconds by the end of September. I have returned to interval training to work toward attaining this goal. Since I had slacked off on running all together for a couple of months, I definitely feel like I have my work cut out for me.
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2. How did you pick your goal weight? Did you pick an ultimate goal weight at the beginning of your weight loss? Did it change? Did you set smaller goals along the way?

I picked my goal weight by selecting from the range of healthy weight for my height, and I also considered the significance of the total weight loss number. 148 is in my range, and it gives me a total weight loss of 100 pounds. I liked the idea of being able to say, ‚ÄúI lost 100 pounds‚ÄĚ, so that is how I came to that ‚Äúmagic‚ÄĚ number. I also set smaller goals along the way as benchmarks for rewards. Every 9 pounds lost (don‚Äôt ask me why 9 and not 10) I had earmarked for a reward. Sometimes my reward was a new book, or some ‚Äúnew‚ÄĚ clothes (all from Goodwill and the like)- coffee with a friend...entry into another 5k...things like that. When I reached my halfway goal of 50 pounds lost, I bought myself a Kindle. Needless to say, my following ‚Äúsmall‚ÄĚ rewards were often books for my kindle- several of which have been healthy life type self help books. When I reached my ultimate goal weight, I had considered celebrating with a small, conservative, inconspicuous tattoo...of perhaps a star that I could add a small star to with each year of maintenance, but I ultimately chickened out on that (which I‚Äôm fine with by the way). I decided instead to buy myself an authentic Pandora ( I had a cheapy one before that was now too big) bracelet. I also got one gold star charm (the charm was more than the bracelet-yikes). My plan is to add one silver star charm (much more affordable) to the bracelet with every year of maintenance. I wear it everyday, and it‚Äôs a constant reminder of all of my hard work, and how important it is to me to maintain that hard work.
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3. Who have you shared your weight loss goals with? What has been good about sharing your goals?

I have shared my goals with everyone whom I have at least a casual relationship. The degree of information I shared varied depending on the closeness of each relationship.I hadn’t done this in past attempts. I had kept it a secret, because I was afraid of failing and having everyone know. Sharing it helps to make it more real, and it helped me to stay accountable to myself and my goals. I really believe that sharing my goals with the people I care about really helped me to find ultimate success this time around. What I found was support and encouragement that grew exponentially. The motivation and drive that I gained from all of that support was unbelievable, and contributed- I feel- a great deal to my overall success.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GORIANA 9/24/2012 1:53PM

    I like the bracelt to remind you of what you've accomplished. emoticon

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FLEUR_DE_LUNE 9/13/2012 5:45AM

  I love this. I copied the list of questions into my word processor for future reference. One day I will answer them myself. I have never posted a blog anywhere. A number of times, I wrote a text in my word processor, but every single time, I decided not to publish what I had written and up until now, I have never regretted not publishing those texts.

Another question if I were to write a blog is whether to write in French (I comment in French for my francophone SP friends) or in English. And probably, I would want to write in both languages, which would be awkward.

You are an inspiration to me! Thank you for responding to this list of questions. I will learn a lot about your weight-loss and maintenance journey.

Johanne

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GRANDMABABA 9/12/2012 3:32PM

    Thanks for sharing your success and the challenges for the rest of us to consider. Keep up your great success.

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