MOBYCARP 175,196 SparkPoints

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Ideal Weight, Revisited

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Early in my SP journey, I looked online at some ideal weights. The answers varied, and it wasn't clear what goal I should aim for. I wrote a blog about this at the time:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4378102

This week, there's been an active discussion on the now-renamed At Goal and Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance team. One of the posts there aimed at supporting new maintainers had a link to a site I'd used to look at various ideal weights. Now that I'm maintaining, I went back and looked again.

I saw the same estimates I was looking at before, but they look different with a year's Sparking under my belt. The BMI range of 139-183 lbs. remains too broad to be useful, but I no longer think about edging into the top end of that range. The top end is clearly too high for me, and the bottom end is clearly too low for me.

The Devine formula target of 170 that looked too low to me then, looks too high now. The People's Choice Ideal Weight spits out 165, but it varies according to what weight I tell it I currently am. I learned to ignore it the first time past.

But the real deal is the Met Life tables. I have a hard time measuring my elbow as described, but I think I come out close to the borderline between medium and small frame as Met Life defines it.

My Met Life ideal weight range is stated to be 160-173 lbs for a medium frame. That looked way low to me a year ago; this morning I weighed in at 161.4 lbs.

However, the Met Life standard is weighing while wearing 5 lbs. of clothing and 1" heels. The program already accounts for the 1" difference in height; but my standard weight is in undershorts and tee shirt, which combine to weigh less than a pound. So if I knock 5 lbs. off the Met Life range for medium, I get 155-168 lbs.

That kind of sounds like where I've settled is in the middle of the range. If it turns out I'm really small frame, that range goes down (adjusted for my weigh-in standards) to 147-158 lbs. I kind of doubt that 158 should be the *top* of my range, though it's possible it should be *in* my range.

What does this all mean? Not a whole lot, in terms of picking a weight target. I still have to do that based on how I feel and what I can do at the proposed target weight. But there is a bit of an ego pump to see that where I've landed, which might still have a slight downward bias, is right there in the range that would make an insurance company happy to sell me a whole life policy.

 GREENGENES 8/19/2012 11:09AM Good stuff. The Met Life table is very helpful and seems more realistic. At first it seems so easy - just set a goal and go. Who would have thought that reaching that goal would only be the start of the adventure. Report Inappropriate Comment
 SWEDE_SU 8/19/2012 1:18AM i checked it out too, i'm small framed but the table says i should be more than i would like to be - the lowest met life weight for my height is the absolute top of my range that i want to see again, i just feel better being lower (and the bmi is still healthy). Report Inappropriate Comment
 4A-HEALTHY-BMI 8/18/2012 10:58PM I went and re-looked at my numbers on that site too, when I added that link.For the frame stuff my body doesn't apply because although the frame is small by any measure you care to use, my bones are apparently 25% denser than average according to a DEXA scan I had in 2010. This is most likely due to having carried around almost 200 extra pounds for so many years. I imagine this may the be case for a lot of people who have carried 100+ lbs for many years (not you, but there are lots of folks in that category).In the end I decided the lower numbers they suggest are a nice idea, but right now I'll be happy if I can just stick within +/- 3% around 150. It's at the upper end of the range for most of the methods, but I guess I'm OK with that. For now. LOL Report Inappropriate Comment
 HEALTHIERKEN 8/18/2012 10:16PM I didn't realize the Met Life tables gave a standard for small, medium and large frames. I'm going straight there to see if I've placed myself in the correct category according to Met Life. Thanks for this pointer : ) Report Inappropriate Comment
 ONEKIDSMOM 8/18/2012 9:29PM Interesting. Of course I had to go Google the Metlife tables for women my height... if the same standards apply to women as men (5 lbs of clothing and 1" heels)... that puts me at 5' 4", 114-127. Since I weigh myself essentially nekkid in the morning, that puts me toward the top end of the small frame range. If I call myself medium framed, I'm toward the bottom end of the range. Depending on which wrist I measure (remember your ambidextrous sister?)... I'm one or the other.Bottom line, I'm happy and healthy where I am right now. I think I can call myself "home" in the range. Report Inappropriate Comment

10K on Thanksgiving Day: Verbally Committed

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Last Thanksgiving, I ran a 10K. I happened to come in first in my age group, which in hindsight wasn't the best thing that could happen. That encouraged me to try to gear up for a half marathon. Further hindsight tells me I added mileage too quickly, and I didn't pay enough attention to my legs. I ended up with a nagging foot injury, tried to come back from that too fast too soon, and am currently sitting out from regular running.

The plan with the foot re-injury was to wait longer and for the foot to feel better than I did the first time around. To support this effort, I'm not even looking at organized races. Pointing at an organized race gives me the wrong incentives. I'm likely to let testosterone poisoning creep in, and end up re-injuring that foot.

The best-laid plans . . .

This evening my daughter asked me if I was doing the Race with Grace (Thanksgiving Day 10K) again. I told her quite honestly that I don't know if I'll be able to run a 10K by Thanksgiving Day.

She wants to do that race with me. She had thought it was 10 miles. When I told her it was 10K, or about 6.2 miles, she said, "I could walk that now. I couldn't walk the next day, but I could walk it."

So what's a father to do? I made a verbal commitment to sign up again this year. The idea is to register as a father-daughter team, as family teams are one of this particular race's gimmicks. If I have to walk it, I'll walk it.

So here I sit, with a bad foot that let me run three stretches of 200 paces each (about a minute and a quarter each) during a 4 mile or so walk last Sunday, but isn't ready for continuous running. Now I know I'll try to train for that 10K, even though the smart thing would be to avoid competition and take a year to come back if the foot needs a year.

But what's a father to do? When your only daughter is overweight and wants to do something physically active with you, you do what you can to support her efforts to become more healthy. And with daughter working every weekend, Thanksgiving Day is the only predictable race day that neither of us will have to work.

Just have to manage my expectations. The goal is to participate and have a good time. The goal is *not* to finish first in my age group.

Time will tell how well I do at paying attention to the smart goals.

 HEALTHIERKEN 8/17/2012 2:16PM What's a father to do?"Just have to manage my expectations. The goal is to participate and have a good time. The goal is *not* to finish first in my age group. "Your words, your wisdom : )Go for it, SparkFriend! Report Inappropriate Comment
 RG_DFW 8/17/2012 2:11PM Not to finish first in the age group... quite a goal! Report Inappropriate Comment
 NWFL59 8/17/2012 12:48PM Sound good to me as long as you let your daughter set the pace. Report Inappropriate Comment
 STRIVERONE 8/17/2012 12:32PM If you don't run ten feet before Thanksgiving, you will still be able to walk 10K with your daughter without injuring yourself further during this event. She will enjoy the company and encouragement you will give her more than seeing your back as you get sucked into competition. I hope your common sense wins out over testosterone during the interim so that 2014 can be a banner year for both of you. Comment edited on: 8/17/2012 12:33:10 PM Report Inappropriate Comment
 DEBRITA01 8/17/2012 9:12AM Walking the race is a great way to support your daughter and not re-injure your foot. You've said it best..."The goal is to participate and have a good time". Enjoy the 10k with your daughter! Report Inappropriate Comment
 WATERMELLEN 8/17/2012 8:00AM "Testosterone poisoning" . . . love it. Will borrow shamelessly as needed. And: admire your commitment to supporting your daughter. Even if you have to walk it in. Report Inappropriate Comment
 MSLZZY 8/17/2012 7:29AM Just do it-for you and for her. Thanks whatmemories are made of-time spent together. Report Inappropriate Comment
 ONEKIDSMOM 8/17/2012 6:46AM Kev, I cried when I read this. OK, call me a mushy big sister/aunt... but the tears are of pride in your daughter... in coming this far, and wanting to go farther. I know how fiercely you love her and the lengths you will go to in helping her get something she so deserves: health and fitness. We all know this is something you can't buy or give to someone else... but we can sure "be there" for them as they earn it themselves!Love you, bro! Do it as a Dad. You rock! Report Inappropriate Comment
 MELISSAD71 8/16/2012 9:49PM It is commendable that you still are committing to it! Walk if you must. Finishing it is more important than running! In the meantime take care of yourself and baby that foot! Report Inappropriate Comment
 MELLIE1030 8/16/2012 9:41PM Report Inappropriate Comment
 DIET_FRIEND 8/16/2012 9:32PM Walking the race is still a great accomplishment if it means your foot won't be further injured. Keep on sparking! Report Inappropriate Comment

Year over Year Comps

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I've weighed myself daily for I don't know how long, but I've recorded the weights since December 31, 2001. That's a decade of data to look at, and noticeable slice of weight fluctuations while Life Happens.

A few years ago, when I thought I was trying to control my weight, I came up with the idea of comparing to a year ago. If the comps showed negative deltas, I was having a good year. If the comps showed positive deltas, I was having a bad year. This motivated me for a little while, then I just continued the spreadsheet out of habit.

In 2012, I got used to having year over year comps showing my weight as down more than 30 pounds. Today I noticed I've completed 7 consecutive days where those comps are less than 30 pounds.

I expected this to happen, and now it's here. By the end of 2012, those comps should be down under 10 pounds, maybe under 5. I had considered that losing that 30 pound margin might look like a bad thing to me, but it turns out that it doesn't.

It looks like I'm doing the MAIN thing, maintaining. My weight is in a four month sideways trend after being in a four month very gentle downward trend. If I can keep this up, in another 8 months those comps should fluctuate randomly between positive and negative numbers.

That would be way cool, to have a maintenance trend so long that the year over year comps averaged out around zero for an extended period of time. I'm not there yet, but I'm beginning to believe that I can get there.

The goal is to take this chart, and make those last four months of sideways extend out for a long way:

A full year of sideways trend would be unprecedented for my last decade. Then again, the weight loss in 2011 after I started SparkPeople was unprecedented. It could happen. I'm going to do my best to make it happen.

 RG_DFW 8/16/2012 5:45AM Report Inappropriate Comment
 WATERMELLEN 8/15/2012 8:34PM So cool to be excited about maintenance: it absolutely is the MAIN thing!! Here's to sideways . . . eternally! Report Inappropriate Comment
 MSLZZY 8/15/2012 9:51AM observations! Report Inappropriate Comment
 ONEKIDSMOM 8/15/2012 6:42AM Here's to sideways! Report Inappropriate Comment
 RRBSKI 8/15/2012 12:12AM GREAT Job!!! I think you'll continue to do just fine. All the best Report Inappropriate Comment
 4A-HEALTHY-BMI 8/14/2012 10:01PM Wow. Until I read this, I didn't know I was capable of data envy. LOL(My own chart only goes back to 2007.)Nice. I like using a graph to visualize hoped-for results, too. Report Inappropriate Comment

Scattered Maintenance Thoughts

Sunday, August 12, 2012

This weekend I've been thinking quite a bit about various aspects of maintenance. That has translated to more time on the At Goal and Maintaining Team, including a couple of moderately long message board posts there. That took so much time that I won't be able to develop any of the following scattered thoughts fully before I need to go to bed.

Goal Weight: When I started my most recent (and ultimately successful) effort to lose weight, I didn't know what goal weight to set. I picked a weight that seemed aggressive at the time, though it sounds overweight to me now. After I achieved the initial goal, I kept losing weight for a while while learning how to not lose. Then after I thought I'd learned to not lose, I was really losing slowly for a while longer.

I now have about 4 months of a sideways weight trend in maintenance, and I haven't changed my goal weight in quite a while. But . . . my goal weight turns out to be the top of a range, not the middle. I get the idea that goal is a range. Intellectually, I get the idea that a single goal weight makes sense as the midpoint of a range, so that going too far over or under is a concern requiring correction.

I just seem to be really bad at accepting being over goal, whatever goal is defined to be. So while my goal has been defined as 162, I've spent a lot of time in the 160-162 range. Yeah, I get that this is too narrow a range; but that leads me to the next scattered thought.

Weigh-in standards: More that a decade ago, before I started recording my daily weight, I settled on a standard for weighing myself. I weigh myself first thing in the morning, after getting up and using the restroom. I wear undershorts and a tee shirt, because a) they're light, b) that's what I usually sleep in, and c) when I started doing this I would have been too embarrassed to weigh myself nude.

My reasoning was that this standard served two purposes. First, it made the daily weigh-in as consistent as I could make it. Second, the consistency should be at the low weight point of the day, so I couldn't cheat by changing when I weight.

That standard served me well through over a decade of weighing myself and trying off and on to lose weight. I have a decade of history that is reasonably comparable. I can look at trends and remember what was going on in my life at the time my weight was moving up or down.

But now, in maintenance, I wonder. Is it a good standard to have the low weight, or does it unfairly deflate my numbers? Deflate compared to what? I guess compared to some unknown-to-me standard for ideal weight or measuring BMI or something. Now that I put this in writing, it sounds really lame. Still, ever since I read that the Met Life tables standard was weighing while wearing one inch heels and 5 pounds of clothing, I wonder about whether I have a fair standard.

I can compare to the Met Life tables by simply adding 5 pounds to my weight and an inch to my height, but . . .

Part of what has me wondering is that I sometimes weight myself at other times of the day to see fluctuations. When I started weighing myself, on an old analog scale that was only accurate to one pound, I might lose a pound, or perhaps two, overnigh. Clearly water weight. With SP-level hydration, I can lose 3 to 5 pounds of water weight overnight. Perhaps my "accurate" weight would be a pound or two higher than my dehydrated standard?

Maintenance, publicity, and consistency: There's a thread on the At Goal and Maintaining Team about how maintainers don't get much visibility on SP: www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/team_mes
1657

I see that this is true, and I kind of understand why. Or at least, I have a theory that I posted there and won't repeat here.

That thread leads me to another scattered thought: Maintenance needs to happen through all phases of life. Sometimes life is going to throw stuff at me that needs a lot of attention. When this happens, what's important? The important stuff for maintenance is, control what I eat, get some sort of exercise, and get as close to enough sleep as I can manage in the face of the Sedentary Work Hell Project or whatever else life throws my way.

When Life Happens, blogging and reading other people's blogs and reading/posting to message boards and reading SP ads takes a back seat to simply recording food, exercise, and the basic goals I use for self-motivation. I can log on and use the tools, if I have a small amount of time. To do any sort of meaningful participation in the community, I need more time.

So . . . when Life Happens, I may be able to maintain. But while Life is Happening, I'm lousy support for other maintainers or people still losing weight who hope to be maintainers some day. I'm also a poor prospect for marketing.

It may well be that some people get to this point, and never see the need to add back the community time. If I can maintain on 15 minutes a day using the SP site, cutting out most social interaction, what reason is there to add back the community? In my case, the community interaction is both entertaining and useful; but if I weren't particularly amused by it, and it didn't make me think about my own situation, all that would be left would be a moral sense of giving something back. And there would surely come a time when I felt I'd given enough back.

The 5% Standard of Maintenance: An oft-quoted statistic is that only 5% of the people who lose weight maintain the weight loss for at least a year. As I was writing about the publicity topic, I got to wondering how the underlying study for this was done. (Not that I'll go and find the study to critique it!) Maybe there are people who lose weight, keep it off, and never bother to report the fact to anyone who does studies?

Is it like the headline I saw this week, that the average cost of a wedding is \$26K? That one, I understand. It's put out by Brides Magazine. The people who are looking for economy weddings are unlikely to be telling Brides Magazine about it, so that statistic almost certainly represents a subset of American society that places a high monetary value on elaborate weddings.

I'll probably never know whether there is similar reporting bias embedded in the oft-cited percentages for maintainers. Even if there is not, that 5% number has been around a while; when was the study done, and does it still represent reality? Maybe the number now should be 10%. Or 2%. In any event, the percentage doesn't do much for me. What matters to me is not whether 19 in 20 people who lose weight gain it back, but whether *I* do.

That, and what I have to do to make long term maintenance a reality. I've got short term maintenance down pat. Now I just have to keep doing it, for the rest of my life. Or perhaps, as some folk say, keep doing it for today. And then again tomorrow. And again the next day. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Now that I've typed this much, I probably won't develop any of the above scattered thoughts into full blogs by themselves. But that's okay. I have time (barely) to get to bed on time tonight. And getting enough sleep is a key for me, personally, to be able to maintain. Everything goes better when I get enough sleep.

 WATERMELLEN 8/19/2012 10:16AM I'm agreeing that the 5% stat is consistent across a number of studies . . . but I recently blogged myself about whether SP's number is actually LOWER? (They claim 12 million registered members, and there are about 16,300 maintainers on At Goal). Yeah, I know and acknowledge, not remotely conclusive. But: does it shed light on why SP doesn't showcase maintenance more? Report Inappropriate Comment
 4A-HEALTHY-BMI 8/19/2012 9:11AM As OOLALA53 said, there are a variety of studies that came up with the 5% number. I have read the literature, and summarized how they arrive at those kinds of numbers, here:http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4323116I have not addressed the issues surrounding self-reported data vs clinical trials. But for the most stringent definitions of maintenance, you see 5% showing up, in both types of studies. And I have been taking heart from that 5% statistic for years. Because, as I said in a very early blog post, that 5% are living, breathing, real live people, living real lives, taking curve balls that life throws at them. And as you've pointed out here, I'm not a statistic, I'm a living human with free will. And I am going to do everything in my power to be in that 5%.http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=2280263Comment edited on: 8/19/2012 9:12:49 AM Report Inappropriate Comment
 COMPUCATHY 8/13/2012 8:22PM You got this...lather, rinse, repeat! You're doing fantastic. Do what works for you. And I think the fact that you realize and are diligent about your sleep is so smart. I think that is an element that is often overlooked. I have been more diligent at times and less diligent at times. Currently, I am tracking it to keep myself honest and focused to keep it in the loop. I hope it makes a difference as I Spark on. Keep up the good work! Thanks for the encouragement! Spark on! Report Inappropriate Comment
 NWFL59 8/13/2012 8:52AM Like the thoughts you shared today. Thanks. I,of course, am still forming and trying to instill the habits that'll get me to where I want to go so I read your and other maintainers blogs and posts to see what to expect in the future when I'm finally within my long term goal range. Thanks for sharing. Report Inappropriate Comment
 ONEKIDSMOM 8/13/2012 7:36AM To quote OOLALA53, below: "My habits are more important to me than the scale. "I'm totally on board with that. The first discontent I feel is with the habits. The scale will do what the scale will do, as long as I am doing the things that make me feel good: nutrition, exercise, sleep... the three-legged stool of a healthy lifestyle.As for the statistics? Weight loss companies are subject to the truth in advertising laws, and so, if you look, in fine print, at the initial materials I got from Jenny Craig, for example, it stated that 6% of their clients who remained on program for at least a year, lost 15% of their body weight and kept it off for a year. As you pointed out, it's not what happens to the other 94% that matters to me. What matters to me is that *I* be in the 6% who keep it off. Some of those weight loss companies *do* market to maintainers... I'm a maintenance client who drops dollars for the *convenience* of not having to think about portion size or packing / freezing to keep variety in the house. CAN I maintain without it? Heck yes... as has been proven... and is a lot more economical. But convenience is sometimes worth paying for... just to have one element I don't need to think about too heavily (pun intended).Have fun figuring it out. We have today... and every today for the rest of our lives... to puzzle over the MAINtenance game. Spark on! Report Inappropriate Comment
 MRSRACHELS 8/13/2012 1:05AM I cant add much so I'll just say weighing in in the morning does seem to be the most consistent measure IMO and you still want a consistent measurement and sweet dreams :) Report Inappropriate Comment
 OOLALA53 8/13/2012 12:14AM There is not just one study on the 5%. That number has been verified over and over and has been around since I first got seriously involved in all this back in 1980. It makes sense, though, because so many diet books claim that this is the last diet you'll ever need but promote relatively unsustainable life. Actually, many maintainers live a life that I would find unsustainable, but it's their prerogative. I am at the top of my BMI range and have accepted that I'm not willing to live much differently to live lower. My life is sustainable and pleasant as is. I could possibly work more activity in and possibly less food, but it won't be because I aim to lose more. And if I do those two things, I may lose more. My habits are more important to me than the scale. Of course, I have my moments of discontent with that, just as some have moments of discontent with their new lifestlye, but the odds are with me, not them. Speaking of determining a goal, for myself, I refused to choose a goal which matches the average BMI of the poorest countries in the world. Or one that emulates the media images, which are often even lower than the poor! But if it happened along the way, I wouldn't try to gain. Most others are not sufficiently motivated by my modest goals, but I think a lot of them would be happier in the long run if they tried to be. Sometimes we're our own worst enemies. And for those who aspire differently, and get there, mazel tov! http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-18770328Comment edited on: 8/13/2012 12:22:35 AM Report Inappropriate Comment
 MICHELLE6468 8/12/2012 9:44PM I sometimes wonder about how I'll maintain when I get to that point. Report Inappropriate Comment

Fresh Produce

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

For most of my adult life, I'd have told you that I Don't Do Fresh Produce. It's hard to understand, you have to go shopping more often, you have to eat it before it goes bad, and it creates awful stinky garbage. I might have had some other excuses, too; but those were the main ones.

A year ago, I would have told you that one of the great things about SparkPeople was that I didn't have to buy fresh produce. I could use the nutrition tracker to just track what I was eating anyway, and adjust what I ate to meet the calorie, carb, fat, and protein goals within the scope of what I was willing to eat.

Tonight I just read a blog by HOT4FITNESS about climbing back on the wagon of buying (and eating) good stuff instead of junk. And I thought about my shopping habits.

Today, for the first time in my life, I bought fresh raspberries. Less than a week ago, for the first time in my life, I bought fresh sweet peppers. Neither the raspberries nor the peppers are going to go bad on me. The raspberries are because Aldi was out of strawberries (something else I never bought fresh before this summer). The peppers were an impulse buy with some SP nutrition articles in mind; they're pretty good on a salad, and I intend to try them in an omelet if I get around to making an omelet before I use them all in salads.

Alas, with a new taste for produce comes the realization that produce has seasons. I discovered a love of navel oranges this spring; now they're more expensive and harder to find. Sigh. SparkPeople has the answer to this for me; buy in season, which means trying more stuff I've never bought before. Hence, the strawberries and raspberries purchased for the first time as oranges become more costly and lower quality.

I don't know that I'll ever become one of those people who look forward to rotating through the seasons to eat different types of fresh produce. But I'm going to make a point to try something that's in season now and then.

Melons are very obviously in season right now. I'm still a bit intimidated by melons. They all look pretty big for one person, and I don't understand how to store part of a melon. But you know what? I might get past that excuse, too.

Stranger things have happened to me. Like, having a refrigerator with fresh produce being some of the most obvious contents. I never would have predicted that.

 MSLZZY 8/9/2012 10:34AM That is why I have a garden. There is so much that I can grow and enjoy in season. We all have a love for fresh veggies and there is somuch now that I will need to buy when theweather turns cold. Keep trying new thingsand cultivate a desire to incorporate them inyour daily life. All healthy choices! Report Inappropriate Comment
 SMILINGTREE 8/9/2012 9:54AM I'm the only one in my house who eats melons, but I love them and cannot resist buying them when they are in season. I haven't found one yet that I didn't like. There are different ways to handle saving part of them. First, buy small melons. A huge watermelon IS intimidating, but a sugar baby (the small, dark green ones) is reasonable for one person. Then, when you first cut it, take half and wrap it in plastic wrap. It'll last a couple of days in the fridge that way. Having melons cut up on a bowl does make them super easy to grab out and eat, and melons are surprisingly good in salads, too. Sometimes I have an entire half a melon for breakfast or as a snack. They are mostly water, so don't hurt your calorie count much. Also, you don't have to go to all the trouble of peeling and chopping. You can just get a spoon and scoop it out and eat without all that mess. Melons really are simple. And tasty. And healthy. Almost as good as raspberries. Report Inappropriate Comment
 WATERMELLEN 8/9/2012 8:17AM Genuinely love fresh produce and rarely waste any of it.I have spinach quite often in my morning omelette: but peppers or mushrooms are good too (with low fat feta . . . in my nifty microwave omelette pan). In the altnerative, large flake oatmeal with flax and raisins or some other variation (and the microwave works fine, not just for the "instant" type in pouches which is not so great). Lunch has been for many years almost always a huge salad of leafy greens and a big variety of brightly coloured veggies: cucumber, tomato, peppers, radish, brussels sprouts or broccoli, raw beet etc. etc. With some lean protein: chicken, shrimp, chick peas etc. And a large serving of chopped fruit too: again, as big a variety as possible. The bags of frozen mized berries and frozen chunks of mango are great for this purpose and I add kiwi, pineapple, cherries, peaches, plums, clementine: whatever.On Saturday mornings before I go grocery shopping I make a large pot of soup, using up any vegetables left over from the week: and adding broth, canned diced tomatoes, whole grain (such as brown rice, quinoa, whole grain pasta etc.) I change up the seasonings, no two pots ever the same. That's supper for the week with Greek yogourt and fresh berries for dessert.The National Weight Loss Registry AND Judith Beck (The Diet Solution) both agree that people who maintain weight loss generally each pretty much the same stuff all the time. Report Inappropriate Comment
 DEBRITA01 8/9/2012 7:26AM Glad you are enjoying fresh produce. I usually cut up melon (and other fruits) and store in a plastic container. It stays fresh and it's easy to grab 'n go! Report Inappropriate Comment
 RG_DFW 8/9/2012 6:18AM Who could have known! Report Inappropriate Comment
 KRISZTA11 8/9/2012 5:32AM Yes, our fridge also looks totally different from one year ago...During the winter I got very fond of broccoli (never ate it before) and missed since early summer when it disappeared...Fresh produce is delicious and very pretty with all those lovely bright colors. Report Inappropriate Comment
 NWFL59 8/8/2012 10:33PM Report Inappropriate Comment
 HEALTHIERKEN 8/8/2012 9:55PM About melons: have you tried freezing bite-size chunks (especially watermelon)? They're pretty yummy--kind of like flash-frozen grapes (that's how I deal with the huge bag of grapes, some of which *definitely* would go bad before I could them). The other thing is, some stores are now stocking smaller melons, making it easier to eat them before they go bad. Report Inappropriate Comment
 GREENGENES 8/8/2012 8:51PM I also used to be intimidated by fresh produce, thinking it was too expensive and inconvenient. Now I love buying things like fresh melons, cutting them up and snacking on them throughout the day. My wife thinks I'm crazy. Why don't I just buy the pre-cut melon pieces - it is much more convenient? But she is coming around. Report Inappropriate Comment
 WRITINGBLUEHAWK 8/8/2012 8:48PM Good for you for including more whole foods in your diet. The payoffs for your energy and mood are going to be tremendous. Report Inappropriate Comment
 MAGGIE101857 8/8/2012 8:47PM Those melons : ) get you every time. I buy them, cut them in half and sure enough, the other half goes bad before I get around to eating it. Maybe you can find someone to share it with? This week I decided to get back on track with my smoothies, so I filled my fridge with kale, lettuce, zucchini, avocado, fresh and frozen fruit. Then I decided to fly out of town on Saturday to go see the babies in FL. I have a lot of fresh produce to go through in the next two days!! lol Report Inappropriate Comment
 ONEKIDSMOM 8/8/2012 8:36PM If nothing else, you have provided an amazing source of amusement for yours truly. Watching you discover what I discovered twenty some years ago... and seeing your surprise that you really CAN learn to like something you never envisioned.Life is Good, brother. Spark on! Report Inappropriate Comment

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