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Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge, Day 4 of 28

Monday, May 14, 2012

This is a bit late because it's actually Monday morning here in Finland already but I was too tired to blog last night so I just went straight to bed instead. So yesterday was Mother's Day and I had such wonderful time with my family! I'm so grateful to have such amazing mom :) I love her so much!

But how was my sweet tooth yesterday? It was pretty bad once I got started. I had one cupcake and one cookie (as promised, haha) and a tiny little slice of strawberry cake. It was all VERY sweet and I actually thought it was a little too sweet to be honest. BUT once I got started with it, it was really difficult to stop!! So later, in the evening, there were still some leftovers, and we all sat down to enjoy them. I was craving sugar like crazy at this point and though I easily COULD HAVE said no, thank you, I really didn't want to. Or so I thought. So I had half a cupcake and a small cookie AND a tiny slice of cake. Sigh. I felt so sick afterwards. Sugar really is so addictive!!! Once you have some, it gets a lot easier to stop once you've had enough. I'm thinking it would be a lot better to stay away from sugary treats most of the time and save it for special occasions only. And yesterday definitely was just that: a special occasion.

Today I'm determined to do a lot better! I find it's always so much more difficult to get things going like normal after a day like that. Why is it though?? It's just one day. No harm done and I learned my lesson. It's time to move on!

I'll be back with Day 5 later today. I just want to update daily at least for the first week of the challenge to stay accountable.

I hope you all had a wonderful Mother's Day!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BD3269PM 5/14/2012 6:58AM

    Every day is a new start. You can do this! I am with yiu is so hard once you start eating those sweets. Let's focus on not starting!!! emoticon

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IUHRYTR 5/14/2012 6:53AM

    Today is a new beginning. Try to balance out any over range calories from yesterday throughout the week and things will be fine. Sugar is indeed so addictive but we're brought up on cupcakes, ice cream, cake and candy and develop a craving for it from early on that is tough to overcome when get older. But we can try, as you're doing, one day at a time. -- Lou

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Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge, Day 3 of 28

Saturday, May 12, 2012

So today was the ultimate challenge for me! I spent the entire day baking cupcakes and making cookies for Mother's Day. I was put in charge of the dessert (surprise, surprise) and I was kind of worried that being around sugary food all day would make me go nuts and cause me to get crazy cravings - BUT I DIDN'T EAT A SINGLE CUPCAKE OR A COOKIE! Instead, I just baked them and put them away in plastic containers to take with me tomorrow to Mother's Day brunch. While I was baking, I made a conscious decision that I would only eat one cupcake and one cookie TOMORROW and I would not have any today, and it worked! I didn't feel the need to eat them. So maybe tomorrow I'll have one - or maybe I'll just have a few bites. Who knows!

I didn't have any sweet treats or desserts today and I stayed well within my calorie range. Again, this is huge for me because as many of you know, I have been having a hard time staying on track on the weekends, and Saturday nights have definitely been the most challenging because I got so used to eating all kinds of fattening junk in front of the TV that it just felt like the only possible way to have a fun Saturday night. How sad! But I've moved on :) I feel like a whole new person! I feel like I can do anything I put my mind to!!

Have a great Saturday night everyone!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PASKALINI 5/13/2012 8:31AM

    Congratulations! I still don't know if I am strong enough to do that! If I do bake I have to have my one and send the rest to work with Bryan. Needless to say his colleagues LOVE IT! I haven't really baked anything since I started sparking again though. Keep up the good work. Maybe when I'm done with the spring bootcamp challenge I will try the tame your sweet tooth challenge!

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IUHRYTR 5/12/2012 11:54PM

    I continue to be excited about the positive changes you are making. not indulging on the Saturday night was a huge breakthrough. Keep being strong and enjoy your new lifestyle. The changes show already. emoticon -- Lou

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MAGGIEX3UK 5/12/2012 5:15PM

    What a huge victory! I'm notorious for always nibbling while baking. And way to go for moving on from the Saturday night nibbles; you're really doing good in this challenge. Enjoy the bites from the cake tomorrow!

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Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge, Day 2 of 28

Friday, May 11, 2012

Today was a great day! I didn't have any sugary treats and didn't really have cravings either. I've noticed that once I eat something that has sugar in it - even if it's in moderation - my cravings get a lot worse. This is definitely one reason why I want to cut back on sugar! Cravings can be so annoying.

But today I did so well! I skipped dessert at lunch and at dinner. I went out to eat at one of my favorite restaurants with my friends today and I chose a lower calorie option instead of what I usually have AND I SKIPPED THE DESSERT :) While the others had drinks and cocktails I had water instead. I felt so good about myself afterwards!

Another thing which is kind of huge is that Friday and Saturday nights used to trigger such crazy cravings for sweets and I usually ended up having huge amounts of chocolate and ice cream. And now, it's Friday night and I'm not eating anything unhealthy and I don't have any cravings either! THAT'S HUGE!!! I guess it takes time to get rid of old habits but once they're gone, it's so much easier to stick with the new, healthy habits.

I'm definitely on the right track! Hope you're all having a great Friday!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IUHRYTR 5/11/2012 11:57PM

    We knew you'd break the weekend habit of overindulging in sweets and you have. now to build on the new habit. Good going on the choices today. You'll be at your goal weight before you know it. emoticon -- Lou

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FCARMICH 5/11/2012 4:39PM

  good luck

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Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge, Day 1 of 28

Thursday, May 10, 2012

So I joined the Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge yesterday! I am such a sugar addict and I really want to challenge myself and learn ways to cut back on sugar to become healthier. It's a four-week challenge with specific action steps for each week. Week 1 is all about becoming more aware of your sugar cravings and making sure you know exactly how much sugar you're eating. Knowing this will make it that much easier to try and change things during the weeks that follow!

This week's action steps are:
1. Assess your current sugar habits.
2. List the reasons why you want to cut back.
3. Record your sugar habits all week long.
4. Learn how to earn your trophy.

So here is my list of reasons for wanting to cut back on sugar:
- I want to lose weight (this is almost too obvious).
- I want to manage my blood sugar levels.
- I want to make my sugar cravings go away or at least make them less intense and frequent.
- I want to learn to enjoy healthier foods instead and choose fruit and berries over sweets.
- I want to avoid diabetes.
- I want to learn to deal with my emotions (stress, anxiety and even being tired) in new ways that don't involve chocolate or ice cream.

I'm sure there are more reasons and I'll share them with you guys if I can think of any. Today I have been paying a lot more attention to my sugar cravings. I used to eat sweets every day in huge portions before I got serious here on SparkPeople. Since then, I've come a long way, only mainly eating very small portions and I usually stay within my calorie range. But the thing is though, I'm still craving sugar. I need to have a sweet treat (even if it's just one small piece of chocolate or a low-fat chocolate pudding) at least once a day, usually after dinner. I have cut back a lot but I'd like to make my cravings less intense so that I don't need that piece of chocolate every day.

I realized today how many times a day I actually think about sugary treats. I have to say that, honestly, I got at least 4 cravings for sweets today (more specifically, for chocolate and ice cream).They weren't very intense and it was easy to say no and have raspberries instead, but still it would be nice not to get those cravings at all.

So what kind of sugary treats did I eat today? Not much. I had a yogurt for breakfast which had some sugar in it since it wasn't plain yogurt. I also had a small pancake with some strawberry jam with lunch and some raspberries with vanilla pudding with dinner. I didn't go over my calories or my carbs for today and my sugar intake was in no way disastrous but this is a perfect example for having a sweet tooth! My body is cravings something sweet at every meal and I try to find healthier, less-sugary alternatives and substitutions. I'm sure this challenge will make me a lot more aware of my cravings and hopefully make it easier to control them.

I'm excited! I'm really looking forward to taming my sweet tooth!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WHQPHQ 5/12/2012 11:15AM

    Good luck, I am back on the sugar in a major way, oops! I have been having a really stressful time at work and I seem to be reaching for chocolate and cake more and more. That's not dealing with the emotions!
Now when I have a bar of chocolate, I want another. I've heard that the fat/sugar combination hits your brain and activates the reward pathway making you want more. Stupid brain!

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IUHRYTR 5/10/2012 11:53PM

    May you have great success Annie. I'm eating chocolate ice cream now because I'm frustrated at how much my back hurts and the only fruit on hand are bananas which haven't ripened yet. But I'm only going to have a few spoonfuls. That I can control. But I need to ponder the questions you posed and answer them honestly for myself. Meanwhile, I will await your success and insights. You can do this. -- Lou

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ABILUCHA 5/10/2012 4:52PM

    Good luck! My friend and I are working on the same thing, and we notice that the less we eat sweets, the less we want them. We also noticed that if we eat a sugary snack, it will set us up for cravings for about 48 hours after that. So that's the price of sugar, 48 hours of cravings. You have to ask yourself if what you want to eat is worth that price. (Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't!)

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Choosing my rewards

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

I restarted my SparkDiet program three months ago when I finally got committed to making a better life for myself. I'm currently at Stage 3 and working on the third strategy which is called "How to reward good behavior". It has forced me to think about ways to reward myself for the progress I make and for reaching the goals I set for myself. For some reason, choosing and sticking to rewards has always been difficult for me. I'd choose a reward and then change my mind and pick a new one or forget about rewarding myself when I should have done so. Not this time!

This time I chose two types of rewards for myself: I chose five rewards I will give myself after reaching a certain goal weight, and I also chose monthly rewards I'll give myself after a month's hard work and dedication (even if the scale won't budge!). In addition to these, each week I will choose a small reward (like a movie night, or some nice flowers, or a new magazine I've been wanting to read) to keep my momentum going and keep me focused on my goals.

Here are my weight related rewards:

Goal 1 - 76 kg / 167 lbs
REWARD: A shopping trip to Helsinki

Goal 2 - 71 kg / 156 lbs
REWARD: Manicure & pedicure, a massage, a facial and a healthy dinner at a romantic restaurant

Goal 3 - 66 kg / 145 lbs
REWARD: A romantic weekend trip to the southern coast of Finland (Hanko or Naantali)

Goal 4 - 61 kg / 134 lbs
REWARD: Jeffery Campbell Lita Shoes

Goal 5 - 56 kg / 123 lbs
REWARD: A romantic weekend getaway in Paris!

And these are my monthly rewards I earn if I stay focused on my goals, track my meals on most days of the week, stay within my calorie range 90 % of the time and get at least 200 fitness minutes per week:

May: subscription to Mondo Magazine (my favorite Finnish travel themed magazine)
June: a shopping trip to Stockholm
July: new lingerie
August: a mini shopping spree (new school clothes)
September: get my hair done and get a massage
October: new perfume
November: a shopping day in Helsinki

This week's mini reward is:

A movie night!

Now I'm going to print out this list of rewards and put it where I can see it every day. I'm so looking forward to reaching my goals!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LUCYGODDESS 5/10/2012 8:30AM

    I enjoyed reading your rewards. How far are you from Paris? What print or color are you trying to decide on the Lita shoes (YES, I had to look them up and there a million designs,)? And what movie are you going to see? I want to see the Johnny Depp Dark Shadows one soon. Is that enough questions for the morning? LMAO!

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IUHRYTR 5/9/2012 11:21PM

    Reasonable and fun goals. I know you will reach all of them. Your dedication has been a joy to follow. Keep up the good efforts. -- Lou

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MAGGIEX3UK 5/9/2012 6:50PM

    Great rewards!
I can't wait til you achieve them. Enjoy the movie =)

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MAGGIEX3UK 5/9/2012 6:19PM

    Great rewards!
I can't wait til you achieve them. Enjoy the movie =)

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