Saturday, November 06, 2010
This was the answer to one of today's trivia questions (makes me happy that I do both aerobic and strength training during my workout) -
John Hopkins researchers found that while aerobic exercise burns more calories at the time you are exercising, your metabolism returns to normal about 30 minutes after you finish your workout. Individuals who perform strength training, however, elevate their metabolisms (burn more calories) for two hours after their workouts end.
Friday, October 01, 2010
Ah, sleep - the healthy habit that somehow still eludes me. But, wait - is there good news? After beating myself up over not being able to schedule 8 hours of sleep, I finally changed my focus to 7 hours of sleep (since I will rarely, if ever, get 8). Even though I'm aiming for 7 hours, I'm still only averaging 5 hours of sleep each night.
But, according to the article below (see link), I might actually be increasing my longevity by only sleeping 5 hours per night!
"The surprise was that when sleep was measured objectively, the best survival was observed among women who slept 5 to 6.5 hours," Kripke said. "Women who slept less than five hours a night or more than 6.5 hours were less likely to be alive at the 14-year follow-up."
So, for those of you who are sleeping your life away getting 8 hours of sleep -- WAKE UP and LIVE! That much sleep isn't prolonging your life! Now, if I could just manage to get 6 hours of sleep...
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
I’m doing my happy dance today! After 26 months, I got my bottom braces off this morning! The top ones will come off "before Christmas." My orthodontist said that will be his Christmas present to me.
Twenty-six months to straighten my teeth (after having braces as a teen, too) is a reminder to me that any lasting change takes time. Losing weight and getting healthier doesn’t happen overnight. Just like the slow movement of my teeth over the last two years, daily healthy lifestyle choices are leading me to my goals.
I will wear a retainer 24/7 for several months (except when eating), and then only at night for who knows how long. I’m not sure if the hygienist is serious when she says, “You’ll wear them at night for the rest of your life.”
Maintenance-mode in weight loss is like wearing a retainer. My lifestyle changes must be with me “for the rest of my life” not just while I am on the weight loss journey. Just like it would be crazy for me to skip wearing my retainers and let the last two years of hard work go to waste, it would be crazy for me to no longer keep up the healthy lifestyle choices that I made.
Who would have thought that wearing braces and retainers would be a metaphor for weight loss and healthy living? I’m grateful for the everyday reminders of what it takes to create lasting change. It takes perseverance, patience, and time. Oh, and showing up on a daily basis!
Thank you to all of my Spark Friends who show up on a daily basis to support, encourage, and cheer me and others on to our goals. You are all special to me!
Friday, August 27, 2010
I'm having lunch with my dad tomorrow. Dad finished his radiation treatment for skin cancer on his ear and came through it like a champ! I'm so proud of him. He'll be 87 in October. He has been hit with one health challenge after another since my mom died 6 years ago, and he just keeps bouncing back. I can learn something from him about staying positive and persevering in the face of adversity.
In my humble opinion, that is what Spark People is all about - persevering in the face adversity by supporting each other, lifting each other up, and encouraging each other through our struggles, and cheering each other on in our victories. For many years, I tried in vain to control my eating and be motivated to exercise on my own. Sometimes I was successful, most times I was not.
When one of my professors turned our class on to Spark People last fall, something clicked for me. The team spirit, the camaraderie, the encouraging remarks, the positive comments, the Spark Goodies -- they all helped to keep me in the game and motivated. It's been 9 months that I've been Sparking, and I could never give you guys up now! Nine months - I could barely stick to anything for more than a few weeks before! I don't know any of your here personally, but I feel such a bond to so many of you. (OK, I know my sister and 3 friends I introduced to Spark, but they don't check in regularly.)
When I feel sad, frustrated or discouraged, I come here and check the team discussion boards -- you make me laugh, you lift me up, sometimes you make me cry when I realize my situation is nothing compared to what you are going through. We all have our struggles, and reading how someone else came through their struggle gives me hope. Or just putting it out there that I need help with something, many of you offer your supportive or suggestive comments to see me through a situation. And I feel empowered knowing that I have you sending your positive vibes and prayers my way.
There is a Swedish proverb that says, "Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow." I am ever so grateful that I can double my joys and halve my sorrows with my Spark Friends! You guys ROCK!
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