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Tackling holiday gain: the cool-headed way!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

So, how much did your ticker move backwards? 2, 5, 10 or more? Or you donít even want to know? Whatever the number, known or unknown, I bet you want the holiday weight to vanish overnight, right? Thatís what I want, too! But Iíve felt the panic before. Actually, it used to be the aftermath of every holiday season forÖ as long as I can remember! Thatís the reason I know how destructive this kind of panic can be. It always leads us to the wrong decisions and makes us fight a lost battle. Until the next holiday seasonÖ

So, what do we do? First of all we take a really deep breath and relax. Think about all the nice things that you did during the holidays that are not food-related. Decorating, shopping, exchanging gifts, meeting friends, gathering with the rest of the family, playing with your kids, anything that made you feel good.
Feeling better already?
Let's add a humorous note, to relax even more.



Now letís deal with everything one step at a time.

- First, the scale.
If you havenít weighed yourself after the holidays, you might want to think about it for a while. We all know when we have crossed our limits with food and have been too ďbusyĒ to work out. We all can feel it when the reading on the scale will most likely disappoint us. But there are people who need this kind of awakening to help them take action and then there are other people who get panicked by even the slightest gain and tend to make things worse by turning to emotional eating and binges. If you belong to the second category, you might want to wait a bit before you get on the scale.

- Knowing or imagining the gain, itís time to give it the correct proportions in your mind. Itís definitely not the end of the world and you didnít just miss your last chance to become a fit and healthy person! This number is just the result of how you changed your eating and exercise habits during the holidays. Either you couldnít resist the temptations or you just allowed yourself to indulge, which, to be honest, are more or less one and the same, but thatís irrelevant. What matters is that it happened. It canít be undone but luckily it can be fixed. If you want to fix it, you have to start eating right and exercise. If you donít want to fix it, you simply wouldnít waste your time reading this.

- Start eating right. That means filling your kitchen with healthy ingredients and emptying your house of sweets and holiday treats. Youíve had enough of them and you enjoyed them. But now itís time for change.

- Exercise. You donít need to become the local gym hero in a day! Start slowly. A longer walk today, a 20-minute workout tomorrow, anything that you enjoy doing will help. You just need to put yourself in the fitness frame of mind for a start.

- Be realistic. Donít expect yourself to be perfect right away. Imagine you return to work just after vacation. What happens on the first day? Can you easily forget about the fun and concentrate on your work or do you daydream of sunny beaches and crystal sea waters at every chance? Habits, even recently-acquired ones, can become second nature. Especially the ones that make us feel good and we enjoy them. Donít expect yourself to forget about them in a day. The first day, youíll mess up right after breakfast. The second day, youíll make it to lunch. The third, youíll only feel weak right before bedtime. In the end, youíll get it right. Just be patient with yourself.

- Try to set some non-scale goals. Iíve read in many Sparkersí blogs that they donít work for them. I know that the scale number is really important for all of us but Iím asking you to give it a second thought. Is it the only proof of our hard work and our progress? What about fitness achievements and smaller sizes? What about feeling healthier and full of energy? Do we have full control of the number on the scale? No, we donít. Our weight fluctuates for many reasons even during the same day. We shouldnít be obsessed with the number on the scale. Itís neither right nor healthy.

Above all, stay cool-headed. Panic never helped anyone achieve anything. Focus and take it one step at a time. And when you Ďre back in control of your eating habits, take a look at your rear-view mirror and inspect yourself, your feelings and your actions during the past holidays. Iím sure youíll have many valuable lessons to learn and practice until the next holiday season. And maybe you wonít ever need to read blog like this one again.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CANNIE50 1/23/2013 5:54PM

    This blog is WONDERFUL! It is chock full of gentle wisdom and smart suggestions. You are such a gem. I also LOVE the little cartoon - so funny. I always say I don't retain water, I only retain fat! I so agree about the "don't panic" advice. If panic and desperation worked, there would be zero fat people. Panic is fine when one needs to get out of a burning building but it doesn't work at all when someone needs to build good health habits and sustain them over time. I think this blog should be required reading for all Sparklers! It is SO good (and so are YOU).

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GODIVADSG 1/16/2013 4:16PM

    Thank you for another blog that hits home! emoticon

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FIT_MAMA_2_FOUR 1/13/2013 11:20PM

    Agreed agreed.

I just made a list of all the things I want to achieve, daily. Very specific food goals, plus a few others and put it on a clip board in my kitchen. I will check this list off everyday until these are habits again.

How quickly things can change. But I am not discouraged, I am figuring out how, without being extreme, to live a healthy life. thanks for the wise words and HAPPY NEW YEAR my friend!

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WILLOWBROOK5 1/13/2013 5:00PM

    What excellent, helpful suggestions!
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ANNIEONLI 1/10/2013 6:39AM

    emoticon
CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP (Oh for pete's sake, isn't there and applause emoticon???)

You SO got this! I love the way you are thinking!
You get a emoticon for this one!
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NASFKAB 1/10/2013 4:57AM

  great advice way to go

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MICKEYH 1/9/2013 10:41PM

    Thanks for your great advice. emoticon

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CRANRANA 1/9/2013 6:39PM

  What wonderful insights--we can spend WAAAAY too much time beating ourselves up over weight loss. We need to relax and stay focused (easier said than done, but something we should all strive for).

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TRAVELGRRL 1/9/2013 3:00PM

    Great advice! Panicking always leads to crappy decisions and crazy diets, and that just never works!

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TIME2BLOOM4ME 1/9/2013 2:33PM

    emoticon

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FITFOODIE806 1/9/2013 1:29PM

    Thank you for these wise, calming words.
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SUSANSERENE 1/9/2013 1:10PM

    Great, great blog, Elle! Insightful and inspiring! Thank you ever so much for helping me get right back on track.

Sparkle on! emoticon

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WINDSURFNERD 1/9/2013 12:38PM

    Excellent blog! I try to remind myself that the extra poundage didn't arrive overnight (nor all in one meal), that it took MANY choices to lay on each one! So, it seems reasonable that shedding each # will also take time and many choices (healthy ones!). Your suggestion to "stay cool" is the best advice during this Resolution-crazy time of year.
-Naomi

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BAKER1009 1/9/2013 12:08PM

    Beautiful blog Elle!! You provided some wonderful analogies and some real life examples that we can all relate too!
Thanks for another awesome blog!!

Hugs,
Beth

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 1/9/2013 11:01AM

    I avoided the scale until today but had to ring in and give myself a starting point. I'm not looking back though. Where I was is gone and it's where I am going that counts!!

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THOMS1 1/9/2013 9:49AM

    emoticon blog. During the Christmas Holiday I like to weigh the day before Christmas and the day after New Years and this year it wasn't so bad but, like so many other people after I weigh I tend not to remember the wonderful time I had over the holidays but just the weight gain. So again I thank you for this blog and I will remember to always remember all the good things of the season and not my weight gain. emoticon

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MRSJERRYBUSH 1/9/2013 9:44AM

    Very good blog, NUOVAELLE!

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Finding beauty!

Monday, January 07, 2013

I havenít posted a blog here for more than a month! Too many ideas, so little timeÖ And even though I have many health, weight and fitness-themed blogs in mind, Iím going to start the year in a different way. This blog is about beauty. The beauty of winter, the way we saw it during our new yearís trip.

We had decided to start this year in a very different way. No big festive dinners, no guests, no fireworks. Just us and nature in the peace and quiet of our isolated village in the mountains. We were all hoping for snow. The kids were hoping for lots of snow, actually! But when we got there, the mountains around looked like this:



It was actually a beautiful sight. Looking at the evergreen fir trees, slightly touched by the white snow, mixed with the last remaining fall colors, awaiting the thick fog coming down from the mountains. Breathtaking!



But we wanted more snow. So, we set off to find it!
Soon, the green color of the trees became difficult to find.



And after we had driven for less than half an hour, the landscape had been covered in a white, fluffy blanket!



The forest had surrendered to the power of the snowflakes. Sticking together, they had transformed everything in sight! And in such a quiet way!



A small hotel in the middle of the forest was waiting for those who were looking for adventure.



A small cabin, half-buried in the snow, and a little white church, fighting to remain visible.



Soon, we reached the skiing center. The peace of the forest was disrupted by joy! Kids feeling free while playing in the snow and laughing, grown-ups finding the kids inside them and becoming even more playful than their children!



We stopped and made a snowman.



And my girls tried snow-sledding. But they soon realized that it was more fun without the sleds!!



I saved the best picture for last. Nature got jealous of humansí Christmas tree decorations and decided to create a star made of snow on top of this fir tree:



I hope you can make it out in the picture. It truly was amazing!!

Iíll end this blog with a wish. A wish for all of you to find the beauty around you this year. As my good Sparkfriend Claire pointed out in her last blog, there is beauty in everything around us.

I hope you all find it. Connect your eyes with your soul and everything will look different. Find the beauty in your surroundings. Find the beauty in the people of your life.

And above all, discover your own beauty.
You don't have to look in the mirror.
Itís always been inside you.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BLOOMINGLENA 1/22/2013 5:58AM

    Such beautiful photos and so beautifully described! I couldn't agree more with you and claire! Beauty is in everything around us and we should take a look with the eyes of our soul to see it! Love you my friend!

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CLAIREINPARIS 1/10/2013 1:58AM

    This is such a gorgeous blog, Elle! Thank you! I hope we can inspire all our Sparkfriends to look for beauty... You are right, it makes everything look different!
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TINAJANE76 1/9/2013 7:40AM

    Thanks for sharing such a lovely blog to kick off the new year. It definitely provided me with a much-needed dose of serenity.

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FITFORMYFAMILY 1/8/2013 9:39PM

    Perfect.
I love what you were in search of, I love that you found it, and I am very thankful that you shared it with us. You are very good at inspiring!

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GODIVADSG 1/8/2013 2:50PM

    What a wonderful blog... thank you. And I could see the star! WOW

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NASFKAB 1/8/2013 11:33AM

  beautiful thanks

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BAKER1009 1/8/2013 10:10AM

    What an awesome blog, Elle! Thank you so much for sharing this with us!
That star is amazing...truly beautiful!

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Beth

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KANOE10 1/8/2013 7:37AM

    That was a lovely blog..both words and photos. Thanks for sharing a beautiful day in nature.

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AEROBISAURUS 1/7/2013 6:30PM

    Awesome! The star was rad. I'm jealous. emoticon

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MICKEYH 1/7/2013 5:45PM

    Beautiful place. Glad you've enjoyed it. emoticon

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MADAMES 1/7/2013 4:17PM

    Absolutely beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing your photos, your blog, and your wishes for the new year!

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FITFOODIE806 1/7/2013 1:20PM

    This blog immediately made me take a deep breathe and feel a sense of calm. Thank you for the reminder of beauty.
All those pics, especially the girls! are such beauty.

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VIXSTERLU 1/7/2013 11:22AM

    Love it Elle! Thanks for the reminder that beauty is all around us. I see beauty in this blog :)

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MRSJERRYBUSH 1/7/2013 11:13AM

    What a lovely blog--and focus!

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-AMANDA79- 1/7/2013 10:36AM

    Beautiful! Cold, but beautiful.

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THOMS1 1/7/2013 10:27AM

    emoticon Sounds like a great trip. HAPPY NEW YEAR! emoticon

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MILLIE5522 1/7/2013 10:26AM

    How lovely! What a stunningly beautiful place.... I love the star!!

A great way to start the New Year emoticon for sharing.

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DIXIECAP79 1/7/2013 10:22AM

    emoticon

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WALKINGTHETALK 1/7/2013 10:19AM

    A perfect first blog of the year! So beautiful!

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Welcome, Christmas spirit!

Monday, December 03, 2012

We're glad to have you here! You were a bit difficult to find this year. Things have been difficult and our minds have been preoccupied with many thoughts, most of them on the negative side. So, I guess Christmas spirit had a slight difficulty entering our hearts. But there's a blessing in being a parent. Actually, one of many blessings. Children have their own way of bringing the holiday spirit in a house. They carry it in their smiles and they generously spread it through the excitement in their eyes. That's what happened in my house this past weekend. My children made me realize that through difficult times, when there's struggling, when hope seems difficult to find and when uncertainty and fear about the future dominate our everyday lives, that's when we need the holiday spirit the most. That's when we need to liven up hope and remember the importance of giving.
So, we started by decorating our house. And I thought I'd share some pictures with my Sparkfriends. This is the holiday version of our house!

Our Christmas tree!




The nativity set!




The fireplace has been my favorite spot to decorate ever since my husband built it. It gets most of my attention all the time!










Our little village on the mantel. My little daughter wanted a family of four there so she added the doll on the right!




The little side table...




...and the center living-room table!




The fire was a "must" to make the place even warmer and cozier!




And the proud creator! The rest of the team were in their pyjamas, so they'll have their pictures taken some other day!



Thank you all for reading. I hope the Christmas spirit is alive in your hearts. I hope the true meaning of Christmas fills your hearts and minds with kindness and hope.
May we all have a blessed holiday season.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANOE10 12/24/2012 9:30AM

    That was a lovely blog. I love your photos and your reminder about the love of family during xmas. emoticon

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JSTETSER 12/18/2012 11:34AM

    beauutiful!!

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HAKAPES 12/11/2012 4:54AM

    Looks lovely! :-)

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LVMAMAW 12/5/2012 3:11PM

    You are so right! The decorations are beautiful and you are blessed to have those little Christmas Spirits running around your home! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GODIVADSG 12/5/2012 10:39AM

    How very nice!

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CLAIREINPARIS 12/4/2012 3:21PM

    How lovely! You all did a great job of it! Have a beautiful Advent season, until Christmas!

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MADAMES 12/4/2012 2:20AM

    A beautiful home....glad you have found the holiday spirit! Very inspiring.

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MICKEYH 12/3/2012 7:59PM

    Thanks for sharing Christmas spirit. You have a beautiful Xmas tree.
Have a wonderful season and happy holidays"!!

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THOMS1 12/3/2012 7:11PM

    emoticon

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TINAJANE76 12/3/2012 5:41PM

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful decorations with us. Your place looks fantastic and full of Christmas spirit!
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MILLIE5522 12/3/2012 5:30PM

    emoticon emoticon Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas! Gorgeous decorations!

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ANNIEONLI 12/3/2012 3:33PM

    Thanks for sharing your holiday spirit!!! Looks lovely!!!
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BAKER1009 12/3/2012 11:58AM

    Your tree is beautiful, and your fireplace is AWESOME!! I'm jealous!

You are so right about our children bringing in the holiday spirit! They are just wonderful, aren't they?!

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Beth

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-AMANDA79- 12/3/2012 10:18AM

    emoticon

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JACKIE542 12/3/2012 10:05AM

    Beautiful! Now this is motivating me to finish mine. Thank you! emoticon

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WILLOWBROOK5 12/3/2012 10:03AM

    Love the decorating! Just beautiful. I plan to clean and deck the halls on Thursday when I sill have a day off.

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MRSJERRYBUSH 12/3/2012 10:03AM

    Beautiful message. And may your home be filled with Christ's love today and always.

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SHANTODD420 12/3/2012 10:01AM

    What a beautiful tree and other holiday items. I love you took a picture of each item. Thanks for sharing.

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SUNSHINE99999 12/3/2012 9:52AM

  Loving the tree and decorations. A blessed holiday season to you and your family.

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"Dark days" in maintenance

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Bullís eye!
The number on the scale is finally right. What youíve been eagerly awaiting, what youíve been working for is a reality at last. Nothing could make you happier. You feel your work from now on is like a walk in the park. You managed to shed all those pounds. How much more difficult could it be to keep them away?

After all, youíre prepared! You have a brand new set of eating habits and plenty of fitness activities that you enjoy doing. Youíve managed to deal with binges and emotional eating successfully and you have your strategies ready for all the temptations that will be thrown your way.
You feel you have it all figured out. Being overweight or obese is a thing of the past.

When suddenly Ė actually not so suddenly but thatís what it feels like Ė things take a wrong turn. The scale starts going up...



And this triggers a series of attitudes that Iím sure many of you will recognize as the lead-in part to the sad story of weight regaining.

First, itís self-reassurance. ďOh, come on. Thereís nothing to worry about. Iím doing everything right. Iím sure my next weigh-in will be back to normal.Ē And we rest assured. No action.

Then, thereís denial. ďIt canít be my fault. I havenít been overeating or anything like that. I canít have gained weight just because I inhaled the smell over the freshly-baked cookies!!! There must be another reason. Maybe water retention!Ē And we find something else to put the blame on. Still no action.

After that comes confession. ďThe truth is I didnít just smell the cookies, I tried one. Or was it two? Now that I think about it, I ate half of them in front of the TV! And that pizza we ordered that night, I just couldnít eat just one piece!Ē And suddenly the memories come back. And the realization hits hard!

At this point, two things could happen.
The first one is panic. We want to fix everything and we want it done fast. We maximize our cardio activities and we starve ourselves hoping that the scale will go back where it was. And this starts an endless vicious circle of deprivation to over-indulgence and vice versa. And little by little, day by day, wrong choice by wrong choice, the pounds creep back up.

I know this sounds frightening but most of us have been there and have felt the despair of this experience. Thankfully, things can be different.

We take full responsibility for our actions. We canít keep up trying to find someone or something to blame Ė unless of course there is a medical reason present, in which case we should talk to our doctor. What we put in our mouths, though, is something we have full control over. A number of reasons, different for everyone, led us to the wrong path. But we are still in control and thatís what we have to realize.
WE decide when this stops. A little damage was done. Shall we undo it or make it bigger? Our choice!

I am currently at those dark days of maintenance. The ones when you realize youíre not maintaining anymore but youíve started gaining. The damage is still small. I can sit around pretending that nothing happened and wait for the situation to resolve itself in a magical way. I can start blaming everything and everyone around me, like my stressful life, my momís delicious cooking, the holidaysí delicacies which have started making an appearance or my new intense fitness program which mistakenly led me to believe I could eat more of anything.
Or I can accept my responsibility, assess the damage and strike back. Reverse the process and correct everything.

I choose the latter. And if youíre dealing with something similar, I encourage you to do the same.


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIDMIS 12/6/2012 12:06AM

    emoticon blog and you hit the nail on the head. That is why I am on a no dessert streak. I can't eat just one.

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FRANCES-AGAPE 12/5/2012 11:41PM

    emoticon



You totally nailed how I've been all week !
And most of November !


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Have a Thrilling Thursday

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BLESSINGS!
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GODIVADSG 12/5/2012 10:36AM

    Thanks

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GOING-STRONG 12/4/2012 4:43PM

    emoticon

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MISSB8604 12/4/2012 1:42PM

    Seriously fantastic blog. Thank you, as this is exactly what I needed to hear.

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ILOVEMALI 12/4/2012 12:52PM

  Wow. Thanks. This is exactly what's been going on with me.

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HEALTH4LYFE 12/4/2012 12:11PM

    Great blog. I am not yet at maintenance, but have done the gain, up and down and up and down again. It isn't pretty. Have about 15 lbs to go and I'll be there. May be looking to you for some guidance?? emoticon

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SHERIO5 12/4/2012 8:56AM

    Oh how I wish I would have read your blog this time last year! It is a slippery slope! But you are right, we can control what we put in our mouths! emoticon

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FIREFLY4407 12/3/2012 1:14PM

    Thank you for sharing your Spark !! Perfect timing as I am trying very hard to stay on track (ok - maybe get back on track would be more accurate). emoticon

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STARDUSTGR 11/30/2012 9:18AM

    Oh! Elle, your blog is what I need this day!!
Things go wrong and what I am reading makes me to think that it is hard but I can do it!
Thank you very much!!
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FEB_SHOWERS16 11/28/2012 11:32AM

    Thank you SO MUCH for this!!! I definitely needed to read this! I feel much better! Today is going to ROCK!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WILLOWBROOK5 11/28/2012 9:36AM

   
Excellent blog! When we take responsibility for our actions, we also assume the power to make needed changes.

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KANOE10 11/28/2012 7:27AM

    I like your dark days of maintenance..and your honesty. We are still maintaining even when we slip and struggle. This is the reality of maintenance, continually working on being accountable.

Great blog. emoticon

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MARTHAWILL 11/27/2012 9:27PM

    Awesome blog. So thankful for SparkPeople. The journey is not the same as before with so many helpful inspiring people like you.

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FITFOODIE806 11/27/2012 8:55PM

    Ahhhh! You're reading my mind! (And my scale) thanks for writing and sharing. I needed this today.

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WATERMELLEN 11/27/2012 8:17PM

    Great bkig! And Mr. Maxwell probably has a point about women too!!

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CRANRANA 11/27/2012 7:51PM

  Isn't it funny--I always think others are maintaining perfectly and I'm the only one who struggles. It's so wonderful that you can share the truth that so many of us face. How is it that we expect to change a lifetime of habits and choices and never falter....ah, human nature. We will always have choices and we we will learn from them and improve.

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TINAJANE76 11/27/2012 7:14PM

    Super blog, Elle! I think this happens to almost all of us at some point after we hit goal. Taking responsibility for our slips and correcting them as quickly as we can is what makes the difference between continuing the perpetual cycle of yo-yo dieting and remaining a successful maintainer. I think this is why it's so helpful to have a maintenance range rather than a specific number as a goal. Not only is it unrealistic and incredibly frustrating to stay exactly at the same number, but having a range also helps you to identify trends over time. If I see one where I'm continually inching up in my range, I know it's time to take action. That was starting to happen to me after my summer vacation--I went from the lower end of my range to the mid-to-upper end so I decided enough was enough and that I had to buckle down and get back under my midpoint before the holidays set in. I am determined to stay in that range and not become a weight regain casualty ever again.

Thanks for addressing this issue so thoroughly. I'm sure it will help a lot of people and I hope everyone who reads this blog will 'like' it.

Comment edited on: 11/27/2012 7:16:11 PM

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MICKEYH 11/27/2012 5:52PM

    What a great blog. Thanks for sharing !! I am with you on this one. My weakness was not cookies but brownies.:) oh yeah, pizza too. Lol)) But since I started my health journey, I become much stronger and smarter to avoid those my weakness. I am so glad that I feels like finally I work up from illusion and nightmare of being fat and obese. I realized it is not worth it to go back unhealthy living in my mid age. But holiday season is a toughest season of all, with all kind of goodies...

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TRAVELGRRL 11/27/2012 5:25PM

    Great blog! Even when we aren't to maintenance yet, we STILL have the same issues. When we make a slip (not "if") do we end it there or compound it? I think this is the whole crux of maintaining our weight.

I have every confidence that you will change your course forthwith!!

Comment edited on: 11/27/2012 5:32:58 PM

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BLUE42DOWN 11/27/2012 4:14PM

    emoticon blog!

Amazing how quickly and easily self-deception can come back into play - and I don't mean the scale. I mean the MOMENT we pick up the cookie and tell our brain to remember it as just giving it a sniff. THAT is one of the hardest habits to truly break.

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BAKER1009 11/27/2012 12:04PM

    Thanks for the blog Elle!
Although I myself have yet to get to maintenance mode (and am currently on HOLD, lol), it is nice to read about how it is when you reach that point. Your insight will be helpful to me when I reach maintenance mode.

As for your struggles...I still believe it is only human, right? You've done a great job, and you're doing a great job now. You know what's happened, and you know what needs to be done to fix it. Go you!!
And I absolutely LOVE that last quote!!

Thanks for sharing this with us all. You ROCK!!
Hugs,
Beth

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THOMS1 11/27/2012 11:31AM

    emoticon

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MIDROAD 11/27/2012 11:30AM

    Love your blog. My personal experience with weight gain has been hmmmm how can I put this..... Something like, but way worse than total blind DENIAL. It's a horrible place, where I never wake up until of course it's too late. I am learning to be present in my own life! My fondest wish is to stay far away from blind denial.
But sincerest thanks for your wonderful blog you really know how to put things in perspective.

Hugs
Jeannie

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KOOKYCOOKIE 11/27/2012 11:30AM

    GREAT blog! This so true! Although I didn't catch my gain until I had REALLY gained a lot back, I did go through all the excuses and blaming it on other things and now I'm back to holding myself accountable. :) I love how you worded your blog and really called it as it is :)

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MJZHERE 11/27/2012 11:10AM

  For me, weighing daily is essential to staying honest. The other day when I "forgot" to weigh in, I discovered I was up 5 lbs (now 4 as I do what is needed). After a life of yoyoing, I am determined to not ignore what gets me there.

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CATMAGNET 11/27/2012 11:00AM

    SO true. It really is about taking the bull by the horns and getting back into those healthy habits instead of letting things slide. Kudos for catching it quickly and getting back on track!

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WINDSURFNERD 11/27/2012 10:41AM

    Great blog! You captured the essence of backsliding!
thanks for sharing!
naomi

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 11/27/2012 10:08AM

    Excellent Blog!! Unlike you - I let my gain go too far and feel just that 'panic' of getting back to where I had busted that 3 year plateau finally.

I am sure that maintenance is just as hard if not harder than losing the weight but you are doing emoticon

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PINKANGEL73 11/27/2012 9:45AM

    How fantastic that you have hit your goal emoticon

Now is that dangerous time where you can either creep slowly back to your old ways emoticon and weight gain or you can try to find the balance with your new habits which keeps you close to goal. emoticon

How many times have most of us lost weight only to put it back on. Well done you for taking control and making the decision to keep it off. emoticon

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MRSJERRYBUSH 11/27/2012 9:22AM

    Just what I needed aftervThanksgiving! Thank you!

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NASFKAB 11/27/2012 9:04AM

  thanks awesome blog so true

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ANNIEONLI 11/27/2012 8:52AM

    There you go!! Well said my friend!

Stop - reassess - take action.

You already know what to do, it's just a matter of doing it right now instead of tomorrow. Soon enough things will be right back where they were before...it just takes some time and patience.
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1935MARY 11/27/2012 8:51AM

    Thank you. This is awesome. You are so right we want to blame it on everything except the one who is responsible for no action. As Barney Fife would say you have to nip it in the bud. emoticon

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AMARILYNH 11/27/2012 8:50AM

    Absolutely awesome blog!! I'm in those same days - and like you realize NOW is the time to take action!! emoticon

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A tribute to fitness overachievers!

Friday, November 09, 2012



Iíve come across this poster a lot this past week. On bus stops, on TV, on Facebook, on sports sites. To be honest, I feel jealous and kind of disappointed. I wanted to be part of this. Not the marathon, of course, but one of the other races that are held on the same day. But it was my choice not to sign up for it. And I keep reminding myself that just because something is not happening for me right now, it doesnít mean that it will never happen. It means Iím not ready for it.

But this is not to talk about me. This is to talk about them. The people who are the personalization of commitment, determination, courage and will-power all in one. The marathoners.

And Iím not talking about the people who are athletes and have been running since they were teenagers. Not that their accomplishments are inferior. But I really admire and look up to all those people who took up running late in their lives. People who started running counting their heavy breaths until they managed to finish a mile. And they ended up transforming this mile into 26.2. They went from a few meters to 42.2 kilometers. I feel so lucky to have met many of those people here.

I always read marathon blogs. And they always bring me to tears with overwhelming feelings of admiration and awe. Their training, what brought them to the big day, is usually a mix of joy and disappointment, belief and disbelief, peaking and dipping self-confidence, courage and discouragement. And all this mixture of emotions leads them throughout their training journey which is not happening in a parallel dimension. Itís part of their daily lives and it co-exists with their demanding roles in their families, jobs, societies.

But whatís almost always the most impressive and overwhelming part is their experience from the race day. Their description of how they managed to overcome their bodiesí limits and their fears. The persistence that helped them continue. The thoughts that guided them through all the mind barriers. The hidden stockpiles of strength which helped them surpass their limits of physical and emotional endurance. And this small step of victory, the one that crossed the finish line and felt like a giant leap which marked a life-changing point in their own personal story and their lifeís achievements.

I wanted to name all of you in this blog. But Iím afraid I might forget someone and it wouldnít be fair. All of you, my Sparkfriends, whether youíve run a full or a half marathon Ė you know who you are Ė have been an endless source of inspiration for me. And I believe youíve done the same for other people, too.

This Sunday, more than 9,500 people will be running the authentic marathon route, the one that named this wonderful athletic event. People from all five continents of the planet and people of all ages. Many of them are well into their seventies and the older one is a man from Italy who is proudly running at the 84th year of his life! If youíre looking for inspiration this weekend, think about this man!

Good luck, marathoners! Keep on showing us the way to achievement.

Thank you for reading, Sparkers. Have a great weekend!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANNIEONLI 11/13/2012 8:30AM

    Ahhh...my Greek goddess Sparkfriend has inspired me once again!

I'm running my second 5K in a week with my sister in law...and while I am a bit rusty and have not trained, I am not bailing on her since it's her very first one.

Support is half the battle sometimes!

Thanks for yours!!
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KANOE10 11/13/2012 7:25AM

    Great blog. I admire the marathon people here also..very dedicated and hard working people who have made fitness so important in their lives!

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FIT_MAMA_2_FOUR 11/11/2012 9:20AM

    Great blog-Thanks!
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VIXSTERLU 11/11/2012 12:40AM

    "And I keep reminding myself that just because something is not happening for me right now, it doesnít mean that it will never happen. It means Iím not ready for it."

This sooo resonated with me today! I have been feeling exactly this and I really want to be able to put that 13.1 or 26.2 sticker on my care, but it's just not my time, won't be for a while. But I will get there, with the help of those blogs you mention and friends like you! You are inspiring Elle! Thank you.



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SPUNKYDUCKY 11/10/2012 2:07PM

    I agree completely - I want to do something like this so bad it HURTs. And I know I will get there and so will you!

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THOMS1 11/9/2012 2:18PM

    Good blog! emoticon

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AMARILYNH 11/9/2012 12:40PM

    Well said!! And I'll just add one thing - if you really WANT to run a marathon, you CAN!! Its all about training!!

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NASFKAB 11/9/2012 10:30AM

  awesome thanks

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BAKER1009 11/9/2012 9:27AM

    Beautiful blog Elle!
I love reading the marathoners blogs too, and all about how it felt to do it. I enjoyed running track in high school, but nothing long distance. I am not sure that marathons are for me, but ya never know I suppose. For now, I'll just live through people like Nikki! LOL!

Have a wonderful weekend too!!
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Beth

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MICKEYH 11/9/2012 9:18AM

    emoticon thanks for sharing !!

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 11/9/2012 8:09AM

    Great blog! I agree, those marathoners are amazing and crazy at the same time, lol! But like you, I love reading their stories, being excited about the results, and crying with them in their despair.

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CAT609 11/9/2012 7:19AM

    Awesome. I would like to be a part of it, too.

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NUOVAELLE 11/9/2012 6:11AM

    JSTETSER thank you for your comment. I'm sorry I misguided you with the title of my blog "A tribute to those who deserve it." I am not American and I had no idea about Veterans day being this Sunday. Thank you for pointing it out to me. I changed the title to avoid misguiding other Sparkers, too.

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JSTETSER 11/9/2012 5:40AM

    Go girl! I thought that this blog was going to be about celebrating Veterans for Veterans Day.

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GHOSTFLAMES 11/9/2012 5:33AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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