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Tools To Go - Photo

Saturday, June 23, 2012

I learned long ago that I "HAVE" to track food daily. Sometimes, I don't have access to the nutrition and fitness tracker at Sparkpeople due to being out of the house, without power or internet, or who knows where (including unexpected time in a hospital and most recently back home for a funeral in a rural area.)

Long ago I learned there was a simple solution. I buy those small memo books (about 2-1/2 x 4" in size.) Our local drug store (national chain) sells them at Back to School time 3/$1 and I stock up! These fit easily into a shirt pocket or purse.



Inside the front cover I paste a print out of one of my BEFORE picture. That's just a reminder of what I DON'T want to be.

The next page I use to keep track of my current weight progress in graph form. I make each line a pound and write the weeks at the top and graph my progress. The book usually lasts about 8 -10 weeks.

The next 4 pages I use for recording the miles on my bike I ride each day.

The next 4 pages are for my walking miles.

The rest of the book (except for about 5 pages at the back) are used to scribble down what I eat . Many of the calories I know by heart now. If not I guess and put parentheses around it and check it later. I make simple tally marks for water at the top.

The last 5 pages or so of the book are for notes. Things to try, websites people mention, book titles, etc.

I've gone through a LOT of these little books. They have been the difference for me in staying on the path. I know I have to keep writing things down and when I have a WEAK moment I can whip out that little book WHEREVER I am and see my before picture, my current progress on the graph and be motivated to stay the course.

It's an inexpensive tool that has helped me. I'll continue to share the things that have helped me make progress on this journey!

Press On!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANGELBABIES2 6/30/2012 11:31AM

    thanks for the wonderful emoticon blog you keep inspiring me with each blog...

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_CYNDY55_ 6/29/2012 1:53AM

    Perfect emoticon
emoticonGreat emoticonblog!

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ONTHERUNMOM4 6/28/2012 5:17PM

    Thanks for sharing! What an awesome idea!

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KBRADFORD88 6/28/2012 8:06AM

    This idea rocks!

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NANHBH 6/27/2012 11:41AM

    Love this idea! I need my before photo in front of me to remind me of how far I have come - and where I don't want to be anymore. Thanks for the suggestion.

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MCHILSTR 6/27/2012 10:35AM

  Great idea! I'm borrowing it -

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SMILES650 6/27/2012 10:23AM

  What a great tool, good for you emoticon

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DOTTY7267 6/27/2012 9:34AM

    Thanks once again for sharing. I do truly appreciate your honesty in your struggle.

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NASFKAB 6/27/2012 2:20AM

  wonderful blog way to fo you explain so well thanks

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RESEDIT 6/26/2012 10:49PM

    Thank you for sharing!


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AMANDASHRINKING 6/26/2012 10:21AM

    thats a great idea I love it keep up the great work

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LRSILVER 6/25/2012 9:19AM

    Great idea, and great blog.

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PCASEY7 6/25/2012 12:29AM

    Another great blog...keep them coming!

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ANYVAR54 6/24/2012 11:38PM

    Great idea, and maybe I can use it to help me to start keeping track of my food intake. I am so bad at this. I need all the help I can get.

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LUVSBULLDOGS 6/24/2012 8:09PM

    That's exactly what I do. Except for the pic on the front. Maybe, I should steal that idea from you. If it helps you, it will help the rest of us.

Thanks for blogging, excellent, as always.

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KAREN608 6/24/2012 7:05PM

    I love the simple DIY approach for record keeping. No high tech, just straight forward easy to use, no battery simplicity.

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CORINA-MOMOF4 6/24/2012 2:45PM

    emoticon

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HAPPYSOUL91 6/24/2012 1:01PM

    You have many great ideas and this one is wonderful and doable

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JENNNY135 6/24/2012 12:29PM

    Thats a super idea.

emoticon

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ANJAYS-JOURNEY 6/24/2012 12:18PM

    I do very similar

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BARBARAROSE54 6/24/2012 12:10PM

    emoticon

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DRKYASHI 6/24/2012 11:59AM

    emoticonfor sharing!

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SLIM242 6/24/2012 10:11AM

    Great idea!!

emoticon

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MAMALOVEBUG 6/24/2012 9:35AM

    Great idea! This will be perfect for vacation in a few weeks.

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MAMA2EEEE 6/24/2012 8:12AM

  This is one of the hardest things for me. Thanks for the idea!

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HEALTHY4ME 6/24/2012 8:11AM

    Wow great idea I like it, I don't like using the nutrition thing here, it is great but find I don't want to wait to turn on uter every time I want to input something, so write it on paper anyway.
Neat idea and at a great time our 5% challenge just started yesterday!


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GEMINI-SKY 6/24/2012 8:06AM

    I Just Love a Woman with a Plan !!!! emoticon

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MUSOLF6 6/24/2012 7:59AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SUNRISE14 6/24/2012 7:16AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TRISTAROSE 6/24/2012 6:39AM

    I do something similar to what you are doing and it really helps to keep me on the right track. Keep up the good work!

emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 6/24/2012 5:48AM

    emoticon emoticon

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FIRECOM 6/24/2012 1:54AM

    I did the same think until I got my smart phone now I just use the SP App for the phone and input food and excercise as I go and it downloads automatically into the regular SP application in my computer. I also have downloaded a couple of GPS apps that keep track of my steps, calories burned and other data.

I admire your effort to keep on track. Lord knows how imoportant it is to do so.
emoticon emoticon

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123ELAINE456 6/24/2012 1:45AM

  Awesome ldea to a very solveable problem. God Bless You and Have a Wonderful Week. This will help many people that has the problem. WAY TO GO!!!

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 6/24/2012 12:29AM

    Great idea! Thanks for sharing it!!
emoticon

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LYNMEINDERS 6/23/2012 11:37PM

    Woohoo....I do a similar thing when I am away and especially when I amaway on holiday each year....it is a great way to keep track of things.....go you

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SNOWYOGA 6/23/2012 11:09PM

    This is toooo cool! I do something similar to yours, but not half as fancy. I will try it your way next time I need a new travel log. Thanks alot for sharing! emoticon emoticon

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Who are they kidding?

Friday, June 22, 2012

I just have to share from my personal experience today. Some "well-intentioned" individual suggested to me that all I needed to lose the rest of my weight was this "product" she was selling. Oh she had success stories to share and knew her script well but when I looked (out of politeness) at the webpage I noticed something.

It was in SMALL print. "Results dependent upon following a calorie-reduced diet and moderate exercise." No joke Sherlock! What does she think I'm doing?

Well the reason I shared this wasn't to try to deter anyone from any commercial product that they think will help them on their journey. That's not my point (thus why I didn't say WHAT it was). My point is just that it's IN THE SMALL PRINT.

HOW DO YOU LOSE WEIGHT?

1) reduce your caloric intake
2) moderate exercise

All the pills, supplements, powders, juices, piston-driven doodads etc . are NOT the main event.

What is?

EAT LESS AND EXERCISE MORE!

I've lost 76 pounds doing just that.

Enough said.

Press On!

P.S. I'm 56, post-menopausal with double knee implants and many other health issues. It takes me longer than when I was younger but it is possible.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUTERSPACE 1/30/2013 9:53AM

    I am 56, post menopausal, no knee surgeries but enough other ones (about 14 altogether). I'm with you, it will take me longer BUT I'll get it without the other gimicks. Thanks for your post.

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FRABBIT 9/22/2012 3:02PM

  It pays to read the small print! But you already knew the message anyway. Congrats.

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CESAU5679 9/14/2012 6:49AM

    emoticon
Thanks for posting

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EMILYDOODLE 7/28/2012 11:08PM

  Way to go! thanks sharing this blog, very true!

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SPRINGBREEZI 7/28/2012 9:56AM

    So true!

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LAFFLOTS57 7/25/2012 11:33PM

    emoticon

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CLIMBERS_ROCK 7/20/2012 10:40AM

    EVERY diet product I've ever seen comes with a recommendation to follow an eating and exercise program. Why don't people read these instructions. Geez!

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HELEN62626 7/15/2012 10:58AM

    emoticon

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MARYM1962 7/12/2012 2:13PM

  too many people want a "magic" pill - that just is not logical! the only way to take the weight off AND keep it off is by hard work. If we could take it off with a pill and/or overnight, then we would not appreciate the end results!

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KENIKE08 7/9/2012 9:13AM

    How true. There are sharks out there who want to bring in the money because weight loss is a prominent issue among hundreds and thousands of people

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NAVALE 7/6/2012 12:35PM

  I agree with TRISHMO1. And it should start with healthier options of school cafeteria food.

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GALINAZ 7/5/2012 10:56AM

    well said!

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YULLABELLE 7/2/2012 9:41AM

    emoticon emoticon

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WRITINGDIVA1 7/1/2012 11:50PM

    So true! Thanks for sharing.

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CESPRINGALL 6/28/2012 8:13PM

  If it was easy, anyone could do it. We didn't join sparks because it was easy. We need help and encouragement.

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KBRADFORD88 6/28/2012 8:08AM

    This morning there was a new diet pill introduced by the FDA. They say you can lose 5% of your body weight. I am not sure that the side effects of a pill would be worth that. Keep on writing emoticon

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BROOKLYN_BORN 6/28/2012 7:26AM

    Exactly right! I've always been able to ignore the obvious "miracle solutions." What annoys me now is when people I used to trust push a product. Specifically, I read an article where I could lose 7 lbs in a week by switching to safflower oil. Then I should buy green coffee extract for a similar result! Both products indicate no changes to diet or exercise needed.

I suppose safflower oil is better than maybe lard, but really now. The only time I lost 7 lbs in 1 week I had the flu and was eating just about nothing. And yes, the lbs came back when I recovered.

Dr. Oz was the expert mentioned in both cases. I always liked Dr Oz. What's up with this?

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SALLYNEAL 6/28/2012 3:38AM

  Too true, well done, keep up the good work and enjoy life x emoticon

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NEWKATHYNOW 6/27/2012 10:08PM

    If there was a magic potion we would all be thin!

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WHITEANGEL4 6/27/2012 5:57PM

    How true. There is no magic solution for weight lose except your own determination, eating less, more healthy foods and moving. I do all my house work very dramatically to get in as much movement as possible. emoticon

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TRISHMO1 6/27/2012 3:35PM

  so true, we should be teaching spark in our schools don't you think? emoticon

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KATOFORNOW 6/27/2012 1:20PM

    you are sooooo right.. it takes time..moderate exercise
(wish my sister would get this.. she decided to lose weight again as I've been sharing of Spark..and so...two days ago, though she hasn't exercised in months.. went out on a five mile run/walk... and was sore, feeling sick and probably will not even go for a normal sensible walk for weeks again) and good eating and tracking..meaning those little chocolate hershey kisses do count!

just saw an ad about some kind of cream you rub on your stomach and then put some kind of girdle thing on and presto, in a matter of hours you lose weight just like that..with..as they say..no exercising, no changing eating habits. aaarrrgghh!

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CATMAGNET 6/27/2012 11:33AM

    Couldn't agree more!

I've also had this debate with a couple of friends (a married couple) that both had gastric bypass surgery, and are complaining about not being able to maintain their weight.

Well, DUH! You post about all the junk you're eating and I don't hear anything about exercise at ALL.

I have found that by losing the weight that I need to lose (approximately 140 pounds, but I'd rather focus on body composition than weight anyways) through healthy eating and exercise, I'm living a much more harmonious life with my body than if I had the surgery. I'm almost halfway there, and have decided not to stress over the scale as much and am focusing more on what my body can do that it couldn't when I was a couch potato, getting excited about cooking various healthy recipes, and trying new foods, as long as they fall within my restricted diet (have to watch my Vitamin K intake, as I'm on warfarin). Those are things that a diet pill or product just can't deliver for me!

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CORYGIRL42 6/27/2012 11:24AM

    I feel the weight loss industry thinks we're idiots and they know most people don't read the fine print. I'm glad you did and CONGRATS on you're loss!! Hope you have a healthy day!!

emoticon
Elizabeth

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ENLIGHTENED7 6/27/2012 6:23AM

  Well said, and so true. No shortcuts to being our best selves, but we're all in this together and, even if we trip up on the way, we'll get there. Your ongoing success is amazing. An inspiration to us all!

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MISSLISA1973 6/27/2012 12:38AM

    Rock on!

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CUDDLEY51 6/26/2012 10:48PM

    You nailed it sister!! Well done!

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TANIED1 6/26/2012 10:12PM

  I agree completely!!! You need to make a lifestyle change not rely on gimmicks to lose the weight. Sure you will lose weight but as soon as you go back to eating "normal" you will gain all the weight back. Eating smaller, healthier portions and exercising is the trick. And don't stop exercising when you reach your goal because I did that and put the weight back on. I'm down almost 20 lbs again and am determined to keep exercise in my life even after I reach my goal. Not only does it keep the weight from coming back, even if you do indulge on occasion, it also makes you feel good and gives you tons of energy!! Keep up the good work everyone!!

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ALPHAPOPPA 6/26/2012 6:43PM

    Good for you! I am glad you didn't get suckered into a quick fix. I personally like the "eat more, exercise enough" mantra because I'm a grumpy Gus when I eat less, but to each his or her own. By "eat more" I mean eat more greens, eat more unprocessed foods, eat more frequently. I just find it works for me. Anway, keep fighting the good fight!

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KIMBALLITE 6/26/2012 6:16PM

  I agree slow and steady wins the race. Been there and done that. We are our own miracle.

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LALISJO 6/26/2012 3:33PM

    So true. I've seen this one too many times. You can even read it on TV ads. I'm sorry, but whoever believes in any of these "miracle" pills and products are just waiting their time. Instead of choosing the right and hard working way, they choose the easy way out. Shame on them. They need to be more educated. Great blog post by the way!

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GROWNINOP 6/26/2012 1:05PM

  It is so hard to get to the point that you aren't grasping at any quick fix solution that comes along. Thanks for reminding me I am doing what it takes and don't need to waste my money on products that aren't really going to make it happen any faster.

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CHANGE_4_ME 6/26/2012 11:10AM

    Well said and oh so true! Have a fabulous day!

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NOTGIVINGUP49 6/26/2012 9:46AM

    Good blog and so true! emoticon on your success!

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LLINDY65 6/26/2012 1:28AM

    I always post my exercise activity and current pounds lost on my facebook page and one of my friends did exactly that sending me this GIMMICK weight loss program that had the same fine print.... I am like REALLY? 54 lbs so far and you think I need you to sell me something to lose more weight....


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GRAMMAP1 6/25/2012 11:47PM

    Why do we try to make something so simple difficult? I think many still hope for a miracle cure. I am saying a simple perscription for weight loss. Putting it into practice is not so simple. It takes self discipline!

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KINKYCOILY 6/25/2012 10:54PM

    Well said!!! emoticon

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JULIA1154 6/25/2012 9:52PM

  Right on - and well done!

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WAMBUI7 6/25/2012 9:02PM

    love it. That's so true.... :) Kip on u can do it.

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LIVINHEALTHY9 6/25/2012 8:59PM

    There is no "magic" pill or product. It's all about eating healthier, eating less, and getting exercise.

Thanks for the good blog!

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CORINA-MOMOF4 6/25/2012 8:56PM

    So very true!! our family always gets a kick out of the ads "just eat less and workout and take this (magic) pill" - um, I don't need a magic pill, I'll get the same results by eating less and working out and NOT taking that pill :)

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RUNNER12COM 6/25/2012 8:40PM

    So true. It's all about the basics.

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DRCLANKY 6/25/2012 8:26PM

    Good job on your continued successes! I've had friends who have gone the pill route and have gained it all back. The temptation is always out there to take the easy way out but in the long run, as you point out, it's only healthy lifestyle changes that will make a difference.

Your PS is hugely motivating, btw, no excuses!!

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GIRLINMOTION 6/25/2012 7:19PM

    Well said! I know the same goes with any exercise equipment you see on tv, yes you can loose the weight using there equipment but they still have calorie diets to follow for quicker results.

LOL.

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PENGUINQUEEN 6/25/2012 6:58PM

    Thank you for your PS. I get discouraged as I face this battle as a 40+ mom with sore knees and hips. Your words are uplifting.

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SUNSHINEGB 6/25/2012 6:42PM

    There is NO substitute for exercise and healthy eating, period. You're proving that!
emoticon

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KMMR87 6/25/2012 5:02PM

    Motivation and knowing that there is no magic remedy. Plain old hard work. Thanks for the reminder.

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RUBYROOTS4YOU 6/25/2012 4:36PM

    Thanks for the reminder!!

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PMFISH 6/25/2012 4:29PM

    Right on!

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GUNNSGIRL91303 6/25/2012 4:15PM

    You are SO right! I'm so sick of these products that make big promises...it's all bunk!
I also appreciate your P.S...I'm approaching 50 and find that it takes 3 times the effort to get 1/4 of the results but I press on and slowly but surely changes are happening.
Great blog!

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Finding Your Balance...

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Most of you probably remember learning to ride a two-wheeled bicycle. When you first got your "big bike" it had training wheels and those early miles were slightly off-center riding along balanced on one side or the other. As time wore on you would begin to find your center and eventually Mom or Dad would get the screwdriver out and take off your training wheels so you could ride unaided.

Even though you had found your center with the training wheels still ON the bike, their removal took with it a "security". Mentally you had to find your center again. Perhaps Mom or Dad ran behind your bike holding onto the tote seat or the back of your shirt. Soon you regained your center and were riding without aid.

Did that mean you didn't fall down? I have many scars from skinned knees to prove otherwise. I've even fallen off the bicycle as an adult some decades after those training wheels disappeared.

There is a great lesson in this for our weight loss journey. Many thousands of people join Sparkpeople (and other weight loss sites/groups) weekly. They all come with a desire to be thin. That's NOT the same as "wanting to lose weight" because the latter implies a willingness to do what it takes to achieve the goal. VERY different things but I digress.

The training wheels on your "sparkcycle" are things like Fast Break Goals, Meal Plan Suggestions, Strength Training suggestions, your Spark Class Team, the helpful articles in the Daily Spark and Health news. Blogs written by those that have journeyed before you (like this one) give you lots of tips and encouragement. All of these things are your training wheels. You need to lean on them heavily in the early days to find your center.

Some, using these tools and applying them daily, soon find their center and the weight starts coming off. They take off the training wheels (quit tracking, stop exercising, distance themselves from their support team, skip logging into the site, etc.) and they FALL DOWN (start gaining).

What keeps the person on balance - MOMENTUM. Once up and going if they keep their momentum they won't fall unless they hit a major obstacle (big rock, hole, etc.). This is how it is with OUR journey too. Once we get that balance of nutrition, tracking, exercise, water, sleep, etc. we make forward progress AS LONG AS we steer clear of the obstacles.

Now some of us will ride RIGHT into a hole knowing full well we are going to fall (going on a cruise, buying the bag of double stuff cookies, skipping our workouts because we just don't "wanna". ) Others will turn a corner and be blindsided by an obstacle (illness, family crisis, loss of job, etc.) We WILL fall. So if we do how do we regain our balance? We have to go back to those training wheels!

To summarize:

We need to lean heavily on our training wheels (tracking, teams, exercise, meal plans, articles, blogs, etc) to find our initial balance.

We need to gain momentum to keep us from falling OFF the bike.

When we fail to steer around an obstacle we need to return to our "training wheels" to regain our balance.

We need to MAINTAIN momentum. This is my favorite saying of PRESS ON! Keep those wheels turning so you don't fall off!

Don't be too proud to strap on those training wheels to learn how to find your center. They have helped MANY people find balance and gain momentum on the journey!

Press On!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHUM48 9/19/2012 10:35AM

    Thanks for the analogy! Those are the best learning lessons! Thanks again!

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NASFKAB 7/23/2012 12:57AM

  Great help thank you

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TOPAZMOON1964 7/9/2012 2:40AM

    I love your blogs....they are the best part of my day

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SLIMTONES 6/28/2012 7:42PM

    You find the most fun ways to steer people straight!

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MEGWAR1370 6/27/2012 12:11AM

    This is exactly what I struggle with! Thanks for writing this; it's always nice to know others are in the same boat. This was a great blog post!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANGELBABIES2 6/25/2012 7:32PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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46SHADOW 6/25/2012 5:25PM

    Momentum! So true.

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EMILYDOODLE 6/24/2012 9:51PM

  great blog, very inspirational!

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SERASARA 6/24/2012 11:13AM

  emoticon

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KIN59VARA 6/23/2012 10:36AM

    Excellent blog. I am needing to recognize that this bike ride may have some bumps along the way.

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JANSUE57 6/23/2012 8:17AM

    Thanks for the positive thoughts. I know that my journey will have bumps along the way but I just have to keep my eyes on the goal. When I ride the bike if I constantly look at my feet or the pedals on the bike I'm going to fall. I must look at my goal and how to stay upright and keep pedaling to finish my journey!

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JOYCRN 6/23/2012 7:28AM

    Great analogy, Thanks! emoticon emoticon

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TASNIM81 6/23/2012 6:55AM

    Great blog! emoticon

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PENSFAITH 6/23/2012 5:00AM

    I just started so I think I will keep my training wheels on for quite some time. emoticon

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BLUEJEAN99 6/23/2012 1:57AM

    emoticon

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CICELY360 6/23/2012 12:28AM

  Good blog

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TAMANI2 6/22/2012 11:09PM

  emoticon emoticon very inspirational blog

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TEESLIM 6/22/2012 9:59PM

  Great perspective! Thanks!!

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KIPPER15 6/22/2012 9:41PM

    excellent blog emoticon

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KRYSTALLA 6/22/2012 9:36PM

    Great blog.

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JAMER123 6/22/2012 8:33PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MYSTERY-LADY1 6/22/2012 6:51PM

    emoticon

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DEBK0923 6/22/2012 6:05PM

    I loved this blog, good job

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ISABELLE31 6/22/2012 5:04PM

    Great analogy--you've given me a different perspective! Thanks!

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NEWCHINELO 6/22/2012 5:03PM

    nice one!

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TERRIJ7 6/22/2012 4:21PM

    Great blog--I like the analogy!

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SHOAPIE 6/22/2012 4:19PM

    emoticon

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LDRICHEL 6/22/2012 3:46PM

    Excellent analogy!!!

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KENIKE08 6/22/2012 3:19PM

    training wheels and momentum are so true

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IAMAGEMLOVER 6/22/2012 3:13PM

    emoticon

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BLUE42DOWN 6/22/2012 3:11PM

    Love this analogy because it is so true - even decades after learning and starting, we can take a tumble and have to get back up and keep going.

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SMOULINIER 6/22/2012 10:59AM

  You take me back (many years) when I got my first bike with training wheels. It took awhile and the help of a neighbor to get those training wheels off but eventually I did it. Now I am embarking on another journey and my sparkfriends and family will help me find my center again. What a wonderful analogy! emoticon

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 6/22/2012 10:56AM

    Great blog - thanks so much for posting it!!

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CLAYARTIST 6/22/2012 10:31AM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MOMMY445 6/22/2012 10:08AM

    amazing blog! have a terrific day!

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TURNINGTABLES21 6/22/2012 10:03AM

  emoticon

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SJKENT1 6/22/2012 9:58AM

    Training wheels - great metaphor! emoticon

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JPEARL127 6/22/2012 9:23AM

  Excellent analogy--thank you for helping me see how important is to always keep my perspective and to know that is always OK to go back to basics when I get lost on my journey!

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FARIS71 6/22/2012 8:19AM

    Oh my goodness so true! I'll go get the screwdriver now . . . .

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GOOSIEMOON 6/22/2012 8:11AM

    Thanks for your post! It was just what I needed to hear today.

Keep up the good work!

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SAINTBETH 6/22/2012 8:08AM

    Right on! Thanks.

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MRSTABER 6/22/2012 8:03AM

    You are so very inspiring!

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LAURIE5658 6/22/2012 7:42AM

    Spot on!! Thank you!

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AVANDREA_ 6/22/2012 7:42AM

    So very true, and so we just keep on moving ahead into a healthier lifestyle.
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IRISHANGIE1 6/22/2012 7:40AM

    Thanks for being my set of Training Wheels!!! Loved the Blog, have a wonderful weekend!! emoticon

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LANNIEMANUEL 6/22/2012 6:53AM

    i love the medafor .

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PREMAMEHROTRA 6/22/2012 6:48AM

  Like you, I believe the journey towards achieving good health is a continuous process of finding the balance. Whatever worked for me in my 20s to achieve my balance was absolutely not useful to me in my 30s and what was good for the 30s failed when I was in my 40s. And now in my 50s, I have had to use trainer bikes all over again. Happy to know that I am not alone in my journey

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LIN1111 6/22/2012 6:42AM

    Great blog...Thank you for sharing...

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SWEDE_SU 6/22/2012 6:42AM

    what a great comparison - they really are training wheels that keep us moving forward without falling! emoticon

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NEWTINK 6/22/2012 6:31AM

    emoticon emoticon

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Status Quo comes in all the PLUS SIZES

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Status Quo is LATIN for "the present state of things" or to put it plainly - the way things were, are and will continue to be without change. I've been wearing a lot of "status quo" around my middle for years. It comes in all the largest sizes 2x 3x 4x etc. It's a state of no change... keeping things like they are (for a variety of reasons).

For most the status quo is a place of comfort. They know it. They aren't surprised by anything about it and it's just easier to do as one has done than to change anything. Now if you are reading this it means you are on Sparkpeople and chances are you are here because you desire change (better fitness, weight loss, better health, etc.)

Some of you have already battled status quo, made changes and are making progress on the journey. Others may be wondering how to make those first changes away from the "present state".

1. You need a plan or goal. Don't make it too big. Make it attainable. Perhaps a 5 or 10 pound weight loss. Maybe you want to strive for 10 minutes of cardio a day. Whatever it is, write it down with a date. I want to lose 5 pounds in 1 month. I want to be doing 10 minutes of daily exercise consistently by ___________ fill in a date.

2. Tell someone about your goal. It makes it real and you are more apt to succeed if you have gone "public" with it. Ask them to support you (be specific in what that means - if you don't want people asking you if that chicken leg is on your diet - tell them. Say to them... you can support me best by ______________.)

3. Take BABY steps. Don't try to do everything at once. Pick something JUST outside your comfort zone and try to do that with consistency. Maybe it's skipping sweets. Perhaps it is always taking the stairs. Small changes add up to sustained lifestyle changes and that's our goal.

4. When you fail - don't give up. Don't find reasons to fail - find reasons to succeed. When a child is learning to walk they fall often but it doesn't deter them from trying. Soon they learn what it takes to maintain their balance and make forward motion.

5. Trade out your E word! Take the EXCUSES out of your program and replace them with EFFORT. There will be times when things DO happen and I recognize that but in just about ANY circumstance you can do SOMETHING. Called into work a double shift? Take the stairs or park in the last spot in the lot. Stuck in an E.R. waiting room - pace the halls, do some wall push-ups. Forced to eat your Aunt Tessie's dinner - fill up on veggies and salad and control your portion size. Skip the dessert or do with one bite.

6. Reward yourself - When you DO reach that goal - give yourself a pat on the back or a non-food reward. I did a blog on this very topic of non food rewards some time back:
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3904241


So how about it? Are you ready to leave the STATUS QUO behind and forge ahead into new territory? You CAN do this!

Press On!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THETROUT 7/11/2012 10:15AM

    Your points are all so true! Especially keeping up the effort in spite of setbacks.

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JESSZZ123 6/24/2012 10:42PM

    thank you thank you thank you!

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REENIE131 6/22/2012 11:27PM

    Thank you! Such good advice!

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TAMANI2 6/22/2012 11:12PM

  another inspirational blog...keep them coming emoticon

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4KWALK 6/22/2012 1:57PM

    Hurrah for you for putting in down in words that make it so clear.
I too like the idea about exchanging the E word. I plan to think about that the next time I want to use an excuse.

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BONNIEBEANZ 6/22/2012 12:28PM

    Great blog. Thank you!

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RITAROSE 6/22/2012 11:46AM

  thanks for your blog!

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NITA-BERRY 6/22/2012 11:26AM

    Thanks. I needed your "gems" today.
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CINCYCHIC27 6/22/2012 9:58AM

    Yes, appreciated.

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MAMA2EEEE 6/22/2012 7:30AM

  Oh, my, this is ME. Thanks so much for writing this.

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OHMEMEME 6/21/2012 9:49PM

   
Change is sooooo hard but once you start the momentum builds. I will not lie, it is HARD, but soooo worth the effort. Once you're on that road things become more pleasant and even better than ever. Again I will not lie, there are setbacks and the cycle begins again and again and again but the outcome gets better and better again. Health and fitness are ongoing once you you arrive you have to go some more. Some points in between are wonderful and others not so wonderful but I rather than have some wonderfuls than to stay in that not so wonderful place forever. Keep Sparking!

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HHB4181 6/21/2012 9:30PM

    emoticon

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KIPPER15 6/21/2012 8:23PM

    I like the changing E words advice. Very true and great advise. emoticon

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LITTLEROX20 6/21/2012 8:03PM

    It's all about planning, patience, persistence, and making things work. Thanks for the incite.

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CHARTHESTAR 6/21/2012 3:56PM

    what I liked best was trade out your E word. that could be a whole blog in itself!
change excuse for EFFORT!
That is
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ALLISONAZ 6/21/2012 3:50PM

    I needed this so much right now! Thank you for your motivation!

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MASTERPIECE8 6/21/2012 3:41PM

    Great blog. One point you touched on that really hit home with me is 'tell someone.' Like I could hide my problems in the past? I was overweight and it was obvious. I had myself convinced that I shouldn't 'talk about it or tell anyone.' By doing that I set myself up for failure, because I planned in advance not to succeed. I wouldn't embarass myself. Now I have told people and I have so much support. You know what else I have that I didn't expect or think about: respect! I'm proud of myself. Something new for me. It's working. Whatever works for ME I'm ready to do.

Thanks for such a great blog.

Barb

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ROBBGIN 6/21/2012 12:25PM

    FANTASTIC blog and great ideas and motivational stuff. Thanks for posting. Going back to read it again!

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RIET69 6/21/2012 10:23AM

  Thanks for the honest, open sharing. I appreciate it a lot.

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ROSIE777 6/21/2012 9:27AM

    emoticon emoticonYou ROCK sweet friend. emoticon

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GRRARRGH 6/21/2012 8:32AM

    Such great advice!

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 6/21/2012 7:42AM

    Thank you!

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OLIVIANIGHT 6/21/2012 5:54AM

    Change excuses to effort: I have a new mantra right there. I know that excuses are my downfall.
I'll do it tomorrow.
I'll just work the extra calories off.
I'm supposed to rest my muscles for a bit.
I'll eat less tomorrow.
I'm too tired.
And on and on... If I put the same amount of effort into exercising as I put into coming up with excuses not to exercise I'd probably be at my goal weight by now!

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THEIS58 6/21/2012 5:54AM

    Thank you!

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SBNORMAL 6/21/2012 3:39AM

  I think I need to go PUBLIC!!

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VICTORIA1228 6/21/2012 12:58AM

    Excellent advice! Baby Steps....I needed this one. emoticon

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CLAIREANNE23 6/21/2012 12:38AM

    So true Suzanne!!

Especially loved the "changing out the E word" Excuse to EFFORT!!!!! Here's to putting status quo behind us!!!

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JIBBIE49 6/21/2012 12:08AM

    emoticonLove seeing your blog featured in the SPark Mail. What an honor.

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BLUEJEAN99 6/20/2012 11:44PM

    emoticon

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PCASEY7 6/20/2012 10:56PM

    Meant to subscribe on my first comment!

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PCASEY7 6/20/2012 10:55PM

    You certainly have a way with words, and the content was spot on! Even though I've reached my goal weight your action steps are well worth a review to reinforce behaviour.

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4RASCALS 6/20/2012 10:45PM

    Your blog was right on. Thanks for sharing . emoticon

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CICELY360 6/20/2012 10:34PM

  Good blog.

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TRESA7 6/20/2012 10:23PM

    Thank you. Thank you. I needed this! Even though I've tried some of the steps you mention, I'm not consistent and that HAS to change!

You're an excellent writer and this piece is a terrific inspiration. You now have a new subscriber.

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SERASARA 6/20/2012 10:18PM

  emoticon

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EUEK098 6/20/2012 8:28PM

    Am so ready, emoticon

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SUSIEMT 6/20/2012 7:06PM

    What good reminders! Keep up the good work!

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MIMIDOT 6/20/2012 5:40PM

    Enjoyed your blog. Thanks for sharing.

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NEWCHINELO 6/20/2012 5:32PM

    THANKS DEAR!

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SHOAPIE 6/20/2012 5:10PM

    emoticon emoticon

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FALLNTENN 6/20/2012 4:55PM

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. emoticon

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PERSISTANT123 6/20/2012 3:45PM

    thanks for sharing! I had eliminated #6, and I think its time I put it back into the formula. Thanks for the reminder.
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WORLDSERIES11 6/20/2012 3:22PM

    Thanks for sharing...great advice!!

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SUZYQ11 6/20/2012 2:54PM

  Thanks for starting your blog. I think that you have a gift for writing. Everything I've read on here has been encouraging. I want to change the Status Quo but I lost sight of that until I read your blog. Thanks!

Suzyq11

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TUBLADY 6/20/2012 2:37PM

    You gave some very good advice.
Most of what I used to lose 200 pounds in the last couple of years.
I went from those 4X,5X clothes to mostly 8's, a couple of 6's.
But the size I am now is not the important change I made.
The fact that I am healthy, fit and added years onto my life, that's what's important.
Besides changing my size, I changed how I think about food, exercise and living the rest of my life.
I am very happy with what I accomplished.
I hope all those struggling with weight will be able to experience the same joy.
Be positive,
Tisha emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DIANNEMT 6/20/2012 2:17PM

    Very good!! I like EFFORT instead of EXCUSE!

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CUDDLEY51 6/20/2012 12:55PM

    You really do motivate me....I think I will have to check in regularly on your blogs! emoticon

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TAMMIEANN76 6/20/2012 12:47PM

    Love it!

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JUDYAASH 6/20/2012 12:10PM

    Great pep talk!! emoticon

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GALINAZ 6/20/2012 11:49AM

    You write very well, thank you for the good pointers

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

What they won't tell you.

Monday, June 18, 2012

I love reading the "success stories" 50, 75, 100, 150 pounds lost. They inspire me and help me know that the goal is achievable. They sometimes even give me new ideas and helpful tips. Sometimes they even make me cry! A life restored, relationships healed, health improved... the stories are numerous.

I want to talk about the part many DON'T mention.

BAD choices - Yep, I still make them - not as often as I did. My bad choices now are actually better than they were. Instead of doughnuts, ice cream, nachos etc. they tend to be "too large" of a serving of something or choosing a chicken entree with a topping rather than plain. The "quantity and quality" of my bad choices have less of an impact now but they are still BAD choices.

EXERCISE BURNOUT - yep - it happens. That's why you must have alternative methods for getting your cardio. When you think you can't pedal another mile on the bike or walk another 10 steps on the treadmill time to mix it up! Get out a DVD, your Wii, go swimming, try a sport, or do something DIFFERENT but don't QUIT exercising. You WILL tire of things but that's when you have to be creative.

DOUBT - Oh yes! I still have doubts that I will keep losing and keep it off. That's normal too! I just have to remember that the destination is NOT optional and that perseverance pays off. It helps to keep lots of visual reminders around (my paper clip chain - see my photos), charts, post-its etc.

MIRROR DISAPPOINTMENT - So I've lost 75 pounds and I look at myself in the mirror and I think - look how FAT I still am. When one has such a large amount of weight to lose as I did no matter how far I've come I have a long way yet to go. It's easy to forget where I "was" and only see where I "am" and think my efforts are not paying off. This is why I keep some of those BEFORE pictures around and that one pair of HUGE pants so that I can have a reality check that indeed I have made huge progress.

UN-SUPPORTIVE FRIENDS/FAMILY - You know what I'm talking about! Here are some of the things they say: Oh you have lost enough let's go get pizza. -- You are only going to gain it back why bother. -- You can diet tomorrow. -- You aren't really fat just big. There are dozens more but they don't help. They are just obstacles in your path.

CHAFFING - Exercise with FAT causes thighs to rub and it HURTS!. I have learned to use lots of lotion followed by powder and wear a pant/short long enough to cover the thighs. Don't let it keep you from exercising.

TRACKING - Yep - I must still track. If I don't I always overeat... ALWAYS. It's a pain, it takes time but it works. I am sure there are people that can adequately count in their head and stay in range but I'm not one of them. That's how I got to be 300 lbs plus!

ACCOUNTABILITY - Are you truly accountable to someone/group/team? It's essential for success. You need someone that is sharing your weight loss journey with you so that you have a REASON to push to the scale each week. Without that it is easy to get into the ANNIE game (tomorrow I'll eat right/exercise/start my diet). Get a weekly weigh-in established with SOMEONE expecting it!

So why did I tell you all this? I am all about being open and honest. If I only told you the "good parts" you would feel a failure if you couldn't produce the same but if I show you that I TOO struggle DAILY to stay on this path... maybe, just maybe it will give you hope and show you that persevering through it will produce results!

Don't be afraid to fail - just make sure if/when you do that you get up and keep PRESSING ON!

See you at "Health & Fitness"

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOANNHUNT 2/22/2013 10:46AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SUTERSPACE 1/28/2013 4:26PM

    Isn't THAT the truth. I've copied all this down and sharing it with others. Thanks.

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ARUSHING2 10/27/2012 2:34PM

 
You said it all . . . you covered it all!

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CHUM48 9/17/2012 12:24PM

    As everyone has said to you to this point. thanks for your honesty and giving us a moment to reflect on our "things not mentioned" Thanks for stirring our hearts and brains to pay attention to these items that just sneak in when we don't pay attention. Thank you!

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SPSPSP1 8/31/2012 2:45PM

    Thanks for your honesty!

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REGILIEH 7/21/2012 4:22AM

    Terrific!!!

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PATTYGRAY 7/19/2012 1:21PM

    Thank You!!

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TONI-ANN_L 7/12/2012 3:49PM

    Dealing with every single one of these issues now...to be honest, it's derailed me just a bit. It's good to know I'm not the only one struggling here.

Best of luck to you. emoticon

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DEB_LEA 7/11/2012 9:14PM

    Good reminders. Thanks for sharing. Keep up the good work!

emoticon

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KENDAL0525 7/11/2012 9:22AM

    Great post! I think it's really important for people to know the realities of this journey. The end result, when we reach it, is amazing, but there are so many ups and downs along the way.

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MISSLISA1973 7/6/2012 11:14PM

    You are so right about the "mirror disappointment." I recently saw a picture of me from a year and a half ago and was SHOCKED at the difference I saw. I don't see THAT in the mirror every moring... I see how far I have to go. That is one reason I focus more on NSV's... I love the sense of accomplishment and then can look at myself in the mirror and love what I see, even if it's in a bigger body than I want. emoticon

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GINIEMIE 7/6/2012 4:37PM

    Just got back from the doctors and read your blog, I fell off the wagon! I've been off for long enough to put 20# back on. The weight was bad enough, but the gain also caused my cholesterol to climb. I'm not back to square one, but I must buckle down and track. Like you and many of us, when I don't track I don't do well. Good job on the 75# lost and good luck on the follow through.
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CLEO27 7/5/2012 7:02PM

  Sometimes we really need the reality check and need to hear the good and the bad. Thank you for being so honest. There will be good days and bad days as long as we keep on trying to get to where we want to be it's all worth it in the end.

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1STICKBLUES 7/5/2012 3:41PM

    Thank you for this. It's something that I really could use today!

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MARYM1962 7/5/2012 3:14PM

  Thanks for letting us know you are human and that we all have these problems. sometimes when you read a blog and they tell you all the great things the have done, you think to yourself that they NEVER have problems and that you just can't do what they did. You showed us that yes, you have come a long way and have accomplished much, but that you also have stumbling blocks in your journey and that you have to work to overcome those as well.

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MYVOYAGE 7/4/2012 3:57PM

    Thank you!!! Often times as I read others blogs I feel inspired, tearful and challenged as well...today your blog helped me to be all of the above as well as challenged. These are many of my obstacles...and I needed to hear this today!

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ENRGEE 7/4/2012 11:13AM

    Thanks for sharing what others were reluctant to share. Iím just starting out and finding it hard to maintain energy and focus some days. Thanks for giving me a kick in my motivation.

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MRSLAURALEE 6/29/2012 9:53AM

    Nicely put!

No one told me how hard maintenance would be and that is partly why I failed it! Starting over is harder than making a few changes to now, like you said! emoticon

So what if you have more to lose, you have still lost 75 lbs! Be proud! emoticon

emoticon Keep up the good work and thank you for telling me I am not alone when I make mistakes!

Laura emoticon

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42FIT4GOOD 6/29/2012 8:55AM

    Thank you for this wonderful and insightful blog. You are correct in mentioning that so many lose the weight and share the positives but don't tend to share the negatives or setbacks or slips and slides. Your blog was written beautifully!! Thanks for being open and honest. A LOT of people out there are struggling with the same thing and tend to forget that others are too! I am one of them. You are correct about how far you have come because I am the same way. I forgot how "far I have come" (lost 70lbs) and still reaching to get those last 30 lbs off. I too, still see my self at my old weight instead of where I am now. Thanks for the wake up call on that!! Keep up the GREAT work!!

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END2WEIGHT 6/28/2012 10:30PM

    I have the same problem with my thighs too! I have come to be friends with Gold Bond Lotions :-)

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CRZYMOM04 6/27/2012 2:40PM

    Thank you so much for sharing. We need to all know the great outcomes and what to look forward to but also the things that may not be as great it is a part of life, but we need to know the information thanks again for sharing.

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JERICHO1991 6/27/2012 9:41AM

    Thanks for sharing the struggles we must deal with daily that can sabotage our quest for a healthy life.

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DUSTYPRAIRIE 6/26/2012 4:31AM

    You speak the truth on this terrific blog! Those reminders are going to come in handy more than once, I'm sure. I am ready to face the day!



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DRB13_1 6/25/2012 10:57PM

    emoticon definitely a emoticon blog...the TRUTH will set us free. emoticon

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DRCLANKY 6/25/2012 8:48PM

    Thanks for keeping it real and sharing your inspiring experiences!

By the way, with respect to the "chaffing" issue, I've discovered that a product called Body Glide does wonders! You apply it to problem areas like a deordorant stick and it really helps. I even use it when I'm not working out on hot days when I'm wearing a skirt and doing some walking. You can pick it up at places like Sports Basement.



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KALANTHA 6/24/2012 7:38PM

    Thank you for being a truth teller. Your honesty lets the rest of us know that we're not alone in our weakest moments and that no matter what, there is always hope (as long as we're willing to do the heavy lifting).

Great blog!

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ENCOURAGEDLADY 6/24/2012 3:54PM

    Thank you for helping to motivate me! Your blogs are excellent emoticon

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SWEETSADDICTION 6/24/2012 9:40AM

    A really good post with very good reality checks. kudos to you for sharing. i am on 13 months and have lost 35 pounds and average of about 2.? pounds per month. i am losing less and less as i go but i am still losing so it is not the end of my journey i have the faith that the slower i take it off the longer it will stay there and hopefully the joy of never seeing it come back. my biggest struggle is still the sweets i want my goodies and even though fruits are better they just dont stand in for the sugars.

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AROCHFORD 6/24/2012 3:53AM

    To help the chafing I use any cream that they use for baby diaper rash in the night before I go to sleep. I find it heals it quickly. E.g. A&D cream

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_CYNDY55_ 6/24/2012 2:51AM

    emoticon emoticonBlog!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GEOGIAGIRL2 6/23/2012 11:24PM

    Thank you so much for insights! It helped me a lot.

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BIKECHIC1 6/23/2012 4:41PM

    Thankyou so much for your post, I don't like it's just me anymore. I thought I was the only one that kept slipping back into bad ways, although they're not as bad as they used to be.
I feel much better now!! emoticon

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DLDMIL 6/23/2012 3:54PM

    Great post, thanks for the reminders. emoticon

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JEANNINEMM68 6/23/2012 3:30PM

    Thank you for being open and honest. Sometimes it is easy to forget that the people that you admire b/c they have succeeded also have problems too. It takes hard work to lose weight and it will not just come off.

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SLIMSOLO10 6/23/2012 2:12PM

    this is all soooo true and good to remember when you feel discouraged! but seeing your success makes it all worth it! thank you!

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J2740LOU 6/23/2012 11:42AM

    You are an inspiration! Thanks for sharing. Nice to know I'm not alone on this journey.

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BETHJRN 6/23/2012 7:54AM

    Wonderful blog.... very inspiring and right on target. Thanks for sharing with me.

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STARRSKS5 6/23/2012 7:22AM

  Thank you so much for writing this entry, so inspirational.

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MKRUSE34 6/23/2012 7:21AM

    You are right. I have been maintaing my weight for about 3 years now, and I still do all the things that you mentioned. Just don't give up.

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CINDY_LYNNE 6/23/2012 1:01AM

    Thank you for writing this. :)

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DEVERYLEJ 6/22/2012 11:42PM

  They also don't tell you that you may have some sagging or wrinkly skin that won't go away no matter how fit you are and how much muscle you gain. But don't give up; you are still getting healthy and strong and you can still look and feel good!

Comment edited on: 6/22/2012 11:43:07 PM

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SDELISFORT100 6/22/2012 10:07PM

    AMEN!! This is so encouraging. I would like to print this out! emoticon

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BEACHGIRL328 6/22/2012 9:56PM

    Amen! I really needed to read this! and it is so good to see i am not the only one with the struggles!

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FLUTTER-BY)L( 6/22/2012 7:34PM

    Yep, we are here for the good, the bad, and the boy I wish it weren't so. Glad you are seeing success.

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CHICKYBEE 6/22/2012 1:16PM

    Wonderful blog. Thanks for a totally different perspective, and the reminder that weight 'loss' is not all good. It has its darker side, and by expressing it, you have given us all another area in which to identify with each other and connect. Sometimes, just an understanding, sympathetic 'pat-on-the-shoulder' is all we need to keep going.

emoticon

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DRULON 6/22/2012 12:17PM

  Many of the things you mention are exactly right, but the one that really hit-the-nail-on-the-head for me is that I still don't see myself as anything but still fat, and I have already lost. I don't have any pix of me as "before" but I'm still going to lose it, so I won't see my self as fat. emoticon

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FITMOMMA4LIFE 6/22/2012 11:29AM

    Took the words right out of my mouth!

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1DUZYW 6/22/2012 10:38AM

    You said just what I have been thinking! Thank you for letting me know I am normal and I can do it!

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YULLABELLE 6/22/2012 9:51AM

    emoticon

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DORY914 6/22/2012 8:48AM

    Thank you for sharing this, its the same stuff I have been struggling with. Its nice to know I'm not alone. emoticon

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