RUSSELL1960   32,053
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RUSSELL1960's Recent Blog Entries

Starting the Plateau Busting Program

Monday, January 14, 2013

I completed the 90 day Spark Coach program today. Its been good. I've learned a lot and I've lost 26 pounds during this three month stretch and I feel really good about that. However, this past week has been frustrating. The scale doesn't seem to want to budge and I have stayed at the same weight all week. Eating two cups of ice cream yesterday at our church youth gathering didn't help - what was I thinking? I realize I've been quite fortunate to have been steadily losing one to two pounds a week and maybe it's not realistic to think that I will continue to lose at that rate to the very end - although I certainly want to. Also, I am not unaware of how good it is to be at my current weight compared to where I was three months ago and how good it is to be maintaining as opposed to gaining! Nevertheless, I'm eager (impatient) to move on. I don't want to be stuck here! I want to lose three more pounds to get to my original target weight of 194. That way I can move on beyond that and get started on my new target weight goal of 175 by summer (with in interim goal for my April birthday). So with these good goals calling my name, being stuck is simply not acceptable. Having completed the 90 Spark Coarch program as of today, I signed up for Spark Coach's 28 day Plateau Busting Program. I'm ready to smash this plateau to bits and get out of these upper 190s. The more distance I can put between me and 200 the better. So we'll see where I am 28 days from now, Feb. 11. Imagine starting the season of Lent in the 180s?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ASHPATCH11 1/16/2013 12:43PM

    you so got this and my the msg update today it looks like it kicked that platue in the butt! keep bringing it!!


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GODS_TEMPLE 1/15/2013 4:00AM

    Maybe you just have to drop your calories a little, or change up your exercise routine. But don't start stressing. Slow and steady STILL wins the race!

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HEALTHIERKEN 1/15/2013 1:59AM

    Happy plateau-smashing!
You can do this.
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EMMAJANEAUSTEN 1/14/2013 7:45PM

    emoticon emoticon

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LADYJ6942 1/14/2013 9:47AM

    The inital weight lose is always the fastest and easiest and then the plateau hits but with spark coach and many other resources here you can push through. Maybe review your journals or fitness journals or trackers to see what you were doing while dropping that maybe you stopped doing now. Maybe changing your meals or workout routine.

Weight lose is like a stubborn child and you've gotta keep digging away until you find the key that works. Good luck!!!

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Hmmm... Balsamic Vinegar

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

What do you do when you have a great tossed salad but discover that there is no salad dressing to be found in the house? That was my predicament recently. Not wanting to go to the store, I decided on a whim to try using balsamic vinegar as my salad dressing. I was rather stunned by the results. It tasted good to me, really good on my salad.

Then I had to wonder why do we have this custom of putting oil with vinegar on our salads? What does the oil add except lots of calories? Can I really taste the oil? Well, no. I couldn't really say that the oil adds anything that I would ever miss now that I think about it. I just added oil by habit, I guess.

A little more thinking got me really sold on the idea of letting the balsamic vinegar handle the salad all by itself. Salad dressings have 60 to 120 calories or more per two tablespoon serving (oil and vinegar has 140). Balsamic vinegar, on the other hand has ten, virtually calorie free. Wow, why waste one's calories on salad dressing when there is such a delightful alternative? I could give up the salad dressing without any sense of loss and have a chocolate covered cherry for dessert instead! With this line of reasoning in place, I bought myself a bottle of dandy balsamic vinegar just for my salads and I've been munching happily away ever since.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ASHPATCH11 1/16/2013 12:44PM

    I should use balsamic vinegar more thanks for posting!!

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ZAHNASGRANDMA 1/9/2013 8:32PM

    I use Balsamic Vinegar or lemon juice on my salad and some veggies.


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TRAZIJANES 1/9/2013 2:54PM

    A little Balsamic Vinegar is great on roasted veggies too... Love it.

Comment edited on: 1/9/2013 2:55:08 PM

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GODS_TEMPLE 1/9/2013 1:38PM

    Some people use lemon juice for some of their salads. My mom used to use pickle juice. Of course she didn't have to watch her salt intake...

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I'm in ONEderland - Wahoo!

Thursday, January 03, 2013

I had to weigh myself at least a dozen times last night and this morning because I couldn't believe it. Not only did I NOT gain weight over Christmas and New Year's Day, I lost weight, and not just one pound but three!!! Even more exciting, this accomplishment puts me in ONEderland. I now weight 199, I dont' remember for sure when my weight first surged over 200 but I know that I have weighed well over 200 for at least fifteen years and it may have been as many as twenty. So I am thrilled to be under 200 after so many years of feeling utterly defeated.

Here is how I did it. I was determined NOT to gain weight over the holidays. I had worked too hard to lose 20+ pounds and I knew I was close to entering ONEderland. At 202, I wanted to be in ONEderland in January of 2013 and I didn't want to make reaching that goal difficult by gaining weight over the holidays. So each day I reminded myself of the vision of entering ONEderland. I took out a guest membership at the fitness center in my parents' hometown so that I could keep working out daily (cardio each day and alternate days of strength training). This was after starting each day with ten minutes of warm up exercise. I also tracked all my food intake, every crumb! I informed my family of my goal and they helped me by leaving some of the desserts (already prepared) in the freezer and by offering healty choces. I checked out some menu items ahead of time on the food tracker so that I knew how much I could indulge in certain high calorie items without blowing my diet. In this way, I was able to enjoy fruitcake, apple pie, ice cream, cookies, and ice cream pie (not to mention stuffing, gravy, casseroles, mashed and scalloped potatoes and meats of all varieties...). I can't say that I was really deprived at all of anything, I just stayed highly disciplined in terms of portion control and sticking to one serving. I did choose not to eat any bread or rolls for the most part. I drank tons of water and kept in touch with my Spark Friends! I also shared what I was doing with family members and inspired a few of them to join Spark People! That's about it. It worked better than I thought it would.

So don't hate me for losing weight over the holidays. I know its a hard time for many people as it has always been for me in the past and some on the other hand chose to relax and enjoy the season which has its justifiable merits. But it was really important for me this year to not lose ground and in my fear of gaining weight I overshot my goal of maintaing and actually lost quite a bit of weight. I have no regrets about that :)

Well, what's next. I can win the "lost 25 pounds" trophy as soon as I lose one more pound. That's a good short term next-step goal. I've also decided to aim for a 100 day streak of getting at least ten minutes of exercise daily (with the intention of getting 250 minutes of exercise a week). This will help me keep moving forward toward my original goal of getting my weight down to 194. That will be the next milestone (30 pounds lost). But I don't plan to stop there. If I can lose weight during the holiday season, then I can surely go on to meet my latest goal of weighing 184 in time for my birthday in April and a very healthy 175 by summer. It really is great to be in ONEderland. What a fantastic way to start the new year!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALTHIERKEN 1/4/2013 12:01AM

    "So don't hate me for losing weight over the holidays."
Hate you????? No way!!!!!! Admire you? yep! Envy you? yep, a little. Respect you? Damn right!

Way to go, SparkFriend!
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EMMAJANEAUSTEN 1/3/2013 8:32PM

    emoticon emoticon

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SSDCQUINCY 1/3/2013 1:47PM

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I remember that feeling of Onederland, and it IS a great feeling!
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ASHPATCH11 1/3/2013 9:08AM

    Love it! You really rocked it out this season not to many people can say that!! Now which way to the beach emoticon !

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GRANNYADA 1/3/2013 7:38AM

    Congratulations!!!!!! emoticon

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CLWALDRO 1/3/2013 7:22AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
I would always cheer someone who made goals and despite everything the world throws at them is able to stay the course and succeed.
I look forward to learning even more about your successful journey to better health

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Contemplating a Cheese Curl

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

My son brought a bag of cheese curls to the table and I considered munching on them but first I picked up the bag to consider the cost. One serving is thirty curls and it contains 150 calories - not too bad I thought. Then my son did the math on a smaller scale: "That means five calories a curl," he said. Could that be right? Indeed, it was 30x5=150. So my mind went another direction. I could actually count the calories as I ate them I thought. One curl - five calories. Two curls - ten calories. Three curls - fifteen calories. Four curls - twenty calories. Five curls - twenty-five calories and so on. Somehow as I contemplated the simple crunch collapse sensation of each curl disintegrating in my mouth with the multiplying consequence of calorie intake increasing in multiples of five I lost all interest in the curls. There simply wasn't enough crunch benefit for the trouble. I watched my family consume the bag with no desire whatsoever in burdening myself with all the math involved. Instead, I grabbed a snack of radishes, carrots, and celery and enjoyed the great munching and crunching pleasures provided by these veggies compared to the curls without needing to worry about the math.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALTHIERKEN 1/2/2013 8:12PM

    Way to go, RUSSELL!!!
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ITSMATT 1/1/2013 7:56PM

    Encouraged by your evaluation of the real benefit/enjoyment you'd get from those cheese curls. I had one of these moment with my favorite candy, the Twizzler, and was just shocked by how awful they are calorie-wise.

Much much better choices to be had out there.

And yep... you can crunch all kinds of veggies without worrying at all about the calories. Pretty cool.

Make it a great day!
Matt

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EMMAJANEAUSTEN 1/1/2013 6:18PM

    Sometimes all it takes is a change of perspective! I am now tempted to do that with all my favorite temptations just to see how much each bite counts.

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Time to Stop

Saturday, December 29, 2012

I have faced the ultimate temptation, walking as I have been these past two days in the midst of tens of thousands of calories just begging to be consumed at two back to back family reunions: nuts, various chocolates, cakes, pies, sweetened drinks, cheese balls, brie, crackers, salmon spread, stuffing, two meats, casseroles, mashed potatos, scalloped potatoes, gravy, breads, cookies, fruit, soup, cranberry salad, apple salad, chips and salsa and more. Thank goodness I looked at the calorie content of one international chocolate placed on the table... 200 per small piece.... I passed. It was not worth it. Yesterday at my wife's family reunion I overshot my recommended calorie intake by just a little. Today, well, I went over by four hundred or so. Not bad, indeed not bad at all considering the total includes apple pie and fruitcake. I also had a very good workout this morning before the feast doing cardio and weight lifting. I'm quite pleased with myself in fact. I bet I ate 7000 calories at each of last year's reunions. So I am thrilled that I could do so much better this year, indulging a bit while maintaining control - I didn't eat any seconds and I limited snacking. Just now I took a little alone time away from the family because I knew I was in danger of blowing it. So I took some time to track my calories and then to write this blog in order to remind myself that I've had enough indulgence for one day - it was fun but enough is enough... NO SNACKING TONIGHT. I am preparing to enter ONEderland in January and there is no point in making that difficult on myself (nor is there any point in making myself miserable tonight by stuffing myself and causing a bad night of sleep). I am quite full and yet still comfortable. My family has noticed that I've lost weight (there's no point in surprising them by gaining all 20 pounds back by tomorrow morning). Therefore, I declare that this day of indulgence was quite successful and on that positive note I'm finished eating for the day - no more - not even a bite, not a nibble, not even a crumb and I'm not kidding, I'm serious! Don't even think about trying to tempt me. So there! I've said it and I've made it quite official by posting it on this blog, and I have thereby made it legal by signing my name (electronically) before all the Spark People witnesses, this 29th day of December, in the year of our Lord, 2012. My lips are now sealed.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ZAHNASGRANDMA 12/30/2012 10:59PM

    emoticon Wonderful, keep up the good work!

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PDQ1203 12/30/2012 7:29AM

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NUTRON3 12/30/2012 6:21AM

    Go, Go, Go!

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GODS_TEMPLE 12/29/2012 11:22PM

    emoticon And I wouldn't want to find out what happens if you break a pledge that you made to all the Sparkers everywhere!!! emoticon

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EMMAJANEAUSTEN 12/29/2012 8:28PM

    emoticon Sounds to me like you came through this day just fine! Congratulations!

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