SH9719   40,180
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SH9719's Recent Blog Entries

Getting More Out of What You Do is the Key

Saturday, July 20, 2013

As I was walking my dogs last night I thinking about my almost year long Spark journey. I realized that the key to my success is that I have made an effort to work harder at what I was already doing. It started with my dog walks last summer. Instead of just strolling around the park for 10 minutes with my dogs, I started walking faster and longer. I started walking or riding my bike for trips that I would have taken my car on in the past. When I referee ice hockey there are a lot of opportunities, especially during men's league games, to just coast. I started to treat each game as a workout. It not only improved my officiating, but I got more calories burned out of each session. I do get most of my calories burned from my planned workout, but the incremental difference of getting more out of normal activities gets a lot credit for my success and for helping me maintain my weight.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAINBOWMF 7/22/2013 6:17PM

    Good thoughts

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JUDY106 7/22/2013 5:28PM

    Glad to hear from you. This was a great blog. We need your encouragement. Thanks!!!

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NORWOODGIRL 7/20/2013 11:27PM

    Glad to read another thoughtful post from you!

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MOM_VICKI 7/20/2013 10:43PM

    Congrats on a very successful year! I like your insight of getting more out of what we're already doing!


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FERRETLOVER1 7/20/2013 8:30AM

    Good for you. Plus, I'll bet your dogs are healthier and happier, too!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WEARINGTHIN 7/20/2013 2:57AM

    Good for you for getting more activity in. Last year was my first active year on the Spark. I had a very successful gym member ship that lasted for about 6 months. Today, I rejoined. I'm starting my new exercise program tomorrow. Thanks for your blog, Glenn

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SUSANBEAMON 7/20/2013 1:30AM

  you've got the idea. keep it up. you can do it.

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My Prayers Were Answered Today

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I have lived through what has been the worst 2 weeks of my life. Last fall I posted a blog that I lost a dog. It was a joke in that I had lost the weight of my 50lb dog. I got a lot of great reactions from that blog and I have thought of reblogging the same joke when I lost the weight of both of my dogs a while back. Unfortunately, I have lived the threat of literally losing my dog for the last 2 weeks. My dog Zoey has been in a shelter for 2 weeks because she escaped through a gate with a broken latch and attacked a dog a week ago Monday. I have been devastated and heart broken over the incident and its results since then. Monday I they had a hearing on her status. One of the toughest hours I have had to sit through. It unfortunately was not the first incident with Zoey, just the worst. The attacked dogs owner argued repeatedly that Zoey should be put down. Boy was that hard to hear. When I had a chance to speak, I was almost incoherent and I am normally a good speaker.

At the end of the hearing I was given the option of staying around for an hour and hearing their decision or leaving and having them e-mail the results. The other dogs owner was staying and I was so wrecked I could not say around. This afternoon I had still not heard the results of the hearing. I could not bring myself to call until this afternoon when I could not stand it anymore. I called animal control and was told that I would be getting Zoey back. My relief is beyond the pale. I called my son to tell him the good news and cried for about the 5th or 6th time in the last 2 weeks. I will find out tomorrow what the stipulations are for getting her back. There will be some steps I will happily implement.

Zoey sleeps with me most nights. I miss her so much.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PUPPYWHISPERS 5/16/2013 7:13AM

    I saw your status today, an dI hope you get Zoey back today. I can't imagine the pain you must be going through. emoticon

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ALDEBARANIAN 4/18/2013 8:50PM

    Best hopes for you both. The last one I lost hurt enough that I didn't get another one.

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NORWOODGIRL 4/18/2013 8:33PM

    I'm glad you received the happy ending you were hoping for!

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TURBO6X2 4/18/2013 10:59AM

    Steve I'm glad they decided to give you the dog back, hope it works out. Take care.

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JUDY106 4/17/2013 10:00PM

    I am a dog lover too. I am so glad you got that great news. My dog feels like a child to me. I know you you feel the same way. Good luck with everything. So glad your dog gets to come home with you.

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VIETNOWGAL51 4/17/2013 9:49PM

    I totally understand how you feel. The day before Easter our poodle disappeared for 13 hours. I cried more than once while looking for her. God truly heard our prayers and after 13 hours she just appeared back on our porch. We have 5 grown poodles, 4 babies that are two weeks old and an irish setter that we need to put down in the next couple of weeks due to a decline in her health. I am so happy that Zoey is coming home.

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An Old Guy Returns To The Ice Thinner, Fitter and More Flexible

Friday, April 12, 2013

Last night I learned the difference between just weighing less and being fit. After a 6 year layoff from strapping on the pads to play goalie I made brief forays to the ice this winter figuring my weight loss would allow me to more easily return to the ice. I was not real happy with the results and at 57 years old I contemplated hanging it up for good. I stayed off the ice for the last couple of months to focus on conditioning and mobility/flexibility.

Through a combination of an at home kettlebell snatch program, mobility drills at my kettlebell class and recent yoga I have greatly improved both my fitness and mobility. So, with much trepidation I stepped on the ice to play back to back 3 on 3 games. For 2 hours I did something I used to live for and thought I had lost. While I was very tired last night, this morning I have literally no muscle soreness and very little residual tiredness. (I was able to take my dog for a fast 1 mile walk when I got home.) While I have a long way to go before a get back the somewhat limited ability I had before I "retired", my physical ability to play the game is no longer in question. Now I just have to find the money to replace most of my equipment. My 100lb weight loss has made my equipment ridiculously big on me.

This is just one more thing to thank SparkPeople for!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUDY106 4/17/2013 9:31PM

    emoticon emoticon I am so happy for you. I am finding that I have improved my life so much from last May when I started this. I am amazed sometimes at the things I find that I can do now. I know how much better mental you feel too. Hugs, Judy

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NORWOODGIRL 4/12/2013 9:11PM

    Well done. Thin. Fit. Healthy. Great combination!

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SHAREBEAR1963 4/12/2013 1:48PM

    Congrats!!!!!! You should be very proud!!!!

I am a big hockey fan, too. Our local team, Dubuque Fighting Saints, had a good year and took the Anderson Cup.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ALDEBARANIAN 4/12/2013 11:37AM

    Looking good, guy. What an inspiration!

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NHES220 4/12/2013 9:57AM

    Congratulations on making it back to playing form! Way to go!

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MOM_VICKI 4/12/2013 9:23AM


Congratulations!!!! What an amazing accomplishment and reason to smile emoticon

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My Biggest Day - Proof That Being Fit Pays Off

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Last Saturday I was blessed with the assignment to officiate the Illinois State Girls U14A state championship game in Bensenville Illinois. In 10 year of officiating I was never assigned to such a prestigious game. It was truly an honor. Without the weight loss and conditioning I would never have been considered for this assignment. Getting in shape for officiating was always part of my motivation for this journey, I never expected such positive results.

The experience was everything I hoped it would be. I skated my but off for the entire game and I was very satisfied with how I did. To top it off the game did not end until 5:46 into the first overtime period. We officials are just as excited about being part of such exciting games as the players. I actually bought a state tournament t-shirt even though it has the Blackhawks logo on it. (The state tournament is called the Blackhawk Cup). I am a life long Red Wings fan.

Before the game I asked the photographer who was handling the still photography for the game to get some pictures of the officials. I am going to order some, but here are some links to the shots from their web site. The jersey I am wearing is a size 56 which I barely fit last season. I am now wearing a 46 regularly, but it was the wrong style for the game so I had to swim in that jersey. The pants are also HUGE on my. They are held up by suspenders. I cannot even tighten the belt anymore.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NORWOODGIRL 3/13/2013 10:36PM

    Great shots! Great officiating! Great weight loss! Great increase in fitness! emoticon

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JUDY106 3/13/2013 8:44PM

    emoticon emoticon You are right you are swimming in those clothes, but you got the job done. emoticon emoticon

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AUNTB63 3/13/2013 8:12PM

    Congrats on a job done. Awesome pictures.

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BABY_GIRL69 3/13/2013 7:30PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon God bless, Dee

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BBECKER1955 3/13/2013 7:19PM

    Way to go. emoticon

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ALDEBARANIAN 3/13/2013 6:34PM

    Lookin good, man. emoticon

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DACHI9 3/13/2013 6:24PM

    How nice for you. It is great to know that such hard work can pay off. Keep it up. I'm sure many more things will come to you! emoticon

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2 Months in Seclusion - 97lbs Down and Feeling Like a Failure

Thursday, March 07, 2013

I am basically a very up person. In fact sometimes to serious. My success on this journey in losing weight and getting in shape has been unprecedented in my life. Unfortunately, other parts of my life have not been so successful and I have been sabotaging those parts for the last 6 months. Around Christmas I started on a funk which I have been trying to end.

I have read a number of blogs and articles have said that losing weight and getting fit will not resolve all of your problems. I am living proof of that. My weight loss and fitness progress has been very satisfying. I had a nice reveal with my parents at Christmas time at 207lbs (down 78). My son and I cooked Christmas dinner and that turned out well. I ate way to much but I worked out some each day I was there. I hit my phase 2 spark goal of 195lbs at the end of January. I decided to let my body decide where I would go next and I have been in an aggressive maintenance mode since then and I am now down to 188.6. This is huge for me because I am now at a normal BMI. This could be the first time ever this always chubby kid can be called thin. I have muscle definition I have never seen in my body. I am now wearing 34" waist jeans, down from 46".

The icing on my fitness success came this week when I was picked by my ice hockey referee association to officiate a girls under 14 Illinois state championship game this Saturday. For this former fat official (who desperately needs new ref pants) this is a first and beyond what I expected. To quote the assigners e-mail, "We had many qualified candidates, but you were selected due to your dedication and commitment to our game. " Last year I had trouble getting anything but lower level your games and adult hockey.

Despite all of this there is my funk. The biggest factor in my funk is my lack of a job for the last 10 months since IBM outsourced my job. I have been living off savings, significant referee money and a small side job. But, the money is running out and I have some major repair expenses that I do not have the money to cover. My problem is that I am not doing a very good job looking for a good job. I think that I am afraid that my age will keep me from getting a good job so I do not try enough. I am having trouble getting past that.

The second biggest factor is that I have no personal life. While I am legally married, I have not had a relationship with my wife for about 8 years. Initially it was for my son's sake that I allowed us to share the same roof. Now, her dependence on me financially makes it impossible for me to just walk away. She has not had a decent full time job in more than 16 years. At least now she spends half of her time at her mom's house taking care of her and is only here part of the time when she works at a small part time job.

I think when I was fat I wrote off a personal life as not very likely. Who would want a 57 year old obese guy. Now that I am fit and active I need more. My son lives with me and we share a lot of interests, but that is not enough. I keep on telling myself to do something,, but my employment and marital status keep my on the sidelines.

To make things even worse, since Christmas I stopped blogging and communicating with many of my Spark friends. I did enjoy writing upbeat and hopefully witty blogs. Detailing my successes and discoveries was fun. It took me a while to get past the fear of blogging, but I was enjoying it. Once my funk started I could not talk lightly or proudly of my adventures because I just felt the failure. I have started several blogs to get back on track, but never followed through. Partly now because I felt that I had abandoned my friends.

I have decided to use my recent successes to try to leverage myself out of this state. I need to get back on the horse and work harder to get a job. I want to stay somewhat active on this site. I want to get to 185 which would be 100lbs loss. But, I need to make it more of a background activity and not my focus. Writing this down has been cathartic. I apologize for its length. I usually try for short blogs, but I needed to get this out. I plan on returning to the community part of SP for its help and to help encourage others.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GYMCHICK30 3/13/2013 2:38PM

    good luck with your lose

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CRAZYLIZZ 3/11/2013 3:16PM

  I have been on spark off and on for years. I use MFP more now and have some other sites. I however searched Tabata, came across some spark articles and was led to your blog.

I am saddened in one way by your state of affairs however, I know what you are going through. After a 2 year separation, my husband and I reunited only to have him lose his job. We took a huge financial hit and yes failure is a constant black cloud. I do not have the weight loss success you have. I have lost 37 lbs and still have at the minimum 130 to lose but to get the normal BMI probably 150. I however, have learned that if I do not take care of myself I have nothing for anyone else. I think fat is often a way to fight off and hide from the emotions etc in our lives. We lose the fat and still have the emotions. I would strongly suggest getting into some counseling to help you deal with those feelings. It helped me immensely and though my 23 yr marriage is not perfect we are no longer in the abyss you describe and we were sharing the same roof for at least 6 yrs prior to the separation. I am not saying marriage counseling as at first I think you have to deal with your emotions. Just a thought. emoticon Thank you for sharing. You have inspired me.

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ALDEBARANIAN 3/8/2013 9:35PM

    Hmm. Let's see. 95% of the people who set out to loose weight fail. That means you're in a very elite group of successful people.

It took me awhile to figure out that weight loss is just part of what Spark People is about. I'm sure you'll be able to use more of the resources and build on your success. You have a terrific start on a network to help you move on to the next phase right here.

Here's to many more successes. emoticon

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GOLDILOX8 3/8/2013 7:51PM

  Wow. I am brand new to spark and don't have any friends yet, but I have to say I am so inspired by you. What a transformation you have made. I guess when you totally change your body, and emotional transformation and new sense of awareness come with the territory. The fact that you are recognizing what your obstacles are show me that there is so much hope for you to have the life you deserve.

First I would say though is that you have lost alot of weight and that's good, but since you are usually more upbeat, maybe you should see a doctor and have some blood work taken. A weight loss like that might have changed the chemical makeup of your body and a doctor can help determine of this is more chemical imbalance than dissatisfaction.

I only just read this and I think you can make the changes you need to. We all feel trapped by sometimes. I will keep my fingers crossed that you find a job. You are worthy.

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NEELIXNKES 3/8/2013 11:37AM

    Thank you for sharing with us. The employment situation is still very frustrating for some of us. Hang in there and I hope that you can find a way out of your funk. Have you checked to see if there are any meetup groups in your area that might have free or cheap activities to get to know people? The site is You might find some other like minded individuals that get together over coffee or a board game.

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NORWOODGIRL 3/7/2013 10:35PM

    Glad you're back! We all have broad shoulders and can help share the load. Your friends will understand.

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MISSB8604 3/7/2013 6:48PM

    Please know you're not alone in this and your SparkFriends (especially me) know EXACTLY where you're coming from. You are not alone and you ARE supported.

Need anything? Just ask.

Even though I've lost 100lbs, I too have felt like a failure. It's the nature of the beast I'm afraid.

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PICKIE98 3/7/2013 6:07PM

    As your body grows in a different direction so does your mind,, focusing on you instead of how others depend on you is a biggie. While they lead their lives, you have none. It is a path I am traveling now,, somewhat.. The spouse thing would never have happened with me, but a child is different.
I did have many others taking advantage of me, but I did learn..: Nobody can step on you unless you get down on the ground.
I am SLIGHTLY older than you and it took a lot of years to change me..
I hope that you look in the mirror and see all of the positives you have accomplished. Change is the hardest thing.. one change at a time is best..

Good luck and I think you look great!!!

BTW, volunteering is sometimes the best path to a great career.. never, ever, ever, give up.

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TXTOAD9970 3/7/2013 5:56PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STUDLEEJOE 3/7/2013 5:41PM

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