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Smart words from a Sparkfriend

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

It's been awhile, I know. I'll get back into blogging soon. Things in life have just been crazy. I did manage to climb Half Dome and make it back down again, but I'll do a catchup post on that later. For now, I wanted to share these words of wisdom that one of my Sparkfriends had posted and asked people to pass on.

To everyone out there in Sparkland...I'm not always consistent in reading blogs or checking in, but I care about each and every one of you and am here for you if you ever need anything. emoticon

Asked by a Spark friend to copy and paste .....

We could all use these words of encouragement now and then.

Everyone will go through some hard times at some point. Life isn't easy.

Just something to think about... did you know the people that are the strongest are usually the most sensitive?

Did you know the people who exhibit the most kindness are the first to get mistreated?

Did you know the ones who take care of others all the time are usually the ones who need it the most?

Did you know the 3 hardest things to say are I love you, I'm sorry, and Help me.

Sometimes just because a person looks happy, you have to look past their smile and see how much pain they may be in.

To all my friends who are going through some issues right now-- let's start an intention avalanche. We all need positive intentions right now. If I don't see your name, I'll understand.

May I ask my friends wherever you might be, to kindly copy and paste this status for one hour to give a moment of support to all those who have family problems, health struggles, job issues, worries of any kind and just need to know that someone cares.

Do it for all of us, for nobody is immune.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

READYTOLOSEIT13 10/20/2013 2:16AM

    I loved this, thank you for sharing! emoticon

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SVELTEWARRIOR 10/15/2013 5:17PM


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SEWKNUTTY 10/15/2013 2:57PM

    Hey. Thanks for your visit to my page. And love your background too! We tell our kids this all the time (much to their dismay) emoticon . Good luck on the challenge. We' re doing great this week.

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JCROB1146 10/15/2013 1:12PM

    Good point, we should all strive to be better people.

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My next great adventure...

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

I'm so excited I can barely type about it, but when I get down to thinking about it I think I'm equal parts nervous and excited! My next great adventure is going to be climbing Half Dome in Yosemite National Park!!! Anyone who's familiar with the North Face brand will recognize it as their logo or from iconic pictures like this one:

The part that they don't show you is how you get up to the top, the famous cables!

It's steep with huge drops on either side...people have fallen to their deaths there, but mostly from not following the rules or not paying attention to what they're doing. Blake and I are going with a group of family friends. I think there will be 10 of us in all, ranging from an 8-year old to an almost 50-year old. I'm going to take it slow, but still, I'm secretly hoping I'm not the lollygagger in the back that everyone has to wait for! I guess I'll just take my time and enjoy the nature if I am. Haha!

Some crazy, in-shape people do the summit and descent as a single-day hike in and out. It's 15-17 miles roundtrip with almost 5,000ft elevation gain. There's no way I'm ready for that...luckily, neither is anyone in my group. Instead, we'll hike in about halfway to camp at the beautiful Little Yosemite Valley at the top of Vernal and Nevada Falls. The next morning we'll get up before the sun does to beat the crowds up the sub-dome and to the cables.

To be honest, I think I can make it through the grueling hike. I'm super happy that I've been doing boot camp for the last month. I've gotten much much better at waking up early and it's helped me on the path to being in shape. I did practice hike last weekend with B and my fully loaded backpack and it wasn't too, too bad. I slept like a baby after only 8 miles! The cables are the part that I'm nervous about, but my boots are grippy and I have a pair of gloves. One step at a time and I'm sure I can make it to the top!!


When (not if!) I make it, it will be a huge life accomplishment. I've had my eye on the hike since the spring of 2007, when I went camping in Yosemite Valley with a bunch of girlfriends. We weren't up for it then, but I think I can do it now! Yeah!

In other news, the challenge is going well. I totally pigged out at a Japanese steakhouse on Sunday night and am still working to get that poundage back off. It tasted good as I ate it, but I felt nasty afterwards and the next morning it popped my weight up by like 2 pounds! It's coming back off though now that I'm eating normally. I'm a little sad because since I'm going away into the woods I'm not going to be able to post all my fitness minutes to help my awesome Teddy Bear team along. Actually...I know I'll be doing at least 120 minutes of walking a day. Maybe I can pre-post?

Sooo....if no one on Spark has heard from me for awhile (I should be home late Sunday or Monday at the latest), I've either fallen off the mountain or fallen in love with the wild and decided to stay there! emoticon I'll post pics and stuff when I get back.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 8/7/2013 11:35PM

    What an incredible journey . . . hope you take lots of pictures! Safe Journey, dear!

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MARTHAWILL 8/7/2013 10:07PM

    What an adventure. You go!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BBONET 8/7/2013 6:04PM

    Have fun on your adventure!!! Can't wait to hear about your hike!!! Go girl!

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ADRIENALINE 8/7/2013 3:25PM

    Looking forward to the pics. We Northern Californians are so lucky to have Yosemite so close. I know so many people who have completed this hike. I KNOW you'll do fine!

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ROCKMAN6797 8/7/2013 10:14AM

    What fun this will be!
Have a great time and please share pictures!

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KARENE10 8/7/2013 8:40AM

    Sounds really exciting! Sounds a little scary too emoticon . Have a great time!!! emoticon emoticon

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NYARAMULA 8/7/2013 12:47AM

    Sounds really great. Enjoy the adventure.

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SVELTEWARRIOR 8/6/2013 11:17PM

    Have a great time!!!!!!!!!! I am excited for you!!!!!!!!!

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MUSIC2HISEARS 8/6/2013 6:18PM

    Sounds so exciting! I hope you have a great time!!!

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KISAKATT 8/6/2013 5:46PM

    Wow!! That is so exciting!! I hope that the trip is a blast and I bet you won't be the last one!!

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KEP5217 8/6/2013 5:16PM

  Have fun on your trip! That sounds awesome!

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Happy Birthday to me! Let's Fly, Teddies!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Goodbye 25 and hello 26! Today I may be closer to 30 than I was to 20, but I think I'm just going to have to be ok with that. Who cares how old I am if I am young at heart, healthy and happy! I've been thoroughly spoiled for my birthday. I got to go see Shrek the Musical (hilarious!) and I also got tickets to go see Bruno Mars! So excited!

I am also lucky enough to get to share my birthday with the start of the 5% summer challenge! I've been slacking on getting all my challenge stuff together, but I'm going to get that done this morning. I actually had written this blog post completely, but got an error when it went to post and Spark deleted it!! grr....So here I am writing it again.

For this challenge, I want to, of course, lose my 5% in weight, which will take me down pretty close to my weight goal. I've been working really hard at eating well and exercising during the time between challenges. I ended the Spring challenge at 147.6lbs and I'm starting the summer challenge at 146.3 lbs. My goal is to lost 7.31 lbs to get to 138.9 for my 5% goal. I'm going to do my best to go to boot camp at 5:30 am every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Last month was my first month of camp and I made to 75% of camps (I missed 4). I'm going to try to miss no more than 2 sessions each month. I'm also going to walk or run with Shimmer at least once a day.

Eating-wise, I'm not following any specific diet, but I'm trying to eat lots of freggies and lean meats with less dairy and sweets. It's hard, but I'm managing. I'm also going to track EVERYTHING that I eat. I've been slacking on the little know, a piece of chocolate here and there, a bite of someone's ice cream cone, but I'm going to stop those mini-cheats and make sure to add them to my tracker. I'm also trying to have small healthy snacks (Trader joe's dried apricots! Yum!) between meals so I don't get super hungry and pig out when it is time to eat. I am however allowing myself a treat every now and then (hellllooo birthday cupcake) and I'm not giving myself a hard time about it, just realizing it will take some work to burn off that deliciousness. It's worth it as long as I enjoyed it!

Reasons I want to lose weight (Assignment #3):
I want to be in shape.
I want to be happy with the girl I see looking back at me in the mirror.
I want to stop comparing myself to every female I see.
I want to be able to run, swim, surf, climb anything without being limited by my body or ashamed by how I look.

I know there's more, but I can't remember everything I had written down before. I want to give a huge hug and a thank you to my Sparkfriends who have given me some birthday love. I am eternally grateful for your support and friendship on this journey. Let's fly, Teddies!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ADRIENALINE 7/27/2013 4:32PM

    You have awesome plans. Happy Birthday and good luck on this challenge

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SVELTEWARRIOR 7/27/2013 4:23PM

    Happy Birthday!!!!!!!!!!!! It sounds like you have a great plan in place!

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MUSIC2HISEARS 7/27/2013 2:37PM

    Happy birthday, Mel!!!! I like your attitude about your age! It is just an age, especially when you feel young and healthy! I like your goals! You definitely can do this!!!!

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FANGFACEKITTY 7/27/2013 2:23PM

    Happy birthday!

Great plan for the challenge! I am starting a pound up from where I ended the Spring Challenge.

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EMPRESSAMQ 7/27/2013 12:44PM

    Happy Birthday and good luck on your challenge. Have fun! emoticon

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bootcamps + end of the challenge

Friday, July 12, 2013

Well I was going to post boot camp workouts here on my blog and that seems to have failed. I missed last Friday and Monday because I went home to visit my family. It was hell getting there...literally. Guys, do NOT fly Frontier. Sheesh. They close their counter 45 min before the flight and B, Shimmer, and I ran up at 44 minutes 30 seconds. They wouldn't let us on the plane and we had to fly from two separate airports later that night. Awful!

A weekend of this sure helped though:

I had a huge NSV accomplishment last Wednesday at boot camp. I ran a mile in 8:52!! Just one, mind you, and I was dying close to the end, but I did it!! emoticon My bootcamp friend, Alison, was just in front of me the whole run and I really pushed myself at the end to catch up with her. We finished together. :) When I was running...awhile ago, I could do a 10 minute mile, but haven't done anything close to that since then. I think running outside helped! There were no numbers ticking closer to 1.0 along with a time and I didn't even have RunKeeper telling me how fast and far I'd gone. It was just me and the pavement. I'm going to have to start running more often.

This bootcamp thing is really pushing me. I see other women (camp is all women) who are older, younger, fitter, less fit...every kind of person you can think of, and if they are all pushing themselves to make it through these exercises, I have no excuse not to! I am feeling stronger, waking up early a little easier, and am on the road to being a healthier Mel! Yay!

With boot camp kicking my butt, I managed to lose 1.1 pounds in the final 2 weeks of the 5% challenge. I was in the running for Last Teddy Bear Standing, but FANGFACEKITTY beat me to it. It was fun competing and having the team hold me responsible. Us Teddies did pretty darn well in the challenge! I missed my 5% goal by 2.6lbs, but I lost 5.4lbs along the way! Woohoo! I'm so happy that I found the 5% challenge and can't wait for the next one.

Here's the link to the Summer 5% Challenge team:
If you're even remotely interested in a large supportive group of people to help you as you try to reach your goals, I highly recommend checking it out. It starts July 20th (a week before my birthday! emoticon )!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FANGFACEKITTY 7/13/2013 6:52AM

    emoticon An 8:52 mile is excellent! I'll be happy when I get back to a 10 minute mile again. I missed my 5% goal too, although all I really wanted was to get back into the middle of my maintenance range.

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SVELTEWARRIOR 7/12/2013 9:55PM

    You go girl that is a great NSV!!!!! You did great in The Last Teddy Bear Standing too!!!!!!!!!

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I survived GOYA Camp Day 1!

Monday, July 01, 2013

Thanks to a sweet Groupon deal, I am trying something that I would never otherwise do. It requires me to get my lazy bum out of bed before the sun is up, but I hope I will make some friends and get in better shape because of it.

Before I get there though, I need to work on what to do when visiting family. I spent the weekend with B's family in San Diego and ate like there was no tomorrow. I stayed away from alcohol, but still ended up eating way too much! On the last week of the 5% Challenge too!! Hopefully I can make up for it this week. I did manage to stand up on an unbroken wave while attempting to surf though! Woo!!

Back to the exercise though. This morning I was supposed to drag myself out of bed at the ungodly hour of 4:30 to get to bootcamp by 5:10 (just the first day, then it will be 5:30). I made it there by 5:20 and was surprised to see a group of about 40 women already there walking circles around the top level of the parking garage. I signed in, plunked down my yoga mat in an open spot and joined in. The warm up was easy, but I was so not ready for like hard core exercise. I walk. I jog. I even wog, but this was out of my league!

I want to remember what I did in the bootcamp so I can go back later and see it. I think I'll try recording it as SparkBlogs so then you call can see it too. Today, we divided into 3 large groups and made a circuit around 3 stations. They called it a "Stackers" workout.

My first station was with Autumn:
**all punches were done while holding a set of 5lb hand weights
- 30 jabs and 1 short lap
- 30 jabs, 30 uppercuts, and 2 short laps
- 30 jabs, 30 uppercuts, and 30 sets of jab, cross-punch, duck/squat

Then I ran down to Station 2, being run by this really cute guy whose name I can't remember for:
- 20 jumping jacks and 1 short lap
- 20 jumping jacks, 20 cross-country jumps (left leg back with right hand up, then jump to right leg back, left hand up) and 2 short laps
- 20 jumping jacks, 20 cross-country jumps, 20 star jumps (jump up and point hand and toes out so you look like a starfish and then land with feet back together)

Then I ran up to Station 3, which was run by Molli and Tony for:
- 10 squats (they had to be perfect or didn't count) and 1 short lap
- 10 squats, 10 push ups, and 2 short laps
- 10 squats, 10 push ups, 10 opposite arm/leg reaches (on all fours lift left leg and right arm and extend, bring in to your core, extend again, switch to other leg/arm for last 5)

Once you were done with all three stations, you had to go back and go through them again. I almost made it around twice and then it was time for stretching/yoga (so nice and relaxing!). I thought we'd get to go home then, but our final mission was 30 seconds of planks followed by 30 seconds of bicycle crunches. Wash, rinse, and repeat for a total of 4 minutes...or maybe it was 3.

At the end of the camp, all the newbies were called up to the front. We were personally thanked for showing up and asked if we knew why all the instructors' shirts said GOYA. I knew, but I didn't say anything. Get Off Your A**!!! We ended Day 1 together with a huddle and GOYA cheer/high five.

I was hurting through the workout and felt a bit lightheaded. Next time I really should eat some breakfast beforehand. Or something small. If I ate breakfast...I might lose it. :S I wore my Vibram Five Finger shoes (the KomodoSport ones) and to my surprise, 3 of the 5 coaches were wearing VFFs too! A couple of them even complemented me on mine! :)

That's it for now. I should be getting back to work. :)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLORIDASUN 7/2/2013 8:48AM

    A BIG ole' HIGH fiver for taking THAT on! I mean just the early hour deserves 'bow down' praise as far as I'm concerned! You held your own as a newbie and did your spark buds PROUD! Gooooooo YOU! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SVELTEWARRIOR 7/1/2013 11:37PM

    emoticon emoticon

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ROCKMAN6797 7/1/2013 5:45PM


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