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Weekly Email & Blog Check-In

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Hi Friends!

I'm creating this blog real quick to get the url for the weekly "Hello From SparkGuy" blog. We're going to start posting that email as a blog on the site this week as well.

I've learned that it's a real production creating an email to send out. I write the content, then Coach Jen does a quick edit to fix my grammar mistakes, and then I have to turn it into html and load it into our email system. Hands-on tech action :).

So, you can either wait until Sunday, or get a head start posting any highlights from this week or goals for next week.

Thanks a bunch to everyone who posted last week -- it was fun seeing more than 400 posts!

Chris (SparkGuy)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIANNEMT 10/22/2014 9:47PM

    Like to hear from you!

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KIPSTER52 10/22/2014 9:43PM

    I am getting my walking in each day but am having trouble doing weight training. Need to do it 3 times a week currently I am doing it once a week. It is something to build on.


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CJPAGS 10/22/2014 8:19PM

    I am consistently exercising at least 4 days a week! This is a good start for me, I usually do way too much and give up after a few days or a week.

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SHEENADEE 10/22/2014 7:51PM

    What? Grammar mistakes? I don't believe it. Hehehe.

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CHANGE_4_ME 10/22/2014 5:25PM

    When I get to busy for formal exercise I add movement and activity to my chores and watch my food choices closely.

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MAUVEBEAR3 10/22/2014 3:10PM

    emoticon Having a great week at the beach and love the new challenge of walking in the sand for my cardio workouts-I took my dog for her first visit to the beach and she is loving it-won't go in the water but likes to scoot up the beach just ahead of the incoming wave. I have even done some of my strength exercises down on the beach-it is so nice and quiet here in the off season-we are at my sister's beach house which is right on the beach. It has a lot of beach houses on this strip but so many are empty that it is like having a giant private beach-on my walks I may see 10 people-walking, fishing, sunning-and that is about the extent of the human factor-Loving the quiet and fresh fish/shrimp that is making up most of our meals. The grill is getting a work out with the fresh veggies we are enjoying with our meals. All in all a pretty good and week and still have 4 more days! emoticon

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THOMASINA57 10/22/2014 12:04PM

    I am going to try and commit to 3 yoga practices this week. After a busy summer, I had to let my yoga go, and my body sure misses it. I did an hour yesterday and I could feel all my sore spots thanking me.



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OXYGEN9 10/22/2014 11:48AM

    Thank you for the weekly motivational e-mails and blog, it keeps me focused! I lost 35 pounds here on Spark but have since been on a plateau for more than a year, I have 35 more to lose to get to my goal. I'm aiming for at least an hour of exercise each day and keep trying to stay within my calorie range, it's hard but emoticon

I can't thank you enough - my life has changed because of SparkPeople! I used to be a couch potato with unhealthy eating habits, now I've been fit and active for two years and I intend on keeping it that way! emoticon My husband is grateful as well and sharing this journey with me.

Keep up the good work!

Andreja (from Slovenia)

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SHEPHERD0348 10/22/2014 9:51AM

    It has been a tough couple of days not making particularly good food choices, but I have managed to keep up the workouts - a minimum of 10 minutes and usually more. Just working one day at a time and hitting the reset each morning.

Sally

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WANTSRECOVERY 10/22/2014 9:22AM

    I am on track for the consistency trophy this month!

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IRISHGAL46 10/21/2014 11:45PM

    I was semi on track but now I am back on track. I am journaling and back to my daily walks.

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1SURFWALKER 10/21/2014 9:38PM

    Happy to be making progress with my goals this week! Soon I will be at my lowest weight in 20 years! Just 1 1/2 more pounds to go! Eating healthier, eating less and exercising each day. Thanks to SP & all the useful tools and all the encouragement I get here! emoticon emoticon

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AMANDAJACKSN 10/21/2014 9:00PM

  I returned to my zumba and kickboxing class.

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PRETTYEYES668 10/21/2014 7:40PM

    I just bought a stationary bike.I started the 8 week program included with the bike yesterday.I am determined to complete these 8 weeks while watching my carbs and keeping my portions under control. emoticon

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BLNBIKERIN1 10/21/2014 6:16PM

  I managed to get my long list of chores done without taking more than one necessary break before lunch time!

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1MUSICAT 10/21/2014 3:42PM

    I kept working to limit eating too many carbs. I made some small steps.

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RICHILA 10/21/2014 3:32PM

    I got over 90,000 steps last week for the first time ever! emoticon

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CANCUNORBUST 10/21/2014 2:03PM

  My husband and I went to Las Vegas last week. My Spark Tracker said we walked 38 miles in 6 days. Even with choosing the occasional pancake or dessert at a buffet meal (and only eating 2 meals a day), I kept my weight the same for that week, which was my goal. Oh, I also climbed a very rocky hill (a small mountain, in my mind) at the Grand Canyon. There was NO WAY I was not going to make it to the top of that hill. The view was amazing.

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CHRIMSONFYRE 10/21/2014 1:17PM

    I've learned sometimes it takes baby steps to get to a bigger goal

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CHARLIE1357 10/21/2014 10:29AM

    I have learned that it is not äll or nothing"! One slip up does NOT mean I should give up and binge, it simply means I hit a slight bump in the road! Happy day everyone!

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RHODESHOUSE 10/21/2014 9:27AM

  I have started tracking my daily steps and watching my calories. The month of October has been sugar-free except one slip up (baby steps). After allowing life to happen and gaining 35 of my 98lbs lost I feel this is a great start to get back on track. Last week I also started doing exercises that helped me to lose the weight like cycling, walking and sitting in the sauna. Hopefully I will start back on my 9Round and Hot Yoga workouts as well. 51 and keeping the body moving....... :-)

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LOVEANTIQUES 10/21/2014 9:25AM

    Earned my bronze medal for walking! I've started taking 1 or 2 walking breaks during work when I'm not in meetings and have convinced my 16-year-old to join me for walks a couple of evenings at home too. It's good for both of us!

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LADYMARCIA1 10/21/2014 9:10AM

    I keep logging in and making every effort to stay on my program. Even if I'm not loosing the weight, I'm staying in the mindset this week.

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NELLIEH1 10/21/2014 8:31AM

    Received my SP Activity Tracker this past week and am learning how to get up to 10,000 steps. Sometimes it seems as if when I march in place, it does not register. But I'm glad for the accountability.

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MAKING-PROGRESS 10/20/2014 11:40PM

    Restarted my 10 min. challenge on Friday and re-committed to the Fall 5% challenge. Getting in the bare minimum so far, but tomorrow will be a day at the pumpkin patch with the kids...should be an enthusiastically exhausting day of fun activities

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TAMWIL2 10/20/2014 10:46PM

    I'm working on tracking all my food this week. I thought I could do this without tracking but I'm clearly not able to control myself enough without it. (If I have to track it, I don't always want to eat it.)

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REDHATSHAPELY1 10/20/2014 9:47PM

    Thanks for starting this weekly blog. It helps me a lot! My goal this week is to
limit my evening eating.
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MICHELLEJ653 10/20/2014 8:33PM

    Thank you for startin this. It has got ten me started and I am thinking I will put the challenge out to my friend. emoticon emoticon

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PENNI68 10/20/2014 6:37PM

    I like getting these weekly emails....helps to keep me aware of Spark!!

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AFFIRMINGLIFE 10/20/2014 5:27PM

  After one week of exceeding my exercise goal by returning to exercise on a daily basis has made a big difference. I had a serious illness and was on high doses Prednisonne for 8 months. The treatment worked, but I lost all core and particularly lower body strength. It has taken awhile to even be willing to return to regular exercises. Fortunately my insurance makes it possible for me to participate in Silver Sneakers at the gym and I had worked with a trainer prior to my illness. I feel great about returning to exercise at a pace that fits my physical abilities.

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RHONDAWI 10/20/2014 4:36PM

  Just trying to do 10 min at least 4 times this week. Todays is done!! emoticon

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PUSHTOTHELIMIT 10/20/2014 4:16PM

    For the past two weeks, I have been making healthy recipes that I find on Sparkpeople and Pinterest. I rarely am able to last this long actually meals and eating healthy! My next goal is to carry that into the weekend too. My weekends are always way too lax.

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BEVANNE45 10/20/2014 4:11PM

    My regular gym has an issue with the gas lines that heat the pool. The water is freezing!! My wonderful husband paid for a new membership at another gym so I could continue to swim every day....He does all he can to help and encourage me. Down 23 lbs so far, 150-200 laps /daily. Best exercise ever!! emoticon

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WENDYINMN 10/20/2014 3:06PM

    I am going back to logging my food. Definitely hit my lowest point -- knee pain when I walk, high blood sugar, over 200lbs -- gotta make changes.

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MISSLORI5 10/20/2014 1:50PM

    Love these new blogs!! I wanted to throw in that over this past month, I have developed a pain in my side, still unexplained but working on it, that kinda limits my activity. My fitness minutes have gone down some. However, something I've realized I am still capable of, without pain is walking, so I go with that. My goal is to make sure I walk everyday. My heart loves me, and in turn, I love myself!! Keep up the blogs, they are inspiring beyond words!! emoticon

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RACHELLYNNS 10/20/2014 1:36PM

    I'm joining the 10 minute challenge. Big thank you to Chris for his free mini-book and 10 minute challenge. I could really relate to many aspects of his story that he shared.

That was motivation for me to get started again with exercise and healthy eating. I have a long history of crashing and burning when starting exercise and watching calorie intake at the same time, then when I get busy at work or with the kids, and I can't sustain it. Then I feel guilty and upset with myself. So my goal will be to do 1o minutes of exercise everyday for the next 30 days (and then hopefully the streak will continue longer, and spread into other areas in my life!).

I've decided to add another goal to eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day and drink my water, as a way to get myself back into eating healthy again. I'm starting to track again, but I've decided that this time I won't be upset with myself if I go over my 1500 calories some days. At least if I eat part of the day in a healthier manner, it's a good first step for me. My hardest point is at work, I teach until 1:50 with very short breaks between classes, and then I am so hungry that I don't want the healthy food that I've packed, and I go straight to the coffee shop across from my building and end up getting junk food instead. I am not sure if this is more of an emotional response to dealing with stress, or maybe I need to pack foods that I am more excited about or that are more satiating. Or simply take my lunch outside to get out of my office area for awhile.

I am inspired to see so many people's stories that are very inspiring, thank you to all who share!

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SPARHIALA 10/20/2014 12:58PM

    About 10 days ago I received my Withings Pulse Ox pedometer and three days ago I committed to taking 20,000 steps/day...so far I have only reached that goal one time (2,500 steps short each day the past couple of days). This week I am committed to getting to the 20,000 steps.

I broke my ankle in January which required surgery (a plate and two screws). While on medical leave I lost 15 pounds and have since gained 20 pounds, so I'm up 5 pounds and the heaviest I have been in nearly 10 years. I am COMMITTED to getting this weight off for good.

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MTRANCHWOMAN 10/20/2014 12:29PM

    Today I officially weighed in at my first goal of 230. Onward!

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MORTICIAADDAMS 10/20/2014 12:15PM

    I have recently been sick so my goal this week is to maintain my streak of brushing my teeth twice a day and to remember to take all my meds and drink at least 2 cups of herbal tea and plenty of fluids.

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KATYDID! 10/20/2014 11:40AM

    Ready to renew my comittment, ready to do 10 minutes activity (minimum) each day and to track nutrition (within ranges). Thanks Chris for being awesome! emoticon

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CLWELSH 10/20/2014 11:33AM

    Thanks for these motivational minutes! It reminds me to get back on track!

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HIMELISSA2007 10/20/2014 10:49AM

    Doing fit food challenge week3. Exercising every day. Spinning sparkwheel every day. And not giving up.

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FRAGILEPETALS 10/20/2014 10:34AM

    My goal for this week is to eat at least 3 cups of vegetables everyday.

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HIMELISSA2007 10/20/2014 10:02AM

    Doing fit food challenge week3. Exercising every day. Spinning sparkwheel every day. And not giving up.

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ELLIEJOSIE 10/20/2014 9:21AM

    I've had flu and it is a doozy. So although I was on a good exercise streak, I am back to square one, after I recover (not there yet).

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LILORITA 10/20/2014 8:50AM

    I want to control my sweet tooth - to avoid sweet snacks

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7FARMER 10/20/2014 8:49AM

    Thanks for starting these weekly emails they are a big help

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BRIDGETNMCUP4ME 10/20/2014 8:08AM

    I have started my exercise streak and this is day three. I am committed to honesty in my food logging habits, which should make a huge difference in my self esteem. I can be SUCH a liar.

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LEEKRAFT1 10/20/2014 8:08AM

  Today is going to be the day I start and will stick to my new lifestyle, yesterday I removed all the tempting sugary sweets from the house and filed the fridge with fruits and veggies. I even bought a Sparks tracker. I'm ready to give it my all.

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OI4GOTIT1 10/20/2014 8:02AM

  I'm down 9.4 lbs! I'm excited so this week goal is stay focused on portion size and parking my vehicle further away at work, grocery store so it will make me walk further. Yoga is in the near future.

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Weekly Email Check-In

Friday, October 10, 2014

Hi Everyone!

Thanks for visiting this blog from my weekly email (or from another area of the site)!

This is where you can post any goals that you reached last week and any goals for the upcoming week. You can post ANY steps -- no matter how big or small.

Have a great week ahead.

As a bonus, here is a song from Pharrell Williams mentioned in the email:



Are you Happy?!


SparkCheers!

Chris (SparkGuy)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LADYBUGSY 10/22/2014 8:57AM

    I'm a list making kinda gal. Sometimes I just can't or more like don't do anything on it. I'm not productive and just sleep all day. My goal this week is to do one thing on my list every day. So far it's been working.

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CMITCHELL34 10/22/2014 8:09AM

    My plan is to go to Curves after work everyday.

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LORIKNAPP 10/20/2014 4:06PM

  I have not gone to the gym in 2 weeks. TODAY, I start going again.

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LSMELA 10/19/2014 6:45PM

  I had fell off the wagon and stopped going to the gym. I was doing great and then lost my fitness partner. It just put me in a slump. But today I realized I can do this just as easy with or without a partner. I did it before and I know I can do it again. I was on a great lose journey and had lost 25 pounds. I gained 10 back over this emoticon emoticon summer. So my goal is for this week is to go back to the gym 3x a week.

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SANDSGIRL26 10/19/2014 2:57PM

    My goal for this week was to find a place close to home to walk on the weekend (I have a dedicated place close to work to walk Monday-Friday). I found a perfect place and walked 2 miles there both Saturday and Sunday.

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LVHOPEJOY 10/19/2014 10:40AM

    My goal has been to get starting working out again, however that hasn't started yet. Tomorrow will be a good day to start. I lost a l lb. this week, not by trying, only eating what I feel like. I miss not getting on SP everyday, that changes today.

lvhopejoy emoticon

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NDCAROL 10/18/2014 12:15PM

    This upcoming week, I'm going to take care of myself and my hubby by taking the week off from work! I discovered that I had accumulated 6 weeks of PTO (paid time off) because I never want to leave the rest of the office short handed. This has, however, "shorted" me of relaxation and recreation, which has a definite impact on my attitude. So hopefully when I go back to work, I'll be in a better place.

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PATRICIAAK 10/18/2014 11:18AM

    Your e-mail was SO RIGHT ON! In the Bible it states love your neighbor AS yourself. This, to me, means EQUAL - not more or less.
I am happier and healthier when I take action to take care of me.

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MARIJA77 10/18/2014 8:56AM

    I want to renew my commitment to myself to have balance in my life.

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KMRJPR 10/17/2014 1:10PM

    My goals for this upcoming week are to return to the gym, need to work up the courage to go (not sure why it's intimidating me--but it is). I think because I worry what others will think when they see me there.

I also have pilates lined up for this weekend and of course my mini 10 minute workouts with my husband.

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CAPTAINMORGAN2 10/17/2014 9:58AM

    I am going to do my subsctibed stretches and exercises every day, step up my steps and try and do one spark exercise a day that I have saved on my computer. One knee needs to be replaced so some of these things i can't do. Have a good week.Oops, and walk my dog thos the knee doesn't make that wasy!! emoticon emoticon emoticon


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TUBLADY 10/17/2014 8:00AM

    I continue to work on my renewed lifestyle, that Spark has helped me in ways that I never thought possible.
I listen to "Happy" 3, 4 times a week.
It's such an uplifting song.
Thank you
Tisha emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LULULOWRY 10/17/2014 7:41AM

    I lost five pounds and finished a quilt!

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ANNARUTH2 10/17/2014 7:06AM

    Was on vacation for 11 days and did not gain any weight! emoticon

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MOM195 10/17/2014 5:29AM

    No more excuses!
emoticon

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TIMEHASCOME56 10/16/2014 2:07PM

    emoticon

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AZCATLVR2 10/16/2014 8:20AM

  Inspiring post. Last week I went to the gym twice. This week three times. I hope to get a little extra workout time today. I'll do the 10 min. morning workout today. emoticon

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MISSSHELBY2014 10/16/2014 12:18AM

  Signed up at the gym last week and have been going to work out every other day, today I did 30 min. on treadmill felt great!

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PUGLOVER1999 10/15/2014 11:36PM

    I am excited that I am walking at least 6000 steps / day (except when I had a house guest for 3 days). My SPAT motivates me to walk more steps to round out a number!
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FITKITTY3 10/15/2014 3:51PM

  Getting back into it, dusting off the treadmill tonight and walking for 15 mins.

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WANTSRECOVERY 10/15/2014 1:47PM

    I am meeting my workout commitment!

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JCDUBEA63 10/15/2014 1:43PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RAESUN54 10/15/2014 12:44PM

    I am down 30 lbs since I joined SparkPeople at the end of 2008. I have had a lot of ups and downs due to personal and physical problems. But, as I am told. I am a fighter and strong. I will do it. I am for 10 but always have to beat what I did before. I am competitive with myself. I can do it.

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BLUECAFE 10/15/2014 12:26PM

    Today I started a 4 week program at my gym. WooHoo!

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MESHEE1227 10/14/2014 11:46PM

  I've stumbled a lot. I've straighten up a lot. One day I'll get it right and I was thinking today! I go to Planet Fitness everyday. It separates me from all the hustle and bustle of everyday. It gives me a chance to concentrate on me. My health, my goals. I'm on a journey to health and I'm glad I have this Spark on my side! emoticon

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CBELT40 10/14/2014 9:10PM

  Just had a pretty big birthday and all I can do is feel bad about my weight. This blog Sparked me because I received a Spark birthday card and it came to me that I need to get healthy! I am going to start my work out and new eating plan in the morning! Thanks Spark for reminding me I need to come first!

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BONNIEB1947 10/14/2014 4:29PM

    I am learning to fit in some walk times during my work day. Any opportunity/excuse to get out of the office and stride out is taken! This week I was able to do it twice, and I hope to be even more inventive as time goes on.

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MYRL22 10/14/2014 2:55PM

    After letting myself go for a month I picked up my diary on Sunday and rededicated myself to a healthy lifestyle to achieve my ideal weight. So Back to Spark I am. Ran 6 miles between yesterday and today and I feel great. Can't wait to see me in December... emoticon SO EXCITED!!

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KERRY10231 10/14/2014 2:07PM

  Joined the gym 3 weeks ago and have committed to 5am workouts on Tuesday and Thursday. Went both days last week and today.

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PENNI68 10/14/2014 2:02PM

    I bought the Spark Tracker....

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VGDOLLY 10/14/2014 2:00PM

    I have been away - so I have spent time this morning catching up on my teams posts and regrounding myself and my motivations.

Thank you for the inspiration.

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CRAZYGROVER 10/14/2014 1:38PM

  I am going to get back to 15000 steps a day. Also plan to do at least 10 minutes of strength training each day.


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NEWBIRTH2014 10/14/2014 12:56PM

    My goal for this week as a member of the The Pink Panther Fall Frenzy Challenge is to play a bingo game so far so good - I've signed up for one of challenge in the past on spark but I dropped out… I'm going all the way for this challenge.

emoticon and WILL DO IT! emoticon

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AMILNEFLIP 10/14/2014 12:47PM

    This week is my "no excuse" week. For the second day in a row, I've gotten up and got 30 minutes of cardio in on the elliptical when it would've been easier to hit snooze and roll back over!

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SPOKENWORD 10/14/2014 12:43PM

    Being consistent with my 400 fitness minutes per week, as I prepare for my MBA graduation and 52th Birthday in December! emoticon emoticon

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MICHELLEJARV 10/14/2014 12:23PM

    Day 9 of following my food plan! Woo Hoo! I had a birthday celebration on Saturday night at a restaurant and then to the theatre and kept to my planned menu. Release of weight is happening, thank you!!! emoticon

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FYRWRKS 10/14/2014 11:21AM

    Off to Palm Springs for some vacation this week! Bringing along the gear with me so I can get in a swim workout every day verses simply laying beside that pool for the week.

And that makes me happy!! emoticon

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1MUSICAT 10/14/2014 10:49AM

    Great song! Very upbeat and helps to uplift people and make them happy! This past week I decided to start tracking what I'm eating. It's helping. I've lost weight before and am just restarting the journey to return to a lower weight again. I have a realistic goal and love the next weekly Spark e-mail and this blog!

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PTWHISK 10/14/2014 10:32AM

  I am HAPPY! This is a great motivating song! I have reached my weight loss goals but now need to quit smoking...I know, how can I be so healthy but still smoke...truth is, it is addiction. Anyone with help or motivation, please share!! Have a spectactular day!!! emoticon

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LINNBEAR 10/14/2014 9:52AM

    I was traveling the last two weekends. I often convince myself that it is too complicated to follow healthy eating habits when traveling. This time I continued to track, and make good choices. I also took the not good day in stride and kept going.

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KDLOGAN 10/14/2014 9:24AM

  I am making a mental note to take at LEAST 10 minutes a day to do SOME sort of physical activity. It is really really helping. At 9:30 last night, I laced up my shoes and walked for 1 little over 10 minutes. I did 1/2 a mile. I was reflecting when I was able to do 1 mile in 15 min. I found myself wanting to reach for that goal. I kept it moving for another 10 min when I got back in the house.

Also, thanks for the reminder to do something for myself everyday. I am still trying to wrap my head around that fact that this is FOR ME!

Keep the motivation coming. It really does help. emoticon

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HVJOHNSON 10/14/2014 9:06AM

    Started a beginning kettlebell class - feeling motivated! emoticon

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LEWLEW150 10/14/2014 8:17AM

    Thank you for the reminder that I have to love and take care of myself in order to adequately be able to take care of others!!!! I am going to speak positive words to myself each day...I LOVE ME!!!!!!!

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DMARTIN106 10/14/2014 7:59AM

  Great song! I just participated in a flash mob, to this song. Was in the cafeteria at work. To kick of 'Healthy Workplace Month' for the month of October. I try to get involved in all health/wellness activities promoted at work, including working out at our company gym.

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PLAYFULLKITTY 10/14/2014 7:02AM

    Goal is to listen to a song...or two...that make me just want to move :)

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AMANDAJACKSN 10/14/2014 6:33AM

  I took a kickboxing class, working out does make me happy.

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FAVORED721 10/14/2014 6:26AM

    This week I am decreasing my fat intake and increasing the fiber!

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JODY-S. 10/14/2014 12:05AM

    I recently renewed my efforts to lose weight (again) and am down 10 slow to lose pounds. My best trick - exercise first thing. No breakfast until after my workout session. I am on day 37 of a streak. WooHoo!

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WARRIORGIRL121 10/14/2014 12:04AM

    I LOVE this song! Hard not to dance when I listen to it! emoticon

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KALEWINE 10/13/2014 10:55PM

    This week I am not going to let the cookies get the best of me.

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Day 175 Update: Nature In Action

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Hi Everyone!

My second “Hello from SparkGuy” email went out to more than 2 million people last night. Hopefully some of them read the Mini-Book and it can help them reach their goals!

Today is Day 175 of my 10+ streak and I’m feeling great. Just talked to someone on SP with a 1,270-day streak!

The past week has been an interesting “nature display” at our house – some positive and some negative (ok, downright scary).

First, yesterday one of our 6 chickens was the first to lay an egg from the young flock. Today, we got another egg. It was a great experience for my oldest son; he was down there right when it happened today. We’re excited to have fresh eggs now to go with our organic garden. The garden is running out of steam for the season.

Second, last week my wife stopped her car and took a photo of a bobcat that was a few houses away from us. We live up in the hills and bobcats come around fairly often. The other day we saw one stalking a squirrel in our yard. After I scared it off, my wife wanted to "extra-scare it" so she went out with a spoon and pan and made a bunch of noise because we’re afraid of the bobcats trying to eat the chickens. Bobcats aren’t THAT large, but right when you see one, the hairs on your arm stand up because you know that it’s a “big cat”. Luckily they are pretty skittish and stay out of your way. I sent the photo around to my family and my brother responded that it “looks cute.” So, I sent him this video so he can see what they look like when they are agitated (this one looks a bit larger than the ones in our area):


Third, and more dangerous than bobcats by far, today I killed 10 black widow spiders around the exterior of our house. We also captured 3 of them to save just in case someone is bitten. It’s crazy looking at a tiny spider that has the potential to kill people! I did research and found some sources say that the spiders don’t like certain essential oils, so I’m spraying those around the house as the first attempt to get them to leave and then keep them away (in addition to smashing them).

Fourth (thankfully we haven’t seen one of these yet), we have to keep a slight eye out for mountain lions. These are rare at our level, but every now and then will come down from higher up in the hills (this just happened in my mother-in-law's neighborhood). Some of the local trails warn about mountain lions and say, “if attacked by a mountain lion...fight back” because you are in big trouble if you don’t fight back against the largest big cat in the US.

Ok, now I’m off for a different type of dangerous display – watching an NFL football game between my hometown Cincinnati Bengals and the New England Patriots.

Hope everyone has a great week ahead! What small steps will you take to reach big goals?

SparkCheers!

Chris (SparkGuy)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RHLMART 10/15/2014 4:24PM

  Diatomaceous Earth is completely natural way to keep bugs away and has thousands of other uses as well. Just Google it.

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AHAPPYSPIRIT 10/10/2014 5:36PM

    We have Bobcats at our lake property about an hr from our home. I'm always fearful of them getting our little white dog. More than that, I am very fearful of Black Widow spiders. Take care and be safe.

Congrats on your 175 day streak!

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ANNARUTH2 10/10/2014 9:09AM

    Stay safe Chris and keep the family safe!

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CAROLJ35 10/9/2014 9:10PM

    We live in NC half of the year and our grandson wanted chickens for Christmas one year. The first 12 were eaten by a fox, then his dad had to build really sturdy fence to keep the chickens in when he got a new batch. Rarely could they free range.
Then it attracted the black snakes who got into their pen and ate the eggs. Kept us all on our toes!
Now the chickens are gone due to old age and we really miss those wonderful brown eggs.

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JLGLENN3 10/9/2014 8:10PM

  I just read you mini book and it was very uplifting and motivational. I CAN do at least 10 minutes a day. After having a baby at age 46 (four years ago) I'm finding it more than a little difficult to get back into a good exercise and healthy eating routine. Thanks so much for the inspiration.

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TERRIJ7 10/8/2014 5:42PM

    I wouldn't want to meet a bobcat close up!

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SPARKFRAN514 10/8/2014 1:44PM

    Thank you for the support you give your millions of members as we journey to good health the book is some thing we cane go back to and get re sparked when needed
thanks

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POLSKARENIA 10/8/2014 12:17PM

    We have a holiday home in French countryside, but that's far safer😀

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MASRITE 10/8/2014 12:38AM

    Black widows, bob cats and mountain lions, oh my!! That's some scary stuff. As I was reading, I was waiting for the mention of snakes. Those really do scare me!!

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REGILIEH 10/8/2014 12:00AM

    WOW!!!

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SPEDED2 10/6/2014 8:29PM

    Hate spiders and snakes! Nasty creatures!

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ELLIEJOSIE 10/6/2014 8:02PM

    I'll take the occasional skunk,raccoon, groundhog, deer, and coyote in SW Ohio over your wildlife, at least before winter sets in. But we do have black widow and wolf spiders, and keeping the area cleaned up is KEY to prevention. Remove the webs, debris, and dust/dirt. Sweep down anything on walls, windows, floors. Your post was fun to read!

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CAROL6X 10/6/2014 7:53PM

    Sounds like a great place to live!!! Bet you have a back up generator for the winters.

Carol

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CHANGING-TURTLE 10/6/2014 6:07PM

    Good job on keeping those scary critters from your home. We had a mountain lion in our neighborhood and I live in Sacramento, you never know when they will come down from the mountains

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FORMYDARLINGS 10/6/2014 4:43PM

   

Chris!!!! WHy do you live there? Black widows, mountain lions, Bobcats!!!! I get upset when there is a coyote in the area. LOL Good thing you guys have a great house and view. ( I think ).


Gini

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JSEATTLE 10/6/2014 4:42PM

  Wildlife around my house is squirrels and raccoons. Occasional coyote not far from here but not in my neighborhood yet. Would love to enjoy some fresh eggs! Best of Luck on your mini-book, you have done a great service to many including me.

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52BINCE 10/6/2014 3:49PM

    Look like your on a roll, not only in health n fitness but, enjoying the things you love.......

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QUILTINGB52 10/6/2014 3:18PM

    Congrats on your continued Streak!!!

emoticon to the chicken laying!!

emoticon Bobcat... better in your yard, than in mine!

Am working on massaging my Lymph nodes to reduce stagnant 'protein based' fluid in my Lymphatic legs (hate this disease). My legs engorgement are so out of control, so massaging is a wonderful relief.

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JEANNETTE59 10/6/2014 2:27PM

  Loud noises are a good deterrent to wild life. If you live in bear or bobcat country always carry a loud swirl whistle with you. It serves two purposes, frightens the animal and alerts other nearby people.

As to the agitated bobcat, I think I'd be pretty ornery if someone stuck me in a small rusty cage. I hope it was only there til it could be transported and released in an unpopulated area.

Love your natural lifestyle.

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MSLZZY 10/6/2014 2:26PM

    You could be living in the Black Hills of South Dakota right now.

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SUZMANNIE 10/6/2014 2:20PM

    Grrrrr...I wouldn't want one of those in my back yard. We think we're so exotic where I work, out east on Long Island, NY, because we have wild turkeys and deer outside, but they're very tame in comparison to your "nice kitty".

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IAMAGEMLOVER 10/6/2014 2:15PM

    We have lots of spiders, my landlord is getting exterminated this week. Thankfully, they aren't black widows.. I would be afraid to let my kids out to play. emoticon on your streak.

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IDICEM 10/6/2014 11:37AM

  Congrats on your streak!

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GABY1948 10/6/2014 11:31AM

    I am SO glad I don't live where you do!

emoticon on your streak. Through your blogs and some other really good ones I follow I am learning the importance of streaks....all kinds of streaks. So I actually started one for eating and I am on day 6. I am excited about it...been here 6 years this month and this is my first "consciously made" streak!

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PATTISTAMPS 10/6/2014 10:46AM

    Yikes! Love the chickens/fresh eggs, terrified of the bobcat and the Black Widows! Don't think I'll come for a visit, LOL.. (OK, so you can't invite 2 million people.. I really do get that!) Here in FL, snakes, gators and icky cockroaches are our scary things. We do have FL panthers, but have only seen one once in 23 years, so don't worry much. Coyotes are becoming a problem, and I did see a wild boar on my morning walk once day.

Have a GREAT week! emoticon

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MCJOYFUL 10/6/2014 10:12AM

    The bobcat was scary but the black widow spiders sound even scarier. Oh my!

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DJSHIP46 10/6/2014 9:27AM

    You're post makes me glad I live here not there, the mad cat was interesting, & I agree that football is dangerous (can't figure out why people play that game and other people watch it... very sad)... Thanks for the mini-book emoticon

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AQUAGIRL08 10/6/2014 9:12AM

    Scary bobcat! I am glad that you got rid of the spiders. Knowing that they are black widow spiders would scare me too.

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CZESTES 10/6/2014 8:19AM

    Do you keep one of those noisy tasers around? It is suggested in Colorado Parks to carry a taser in order to frighten off bears and large wildlife. I carry mine on walks to frighten coyotes and wild dogs on my walks. The noise annoys the tar out of them and they do not want to get close to it.

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GOANNA2 10/6/2014 5:08AM

    Scary bobcat. Glad you got rid of the spiders.

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CATHYGETSFIT 10/6/2014 3:29AM

    emoticon emoticon on your 175 day streak! I've never seen a bobcat that big! He's much bigger than any I've seen. We have lots of other wildlife too. We have coyotes here in southern Missouri and oddly enough there have been sightings of mountain lions here. The conservation department has had pictures sent in to them of mountain lions here. We saw one once late at night. It was so quick though that if you had blinked you wouldn't have seen him. I'm thankful we don't have black widows here. We have brown recluses but they aren't as dangerous as black widows. We also have wolf spiders that can get as big as your hand! No kidding!! I remember being really afraid of black widows when we lived in Colorado. They were everywhere....or so it seemed to me. lol

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NEW-CAZ 10/6/2014 3:10AM

    Great, have a good week

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JAMER123 10/6/2014 12:01AM

    Glad you are now getting fresh eggs. As a farm girl growing up my job was to gather eggs and wash them, 300 laying hens and gathered them twice a day. We had foxes to go after our chickens.
Have a great upcoming week.

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DALID414 10/5/2014 11:16PM

    Scary stuff! emoticon

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PATRICIAAK 10/5/2014 10:50PM

    I remember gathering fresh eggs as a child when we visited my grandparents.

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NHEMBERGER 10/5/2014 10:46PM

    Just finished the mini book. Ready to get over this plateau. Thanks Sparkguy!

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NELLIEC 10/5/2014 9:52PM

    Since I have a 331 week streak of 120 minutes of exercise per week, I am pretty confident that I have at least 2317 days over 10 per day. emoticon

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GABIBEAR 10/5/2014 9:47PM

    Great going on your streak Chris!!! Keep up the good work!
That wild bobcat sure looks unhappy in the cage. Good thing they are skittish! Is there a way to get the spiders in check? That would scare me to have them by my family.

I haven't gotten the chance to look at the book yet, but am looking forward to seeing it!

Have a great week ahead!

Gabi


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NUTINLOOKSLIKE 10/5/2014 9:20PM

    That's cool that y'all got your first chicken eggs!

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ROXYZMOM 10/5/2014 9:07PM

    Oh my goodness! The spiders would creep me out. Are you going to call an exterminator?? Maybe an electric fence around your coup would help keep the bobcat at bay.

Thanks for the book. I am going to share it with my husband.

And...Congratulatio
ns on your exercise streak!

You are doing great!!

emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/5/2014 9:11:55 PM

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ETERNALPINKGLOW 10/5/2014 9:05PM

    Like a beautiful garden emoticon

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KITT52 10/5/2014 9:05PM

    thanks for sharing...wonder what kids rid of spiders....spray doesn't seem to work

Have a healthy week

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SUSIEMT 10/5/2014 9:04PM

    Congrats on your current 10-Minute streak! Also on the release of the mini book. Hopefully the people that download it read it and understand it.

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WALLAHALLA 10/5/2014 8:58PM

    I hate spiders. Hope you get rid of them before anyone gets bit. They can kill your pets as well.

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1CRAZYDOG 10/5/2014 8:48PM

    Wow! We have deer, wild turkey, ducks, but not anything dangerous.

Spiders, on the other hand . . . lots of them. Not my favorite thing!

Congrats on your mini-book release! It's awesome. Thank you!


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MAGGIEVAN 10/5/2014 8:41PM

    Chris, you are most welcome to move to New Zealand. We don't have dangerous animals here, and the most irritating is the sand flies on the West Coast.

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ALICIA363 10/5/2014 8:35PM

    emoticon Congrats on your 175 day streak!

This week I need to focus on getting enough sleep. Thank you for spark people, and for not allowing me to delete that goal!

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CREE123 10/5/2014 8:35PM

    Hi Chris!!! Its really nice to see your blog post today!! Didn't know u did such things! I live in cougar and lynx country as well...hello from Alberta.

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

10+ Fitness Minutes Mini-Book Launch!

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Hi All

I'm happy to give you an early look at the final version of the 10+ Fitness Minutes Challenge Mini-Book if you'd like to take a look!
sparkpeople.com/10


Feel free to share this version with anyone who might be interested -- whether they are SP members or not. I'll launch this broadly in my email this Sunday that goes out to more than 2 million of my closest friends :).

In about a month, we'll be launching new Streak features on the site to go along with this.

Thanks a bunch for your support and have fun reaching your goals!

Today is Day 172 of my streak. How about you?

SparkCheers!

Chris (SparkGuy)
emoticon


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LADYVOLSFAN1954 10/14/2014 2:03PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JUNETTA2002 10/13/2014 10:54AM

    I can do 10 minutes a day no problem. I just need to do it.

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KNITTINGNAN22 10/10/2014 12:22PM

    Thanks! You keep us going! Awesome book!

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KMRJPR 10/8/2014 1:11AM

    Thank you for this blog and for the motivation!

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DOINGNOTTRYING 10/7/2014 1:49PM

    Just downloaded the mini book. Thank you very much !

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MOMMY445 10/6/2014 5:33PM

    thanks for the sneak peek!

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TIMEHASCOME56 10/6/2014 3:31PM

    emoticon emoticon

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NYARAMULA 10/6/2014 3:03AM

    emoticon

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SCBALOG 10/5/2014 3:35PM

    I love this challenge - have been sharing the link in all my groups and pages #richfitclub and encouraging everyone I know to join Sparkpeople and take the Challenge!

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SHUDDEC 10/5/2014 11:05AM

    What a gift you are to the world!!! Thank you so much for sharing your story, your inspiration with us and inviting us into SparkPeople.

Thanks for the great ebook, looking forward to hearing/reading more emoticon

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NOLAHORSERIDER 10/5/2014 8:54AM

    You are truly an amazing person! Thank you so much for sharing your story and for the encouragement to so many people to help them get healthy! The 10 Min Mini Book is awesome too!

God Bless!

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LEANJEAN6 10/5/2014 8:37AM

    It sounds like a great idea!-----

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NEW-CAZ 10/5/2014 8:04AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SPARKFRAN514 10/3/2014 10:12PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon thank you for all your effort in helping so many reach their goals and not charging us along the way i would never be able to do it if you had a fee. thank you millions for this free gift you give us . way to go on your challenge too great cover

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DJSHIP46 10/3/2014 7:20PM

    emoticon ... Shared emoticon

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JSEATTLE 10/3/2014 6:32PM

  AWESOME achievements on both your mini-book and your streak!

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IAMAGEMLOVER 10/3/2014 3:38PM

    emoticon

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GABY1948 10/3/2014 1:43PM

    Thank you so much....I DID share it! emoticon emoticon

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PATTISTAMPS 10/3/2014 11:11AM

    Woo Hoo!!! I'm so glad it is out! I will be sharing with family and friends!! TODAY!!
emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 10/3/2014 11:02AM

  emoticon emoticon

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POLSKARENIA 10/3/2014 8:02AM

    Such a great idea - thanks!!

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BARBARAROSE54 10/3/2014 7:37AM

    emoticon

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GOANNA2 10/3/2014 6:46AM

    emoticon emoticon Read and downloaded.

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WARRIORGIRL121 10/3/2014 1:35AM

    Downloaded and read it... looks great! emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 10/3/2014 12:23AM

    emoticon emoticon

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JEANKNEE 10/3/2014 12:23AM

    Thanks for the sneak peak. Downloaded, read and streak started.



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JAMER123 10/2/2014 11:56PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon Fantastic release date!

And as for my "streaking", I seem to be good for 3 days and then like today broke it BUT we have a heat index of 110 so didn't go outdoors! Will be going for #1 tomorrow and am sure to make it as we will be at our winter home and unloading all the items we brought down with us to add to our collection in our new home!

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SUSIEMT 10/2/2014 11:03PM

    Woo Hoo!!!

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TERRIJ7 10/2/2014 10:42PM

    Thanks for the sneak peek :)

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MATER88 10/2/2014 10:38PM

    I have been on SparkPetheople for 6 years. Reading this reminded me of what I have accomplished in those years. But it also sparked me to ramp up my streaks. I don't think I ever imagined keepinging up a streak into the thousands of days. Thanks for re- igniting the spark in me. emoticon emoticon

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_CYNDY55_ 10/2/2014 10:34PM

    emoticonfor sharing the sneak peak emoticon

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KOHINOOR2 10/2/2014 10:20PM

    emoticon emoticon

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BETRHO48 10/2/2014 10:20PM

    emoticon

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PEANUTSMOM96 10/2/2014 10:18PM

    day 43 for me
Congratulations on the book, I look forward to reading

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REGILIEH 10/2/2014 9:44PM

    emoticon

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CATHYGETSFIT 10/2/2014 9:32PM

    emoticon Thanks for the sneak peek!

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46SHADOW 10/2/2014 9:25PM

    great idea!

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MSKIZ69 10/2/2014 9:11PM

    Thanks for the sneak peek!!!! emoticon emoticon

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SHOAPIE 10/2/2014 8:52PM

    emoticon

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*TRACY* 10/2/2014 8:10PM

    emoticon The 10 minutes challenge worked for me!

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ETERNALPINKGLOW 10/2/2014 7:54PM

    Thanks for new information sparks family emoticon

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WALLAHALLA 10/2/2014 7:41PM

    emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 10/2/2014 7:29PM

    This is sparktacular!

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MOSTMOM1 10/2/2014 7:25PM

    Day 1270. WOOHOO!

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KITT52 10/2/2014 7:24PM

    thanks I'll check it out

made a copy to share with my siblings tomorrow

Comment edited on: 10/2/2014 7:29:07 PM

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YELLOW09RED 10/2/2014 7:15PM

    emoticon emoticon

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MBPP50 10/2/2014 7:06PM

    emoticon

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NUTINLOOKSLIKE 10/2/2014 7:03PM

    Thanks for the sneak peek! emoticon

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CZESTES 10/2/2014 7:01PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MSROZZIE 10/2/2014 6:58PM

    Good info, thanks for sharing! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Day 164 Update: Good Trip to Cincinnati

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Hi Everyone

Today is Day 164 of my 10+ fitness minutes streak. Happy streaking to anyone else out there joining in the fun. Today’s highlight was doing pushups, lunges, and stretching outside. The nice fall weather is here.

I had a fun trip to Cincinnati last week to visit with the SparkPeople team. Our small team is like a family in a fun office in downtown Cincinnati.

One project we worked on together is the launch of the 10+ Fitness minutes challenge Mini-Book. I will launch this on the site next Sunday, October 4th. Elliott from our graphics team did a great job helping make it look nice. As part of this, I’ll also start writing a weekly email to SP members. We’re also building some fun features that will help make streaks more fun on the site for people who like this as a motivator.

Hope everyone is having a great start to the fall!

Chris (SparkGuy)
emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BMCOLLEY 10/5/2014 10:08AM

    Thanks so much for sharing. I have the Mini-Book and know that it is going to be a hit because the map is drawn for us.

Bettie

Comment edited on: 10/5/2014 10:09:28 AM

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PATRICIAAK 10/2/2014 8:16PM

    terrific

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SPEDED2 10/2/2014 7:13PM

    Wonderful!

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NASFKAB 9/30/2014 1:26AM

  great thanks

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REEDWEEB 9/29/2014 11:19AM

    I was in Cincinnati too, should have dropped by!! lol Like the new idea! emoticon

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GRACED777 9/28/2014 4:18PM

    Thanks! I'm still getting into streaks. Even on my rest from exercise day I've done 12 minutes so far.

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DEERLADY45 9/28/2014 7:55AM

    Thanks Spark Guy! your the best! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon BONZ emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 9/26/2014 8:25PM

  emoticon I love holding myself accountable, so streaks work well for me.

My Current Longest Streaks:

Log on to Spark: 642 days

Exercise at least 90 minutes a week: 123 weeks

Consume at least 8 cups of water a day: 345 days

emoticon

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WARRIORGIRL121 9/26/2014 4:44PM

    emoticon and looking forward to the revised mini book!

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QUILTINGB52 9/26/2014 1:38AM

    You are doing better with your streaking than I am.

After my "pity party" yesterday.....I am now back to Day 1......

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ANNARUTH2 9/25/2014 9:55PM

    emoticon emoticon

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SUSIEMT 9/25/2014 6:55PM

    It's always nice to hear about you 10 minute exercise streak updates! Go gettem boss! WooHoo you!

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MOONGLOWSNANA 9/25/2014 2:38PM

  Glad to hear that you enjoyed your work visit to the midwest for the good of us all!

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SPARKFRAN514 9/25/2014 2:29PM

    Can't wait to get my spark re lite its on low sounds like a great way to head into Fall and get ready for the up coming holiday season. emoticon

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PATTISTAMPS 9/25/2014 1:22PM

    YES! Can't wait to re-read it and share it!

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IAMAGEMLOVER 9/25/2014 11:35AM

    emoticon for all you do Chris.

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NUTINLOOKSLIKE 9/25/2014 10:29AM

    Thank you! I love doing mini-bursts of exercise, so I am always looking for little tricks to help. KEEP IT UP!

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GABY1948 9/25/2014 10:28AM

    emoticon

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DJSHIP46 9/25/2014 9:11AM

    Thanks for the update emoticon

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GOANNA2 9/25/2014 8:42AM

    Can't wait. Thank you! emoticon

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BARBARAROSE54 9/25/2014 7:59AM

    emoticon

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BE-THE-CHANGE 9/25/2014 7:31AM

    emoticon

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KITT52 9/25/2014 6:00AM

    emoticon

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NILLAPEPSI 9/25/2014 4:21AM

    emoticon emoticon

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CATHYGETSFIT 9/25/2014 3:31AM

    emoticon Looking forward to the mini book coming out!

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NEW-CAZ 9/25/2014 2:49AM

    emoticon emoticon

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POLSKARENIA 9/25/2014 2:35AM

    Looking forward o seeing the mini-book!

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JSEATTLE 9/25/2014 1:02AM

  Great news about your mini-book. Sounds like you have a great group to work with.

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REGILIEH 9/25/2014 12:39AM

    emoticon

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JAMER123 9/25/2014 12:28AM

    emoticon October is an awesome month!!

emoticon On the launch of the book and soon launch of the weekly newsletter. I have a feeling it will be well received!

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DALID414 9/25/2014 12:10AM

    Happy Fall!

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MADAMES 9/24/2014 11:01PM

    Sounds like great thing s are coming soon! Thank you!

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PATRICIAAK 9/24/2014 10:30PM

    super

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_CYNDY55_ 9/24/2014 10:14PM

    emoticon emoticonSounds emoticon

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KOHINOOR2 9/24/2014 9:38PM

    emoticon emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 9/24/2014 9:20PM

    emoticon

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RICKI157 9/24/2014 9:19PM

    emoticon

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KERRYG155 9/24/2014 9:12PM

    Sounds like a very good week.

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1CRAZYDOG 9/24/2014 9:05PM

    Sounds sparking good!

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MBPP50 9/24/2014 8:55PM

    emoticon

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WALLAHALLA 9/24/2014 8:48PM

    Sounds great! I look forward to it.

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