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Awesome Photo Blog: Day 1

Monday, February 07, 2011

I've seen this in a few other Sparkers blogs and decided to participate too! Basically this is a daily blog where you post a photo based on the guidelines below:

Day 01- A recent picture of yourself
Day 02 - A picture of you and the person you have been closest with the longest
Day 03 - A picture of your inspiration for weight loss
Day 04 - A picture of the cast of your favorite TV show
Day 05 - A picture of your favorite animal
Day 06 - A picture of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day
Day 07 - A picture of your most treasured item
Day 08 - A picture of your favorite color
Day 09 – A picture that motivates you to do more
Day 10 - A picture of your closest friend
Day 11 - A picture of your IPOD or other music playing device on shuffle, and then list the first 10 songs that play.
Day 12 – A picture that defines you
Day 13 - A picture of your favorite band or artist
Day 14 – A picture of you now
Day 15 - A picture of something you want to do before you die
Day 16 - A picture of someone who inspires you
Day 17 - A picture of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently
Day 18 - A picture of your biggest insecurity, and the reasons why it is the biggest
Day 19 - A picture of your nicknames you have; why do you have them.
Day 20 - A picture of somewhere you'd love to travel
Day 21 – A picture of an exercise you can’t do, but would like to try (and then try it if you want to)
Day 22 - A picture of something you wish you were better at
Day 23 - A picture of your favorite book; why is it your favorite?
Day 24 - A picture of what I would find in your bag
Day 25 - A picture of your favorite super hero and why
Day 26 - A picture of something that means a lot to you
Day 27 - A picture of yourself and a family member
Day 28 - A picture of something you're afraid of
Day 29 - A picture that can always make you smile
Day 30 - A picture of you last year and now, how have you changed since then?

I would *love* for some of my fellow Sparkies to join in. Please let me know in the comments if you are going to join in so I can follow your pics as well. I think it would be a great way to learn more about each other.

So here is my start:
Day 1: A recent photo of myself

February 6, 2011: Superbowl XLV
Packers pull out a win against the mighty Steelers. Being raised in Wisconsin makes me a Cheddarhead by definition. I miss Favre, but still root for the Pack!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FAT2FITKECIA 2/27/2011 3:16PM

    Hey spunky ducky... this is a truly lovely idea! I'm joining you on this one and thanks to this, i'll start blogging on SP. it's been a long time since I've done anything more than logging in... Thanks for sharing this idea!

HUGS emoticon

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GERIKRAGH 2/10/2011 1:40PM

    Great idea.

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HARMONYBLUE 2/10/2011 11:11AM

    This is a great idea! I think I might have to try it. I like that is something that can be done pretty quickly since I don't have a ton of time for sparking lately.

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ADVENTURE-GIRL 2/8/2011 8:33PM

    You look great!

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CAROBEAR1 2/8/2011 7:33PM

    this looks too fun not to join in...and I'm enjoying the ones I've seen on other pages

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FITSPIRATION 2/7/2011 11:45PM

  Going to join you for the challenge. I love pics, just have to learn to love my own more! I think this will be a good way to learn to get comfortable with my pics. BTW, you look amazing!
You look thin. emoticon

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    You're so cute! Congrats on your win ha. I think I'll join you! I'm a big picture person! :D

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BORN2BLOSSOM 2/7/2011 4:28PM

    Yay glad you decided to join the daily photo blog challenge!! Great pic too!

These are so fun to look through. Can't wait to see the rest of your entries!

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ROCKMAN6797 2/7/2011 2:47PM

    Great picture!
Yeah Green Bay!

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MOMONTHERUN1 2/7/2011 12:49PM

    Great picture and what a great idea!

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LIZZABETH1986 2/7/2011 11:37AM

    you look GREAT in that green bay jersey! this sounds really fun and like a great way to keep me logging in. i'm gonna join you on the 30 days of awesome-ness! emoticon

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ANNE7X7 2/7/2011 11:19AM

    You look amazing!

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EMTFF376 2/7/2011 8:08AM

    I feel like I was almost there... oh wait. LOL.

Good to see you last night. Slightly disappointed in the commercials, but there were some good ones.

Have a great Monday!

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LIZZYP609 2/7/2011 7:41AM

    This looks like fun and thought provoking! I will join!
I will have to wait until I get home though! LOL

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ROBYN168 2/7/2011 7:05AM

    I love your photo.

I'm doing P365 - where I take a photo of random life everyday all year with another group of friends.....photo challenges are fun.

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NATURALLYME21 2/7/2011 6:40AM

    You look GREAT!!! I am thinking about the picture challenge. I will lat you know.

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AMOHAME2 2/7/2011 6:25AM

    What a great picture! I've been following this 30-day photo journal of a few other Spark friends too, and I love it!

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    You look amazing! It's been a while... and your smile shines the brilliance of your spirit!

Have an amaing week!!

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NICKEL1331 2/7/2011 1:01AM

    I love it! I will play along as well...

this should be fun! I will go get started!

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Honest calorie logging

Saturday, February 05, 2011

This is how I often feel about logging calories...guilty
One of my biggest hangups on the Spark has always been inconsistent calorie logging.

I always log breakfast. Why? Because I (am boring) and eat the same thing for breakfast every day. 1 cup of Kelloggs Raisin Bran Crunch, 1/2 cup of soy milk and 1/2 cup of fruit (usually blackberries, sometimes strawberries). Total ~275 calories

After logging, I pat myself on the back and think: today is going to be a good day.

Then comes lunch. Have I ever mentioned my husband packs my lunches? Turkey sandwich, chicken vindaloo, veggies and/or fruit. Pretty painless to log.

Then....comes evening. On a "good day" after dinner I behave (ie don't snack for hours) and log my calories...On a bad day - I have a snack-a-palooza. A rice cake, hmmm....no not what I was "hungry" for, maybe some crackers, nope...maybe I want a few M &Ms (always starts with 10)...all the sudden I don't want to log anymore....so I don't

(I always thought M & Ms were the reason I didn't log calories, the truth is that guilt is what got in my way)

This week, one of my goals was HONEST logging. I actually did it (everything that went into my mouth got logged) and interestingly (despite 2 days over 2000 calories)...I STILL LOST WEIGHT. Even more interesting, I didn't feel as guilty about what I ate once I logged it. I felt honest. I felt accountable and you know what, it felt pretty good!

I have always been afraid that logging my "bad days"would make me feel worse, more guilty (if that is possible). What an a-ha moment to realize it actually did the opposite!!

Pretty eye opening for me.
Any of you have this experience?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ADVENTURE-GIRL 2/8/2011 8:35PM

    I always log my food, even on my really bad days. Good job!

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DONNA2238 2/8/2011 7:02AM

    So, how's the calorie posting going? Since I use WW I don't log my food here much but when I did it helped me to really see what and where I needed to focus on prepping for a bad time of day---which for me is from 3-7! I seem FAMISHED! So I need to eat those M and M's at 4 :0). Hope your having a great week! emoticon I think those look like M and M's but prob is supposed to be cereal :0).

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HALLELUL 2/6/2011 4:59PM

    Stopping for a visit. Those M&Ms look really good. emoticon. emoticon on honest tracking and loosing weight. emoticon

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BIGMAMAT 2/6/2011 4:31PM

    I love the doggie! soooo cute. I feel this way too but my problem food is emoticon!

Not just one but lots of them. Thinking that they were going to take away my pain when they actually brought me lots of emotional distress, 7 pounds and more sadness.

Congratulations on honest logging! emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 2/6/2011 1:14PM

  Honesty is the best policy.....but it sure can be hard some days. Thanks for the great blog!

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 2/6/2011 12:31PM

    Oh no! We have to be honest? Who knew?? haha

Seriously, I'm glad you addressed this issue - I have no problem being 'honest' about logging when my eating is good but when it's, ummmm, less than stellar, I tend to avoid the nutrition tracker. One of the behaviors I want to change so posting this here is part of the process.

Thanks again and good luck on your journey!!


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NICKEL1331 2/6/2011 3:55AM

    emoticon I love that you covered this! That was my downfall the last time around. Eventually I just stopped logging all together and fell off the spark wagon!

I believe when you can recognize the Oops moments and bring then out in the open, you will be less likely to have the same Oops moment again!

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SKABABY 2/5/2011 10:26PM

    I try to pre-log. I plan my meals and try to work out healthy lunches or dinners if i go over in one of my meals or my snacking. sometimes i just wont log that day at all when i've been really bad. BUT i do find on the really bad days i'm far more willing to get my butt to the gym or do a cardio tape once i've logged what i've eaten!

Don't feel guilty. We all make slip ups. We are only human! and there are so many unhealthy food choices thrust in our faces on a daily basis. Anytime you you make a good food choice over a bad one, that should be considered a victory in itself!

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KT-NICHOLS-13 2/5/2011 7:36PM

    I'm not perfect at logging and it becomes tougher when I've nibbled here and there and the calorie bank is close to or has already been over drawn. Of late, I'm trying to learn from my "habits" and reflecting on calorie intake and the when is a good thing. Of course, it's hard to log *ethnic* foods that I refuse to give up so I often guesstamate on those and try to always log higher than lower.

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ANNE7X7 2/5/2011 7:31PM

    Way to log honestly! Look at that, it even HELPED you! You rock girl!!

PS: I think it's adorable that your hubby always comments on your blogs! He seems like such a sweetheart!!

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FRENCHTOSD 2/5/2011 6:17PM

    I did have that exact revelation last year. I helps me to stay in the "log it anyway" mode. I also use a spreadsheet to average over 7 days, so I don't worry about each individual day as much.

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KITHKINCAID 2/5/2011 6:09PM

    i log honestly about 98% of the time, even when i'm "bad" or over my calories. it helps me learn my habits. so yep - it's a good thing!

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CAROBEAR1 2/5/2011 3:52PM

    Logging stops me on the So-So days....the good days I'm also pretty boring even down to my evening snacking....on the bad days I'm pretty confident where things have gone wrong!! Chinese Buffet! I'm talking to you!!
On the So-So days I've been pretty good and tell myself I'm not being so bad ...usually healthy snacks but logging makes sure I'm accountable and KNOW that I'm sooooooo close and I've already had a snack and is a little more really worth it....So for me logging stops me on the "ohhhh soooo close days"...But I also find it's easier for me to log in a written journal. The sparkpage is a little too much for me...in a written journal I can flip back the pages quickly to find previous calorie counts, etc.

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NORAB52GOOD 2/5/2011 3:38PM

    This is a big problem for me too. A couple of things trip me up. 1. feeling like I have eaten things that are 'unloggable'. Well, I have NO idea how many of those delicious *insert food item here* things I ate so I can't possibly log them. 2. feeling too tired to log. At the end of the day, the thought of thinking through and then logging EVERYTHING I have consumed that day is just too much and feels like it will take too much time. I snapped myself out of this one by setting a timer and seeing how long it actually takes me to log a full day of food. About 15 mins. That is NOT too much time. Also, logging the day before also helps. This is easy especially when I pack my lunch and plan my dinner. Then all I have to add is my breakfast.
Thanks for reminding me that I need to be honest with myself!

Comment edited on: 2/5/2011 3:40:13 PM

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    ABSOLUTELY! The guilt get's in the way at times! I love that M&M pic for some reason.... emoticon It's a good thing we don't keep them in the house!
I feel so responsible and healthy when I track my intake. I just tracked a couple mini tater tots because I stole some from my 5 yr old's lunch. All those little "snacks" and nibbles count!

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ROCKMAN6797 2/5/2011 2:52PM

    What a great doggy picture!
Logging your food can be such a pain sometimes but thankfully SparkPeople has a good smartphone application so I am able to log on the go. Also, I guess I am a boring eater, too, because alot of the food I eat is the same day after day. (What can I say I like it!) But quite honestly, logging everything that I eat has been a big reason for my weight loss. Like you said in your blog, it keeps me honest. I can make adjustments as my day progresses and even enjoy a bag of gummie bears every once in awhile!

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NEWJEWELS4LIFE 2/5/2011 2:52PM

    emoticon I am the same way, if I get out of control I don't bother logging. Maybe in my head if I write it down then I know what I did. If I don't then I can lie to myself that I didn't consume THAT many calories when in reality I did consume THAT many calories. I am working on logging the good, the bad and the ugly. Great blog! Oh & the puppy pic is ADORABLE!

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ROBYN168 2/5/2011 2:29PM

    Cute doggy - and I have started like you logging everything - the good the bad and the ugly. Most days I am close to my ranges - some others over 2,000 - no weight loss this week - but I did shed some inches in January - so I'm good.

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BGOLIC 2/5/2011 2:21PM

    I try to make sure I log both the good and the bad. Its the only way I can hold myself accountable!

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MARYLQ11 2/5/2011 2:18PM


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PENGUITO 2/5/2011 2:17PM

    Awesome doggy picture! I feel similarly about logging "bad days" such that I haven't tried logging them yet. Your blog has inspired me to attempt honest logging.

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How to Beat the Winter Blues

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Beating the Winter Blues
1. GO OUTSIDE. Yes I am serious. It isn't THAT cold. Buy some long underwear, layer, do whatever it takes, but GET OUTSIDE. There is sun out there somewhere
2. Exercise - only have 10 minutes of spare time - get it done! Have longer to exercise - consider yourself lucky!
3. Eat when you are hungry: like many people I will use any excuse to eat: I don't feel good (eat), I am stressed out from work (eat)...it is cold outside (STOP -DON'T do IT!!!) Remember food is only fuel
4. Ignite your Spark buddies - We are all in the same boat (except those of you who are lucky enough to live in Cali or Florida) it is cold, dark and somewhat depressing at times in winter. Now is a great time to reconnect with Sparkies for the support you (and they) need!
5. Warm up with a cup of tea. Preferably cinnamon spice, but any kind you like is fine

Hang in there Sparkies...winter is halfway over!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALEXANDRA64 2/7/2011 6:45AM

    I actually love winter and am thrilled to go out in the cold to either shovel snow or go for a walk. I think of it as a wonderful adventure to experience. Good thing because where I live winter lasts for about 7 months, lol.


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LOL_PRINCESS 2/6/2011 10:10PM

    Oh I loved the part about it being half over! I'm not a huge fan of the cold but I've made it this far. The snow this year is a little much! But I love some of your ideas. And I honestly like going outside, something about the air I guess. Hahaha. But thanks for the post!!! :)

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HARMONYBLUE 2/2/2011 11:09PM

    Amen! Yep, it's amazing what good a little bit of sun, fresh air and exercise will do for the blues. As for the tea, my preference is Vanilla Rooibos:)

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BOGUSANNIE 2/2/2011 1:39PM

    I am with you on ALMOST all of it...

I AM NOT going out in -30 weather...NOPE....can't make me!!!!

great blog! I feel motivated to get off my ass!

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SCHENPOSSIBLE 2/1/2011 11:14PM

    I love your blogs because you always include a fun picture of your smiling pretty face. How can anyone have the winter blues when they see a smile like yours? Enjoy your time outside! emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 2/1/2011 3:52PM

  emoticon I've got so much snow it doesn't have a chance to get dirty before another layer lands on top!
Concentrate on the things you can change. You'll find that there are enough of them, that you have no time to worry about the things you can't change. emoticon

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KITHKINCAID 2/1/2011 3:37PM

    The little rodent is NOT going to see his shadow tomorrow. I know it!

How I LONG to go skiing. Enjoy yourself out there!

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SUNNYWBL 2/1/2011 2:48PM

    Yes, I live in Minnesota and I also have SAD, Lucky, lucky me! Since I can't move due to the present housing crisis, I have adapted. Taking a vacation to some where warm is not possible due to fiscal restraint. emoticon

I was out last night walking in the lightly falling snow for 55 minutes. Yes it can be done. I use YaksTrax on my shoes and hand warmers between my gloves and overmittens and I was toasty warm. It was beautiful out and quiet! emoticon

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ROCKMAN6797 2/1/2011 11:44AM

    Great suggestions!
Thankfully I don't have to worry about snowy conditions.
Those that do have my utmost respect, I am definitely impressed that one is able to function in such frigid conditions! But then I guess we adapt to the situation. Stay warm and safe.


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ROBYN168 2/1/2011 11:19AM

    Couldn't agree more - we have fully embraced Winter here. We have a skating rink in our backyard, and a five run sledding hill on the hill next to our house.

Hubby shoveled bobsled like tracks into the snow for the kids complete with burms and turns and jumps. It is so much fun.

Hubby says the shoveling is cheaper thana gym membership and the kids are having so much fun it is worth it.

Embrace the Winter...LOVE IT!

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ANNE7X7 2/1/2011 11:15AM

    Ah Winter! I've never been so excited for it to be over in my life! But I guess you have to make the most of it! Great list of tips! We'll fight our way through the snow and cold!! Spring will be here eventually!

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KARVY09 2/1/2011 8:48AM

    Definitely true. Thanks for this.

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FABAT402009 2/1/2011 1:37AM

    Thank you! I went hiking on Sunday with a friend and I didn't realize it was cold.. I actually felt warm even with snow dropping on us when we started. Moving and exerting yourself cures a lot of the winter blahs!

We're headed back out there this weekend!!

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PENGUITO 2/1/2011 1:05AM

    Thank you for the great encouragement and tips! You are awesome!

Comment edited on: 2/1/2011 1:05:28 AM

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Goals for this week

Sunday, January 30, 2011

This is mostly for me. I have been struggling with consistency recently (ironic, as usually this is my strength). I want to post some obtainable goals to help keep me accountable this week. So here goes:

1. Exercise every day, at least 30 minutes
2. Track all calories...especially the chocolate ones (for some reason I REALLY struggle with this...denial much??)
3. Log into Spark daily, support my teammates and friends
4. Forgive myself for not being perfect
5. Stay off the scale.

I will let you all know how I do...
It looks easy right? Lol!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOGUSANNIE 2/2/2011 1:37PM

    2 and 5 are my biggies right now!

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ONMYOWNAM 1/31/2011 5:55PM

    great goals, good luck!

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MUSHROOMSTEW 1/31/2011 3:10PM

    Good luck!

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LIVESTRONG2010 1/31/2011 3:04PM

    Looks like a great plan! emoticon

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ANNE7X7 1/31/2011 2:55PM

    You can do it girl!!! Keep at it!

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PAMINHALF 1/31/2011 7:54AM

  Thank you for inspiring me to set my own goals for the week. We can do this!

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FITMARY 1/31/2011 7:10AM

    Good for you for nipping it in the bud. Chocolate has been my downfall too. Lately I've been treating myself to Oikos Greek yogurt with chocolate in the bottom. Heavenly! And it really helps me with the urges.....

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NICKEL1331 1/31/2011 2:01AM

    You got this hon! We are all here if you need us!

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SCHENPOSSIBLE 1/30/2011 8:23PM

    Don't just take it one day at a time, sometimes you have to take it one hour at a time. Good luck this week. Sending you strong and healthy thoughts!

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KITHKINCAID 1/30/2011 6:55PM

    I didn't track chocolate calories last night either. Here - I'm coming clean to you right now. I ate 2 mini ice cream cups. Ugh. There - that felt better. Ok - resume plan. You can do it. It will be a tough week (especially staying off the scale), but you've got it in you :)

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TAFODIL24 1/30/2011 5:44PM

    great goals emoticon

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JUNESHOPE 1/30/2011 5:36PM

    emoticon emoticon
You are doing sooo well. I enjoy reading your blogs.

Have a great day, June emoticon

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FRENCHTOSD 1/30/2011 5:20PM

    And if you can't do 30 - at least do 10.

I like #4 and I struggle with that one too.

Have a great week, Hollynn - you can do all of this - stay focused.


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ROCKMAN6797 1/30/2011 1:47PM

    Not only can you do this but you WILL do this!
We are here to listen and help whenever you feel the need.


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VANILLAMAMA 1/30/2011 1:35PM

  You can do this!

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ROBYN168 1/30/2011 1:33PM

    emoticon emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 1/30/2011 1:32PM

  emoticon emoticon

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Sympathy Eating

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Sympathy Eating...aka eating because I feel sorry for myself

LOL. This is my biggest downfall when I struggle. Damn, I wish food wasn't such a comfort for me! Something about being in pain makes me want to eat sweets and carbs. Emotional upsets I have learned to deal with over time and effort, so less overall "emotional eating" however, physical pain....uggghhh! I admit it! I am a baby when it comes to being in pain. I had a small surgery yesterday (nothing major, I am doing fine) and today I just want to curl up with a heating pad on my stomach and eat chocolate, preferably covered in peanut butter...So I just sent hubby to the store to pick up every healthy looking snack he can find. Here is how I am going to get through the weekend:
1. Sparking for support
2. Logging every calorie...including the chocolate ones that sneak in
3. Hummus with red peppers
4. Off season cherries - expensive, but sweet and healthy!
5. Rice cakes
6. Popsicles
7. Tea

The last one might really help me as a Replacement for sweets. I also find herbal teas very comforting. So as I type I am drinking: Celestial Seasons Apple and Cinnimon Spice.

Other suggestions for HEALTHY comfort food???
I am open to whatever it takes


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHARLIE215 2/13/2011 9:06PM

    I like Vitatops - deep chocolate flavour. Not the cleanest food, but only 100cals & a decent choc. hit :)

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ANNE7X7 1/31/2011 2:54PM

    Way to get yourself out of that slump! Planning is key!!!

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JSTCHLIN 1/29/2011 6:05PM

    Sounds good, Stick with the healthy snacks and you will do just fine!

Take care and stay healthy
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ROCKMAN6797 1/29/2011 4:25PM

    Glad to hear you are ok.
Peanut butter and bananas are my go to food when I need to fill up.
Also love grapes, especially after they have been frozen.
Stick to your plan and stay strong Hollynn!


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DARE2BE 1/29/2011 3:19PM

    Glad to hear you are ok. You have recognized that you needed to have a plan in place before you began to binge... so that's a win in my book. emoticon

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ADVENTURE-GIRL 1/29/2011 1:32PM

    Hope you feel better soon.

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KITHKINCAID 1/29/2011 1:14PM

    I made a batch of yummy high fiber, apple & carrot muffins last week. They taste and smell amazing and they really fill you up so you don't crave anything else. AND - they're only 100 calories. Bonus! http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/reci

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HEYPINK 1/29/2011 11:39AM

    veggies are always good to snack on. I really like eating carrots as a snack item.

Also, be careful with the rice cakes. They can be a little decietful. A couple are great for a snack, but they can contribute to mindless eating and then the calories add up!

If you really want something sweet, but not too bad, take a half a piece of pita bread, spread a little cream cheese and cut up some strawberries inside and then grill it in a pan! Tasty!

Comment edited on: 1/29/2011 11:41:04 AM

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LOOZINITNOW 1/29/2011 11:30AM

    Glad to hear that you came through your surgery well. Sympathy eating stinks but is so easy to do. I'm a big sympathy eater. Your peanut butter and chocolate craving reminded me of something that I have in my cupboard and eat a few times a week on a whole wheat bagel thin. It's called Peanut Butter & Company-Dark Chocolate Dreams. It's a natural peanut butter and you find it with the other peanut butters at Wal-Mart. It's delicious and really satisfies a chocolate/peanut butter craving. Hope you feel better really soon. emoticon

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