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Some changes I would rather not have

Sunday, November 03, 2013

It has been a rough week, several people close to me are very ill. It makes me melancholy because life around me is changing and I am anxious about what it will look like. I have found myself hiding in the house and pulling back from being engaged with others. It is easier to fold up rather than add more opportunity for pain. I am involved with those close to me and will be as strong as possible to help their families through the difficult times ahead. But the effect on my life and the empty spaces they will leave make my eyes tear up. I am allowing my self to grieve for those who are in pain and for myself and the loss I am already beginning to feel.

I read a blog Be yourself..everyone else is taken by Beth and her words echoed with me. (Do stop and visit http://moredoors.blogspot.com/ and enjoy the beautiful photography)

These thoughts are from the blog but fit so well with what I need to do to help me through how I am feeling right now.


Make others laugh
Make yourself laugh
Be, don’t be back there or too far ahead, just be here
Love deeply, love like there won’t be a tomorrow,
Be thankful when you wake up, the past is the past, leave it there
Eat Broccoli
Play in the leaves
Don’t keep your feelings inside
Quiche can be eaten three times a day
Walk, walk a lot,
Don’t wear clothes that make you feel ugly
Drink more water,
Figure out what makes you happy and do it
And Last but not least, let me repeat. Be here, Be Present


My thoughts go out to anyone who is feeling a loss and I hope that we all come through our journeys with our focus to have happiness in our days and to add happiness to the lives of those we love. I am so grateful that I found SP, getting healthy and strong will help me through the stress and the people I have connected with have helped me to understand myself better.

Tomorrow I will be back on track but tonight I am going to allow myself to feel sad. But food will not be involved I have learned how to take care of myself.

Be yourself..everyone else is taken by Beth
moredoors.blogspot.com/

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GRANDMABABA 11/4/2013 10:25AM

    I pray your tomorrow's will be brighter. Sad is hard, but also such an important part of our lives. Thanks for sharing.

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RASPBERRY56 11/3/2013 6:07PM

    BTDT, Sunny........please know that your fellow Sparkies care! Please be gentle with yourself while you work on coping!

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SUZYMOBILE 11/3/2013 5:32PM

    Oh baby. The fact that your soul is so open to others is even more important than being "on track." This truly is ON TRACK. Once I disengage from the work life, I hope that I'll be as in touch with others as you are now.

Is Beth the woman whose blog you put us in touch with? I hope she's not the one who is ill. Do you know her well? Her blog should be a book!

Comment edited on: 11/3/2013 5:42:02 PM

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-SHOREIDO- 11/3/2013 1:29PM

    Oh wow!! You are a special person,you are!!
To take the time and share what you have here displays a beautiful soul.

My prayers are with you emoticon
Ginny (Healthy Hearts Team)

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MORTICIAADDAMS 11/3/2013 11:19AM

    I understand completely. I lost almost all of my family from 1995 until 1998. It was very painful. My prayers are with you.

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RACEWELLWON 11/3/2013 8:47AM

    Oh Sunny - I am so sorry that you are feeling the pain of grief an anticipation. Helping those in need is very thoughtful during this difficult stage of Life. Perhaps you may be able to find a Bereavement Group through your local Hospice . I found that to be very helpful through some difficult times- Hugs Karen - I am here if you need someone - Karen emoticon

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BETHGILLIGAN 11/3/2013 7:13AM

    I am so sorry that you have to go through this painful time. It is hard to let go of loved ones; it is hard to think of life without them. You will have the strength that you need to support the families and yourself. I am sending prayers for you; for the ill and for their families. emoticon

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TORTISE110 11/3/2013 5:41AM

    Were that it were not so, but sadness is part of a full life. How could it not be? Saying goodbye to people we love and who make our live's good is hard. You take care.

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KRISZTA11 11/3/2013 4:57AM

    I'm sorry there is so much trouble and anticipation of loss around you...
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The quote is beautiful and wise.
Being there in the here and now, not too far ahead really helps in difficult times.
It is good you allow yourself feel the sadness, feeling and accepting is the only way out and forwards.

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GLAMNGLOWDIVA 11/3/2013 1:10AM

    This is beautiful. I'm so sorry that you are going through such a rough time in your life and with people that you care about. Take each day as it comes and work with that.

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Small changes make a difference

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I was thinking about the last time I got off track with my food choices. What caused me to get derailed from my good intentions? One of the problems was not eating enough protein at meals and then the Munchies Devil would attack and I would eat anything that was available. So I make sure that I have egg whites at breakfast, keep lean cooked turkey in the freezer for snack, and have kidney bean salad with my lunch. This really helps when the munchies attack, I am better able to pick better portions. Before I would overdo the amount of peanut butter, but now I measure it out and spread it on low calorie crackers. A small change but has a big payoff in total calories during the day.

The Sugar Monster would attach at almost any time and I would snack on anything sweet, but I keep individual applesauce servings in the refrigerator and go for one of them first. Then if I still want something sweet like chocolate or a cookie, I find that I can limit the amount I eat.

In figuring out maintenance, it is clearly important to find strategies that will work every day and that I can live with. Just saying no doesn’t work but having some easy, acceptable alternative helps me with making good choices. It is too easy to slip in extra calories and then slide down the slippery slope back to weight gain. Small changes becoming habits will be a part of my success. I need this to help ward off the Munchies Devil, the Binge Demon, the Emotions Beast and the Sugar Monster.

It is all about calories and being happy with the calories I eat. Maintenance is definitely different than losing weight.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IS1GAR 10/26/2013 12:22PM

    Thank you, I also have been fighting this battle. I have try some different things but I will try the protein approach to find the balance as you have.
Good luck and have a beautiful weekend!
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PMRUNNER 10/20/2013 6:26AM

    Thanks for sharing, still working on taming my sugar cravings!

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KRISZTA11 10/20/2013 6:08AM

    Eggs whites, lean turkey and beans are great choices to put enough proteins in your meals. I too find it easier to avoid mindless eating on days when I have enough proteins.
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BETONME2 10/19/2013 8:31AM

    Ah protein. It works for me.

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KANOE10 10/18/2013 7:47AM

    I think that is a great small step. I agree that protein helps you stay balanced. I have heard that the nf dry peanut butter is a good source of protein.

Great job of finding ways to maintain that help you.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 10/17/2013 9:28PM

    I think protein is the answer to my problems right now too. I am trying to increase my protein.

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RACEWELLWON 10/17/2013 5:54PM

    Good Choices Sunny - I too stock up on protein , the egg whites I place in my poached egg gadget and have hard boiled whites available similar to hard boiled eggs , make is easy. Karen

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What do you mean I can’t eat it all After-I-Finally-Get-To-Goal?

Friday, October 11, 2013

First thanks to everyone who liked my blog and made it a Featured Blog Post and thank you for voting me a Motivator. It really does mean a lot when someone posts a comment and shares their story. Thank you.

In my continuing process to figure out how to keep myself healthy and at a good weight, I realized that the After-You-Get-To-Goal is just the beginning of another phase. As I thought through this I have spent some time “getting in touch with my feelings.” How many times have I been through a workshop --on all sorts of topics -- that the leader has brought this up? Often it is easy to be active during the exercises during the workshop or training but it is really, really hard to apply different strategies during the chaos and messiness of day to day life. But it has become apparent to me that keeping the weight off is partly about managing the feelings that food evokes.

I see apple pie and lemon meringue pie and it reminds me of helping my mom in the kitchen when I was young. Hot dogs, hamburgers, potato chips, fried chicken and potato salad bring back pictures of picnics and big family gatherings. A simple thing like the smell of beef stew with dumplings cooking on the stove on a cold winter night is very comforting. Pumpkin pie is all of those Thanksgiving and Christmas family gatherings. Nowhere does a bowl of broccoli bring up memories (unless it is a wonderful high fat cheese casserole). So whether I am happy, sad, stressed, bored, angry, lonely, nostalgic or ecstatic there is some food that will help reinforce my feelings or bring me comfort while I work through them.

What I realized as I work through the first part of maintenance is that I have to give up the foods that are tied to my memories because many of the foods do not fit into my healthy lifestyle. So my first reaction was total DISBELIEF that I could not go back to the way I ate before and it made me very angry. I have to permanently Change my Food choices. As I worked through these emotions in my blog it seemed that the Stages of Accepting Change really apply. I found the list on the Internet and have rewritten them to apply to me.

The Stages for maintenance are:

1. Shock and Anger, I learned that Change in Food Choices is permanent and I still do not get the 20 year old body back.

2. Denial, I wanted to be in a comfort zone, it will be different for me “I can still eat all the cheese I want”.

3. Depression, feeling depressed and negative about giving up foods I love to eat and only having them occasionally in small amounts if I really want to keep the weight off.

4. Insight and Acceptance, realizing that without Change in Food Choices, the road will lead me back to an unhealthy place while Change in Food Choices leads to a real chance of success and I am in charge of making those choices

5. Learning and Actualization, a positive mind state, adapting and figuring out strategies for Change of Food Choices and incorporating them into a healthy balanced life

I can see that in previous weight loss situations, I had never worked through the phases and really got stuck at number 2 or number 3. I am working through the Depression of giving up foods I have always loved to eat and working into Insight and Acceptance. Part of this process is learning to cherish the memories but not indulging in the calories. Also, it is about recognizing emotions and acknowledging them with something other than food. And recognizing hunger and choosing wisely most of the time trying to push out the Food Demon (Eat both donuts!) from my healthy self-talk (Have some fruit and ˝ of a donut).

What struck me as I read through the comments was how many Sparklers have moved to the learning and actualization state. It doesn’t mean that maintenance is always easy. But the bottom line is you’re weight’s always going to creep up. You just have to keep pushing it down. We have to do the best we can with whatever information is available and what we accept about ourselves. You can read through all the wonderful comments but these are the ones that really resonated with me. Thank you all for sharing I posted your Spark name at the end of the comment.

SOME THOUGHTS ON CHOICES
Stick with what you know is truly fair and that you can live with for a long time. It really doesn't have to be a terrible struggle every day. OOLALA53

But I think in the end it is about doing the best that we can do to stay healthy without killing ourselves or injuring ourselves to lose the fat. HMAZIS

Fortunately as humans we've got free will and intelligence and grit, and we get to decide if something is worth the effort. 4A-HEALTHY-BMI

It is clear that the same rules for weight loss apply whether you're 30 or 60 -- reduce your calorie intake and increase your activity level. TORTISE110

Mother Nature can be such a meanie, but I will accept a healthy body and organs and let the shapers and camouflaging clothing handle the appearances! We will not give up, even though time is definitely not on our side! MNNICE

I can totally relate to what you say. It's the same for me. Losing weight means exercising my butt off - literally- and starving myself to death - literally. LOL. I have scaled back my expectations. MORTICIAADDAMS

I just keep moving and strength training at a moderate rate. I have stopped focusing on the scale number and rely on how I look and feel in my clothes. RACINGTODOIT

I enjoy and appreciate my new body, my new muscles. I'm not going to lose sleep over what I have not achieved so far! NICKYCRANE

I have learned to enjoy my cup of lasagna, and just a tablespoon of each component in a Cobb Salad. The one upside, I guess, is that time seems to pass faster at my age, so "a couple times a year" doesn't feel so onerous. NELLJONES

But I do more than an hour of exercise daily, including ST and I really watch what I eat. I am a size 8, but if I don't watch that will become a 10 again, and I gave all those clothes away. I think that it is important to watch what I eat and how much I exercise to make sure I feel and look good. I am 59 1/2 and find that every year it gets harder. But I work harder. LRSILVER


I hope I will be able to make good choices and live a healthy life and be content and satisfied with how I look, belly fat or no belly fat. I think the most important thing is how healthy I am and to continue to make healthy food choices and keep portion controls in check, and from there I'll take it one day at a time. OFFICECHIK

I am not in my 60s yet but as I creep into my 50s I am feeling all of the things you wrote here. It is really hard to maintain that first initial goal weight as we age and Mother Nature pulls her fast ones on us all. Great glob! Thanks for sharing. ISHIIGIRL

I refuse to live my life worrying about every mouthful of food. OOLALA53

Do I cut out all of the foods I enjoy across the board or do I eat healthy and enjoy some of my favorites, too? At my age, I'm thinking of enjoying my life a little more but I'm not liking the numbers on the scale or on my pants. My goal needs to be healthy not thin! BETHGILLIGAN


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NEZE11 10/18/2013 12:55PM

    I am new to SP and finding your biog give me inspiration to keep going. Thank you for sharing your struggling moments... which we all have!! emoticon

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 10/17/2013 8:14AM

    Interesting to show the stages. That really rings true for me. There is definitely an emotional adjustment to the changes.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 10/15/2013 10:17PM

    It's eye opening to think that until menopause I was a person who could eat anything I wanted and not gain weight. I was also extremely active - always on the go and had a really active job. I actually didn't eat all that much back then and that it why I stayed thin. It's hard for me to mimic those former conditions because I no longer work and can't recreate that level of activity at home. And now I'm hungry. But I can't give into it and have to change my ways or die an early death.

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SUZYMOBILE 10/13/2013 11:30AM

    Reading about those early stages in the process reminded me that I really am lucky enough to have reached the learning and actualization stage. There are a LOT of foods that I don't even pine after any more. On another forum, we were talking about how we haven't had donuts pass our lips in 10 years or longer. Same, with me, for pancakes, muffins, heavily cheese-covered ooey-gooeys, beef stew, and so on. They just aren't allowed. Where I get into trouble sometimes (and pay for) is deep-fried or sauced things, like fisherman's platter and buffalo wings, or pizza, washed down with a glass of wine. Still, I'm staying in a sort of balance. It took years to get here, by the way.

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HOLLYM48 10/13/2013 9:48AM

    I loved your blog! Very insightful to the smells and memories of food and days gone by.
You did a great job with the different stages that people/you go thru when deciding this is a forever maintenance lifestyle, not always easy, but oh so worth it.
With the tools on SP and the support, I have no doubt that you will be successful!
I love the quotes from different people and they really all hit home for me too.
Thanks for sharing this great blog with us and keep up the great work and you venture on down the path of this awesome journey! Holly

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RACEWELLWON 10/12/2013 11:58AM

    Good Morning Sunny - what a lovely blog - you deserved both of those Honors . I agree with you relating food to Memories is a hard habit to brake. I feel like this Journey is like going through stages of Grief at some point , we want what we cannot have , and when we do have it that Guilt Word come s to play. Such a Dilemma , its feels like that at the end of this Journey a new begins we are always finding new ways to Create Ourselves . I too have associated many foods with Memories , Bousha's baked goods , peroggis etc. I feel this way at our age we now have the ability to start new Memories with the younger generation with Healthy recipes and habits . For example today is my Wedding Anniversary and opposed to a Heavy Meal we are heading out to a 11 mile Corn Maze in the shape of the Beatles - I am packing a healthy back pack but you know what I am having the Pumpkin Pie today - Great Potassium in that Pumpkin ! Hugs Karen - Thanks for the Mention emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/12/2013 11:59:38 AM

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TORTISE110 10/11/2013 5:45PM

    This is such a generous blog. Quoting all of us struggling maintainers! How cool is THAT. Thank you.

At 66 I LOVE food, and am realizing that smaller amounts are incredibly satisfying. I mean that. I really do. I avoid NOTHING that I truly want. I really do not. But if it is laden with things that clog my arteries or send me on a sugar jag, I do it in small (savored) bites. I do not suffer much. I really don't.

Tonight I am alone. I am having a 4 ounce filet, brussel sprouts with bacon and sauteed mushrooms. Oh and a glass of wine. I feel no pain!! But saying all that, I think it was mindlessly stuffing myself of more that was good that made me fat. I know we are all different.

Today I did a 4 mile walk in the rain. Felt so young (-: It's something really old people don't do. So. I must not be really old!!! Cheers to you and thank you for talking about maintenance.

Comment edited on: 10/11/2013 5:46:24 PM

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USMAWIFE 10/11/2013 5:10PM

    great blog.. I am in my late 50's looking 60 in the back door soon

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Maintenance at 60 is a different game

Thursday, September 19, 2013

What started me looking at the problem of age and persistent belly-fat was that I had targeted 157 as a good goal weight. The last time I was there I looked pretty good and fit into a size 12. Well I made it!!!! And I do fit into a Size 12 but there is a lot of belly fat hanging around which wasn’t there the last time.

On one Message board someone posted “Cardio, strength training, and eating well have gotten rid of most of my belly fat. AT BMI 25 I had a lot of belly fat. At BMI 20.4 I have very little.” I tried to figure out how much I would need to lose to reduce my BMI and this is what I found:
Past: 185 BMI = 30.8 Ate anything I wanted and just a little exercise (Size 16 a bit tight)

Now: 157 BMI = 23.7 Eat 1450-1550 calories, keep to 47 or less fat grams, moderate exercise 5 days, strength training 2 days (Size 12, tight around the waist)

Maybe: 150 BMI = 22.8 Eat 1350-1450 calories, keep fat grams under 45, increase cardio intensity, exercise every day, work up to heavier weights

I haven’t been at 150 for quite a while and although I believe that I can work down to it, the maintenance is going to be very difficult. Right now I am struggling with staying in my calorie range for 157 and finding a level of exercise I am going to do regularly from now on. Anything lower than 150 is just not worth it to me.

I have read through a lot of SP articles, blog and team/message posts and it is clear that the same rules for weight loss apply whether you're 30 or 60 -- reduce your calorie intake and increase your activity level. But in looking at the problem of my repeated weight gains between 50 and 60 it is clear that my body is different in my senior years than it was when I was younger. In reading about the after 50 woman, I found that as you age, your metabolism slows -- by up to 10 percent per decade after age 25. That means you may take in the same number of calories and exercise just as much as you did in your 30s, but the weight still creeps on.

Although your estrogen levels may be the same as they were in your 50s, you're still losing muscle due to aging. That further slows your metabolism, which is why belly fat continues to be an issue. As you lose bone mass, you become shorter. Because there's no place for your organs to go, your abdomen protrudes. What this means is that as you shrink your BMI numbers change. If you were 5’6” and 150 pounds your BMI is 24.2 in the normal range. If you have shrunk a little to 5” 5” and still 150 pounds, your BMI is now 25 in the overweight range. And since you have lost muscle that extra is in fat which is probably around your middle because you are a woman.

One article suggested that to avoid gaining weight, the rule of thumb is that for each decade past 40, you should consume about 100 fewer calories EACH DAY. That’s because metabolism—the rate at which your body burns calories—gradually slows down as you age. So it means that you need to fight the encroaching belly bulge by reducing your caloric intake even further and keep up your exercising. If you think walking to the mailbox is cardio, then you are in for a big surprise.

In another article it said that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is best at blasting belly fat. “Research has shown that women who did 20 minutes of HIIT 3 time a week burned more fat than women who exercised at a moderate pace for 40 minutes 3 times a week.” To do this you need to do work up to doing 25 minutes of HIIT 3 to 6 days a week. SP has a lot of articles on HIIT and it isn’t for sissies. (www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_arti
cles.asp?id=621). www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
_articles.asp?id=621


Thinking about doing cardio is easier than doing cardio after 60. As I have aged, I find that I am not as flexible, it takes longer for me to recover from intense cardio, my joints ache a lot more and it is much easier to get hurt. So being active is great but there are limits.

As for reducing calories, it really means that you must give up sugar, all refined carbs, limit red meat and really watch the amount of fat you eat. And by age 60 I should be eating at the low end of my calorie range which is not a lot of food in a day and there is almost no room for fun food. Even if you plan out your calories to splurge at one meal, you still have to eat small amounts (think Thanksgiving!! ). There are 408 calories in 1 cup of Lasagna with Meat. Who eats only a serving of lasagna that fits into a cup? You can check on your favorite fun food.

One recommendation was when eating a Cobb salad (egg, blue cheese, bacon, dressing, maybe avocado) besides the lettuce and tomatoes only choose two items. It isn’t a Cobb salad at that point! But that is what it takes to reduce down the belly fat.

So where does all this information leave me? Really unhappy because it means that if I like being at my current weight I have to really watch what and how much I eat every single day and be committed to a regular (no excuses) exercise program. If I want to lose a little more belly fat, I have to eat even less and add in more minutes of cardio exercise.

I am very happy at having lost the weight and SP and the Sparklers have really made it possible. What I am now doing is exploring what I am willing to do to maintain and again SP really helps to think it through. So many other programs don’t really give you the tools you need to work out the problems of maintenance. So I am grateful for having lost the weight, feeling better, having more energy, being healthy and getting into a size I like. I just wish Mother Nature had thought this aging thing through a little better.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MBTEPP 11/17/2013 11:36AM

    I was successful with weight watchers years ago with very little exercise. Maintenance is much easier with a sustained fitness program. SP has really helped me to reintroduce fitness in my life. Now that I am in menopause, I need both fitness and a good nutrition plan.

Great blog!

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LOGOULD 10/30/2013 5:10PM

    Thank you so much for candidly sharing on this blog - being less than a couple of years into menopause, I too, am struggling with ANY and ALL extra weight going right to my middle. Even heavy I always had a small(ish) waist, but not it is so important for me to keep on doing what I can not just maintain my muscle mass, but to increase it as much as possible to burn more calories.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 10/15/2013 10:03PM

    I should have stated before that I loved this blog. It's what I've known for a long time as a nurse and it's hard to stomach, if you will excuse my inference.

Comment edited on: 10/15/2013 10:23:46 PM

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JACKIE542 10/11/2013 6:29PM

    emoticon

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_CYNDY55_ 10/10/2013 2:37AM

    emoticon
emoticon emoticon !!
emoticonInfo!!
You are correct .. all about the exercise and your nutrition.
Belly fat will slowly go away. emoticon
Balancing act .. Strength and Cardio !!

Comment edited on: 10/10/2013 2:39:32 AM

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LRSILVER 10/5/2013 8:29PM

    Great blog. I think the answer is what is having a flat belly worth to you. I still have a little belly. But I do more than an hour of exercise daily, including ST and I really watch what I eat. I am a size 8, but if I don't watch that will become a 10 again, and I gave all those clothes away. I think that it is important to watch what I eat and how much I exercise to make sure I feel and look good. I am 59 1/2 and find that every year it gets harder. But I work harder.
Good luck.

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OFFICECHIK 10/5/2013 5:39PM

    Great blog. This aging thing really isn't always fun is it? I'm 50 and although I haven't reached goal weight yet I know once I do I'm going to be looking at the same options here. I really do want to get to a weight that I'm happy with and that I can maintain for a long time. I guess I'll be looking at all my options but I hope I will be able to make good choices and live a healthy life and be content and satisfied with how I look, belly fat or no belly fat. I think the most important thing is how healthy I am and to continue to make healthy food choices and keep portion controls in check, and from there I'll take it one day at a time.
Good look with your continued journey.

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ISHIIGIRL 10/5/2013 11:57AM

    I am not in my 60s yet but as I creep into my 50s I am feeling all of the things you wrote here. It is really hard to maintain that first initial goal weight as we age and Mother Nature pulls her fast ones on us all. Great glob! Thanks for sharing.

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BETHGILLIGAN 10/5/2013 8:57AM

    Thank you! Thank you! I'm 62 and just wrote a blog about this very thing. The belly fat is frustrating and the decision has to be made: do I want to kill myself with exercise and my body feels awful all of the time or do I lower my expectations and deal with this belly? Do I cut out all of the foods I enjoy across the board or do I eat healthy and enjoy some of my favorites, too? At my age, I'm thinking of enjoying my life a little more but I'm not liking the numbers on the scale or on my pants. emoticon My goal needs to be healthy not thin!

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BESSHAILE 10/5/2013 7:51AM

    Oh man. I'm bookmarking this blog. It's so WHERE I AM right now.

Thank you thank you thank you.

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DSJB9999 10/5/2013 6:52AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GRANDMABABA 10/3/2013 11:38PM

    Sounds like you have a good grip on you! Continued success.

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KIMBERLY_Y 10/3/2013 9:40PM

    Congratulations on all your accomplishments and on a great blog! Way to go! I really got a tremendous amount of information from your blog. Thank you. As I approach the big 4-0, I often think about some of your comments. Thank you for your perspective.

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DELLMEL 10/3/2013 6:20PM

  emoticon emoticon

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OOLALA53 10/3/2013 2:15PM

    wow, that's a lot of comments. I didn't read them all.

I refuse to live my life worrying about every mouthful of food. I am willing to experience real hunger for an hour or two before each meal. (I am willing to tolerate fake hunger until my next meal time.) I limit sweets to weekends. I am willing to work out vigorously for 14 minutes 5x a week and take a brisk walk most days. That's it. That is what I can live with. If I eat less or work out more sometimes, great. I've been doing this (actually, not the exercise so much) for 44 months and am nearing the middle of my normal BMI range after a year of plateauing. So what? I eat very reasonably, and feel pretty peppy.

Stick with what you know is truly fair and that you can live with for a long time. It really doesn't have to be a terrible struggle every day.

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IAMAGEMLOVER 10/3/2013 2:15PM

    emoticon

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SUSIEMT 10/3/2013 1:44PM

    Good Blog! Thanks for the info.

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HOLLYM48 10/3/2013 1:43PM

    It is true that we women have a much harder time losing fat! Very annoying. But we can keep on fighting to be the healthiest and the fittest that we can be. You are right that HIIT is not for sissies. Nor is intense cardio. But I think in the end it is about doing the best that we can do to stay healthy without killing ourselves or injuring ourselves to lose the fat. SP is awesome as far as the tools and the people that help to keep us motivated.
Keep up the great work and contine to make great choices. It is not always easy that is for sure. You have done an aweome job of losing and best of luck on your journey into maintenance! emoticon emoticon

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BOOERDEM 10/3/2013 10:35AM

    Thanks for your blog post & all the information you shared! You mentioned the soreness & lack of flexibility, & I was wondering if you have considered (or do) any yoga. I have found that it not only has helped me with flexibility, but also strengthens my core, helps maintain good balance & makes me more mindful of what I eat. I feel like it helps reduce soreness with other types of exercise that I do, too. Best wishes as you continue to maintain & I celebrate your great accomplishment!!!

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FELINA 10/3/2013 9:54AM

    emoticon
I'm in that same club, I'm 62, have kept off more than 30 pounds, but the belly fat is still there. It took me a while, but I've accepted that it's not going anywhere, due to age and slower metabolism.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 10/3/2013 9:24AM

    Sadly, Mother Nature (Evolution) is mostly geared toward us being able to produce and raise offspring. Once we're past bearing years and the next generation are old enough to create their own offspring, many of our biological systems function less well and it takes more effort to maintain fitness.

Fortunately as humans we've got free will and intelligence and grit, and we get to decide if something is worth the effort. There's a lady in my tae kardio class who is in her 80s. She's not in the best shape in the world and freely admits to having donuts at Tim Horton's when she wants them, but she's still quite active and enjoys her life. She seems to have found a way of life she's comfortable with.

I hope if/when I make it into my 80s that I'll be as active as she is.

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WATERMELLEN 10/3/2013 8:29AM

    Great blog!! I agree that slowing metabolism for over 60s (I'm one too) create particular problems for maintaining weight loss. This is an issue specifically addressed in the new book, State of Slim, written by one of the founders of the National Weight Loss Registry (there's a recent blog on my page and a link to consider purchase if you think it might help . . . I'm going to try some of it!)

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LESLIE871948 10/3/2013 6:52AM

    OK 65 here, formerly giant 365 pound girl :) I am barely at the top of my normal BMI. I lift a lot of weight. I think that may be one of the main reasons I can maintain at a decent number of calories. The thing is, I have to really work at staying this weight and the record keeping is the key. Years ago one of my good friends at WW told me about the Wendy plan. Eat lower in the range a couple of days, middle of range a couple, and high a couple. As long as I am keeping the journal this works for me. I have excel spreadsheets that prove it. This gives my metabolism a boost too, because the higher days assure my body that there is no famine going on or something. :)

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CELIAMINER 10/3/2013 6:06AM

    I'm pushing 60, and I'm resigned to a little bit of fat, but like Nell, there is loose skin. In my case, a lot of loose skin because I let myself balloon to 224 before I started to lose weight after menopause, and the skin doesn't just return to normal. Anyway, I applaud your efforts to educate yourself and your success in losing the weight!
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KSGAMMA 10/3/2013 6:00AM

    Congrats. I've always had a big belly and with the weight loss was looking forward to not having one. But, at age 60 my weight loss has been everywhere but my belly. The tape measurer shows a loss of 7" around my waist but things I wore before are still snug around the waist when I sit down. I've had to take about 6-8" off the legs but very little off the upper part. Being short-waisted is part of my problem - when I sit and my ribs and hips are almost touching, there is nowhere for everything to go but out but even when I stand - there it is leading the way. I'm sure I've got abs of steel beneath that flab! We'll have to keep on trying.

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_LINDA 10/3/2013 2:07AM

    I think Rosewand is the rare exeception here. It is very difficult to lose the belly fat, and I join the legion of older women struggling with it. I was right down to the lower limit of healthy BMI and still the bulge hung on. I could not safely go any lower. As I love to exercise I get away with higher calories, but as my health problems keep escalating and working against me, I will have to learn to reign in the calories. This is why Sparkpeople's dynamic trackers work so well for me -on the days I am unable to exercise I can see what calorie range I need to stay in. Its perfect.
Happy maintaining -what ever way works for YOU!
Keep up the great work!!

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LYNCHD05 10/3/2013 12:54AM

    emoticon emoticon

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PEZMOM1 10/2/2013 10:51PM

    emoticon

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PROUD-GRANDMA 10/2/2013 10:42PM

    emoticon

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MOMMY445 10/2/2013 9:35PM

    congratulations!

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SLENDERELLA61 10/2/2013 9:27PM

    Great blog! Best wishes for continued success!!

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TORTISE110 10/2/2013 9:24PM

    and it is clear that the same rules for weight loss apply whether you're 30 or 60 -- reduce your calorie intake and increase your activity level.


Yes!!

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DAISYBELL6 10/2/2013 9:23PM

    I can certainly identify with your blog! Thanks for sharing. It helps me to keep what's happening to me in perspective!

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MNNICE 9/29/2013 1:54PM

    I've always carried my weight in my belly, but after losing and maintaining for several years and at a BMI right around 25 (went up due to getting a little shorter, like you said), the belly fat and loose, lumpy skin seems to have gotten worse as I get older. Yesterday I was shopping and decided to just accept reality and get one of those "shaper" garments (like a panty that pulls all the way up to under the breasts). At least it will all be smoothed out under my clothes and confined to ONE roll instead of several! Mother nature can be such a meanie, but I will accept a healthy body and organs and let the shapers and camouflaging clothing handle the appearances! Congratulations on your maintenance - we will not give up, even though time is definitely not on our side!

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SUZYMOBILE 9/29/2013 11:12AM

    To get rid of the belly fat, I have to get down to a BMI of 18 or 19, which is wicked hard to maintain. And like Nell, I've got the oozy roll of skin over the top of my waistband, no matter how low my weight gets. I'm accepting of this and try to go around with clothes on as much as possible.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 9/23/2013 10:25PM

    I can totally relate to what you say. It's the same for me. Losing weight means exercising my butt off - literally- and starving myself to death - literally. LOL. I have scaled back my expectations.

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RACEWELLWON 9/21/2013 5:01PM

    First , Congratulations on your success ! emoticon I do agree that age plays a huge part in the belly area, I am over 50 , little closer to mid fifties and although my scale reads 136 after reducing I too see the rolls. How to combat ? Well , for me , I do feel that hormones do effect all of us differently at certain ages. I just keep moving and strength training at a moderate rate. I have stopped focusing on the scale number and rely on how I look and feel in my clothes. Since I have started to train for this Triathlon ( mind you I am not striving to be in first place but to complete ) I have noticed the scale going up to 140 to 145 - no doubt due to muscle weight however I am still comfortable in a size 14 depending on the manufacture. I wanted to also Thank-you for visiting my blog. I noticed in that Triathlon most of the participants were woman in their late 50's thru 70 !! I was so impressed and the comrade was exhilarating. I am not sure if you knew I took some time off of Spark for the last month and a half due to a heat stroke - all better !! Thanks Karen emoticon

Comment edited on: 9/22/2013 9:40:42 AM

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KANOE10 9/20/2013 7:54AM

    I am in my 60s also. I think developing muscles by doing strength training is helpful. Good luck on figuring out maintenance. We can do this!

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NICKYCRANE 9/19/2013 5:13PM

    I'm 70, and have shed about 7 kilos this year and reached my goal, even adjusted my goal down. My problem seems to be that at our age our skin is no longer elastic, so doesn't keep the belly in shape! There's not much we can do about that! My spare tyre is outside my abs, so nothing to do with my organs. A more elastic skin would contain it more efficiently, but that's unlikely to happen. BUt people notice and comment on the fact that I have lost weight, and I've always been fortunate in looking slimmer than I am, even when I was really overweight! I'm not going to torment myself either by going hungry or by obsessing about the spare tyre. I enjoy and appreciate my new body, my new muscles. I'm not going to lose sleep over what I have not achieved so far!

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ROSEWAND 9/19/2013 1:36PM

    I lost the belly fat in my mid-sixties after trying for
years. You might want to read the blog on my
SparkPage about weight loss after menopause.
The shift in our shape is largely about hormones.
When we recondition our hormone responses,
everything really does change. It really is that
easy. Once I figured this out, the weight dropped
slowly and steadily.

When I started my waist was 35." For the last three
years, it has remained a trim 25." I eat more calories
than I did in my forties and now maintain the weight
I was in eight grade. I still eat some sugar, white flour,
pasta, etc. I really enjoy my diet and have found
maintenance to be relatively easy.

Comment edited on: 9/19/2013 1:39:05 PM

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NELLJONES 9/19/2013 8:33AM

    I am 64 and don't have "belly fat" but I do have really soft loose skin that oozes over the top of my jeans a little, and crinkles into rolls when I sit down. The only thing for that is surgery, and I'll pass. I have learned to enjoy my cup of lasagna, and just a tablespoon of each component in a Cobb Salad. The one upside, I guess, is that time seems to pass faster at my age, so "a couple times a year" doesn't feel so onerous.

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TORTISE110 9/19/2013 6:29AM

    Like you I am over 60 and know it's a challenge! I hope you find your path.

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GENRE009 9/19/2013 12:57AM

    I do weight Watchers with spark, because it teaches you how to change your lifestyle! If you eat properly, you will loose 2 pounds almost with out exercising. You can eat lot, and still loose weight. It's what you eat. I am 5'3", 157 is fat for me, at a size 12.
In order to get down, my daily intake is1200 pounds a day. Go on the diabetic diet by spark. If you don't understand it, just remember you can change what is listed by clicking on the item, or look for diabetic recipes. They are the healthiest. If you are a vegetarian, then you need to know the vitamin content of the foods you are combining, and take certain vitamins.

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ZRIE014 9/19/2013 12:51AM

  congrat

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Staying on a different course

Thursday, September 05, 2013

I just couldn't believe it when the scale number hit my designated goal weight. It was really anticlimactic, the number on the scale just came up and no fireworks or balloons appeared. But I am now struggling with how to keep the number on the scale within a 2 pound range. I am still tracking, and I get myself going out for the long walks but I wasn't sure where I was going Then I read GETFIT2LIVE

www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5462170


The description of her commitment to keeping the weight off made me realize that there are still goals to be set and reached in the Maintenance stage. In some ways it was easier to be in the losing weight stage because it seemed like there was an end. But Maintenance does not have an end, something I never fully grasped the last 3 times I got to this point. So now I need SP more than ever to help keep me heading towards goals I never really set before. I do like being in my clothes size, my stamina is much better, I am stronger and I sleep better. So the actions it took to get here were definitely worth it. Now it is a different course, different goals to set and there is more to learn about myself.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KELLIEBEAN 9/18/2013 5:22PM

    I can totally relate to everything you said. When I saw my goal weight I wanted to shout "HEY EVERYBODY COME HERE, LOOK AT THIS" but it was 5am and I was home alone. My kids are grown and moved out, DH and I had only been married six years, he didn't understand my weight struggles in the past and doesn't care how much I weigh. So yes, anticlimactic!

I have lost weight quite a few times over the years but never kept it off long. I posted on spark that I hit my goal weight and maybe this time I'd keep on reading blogs on to remind me to keep off the weight.

Someone suggested the At Goal and Maintaining Team and it has been such a HUGE HELP. Depending on the day, I am 2 - 3 pounds below my goal weight and I'm stronger than I've ever been so YAHOO!

Welcome to the club! Glad to have ya!

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CLAIREINPARIS 9/11/2013 8:45AM

    Wow, congratulations, this is a wonderful stage, and many of us dream about the day when we will reach it! But I like your attitude (and GETFIT2LIVE): indeed, there are still other goals to reach!
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MORTICIAADDAMS 9/5/2013 1:14PM

    I have close friends who are in maintenance and hope to join them some day.

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