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August Challenges - And On To September!

Tuesday, September 02, 2014


SLEEP BET - I blew past my goal to average more than 7 hours of sleep a night! I averaged 7:49! I'd guess that I had been getting 6.5 - 7 hours. I am a person who has always needed a lot of sleep - 8 to 9 hours. The range for August was 5:40 to 9:38. The extreme short time was after I worked an overnight shift. I am not feeling terribly energetic generally, but I do feel worse after a night of only 6.5-7 hours of sleep.

I struggle mightily with figuring out rewards. Yet, I know that just doing it because 'it's the right thing to do for myself' doesn't motivate me. I couldn't find a 'Life is Good" tshirt that spoke to me. I dislike shopping, running around, even looking around much online. I eventually designed and bought online a t-shirt that says "Can Do!". I will post a picture when I get the shirt. And since I like bright colors and don't mind wearing similiar shirts, I may use for future rewards my own Can Do! shirts in rainbow colors with iron on transfers. :)

I am going to continue this challenge, with the goal of averaging more than 8 hours of sleep.

CALORIE BURN BET - I met this challenge to burn more calories than I consume on at least 51% with a score of 57%! My reward for this was plants for my butterfly/bird/bee garden - scored a sale so I was able to get 6 1-gallon plants!

Calories in and emotional eating are challenges for me - just going for a burn greater than calories in, no matter how small that deficit is, is a victory for me. My calorie deficit averaged -102. Not great, and leaves me tempted to make the next CBB about upping that number. But I really feel I need to continue to focus on just having a calorie deficit for more days. There will be time after I get the calorie burn concept down to work on improving the calorie deficit number. DH suggested going for 66% of the days in September (20). I have 75% of the days (23) stuck in my head. While trying to up the burn average seems like too big of a jump for me right now, I think having a reach goal of 75% or 23 days is doable.

Future rewards besides the shirts could be more plants or maybe fancy-schmancy candles that I could never justify in the past.


As many of you already know, I miss "real" running greatly - running races, especially half marathons. And I miss long distance hiking. I will continue the home PT for my knee, the limited run/walking as allowed. And I start PT for my previously mentioned feet and lower leg problems. Maybe this will help the knee situation. Ahem, *a.n.y.w.a.y.*, I need a fitness goal, as this loosy-goosey no-goal race way of life has not been working well.

I hesitate even to write this as I've avoided getting serious about these types of fitness for years. I did the Spark People push-up and crunch one-minute fitness tests.

I could not do a single pushup. When I did the on-your-knees pushup, I did 6. I've always known that my arm strength relative to my height/weight was poor. What's weird is that I am one of the stronger (and/or more willing) people at work to lift stuff (carefully) and do carryouts. I am hoping my goal is not too much - do 6 regular pushups by the end of the month.

As for the crunch test, I did 8 crunches. I would like to double that.


Sleep Bet: Average 8 or more hours of sleep each night.

Calorie Burn Bet: Burn more calories than I consume on 23 days in September.

Exercise Bet: Do 6 pushups and 16 crunches when I retest with the SP fitness tests.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IFDEEVARUNS2 9/18/2014 9:59AM

    Inspiring goals. I know you can meet them.

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HEAITHYMOMMA 9/3/2014 9:37AM

    Great goals. You can do it. Good Luck.

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DEBBYFROMMT 9/3/2014 8:57AM

    Sounds like a good month! I know you like to run but keep up that PT and take care of yourself so that one day you WILL run again! Here's to September!

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BETRHO48 9/2/2014 10:32PM

    emoticon You are amazing! What an inspiration you are.
Thank you so much for your post. I can't wait to see your tee shirt.

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JANISMKW 9/2/2014 10:24PM

    You are an inspiration!

Reward ideas... buy a song on iTunes; a massage, facial, etc. or bubble bath or mani-pedi at home; buy a bead to add to a bracelet or necklace, then you have one item to commemorate the whole accomplishment, the prices can vary widely bead store to jewelry store.

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JMARIES51 9/2/2014 12:51PM

    emoticon emoticon
Good luck on September goals

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ROCKPORT9 9/2/2014 12:19PM

    You are doing great!

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My Ice Bucket Challenge Video - With a Sunny Mary Twist

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Posting as requested by a dear Spark Friend - here is my video ;)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBYFROMMT 8/28/2014 10:50AM

    I've been nominated by a friend of mine. Hmmm, LOVE the vlog!

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JANISMKW 8/27/2014 9:30PM


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-COURT- 8/27/2014 7:06PM

    Whoa, a double bucket dump. Brrrrr!!!!!

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    Couldn't view it emoticon

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ONMYMEDS 8/27/2014 3:08PM



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IFDEEVARUNS2 8/27/2014 11:35AM

    Having problems getting it to load. emoticon

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Day 7 I Can Do It; Day 8 Help Me, Please...*

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

*"Day" blogs based on activities in Linda Spangle's 100 Day Weight Loss book.

Day 7 I Can Do It

Today is about becoming my own cheerleader. I set up my vision board on my Start Page to focus on words of encouragement: "I Can Do Hard Things" 2x, "I Totally Matter", "I Will Eat What Fuels My Body Best", "I Am Doing This For ME" and "Love Yourself First And Everything Else Falls Into Line - Lucille Ball". And I will post at least ten sticky notes around with the phrase, "I Can Do Hard Things!" - DONE!

I "Can Do" because:

- I have set up a plan and worked it through to a big goal before - completing a marathon
- I have organizing skills
- I function well with goals, order and routine
- I am getting enough sleep


Day 8 Help Me, Please...

I have made some progress in asking for specific kinds of support that are actually supportive to me.

My husband preportions my shredded wheat and makes sure there are only 3-4 servings in the cupboard. He hides the remainder.

I have made a Sleep Bet with my DD and a Calorie Burn Bet with my DH for the month of August. These are more like accountability challenges in that neither DD nor DH has chosen to make a bet back. I gave DD $20 in a envelope that I am to get back if I average more than 7 hours of sleep a night - if I don't she gets to donate it to the charity of her choice. I plan to use the money to buy a fun Life is Good t-shirt. BTW, I am averaging 7 hours, 50 minutes so far! :)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROCKPORT9 8/31/2014 2:59PM

    You have motivated me to get Linda Spangle's book and join the Spark team that uses her book. Thank you so much! Hugs, Laurel emoticon

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JANISMKW 8/27/2014 9:29PM

    Thanks for sharing these "Day" blogs.
I think your sleep average is increasing, right? Progress.

I don't think I could be quite as structured as you are, but my goals have been motivating me lately as content with other struggles.

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NORMA/MAC 8/27/2014 11:40AM

    keep up the good job and good luck norma

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Bucket List Dilemma

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I am not sure why I am balking at writing a bucket list. Through my employer, I have access to an online wellness program that includes new ways to earn points each month - for August, we are to write a bucket list and accomplish one thing on it. My only life goal right now is to hike the Ice Age Trail, a 1200 mile long trail. So far I've hiked 474 miles. It has gotten harder to get out on the trail since new trail is further away, I now work full-time (including most weekends) and I don't know how my ongoing (forever!) recovery from a knee injury is going to affect or be affected by the hike. About the only thing I can do this month still hiking the IAT is to request a weekend off.

In terms of specific and measurable, hiking the IAT is my only life goal. I've got goals related to healthy living. They are "in-process", certainly not attainable by 8/31. I've got the Sleep Bet and Calorie Burn Bet for the month of August, but those aren't life goals. I would not consider building and maintaining a butterfly garden in the front yard a life goal - and I am not sure I could clean it up enough by the end of the month.

The only other life goals I've had that I can think of, I have accomplished: college, studied abroad for a semester, had kids.

Soooo, what are your thoughts on this life goal issue for me? For yourself - what are your life goals?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FOCUSD 8/30/2014 9:16AM

  How about a fun goal. Working so hard you may need to find a way to enjoy a few minutes. Call an old friend? Watch a new movie?

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LOLAINSC 8/27/2014 1:28PM

    Am I missing the point of a Bucket List, do they have to be lifetime achievements? Is there a rule that says they can't be simple and realistically obtainable? I thought they just were something whose attainment would bring you a good dose of joy. Last Thanksgiving when I was visiting family for the holidays we enabled my sister to achieve an item on her Bucket List. We were playing Dominoes with some cousins and started one-upping each other with extreme trash-talk, as if we were in a vicious life and death duel. We all ended up laughing so hard that I was afraid of falling off my chair and breaking a hip. My sister checked off "Laugh with your family until tears roll down your face" from her Bucket List.

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AUNTRENEE 8/27/2014 10:43AM

    Great goals. In my opinion, our goals is our bucket list. No need to have 2 different lists.

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DEBBYFROMMT 8/27/2014 10:08AM

    Wow, that is interesting. That will certainly take some thought. What else do you want to do? (or if you can imagine, what would you do if you have a million dollars?)

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Day 5 - Magic Notebook; Day 6 - Protect My Program

Monday, August 25, 2014

Day 5 - Magic Notebook

I like the idea of the magic notebook. I see it as two things really - a journal, which I have here through Spark's Planner, for longer writing; and a quick note like on a memo on my phone or paper in my pocket when I am at work. I like the idea of for the moment writing down the name of the tempting food, maybe a description, then telling myself I am not going to eat any right now. 'Course, I could carry paper in my pocket outside of work as well - and then I could "throw away" the thought of food that is on that paper. :)


Day 6 - Protect My Program

I really like this idea of when I am around other people and food, say "not just yet" or "I'm going to wait a little while".

What fortunate timing about seeing this reading today. In the past - and earlier today - I struggled with protecting my program, making taking care of myself a priority. Not so much that other people pushed themselves first, but that I put everybody else first. Today, while my teenaged son is still sleeping, I am putting as a priority the I-need-quiet self care activities - including working through these lessons in Spangle's 100 Day Weight Loss book.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBYFROMMT 8/26/2014 4:24PM

    I like saying "not just yet" or "getting to that in a little while" . Perfect for parties or dinner with the in-laws, or whoever is trying to get you to eat!

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JANISMKW 8/25/2014 9:44PM

    Good stuff! emoticon

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GOODGETNBETR 8/25/2014 4:54PM

    Like they say "Put on your own oxygen mask 1st." Hard to help anyone else when you're unconscious.

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IFDEEVARUNS2 8/25/2014 3:15PM

    Seize the day!
Good work, Mary

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ROCKPORT9 8/25/2014 2:00PM

    I am looking in to this book. It sounds good in your blogs.

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