TRACIE-C   5,358
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4 months later.....

Monday, March 11, 2013

i woke up this morning and realized i am 4 months into my spark program!
.....caution i'm not sure how to not ramble through the last 4 months of this update....

i reached my weight loss goal of 18 lbs about 3 months after i started.
i thought i would write a blog post when i hit my goal somewhere the time got away from me.

when i started to spark i thought....
just get started. somewhere some how this mess i made HAS to get turned around. JUST START!!!
give yourself 1 month and see what you can do... just four weeks.

i hit that first month with a quiet vengeance... i did it without telling anyone in my house. i just did it.
to me, my 18 lbs might as well had been 100 lbs.
i felt miserable.
my clothes did not fit. when i looked in the mirror my self esteem was terrible. my face had become round. my bra and panties cut into me, i felt like a caterpillar. my winter coat was even tight. i would pinch at my rolls and be disgusted. i even would have dreams of being fat... fatter than i was, even ashamed in my dreams. it was constantly on my mind how uncomfortable i was about myself ... how i appeared, but also how physically unfit i had become.
maybe 18 lbs doesn't sound like much when other are struggling with so much more weight, but for me 18 felt miserable, unhealthy, stifling. heartbreaking. defeating. shameful.

getting started, i set a goal of physical activity 3 times a week for 20 min. that was almost laughable to me given before my knee injury i had been running 5 times a week for 50-60 min per session. and here i was struggling to set such a low goal to just walk 3 times a week for 20 min. but there it was. JUST GET STARTED and MOVE.
it didn't take long i was pumping up my 20 min walks to 45 min in snow and ice and terrible freezing winds. i was out sweating in miserable weather. i was pissed at myself and determined. i worked a lot of stuff out in my head out in that snow and blistering winds.
on the days i wasn't out hiking i hit my mat and did yoga and indoor cardio. i just moved.

i started doing things for myself. i lit candles and took baths. i started doing my hair and make up again. i made myself paint my nails. these were things that slipped away as i fell into my depression (and weight gain) these were little simple things that were part of how i kept myself going. these were little gifts i gave back to myself again.

i logged every bite that went into my mouth. it was the only way i could be truly honest with myself.
logging my food for the first time in my life, was life changing. i had NEVER kept track of food before!
i figured out pretty early on that prior to logging my food i had been exceeding greatly a 2000 cal per day diet. my portions were out of control, boy was that was eye opening.
i decided on cutting white sugar out of my life. again life changing. i could write a novel post on that alone for the changes that happened from my joints to my skin.

anyway, after a few weeks the scale started to move. that was a slow process but it happened. my face started thinning back out. i started to feel better physically. many times a day i would tell myself ....
'take care of yourself like your life depends on it'
before long the words had become part of me. i was living it!!!
everything in my life started changing and i do mean everything. i was feeling peaceful, healthy, stable, strong, happy, motivated, proud, confident, positive.
i channeled my energy into 'taking care of myself like my life depended on it!' i really did.

here i was in the middle of winter and deciding of all times this was the time to get my health together... going into the food fest of holidays... but worse... a long helsinki winter.
for the last 3 yrs the winters here had been something i had dreaded. they are dreary, cold, icy, depressing they are dark... there are times of only 4-5 hrs of gray daylight. going out and exercising is a chore.
it's the kind of season you want to sleep and eat through. this year i embraced it and decided it was an inside job and as long as i saw it as miserable that is how i would be living the season.

currently, for the last several weeks i have been back and forth between 21 and 23 lbs loss. yes, i exceeded my weight loss goal! i have been trying to figure out my maintenance now.
one of the eye opening discoveries for me in the last 4 months... i am healthier now, weigh less than i did when i was running because i am eating healthier than i ever was when i was running! i no longer hurt all over.
i am done running, i am done pounding myself and my joints. i have now reconciled that through this process and feel like i have mourned that chapter. i am now a walker, a hiker and healthy eater. i am at peace with my health and what it's going to take to stay healthy.

so i thank you spark people for the tools.. thank you my spark friends for your lovely support.
cheers to us all!
wishing everyone health!
xx tracie

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHANTENAY 3/11/2013 9:33PM

    I also started Spark People without telling anyone, for reasons that I can't define. It's interesting that you were able to move up your exercise within a short period of time. That must have been a surprise for you. I noted your emotional struggle at first, then also how you started doing nice things for yourself. This sparks me when I feel a struggle to be lazy and not go out - I will do it anyway thinking of what you said. And remember to treat myself. It was a wonderful journey you took. Amazing what the human heart can do with a little help from our friends. I hope to get to the point of contemplating how to do maintenance...


Comment edited on: 3/11/2013 9:35:59 PM

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XSCAPEREALITY82 3/11/2013 6:14PM


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RUNNING-TURTLE 3/11/2013 10:14AM


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GODS_TEMPLE 3/11/2013 5:43AM

    emoticon on making and exceeding your goals. I hope you find that fine line for maintaining.

Even though you only had 18 pounds to lose...that was just as important to your health as my 140 pounds were to me when I started SP. We are each at a different point in our lives, and journeys to that healthy place. You deserve as much joy on reaching your goal as I will when I reach my goal! emoticon

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WEARINGTHIN 3/11/2013 5:27AM

    Congratulations and good luck at finding your maintenance level. I've got about 30 lbs to go, and since you made it look so easy, maybe I can tackle this without killing myself. Best of luck to you, Glenn

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10 weeks of my sugar detox and stuff...

Friday, January 11, 2013

i'm 10 weeks into my sugar detox!!! whoooohooooo!!!!!

i started this because i knew i was out of control already and the holidays were coming and i thought what do i have to loss...
well i had 20 lbs to loss but i thought i have to get a handle on this business because i knew i was already in a bad place and it was only going to get worse.

btw, i do not drink soda or sugar drinks, i gave those up 20 yrs ago.
my issue was with baked goods/ice cream/chocolate/candy. in that order.

weight update: i'm down 15.5 lbs since nov. 1st.

i picked the holidays to do this challenge.
the hardest time of the year to challenge myself. geeeeesh!

over the course of the holidays like any other time in our home i cook and i bake. A LOT.
all our meals.
we rarely ever eat out (never fast food).
95-99% our our meals are made with fresh fruit/veg and from scratch. even the bread.
i make 3-5 loaves per week. by hand.
one of my passions is cooking and recipe development.
with living abroad, cooking has turned into a wonderful passion for me!

a little about our little life...
i have 3 lean mean hard hockey playing teen machine step sons in the house.
they eat A LOT.

if you have growing boys you know what i am talking about. they eat. man do they eat!
the oldest (19) lives with us full time, the other 2 live with us 8-15 days of the month.

when the house is full it's like running a full service restaurant around here!
and i write that with a smile because i truly love to cook.
my food is loved and appreciated with happy eating noises and thank yous and some times i even get hugs.... those are the very best!

cooking/baking was a big part of the challenge for me. how do i go about this as i am trying to deal with my sugar addiction?
someone said to me... well they don't need baked goods either.

you know what.... they probably don't, but they are active and are burning off everything they eat... they are lean and strong and metabolize their food much different than i do.
and they eat healthy with plenty of fruits and veg and lean protiens.

they don't need to loss weight, but i did. they don't have a sugar addiction... i do.
i cannot 'punish' them because i am kicking the sugar out of my diet. we have different needs.

anyway when you are cooking for more than just yourself you have to be aware that it isn't all about you....
what goes in my mouth belongs to me and i am accountable for that.

being around the sugar was tough.... at first. i had to think different about it.
most important i had to be accountable and honest about it to myself... and then there was the food tracker.
if it goes into the mouth... it goes into the tracker.
this has been one of the biggest accountability tools for me.... and not just for sugar, but food and portion size (another issue i'm getting in control of!).

i have almost no craving for sugar after 10 weeks.
so stick in there, i am proof you can get it under control!
i sure feel GREAT and i know you can too!!!!

wishing everyone a healthy (sugar free) day!
xx tracie

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WILMA102 1/27/2013 5:39AM

    I've been wanting to quit sugar but didn't have the gumption but after reading this I going to do it I know it won't be east there will be temper tsntrums on my part but I hsve to take control of my eating thanks

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BROOKLEE99 1/13/2013 1:00AM

    10 weeks!? Wow! Great accomplishment!

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RG_DFW 1/11/2013 10:47AM

    good news and congrats on the loss!

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YA_YAYA 1/11/2013 6:21AM

    What a great accomplishment. Awesome job. Very inspirational.

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DIXIECAP79 1/11/2013 5:50AM


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GODS_TEMPLE 1/11/2013 4:06AM

    Great Job of getting the sugar out of your system, and also for not thinking 'everyone' has to eat the way you do.

Growing boys need lots of food. I can remember my mother taking my oldest brother to the doctor to find out if something was wrong with him because he ate 5 full meals a day and didn't gain any weight!

It finally caught up with him when he turned 50. He and his wife went on the "Sugar Busters Diet" so they would look good at their son's wedding. Then they promptly gained the weight back. emoticon

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PHOENIX1949 1/11/2013 3:43AM

    emoticon emoticon

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BYEPOUNDS 1/11/2013 3:28AM

    thanks for sharing, I like your blog

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frustrating 'support'

Saturday, December 15, 2012

many times on our evening power walk we make good use of our time out and about and pick up groceries from the market.
this week walking home from the market in the snow and wind about 1.5 miles (2.5k) from home my husband carrying a bag of groceries and i with a kilo (2.2lbs) of tangerines... he kept telling me he would carry my bag also.
i insisted i wanted to carry it.

finally after the 3rd time he offered.....
i mentioned that 5 weeks earlier i had been carrying around nearly the equivalent weight of 5 bags of tangerines ALL THE TIME!

he said... are you trying to tell me you have lost almost 5 kilos?... honey that's 10 lbs?!
i was so excited i said YES! i have lost 10 pounds!

it was the first time i had said anything to him about my weight loss.
he knew i had been cooking different things and snacking different and passing up on dessert and holiday treats but we really hadn't had a real conversation about it.
he's been traveling a lot in the last 6 weeks and quite distracted with work so hasn't been noticing the details of the day to day things i have had going on.
i cook he eats.

as i began talking about the last 5 weeks he seemed really supportive and started asking me questions like what my total goal was. how many calories i eat a day, etc.

i told him i had about 10 more lbs to go... and the reaction was... great 10 more and then WE can have some good pasta meals again and cake and... and...and....

i began to explain how miserable i had been with my weight gain over the last year.
the shame. the depression of it all.
that once i hit my goal i still need to be be careful what i eat.
explained the metabolism rate of a middle aged woman and how hard i had to work to shed just the 10 lbs.
explained i have got back into eating healthy food and portions and had been retraining myself to eat healthy like i used i don't end up back in the same place as i was 5 weeks earlier and how the last year of habits has got me into this mess in the first place.

i was fighting back my tears. every point i tried to make, he had one that seemed dismissive of my reasoning.
it was soooo frustrating.

the conversation that started with my excitement of reaching a 10 lb goal and how good i had been feeling, my energy level, joints, flexibility, aches and pains and over all healthiness...

in the end i was so pissy and frustrated.
the conversation ended with me saying.....
never mind, i wish i wouldn't have mentioned anything. i'm sorry you are feeling deprived of starchy fatty sugary food... i have offered you alternative foods every day in addition to what i made. but i just can't go back to eating heavy foods and sugar like before it's how i've gotten myself so off track and in this situation to begin with.

his reaction.. i don't know why you're upset with me, i didn't say anything that wasn't supportive.

yes dear, that was wonderfully supportive. thank you.
shhhhheshhhh. madness.

how do you deal with those that just don't get it?

healthy wishes to all. xx tracie

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AQUIETPLACE 1/9/2013 3:11AM

    Hi Tracie, I can completely sympathise with this story, and I agree with the person who said, one minute your husband will be supportive and then next day he says something horribly unhelpful. Fortunately my husband has not complained about the lack of creamed soup casseroles now that I have stopped making them. I also use the low-fat recipes of casseroles and sauces like Satchmo-99 said. My husband and kids also don't notice. As for the lack of support, I have given up expecting it from anyone at home. Then when you get a little it is a nice surprise. Otherwise Sparkpeople is a great place to come. You have done such a great job, already losing ten pounds! You are half-way there. Keep it up. emoticon

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TRACIE-C 12/16/2012 1:00PM

    thank you to everyone for taking the time to read my blog and for the encouragement!
spark people is THE BEST!
xx tracie

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HEALTHIERKEN 12/15/2012 11:40AM

    You're on the right track, he's on the wrong track. Sorry you had to experience that anti-support : (

Keep up the good work. You'll be glad you did : )


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RG_DFW 12/15/2012 10:13AM

    Sorry, most people mean well but just don't "think" about what comes out

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RUNNING-TURTLE 12/15/2012 8:04AM

    Not much you can do with those types of comments from the man you love. Mine will be supportive at one minute, then say the wrong thing the next and act like he don't know what I'm talking about. But I guess men and women are definitely wired differently. You keep going for your goal, maybe he'll see the healthier side isn't such a bad idea after all. Wishing you lots of luck.

emoticon emoticon

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GHOSTFLAMES 12/15/2012 6:13AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SATCHMO99 12/15/2012 5:59AM

    So sorry to hear how the conversation turned out, after a great start. No, it was NOT supportive Mr C. However, Tracie, well done on your current loss, which is great, and good luck for the remainder.

In terms of Mr C, it would be interesting to know if he's dropped any lbs?

In terms of "after" you've dropped the remaining lbs, I'd carry on with the healthy choices, and perhaps have a treat day when you serve up a pasta and dessert choice, but search the SparkPeople recipes for healthier versions. There are some amazing recipes, and your hubby probably won't even realise he's eating a lower fat dish.

One thing I've found after 8 months of Sparkie eating, I have found my stop button, and even when eating a "normal" meal, I don't find it hard to leave the potatoes, or just have a spoonful of dessert, and stop when I feel full (unheard of before I changed my lifestyle).

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keeping at it! week 5

Monday, December 10, 2012

last week:
7 days of power walking and 6 days on the mat.

keeping my sugar in check. had the equiv of 3 tbls of holiday baked goods. all seemed super sweet and not that appealing, that's a great sign the sugar detox is working.

kept my cal/carbs/fat/cholest in range or below daily goal for 7 days. fiber intake at or above goal.

at goal or above daily with my water.

i was surprised after all my hard work my weight stayed the same... a little dissapointed....
then i got out the measuring tape. -.75'' on thigh -.50'' on waist. great reminder the scale is just 1 part of the story.

@5 weeks:
i've been gradually increasing my mat work... stretching/yoga/cardio/core over the last 5 weeks. i started at 20 minutes...10 min on the floor 10 minutes standing up.
wow my strength and flexibility has come a really long way!

when i first began i was so stiff. i didn't let it stop me.
i kept moving, gently pushing, reminding myself the whole time that my mat work was a gift to myself. a little time out of the day to tune out what others need/want and just focus on me, my health and bring myself into balance.
funny how before i had got into the excuse routine where i just couldn't 'find' an extra 20 minutes in the day to focus on my own health.

every week i would increase my time and repetitions. yesterday i hit my 40 minute mark.
20 min floor 20 min standing up.

great day. good way to end a weekend, good way to start a new week.
in the afternoon as the house was buzzing with their own comings and goings i slipped away and got in 40 minutes of mat work. (no one even noticed)
after dinner husband and i got out for a brisk 6k under a snowy sky for 60 min.

came home showered lit our evening candles. snuggled under a big blanket with popcorn and a glass of red. pretty much a perfect sunday.
cheers to a healthy week! xx

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RG_DFW 12/10/2012 10:44AM


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PHATBYNOVEMBER 12/10/2012 4:48AM

    emoticon emoticon

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taking the sweet tooth challenge!

Thursday, December 06, 2012

i took the sweet tooth quiz and i have situational sugar issues! not a shock for me.
when i am around baked goods i am pretty weak and then i crave them until i get almost sick.

i have went several years with it right out of my system. i haven't consumed soda in almost 20 yrs. broke that addiction so that is not an issue.
it's cookies, pie, cake.... they are the death of me.

i have been getting my sugar intake under control for the last 4 weeks and have done amazing. i have avoided them even when i made them for others in the house and didn't give in.
i know the control is paying off as i have shed 9 lbs so far, so yeah for me...

avoiding the kick off of sugar season (thanksgiving) this year was pretty easy as
1) i live abroad so no traditional thanksgiving food feast to partake in
2) i 'celebrated' alone (4th yr in a row. sad) as my husband was out of the country for work.

so november was fairly easy as there wasn't temptations around me.
going into the Christmas/new years sugar fest ...
i do 99% of the cooking and the traditional holiday sweets/cooking will be expected in the house.
so i decided to participate in the sweet tooth challenge i'm hoping i can learn some new skills i can use to keep my progress going and enjoy the holidays in a healthy mindful way.

healthy wishes to all!! xx tracie

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WILMA102 12/6/2012 5:31AM

    I have a sweet tooth and I'm going to take the sweet tooth challenge.

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