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MAINtaining: 4A-HEALTHY-BMI knows it's the main thing!

Sunday, August 12, 2012


OK, I don't want to embarrass 4A-HEALTHY-BMI by becoming a one-note cheerleader for her blogs . . . but yeah, I guess that's a possibility.

Because she writes excellent blogs. And is an outstanding leader for the At Goal and Maintaining Team.

Which, IMHO, is a really key team here at SparkPeople.

Because losing the weight to achieve our goal, and then keeping it off and staying healthy is what most SparkPeople aspire to do.

And it's tough to do -- we know that because current research indicates only about 5% of people who take it off, keep it off.

So if we don't learn about maintaining strategies, the hard won "victory" (weight loss) may also be a short won victory.

Commercial weight loss services depend upon recidivism for their business plan.

SP, although supported by advertising, is free: not a "commercial" site.

Which means that SP may be uniquely positioned to become the world leader in researching and teaching weight loss maintenance strategies.

I posted a link to 4A-HEALTHY-BMI's latest blog on the Spark Team Staff page. And I'm hoping you might join me in "liking" her blog and in encouraging SP to increase its efforts in the absolutely crucial area of weight loss MAINtenance!!

Here's that link too:


I'd love to see SP become the world leader in weight loss MAINTENANCE research, skills development, motivation and support.

What do you think? Whether you're at goal now or not, is MAINtenance your MAIN thing too?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 8/16/2012 11:48AM

    Awesome reference! Thanks!!


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NANCY- 8/13/2012 9:43AM

    MAINtaining is the ultimate goal for me. Developing a healthy lifestyle for life. I'm not just here to lose weight. Thanks for sharing her blog with us.

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KALIGIRL 8/13/2012 8:58AM

    Maintenance is far from my main thing - never will get very high on the scale because weight is only half of physical wellness, which is only part of a healthy life-style. (Plus doesn't hurt to be as WALKINGANNIE dubbed me, a natural 'thin' person.)

My 'style' in so many other areas - emotional, intellectual, spiritual and social, to name a few - are where I need the most focus...

The wonderful thing about Spark is that even if "Because losing the weight to achieve our goal, and then keeping it off and staying healthy is what most SparkPeople aspire to do." - there's room for the rest of us.

Namaste my friend.

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_LINDA 8/12/2012 9:39PM

    Between you and ONEKIDSMOM, I am getting the links to her well written blogs. She should be recognized in that 5% article (its an older one that has been on before) as well as being a great leader of this team. Maintenance does need to come into the spotlight!! Spark needs to work at improving that 5% instead of just leaving successful weight loss achievers hanging!
Thanks for the link!

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DDOORN 8/12/2012 8:33PM

    Oh hey, definitely adding my note amongst the cheerleading! On both counts, 1) the wonderful accomplishments and inspirations offered by 4A-HEALTHY-BMI AND the 2) critical role maintenance plays in living a healthy and well LIFESTYLE, which implies long-term, however is all too often glossed over and not spelled out loud & clear!


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TRAVELGRRL 8/12/2012 8:14PM

    I read her blog and as usual it's excellent. I didn't even think about "liking" it so thanks for the reminder. I'll pop over and do that now.

Of course MAINtenance has to be the MAIN thing, otherwise what's the point?

I agree that SP doesn't depend on people needed their services over and over and over again, like the paid weight loss programs, so it truly IS uniquely positioned to be the voice and advocate of maintenance.

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PHEBESS 8/12/2012 7:47PM

    I've always said that even maintaining a plateau is a whole lot better than gaining!!!!!

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SLENDERELLA61 8/12/2012 7:42PM

    100% agree!! She's a great leader. Maintenance is the MAIN thing. I used to think maintenance was just plain boring, now I think it is positively the COOLEST thing there is!! Thanks.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 8/12/2012 7:16PM



You know I'd love nothing better than to see that maintenance success rate skyrocket. Here, or anywhere else. I'm hoping the stats we're gathering on the maintenance anniversaries might give us an idea of whether we're beating those odds.

People are suffering. The emotional pain of regain is real. The physical damage done to our bodies by yo-yo-ing is real, too. If you're just going to gain the weight back, depending on the situation it might be better not to lose it in the first place.


Maintenance IS hard, just as is weight loss. But I don't think it has to be as hard as it currently is. I really really don't.

Comment edited on: 8/12/2012 7:16:51 PM

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Eat Fast Eat

Friday, August 10, 2012


Nope, not about fast foods. Or pausing while you eat.

About fasting. Not eating at all.

At two different points in my life, I've fasted for a week. No food. Water only. I used a book called "Fasting Can Change Your Life."

It was an interesting experience, not for weight loss so much as for resting the body physically from the work of digestion, slowing down and "resetting" the appetite, and providing a spiritual focus akin to mediation: "emptying" the mind. Hunger while fasting is not constant: it comes and goes. But fasting in that manner really does require supervision by someone experienced in supervising fasts; and it really does require that the person doing the fasting can withdraw from the usual routines of life and rest and keep warm. Not something to take on casually, or at least that's my opinion.

I haven't fasted for awhile, but there have been a few recent blogs in SP on this topic, riffing on a BBC program (which we can't get here in North America). However, one of the comments pointed me to this link on the Eat Fast Eat approach: namely, eating five days a week, and fasting two (separated) days a week, with a 600 calorie breakfast on the morning of the fast day and then no further food until the following morning's breakfast. The Eat Fast Eat approach also stresses weight training.

There are many religious practices that incorporate fasting, of course, including Ramadan.

And there are plenty of people outside the religious context who do fast (even without the 600 calorie breakfast) one or two days a week quite routinely.

This Eat Fast Eat approach is attractive to me as a more moderate approach which would not require withdrawal from the ordinary routine of work/life.

Has anyone here tried it?

Your experiences?

Do you recommend it?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BREWMASTERBILL 8/15/2012 10:08AM

    SLENDERELLA61 - For the record, protein sparing modified fast is NOT intermittent fasting. They are not even distant cousins.

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GRACEFULIFE 8/15/2012 9:33AM

    Here are some more resources on Leangains:

The Q&A page contains Martin's approach to beginning IF with women. Similar to what BB says (that he worked into it gradually by taking a first meal later and later) and Berardi's book suggests (backing up the first meal by ~15 minutes a day... I'd add "as you feel comfortable" to that scheme also).

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GRACEFULIFE 8/15/2012 9:24AM

    Let me also note that while I used to discourage any form of fasting, up-to-24-hour fasting for up-to-two-days-per-week I now think is OK. I'd still discourage anything more than that. I'd also, personally, strongly discourage any form of anything using any of the terms "juice fast", "cleansing", or "detoxification".

Also, as some people have slightly hinted, any form of fasting may or may not be for you if you are diabetic (especially type 1--IFing might help a mild type 2), or hypothyroid, or in any other way metabolically abnormal in a medically provable sense then you should exercise extreme caution and consult medical professionals. However, you also have every right to seek out progressive and open-minded medical professionals.

I'm assuming you are referring to Pilon's latest blog post http://bradpilon.com/weight-loss/th
e-52-diet-my-review/ ...let me note that I don't think 5/2 is the best IF approach (based mostly on Berardi's experience--I won't be trying 24 hour fasts in the foreseeable future).

Let me also state that now that I look I accidentally mistook Pilon for a different fitness personality on the web (who I shall not name). Pilon is mostly legit. I will redact the statement in my earlier reply about him.

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TEENY_BIKINI 8/14/2012 10:52PM

    Nope, can't do it. It's interesting to see the different perspectives though... it makes me anxious just thinking about it. The closest I've come to fasting is when they say don't eat after midnight when I get a blood test, but since I am sleeping it's not that much of a sacrifice (and probably the only reason I can do it). Apparently, sleeping through the event inspires great discipline in me :) And that is why sleeping is good...


Great blog, gorgeous.

Comment edited on: 8/14/2012 10:53:12 PM

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KALIGIRL 8/13/2012 9:20AM

    I love the idea and have wanted to incorporate a fast day once a month - finding the 'day' when I will not impact others has not been easy...

Hope you find a way to work it into your life'style'!

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GRACEFULIFE 8/13/2012 6:19AM

    It's "Eat Stop Eat", actually. If you intend to try that approach you'd be wise to get your hands on a copy of the book by that name.

I do pretty much what BB does--I start my eating day about noon, but contemplating starting at 1 since I have wound up eating near 9 or so pretty often these days. So far I like it--losing weight, and not hungry enough to bother me much once I adapted, a nice kick in the pants after the first meal and absolutely no afternoon slow feeling--plus it feels like the big dinner kicks up my metabolism. It controls my appetite and snack cravings better than other regimes have, and one less time to seek food adds an hour or so to the useful time of the day. I usually eat two meals, sometimes a small one in between--and you can definitely eat a fully satisfying dinner. So far I don't even bother counting calories with it either. I don't bother exercising fasted as Berkhan recommends; I just get it in when I can. I just finished Berardi's book, and it's pretty good--well written and readable, a good introduction. I only have a couple complaints about it: firstly he makes it sound as if he fasted for more than 24 hours (and perhaps he did), e.g. ate dinner Tuesday, didn't eat until Thursday morning. That does not agree with the ESE book, or Berardi's own writing in other parts of the book which suggest only fasting for a 24 hour period - for example dinner-to-dinner or breakfast-to-breakfast. Secondly, he pushes lots of products that aren't really necessary, like the greens drinks or whatever. I don't use it, and neither do most people experimenting with intermittent fasting.

If you intend to try Berkhan's approach you should be advised that he does not suggest an 8/16 schedule for females, rather he suggests a 10 hour feeding window. I haven't looked into that enough to know why that might be.

Also, note that some replies to this blog entry include significant amounts of broscience--even some which is spouted officially on Spark. Careful investigation and heavy skepticism is advisable.

NOTE: I am redacting the paragraph below this line which I wrote in error. Pilon is generally legit and I was thinking of a different web nutrition personality whom I will not name.
Most of Pilon's stuff is brosciencey and he has lots of stuff to sell. There are much better places to learn about strategic fasting for health and fitness (honestly better to just avoid the place).
^^^ Above statement was written in error and is retracted in full.

Comment edited on: 8/15/2012 9:28:39 AM

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MOBYCARP 8/11/2012 8:39PM

    I've heard plugs for fasting as a spiritual discipline off and on for years. I've never tried it for that purpose. I was never dedicated enough to pull it off.

The closest I've actually come to fasting was preparing for a colonoscopy. That involved hunger that came and went, and certain other discomforts as well. But that's not really the kind of fasting that would be helpful for weight loss; the 5 pounds I took off in one day came right back the next day.

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NOLAZYBUTT110 8/11/2012 7:16PM

    Many people dont know how to fast. Your better off fasting one whole day out of 8 days, but still going off meat or having no full meals is hard. You have to go off slow even though its one meal and then come back slow. Going off food slowly and eliminating meat then go down to eating just veggies , then soup to water only. Even such a fast one should not fast longer than 8 days. If its for a cleanse you can do that by just drinking a Detox herbal tea once a day ! But people who are diabetics or have any other health issues should be careful. You should make your own soup and eliminate meat first for a fast. Most fast are for prayer. It wont accomplish much without it! Fast are a waste of time without prayer accompanying it! fast are meant to really help one atune oneself spiritually! Eptying oneself for coming into the presence of G*D! Its not to be a used process for those who know nothing about the spiritual. It can bring a person very close to death if they dont know what they are doing! Its not the best way for losing weight Or for the uninitiate! Hope your careful to still consume something that will sustain you for withotu prayer it can do mroe ahrm than good!

I know of a recipe that used to be given out by Hospitals for those having heart surgery which caused most people to lose a good ten pounds in one to two weeks. It was a tomato soup recipe with veggies and you could eat all you wanted. You did not feel hunger either. You did lose weight. Thats the ticket for many who have surgery. I hope you dont gain all YOUR weight back, because most people who do a foolish fast, do regain most of their weight back. And many get sicker ...those who do not constitute prayer....it can bring you to a bad place if your not carefully and in tune with the right spirits! Good luck!

Comment edited on: 8/11/2012 7:35:17 PM

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SLENDERELLA61 8/11/2012 2:34PM

    I did the protein-sparing fast in 1986 where the only thing I consumed was liquid protein, water, and diet ginger ale. I lost 21 pounds in 28 days. For 9 months I had no periods, had terrible insomnia, and my skin looked dull. I had regained all the weight before I regained my health. I have no desire to try any kind of fasting again.

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BREWMASTERBILL 8/11/2012 12:39PM

    Doing IF now and enjoying it. Fits my lifestyle. I'm a habitually breakfast skipper and love to eat a big dinner, so IF just fits. I'm largely on the 16/8 (fast 16 hours, eat 8), which means I usually have a small, late lunch and a pretty large dinner.

I may do a 24 hour fast as an experiment, but do not plan on incorporating that into my maintenance plan.

One thing to note, for me anyway, is that you have to build up to this. Hunger seemed to be in sync with the clock. At noon, it was lunch time. Period. Breaking that habit so that lunch was whenever I said it was lunch or that sometimes there was no lunch took a lot of practice.

I say if IF works for you, do it. If it doesn't, don't do it.

Also, look at the site http://www.leangains.com, particularly http://www.leangains.com/2008/06/br

And finally, you might be interested in this free book by John Berardi http://www.precisionnutrition.com/i

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/11/2012 7:28AM

    I have never followed such a formal strategy but back when I was between high school and college I followed a modified "feast day / fast day" cycle and dropped about 30 pounds, my first "serious" diet. It set me up for the cycle of starvation response regain of MORE than those 30 pounds and set me on the weight roller coaster for the rest of my life.

I personally don't recommend doing what I did... it was a lifetime disaster. However, this one sounds a little smarter than my crazy teenaged version, so I won't write it off at once, even though since what I'm doing now (portion control, balanced nutrients) is working for me, I'm not likely to try it myself.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 8/11/2012 7:26AM

    Lots of people do intermittent fasting (IF), mostly when they're trying to confuse the metabolism and prevent it from adapting to a consistent nutrient level.

Most of the strategies are based on a 24-hour cycle. None of them last a week. Doing that would probably slow your metabolism.

BREWMASTERBILL and GRACEFULIFE have both tried IF. I'll send them over here in case they have comments.

Comment edited on: 8/11/2012 7:34:09 AM

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_LINDA 8/11/2012 1:26AM

    I don't think this is a good idea, especially for anyone wanting to lose weight. You need proper fuel and nutrition to have your body function at its peak and to make the most out of your exercising. Fat burns in the carbohydrate flame. Your brain only uses one fuel -carbohydrates. Your metabolism needs fuel to keep burning. There are just so many reasons not to fast. I have been forced into numerous fasts due to surgeries (and procedures), and I can't say its given me any benefits. I notice the difference if I haven't eaten anything before a workout and when I do (early enough before so the meal or snack is digested and can be used as fuel).
Proceed with caution and preferably under a Dr. or Nurse practitioner's care. It goes without saying diabetics should not even be considering this. I can't see once in a while for religious observances it being a problem, but on a regular basis? No way.

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PHEBESS 8/10/2012 10:07PM

    I've always been a fan of listen to my body. There are times when I don't eat - I'm busy, I'm tired after 4 hours of mural work, I'm sick and my stomach just doesn't want food. I've had a week or two where I only eat maybe 600 cals a day. But those are few and far between - because I'm not eating not by choice, but due to extenuating circumstances.

At the same time, there are fast days in our religion - and some years I can do it, and some I can't. Depends on all kinds of things - and our lady hormones can make fasting even worse. (There was the year I keeled over onto my mom on Yom Kippur.)

So - I agree that one should not approach fasting lightly. And that there is a time and place. Listen to your body and see what it thinks. Try half a day of fasting and see what your body tells you. It might be happy. It might be miserable. Give it a try, but listen carefully to be sure you aren't thinking your body is saying what you want to hear.

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NEWKAREN43 8/10/2012 9:25PM

    Very interesting...I'm tuning in to the responses to learn more about this. Very interesting. Thanks for posting this. I learn from you every time I read one of your blogs...Thank you!

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DDOORN 8/10/2012 9:16PM

    Heard of it, used to pick one day a week to fast. It was so-so for me, not bad, not great. Haven't in a while. Just posted some resources to check out at this blog:



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LEFTHANDLUKE 8/10/2012 9:13PM

    diabetic,couldn't even begin to try that emoticon

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TBARBOUR0322 8/10/2012 9:12PM

    The thought scares me.

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CARRAND 8/10/2012 9:04PM

    I've never fasted unless I was really sick. If you try it, be cautious. Let us know how it turns out.

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Back to Beck Basics!

Monday, August 06, 2012

I'm rereading Judith S. Beck's "The Diet Solution". Just need to reaffirm my commitment to eating everything sitting down, tracking everything (my body is tracking everything whether "I'"do or not) and reminding myself how to think like a thin person. This is a skill, like learning how to play a musical instrument or drive a car. I'm keeping my skills sharp.

So I've just reread my Advantages Response Card. I need to set up a system to remind myself to read it regularly. And to think about each advantage and why it's important to me and where I prioritize it.

#1 for me: I'll reduce the risk of recurrence of breast cancer. Hugely motivating.
#8 I'll enjoy trying on clothes! pretty trivial, I know . . . but also a powerful motivator. I was recently trying on white shorts (my old ones are pooched for "formal" wear, and I'm very particular about the right degree of opacity of white shorts!) It was fun -- particularly trying on size 6s which fit fine (but too transparent, did not buy 'em).

And I'm reminding myself: It's normal to feel hungry. Most people who are thin are matter-of-fact about feeling hungry and just wait for their next meal. Hunger can be a positive signal that I will enjoy my next planned meal even more.

It's a long weekend in Ontario so I'm not at work today. Greek omelette for breakfast. Cauliflower soup for lunch. Golf this afternoon (it's gorgeous). I've got my salads all ready for work tomorrow, in the fridge, in case I'm tired when I get back from golf.

OK then. Planning. Fighting back sabotaging thoughts. Relearning how to think like a thin person!! Because that's what it takes. For me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KLONG8 8/9/2012 12:33AM

    Size 6....way to go. Keep thinking thin...it IS a mindset.

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NANCY- 8/7/2012 1:18PM

    WTG on honing your skills... even Olympians need practice to get to their desired level. You are so spot on with your thinking.
Sometimes the trivial can be more motivating, I quit smoking because of the smell... not for my health, that was just an added benefit.

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KALIGIRL 8/7/2012 8:49AM

    "think about each advantage and why it's important to me and where I prioritize it" - can't do much better than that!

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CARRAND 8/6/2012 9:15PM

    Way to go!

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ROOSTER72 8/6/2012 7:00PM

    It seems to me that the habits of thin people need to be revisited occasionally. Good for you. I am finding it challenging, thats for sure!

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_LINDA 8/6/2012 3:04PM

    Size 6! WooWhee! You are a thin person!! Your brain just needs to catch up with that fact! Whatever it takes, and these Beck cards were so awesome! You are rocking fabulous Ellen!! An inspiration to maintainers everywhere!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TRAVELGRRL 8/6/2012 2:03PM

    I definitely think the Beck book and cards are worth revisiting from time to time. Just like any skill, we tend to slack off/get rusty if we don't practice.

Have you thought about posting your Curried Coconut Cauliflower Soup ("Triple C Soup") to Spark recipes?

Have fun on your extra day off!

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PHEBESS 8/6/2012 12:30PM

    I am so impressed by your mental toughness and commitment to staying thin! And yes, I have Beck at the ready, have perused it, and have been to lazy and busy to do every step. And yes, it is a lifelong commitment (and struggle) for many of us!

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Curried Coconut Cauliflower Soup!

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Local cauliflower looked gorgeous at the grocery store and well priced too: two huge ones for $5.

I chopped them up and simmered them in two cartons of vegetable broth until just tender, then whirred in batches in the food processor with a package of pure coconut cream, a good sized chunk of fresh ginger and a couple generous heaping tablespoonfuls of garam masala.

I stirred in a can of lentils (well drained, well rinsed) and a can of diced tomatoes.

Simple. Fast. And smells delicious!

Not sure whether this would be best cold or hot: I'll try it tomorrow. But curried coconut cauliflower will be my soup this week!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KALIGIRL 8/6/2012 8:46AM

    Sounds yummy!

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_LINDA 8/6/2012 1:25AM

    Wow Ellen!! You are making some awesome soups!! Just drooling thinking about it!!

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NANCY- 8/5/2012 7:06PM

    Can't wait to hear which you like better hot of cold.

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FIFIFRIZZLE 8/5/2012 5:58PM

    Oh yum that sounds WONDERFUL! I'll look out for cauliflower at the market today.

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SLENDERELLA61 8/5/2012 1:55PM

    Sounds wonderful! Enjoy!! Thanks for sharing. Perhaps you have given me an idea...

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ALOHAEV1 8/5/2012 10:53AM

    Brillant idea! My stash of garam marsala is about at the end of being "fresh" so this is perfect.

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/5/2012 6:45AM

    Oh, my... sounds delicious!

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PENNYAN45 8/5/2012 12:01AM

    This sounds delicious! I will give it a try.

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IMAGINE_IT 8/4/2012 11:00PM

    Mmmmm....... emoticon i haven't decided what my 'soup for the week' will be....but your soup sure does sound very delicious.....i never tried 'fresh ginger' i always use the powdered kind...i may have to try the fresh one this week.

Comment edited on: 8/4/2012 11:00:27 PM

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    Sounds absolutely delish!

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TRAVELGRRL 8/4/2012 9:48PM

    That's a great price for cauliflower. The soup sounds interesting! I couldn't find garam masala in my small town, so when I visited my daughter in Boston I stocked up! This sounds like a great use for it!

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PHEBESS 8/4/2012 9:15PM

    You are one of the most creative soup chefs I've ever heard of!!!!!

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    That sounds soooo good!

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CARRAND 8/4/2012 9:06PM

    Sounds interesting. My mother loved cauliflower, but I never cared for it. Maybe with the ginger and gram masala, I would like it, too.

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Peregrine Falcons!

Friday, August 03, 2012


Last Saturday morning very early I heard some raucous and repeated bird calls which were new to me. I searched the sky outside and noticed a pair of hawk-like birds roosting at the top of a tall tree with some bare branches. They are a little smaller than a crow, larger than a bluejay, and fly very rapidly. They have vertically streaked breasts and horizontally barred tails. Their hooked beaks made it clear they are birds of prey, hawk-like, but they do not soar like the buteos (red tail hawks) or turkey vultures I'm familiar with.

I got out the binoculars and the bird book, began searching various websites, and have identified them as a pair of peregrine falcons. I've been observing them all week. They are most active in the early morning and before dusk, apparently catching bats and birds on the wing and calling constantly while on the hunt. On Thursday morning there were no falcons, but a robin was innocently occupying the roost, which has been a favourite of robins, jays and cardinals for years. With a sudden divebombing attack at incredible speed, one of the peregrines ousted the robin which let out an absolutely terrified cry. I don't know if it escaped or not . . . . Nature red in tooth and claw indeed.

This morning I was thrilled to see the two peregrines joined by a third and then a fourth, all jostling with wings outspread on the dead branches. It's clear there is a breeding pair with two adult offspring. I've no idea where the nest was -- perhaps on the flat roof of an adjacent building.

I'm not good at taking pictures, but the National Geographic image in the link looks most like the birds I'm seeing. There are lots of images on the internet and quite a bit of variation in colouring. This National Geographic link has an audio recording too and if you like, you can hear their characteristic call.

Peregrines were rendered just about extinct by DDT by the 1970s, but now DDT is banned they've become a bit of a "cult bird" with their slow resurgence. Webcams are posted in various nesting sites at tall buildings and bridge spans. There is a Canadian Peregrine Foundation, for example, that reports sightings.

I've never seen even one peregrine before, so this has been pretty exciting for me!

Here's another link that shows just how fast they can fly: over 200 miles an hour!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CARRAND 8/4/2012 9:27PM

    How exciting!

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TRAVELGRRL 8/4/2012 6:09PM

    I think those are the falcons that were used in falconry in the middle ages! How cool that you've been able to enjoy them up close and personal!

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    That is so cool! How exciting that must be to see such beautiful creatures! You are so lucky, indeed!

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 8/4/2012 5:27PM

    That's wonderful! I am so glad that you saw such majestic birds.

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SLENDERELLA61 8/4/2012 2:53PM

    Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed the picture, the video, and your appreciative blog.

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IMAGINE_IT 8/4/2012 2:26PM

    ,,,, such beautiful birds..thank you for giving the link....and aren't you lucky to be that close to be able to watch the wonder of nature... emoticon I love nature...and i wished many...many more people would appreciate and respect what we still have left on this earth.

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_LINDA 8/4/2012 12:05PM

    How wonderful!! To see them so very close is aweome and an amazing experience!!
The Nature conservationalists were trying to preserve the peregrine in our city some twenty years ago. They encouraged two young breeding pairs to roost on top of our old Bessborough, and it was a success as their offspring and generations there after returned to that spot. I have only seen them once. Their almost nocturnal habits make them hard to spot, and I am never around that area early or late. One of my bridge partners, who lives in a building nearby, hears them all the time, and of course, doesn't like the screeching, she would rather hear birdsong
Thanks for the links! Enjoy your lucky front row seat!!

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TRYINGHARD1948 8/4/2012 4:19AM

    How truly blessed you are.

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JIBBIE49 8/4/2012 12:41AM


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PHEBESS 8/3/2012 10:37PM

    Peregrines are incredible - you can just SEE how they're designed for speed, being so small and compact and streamlined! Amazing little birds!

Kestrels are interesting too - we have a lot of kestrels here.

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/3/2012 10:28PM

    Cool! Recently I went on a tour of our State Capitol building, which is one of those tall buildings with a nesting site for peregrins (and a web cam). The guide said these birds of prey keep the pigeons away, saving maintenance of the building! We got a pair of male chicks out of the nest this year. Oh, and they return to the same nesting site from which they hatched, often, to rear the next generation.

When the tour group made a foray out into the observation deck, mama or papa peregrin decided they didn't like it much and they took some pretty aggressive swoops at us, screaming their war cry. We scooted back inside.

The guide told us when they stoop (on lower-flying birds, mostly, your robin story reminded me)... they drop at close to 200 miles an hour, and essentially go inert, slowing the heart and lungs (the falcon), to come awake on impact with the prey, breaking the neck of their prey. I don't think I'd want to get hit by a 200 mph flying falcon! Beautiful, but deadly.

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NOLAZYBUTT110 8/3/2012 10:24PM

    That reminds me of something I saw.......which was in the city. There was a bird sitting on a window sill on the outside of a store on the Main street of our city and on the inside of the store window was a cat going berserk! I wanted so much to have a camera at the time, but one never has it when they see such behavior and catch it! susana

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