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WRITINGBLUEHAWK's Recent Blog Entries

Day 1

Monday, January 13, 2014

Today was my first day on my friends and family "Biggest Loser" challenge (January 12 to July 12) and it was fairly routine. I returned to my regular eating program, which consists of the new eating habits I acquired when I lost weight the first time around. The only thing I added was a 25 minute walk during lunch. It doesn't sound like much, but considering I've been relatively inactive for the last couple of months, it was a big step in the right direction.

I checked in with a couple of friends today and they have joined Weight Watchers, joined an area gym and are dieting hard. Quite honestly, I want to give my regular program some time before I resort to hard dieting. I'm just not motivated to make drastic changes to my eating habits right now.

What I did do was spend the weekend grocery shopping and cooking up a bunch of recipes at once. My thinking is that having delicious food in my fridge and freezer will prevent me from wasting time, money and calories dining out. So I made chili, pizza with turkey pepperoni, chicken noodle (& veggie) soup, baked chicken, an enchilada casserole and a Sparkpeople dessert. I also bought some clementine oranges and a bagged salad.

Hopefully, by exercising more consistently and keeping a food diary, I can lose a significant amount of weight by spring and summer.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIBANANA 1/14/2014 4:38PM

  One day at a time. You can do it.

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KHCHARMED1987 1/13/2014 9:19PM

    Good job planning ahead and having all that food ready to go!! Best of Luck! emoticon

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

I've been away from my blog for awhile and not paying attention to my eating habits. After a year of maintaining my 50 pound weight loss, my weight has been creeping up. So what happened? LIFE. Pure and simple. It's a waste of time to overanalyze why. The REAL question is what am I going to do about it? The answer is I'm going to pick up the tools that helped me drop my weight to begin with.

Last January, I started out of the gate like a bullet; I went on the south beach diet and shed 7 pounds in two weeks. Trouble is, once I returned to my "normal" habits, the weight reappeared. This year, I plan to focus on the smaller stuff--eating more fruits and veggies and exercising 150 minutes a week. Because I've been inactive for several months--I'm going to set a modest goal to walk for 30 minutes 3x this week and build up from there.

I am also doing this with the support of family and friends. We've set up our own "Biggest Loser" contest and our weigh in was today. I have set a modest goal to lose 10% of my body weight by the end of the contest. Six months is plenty of time to lose 10%.

If you are in the same boat as me; welcome or welcome back to Sparkpeople. This is not a diet, but a lifestyle--not a sprint, but a marathon. Best of luck on your weight loss journey in 2014. Together, we will find success!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VANICIS 1/13/2014 1:47PM

Don't worry about it! Life happens and as long as you love yourself along the way you will be fine!!

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BABY_GIRL69 1/12/2014 7:52PM

    When we have our cheat moments we actually have to add minutes to burn off those calories....

God bless & we can do it!


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CASTIRONLADY 1/12/2014 7:45PM

    I know the feeling, but back is back!

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DIBANANA 1/12/2014 7:36PM

  Glad to hear you didn't let your weight keep going up and destroy the progress you made!

Welcome back

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JACKIE542 1/12/2014 7:28PM

    Glad to see you back!! emoticon

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DIVANOV 1/12/2014 6:41PM

    Good Luck w your goals and Congrats for coming back!

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DMEYER4 1/12/2014 6:31PM

  emoticon emoticon

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Strengthening My Resolve

Sunday, November 10, 2013

This morning I was on the telephone with my best friend and fellow Sparker. We lamented the weight each of us had gained and shared our views of what factors had contributed to the weight gain. As I've previously mentioned, for me it's constant fatigue fueled by lack of sleep. For my friend, it's lack of time and eating on the run.

By the end of the conversation, we agreed it was time to take action. Together, we set two simple goals:
1) MAINTAIN our body weight through the holiday season. Lord knows, it's tough to peel off weight in a food-laden environment. We recognized this, but also realized it's important to eat mindfully and exercise moderately throughout the holidays.

2) Lose 10% of our body weight starting in 2014. We decided to make it a contest. We are recruiting friends and family members to join us. The first person to achieve this goal gets a prize. We have no idea what the prize is outside of bragging rights, but that's okay.

Two simple, realistic yet challenging goals.

After I hung up the phone, I made up a menu for the week and went to the grocery store to shop for the ingredients. As I write this blog, I've got baked chicken breasts in the oven and two different types of soup simmering on the stove. It's enough food to freeze and pack for lunch for the next work week. I also have the ingredients for several tasty salad recipes and a really luscious but low-fat dessert. After weeks of inactivity, I took a one-hour walk yesterday.

I am feeling much more confident and motivated about my ability to make this happen. When I combine these behaviors with my renewed dedication to blogging, I'm hopeful that I will be able to stay focused.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIBANANA 12/30/2013 6:54PM

  Planning is key I think. When I don't plan I don't eat right!

Good for you taking back control!

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MISSMIRANDALEE 11/19/2013 2:20PM

    Great job! I know you will be successful! emoticon

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LILSHINE 11/15/2013 8:56AM

    emoticon emoticon

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DRKYASHI 11/11/2013 2:36PM

    Sounds like a emoticonplan!
emoticon emoticon

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SHELL1400_85 11/11/2013 10:40AM

    I love the idea of the competition. That really helps to get people motivated! Good luck to you this holiday season I'm sure you can meet you realistic goals.


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SUNSET09 11/11/2013 7:00AM

  It's the buddy system and being accountable for and to one another. We all have to start from some place. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KATIBUG49 11/10/2013 8:02PM

    Sounds like a great plan! if you are really tired all the time, have you had your Vitamin D checked? I found out I was really low which contributes to being tired. So now I take 2000mg a day.

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JACKIE542 11/10/2013 4:30PM

    Always good to have a friend to work with, great goals too.

Good job planning your food always great to have the food ready, I need to do this today too. emoticon

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Staying positive

Saturday, November 09, 2013

I know how gaining weight plays on the mind and all the negative self-talk that gets in the way of progress. Sometimes we are harder on ourselves than our friends or family. When I jump on the scale, I can see the 7-pound weight gain, but since I'm 5'7" most people don't notice it. I do, because it's all in my belly and my pants fit differently.

This time around, I'm stepping up the vigilance and being patient with myself. I'm beginning to believe that my persistent fatigue is at the root of my weight gain. I've been TOO TIRED to do anything besides go to work and come home. I've skipped social events because I feel too tired to go. I missed a jazz festival and a concert because I didn't want to leave the house. When fatigue starts interfering with my quality of life--it's time to see the doctor. I have an appointment on Wednesday.

I am also working on other ways to regain my energy. I'm taking more Vitamin D and have started up on a cocktail of vitamins intended to address hot flashes. I upped my intake of beef for awhile to address any underlying anemia issues. I am reading and continuing to learn more strategies to address the fatigue.

Today is going to be a higher energy day and I'm grateful that it falls on a Saturday. I realized when I woke up this morning that I slept through the night and didn't wake up in the middle of the night with a hot flash. My sleep pattern is critical to my energy level and I'm paying close attention.

It looks like it's going to be a gorgeous fall day. I plan to walk three miles and plan my menu for the next week. Most of all, I plan to stay positive and not be too hard on myself. One thing I'm keeping in mind is that I'm STILL a size 12. It's better than those 16Ws I got rid of a year ago. Once I boost my energy, I feel good about my chances of dropping the weight.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOBYCARP 11/9/2013 6:55PM

    "My sleep pattern is critical to my energy level and I'm paying close attention."

Realizing this is a HUGE first step. It allows you to not only try different things to improve your sleep, but recognize in advance when you're likely to have a low-energy day so you can plan around it.

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GR8TAWK 11/9/2013 4:01PM

    emoticon emoticon

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BZJOHNSON 11/9/2013 11:55AM


Keep thinking positive and get to the root of your fatigue issues!!! Keep us posted on what seems to help.

I found out that I had seasonal affective disorder and now am aware of what I need to do to manage my energy levels during the winter. Being armed with knowledge is the first step!!


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JACKIE542 11/9/2013 11:20AM

    emoticon emoticon

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TEENY_BIKINI 11/9/2013 10:41AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DRKYASHI 11/9/2013 10:24AM

    emoticon Attitude!

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Getting Back on Track

Thursday, November 07, 2013

They say weight maintenance is forever and I couldn't agree more. For the first time in over a year, I've gained a significant amount of weight. What's worse is that when I noticed the weight gain, I took measures to reverse it and ended up gaining more. If I could point to one or two things I'm doing, it would be simpler, but I understand there are several contributing factors. For me the best step is to figure out what the heck is going on and taking steps to reverse it.

The factors:
1) I am dining out more. Conferences, luncheons, fundraisers, socials.
2) I am not exercising enough.
3) I'm tired all the time and it's messed up my exercise
4) Menopause--night sweats and hot flashes are messin' up my sleep patterns contributing to my fatigue.
5) I don't wanna mess up my hair. (Yeah, I know this is stupid, but I'm being honest with myself.)

The solutions
1) Return to blogging more consistently
2) Hit the gym 3x a week and exercise at home 2x a week
3) Restart the food diary
4) Plan your meals in advance
5) Exercise more vigilance when dining out
6) Be patient and forgiving with yourself
7) Pay attention to your water intake; take your vitamins
8) If you are still fatigued--set up an appointment with your doctor. (Thinkin' I might do this anyway)
9) Cut your hair so you don't have to worry about it during workouts

I have put on 7--yes 7 pounds since early October. Is this what menopause does? If I had been overeating with abandon, it would make more sense, but I haven't, so to gain this much this fast has been bewildering. My clothes are getting tight and I have no wardrobe safety net. I am not buying a new wardrobe in a bigger size.

The pain of overweight is back with a vengeance. It's seven pounds but when I look in the mirror, I see 20. I am now 24 pounds away from my goal weight. I'm getting tired of struggling with whether or not to lose more weight. My mind is made up. Clearly I need to lose the 7 pounds I gained, but why stop there? I've found a new resolve to identify what's keeping me fat, remove those behaviors and get down to the business of dropping the weight.

With the holidays fast approaching, I need to do whatever I can to avoid gaining additional weight and maybe even peeling off the seven pounds. I've even cut my hair to remove that barrier to fitness! By regaining consistency on SP, I will get there.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOBYCARP 11/7/2013 7:28PM

    I can't speak to the menopause aspect, but I know that when I've been injured and unable to exercise as much as I'd like I have needed to cut my calories to avoid gaining weight. That's fairly easy, where my normal nutrition range is; it would be more challenging on a typical woman's weight loss nutrition range.

Other than matching what you eat to how much exercise you're really doing, the one thing I didn't hear you talking about was how much sleep you're getting. You might want to pay some attention to that for a week or two. If you're simply not getting enough sleep hours in, fixing that can help with lots of things including having the energy to exercise. If you're getting the hours in but you're still tired, that's a red flag that you need to check with your doctor and figure out what else might be going on.

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SONYALATRECE 11/7/2013 6:04PM

    You have a plan soror. Just work it and you will yield the results you want.
I'm here.

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    I haven't been on Spark in awhile & this is exactly what I needed to hear! I hadn't reached my goal weight yet, but have gained back 8 of the 20lbs lost & was on a downhill spiral. Your blog encouraged me to take the time & ask myself the same questions, and move in the right direction to get back on track. Thank you! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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