ZELLAZM   101,388
100,000-149,999 SparkPoints
ZELLAZM's Recent Blog Entries

Ms. Consistency

Sunday, May 01, 2011

I'm going for the title this month! I want to track fitness and nutrition daily. I've been doing pretty well the past couple of weeks although I slipped up this weekend. Consistency in exercise is less of an issue - my 30-minutes-a-day streak is approaching the one-year mark.

Going to set up those streak thingies on my Spark page...

By the way, I'm off TV - just brought it out of hiding for the royal wedding. It had become such a time bandit and I'm amazed at the difference in my sleep and productivity levels since I banned it to the cellar last week. It's going back there now!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Great goal, Michelle! I've been "Miss(ing) Consistency" so I should take a page from your book. I'm working on new goals, and I know my Sparkfriends are always great for inspiration and ideas.

Report Inappropriate Comment

    Great Michelle to hear about your exercise streak!!
Another Great for dumping the TV...we've never had one here and only watched the news in the UK. I did watch the Royal Wedding on live coverage on the internet though.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SJG1953 5/3/2011 1:41AM

    I have noticed when I leave our tv off or turn it off when it is on, that I do much better on getting more accomplished also. I have gotten to the point that I don't even like to watch it much anymore. So I do admire you for banning yours completely.

Congratulations on your one year exercise streak!! That is a great accomplishment. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DDOORN 5/2/2011 10:22PM

    No TV here either...it's on at home, but I have absolutely no interest. I'll watch out of curiousity while working out at the fitness center. No volume though, as I listen to my mp3 player. I can guess what is mostly said and I'm convinced I'm not missing anything...lol!

Kudos to the consistency goal! Need to ramp up in that area too!


Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHYKIM 5/2/2011 1:12PM

    I have more issues with the computer than TV, but both DO take up an enormous part of my day.

Report Inappropriate Comment
FRANNIEDID 5/2/2011 11:32AM

    You go girl! Way to go on the exercise streak. I will be cheering for you for sure!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TRYINGHARD1948 5/2/2011 6:17AM

    ot just consistency but a will of iron too. WooHoo, you have me awe struck. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

    Congratulations on your exercise streak. That is awesome!

Report Inappropriate Comment
HOMEBUNNY 5/1/2011 7:25PM

    Good luck to you on being consistent!! You can do it & I know that you will!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
LIVE2RUN4LIFE 5/1/2011 6:44PM


Report Inappropriate Comment
CTEMPLE 5/1/2011 5:33PM

    Great to hear you got your mojo back. The royal wedding was a must. I'm a bit like that with my computer, have to have an alarm not to get swallowed!!
Lookiing forward to reading your blogs. Congratulations on your consistency with exercise. That's very hard for me because I'm in pain and never enjoyed it and it's not a matter of finding the right thing, just not a sports and exercise person.
emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
ANGORA4 5/1/2011 5:28PM

    Good for you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KARENBROWN6 5/1/2011 4:11PM

    Banning TV takes real dedication. Our aerial packed up last week and my productivity increased dramatically. It's back on and I'm now hooked on the snooker final. Knowing where I am going wrong is half the battle - I hope!

Wasn't the wedding wonderful? I went to Charles and Di's wedding and slept in St James Park so this one brought back a lot of memories. Kate's sister was stunning. Luckily the weather held. We had street parties in Stratford and Alcester but felt it might be a bit dangerous to sit in our country lane having tea!

Well done on your exercise streak. That is an amazing achievement. I hope you have a reward planned for when you reach the one year mark?

Report Inappropriate Comment
SUGARSMOM2 5/1/2011 3:01PM

  yes time wasters are a way of getting in our own way . find them and try to weed them out . hard to do but you can do this .

Report Inappropriate Comment
CMPEARL 5/1/2011 1:23PM

    Good for you on the TV front...I need to do that for my facebook games!

Fantastic job on your 30 minute exercise streak!!! Thank you for being my inspiration to get off the computer and get moving today :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
CHRYS13 5/1/2011 1:08PM

    emoticonon approaching a year on that fitness streak! emoticon
I know that at the end of May, we'll be reading that you indeed achieved your title of Ms. Consistency! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

Rocket Science

Monday, April 25, 2011

Spark Community Team members have certain tasks to perform, one of them welcoming new Sparkers on the Introductions message board. My standard statement to newbies is that the trackers are my best friends here on SP --- apart from my human Spark buddies, of course! I go on to say that, if you use the trackers consistently and stay within your ranges, consuming and burning the number of calories Spark suggests, you'll see results.

But I've been on-and-off again with tracking myself and still somehow expecting the pounds to disappear. It's clear that I need to listen to my own advice.

And I have been this past week. I finally lost a pound that wasn't one of the "yoyo" pounds. (Actually it may be a little more, but I have an old, analog scale in kilos that doesn't measure smaller increments. When the needle is between two numbers, I call it a pound.)

If you look at my nutrition tracker, you see that I only went over my calories on two days, one by only 10 and one by 200. (OK, I baked a carrot cake for Easter!) I was pretty much within my ranges on all the other components as well. I got in the number of cardio minutes and burned the number of calories Spark suggests on the fitness tracker. I did my 3x3 strength training challenge.

So. It really isn't rocket science. It's not magic either. It's hard work. But it pays off.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    you're so right! it's not rocket science, but sometimes it feels like it is! way to go!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SJG1953 4/26/2011 10:40PM

    emoticon emoticon Good job Michele!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SIMPLELIFE4REAL 4/26/2011 1:19PM

    Tracking does pay off...no doubt about it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DDOORN 4/26/2011 8:56AM

    So SO true!


Report Inappropriate Comment
DLG0505 4/26/2011 2:56AM

    As hard as we make it, it does sometimes feel like rocket science. Which is probably why I'm horrible at this weight loss stuff. And now I'm hungry for carrot cake! But you are doing fantastic! It is all about simple tracking isn't it?

Report Inappropriate Comment
ANONSI 4/25/2011 2:43PM

    This is definitely so true. I stopped tracking for a long while and the weight just crept back on! Soon I was back to my starting weight and then some. I'm back to tracking again, and my weight has been going down slowly. Congrats on the loss!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CMPEARL 4/25/2011 12:39PM

    Spot on...I wrote earlier this month how the calorie differential is my new favorite number and how despite being on spark for over a year, I am just now a believer in the power of the nutrition tracker. It takes a lot of time, planning, and practice, but it is SO worth it in the end. Congrats on your loss!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
NEWLIBRARIAN 4/25/2011 12:28PM

    You've got it dear!

Report Inappropriate Comment
VIVIANJ5 4/25/2011 11:19AM

    Cool, Michelle! I finally lost a pound that wasn't a "yoyo" pound, and it felt so very good...

Amazing what getting back into our plans can do for us, isn't it? Congratulations!

Take care.

Report Inappropriate Comment
LIGIRLATHEART 4/25/2011 10:21AM

    "...if you use the trackers consistently and stay within your ranges, consuming and burning the number of calories Spark suggests, you'll see results."

This statement is exactly what I needed to hear (again) today....

Thanks for this inspiring blog!

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHYKIM 4/25/2011 9:42AM

    So true - I have been good at tracking my exercise (which makes me feel good), but NOT at tracking my food. I know I have been eating over my calorie range, but have been in denial. Will start tracking again today! Thanks for the reminder!


Report Inappropriate Comment
KARENBROWN6 4/25/2011 9:19AM

    Unfortunately, you are right. It's no good just reading or blogging about things we need to actually eat properly and exercise! Sometimes the reward doesn't seem enough for the effort put in but even staying a constant weight is better than creeping up.
Congratulations on staying within calorie range. It is surprising how much will power that can take.
Enjoy your carrot cake - you've earned it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
FRANNIEDID 4/25/2011 9:19AM

    You are so right, and I am guilty of exactly the same thing. When I started I tracked religiously and lately it has been sporatic. I hardly tracked last week at all. I am going to work harder to get back to what I know works!

Report Inappropriate Comment
HOMEBUNNY 4/25/2011 8:55AM

    That is so true, Michelle. We have to use the calories we consume & stay with in our ranges to see results. I am going through trying to get back into my maintenance range, but am not staying with in my calorie ranges. Therefore my exercise is not doing what I need it to do. Thank you for the reminder! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CTEMPLE 4/25/2011 7:31AM

    Yes Michelle is pure maths. If I eat 1500-1600 I lose, if I eat 1700 to 1900 I maintain and if I eat over 2000 I put on. But it's not only tracking, you can track and still eat too much, it's a matter of being in the right place to give up on comforts for a better result.

Report Inappropriate Comment


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Just in case you haven't heard from my other blog posts, message board posts, or status updates, today is my 4th Sparkiversary! Somehow this year it seems particularly significant.

Maybe that's because it's been a particularly rough year and I managed to survive it. Thank you Lord for being faithful even when I've stumbled along trying to do things my way.

Maybe it's because I've realized more than ever that the Spark plan works and that the community is the bestest.

Maybe it's because I have the week off and needed something to celebrate to keep from getting bored!

Anyway, thanks Spark friends for being here and for celebrating with me today! Here on SP, I sent goodies to some of my Class Team members, am in the process of earning 100 points to meet the One Day Challenge, hung some new wallpaper on my Spark page and updated my bio. Onward to year 5!

In real life (whatever that is!) I had lunch with a friend at the Chinese buffet here in town - and behaved myself admirably, thank you very much. This afternoon I washed Louise (my car) because she really needed it, was covered with spring pollen, and I'm taking some friends to church tomorrow and didn't want to be embarassed. Then this evening, I went for a nice, long Nordic walk in the woods near my home. Yep, it's spring and I'm glad!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 4/24/2011 8:48PM

    Cheers to #4 (from your fellow "classmate!) and to getting out with the Nordic Poles!

Here's to many more years with our SparkFamily!!


Report Inappropriate Comment
CTEMPLE 4/22/2011 8:48PM

    Congratulations dear M!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CMPEARL 4/22/2011 7:49PM

    emoticonHappy 4th sparkiversary! Thank you for being such an amazing leader on the BUGS!!! emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHYKIM 4/22/2011 12:24PM

    Happy emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
JANETELIZABETH1 4/22/2011 6:29AM

    Happy emoticonMichelle....you are a great encourager and inspiration to us all!!
Wishing you every success and blessing for your next spark year!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TRYINGHARD1948 4/22/2011 3:44AM

    Congratulations Michelle, happy Sparkversary. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LIVE2RUN4LIFE 4/22/2011 12:33AM

    Happy Sparkversary!!
emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SJG1953 4/21/2011 10:47PM

    Happy emoticon!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BANDMAMAPC 4/21/2011 8:03PM

    Happy emoticon! Since the start, you have always been there for me, now it's my turn to turn the favor.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SIMPLELIFE4REAL 4/21/2011 6:02PM

    Congratulations again on your anniversary!!! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
BELTONWALKER67 4/21/2011 5:40PM

    Happy, Healthy Sparkversary! May year #5 hold all you want it to be! emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FRANNIEDID 4/21/2011 3:40PM

    Happy 4th Sparkiversary!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

Mine was Tuesday and it is amazing that we have been here that long, here is to a successful and healthy 5th year!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment

Metro Etiquette - More Prague

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A new friend of mine (thanks, Sabrina) who I met at the conference in Prague took these pictures in the Metro. Thought you might enjoy seeing them: They must have struck me as being funny because I'm working on a course in Intercultural Communication. You know the old saying, "a picture is worth a thousand words." Somehow, the people who put up these signs must have been thinking - "a picture AND a thousand words (in Czech) is even better."

Yep...and summer's coming!

Oh! I see a word with "respekt" in it. I know that word!

On the train here in Germany, I know I've had the same expression as the girl in the pic. Often. Too often.

This one could have been referring to me with my big suitcase, backpack and handbag. At least I didn't have the guitar with me this trip.

Tomorrow's my 4th Sparkiversary. I'm home all week, so will be updating my page and stuff in honor of the day, maybe take a nice long hike somewhere after (healthy) lunch with a friend. Now where was that Spark article about how to manage at buffets!?

By the way, my black eyes healed up just fine. One was gone within a day or two. By Friday when the picture-taking started getting into full swing at the conference, it was just a shadow. The mark where the cyst was removed is still healing, but my glasses pretty much covered it in the photos.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANGORA4 4/21/2011 11:46AM

    Happy 4th! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SJG1953 4/21/2011 1:41AM

    Cute cartoons. Happy 4th Sparkversary!! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SIMPLELIFE4REAL 4/20/2011 8:34PM

    Love the pictures....thanks for sharing them.

Congratulations on your four year anniversary.

Report Inappropriate Comment
TRYINGHARD1948 4/20/2011 5:34PM

    Good to hear you are healing and that you enjoyed your Prague transport. Sounds as if you made new friends too. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FRANNIEDID 4/20/2011 4:58PM

    I love it, they are very clear in meaning. LOL

Report Inappropriate Comment
DESERTGEMINI 4/20/2011 2:28PM

    Wow. Love these! Looks like South Park characters too which makes it even funnier. Thanks for sharing!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CMPEARL 4/20/2011 10:54AM

    Love the subway pics :)

In case I don't catch you tomorrow, happy sparkiversary!!! Sounds like you have a fantastic day planned out!! Enjoy!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHYKIM 4/20/2011 10:47AM


Report Inappropriate Comment
NEWLIBRARIAN 4/20/2011 8:39AM

    These are a hoot and I can't read Czech.

Report Inappropriate Comment


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Here come a few typical tourist pictures from the beautiful Czech city of Prague. We had about three hours to see the city. I was glad I had been there before and that we had a gracious tour guide who knew when to hurry us along!

Castle and Cathedral at the top of the old fortified city hill. (Took my pink raincoat but never needed it for rain!)

From the other side. You have to go as far back as possible to get this shot in the plaza.

Prague trademark - the clock was being repaired (that's the reason for the white sign) so we didn't get to see the Glockenspiel this time. That means I have to go back!

View from the Charles Bridge. It was crowded! Perfect weather and we tourists were out in full force.

Monument to Jan Hus, the forerunner of the Reformation. The flowers were decorating one of the Easter market stands that filled the plaza.

More on the trip and an update in my next post!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUDYAMK 6/26/2011 8:54PM

    Thank you for sharing your pictures. I love History. I was in Israel, Greece & Jordan a few years back. To know the Bible & the places mentioned in them was so beautiful.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SJG1953 4/21/2011 1:40AM

    Beautiful old buildings Michele. Thanks for sharing. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip. Blessings and hugs, Shirley

Report Inappropriate Comment
MARAHAB 4/20/2011 10:21PM

    Love it! One of the places I hope to visit soon!

Report Inappropriate Comment
FRANNIEDID 4/20/2011 4:57PM

    What a beautiful city, thanks for sharing!

Report Inappropriate Comment
HOMEBUNNY 4/19/2011 11:24PM

    Thank you for sharing the pics! I will probably never see them in person, so I can enjoy them through your lens!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DDOORN 4/19/2011 6:59PM

    So pleased that the weather held up for you! I'm sure Prague looks MUCH better under sunshiney blue skies! :-)

Enjoy your travels!


Report Inappropriate Comment
LIVE2RUN4LIFE 4/19/2011 3:48PM


Report Inappropriate Comment
ANGORA4 4/19/2011 11:55AM

    Beautiful, appreciate you sharing with us!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BELTONWALKER67 4/19/2011 11:34AM

    Thank you so much for sharing. Love the design of the buildings. You are so blessed to be able to see such beautiful scenery.

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHYKIM 4/19/2011 10:56AM


Report Inappropriate Comment
CMPEARL 4/19/2011 9:51AM

    Just gorgeous...thanks so much for posting!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GARDENCHRIS 4/19/2011 7:01AM

    very nice pictures.... have been there myself on holiday. Are you also on holiday? have a great time.

Report Inappropriate Comment

First Page  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 Last Page