AMYLONGHORN's SparkPeople Blog AMYLONGHORN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community 5% Challenge Blog #4 and #5 More on my healthy habit blogs. My focus this week has been on drinking more water. Here are my answers to the next two questions: <BR> <BR> 4) How are you doing day by day? <BR> This really is a day-by-day thing for me. I say it's easy to incorporate water and it really *should* be, but for me, it's so not. I can do above and beyond one day (Monday), and then revert back to no water (Tuesday), and then I'm right back up there today. Consistency is a problem for me not just in this habi... Wed, 6 Mar 2013 14:40:28 EST 5% Challenge Blog #2 and #3 Running behind, so am catching up on answering questions from yesterday and today. <BR> <BR> My new habit I want to develop is drinking water, so the next phase of this blogging exercise involves these two questions: <BR> <BR> 2) How will you do that? <BR> 3) What are you doing to encourage yourself and keep on track? <BR> <BR> How will I do that?? Drink some dang water, that's how I'll do it! But I need to be more AWARE of what I'm drinking and incorporate water into my routine to make ... Mon, 4 Mar 2013 16:52:36 EST 5% Challenge Blog #1 Question: What new habit you wish to develop? <BR> <BR> Well, after having water being our Living the Good Life challenge last week, I realize that I absolutely do NOT drink enough water every day. There are even some days where I don't drink water AT ALL. For someone who is trying to get healthy, this simple act seems to allude me. And I have no idea why. <BR> <BR> You might be wondering how in the h-e-double-hockey-sticks I can go for a full day without drinking water? Let me tell yo... Sat, 2 Mar 2013 17:37:31 EST Progress As I wrote before, I am "investing in my commitment" to start running again. It has been a few days since I've started on this new adventure, but I find myself making progress. <BR> <BR> I signed up for another is the Firefly 5K that I mentioned in my previous blog. I had wanted to sign up for it when I saw a Groupon for it and asked my coworker, who is also running races this year, if she would run it with me. She said she had run it before in the past and they ran out of water. ... Sat, 26 Jan 2013 16:50:32 EST Investing in my commitment Hi…remember me? No? That’s cool, and totally understandable! I’m Amy and I’ve realized I have GOT to get back into this whole get healthy thing. <BR> <BR> So I’ve basically determined that I have to start over. And by that, I mean I have crept up in weight for the last few years and I am sick of it. What worked for me last time? That Medifast diet that totally worked but that I will probably never do again in my life, and running. So since I’m not going to do the hard core liquid-ty... Thu, 24 Jan 2013 11:23:38 EST Know Your Numbers Every year around our benefits annual enrollment period at my work, we are offered an incentive to have a Know Your Numbers wellness screening. I usually go into these screenings prepared to hear the worst, but I think that today’s news wasn’t *too* bad… <BR> <BR> My BMI is HIGH. I could have told them that, so this number was something I was ready for. My blood pressure was also a little high (130/74), but I TOTALLY blame that on the fact that my appointment for the screening was schedule... Tue, 9 Oct 2012 12:24:12 EST Four years ago today... Four years ago today, I was in the best shape of my LIFE! At my smallest, I weighed 129 pounds after tipping the scales at 217 pounds. I had been on the Medifast “diet” for eight months and was just getting used to being skinny. I was living in Virginia, working and trying to do my thing, whatever that was. I had very few friends (I really only hung out with Brenda!), was alone/by myself a lot outside of work, I didn’t have a boyfriend and although I was skinny, that didn’t necessarily me... Wed, 4 Apr 2012 15:25:41 EST I did it!! So I had posted that I was planning to go to a kickboxing class during my lunch hour today and to please keep me accountable. Well, I did it!! I was a little nervous because it was my first time actually being able to get into my work gym facility AND it was my first try at kickboxing, but it all turned out GREAT! My badge finally worked and I was able to go right on in, change out of my work clothes and into my workOUT clothes and went into the group exercise room. I was a little thrown ... Mon, 19 Mar 2012 16:07:52 EST *More* Spring 5% pre-challenge activities Pre-challenge Assignment #6: Get kitchen ready <BR> <BR> The other Countdown Assignments required thinking and writing. This one will take a little more effort - time to look at the diet plan, clean the fridge, tidy the pantry, make a grocery list and shop. If you don't have time to do it now, write down what you will do: <BR> <BR> So here’s my plan: I am already a planner by nature, so every week I sit down to plan our dinners and make a grocery list based on that. I try to use new recipes... Fri, 16 Mar 2012 16:04:19 EST Spring 5% pre-challenge activities 1-5 Pre-challenge Activity #1: Getting ready for the challenge!! <BR> <BR> Have you got your gym clothes, runners, water bottle, etc. ready to go? <BR> Yessiree! I signed up to use the brand spanking new gym at my work, so I have a gym bag all packed and ready to go…I just have to USE it! <BR> <BR> What is your exercise plan? <BR> I will go to Zumba classes on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and do cardio in the mornings of Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I want to train for a 5K using the Spar... Mon, 12 Mar 2012 09:02:24 EST He’s lookin’ good, but… So my husband has a bad back and since his diagnosis of a torn/bulging disk in his lower back about three years ago, he started gaining weight. We weren’t working out, and he was getting a belly. I don’t want to say he is “small,” but he is about 5’8” and has a thin frame, so the belly was getting noticeable. He kept a good humor about it, and would stick it out and make jokes about being pregnant. He also started snoring with his weight gain…yikes! And when we were in Ohio over the holi... Wed, 7 Mar 2012 11:02:49 EST Motivation...the countdowns begin!! I have a few big events coming up this year that I am trying to use as motivation to lose weight: <BR> <BR> June 17 - 10-year high school reunion - 150 days away!! <BR> September 8 - bridesmaid in my friend's wedding - 233 days away!! <BR> <BR> Yikes and yikes!! <BR> <BR> I'm not really wanting to put a number on those I'll lose 15 pounds by my high school reunion or I'll lose 20 pounds by my friend's wedding...or SHOULD I?! What do you think?? All thoughts welcome/encourage... Wed, 18 Jan 2012 18:22:54 EST "Keep up the good work!" I had some blood work done for my yearly doctor’s exam and got some pretty good news! My cholesterol is improving, although my HDL (the “good” kind) is still kind of low, so I need to keep working on that. Also, my triglycerides are now in a normal range, which is great because last year they were a smidge out of control. My thyroid levels were also good, so there was no need to adjust my meds. AND I lost three pounds since the last time I was at the doctor’s office, which was probably tw... Thu, 1 Dec 2011 13:38:26 EST Perhaps Two Saturdays ago, I participated in the Dallas Walk to Defeat ALS…Brenda asked if I was going to do a blog about it, and I realized I hadn’t blogged in pretty much *forever,* so here goes… <BR> <BR> This summer, my dear friend Molly from church was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Molly is an amazing woman and she had been going through a ton of personal issues in her life, so the diagnosis was devastating. When I found out about her situation, I immediately thought, “What can I do?!”... Mon, 7 Nov 2011 16:43:42 EST I could have walked out... …but attitude is everything, right?? <BR> <BR> I have lamented about my Zumba class issues here before…with a new teacher teaching the Monday classes and my FAVORITE teacher Teresa only teaching on Wednesdays. So after not going to Zumba class for a couple of weeks because of scheduling issues, I was PUMPED to go last week. I walk into class and have a sinking feeling in my stomach…I look around in a panic as the class set-up looks like it is for the other teacher, NOT Teresa. I think to ... Wed, 17 Aug 2011 09:19:30 EST Allergist appointment update OK so I haven’t really talked about it here, but I have been having some MAJOR reactions to bug bites lately…I’ve actually always reacted pretty badly to bug bites with swelling and itching, but this situation is way worse than I’ve ever experienced. I’m not sure what is biting me, but I have gone to my regular doctor twice about bug bites in the past month. Last month, I had one bite on my upper thigh that was OUT OF CONTROL, so I got it treated as an infection with antibiotics from my reg... Wed, 20 Jul 2011 10:24:47 EST A "McGriddle moment" Three years ago, when I was moving back to Texas from Virginia to be with the man who is now my husband, we stopped at a McDonalds for breakfast and I was curious about the McGriddle. The hubs said they were AWESOME was going to order one, so I thought, “what the hey?!” and ordered one, too. I ate it, and then found out how many calories it had and I was like WHOA!!!! I thought, “I’m never eating one of those EVER again,” and I haven’t and I have no desire to. <BR> <BR> Sidenote: In think... Wed, 13 Jul 2011 14:26:05 EST 50 Questions 1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? <BR> Yes – my middle name, Louise, was my Granny’s name and is my mom’s middle name. I plan to use “Louise” as the middle name of my daughter one day! <BR> <BR> 2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? <BR> I’m not sure…I’m pretty emotional, but it feels like it’s been a while since I’ve cried! <BR> <BR> 3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? <BR> Sure! <BR> <BR> 4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT? <BR> Ham – I know it’s not the best, but I like it a lot! <BR> <BR>... Sun, 10 Jul 2011 16:57:45 EST SELF Magazine When I signed up for the Komen Race, my registration also got me a free subscription to SELF magazine. I got my first one last week and read through it on Friday and LOVED it! I really enjoyed reading their tips and ideas when it came to fitness and food. I even cut out some arm exercises cards from the magazine and did them yesterday. What I especially loved was all the recipes in there…I found at least four or so that I wanted to try that look soooo good. I think I have a full year’s s... Tue, 21 Jun 2011 13:00:59 EST Update on my Zumba Dilemma First of all, THANK YOU to everyone who wrote comments on my blog regarding the issue I was having with my Zumba class. <BR> <BR> I went to class last night and got my workout on with Theresa, and LOVED it. Great workout, felt really good about it. After class, I had made the decision to approach Theresa first to get the 411 on what the deal was with the Monday classes rather than just going above her head to the rec center itself. Basically, I asked her upfront if the new teacher situat... Thu, 16 Jun 2011 08:57:35 EST Dilemma - help wanted!!! OK I have a dilemma and I’m hoping you guys can help me out. <BR> <BR> I have been going to a Zumba class at my city rec center for about a year now…I think since it started. My teacher Theresa is AWESOME…I have written about her before. The classes are on Monday and Wednesday nights, and I really enjoy going. However, they recently started having a different teacher on Monday nights and Theresa still teaches on Wednesday nights. I have gone several times with the new teacher and unfor... Wed, 15 Jun 2011 09:33:29 EST We wore the same dress… And she looked WAY better in it than me!! <BR> <BR> So I went to a friend’s bridal shower on Saturday and I wore a green cotton dress from Old Navy that I got on sale for $9 a couple weeks ago! I got a green one and a black one, but decided to wear the green one to this shower. I show up at the shower and one of my other friends (and the only other person I knew there besides the bride, her mom and sister) was wearing the same dress! And she has recently lost a TON of weight and looks AWE... Mon, 6 Jun 2011 12:37:00 EST Gripe about the fridge at work So I bring my lunch to work everyday. We have refrigerators on every floor for folks to put stuff in, and I frequent the fridge every morning to put my usual sandwich, carrots and string cheese in there. Now, that is all I put in there, but I am becoming increasingly frustrated with people putting their whole dang lunch bags in there! You know, the bulky cloth kinds? UGH! My stuff is getting squished! Just now I went into the break area to fill up my water cup and opened the fridge and ... Wed, 1 Jun 2011 12:25:51 EST A gross hawt mess!! OK I admit, I sweat A LOT when I work out. Living in a humid place doesn’t help, either. This morning I got up and went running on the treadmill at my gym, and I was hot, sweaty and red faced for over an HOUR after my workout…even after my shower! Gross!! Let’s just say I was not looking forward to coming into the office like that!! But I did…I didn’t drink as much coffee (tooooo hot!!), blow dried my hair on the cold setting, and blast the AC in my car on the drive to work. I feel bett... Mon, 23 May 2011 12:34:53 EST Sad and disappointed So this doesn’t have much to do about weight loss or dieting or exercise or all the other SparkPeople website issues. But something happened today that just bummed me out… <BR> <BR> My company has a demonstration center onsite where they give tours to prospective/current clients to show all the things we have to offer. The people who give those tours are called “Ambassadors,” and I applied to be one. I learned about this opportunity a couple of years ago, but you had to have worked with t... Thu, 19 May 2011 14:42:31 EST Wellness event at work today Well hello! How about another lunchtime blog?! As I finish off my lunch with some carrots and hummus, I thought I'd drop you a line to tell you about a Wellness Event they had at my work today. <BR> <BR> So my company has been on a wellness kick for a while now, which I totally appreciate! They even have challenges, similar to the 5% ones on Spark People, where you can join a team and you keep track of different things online like calories, steps walked, etc., and they even give you a fre... Tue, 17 May 2011 13:36:56 EST Oh the weather outside is frightful... So it's DEFINITELY not Christmas here in Texas, but it is getting close to summer and we have been getting major storms. This afternoon, another one rolled through and brought high winds, tons of rain, thunder, lightning, the works, for several hours straight. Although there wasn't any hail or any tornadoes, I was not feeling going out in the rain! Now, you may be thinking, "But Amy, what about your Zumba class?! You said you would go every Monday and Wednesday!!!" Well, instead of going... Wed, 11 May 2011 20:40:44 EST Won’t you join me for lunch? I’m blogging during my lunch...I pack my lunch everyday and eat at my desk. Anyways, just thought I’d write a blog and it might feel like you all are here with me!! <BR> <BR> So what’s for lunch today? I’ve got a turkey sandwich on wheat with mustard, string cheese, carrots with hummus and greek yogurt. I probably won’t eat it all right now, but may save some for a snack this afternoon…I’ve found I’ve been getting hungry in the afternoons, so I’ll probably save some carrots or the yogurt ... Tue, 10 May 2011 13:00:08 EST Back in the swing of things... OK so the challenge between these challenges has been motivation for me. I haven’t been as strict with going to the gym as I MEAN to, I haven’t been as strict about going to Zumba, and I haven’t been watching my diet. Especially this past weekend. I was out of town for my little brother’s college graduation in Arkansas and I ate JUNK pretty much the whole time. Ugh. So all that being said… <BR> <BR> IT’S TIME TO GET SERIOUS! <BR> <BR> *again* <BR> <BR> So I’m back again, and have EV... Mon, 9 May 2011 13:20:10 EST Registered for Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5K... …and this year, I’m gonna RUN it! <BR> <BR> Last year, the hubs and I registered to run it and we were really into training for it, but a few weeks before the race, Chris injured his back. He wasn’t able to run, so I decided not to run it, to, and we walked it together instead. Even walking the 3.1 miles may not have been the best idea for Chris with how injured his back was at the time, but we did it and it was fun. We walked in honor of my grandmother, who is a breast cancer survivor. ... Wed, 6 Apr 2011 13:58:55 EST Fish Taco Tuesday a success! So Tuesdays have turned into Taco Tuesday at my house. Rosa's Cafe Mexican restaurant here has their taco plate (three tacos) discounted to like $3.75 on Tuesdays. My husband and I started going to Rosa's *every week*, and then we started doing Taco Tuesdays to-go and loading up on the awesome salsa bar they have...onions, jalapenos, cilantro, all different kinds of salsa, all the good stuff...for less than $8... It even turned into the one night a week that we would go out to eat... <BR> ... Wed, 23 Mar 2011 09:19:52 EST A great day for a walk at the lake! This afternoon the hubs and I took advantage of the GORGEOUS weather here in Dallas (sunny, light wind, 80 degrees) and took a walk at the lake! We used to live right by there, and had a route we would run while training for a 5K. Though we are far from where we were running-wise, it is still nice to get out by the lake and enjoy the weather and the view and the company, all while getting some light exercise in. <BR> <BR> I wish I was still in shape to run out there like I used to, and th... Sat, 19 Mar 2011 17:23:26 EST Little changes make a big difference As I have been watching what I'm eating more and trying to be healthier lately, I've noticed that the little things have been making a difference. Some thoughts: <BR> <BR> --Yogurt for breakfast, not Pop-Tarts: I pack lunches for my husband and I everyday and include breakfast, too. For a long time, I would just throw a Pop-Tart in there, easy. But lately, I've been packing yogurt with some granola for our breakfast fare instead. Sounds like a DUH thing, but I've cut down a lot on calori... Wed, 16 Mar 2011 10:29:34 EST Greek Yogurt So I have heard rumors that Greek yogurt is supposed to be better for you, but I haven’t tried it…til now. I picked up a cup at the store yesterday and brought it to work for breakfast this morning, and HOLY MOLY it was yummo! At first I was nervous because it looked like old cream cheese or something on the top of the lid, but once I started stirring the honey into the yogurt, it was creamy and delicious! There was another kind with blueberries which I might try next time, but the honey o... Mon, 14 Mar 2011 10:25:42 EST Favorite SparkRecipes anyone?! Hey guys! Soooooo I'm wanting to try out some new recipes. BUT I'm very low maintenance and would prefer the easier, the better. I have been looking on the SparkRecipes site and have found several that sound good, but I would like to try recipes that are YUMMO that others have tried and enjoyed, too, you know? Brenda gave me the recipes for turkey feta burgers and cheesy stuffed eggplant, but I'd like to hear what other recipes you guys have tried and liked. The SparkRecipes site is grea... Sat, 5 Mar 2011 16:10:33 EST Me: A to Z!! A~Age: 27 <BR> <BR> B~Bed Size: Queen <BR> <BR> C~Chore you hate: Scrubbing the kitchen floor, on my hands and knees (good workout?! LOL)…stupid linoleum… <BR> <BR> D~Dogs: A pug is in the plan for the future. <BR> <BR> E~Essential Start your Day Item: My BlackBerry…it’s my alarm clock and I check my e-mail right when I wake up. <BR> <BR> F~Favorite Color: Green <BR> <BR> G~Gold or Silver: SILVER for sure. <BR> <BR> H~Height: 5'4" <BR> <BR> I~Instruments you play: Nothing…boo!... Fri, 4 Mar 2011 11:04:40 EST Started the day off RIGHT I woke up this morning and did some ZUMBA on the Playstation Move! It felt good to get up and get music, fun dancing, who knew it could be so much fun to exercise?! <BR> <BR> WTG Starfish for making it to MADAGASCAR already! Woo hoo! Where to next week?! <BR> <BR> I am looking forward to the weigh in tomorrow...I hope I do well. Hopefully it will turn up good news....we'll see!! <BR> <BR> This weekend I am going on a Women's Retreat with my church. We will be going to F... Fri, 25 Feb 2011 09:16:22 EST Having a "blah" kinda day Good morning. I know my blogs this week are supposed to be positive, but MAN today is just not going in that direction. The weather here's cloudy and rainy and humid as all get out. I'm not feeling well this morning, either. AND I forgot my headphones at home so I can't listen to my favorite radio morning show podcasts at work. So today is off to a *great* start... <BR> <BR> On a positive note, I went to Zumba last night! YAY! It was really fun and we did some of my favorit... Thu, 24 Feb 2011 09:08:12 EST Getting back into it I've been resting my foot since my Monday morning workout. Since my foot was feeling better, I got up this morning to hit the gym (work from home day!) and jumped on the treadmill to do some running/walking intrevals and about 12 minutes in my foot started hurting AGAIN!!! Grrrr! Panicked, I walked the rest of the 30 minutes because I REALLY want to go to Zumba tonight because a) it is SUPER fun and b) it's one of my commitments! So I took it a little easier the rest of the time, and then... Wed, 23 Feb 2011 09:14:10 EST Slight setback...already?! OMG yesterday was only the THIRD day of the challenge and I already messed up my commitments! Grrrrrrr..... <BR> <BR> So yesterday morning as I reported, I was SUPER pumped and got up early and went to the gym. Awesome! BUT when I got home, I noticed my right foot was hurting. Bad. I rested it while I was working but hobbled around for a while doing laundry and running to the bathroom after consuming 64 oz. of water before 11 a.m., and I started thinking, "What the heck..?!" I was in p... Tue, 22 Feb 2011 08:59:24 EST Dodged the donuts... My husband and I are Sunday School teachers for the high school youth class at our church. Every week, we bring donuts for the students. Usually I eat one or even two, and sometimes we have leftovers and take them for breakfast during the week. BUT yesterday, I ate a bowl of cereal at home before church and then avoided the donuts during Sunday School, and thankfully this week all the donuts got eaten. *score* <BR> <BR> So I don't have President's Day off work, but the rest of my company... Mon, 21 Feb 2011 09:04:34 EST So it begins for a newbie... OK so I'm still trying to get the hang of everything involving the challenge, the website, all of it. For a newbie, it is a *smidge* overwhelming, I must admit. I know my fellow teammates are here for support and guidance, but I still don't feel 100% comfortable with everything that is going on with the challenge. Hopefully by just DOING it I will get the hang of it, but right now it seems like there is so much going on and I am just trying to keep up! The best I figure I can do is exerci... Sat, 19 Feb 2011 15:08:31 EST