ANNEMARGO's SparkPeople Blog ANNEMARGO's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community my dream last night... Sometimes you have a dream that is obviously your brain trying to tell you something. Last night I had such a dream. I dreamed that I was in a sacred space where the chosen method of worship was dance. But the problem was that there were three bands/musicians to play for the dancers, all playing different kinds of music, and when one would play, the other two would start playing their music at the same time--and the dancers (myself being one of them) couldn't dance. I would suppose this m... Sat, 5 Jan 2013 15:05:22 EST interesting and a little controversial NY Times printed an interesting article yesterday about mortality risks and a BMI that registers as overweight--and they don't play out like you would think. Today, it printed an editorial about that study: <BR><BR>n/our-imaginary-weight-problem.html?sm<BR>id=pl-share <BR> <BR> This is interesting to me, because my BMI is in the mildly overweight category right now. So, do I want to be thinner because I feel better around 180, or do I want to be thi... Thu, 3 Jan 2013 09:31:02 EST 2013 goals goal 1--to accept myself, just as I am right now, as a lovable person worthy of care and respect--and that includes self-care and self-respect. This will be the basis of the rest of my goals. <BR> <BR> goal 2--to separate what I can control from what I can't, and take responsibility only for the first. And to learn to stop hanging on to guilt and shame. <BR> <BR> goal 3--as I feel better when I'm active, work on consistency in exercise. Better to do a small amount consistently than long ... Tue, 1 Jan 2013 13:54:24 EST Life Lessons from exercise DVDs... Things I've learned from doing exercise DVDs: <BR> <BR> 1. Concentrate on the present; worrying too much about the past or the future will mess you up. <BR> I've fumbled more times than I can count because I was anticipating a move and did it too soon, or I was thinking so much of the move I just did that I missed a cue. When I concentrate on what the instructor's doing as it happens, I do so much better. Same thing in life; if I'm obsessing about something in the past ... Sun, 13 Feb 2011 11:49:05 EST Grappling with my doormat tendencies.... Or co-dependency issues, or self-esteem problems, or all three. The point is, I've come to realize the past couple days that it's something that I need to tackle. <BR> <BR> For the past few years, I've maintained a friendly acquaintance with this kid at work. (I believe he's actually in his late 20s, but he's young for his age, so I think of him as a kid.) First, he reminded me of my son, since he has many of the same interests and some of the same mannerisms, second because he remind... Sat, 5 Feb 2011 15:37:26 EST Let's try this again..... I've gotten lazy, not so much with exercise as with eating, and you know what comes next--the weight. It's not real bad right now, but enough so an acquaintance felt compelled to make a "nice-nasty" remark about how she didn't know whether a sale at a local store had my size, but don't feel bad, she's right behind me--she's in a 14! It just so happens I _am_ a 14. Now, whether she honestly thought she was still smaller than me or whether she was just being an adult version of Mean Girls isn... Sun, 30 Jan 2011 19:26:20 EST Been a while.... Things have been going on and I just haven't wanted to blog. So I haven't. Life has been very stressful these days, and writing about it means thinking about it which means getting more and more stressed. I'm just trying to control what I can here--eating a sensible diet and ramping up my exercise. I'm on Facebook way too much...that's something that I need to change. So, two days after my birthday, and my goals for this year of my life: start morning pages again, start Morning Prayer... Fri, 20 Aug 2010 11:23:02 EST don't let what you think you should have... lose you what you have. It's good to dream, and it's good to follow your dreams. But it's not good to be so busy thinking you "should" be a certain weight or fitness level by now, or have a better job or a better marriage or whatever, that you neglect what you do have. That's a good way to end up with nothing. We think we ought to have lost x amount of weight in x amount of time, and when we haven't, we totally blow our eating plan. And we end up gaining. Or we get mad that we can't run m... Thu, 10 Jun 2010 22:59:12 EST emotional health entry on forgiveness.... I generally don't like to write blog entries about other people, because they're not able to defend themselves, but I do feel the need to write about a situation, so I'm going to be as non-specific here as I can. Basically, a close relative of my husband's was gravely ill for the past few months and in danger of dying at one point. At that point, fearing that s/he was going to die with something on his/her conscience, the relative made a confession to other members of the family that happen... Wed, 2 Jun 2010 11:16:23 EST May's New Thing: Hoop Dancing (finally!) I actually tried the May New Thing the first week of May, but a dead hard drive, a very slow repair shop, and a busy schedule after I got back on the web got in the way of blogging about it. The good news is, we got back our 'puter with a brand new hard drive, which we promptly gave to our daughter and son in law, and bought a gently used Apple for ourselves. And I got a lot done while the computer was in the shop! <BR> <BR> So, Hoop Dancing. I handled this a little differently than the o... Sun, 30 May 2010 17:28:52 EST Well, I was going to write about the May New Thing.... But my husband just called and told me that our computer has shown the dreaded Blue Screen of Death, so I may not be on for a bit. He's taking it to the store tonight and looking at what they've got for sale there, so who knows, we may be up and running this weekend. If not, have a very good Mother's Day, whether you're a mother, stepmother, grandmother, or just have a mother. Fri, 7 May 2010 21:40:40 EST April's New Thing--Bollywood Dance on Demand This is a kind of cheat in a way, because most of my energies in April were, first, Easter, second, a weekend trip with some friends out of town, and in the last part of the month, setting up what will be the May New Thing. More on that Sunday night or Monday morning. I've been exercising regularly all month, but I wasn't really up to doing something new. (Come to think of it, since I've never set up an exercise class for a group before, I guess that can be a New Thing too. So, hey, ma... Fri, 30 Apr 2010 22:15:56 EST you can't be ugly when you're real.... except to people who don't understand. Our rector quoted this in the sermon yesterday (it's from the Velveteen Rabbit) and it brought tears to my eyes. (Awesome sermon for Good Shepherd Sunday, BTW, on "yea, though I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, thou art with me", and why God doesn't just get rid of the possibility of bad things in our lives, but promises that He will guide us through them. But that's a subject for a different blog.) If anyone's read my old blog pos... Mon, 26 Apr 2010 12:23:05 EST I don't usually talk about politics.... And I'm not going to make this very political if I can help it. All I want to say is that the Oklahoma City bombings were 15 years ago today. Sometimes, after 9/11, we forget about Oklahoma City, but today, let's remember. Let's pray for the families of the victims, especially the 19 sets of parents who should have been buying clothes for their kids' proms or planning graduation parties or sifting through college applications about now, but got that (along with every other joy of parentin... Mon, 19 Apr 2010 12:06:43 EST another reason exercise is so important..... Last night I was starting down the BART station steps to the platforms when my heel caught on something and I pitched forward and started to fall. I managed to hold on to the handrail with one hand, twist myself around and grab the handrail with the other, stopping my fall. After I got through thanking God that I didn't fall head first down a bunch of concrete steps, I realized that I couldn't have done that 10 years ago--maybe even three years ago. All the exercises I've done the past few... Thu, 15 Apr 2010 18:29:31 EST arrrggghhh, I love the Daily Spark but..... I hate it when a blogger on the daily spark puts bad health information up. Right now, for instance, Nancy has a blog up about stress cardiomyopathy, which would be great if she had written correct information. Instead she seems to have decided that "broken heart syndrome" is just a panic attack, and pretty much everyone responding is making the same mistake. And they're all diagnosing themselves with "broken heart syndrome"!!!!! But it's not their fault, they're responding to bad infor... Thu, 8 Apr 2010 18:51:28 EST Food is Fun! I saw that saying on a restaurant sign, and thought, yeah, it should be. Not "the enemy". And while food IS fuel, it shouldn't be JUST fuel. It's okay to enjoy food! Really! <BR> <BR> This is the day before Easter, and I've been reading the "survival guide" thread over on the Sparkpeople message boards. There are some good tips and strategies, but there's also lots of dread and anguish. There are even people who aren't celebrating Easter at all so they don't have to deal with the fo... Sat, 3 Apr 2010 10:53:54 EST This will probably be a rest day. Without going into TMI territory, I have things going on that make me think exercising very vigorously wouldn't be the best idea. So what I'll do is get my apartment clean and do some errands, then if I'm feeling better play on the Wii a little this afternoon. I'm a little bummed about it, but I'm reminding myself that listening to my body is important, even when my body's saying that it needs to rest and heal. Sat, 27 Mar 2010 13:04:12 EST You know what I like best about Sparkpeople? There are people from all over the world with pretty much every political and religious (or non, for the agnostics and athiests) persuasion, and pretty much every ethnic group you can imagine. And we're still a community. That's impressive. Tue, 23 Mar 2010 11:49:49 EST Tough Love vs abuse I want to start this by explaining what got me to lose weight for good back in 1999. I was with my then-fiance and said something like "well, I've been good today, so I think I'll have a cheese danish (or something like that). " And my fiance, very calmly, said "no you haven't." And he was right, I hadn't. At that moment, I realized that I was playing around and got serious. It helped that I'd discovered Healthy Exchanges at that point so that I had the tool I needed to get serious, but ... Sun, 21 Mar 2010 13:37:56 EST The worst feeling.... I've taken my laundry out of the dryer, and I pick up a pair of slacks to fold. And the seam on the backside is totally split. And I have no idea whether it happened in the wash or the last time I wore them. Oh, the uncertainty.... Sun, 21 Mar 2010 11:11:19 EST End of the week random mailbox thoughts... Got goodies in the mail this week--first, my order from Collage Video arrived Thursday. I put in this order Monday--talk about fast shipping! If you don't know Collage Video and you like exercising at home, do yourself a favor and check them out! They're totally about exercise DVDs and videos. Shipping's crazy fast (as you can see) the workouts are all rated according to level, and the operators really know the workouts--they do a bunch of them themselves. Even if you buy from Amazon, th... Sat, 20 Mar 2010 11:12:52 EST I reject your reality and substitute my own. My daughter was telling me about her cognitive behavior therapy class, and for some reason that quote lodged in my head. But you know, sometimes that's what positive thinking has to be--at least rejecting a _perception_ of reality and substituting a more positive perception. How many times have I just bought into the diet reality perception, where I have to be perfect all the time, or I've blown it forever? Well, I reject that reality, and I substitute my own--the healthy living reality... Fri, 19 Mar 2010 21:08:47 EST The VCR ate my favorite workout videotape! It was a 10 year old tape and got played a LOT. Luckily, I believe Collage has it in DVD form, so I guess it'll go in my next order. I'll look at this as a chance to look at new step workouts, I guess! Oh yeah, and maybe a floor aerobic/toning mixture--there's got to be one I like out there somewhere. Sigh. Well, off to the shower and then get started on my day. Have a good Saturday, everyone! Sat, 13 Mar 2010 12:42:40 EST Some phrases anyone on the health journey should learn. JoAnna Lund told the story in one of her books--HELP, if I remember correctly, about a co-worker in the insurance office she worked at before starting Healthy Exchanges. This woman approached JoAnna on her last day at that office and said something like "You're going to start a weight loss newsletter? What are you going to do WHEN you gain the weight back and you can't sell your newsletter?" It speaks to JoAnna's character that she didn't give up then or there--or slapped the woman. (I'd... Fri, 12 Mar 2010 21:21:48 EST The March New Thing--Pilates Yoga Blend Oh. My. Goodness. This one kicked my butt. Have you ever seen salt water taffy being stretched? Okay, that was how my muscles felt after I got done. IOW, I loved it. <BR> <BR> I used a DVD from Crunch fitness, released in 2006. There is no new age mumbo jumbo, and the "yoga" part of the workout was more "dance-y" than anything else. NO sun salutations (yay!), just a warm up based on the warrior and the side angle postures, with lots of flowing motion. There's a few other postures... Thu, 11 Mar 2010 10:37:58 EST The February new thing--Tai Chi One of my goals for 2010 is to try a new physical activity each month. For February, I chose Tai Chi. I have no experience with Tai Chi, other than going through Oakland's Chinatown in the morning and seeing older adults practicing in the park. But my exercise routine right now is very heavy on vigorous exercise and not so much on routines that work on flexibility. And I would like to find something that I can do on my rest day. Besides, Tai Chi looks really cool and I pretty much fi... Sat, 13 Feb 2010 12:05:23 EST Incentive programs and Whole Foods I've been reading the Daily Spark blog thread about the WF incentive program pretty obsessively, and rather than clog up the thread with another comment from me, I'm going to write here. (I wrote two comments. One when I didn't know much about the programs and one after I did some research.) <BR> <BR> The furor over this program aside, incentive programs aren't all that new and usually aren't that controversial. Some focus on something totally job related--my job has a major safety incen... Sun, 7 Feb 2010 13:11:18 EST "When I was a child, I spake as a child...." So, Valentine's Day is coming up, and love's being mentioned a lot. And that got me thinking about 1 Corinthians 13, that beautiful meditation on love. You hear it a lot at weddings, but people don't tend to live by it very much. In fact, I think we'd rather think of love and that chapter of the Bible as this sweet sentimental thing, which is missing the point. I'm wondering what it would be like if we lived our lives, and for this blog particularly our healthy journey, according to the f... Sat, 6 Feb 2010 14:21:54 EST A year ago yesterday.... Yesterday was the year's anniversary of my grandson Gabriel's death. We knew that he'd probably be healed in heaven, not earth, but it still hurt terribly. It still does hurt terribly. Yesterday was hard, though it got easier when I remembered to be kind to myself and avoid as much stress as possible. Actually, today's not great either. I do have an action plan for today--my younger daughter and I will go to the farmer's market in Berkeley, something I love to do, and get some exercise ... Sat, 23 Jan 2010 15:21:49 EST My health goals for 2010 Not a terribly original title, but since what I'm going to do is convert the vague "this year I'd like to...." into the concrete "I'm working for this result..." its accurate. I'm going to try to keep this down to a minimum, so as to not overwhelm myself. They're in no particular order, except that the first one is pretty important. <BR> <BR> 1. take my medication as directed, without skipping doses. <BR> I've never been on medication indefinitely before, and it shows. (Even when I've ... Sat, 9 Jan 2010 11:59:47 EST What 2009 taught me I'm sitting in my apartment, listening to Kenny G's version of Auld Lang Syne, waiting for my husband to come back from picking up our daughter at the airport, and thinking about 2009. As many of you know, this was a pretty hard year for my family and I. In just one year, we've faced the loss of a grandchild, my husband having a stroke, my older daughter and her husband's divorce (unfortunately the same daughter and son-in-law that lost a child), financial troubles caused by my husband's i... Fri, 1 Jan 2010 02:49:18 EST It's been awhile.... You may have noticed I stopped posting back in late September. On September 19th, my heart started acting up again. Actually, I went into V-fib and I'm very lucky that I have an ICD, because otherwise I'd be dead. That's pretty much a quote from the ICD nurse. I pretended it didn't happen and didn't call my doctor until my next scheduled check in early October, which was pretty stupid. I guess I didn't want it confirmed, because unless a medical professional confirms it, it didn't happe... Sun, 27 Dec 2009 11:43:44 EST Let's start something! In the past week, I've read and heard stories about: PETA erecting a billboard calling overweight women names, a man slapping a stranger's child because the toddler was crying in the same Walmart that he was in, a US Representative heckling the President of the United States, and Kanye West disrupting an acceptance speech because he thought someone else should have won. What do all these stories have in common? They're glaring examples of rudeness, and they're only the tip of the iceberg. ... Thu, 17 Sep 2009 11:07:24 EST The point of exercise We went down to the Monterey area this past weekend with a church group. A bunch of us rented bikes in Monterey and took about a 5 or 6 mile ride from the beginning of Cannery Row to close to the lighthouse and back. If you've never been to Monterey, it's gorgeous, esp. right next to the ocean. Coming back, I rounded a curve just in time to see a wave break dramatically on a small rock outcropping, and everything just came together and was perfect. And it occurred to me that we miss the... Wed, 9 Sep 2009 12:32:12 EST PETA, shaming, and a confession So PETA's latest offensive campaign is over, sort of. And lots of people have shared about how it made them feel, and what it made them want to do (protest to PETA, eat a cheeseburger, etc.) But what that billboard made me feel was ashamed, because it reminded me of something I'm not too proud of. When I was 8, I lived down the street from a teenaged girl who was quite heavy. I saw her as almost adult, but she was probably 13 or 14 at the time. When I and my friends would see her comin... Sat, 29 Aug 2009 12:45:05 EST Life isn't the breath you take.... ---it's the moments that take your breath away, as a song on George Strait's newest album says. Today was one of those days. Nothing earth shattering; it's just that my three year old "honorary granddaughter" Melanie spent the day with me. We went to the playground in the morning, I read her a couple stories and she helped me make soup and bake brownies in the afternoon. While we were making brownies, she told me "I love you because you're beautiful." And that's when my breath was tak... Sat, 22 Aug 2009 21:21:54 EST I had a major binge episode this weekend. It was a classic, complete with secrecy, discomfort, guilt and lack of control. No purging, thankfully. I thought I was past that, but apparently not as much as I thought. So now, I'm going to stop the guilt and analyze the problem. <BR> <BR> First, since an eating disorder is a coping mechanism, I need to find what triggered the episode. It's most probably because of my mixed feelings about my birthday. Not the getting older, but the feeling that my birthday--and myself, by extensio... Tue, 18 Aug 2009 14:20:50 EST I know I say that this is about health, not dress size.... My last pair of casual jeans wore out Saturday, and I've been noticing for a while that my clothes are a bit, well, dated. (I haven't bought any new clothes in close to a year, and I'm still wearing some clothes I bought _before_ I got married to Will. We're celebrating our 8th anniversary tomorrow. I have at least two articles of clothing that were bought in stores that ceased existence more than 10 years ago. One of those articles is from a store that closed in 1991.) So yesterday I did ... Mon, 27 Jul 2009 20:37:49 EST Hard work is not a punishment!!!! This entry's inspired by a message thread I read a while back, and a more recent Sparkpeople blog poll. It isn't intended to say anything bad about the participants, only develop my thoughts a bit. <BR> The message thread was entitled something like "would you keep exercising if you didn't HAVE to?" and the blog was on whether those who answered considered exercise a punishment or a health benefit. The answers really surprised me--there seem to be a lot of people who hate exercise but f... Sat, 18 Jul 2009 14:21:25 EST I love it when a plan comes together! What a nice 4th! We went to the Marin County Fair and had a great time. And the best thing is that I didn't spend the 5th regretting what I did the day before. That's because I had a real plan and I stuck to it. Way back when I first started losing weight, I used to confuse having an intention with having a plan. An intention is sort of a vague "I'm going to try to stick to my diet today", but a plan is more "this is how I'm going to be as healthy as I can today." So, I'm going to shar... Mon, 6 Jul 2009 10:27:07 EST In Praise of the Stroll In addition to the exercise and walks I log, I take a stroll almost every day for my "morning" break at work. Because I'm dressed for work, I walk slower than I normally do and the walk's 14 minutes tops, so it isn't really "exercise" to me. It is a healthy living habit, though, so here's some reasons to incorporate strolls into your routine. <BR> 1. It clears my head. I'm getting some fresh air (well, as fresh as it gets in the middle of a city) and allowing my mind to think of somethin... Sat, 27 Jun 2009 12:49:11 EST A big chunk of my adolescence died yesterday. Farrah and Michael. Wow. I expected Farrah, but not Michael. Truth to tell, though Farrah was at the time of my teenage years, Michael's greatest fame would come a little later, in his solo career. But there were still enough songs then--Ben, Dancing Machine, all the Jackson 5 work...... <BR> <BR> I was thinking about those two and body issues. Farrah, of course, was that poster. The image I could never be, me with my curly hair that didn't feather and my body that wasn't the ideal ... Fri, 26 Jun 2009 10:14:41 EST Thoughts on loving oneself.... I checked out a book from the library called "The Women's Comfort Book". It's a little new-age-y in spots but interesting. It got me thinking, along with what I talked about my last post, about loving myself. I really do think that the first step in successful healthy living is learning to love yourself. But I don't think we do it that much. Oh sure, we might talk about it, but let's look at this. Do we really treat ourselves like someone we love? Would we treat someone we love, say ... Tue, 16 Jun 2009 22:20:11 EST I just saw something that bothers me. I'm not trying to call anyone out here, but I want to talk about something that's troubling to me. I was looking at the new sparkpages, and I saw a picture of a girl that was dangerously underweight. Now, I've seen pictures and whatever of people that seem to be in a healthy weight range and are on Sparkpeople. I'm sure some are in maintenance and others are trying to get to the lower part of their weight range. But this girl looked like she could be anorexic. I've blogged before about... Mon, 15 Jun 2009 12:01:36 EST Resources that have helped me.... ...aside from Sparkpeople, that is! These are some programs, DVDs, whatever, that I found very helpful. So why not share? <BR> <BR> Overall program: Weight Watchers. I use the online or at home version; I work funny hours and can't get to meetings easily. Since a number of my family and friends are doing Weight Watchers as well, it's easy for me to discuss the program with them and get support when needed. As I said in my previous blog post, the points program is loose enough that I... Sun, 7 Jun 2009 15:37:13 EST Control/Moderation Okay, now that I'm over my panic of last week, I'm going to talk about control. Or rather, my fear of not being in control. I have a thing about control. In some ways that's good--I've never been tempted to abuse drugs or alcohol because I hate the way being drunk feels. In other ways, it's a problem, because being preoccupied with control can lead to things like, well, eating disorders. (It's easier to see with anorexia, but I think all eating disorders are about control in some way... Sat, 6 Jun 2009 20:48:13 EST Not an upbeat post..... And it should have been. It should have been a post about how I had so much fun at my church's dinner dance and how I danced the night away. My husband, Will, and I were kitchen staff for the dinner--I was the head cook--and we were working all day in either our kitchen or the church's kitchen. After the attendees ate and Will and I had a little bit of chicken and rice, we were at leisure to eat dessert, have something to drink and dance to some good old school music. And that's what we... Sun, 31 May 2009 11:19:47 EST Having a lightbulb moment So, a week or two ago, on a Friday, I was on my lunch hour and decided since it was a hot day, I'd get some ice cream. I'd already had lunch, but I was tired of thinking about shoulds and shouldn'ts and just wanted to cool down, no guilt involved. I got to the corner sandwich etc. place, caught sight of the cooler full of diet Snapples, and thought to myself, "ya know, an nice cold ice tea would be even more refreshing", and ended up buying a diet Snapple ice tea instead. Then I had a ligh... Sat, 23 May 2009 15:06:22 EST Back, after major 'net problems.... Haven't really been able to connect for more than a month...after many phone calls and two tech visits, it turns out the main splitter in the apartment was the original one that had been installed when cable was first put in---in at least the late 70s and probably before that--and it was dying of old age. So, the tech replaced the splitter and not only the online access but our cable TV service is much better. WhooHoo! Over the weekend, I'll try to post updates on what's been happening in ... Sat, 16 May 2009 13:41:55 EST