DIET_FRIEND's SparkPeople Blog DIET_FRIEND's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Book Bub I get a daily email from that informs me of free or cheap e-books I can get from Amazon or Apple (I think--I always get mine from Amazon). ANYWAY, I recieved a free book today from them called The Diet Dropout's Guide to Natural Weight Loss. If you are interested in getting it, for a limited time, it is free to download from Amazon. You can read it on a Smart Phone, iPod, iPad, or Kindle device--even from a desktop computer! I really enjoy getting so many free or cheap books t... Tue, 14 May 2013 15:26:44 EST Non-Scale Victory at the Store Since I have a new job, I indulged in a bit of shopping today. I decided to get some capri-length jeans and a top. I tried on the size I believed I needed, but they were too baggy. I had to take a smaller size! I haven't worn that size in oh-so-long! I haven't been doing well with any aspect of my Spark Plan, but it was truly a nice feeling to require a smaller size pants! These pants are pull-on with a stretchy waist and no fly. Who needs it when my tops are always covering my waist a... Sat, 6 Apr 2013 18:49:51 EST Life in a higher gear I had gotten used to being a woman of leisure. Now I have a time-consuming job. I go from 8-ish to 4-ish to a family's home and provide tutoring and behavior therapy to a couple of children with a diagnosis of being on the Autism spectrum. It's my first time being solely responsible for the care and tending of an autistic child, and so far so good. I have a co-worker in the home with me. She is responsible for the younger child who exhibits a classic case of autistism (he's 8, but really... Sat, 30 Mar 2013 17:03:31 EST Babysteps I have been babystepping back to the sweet sparking spot. Still not there yet though. Drinking water, eating freggies, need to move more and curb junk food. <BR> <BR> My new job still hasn't begun. I hoped to be working this week. I will be getting some training late in the week NEXT week. Argh! I guess I just have to roll with it. I continue to draw unemployment and I really wish I could quit. Part of being on unemployment is having to report job search activities so I have to conti... Fri, 22 Mar 2013 14:34:46 EST No Mojo Lately I have fallen by the health and fitness wayside. How does it happen? Gradually I started eating more and more inappropriate foods. Gradually I stopped paying attention to my water. I haven't done serious fitness in quite a few days. I need to get my mojo working for sure! I made a healthy salad for dinner with a load of leafy greens as well as tomatoes and strawberries. Have you ever had strawberries sliced in your salad? It's surprisingly good with any kind of salad dressing. ... Mon, 18 Mar 2013 19:21:18 EST Musings Today I was noticed a cache of old letters from my single days in the 1990s. I read a few of them and it was great to read little missives from my mom and friends from back then. The ones that wrote me letters then are still friends today. I reached behind this box and thought I saw a wad of lint or a rock or something that I thought I'd throw away. It turned out to be a long-lost earring! This was an earring that I really really liked back in my 30s and was pretty sad to have lost. I s... Wed, 13 Mar 2013 12:45:19 EST End of Leisure Life I mentioned in my status a few days ago that I thought I'd landed a job, and I have. I will be working in a private home tutoring and giving applied behavioral therapy to 1-2 autistic children. I have never truly taught autistic kids and have never been a therapist, but they seem to think I'm the person for the job, so here I go! Mon, 11 Mar 2013 13:48:33 EST Sparking away I won't waste your time telling you of all the eating sins I have committed recently, but I am still sparking despite it all. I got a good workout in today. I'm thinking seriously about a Fitbit, but haven't made up my mind. <BR> <BR> I got the roses planted and hopefully they will thrive. I covered the dirt around them with newspapers and mulch. Then it rained that night so I think they have a good start in life. I will water them again this weekend if it doesn't rain again. I am ma... Thu, 7 Mar 2013 21:27:02 EST All the seasons in a week! It wasn't that long ago that we were practically swimming for it here in South Georgia. Then last weekend we experienced our coldest weather of the year. And of course I had to spend the days hanging out on a windswept soccer pitch watching my son's team play in a tournament with my fellow soccer-moms. We enjoy it, but it was super cold. We were all bundled as best as we could be. Many of us don't have warm coats and such as we rarely have to be in cold conditions. One child was in flip... Mon, 4 Mar 2013 20:48:06 EST Ups and Downs My weight went up in mid-February and I resolved to do better with my fitness and water drinking as well as do better with eating and tracking. Well, my weight was at 226 on weigh-in Tuesday, but down again to 224 today. I hope tomorrow it's still at 224 or less. I haven't done as much fitness today and yesterday as my routines were disrupted with a trip to see my dad and stepmother. It was a nice visit. <BR> <BR> I had an interview today. I felt really good about the interview, but y... Wed, 27 Feb 2013 19:06:01 EST Feeling a sense of progress When you are on a health and fitness program as we all are, and you are also a food lover, as most of us are, and you tend towards sedentary behavior, as I do, you can get kind of dispirited about your progress. I joined the 13-13-13 challenge, but I couldn't seem to keep my cravings at bay and due to a bout of hopelessness about life in general (like getting a job), I found myself sleeping as much as I could and sitting in my easy chair with no excuse whatsoever to skip working out or avoid... Fri, 22 Feb 2013 14:52:46 EST Sunday Afternoon Have not been doing well with my eating this week. Thanks Easter candy! I cannot resist a box of chocolate. I have cooked a lot of veggies though. I made a tasty chicken enchilada soup this week that was muy tasty! Yesterday, I braised so cheap little steak cuts over a bed of carrots and leeks. I poured a small can of V-8 juice over the veggies. It made a nice pot liquor to sauce the side dish of cous cous I prepared mixed with some green peas. The kids enjoyed this meal too. <BR> ... Sun, 17 Feb 2013 16:52:03 EST Throw out your rear-view mirror I decided to subscribe to Jonathan Roche's latest challenge over on FlyLady and wondered why I wasnt recieving his emails. There they were in my junk file! I read his 15 Secrets to Better Health. Nothing really earth-shattering here for those of us who Spark. But one take-away idea is to quit dwelling on the past. We need to quit regretting our missed exercises and overeating from yesterday. There is nothing we can do about what happened in the past. Today is a fresh day. Let's make i... Fri, 15 Feb 2013 12:22:03 EST No Excuses weightloss program from FlyLady's Jonathan Roche I feel somewhat in weightloss doldrums. I did manage to dip down a pound on weigh-in, but I bet it's not permanently gone. I don't seem to be interested in my usual fitness routines nor in being careful in my eating. I am managing to drink my water at least. <BR> <BR> I get Flylady email in my hotmail account and today there was one from "Kelly" who invited my to lose 15-30 pounds by Memorial Day. Well, I clicked the link and now I'm involved in another program to hopefully motivate me... Wed, 13 Feb 2013 19:53:40 EST Mind Games This weight loss thing is as much of a head trip as it is a physical activity. We have to use our minds too. I have such a time doing what is right, so what is in my head? Do I honestly think I can do it? Is my desire to indulge in a bag of chips stronger than my desire to be more fit and healthier? How can I control the cravings that haunt my mind? If I had these answers, I'd write a diet book and get really rich! Sat, 9 Feb 2013 21:36:31 EST One Pound at a Time I find myself in a weightloss rut. I had abandoned tracking because inputting my recipes was so frustrating and time-consuming and I eat a lot of home cooking. I could call my position a plateau, but I know it's really a result of eating choices. I do so well during the day, but evenings come around and I start craving. I am no where near ready for bed, so don't suggest earlier bedtime, in fact I know what I need to do, I just need to do it. I need to eat less, watch portions, minimize c... Wed, 6 Feb 2013 14:03:23 EST Rededicating Myself I have resolved to lose 13 pounds in 13 weeks, but what am I doing to make it happen? I have done a bit of fitness virtually every day (missed 2). The fitness I've done hasn't really gotten my heart pounding or sweat pouring, but I am leaps and bounds ahead of where I was. I think I will do more Leslie Sansone to really rev up my fat burning! I need to take strength training more seriously because when the weather warms up for spring and summer and I'm baring flesh, I want it to look tone... Sun, 3 Feb 2013 21:34:16 EST Fun Outing Went to St. Augustine's Lighthouse with a good friend yesterday. She had a coupon so it was free and included a tour of the site. I have visited St. Augustine many times including exploring the fort, attending concerts, going to the beach, shopping, and meandering down the historic St. George Street. This was the first time I'd toured the lighthouse. It was interesting to learn about archeology and shipwreck artifact recovery. Also learning about the lighthouse and the associated evolvin... Wed, 30 Jan 2013 12:19:48 EST A-Z re me! Hi all, <BR> <BR> I appropriated this from IMAGELOVER and Gwen. I don't usually do these, but enjoyed theirs so here's mine! <BR> <BR> A - Available or Married: Married. <BR> <BR> B - Book: Fat Chance by a Biggest Loser Alum--got it at Dollar Tree!. <BR> <BR> C - Cake or Pie? mmmm...both! <BR> <BR> D - Drink of Choice: Water these days, but I like wine & beer too. <BR> <BR> E - Essential Item: computer. <BR> <BR> F - Favorite Color: purple. <BR> <BR> G - Game to Play or Watch: ... Mon, 28 Jan 2013 13:48:43 EST What's going on with me Here it is another Sunday night. Went to church and lunch out at Ruby Tuesday. I had a big salad consisting primarily of salad greens and then ordered the fish tacos. I gave one to my hubby. It is so good, but with the salad, it's really too much, so I was glad DH would enjoy one too. Not expecting a weightloss this month as I have been overeating again. I just hope the scales don't rise! <BR> <BR> Went to Target with my friend after church/lunch. Since I had a gift card for Starbu... Sun, 27 Jan 2013 19:30:12 EST Thoughts on fitness I bought a few fitness tools for Christmas: a ball, a cushy mat, and a resistance band. I want to use Spark videos to help me with form so I get the most out of my efforts. I can't seem to get them easily on my TV with my Wii accessing youtube, and the ones on the site need a download to work which I can't get on my Wii/TV. So....must I work out in front of my computer? The space is so confined! <BR> <BR> Enter the IPad! If you have been thinking of getting one, it's a pretty cool litt... Mon, 21 Jan 2013 19:07:43 EST Happy MLK Day and Inaugeration! My usual viewing of The Today Show has been pre-empted by the inaugeration ceremony. Is it really true that Fox News will go off the air at 11:30 because of it? That's so crazy! But to be honest, if you want to see this ceremony, it is available to see. It looks chilly in DC and may snow. Brrr! My dad claims Obama is a Muslim, but he just went to a Christian Church today and is being sworn in on two Christian Bibles. Not very faithful to his faith if he's a Muslim! I am a fan of Obama... Mon, 21 Jan 2013 10:22:18 EST Non Scale Victory My pounds are not down where they were on Tuesday. I have eaten some salty chips and carby pasta as well as some sugary birthday cake thanks to the back-to-back celebrations of my son and husband's birthdays. And I just couldn't rally to the exercise bit yesterday either. Nevertheless, I have been faithful about downing my water quota. <BR> <BR> For my interview today, I selected to wear a little 3/4 sleeve jacket over a tank shell top and black slacks and nearly-new ballerina flats wit... Thu, 17 Jan 2013 19:20:41 EST Weight coming off Yay! The Wii Fit with fresh batteries says I'm down a pound! I was not really expecting a loss as my eating is not good. Yesterday was my son's birthday and he wanted lasagna but switched to going to Bonzai, the Japanese place where the chef cooks in front of you. You get to see them stir fry with gobs of butter on white rice and teriyaki and soy sauce. None of these are good for weightloss! Thankfully everyone was too full when we got home to eat birthday cake which I put together yest... Tue, 15 Jan 2013 11:16:40 EST Sunday Got in some fitness minutes and intended to eat better, but plans are made to be broken. Had a big salad at Zaxby's and that meant 4 servings of veggies. It was doughnut Sunday, and I couldn't resist one doughnut. <BR> <BR> Had a sad episode today as well as I attended the funeral of a 21-year-old boy who is a church friend. He was killed in a single car accident at 2 in the morning. He wasn't wearing his safety belt, and he fell asleep behind the wheel (at least that's the way it look... Sun, 13 Jan 2013 18:59:42 EST Hills and Valleys Like most long term projects, there are hills and valleys in my health and fitness journey. I had lost a bit prior to Christmas and despite the impending holiday, was able to focus and concentrate on my fitness and right foods. I am now experiencing a lack of focus. I haven't eaten all my calories today, but might before the day is done. I didn't eat many veggies though. I have had trouble making myself drink my water too. I haven't been getting in too many fitness minutes either. I AM... Wed, 9 Jan 2013 19:36:52 EST Choogling 402 people in the challenge at last count. The emails have stopped pouring in. In fact, I think I only got one new one today. For me to lose 13 pounds in the first 13 weeks of 2013, I need to get away from the computer some and do my fitness, plan my good eating, chug my water, which means visiting the water closet! <BR> <BR> Have you noticed that a lot of TV programming is centered on weightloss? I guess I always knew it was true that January is the month when we all think about our wai... Sat, 5 Jan 2013 16:53:45 EST 382 at last count! I keep a word document with all the people that joined the challenge, and I'm up to 382 now! If all 382 of the people lose their 13 pounds, the earth will be better for it! It's exciting to have so many people responding to the challenge. I have to do more than run the challenge in order to lose my pounds though! <BR> <BR> This morning my daughter wanted to make pancakes. We found a recipe on Food Network for buckwheat and whole wheat pancakes and cooked them up. I ate 3, and they wer... Thu, 3 Jan 2013 13:06:06 EST JumpStart! I am leading the 50+ team and we decided to have a 13-week challenge in which we attempt to lose 13 pounds. I sent an email to all the team members and the response was fantastic! There are about 300 people that want to get in on the challenge. I hope we can all hang in there for the duration. The worst thing any of us can do is quit. Even if we don't shed all 13 pounds, even losing 5-10 would be great. It would be for me, because I'm up 5 pounds! Christmas is NOT a good season for my ... Mon, 31 Dec 2012 20:31:37 EST Getting my Spark points To get spark points, I have started doing the trivia questions found on Healthy Lifestyle page. I quit when I have answer 3. This is a great way to get points and learn tidbits at the same time. <BR> <BR> I am listening to SparkRadio right now. It's such a perky podcast. Still, there is much to learn. <BR> <BR> On my 50+ team, some of the members are starting a challenge in January that lasts until Easter. We are planning to lose 13 pounds in 13 weeks for 2013. If you are interested, ... Fri, 28 Dec 2012 18:33:38 EST Merry Christmas! I had a nice Christmas Day with my husband, kids, mom, sister, niece and nephew. I made a big ole messy lasagne. I would love to learn the secret to making it in a way that comes out of the pan. I will try other techniques than the seat-of-your-pants method I used for this one. it used a lot of sauce and was pretty messy. People thought it tasted good though and that's the most important thing! <BR> <BR> Hubby bought me a used Ipad for Christmas and I like it. It's an upgrade from my n... Tue, 25 Dec 2012 19:49:56 EST Got a little cold. I woke up yesterday with a bit of sore throat and proceeded to sneeze the day away along with a runny nose. Went to bed with nighttime cold meds and woke up with more cold. I'm making chicken soup today. I'm making my own recipe. <BR> <BR> I'm defrosting frozen chicken tenders and sauteeing them in a bit of olive oil and garlic. Then I'm adding a box of chicken broth and a bag of cole slaw. I'll season it some, maybe add a jar of tomatoes my mom put up for me. Yummo (I hope) and they s... Fri, 21 Dec 2012 13:11:28 EST Weight coming off My Wii Fit says I'm down a pound or so. I can tell you what I'm doing that appears to be working. I am drinking my water. I feel like I am in a swimming pool I drink it so much! I am drinking from 6-10 cups a day. I am taking a lot of restroom breaks but c'est la vie! <BR> <BR> I am not grazing. I have had some not-so-great food choices, particularly when I'm not home, but I am not grazing and snacking...well...not without being mindful! I ate a few potato chips last night, but not ve... Thu, 20 Dec 2012 15:59:17 EST What's happening with me... I haven't felt motivated to write a blog for a while, but that's not to say I'm not working my plan or have abandoned SparkPeople. I still log in every day. I still check my friend feed to see what my peeps are up to on their blogs and status updates. Still spinning that wheel and logging in my fitness minutes. <BR> <BR> I'm not that great at logging food these days. I know when I have a pig-out day, I'll have some terrible numbers. Yesterday hubby and I ate at Chile's (or is it Chili... Tue, 18 Dec 2012 14:51:49 EST It's a mental journey as well as physical Something that upsets my program is dispair. I feel like I'm making so many good choices and yet the scales don't move, I then get a bit blue. When I'm blue over lack of progress, I find myself not tracking, eating more non-Spark foods, skimping on water, drinking sugar-free soda and wine. I also sit in my chair too long. When you lapse a day or two, it's sometimes hard to get back to the optimal focus. I've been back and to with Spark since 2009 so I know about losing focus! <BR> <BR> ... Fri, 14 Dec 2012 10:33:52 EST Feel like I'm making progress For the longest time, I felt like my weight just wouldn't come off. My scales just wouldn't budge no matter what. When I started doing my Wii Fit activities, one of the things I do is have a body check daily including weight, and according to this gadget, I AM losing weight. When I move my scales around the room, the number can vary. My floors are just not level. So today I changed my ticker for the first time in a long time and I am finally out of the 230s! I have been in them since th... Wed, 12 Dec 2012 14:19:18 EST Did very well today. I made a personal commitment to do a better job of tracking this week as I have been off the tracking for a while. I would possible write down breakfast, but by the end of the tracking. It's a problem to track when you eat a lot of homemade foods with unknown quantities of ingredients. I tried to put my split pea recipe in the tracker and I ended up with 3 copies and the nutrition facts seemed pretty unlikely. So I input the ingredients on my tracker as best I could yesterday. ... Tue, 11 Dec 2012 22:55:33 EST Need inspiration about "freggies" This is not the greatest season for fresh veggies, and I am not crazy about canned or frozen ones. I do use canned tomatoes and tomato products a lot making soup, spaghetti sauce, chili, and such. I buy bags of salad with the best of intentions but usually have to toss some out before it's all eaten. <BR> <BR> I buy bananas, grapes, oranges, and "cuties" (clementine oranges) for the kids. I try to avoid eating the fruit a lot because I think it's full of carbs and sugar. <BR> <BR> I... Mon, 10 Dec 2012 13:52:48 EST Fun Saturday with Wii Fit I have been the only one that used the Wii Fit until today. Yesterday I started doing an obstacle course on it and it was really fun. You get a sweat on and aren't bothered because the challenge is so compelling. Last night I told my husband I wanted him to try it, and he agreed to do so today. Then my 12-going-on-13-year-old son joined in and of course, being the athlete of the family, he cleaned our clocks! It is kind of like actually being Mario! I have over 45 minutes logged on tod... Sat, 8 Dec 2012 17:06:44 EST Not very faithful to streaks and challenges I sign on for different challenges at different teams' pages. I am plain ole not faithful to these challenges! I said I'd work out for 30 minutes every day. These days I do about 20 minutes not including sporadic NEAT moving that I am incorporating. I feel a lot better though and Wii Fit says I'm losing weight. Hope Wii Fit is right! My humble scales haven't moved in the right direction in sooooo long. I was up a few pounds there for a while and now I'm back at my ticker weight...accor... Fri, 7 Dec 2012 17:55:04 EST I am feeling pretty low Hubby and I went to a job fair and had a good interview. We were feeling so positive about the experience. We recieved an email today that said that company is no longer considering us and it's because of my references. I have a former supervisor who apparently has it in for me even though I no longer work for him. I don't want to go into it, but I left my last job on bad conditions not entirely my fault. I really hate to even write this job on my job history but I feel that with the int... Thu, 6 Dec 2012 15:30:57 EST Doing pretty well with program I need to think of my health and fitness activities as not a program but a lifestyle, but I still call it a program--better than a diet! <BR> <BR> Got in adequate sleep last night and didn't snack on ice cream or anything, just my sugar-free cocoa with mini-marshmallows. Hot drinks are the bomb this time of year! Drank coffee for breakfast and before I knew it the morning was over. I made a big salad of lettuce greens and spinach and topped it with a few black beans, 2 boiled eggs, and ... Wed, 5 Dec 2012 12:09:11 EST Back from the Job Fair Hubby and I are back from our whirlwind trip to Atlanta for the job fair we have been anticipating for quite a while. We did have one really good interview, but there were not many schools there and other than the one really good interview, there were no positions appropriate for the 2 of us. Ah well, now we know what we are up against. The one interview though is all we really need to get a job. This organization prefers to hire married teacher couples. They have schools in many locatio... Mon, 3 Dec 2012 19:58:27 EST Doing NEAT things. Read a blog by a gal named Frauching on the subject of NEAT, which is an acronym that stands for Non-exercise Activity Thermogenesis, or activities we do beyond working out. Some people (myself included) tend to be extremely sedentary when not actually engaged in fitness exercise. I know this is a problem for me with a lot of ill side effects like super-weak muscles. I've considered turning on the timer to prompt me to get up and move for 5 minutes every hour. I still might do that! <BR> ... Sat, 1 Dec 2012 10:46:31 EST Quick update I'm keeping on keeping on. I have been very much in control of my eating (I think). I'm tracking. My main source of sustenance has been soup lately. It was a little cool in these parts and I got in the mood to make lamb stew. Today I made black bean soup. My kids at first tun their noses up, but then they eat it up and say they liked it. Yesterday I made a quinoa/spinach dish I read about on SparkRecipes. I had all the ingredients. Everyone liked it. I also made twice this week some... Thu, 29 Nov 2012 22:55:07 EST On my program I drank my water today and have managed what I eat so far. Yesterday, I ate a bunch of sherbet though...just couldn't stop myself! I got on the Wii Fit again today. My husband is off too and he got on it for a few minutes. He says he can't get excited about it because he is strapped for time. I wish he could get excited though because he needs to reduce as much as I do. Here's hoping he'll try it again over Christmas holidays. If you have never tried the Wii Fit, it is a fun tool for g... Mon, 26 Nov 2012 13:42:00 EST Maybe I'll lose a few before 2013 I stepped on the scales this morning to greet a weight gain. Not surprising as I have not been sparking very brightly these past couple of days. I did eat heartily at Thanksgiving, but didn't eat much before or after the meal. Today, my kids brought home doughnuts and I ate one before thinking about it very long. I made a pretty healthy lunch though. My husband helped me set up the Wii Fit my sister let me borrow. I finally rallied enough to give it a try. My son helped set me up. I m... Fri, 23 Nov 2012 19:25:13 EST Could this be true? <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I saw this on Facebook and thought it was worth sharing with Spark World. Tue, 20 Nov 2012 08:56:43 EST Complicated relationship with Dad For the past many years, I have been eating Thanksgiving at my Dad's house. My stepmother told me that as long as she was able, she would always have Thanksgiving at her house. So I just assumed I'd be going there again in a few days. My sister called me last night and told me that Dad and Barbara would NOT be having Thanksgiving at their house. My sister was worrying that maybe Barbara is ill in some way, but that there was no explanation given to her and when I found out what was up, to... Mon, 19 Nov 2012 12:24:32 EST Sparking today with Hungry Girl I started my day with Hungry Girls "Growing Oatmeal." This very filling dish consists of just 1/2 cup of oats cooked with 1 cup of almond milk and 1 cup water as well as some fruit--in my case, I added a fresh pear to mine. Also you'll need splenda, salt, cinnamon, and I added nutmeg. It makes a large serving of food that keeps you feeling full for a long time! I might make it again tomorrow! I saw that Hungry Girl was on Dr. Oz, but I couldn't watch her because my family was coming home... Fri, 16 Nov 2012 15:22:53 EST