ECAT77's SparkPeople Blog ECAT77's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Reading Material A book that has helped me in my weight loss journey is "Made to Crave" by Lysa Terkeurst. She is a Christian author, president of Proverbs 31 Ministries, and this book changed my life. She writes about the fruit of the spirit of self-control. It was certainly lacking in my life. I remember telling my doctor before I started Spark People (over, again!) that I felt out of control, that I just could not get a grip on eating and weight loss. This book opened my eyes to what was missing. As much a... Sat, 19 Jan 2013 23:45:50 EST How You Doin' It's January 18. I hope you are still reaching for your goals/resolutions. Don't give up! If you did, start over! There are so many things in life that we don't have any control over, but we can control what goes into our body and how we treat it. Let's do this thing! We CAN do it! Fri, 18 Jan 2013 18:00:23 EST Don't Break the Eggs! I know many people get discouraged if they make a poor food choice during the day. In their minds, if they decide to have a donut vs. scrambled eggs at breakfast, the whole day is ruined (calorie-wise) so they might as well indulge the whole rest of the day. A great analogy my nutritionist gave me was this: If you go get eggs out of the fridge, drop one and it breaks all over the floor, do you then say, "Well, I dropped one, the whole carton is ruined, I may as well go break the rest of them... Fri, 11 Jan 2013 23:44:58 EST Pressing on Toward the Goal Happy New Year! How was your 2012? Are you glad to see it go because it was full of struggles, or was it your best year yet? Or was it a mixed bag of both? I fall into the latter. We were not struggle-free, but many good things happened as well. <BR> <BR> I think in 15 1/2 years of marriage, these last 3 years have been the hardest for us financially. Will works 2 jobs, I work one, and 3 incomes still don't make ends meet sometimes. There were many times this past year where I thought we we... Tue, 1 Jan 2013 11:57:53 EST Elation! Met my goal! WOOOOO HOOOOO! I am so excited to have reached my goal! When I re-started SP (for the 3rd time) on December 29, 2011, I set a goal to lose 30 pounds by June 1. Today was my weigh-in for my nutrition class, and I DID IT! I am down 30 pounds and tomorrow is June 1. It feels sooooo good, even more so because the last time I really was into SP, I never met the goal I had set. For the first time just this week, I actually feel lighter. I don't see it when I look in the mirror, I don't see it when ... Thu, 31 May 2012 22:19:02 EST Halfway to First Goal! I've been meaning to write this since last week. Thursday is my weigh-in day in the nutrition class I'm taking. As of March 1, I am down 15 pounds since January 1! That is halfway to my goal of an initial 30 pound weight loss. I need to lose a whole lot more than that, but I decided that saying I need to lose 100+ was too daunting a task. I'm going at it 30 pounds at a time because that is more feasible and easier a goal to set/reach. I have also lost 8.75 inches total in different areas of m... Mon, 5 Mar 2012 22:52:10 EST Grocery shopping in a new light I hear so many people complain about going to the grocery store, but I actually enjoy it. Don't get me wrong, there ARE times when every nerve gets plucked. Sounds weird perhaps being surrounded by all those other people, but I just sort of zone out and concentrate on my list. I do not take my children with me so in a way it's "me time." <BR> <BR> Today was the first time I went grocery shopping since starting my nutrition class at our local wellness center. I just saw everything in a new ... Sat, 28 Jan 2012 18:38:29 EST Food scale I bought a food scale today. It's one endorsed or used by "The Biggest Loser." I don't watch that show so I don't care about that part, but it seemed the most user-friendly to me of scales in the store. I've been using measuring cups and spoons, but there are many foods that obviously won't work in those. :) I know these scales are not for everyone, but I really need to watch my portion control. The only thing I used it for so far was to weigh deli meat. It was so great to know what 2 oz. of ... Sat, 21 Jan 2012 23:26:22 EST So excited about nutrition class! In my last blog entry, I talked about my insurance company not paying for anything obesity related (diagnosis or treatment-wise) and me not being able to afford one-on-one counseling with a nutritionist on my own. <BR> <BR> So I found a nutrition class at a nearby wellness center that is $15 per week. Yesterday was the first class and I am so EXCITED about it! The nutritionist leading the group is so down to earth. I was scared going in about her or others in there being judgmental or conde... Fri, 20 Jan 2012 21:34:41 EST Frustrated with insurance First off, I know that I alone am responsible for this weight. So I can understand when people say they don't want to pay higher premiums for obese people. <BR> <BR> Still...I am so mad that my insurance company does not provide coverage whatsoever for anything obesity related. I'm not interested in bariatric surgery, I just want to meet with a nutritionist. But the insurance will only cover such a meeting if the diagnosis is diabetes, which I DON'T have. I want to sit down with someone wh... Thu, 29 Dec 2011 22:46:11 EST Bootcamp Challenge Today I finished week 1 of the 28-day bootcamp challenge. Wow! Some of those exercises were too much for me. Definitely had to do the less strenuous/beginner version (not sure of the proper term) of some of those moves. However, I feel great for doing it. It's so easy to work in the 10 minute videos each day. Then to get in my cardio I would follow up with some Wii exercises (I love Just Dance) or one of my Leslie Sansone walking DVDs. I wish I had measured my arms, calves, etc. last week whe... Sun, 16 Jan 2011 22:34:20 EST Body, soul, spirit I do believe we are all 3 of those. Yesterday marked the beginning of my church doing a 21-day fast. I'm not able to completely fast from food but I am giving up some foods and some other things that occupy my time. This goes so well with me starting Spark again. I'm feeling better physically, which helps me mentally and it's all a cycle. Instead of spending hours each evening cruising Facebook and the internet, I've been exercising and then reading my Bible, praying, and doing a devotion. Th... Tue, 11 Jan 2011 20:58:34 EST Count your blessings What are you thankful for today? I'm thankful that even though I come from a dysfunctional family with a seriously alcholic father, I broke the cycle. I married a man the complete opposite of my father. My husband tells me he loves me, is hands on with the kids, provides for us financially and does not drink! <BR> I'm writing this because last week I was away working at a summer camp for foster kids and other at-risk kids referred to our camp by Social Services. It's tough emotionally and ph... Tue, 29 Jun 2010 22:14:28 EST Getting back on the Spark wagon If you read my post yesterday, you know I haven't been on Spark the last 2 weeks. I haven't done much in the way of exercising either. But last night I got back on Spark, wrote the blog (journaling has always been therapeutic for me), did a bunch of things to earn points, and most importantly - today I got back to exercising! It felt SO good. <BR> <BR> One of the main motivating factors for me to start this journey was to lose weight for my high school reunion coming up this fall. I'm on t... Fri, 28 May 2010 22:14:55 EST I've been MIA This isn't really for anyone else. I'm just rambling and need to get some thoughts out. I haven't done much sparking lately. It's a vicious cycle. I get tired one night so I don't exercise, but exercise will make me feel better. Once I get out of the habit of exercise, it's hard for me to get back into it. Although I know how good it is for me. The past two weeks I haven't worked out on the Wii at all and have done maybe 2 Spark routines. We have gone for walks in the evening though. At least... Thu, 27 May 2010 23:16:20 EST Apple Blossom Time A.B. is a local festival in VA. Last night we went to the Disco Fever Party for the first time. I had a blast! Burned off over 700 calories dancing, according to SP. Woo hoo! Having a ball and getting fit. :) <BR> <BR> Tomorrow is the big parade. Val Kilmer is the grand marshal. He's not aged well, but he's a pretty big name for this festival (usually has-beens whose last hit movie was in the last decade or longer - ha!). My daughter is so excited to see the bands, fire dept. princesses and... Fri, 30 Apr 2010 21:56:55 EST New clothes, new size Finally got to do a little shopping today! We don't have a lot of extra money so I'm waiting to buy things for as long as possible, but a Festival in town this weekend is providing opportunites to dress up. I needed to get 2 shirts. Trying on clothes was fun again! I took one of the size I've been wearing and one size smaller into the dressing room with me. I cannot tell you how great it felt to be able to purchase the smaller size! Tue, 27 Apr 2010 22:27:28 EST Has reached the halfway point Yay! I weigh myself on Monday mornings. As of today I am down a total of 16 lbs. My initial goal was 30 lbs, so I'm halfway there! It's been a struggle but so worth it. Mon, 26 Apr 2010 13:11:02 EST The Vision Collage Really Works for Me Back in stage 1, we were encouraged to make a vision collage (right term?). I cut out pictures of things and words that inspire and motivate me to lose weight. I put it on my freezer door, right next to the handle at eye level. So whenever I go to get something out of the fridge or freezer, that collage is hanging right there in my face. One of my biggest hang-ups is wanting to snack after the kids go to bed (around 9pm). So many times looking at that collage has kept me from falling into tha... Sat, 10 Apr 2010 12:05:33 EST I know there's no good to beating myself up, but... ...have I hit a plateau already?! As of today I'm down 9.5 lbs - exact same weight as last Monday. Now I know it's my own fault. I've been doing the Spark strength training faithfully but this past week I was not so good at doing the cardio. And for me I know that's where I really burn the calories. I just gotta get MOVING! <BR> <BR> On a positive note - I had one lady tell me at church yesterday she could tell I lost weight. I don't see it when I look in the mirror but I can tell with my c... Mon, 15 Mar 2010 13:14:01 EST Portion sizes I'm now starting in stage 2, where we are to measure our portions. What an amazing difference this is to me! I used to eat a whole bowl of cereal. Way more than the 1 cup portion. This morning I measured out one cup. I thought there is no way this is going to fill me up, but what a surprise when it did! I've noticed this too with ice cream. A 1/2 cup doesn't seem like much, but it really does satisfy my sweet tooth and I am satisfied with it. I know all the water I'm drinking is helping to fi... Sun, 7 Mar 2010 21:36:04 EST A Better Fit So looking at the scale I've only lost 9 lbs. (as of this past Monday, I weigh myself on Mondays). Doesn't seem like much. However, today I put on a vest that I couldn't fit into last winter. Today it fit with room to spare! Woo hoo! I also have 2 pairs of jeans that are now too big and require a belt. Oh, what a great feeling that is! Still hard for me to believe that 9 little pounds make such a big difference. It gives me another surge of motivation to keep up the hard work. :) Fri, 5 Mar 2010 23:06:41 EST It's all in the timing One of my main saboteurs in weight loss has been eating late at night. My kids are in bed by 8:30-9:00 and after that is "me" time. But I am winning this battle! What I've been doing the past few months has been to go workout on the Wii Fit at that time. And now, since joining Spark, that time is also when I get on here. I am using my time wisely! <BR> Last week, my small group at church made the vision collages as described in the Spark start up. I posted that collage on my freezer door, ri... Fri, 26 Feb 2010 22:32:56 EST Let go and let God The thing I've never really completely given over to God is my weight. I've prayed for good health and healing over the years, but never help with my weight. I have to stop worrying because "each day has enough trouble of it's own" and ask God to help me. I'm so thankful for the support of my "church ladies" and seeing things from a Biblical perspective. God created my body and I need to keep it in better shape! Thu, 25 Feb 2010 22:37:01 EST Bod4God group I lead a small group Bible study for ladies at my church. Last week we started the book, "Bod4God" by Steve Reynolds. It's more about lifestyle changes than an actual diet. Which I really like. There are 11 ladies, including me. The book is about tailoring a lifestyle health plan individually. Wed, 24 Feb 2010 22:36:46 EST Disappointment We got our taxes done last night. Big letdown! We're getting back about half less than what we did last year. We had changed our exemptions to have more in our pockets, but didn't realize how much it would hurt the refund. So we can still get our carpet for downstairs, but we won't be buying furniture. We have enough around the house to go around though. Also, the church just bough new office furniture, so I took my old desk, a loveseat and a file cabinet from there. We will be ok. God always... Tue, 23 Feb 2010 20:43:59 EST Busy day I'm currently taking my lunch break at work as I write this. I am swamped today! Just don't know how it's all going to get done. I can't stay late because Sierra has cheer practice tonight. Tue, 16 Feb 2010 13:17:18 EST More snow?! It's snowing again. UGH! Go away! I'm tired of the snow. Done, done, done. Cannot wait until Spring. Or even better - summer and the beach! Mon, 15 Feb 2010 14:25:26 EST 2/14/10 Happy Valentine's Day! Will and I went out, just the two of us, to Red Lobster after church. It was a great lunch. Then we went to look at cars. We can't afford one for another year or so, but it's fun to window shop! Interested in the Chevy Impala and Malibu. <BR> <BR> Then we went to look for family room furniture. Once we get our tax refund, we just need to have carpet installed downstairs and then we can buy furniture. It's been almost 4 years since we moved in and I can't wait to have t... Sun, 14 Feb 2010 19:15:54 EST 2/12/10 I've been on Spark for 2 weeks now. I've lost 6.5 lbs! Woo hoo! I'm doing really well with the exercises, but still need to work on my eating habits. I can tell my clothes are already fitting better. I feel better than I have in a long time. Fri, 12 Feb 2010 20:59:15 EST