HAVETOGETITOFF's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=HAVETOGETITOFF HAVETOGETITOFF's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ As Arnie said... "I'll be back!" http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5387599 Sorry for the unexplained sudden absence, but it has been unavoidable. A very close friend's husband passed away last week, and although it was after a long illness, it has hit us all very hard. Another friend and I have been with her as much as possible, and I've only been coming home briefly to make sure everything is ok, to walk the dogs and feed my cat. <BR> <BR> Graham's funeral will be held tomorrow morning, so I won't be back online until his wife has had a chance to get used to not j... Thu, 13 Jun 2013 03:05:28 EST Time for a new challenge! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5368116 After browsing a Spark friend's page, I noticed she is a member of the Official Spark People 5K Your Way Walk/Jog Program. <BR> <BR> The name intrigued me, so I decided to check out the program, with the idea that maybe sometime in the future I too could aim for a 5km walk. Jogging/running is out of the question in my case, thanks to osteoarthritis in most joints below the waist, but I'm sure that so long as I take things slowly, I will be able to build up my endurance to walk 5km in one s... Sun, 26 May 2013 04:16:03 EST Saturday May 25, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5367278 Hi everyone, <BR> <BR> Sorry for the unplanned absence, and believe me, it WAS unplanned. My visit to the cardiologist was ok - given meds to lower my blood pressure, have been scheduled for a cardiac stress test/ultrasound on June 7, and also a request has been sent to my own GP requesting he arrange for me to be tested for sleep apnoea as soon as possible. <BR> <BR> Nothing was or is dramatically wrong, the reason I wasn't online all this time is because the bp meds have been making me so... Sat, 25 May 2013 03:08:27 EST Thursday, May 16, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5357817 This week has been one of ups and downs. <BR> <BR> First, the negatives - <BR> - a few unmotivated Spark free days <BR> - dining out with friends on Mothers Day and then having a calorie blow-out afterwards <BR> - two totally exercise free days where I did virtually nothing. <BR> <BR> Next, the positives - <BR> - I discovered how much I need to stay in touch on Spark People in order to keep my focus on healthy eating and exercise. <BR> - The realisation that one episode of weakness does n... Wed, 15 May 2013 20:00:28 EST Wednesday May 15, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5356574 Just a short blog today... <BR> <BR> My few days of only minimum Sparking has proven to me how important it is to stay connected to my Spark friends, team mates, and to take part in posting on the team boards. Why? Because they keep Spark People at the forefront of my thoughts. Because of that, the occasional vague thoughts of the unhealthy take away meals and just downright junk food are so much easier to dismiss, and those cravings are more easily satisfied by swapping the longing for a hu... Tue, 14 May 2013 17:31:28 EST Monday, May 13, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5354641 Somehow I seemed to be busy with other things, none of them important, and didn't get around to turning on my computer for a few days. Nothing happened, nothing was wrong, I wasn't unwell, just doing other things... I did my best to stay within my calorie range, made the best food choices yesterday when I was out enjoying Mothers Day lunch with friends, and even managed to get back to drinking my 8 glasses of water per day. <BR> <BR> This morning I logged on and the first thing I did was to... Mon, 13 May 2013 01:39:37 EST Sunday, May 5, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5345654 I woke this morning to the coldest morning so far this year - temperature was 1deg. C., not exactly motivating. I was up out of bed long enough to turn on the heater, make myself a hot drink and jump back into bed for the next two hours, most of which was spent sleeping. Reluctantly I got out of bed at 9am, and while the temperature was now up to 5 degrees, that breeze felt soooo cold. A bowl of porridge with diced dried figs and skim milk, with a hot drink to follow, and I'm beginning to acc... Sat, 4 May 2013 21:05:15 EST Update on Rhani's vet visit & confessions of a healthy binge. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5343734 Finally have my wifi connection up and running, so a, not relying on my aging laptop to post on SP, and the first thing I wanted to do was to add an update on yesterday's visit to the vet to see if anything could be done to help my cat Rhani live life with less pain than she has been since the weather started to turn colder. <BR> <BR> I assumed arthritis was the problem, since both Rhani and I have trouble getting and staying mobile on the same days, and have much less trouble on warmer days... Thu, 2 May 2013 22:01:06 EST Thursday, May 2, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5342298 Ahh, the luxury of sitting up in bed, my doona keeping me warm while I Spark till 8am... <BR> <BR> I woke at 5am, showered, did a little housework, made myself a cup of Caro (caffeine free coffee substitute) and decided the world wasn't going to grind to a halt if I came back to bed for an hour. Sheer and complete indulgence, hahah. Best part is that Rhani, my elderly cat, is snuggled up beside my left knee, purring with happiness. Rhani came to me when she was just under a year old, and we'... Wed, 1 May 2013 17:49:02 EST Wednesday, May 1, 2013. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5341481 Not feeling very 'Sparkling' today, just the opposite in fact. Again today my high blood pressure is back, leaving me feeling shaky, exhausted, and with a really aggravating headache. No idea why the problem has resurfaced after a break of a few weeks, which saw me eating a range of good, clean, healthy foods within my nutritional recommendations, getting some exercise almost every day, and learning to enjoy getting out and exercising to the limit of my capabilities. <BR> <BR> I weighed mys... Wed, 1 May 2013 03:14:28 EST Sunday, April 28... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5337867 Still no ADSL connection, not because of poor service from my new internet provider, just that I've been way too busy doing things I really hadn't planned doing to find the time to set it up. I'm lucky to be able to use my once-loved laptop, but it is so very slow that it requires all my patience to wait for page after page to load, because my wifi connection is always slow during weekends. <BR> <BR> I wrote about my decision to drive anywhere I needed to go around town in my last blog. Well... Sun, 28 Apr 2013 00:54:38 EST Reading your horoscope can change your week for the better... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5334517 I live in a country town in western Victoria, Australia, and like most other towns, each week the local free paper arrives in our mailboxes. The paper contains mostly advertisements (which is why it's free), and some local news and updates. I very seldom read it, but today I was eating breakfast and started glancing through it. One thing took my attention - the section called 'Your Lucky Stars', by well known Australian astrologer Kerry Kulkens. I decided to check my 'stars' out. <BR> <BR> ... Wed, 24 Apr 2013 19:29:48 EST My promise to myself for today... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5333319 I woke this morning knowing that today will be a dedicated 'clothing elimination day', a day in which every article of my clothing will be taken from the wardrobe or drawers, checked to see whether I have any intentions of wearing it in the future, and if not, assessed as to whether it is suitable to be donated to a charity shop or is ready to be thrown out or turned into something more useful. <BR> <BR> These days happen once every so often, but this one is special. This time I'm not doing ... Tue, 23 Apr 2013 19:25:49 EST Ever visited anyone you don't know? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5332186 Friends now living temporarily in Dubai were talking with me a few days ago, and suggested they would be grateful if I would consider contacting a distant relative of theirs who lives within an hour's drive from here. Because those friends are such wonderful people, so kind, welcoming and generous, I felt I should agree to meet with the people concerned. <BR> <BR> I thought about it for a few days, doing the whole 'should I?/shouldn't I?' thing, and in the end decided what harm could one cu... Mon, 22 Apr 2013 20:44:49 EST Gratitude and a 'hmmmm' moment... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5330059 Gratitude first, because as my wonderful Dad used to say to me 'give me the good news first, then I'll deal with the other stuff'. Ok, here goes... <BR> <BR> So thankful for having been Sparking for a month now without any major (or even minor) binges, feelings of deprivation, helplessness, hopelessness, or thoughts of just giving up because it's all too hard. All these things have been with me whenever I tried to lose weight and improve my health previously. Kudos to Spark People for havin... Sat, 20 Apr 2013 21:37:34 EST Not really a blog, more of a jumper really... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5325981 <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/2/1/l21571683.jpg"> <BR> <BR> This is a photo of the idea I came up with in order to avoid being tempted to pick at leftovers and nibble at chocolates, cakes, etc when I first joined Spark People. I couldn't eat if I was knitting now could I? Specially if what I was knitting was cream in colour, and sure to show every chocolatey piece of evidence along the way to completing it. <BR> <BR> Not once in the almost four weeks I took to knit that ju... Wed, 17 Apr 2013 05:45:06 EST Gratitude, Days 6, 7, 8... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5325759 Busy yesterday, and somehow I never got around to spending much time on Spark People. Just one of those days that one thing seems to lead into the next and the next, and so on... <BR> <BR> I am thankful that - <BR> <BR> - despite my lack of Sparking, I did manage to plan my meals and snacks yesterday, and had no trouble sticking with it. <BR> <BR> - for the first time since I began Sparking, I deliberately took a walk down both the confectionery and potato chip/corn chip aisle, then throu... Tue, 16 Apr 2013 22:13:44 EST Very brief, but true... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5322198 <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/1/4/l1430628385.jpg"> Sat, 13 Apr 2013 21:26:38 EST Gratitude, Day 5... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5322192 I've noticed a similar thread in a few blogs I've read these past few days. I knew exactly where these people were coming from, because I've felt exactly that way for the vast majority of my life. When someone I meet someone i know and for some reason he or she doesn't want to stop and chat, doesn't give me that big, cheery smile they usually do, or just walks on with barely a word of acknowledgement, I always felt it was because I'd done something wrong, had upset them in some way, or they j... Sat, 13 Apr 2013 21:16:47 EST Gratitude, Day 4... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5321471 Saturday today, the weather is finally cooling down, almost to the point where it no longer feels like the summer which was meant to have ended on February 28th, is coming to an end and allowing autumn to take over. Hope it's not just a false alarm, lol. <BR> <BR> I am thankful today for... <BR> <BR> ... having bathed my two dogs, which was a workout in itself, but fun none the less. It wasn't only the dogs who were covered in dog shampoo, I ended up covered in almost as many bubbles as th... Sat, 13 Apr 2013 04:12:53 EST Gratitude, Day 3... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5320367 Today was easier still to see the brighter side of life, since I woke feeling really positive instead of the usual - mentally listing everything I had to do during the day, the things I'd need from the supermarket, the people I wanted to find time to visit... Today was different, because I woke thinking about the things I COULD do, rather than the things I HAD to do. <BR> <BR> So, other than the really positive beginning to my day, I have so many things to be thankful for today. Amongst them... Fri, 12 Apr 2013 05:26:52 EST Gratitude, Day 2... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5319063 Just past 1pm today, and already I feel the need to list some of the things I am grateful for today.. <BR> <BR> 1. Wanting to take my dogs for another walk today, something I hadn't had the energy to do for way too long until recently. Also the sunshine which seemed to appear just as the dogs and I started off on our walk. <BR> <BR> 2. The fact that when I altered my nutrition chart for yesterday, removing the cup of hot milk I usually have prior to bed with the addition of a spoonful of Na... Wed, 10 Apr 2013 23:22:44 EST Gratitude, Day 1... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5317916 This morning I decided in future to focus on the positives in my life via my blogs, so if I was doing it tough, I could read all the positives Sparking has brought into my life. Here goes... <BR> <BR> 1. This morning I knew I was going to be out of town most of the day, so was out of bed early enough to do a 30 minute exercise session, then take my two dogs for a 20 minute walk before I needed to leave. I even had time to post on the team message boards before breakfast. I am going to try ... Wed, 10 Apr 2013 05:05:05 EST Another minor breakthrough... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5316715 This morning I made a list of all I hoped to do today. Nothing out of the ordinary, just everyday tasks I hoped to have out of the way by the time I went to bed. Usually I have a vague plan of what I'd like to achieve each day. Usually most of it remains undone. Today most things were ticked off that list, even though I went with a friend on an unplanned drive out of town. <BR> <BR> My day wouldn't have been anywhere near as satisfying without that list, because I am way too fond of telling... Tue, 9 Apr 2013 06:37:53 EST Losses can equal gains. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5314017 I haven't been spending as long on the Spark People website these past few days as I was before. It's not that I'm losing interest, motivation, nothing of that kind. It's just that I found something a few days ago I'd months back, never imagined I'd see again, and have been spending time enjoying my find. What did I find? Well, believe it or not, I seem to have found my ENERGY! <BR> <BR> So far, the spare room has been cleared of all unwanted items, all small items I kept are stored in the ... Sat, 6 Apr 2013 21:11:37 EST Take one per hour and don't lie down... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5309637 I've been finding it way easier than I'd ever imagined to eat within (or close to) Spark's nutritional guidelines, and have to admit to the fact that I'm actually enjoying my healthy meals much more than I did the previous thrown together or fast food meals. <BR> <BR> I've even coped with going without sugar in my tea or coffee - tried it without any sweetening (disaster), then settled on adding Natvia to my morning and evening tea and coffee. That I can live with - and hopefully for more y... Wed, 3 Apr 2013 01:17:12 EST Just a simple teaspoon... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5305746 My decision to downsize the plate and bowls I eat my meals from has been successful to date, not completely, but it HAS been successful in keeping my main course at dinner at the single serve or 'enough' size. I now know to what level to fill my bowl for 'enough' for a single serving. <BR> <BR> Cereals and desserts are another thing altogether. I know now the correct level in the smaller bowl for 'enough', and am happy just to stop at that level. But... for some reason, where I take time to ... Sat, 30 Mar 2013 21:34:36 EST Further discoveries... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5302474 Yesterday's frustrations with all things medical faded into the background last night, replaced by a highly unusual sense of excitement about two things I'd discovered about myself by accident. <BR> <BR> Firstly, thanks to browsing amongst the huge amount of suggestions, information, advice, and videos available on the SP site, I came across a video for a 9 minute seated workout by Coach Nicole. No real idea of how it could be possible to exercise while remaining seated, so checked it out. I... Wed, 27 Mar 2013 20:41:37 EST Today I discovered... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5301118 Hoping today my doctor can wave some kind of magic wand and come up with a way to relieve my high blood pressure, constant breathlessness, permanent headache and dizziness, after checking the results of my echocardiogram. After four weeks of tests some definite conclusion should surely be reached. I want to know what needs to be done or what medication/s I can take so I can live my life again as I was just a month ago. Whatever is causing these problems surely must have become obvious, or if ... Tue, 26 Mar 2013 18:30:24 EST Baby steps... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5298853 I haven't yet been Sparking for an entire week, but already I am beginning to realise that I CAN become the lighter, fitter, more energetic, happier person I know I should be. <BR> <BR> After yesterday's surprise attack of energy resulting in me actually enjoying (!!!) tackling some housework, I woke this morning having decided to take the larger (and more energetic) of my two dogs for a walk with a friend and her dog. We may have only walked for 20 minutes or so, but it's something I haven'... Sun, 24 Mar 2013 23:15:01 EST Only slugs should feel sluggish... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5297687 After waking this morning without the usual 'I don't have the energy to get out of bed yet' thoughts, I got a little carried away doing something I've ordinarily had to forced myself to tackle - the dreaded HOUSEWORK! <BR> <BR> I don't know how it happened, I just somehow noticed something needed doing and did it... then something else, and something else... I truthfully can't remember the last time I've done so much in so short a time, but today I didn't even have to psych myself up into ... Sat, 23 Mar 2013 22:15:09 EST