KELLIEBEAN's SparkPeople Blog KELLIEBEAN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Alright Alright Alright! That blog title couresy of Matthew McConaughey, first line he ever spoke in his movie career and the phrase he throws out when he wins awards. I think we should start every day with this phrase. <BR> <BR> I've had a pretty negative week but I'm pulling out of it, thanks to my friends at Spark. Give yourselves a big round of applause! <BR> <BR> I went for a run last night with my new running shoes (I spent time all week breaking them in first), my Spark People shirt and my new running skirt... Fri, 11 Jul 2014 08:37:25 EST IT'S ALIVE! The saga began last Friday. I left work early with a slight cough. I didn’t feel too bad, just didn’t want to be in close proximity to my co-workers in a quiet environment like that. I took work home and dug in. An hour later…. THE SNEEZE. You know the one, the one that immediately tells you it’s gonna be a bad day. <BR> <BR> It was all downhill from there. I sat up all night with tissue after tissue, eyes tearing, coughing worse, no sleep to be had. Knowing there would be no way I’d get to... Fri, 27 Jun 2014 13:17:31 EST I'm a Warrior Warrior Dash 2014 is in the books! What a gorgeous day for it. Not too hot and no humidity to speak of. <BR> <BR> The event didn't seem as organized as in previous years. I don't think they were prepared for how much this has grown. It was a long wait for packet pickup (like ridiculously long) and there were some wait times at a few obstacles. <BR> <BR> This is the third year I did this with my son and daughter. My ex-sister-in-law decided to do it this year too. Hats off to her. Married, ... Sat, 14 Jun 2014 22:43:21 EST It's All Happenin At The Zoo Here's a cute video to go along with the Simon and Garfunkel song ... <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> Yesterday I ran a 5K benefitting a local zoo. I did it last year for the first time and it's a just great day. It goes along with a weekend of activities in that suburb. The course runs through the residential area nearby. All the residents come out, sit in their driveways with their coffee and cheer on the runners. Babies are set up in their playpens,... Sun, 8 Jun 2014 08:24:37 EST Bring on the June Well, May really flew past me. I worked crazy-style so I could leave for vacation without leaving too much hanging at work. Nine days on a motorcycle, two days of laundry and then two days at a work seminar. <BR> <BR> Next thing I know, it's June 1st! Where will I go from here? <BR> <BR> I started the 30-day plank challenge today. I've worked my way up to a one-minute plank but then slacked off. So this challenge will get me back in gear. <BR> <BR> I have two 5Ks coming up this month. Th... Sun, 1 Jun 2014 20:51:44 EST Holiday Road Okay, let's get this blog started with the intro from the movie Vacation... <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> We left the Chicago area for a nine-day motorcycle ride on a bitter cold, rainy morning. No worries, the rain wasn't too hard and we have great rain gear. Four hours later, we shed the rain gear in sunny, southern Illinois and made our first stop in Hannibal, MO. The other couple showed up just as one of their tires went flat. <BR> <BR> While w... Sun, 25 May 2014 21:59:43 EST What a Long Strange Trip it's Been Sometimes I wonder if it's worth going on vacation with the amount of work I have had to do in the last two weeks. When I get back, I will have two days to relax after a nine-day motorcycle trip before I have to catch a plane for a work seminar for three days. <BR> <BR> But I know vacations are needed. A change of scenery, unplugging from the daily grind is necessary. Nothing at work will crumble in my absence. <BR> <BR> As many of you know, my mom passed away unexpectedly in February. It's... Wed, 14 May 2014 22:59:02 EST Sensational Saturday A mild, sunny Saturday started in the usual way, with a little coffee and a little sparking in the early morning quiet. I really wish my dog would sleep late on weekends! But then the quiet solitude is nice too. <BR> <BR> I took her for her usual one-mile walk then changed and headed out for a three-mile run, taking a different route than normal. For the first time in a long time, I felt light and natural heading out instead of like I'm wearing cement shoes the first five minutes of the run.... Sat, 10 May 2014 22:46:19 EST Weekend Tidbits Friday we started the day with Pherell’s Happy. We’ve done this a few times in the office, first thing in the morning, we fire up the video and dance. One woman and I try to mimic the moves of the people in the video. Hilarity ensues! This particular Friday, they talked my boss into staying. To say I was cringing on the inside was an understatement. I didn’t want to be a party pooper so I did my best to forget he was behind us. Hilarity ensued! <BR> <BR> I had posted on my One Day Challenge ... Mon, 5 May 2014 09:00:45 EST Little Wonders I was looking at articles about May Day last night. It’s not celebrated so much in the US but in other countries it is celebrated with flowers and dancing. <BR> <BR> In Germany, it’s common to hold dances on April 30th that last past midnight to “dance into May”. How wonderful is that?! <BR> <BR> Some celebrate May Day by leaving baskets of flowers on their neighbor’s doors. It is said that if they catch you leaving the flowers they can claim a kiss. Delightful! Well, I guess that depends... Thu, 1 May 2014 09:44:23 EST Worthwhile Weekend The weekend started with a great end of the day walk around a section of the walking path at work that I have never ventured to before. Nice little inclines. Quite windy but it was an invigorating one-mile walk. <BR> <BR> A friend stopped by Friday evening to catch up. It was good to see her again. After she left, I did a quick upper body strength training video and hit the hay. <BR> <BR> Saturday, I ran a 5K benefitting local non-profits. It was cool, and windy but a gorgeous morning to be... Sun, 27 Apr 2014 12:44:08 EST Easter is done Someone told me last week that as the oldest daughter, I am the matriarch of the family since my mom passed away. That threw me into a bit of a tailspin. <BR> <BR> I hosted Easter today which I do normally but it was different without my mom around. No bouncing ideas off of her about the nieces' and nephews' gifts and food. <BR> <BR> DH, AKA the cook in this household, had to work. Everyone was due about 1pm. I finally finished getting everything together about noon. Nothing like waiting t... Sun, 20 Apr 2014 21:35:41 EST Two For Tuesday It's good to get a good dose of a world existing beyond your issues every now and again. <BR> <BR> Last night I almost didn't go to yoga. Changing priorities at work aggravated me and it was cold and snowy after a beautiful spring-like weekend. But I went. <BR> <BR> A woman new to the class talked to me afterwards. She will be 71 this week. She had been to water aerobics in the morning, senior Zumba and now yoga. I told her if I had done a water aerobics class, I'd be napping, not hitting ... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:28:02 EST Conversations With Myself I posted in my Spark status that I would run last night because the weekend was going to be too busy. I post, therefore I do. It was a draining day at work, sitting in a dark room watching a webex all day. <BR> <BR> I had to stop for a few groceries and gas before I got home. While driving, I had the following conversation… <BR> <BR> “If I don’t get home quickly, I’ll lose my spark to run, the dog will want a walk, and it will be too late.” <BR> <BR> “Stop it! It’s only 4:30, you have time... Fri, 11 Apr 2014 08:31:11 EST Spring and Rebirth It hit me today, really hit me how you need to keep moving through the tough times to get to the good times. <BR> <BR> While walking the dog, it occurred to me that it was just a few short weeks ago that there were still mounds of snow here and there that we climbed up and over on our walks. I remember the feeling that winter was never ever going to end, that I was living in Siberia, that the sun was never going to shine again. <BR> <BR> It's kind of like pregnancy and childbirth. I was nev... Wed, 9 Apr 2014 22:28:01 EST Great Beginning and End Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to my first blog from my new iMac. I can be taught! <BR> <BR> <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> Last Friday, a woman in my office decided to start the day with Pharell Williams' Happy. We got up and danced. SO unlike us! <BR> <BR> This morning, she decided to do it again only this time, she brought up the video and we tried to mimic the moves of everyone in the video. Let me tell you, hilarity ensued and we worked up a sweat. A great way to start the day! <BR> <BR> ... Fri, 4 Apr 2014 22:37:08 EST The Week A blog written by a sleepy blogger for busy readers.... <BR> <BR> On call this week at work, snacked too much, DH has been home all week which tempts me to curl up on the couch in the evenings. <BR> <BR> Pushed myself to move, walking breaks at work, even if only 5 or 10 minutes a few times a day, walking the dog after dinner, workout videos. <BR> <BR> Tonight was the body weight cardio training plus lower body video. I'm gonna go ahead and say it, brutal, excruciating,... Thu, 3 Apr 2014 22:14:13 EST Going Out Like A Lion It's the end of March! Whoohooo! Emotionally and activity-wise, March came in like a lamb and is going out like a lion for me. I had a rough start to the month, very low energy, a bit sullen. The end of the month, I'm trying to pick up the pace a bit. I need to take the bull by the horns these days. <BR> <BR> I have been in maintenance for over a year now. I have found that I have to come up with creative ways to keep myself motivated to maintain my new weight and healthy lifestyle. Spark c... Sat, 29 Mar 2014 16:27:07 EST Challenges Accepted Friday baby YEAH! It may hit 60 degrees today baby Yeah! <BR> <BR> Yesterday I finished the Spark Streak Into Spring 20-day Challenge. I committed to at least 10 minutes of strength training every day. One day abs, one day lower body and one day upper body, repeat. I used the Spark videos as well as videos from <BR> <BR> I have started quite a few Spark challenges but I think that's the first Spark challenge I have completed. I feel pretty incredible and stronger. So muc... Fri, 21 Mar 2014 08:26:45 EST What a Difference A Day Makes Saturday, I ran my first 5K in four months. There were several challenges but I felt strong and finished with a time a couple minutes longer than last year which made me happy. <BR> <BR> After the race, I had a nice lunch with my family which included uncles who were visiting from out of town. I took the dog for a walk and got laundry done. It was a good day. <BR> <BR> Then Sunday came. I took lazy and brooding to a whole new level. I barely moved. DH took our yellow lab to the groomer so I... Mon, 17 Mar 2014 09:26:22 EST Streak Into Spring Day 15 It was a crisp 30-something degrees this morning as I met my daughter in the city for the St. Patrick's Day 5K. First run of the season. <BR> <BR> I got there way too early hoping to get free on-street parking..... In Chicago! Bah ha! I constantly amuse myself. After winding through several blocks, I finally broke down and parked in the $20 zoo parking lot nearby. <BR> <BR> We had a fun warmup with the DJ and then it was time to line up for our first race in 4 months. Mud, puddles, ice pa... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 22:19:22 EST Streak Into Spring Day 13 Wrapping up the week. I'm trying not to rush the days away but I'm happy to wrap up this week. <BR> <BR> After my mom passed away, I was a bit of a zombie at work so this week I was really trying to get it in gear and make my deadlines. My dad also had knee surgery this week so I've been a bit on edge worrying about him.He's doing great, just a bit too soon to go back to that hospital! <BR> <BR> Spark Streak Into Spring challenge is going well. I committed to at least 10 minutes of strengt... Thu, 13 Mar 2014 16:54:21 EST Streak Into Spring Day 8 Another day of at least ten minutes of strength training is in the books. I did the upper body workout I've been working on this week. This time I did the full two rounds... 20 minutes, instead of just the first 10 minute round. I like the shape my arms are taking. <BR> <BR> I was in a bit of a fog earlier, caught up on some TV shows I had recorded and then read my book. I got on the elliptical for an easy half hour and read my book a little more. Then I took the dog for h... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 20:44:13 EST Streak into Spring Day 6 So far so good committing to 10 minutes of strength each day for the Spark Streak Into Spring challenge. Tonight was ab work. <BR> <BR> So I'm still a bit discombobulated from my mom's passing almost two weeks ago. Still having a hard time accepting this really happened. She was a force of nature; this just does not seem possible. You have all been amazing and DH has just been my rock helping me help my dad. So I feel blessed! <BR> <BR> Concentrating at work has been an exercise in futility... Wed, 5 Mar 2014 23:13:50 EST Streak Into Spring Challenge-Day 1 I'm in for the SparkPeople Streak Into Spring 20-day challenge. I am committing to at least 10 minutes of strength training each day. <BR> <BR> I began the day with an easy 15-minute run with my Riley girl (my yellow lab). There was a light dusting of snow but the temp was bearable. <BR> <BR> I ran to a local outdoor mall and soon found I was 20 minutes early for the store to open so I did laps around the mall. BRRR! I also stopped and picked up a couple pieces of flair (reference to the m... Sat, 1 Mar 2014 21:25:01 EST Disney Inspiration I think life is better with a little Disney... <BR> <BR> Remember, you’re the one who can fill the world with sunshine. Snow White <BR> <BR> The more you laugh, the more you fill with glee. Mary Poppins <BR> <BR> Don’t be fooled by its commonplace appearance. Like so many things, it is not what’s outside, but what is inside that counts. Alladin <BR> <BR> Alice: “This is impossible.” <BR> The Mad Hatter: “Only if you believe it is.” Alice in Wonderland <BR> <BR> If your heart is in your d... Fri, 28 Feb 2014 08:28:33 EST One Day At A Time I'm working on coming out of the fog of my mom's passing. Last evening was her memorial service. The amount of friends and family that showed up in the bitter cold was really amazing. She touched many lives. <BR> <BR> As dark as the past five days have been, I've tried to at least keep the water and freggies going. I have had a hard time eating a full meal. Everything I eat turns sour and I have had a constant thundering headache. I haven't been sparking much but I have kept the principles i... Wed, 26 Feb 2014 22:26:31 EST Saying Goodbye To Mom Hello Spark friends. A huge thank you for all of the kind thoughts about the passing of my mom. It warmed my heart more than you know. <BR> <BR> In my last blog, I wrote how she was improving when I left her Thursday evening. She was responsive after two days of being unresponsive and she was beginning to be mean to my dad. She has had many hospital stays and it was always the same pattern, she'd start treating my dad terrible and we knew she was on the road to recovery. <BR> <BR> No matte... Sat, 22 Feb 2014 21:17:07 EST Overcame the Couch I'm very ready for the weekend even if it doesn't turn out to be as relaxing as I would like. <BR> <BR> My mom was moved to ICU because she became unresponsive for a couple days. While upsetting, this has happened several times in the past when she has been hospitalized. So I didn't get too worried. But then I started to wonder just how much one body can withstand, what if this time is the last time? <BR> <BR> Today she came back around and is getting back to her usual hospital Thu, 20 Feb 2014 21:25:06 EST Spring baby Yeah! The temperature in Chi-town will reach the 40s today! yahflippinhoo! I have heard talk that there is grass that grows from the ground and sidewalks. I have not seen these things they speak of but that's the word on the street! <BR> <BR> I know this weather is temporary but I choose to think spring. I'm fighting cabin fever, work stress and family health issues. How do you fight all of those things? With healthy foods, proper sleep, exercise and faith that one day spring will come again. <BR>... Wed, 19 Feb 2014 10:51:18 EST Keep Going Didn't mean to get all emotional in last nights blog. Emotions got the best of me and I thought hitting the blogs was a better option than hitting the fridge! Thanks for all of the supportive comments! <BR> <BR> My mom is doing a little better today and dad's test results came out fine. He just needs to eat better and exercise. He's been eating VERY well since they moved into the retirement community! <BR> <BR> So anyway, I saw the commercial again the other day from <BR> <BR>... Thu, 13 Feb 2014 22:33:04 EST Hump Day Happenings The week started with news my mom fell, cut her head open on the wheel brake on her walker, took six staples to close it and was admitted in the hospital since the cold she thought she had was pneumonia and her heart rate kept spiking. <BR> <BR> Dad hinted at canceling his doctor's appointment Tuesday because he never leaves her side when she's in the hospital. I told him I'd sit with her while he goes to the doctor. Mom decided I should go with him instead because she was afraid he wouldn't... Wed, 12 Feb 2014 21:20:18 EST It's Friday Baby Okay, not for a couple hours but close enough. <BR> <BR> When the alarm went off Monday morning, I thought it was Sunday and I had set my alarm by mistake. As I rolled over to go back to sleep, it hit me, UGH, it's Monday! Cue Bruno Mars... <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> "Today I don't feel like doin anything <BR> I just want to lay in my bed <BR> Don't feel like picking up my phone <BR> So leave a message at the tone <BR> Cause today I swear I'm ... Thu, 6 Feb 2014 23:31:43 EST I WILL SURVIVE Good morning Sparkers! <BR> <BR> I woke up to another abysmal forecast this morning but tried to keep my attitude in check, as I've been trying to do for the last several weeks. <BR> <BR> All the way to work this morning, I had Gloria Gaynor in my head. Does anyone remember her song I Will Survive? Well, I changed the lyrics a bit. <BR> <BR> Don't worry, I won't quit my day job! <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> At first I wanted snow <BR> I was done with fall <BR> Kept thinking I would not ... Tue, 4 Feb 2014 09:16:20 EST Dancin into February Good riddance January. I'll skip the stats on this past month here in Chi-beria! I am dancing into February. <BR> <BR> Tonight I fired up a dance song play list, went in the spare bedroom and danced like nobody was watching. What a FABULOUS feeling that was and what a massive sweat I worked up. <BR> <BR> I started with some Footloose, (the 1984 movie, the best version to my mind), I did some Prince from Purple Rain, The Psychedelic Furs and Car Wash among others. <BR> <BR> The weather fo... Fri, 31 Jan 2014 21:02:35 EST Two For Tuesday Hello from Chi-beria and welcome to another installment of Two For Tuesday. It's been a while since I did a two-for-Tuesday blog. Radio stations do it so here we go. Two thoughts rambling around my head today...... <BR> <BR> <BR> Squats and Lunges <BR> <BR> I really hate squats and lunges. No I don't think you heard me, I really hate squats and lunges. But since I have been incorporating them into the rotation, I can feel and almost see the toning going on. <BR> <BR> I walk with more con... Tue, 28 Jan 2014 08:17:37 EST The Bare Necessities So I'm struggling but I'm also fighting. I've never had such a hard time with winter but this has been a more challenging winter. <BR> <BR> I reached my weight loss goal the end of November2012, maintained through the holidays and have continued maintaining all through 2013 and past the 2013 holidays too. But since January 1st this year, I'm not sure what switch got flipped in me but the sweet monster woke up! My belly has popped right back out, not that it was ever flat, just a little slimm... Sat, 25 Jan 2014 12:32:34 EST Random Sunday Thoughts So winter. What do you think? Yeah, I know. I'm with you. The polar vortex we had a couple weeks ago is moving back in tomorrow and I have a few choice words for this roommate for which I have no use. <BR> <BR> But I have lived in the Chicago area for 48 years, time to put on my big girl panties and deal with it. I had some kind of stomach thing going on yesterday that had me down for the count but I got out there in the snow and walked. It felt good to get out of the house. My Labrador insi... Sun, 19 Jan 2014 20:43:20 EST Lessons Learned and Thinking Spring This was the first full work week in a while. A major system upgrade thrown in for extra fun! Way to start off a new year. <BR> <BR> There was overeating and a little lack of sleep this week but there was walking and yoga and the elliptical. <BR> <BR> I kept pushing myself to walk laps in the gymnasium at work, even if it was only 10 minutes. I ran into a couple frustrating moments at work so I took some laps. It didn’t make the problem go away but it stopped all the detrimental churning ... Fri, 10 Jan 2014 08:24:59 EST Walkin Through My Town in the Snow This walk was brought to you today by inspiration from spark member BIGPAWSUP and further fueled by fitbit! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I was sipping my coffee this morning, watching the news with the awful snowy, icy reports YET AGAIN, very grumpy, when I saw spark member BUGPAWSUP post a status that she was heading out there with her dogs! I thought 'you're a better woman than I, no thank you!' <BR> <BR> About an hour later I t... Sun, 5 Jan 2014 11:44:08 EST #RockYouResolution I do not make resolutions. I just participate in the monthly spark challenges to keep improving my health and wellness. My January challenge is to work on flexibility. I checked out a great yoga DVD from my library a couple weeks ago to get started. I liked it so much I ordered it from <BR> <BR> I've been taking a yoga class once a week at my library for a couple years but I would like to do it more often. This morning, I saw some improvement. It's hard to describe the pose but ... Thu, 2 Jan 2014 22:24:44 EST Love is everywhere From the movie Love Actually.... <BR> <BR> "Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. <BR> <BR> General opinion's starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don't see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often, it's not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it's always there - fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. <BR> <BR> W... Wed, 1 Jan 2014 01:04:07 EST Another day Thought for the day..... Year's end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us. ~Hal Borland <BR> <BR> <BR> I used to get quite down around New Years. I would play my failure reel in my head...all of the bad decisions, misjudgments and missed opportunities of the passing year. All of the chances to be a better wife, mother, sister etc that I missed. <BR> <BR> Then I would go to work on my New Years resolutions. By February or M... Mon, 30 Dec 2013 21:33:44 EST Feel Your Moment Christmas 2013 is in the books, well almost. I still have a celebration with my parents, sisters and their families this Saturday. We are meeting for breakfast at a local restaurant and then back to my house to open gifts. <BR> <BR> My kids are adults so quality time with them gets to be few and far between. The schedules did not start out promising and I felt the holiday gloom and doom mood set in but I kept telling myself to let it go. It’s a new attitude I’ve been working on all year. It’... Thu, 26 Dec 2013 11:07:33 EST Sunday Wishes The Chicago area has been covered in a pretty layer of snow this morning. I took my walking buddy (yellow lab) for our one-mile walk this morning. It was so pretty and peaceful. It made me feel slightly like a little kid looking forward to Christmas. <BR> <BR> I thought of the final scene in the move A Christmas Story.. Ralphie and Randi are in bed, the Parkers sat in the living room, lit only by the Christmas tree lights, looking out the window at the snow falling as Deck the Halls plays. ... Sun, 22 Dec 2013 11:05:45 EST All Fired Up It's been a week of holiday celebrations at work. Treats everywhere. My Monday resolve you may have read about..... dissolved. The scale is up again today BUT, I'm still under goal which became the new goal when I hit goal weight last year. <BR> <BR> Since I'm on call this week, I did not schedule any PT appointments for my plantar faciitis BUT I continued to do the exercises he makes me do and I do the stretches several times every day. <BR> <BR> I overdid some back extensions during a wor... Fri, 20 Dec 2013 08:13:59 EST It Sure Is Monday Good Monday to ya! <BR> <BR> I read a quote this morning by the famous author Anonymous… Monday is a fresh start. It's never too late to dig in and begin a new journey of success. <BR> <BR> This will be my mindset for the week! I had a very busy weekend beginning a little power shopping Friday evening. Saturday began with a trip to the Harley dealership to make a payment on winter services on our motorcycles and getting a picture with Santa. <BR> <BR> We were not picture ready but DH agre... Mon, 16 Dec 2013 10:40:33 EST Stay Forever Young As always, I'm inspired by spark member Brooklyn Born. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5563374 </link> <BR> <BR> I think about aging often since my mom has aged before her time due to her sedentary lifestyle. I am determined to age strong and vibrant as I age. <BR> <BR> Brookly posted a couple good spark articles about aging and redefining old. It got me thinking again. Why should we start sitting back and watching life go by after ... Fri, 13 Dec 2013 09:10:34 EST That's All The winter blahs have firmly set in. I was one with the couch after dinner last night watching Wheel of Fortune thinking, "I have GOT to get up, I have GOT to get up!" <BR> <BR> I decided,' just 10 minutes on the elliptical'. That can usually get me into a good workout! I set my HIIT timer app for 20 minutes, hit shuffle on the iPhone and motivation was delivered in the form of Etta James singing That's all. <BR> <BR> "Now come here baby, get ready to go, cuz I'm in the mood to rock and rol... Wed, 11 Dec 2013 08:38:08 EST The Weekend in Review It's official, I am in the Christmas mood! The weekend had some ups and downs, mostly ups. I got out of work early Friday, walked the dog (in many layers of clothes brrrr), my heel was feeling good. All was right with the world. <BR> <BR> THEN I watched The Sound of Music I had recorded with Carrie Underwood. That movie was one of my favorites as a child, my now 28-year-old daughter loved it when she was little. We watched it many times and sang all the songs. <BR> <BR> As I was singing al... Mon, 9 Dec 2013 09:44:49 EST