LKG9999's SparkPeople Blog LKG9999's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Breaking through roadblocks I woke up today feeling somewhat discouraged; this past week has not been one of my best. Although I haven't had any days I've gone wildly overboard, I have consumed more than I'm aiming for and I didn't exercise two days. What's interesting is that not doing what I set out to do seems to open the floodgate of negative self-talk: "This is too hard, why bother..." When I caught myself thinking that, I decided to STOP and take a look at what is derailing me. So here's what I've figured out s... Fri, 17 Apr 2015 13:02:34 EST Dressing for success Last fall I discovered a brand of jeans that fit me extremely well, and I was thrilled that I was able to buy them in a size 8. Then I fell off the wagon and gained 30 pounds. The jeans I loved no longer fit, and I hated the ones that did. They really don't fit me well; the low rise was too low and the zippers wouldn't stay zipped up. I also had to wear a different bra size and hated those too; the strap adjustment kept slipping, dumping the girls forward. I was constantly pulling my jeans ... Sat, 4 Apr 2015 12:30:10 EST Hitting the reset button It's ironic to read my last blog post, as I see that Thanksgiving trip as the beginning of a downward spiral that I am just now recovering from. I'm not going to dwell on all that happened, and why I gave up on all the healthy habits I had been working on. It's time to take stock and focus on what I can do to move forward again. So here's what I've done: <BR> <BR> - Reset my daily eating to the low-carb plan that I have had great success with in the past <BR> - Recognize that there will b... Thu, 2 Apr 2015 12:50:40 EST Taking my low-carb show on the road Next week my family and I will be joining the 46.3 million Americans who will be traveling this Thanksgiving. Traveling poses many challenges for those of us attempting to stay on a healthy eating regime. I'll be taking a few low-carb items with me to help stay on track: ground flax seed, Quest protein bars, packets or protein-based hot chocolate, raw almonds, and coconut oil. The latter has been a challenge; how to transport something that softens at room temperatures and could make a mes... Thu, 20 Nov 2014 15:47:06 EST Sunday Brunch Today I get to enjoy one of my favorite meals of the week, Sunday Brunch: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Pictured are low-carb, protein-powder based pancakes, topped with extra virgin coconut oil and cinnamon. It's the one day of the week when I can sit in my cozy breakfast nook during the daytime and take some time to read my favorite sections of the local Sunday paper. Sun, 9 Nov 2014 13:18:59 EST Motivation for Maintenance Needed I've been back Sparking for about 6 weeks and I've been doing great, sticking to my eating and exercise goals and surviving a wedding weekend. In fact I am doing so well I'm not even worried about Halloween this week and having a boatload of candy in the house. Last year for probably the first time in my life I did not eat a single piece of trick-or-treat candy, and I'm so charged up I'm planning to do the same this year. <BR> <BR> At the same time, I know my history: I get to my goal and ... Sat, 25 Oct 2014 14:16:26 EST Out of sight, out of mind I love my partner Ken; he's funny, kind and loving, and we have gone through a lot together in our 10 years together. He's supportive of my weight maintenance activities and strongly supportive of regular exercise, which is not surprising given that he is a professional sports coach at a local college. But with food, we are on different tracks; I often joke that we're the couple in the old nursery rhyme "Jack Splat would eat no fat, his wife would eat no lean..." Except with us it's the o... Fri, 17 Oct 2014 13:47:47 EST Breaking the link: stress & overeating Like many Sparkpeople members, I struggle with emotional eating. My issues started when I was 10 years old, when I discovered that just 1 or two fun-sized candy bars were not enough. Soon food became my comfort, during the tough grade school years when I was bullied and alienated by my peers. Although I moved well past during high school and college, emotional eating had taken a firm hold in my psyche. As a result I've been yo-yo dieting for years, managing to maintain a lower weight only... Fri, 10 Oct 2014 14:28:56 EST Where would I be without Sparkpeople? Recently I put myself back into reducing mode as I had regained a chunk of the weight I lost last year. It's definitely frustrating to be working on re-losing weight and seeing numbers on the scale I had hoped were behind me "forever". But then it occurred to me, it's always easy to beat yourself up for gaining weight back... What if, during the course of my 8 year membership on Sparkpeople, I had never tried to lose weight? <BR> <BR> So I did a little math exercise. I looked back on the... Tue, 23 Sep 2014 12:32:37 EST Back on the wagon... again. :-( This summer was basically a disaster for me, weight and health-wise. I was traveling a lot due to numerous family commitments, so not only was I eating out a lot but also sitting next to my fiance who snacks on trail mix while driving. It's almost impossible to not indulge myself when there's a huge open bag sitting right next to me! I also developed an issue with a herniated disk in my neck and was having a lot of issues at work, so I was over-eating and drinking as a reaction to stress a... Sat, 20 Sep 2014 13:32:59 EST Year In Review - With pictures! May 2013: I have been trying in vain to lose twenty pounds to reach 160 pounds. I'm feeling "obligated" to work out and wondering if I'm stuck for good at my current weight: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> August 2013: Between a kitchen remodel and my growing frustration, I have thrown in the towel and gained an additional 30 pounds: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.s... Thu, 3 Apr 2014 18:18:59 EST No more weight-ing So last week the hard plaster cast came off and I was able to "officially" weigh myself. Much to my surprise I have definitely lost more weight - yes, even with a hard plaster cast and not being able to exercise. I'm now within 2 pounds of my target goal. <BR> <BR> So how did I manage this? I continued to follow Ideal Protein Phase 1, albeit with a few more calories per day. I stayed low-carb and low-calorie, and tuned into the cravings that were based on emotions (boredom, stress). Mos... Tue, 1 Apr 2014 15:18:53 EST Weight-ing A little over one month ago, I broke my foot and ankle. At the time this happened, I was started to feel restless with the eating plan I had been following for 4.5 months. It was working very well and I had lost 43 pounds, but was pretty low-calorie with a number of restrictions that were starting to wear on me. Even though I wasn't completely to my goal weight, I was considering giving myself a break from active weight loss mode and changing to more of a weight-maintenance mode. All that ... Tue, 18 Mar 2014 15:25:44 EST Fighting the boredom dragon I am now on week 2 of working from home and pretty much not going anywhere except for doctor's appointments. This lack of mobility, combined the extended winter of snow and frigid temperatures in addition to missing a few days vacation that I had really been looking forward to, is stirring up a mess of emotions: boredom, cranky, and the faint edges of apathy. All of which could lead to emotional eating, which I very much want and need to avoid. <BR> <BR> I've remained on-track fairly faith... Thu, 27 Feb 2014 13:01:27 EST Proof that the scale is stupid This morning I decided to try and get a reading on where my weight is these days. This is tricky given that I can't stand on it with weight on both legs, but figured I could stand on one foot and balance myself with my walker. Given my new morning routine, I needed to do this after I got dressed, so I was ready to allow 1-2 pounds for clothing. I also figured that my cast would add another 3-5 pounds, so I was fully prepared to see a number around 7 pounds higher than my last weigh-in. <BR... Wed, 26 Feb 2014 12:58:49 EST 10 day checkup: no surgery required :-) I had another doctor's appointment today for my foot & ankle. Good news: so far all is healing well and I do not need surgery. I was very happy to hear this as I figured that surgery was going to add to my recovery time. OTOH I also found out I will be in the hard cast for 6 weeks, and I'm sure I'll need an interim walking appliance and physical therapy... So I'm guessing my overall, total recovery time is more in the order of 3 months, not 6-8 weeks. <BR> <BR> I'm moving around more and... Tue, 25 Feb 2014 16:28:54 EST Another theory on why I fell The other night I was on the phone with my 84yo mother, talking about the accident which lead to my fractured foot and ankle. In an earlier blog, I had taken the blame for the fall fully on myself, as I was feeling guilty as h-ll that I had a sudden influx of wine the night I fell due to celebrating Valentine's Day. My mom proposed an alternate theory that doesn't get me off the hook 100%, but is certainly something to pursue further with my doctor. <BR> <BR> 3 days before the accident I h... Fri, 21 Feb 2014 11:04:46 EST Low carb = high mood? On day 4 after breaking foot and ankle, and finally getting to see the orthopedist this afternoon. Also hoping to get a knee walker to help with mobility around the house; I gave up on the crutches after falling while using them. My SO Ken has been very sweet and patient making me my low-carb foods, but I'm looking forward to regaining some mobility and independence. <BR> <BR> One strange thing I am noticing: I am not nearly as depressed as I thought I would be. Sure I'm bummed that I'm c... Tue, 18 Feb 2014 13:37:31 EST Broken foot and ankle Well, looks like I'm going to get a break from my fitness program. My new program involves lots of upper-body weight-bearing and hopping... I have a broken foot and ankle and am currently on crutches. :( <BR> <BR> So here's what happened: On Valentines Day my fiance and I planned a really nice dinner, including some wine. Now I have not been having an alcohol for a number of months as part of my healthier lifestyle, and that night I had 3 glasses. Everything was fine until I woke up arou... Sun, 16 Feb 2014 10:42:45 EST Time for a change? Since September 29 I have been following a plan that is very similar to Phase 1 of the Ideal Protein plan with alternative (non-Ideal Protein brand) products. I have done very well so far, losing ~43 of my 54 pound goal. My original plan was to stay on Phase 1 until I reached that 54 pound goal goal and then start the transition through Phases 2 & 3 to maintenance (Phase 4). But, I am noticing a few things that have me rethinking that plan. <BR> <BR> I've been following the plan for 4.5 mon... Thu, 13 Feb 2014 12:46:08 EST Open letter on standard sizing Dear USA women clothing manufacturers, <BR> <BR> Yesterday I was wearing a cardigan marked as a size M and jeans labeled size 8; today the cardigan I am wearing is marked XL and my pants are size 12. What's up with that? Did I gain 20 pounds or more overnight, requiring larger clothing? Nope, this is just a sign of something that is driving every woman in America crazy, namely, the lack of standard clothing sizes for women. <BR> <BR> Now when a man goes to buy a pair of pants, he shops b... Thu, 30 Jan 2014 13:15:18 EST 40 pounds gone!! As of this morning's weekly weigh-in, I am down 40.4 pounds from my starting weight, and 13.6 pounds away from my targeted maintenance weight. Can I hear a loud <BR> <em>244</em> <BR> <BR> However, I am expecting that it will take a while to get to that final goal. As expected and is normal, the rate at which the weight is coming off is starting to slow now that I am very close to a healthy BMI. I also have a few things coming up in my schedule that will take me off the strict eating... Sat, 25 Jan 2014 12:15:10 EST No-calorie way of coping with a stressful day Today has not been a great day. In fact, at points it has been downright stressful. At one point I found myself thinking, "Boy I could really use a glass of wine when I get home tonight!" <BR> <BR> This thought took me a bit by surprised. As part of the low-carb plan I have been following I have cut out all alcohol, and for the most part I have not really missed it. But I know that the gateway to having 1 glass of wine, then 2, then every night, is exactly the thought I just had: "I need... Wed, 22 Jan 2014 17:10:13 EST Heartbreak Hill For those of you not living in the Boston area, Heartbreak Hill is the name for a very famous stretch along the Boston marathon route: <BR> <BR> "Heartbreak Hill is an ascent over 0.4-mile (600 m) between the 20 and 21-mile (32 and 34 km) marks, near Boston College. It is the last of four "Newton hills", which begin at the 16-mile (26 km) mark and challenge contestants with late (if modest) climbs after the course's general downhill trend to that point. Though Heartbreak Hill itself rises on... Tue, 21 Jan 2014 14:09:30 EST Sparkspeak I've noticed the past few weeks that the more I focus on a healthier lifesyle, ordinary household phrases are changing their meaning in my mind. For example: <BR> <BR> "6 pack" now means a package of romaine hearts with 6 heads of lettuce instead of just 3. <BR> "Fast food" are fresh veggies that are washed, cut and ready to use, like broccoli florets. <BR> I used the phrase "comfort food" to describe a standard dinner dish I make, Curried Cauliflower with Chicken. <BR> <BR> What about you... Tue, 14 Jan 2014 20:50:30 EST 2014 resolution I was never really a New Year's resolution type of person. Privately I thought they were rather pointless, usually leading to grandiose dreaming of how one would like their life to be without true commitment to change, with the inevitable loss of direction and sense of failure. But the past few years I have actually made New years resolutions, and even more interesting is that I've kept them. Here's the two simple rules I have created for my New year resolutions: <BR> <BR> 1. Focus on *on... Wed, 8 Jan 2014 13:59:55 EST Healthy Dining Program in town near me... I'm going to be pushing to go to these restaurants when the family wants to dine out: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>huket-joins-mass-motion-healthy-dining<BR>-program/ </link> <BR> <BR> How great to have some healthy options nearby! <BR> Thu, 21 Nov 2013 15:13:43 EST The numbers game Today I stepped on the scale and saw a .1 pound loss from last week. Moving the scale to different places on the floor did not change it's mind. :-) Last week, I stepped on the scale and was shocked to see a 5.2 pound drop from the previous week. So what's up with that? <BR> <BR> One thing I am learning to make peace with is that expecting a constant, predictable result on the scale is certain to lead to disappointment, frustration and lower morale. The sad truth is one needs to look at ... Sun, 10 Nov 2013 12:04:30 EST Radish redux As discussed in a previous blog ( <link><BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5516006 </link> ) I enjoy most vegetables; I'm even one of those strange people who like Brussels sprouts. One of the few veggies on my "don't like" list is radishes. My parents would add them sliced and raw to salads, and I always found them too sharp and/or bitter. <BR> <BR> As part of the program I am following right now I am eating a *lot* of vegetables, so I decided to give som... Fri, 8 Nov 2013 14:34:35 EST Do you have a drinking problem? I used to. Not *that* kind of drinking problem; the one where you struggle to drink 8 cups of water every day. Here's a few things I have found helpful: <BR> <BR> - My one and only New Year's resolution for 2013 was to drink 8 cups of water every day. By making it the only resolution, I had more focus on my goal. <BR> - When I first wake up I am usually thirsty, especially as the air dries out in the colder months. I now aim to have 2-3 glasses of water while I am getting ready for work.... Wed, 6 Nov 2013 11:57:18 EST Yes, we have no veggies... True, funny story: <BR> <BR> Last night I did my weekly grocery shopping. After loading up the cart with flavored seltzers, baked snack items for DD, and lean meats, I headed over to the produce department to stock up on vegetables. Would you believe they were out of Brussels sprouts, asparagus, *and* cauliflower?! I kept thinking, "How can they run out of Brussels sprouts? I'm probably one of three people in a 5 mile radius of this store who likes them!" <BR> <BR> Possible signs of a mo... Thu, 17 Oct 2013 11:26:10 EST Aerobic Painting? This past weekend I stripped the wallpaper and painted DD's room. I was curious if the Sparkpeople fitness tracker had any entries for Painting/Sanding/etc., and was surprised when I did find Painting. However the calories burned seemed a bit excessive: 32 per 5 minutes for a total of 385 per hour. My $.02 opinion is that really only applies to the really hard work that requires more movement, namely stripping wallpaper, sanding the walls, and rolling paint. What does everyone else think?... Tue, 15 Oct 2013 11:59:36 EST 2 weeks of low-carb and going strong! Today is a full 14 days that I have been following the IP Protocol using alternative foods. My diligence is paying off: as of this morning I am down a whopping 10 pounds in just two weeks! After ~8 days of being rather hungry, my appetite has settled down to normal levels and I am doing very well on this very low-calorie plan. I am trying to walk a bit every day just to keep muscles limber and back comfortable. <BR> <BR> I was honestly a little disappointed that after last week's huge d... Sun, 13 Oct 2013 11:04:12 EST Back again, and going low-carb I'm baacckkkk.... <BR> <BR> After successfully losing 30 pounds in 2011, I was struggling to get the remaining 20 pounds to come off. I would dip down for a few days, only to bounce right back to ~180 (which is a BMI of 27 on my 5'8-1/4" frame). I was frustrated with the lack of progress, and working out became both dull and burdensome. Then my kitchen remodel started last spring, and I gave up exercising and eating well. The remodel lead to summer, when I travel alot... Long story short... Sat, 5 Oct 2013 12:57:31 EST Is there too much of a *good* thing? Ran across the following article about excessive Coke consumption (2 gallons a day!) as contributing to a woman's early death: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>h-health_care/ </link> <BR> <BR> While I generally agree with the points made by the article, I do take issue with one: <BR> <BR> 'New Zealand Food & Grocery Council Chief Executive Katherine Rich said "there isn't a labeling regime in the world" that could have prevented the death of somebody who chose to... Wed, 13 Feb 2013 15:02:02 EST Spice it up! Last night I read about a store in a nearby town that only sells spices: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>eysstores.html </link> <BR> <BR> The article was about the different varieties of cinnamon they sell - 5 different types! Who knew that there are varieties of spices? I'm thinking it's worth a road trip to check it out; I use a *lot* of cinnamon and having a variety can help jazz up my breakfasts. <BR> <BR> Am I the only one surprised to find out that there... Thu, 7 Feb 2013 12:59:08 EST New Years Resolutions: One Month Review Unbelievably, the month of January 2013 is already history. Remember those New Years resolutions you made? I do, because I applied the KISS principal this year; I've Kept It Simple, Silly. I made only one resolution: to drink 8 cups of water a day. So one month into the new year, it's time for a resolution check. <BR> <BR> The good news is that overall I'm doing much better about getting in 8 cups a day. It isn't "natural" yet, but maybe it will get that way after I've been add it for a... Fri, 1 Feb 2013 12:11:43 EST Another reason to drink coffee (in moderation) If you think your morning java is essential to get your brain moving, there's now a study to support that: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>nd?utm_source=Tufts+Now+-+Faculty+and+<BR>Staff&utm_campaign=c709915a79-Tufts_No<BR>w_internal_130109&utm_medium=email </link> <BR> <BR> Absolutely *love* this study! Just make sure to not negate coffee's benefits by overloading it with cream and sugar! <BR> <BR> <em>106</em> Thu, 10 Jan 2013 11:26:09 EST Weight loss on the job My fiance works at Tufts University and sent me an an interesting article on work being done at Tufts related to weight loss at work: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ource=Tufts+Now+-+Faculty+and+Staff&ut<BR>m_campaign=c709915a79-Tufts_Now_intern<BR>al_130109&utm_medium=email </link> <BR> <BR> While I'm glad to see that there's some attention to the special challenges of losing weight in the workplace, I was rather surprised that there seemed to be very little di... Wed, 9 Jan 2013 14:10:02 EST Exercise and memory Interesting article on the possible relationship between exercise and memory: <BR> <BR><BR>/how-exercise-can-jog-the-memory/ <BR> <BR> Not sure this can be wholly attributed to exercise (or the lack thereof), but I am wondering if this is at least partially why my 87yo, active father has an amazing memory given his age, but my 83yo sedentary mother is showing definite signs of demetia. Regardless, seems to me that there is more and more evidence tha... Mon, 7 Jan 2013 12:28:04 EST Weight gain or cold scale? I had a funny experience with my weigh-in this morning. I live just a bit north of Boston, and for the past few days it has been very cold. Yesterday I stepped on my (digital) scale and was thrilled to see that I had mostly maintained my weight over the holidays. This morning I stepped on and the scale registered a 7 pound increase! <BR> <BR> Knowing that it's nearly impossible to gain 7 pounds in one day, I'm guessing that: <BR> <BR> a. The frigid temperature has the scale out-of-wack. ... Thu, 3 Jan 2013 12:54:52 EST New Year's resolutions This is the time of year when everyone is talking about their New Year's resolutions. In general, I don't usually make New Years resolutions; it's always seemed a bit silly to me. Why should a new year make any difference in how I handle my life? But this year I decided to use it as an opportunity to evaluate what was working and what was not, particularly in regards to my health. <BR> <BR> Here's what is working: I'm now working out regularly, so that doesn't need a resolution. In 2012... Wed, 2 Jan 2013 12:49:22 EST The Prius Owner's Guide to Weight Loss and Good Health I recently joined the band of ever-higher MPG seekers who drive a Prius. After a few weeks of driving the car, I've noticed there are some similarities between using my car to get the best MPG, and how I treat my body to lose weight and obtain the best state of health. <BR> <BR> SLOW DOWN - For the car, slower speeds means a greater likelyhood that it will be powered by electricity rather than gasoline. For my body, this means taking the time to shop, prepare and eat the foods that give me... Fri, 31 Aug 2012 15:37:59 EST OK, now I KNOW this time is different I stepped on the scale this morning for my monthly weigh-in, and discovered I had gained two pounds. Here's what didn't happen: the usual combination of denial, frustration and anger, spiraling into depression and self-loathing. It didn't ruin my day. It wasn't good news, but I took it for what it is: a warning. Because the truth is, I have not been as much on target this past month for losing weight. Yes, I've gone to the gym faithfully, but truthfully my eating - and tracking - has bee... Wed, 15 Aug 2012 21:30:09 EST Workout and - date? Last night, something happened while I was working out that really boosted my motivation. No, I wasn't suddenly bench-pressing 200 pounds or running 6 minute miles. Out of the blue, I was asked out on a date. <BR> <BR> Some background: The gym is actually a YMCA, nestled in a suburban neighborhood close to several schools and a park. When I think of the social vibe, it's more kids and family than a singles dating scene. I'm usually hitting the gym around 7:30am, and trust me, at that hou... Thu, 9 Aug 2012 15:07:51 EST Cholesterol: Back to normal in 3 months! Three months ago I had my annual physical and my cholesterol results came back high enough to warrant a recheck. I knew that if I didn't lower it through diet and exercise I was facing medication, and I was determined not to let that happen. Today I got the results of my 3 month recheck and everything is normal! Here are my results: <BR> <BR> Cholesterol : 257 to 178 <BR> HDL: 68 to 45 <BR> LDL: 155 to 109 <BR> Triglycerides: 171 to 119 <BR> <BR> As a side benefit, all those walks in sun... Sat, 16 Jun 2012 11:01:16 EST High cholesterol is a...blessing? Hello fellow Sparkpeople - I'm back. <BR> <BR> Two years ago, I reached my goal weight after losing 70 pounds. But staying at my goal weight proved even more challenging than losing the weight had been. I seem to be one of those people who do well when I have a clearly defined goal in front of me, and for 15 months I was working towards the promised land of a normal BMI. But once I got there, the goal of staying in a normal range seemed to stretch endlessly, indefinately before me. And a... Thu, 5 Apr 2012 15:16:18 EST All done with feeling lousy Since my last blog entry a few days ago, I have been walking around feeling like someone kicked me in the gut. On a positive note, I haven't felt much like eating, and it's been very easy to stay on my 4-day "special diet" that I had started to offset the comfort eating I had done earlier in the month. However that benefit was far outweighed by how just plain lousy I felt. <BR> <BR> This morning I woke up (early, because I couldn't sleep), and started thinking about how lousy I was feeling... Sat, 29 May 2010 11:27:12 EST In free fall WARNING: Long, whiny blog post below. My apologies... <BR> <BR> As many of you already know, this past week I donned cap and gown for the second time in my life and received a Master’s degree in Software Engineering. In many ways it was a very happy day, the celebration of a life’s goal and achievement. I’d like to say I was completely happy. But very honestly, finishing my coursework has felt more like I’ve stepped off a high cliff and I’m in free-fall, without a clear sense of when i... Thu, 27 May 2010 22:04:34 EST 70 pounds - GONE I did it, I reached my initial Sparkpeople goal of losing 70 pounds! <BR> <BR> I actually reached this goal on Friday. Sadly, a friend of the family's also passed away that day and I wasn't in much of a mood to celebrate. However after a few days to come to terms with his passing, I feel it would be wrong to not acknowledge having met such a major milestone. <BR> <BR> It's actually been a week of achieving goals. The day before the weigh-in which made the weight loss official, I turned i... Mon, 12 Apr 2010 13:15:28 EST