PSIMSON's SparkPeople Blog PSIMSON's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community 2014 5% Winter Challenge wheels up! I've joined the 2014 5% Winter Challenge on the Cats team (what else for me!!) and it's wheels up today, January 18th. My 5% goal would equal to 8 lbs. in 8 weeks, which is totally doable if I stay on program. I'm looking forward to being accountable to my team, I don't want to let them down! The plan is to stay within my calorie range and track my food faithfully every day. Also, 30 minutes of cardio/walking 6 days a week and 3 sessions of strength training per week. My once a year phys... Sat, 18 Jan 2014 12:35:52 EST What a relief! Just one year ago I was starting on my journey towards improving my health and losing weight. Being who I am, I researched to the nth degree all the different available options, low-carb this, high protein that, the supermarket diet, the paleo diet, etc., etc. But what I've found has worked so successfully for me this year (and I've lost over 40 pounds!), is just simply sticking to the Spark way of life. I eat appropriate quantities of highly nutritious food, cut out most of the junk I at... Sat, 28 Dec 2013 19:10:27 EST I'm going for it - 30 days until beach vacation My husband and I have booked a beach vacation in Mexico from December 15-22nd and for the first time, I want to feel confident and comfortable in a bathing suit. I also want to participate in all of the activities and not feel tired like I have in the past. So, I'm going for it for the next 30 days. I'm doing Leslie Sansone's Walk it off in 30 days, which is 3 days of cardio and 3 days of strength training every week. The strength training is at a much higher level than her previous dvd's... Mon, 11 Nov 2013 15:28:20 EST I'm grateful for..... Today is Canadian Thanksgiving and it's a good opportunity to stop and reflect on how good life can be and what we are most grateful for. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful for: <BR> My wonderful husband who gave up his summer vacation to help me through my knee replacement surgery <BR> <BR> My surgeon, Dr. Nelson Greidanus who gave me back the active life I'd been missing out on for so many years <BR> <BR> My family and friends who enrich my life <BR> <BR> Spark People and all of the new friends I'v... Mon, 14 Oct 2013 17:18:24 EST Exercise, fun, me - 3 words I never thought would go together! I just did my first Leslie Sansone Walk Away the Pounds dvd program and I had FUN EXERCISING! ME! Those are 3 words I never thought would be in the same sentence. I've always loathed exercise (yes, yes - I did some, but grudgingly). It's partly my new knee, which is finally working pretty well and partly Leslie Sansone, who I'm loving and partly the Spark People community which emphasizes finding ways to incorporate movement and fitness into your life in ways that work for you. So, now I... Sun, 11 Aug 2013 15:15:24 EST Light at the end of the tunnel at last Light at the end of the tunnel at last, after my knee replacement surgery. My progress has been steady, but slow, but it's picking up now. Here's where I'm at this week (8 weeks after my surgery): <BR> Back at work full time <BR> Walked home from work for the first time this week (8 blocks with hills) <BR> Walked to the grocery store and shopped for the first time <BR> Walked to the library (twice!) <BR> Walking mostly without a cane and not limping as much <BR> <BR> The big thing is, I'm ... Sun, 7 Jul 2013 21:22:15 EST Made it to 90 degrees FINALLY! Well, better late than never, right? I FINALLY reached a 90 degree bend, 6 weeks after my knee replacement surgery. I am the proverbial tortoise, not the hare, for sure! My recovery has been steady, but slower than most, and this is a real milestone for me. I start back to work next week and in every other way, I've been feeling like I'm making good progress. My strength is very good, I'm down to one crutch and transitioning to a cane this week. In fact, I'm starting to walk without any... Tue, 18 Jun 2013 19:52:58 EST I made it though the dreaded knee surgery! Well, I made it though the dreaded knee replacement surgery and now I'm in recovery mode. It's weird to have to relearn how to do simple things like raise your leg, but it's a good test of patience and perseverance. I'm working super hard on my physio, with the help and support of my wonderful and amazing husband who pushes me for my own good. I'm just starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel and instead of focusing on the the discomfort, I'm looking forward to the many activitie... Fri, 24 May 2013 12:17:06 EST A long way to go, but I've come a long way too - bye-bye "big" clothes! This morning was pretty momentous for me. I was struggling to find something to wear that fits (and is clean, hee-hee!), and inadvertently put on a pair of pants that I haven't worn in a few months. They were massive on me and falling down! It made me realize that even though I have a long way to go, I've also come a really long way and it reinspired me to keep going. I don't want all my efforts to be for nothing. Sooooo....... I went through my closets and cleared out all of my old clo... Sun, 31 Mar 2013 13:29:27 EST Exercise my mind to exercise my body Week two of Kindergarten and here's what I learned this week: <BR> <BR> Exercise my mind to exercise my body! My joints are bad and getting exercise has been an issue for me. But this week, I decided that I would use "my little grey cells" to quote Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot, get innovative, and figure out what I can do, instead of focusing on what I can't do. Turns out, I can do a lot! I can't get down on the floor to do stretches, but I can do them on my bed. I can't stand and ... Sun, 4 Nov 2012 13:56:42 EST I'm in Sparkpeople Kindergarten and here's what I've learned so far It's been one week since I started with Sparkpeople and so I feel like the new kid who just started kindergarten. Who are all those cool kids having fun over in the corner? How do I use the toys in the toybox? Will my teacher like me? Will I make friends? Will I succeed? So far, so good. Here's what I've learned this week that's been helpful to me, the new kid: <BR> <BR> 1. Tracking everything is super-important. I eat pretty well, but I was suprised that I wasn't eating as many vegg... Sun, 28 Oct 2012 18:24:31 EST