REVSERENA's SparkPeople Blog REVSERENA's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Ha! In my last blog I talked about what progress is. I defined it this way: <BR> <BR> "tracking - no matter what I eat. <BR> weighing - no matter how much I think I know what the scale will say. <BR> moving - no matter how tired, busy, etc. I am." <BR> <BR> Tracking? Check! <BR> Weighing? Check! <BR> Moving? Ah, now there's the rub. <BR> <BR> I'm not being lazy. <BR> I have enough time. <BR> I really want to do it... BUT... <BR> <BR> I've developed plantar fasciitis. <BR> <BR> What's... Wed, 29 Aug 2012 18:10:44 EST What IS "progress" anyway? Progress Report after one week back on track: <BR> <BR> Progress on the scale is always nice. <BR> Progress in inches and better fitting clothes certainly makes me smile. <BR> Progress toward fitness goals, like a 5K or a faster time, or a higher jump, sure feels great. <BR> BUT in the long run, those aren't the measures that count. <BR> <BR> Having reached goals, congratulated myself, and then fallen away from healthy choices, I am wiser. <BR> <BR> The progress that counts is the daily pr... Sun, 12 Aug 2012 18:05:47 EST The Perfect Storm I totally blew it. <BR> I ate a veggie egg white omlete for breakfast (great!), <BR> the soup and salad for lunch (hooray me!) <BR> and an entire 12" thin crust pizza for dinner (yikes!) <BR> <BR> My total caloric intake for the day was more than 600 calories over range. <BR> <BR> What went wrong? <BR> <BR> 1. I let myself get hungry. <BR> 2. I told myself it was "thin crust" so it couldn't be that bad. <BR> 3. I ate from the box. <BR> 4. My husband wasn't home, and since he can't eat ... Fri, 16 Mar 2012 09:05:46 EST The amazing story of my first 5K! My son (the marathon runner) has been challenging me for a couple of years to run a 5K race. So, realizing that I was going to be 50 before I knew it, reading that running actually preserves people's knees rather than wrecking them, and knowing that running burns a lot of calories, and the pounds were not melting off, I decided to give it a go. <BR> <BR> I started training in July with a Couch to 5K program (affectionately referred to as a C25K). The plan ran for 9 weeks, so I found a 5K ... Wed, 28 Sep 2011 23:01:39 EST Romans 7:15 "I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate." Paul confessed in his letter to the Romans. <BR> <BR> All I can say is, "Me Too!" <BR> <BR> I caught myself trying to cheat this morning. <BR> <BR> Somewhere during lap 9 I almost convinced myself that I was on lap 10. If I hadn't been timing my run, I think I would have believed myself! I know that I run a lap in 3-4 minutes, so when I looked at my time, I realized that I still had thre... Mon, 19 Sep 2011 09:21:00 EST It worked! WooHoo! My modified training schedule worked! Today was a "run continuously as far as you possibly can" day. I knew I could get past two miles, but I wasn't sure if I'd make 10 laps or eleven. The weather was perfect. Cool even. I kept reminding myself that I was going for distance, so I took it really slow. <BR> <BR> I decided to run the opposite way on the track. It occurred to me that I have been running in one direction, and that can't be what the body was designed for, so, since ... Thu, 8 Sep 2011 09:53:29 EST Best laid plans... My plan today was simply to run as far as I could continuously. <BR> <BR> But... it was really humid, and I forgot to bring my towel, so the sweat was stinging my eyes, and... (You get the picture.) <BR> <BR> Even though I have run two miles continuously in the past, I stopped at 1.5 miles. I really wasn't satisfied with myself, so I walked a half mile so that I really recovered, and ran another mile. I realized that I was almost to 3 miles of running, so I walked one more lap, and ran th... Mon, 5 Sep 2011 11:05:21 EST Update on the 5K journey... Well, it's been interesting! <BR> <BR> With travel throughout much of August and transitioning back into work I tried my best to stick with my C25K program, because my race is pretty tight on the heels of the end of the training schedule. (I know. Right? Forget that I'm pushing fifty, and dreaded running s mile, even in high school.) <BR> <BR> Anyway, between switching between treadmill running and track running, being forced to juggle the training schedule a little to accommodate life o... Sat, 3 Sep 2011 19:47:49 EST The Quest gets Questionable I've been getting a little discouraged here. I've been doing what I know works. Weighing my food to the last gram, eating seven to nine servings of fruits and vegetables daily, getting enough protein, fiber, calcium, never going over my calorie range, even once, I'm even RUNNING three days a week, for heavens sake. <BR> <BR> Still, waistlines as tight as ever, and the scale not budging. <BR> <BR> And then I came down with a knock-down-drag-out kick-you-in-the-gut and leave-you-whimpering... Mon, 8 Aug 2011 08:09:59 EST Decisions! Decisions! I read a blog this morning from a person who was stressed because they felt they had an important decision to make. They were considering doing something that they did not feel would be the best psychologically for them. <BR> <BR> Been there, done that. <BR> <BR> I know that from the outside it is easy to say, "If it isn't good for you, DON'T DO IT!" But if we always took that advice, would any of us need the support of Sparkpeople? <BR> <BR> And there can be some pretty complicated reas... Thu, 21 Jul 2011 08:15:43 EST Third Sparkiversary Eve I'm recently back in the groove, and was surprised to realize that I've been a Spark-person for almost 3 years. <BR> <BR> My three year story in a nutshell is: <BR> <BR> 1. Lost all the weight! Woo Hoo!" <BR> <BR> 2. Tried to figure out how to maintain. <BR> <BR> 3. Changed jobs, moved to a new home, went through Senior year and the college selection process with my daughter, (stress, stress and more stress!) <BR> <BR> 4. Gradually gained back half the weight, with occasional atte... Tue, 19 Jul 2011 15:24:41 EST Almost a year later... I looked at my blog for the first time in a long time... and realized it had been a few days short of a year. <BR> <BR> My last blog was a pep talk to myself about getting back on track, and I guess I did for a little bit, but it didn't last. <BR> <BR> I did buy bigger clothes. <BR> <BR> My knees have been making themselves known. <BR> <BR> My bigger clothes are getting tight. <BR> <BR> It's time. <BR> <BR> Three days ago I started posting my food again. <BR> <BR> Yesterday I resumed m... Fri, 5 Nov 2010 13:12:12 EST The Cold Hard Light of Day I weighed this morning. <BR> <BR> Sigh. <BR> <BR> I used to weigh every day, and compare my weight to the month before. Lately I have avoided the scale. I weigh on the wii fit, so when I went to weigh-in today I learned that it had been 20 days since my last weigh-in. <BR> <BR> I knew that I had been "slipping" on the healthy eating. I'm in the midst of a job transition (not a job loss, thanks be to God, but a transition) so there have been eating "occasions" (welcomes & goodbyes) with ... Sun, 8 Nov 2009 09:42:01 EST My Five Step Process to Tackling a Huge Scary Goal I responded to someone else who was blogging about feeling unmotivated and seeking advice. When I finished I realized my response would make a pretty good blog, so I made it a little more general and here it is... <BR> <BR> There are several things that are true: <BR> <BR> A body in motion stays in motion and a body at rest stays at rest. What we do as routine (and don't actually think about) is easy to keep doing. It takes significantly more energy to start moving, or to move in a new dir... Thu, 15 Oct 2009 21:13:44 EST The "Woo-Hoo Button" I reached my goal weight, and I have been trying to learn to maintain. It has been a tricky undertaking, and I have been dipping under my goal now and again. I also have noticed that my skin is less loose than it was. It will never be smooth again, but it is getting less saggy! <BR> <BR> The really amazing thing has been clothes. Even though I have mostly stopped losing pounds, I am fitting into ever smaller sizes. When I started last July I could barely button my size 18 jeans. The ot... Sat, 27 Jun 2009 12:29:09 EST The L-o-n-g View Now that I am so close to my goal weight "getting there" is not such a motivational thought. I won't look any different a pound from now. I won't be dropping a dress size. I don't imagine that I'll feel a lot healthier. People are not going to notice. Frankly, I doubt I'm really going to notice any difference once I step off the scale. It's beginning to feel like "just a number." <BR> <BR> There is also a little "then what?" feeling about reaching my goal weight. Since I know from my d... Thu, 21 May 2009 23:51:21 EST The Truth Will Set You Free I weigh every day (unless I am away from home and can't get to my scale). The thing is, it's made me more aware of the many, many factors that can vary how much the scale reads. Weighing daily has also taught me how little I can rely on the scale to learn about my progress! <BR> <BR> My weight fluctuates every day. Sometimes it's up, and sometimes it's down. By keeping close tabs I've learned that my sodium intake is a factor. I know that the time of day matters. It's become clear th... Thu, 30 Apr 2009 11:11:11 EST What Can Happen in 9 Months! My 9 month "sparkiversary" was this week. It is truly amazing to me how much change I have gone through in this period of time, but I shouldn't be surprised. I am a mom. I have seen how much my body can transform in 9 months before. Only this time I went the other direction! <BR> <BR> That was actually one of my reasons for beginning my journey on spark. I had reached my highest weight ever. The only time my weight had even been close, I had been on the verge of going into labor with m... Thu, 23 Apr 2009 14:42:27 EST Changed for good! I joined in a class with my old yoga teacher tonight, and she greeted me by squinting, getting wide eyed, and then exclaiming "Is that you?! What did you do?!" Of course I spread the spark! <BR> <BR> As I was in class I was remembering how hard it was to do some of the poses when I was heavier. My arms would shake from holding up all the weight. I'd have to figure out how to do the poses around my stomach bulge. Sure, I've been doing yoga longer now, but my improved form has more to do w... Wed, 15 Apr 2009 23:42:15 EST The Fabulous Fifty I'm not sure exactly when it started, or why, but at some point along the way I started trying to get 50 spark points a day. It wasn't a formal decision. I don't have a "spark streak", it has just become part of my routine to try to get up to 50 before I log off for the day. <BR> <BR> There are a lot of little things on this site that keep my head in the right place for getting healthy. My goal of fifty points encourages me to take advantage of them. Most days I am reading nutrition and f... Tue, 14 Apr 2009 22:26:15 EST My Clothing Library While I'm in "size transition" I've been using the Salvation Army and Goodwill thrift stores as my "clothing lending library". There are lots of gently used clothes to choose from, and some still have the tags on them. The prices are so low that I can think of it as a fee rather than a cost, and the money goes to a good cause anyway. Like going to the library I take back the old clothes when I buy the new ones. <BR> <BR> Buying clothes this way reminds me that I don't need to invest too much... Sat, 4 Apr 2009 11:09:32 EST It's Not Discipline It's Decision I found myself correcting a co-worker who remarked on my weight loss this week. She said the key to my weight loss was great self-discipline. Although I do have self-discipline, if I thought of that as the key I'd still be over 200 lbs. <BR> <BR> Discipline makes me think of rules, and punishments for doing the WRONG thing. The key for me is CHOICE. This is all about freedom to be the kind of person I want to be, not restriction from the foods or couch time that I used to enjoy. <BR> <B... Wed, 1 Apr 2009 09:59:04 EST Miracle of Miracles - She Runs! I actually went running today. (Don't all fall out of your chairs all at once.) <BR> <BR> I gasped my way through a miserable run last fall. It was my first run since high school! (Even in high school I only ran when we were forced to take the fitness test.) My asthma kicked in, my knees hurt, and I figured I might never be able to really run. <BR> <BR> I have never been an athlete. My older siblings and younger siblings were all faster, stronger, and more graceful. I just thought that th... Sat, 7 Mar 2009 19:21:02 EST My Motivating Metaphor I have found it helpful to think of my attempt at weight loss as a long journey. When you are traveling you are faced with many options of directions to go, speed, and alternate paths, and you are constantly making choices. It's the same thing with losing weight. <BR> <BR> Once in awhile on a journey you get stuck in traffic, or there is a flight delay. Weight loss plateaus are a little like that. I may never know the reason that I'm not making progress, but I'm not, and there isn't a lo... Tue, 24 Feb 2009 14:46:03 EST Ta-da! Today I received a new trophy! <BR> <BR> Yeah-yeah, big deal, woop-de-do! <BR> <BR> What is the difference? A little splash of color over the tiny picture of a trophy on my spark page. <BR> <BR> It's true. That's all it is, except... it is a testament to my faithfulness to this process. It's been 5,000 points since I last had a trophy change, and I've kept doing those things that are making me healthy (and coincidentally giving me spark points!) I've been reading, and logging all my f... Fri, 6 Feb 2009 15:23:27 EST Bootcamp was the best! I can't believe that this is the last day of bootcamp! <BR> <BR> I have consistently done the video each day and at least thirty minutes of cardio five days each week. Actually, I have been doing the cardio daily for the last two weeks. I really like coach Nicole! The challenge of the boot camp has been that extra push I have needed to get to the gym. It really has been great. <BR> <BR> I've lost pounds and inches during a month that I have had major stress at work (Our office moved to ... Sat, 31 Jan 2009 14:38:43 EST Self-efficacy and Self differentiation Coach Dean Anderson posted a great blog about self-efficacy and learning from our mistakes that I read today. It is about claiming responsibility for our choices, and noticing whether or not they are good for us. <BR> <BR> As I think about my life long journey with weight loss (and gain) this makes a lot of sense to me. When I pay attention to what I really want long term (less likelihood of cancer, diabetes and heart disease, more ability to participate in activities that are productive a... Wed, 14 Jan 2009 09:24:48 EST The Boot Camp Challenge Begins Today! I have entered the New Year's boot camp challenge. My daughter has agreed to do it with me. Each day we will do a spark fitness video and five days a week we will do 30 minutes of cardio. I'm excited to get started! <BR> <BR> My current weight is 162.5 lbs. I am hoping to get to 157 before the end of February. I hope the challenge gets me well on my way to that goal. <BR> <BR> During the holidays my daughters have been going to the YMCA with me. They have also agreed to a contest: Who... Sun, 4 Jan 2009 08:42:26 EST A little something for Christmas I originally planned to log my Christmas feast like any other day, but as the holiday became closer I realized that I was not going to be able to resist the goodies forever without resentment. It would be very frustrating to figure out how to record many of the things that I wanted to eat too, since so many of them are homemade, with many ingredients. I realized that if I was going to track everything I was going to resent the computer time when I wanted to be with my family. <BR> <BR> I co... Tue, 30 Dec 2008 17:52:48 EST In the chill of winter.... Today I was remembering that one of my sparkpeople friends had some damage from Hurricane Ike and was without power for awhile in September. It came to mind because we had our own little disaster (at least for us) this week. <BR> <BR> On Sunday my husband noticed an oil leak and turned off the funace. On Monday the repairman said it was the oil pump, shook his head, and sadly proclaimed that they don't make 'em like that anymore. He didn't think that he could get parts. My husband pani... Fri, 19 Dec 2008 17:12:05 EST Pole', pole'! It is Swahili for "slow, slow," and it is the thing that you hear most often when you climb Kilimanjaro. I remember my guide saying this phrase almost like a chant as we climbed. The fact is that a fast climb is usually an unsuccessful one. <BR> <BR> First, there are the dangers of injury and exhaustion to worry about. Day one you need to be thinking about keeping reserves for day five. If you get too tired, or pull a muscle, you aren't going to make it when you reach the point that y... Wed, 12 Nov 2008 08:33:28 EST Three Months Tomorrow! What a Difference! Almost exactly three months ago I joined sparkpeople. I've lost 29.5 lbs. I'm no longer "obese", but just "overweight." I'm half way to my goal weight. I think I may actually reach my goal and be a healthy weight before Spring. My clothes feel good. I have more energy and a better attitude. People have noticed. <BR> <BR> I wasn't sure what to expect when I signed on. I was looking for the tracking tools, but I've found much more. My teams and spark friends really pick me up. I am in... Sun, 19 Oct 2008 19:51:38 EST Who's in charge here anyway? It has been a frustrating couple of weeks. This is normally a very intense season in my work, but there has been some significant additional stress lately at work and at home. I haven't been able to get as much sleep as I need. My weight has been fluctuating wildly and, since I increased my attention to fiber, I have frequently been gassy and uncomfortable. <BR> <BR> I have been trying to take my own advice about focusing less on the scale and more on my other progress, but I confess I hav... Sun, 14 Sep 2008 08:08:57 EST Settling In It isn't feeling like a novelty to exercise and log my calories any more. Keeping up the discipline is getting to be a challenge. But that is how deep and lasting changes are made. The word "discipline" is not about punishment, but is related to the word "disciple" a student who devotes him or herself to learning a way of life. <BR> <BR> I admit I was getting to a little fanatical for awhile. Being a disciple feels a lot healthier. Maybe we need that enthusiasm to get started, but it bu... Mon, 1 Sep 2008 23:45:55 EST 30 Days a Spark Person When I looked at my spark points page today I realized that I have been logging onto Sparkpeople for thirty days today. (You get 10 points for every thirty days.) <BR> <BR> I hadn't really been keeping track. I've simply made logging my meals and exercise a regular part of my daily routine. Along the way I've met some great friends who offer me messages of support and sparkgoodies to encourage me. <BR> <BR> I've offered a little encouragement of my own as well. (I've posted over 200 t... Tue, 19 Aug 2008 17:31:13 EST Eating Well My friend KathyLM51 blogged about the satisfaction that she found in preparing a meal from scratch. She said that rather than grabbing something processed from the freezer, she bought fresh foods and prepared the meal herself. It took some time, but it was much more satisfying. <BR> <BR> It got me thinking. We have lost the satisfaction of being intimately related to the process of feeding and being fed in our society. <BR> <BR> My family joined a csa farm (community sustained agricult... Thu, 7 Aug 2008 11:08:18 EST Wow! It's probably the new scales, but it sure feels nice! Between my stomach bug this week, sticking with the program, and new scales I lost seven pounds. <BR> <BR> It surprises me how tickled I am. After all, my goal is health, not a number on a scale. And truth be told, IT ISN'T REAL. It is a different scale. I know this, and yet... it makes me feel good to be making progress. <BR> <BR> I don't know how much I actually lost. Our old spring loaded scale was acting completely wacky. I lost and gained five pounds daily, sometimes on the same ... Sat, 2 Aug 2008 20:56:36 EST A no good, very bad, digestion day Yesterday I woke up feeling crummy. I ended up with some kind of bug. I took the day off work because the sudden runs to the rest room were not compatible with my hour commute! <BR> <BR> By the end of the day I was feeling better, and ate a number of calories, though well below my range. (I wasn't moving so much either.) <BR> <BR> Back to the grindstone today. Diet and exercise are on track for today, and the work waited. Wed, 30 Jul 2008 13:38:46 EST Congratulations Alison & Tom! (& me!) The wedding was great. <BR> <BR> I indulged, but I didn't over indulge. With shrimp and vegetable crudités as appetizers, and clams, veal and salad as the main course, and chocolate dipped strawberries for dessert, I had choices that allowed me to keep it in check. Knowing that I would need to enter everything on sparkpeople also helped me be mindful. <BR> <BR> We danced for hours. It was a great band. I entered 120 minutes in my log, but that is a conservative estimate. <BR> <BR> I'm a... Sun, 27 Jul 2008 21:40:40 EST Big Family Wedding this weekend I am with my family this weekend for a big family wedding celebration. So far I have been able to stick with the program, but tonight is the dinner. I think I am just going to focus on portion control and go ahead and have a bit of everything. <BR> <BR> After all, I am doing this so that I can enjoy my life more, and what is more worth celebrating than welcoming someone wonderful into the family? Sat, 26 Jul 2008 11:22:09 EST Metabolism, metabolism, metabolism.... I have been reading this morning about how to get my metabolism in gear. I knew about the importance of strength training, but I wasn't aware of the importance of keeping hydrated. Who knew that your body gets distracted from burning fat when it has to deal with dehydration? Our bodies are so amazing. <BR> <BR> Another important factor is sleep. I got involved in reading and didn't get to bed until two this morning. Four to five hours just isn't going to cut it. <BR> <BR> My work often... Wed, 23 Jul 2008 09:47:10 EST Day 3 I have actually been watching what I eat for a couple of weeks but I have only been on Spark for 3 days. I love the features for tracking what I eat and when I exercise. I'm thrilled that I can design my own meals but still track my calories, proteins, fats and carbs. <BR> <BR> I hope that I can keep up with my entries. <BR> So far so good. <BR> Tue, 22 Jul 2008 14:44:02 EST