SAPHRAEL's SparkPeople Blog SAPHRAEL's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community #30daysofawesome - Day 8 I decided what to spend my gift card money on after completing the Boeing on the Move challenge: a hula hoop! Yep. I sucked at it as a kid, but I think I'll give it another try. Do any of you hoop? Suggestions are welcome. To get me started, I'm going with a 40", 1.5 lb. Weighted hoop. I'll stick with waist hooping and see how it goes. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""... Sat, 12 Jul 2014 11:05:03 EST #30daysofawesome - Day 7 At 7:30 last night, I realized I only had around 3200 steps on the pedometer. I briefly thought, "There goes my streak." Then I came to my senses and started marching in place while watching a Netflix movie. I can't remember the title, but it was about a teen with Leukemia, starring Dakota Fanning. I'm somewhere in the middle of it. I turned it off once I reached my step goal. The movie so far is decent. It's a good showcase of feelings one goes through when they are faced with a termin... Fri, 11 Jul 2014 18:40:49 EST #30DaysofAwesome - Day 6 <em>248</em> Achieving 10K steps yesterday was easier than the previous day, since I did a fair bit of walking at work. I only had to stare at the fitbit for 30 minutes instead of 50 to reach goal. <BR> <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I came in under budget on my calories yesterday..only about 100 calories. And I'm on track today. I stopped by the market on my way home and picked up some blackberries and Rainier... Thu, 10 Jul 2014 15:55:06 EST #30DaysofAwesome - Day 5 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> It's morning, barely! So, I have to make this quick. I have a stealth health walk waiting for me! <BR> <BR> I tore it up yesterday with almost 120 minutes of fitness between a walk at work, a kettlebell workout, and almost an hour on the elliptical. Guess what I learned? For you Fitbit users, you may already know this, but if you have the Fitbit app activated on your phone, it does a real time count for you. ... Wed, 9 Jul 2014 13:46:20 EST #30DaysofAwesome - Day 4 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> My Fellow Done Girl, WOLFKITTY, inspired me to do a 30 day blog streak of something. I choose 30 days of AWESOME because I am! <BR> <BR> Today is Day 4 of clean, sensible eating (no binge, low sugar, healthy fats) and killer workouts in unseasonable heat. Whew! Are we awesome or what?! Tue, 8 Jul 2014 22:16:58 EST Streak of Awesome Wow, I’m sore! I was determined to get my 10k steps in yesterday, despite the humidity and the heat. For some reason, it felt like my Fitbit wasn’t registering all my steps. I walked and did the elliptical for a total of 85 minutes. The extra walk helped me squeak over the finish line. I usually get my steps in easily with that effort. Ooh, I just had a thought! I was reading on the elliptical. No more of that! I need to maximize my workouts. No more multi-tasking! <BR> <img src="... Mon, 7 Jul 2014 15:09:44 EST Two Weeks Left! I have two weeks left in the Boeing on the Move Challenge. Right now, I'm in the running for a $50 gift card. If I pick up the pace and get around 13k steps between now and the end of the challenge, I could earn a $75 gift card. And if I go a little crazy and somehow manage 21k steps per day, I could earn the max $100 gift card. <BR> <BR> I think I'm going to set my sights on that $75 card because I've been reaching 13k about 25% of the time without really trying. <BR> <em>311</em> Wal... Fri, 27 Jun 2014 16:34:16 EST Get Thee Some Produce! <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I finally got to the local market today. I only planned on picking up a watermelon, since I've been thinking about it for a few weeks after buying a bad one at the Super Walmart. The one from the market isn't exactly local, but it wasn't grown too far away in California. I forgot how reasonable the local farmer's markets are! I wound up buying more Rainier cherries, corn on the cob, cucumber, and some English p... Wed, 25 Jun 2014 18:04:20 EST A New Motivational Milestone I've been approved to attend a Project Management symposium in Miami! <BR> <em>47</em> <BR> <BR> I have about 20 weeks to transform into a young hard body so I can fit in! <BR> <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> Do you have a tipping point? A weight where you know you don't want to stay there, but it's less than before and you start recalling what normal felt like when you're there? That's kind of where I am right now. It feels good. I want more! I'm going for it! <BR> <img s... Tue, 24 Jun 2014 14:56:14 EST Slowly Returning to Normal My little mini vacation screwed up my routines. I was totally unprepared for the temptations I introduced back into the house. They're nearly cleared out because I ate so much of it this weekend, but I'm recommitted. My plan is set and I'm working my plan. <BR> <BR> Despite my poor choices, I managed to stay out of the 230s for the 2nd week in a row. <em>244</em> <BR> <BR> I was getting ready to enter my nutrition into My Fitness Pal around 9 am this morning and realized that I didn'... Wed, 18 Jun 2014 13:53:48 EST This is SO not Me :( Ai, ai, ai! What a week! I struggled to get back into my routine when I got back from Denver. Then my dad dropped in for Father's Day weekend, which was great, but I made a lot of poor choices while hosting. <BR> <BR> Why, why, why?! I'm sick to my stomach right now, which is no surprise, since I've been fueling up with sugar and junk. <BR> <BR> I really don't want to weigh in tomorrow. I'm so annoyed with myself. I finally get out of the 230s only to go on a total food bender. I fee... Tue, 17 Jun 2014 18:56:22 EST Be the Model I just got back from a short business trip in Denver. The trip and weather were nice. The return trip was a little rough, just little process breakdowns, but you know, you just have to set your expectations really low when you travel these days, that way, you may be pleasantly surprised if they go ok. The best part of my return home was sliding behind the wheel of my somewhat new Nissan 370 Z. I’ve had it about a year, but man, it never gets old! <em>226</em> <BR> <BR> I had a breakth... Thu, 12 Jun 2014 15:43:54 EST Losing Focus I'm really struggling to focus lately. I haven't made progress losing weight and each weigh in just throws me off. I'm seriously thinking about not participating in any challenges once BLC25 is over. Are there any teams that have organized challenges that don't require weigh ins? <BR> <BR> I have felt like I need to stop the weekly (and daily) weigh ins and try monthly weigh ins instead. Anyone else have better success when they stop obsessing over the scale? <BR> <BR> My long term g... Sat, 7 Jun 2014 09:39:51 EST I Earned a Rest Day This Week! Wow, it's tough to get up and workout when you wake feeling sore all over. Knowing tomorrow is a rest day made it easier. <BR> <BR> I'm adding 5 minutes to my elliptical workout today. I tried adding 15 last night after weights, but was just too tired. Last night, I worked legs. I had to make some adjustments to protect my knees and hamstrings. I'd rather do body weight than risk injury with weight. So I subbed the dumbbell clean with a single leg deadlift, which was still really tough... Tue, 3 Jun 2014 10:16:02 EST Bloggity Blog I’m trying to blog more frequently, even if it’s just a quick update, just to keep me motivated. I ended the day yesterday with a second spin on the elliptical to get my 10k steps. Today is <em>249</em> of the Boeing On The Move challenge I started the day with a 30 minute spin and I’ve had one healthy walk break so far. I plan to take another after posting this. Tonight is Week 3, Day 4 of Live Fit. Get ready, legs! 7 exercises. The dumbbell clean exercise is a little daunting, but... Mon, 2 Jun 2014 15:17:46 EST Chest and Triceps Week 3 I sparked around just long enough this morning to realize I was burning up valuable workout time! I corrected that and completed a 40 minute chest and tri workout. Whew! I wound up deleting the 9th exercise, which was another triceps exercise. Those babies just didn't have anything left! Plus, I needed to swap it because I didn't have a cable machine. I did it! One step closer to sexy, well - defined arms to squeeze my honey with! I wrapped up the workout with a 30 minute elliptical... Sun, 1 Jun 2014 12:32:54 EST What's Next? Another month draws to a close. How did you do? I did some amazing things, and continue to do amazing things! <BR> <BR> 1. I had 3 complete rest days in May. The rest of the month consisted of active rest days, where I got at least one walk in at work. But most days included at least one 30 minute spin on the elliptical. I'm so glad I got that! It's made a huge difference. The workout is over before I know it, even though I've been tinkering with the higher intervals and really crank... Sat, 31 May 2014 23:17:45 EST I Found My Linea Alba Being so far from my goal weight, I don't spend much time looking at my unclothed body. This morning, I was buttoning the top of my dress and noticed that my midriff is bifurcated! Oh my! I'm not close to having a 6 pack yet, but it was a pleasant surprise to see the definition in my upper abs. <BR> <img src=""> Tue, 27 May 2014 13:55:47 EST Focus on Your Strengths, not Your Weaknesses I completed Week 2 of the Live Fit program today. <em>248</em> <em>244</em> I should say, I'm not following the meal program. I'm doing my own thing on that front and just doing the weights. Today was shoulders and abs. I almost managed to add 2.5 pounds to my shoulder workout. Form was bad on too many of the finishing reps, so I went back to 10 pounds. I've been enjoying the workouts. During the week, I do them in the evening and always follow them up with 30 minutes on the ellip... Mon, 26 May 2014 14:50:21 EST Every Move and Feelings of Defeat I shared this with my CAMO team, but thought I'd add it to my blog as well. <BR> <BR> I just earned another reward at Every Move <link> </link> It's a brilliant site where you earn rewards for moving. So far, I've earned two $5 donations to two different charities, a t-shirt and water bottle (I love flair!), $20 off at Shoes & Feet (local shoe store), an online workout / diet plan that I redeemed and never used <em>40</em> and this latest one, 50% off 6 teas of m... Mon, 26 May 2014 10:07:25 EST Moving Faster and Lifting More Good news! I have a new personal record on the elliptical: 6.1 miles in 30 minutes. I cranked up the intensity to Level 4. Two of the intervals were at Level 6 (that level has a special color on the monitor <em>20</em> ). I typically do around 4 miles, so <em>224</em> <BR> <BR> I'm a few days late starting Week 2 of the Live Fit program, but I did that last night. I added 10# to my bench press, so I'm back up to 70#. The last reps in set 3 were really difficult, so I got the wei... Sat, 24 May 2014 09:10:11 EST Slow Movement The focus challenge this week got me thinking about the slow movement. Maybe you've heard of it. You can check out for more information. I don't ascribe to all its applications. For me, it's finding ways to get out of the rat race and spend more time being than doing. It's a refreshing concept after being on the hamster wheel all your life. I began my slow movement without realizing it when I adjusted my work schedule to fit my workout schedule. I start work later to ... Fri, 23 May 2014 05:48:08 EST An Observation I think my sugar cravings were a PMS symptom...that and a grueling headache that lingered for 3 days. Now, I'm just left with cramps. I don't recall headaches or food cravings prior to this year. I guess that's fine. At least now I know what to expect. <BR> <BR> I'm down 3.4 pounds this week, recovering from the 4 pound gain last week. Now to just get multiple weeks of losses in a row for awhile!! I'm so close to my first 2014 milestone of getting back in the 220s. <BR> Wed, 21 May 2014 22:50:08 EST Adopting a Plan that Works for Me I've been driving myself crazy with this sugar thing recently. Avoiding it has me obsessing over it. So, I decided to make a little treat. I found these orange oatmeal cookies on Sparkpeople: <link><BR>l.asp?recipe=1462782 </link> I left out the wheat bran because I didn't have any. They turned out pretty well..more cake-like in consistency than cookie, but I still enjoy them. The orange zest sets it apart. <BR> So, there you go, my homemade ~100... Mon, 19 May 2014 18:41:44 EST Week One, Day 4 I just completed my 4th Live Fit workout. Here's what I did: <BR> <BR> 3x12 of each: <BR> Standing Dumbbell Straight Arm Front Delt Raise, 15#, 10, 10 <BR> Side Lateral Raises, 10, 10, 10 <BR> Seated Bent Over Rear Delt Fly, 10, 10, 10 <BR> Crunches <BR> Seated Dumbbell Press, 15, 15, 15 <BR> Air bike <BR> <BR> Apparently, I lost some ground compared to when I did this last year. But I think I'm more focused on good form this time around. <BR> <BR> Weee! I get a three day break from str... Sat, 17 May 2014 16:20:41 EST I Choose Me You’ve probably seen the slogan floating around the net. Losing weight is hard. Maintaining weight is hard. Being overweight is hard. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> I have to say trying to lose weight is exhausting! I feel like I have an angel <em>43</em> on one shoulder and a little devil <em>18</em> on the other and they are both playing tug of war. Holy Hannah! The amount of emotion, effort, time, planning, sweating, tracking, y... Tue, 13 May 2014 16:14:50 EST Hard Copy Food Log Experiment Results are in: the hard copy journal was helpful, but I still need to transcribe the stuff into sparkpeople to really manage the macronutrients. Jotting things down also made it easier to ignore portions, so by the time I wrote them into sparkpeople, I didn't have a clear picture of how much I ate. <BR> <BR> I think I'll continue with the hard copy, but I have to make sure I jot down portions and update the spark tracker more frequently. I might also try eating standard meals to make it... Tue, 13 May 2014 09:45:45 EST 100 Push Ups Now that we've all completed the fitness tests for Week One, who's interested in improving their push up numbers? Below is a link to a cool 6 week program to get you on your way. You just create a baseline by doing as many good form pushups as you can, then use the chart to figure out your push up workout. I think there's an app for your phone too. <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> Tue, 6 May 2014 12:50:52 EST New PR I increased my average mph on the elliptical by 2 miles last night. Coincidentally, I also increased the resistance. Does it make sense that I would go slower with an easier resistance? Maybe I just had more mojo last night...requires further consideration. In the meantime, woo hoo for a new PR! Tue, 6 May 2014 00:51:24 EST Snowflake Special Working out on the elliptical is wandering time for my mind. Today, I wandered around a few topics: making the event about the experience, not the food and the concept of personal exceptionalism. One of the speakers in my Project Management class spoke of personal exceptionalism, the perception that you are really good at something, not to be confused with arrogance. I hope I do it justice here, since I was only half- listening. But the point of the topic was to consider people you know t... Sun, 4 May 2014 11:36:19 EST BLC 25 Fitness Tests Part of the BLC Week One challenge was to complete a series of fitness tests. Here's a link to the article if you want to test yourself: <link><BR>_articles.asp?id=1112 </link> <BR> <BR> I haven't completed the walking test yet, but I scored better than average on the push up, crunch, and step tests. I had an excellent step score and was one crunch away from excellent. I scored good on the push ups, which isn't surprising. I did real push ups and h... Sat, 3 May 2014 10:17:08 EST Setting the Tone My four pound loss last week puts me back to a 21.6 pound loss overall since I joined Sparkpeople in 2011. <em>380</em> I’m so ready for this! Hopefully, this week's weigh in is setting the tone for big losses over the next 12 weeks! <em>9</em> <BR> <BR> In a few weeks when my motivation wanes, please remind me of how invincible I was feeling today! <em>52</em> I have every confidence that I can do this. I need to keep this short because I have a pair of sneakers calling my name... Wed, 30 Apr 2014 14:58:15 EST Thinking Ahead I’m resisting the urge to add this morning’s weight to SparkPeople. I’ve maintained a two pound loss for the past few days. I can hold out two more days to make it official for my Wednesday weigh in. Maybe by waiting, I won’t jinx it and be up again on weigh in day. That’s a crazy thought, isn’t it? I’ve been doing all the right things, so there’s no reason a good weigh in won’t happen. <BR> <BR> It’s 9:00 a.m. and I’m already hungry for a snack! But my day started at 4:00 a.m., so it ... Mon, 28 Apr 2014 12:39:52 EST Final Installment to the Home Gym <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Here she is! I just took my new rowing machine for a 30 minute spin this morning. I'm considering it a strength workout instead of cardio. I think my average pace was 7 mph, so not fast, though I did work up a sweat. The moves were slow, deliberate, and hard. I suspect if you were going for speed, you could consider it cardio, but I used the lowest resistance and tried to go fast and just couldn't pull quick e... Sat, 26 Apr 2014 11:51:47 EST BLC 25 Kicks Off Next Week I was up at 4 a.m. today to eat a healthy breakfast and put in 30 minutes on the elliptical. Getting up a half hour earlier than yesterday helped out quite a bit to make sure I got to work on time. <BR> <BR> I had a rough time this month tracking food, so this week, I printed off some hard copy menu templates (simple grids for each day of the week). I'm going to aim to use the hard copy to track my food. If and when I have time, I'll transfer the info into my SP tracker, but if it never gets... Thu, 24 Apr 2014 11:54:28 EST My Shiny New Toy <img src=""> <BR> <BR> The elliptical arrived on schedule Thursday. I spent three or four hours putting the thing together by myself and I still wasn't finished, so my husband helped me finish the assembly Friday night, which was incredible, considering how terrible our Friday went. <BR> <BR> When I went to bed Thursday night, I heard this weird hissing sound near the front door when I was locking up. I couldn't figure out what it w... Sat, 19 Apr 2014 16:44:15 EST 36 Weeks to Go! 36 weeks and some change left in 2014. Do you have a lot of weight to lose too? Is ONEderland in your sights? It's been one of my goals for the past three years. We could make a significant dent in that goal by chipping away at it, one pound at a time. <BR> <BR> I just reset my weight goal on Sparkpeople. I needed to figure out what the dates are that I can reasonably get to ONEderland. I could get there by August, October, or December, depending on how hard I work. I have this craz... Thu, 17 Apr 2014 12:24:34 EST Cedar River Trail Session 1 - No Falls! After an hour and a half of driving to scoop up my daughter, meet her new boyfriend, drive to her old apartment to pick up her skates, then all the way back to the bike trail, my first ride lasted 30 minutes, replete with many stops and flailing arms! Regrettably, I'm not as steady as I once was, but I'm also sporting 70 extra pounds! Similar to the rink experience, my shins lit up right away. Thankfully, hopping off onto the gravel was easier than the rink, where there was no mid-lap esca... Sun, 13 Apr 2014 10:19:21 EST 20 Years My husband and I are celebrating our <em>512</em> wedding anniversary next week. Seriously, where did the time go? He ordered just about every goofy thing on my Amazon wish list today: an elliptical, a rowing machine, protective gear for my skating adventures, gardening gloves...and I'm not sure what else I had on there. <BR> <BR> I'm excited to get the elliptical. I debated whether or not to get that or a treadmill. Since I have some cranky knees, I thought it best to go for the lowe... Sat, 12 Apr 2014 01:59:08 EST Out Like A Lion or a Lamb? We're approaching another end of another month. How did you make out this month? I feel like I made some headway, despite the lack of movement on the scale. I think that's about to change because I'm making a concerted effort to avoid evening snacking. I just put that plan into action, so I'll keep you posted on the progress. I just really need to practice some discipline in the evening. Otherwise, the 1,000 plus hours that I racked up this month is a loss. I'm tired of treading water.... Sat, 29 Mar 2014 12:46:25 EST My Sunday It was a good day, over all. It rained nearly all day! I slacked off this morning. Some of you may know of my goal to workout each morning. It's been going really well. In fact, it's such a commitment now that if I do miss it, I have no trouble making it up later in the day. Also, breaking up the fitness into 20-30 minute increments has also helped get about an hour in each day. <BR> <BR> We went to Applebee's for brunch. I tried the chicken and shrimp tequila tango. It's an 870 calo... Mon, 17 Mar 2014 08:19:24 EST How Was Your Saturday? Did you make today a good one? I did my best. <BR> <BR> I started the day with a new workout video: Denise Austin's Shape Up and Shed Pounds. I did the first segment, which was cardio. Then I made breakfast: bacon, turkey bacon and eggs with spinach. I had two whole eggs scrambled with spinach and about ten pieces of turkey bacon. I know, I know! But I didn't eat them all in one sitting. There were a number of drive by snackings throughout the mid-morning! <BR> <BR> After chatting wi... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 23:13:46 EST The Art of the Possible I've been staring at my weight graph today. I've been milling around in the 230s since the beginning of last year. Prior to that, I milled in the 220s for almost all of 2012. In 2011, I made a big push to get from 254 to 225. I lost at a modest 1/2 pound per week in 2011. I won't bemoan the ups and downs between then and now. The benefit of stewing over that graph is that I convinced myself that I can repeat what I did in 2011. I can and I will! <BR> <BR> I'm not sure how good this ima... Wed, 12 Mar 2014 19:19:04 EST Vision Statement I found these vision statement I drafted in 2011 on my iPod while working out this morning.  They've stood the test of time.  I still like them all! Do you have one or many vision statements for yourself? They are nice to reflect on and set goals toward. <BR> <BR> Vision statement <BR> I am a well-maintained, fuel-burning machine! <BR> <BR> I'm a loving companion to my husband.  I'm a good listener and my opinions are valued by those around me. <BR> <BR> I am athletic, sexy, and creative.... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 12:26:56 EST Morning Fitness - Check Woohoo! I just did my Friday strength training. I decided to do Jillian Michaels Shred it with Weights again. <BR> <BR> I just had a V-8 moment. I realized why I'm eating more in the evening. I stopped my tactic of packing a protein snack. If I have a little something before I drive home from work, it really helps me eat sensibly in the evening. Doh! Lesson learned and moving on! <BR> <BR> I'm on the market for a new pair of sneakers this weekend. I also think I'll go to Michaels to... Fri, 7 Mar 2014 09:21:46 EST Morning Fitness and Evening Nutrition I have two habits I want to focus on this week…and forever! <BR> <BR> 1. Exercising in the morning. My work schedule is becoming somewhat more flexible, so I am able to come in just a little bit later, guaranteeing time for a workout. I’ve experienced two major benefits of morning exercise: I feel jazzed. I mean, I feel so good! I know I’m an amazing person for doing such a great thing for myself when I workout. The second benefit: It’s done. Any other fitness for the day is bonus after gett... Thu, 6 Mar 2014 14:56:50 EST DOMS and Jicama I woke this morning sore as heck from yesterday's workout and rollerskating. DOMS fully set in, so I started my day with a 30 minute bike ride. It didn't help much. So, my daughter and I went grocery shopping. It wasn't until we were finished and leaving the store that my legs started to limber up a bit. <BR> <BR> I bought and tried my first Jicama today. It's an odd little tuber, similar to a turnip, but has a slightly sweet flavor. I didn't fall in love with it immediately. It's def... Sun, 2 Mar 2014 21:59:08 EST Kettlebells and Roller Skating I found some free workout DVDs on download through Amazon Prime. I felt like I hit the jackpot! On Thursday, I did a 20 minute barre workout. Um, ballerinas are fierce and maybe a little masochistic! They make elegant look easy. I can't tell you how sore my arms are. Swan arms are two dirty words to me now! <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> I started today off with Jillian Michael's Shred it with Weights, a nice 25 minute kettlebell workout. I have a few other barre workouts and Denise Aust... Sat, 1 Mar 2014 23:28:21 EST Last Weigh-in of the Month Two days remain in February, but I had time to kill today, so I thought I’d start looking at where I’ve been and where I want to be. <BR> <BR> I lost almost 7 pounds in January. I did 1,096 fitness minutes, 41 strength exercises on 8 days and 21 cardio sessions. <BR> In February, I’m up 1.6 pounds. I did 748 fitness minutes, 8 strength exercises on 2 days and 16 cardio sessions. <BR> <BR> I’m pretty sure I did strength on more than 2 days, but overall, I could tell I wasn’t on fire like I... Wed, 26 Feb 2014 16:03:08 EST Mind, Meet Body My body is so ready for the 220s! I don't know why this didn't occur to me earlier. Last week, I was the biggest loser on my team, which is really cool. I was so busy beating myself up for the gain before the wedding that I didn't realize how easy I was able to lose it. So, let’s celebrate a little! Yay! <BR> <BR> Huh. Even though I feel like I'm not making progress, my body is telling a different story. Even though I did some binge TV watching on Saturday and blanked out the crummy f... Tue, 25 Feb 2014 16:13:14 EST