SAWYERPATTI's SparkPeople Blog SAWYERPATTI's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community 125 Days Later Hi everyone, <BR> <BR> I assure you- you are not forgotten. I am 6 weeks away from my epic adventure in Peru. I PROMISE I will post pics and a nice blog about the adventure. <BR> <BR> Sooooooo- what have I been up to? I have been training, training and training some more. I am walking 9 miles with a full pack, doing 120 FLIGHTS of stairs, (up and down) and the ever present yoga and biking with Coco. I feel great. I look good. <BR> <BR> Still haven't gotten on the scale- but am a comfortabl... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 12:50:51 EST Great Minds Think Fit Hi everyone, <BR> <BR> Still plugging along. I see improvement in my body but the snails pace is frustrating. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I nailed my workout goal and made vast improvement in tracking my food. All the components are coming together and success is within my reach. I was amazed at how much easier 80 flights of stairs are compared to a year ago. I actually crave my workouts. lol <BR> <BR> Keep going sparksters- re... Sat, 1 Mar 2014 11:32:27 EST Valentines for the Rest of Us Here's a chuckle from the happy singleton. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Don't face plant into the chocolate. <BR> Fri, 14 Feb 2014 11:57:37 EST February Goals and Tracking Hi sparkfriends! <BR> <BR> I hit my stair goal for January and I feel great. I feel the next 8 months will be a layering of goals and exercise challenges to get me ready for my big trip. <BR> <BR> I will be climbing 1000 flights each month but currently I can do 80 flights comfortably at one time. I would like to do 96 flights comfortably and cut the number of workouts. That will leave me more time to do other things, i.e. weights etc... <BR> <BR> For the short month I have decided to tack... Tue, 4 Feb 2014 12:40:00 EST Stairs- WHY I am obsessed with them! Hi Sparkfriends. <BR> <BR> Time to share my motivation for climbing ALL THOSE STAIRS. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I am turning 50 in September and I will do so atop of Machu Picchu in Peru. I will trek the 4 day Inca trail- 27 miles, to an altitude of 13,000 feet. I am going with an organized tour and will have all the support I need. <BR> <BR> All I want is a picture of me with a sign with that vista behind me. I will save what... Mon, 27 Jan 2014 13:51:19 EST Those Magic Words I heard them yesterday from a coworker...those magic words....."You're losing weight. I can see it". YAY!!!!! <BR> <BR> You know I won't get on the scale. It just does my head in too much. My clothes are looser but I'm not a size 4- so who knows what I weigh. To be perfectly honest I don't care. If I can look in the mirror naked and be realistically happy with what I see- all is good. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Stairs are going ... Fri, 17 Jan 2014 13:01:28 EST Stair Genie... who knew????? Hi sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> Cold came and went quickly- yay for me! <BR> <BR> Worked 12 hours yesterday so I didn't have the energy to workout. I woke up this morning and made stairs my priority. I decided to climb the other set of stairs in my building as a change of pace. <BR> <BR> You can imagine my surprise when I rounded the 13th floor and I came face to face WITH A FACE. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I decided he was a STAI... Fri, 10 Jan 2014 13:22:15 EST January 1st Stairs Happy New Year Sparkfriends! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I love this photo. I don't know where it's from but I had to share it. <BR> <BR> Today I climbed 54 flights of stairs. I was barely winded, hardly sweated, and feel amazing. My rest periods were infrequent and brief. I stretch in between laps and my body feels more aligned and even. <BR> <BR> It's going to be a great month! Vegan sugar free plan in place. I see success in ... Wed, 1 Jan 2014 12:30:33 EST Prepped and Prepared for Success Hi sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> I'm well. Hope your holidays went well. My veggies are washed and cut, my homemade ratatouille and rice and ready to go and I'm making hummus this afternoon. <BR> <BR> I have my plan for January- stairs. 1000 flights of stairs for January. You saw that one coming, didn't you? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I'm so predictable. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <... Sun, 29 Dec 2013 12:20:08 EST My Goals, My Plan and My Determination Hello Sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> This is a fairly honest blog. I'll try not to blather. <BR> <BR> I have been seriously working on my health for about a decade. It's been a story of peaks and valleys, triumphs and some minor setbacks. I kept moving forward but never really got to where I really wanted to be. I settled for good enough. <BR> <BR> Now don't get me wrong- my health is good, my numbers are perfect and I look great for a woman pushing 50 years old. <BR> <BR> I rejoined Sparkpeople... Thu, 19 Dec 2013 11:34:59 EST Hugs All Around <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> 'nuf said. Sun, 15 Dec 2013 16:48:08 EST Stay Calm <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> I have been sugar free now for over a week. The dog isn't afraid of me anymore. I feel good, clear headed and determined. <BR> I am still eating a natural, plant based vegetarian diet. I am enjoying the last of my cheese, olive oil and nuts. I will be adapting a vegan diet with no salt, fat or sugar at the beginning of the year. <BR> <BR> I AM that crazy. <BR> <BR> Before you all lose your minds, remember ... Mon, 9 Dec 2013 20:25:32 EST The OTHER Crack Cocaine I gave up white sugar. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Day two. Getting a bit cranky. Yelled at the dog. I am DETERMINED to defeat this crack cocaine called "candy". <BR> <BR> OMG, did I mention I'm cranky?????? <BR> <BR> <BR> I have had a lifelong love affair with sugar. It has been my drug of choice my entire life- from the very beginning of my unhappy childhood right through my just as miserable marriage. Reeses never let me down... Tue, 3 Dec 2013 19:52:06 EST Soundtrack to My Day <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I have loved this man and his music for over 25 years. <BR> <BR> <BR> Go to youtube and enter December by George Winston. <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Thu, 21 Nov 2013 11:33:20 EST Focus <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I am focused and clear in my mind. Life is good. <BR> <BR> Spark on. Wed, 20 Nov 2013 12:20:43 EST Tracking Intention I changed my tracker (again) because I intuitively know my struggle is between my ears and nestled in my soul. <BR> <BR> I am fit, strong, healthy and happy. I would like to continue to be so and constantly improve- and yes....lose my last 20 pounds. <BR> <BR> I have changed my diet radically (again) and am a contented vegetarian. <BR> <BR> Now I feel I need to address INTENTION. I am reigning in my negativity and anxiety. I am not naturally anxious but menopause has me a bit off kilter. T... Mon, 18 Nov 2013 11:00:00 EST Last Fall Ride Coco and I re headed out for one last ride. I feel anxious to do so before the snow flies for real. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> My vegetarian diet is going well. Love the new car- rides well and is super comfy. <BR> I've been struggling with going over my calorie limit. Wil... Wed, 13 Nov 2013 11:30:04 EST New Perspective “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” <BR> &#8213; Maya Angelou <BR> <BR> <BR> I have been here for so long. Twenty pounds away from goal. Damn. <BR> <BR> I am going to track my days I stay under 1500kcal. That is where I need to focus. If I am going to eat a treat I need to be accountable for the CALORIES. I have good habit... Thu, 7 Nov 2013 10:37:30 EST New Car Smell I have my very first brand new car. The smell is comforting-and a little chemically. lol <BR> <BR> I have had commuter cars for years and when I came back from Saudi Arabia I wanted a fun and sexy car. I got a used Mini Cooper and when the check engine light kept coming on I traded it in for a Volkswagen Beetle convertible. Damn check engine light came on and it was a $1200.00 repair. You read that right. I paid that one but I knew there would be more in my future if I stubbornly kept that c... Sun, 3 Nov 2013 10:30:03 EST Hair Photo Hi, <BR> <BR> Had a great time at Loki's Halloween Bash at the American Swedish Institute castle. <BR> <BR> Sadly,NOT ONE of my pictures turned out. So I took a couple selfies when I got home. I apologize for not being as fresh as I was earlier- but at least you get to see my fabulous hair! lol <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> One more: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hope y... Fri, 1 Nov 2013 00:12:37 EST New York Subway Signs Experiment From MSN: <BR> <BR> When a train pulls into a station in New York City, subway conductors in the middle cars usually point at a little black-and-white sign on the platform to prove that they're paying attention. (It's not completely clear how this proves they're paying attention to anything other than that sign, but rules are rules.) Grateful subway riders Yosef Lerner and Rose Sacktor decided to brighten the drivers' day with a few funny, well-placed signs that brought a little laughter to ... Thu, 31 Oct 2013 16:13:09 EST Magical Moment I am a firm believer in random acts of kindness. Today I was the lucky recipient of a thoughtful and kind gesture. <BR> <BR> Coco indicated she needed to go potty. It was earlier than her usual time but I put my coat on and we headed out. We walked across the street to the bit of grass at the Government Center and she did her business. I went to toss her waste in the garbage can by the bus shelter and there a white leaflet caught my eye. <BR> <BR> I walked over and could see it was a handfu... Mon, 28 Oct 2013 13:56:21 EST TWO Servings a Meal Hi sparkfriends, <BR> <BR> My shift to a vegetarian diet is going well. I have failed in the past because I relied on carbs and sugar and really didn't eat too many vegetables- really a problem if you want to be a "vegetarian". My life is more settled now and I have the time and energy to devote to my meal planning. <BR> <BR> I have figured out I need TWO servings of fruit/vegetables for each meal. I am eating fruit for breakfast and vegetables are the foundation of lunch and dinner. Keepin... Fri, 25 Oct 2013 12:00:08 EST MY Ongoing Evolution to Wellness Good morning from misty grey Minneapolis. <BR> <BR> (Winter is indeed coming- the Starks are right eventually.) lol <BR> <BR> I have been thinking about my wellness and it's slow evolution. Don't get me wrong I am perfectly ok with slow change- it tends to be more lasting that way. <BR> <BR> I have been working very seriously on my health and wellness for a decade now. I have eliminated processed foods, soda, and some chemicals from my life. I am ready now for more change. It's time. I ha... Sun, 20 Oct 2013 11:53:09 EST Yoga in the Park Hi everyone, <BR> <BR> I have had something exciting to share with all of you for nearly a week. It's been THAT busy for me. I belong to a MeetUp group that is a non-profit yoga group. Any money donated for class goes to charity. The yogi that teaches class is a "dude" that went through Core Power Yoga training. (Think skinny well to do Gwennie Paltrow types.) The class is a tough class for yoga bunnies. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I signed up for the class in the park last Sunday. I rode my bike to ... Fri, 18 Oct 2013 11:26:50 EST Hi Sparkfriends Been extra busy this last week or so. I am going to let go of my perfectionist thinking and commit to posting 3x a week or so to remain accountable to you and myself. <BR> <BR> Just a couple of thoughts; <BR> <BR> Biggest Loser started this week. Love that show. <BR> <BR> It won't be long before the holidays are upon us- then starts the "NEW BEGINNING" diet craze that every January 1st brings. <BR> <BR> Where do you want to be January first? I am asking myself this question and am interes... Thu, 17 Oct 2013 20:52:58 EST Operation DeBloat Day 2 Wow. I feel better. 1200 calorie day with a good sweat and no wheat= less bloated. <BR> <BR> Still on track today. Feel good. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Fri, 4 Oct 2013 17:18:56 EST Operation DeBloat Day 1 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> Come on, now. You KNOW we have to laugh at these little glitches or they will get the best of us. <BR> <BR> Tracked and planned my day. Had a fantastic workout and I am certain in a few days/weeks I'll be happy with what I see in the mirror again. <BR> <BR> My personal mantra: I AM RESPONSIBLE FOR MY HEALTH AND HAPPINESS. <BR> <BR> Big girl panties firmly in place. <BR> <BR> Spark on! Thu, 3 Oct 2013 11:55:24 EST Carbohydrate Bloat So, I've been happy, active and have a new love interest. <BR> <BR> AND I've been eating carbohydrates- yummy, yummy carbs. <BR> <BR> I am not able to eat carbs with impunity. I bloat and gain weight easily with bread in my life. <BR> <BR> So here's the deal. I noticed- HONESTLY and without fat shaming I was bloated and puffy. <BR> <BR> I have not been tracking and old habits have snuck in. What to do???? <BR> <BR> Shame, blame, guilt and all that crap??????? <BR> <BR> Nope. Begin track... Wed, 2 Oct 2013 21:03:10 EST Fall and Healthy Choices <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Fall is here. It's my favorite time of the year. I feel energized, motivated and grateful for my blessings. <BR> <BR> It was a week of celebration and reflection for me. I ate without worry or guilt. I enjoyed myself and never abandoned my healthy lifestyle. I was active, got in my workouts and took the stairs. One day I hit 14,000 steps on my fitbit. <BR> <BR> It's been a year since my knee replacement. I can wa... Mon, 23 Sep 2013 09:27:29 EST 49 Today Hi everyone, <BR> <BR> I turned 49 today! Yay! I feel great. <BR> <BR> I want to share as a gift to all of you Cindy Joseph's story. She is my heroine. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Please read her lovely interview and be inspired. <BR> <BR><BR>tm_source=outbrain&utm_medium=adsales&<BR>utm_campaign=RSS&utm_content=How-This-<BR>63YearOld-Model-Stays-Gorgeous#slide-1 <BR> <BR> Note the yoga... Mon, 16 Sep 2013 10:14:54 EST Fitspo BS Good morning sparksters, <BR> <BR> I'm feeling great. I am strong, confident and comfortable in my own skin. I do not have 6 pack abs nor am I at ideal body weight. <BR> <BR> I am happy and realistic. <BR> <BR> I read an article I want to share. It addresses the unhealthy "fitspo" messages on the internet by a respected fitness blogger. It has some choice adult language that may offend some delicate flowers. This guy is MAD at what crap is being perpetuated by the media in order to make us... Fri, 13 Sep 2013 08:47:22 EST Week Till My Bday <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hi sparksters, <BR> <BR> Hope you had a fabulous weekend. It is exactly one week till my 49th bday. Birthdays aren't a big deal for me but I want to feel good and not bloated. <BR> <BR> I am starting a 7 day streak of flawless food choices, exercises and honest tracking. <BR> <BR> I see stairs in my future. <BR> <BR> p.s. I had a great workout out and climbed the 6 flights back home without holding on to the ra... Mon, 9 Sep 2013 10:12:10 EST Thanks For The Feedback Thanks sparks friends! <BR> <BR> I feel good about my ingrained lifestyle choices. They are set. I've been eating my vegetables and drinking my water for a long time now. <BR> <BR> What I struggle with is the constant restarting "I'm going to buckle down and lose the rest of the weight" mode. I'm confident and comfortable where I'm at. <BR> <BR> My conflict comes from my ingrained perfectionism and Virgo personality. <BR> <BR> lol <BR> <BR> I'll chat with my doc- ask for some advice an... Mon, 2 Sep 2013 13:33:04 EST A Really Honest Blog Good morning, <BR> <BR> I met a friend for coffee this morning. She asked me during our catch up conversation "was I still losing weight, tracking etc"? The truth of the matter is I looked exactly the same as when she saw me last. She had no unkind agenda and she thinks I'm beautiful- no matter what I weigh. <BR> <BR> I told her I still tracked my food, worked out three days a week and felt good. I am comfortable where I'm at and wasn't sure if I was going to lose any more weight. <BR> <BR... Sun, 1 Sep 2013 13:31:18 EST I Sense a Days of the Week Theme to My Blog <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Most of you have long weekends and lots of fun plans but I'll be working through Tuesday! Whew! One down and five more to go out of a 6 day stretch. <BR> <BR> I have packed my food- have everything I need to eat on track and be successful. Headed to the gym after I post this. <BR> <BR> Be safe, enjoy your fiends and family and don't throw your goals out the window. <BR> <BR> Spark on. Fri, 30 Aug 2013 11:24:33 EST Happy Monday Sparksters <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hello! Hope everyone is well. I have been uber busy! I have been eating well and staying active. Minnesota summer isn't very long so I feel the urgent need to make the most of it before the snow flies. Coco and I have been out on our new bike nearly daily. I'm getting stronger and the hills are not nearly as daunting. <BR> <BR> I am still using the Gain app 3x a week with 30 min of cardio. It's fun and I enjoy it... Mon, 26 Aug 2013 09:40:22 EST A Funny For Your Friday <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Have a fabulous Friday- spark on. Fri, 16 Aug 2013 12:30:39 EST Happy Thoughts Today <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Laugh- it's good for you. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Discover unconventional beauty. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> You can do anything you set your mind to. <BR> <BR> Spark on. <BR> <BR> Sun, 11 Aug 2013 10:24:06 EST Plus Size Pin Up- Hilda I was completely charmed by Hilda this morning and had to share her. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> "Meet Hilda, the creation of illustrator Duane Bryers and pin-up art’s best kept secret. Voluptuous in all the right places, a little clumsy but not at all shy about her figure, Hilda was one of the only atypical plus-sized pin-up queens to grace the pages of American calendars from the 1950s up until the early 1980s, and achieved mode... Mon, 5 Aug 2013 09:52:27 EST Coco LOVES Her Bike Basket <img src=""> <BR> <BR> This is the face of contentment. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Seriously, this thing is sooooo cool. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> We went for a 2 hour bike ride this morning. It was cool and breezy and slightly overcast. We rode all over downtown and then headed to the Uptown Art Fair. <BR> We ... Sun, 4 Aug 2013 14:17:13 EST WOW! Love this App! I live on a budget. I need some help training because I find it boring and tend to go through the motions. Snoooozzzeeee...... <em>102</em> <BR> <BR> I read an article on HuffPost yesterday and they recommended Gain Cross Training App-best of all it is FREE!!!!! <BR> <BR><BR>ness-cross-trainer/id441646808?mt=8 <BR> <BR> I loaded it, plugged in my info and this morning I had a great workout with timely reminders, corrections and it was FUN! <em>... Wed, 31 Jul 2013 12:02:12 EST Back to the Land of the Living Good to be back. Thank you for all the TLC, goodies and kind words. <BR> <BR> Time to get busy. Back to streaking (teehee), challenges and eating super clean. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Time to uplift and encourage and celebrate ourselves just as we are. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> My bday is in roughly six weeks and I want to feel amazing. <BR> <BR> Stairs are the a... Tue, 30 Jul 2013 10:43:34 EST Summer Cold This is me; <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Going back to bed. Cuddling box of Puffs Plus. <BR> <BR> Spark on healthy people, spark on. Fri, 26 Jul 2013 10:17:06 EST What A Nice Moment I ran into a friend I haven't seen in a very long time- and his reaction to my appearance was priceless. This is a man who is never one to throw away a compliment. He told me I look incredible and he was staring just a little bit. <BR> Gotta chuckle. <BR> No matter where you are in this transformation- take a moment to appreciate what miracles have already transpired. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Spark on. Tue, 23 Jul 2013 12:15:53 EST This Is Working <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I've been eating this eating plan all week. It's working. I'm leaner, less bloated and have more energy. The low carb, no sugar, high veg and protein thing seems to be what my body needs. It has been surprisingly easy to stick to. <BR> <BR> It does take a bit of planning and prep work. It really takes some concentrated effort. <BR> <BR> But it's working. <BR> <BR> <img src=" Fri, 19 Jul 2013 14:04:28 EST Candlelight Yoga <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I have discovered MeetUp. It's a free online community that offers social groups of an amazing diversity. I joined a book club, small dog socialization and a couple of nightlife groups. <BR> So one of my groups offered a candlelight yoga class. i signed up and was happy to see it was super close to home and only 4 people signed up. <BR> <BR> I am still awkward after 10 months post knee replacement. My balance is ... Wed, 17 Jul 2013 11:52:44 EST My Clean Eating Plan Meal 1: <BR> <BR> 2 cups water (squeeze of citrus or sliced cucumber if desired) <BR> <BR> Serve 2 whole eggs cooked with sautéed broccoli and several cups of spinach (or veggies of your choice), plus a small handful of cheese. Sauté veggies in about 1 tsp olive oil. <BR> <BR> Pair with 1 cup blueberries (or fruit of your choice) <BR> <BR> Meal 2: <BR> 1 handful pistachios (or nuts of your choice) <BR> <BR> 1 apple (or fruit of your choice) <BR> <BR> Meal 3: <BR> 2 cups water (squeeze... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 11:25:57 EST Streaking! YAY! I confess- there is some actual streaking in my long distant past. I was in junior high and it was the 70's. Enough said. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> NO. Just say no to middle aged public displays of nudity. <BR> <BR> The streak I'm actually advocating is a 7 day clean eating streak. <BR> <BR> Day ONE for me. Will keep you posted on my progress. <BR> <BR> Spark on fully clothed sparksters. <BR> Mon, 15 Jul 2013 09:04:21 EST How Did I Blink and It Was Thursday?? Where did my week go??? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Not been a couple of great days- just busy and not eating as well as I should. I've been a little wound up with stress lately. I took some time this morning to practice gratitude. I find being thankful helps me keep perspective. <BR> Our time is now, sparkfriends. You are worth the time and energy it takes to be healthy. <BR> <BR> I'm headed for the stairwell. <BR> <BR> Spark o... Thu, 11 Jul 2013 12:02:44 EST