SEMISWEETCHICK's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=SEMISWEETCHICK SEMISWEETCHICK's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ Day 1: A chance to get some traction http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5869619 I'd made a great beginning to 2015 in January. I had a 21-day fitness streak going, and I was logging calories faithfully every day. <BR> <BR> Then my sister came to visit for a week. Kerplooey! There went my good eating habits and daily exercise. <BR> <BR> I loved seeing my sister. We only get about one week per year to catch up, so the diet interruption was well worth it. <BR> <BR> But now life is back to normal, and I feel like I can finally get some real traction. I have three months ... Wed, 4 Feb 2015 20:23:05 EST Day 1: Walking in the rain http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5861204 I love it when I can get exercise and a facial treatment all in one go. That's how it was today. Sort of. <BR> <BR> When I went for my daily brisk walk just after lunch, the temperature was about 38F, with 100% humidity and a cold mist in the air. The north wind was fairly bitter. I'm glad I wore two shirts under my workout jacket. As I walked the mist soaked my face, giving it a nice, refreshing cleansing. <BR> <BR> Despite the fact I'm not seeing any weight loss yet, I'm not giving up. I... Fri, 23 Jan 2015 20:40:57 EST Day 1: Three weeks, little progress http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5860190 Today marks my 21st day in a row of exercising for at least 10 minutes a day. Most of those 21 days saw me exercise for much longer than 10 minutes, and at a reasonable intensity. Most of those 21 days I've also eaten within my calorie range. <BR> <BR> So why virtually no pounds lost? <BR> <BR> It's something I'm contemplating this morning. I'm still getting used to the additional daily calories added to my range by my Jawbone. My range sometimes balloons to 1800 calories or more, based on ... Thu, 22 Jan 2015 10:39:07 EST Day 1: Think beyond the scale when it comes to rewards http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5857182 I've always rewarded myself for reaching certain weight loss goals. But I've been suffering from motivation issues lately and realized I could perfectly well reward myself simply for my perseverance, regardless of what the scale says. (I know, novel concept, right??) <BR> <BR> So last night I downloaded some new tunes to my phone -- a little treat for reaching 16 consecutive days of fitness. The lure of that new music got me out of the house early this morning for a brisk, 30-minute walk. It... Sun, 18 Jan 2015 14:14:10 EST Day 1: I've got a lot of work to do http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5856351 ...to make up for yesterday. <BR> <BR> I try to stay positive on this blog. Positivity is a theme for me for 2015. I don't believe you can just "wish away" negative thoughts, but I do believe it's possible to perhaps retrain the brain to shift focus away from negativity towards positivity. This is what I've been trying to do, anyway, when a negative thought creeps in. <BR> <BR> Today is Saturday, and I must say the previous week had little to recommend it. My insomnia's been intractable, wh... Sat, 17 Jan 2015 10:49:15 EST Day 1: Holding pattern http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5854892 It's been kind of a bumpy week so far. I've had trouble with sleep and low energy. I blew my calorie count one day, but I kind of shrug that off. It was only one day. For the past two days, I haven't taken my afternoon walk. The relentless cloudiness (six consecutive days without a glimpse of the sun) and cold have deterred me and sunk my mood. <BR> <BR> If all that sounds complainy...well, it is. But I'm trying to stay optimistic. <BR> <BR> Today is my weigh day, and I am the same weight a... Thu, 15 Jan 2015 08:48:08 EST Day 1: Didn't let insomnia slow me down http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5853079 On the heels of yesterday's awesome, 10+ mood rating...I couldn't sleep. Why? Who knows?! Insomnia can be so aggravating. Even when you do everything 'right,' it can still plague you. <BR> <BR> Luckily, I don't suffer from all-out, my-eyes-were-wide-open-all-night insomnia. The word can be used to describe a wide range of sleeping disorders. In my case, insomnia usually manifests as an inability to fall asleep and/or low-quality sleep all night. <BR> <BR> Last night...couldn't fall asleep. ... Mon, 12 Jan 2015 22:25:52 EST Day 1: For the first time ever, I rated my mood 10+ http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5851859 I've been a member of SP for...I don't know how long. I think since at least 2010. Like many members, I've waxed and waned with Spark. One thing I like about SP is how they continually add new tools (or 'toys,' the way I see it) to play with. It gives me something fun to focus on. <BR> <BR> I've tracked my mood for as long as this feature has been available. I've always had trouble with mood. I don't expect to be in a state of euphoria all the time, but at the same time I've always thought i... Sun, 11 Jan 2015 14:19:38 EST Day 1: Still learning new things about myself http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5851165 I have never in my adult life exercised outdoors in inclement weather. And I have a very broad definition of what constitutes "inclement weather." Over 90 degrees. Under 50 degrees. Breezy. Raining/snowing. Or even just threatening to rain/snow. Basically I used any excuse not to get out into the weather, despite the fact walking is my favorite fitness activity. <BR> <BR> This all boils down to fear. I was afraid of exercising in anything but perfect weather. I don't know why. I don't know ... Sat, 10 Jan 2015 15:48:34 EST Day 1: Eight-day streak and counting http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5850601 Today I reaffirmed to myself that I can be flexible about fitness but still get it done. <BR> <BR> Due to an early medical appointment for my mom, I wasn't able to get my 10 minutes of rowing done first thing this morning. That concerned me because I wondered if my willpower would flag by the afternoon. To my delight, I discovered it did not. Around 2:30pm, I proudly completed about 15 minutes of rowing -- extending my fitness streak to eight days. I find this incredibly motivating! <BR> <B... Fri, 9 Jan 2015 20:43:32 EST Day 1: Two pounds down, 10 to go http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5849301 I was going to stay off the scale, but I couldn't resist. Thursday is my usual weigh-in day, so I stepped onto the white square this morning. To my delight, it says I have lost two pounds already. I'm very pleased, even if that is all just water weight. It tells me my efforts have been worth it. <BR> <BR> I'm not aiming to lose two pounds a week; I'm set up for a goal of one. When I think about how hungry I've been on days when I exercise, I figure I'm safe to eat at the higher end of my cal... Thu, 8 Jan 2015 08:52:08 EST Day 1: I did not reach my steps goal today, and... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5848951 I don't care. <BR> <BR> I said before I mainly use the Jawbone to prompt me to move, not to simply count steps (though it IS a fun challenge!). Today I just couldn't rouse myself to do extra walking. I had a rough sleep night, followed by a low-energy day. <BR> <BR> I knew today was going to be a struggle as soon as I arose this morning. I just felt very tired. So I did extra time on the rowing machine this morning -- 15 minutes -- to compensate for not hitting my steps target. I essentiall... Wed, 7 Jan 2015 20:51:47 EST Day 1: Six-day streak http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5848424 I love streaking. Sorry for the bad joke. <BR> <BR> Because I was pretty much "away" from SP for 18 months (and subsequently gained 13 pounds), I didn't have a lot of confidence in my ability to muster the self-discipline required to get back on track. The experience of coming back to SP has really been a lesson for me in how the "baby steps" philosophy truly, truly works. Once I got back to Spark basics, I found success again. <BR> <BR> Case-in-point: My current six-day fitness streak. I r... Wed, 7 Jan 2015 09:36:28 EST Day 1: Nailed the nutrition today http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5846996 Today's victory goes in the nutrition category. Every day I run the nutrition feedback report, and I was surprised to see today I hit every nutrient on the money! I say "surprised" because I rarely hit them all. It's kind of a game to me, though I don't sit there and plan every meal by evaluating how much protein or fiber it contains. <BR> <BR> I have felt fairly tired today. I think it's because I slept light last night. Nonetheless, I got up and did my moderate rowing workout first thing ... Mon, 5 Jan 2015 20:33:29 EST Day 1: Can't get over how great I feel http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5845802 All I can say is: Wow. If this is all attributable to exercising first thing in the morning, I am amazed. <BR> <BR> Today, for the second day in a row, I did 10 minutes of moderate rowing as soon as I got out of bed. I woke up much more quickly than usual, and within about 40 minutes my energy soared through the roof. As I type this at 3:20pm, I've just finished a brisk 20-minute walk and now feel practically euphoric. I understand endorphins, of course, but...wow! For someone who rarely exp... Sun, 4 Jan 2015 16:35:31 EST Day 1: I feel like a champion http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5844573 I feel like I finally got back in touch with my self-discipline. Wherever it has been these past many months, it found me again yesterday. <BR> <BR> Despite the fact I slept horrible and only briefly (well, about four hours, sporadically, over the course of eight hours in the bed), I nonetheless kept my promise to get up and exercise first thing. I made myself get out of bed at the appointed time, put on my shorts immediately, and got on the rowing machine for 10 minutes -- even before a cup... Sat, 3 Jan 2015 09:42:18 EST Day 1...Really IS 'day one' this time! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5844201 My new life begins today, January 2, 2015. It would have begun yesterday, except we always throw a New Year's Day party with family. That was a gutbuster for me. <BR> <BR> But today I awoke refreshed and prepared to achieve my goal of getting back in shape and losing 15 pounds. All of my blog posts are titled "Day 1:" because I believe every day is a fresh start. Today really IS a 'day one,' though, because I am rebooting my whole program. I am shaking up almost every component of my lifesty... Fri, 2 Jan 2015 20:07:42 EST Day 1: A simple walk http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5839532 I'm in trouble. <BR> <BR> I went nuts with food and alcohol on my vacation to NYC, and now I'm up 13.5 pounds over my goal weight (which I achieved a year ago). It's incredibly depressing. There's no point in blaming myself; that only leads to more self-loathing and medication-by-food. <BR> <BR> Using a counterintuitive approach, I bought myself a new fitness toy. I say "counterintuitive" because I normally only buy myself something as a reward, but this time I bought it for motivation and... Sat, 27 Dec 2014 20:41:01 EST Day 1: A little rocky, but hanging in there http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5832104 I was happy to ride the four-day diet streak, even as I knew it would not extend to a fifth day. Well, what are you supposed to do when you must attend the spouse's company holiday party? <BR> <BR> It's not that I horribly succumbed to temptations at a potluck where all the staff brought chile con queso and rum balls or anything like that (though I definitely have been in those situations, too!). It's that we had to travel (read: get super-tired, which can lead to poor decision-making), and ... Fri, 12 Dec 2014 20:50:14 EST Day 1: Reveling in the streak http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5830457 I did it! Today was my fourth good food day in a row! This, despite going out for dinner. Yay, me! <BR> <BR> I had to perform some dietary gymnastics to make it, I admit. Eating in a restaurant never fits neatly into the diet plan. And in this case we dined at a restaurant (Bennigan's) not known for its health-conscious choices. However, a bit of pre-game warmup on the internet provided the intel I needed to make a smart decision at the restaurant. Also, I admit I ate very sparingly the enti... Tue, 9 Dec 2014 20:00:31 EST Day 1: Three in a row! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5829910 My nascent streak continues. I had an excellent food day today. Despite the fact I seriously craved a martini this afternoon, I abstained. I consumed three excellent meals plus healthy snacks (and some dark chocolate). According to SP's nutrition feedback, I hit every important nutritional range, except for falling very slightly short on protein, fiber, calcium and iron. I can live with that. <BR> <BR> The main thing is I'm feeling very calm and in control of my eating right now. I feel rela... Mon, 8 Dec 2014 21:16:20 EST Day 1.1: One day at a time leads to two days in a row http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5829232 Just a quick update to say...I did it! I managed to put two good food days together in a row. Next up: three days in a row. <BR> <BR> I inadvertently almost went over by indulging on ground turkey with beans for dinner. I honestly didn't think I was consuming as many calories as I was. (I mean, I know beans are caloric, but there were no other starches in the concoction.) However, the recipe weighed in at 378 calories per serving...and I treated myself to two servings. I don't feel bad, sinc... Sun, 7 Dec 2014 19:25:42 EST Day 1: Let's make it two days in a row http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5829060 I did a brave thing today: I got on the scale. <BR> <BR> I've been avoiding it because my body tells me everything I need to know: belly roll hanging over my waistband, bra feeling tight, thighs jiggling when I walk. It's not pretty. (And sorry if that's TMI for some of you guys out there!) <BR> <BR> My body has been communicating with me all along, as I've laid on an extra 12 pounds this year. But I was deaf to what my body was saying. <BR> <BR> Well, as I told myself before I stepped on ... Sun, 7 Dec 2014 10:55:38 EST Day 1: Celebrate the small accomplishments http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5828771 I try to use this blog to chronicle positive things, to channel positivity. I don't always succeed, but I generally try to keep negativity off this page. <BR> <BR> That said, it's been a rough week. Lots of stress, and lots of stress eating. I try to keep my "day one" philosophy front-and-center at these times. I had a one of those give-up moments on Wednesday, where it was like, "I'm already so far over my calorie allotment for the day I might as well polish off half a package of cookies, t... Sat, 6 Dec 2014 19:56:00 EST Day 1: Remember what's important http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5826017 When I hit 163, I believed I was in trouble. There was just no way I had the energy to continue rowing until I had burned 200 calories -- my goal for the day. I felt exhausted. Spent. I'd been rowing for almost 20 minutes, for crying out loud! How long would it take to burn another 37 calories?? I couldn't do it. I was sure of it. <BR> <BR> I looked at the readout on the rower. I was maintaining a good pace. If I kept this up, I would row 5000 meters in 30 minutes. That's always the goal I s... Mon, 1 Dec 2014 20:31:40 EST Day 1: Every day is Day One http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5812789 I'm blown away by all the wonderful comments and suggestions on my last post, "Day 1: New rules, new systems." I read each and every comment everyone posts, and they all lift my spirits and give me new ways to cope. I'm deeply grateful to all of you, and to everyone in the wider Spark community. <BR> <BR> Today is, again, "Day 1." I wanted to explain that, in case some of you thought I was new to Spark. I am not. I've been hanging around here for a few years now. But each of my blog posts is... Fri, 7 Nov 2014 20:45:41 EST Day 1: New rules, new systems http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5810228 I've really struggled with my food intake since my mom moved in with me about a year ago. Our dietary habits are nothing alike, and Mom would like me to eat exactly the same things she eats. It's not going to happen. (She is one of the worst eaters I've ever known -- all sugar and cheese and chips and red meat and potatoes -- and yet she's healthy as a horse at age 80. Go figure.) <BR> <BR> It has been hard to say "no" when she wants to order dessert in a restaurant or go out for donuts and ... Mon, 3 Nov 2014 19:35:18 EST Day 1: Back on the rowing machine http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5807241 A few weekends ago, my husband helped me pull the Concept2 rower out of the attic. We set it in the corner of the game room, where we watch TV. Last week, I got on it for the first time in about 18 months. Today, I got on it again. It felt good. <BR> <BR> Buying that rowing machine was one of the best investments I've ever made, hands down. I have used it consistently, if sporadically, since the day it arrived. Twice it has traveled with us to a new home. The display has become inconsistent... Wed, 29 Oct 2014 22:48:31 EST Day 1: Does 'gardening' really burn that many calories? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5804658 My husband and I did a TON of landscaping today. We started at 10am, and the activities involved shoveling, raking, digging, planting, carrying (heavy weights of 40 pounds or more), and so on. <BR> <BR> We continued almost unabated until 1pm, then we took a rest and resumed at 3pm for another hour and a half. Honestly, we were almost constantly moving during these periods. A couple of times we collapsed on the grass for short breaks of 10 minutes or so. <BR> <BR> If I put the full number of... Sat, 25 Oct 2014 19:26:37 EST Day 1: The Freezer is My Friend http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5796313 I've always had a freezer. A separate freezer, I mean. As a kid, we actually had two freezers: a large chest and an upright. That's because we butchered our own beef, so we needed a big chest freezer to hold that steer. <BR> <BR> When I began making house on my own, getting a freezer was high on the agenda. I've never lived without a freezer - until the past year. <BR> <BR> When we moved into our house in Houston, we bought a beautiful LG refrigerator with a 10 cu ft freezer on the bottom. ... Sat, 11 Oct 2014 11:40:20 EST Day 1: Hungry is good http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5753856 Man, I'm struggling with food today. I think I underate a little yesterday. I ate within my Spark range, but when I factor in the exercise I did, I think I may have been on the short end of the calorie stick. <BR> <BR> I was hungry last night, but I repeated my weight loss mantra: Hungry is good. That's kind of a joke, of course. What I mean by it is: I am not going to die of starvation. It's OK to be a little hungry during this phase of things. Once I get back to maintenance, I should be fe... Tue, 5 Aug 2014 19:47:51 EST Day 1: Pushing through insomnia http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5752957 I'm coming through the worst bout of insomnia I've experienced for months. I'm not talking a total lack of sleep, but trouble falling asleep, poor quality sleep, daytime grogginess, etc. UGH! <BR> <BR> I'm hoping my continuing gym routine and healthy eating will get my sleep back on track. Because other than that, life is fine! <BR> <BR> Really looking forward to the gym today. As a special reward for consistently attending last week, I downloaded Pharrell Williams' "Happy" to my workout mi... Mon, 4 Aug 2014 13:34:25 EST Day 1: Steady as she goes http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5751831 Not much to report today. I kind of hate non-workout days because I can't eat as much! ha ha <BR> <BR> I did manage to bring my calories in on budget today, regardless. I also took a nap. Life is good. <BR> <BR> Beautiful day in Houston - -shockingly good for August. It was only 72F on the patio this morning, so I drank coffee outside for an hour and enjoyed the scenery and weather. And then I was able to grill for dinner, which is unusual at this time of year. It's usually way too hot to g... Sat, 2 Aug 2014 19:40:08 EST Day 1: Two pounds down http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5750941 Yay! It's Weigh Day for me, and I was pleased to see I've stopped the backsliding and have lost two pounds in the past week. Woo hoo! <BR> <BR> In looking at my weight loss graph over time, I see the lowest I hit was 159.8 on 11/11/13. I had forgotten breaking the 160 barrier. That was a tough plateau to bust through, so it's a little sad to see I'd recently peaked again at 167. Well, it's 165 today and I'd like to get that 5 pounds off over the next month. Feeling confident I can do it. <BR... Fri, 1 Aug 2014 09:29:47 EST Day One: New routine going well http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5750288 Monday I implemented a totally new daily routine. I'm not talking about only my diet and fitness. This new routine encompasses every aspect of my life. <BR> <BR> I'm a person who does best with routines. Routines keep my anxiety in check. Routines provide structure and comfort. <BR> <BR> I read an interesting excerpt from the book of a professional organizer. She said, "Never check email during the first hour of the day." Being a writer, my life pretty much revolves around email. My old ro... Thu, 31 Jul 2014 10:03:22 EST Day 1: Pre-planning for the restaurant today http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5744102 Yesterday I did so well...and then finished poorly. I succumbed to the temptation of frozen yogurt topped with Hershey's syrup. Oh, well. It didn't push me over my calorie limit, though it surely was more sugar than anyone needs. <BR> <BR> My landmine for today is dining out for lunch. I'm taking Mom to a doctor appointment, and we will have lunch in a restaurant. I'm going to steel my resolve to stick with a plain salad. Maybe I should pack an apple, too, so I have something to eat mid-aft... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 09:51:47 EST Day 1: Staying motivated by checking in http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5743293 Today, I'm getting back on my eating plan. I am sorely tempted to rejigger my meal plan to accommodate a martini tonight, but I think a better option would be to be strict with myself for a week to jump-start my weight loss. <BR> <BR> I am hoping to stay motivated by "checking in" on my blog every day -- to give myself a pat on the back and to read the encouraging comments everyone so generously leaves me. <BR> <BR> It's only 10 pounds, but then again I realized it's not the 10 pounds at al... Mon, 21 Jul 2014 09:30:10 EST Day 1: Courage and a plan http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5742038 I finally got up the courage to step on the scale today for the first time since 5/31. The damage wasn't as bad as I'd feared. In fact, I guessed my weight to be 8 pounds higher than it actually was, which was good news (and also shows how poor I am at estimating my own weight). <BR> <BR> With that information in hand, I was able to re-set my goal to get an accurate calorie range for each day. I have an event coming up in early September and would like to lose 7 pounds by then. Pretty sure I... Sat, 19 Jul 2014 10:57:21 EST Day 1: Starting over with a fresh attitude http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5738105 Ten pounds is not life-threatening. Ten pounds is not worthy of the power over my life I've accorded it. Ten pounds will not make or break me. <BR> <BR> I've gained at least 10 pounds since I last posted a blog. I don't know how much I've gained, exactly, because I'm afraid to get on the scale. But I know my size 14 pants are very tight "across the beam" these days, and they weren't before. I know jeans that fit me six months ago no longer button or zip. <BR> <BR> I've been stressing out A ... Sun, 13 Jul 2014 19:31:40 EST Day 1: Into a routine at last http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5694215 I bought a gym membership and some personal training sessions to get the habit ingrained, then we entertained house guests for five days, which threw everything off in the ditch again. It probably was dumb to start working out right before a major derailment I could see ahead, but whatever. <BR> <BR> Today I reclaimed my schedule and got in some gym time. I ran a mile on the treadmill and called it good. It's only the second time in my life I've "run" a mile. It felt great! <BR> <BR> The gy... Tue, 13 May 2014 13:54:48 EST Day 1: Fell off. Getting back on. http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5685714 Here's all I think I need to say: Three straight nights of insomnia. <BR> <BR> I'm not talking full-out, sleepless nights. Oh, I've been sleeping. But I wake up feeling as if I've had not a wink. It's so depressing. <BR> <BR> And so, yesterday, I felt so exhausted I fell off my diet plan. I indulged in pizza. OK, well. I got on the scale this morning anyway. I certainly could see that water retention due to sodium! ha ha <BR> <BR> I'm scheduled for my last personal training session at 1pm... Fri, 2 May 2014 11:31:58 EST Day 1: I put the cookies back http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5683014 Now that I am working out regularly, I have to do math every day. I have my SP set up to adjust the calorie range based on my daily burn, which helps me avoid the "too few calories" trap. <BR> <BR> I've found I do very well at 1500 calories a day. At 1500 calories, I feel satisfied. I may experience moments of hunger a couple of times a day, but they usually stem from boredom and resolve as soon as I distract myself. <BR> <BR> So far my gym workouts have burned 400-500 calories each time. Y... Tue, 29 Apr 2014 09:40:38 EST Day 1: Underestimated the pain factor http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5681679 This ain't my first workout rodeo. I knew on Friday when I started strength training after many years of only focusing on aerobic exercise that I'd be sore for a couple of days. But, dang. I seriously underestimated how sore I'd be. <BR> <BR> Friday night, my sleep kept getting interrupted by triceps muscle pain whenever I turned onto my side. Saturday, I couldn't raise my arms to put my hair in a ponytail and could hardly get the toothbrush into my mouth. By Saturday evening, I was in sever... Sun, 27 Apr 2014 14:40:00 EST Day 1: Gym time http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5680485 Despite a poor night's sleep, I got a lot accomplished today. <BR> <BR> Yesterday my new Planner Pad arrived, and I was giddy as a kid with a new toy. I've tried all kinds of paperless calendars and organizing systems (and some of them, like Cozi, work quite well), but "virtual calendaring" is too nebulous for me. I like the feel of a paper organizer in my hands. The Planner Pad came highly recommended by some writer friends, and wow! I got more done in four hours today than I probably got d... Fri, 25 Apr 2014 19:51:38 EST Day 1: Back to the gym http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5680043 It's been a few years since I belonged to a gym. At my previous home I'd focused on weight loss and cardio, which could be done outdoors all year round. I realize I can weight train at home, but I'm just not motivated to do it. <BR> <BR> So yesterday I visited a local fitness club. It's cheap because they don't offer any wet facilities, which suits me fine. I bought a membership plus five personal training sessions to get me started. <BR> <BR> Today at 1pm, I'll get a fitness assessment plu... Fri, 25 Apr 2014 08:34:56 EST Day 1: Trying to avoid the crash-and-burn express http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5678946 I dunno about you, but when I get tired -- I mean, bone-weary exhausted -- my resistance to food ebbs. When I'm tired, I can find even a tablespoon of peanut butter seductive. And, man, am I tired today. <BR> <BR> Two nights in a row of poor sleep has left me feeling weary. Nonetheless, I've plowed through my diet plan today, even consuming the somewhat inexplicable "spicy navy bean soup" specified on my menu plan -- inexplicable because it was barely "soup" and because the sheer volume of i... Wed, 23 Apr 2014 20:09:02 EST Day 1.1: I did it! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5678151 It's rare for me to make two blog entries on the same day, but I started out with intentions and, in an effort to stay accountable to myself, want to end the day by denoting my accomplishments. <BR> <BR> Despite the fact it was very trying at the doctor's office, and we encountered several other little snafus throughout our day, I did maintain a positive attitude and did NOT feed my stress in any way. In fact, I am sitting here munching on an apple because I discovered when I ran the daily n... Tue, 22 Apr 2014 19:53:04 EST Day 1: Setting intentions http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5677714 First, thank you to everyone who reads and responds so supportively to my blog posts. I wish there were an option for responding to each comment, but that functionality doesn't exist, so please accept this "thank you" for your positivity and kind words. They mean a lot! <BR> <BR> To the best of my ability, I use my SP blog as a place where I can engage in positive self-talk. I try not to use this space as a forum for whining, though it definitely creeps in occasionally! <BR> <BR> Today, I a... Tue, 22 Apr 2014 09:26:41 EST Day 1: Staying the course http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5677346 Today I adhered to my pre-planned menus almost to the letter. I did eat a bit more salmon than the menu plan called for, simply because the piece I chose was 0.5 oz larger. I didn't want to waste half an ounce of fish. It's nice to think I could have eaten it later, but the likelihood of that was slim. So I ate it. <BR> <BR> It was very enjoyable to view my daily nutrition feedback and see I was "in the range" for every nutrient except calcium and Vitamin D. Why I was slightly low on calcium... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 19:48:49 EST Day 1: Mission accomplished http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5676501 I was able to enjoy the Easter buffet my SIL prepared without too much damage. In fact, by limiting myself to about two tablespoons of each of the "heavier" side dishes (like green bean casserole), I was able to enjoy a bite without sabotaging what I began yesterday. I even enjoyed three bites of Pecan Pie Cake (which the SP calculator estimated at a whopping 834 calories per slice!) without feeling the need for "more." After those three cake bites, I gave the rest to my husband and immediate... Sun, 20 Apr 2014 17:38:44 EST