SINGINGMAIDEN's SparkPeople Blog SINGINGMAIDEN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community New Week, New Goals #1 It's Sunday night, which means the beginning of a new week is upon us. So it's a good time to give an update on my goals from last week and add a couple new ones! <BR> <BR> So I succeeded in all of my goals except for one last week. I have been walking to and from the station more instead of taking the bus. I have been moving more in the classroom. I've kept up with fruit, veggies, and water. I have not gotten to the gym. I think it's best to cancel my membership and focus on walking.... Sun, 28 Jun 2015 18:08:43 EST The Summer of Self Care Good morning! As I sit in my home office, preparing to go to work, I'm thinking about what I can do this summer to take better care of myself. Here's my plan so far: <BR> <BR> 1. Walk more! The train station is a 20 minute walk from my house. It's a nice early morning walk if I can get myself up and out. It also makes a nice, decompressing walk home. So my goal for the week is to walk one way, then catch a ride or a bus the other way. Next week we'll see about walking both ways. <B... Mon, 22 Jun 2015 06:37:05 EST A mix of good and bad.... The past couple of months have been quite mixture of things. <BR> <BR> Let's start with the bad I guess. <BR> <BR> 1. My birthday was April 11, and it was fabulous. But the only person I didn't see on my birthday was my father. He backed out of our plans with some very flimsy sounding reason. Then, when he called me two days later I thought he was going to apologize and wish me happy birthday. Turns out, he was calling to yell at me for something completely not my fault. And whe... Fri, 22 May 2015 09:58:54 EST One pair of shoes makes a huge difference..... This week I said goodbye to my favorite pair of teaching shoes. They looked like standard black flats but felt like sneakers! Very comfortable and perfect for teaching in. They died a smelly death on Monday night. So I wore my back up pair of black flats on Tuesday and boy do I regret it. They look like they'd be comfy enough, but as it turns out they have no cushion. After a day of teaching in them I was in a lot of pain and I've been sore from my lower back all the way down to my f... Fri, 3 Apr 2015 09:20:29 EST My Bucket List What is on my bucket list? What goal would I set for myself if anything were possible? These are things I haven’t thought about in a long time. Here’s my list. <BR> <BR> 1. Go to grad school for music (Masters and Doctorate, so I can teach in a university somewhere). The Masters would make it possible for me to teach voice and piano lessons out of my home. <BR> <BR> 2. That home I’d teach lessons out of? Ideally it’s in Marblehead, Salem, or Beverly. And I’d live there wit... Wed, 25 Mar 2015 20:38:52 EST Taking steps to take care of myself Well I'm home from work and I have a plan to stop this binging thing. Here we go! <BR> <BR> 1. Make a meal plan for the week and stick to it, while realizing that there is no off limits food. I can have anything as long as I only have a serving and it's within my range for the day. <BR> <BR> 2. Exercise! There is a new gym opening up around the corner from my job. I signed up today and they'll be open by the end of the month. In the meantime, I'll walk! <BR> <BR> 3. When I come h... Fri, 13 Mar 2015 18:50:31 EST An ugly pattern returns.... I thought I had kicked the binging for a while, but my latest binge just proved I haven't. I know when it tends to happen. My plan to combat it just isn't strong enough. So...time for a better plan. Anyone got one? Thu, 12 Mar 2015 19:21:21 EST Breaking Patterns For the past year I've been hopping from job to job trying to find the right one. Most jobs have only lasted a few months before something happens and I find something else. This time, I really loved where I was but I was being treated badly by the administration. I was willing to deal with it because I loved my students and it was paying the bills, but when my hours dropped from 20 a week to 4 a week I had to find something new. I found one that looks good and I'll only have hours on wee... Tue, 10 Feb 2015 16:46:42 EST Write your own story... <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I saw this picture on SparkPeople's Facebook page this morning and it reminded me of something my therapist always says. When things get rough, or when I feel like I'm losing control, he tells me that everyone writes their own story. It's his way of saying that even when you feel like crap and like you have no control there is always something you can do to help yourself feel better, even if it's very small. <... Tue, 30 Dec 2014 09:21:06 EST Making my way back one healthy choice at a time Not gonna lie. I've gained a lot of weight over the past few months. I've fallen into a pattern of overeating, especially when I'm particularly anxious or tired. Thing is, I'm getting married in less than a year and I'd love to be happy about how I look, not thinking about the extra few inches on my waistline. <BR> <BR> So I'm working my way back one healthy choice at a time. First choice? No more eating out or ordering out. That'll save money too. Instead of ordering tonight, I mad... Thu, 4 Dec 2014 18:35:17 EST Adventures in cooking and a big pet peeve Since my boyfriend and I have moved in together we've had lots of adventures in cooking while trying to find healthy alternatives to the things we love. A few of the recipes have become staples in our house. <BR> <BR> Our favorite, very easy, meal to make is chicken with rice, black beans, and salsa. We throw a few chicken breasts, a can of black beans (drained of course), a jar of salsa, and a cup of brown rice in the crock pot first thing in the morning and it's ready by dinner time. ... Wed, 9 Jul 2014 20:00:12 EST Looking back at 2013 To say that 2013 was turbulent would be an understatement. Here's a look back at what happened month by month. <BR> <BR> January 2013: <BR> My first 5k <BR> Started a regular job as an ESL teacher, loved it <BR> <BR> February 2013: <BR> Long term relationship I was in took a downturn. Lots of arguing. He was becoming more and more interested in his video games and less interested in having a life with me. <BR> <BR> March 2013: <BR> Relationship ended. Cue feelings of sadness, ang... Sun, 12 Jan 2014 23:44:10 EST Being Kinder to Myself Hello! It has been a long time since I've blogged, mainly because a lot has happened and quite frankly I didn't know where to start. <BR> <BR> It all started about a month ago. I ended the 3 year relationship between me and my (now ex) boyfriend. It's a long story that still makes me angry but it all boils down to the fact that playing video games with his friends was more important than spending time with me. It left me feeling like he was basically using me for a free place to live w... Sun, 31 Mar 2013 18:53:51 EST Things are looking up! Things have gotten much better since my last post. First, I got to speak with the lovely ladies from SparkPeople Radio, Karen and Lily. That was an amazing experience and the start of things getting better for me. <BR> <BR> Work got better too! It turns out I really enjoy the class I've been subbing in and they like having me there. So there will be some teacher/class shuffling, but I will get to keep that class! Between that and my Explore Boston group I have a solid 17 hours a week ... Wed, 20 Feb 2013 13:52:50 EST Fake it til you make it? Between my current anxiety level and my class getting canceled my confidence level is shot. It's been shot since last week actually and it's starting to show. My boss noticed and offered some encouragement along with telling me that sometimes I just have to pretend I'm confident even if I'm not. <BR> <BR> My question to you is this: How do you do that? I have tried and I apparently haven't figured it out yet. I'd love to hear your ideas, especially since it's starting to bleed through ... Tue, 5 Feb 2013 19:37:07 EST Having a rough time I'd say that my anxiety level is high but that's an understatement. The last week of my life has just, for lack of a better word, sucked. <BR> <BR> It started off with my physical on Monday. As you can see in my prior post that was fine. It went well actually. The trouble started that night with a fight with someone I love very much. That fight lasted until Tuesday night. It's resolved now but things are still weird. <BR> <BR> I woke up around 4am on Wednesday to a major panic att... Mon, 4 Feb 2013 12:20:15 EST After my physical... Good morning! It's been a couple of weeks since I posted so here's an update. <BR> <BR> My physical: I got a mostly clean bill of health at my physical on Monday. Vitamin D is a little low but that's all my doc was concerned about. Nothing else on the blood work concerned her. That's a new one for me! <BR> <BR> My weight: In the mid 160's. It's been this way for about a month. I'm not complaining! It hasn't gone up and that makes me happy. I'd like to see it get down to about 150... Sun, 3 Feb 2013 09:01:42 EST Eating on a schedule Today's SparkCoach challenge is to eat on a schedule. For example today would probably be breakfast at 8, lunch at noon, dinner at 5. If I'm hungry in between maybe a snack at 10, 2, and 7. <BR> <BR> I've done a similar things before. Liked and disliked it. Liked it because I knew when exactly I would be eating next and had my food planned out. Disliked it because if something disrupted my schedule I felt like it threw me off. I'll give it a shot today and see how it goes though! Sun, 20 Jan 2013 08:12:00 EST Starting Again With SparkCoach and Today's Visualization I reactivated my SparkCoach account this morning. I realized that while I can do it alone it would be so much better to have something to hold me accountable. So here I go! <BR> <BR> Today's visualization interested me. I'm supposed to imagine going in for a checkup, getting a completely clean bill of health, and how it feels to know I did all the right things. Actually, that's a pretty helpful one for me. I have my checkup on January 28. While I'm not expecting perfection I'd like t... Sat, 12 Jan 2013 08:44:17 EST Goal Setting and Meal Planning Here we are at the beginning of a new week! I've just finished planning out my lessons for the week. I'm teaching a new class at Kaplan and it's all about idioms! I have a book called "A Year in the Life of an ESL Student" and a list of some popular songs (all with idioms highlighted). I have the whole week's lessons planned. I know what I need to make copies of and what to put in a little power point presentation. <BR> <BR> When I finished planning that I decided to look through all ... Sun, 6 Jan 2013 15:17:26 EST A little life update... I realized today that I've been neglecting my blog! Can't have that. After my last post, things got extraordinarily busy at work. I got everyone Pre-k through grade 6, the grammar school chorus, and the middle school chorus ready for their Christmas concerts. It was split into 2 nights. Grammar school went on Monday, December 17. I was so proud of all the kids involved in it! It went very well despite how nervous (ok so terrified might be a better word) I was. The next day I had a reh... Fri, 4 Jan 2013 18:27:38 EST SparkCoach challenge So, to help me shed some of this extra weight I decided to try SparkCoach. Today's challenge is to not eat anything after dinner. I've been managing to do that pretty consistently, but it's a good reminder. I've been distracting myself with jewelry making or knitting or even playing a computer game until bed time. Might be a little more challenging since I'm on an antibiotic and I'm supposed to eat something with it, but I can make it something healthy like yogurt. <BR> <BR> Other than... Mon, 3 Dec 2012 09:06:24 EST Today's meal plan My plan today is this: <BR> <BR> Breakfast <BR> oatmeal (1/2 cup dry) <BR> blueberries (1 cup) <BR> honey (1 tbsp) <BR> <BR> Lunch <BR> Tomato/spinach/chickpea soup <BR> <BR> Dinner: <BR> stir-fry Sun, 2 Dec 2012 08:15:49 EST The Wonderful World of Stress Good morning! So I haven't posted for a couple weeks now. Work has been stressful with the children's concert coming up. I didn't realize it til recently, but I've been eating my way through it. I wouldn't mind if what I've been eating had any nutritional value at all, but it doesn't. Just ask the empty package of Oreos.... <BR> <BR> Can't do it anymore. My body is upset with me. My clothes are starting to feel too snug. I'm starting over today! Thu, 29 Nov 2012 09:39:46 EST My first walk/run!! I did my first walk/run at the gym yesterday. I expected it to exhaust me, but it felt really good! Doing it again today. Sat, 17 Nov 2012 10:06:28 EST Goal setting and making long term plans My long term plans are shaping up quite nicely. At first, I wasn't sure what was going to happen after my job teaching music ends. Now I know I'll be teaching ESL for adults in a slightly underfunded but great environment. Knowing this and how much I'll be making has allowed me and my boyfriend to start thinking harder about our future together. <BR> <BR> So here's what we talked about: <BR> <BR> 1. Our living situation. Right now, we're both in my room in my mom's apartment. Not bad... Mon, 5 Nov 2012 09:49:51 EST Accepting Mistakes.... After reading the first chapter of The Spark and learning more about Chris I got to thinking a little bit. Well ok, I thought a lot. I thought specifically about mistakes I've made in my life. Nothing too dramatic really. Got married too young (terrible idea, got the divorce papers to prove it). Trusted the wrong people. Got into a wrong relationship or two. Won't go into it any more than that, not here anyway. <BR> <BR> The point is it all could have turned me off men and relations... Tue, 30 Oct 2012 20:19:33 EST Getting Sparked Good morning! So I the past couple of months have been a little rough. I'm teaching music in a small private school. I'm responsible for general music classes for grades Pre-K to 6, the grammar school chorus (grades 4-6), and the middle school chorus (grades 7-8). It's my first time working with such young kids and it's taken me a while to find my way. But I finally feel like I've found it! <BR> <BR> Anyway, I've been exhausted. When I get home from work I sprawl out on my bed and I ... Tue, 23 Oct 2012 07:20:20 EST Getting back in shape...hobbit style! Six years ago I started following Frodo's path from Bag End to Rivendell and beyond as a way to get myself up and walking more often. I counted every mile and compared my progress to Frodo's. I did it faithfully for a long time, but then I stopped. Or at least I stopped counting miles and have lost track of where in Middle Earth I'd be. <BR> <BR> So today I'm starting over. This time I'm following the path of Bilbo, in The Hobbit. The first leg of the journey is 357 miles from Bag End... Sat, 28 Jul 2012 11:18:23 EST The way we eat This week I did a unit about food with my ESL students. These are intermediate students, so it wasn't just vocabulary like apple, beef, chicken, etc. It was about the way we eat. We read about several different popular weight loss programs. After we read, I asked them what they thought about each program and their response was the same each time. "This is crazy!" <BR> <BR> We also discussed how eating habits in the U.S. are different from eating habits where they come from. Honestly, ... Sat, 21 Apr 2012 09:40:40 EST A much needed kick in the butt! I met with my favorite accompanist yesterday so we could practice the songs I've been learning. Despite my voice being somewhat out of shape it went pretty well! And the reason she's my favorite accompanist is that she knows what I need to hear. She asked what I've been up to in my free time (which is like...all of my time). I told her that when I'm not job searching or going to the gym I'm playing computer games. She asked me what on earth I was doing that for. So she helped me come u... Sat, 7 Apr 2012 15:41:56 EST Getting started on my goals Ok. Today I started getting my space organized. Here's what I did: <BR> <BR> 1. Threw away unnecessary things. For example old papers, empty boxes, shoes I don't wear anymore. <BR> 2. Put the dirty laundry through the wash. Put the clean laundry away. <BR> 3. Made room for indoor exercise. Can't do the exercise if there's no room! <BR> <BR> That being said, I'm trying yoga. I'm starting with a simple daily stretching routine, then when I'm consistent with that I'll add another seque... Mon, 9 Jan 2012 18:13:57 EST Goal Setting My Short Term Goals: <BR> <BR> Get my TEFL certificate (4 week process, I start it January 30) <BR> Find a job teaching/tutoring ESL <BR> Get my space organized <BR> <BR> <BR> My Long Term Goals: <BR> Learn to drive and get my license <BR> Sun, 8 Jan 2012 11:44:54 EST Changes everywhere! My life has changed a lot in the past few months. I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts in Music. I applied to (and got rejected from) a couple of grad school programs. I also applied (and got accepted to!) an internship program in northern Italy. <BR> <BR> Originally the internship had me teaching English in one school from the end of September until the end of December. A week after I got accepted they offered me a second school that would extend my time there until the first week in ... Tue, 23 Aug 2011 10:25:26 EST Resetting my eating habits Ok so it's the middle of the semester and while I've gained no more than 5 pounds, I'd like it to stop there. So time to reset my habits again! It's not an easy thing to do at school. The "healthy options" here are gigantic salads which look good but they're loaded with fried chicken, cheese, and full fat dressing. more than 600 calories in one of those puppies! A slice of pizza is better than that! My back isn't great, so carrying loads of extra stuff so I can eat better isn't the bes... Wed, 2 Mar 2011 08:03:49 EST Winter Break weight loss... Ok so here I am after another semester at good old SSU. I managed to get myself down to between 162 and 164 pounds. It fluctuates depending on how much I give in to the junk cravings. But I've also managed to go down a pantsize. In September I was solidly in a 14. Now I wear a 12 :) <BR> <BR> My goal this break is to get into the 150s. That give me less than a month to lose between 5 and 7 pounds. I can do that! Thu, 23 Dec 2010 22:53:26 EST Getting back on track... So I've fallen off the wagon the past week or so. I'm back today though! Started the day with a strawberry banana smoothie. I plan on a half hour walk before lunch and one before bed tonight! Thu, 22 Jul 2010 10:06:50 EST Oh yesterday.... I started with the best of intentions and then I went to the beach with a friend and fell prey to beach food...needless to say I blew it. But today is a new day! I started the day with my usual coffee, a strawberry smoothie (frozen berries, ff greek yogurt, and skim milk), and I have my Nalgene bottle filled with water that will be filled up at least twice if not three times today. Thu, 8 Jul 2010 11:55:39 EST Feeling Good!! So I've been back to using this site faithfully for about 2 weeks now and I've lost 8 pounds by doing so! Hope I can keep it up. I'm feeling really good lately. Not as many parts of me jiggle. I have energy. I like recent pictures of myself! Wed, 7 Jul 2010 08:56:10 EST Getting myself back on the right track! So I set a goal to lose 5 pounds before classes start again. I can do that. Classes start January 20. So today I've logged all my food so far. I've done a strength training workout and a WATP workout. Mon, 28 Dec 2009 15:26:42 EST I'm back! I made it through the whole semester without gaining more than 3 pounds. Actually I gained and lost the 3 pounds continuously. I bounced between 177 and 180 all semester. But I must admit I feel all bloated and gross right now. I know that's thanks to not drinking enough water and not eating enough fruits and veggies. <BR> <BR> So I'm back. I'd like to lose 5 pounds between now and January 20th, which is when my classes start again. Tue, 22 Dec 2009 10:11:06 EST Officially getting away from Jenny Craig Ok so I think I mentioned this in other places, but the people at Jenny Craig have given me a hard time about leaving. In order to no charge me any more money, they want a note from my doctor saying I can't eat the food. I thought he could just write it, but it turns out he wants to see me first. So I have an appointment on Monday morning. I'm wondering why he wants to see me, but I need a new prescription for my BP meds anyway so it's not that big a deal. Fri, 28 Aug 2009 16:42:34 EST Good WI this week! I jumped on the scale this morning before before breakfast and I am so happy with the result. 3 pounds down this week, 12 pounds in the past 3 weeks! That's more than I've ever lost in such a short time. Here's to hoping it keeps up (erm...down?) Wed, 26 Aug 2009 14:25:42 EST Keeping the momentum going! After trying it on my own for a long time, I finally joined a popular weight loss program. But here's the problem. It's expensive and they want me to buy all their packaged, overly processed food. So I'm saying buh-bye to them and giving this place a real shot. The good thing about the program I was on is that it gave me a nice jumpstart. I lost 9 pounds in two weeks on it. I want to keep the momentum going! I'll be here every day journaling all my food and exercise. Tue, 25 Aug 2009 19:46:41 EST Getting back on track I've been a member on this site for a long time, but I don't think I've ever used it regularly. Last week, I got tired of feeling so gross. I haven't gained weight, in fact I've lost a great deal of it but I recently got into a nasty pattern of stress eating and being really sedentary. So I logged back into my account here, reset my goals, and I have successfully tracked all my food for at least 5 days out of 7. Tue, 13 May 2008 12:40:29 EST