SUNNYBEACHGIRL's SparkPeople Blog SUNNYBEACHGIRL's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Being Prepared <BR> <BR> Keeping my weight at a level I like is purely for my own satisfaction. I would rather eat plates of spaghetti and pieces of cake everyday but I get a lot more satisfaction putting on clothes that fit. Keeping the weight at a reasonable level helps me keep up my energy and do all the things that I like to do and that I am willing to do. <BR> <BR> However, exercising is another story. I like getting out on hikes, walking long distances, traveling, visiting museums, shopping and ... Tue, 23 Jan 2018 12:42:47 EST A YEAR OF WEIGHT ISSUES IN REVIEW Keeping healthy is always a conscious commitment. For me, it includes walking moderately 2-3 miles most days, going to an exercise class 2-3 times a week, doing a couple of SP videos each week and ALWAYS watching what I eat and making GOOD choices. <BR> <BR> In 2017 my husband had 3 surgeries, was immobile for 2 months and had months of very slow recovery. Thank goodness nothing was life threatening, he is recovering and he is living with a lot less pain. The pressure of being a full tim... Wed, 13 Dec 2017 14:50:28 EST Persistent and Still Having Fun This has been a real up and down year for my weight and it is not over. As I changed the calendar to SEPTEMBER (yes I still have a paper calendar on the wall) I realized Fall is coming, the image of Halloween candy, Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas goodies materialized. During the Summer I enjoyed myself and chose the fun food at parties, picnics, family events and on vacation. When the balloons were put away, or the beach towels put in the washer I would recommit to making the healthy c... Wed, 6 Sep 2017 23:05:43 EST Menu Labels and My Willpower Sometimes when I am battling my willpower, I put all the blame on myself. But from today’s NPR SCIENCE FRIDAY radio show about food labeling, I realize why I have so much trouble with restaurant menus. Why it is important to look at menus before you sit down in the restaurant or to evaluate food packaging in the grocery store before you buy that box of cereal. <BR> <BR> Whatever you do, don't label the healthy stuff as "healthy"—in food psychology, that's a "red light" for the restaurant pa... Fri, 16 Jun 2017 16:57:27 EST Still trying to make good choices Does this sound like a familiar story? I worked really hard and lost the 5, 10, 15, 40 or whatever number of pounds and after 2, 3, 4 or whatever number of years I find that 3, 6, 9 or whatever number of pounds has returned. I can stay strong and maintain but when emotions (good or bad, happy or sad, up or down) or difficult life situations come on the first thing I do is eat. <BR> <BR> The past 8 months have been difficult. I get bogged down in problem solving and crisis fixing mode and... Fri, 2 Jun 2017 13:27:52 EST Recommitting to healthy choices I love food, all food, good and bad. If I am very good about staying away from sugar and starches my weight stays in the good range. But I just love desserts and the sweet treats around the holidays were a definite distraction. My January weight is not as bad as it could have been because I limited the number of treats I had. And I did hold my own through the beginning of December but we went away for 10 days and traveling always is my downfall. Add in worrying about some minor surgery fo... Sat, 7 Jan 2017 22:08:35 EST Looking to October It has been an UP and DOWN summer for me and now it is actually officially Fall. I had gotten my weight back to top of my maintenance and then watched the scale number rise. Emotions, anxiety, travels and family events have put pressure on me while I desperately try to make good food decisions and keep up with my daily exercise minutes. I have found that by checking into Spark People each day, the weight gain has not been totally awful. The last time I lost weight I did see the pounds com... Fri, 23 Sep 2016 17:50:51 EST I can't believe it is August The end of Summer is closing in on me as we move from the last long days to seeing Fall on the horizon. I know I have struggled with my Summer weight goals due to vacations, some minor health issues, family members with problems, disruptions in my schedule from summer visitors, barbecues, picnics, parties and sometimes just an “I don’t want to do this anymore.” I have managed to keep up my exercise minutes each day because I participate in the 5% Challenge. Although my weight has not come... Tue, 9 Aug 2016 13:13:55 EST So what am I supposed to eat? It has been a while since I last posted a blog and it has been an interesting and thoughtful time. There are many ways to lose weight but I have struggled to maintain a healthy weight and have really tried to work out a successful plan. This my latest approach. <BR> <BR> During my first time Weight Watchers journey to lose 40 pounds, I was appalled that they really wanted you to eat just a half of an English muffin. I had always been a bread and pasta girl. Then I joined the low fat craz... Wed, 8 Jun 2016 16:31:49 EST So it begins again My Spark People weight loss journey so far: <BR> 2009 OCT 180.0 <BR> 2010 OCT 169.0 <BR> 2011 OCT 168.5 <BR> 2012 OCT 164.5 <BR> 2013 OCT 157.0 MAINTENANCE (TOP WEIGHT) <BR> 2014 APR 152.5 LOWEST WEIGHT <BR> 2014 OCT 155.5 <BR> 2015 OCT 159.5 (2.5 pounds above Maintenance Weight) <BR> <BR> I managed to keep at my target weight of 155 for most all of 2015 my second year of maintenance. But in August I let life events interfere with my healthy choices. This included a family vacation ... Wed, 2 Dec 2015 15:18:09 EST Have you have chosen suffering as a weight management style? You would think that even if severity's what's required to keep the weight off that I have worked so hard to lose, I would just stay hard core and focused. I really, really, really want to keep the weight off but it confounds me how much I have been struggling during this second year. From the comments on my blog and reading other blogs I am not alone in this lose and then struggle to stop the regain battle. <BR> <BR> So why do people gain it back if it's so important to keep it off? One w... Mon, 25 May 2015 18:05:25 EST There will be tough times & facing mistakes during Year 2 of Maintenance I know my faults with weight gain. They are ongoing issues with portion control of foods I really like, dining out choices and my indulgence in cake with cream cheese frosting which has grown from a rare treat to a weekly occurrence. I just wish that those issues didn’t make such an impact on my weight and waist circumference. <BR> <BR> Over the last six months my enthusiasm for maintaining my current weight is fading, and some of my long-ignored temptations are indulged with abandon. Som... Mon, 27 Apr 2015 01:42:31 EST Maintenance is a struggle I have been looking for reasons why maintenance is so hard. Because recently some stresses in my life have sent me running for a fork and a piece of chocolate cake. <BR> <BR> Sometimes I just can’t stop eating the wrong foods, the foods that make me gain weight, but that I LIKE and WANT to eat. A piece of chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting reached out and grabbed me at the grocery store this week. <BR> <BR> Sure, I KNOW some foods are not great for me. But sometimes I just CAN’T ... Mon, 13 Apr 2015 02:03:48 EST CHALLENGE TO MAINTAIN DURING THE HOLIDAYS <BR> It has taken me 5 years to get to maintenance. I did it slowly and worked on adjusting my eating habits during the entire time. For the past few months since I passed my maintenance anniversary in October I have been looking for ways to help me stay at my current weight while still eating some of the foods I love and enjoying social occasions. <BR> <BR> I never really monitored my maintenance in the past and this time I do not want to gain back what I lost. <BR> A few rules I follo... Thu, 18 Dec 2014 19:24:57 EST Slow and steady maintenance program A recent study comparing results for slow weight loss vs. fast weight loss reports that after 3 years everyone gained back weight. If you read further than the news reports you find that this study was an Optifast weight loss program. After the initial weight loss part of the study, participants were told to follow nutrition guidelines for weight control for 3 years. It is no surprise that everyone gained back weight, when there was no change in lifestyle eating patterns. The study actual... Fri, 21 Nov 2014 00:17:54 EST Fall Colors of Southern California - Blue and Brown I love all the pictures of Fall colors showing up on the Internet. We often make a Fall trip to see colors in other parts of the country, such as Hartford, Chicago, and Leavenworth, WA. We have gone to northern California to Yosemite, Mammoth, and Nevada City. But this year we are staying in Southern California and we have limited Fall colors: Blue and Brown. Blue is the sky and the ocean on a great October Sunday morning. Brown is the garden changed to drought tolerant plants because o... Sun, 5 Oct 2014 16:11:42 EST My Year Of MAINTENANCE The journey: <BR> 2009 OCT 180.0 <BR> 2010 OCT 169.0 <BR> 2011 OCT 168.5 <BR> 2012 OCT 164.5 <BR> 2013 OCT 157.0 MAINTENANCE (TOP WEIGHT) <BR> 2014 APR 152.5 LOWEST WEIGHT <BR> 2014 OCT 155.5 <BR> <BR> October 2014 is a year of maintenance at my goal weight range (157-152). I know how to gain weight and I know how to lose weight. Right now I am learning how to keep at a healthy weight. It is getting easier after a year but I remain vigilant. <BR> <... Wed, 1 Oct 2014 01:23:53 EST How come Grandma's potato salad is not on the list I love the MidLife Boulevard blog site <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> The writers address a lot of different important, serious, fun and sometimes just interesting topics. This week Ellen Dolgen writes -- Does Eating Like a Man Make You Fat?-- She is reviewing a book by author Staness Jonekos -- Eat Like a Woman--. What made me want to share is the number of recent posts about regaining, and about the dreaded belly fat which does not... Fri, 11 Jul 2014 16:27:36 EST Pacific Northwest in June the rest of the story We started our vacation on Whidbey Island, just outside of Seattle. It is a very rural and lovely landscape with spectacular view of snowcapped mountains, including Mt. Baker. We stayed in a very nice B&B in Coupeville. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Picture of B&B <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Whidbey Island View of Sound <BR> <BR> Then we took the ferry to Port Townsend and drove to Poulsbo wh... Tue, 8 Jul 2014 18:11:21 EST Pacific Northwest in June <img src=""> <img src=""> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> In addition to glorious scenery there are fresh berries, fruits, handmade cheese, great fresh seafood and lovely wine. <BR> <BR> Just a beautiful place Mon, 30 Jun 2014 19:18:15 EST My relationship with the dreaded Scale Last blog in this series and I end with THE DREADED SCALE. <BR> <BR> Personally I need to weigh myself every day to make sure I am staying in a range. Even if I am not tracking anything else, I write down my weight each morning. I mark it on a graph so I can see if I am up, down or the same. On the 12 day vacation this Spring there was no access to a scale, I gained 3 pounds. Last summer I took my scale with me (yes I actually packed it!) and I managed to hold steady. There is somethi... Fri, 30 May 2014 23:06:03 EST Do I have to exercise? I look in the mirror every day and tell myself that maintaining keeps me healthy and drifting is not an option. Getting out and moving each day is important but sometimes I slack off. <BR> <BR> Before going on vacation in April, I would try to evaluate my schedule for the next day and commit to exercise minutes. But getting ready for vacation, being on vacation and then recovering from vacation has disrupted my commitment. The other problem is the physical therapy that I have been doing 3... Thu, 29 May 2014 17:42:46 EST Posting is part of the journey <BR> Maintenance is an ongoing challenge. I look in the mirror every day and tell myself that maintaining keeps me healthy and drifting is not an option. The last few times I got to goal weight I managed to maintain for a while but I realize that I need ongoing support to keep it off not just to lose. <BR> <BR> I post in SP every day. Sometimes it is just a line to say hello. Most days I post in the Maintenance team about how my food choices and exercise are going for the day. I may not ha... Wed, 28 May 2014 22:49:31 EST Making healthy food choices is not always easy In my last blog several months ago I listed what I do to help my maintenance program. I am reviewing each one this week. <BR> <BR> Maintenance is an ongoing challenge. Every day brings some opportunity to make a healthy food choice. I looked in the mirror today and told myself that maintaining keeps me healthy and drifting is not an option. And that food will not solve any problems that I am facing today. <BR> <BR> However sometimes I make the less healthy choice. I might choose a high c... Tue, 27 May 2014 14:52:33 EST Thoughts on my maintenance journey Maintenance is its own every day journey. After working at losing 35 pounds it is easy to drift into making too many food choices that lead to weight gain. It is not that one time party I went to but the small choices I make every day that lead me to over eating foods that add numbers to the scale. <BR> <BR> I read through some of the food choice problems other people write about and I think that I am glad not to have problems with things like soda or potato chips. I feel pleased with myse... Mon, 24 Mar 2014 23:26:13 EST Managing weight loss after 60 I have read through a lot of SP articles, blog and team/message posts and it is clear that the same rules for weight loss apply whether you're 30 or 60 -- reduce your calorie intake and increase your activity level. But in looking at the problem of my repeated weight gains between 50 and 60 it is clear that my body was different in my 50+ years than it was when I was younger. In reading about the Over- 50 woman, I found that as you age, your metabolism SLOWS-- by up to 10 percent per decade a... Fri, 21 Feb 2014 18:00:17 EST HOLIDAY CHALLENGE TO MAINTAIN COMPLETED Well I made it through the Holiday Season started at 156.5 and ended at my goal weight of 154. <BR> <BR> The main lesson I learned as I watched my self each day during the November-December season was that I AM GOING TO OVER EAT HIGH CALORIE FOODS. <BR> <BR> What helped me to keep from ending up gaining 5-10 pounds were: <BR> <BR> Made people who stayed with us responsible for their own meals rather than fixing food for everyone at every meal. Lots of choices in the pantry and refrigerat... Sun, 5 Jan 2014 16:02:32 EST What is your word for the year 2014? I have been thinking that New Year’s Resolutions are not always successful or easy to keep. I wanted some way to focus my efforts for change this year but in a different way than a static list. ANGELCITYGAL mentioned that Oriah Mountain Dreamer (<BR>) on her Facebook page recommended this week that her readers pick one word as a kind of theme or grounding point for the New Year. She also advised that it not be one of the "big" words like love, p... Thu, 2 Jan 2014 00:17:55 EST Holiday challenge is still here I am holding to my goal weight but there are challenges coming. Several parties and events in the next week and then Christmas. <BR> <BR> Christmas baking and cookies has been a part of my holiday fun. But this year I have put the recipe box away and just living vicariously through the baking marathons of others. It is amazing what you can find on Pinterest Do I miss the fudge and the Mexican wedding cakes? YES!!! But the best advice I read on a SP blog is that your body does NOT know ... Sat, 14 Dec 2013 15:36:38 EST Holiday Challenge Continues Well I made it through the Thanksgiving weekend. Some of the family stayed through Friday and the rest left on Sunday. I spent Monday in bed. One change I made was not to fix food for anyone on Friday or Saturday. They were responsible for going out or eating what was in the refrigerator. This made it easier for me because I could concentrate on myself and be less tempted by the leftovers. <BR> <BR> I put some of the leftover turkey into small portions and put it in the freezer. I also... Sat, 7 Dec 2013 14:38:46 EST So You Have Decided To Go GLUTEN FREE So you have decided to go GLUTEN FREE. Are you prepared to never go out to eat for Italian, Chinese, Thai, Hamburgers, Diners, Breakfast, Mexican, Pizza, Sandwiches, Seafood, Steakhouses, Buffets, Delis, Fast food, Hot Dogs, Bakeries, Donuts, and Vegetarian? All these restaurants are suspect unless they state that they have gluten free items. If you live in New York City the number of restaurants available is huge, but most other places have very limited choices if any at all. Think Paris... Fri, 6 Dec 2013 13:53:48 EST Holiday Challenge and Still Maintaining In Week Two of my Holiday Challenge my weight went back to 154.5 which is close to my goal weight of 154. For week Three it went down to 153.4. We are not in the holiday party phase yet and Thanksgiving is still a week away so I have been eating my normal pattern. <BR> <BR> I find it hard to deal with social situations that involve food and not over eat. So I am really trying to monitor my choices before Thanksgiving comes since I have time to plan for it. Dinner is at my house, so I h... Thu, 21 Nov 2013 19:32:05 EST Holiday challenge to Maintain Just had guest for the weekend and although we stayed in and prepared all the food, I had a hard time sticking to my regular portions. Something about socializing and getting together that just makes me want to munch. Did ok on the weight but I can see that the next weeks are going to present a challenge. <BR> <BR> I hit my maintenance weight in October of 154 and I am still working on how to maintain it. It has been up a little as I try to figure out how much to each so the social eating... Mon, 11 Nov 2013 16:01:23 EST Right now it seems like I need a new glass Thought for the day that I read in a blog "Instead of glass half-empty, I think this glass might be broken because it keeps dripping all over me." Right now it seems like I need a new glass. <BR> <BR> My life has always been busy, the oldest of 5 with a working mother, working my way through college, getting married, having a child and continuing to work, progressing through higher levels of responsible jobs while teaching college classes part time. <BR> <BR> Then after I retired, I thr... Thu, 7 Nov 2013 15:26:56 EST Some changes I would rather not have It has been a rough week, several people close to me are very ill. It makes me melancholy because life around me is changing and I am anxious about what it will look like. I have found myself hiding in the house and pulling back from being engaged with others. It is easier to fold up rather than add more opportunity for pain. I am involved with those close to me and will be as strong as possible to help their families through the difficult times ahead. But the effect on my life and the e... Sun, 3 Nov 2013 00:55:04 EST Small changes make a difference I was thinking about the last time I got off track with my food choices. What caused me to get derailed from my good intentions? One of the problems was not eating enough protein at meals and then the Munchies Devil would attack and I would eat anything that was available. So I make sure that I have egg whites at breakfast, keep lean cooked turkey in the freezer for snack, and have kidney bean salad with my lunch. This really helps when the munchies attack, I am better able to pick better p... Thu, 17 Oct 2013 16:51:02 EST What do you mean I can’t eat it all After-I-Finally-Get-To-Goal? First thanks to everyone who liked my blog and made it a Featured Blog Post and thank you for voting me a Motivator. It really does mean a lot when someone posts a comment and shares their story. Thank you. <BR> <BR> In my continuing process to figure out how to keep myself healthy and at a good weight, I realized that the After-You-Get-To-Goal is just the beginning of another phase. As I thought through this I have spent some time “getting in touch with my feelings.” How many times have... Fri, 11 Oct 2013 17:03:32 EST Maintenance at 60 is a different game What started me looking at the problem of age and persistent belly-fat was that I had targeted 157 as a good goal weight. The last time I was there I looked pretty good and fit into a size 12. Well I made it!!!! And I do fit into a Size 12 but there is a lot of belly fat hanging around which wasn’t there the last time. <BR> <BR> On one Message board someone posted “Cardio, strength training, and eating well have gotten rid of most of my belly fat. AT BMI 25 I had a lot of belly fat. At BM... Thu, 19 Sep 2013 00:48:58 EST Staying on a different course I just couldn't believe it when the scale number hit my designated goal weight. It was really anticlimactic, the number on the scale just came up and no fireworks or balloons appeared. But I am now struggling with how to keep the number on the scale within a 2 pound range. I am still tracking, and I get myself going out for the long walks but I wasn't sure where I was going Then I read GETFIT2LIVE <BR> <BR> <link><BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=54621... Thu, 5 Sep 2013 11:20:54 EST Oh those cravings I have gotten to a weight that I plan to stay at for a little while and have increased my exercise minutes. These cravings come over me like wanting a big fat cinnamon roll. Or the need to go out and find some lasagna to have as a snack. I have increased the amount of carbs I am eating because that seems to be what I am craving. So now I have planned more potatoes, pasta, rice and bread into my day. That seems to help, along with a little more protein. Trying to redirect those cravings ... Sat, 17 Aug 2013 23:11:32 EST And the journey continues Five years ago was the last time I saw any number below 160 on the scale. It has been reading 156.5 – 157 during the past week. 157 has been my goal weight and here it is. I should be ecstatic, bursting with pride, or at least doing a happy dance. Instead I went out to lunch and ate a fattening entrée, the whole thing, disregarding the high calorie count. Then a coffee get together at my house with a few of my friends in the neighborhood was an excuse to buy a large package of mini-scon... Fri, 16 Aug 2013 10:29:37 EST Calories sneaking up There are foods that I do not eat because they cause me physical pain, such as thick steaks and cheesecakes. It is easy not to choose them under any circumstances because I suffer the next day. I believe that they are too high in saturated fats for me. Then there are foods I love and have a hard time doing any portion control such as pasta, brownies, chocolate or cookies. <BR> <BR> In any form --cold, hot, red sauce, white sauce, no sauce, with vegetables, with meat—pasta is my favorite... Fri, 9 Aug 2013 00:05:07 EST Three down in Phase 1 and One to go in Phase 2 RESULTS <BR> <BR> On July 14 my weight was at 161. <BR> <BR> July 21 was the Start of 2 week FOCUS: <BR> Goal was to lose 4 pounds to get to 157. <BR> <BR> Weight results are: <BR> July 21 160.5 <BR> July 28 159 <BR> Aug 5 157.5 <BR> <BR> Lost 3 pounds over the two weeks <BR> <BR> <BR> How it all worked: <BR> 1. To follow the Spark Meal Plans very closely. <BR> ACTUAL: The first week I ate every meal at home, but the second week I ate out 3 times and although I made good choices I ... Mon, 5 Aug 2013 23:56:43 EST Still on the way down I am a couple of days away from my two weeks Spark Diet Focus. I may or may not reach this 4 pound goal but I will be close. But I plan to check my weight at the end of the two weeks and reset my goal. Maybe a little less ambitious. During this focused two weeks I have figured out some problems that were keeping my weight plateaued. A good summary of the issues is an article written by Nicole Nichols " 8 Reasons Why You're Not Losing Weight " <BR> <BR> When I read the article it really ... Sat, 3 Aug 2013 00:23:48 EST 2 pounds gone, 2 to go A week ago I made a commitment to lose 4 pounds in 2 weeks. Well I went from 160.5 to 158.5. YEAH!!!! So I will continue on my program. <BR> My major steps are <BR> 1. To follow the Spark Meal Plans very closely <BR> 2. Eat at the low end of my allowed amount of FATS each day <BR> 3. To stay within 1400 calories which is at the low end of my range <BR> 4. To do Spark Coach every day <BR> 5. To do a Fitness streak for 10 or more min each day <BR> 6. To earn at least 100 Spark Points each da... Mon, 29 Jul 2013 10:54:12 EST Realities of not keeping the weight off or Why am I weight cycling <BR> I am an over 50 (actually over 60) woman who has been weight cycling up and down for 15 years. Before that my weight was steady and I could actually eat one hamburger without gaining 5 pounds. This time I really wanted to commit to losing the 30 pounds (for the fourth time) for the last time. So I realistically looked at what has been causing me to gain weight and I have come up with a Constant Diet approach to eating. But it is mainly a listing of the foods I can’t ever eat again. ... Sun, 28 Jul 2013 09:47:59 EST Questions to think about What are my real goals concerning weight loss this time. What is my motivation for working on weight loss and fitness? What do I hope to achieve after reaching my goals? I am thinking about these questions because I would like to re educate my choice making ability to choose healthy. Spending time thinking about these issues is important Tue, 23 Jul 2013 01:30:30 EST Can I get the next 4 pound off? So it is the summer time and I find it easier to lose weight when the sun is shining and it is easy to get outside. I am about 6 pounds away from a goal weight for this year. So I am going to hunker down and work on exercise and eating correctly for the next 14 days to just get the numbers to move downward. It would be nice if I could get rid of the whole 6 but 4 would be fine. I have been reading the various articles and it is clear that I need to increase my exercise by about 300 calor... Sat, 20 Jul 2013 23:19:00 EST NON Scale Victories -- A Great Idea “Non Scale Victories “ a great idea <BR> <BR> STONECOT wrote about NSV’s (non scale victories) in a recent blog. She detailed out all of the wonderful positive changes that have happened while she has been working on getting healthy and strong. It really reminded me that often the healthy changes are very small each day but add up over time. Being able to walk fast a longer distance comes gradually but it helps the stamina. Also, I notice that I sleep better. Not waking up two or three ... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 23:42:07 EST Beating the vacation weight gain uglies The goal was to finish the 2 week vacation without gaining more than 2 pounds. Two pounds is easy to lose after a vacation because it is usually a result of too much salt and an increase in fats. 5 to 10 pounds means that the calorie count was too high for too many days. This vacation was a success because most days my weight stayed steady. It was at the end that the scale went up. But when I got home, it was only a 1.5 pound gain. These are the steps I took to have a fun time and sti... Wed, 10 Jul 2013 00:21:42 EST