SUSUSUZZZIE's SparkPeople Blog SUSUSUZZZIE's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Transitioning to self-sufficiency I am in a slow transition to maintenance without SparkPeople. I guess I've been in this period for a few years, really. After having my SparkPeople Other Goals clear out unexpectedly one too many times without any support other than "try another browser," I reached the end of that rope. Much like my long wheel-spinning streak that I accidentally ended, my other goal tracking has meant everything to me. With too many times of attempting to guess which goals and how many of this and that I d... Sun, 18 Oct 2015 00:10:56 EST Moderation is harder than all-or-nothing This bog is really for me with intentions that I’ll be able to look back in a few months and find this little thing didn’t slow me down one bit. <BR> <BR> I accidentally ended my daily Spark streak of 1578 days yesterday. I forgot to log food, exercise, water, etc. for the first time in over 4 years. I’m sad and disappointed as silly as it sounds. Through thick and thin, the daily habit has kept me on the right track or steered me back to the right track when I’ve had difficulties. <BR... Mon, 7 Sep 2015 14:50:02 EST Trail adventure of epic beauty The beauty from this trail will be hard to beat. I feel that way about nearly every adventure but this one rates way up there! <BR> <BR> While on the trail, I reflected how this would not have been possible about 4+ years ago/pre-spark. Love the constant reminders about how worth-it it is to keep trying, to keep adjusting to find the way to maintain this lifestyle! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="h... Sun, 28 Jun 2015 23:51:15 EST Pictures from today's trail adventure Just a few pictures from today's run/hike. We covered about 13 miles/2700 ft elevation gain on a trail that I've wanted to do for a long time. It was out of range/comfort last year but a mild challenge this year. We still had legs for a lot more when we returned to the car. We beat the heat and the people with an early start and enjoyed a beautiful blue sky with amazing haze-less views - pretty special for around here. Pictures do not begin to demonstrate the magnificent views. <BR> <... Sun, 7 Jun 2015 19:46:48 EST Learning from DNFd 25k It's strange to read my name in the blog of my Spark Friend, KONRAD695. But LOL! It is an honor to help inspire some good stuff and stuff that helps me! <BR> <BR> I wrote a long reply but I decided to post as a blog purely so I could reflect back. I still may write another as I work through all of this. <BR> <BR> I DNF’d (did not finish) my long awaited 25k this weekend. I’ve been dedicated to training for this since February and I signed up for this one late last year. It’s been a long... Wed, 20 May 2015 00:40:00 EST 25k countdown and building confidence My first 25k is in about a month. The longest race to this point has been 10k. <BR> <BR> Yesterday's training schedule called for a mild-paced, mostly flat 10-12 miles. Knowing I wouldn't be contending with steep hills that I would have to hike, I hoped it would be an opportunity to finally run a full hour without walking. <BR> <BR> After about a mile run and stopping for a few stretches, I set out to run about 5 more miles out with a goal to run 1 hour without walking for any reason. ... Sun, 19 Apr 2015 19:44:58 EST The hills are getting smaller Saturday I was scheduled to run 10-12 miles for my 25k training but I was with someone having an off-day and we ended up at 6.25 miles in about two hours. It wasn’t much of a workout, but it was good to be there for someone else and I had a few moments of getting my heart rate up on some short and steep hills while enjoy a beautiful spring morning. <BR> <BR> Knowing I’d fallen far-short of my goal, I decided do an favorite but forgotten favorite paved-hilly loop in the area. I haven’t been ... Sun, 5 Apr 2015 23:52:21 EST I have lots of places to go but back isn’t one of them - 160 Flights of stairs done! I did it! I completed a 160-flight stair race (over 3100 individual stairs). <BR> <BR> I wasn’t as physically prepared as I planned but I got it done. I was more concerned about the mental challenges but in the end, I was prepared for that too. <BR> <BR> Pre-race concerns: <BR> Confined space <BR> Heavy air in not-so ventilated space (and again hot sweaty people exhaling) <BR> Smelly-sweaty people in general (crammed into small space) <BR> Being slow and holding up the fast people <BR> B... Sat, 24 Jan 2015 20:43:27 EST Beautiful Trail Run Saturday The views were some of the best we've ever enjoyed. I felt strong and good. I think a 25k may be in my future. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Goats on rocks above lake <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Mt St. Helens on horizo... Sun, 5 Oct 2014 19:18:21 EST September Refocus I've reached some goals this summer and it's time to think about what's next. Over the last many months, my aim has been related to physical-activity pursuits; it's time to get some of the basics back to a level that will help me reach my weight goals and will support other improvements. This blog is more about getting my brain redirected...why. <BR> <BR> - I have my annual physical in a couple months and I really want to show measurable progress. I'm so annoyed for putting off getting i... Mon, 1 Sep 2014 22:15:51 EST Hike with Payoffs A lot of our hikes this summer have been for conditioning or training. Today we hike a trail with two great pay offs! <BR> <BR> It was great to feel strong and in-control on some steep and challenging sections. It was great not to be passed but to do the passing. <BR> <BR> We can't wait to try this hike again on a sunny day. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR>... Sun, 31 Aug 2014 22:35:14 EST Big mid-term goal reached 2800 feet up in 1.8 miles <BR> <BR> <em>248</em> <BR> More leg and lung burning fun for another mid-term goal. Very good workout for the body, mind and soul. <BR> <BR> Sharing some pictures. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=" Mon, 18 Aug 2014 22:35:11 EST Stadium Stair Race - 816 Stairs Up and 816 Stairs down Today was a training opportunity for a steep hike/climb in about 3 weeks. A stair race in a local historic stadium benefiting a foundation that provides sanctuary to abandoned, abused and neglected dogs and cats and much more. <BR> <BR> It was hard! At the top of the first run of 60 stairs my legs were starting to shake. I burned through my reserve energy too fast. Note to self, remember to eat more ahead of more strenuous activities. A good reminder (I need to put more focus on the fue... Sun, 3 Aug 2014 20:59:12 EST Hike pics from weekend and a bit of a scare Two Hike Saturday - One ended at a water crossing running too fast and deep. The other was a short group hike with coworkers to a beautiful water fall. <BR> <BR> One Hike Today - Our most challenging elevation gain to date and a little more than 5 hours of hiking/moving time. It looked like the weather was going to clear out but instead the rain came on strong and trail conditions deteriorated so we cut the trip short. I felt strong and good navigating what seemed like a vertical climb o... Sun, 29 Jun 2014 21:36:24 EST Active Weekend - Cake Making, Hiking, Running & Kayaking As mentioned a couple days ago, hubby's old truck was stolen. When we thought we'd never see it again - assuming it was taken for parts, we were on the road to acceptance. <BR> <BR> Acceptance turned to sadness and a sick feeling when we saw what was left after being recovered in a ditch. (Not posting pics because I hate looking at it.) The thieves took the engine, the drive, the transmission, the hood, the grill, the front fenders and more. Pretty much all that was left is the cab, t... Sun, 22 Jun 2014 23:07:13 EST Almost 1400 of these <img src=""> <BR> <BR> 388 up... <BR> ...then down <BR> <BR> repeat a couple times <BR> <BR> do the long-middle section an extra time before going all the way down the final round <BR> <BR> <BR> Felt like I was going to toss my breakfast a few times but I'll get stronger <BR> <BR> quads were burning from time to time <BR> <BR> the downs made excellent opportunities for recovery - but the calves will pay for it tomorrow or the next... Sat, 14 Jun 2014 23:52:35 EST Can strength exercise "sold" for aesthetic reasons make me stronger? I have a question that I probably should post on the Fitness and Exercise message board but I wanted to start here. <BR> <BR> I feel like I should know better and this is a silly question, but you know what they say about questions... <BR> <BR> As I've mentioned previously, I'm preparing for a 2800 ft hike that is the equivalent of over 2800 stairs. I've been doing research and working out my game plan for strength training to accompany lots of incline and stair work. I've found a lot ... Mon, 2 Jun 2014 23:15:43 EST 2nd 10k done <em>365</em> <BR> I completed my 2nd 10k this morning and I improved my time from the first by more than 20 minutes. I'm thrilled with the improvement however this course was not as challenging as the first. And I started off the first 1-2 miles of 10k number one way too fast for me, making it difficult to manage my pace. The roller coast-like hills of that one made it nearly impossible to find recovery on the flats and downhill sections like normal. <BR> <BR> Regardless of differe... Sun, 1 Jun 2014 20:49:04 EST Last Week Recap and This Week Focus Last week recap: <BR> - I tried to find bulgur (do not want quick cooking) but so far no luck. I have some recipes, now I just need the grain. I may purchase online but I'd like to try it first. <BR> - Ate what was planned 5 days. Salmon only 2 days. Haven't done my best this holiday weekend. <BR> - At least 10k steps all 7 days (average just under 14k/day) <BR> - Sat. hike fell short of goal by about 300 feet but still good. <BR> - Signed up for 10k (husband is volunteering) <BR> - Didn... Mon, 26 May 2014 21:03:45 EST Sat. Hike pic and training I have a goal in August to complete a particularly steep hike (2800 ft up in 1.8 miles). It's a big and important goal for me. Saturday morning we revisited a special hike we haven't hiked since Jun and Dec 2012 for some hill work. It is about 1700 feet up in two miles. Much of it is like climbing stone stairs up the steep slopes. It's a tough hike (though some guides call it moderate). I cannot imagine adding another 1100 feet of elevation gain in roughly the same distance. <BR> <B... Sun, 25 May 2014 23:44:30 EST Prepping to do better this week This week's focus: <BR> - Salmon 3 days <BR> - Do something with my beets <BR> - Buy bulgur this weekend <BR> - Eat what is planned <BR> - 10k steps per day <BR> - 2000 feet elevation hike/run this weekend <BR> - Decide if doing 6/1 10k or sign up to volunteer <BR> - Kayak on a leg rest day <BR> - Core work <BR> - Work on ST to help with IT Band issues <BR> - Meditation <BR> - Read (lot of business reading needed) <BR> - Keep work time balance (and remember how much you gave las... Sun, 18 May 2014 21:43:50 EST Urban Hike - over 9 miles Just a few shots from today's beautiful urban "hike" - What I somehow didn't capture was the numerous stairways that we climbed and crazy-beautiful trees and bushes in full bloom. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=" Sat, 10 May 2014 22:16:23 EST Today I will... (day 4 plus day 3 update) 5/8/14 <BR> <BR> Today I WILL eat what I planned and nothing more. <BR> Today I WILL get at least 10,000 steps <BR> Today I WILL stretch <BR> Today I WILL reflect and be grateful at the end of the day <BR> <BR> I started the day tired and in a particularly good mood - I think some work challenges are weighing on me. I haven't been sleeping well - waking up around 1 AM the last few nights. <BR> <BR> Food fail. After reaching my step goal in creative ways (BTW major win and some lesson... Fri, 9 May 2014 13:32:02 EST Today I will... (day 2) 5/6/14 <BR> Today I WILL eat what I planned and nothing more. <BR> Today I WILL get at least 12,000 steps (and at least 4000 by noon) <BR> Today I WILL do something unexpected for my husband <BR> Today I WILL reflect and be grateful <BR> <BR> I did much better with food but not where I want to be. I got over 13000 steps with 3000 by 1:00 PM. I did a couple chores that hubby normally takes care of. He didn't notice yet, but that's ok - I wasn't doing it for recognition. I didn't specifica... Wed, 7 May 2014 09:34:42 EST Today I WILL... Today I WILL eat what I planned and nothing more <BR> <BR> Today I WILL get at least 12,000 steps (and at least 4000 by noon) <BR> <BR> Today I WILL do something unexpected for my husband <BR> <BR> Today I WILL reflect and be grateful <BR> Tue, 6 May 2014 10:10:30 EST Finally taking action and putting an end to my going through the motions phase I'm on my final day of a week off from work. I've used a bit of my vacation to reflect (again) to look for inspiration and to kick start a drive to make the right-for-me choices again. <BR> <BR> I started my day with a walk with a couple girlfriends and I packed a box clothes that are too big for me to take to Goodwill. I'm getting rid of those clothes to make it harder to slide up a size. <BR> <BR> I've reset nearly all of my other goals. It is sort of freeing to start over. (Streaks I... Mon, 28 Apr 2014 17:50:29 EST Back on the trail, new shoes and working through a slump Hubby and I enjoyed our first trail run in quite several weeks. We did an easy 5.5 miles with about 400 feet of elevation gain (300 ft in a short span). I haven't been on the trails since my 10k last month. (A couple 5 AM trail runs don't count because I can't see outside my headlamp beam). The sunshine and beautiful springy weather were just what we both needed today. <BR> <BR> I was able to try new trail running shoes for a maiden voyage and I think I have a winner. I didn't think... Sun, 23 Mar 2014 22:13:30 EST First 10k, a 10k trail race - Done! Beautiful location. <BR> It was windy but it got much worse after I was done. <BR> I didn't have a real goal other than finish, have fun and hopefully get done within 2 hours. <BR> I had fun and I got done in 1 hour and 50 minutes. Not fast but it was hilly and I had to walk up hills more than I expected. <BR> <BR> A few shots. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I passed this guy going up hill :) <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkp... Sun, 16 Feb 2014 22:29:05 EST Today 8.39 mile run/walk on trails including some tough hill repeats <em>363</em> My goal was to do 7 miles today. <em>248</em> <BR> <BR> I estimate that I ran at least 2/3rds - 3/4th of the total distance/time. <BR> A slow pace but still running. <BR> <BR> It was sometimes difficult to talk myself in to continuing the run or picking it back up but I was motivated by knowing it was making me stronger, especially when I didn't want to continue. <BR> <BR> I did it by myself. I used to have to have my husband or a friend to get out there. I've been do... Sat, 1 Feb 2014 22:02:26 EST Challenge this week: Increase sleep to 7 hours per night To do this I will: <BR> - go to bed by 9 PM or earlier and at least by 8:30 on days I get up at 4AM <BR> - limit the amount of time I read in bed <BR> - do everything possible to honor my personal time and stop working before 7 PM <BR> - pre-plan and pre-track my food and eat what I planned and tracked to avoid the need to shuffle/edit pre-tracked food which is a waste of time. <BR> - meditate 5 times this week <BR> - make sure TV is off well before bed (eliminate needless noise) <BR> ... Sat, 25 Jan 2014 22:53:48 EST Nearing 1000 Days of Sparking I've been reflecting on my upcoming 1000 days on SparkPeople. This reflection ties to changes I want to implement but will hold until I reach the milestone. This post is a little premature because I'm about to get busier (I don't know how that is possible) with a job change (a promotion, bigger team, but still stuck with old job until replacement found) and I'm starting to do more run-training (for sanity and just to keep pushing). With the new job, I realize I'm going to have to make c... Sun, 19 Jan 2014 22:23:18 EST 2013 Highlights and 2014 Initial Goals 2013 Highlights <BR> <BR> MILES <em>48</em> <BR> - Goal=750. Actual=878 (around 1200 miles in 2012) <BR> <BR> WEIGHT <em>346</em> <BR> - 1/1/2013=171. 12/31/2013=162 <BR> - (LOW: 4/4/13=160; HIGH following low: 10/12/13=165) <BR> - In Feb. I reached the important milestone of weighing less than hubby! <BR> - I learned that my size medium is the same as other people's size medium <BR> - I'm still 5 pounds from my original goal of 157 <BR> - Fit in cute dress for a wedding tha... Wed, 1 Jan 2014 19:01:53 EST Gravity Finally! A picture of me with both feet off the ground at the same time. <BR> <BR> I should have made this an official goal because it's been a long-time hope. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <em>248</em> Tue, 24 Dec 2013 20:06:53 EST Getting stronger! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! So much is going on these days. It's like this for so many of us this time of year. <BR> <BR> On top of all the normal life stuff, there is more work to do at me job while somehow trying to take time off. There are employee issues (1 on a performance plan, one looking for his next big thing, and 1 interviewing an exciting career move. ) There is new technology creating temporary added work for my team. Then we all have had extra vacation and holiday time off of work. You know, more wor... Mon, 23 Dec 2013 17:34:39 EST My first 5k Trail Race It was cold - very cold for us at 22-23 degrees. At least it wasn't windy. <BR> <BR> Thank you, Little Hotties in my shoes and gloves, and thank you super-awesome warm running pants for after the race. <BR> <BR> I even made a costume. What has happened to me? The Suz I know doesn't do costumes. <BR> <BR> It was a fun and challenging course but not because of steep inclines. The challenge was the frozen-tundra-like ground with numerous gigantic frozen-solid mole mounds and unseen... Sun, 8 Dec 2013 22:01:45 EST Streaks have to end in order to better them I'm sadly reporting that my 72 day 10,000 steps per day streak ended Monday. <BR> <BR> I had such a hard time getting that step streak going after surgery in Feb. I find it easier to keep streaks going than to start them. I'm determined not to falter in the early stages of my new streak. <BR> <BR> Work has really amped up as it does this time of year and I made a conscious choice to let the streak go rather than stress myself during a stressful time at work and while I'm not feeling 100... Thu, 5 Dec 2013 23:30:01 EST Trying Turmeric Tea I've wanted to incorporate turmeric into my diet for a while, mostly for the anti-inflammatory benefits - but also it is reported to help or prevent conditions from Alzheimer's, arthritis, some cancers, colds, infections of several types, liver problems just to name a few. <BR> <BR> There's a lot of info. out there on the benefits of turmeric. Here's just one link: <BR> <link><BR>urmeric </link> <BR> <BR> I looked at turmeric supplements because I'... Sun, 17 Nov 2013 20:23:27 EST Today's Trail Run Pics The sun came out today. I wanted to FEEL the sunshine on me but I went into the shaded forest because I couldn't stand the thought of pavement. It was beautiful and a little brighter and dryer than normal. <BR> <BR> <BR> Highlights <BR> *4.2 Miles <BR> *65 minutes of run/walk time (I stop my app when I stop for pics) <BR> *Run time at least half of the total <BR> *Was the only car when I arrived and the trails felt creepy for a while and then very peaceful <BR> Had the bejeezus scared out... Mon, 11 Nov 2013 20:42:41 EST Hiking-Running-Staying Fueled-Running for Points-Health This weekend I hiked/ran 9 miles with my 3 nephews, my SIL and my hubby. The boys did great and we all had fun. It was supposed to be a semi-level route but there were lots of small hills, obstacles, and puddles. <BR> <BR> I love the idea of getting more and more miles under my legs and I dream of the calories I'm going to burn but eating for weight loss has to take a back burner. Eating to stay fueled in order to go the distance and prevent legs and all from getting tired is counter we... Mon, 11 Nov 2013 15:29:49 EST Trail running in the dark Last Wednesday evening was the last group trail running in the forest at night for several months. We're moving to paved trails and tracks until daylight returns. But I hope to take hubby out a few late evenings so I can get my forest fix. <BR> <BR> I took hubby out for a hike Friday after work. He didn't love it but he isn't familiar with these trails, he didn't have a good headlamp and we have since learned that he had the beginnings of an ear infection that messed with his balance. He... Sun, 6 Oct 2013 22:51:28 EST 17 Days until 1 year anniversary of losing 100# - Goals for next 17 Days I'm 17 days away from celebrating keeping 100 pounds off for a year. I've lost 12-17 more since then and I really want to get to my overall goal of losing 120 so I can set a goal for my maintenance weight (probably around 160). <BR> <BR> My 17 day goal focus is on a portion of my existing goals that need attention or will help me solidify streaks and reach my overarching goals. <BR> <BR> 17 days of eating what was planned (only exceptions for adjustments need for activity changes and incre... Wed, 25 Sep 2013 14:03:28 EST Small steps worth celebrating Today was another busy and less than stellar work day. I sat in front of my laptop and barely moved a muscle since I sat down at 5:45 AM. I only had 331 steps at 4:00. I was also super hungry and I knew practically any meal would put me over sedentary calories. <BR> <BR> I was tempted to go to the Y but that would have meant shaving my legs (LOL) and coordinating with hubby who was not interested in working out tonight. It was also pouring rain which meant the Y would be really-really b... Mon, 23 Sep 2013 23:33:37 EST New Trail Personal Best I remember how I couldn't even make myself go to check out B. Rock State Park when I was at my heaviest and unhealthiest. I didn't want to be seen or try and block others from going up the trail as I huffed and puffed. <BR> <BR> While working my way through my first few days of the Spark-program, I made this one of my medium-term goals. Since then it has served as a measuring stick for my overall progress. About this Mid-Term goal and the hike (May 2011): <BR> Tue, 17 Sep 2013 23:22:01 EST Lots going on My parents arrive this week. It will be nice to see them but it's always a challenge. I'm trying to be positive about it. And especially try to be thankful for having parents who love me (in their unique way). <BR> <BR> My grandmother passed this weekend and it's been hard not to be able to go back and spend time with family. She was in her late 90s and lived on her own up until about two months ago. I hope I can make it to 98 and live independently like her. There's lots I could say... Tue, 10 Sep 2013 23:25:13 EST A-Ha! Or DUH! is more like it. It occurred to me tonight that I'm eating very close to my calculated daily burn most of the time. <BR> <BR> In the past I carefully noted my calories in/out in my Excel tracker and then reviewed trends and made adjustments. I think that habit fell to the side and was forgotten during one of my ultra-crazy phases. <BR> <BR> I'm still tracking but I'm not reviewing. I'm not analyzing (this is darn embarrassing!). I'm not reflecting on this part of it. I've had a feeling I was missing... Mon, 19 Aug 2013 00:02:42 EST I joined a 6 week trail running group After being inspired to run after a recent 5k with co-workers and then experiencing leg pain on a treadmill 5k, I went on an unsuccessful search for a book or information on running form, strength training and conditioning. I needed help if I wanted to better my time and to really be able to run <BR> <BR> About a couple weeks ago I happened upon a 5k running class for all fitness and running levels/abilities that was starting in two days. It wasn't too far away. It was a time of day I c... Thu, 8 Aug 2013 15:22:33 EST Goals for next few weeks 1. **Healthy Lab Results** (they were great last time don't let that slip!) <BR> <BR> 2. Hit **Healthy BMI** for next Dr. visit (then consider goal weight) <BR> <BR> 3. Get this **Goal Weight** thing done! (glider reward?) Move to maintenance! <BR> <BR> 4. **Great Fit in new dress** for wedding in September - it just fits - it won't take much to make it fit like it was made just for me <BR> <BR> 5. **Improve 5k Time**in Sept. <BR> <BR> 6. **Practice yoga** <BR> <BR> 7. More **... Mon, 29 Jul 2013 00:43:43 EST Time to use my energy for what I can control Yesterday morning I started thinking about how to dig deep to the old feelings I had when I started here (over 110 pounds and 2 years ago). I wanted to feel that same sense of urgency that helped drive my success for so many months and pounds. As much as I want to keep my old life in the past, I can't afford to put it completely away at this stage. Not only do I need to remember it, I NEED to really feel it and draw some of that energy to keep me on the right path while practicing making ... Sat, 27 Jul 2013 12:00:31 EST Planning a small change to reap big rewards One of my Spark Goals that I'm streaking is Pre-plan and track meals 7 times per week. I'm doing fine with that goal, but I'm not consistently sticking to my pre-planned meals. Not only does this mean I'm probably not eating as healthily and balanced as I should, it means I'm wasting a time. <BR> <BR> Time to get this one under control. <BR> <BR> This is a small goal I can manage right now and the success will be beneficial in many ways. <BR> <BR> Resetting that goal planning for t... Thu, 25 Jul 2013 23:13:49 EST Sat Highlights (Part 2) Raising Awareness and Funds for Domestic Violence This is a part two from my Highlights from Saturday & 5k #7 Blog <BR> <link><BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5428340 </link> <BR> <BR> I organized a work-team's participation in a 5k benefiting a domestic violence organization that was held yesterday. We had 14 on our team and a little more info. can be found in Part 1, along with more information about my day. <BR> <BR> There's a lot I could say here, but trying to keep it brief. <BR> <BR> - This ... Sun, 21 Jul 2013 15:01:42 EST