VHALKYRIE's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=VHALKYRIE VHALKYRIE'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/ I'm a Size 6! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6307819 I put on a pair of old size 6 work pants this morning, and they fit perfectly! No tugging, pulling, or squeezing to get in, and I can sit down in them without splitting my seat. <BR> <BR> I tried putting on a pair of size 4, but they are too snug. I can get them over my rear and zip up, but sitting down would be ill advised. If I stood up at work all day, it might be fine - as long as I didn't eat or drink anything - lol! <BR> <BR> So far everything is going according to plan. Everyth... Mon, 30 Jan 2017 11:01:10 EST Recomposition: It's Working! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6303228 Today was my 30 day review at my gym with my new program. <BR> <BR> To Recap: <BR> <BR> Exercise: <BR> Monday: Peak High Intensity Interval Training (max HRM conditioning) 30-45 minutes <BR> Tuesday: Pilates / resistance training <BR> Wednesday: Low Intensity Interval Training (fat burn) 45 minutes <BR> Thursday: Pilates / resistance training <BR> Friday: Medium Intensity Interval Training (conditioning/fat burn) 45 minutes <BR> Saturday/Sunday: Rest or recreational activities <BR> <BR> Nu... Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:18:36 EST New Direction, and Staying the Course http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6302476 Every time I change my routine to do something that seems backwards to the way I used to do it, I have a few days of anxiety. "Am I really doing the right thing?" <BR> <BR> It's a natural reaction. And I know it will pass. <BR> <BR> The first week of eating 1800 calories, and I'm feeling pretty good. I kept thinking to myself, "Is this really a good idea? Am I going to gain weight?" Each morning I stepped on the scale, expecting the worst. Each morning my scale weight stayed the same.... Sat, 21 Jan 2017 11:04:05 EST Eat More, Move More http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6301899 Today wraps up my first week of my new eating plan. <BR> <BR> I haven't talked much about why I am changing my fitness and nutrition regime. Basically, I met my goal weight just before the holidays, but my body doesn't look exactly the way I want it. I'm still too flabby. So, I need to work on my body recomposition, not necessarily weight loss. <BR> <BR> My goal isn't to be a skinny little bean pole. I don't care about skinny jeans. I want to be able to snowshoe, hike or ski all day an... Fri, 20 Jan 2017 10:54:06 EST Progress, One Improvement at a Time http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6301323 My calorie tracking programs are all freaking out over how many calories I am eating. I've reset them for 'maintenance' to quiet them, even though my goal is body recomposition. <BR> <BR> My new gym is a little out of my element. The clientele who go there tend to be younger, and extreme fitness types. It's simultaneously intimidating and inspiring. I see women who look like fitness models lifting heavy weights. They aren't bulky or masculine looking at all. <BR> <BR> Example: <BR> ... Thu, 19 Jan 2017 11:41:19 EST The Plan for the Next 3 Weeks http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6300687 I didn't lose any weight in December, but that was to be expected. Between our cross country move, selling our house, settling into a new routine at work, and the holiday cookies/pies, it was never going to be the right conditions. However, I maintained my weight through the holidays and the same jean size, which was my goal for the remainder of last year. <BR> <BR> Now that it's January, it's time to get back to work. I already have a new exercise routine, and readjusted my dietary goals... Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:52:17 EST How Do You Eat 1800-2000 Calories Per Day? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6299947 I put together a tentative meal plan to try and push my calories up to 1800. I'm finding it quite challenging. <BR> <BR> Here's my plan for today's menu: <BR> <BR> Breakfast: (426 calories) <BR> 2 hard boiled eggs <BR> Plain whole milk yogurt with blueberries, hemp hearts, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, and shredded coconut <BR> <BR> Lunch: (444 calories) <BR> Leftover NY Strip Steak <BR> Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes <BR> 1/2 Avocado <BR> <BR> Dinner: (486 calorie... Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:28:21 EST 1800 Calories Per Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6299876 After the results of my RMR test, I'm in the surprising position of having to eat *more* calories in order to meet my goals. I followed the standard dietary advice for years that I must restrict calories to be between 1200-1600 per day based on estimates that my RMR is 1180, plus exercise. My real RMR is 1883, not including exercise, so I have been vastly undereating for my needs. <BR> <BR> It's more difficult to eat that many calories than it seems. It's not a blank check to eat anything... Tue, 17 Jan 2017 09:54:06 EST Resting Metabolic Assessment http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6299484 A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about taking an Active Metabolic Assessment where my fat burn was measured during various levels of exercise exertion. In this way, I am able to better tailor my activities for my goals. <BR> <BR> Yesterday, I took a Resting Metabolic Assessment where my resting metabolic rate (RMR) was tested. Resting metabolic rate is the basic calorie burn necessary to keep your brain, heart, liver, kidneys, etc running. Basically, how many calories are necessary to keep ... Mon, 16 Jan 2017 19:46:12 EST Resistance Training Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6286914 Resistance training is my biggest weakness in my fitness goals. I know it's good for me. I'm just not consistent or disciplined in doing it. <BR> <BR> Mostly it's because I don't know what I'm doing. I would actually love to be one of those people that walks right in, picks up some weights, and rocks it. <BR> <BR> I'm floundering around. I don't do it because I'm worried about doing it wrong. <BR> <BR> Fortunately, this came up in my Spark feed today. <BR> <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople... Thu, 29 Dec 2016 09:44:54 EST Active Metabolic Assessment Results Part 4 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6286711 Today I completed Day 3 of my Active Metabolic Assessment plan. Wednesday's workout is a light "base interval" where I stay within Zone 1-2 of my max heart rate. <BR> <BR> I was experimenting with my app and it didn't do what I expected, so my info wasn't saved in a nice breakdown sheet like last time. I did get screencaps of my graphs, though. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/cce878c7-f43f-4eb1-b9fc-d6750e350277.jpg"> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople... Wed, 28 Dec 2016 22:37:00 EST Active Metabolic Assessment Results Part 3 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6285978 Last night I completed the first set of my 4 week program based on the results of my Active Metabolic Assessment I took last week. <BR> <BR> The charts I got from my assessment are quite nice. It's very educational and helpful to see the information laid out in clear terms. Here are samples: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/d6166a5b-e4d1-4f0e-8336-b6195ae209e3.JPG"> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/283f1685-3b57-4328-93ad-d07130645439.JPG"> <... Tue, 27 Dec 2016 12:05:08 EST Active Metabolic Assessment Results Part 2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6284678 Continued from my last blog... <BR> <BR> I got the results of my active metabolic assessment from the gym today. It was a test that scientifically measured my real metabolic response during various levels of exercise intensity. I wore an oxygen mask that looked similar to this one, and was hooked up to a computer to record my VO2 max and fat burn: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/aa2174c8-77e7-44cf-b89a-ceef60275f95.jpg"> <BR> <BR> <link>eatingacademy.com/how-a... Fri, 23 Dec 2016 22:34:11 EST Active Metabolic Assessment Results Part 1 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6284572 As mentioned in my last blog, I purchased an active metabolic assessment as part of my new gym package. I went to my appointment yesterday to get tested, and got my results and workout schedule today. <BR> <BR> During the assessment, I wore a mask that recorded my oxygen levels, fitness level, and fat burn during differing stages of physical exertion. The result is I have a very personalized data sheet on what my real 'fat burn' zones and heart rate max are, not just based on broad statist... Fri, 23 Dec 2016 15:10:12 EST Metabolic Assessment http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6284196 Hello again, Sparklers! Hope you are staying healthy and happy through the final stretch in the holidays! <BR> <BR> Just a quick update. I'm doing great. Still hanging in there and maintaining my weight. My goal is just to maintain. I won't worry about active weight loss until after the New Year. I joined a new gym, and I am swinging by there on my way home from work. Exercise is a great way to end the day, and it helps me unwind. <BR> <BR> One of the products they sell at this gym i... Thu, 22 Dec 2016 12:41:19 EST Maintaining Through the Holidays! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6280373 Hello, Sparklers! Hope you are all having a wonderful holiday season, and all is going well as we end 2016! <BR> <BR> For me, I mostly met my goal of losing weight and getting back in shape this year. I gained too much weight during a rebound, and I didn't lose all of it, but I made great progress. My old clothes fit, and that is making me feel better. I'm no longer hiding under bulky, draping clothing. <BR> <BR> We had a lot going on all at once. Two hurricanes, one with an evacuation... Tue, 13 Dec 2016 11:24:12 EST Happy Thanksgiving! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6270829 Hiya, Sparkfriends! Long time no see! How is everyone doing? <BR> <BR> Last I wrote, we were preparing to move to Colorado. Well, we're here! It was an interesting adventure getting our house packed up, cleaned up for sale, then traveling for 4 days cross country with the cat as my co-pilot. We all made it safely, but are still in process of getting settled. There are still boxes everywhere, but it's getting better. At least I have a somewhat clean spot on my desk. <BR> <BR> Somehow ... Tue, 22 Nov 2016 17:42:01 EST The Big Storm: Hurricane Matthew http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6256321 So much has happened in a short period of time. Let me try to recap. <BR> <BR> My husband and I went on a lovely vacation to Victoria BC at the end of September. We flew into Seattle, then took a high speed catamaran trip to Victoria for a weekend. While on the boat, we were seated with a couple (Donny and Shannon) from Edmunds, WA who were going there to stargaze the royals, Prince William, Kate and their two children. The royals happened to be vacationing in Victoria, and they made th... Mon, 24 Oct 2016 10:37:31 EST My Life Has Gone Nuts! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6249563 Long time no blog, and so much has gone on! I'll have to do the quick version and fill in the stories later. <BR> <BR> My husband and I went on vacation in Seattle and Victoria. Had a great time. I got a cold a couple of days before we went home, which knocked me on my rear. <BR> <BR> We got home, and Hurricane Matthew was heading right for us. I was really sick, and couldn't help my husband prepare much. We had 2 days to prepare. He ran around buying supplies. He boarded up the hous... Mon, 10 Oct 2016 21:02:27 EST Vacation Day 1 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6243592 First, please excuse any typos, grammar, formatting and especially weird autocorrect word changes. I am typing this on my phone. <BR> <BR> Since I knew I was going to be navigating a sugary world once I left the comforts of my home, I opted to skip breakfast yesterday and go on an 18 hour fast. I had a cup of coffee with coconut milk for creamer. I ate one of my homemade soups for lunch. Then that was it until much later. <BR> <BR> At the airport we had a cocktail, but I regretted it. I... Thu, 29 Sep 2016 09:59:54 EST Results from my Physical http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6242689 I just got back the results from blood work from a physical a couple of months ago. I don't mind sharing the result with you all. When I first started Low Carb dieting, it was really hard to wrap my mind around eating fewer carbs and more fat. I had been raised during an era where we were told that fats will increase risks of heart attacks and kill you. I seriously thought I had a panic attack the first time I started eating whole milk cottage cheese! <BR> <BR> After more than 5 years of... Tue, 27 Sep 2016 14:16:59 EST Change in Goals http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6242542 I'm changing my goals for the rest of the year. I knew September would be busy with work travel, vacations and my birthday, so I figured that I would be maintaining my weight through the month. <BR> <BR> I had planned to get back to work on weight loss in October, but I'm not sure how realistic that is going to be. It's now starting to head into the holiday seasons, and a lot of impromptu events are going to come up. I'm not sure I can put a laser like focus on my diet and exercise that i... Tue, 27 Sep 2016 09:14:18 EST Gilmore Girls Fashion http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6242038 Something totally random for this Monday morning and a departure from my regular blogs. <BR> <BR> Anyone a fan of the Gilmore Girls from the dawn of the millenium? I ran across this article where a writer dressed like Lorelai Gilmore to gauge the reaction. Hilarious! I couldn't stop laughing! <BR> <BR> <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> <link>www.bustle.com/articles/143072-i-dre<BR>ssed-like-lorelai-gilmore-for-a-week-h<BR>eres-what-happened </link> <BR> <BR> P.S. For the record, I love DVF ... Mon, 26 Sep 2016 09:49:21 EST Winning Formula http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6241039 I've had a rough week since coming back from my work trip. I've been getting up late, not having much energy, and been pretty lazy. One of my trouble spots in the past is that I do really well with a regular schedule of good eating and exercise, then I go on work travel or vacation, then don't get back into a routine. I've been like that this week. <BR> <BR> But, I'm still maintaining my weight. I am eating well, at least. I just haven't exactly got back into my routine. However, I'm l... Sat, 24 Sep 2016 09:59:04 EST Working With Our Individual Needs http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6239010 This is the story of two very different people. One person doesn't gain weight easily, and can eat grains and starchy carbs without issue. The other person gains weight very easily when eating grains and starchy carbs, and has uncontrollable hunger issues with it. <BR> <BR> The first person is my friend Shana, and the second person is her mother. <BR> <BR> Shana is rail thin and always has been. She has never been fat, and doesn't put on fat easily. She doesn't exercise much. She can s... Tue, 20 Sep 2016 10:08:14 EST Home For A Week http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6238416 This morning's weigh in confirms it: I successfully maintained my weight during my work trip! I left and came back at the same weight! <BR> <BR> <em>9</em> <BR> <BR> I actually lost half a pound (.6), but I'm not counting it since the major number is the same - lol. It was pretty terrifying since I had no weight scale and I had no idea if I was going off track. I used a couple of ketostix as a spot check, but that was my only insight that I was hanging in there. <BR> <BR> Everyone s... Mon, 19 Sep 2016 10:21:44 EST I Survived! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6238068 It's a carb world, but I made it back intact! I checked my ketostix as a quick snapshot, and somehow I managed to stay fat burning the whole trip! The scale shows that I successfully maintained my weight! <BR> <BR> On Day 2 of the conference, they served pasta for lunch. No options at all for LC. I went down the road to our office cafeteria and paid for a salad with roasted chicken breast out of my own pocket instead. <BR> <BR> I wish one of my coworkers hadn't noticed my 'different' lu... Sun, 18 Sep 2016 19:28:38 EST Carby Conference http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6236239 Today is day 2 of my conference. I would rate my success a 7 out of 10. Passing, but not great. <BR> <BR> The breakfast provided is a carb fest. Bagels, donuts, Danishes and cereal. There is low fat yogurt with 18g of sugar. There's no protein, fat or vegetables. If there were celery sticks, I could at least swipe the cream cheese. <BR> <BR> Yesterday I skipped breakfast and did an 18 hour intermittent fast instead. <BR> <BR> This morning I brought a snack bar, jerky and nuts. I bo... Thu, 15 Sep 2016 10:16:08 EST Surviving Out in the Urban Wild http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6235100 Just a super quick update on my progress. I am managing to survive the scary, carby world out there, but it hasn't been easy. Dodging sugars has been my biggest challenge. I ordered a mocha latte, then realized that the chocolate syrup was probably a sugar bomb. I drank half of it and threw the rest away. <BR> <BR> My husband and I had dinner at a Brazillian grill the night before my flight. I avoided the caipirinha/margaritas and opted for a refreshing sangria instead. I ate well with... Tue, 13 Sep 2016 10:14:17 EST 60 Day Review http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6230615 ----Note: I am changing my blog status from private back to public. Any posts that I find as less than supportive, backhanded, or rude I will remove. This is about me, and what is best for me. If you find it interesting, welcome along for the ride!---- <BR> <BR> As summer comes to an end, it's fitting that this will be my last blog until October. 60 days ago, I returned to Spark because I had regained weight during a sedentary period. After struggling and being tired of not being able to... Mon, 5 Sep 2016 15:58:28 EST Breakfast Egg Cups http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6230469 Anyone who is on Facebook or PInterest have probably seen the breakfast egg cups. This morning I made my own take on it. <BR> <BR> I took a couple of silicon cupcake molds, and put a slice of ham and cheese in it. I cracked an egg inside the cup. I baked it in the oven until the top of the eggs were set. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/547195b6-d789-473a-a440-6de58d76a737.JPG"> <BR> <BR> Using the cupcake molds, I was able to make single serving sizes instead ... Mon, 5 Sep 2016 10:45:54 EST Sunday Shopping and Chopping http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6229901 Yesterday I went to the market to pickup my weekly supply of fresh pasture chicken raised eggs. I also picked up a package of grass fed beef burgers that were on sale for the Labor Day weekend. I went home, put it on the grill, and ate it bunless with a side salad. A bit healthier than a regular burger, I think. Instead of one small, sad piece of lettuce, I had a whole bowl full of fresh greens and cucumbers. <BR> <BR> <em>368</em> <BR> <BR> I also went to my regular grocery store a... Sun, 4 Sep 2016 09:55:31 EST Saturday After the Storm http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6229398 Just came back from my Saturday morning 10 mile bike ride. There's random debris in the neighborhood, but nothing major. We got pretty lucky where I am. It's a much cooler 76F outside, which I am very thankful for! Perfectly clear skies, wouldn't know there was a tropical storm here yesterday. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/12da4745-d760-44d5-8163-0624287756db.JPG"> <BR> <BR> Today is pretty much back to usual. <BR> <BR> I'm having my breakfast of 2 hard boi... Sat, 3 Sep 2016 09:55:38 EST Tropical Storm Hermine #2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6229056 Looks like we're pretty much finished. We got our heaviest rain and thunderstorms during the night, which didn't make for very restful sleep. Tornado siren went off once, but it touchdown pretty far from us. There were very heavy winds, but a forested area behind my neighbor's house sheltered me from most of it. Forests are friends! <BR> <BR> I'm a pretty bad storm watcher. I am terrified of thunderstorms, always have been. My parents said when I was little, I wouldn't mind playing in ... Fri, 2 Sep 2016 14:53:56 EST Tropical Storm Hermine http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6228812 Hermine was downgraded from a Cat 1 Hurricane to a Tropical Storm last night. I spent most of last night organizing flashlights and charging other light sources. I picked up a case of bottled water at the grocery yesterday. In a dire emergency, I also have some water purifiers from camping. I have plenty of calorie sources that don't require electricity like nuts, peanut butter, jerky, and protein bars (my husband eats them - I don't normally, but it works here). Low carb lifestyle has l... Fri, 2 Sep 2016 08:04:55 EST Thursday Thoughts and Labor Day Weekend http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6228286 Today's blog will be a much lighter read then yesterday - LOL! Sorry for the academia, but I felt it necessary to introduce a few concepts before I reveal results from my latest self experiment. It is possible to get estimates and insights on levels of body fat burned. Believe me, I never imagined I would ever get into this level of detail! I have found it necessary since the conventional advice wasn't helping me, and in some ways, made things worse. We're all going to function different... Thu, 1 Sep 2016 09:30:56 EST Sugar Burner, Keto Burner, Fat Burner http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6227602 Disclaimer: There are other causes of weight gain and inability to lose weight that are not related to insulin. People who tolerate glucose can do well on a high carb diet. Insulin impaired people can do well on either ketogenic diets or low-carb diets. If insulin is not the cause of your weight issues, then neither standard high carb or standard low carb will work well. Hopefully this might be interesting to you anyway, or give you some additional things to think about. <BR> <BR> This b... Wed, 31 Aug 2016 08:36:16 EST 9 Week Summary and Challenges Ahead http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6227039 Today is my 9 week summary of when I restarted my diet and fitness reboot. Here's a chart of my bodyfat, lean mass and weight progress to date: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/fae2da53-ed10-416c-9f17-39a3a8b0dc6c.PNG"> <BR> <BR> For reference: <BR> Avg Calories per day: 1500-1600 <BR> Macro ratios: 20% carbs/55% fat/25% protein <BR> Exercise: 1 hour walk or recreational cycling per day <BR> <BR> From my previous blogs, I mentioned that I am taking bodyfat and we... Tue, 30 Aug 2016 10:01:33 EST Why I Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6226401 My story is not the most miraculous around. At my heaviest, I was borderline obese, so I haven't lost the most. At the time of my discovery in 2011, I was active, but overweight, but my doctors all told me I was in fine health. Insulin resistance was not on my radar because I was not diabetic. <BR> <BR> I had no idea how wrong I was. <BR> <BR> It turns out that I did have at least some degree of insulin resistance given that I tend to put on weight fairly easily. When I switched to a lo... Mon, 29 Aug 2016 09:37:34 EST Sunday Reflections http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6225861 Yesterday hubby and I went for a day trip to Charleston, SC, which is about 100 miles from us. We had a wonderful brunch at one of our favorite cafes. We shared a plate of fried green tomatoes. I ordered a burger, and ate it with a knife and fork, of course. When I finished, I was absolutely stuffed. I realized that regardless of my LC lifestyle, the large brioche bun would have been overkill in my calorie consumption. I didn't need the extra calories from the bun. I was completely sat... Sun, 28 Aug 2016 10:35:39 EST Battle of the Diets http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6225581 Sorry about my editing on my last post. I rushed through it, and didn't get all of my thoughts down. My husband was pushing me to hurry up to leave this morning. <em>20</em> <BR> <BR> I just noticed that one of the links on my old blog no longer works. As it is one of the big epiphany moments for me, so I think it's important to highlight it. <BR> <BR> <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=eREuZEdMAVo </link> <BR> <BR> Stanford researcher Dr. Christopher Gardner, PhD lead the most comp... Sat, 27 Aug 2016 20:19:59 EST Leap of Faith http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6225265 A higher carb diet works for some people. I've never said otherwise. For people who are very athletic (marathon runners/Olympic athletes) or people with no insulin resistance, a 200g-300g carbohydrate diet will probably cause them no issue. <BR> <BR> However, the more insulin resistance you have the worse it gets. I imagine a great many people out there don't think that is them because they haven't been diagnosed with diabetes yet. Those that have been diagnosed are still recommended to ... Sat, 27 Aug 2016 08:33:44 EST Trust Nature http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6224706 First, I want to thank everyone for your support yesterday. If you can read this today, you made the cut! You are someone who is supportive, positive, and who I want to share this part of my journey with. I have temporarily set my Spark page to private. As much as I would love to be a low-carb crusader, I cannot be that person at this time. I need to take care of my own needs and clean house first. I may turn it back to public at a later time. I will be Sparking less due to work and tr... Fri, 26 Aug 2016 07:31:14 EST Less Sparking http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6224171 As I'm getting close to my work trip, I'm going to be Sparking less. Have to wrap up at work and get my things in order. <BR> <BR> Also not having much inspiration on finding things to write about. Since I've been back to Spark, I haven't really found my groove. Spark served a purpose for me in a different place and time, but I feel like a stranger in strange land. I don't really belong here. Spark can still be pretty hostile to my particular needs. <BR> <BR> Would you go to a blog o... Thu, 25 Aug 2016 07:57:39 EST What is Whole 30? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6223767 What is Whole 30? <BR> <BR> I was asked this question on yesterday's blog when I described my 45 day results and how I achieved it. I wrote that my diet framework is based on the Whole 30 plan. <BR> <BR> In summary, Whole 30 is a real food eating plan. It is eating veggies, fruit and protein - the raw basics of life. There's no packaged, prepared foods. Canned veggies are allowed due to convenience and cost needs of some people, but fresh produce is always preferred. The challenge is t... Wed, 24 Aug 2016 12:27:01 EST 45 Day Progress (with Pics) http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6223024 Today marks 45 Days since my diet/fitness reboot. Since everyone loves before/after photos, here is mine. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/1e291c51-650a-43ab-9a9f-c4c8971abd18.png"> <BR> <BR> At the beginning of July, I had a noticeable bulge in my gut. My belly extended past my boobs - embarrassing! Despite having normal blood pressure and cholesterol (no sign of internal inflammation), I had excessive abdominal fat. This is a classic sign of insulin resistan... Tue, 23 Aug 2016 09:37:36 EST Lifestyle Wellness: Hobbies http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6222640 One of the areas that I feel I need to be more well rounded on is my hobbies. Browsing PInterest and playing games is making me rather bored. When I get bored, I go on Facebook and get into political arguments with my friends. <BR> <BR> So, instead of getting mad at all the world's problems, I decided I need to get back to making DIY projects. I used to enjoy sewing and beading. <BR> <BR> I found these cute bag patterns on Etsy. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid... Mon, 22 Aug 2016 16:39:03 EST Tough Love Edition http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6222414 I'm not your best friend. <BR> <BR> Sorry, but I'm not. I'm not going to tell you that you can eat whatever and still lose weight. <BR> <BR> I am your mean mom. You need to eat your veggies and healthy proteins. <BR> <BR> This is an intervention. Are you struggling? Are you at your wits end? Are you in tears because you just can't understand why it isn't working? <BR> <BR> Let's talk: <BR> <BR> ALL THINGS IN MODERATION <BR> This is your cake and eating it too. Eat whatever you want... Mon, 22 Aug 2016 09:36:56 EST Super Sunday http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6221944 Last week went very well. I had to take a break from my routines due to feeling fatigue, but this was exactly the right thing I needed. My body responded. I'm 1 pound down and 1 inch less on my waist! <BR> <BR> So what did I do? <BR> <BR> My cycling and HIIT activities were too stressful. I wasn't sleeping well, and I wasn't thriving. I cut my activities to walking only. Walking is a perfectly fine exercise for losing weight! People don't walk enough. <BR> <BR> I noticed that my cal... Sun, 21 Aug 2016 12:27:04 EST Just Right Diet and Exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6220845 Things are going great this morning. I got an excellent night's sleep, my numbers are moving down this morning, and I am full of energy. I took a 3 mile, 1 hour walk and watered my garden. I have another pair of shorts that I have to pull up when I put my keys in my pocket, which is a tell-tale sign of getting close to the next size down. <BR> <BR> It's a shame I have to spend the rest of the day in a chair staring at a LCD screen because I feel like I could do so much more. <BR> <BR> Ea... Fri, 19 Aug 2016 10:23:49 EST