WRITINGBLUEHAWK's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=WRITINGBLUEHAWK WRITINGBLUEHAWK'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/ Life Happens http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6348539 Well it's been a long time and so many things in my life have changed. Most notably is my health. I won't bore you with the details, but my ordeal resulted in a great deal of fatigue, depression, and--you guessed it, WEIGHT GAIN. <BR> <BR> I feel like I spent all this time building a beautiful house, only to have a hurricane roar through and completely destroy it. But what is the self-talk that you have when that happens? <BR> <BR> NEVER GIVE UP <BR> <BR> <BR> And so I'm back. Humbled by ... Fri, 14 Apr 2017 17:11:34 EST 5K Run http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5994880 Yesterday, I met up with my running group and ran 5K. I don't consider myself a runner. The 5K distance was challenging and not always pleasant--especially running up those inclines toward the end of the route. But I kept my stride and finished. <BR> <BR> I'm a slow runner; I'm not particularly athletic. But I did finish and that makes me feel proud. <BR> <BR> Today, I'm feeling kinda tired and wore down but I plan to get a light workout in this evening. <BR> <BR> I've run twice in the la... Thu, 10 Sep 2015 14:49:35 EST Another Pound Down! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5989641 Today I jumped on the scale and to my amazement, I've dropped another pound. <BR> <BR> How did I do it? Sheer grit. I don't think I've ever worked harder to lose a single pound. I think the difference-maker is how vigorously and frequently I've been exercising. I had already been recording my food intake and had been averaging around 1,500 calories a day. I added in four days of exercise--30 minutes of cardio and 20 minutes of strength training. I have been doing both about a month and had... Wed, 2 Sep 2015 13:38:28 EST The Run http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5989235 Yesterday I went running with a group for the first time. We met up at a designated time and place. I wasn't sure what to expect, but there were eight ladies at the meetup including one girl about 12 and her mother and another woman who appeared to be in her 50s. They were all very friendly and we took a moment to get acquainted and do some basic stretches. <BR> <BR> Once we started the run, I immediately fell behind, which was no surprise because I'm a slow runner. Fortunately for me, ther... Wed, 2 Sep 2015 00:06:48 EST Running Group http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5988284 A few weeks ago, I joined a running group on Facebook. I have a love/hate relationship with running so I figured if I surrounded myself with people who enjoyed running that I would warm up to it. I like running because it's a cheap and efficient way to burn calories. I dislike it because I get bored too easily and I'm just not very athletic. <BR> <BR> This group says they "leave no one behind", which is a good thing because I'm about as fast as a turtle running uphill in peanut butter. :) I ... Mon, 31 Aug 2015 18:57:01 EST Taking Stock of My Progress http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5987029 So I've been back on the wagon about a month now. How am I doing? Time to take stock. <BR> <BR> The good: <BR> <BR> I've been consistent with the exercise. I'm averaging 240 minutes of exercise a week and am splitting it between cardio and strength training. I am burning between 300 and 400 calories each session. <BR> <BR> I'm starting to see results. My arms and legs are firmer; my stomach is not sticking out as far. <BR> <BR> I have more energy. Fatigue has been a huge factor in my abil... Sat, 29 Aug 2015 20:49:28 EST Okay, okay--It's a Lifesyle http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5976921 I can be a hard-headed woman at times. <BR> <BR> The Sparkpeople mantra is "It's a lifestyle--not a diet." I've always understood what this means but never, truly internalized it. Not until I was reading this entertainment rag that had published an interview with Chris Hemsworth (?) who was voted sexiest man alive. (I would've preferred Idris Elba--but I digress). Anyway, in the interview, Chris said something that got my attention. <BR> <BR> He talked about how hard he had worked on his... Wed, 12 Aug 2015 22:52:53 EST Getting it Together http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5976240 Slowly but surely, I'm returning to the habits that helped me lose 50 pounds three years ago. I'm really starting to internalize the lifestyle change mentality and putting less focus on the week to week results and taking the longer view of truly, truly committing myself to maintaining healthy habits. <BR> <BR> This week I had a series of small victories that gave me more confidence that I can sustain these changes. <BR> <BR> 1) I tried a vegetarian recipe using an eggplant I bought at a ... Tue, 11 Aug 2015 21:49:52 EST Fall Six times; Get Up Seven http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5970772 Ever heard that saying "Fall six times; get up seven?" Or however it goes? <BR> <BR> Yes, that's me. Struggling to build good habits and vanquish the bad. I set goals to keep my food diary and work out more. I've been consistently logging my food intake for five weeks now. The final frontier is exercise, which is tough. <BR> <BR> I've been struggling with lack of energy. A visit to the doctor yielded no solutions. I don't like taking medicine anyway, so I was kind of relieved. I sought ou... Sun, 2 Aug 2015 12:01:38 EST Going soda free http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5934593 Nearly two months ago, I quit drinking Diet Coke. <BR> <BR> I had a love/hate affair with Diet Coke and used to drink anywhere from 32 to 64 oz of the stuff daily. I knew that was not good. Even my family was on my case about it. As of today, I've only had 20 oz in two months. <BR> <BR> The first three weeks were super tough. I tried to find something, anything that would make a good substitute. I am still drinking coffee, so that helped me maintain my caffeine habit, although caffeine may... Tue, 26 May 2015 14:19:36 EST Life Happens So Now What? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5932579 I admit it. It's been awhile. I could wax poetic on all the reasons I've neglected SP, but what good would that do? The good news, is I'm back. <BR> <BR> Three years ago, I used Sparkpeople to drop 50 pounds. I was proud of that--still am. I maintained my weight for a year, then the pounds slowly began to creep on. The formula that I used to maintain the weight no longer worked. I became discouraged. I regained 20 pounds. <BR> <BR> Today, I had a simple epiphany. Instead of focusing on th... Fri, 22 May 2015 14:02:44 EST Ready to Get Fit and Lean in 2015 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5845205 The last few months I've been so focused on other areas of my life that I haven't thought much about diet, exercise or my weight. I know I've gained weight, but I'm actually not distressed about it. I take full responsibility for the neglect and it's okay because I know what to do to take it back off. <BR> <BR> Up to the holidays I pretty much stuck to my regular food staples; chicken, pistachios, green beans, bananas, oranges. But in the last two months, I started eating more breads and s... Sat, 3 Jan 2015 22:49:19 EST Still Learning Important Lessons http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5796885 Today, I'm reflecting on a major victory with the scale. After months of near panic as I watched the numbers rise on the scale, I reached a truce with myself. <BR> <BR> I would continue to focus on eating the same foods that helped me lose 50 pounds two years ago and just stop obsessing, worrying and stressing about what was happening. I would also stop weighing myself. Instead, I focused on making good food choices and eating consciously. If I strayed from my staple foods, I would watch my ... Sun, 12 Oct 2014 14:43:58 EST Reunited with my Gym http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5763150 About a month ago, I switched from a commercial gym back to my good old community center. I had originally changed gyms because I wanted to belong to the gym in my neighborhood. I lasted a year before I decided enough was enough. Why didn't it work? <BR> <BR> Several factors but the main reason was because they blasted all this rough, heavy metal music. Now, I like rock music okay, but after awhile it was getting on my nerves. I brought my own tunes to compensate. Another factor was I grew... Tue, 19 Aug 2014 20:35:07 EST Sustainable Change versus Losing Weight http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5757685 I've read the literature and seen the reports. It's not about losing weight, it's about making sustainable, healthy changes to your lifestyle over time. Losing weight is a side effect of those healthier choices. <BR> <BR> But what if you've made several sustainable changes and you're still overweight? <BR> <BR> In my mind, this is where "sustainable change" ends and the whole mindset of dieting begins. Any further change becomes tough and hard to do. So now, I'm counting calories or carbs... Mon, 11 Aug 2014 16:26:34 EST Don't forget your vitamins! (I love Lucy) http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5748289 As I was reading up on nutrition, I remembered one of my favorite "I Love Lucy" scenes ever. I am sharing it so you can laugh as much as I do whenever I see it. <BR> <BR> <link>youtu.be/m-wErh2qp2o </link> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 13:34:29 EST Preventing Exercise Boredom http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5747670 A few days ago, I rejoined the community center gym that was a big part of me dropping 50 pounds nearly two years ago. I'm 10 pounds over goal and am determined to not only return to goal, but drop eight more pounds before the end of 2014. <BR> <BR> Today, I started up the strength training routine for my upper body. While I was working out, I realized that lifting weights is something I enjoy. I don't know why I stayed away so long, but I'm glad that I returned. I have to keep this in mind... Sun, 27 Jul 2014 18:17:42 EST Staying Motivated http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5747065 I put my scale away. Although I'm still celebrating yesterday's two pound weight loss, I believed I was getting too scale obsessed. I really want to focus on continuing to build on my healthier habits and doing what I need to do to remain in this focused frame of mind. I plan to avoid the scale until a week from tomorrow. <BR> <BR> Yesterday, I hit the gym for the first time in five or so months. I had been walking outside, but now that temperatures are hovering in the 100's, it is now impr... Sat, 26 Jul 2014 17:32:45 EST 8 pounds down; 18 to go http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5746511 Today was a fabulous day, weight-wise. I have dropped two more pounds and am thrilled that I have finally found a combination of food and activity that's getting me results. I'm keeping my food diary, working hard to be more active, getting patient and maintaining a positive, "can do" attitude. <BR> <BR> One area I want to focus on next is my weekend eating. I believe that my eating habits Friday through Sunday are sabotaging my hard work Monday through Friday. It's so easy to fall away fro... Fri, 25 Jul 2014 17:14:33 EST Back to the Basics http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5745757 I recently set a goal to lose 25 pounds by the end of the year. To date, I've lost 5 pounds. I have 13 pounds to lose to return to what I weighed a year ago. A 25 pound weight loss will put me 10 pounds over my goal weight and a BMI under 25. <BR> <BR> I spent some time reading old blogs and analyzing what I did to lose 50 pounds in 2012 and what happened to my efforts. I realized that logging into Sparkpeople and continuing to track my eating and exercise are just as critical to maintenanc... Thu, 24 Jul 2014 13:47:54 EST Interesting time at Zumba http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5743742 Sometimes life brings you random moments of silliness that crack me up when I think about them. Saturday, it was the Zumba class I dropped in on at our suburban community center. For some reason (probably because I was in the suburbs) I expected the instructor to be a perky blonde or brunette. Instead, our instructor was a young woman sportin' red cornrows and braids, a nose ring and various tattoos. There were about 15 of us in the class, and about eight of us were near or over the age of ... Mon, 21 Jul 2014 21:38:39 EST Another pound gone http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5741031 Feeling pretty good about my progress this week because I'm another pound down. I have to work harder to lose one measly pound now that I'm older, but I'm slowly making peace with it. <BR> <BR> The good news is that I am eating food that is not only nutritious but also satisfying. I realized that I needed to cut calories from my breakfasts and lunches, so I found ways to achieve that without sacrificing taste. For example, for breakfast, I ditched my cereal and now toast an english muffin.... Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:36:53 EST Finally! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5735964 Finally, I am seeing results! <BR> <BR> Today I weighed in and I've lost one pound. It reinforces to me how important it is to write down EVERYTHING I eat and track all of my activity. I've also realized that to lose weight, I need to be eating 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day AND exercising 4-5x a week. AND I need to do it consistently. <BR> <BR> Most importantly, for me, the line between losing weight and gaining weight is ever so slight. Only a difference of 300 to 500 calories a day. T... Thu, 10 Jul 2014 10:16:33 EST An "A" Grade Food Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5734047 Today, I'm patting myself on the back for putting together a really good day food wise. I had oatmeal, berries and a banana for breakfast, snacked on pistachio nuts, ate fish, green beans, carrots and a small portion of new potatoes for lunch, and for dinner I had chicken and a salad. <BR> <BR> My calories totaled around 1,300, I got all my fruits and vegetables in, I drank all my water, I did not consume a single soda, and best of all, I did not get hungry. <BR> <BR> I spend a lot of tim... Mon, 7 Jul 2014 19:44:09 EST Baby steps, baby steps http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5733233 There's a book I read one time called "The Four Agreements". I know that three of them are "always do your best" and "don't take anything personally" and "keep your word". I really like to focus on "always do your best." Some days are going to be tougher to deal with than others diet and exercise wise. This means that sometimes your plans will go awry because life gets in the way. Despite that, you adjust and keep moving forward. <BR> <BR> With my goal firmly in mind, I am continuing to ha... Sun, 6 Jul 2014 17:13:28 EST Feeling impatient http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5731876 Why is it that time slows down when you are trying to lose weight? <BR> <BR> Finally, after months and months of starts and stops, I've put a consistent program together. So far, I've lost four pounds in the last two weeks. So why is that not enough? <BR> <BR> Because yesterday, I tried on a skirt that was loose in the waist a year ago and now I didn't even get close to buttoning it. Depressing, but it underscores the work I need to do. <BR> <BR> Officially, I am trying to lose 23 pound... Fri, 4 Jul 2014 10:35:05 EST The Food Diary http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5730080 It's been a good week so far. I'm logging into Sparkpeople, recording my food and activity, eating more fruit and vegetables, cutting out simple carbs and cutting down my intake of diet coke. I haven't had one in two days, which is awfully good for me. <BR> <BR> Still, I have a love/hate relationship with my food diary. It's tedious to have to record everything I eat, estimate calories, measure food, etc. I prefer not to do it, but I learned an important and personal lesson about the dang th... Tue, 1 Jul 2014 20:24:58 EST Getting it Together http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5728382 Finally, I feel like I've gotten back into a groove and the frame of mind I need to adopt to drop the weight. I can never explain that "click" in my brain and what causes it to happen, but it did and now I'm the most focused I've been in a while. <BR> <BR> I've had a good week. Not a great one, because I only got 90 minutes of exercise this week, but a good one as far as food is concerned. I said "no" to treats 95% of the time and returned to the foods that helped me drop 50 pounds in 2012.... Sun, 29 Jun 2014 14:09:29 EST Took a Hike Today http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5723529 I was getting focused on dropping weight when I took a brief vacation that threw all of my best laid plans off track. When I returned and weighed in, I wanted to cry. I have no one else to blame but myself. I was mentally "offline" for nearly a week and the results of my lack of focus showed up on the scale. <BR> <BR> The good news, is, I sprung immediately into action on Saturday--cutting out dessert and bread, walking for an hour and drinking lots of water. When I weighed in this morning... Sun, 22 Jun 2014 17:45:23 EST Powering Forward http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5707432 Diet and exercise-wise; this was the best week I've had in a long time. I've been struggling to address three bad habits 1) not exercising enough; 2) my crazy addition to diet coke; 3) my sweet tooth. For some reason, I expected the scale to reward me. To my dismay, I've GAINED not lost weight, so what gives? <BR> <BR> I did some reading and learned that sometimes when you start a new exercise program or drink more water, that you temporarily gain weight. I certainly hope this is true becau... Sat, 31 May 2014 11:23:14 EST "Do What You Gotta Do" http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5704749 In a previous blog, I had written about canceling my outdoor walk because of the rain. Well, Mobycarp, my SP friend graciously pointed out that if he waited until the weather was ideal to work out, that he would not be in shape by the time summer rolled around. He mentioned that he regularly jogged in the rain because sometime you just "do what you gotta do." <BR> <BR> Do what you gotta go. It's an expression similar to Nike's "Just do it". It means stop overthinking everything and just make... Tue, 27 May 2014 22:18:06 EST Weekend Warrior http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5703796 As I continue to struggle to build and maintain healthier habits, I can rejoice in the fact that I am working my way back into an exercise routine. This weekend, I worked out Saturday, Sunday and today and feel better for having done so. <BR> <BR> My workout routine is heavy on my mind because I let my gym membership expire. Now, I'm looking for alternative ways to get my exercise in. My goal is to exercise 150 minutes a week. This amount is scientifically proven to stave off diabetes, so i... Mon, 26 May 2014 19:58:32 EST Fair Weather Jogger http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5686559 Last week I vowed to push the exercise, with minimal success. I got up and walked Monday morning, but didn't do hardly anything else until today. Why? Because it was cold and rainy most of the week. Today is probably one of the most beautiful days I've seen all year, so it was easy to get outside and walk/jog for nearly an hour. <BR> <BR> That compares favorably to the minimal exercise I had been getting, but I need to continue to step up. I pray that this weather holds out for a while long... Sat, 3 May 2014 15:15:55 EST Ready to get focused again http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5681630 This morning, I woke up with a specific weight loss goal in mind. I want to lose 20 pounds by November. It's a modest goal, yet realistic given my tendency to meander, lose focus, skip workouts and make wrong turns. it's absolutely true that I could've lost the last 20-30 pounds of my weight a year ago, but why cry over spilled milk? I own my tendency to procrastinate. <BR> <BR> My blood sugar numbers are normal and my blood pressure is terrific. I'm blessed to be this healthy at age 48 when... Sun, 27 Apr 2014 13:23:18 EST Day 1 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5592883 Today was my first day on my friends and family "Biggest Loser" challenge (January 12 to July 12) and it was fairly routine. I returned to my regular eating program, which consists of the new eating habits I acquired when I lost weight the first time around. The only thing I added was a 25 minute walk during lunch. It doesn't sound like much, but considering I've been relatively inactive for the last couple of months, it was a big step in the right direction. <BR> <BR> I checked in with a c... Mon, 13 Jan 2014 21:10:03 EST Reboot http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5591502 I've been away from my blog for awhile and not paying attention to my eating habits. After a year of maintaining my 50 pound weight loss, my weight has been creeping up. So what happened? LIFE. Pure and simple. It's a waste of time to overanalyze why. The REAL question is what am I going to do about it? The answer is I'm going to pick up the tools that helped me drop my weight to begin with. <BR> <BR> Last January, I started out of the gate like a bullet; I went on the south beach diet an... Sun, 12 Jan 2014 18:27:58 EST Strengthening My Resolve http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5537455 This morning I was on the telephone with my best friend and fellow Sparker. We lamented the weight each of us had gained and shared our views of what factors had contributed to the weight gain. As I've previously mentioned, for me it's constant fatigue fueled by lack of sleep. For my friend, it's lack of time and eating on the run. <BR> <BR> By the end of the conversation, we agreed it was time to take action. Together, we set two simple goals: <BR> 1) MAINTAIN our body weight through the h... Sun, 10 Nov 2013 16:12:52 EST Staying positive http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5536443 I know how gaining weight plays on the mind and all the negative self-talk that gets in the way of progress. Sometimes we are harder on ourselves than our friends or family. When I jump on the scale, I can see the 7-pound weight gain, but since I'm 5'7" most people don't notice it. I do, because it's all in my belly and my pants fit differently. <BR> <BR> This time around, I'm stepping up the vigilance and being patient with myself. I'm beginning to believe that my persistent fatigue is at ... Sat, 9 Nov 2013 09:38:39 EST Getting Back on Track http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5534763 They say weight maintenance is forever and I couldn't agree more. For the first time in over a year, I've gained a significant amount of weight. What's worse is that when I noticed the weight gain, I took measures to reverse it and ended up gaining more. If I could point to one or two things I'm doing, it would be simpler, but I understand there are several contributing factors. For me the best step is to figure out what the heck is going on and taking steps to reverse it. <BR> <BR> The fac... Thu, 7 Nov 2013 10:22:17 EST Do I wanna lose 17 pounds or not? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5513368 Do I wanna lose 17 pounds or not? <BR> <BR> I ask myself this question all the time. The answer typically depends on what day it is and how fat I feel on said given day. <BR> <BR> One year ago, I lost 50 pounds and have successfully kept it off. I'm proud of that, but my original goal was to lose 67 pounds. <BR> <BR> There are so many advantages and disadvantages to staying at this weight or dropping more and I can't seem to commit to either decision. <BR> <BR> Advantages: <BR> 1. BMI ... Mon, 14 Oct 2013 15:26:16 EST My Class Reunion http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5480410 My class reunion was fun, fun, fun and my hard work paid off. I looked and felt the best that I had in years, but I learned something important. Once you've been out of high school for 30 years, some of the stuff that used to matter becomes unimportant. Our cliques have virtually disappeared because no one cares anymore. <BR> <BR> Yes, it's nice to look good, but it's even better to be alive and healthy. Some of my classmates have survived incredibly difficult life circumstances and were qu... Mon, 9 Sep 2013 10:07:34 EST When is a habit a habit again? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5433229 This morning I didn't even think about it. I woke up early, got dressed and headed outside for my morning walk. Considering that I'm not even a morning person, it's remarkable that I did this on autopilot. For the first time, I didn't ask myself "Should I go for my walk?" Instead, I just got up and did it. <BR> <BR> I'm still concerned about sustaining this habit. For example on Tuesday, I woke up expecting to see a reward on the scale for my hard work because I "felt" thinner (lol). Instea... Thu, 25 Jul 2013 14:33:19 EST 100/70--Yay! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5426544 100/70 was my blood pressure reading at the doctor's office yesterday morning! She was pleased and I was totally elated because I am taking absolutely NO medication. Although I've never been diagnosed with hypertension, I've had several borderline readings in the last few years. <BR> <BR> Generally in my family, most start taking blood pressure medicine in their mid-forties and must take it the rest of their lives. I am determined to avoid a similar fate. So far, I've managed to stave off ... Fri, 19 Jul 2013 14:16:16 EST Now I get it http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5425092 I love reading weight loss success stories. I find them infinitely motivating and love to hear how persistent these folks were to shed the weight. What I've always paid special attention to was how often they exercised. I wanna say about half of these people work out 300 minutes or more a week. I used to believe that was MUCH more than I could ever exercise. <BR> <BR> But, now I get it. The hard truth is that these "biggest losers" HAVE to workout that much to stay fit and trim. They will H... Thu, 18 Jul 2013 09:20:50 EST Songs about walking? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5423462 What are some of the best known songs about walking? I know this is a silly topic, but bear with me because I love music. <em>30</em> <BR> <BR> I thought it would make for an interesting play list for my morning walks. Here's what I have so far: <BR> <BR> Jesus Walks--Kanye West <BR> Walk Away Renee--Four Tops (?) <BR> The Walk--The Time <BR> A Long Walk--Jill Scott <BR> Walk this Way--The Jacksons <BR> Walking in Rhythm--The Blackbyrds <BR> Walking on the Moon--The Police <BR> Walking ... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 21:12:14 EST Diet Coke--My Frenemy http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5422322 I've been addicted to Diet Coke for more than 20 years. It started when I was in college. I didn't drink coffee so I used Diet Coke as my source of caffeine when I was studying. I figured it was okay to do because it has no calories. Soon, I was drinking Diet Coke in the mornings as well as evenings. Since then, with the exception of my pregnancy, I have averaged anywhere from two to five servings a day. <BR> <BR> Yes, I've read all the articles about the evils of aspartame. I'm sure my fam... Mon, 15 Jul 2013 21:06:27 EST Wearing a tank top http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5420688 For the first time in years, I am wearing a tank top. In years past, my arms had bat wings and that annoying pinch of fat in my armpit. Today, they are toned and I can bare them with confidence. I'm nearly 48 years old; one day I will be too old to do this, so here I am. <BR> <BR> Although I am struggling to lose the next 5 pounds, I am taking some time once again to appreciate where I'm at right now. <BR> <BR> <em>357</em> Sun, 14 Jul 2013 12:06:31 EST Woo-hoo! Another pound bites the dust http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5418697 My plateau is over! When I weighed in this morning, I saw that I've dropped another pound. I was practically dancing around the scale. Since I'm a fan of the rock band Queen, I wanted to air guitar that riff that starts with the song "Another One Bites the Dust." THAT's how elated I am. <BR> <BR> Here are some lessons that were reinforced to me this morning: <BR> <BR> 1) Persistence counts whether you are sprinting, walking, crawling--whatever you're doing. As long as you're pushing forward... Fri, 12 Jul 2013 09:25:33 EST One food choice at a time http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5417940 I have a goal to drop six pounds by August 8th, the day I leave for my high school class reunion. To accomplish this goal, I am working hard to reduce my calorie intake from 1,600 to 1,700 calories a day to 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day. Much easier said than done. <BR> <BR> What I am hoping will work is continuing to eat the same foods but make small shifts that reduce the calorie count for that meal. <BR> <BR> For example last night, I really wanted pancakes for dinner. So I had them. In... Thu, 11 Jul 2013 14:01:37 EST Overjoyed at losing 1/2 a pound http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5415628 Never during this journey have I ever been so elated over losing 1/2 a pound. You would think I've won the lotto. That dang half pound is a powerful symbol. It symbolizes PROGRESS. The adjustments I've made to my exercise program, the reigning in of my eating. The food diary. The substitution of coffee or water for Diet Coke. My tweaks are starting to add up enough to move the scale. <BR> <BR> I'll summarize my numbers; in January 2012, at 5'7", I weighed in at 222 pounds and wore size 16W... Tue, 9 Jul 2013 14:09:57 EST