Welcome. The empty nester thing is hard but try to think of it as getting your life back. Learn a language, take a trip, join something where you can make new friends, sleep late and don't clean house. You'll soon find your nest isn't so empty. They come back to haunt you eventually!
Achieve success in any area of life by identifying the optimum strategies and repeating them until they become habit - Charles Givens
Pounds lost: 9.0
Fitness Minutes: (7,675) Posts: 722 3/30/14 9:20 A
Hi Charlie and welcome! I joined several years ago according to Spark People but as far as I know I joined last spring. Maybe I did years ago and quit but I have no memory of it (that's not unusual for me!). Don't let all the things to do and see on the site overwhelm you. Take your time. Read some of the articles and watch some of the videos - particularly on starting out on the website. Take your time - there are so many groups to join if you want - you can look at a list of all the Teams under the Community drop down menu at the top of the screen (the articles and videos are available that way too). If you select a Team to look at, when you open it that 1 team could have up to 30 forums of discussion - it's endless and there should be something for everybody. I would suggest that first you start a Spark Page and post information about yourself and pictures if you want. You can gain friends who will be added to your page as well any teams you officially join. People can send you "goodies" when you have a bad day or send you messages that appear only on your page and not on an open forum. Mind you, they are not totally private either as anyone viewing your page can read the comments. You can set privacy settings however. There is also an e-mail system and that is private. If you have an incoming message, you should receive an e-mail telling you that if you set that option up. Also, at the top of the screen where it says Help and Share etc., it will say you have mail if you do. Next I would look into the Trackers also in a pull down menu at the top. Tracking your nutrition and your exercise is important - it keeps us honest with ourselves, and lets us see how much activity we are actually doing in a day and how much food we are consuming in a day. I am diabetic so my nutrition tracker tracks the nutrients a diabetic must watch. I have other needs so I am able to add those nutrients and it will tack them as well. There are a couple of versions of the nutrition tracker. That tracker alone will take some getting used to in how to record recipes and calculate the nutritional value of an item, a multi-item dish, or an entire meal. As for tracking exercise I can't do too too much with my heart condition and other medical issues but I still work out. I just got the Spark People Tracker - I love it! It tracks movement - it isn't 100% accurate for all types of exercise but apparently very good with walking, jogging, elliptical, treadmills and bikes I understand. I'm using it for tracking my aqua therapy and am still trying to figure out where best to wear it in the water to pick up as much as it can. Next, set some goals for yourself. Don't set too lofty of a goal like I want to lose 100 lbs. by July 1st. Not only would that not be healthy, it's not easily achievable. If you wanted to lose 100 lbs. you might have a goal to lose 10 lbs. by the end of April, then set another goal to lose 10 lbs. by mid June or whatever - easily achievable goals. This will help you to not get discouraged if you are having trouble losing weight and help to keep your spirits up. You can also set exercise goals. If you go to the Start Page under the Tracker menu, it has near the top a section to set goals. Spark People will award you for your goals and people will send you goodies and you will earn spark points. These are all virtual rewards and I believe they are simply mood boosters- sometimes welcome ones. Keep it light and take it slow and good luck on your journey.
Lin from Peterborough, ON., Canada
10 STEPS TO SELF-CARE - If it feels wrong, don't do it; Say "exactly" what you mean; Don't be a people pleaser; Trust your instincts; Never speak bad about yourself; Never give up on your dreams; Don't be afraid to say "No"; Don't be afraid to say "Yes"; Be kind to yourself; Let go of what you can't control; Stay away from drama and negativity as much as possible. (unknown)
Lost 48 lbs. in 2012 & 13 but gained 20 back!
Pounds lost: 35.4
Fitness Minutes: (218) Posts: 5 3/29/14 8:39 P
Just joining SparkPeople today. I'm not sure how this whole website works, but I'm excited to learn! I'm a recent empty-nester and am struggling with this even after eight months, so I've decided it's time to reclaim myself and my time. I'm looking forward to lots of exercise/walking time with my dogs now that summer is near, and hoping to shed some pounds doing it. :-)
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