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GERRTIE SparkPoints: (63,772)
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Posts: 3,062
7/28/14 10:19 A

One thing I tell myself is "I don't have to. I can do anything I want. I don't HAVE to exercise." And that's the truth. But what DO I want?

I want to feel better physically.
I want to keep my blood sugar in a normal range, without meds.
I want to fit into my super cute "Bling Jeans"
I want to maintain my weight loss.
I want to feel proud of myself for taking actions that make me healthy.

Then I think, Well, what is it I can do to accomplish these things?

Exercise. I don't have to become a professional athlete and commit to hours of working out a day. I do Zumba regularly. And I walk 2 miles 3 times a week. I'm not breaking any records here, but I am staying healthy and active. Start small, and enjoy the success that brings.

STAR1973 SparkPoints: (6,749)
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7/28/14 7:56 A

all of your tips are so helpful! thankyou emoticon

REDGIRL54 Posts: 255
7/27/14 11:18 P

You need to want to exercise. Start with small goals and gradually build up your endurance. Eventually, exercise is something that you will miss when you cannot get out and do it. If you have a family, take the kids for a walk. My children are grown, so I take my little dog for a walk. Another thing that really helps me be accountable is to have a regular scheduled time for exercise and engage a walking buddy. Even on days when I would rather sleep in, I will always walk because my walking buddy is counting on me.

emoticon Take time for you!

Edited by: REDGIRL54 at: 7/27/2014 (23:19)
CRAMPERELLA Posts: 1,545
7/27/14 7:07 P

Start small. Go for a daily walk with your children. I am coming back to exercise after a fairly long period of inactivity. I am doing it in 5 minute chunks. It all adds up.

EAGLET21 SparkPoints: (4,713)
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Posts: 46
7/27/14 2:06 P

I just built my own home gym and when its all there, laid out and spacious, I am motivated.

2BDYNAMIC SparkPoints: (336,698)
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Posts: 39,266
7/27/14 12:07 P

A spark friend recently blogged ..... "100 days til Halloween" and asked .......... What can you do between now and then if you were diligent every day?" ................. I got a little journal and add to it daily ............ and a note in my fitness journal here in Sparks! .............. A little here and a little there ................. with some ST and tracking that food! .............. I am motivated as I have some cute things to wear in the Fall and I want to look 'top notch.' ............

VUKELK Posts: 623
7/27/14 10:21 A

I think you just need to make the time and realize that you are worth it. It's hard for all of us because many things can make us side step and make the best laid plans fall apart quickly.
Early am exercise is best for me because that is totally my time without and interruptions. I'm in the process of setting up a weekly schedule of an exercise routine and sticking with that. So I get up and no thinking about, I can just do it. On weekends I tell myself by 1:00 (or so) I am going to do this. That works most of the time.

CHAUCERSGIRL SparkPoints: (940)
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7/26/14 10:52 P


I find something that I enjoy. For me, it's Zumba. I like that it's fun, energetic, and non-stop. I'm not working out! I'm dancing. :)

Find something you enjoy and do that. Don't think of it as "working out" because people hate working out. Just have fun!

7/26/14 7:45 P

I think of how much better i feel afterward.

7/26/14 6:03 P

I think of how much better i feel afterward.

GRIZ1GIRL SparkPoints: (199,219)
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Posts: 2,243
7/26/14 1:58 P

You have to start thinking of exercise as something you NEED EVERY DAY--a normal part of your daily routine. Like brushing your teeth, or taking a shower, you just do it--you exercise first thing every morning.

Don't own exercise equipment? No problem--just put on comfortable clothes (no fancy spandex needed!), a pair of tennis shoes, and hit the pavement! Walking for 20-30 minutes every day will provide HUGE results!

And when you're comfortable going that far--kick it up a notch & go farther. Move faster. Add ab crunches & stretches. Find new ways to challenge yourself!

I guarantee you'll reach a point (if you exercise regularly) where you CRAVE that daily workout--because it MAKES YOU FEEL SO GOOD! And as the pounds melt away you'll have even more reasons to be proud of yourself! YOU CAN DO IT!

LEANMEAN2 Posts: 20,021
7/26/14 11:49 A

Such good answers here. Thanks to all.

PORKIE60 Posts: 32
7/25/14 5:48 P

I started by going for walks. Using the map your route on Spark People I learned different routes around my area and saw how many calories I burned. After a while that got old so then I started using the video workouts on Spark People. Those are short, so then I used the WII Fit. Now I go to the YMCA 5 mornings a week. So, just start out doing something small like walking and then you will feel good and move on to other exercises that suit you and your lifestyle.

KEEPITSIMPLE_ Posts: 4,835
7/25/14 3:40 P

Start with "just 10 Min", this is a Spark Team too. This is what got me off the couch and moving. At first I did just 10 minutes, then I went a little longer, and tried to fit in another 10 later. If you are consistent, you start wanting to do more, and you progress. It's still my Mantra, and on days I just don't want to do anything, I try something, anything for just 10 minutes, normally I end up going further, but some days that's just it.

After 4 years of this, I still seek more opportunities, no matter how short or small. Little bits really add up, even if you don't see it immediately, things change.

KATETHEGREAT24 SparkPoints: (519)
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Posts: 1
7/25/14 1:13 P

If I know I have errands to run, and they usually involve groceries and specialty items, I challenge myself to bike to my destination. There are 4 grocery stores near my house, one down the block (its the fancy pants market type) and then 3 in the town next to me. I try to challenge myself to bike to the ones in the next town, using my bike basket as a shopping bag. This helps fit in some easy cardio and maintain a little bit of a spending discipline: If I can fit the items in my basket and realistically bike it all home, I can get them.House and yardwark are also easy ways to squeeze in some exercise.
Lately, during my social outings, I try to shift our base of outings away from eating out and more towards taking a walk around and catching up over a stroll of 'Adventure' instead of over a burger and fries.

JOYCECAIN SparkPoints: (137,945)
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Posts: 3,627
7/25/14 9:53 A

I used to walk 4 miles a day up until last year when I hurt my foot. With the severe winter we had, I didn't get out. Today I forced myself out the door, I got 3 miles in. I have been doing 1 in the a.m. and 1 in the p.m. But my eating is terrible.

Need to focus.

7/25/14 7:38 A

It is very difficult to fit in exercise if you are a busy Mum, a working girl or both.

My advice is KIS-keep it simple. Set you alarm for 15 minutes early. Give yourself 5 minutes to wake up, slap cold water on your face and then exercise for ten minutes immediately. I like to go outside to change the environment. Nicole Nichol's videos on Spark people are wonderful, or run around your place for ten minutes. emoticon You will be surprised how good you feel throughout the day. emoticon The secret to consistency in my mind is to start simply and continue until you challenge your self to add a minute or too. Then, you choose the next level you will undertake. Find a friend who, like you, wants to improve his/her physical fitness. Remind yourself how satisfying it is to rise to challenge. Praise yourself through the day for attending to the small victories in life.. emoticon
It will astound you how quickly you increase this habit of fitness..
As for me, I still walk. I do strengthening and toning exercises and more and more general activity daily. I do not run marathons, climb mountains etc. I leave that to those who are physically smart. But I do my little bit daily. Consistency is a key.

You go Girl. emoticon

Edited by: ARCHIEMITCHELL at: 7/25/2014 (07:40)
SHOOPETTE SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 3,151
7/25/14 3:46 A

I started walking then when I was no longer challenged and ready for more I gradually added ST sessions and cardio videos. I also really like to break down my work outs, 20 min in the morning 15 or 20 in teh evening. I like to be tired but not exhausted

OLDEROWL Posts: 1,368
7/23/14 10:33 P

Get 8 hours of Sleep. Research has shown that those who get between around 8 hours of sleep, not much more or much less, tend to wake up energized and more motivated. Google weight loss and sleep habits. Also, avoid watching TV, playing video games, or surfing the internet, etc. right up until bedtime; the optical strain of constantly changing images from doing this lasts and tends to prevent one from going to sleep quickly. Those who wake up fresh without a sluggish feeling tend to plan their day better, have more fun, and are more motivated to follow their plans.

Edited by: OLDEROWL at: 7/23/2014 (22:43)
IAMPREACHER Posts: 5,132
7/23/14 9:01 P

I've been at my goal weight for several years now, but started to think I've got this now, so just kick back and relax. Well, I gained 5 pounds in one thought. I knew I couldn't just sit back and relax and lost my motivation to exercise consistently at home. So I found that there is a YWCA close enough to home that I could go to. I joined 4 months ago and took exercising to a whole new level. I can swim, do free weights, fitness machines, bikes, and best of all ZUMBA 3 times a week, twice on Fridays because they have a regular class and then a Zumba Gold. I call the Gold class my cool down!
I've also found that by joining, I'm more motivated to go. Probably due to the fee--don't want to waste money, but also because of the people; I don't feel so isolated. Isolation is something anyone dieting should avoid.
Deciding to make a change is easy until you try. Sometimes, it's not so much wanting to, it's the not knowing how. I needed a change. I decided to find a way to make it work. It just take determination, and discipline. Once you've got those 2, you're good to go.

7/23/14 6:06 P

I love what everyone is saying! Also, though, buy a cute workout outfit! I shop at Marshall's religiously, and can easily get a top and capris for under 20 total. To me, it makes a big difference. I felt more frumpy working out in an old tshirt and sweatpants. It's not meant to sound superficial, but why can't we look cute when we workout?? Yesterday I reallllly didn't want to go for a run, and hadn't in over a week. Then I remembered I bought two new headbands/sweatbands, and literally THAT is what got my butt off the couch! Give that a try in addition to everyone's great suggestions :)

LIVINGLIFEAGAIN SparkPoints: (28,778)
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Posts: 1,190
7/23/14 11:38 A

I think we have all probably struggled with this. It is definitely tough when you have young kiddos. My best advice is to put on your workout clothes, tennis shoes and just do it! Make an appointment if you need to but DO NOT cancel! I love what everyone is suggesting to start with something whether it's 10-15 minutes and work up from there. You will start to feel so good and your body will begin to "crave" exercise. You don't even need anything formal, just start with 10 jumping jacks, run in place, do some squats, lunges, use hand weights, walk around the neighborhood, etc. Any exercise is better than nothing. You can do this! emoticon emoticon

EREBECCA1 Posts: 95
7/23/14 7:07 A

I love the idea of making an appointment for yourself!

MISSESD1 Posts: 263
7/23/14 6:45 A

Try making an appointment for yourself (me time) and take a walk or dance to music for 10 minutes. I found if I schedule the time for myself, physically placing it on my calendar, I will do it and not make excuses for not doing it. Me time also helps you mentally as well.

7/22/14 4:02 P

emoticon BABY STEPS

SNOOKS2013 Posts: 40
7/22/14 12:50 P

One step at a time

QUEEN_CEE Posts: 3,495
7/22/14 12:39 P

Begin with small steps. Try ten minutes a few days a week. Then add five more. Walking is a great way to start. It takes ninety days to make exercise a habit. Take you time and believe it can be done!

GIPPER1961 Posts: 766
7/22/14 12:36 P

The title is the answer, You make yourself start. You don't have to be a Yoga master or Jillian Michaels on day 1. You take whatever time you can and choose something. If all you can do is ten minutes while your children are sleeping than that is a start. Youtube has lots of free videos for exercise to start with.

From there you may find other things that become fun, but without starting somewhere none of that will happen.

This doesn't imply that it is easy, but simple. That first workout whether it be five minutes or an hour may be the hardest thing you ever do, but it is worth it.

In my estimation the most important thing about exercise is not the calories you burn (although that is important of course) but the way it can make you feel. I call it natures Prozac (I am sure that is not original I think I saw it somewhere).l

BHENDRICK2 Posts: 1,211
7/22/14 12:36 P


ILOVEJIM851991 SparkPoints: (183,539)
Fitness Minutes: (109,646)
Posts: 2,053
7/22/14 12:05 P

I'm inspired by the videos in my e-mail inbox. That serves as a reminder that I need to move emoticon emoticon

BLUETABBY Posts: 153
7/22/14 10:42 A

I'm kind of in the same boat--I know I need to exercise, I have ~30 pounds to lose, and I HATE it. I hate exercise, always have.

But yesterday, I put on my tennis shoes and dragged myself out for a neighborhood hike -- 1 mile out to a nearby park, 1 mile back. Here's how I made myself do it: YouTube. I took my purse with me instead of just my keys and water, and pulled up an episode of one of my favorite shows I used to watch in reruns while I was in college (Alias Smith and Jones, if you're curious). Put the smartphone back in my purse, popped in my earbuds, and away I went, chuckling over the story and not paying attention to how boring the exercise is. It made it fun instead of awful, and gave me a clever way to time my hike besides.

Did the same thing again today. Still fun. NOW, my goal is going to be to get all the way back home before the end credits music. That's 2 miles in 50 minutes. I'm not there yet, but I figure each time if I can get closer to home by then, I'll be making progress... I don't have anyone to exercise with, but listening to those guys sort of makes up for it.

Edited by: BLUETABBY at: 7/22/2014 (10:44)
ACACIA21 SparkPoints: (83,737)
Fitness Minutes: (21,255)
Posts: 2,207
7/22/14 9:18 A

try just 10 minutes a day. try one of sparks short videos. it gets contagious after a couple weeks. Also, I LOVE to light up my spark tracker.

BABARR67 Posts: 170
7/22/14 9:17 A

I am doing the same thing and I don't even have 4 little kids to keep up with. (My stepkids are 20, 14 and 11) I get so tired and feel so busy just keeping up with the normal demands of everyday life that I don't take time to exercise. You need to figure out whether you want to exercise with or without kiddos. When I mall walk in the winter, I see many moms doing interval training with kids in tow. However, I think it would be good for you to get some alone time just for you if at all possible. The Y has free childcare (and the Y close to me was very good at entertaining the kids.) while you work out. They also have financial aid if money is tight. Your husband could also spell you for at least an hour. We do "tag team" at my house. I entertain the kids while hubby does what he needs/wants for a bit, then we switch.

Personally, I know that not exercising is not making me feel less tired. I just have to schedule an appointment with myself and do it. Also... I am oddly motivated by visuals. Get a calendar and some cheap stickers. Put a sticker on the calendar for every day you get in your 10 minutes.

I know the extra 80 lbs also has to be making you tired because I have been there. Hang in there. And set a 10% goal. Losing 10% of your weight will already improve your health. That's 8 lbs, not 80. emoticon

EREBECCA1 Posts: 95
7/22/14 6:35 A

Pick something easy and simple that you can pause and come back to later if you need. Yoga or pilates might be quite good. Relaxing too :)

FIT_MOMMY_OF2 SparkPoints: (4,196)
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Posts: 138
7/22/14 2:45 A

10 minutes is a good way to start!

BORN2BMORE Posts: 443
7/21/14 10:41 P

I agree with the folks saying to start with 10 minutes. I just started doing this myself a week ago. A couple of nights I almost didn't get it done, but I asked myself if my health was worth 10 minutes and of course the answer is yes! Most nights I have been walking, either by myself or with the hubs. One night when he didn't feel like it and it was just too hot outside, I turned on some upbeat music and danced. That's something you could do with your kids, dance. My kids loved it when I would dance with them.

Just take it one step at a time. emoticon

7/21/14 8:51 P

Assuming that you do chores around the house, you can count the more active among them as exercise. You could keep a timer going on your phone. Of course, there are more vigorous exercises you could be doing than mopping or picking up the house, but it might encourage you to get to more active exercising if you at least got the lift of getting to list what you were already doing?
That's something I read in a book called Switch--about creating and motivating change.
Good luck!

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,433
7/21/14 7:54 P

There are many things you can do to be active, that aren't "formal exercise." If you find gearing up your mindset (and setting up your schedule, childcare, etc) makes it difficult to follow a formal exercise routine (like going to the gym, or jogging, etc), then try other things that just keep you active. Such as... Take the kids for a walk, go to the park and run around with them, take a ball to kick or throw. This stuff counts as activity! Walking, hiking, playing frisbee, all counts, and it doesn't even FEEL like "dun dun dunnnnn.... Exercise!"

I am a big fan of "accidental" exercise, the kind you get when you don't even realize you are exercising!

Also keep in mind that the major contributor to weight loss is what you eat. So even if you can't swing a steady intense exercise routine right now, you can make great strides with weight loss simply by paying close attention to the quantity (and quality) of your food intake.

IVYLASS SparkPoints: (225,372)
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Posts: 7,170
7/21/14 4:10 P

It looks like you need some help. Do you have someone to watch the kidlets while you take a walk or ride your bike?

7/21/14 3:18 P

Use your kids. Have fun and play. You get exercise and they get tired. Lay the baby on the floor and do push-ups, on the down do a belly blow on him or her. Lay on your back and lift baby in the air. Your arms will get a workout. Do a few sqauts holding baby. Chase the others around the house or play hide and seek a few times a day. Everyone will be happy. Not to mention you'll be the fun mom as they grow up.

Edited by: FANCYSTITCH at: 7/21/2014 (15:20)
AZRIDERS Posts: 215
7/21/14 2:05 P

Hi there,

CJ has great advice to start with just a few minutes a day. There are loads of free exercise videos on this site. You will never get tired of the variety. Then, fake it until you make it. I find exercise has to become a habit--a good one!

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (199,929)
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Posts: 27,309
7/21/14 12:57 P


I've very sorry to hear of the loss of your father. I give all new members one piece of advice and it's this,"Don't look at good health or weight loss with an all or nothing mentality". if the only healthy thing you did for yourself today was drink 8 glasses of water, that's still a step in the right direction.

Remember, you're trying to change habits learned over a life time. that's not going to happen overnight, a week, a month or even a year. Change takes time, thus the need to be patient with yourself and your body. Spark People encourages all its members to start with simple changes first. don't try to do everything at once or you will end up frustrated. set some simple goals.

Example, if you're not eating 6-9 servings of fresh fruit and veggies, set a goal to east 2-3 servings each day for one week. If you're not drinking 8 glasses of water, set a goal to drink 2-4 glasses each day for one week. if you're not exercising, don't start with an hour a day, set a goal to take a 30 minute walk each day for one week. Once you've achieved these goals, then you set new ones.

Would you expect your beautiful baby to start walking within the first 3-4 weeks ? Okay, if it takes time for your baby to learn to walk, it's going to take time for you to learn to incorporate healthier habits. If your baby falls when they try to walk, do you chastise them ? Same thing. Don't chastise yourself for making mistakes. We ALL make them. it's part of the learning process.

No one is perfect. You don't have to be perfect to be healthy.

ACACIA21 SparkPoints: (83,737)
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Posts: 2,207
7/21/14 12:22 P

think of it as you time. It is hard to keep giving to everyone else if you never take care of yourself.

COLLEENBOB SparkPoints: (25,120)
Fitness Minutes: (9,859)
Posts: 71
7/21/14 10:19 A

Visualize. As you're trying to keep up with the kids, visualize how much easier your life would be if you weren't winded and tired so often. When you collapse at the end of the day, once the kids are down, visualize how much better life would be if you only had a little more energy. You've got to want it, it is so worth it, and you start with just 10 minutes per day.

As you gain strength and stamina by slowly increasing your daily exercise routine you will find that you have more time in the day, not less. With increased energy you will be able to function at a higher level, accomplish more, and not have to end each day exhausted.

A quick ten minute walk before the kids get up, or after they go to bed would work. But I suggest you incorporate your kids in your daily exercise. Start with actively playing with them: tag, kick ball, jump rope, hopscotch...there are endless possibilities. My son and his friends loved it when I became the monster in the playground and chased them all over the place, if I could catch them, I got to tickle and kiss them. After a couple of weeks you will have more energy and will want to add more exercise to your daily routine.

Exercise really is a magic energy potion.

Good luck.

7/21/14 10:11 A

Thank you :)

7/21/14 9:36 A

Just wanted to tell you it takes a lot of forceful talking to yourself to get into the habit of exercise. I hated it. Always have. Even just walking. But I am lazy and that is a capital word for me.
However....I know if I want to lose weight....I have to exercise.

No choice about it. That walk that I do uses calories.....the elliptical I do...burns lots of calories. And now I usually don't have to force myself too much. I still have lots of weight to lose but I know I need the exercise to help lose it. It is much easier to talk myself into working out or walking now than it was 2 months ago so I think what you need is to just make it a habit and then it is something you just do as part of your daily routine.
I won't tell you I love it because I would be lying. I hate sweating and I sweat a lot. Doesn't matter what exercise I do....but that's because I have too much fat on my body and I just feel like now the sweat is my fat melting away. But I will tell's awesome after you finish a just kinda pat yourself on the back and say good job.
There are no easy answers to losing weight and exercising but I do know they go hand in hand.
And if you have a hard time with the exercise part...get yourself a calendar...and some lil stars like they use for lil kids in school. Every time you do a good workout...give yourself a star. You deserve it. And eventually if nothing like seeing the stars fill the calendar and you get into the habit. LOL! Whatever it takes eh.....honestly....that's what I did and it worked. I now don't even think about exercise...I just know its part of my day and something I just do. I would still not do it if I could but....I have to and I know it so it's just there before noon...every day.
Hope something in there helps and motivates you.
DEE emoticon

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (199,401)
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Posts: 15,862
7/21/14 8:50 A

Exercise is fun, not torture. Why wouldn't you want to do something that makes you healthier, happier and more energetic?

AVEINDHA SparkPoints: (640)
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Posts: 11
7/21/14 3:36 A

I am sorry to hear about your dad!
Firstly, you are not alone in this. I think it has to do with loss of faith in yourself, that's why it becomes so difficult for you to get up and start working towards your goals again. You put on weight, are probably angry at yourself and now you feel you don't deserve to be fit and healthy. Well, that's what I often go through!
My motivating factor is usually someone at work saying "hey, your ass is getting big!" after the initial feeling of wanting to slap them in the face, i realise that "hey, yes my ass is getting fat!" it helps me get over denial, which puts things in perspective.
For me, if I put in a tiny bit of effort, just force myself to get going again in the smallest way, i get the much needed boost of confidence and away i go again.
Do not despair! just make ane effort to get back on your right path...and before you know it! you will be feeling great once more!:)
God bless

P.S:NEVER say HAVE creates a feeling of dread... instead say :i will! I want to!" it helps to make you feel less hopeless, more powerful.

Edited by: AVEINDHA at: 7/21/2014 (03:38)
CHERRY-TREE Posts: 834
7/21/14 2:48 A

Start by doing just ten minutes (could be ten minutes of walking). Preferably in the morning, so you can be 'done' with it for the day and feel good about doing it. It is more important to get into a habit than to do a lot, in the beginning.

Maybe do another 5 to ten minutes later on in the day if you have the time. And start tracking your fitness minutes, that may help you to be motivated. emoticon

It also sounds like you need some more 'me-time' - would be good if you could arrange it, though it may not be easy if you're a mother of four children.

7/21/14 2:34 A

I know how to exercise, I know how to eat right. My baby #4 is five months, my twins are 3 & my oldest is almost 5. I gained a little with each pregnancy & then my Dad passed away a month before I had my 5 month old & I ate to comfort myself. Needless to say, I am the biggest I have ever been & I keep saying I will start & the time passes & before I know it it is midnight & I'm the last one to crawl in bed with zero actual exercise for the day & I promise myself I will "start" tomorrow. Help! This has gone on for weeks. emoticon What can I do to make myself do this. I have 80 pounds to lose, I have to start

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