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Me at 250! 75 pounds down...




Garden Gnome


DANCETAXI22 is a SparkPeople Motivator!

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I've lost 76 pounds with the help of Spark People and plain old-fashioned walking! Nothing fancy about my program. It all started with the question, "I wonder what will happen if I park the car and start riding the bus?" I began losing weight. Then I asked the question, "I wonder what will happen if I start writing down everything that goes in my mouth and then stop at 1,800 calories?" I started losing even more weight.

My entire journey is going to be about asking that question, "I wonder what will happen if I...." and then moving to the next thing. It is working so far. And the other part will be staying patient and not rushing anything. Things will happen at the right time.

I started this alone and early on, threw out a prayer for help with my weight loss. Pretty soon after that prayer, I came across Spark People. The change has been remarkable. I have all the tools I need at my fingertips to figure out the next step and keep track of my progress. And the best thing is all the wonderful support from my new Spark Friends. We all need a bit of outside validation and a place where we can truly be ourselves. I found my voice and my inspiration on Spark People. I think part of this was also turning 50. I just said, enough! I am not taking anymore crap! And I just decided to be worth it and to go for it. I throw prayers out to the universe and expect them to happen. I am amazed at how the positive energy works for me.

Also, I just like to walk. It energizes me instead of draining me. I hate the gym; costs too much and I get the same results out walking and lifting free weights at home. I'm thinking about getting one of those big balls and some of those stretchy bands to pull on. I can just see me now wallowing around on that swiss ball. The thought of it just cracks me up. But I really don't want to climb down on the floor. We have ceramic tile, no rugs, my knees hurt, and the cats crawl all over me. I need some air!! Ick on videos too! Anyway, that should give you a glimpse into my thought process on exercise. I don't like most of it, but I really like some of it. I just had to find what worked and things that made me feel better.

So here we go! I have definitely started walking my way out of this and won't stop until I reach the weight I am supposed to be. I've been there before, but this time it will be for different and better reasons.


God please grant me the serenity to
accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.



When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit-
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a fellow turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out.
Don't give up though the pace seems slow -
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to a faint and faltering man;
Often the struggler has given up
Whe he might have captured the victor's cup;
And he learned too late when the night came down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out -
The silver tint in the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It might be near when it seems afar;
So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit -
It's when things seem worst that you must not quit.

SO WHAT IS MY STORY? Here is a bit of it:

I finally found the peace of mind to be able to make the change. This involved quitting a horrible job, finding a way out of a bad financial situation, and as a single mom - watching my daughter graduate from high school and go on to college. All of these were causing significant stress, which I was not coping with very well.

So now, I'm just ready to take the weight off. I feel really balanced and calm about it. Whereas before I just wasn't able to do it.

So, when the doctor looked at me horrified and said, "Your weight!" I was at 321. When we went to Sun Valley and you couldn't ride the horses if you weighed more than 240 and I was 280. When I got on the plane and my horrified daughter watched as I asked for a seatbelt extender. When I saw pictures of myself with so much weight and remembered pictures when I weighed 155. When the doctor put me on cholesterol medicine and started throwing around the pre-diabetes word. When my back hurt from the weight, when my knees hurt from the weight, when I had no energy and wanted to sleep a lot. There were all great reasons to change my life, I just was not ready to do it.

So now, I'm just done with it. For very real reasons, I had to be in a lifestyle that was full of coping and medicating for my stress. That coping saved me from going crazy, but it doesn't work for me anymore. So, I'm just done with the weight and walking back out, one step at a time. Literally! I am a walker and taking my life back. Ahhhh, I feel good.

Ta Da!


Quit worst relation ever! Good riddance to RS - DONE!
Find best therapist in town - DONE!
Survive three years of depression - DONE!
Get off all depressions meds - DONE!
Diagnosed with low thyroid and got meds for it - DONE!
Decide it is finally time to lose weight - BMI 48.9 - 321 lbs. DONE!
Lose 10 pounds - 311 - DONE!
Quit my horrible job - DONE!
Get finances under control - DONE!
Find a less expensive therapist to survive no job - DONE!
Keep sanity and don't go into depressive cycle - DONE!
BONUS - finish piecing feathered star quilt! - DONE
BONUS - start and finish piecing hollihocks quilt - DONE!
Get rehired before recession hits - DONE!
Find the perfect job for me - DONE!
Clean out clothes closet and revamp wardrobe - DONE!
Get kid accepted into college - DONE!
BONUS - buy gorgeous pair of Versace glasses - DONE!
Get kid graduated from high school - DONE!
Park the car and walk to the bus everyday - DONE!
BONUS - Get a promotion and big raise - DONE!
Get kid moved into her dorm at college - DONE!
Lose 20 pounds - 301 - DONE!
Get below 300 pounds - BMI 45.7- DONE!
Remove ex-husband from life - FINALLY DONE!
Start classes for paralegal certification - DONE!
Walk three miles in under an hour - DONE!
Finish Intro to Paralegal Studies with an A - DONE!
Throw prayer out to the Universe for help - DONE!
Join SparkPeople - DONE!
Consistently manage food journal - DONE!
Consistently walk an hour, five days a week - DONE!
Consistently walk 10,000 steps, five days a week - DONE!
Lose 30 pounds - 291 - DONE!
Survive first job evaluation with flying colors - DONE!
Lose 40 pounds - 281 - DONE!
Get below 278 pounds (25% of the way there) - DONE!
Post my first blog - DONE!
BONUS - Got a huge hug from my doctor - DONE!
BONUS - Spread the Spark to LRV - DONE!
BONUS - Spread the Spark to BB - DONE!
Get kid moved into first apartment - DONE!
Get kid through first year of college - DONE!
Finish Legal Research Class with an A - DONE!
Fit in airplane seats without a seatbelt extender - DONE!
BONUS - My knees don't hurt all the time - DONE!
BONUS - Spread the Spark to WG - DONE!
Find some SparkTeams that work for me - DONE!
Make some Spark Friends - DONE!
Consistently get 13,000 steps in on workdays - 5 miles - DONE!
Lose 50 pounds - BMI 41.9 - 271 - DONE!
BONUS - Fit into small seats at the auditorium - DONE!
Fit into a size 3X - DONE!
Have random people ask if I have lost weight - DONE!
Consistently walk 60 aerobic minutes, 7 days a week - DONE!
BONUS - Shop off the rack at the department stores - DONE!
BONUS - Learn I can eat over 2,000 calories a day - DONE!
Lose a 1/3 of a person at 266 - DONE!
Get back to where I started the last time - 265 - DONE!
Take a real vacation from the new job - DONE!
BIG BONUS: Chosen as a Spark Motivator!! - DONE!
Get BMI below 40 - 262 lbs. - DONE!
BONUS: NO LONGER considered extremely obese - DONE!
Lose 60 pounds - 261 - DONE!
Fit into a size 2X - DONE!
Fit comfortably into the desks at school - DONE!
Have less than 100 pounds to lose - 254.9 - DONE!
Work up to exercise that equals 3,500 calories a week - DONE!
BONUS: Learned that taking a break does wonders - DONE!
Lose 70 pounds - 251 - DONE!
Get below 250 pounds - BMI 38.1 - DONE!
Lose 74.5 pounds by Thanksgiving 2009 - DONE!
REWARDS - Get my teeth whitened - DONE!
Finish Wills, Trusts, and Estates class with an A - DONE!
REWARDS - Get my back to quit hurting all the time - DONE!
Maintain my weight over the holidays 2009 - DONE!
Went on a Maintenance Break for 1 year - DONE!
Gained back 22 pounds this year - BOO!! DONE!!
Finish Legal Ethics Class with an A
Lose back my 22 pounds - 243
Lose 80 pounds - 241
Get below 240 so I can ride the horses in Sun Valley
Get below 238 (half way there!)
Get to 235, the place I started once before
Lose 90 pounds - 231
Lose 100 pounds - 221 - BMI 34.3
Finish Family Law class with an A
Have random people tell me I look totally different
Consistently take the stairs at work
Get below 220 so I can get long-term care insurance
Fit into a size 1X
Lose 110 pounds - 211
Lose 2/3s of a person at 209
Lose 120 pounds - 201
Get below 200 pounds - BMI 30.5
Get BMI below Obese at 200 pounds
Fit into a size 20
Get back to what my weight was in 2000 - 200
Get BMI below 30 - 196 lbs.
Get below 196 pounds (75% of the way there)
Lose 130 pounds - 191
Lose 140 pounds - 181
Fit into a size 18
Lose 150 pounds - 171 - BMI 26.7
Fit into a size 16
Walk four miles in under an hour
Lose 155 pounds - Entire person at 166 pounds
Fit into a size 14
Get BMI into Healthy zone at 163 - BMI 24.8
Lose 160 pounds - 161
Lose 166 pounds - 155
Reach goal of 155 - BMI 23.6
Get off my cholesterol meds
Fit into a size 12? - Wow wouldn't that be something
Take the stairs at work without my knees hurting
Wear shorts
Wear a dress
Wear a bathing suit
REWARDS - Get off all asthma meds???
REWARDS - Join a yoga class
Get kid through second year of college
Get kid through third year of college
Get kid through fourth year of college
See kid graduate from a four-year University
See kid get a real job after college
Sell the house after the housing market restarts in AZ
Finish Paralegal Certificate

Member Since: 3/15/2009

Fitness Minutes: 23,794

My Goals:
My main goal is to be patient about my weight loss. All my life lessons have been about patience. Here we go again!

I am working on eating enough calories. I have had problems believing that I have to eat over 2,000 calories a day, but that is the reality of it since I am walking so much. The trackers and my expert advisors say EAT! Don't starve your body or it will hang on to those pounds for dear life! So I am giving this a try, and it is working!!

My Program:
Things start falling apart pretty quick for me if I don't stay balanced. I get stressed out pretty easily. So I work on the basics: tracking, walking, sleeping.

I track everything before it goes in my mouth on the Nutrition Tracker. I tend to track on the fly, and it helps me make decisions about what to eat and what to pass on, BEFORE it goes in my mouth! I have to make sure I eat enough, too. Currently it is around 2,100 calories a day.

I love to walk and average an hour seven days a week. If I don't have my miles in, I turn down other activities that distract. Walking is something I can do easily, I feel great afterwards, and it definitely reduces my stress. I use a pedometer and am averaging 13,000 steps, five days a week, and averaging 60 minutes of cardio walking every day at 3 mph.

Also getting enough sleep has turned out to be key. If I am tired, I eat trying to make myself feel more energetic. That is where all my weight came from.

Personal Information:
I am from Tucson, Arizona, by way of Moscow, Idaho. Go Wildcats and Go Vandals! The two shall never meet on the gridiron or the maplewood, so I can root for both!

I like to quilt, just don't have enough time to get at it. I am also working on a paralegal certificate. My daughter is 19 and away at college. I have three cats and a dog. Too much fun at our house!

Other Information:
THANK YOU for all the support in nominating me as an OVERALL Spark Motivator! Very cool honor on August 22, 2009.

Lost 50 pounds - 6/13/09
Lost 60 pounds - 8/23/09
Lost 70 pounds - 11/8/09
Lost 75 pounds by my birthday 1/20/10!

Next goal is to lose 15 pounds by my next doctor's appointment in March, and to reach my total goal halfway point by July 1. I have 30 pounds to go!

Wish me luck!

Read More About DANCETAXI22 - Profile Information moved here. (Updated January 2)

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