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Hi there!

I have posted some things that have inspired me to keep going when the going gets tough. I put them right here on my spark page so I can get to them in a hurry (before the refrigerator wins). I hope you find them useful too!


Weightloss Secrets From Dietgirl blog at:

1. First, start with the big picture. Write down your goals and be specific. What do you want to change? Where do you want to be a year from now?

2. Next, focus on the details. Every day we make dozens of tiny decisions that can spell the difference between whether we lose weight or gain. Do you pick the muesli for breakfast or the chocolate muffin? Do you spend twenty minutes on the couch or twenty minutes on a brisk walk? Small changes can add up to huge results.

3. Start exercising--no matter what your fitness level. At 25 stone I could only shuffle to the end of the street, but I gradually built up to the whole block. Within a couple of years I was running! Don't compare yourself to others, just work within your limits and take it slow and steady.

4. Eat breakfast. A wholesome breakfast makes me feel smug, satisfied and determined to stay on track all day. My favourite is porridge, livened up with grated apple and cinnamon, or chopped banana and teaspoon of peanut butter.

5. Be kind to yourself and your body. You don’t have to look in the mirror and chant, “I love me! I am beautiful!” but at the same time yelling at your thighs won’t encourage your weight loss efforts.

6. Make your treats miniature. Instead of banning dessert, I choose smaller portions – like an apple crumble baked in a ramekin dish or a small bar of Green and Blacks chocolate. I get my sugar hit without dangerous leftovers!

7. Lift weights. It won’t make you bigger – it’ll make you svelte and strong! If you’re worried about loose skin, resistance training is the best thing you can do to tone your body as you lose weight.

8. Planning is crucial. Every Saturday I take ten minutes to plan our meals for the coming week. I choose from a list of 25 easy, tried-and-true recipes, so it’s quicker to cook than phone for a takeaway.

9. Buy your groceries online. It saves time and you’re not tempted by all the sights and smells of the supermarket. Or tortured by your screaming children.

10. Feel your emotions, don’t feed them. In times of stress it’s tempting to bury your feelings in cake – better to feel bad about binging than tackle the real issue! But try to find non-edible ways of coping – I highly recommend kickboxing classes.

11. Go Greek. If you’re a cream or sour cream fiend, 0% or 2% Greek yogurt is an excellent substitute. It's low in fat, protein-rich and incredibly creamy. Dollop into meringue nests and top with fresh fruit. Splodge onto a bowl of chilli. Swirl into butternut squash soup.

12. The best exercise is the one you enjoy. So what if your best friend swears by aerobics at dawn? If you’re a shift worker or just plain grumpy in the morning, this will never suit you. Choose an exercise you like and do it when it’s most convenient for you – this way you’ll stick with it.

13. Stock your office pantry. It's much easier to ignore the vending machine when I’ve got half an orchard sitting on my desk and a drawer full of oatcakes, nuts and seeds.

14. Have a cuppa. When hunger strikes and it’s not meal time, I make a cup of tea. This gives me time to figure out if I’m really hungry or if I’m just bored or cranky or upset. Herbal tea is great – experiment until you find one that doesn’t taste like grass clippings!

15. Have a moan. Losing weight isn’t easy, but you don’t have to feel alone in the struggle. Start your own blog, or sign up for a message board. Remember, we’re all in this lardy boat together!

16. Put the scales in perspective. Don’t fret over small fluctuations – focus on all the healthy things you’ve been doing for your body. Get out the tape measure or have a pair of “measurement jeans”, so you’re not dependent on the scales for feedback.

17. Be adaptable. Make your weight loss plans fit around your life, not the other way around. Sometimes circumstances will change – a new job, a family crisis, moving house – and suddenly your usual routine doesn’t work. The trick is to be flexible and know when it’s time to tweak your methods.

18. Set a non-scale goal. Why not train for a charity 5k race or challenge yourself to do ten push-ups? Focusing on fitness means I don’t fret about the numbers so much. And all those endorphins make me feel less inclined to go on a chocolate bender.

19. Accept that sometimes it’s going to suck. Despite your best intentions, there will be days when you fall into a bag of crisps. But long-term success is about persistence, not perfection. It’s picking yourself up when you fall, over and over again.

20. Don’t wait to be “skinny” to start living your life. If you have dreams of traveling or writing a book or learning to scuba dive, don’t think you need a smaller bum before you deserve them. Your life is happening right now – so forget about your wobbly bits and jump right in!

Her book is available on amazon!

A few of my favorite quotes...

"Going on a diet involves an external and temporary change in eating technique. You start counting and measuring, and you stop eating some foods and substitute others, based on the rules of whatever diet plan you are using. Maybe you throw in some exercise to burn a few extra calories. You assume that it’s the technique that produces the results, not you. The results of a diet are external; if you’re lucky, you may change on the outside—but not on the inside. Once you reach your goal weight, you don’t need the technique anymore, and things gradually go back to “normal.” So does your weight—and then some. And, of course, all the problems you hoped the weight loss would solve are still there." Coach Dean vation_articles.asp?id=620

"But when you realize that what you're trying to do is to simply start eating and exercising now--the way you're going to be doing it from here on out--these things look a lot different. You don't need to do things perfectly every day to "stay on track," and it really doesn't matter if you eat a few calories more today and a few less on some other day--it’s not like you’ve got a deadine to meet or the world is going to end if it takes you an extra day or two to get to your goal. And you don't have to wait until you lose the weight to get on with your life. This IS the rest of your life, and all you have to do is the best you can to live according to your own values and goals--it's the process and the journey that matter, not the destination."
Dean Anderson

"There may well be days when deciding not to follow your plan is the best choice you can make under the circumstances. And, as long as you know that it is you making these decisions—not the job, or the family, or the food—you won’t have to worry about falling off the wagon completely. You’ll know that it is just one decision, and that you can make a different one 10 minutes later if you want to." Dean Anderson


A little story from :

A frog, hopping around the farm, minding his own business, fell right into a pail half-filled with cream. Swimming frantically, he found the sides too steep and too high. Determined not to give up, he continued to struggle. He kicked and squirmed, kicked and squirmed until at last his churning had turned the cream into a block of butter – allowing him to hop right out. He never gave up!

"... if you're not kicking, you're sinking" (Kramer)




Write in your Journal

Listen to your favorite music

Watch a sunset

Color in a coloring book

Play your favorite instrument

Tell one person how you feel

Teach a child to play a game

Pop or stomp on bubble-wrap

Have a water balloon fight

Paint a picture

Go to the pet store

Take a long hot bath

Go berry picking

Hug someone

Take a long drive

Pack up some clothes for charity

Go to a concert

Take a leisurely walk

Rent your favorite movie

Take a trip to the toy store

Go to a movie by yourself

Call an old friend

Fingerpaint, Doodle

Build with blocks. Build a tower and knock it down

Build with Legos

Spend time with your pet

Wash your car with a friend

Pick dandelions

Have a water-gun fight

Play Hopscotch

Have a snowball fight with somone

Paint a Room in your house

Read a book

Take a vacation

Take a nap

Count and roll loose change

Throw nerf balls, koosh balls or bean-bags at a wall (available at most toy stores)

Remind Yourself "It'll be Ok"

Take a deep breath, count to 10

Ask your therapist to make a tape with you that you can use during difficult times

Go to a favorite "safe" location (beach, park, woods, playground, etc.)

Think of advice you'd give someone else... and take it!

Say something good about yourself

Use Self Affirmation tapes and books... and make your own affirmations (use notebooks, index cards, tapes, post-it notes, journal)

Meditate, use Relaxation

Call a Hotline

Have a pillow fight or punch a pillow

Do gardening or housecleaning

Play your favourite game as a child

Spend time with a sibling

Hold and/or tell your favorite stuffed animal or doll your feelings

Find an AOL or e-mail pal or join a chatroom for support

Stay in touch with others through contact - don't isolate yourself

From Ellen's site:
Alternatives to Eating Disordered Behavior

Below is a list of things to do instead of engaging in eating disordered behavior. Keep in mind that not everything on this list will work for everyone, pick and choose what is most helpful to you. Some of these choices are difficult and you might want to discuss them with your therapist or support system. Recovery is not a process that can be walked through alone... don't be afraid to reach out for help.

Listen to music/relaxation tapes

Make a mourning wreath (start with black flowers and replace with colored ones)

Repetitive reality checking ("It's January ??, 2007, and I'm going to be OK")

Negotiate with yourself

Get to know others

Recognize and acknowledge the choices you have NOW

Offer options

Carry tokens to remind you of peaceful comforting people/things

Create and use mental safe places (the beach, a cabin in the woods, etc.)

Get out on your own, get away from stress

Help someone around you

Pay attention to the changes needed to make you feel safe

Count yourself down (10...9...8...7..)

Take a different perspective (different vantage point)

"I'm aware" repeat 5 things that you see, smell, touch, taste in your present surroundings to help you ground you in the present

Pay attention to your breathing

Pay attention to the rhythmic motions of your body

Move to music


Ask yourself inside, what YOU need


Make affirmation tapes inside you that are good, kind, gentle (reverse the negative thoughts and physically rewrite them into positive statements

Touch something familiar/safe


Put your feet firmly on the floor

Make something

Accept a gift from a friend


Make a phone list of people you can call for help and support, and allow yourself to use it

Learn HALT signals (Hungry, angry, lonely, tired)

Identify what is causing you the pain (other than the food)

Accept where you are in the process.

Beating yourself up only makes it worse

Do something FUN!

Take a break from mental processing

Take a SAFE risk

Tear up paper

Honor your present anger

Throw ice cubes at a tree, bathtub wall, etc.

Give yourself permission to.... (keep it safe)

Lose the "would-could-have to" words.

Try "what if"

Choose your way of thinking, try to resist following old thinking patterns

Put memories in air tight containers with air tight lids

Notice black and white thinking

Connect with others around you. Call a therapist or friend

Notice "choices" versus "dilemmas"

Keep in touch with others who are fighting the same fight

Check in with yourself and other frequently (try not to isolate)

Make yourself as comfortable as possible (without using food)

Take a bath or shower

Color in coloring books

Hold a stuffed animal

Write a poem

Leave the room

Leave the premises

Write a letter, NOT mailed, to the person or problem upsetting you

Play a musical instrument

Plan regular activities for your most difficult time of day

Call a hotline or support group

Listen to a comedy tape of video

Reality check old messages

Clean the house

Get out a fine tooth comb and vigorously brush the fur of a stuffed animal (use gentle vigor)

Pull weeds in the garden

Plant flowers

Play with a pet

Take your dog for a walk


To: Calling all Goonies- 2008
Date: 8/20/2008 - 9:46 AM
Subject: Help keeping the motivation on an even keel.
Message: I know I have posted this on site but felt to send it on so that everyone would also have their own personal copy.
Only because it would seems that there a quite a few who are having struggles with staying focused and on track. And to have a copy to hang on hte refriderator might help keep the motivation on an even keel.

Setting realistic goals - including weight, exercise, food and psychological goals - before you begin a weight loss plan is essential to a successful program.

Things You’ll Need:
Walking Shoes
Low-fat, Low Cal, High Fibre, and Protien recipies
And a measuring tape.

Step 1
Begin by setting some small daily goals. Your weight goal might be to lose 1 pound per week. If you hardly exercised in the past, you might want to walk around your neighborhood for 20 minutes every day. (If you like, split it into a 10-minute walk in the morning and another in the evening.) Your nutritional goal may be to reduce your fat intake. Your psychological goal may be to write in a journal every day.

Step 2
Establish intermediate goals that are a little more ambitious than your original goals. For instance, two weeks after you begin to meet your daily 20-minute walk goal, extend your goal to a daily 1-hour walk; start eating smaller portions at every meal; and seek counseling for any self-esteem issues you might have.

Step 3
Determine big-picture goals; this includes the total amount of weight you'd like to lose by the end of your program. Make a commitment to jog or run every day to maintain your weight and health; learn how you can shop, cook and eat as nutritiously as possible; and take up an activity that you think you have a knack for - this can keep up your self-esteem.

Step 4
Set time frames for your daily, intermediate and big-picture goals. As you progress from one to the next, reward yourself. Go shopping, get a facial, take a weekend trip. You deserve it!

Step 5 Dejunk your house!
I'm talking literally pitching and tossing all high fat, high calorie refined carb foods; anything and everything made with white sugar and flours!
And if you're the type of person who does not and will not waste food? There are food banks around the community that could definalty use the food!

Step 6
Fill your cupboards fridge and freezers with low fat, low carb complex carb foods; wholewheat and multi-grain breads, pastas, high fibre cereals; oatmeal, red reiver cereal, wholewheat shredded wheat, All Bran, Bran flakes, Wholewheat pancake or waffle mixes.
Fruits; apples oranges, bananas, pears, peaches, plums, grapes, cantaloupes, honey dew melons, strawberries, raspberries, watermelon is big this year!
Skim or 1% milk, no salt butter, yogurt, nuts; walnuts, almonds,

Step 7
Most people today drink way too many of their calories from other beverages like soda, juice, flavored coffees and teas, sports drinks, fruit drinks, artificially-sweetened drinks, etc. Drinking 8 10 ounce cups of plain water a day—in place of, not in addition to—these caloric beverages can help with weight management. Plus, most of these beverages don't offer any health benefits, while water does.

Step 7B
And while water is a vital key to success so is the amount of calories fats amd carbs you eat and limit yourself to every day!
It is very important to stay within your limits and at the lower end of them is the better. However when it comes to calorie intake for the day You MUST NOT eat less than 1200 Why? Because your body will then pull out all the big guns and halt your wieght loss! Why? Because it thinks you are trying to starve yourself and therefore will hang onto everything that you put in through your mouth and what is already there!
The solution? To eat no less than 1200 calories a day and to divide it up into five smaller meals! WHY? In this way the body is constantly burning calories because your metabolism is constantly being fed! But the point at which you should stop eating for the day is three hours before you retire for the night!

Step 8
Activity Levels!
Stretching Goal: every morning seven days a week! Ten minutes a day. That’s what you’re going to do: ten minutes a day. Til you reach your goal, you will spend ten minutes a day stretching before you begin your cardio or strength training exercises! Cardio: Find a Go to exercise to do for 30 minutes 7 times a week Start Small Stay consistent. . Make it easy. It’s okay if you finish thinking it wasn't hard and that you could have done more – that’s what the next day is for. It becomes a challenge
Strength Training Three days a week Monday Wednesday and Fridays using the challenge that has been already set in place. Whenever we tempted to drop the weights and grab a cookie instead, this is what we remind ourselves : The top 3 reasons everyone should strength train (and LOVE every minute of it): 1. Strength training preserves muscle mass during weight loss 2. Strength training elevates your metabolism 3. Strength training helps you lose weight more easily

Step 9
LOG IN to your support network and tools!!
To log in means to activley participate within the team every day; recording your first/initial weight and measurements, keeping up with the challenges you have joined, blogging daily/weekly as to your progress. Filling out you Nuturition; food tracker, making available for captains to see (accountability)
Filling out your fitness cardio and strength training and other goals! Again making them availble for captains to see (accountability)

Member Since: 6/22/2008

Fitness Minutes: 27,310

My Goals:
My main goal is to be healthy and strong.

Live by the 80/20 rule. Eating nutritious foods 80% of the time and "fun" foods 20% of the time is a healthy goal. Like all things in life, a healthy diet is about balance and moderation.

My Program:
I usually stay within my calorie range and exercise just about every day.

I love having a range! Sometimes I eat at the low end and sometimes at the high end. Sometimes I go over and sometimes I go under. But mostly, I stay within range and it doesn't feel like a diet.

I keep putting one foot in front of the other and the pounds are leaving!

It's a pretty uncomplicated way of doing things and so far it's working so I'm not fixing it.

Personal Information:

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