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BETRME100 is a SparkPeople Motivator!

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Update: After giving up on myself for a while, I'm back amongst friends here at SparkPeople. A few weeks ago I was at my highest weight in years...I felt tired all the time, my body was in pain, I wasn't really living life...I was just making it through each day. Then I got the diagnosis that changed me. I found out I have RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and suddenly so much of what I'd gone through over the past few years began to make sense. I realized there was a reason I felt the way I did and that I needed to do everything in my power to give myself the gift of health. Now I'm back with exercising...not the way I used to, but the way I'm able to right now. I'm making changes in my more artificial sweeteners, cut way back on sugar. I couldn't tell you the last time I had fast food...and I don't even miss it. I'm studying various dietary changes that may help me fight the inflammation in my body. I guess the pain, and the diagnosis, woke me up to what I need to do for myself. I have no way to predict what the future holds for me, but I'm going to give it my all!

I always had big dreams. As a child, I wanted to be a singer (the catch was...I can't really sing)...and I always loved to dance. But I allowed my weight to keep me from pursuing my dreams. I was extremely shy and self conscious, had very low self esteem. I used food to comfort myself, to be my friend, not realizing that wasn't really what food was designed to do. Looking back, I now realize I did what I needed to do to survive some difficult childhood situations that I had no control over. Only recently have I stopped blaming myself for those situations and for using food to deal with them. The little girl that I was came up with a way to make it through life when she didn't know any better. Now, as an adult, I'm learning healthier ways to deal with the obstacles that sometimes appear in front of me as I travel through my life's journey. I've learned to treat myself with respect, compassion, and tenderness. I've learned to forgive myself when I don't live up to my own expectations. And most importantly, I've learned to love the life I live...this is the only life I'll have (I think) and I intend to live the rest of my life as the adventure it is!!

My all time highest weight was 360 pds. In June of 2008, I weighed 270 pounds. When I found SparkPeople in August of 2008, I was down to 251 pounds.

It's now early December of 2008 and I'm down to 212 pounds. The resources I've found at SP are invaluable. I've never had this kind of support in any past attempts at losing weight. I now realize this is about my health and fitness...not just about losing weight. I feel so much better physically and emotionally. I'm now able to live my life relatively pain free. I have energy and a positive attitude. I believe I can do this for the rest of my life. I'm now dancing again and enjoying my life. If I can do this, anyone can!!

Feb 1, 2009: I'm down to 196 (yea!! below 200 pounds for the first time in a long time!!). The middle of Feb. will be my 6 month anniversary with SP, I just can't believe the changes I've made during that time! I'm actually wearing regular size clothes now!! I just feel so much lighter...when I dance, I notice I'm able to move more freely, I no longer struggle to climb stairs or walk distances, I no longer come home from work too exhausted to I come home and work out!! If I've been able to change my life this much in the past 6 months, I'm really excited about what the next 6 months will bring!

March 25, 2009: Just turned 50 yesterday and I can't believe how great I feel. I'm stronger and more fit now than I was at 30!! I weighed in at 190 pounds this morning. The weight loss has slowed down, but I now realize I'm more concerned about making healthy choices than I am about some number on the scale. Yes I still have more weight to lose, but I know that will come if I continue eating healthy and exercising and I fully intend to continue down this road..."quit" is no longer in my vocabulary!!

Well, after spinning my wheels for several months, regaining 11 pounds and feeling the effects of that, I'm thrilled that I've managed to get back on track!! I've become a vegetarian full time (was eating fish or chicken once in a while before), given up artificial sweeteners and begun eating more whole foods. I spend more time cooking, but am able to prepare enough on my days off to keep me eating clean until my next day off. I've now gone 2 weeks without eating any junk food at all and I feel so much better. The weight is slowly coming off again (why does it pile on so much more quickly than it comes off?) and I'm feeling positive that I can reach my goals!!

Wow, been a while since I updated my page (other than how it looks)...the 5% challenges have motivated me to get back to my losing ways...something about being a part of a team makes me want to do my part so we can reach our team goals faster...go Daisies!!

I ran/walked my first 5K on 9/18...Hoosiers Outrun was a wonderful event, over 5,000 participants...and I finished..that was my goal for it and I did it!! Now I'm setting a goal for next year's run the entire race!! I know I can do it!

The stated goal of the 5% challenge is to lose 5% of your body weight...I've been managing about 2.5%...I'd really like to kick it up for this challenge and actually lose the order to do that I'm going to have to be especially vigilant with my my personal goal for this challenge is to plan and track every meal and snack and really stick with it. I get the exercise in daily, but the eating isn't always the best...I'm going to keep healthy snacks in my desk at work to keep me from visiting the vending machine...cook food for my lunches on my days off so I have healthy meals readily available. For myself, these are key steps in continuing my weight loss. I'm doing it starting NOW!!

Member Since: 8/16/2008

Fitness Minutes: 108,091

My Goals:
To feel healthy and strong.
To have the energy to go dancing again.
To be able to go into any store and buy cute clothes.
To be able to tuck my shirt in my jeans and know I look good.

My Program:
Since my RA diagnosis, I've been following a vegetarian diet (which wasn't difficult for me since I ate very little meat anyhow), cut out sugar and artificial sweeteners (okay, haven't completely cut out sugar yet), working on eliminating, or at least reducing, dairy, stopped eating nightshades, and am looking into a gluten free diet. As far as I can tell, these things are possibly helpful in fighting inflammation in people with autoimmune diseases. Hey, it can't hurt!
I exercise almost every day: cardio, strength training, core work and flexibility.

Personal Information:
I work long hours at a very stressful job. To relax, I like to garden, read, write, dance, make jewelry and play with my crazy little cat.

Other Information:
I used to take dance lessons-love to watch Dancing With the Stars!
I'm not totally a vegetarian, but I do eat a lot of vegetarian meals.
Read mystery novels-particularly those written by female authors.

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