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    emoticon to SparkPeople and the "I Can Do All Things Through Christ!" team. I wish you much success with your weight loss. Take things one healthy meal, one exercise, one positive day at a time and always believe in yourself you can do this, one pound at a time. emoticon -- Lou
    2716 days ago
  • v RG_DFW
    emoticon Welcome to SparkPeople!

    Are you competitive by nature? One of my daily goals is to hit 100 SparkPoints. When I do that, I've not only read articles, I've interacted with other members by reading and commenting on their blogs and writing my own blog. 100 points gets me here and gets me active each and every day.

    When I started, I made the commitment to workout daily and write a blog about it. On days when I don't feel like doing it, I think about the blog I need to write and I certainly do NOT want to write that I was lazy and did not work out.

    Maintain your goals on your SparkPage (that's what all the goal-setting gurus write about) and make the goals public on your page. Write about it on your blog every day.

    Weight loss = calorie maintenance, cardio, and strength. Calorie maintenance is every day, cardio is at least five days per week, and strength is 3 to 4 days per week. I believe you need all three for a successful weight loss and fitness program.

    Above all, be consistent. Doing something toward you goal every day will pay big rewards over the next few months. You can do this!

    2717 days ago
    Hello Heather. well as you can see you have been given some very good advice. just know that you don't have to be perfect ,,, it is all about EVOLVING one little change at a time and soon they are good habits that have replaced the bad habits. I know what it is to have a large family and be VERY overweight. but I also know what it is to lose that weight . I am down about 70 pounds in the last couple years and it is staying off too. Welcome to Spark this is the answer that you have been praying for ,honest!Enjoy the day at a time. emoticon
    2717 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    Hi Heather
    Glad to have you on SP. To begin I want to wish you all the best on your new journey. Next I would like to give you a few ideas that have worked for me.
    1. First and foremost, I try and put God first and he helps me get through everything. I pray daily for strength.
    2. Start slow. One step at a time. Don't try and change everything at once, it will over whelm you.
    3. Don't stress over "Oops Days". Don't beat yourself up if you have that candy bar or milkshake. Learn from it.
    4. Be a giver. You will find when you share your experience it will help someone and will make you feel better about yourself.
    5. Join Spark teams. When you join teams of things you can relate to, you can make friends that will help, support, and motivate you.
    6. Keep track of everything. I can't believe the difference it has made of being able to see what I'm doing. I've learned so much from it.

    Hope I can be a Spark friend that can help you on your journey. Best of luck on your journey.

    Keep Smiling
    2718 days ago
    Hi Heather! I'm Heather. ;) Glad to have you aboard! You're in the right place for support and advice... here's to living a healthier lifestyle!

    Couple of suggestions:

    1) Track everything! Start now, and just track for a few days, to get an idea of what you normally eat. It will make it easier to determine where you need to start changing your lifestyle.

    2) Start small! One thing at a time. You don't have to go organically-grown homemade Californian vegan to be healthy. Start with watching your caloric intake, then work on incorporating healthier eating habits bit by bit. I started by mixing my normal pasta with 1/2 whole wheat. By measuring out, over the last months, I've switched completely to whole wheat, and am incorporating more whole grains into my diet!

    3) Set up a complete exercise program. Don't neglect your strength training until you've lost the weight... start now! adding strength to your cardio program will help you burn calories everywhere more efficiently. Even when sitting around doing nothing. :) It will help the fat you do have look better, and you'll feel better as a result.

    4) REmember that this is NOT about perfection. You can do this! Mistakes happen, you'll have setbacks, and you'll have days you go over. It's okay. This is a journey, not a race, and you've taken the first step.

    2718 days ago
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