Pink Rhinoceroses and SparkPeople Benefits
Saturday, April 02, 2011
In posting to some blogs and commenting on some people's SparkPages today, it got me really thinking about how much this (SP) has helped me.
I have been in SparkPeople for nearly 3 months, and it has made a great difference for me.
Now stay with me here, and don't think about pink rhinoceroses yet!
I haven't lost tons of weight yet -- only about 13 of the 146 that I want to lose. HEY, that's almost 10% 2 more pounds and I will celebrate that mark!!! But it's OK with me that it will take a while. I didn't GAIN it all in 3 months, so why should I expect to LOSE it in 3 months??? My plan is to lose 50 pounds each year for 3 years (almost). If that doesn't force me to change habits over the long haul, I don't know what will. :)
Changing habits is what has been key for me.
I haven't yet developed all of the healthier habits that I eventually want to develop, but I am changing some of the bad habits. Some are just getting "less bad" but still not good. Some really are moving over to the "good" column. As I have said I'm many blogs and posts, I'm glad to be making ANY progress, because it's better than NOT making progress!!!
I have been celebrating my successes with ME time. I learned quickly that specific rewards were tending to bring me down for various reasons. I rewarded myself with reading time in a really good book, but I missed enjoying a warm, sunny day outside in late January. So when we had some warmer temperatures briefly (before it got cold again) I was going to reward myself by a nice walk outside.
So instead of those specific rewards, I give myself ME time. Ten or twenty or thirty minutes. If I miss a goal but made SOME progress, I get at least 5 minutes to do something in ME time. That helps encourage me to succeed and get more ME time tomorrow!
Some of my early ME time was here in SP. I spent lots and lots of time here -- I even blogged about spending TOO much time here. The idea for me, though, was to divert myself from absent-minded eating and to help myself find a better reward for better eating habits. Giving myself food as a reward had failed in the past! Now, I can "allow" myself ANY food, as long as it fits my goals for that day. Instead of doing well and then blowing it with a food reward, I have been able to allow myself food, avoiding the cravings that denials bring about (don't thing about pink rhinoceroses). That has really helped. (Remember: Don't think about pink rhinoceroses).
The surprise the I got from spending so much time in SP early on was finding SO much that SP has to offer on the website. I joined several teams, and now serve as a leader on one (White Sox Fans - come join us). I try to do the quizzes each day. I tried out several of the challenges. I signed up for emails to force myself to read different things, so that I don't get lost only in my favorite topics!
Especially helpful are the Trackers. Nutrition, Fitness, and Other Goals really help keep me in line more. Sometimes I use them to plan ahead, sometimes, they're done at the end, but having the daily discipline is what's making it work!
(You aren't thinking about pink rhinos, are you?)
One of the best things is becoming friends with people. Early on, I kept adding people as friends just because they posted to my blog or SparkPage. Now, there are too many people doing that now, so I don't add people as frequently as I once did. Still, I really enjoy working through my Friend Feed and seeing how people are doing, and offering support or encouragement. And it always great to RECEIVE support and encouragement from my friends!
So there's LOTS here at SP. Lots of support from lots of people. Lots of good information. AND lots of fun along the way!
And if you're still thinking of Pink Rhinos, then you know why trying to deny yourself certain foods is VERY difficult! The more you think about NOT eating it, the more you seem to crave it.
So no more pink rhino banishment. If a pink rhino gets in my head, well then it just does! Sometimes, I'll pay it some attention, and other times, I may not even notice. But at least I will be in charge myself, and not let my rhinoceros -- or my food -- run MY life for me!