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Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll

Wednesday, June 18, 2014


* No matter how carefully I write, rewrite or edit my blogs, people see what they want to see, XOR what they don't want to see in them. Social media, in general, and SP blogs in particular are a MORT (Massively Online Rohrschach Test). Yes, there are a few (too few) readers who get something meaningful out of this.

* If I wanted to get the most play, here, my constant topic would be inspirational drivel. As I've said before, if you're so inspired, where's the results?

* The only constant is that: if I have an intriguing title I get more comments. (Hence today's subject. >;-))

* The previous's blog was about limited SP computing resource and agonizing time delays, exacerbated by an ever increasing ad stream. It was not about pop-up ads.

I give up! :-|


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SANDICANE 7/29/2014 7:02AM

    Good morning! I LOVE the title of your rant.

Yep, there are tons of ads/pop-ups on my SP too. Poor guy has to pay for this site somehow....

Hoping your power is back on and you are having a SparkFilled Day!

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ALIIDA 7/27/2014 11:56AM

    Bit late here, but I'm more interested in your writing than those three things up there. emoticon Don't even think about giving up!

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LSDALOIA 7/6/2014 11:25AM

    I hate pop ups, too.

But I also find that writing/blogging/journaling is really more for me than for accolades by readers. So, if you like doing it, keep it up.

I also think some people read your blogs and don't comment (I'm guilty) so you might have more fans than you realize.

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DEBBYFROMMT 6/25/2014 4:12PM

    LOL! I read your blogs anyway but the title sure caught me!

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BRENDA_G50 6/24/2014 8:55AM

    To quote Sir Winston Churchill: "Never, never, never give up"!!!

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NELLIEH1 6/20/2014 3:36PM

    Lee, hope you will keep sharing...we "people" will see/hear/understand from our own perspectives...but is that really a problem? The important thing, a I see it, is that you pose questions, share insights, try to do some shaking up of the status quo...good job....keep on keeping on...

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DRAGON-CHICK 6/19/2014 8:45AM

    Don't give up. Keep on bloggin'
Just ignore bad comments...

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MSLZZY 6/19/2014 6:49AM

    Don't give up now. You got my attention.
It is amazing what people read into our blogs.

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SNUFFKINS 6/19/2014 1:50AM

  I can relate to the issues you have with sparkpeople's website. I have a whole blog post to write about how it's giving me ads related to diet pills ( I mean, what?).
I also mostly agree with your take on inspirational blogs (I find motivational picture posts very annoying).

However, I disagree with your statement, that the reader always sees what s/he wants. Communication is not only a matter of receiving the message. You might want to look into Schulz von Thun's communication model ;)

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1SALMON1 6/19/2014 12:19AM

    O don't give up. GB Shaw said the biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place. Yet the attempt provides at the minimum so much entertainment; and sometimes for a glorious moment there is actual connection! Also I check out your blogs because I've found them valuable in the past - entertaining, or informative, or whatever; I pay no particular attention to the title.

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MICKEYH 6/18/2014 11:55PM

    You are so right about this! Thanks for posited out. emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 6/18/2014 10:02PM

    Alrighty then.

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68ANNE 6/18/2014 8:14PM

    So your blogs aren't more for you?

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ZZYYGGY3 6/18/2014 6:16PM

    I know what you mean, but don't give up writing your blogs. Write them for yourself, and noone else

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BMCOLLEY 6/18/2014 4:41PM

    You sound like a teacher whose class is not mastering the subject matter. I, personally, am an independent thinker. If I am one of the people that is causing you to feel as if you are wasting your time, I feel you can do one of two things: accept us as we are or stop blogging.


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    I thought you were peeved over your TIME BEING WASTED with slow-down fluff on a funky website. Are you mad at us? Why?

You can't fault us for being intrigued with sex, drugs, and rock and roll. We're perverts, I guess. LOL. I was excited when I saw the title. I thought you were going to go kinky on us. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Personally, I like the blogs where we get an insight into who Bobby is. I'm sorry if you don't like that. It's how I'm wired.

We are doing our best to figure out what you are saying but sometimes you are not the easiest person to read. This is a social media site - maybe you just attract a bunch of shallow, ignorant readers - you know, "Girls" who just wanna have fun-un. LOL.

Try to think of yourself as Mr. Phelps, on Mission Impossible. "Good Morning, Mr. Boppy. Your mission, Boppy, should you choose to accept it.........blah, blah, blah. As always should any member of your IMF force be caught or killed, the secretary will disavow all knowledge of your actions. This tape will self-destruct in five seconds. Good luck Boppy."

Try not to kill us. Would you mind expanding on the ex, drugs, and rock roll part? emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/18/2014 5:35:51 PM

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MAVERICKDR 6/18/2014 4:04PM

    How do I, an independent thinker who's inclined toward amusement, respond to this.

I have no knowledge of the computing resources that SP devotes to this supposedly free website. I hope someone somewhere is making money...helps the economy. Some days the entertainment value on SP is priceless as I need a laugh and I do laugh...frequently. I do find some inspiration, too, because I need to stay on the journey.

Pop-up ads are a source of irritation to me as they slow things down on the site, distract me, require extra caution in mousing around the page and I'm not interested in buying anything.

When you referred to MORT, I thought of Mork calling Orson. I don't know why, just my Rorschach tape rolling, I guess.

I am not interested in intriguing titles. I am interested in hearing what you are thinking.

I like to write, I like writing, but I don't write many blogs on SP, and haven't written any blog(s) anywhere else at all. I do not, and will not, do it just for the SparkPoints. I am required to do it at least once a week to fulfill the goals of the Community Team. I have been known to write reviews of products in which I am genuinely interested and with which I am pleased.

What else? That's it. Oh I like progressive rock, but not necessarily metal or rockabilly or the stereotypical lifestyle of rock stars.

emoticon emoticon

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ALEXTHEHUN 6/18/2014 4:00PM

    Thoughts on observations.

It's certainly true that communication goes awry, despite one's best efforts. By it's very nature the process is fraught with opportunities for misunderstanding. Even though the message you post is the same, the readers, their experiences, the level of knowledge and understanding, and their emotional state vary in every instance. It would be astonishing if any two of them DO get the same thing out of it. To expect otherwise seems like a good way to be contually disappointed.

And of course it truly is disappointing. So many times I think I've nailed it in delivering a lecture, only to have some question posed that clearly shows that what I thought I said and what they understood were quite distinct.

Upton Sinclair's novel, The Jungle, is famous for its expose of horrors and abuses of the meat-packing industry back in 1904. The thing is, that's NOT what the book is about. It's about labor relations and the dangers of unregulated capitalism. The meat-packing was supposed to be incidental, a means to convey his real message. Sinclair was similarly disappointed. He said, "I aimed at the public's heart and accidentally hit them in the stomach."

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MIAMOJO 6/18/2014 3:59PM

    I love your page's background image of ice cream sandwiches taken with an infrared camera. Very psychedelic!

What a racy blog subject you chose today! I enjoyed it and found it very inspirational. And it's so clever the way you hid the lyrics to that Metallica song within your post, while pretending to write about people misunderstanding your writing! As you can see, I am one of the few who get what you're saying.


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KAREN-IS-HERE 6/18/2014 3:13PM

    emoticon are you sure you didn't write about sex drugs and rock n roll- I could of sworn I read something in here about it....

can't wait to read how many new ways you'll be misunderstood today- Hi ya Lee- keep your chin up emoticon any more word about 'subdued birds'?

Comment edited on: 6/18/2014 3:31:22 PM

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Tipping Point @ SparkPeople

Monday, June 16, 2014

I've talked about tipping points before, but I may have found a new tipping point for me.

The popups ads at are so frequent, numerous and invasive at SparkPeople, AND the limited amount of computing and communications resource that SparkPeople is devoting to their web site is making my use of it cost prohibitive (in terms of my time)!

At first, I thought it was my browser. But, browser doesn't matter. Then, I thought it might be the fact that I blocked them. Blocking (or not) also doesn't matter. Extensions and add-ins also don't matter.

Ads I don't mind. Time-wasting I will not tolerate!

Looks like I may have to find an alternative. emoticon

Lee emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DOUGDC 7/2/2014 11:04AM

    I basically agree. My use of SparkPeople is becoming more degraded by imaginative ads. I turn off the sound when I"m on the site so I'm not bothered by the videos that launch without invitation.

My real problem is the way pages paint. My internet connection is pretty fast, but before the Spark content displays, the page loads tons of advertising related material, slowing my movement through the pages down while showing nothing useful.

I understand the idea of the ads, but I think Spark is running the most complex, and therefor least usable, web sites anywhere.

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BRENDA_G50 6/24/2014 9:03AM

    Yes, the popup ads are very annoying!!! Yes, they waste our time. I agree 100% with you on that. I also, do not like the intrusion. It interferes with my train of thought and wastes my valuable time. I also am annoyed by the videos that automatically play and there's no way to shut them off (actually, I just turn off the sound and try to ignore them). emoticon

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DRAGON-CHICK 6/19/2014 8:48AM

    An alternative to SP? *gasp*
I find the pop-ups really annoying, but really gets me are the videos that start playing, with sound. (While I'm browsing at work!)

emoticon emoticon

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MIAMOJO 6/18/2014 4:14PM

    Sorry you're getting frustrated with the site! This website is fast as lightening for me, and I can honestly say I have never (in my 10 days here) seen even one advertisement on this site and the only pop-ups I get are to tell me I've gotten a bonus spin (and I like those!). I use firefox along with the adblock plus extension, but I'm not sure what accounts for the fast pageload; maybe it's my internet connection speed, but it's considered average.

emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/18/2014 4:16:02 PM

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DAISY443 6/18/2014 2:51PM

    I am finding many facets of SP that have changed recently

Comment edited on: 6/18/2014 4:18:25 PM

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MSLZZY 6/18/2014 6:42AM

    I can ignore them at home but it makes my workday longer since my blocker lets some of them through. Work flow is really affected.

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JEANKNEE 6/17/2014 11:57PM

    I consider myself fortunate. Like Alex, I am fine at home. It's another story at work.

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NELLIEH1 6/17/2014 7:57PM

    Hope you don't have to leave...but agree that the interruptions are increasing...Bah humbug.

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MAVERICKDR 6/17/2014 6:27PM

    My experience is the same as Alex wrote regarding home vs work. I feel the same as Morticia that SparkPeople can be a waste of my time if I waste my time in there.

I use Google Chrome for my browser and I use a pop up blocker extension and don't have issues with pop-up ads at home.

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MOM2ACAT 6/17/2014 5:58PM

    I use Firefox for my browser, and I have an ad blocker; I never see any ads while I am on Spark nor do I get any pop ups.

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KAREN-IS-HERE 6/17/2014 11:59AM

    dang, I hope you linger longer.... I'm not ready to see you go

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LADYRH 6/17/2014 5:49AM

    I don't get pop ups just the ad's which help keep the site free. Check your pop up blocker.

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STRONGERLEANER 6/16/2014 11:56PM

    So sorry this is happening to you. I don't get the pop-ups, just ads in the "sidebars." Hoping there is a way for you to stop the extra ads for you so that you'll stay.

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1CRAZYDOG 6/16/2014 10:42PM

    I hope you do stick around, at least till you see if you find something that fits in better.

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68ANNE 6/16/2014 9:19PM

    Time wasting is frustrating

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    I'm sorry!

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BMCOLLEY 6/16/2014 7:45PM

    I just had my computer overhauled by Frontier. Now, my computer is very fast and I have not gotten any pop-up.


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MJREIMERS 6/16/2014 7:41PM

    I hate how if I do a search on my computer, I start seeing the same sites on Spark as advertisements. I understand your frustration. I certainly hope that you can figure out a way to block the ads. I'd miss not "hearing" from you.

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ALEXTHEHUN 6/16/2014 6:02PM

    My pop-up blocker is pretty effective. I don't get too many. I know this because, I also use sparkpeople at work. At work, I have no control over how it works and I am bombarded with nonsense. It's almost the point of giving up.
Good luck.

Comment edited on: 6/16/2014 6:03:00 PM

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ADARKARA 6/16/2014 5:36PM

    Weird! I use ad blocker extension on all my browser's and block pop-ups and I never see a pop-up. Hope you find a solution!

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    I don't get any popups or ads any more. Sparkpeople is in general a time waster for me though. My time would be better spent trying to get more exercise in if my knee would allow it. I need to work back up to 3 hours a day minimum. I'm working on it but it's exasperatingly slow.

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SARAHL817 6/16/2014 4:20PM

    If you find another site where you can accomplish the same goals in a more time-effective manner, then it's probably time for you to move on.

Unfortunately, invasive ads are becoming the norm with websites these days . . . which is great for advertisers, but not so great for people who just want to use their favorite websites without interruptions from ads. Don't be surprised if you find this problem with other sites as well.

I hope you find something that works for you!

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Portion Control

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Portion Control

Portion control may be a problem, but it is definitely NOT the solution, IMAO. Or, rather, it's the wrong place to start trying to solve the problem of weight and health management

For me, the key to portion control is planning. Not just planning at the time I take a portion, but long-term planning.

1. I don't eat things that make me want more of those things. Rice, for me, is a principal example. Most bread also falls into this category.

2. I don't eat things where the calorie to satisfaction ratio is high. There are so many things that fall into this category that time and bits preclude a catalog. However, it includes all deep-fat fried foods, all fast foods, junk food such as potato chips, snack crackers, candy, cake (except for birthday celebrations), almost all packaged, processed foods, beef and pork sausages (including hot dogs), and beer and booze (most of the time--360 out of 365 days, at least).

3. I limit my meat intake to about 8 ounces per day. I usually only eat lean beef, chicken or pork. I rarely have chicken with the skin on it. Fish is an exception. Depending on the fat content, I'll have between .75 to 1.5 pounds of fish in lieu of any other animal protein. If I'm having trouble "making weight", I'll drop beef out of the equation first, AND will put a heavy emphasis on the animal protein IN the salad.

4. How do I know this? Because we shop based on the above and following rules, AND I weigh everything before I eat it. Every meal. Every snack. Every day. More that that, I plan out my day based on what I'm going to eat for dinner. This is especially important if I know I'm going to go out to eat for the dinner meal.

5. Breakfast is the important meal, in so many ways. Before I have breakfast, I've already weighed myself, and often have been on the treadmill for at least a warm-up walk. The weigh-in tells me how I'm doing and allows me to recommit to my program daily. My breakfast is almost always hearty. 13 out of 14 days, it's 80 grams (2 cups-- but weighed not by volume too much chance to cheat), and either dried fruit or berries, also weighed. I also have a spoonful or two (22 - 60) grams of Greek Yogurt that I take with medications. I will also have 6 cups of black coffee or decaf (usually, 2 of one and 4 of the other -- but weak in both cases.

Why all the emphasis on planning and measuring?

Because I don't know myself, and I am willing to bet that you don't know you! Moreover, our joint state of needing to lose weight means that we don't know our eating behavior and don't have "built-in" portion control.


Lee emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KATELJM 8/17/2014 2:57PM

    In my vocabulary, your "calorie to satisfaction ratio" goes by the name, "Calorie justification analysis". I believe in planning ahead, too. Before I go to a restaurant, I have already figured out what to order, as you probably would do as well.

Animal protein is on my list of "Controlled Substances", items which need to be carefully portioned if I am going to ingest them. I rarely eat beef the night before a weigh-in, but when I "splurge", many times it is beef. It turns out I'd rather have more good meat than almost any dessert, although I have been known to plan a week's menus around having a bit of cheesecake.

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DAISY443 6/18/2014 2:54PM


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    It's interesting to me to see what other people eat. I'm not sure if anyone would be interested in what I eat but I eat meat, fish seafood, veggies, fruits, seeds, nuts, healthy fats, and some dairy and legumes.

I tend to eat on plan, most of the time, unless away from home with limited options. I'm picky so it is hard for me to eat away from home. I overeat healthy food even though I weigh everything. The only time I ever binged in my life was on cabbage. I figure I probably ate a half a head. It tasted really good and I ate too much and ended up sick for days. I want cauliflower, peppers, broccoli, carrots when I just should be eating a serving of maybe 2 of them. I keep a register for my doctor of what I eat and he pretty much loves it but says I am still eating too many carbs for someone with my medical conditions. I wish he would just give me a range but he told me 135gms a day is too much. I can eat a serving of long cooking brown rice but would rather spend the calories on veggies or fruit. I love vegetables and fruit but unfortunately too many are not good for me either. They are all eventually converted to simple sugars. And I don't generally eat bread as I'm supposed to be gluten free and gluten free bread is expensive and gross. It's not worth the calories and is highly processed. They usually add b vitamins to make any bread worth bothering with.

I watch my calories too and am usually in my range unless I eat out. I'm fortunate I don't care much for many really high calorie foods - too rich for me. A serving of something like cake or pie gags me. Especially the crust. Fast foods are fairly gross. I do admit that I like certain potato chips but they upset my stomach. I like crackers but they make me sick. I can have sausage if it's gluten free, uncured, and lean. I don't want it very often. Same with hot dogs. I sometimes like one for a treat - Nathans.

I'm not into alcohol, juice, coffee - not on my plan. I'm not allowed to drink anything with calories other than dairy. And I don't really care much for dairy.

I love fish and seafood, a few cuts of pork like tenderloin, and a few cuts of beef, like sirloin, round steak. Maybe a little turkey breast and chicken breast - not crazy about chicken. I'm required to eat a lot more than 8 ounces a day though. My protein needs are higher than most people. I'm a mesomorph.

I don't like to go out to eat. Most restaurants are filthy. My GF was head of the health department. Now they list the health reports online. They are frightening.

I stopped having breakfast recently and it has really helped me. Up until the age of 46 when I was thin I never ate breakfast. I was convinced that it was necessary by all the pseudo-science and now they are retracting all of that. I am to the point where I don't believe or trust any studies. Some people do well with breakfast, other don't. It makes me symptomatic. Sets me up for a day of fighting my blood sugar.

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LADYRH 6/16/2014 6:45AM

    Portion control and planning are both very good parts of weight loss, combined with determination to stick to the plan.

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PJB149 6/16/2014 4:30AM

    emoticon I practice portion control but I am learning to eye-ball pretty accurately at home. At restaurants, forget about it! The portions are so huge that even eating half is usually too much food. I don't do a lot of eating out for that very reason. Junk food is exactly that, not good for you and doesn't taste that great either.

I don't plan every meal but I always have a hearty breakfast. I don't eat "on the clock," I eat when I get hungry so, sometimes, I am under my caloric count but I don't usually go over.

I decided when I started and recommitted to losing this weight that I would not do anything to lose that I am not willing to do for life. That means I am incorporating all the foods I like into my program (including carbs) but being very strict with my weighing and measuring and portion control. I am probably losing slower than most because of this but it is not a race. The object is to create a lifestyle I can live with not just lose with.

Continued success with your program you have obviously found what works for you.

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1SALMON1 6/16/2014 1:08AM

    I am behind the curve of planning, rather than ahead of it. I weigh and measure everything, track everything - but at the end of the day, and after having eaten. Sometimes I am low on calories at the end of the day; somewhat more often I am high and it's too late to fix it - I already ate it! Planning ahead is something I can do to improve my results.

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1CRAZYDOG 6/15/2014 10:37PM


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MAVERICKDR 6/15/2014 10:10PM

    You have certainly written your thoughts very clearly, and you have the results to show for it. Good job.

As I read, my mind wandered to Finding Nemo when Bruce the shark says, "I am a nice shark, not a mindless eating machine. If I am to change this image, I must first change myself. Fish are friends, not food." Good thing you are Lee, not Bruce; otherwise 3 above would need revision.

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68ANNE 6/15/2014 6:50PM

    Learn to know yourself is a huge step many people won't do

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ALEXTHEHUN 6/15/2014 6:40PM

    What clear observations. I find that I am well along the same path, however, I had not articulated such actions quite so clearly. I do measure most things and I do measure more things by weight than by volume. A few things, that I eat very regularly, I measured enough times that I am confident in eyeballing it now. But even those, I will recalibrate from time to time.
Planning for the week, the day, and the individual meals truly helps me stay on track and helps minimize my setbacks.
As I write these remarks, I suspect that a difference in your success and mine is that you have adhered to this regime more diligently than I. Perhaps there is a lesson for me in this.

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NELLIEH1 6/15/2014 6:30PM

    My "no-no" list is similar to yours...especially if I see myself gaining once again.
However, it is usually sweets rather than salty things that get me. Jim and I have decided to do four days of veggie main meals (3-5PM), 1 day of fish and two weekend days with fowl. Only for a celebration do we include beef, pork or lamb.
We use nuts and sometimes cheese, occasionally beans and Greek yogurt to keep the protein balance. Breakfast is eggs or Greek yogurt with fruit. And the evening meal is salad/fruit for me and popcorn/fruit for him.

I like to "graze", so plan to divide my main meals of breakfast and "lunsup" into two parts with lots of water.

Portion size is the same-same, except that I allow unlimited greens, peppers and cucumber slices.

When we go out to a restaurant, I order salad with or without grilled chicken and always have the dressing on the side. When invited out to a home/party/etc. I eat what's put in front of me. (after having cut way back on calories for previous meals and limiting later meals for a day or two afterwards depending.) Portion size can be iffy in such situations. I like the suggestion of saving half a restaurant meal for a "doggy bag"...but that can't be done at someone else's home.

It is good for us to be encouraging one another like this! Thanks

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KAREN-IS-HERE 6/15/2014 5:33PM

    I figure if it is in my house I'm eating it- so the store is filter one: same as you no junk, fast or fried, sweets, sugary or floury stuff. I think in terms of three meals, protein, produce, and fiber- every thing to the nearest 50 calories. Popcorn (no oils no salt) air popped measured to nearest 50 calories too. I measure every thing but lettuce, I give myself a pass.

yippee for portion control!!

Comment edited on: 6/15/2014 5:35:17 PM

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MIAMOJO 6/15/2014 5:18PM

    This is a great summary of what it takes to maintain weight loss. Congrats on your success! emoticon

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LJOYCE55 6/15/2014 5:11PM

  Thank you.

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    Thank you!

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Observations & Rules, Here!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Some rules of thumb about what I've observed from my readers, and me.

* Who Benefits?

I benefit because it clarifies my thinking about nutrition, fitness, wellness, and CHANGE.

Best case, the readers who need any advice or perspective the LEAST, embrace it the most.

To give examples of what I mean, because I can't imagine anybody understanding the previous generality without examples. No, Alex, and '1CD', I was positively absolutely NOT referring to your monikers, in the previous blog post.

* Questions, Questions, Questions?

Do I ask myself the kind of questions that I pose to myself and readers in my blogs?

Absolutely. All the time. Even, recursively. emoticon

For example, if I've had trouble understanding something someone is saying, and I think I've finally gotten "it", I will ask them a question based on their premise, that I think I know the answer to. If I don't get the answer I was expecting, then I know I still haven't "gotten it".

As a speaker on the dais, or in a classroom, etc., I have often done this with the audience. The alternative "Do you understand?" is often, best case, autistic (i.e., a false, or cryptic feedback plea), and, worst case, more intimidating than asking a series of graded (easy to hard) questions.

This means that specific feedback to my blogs makes clear to me what my reader is unclear on, and what I'm unclear on. I can be "unclear" in at least three ways: (a) my writing is confusing, emoticon (b) my writing references concepts and experience my audience does not share with me emoticon , or (c) I flat out don't know what I'm talking about. emoticon

BTW, if you ask questions, I will always try to answer them, if I think I can. Most often, they will find their way in a separate later blog post. I've pretty much abandoned answering questions as an additional comment. There are several reasons for this. First many readers do not read blogs very carefully, and only respond to get points. Of those that do read blogs in entirety, few read the comments. Also, few folks at SP ever looks at older blogs, or comments. And, in all cases they certainly don't look at blog comments to blogs, they have just posted comments to. This is because the software AND the ethos at SP does NOT support ongoing conversations.

If you read my blog regularly, you will see that there are recurring themes where I try to clarify, enlarge and differentiate topics presented earlier.

* Deletion of Comments

In general, I'm looking for response, so a comment has to prove that it has no redeeming content value, before I delete it.

One cause of deletion by me is pointed comments about religion or god -- NO MATTER HOW WELL INTENTIONED. This is a recurring issue, that's why I bring it up, again.

The other cause is folk (no s) engaged in some kind of vendetta.

I have noticed that I have a few regular readers who have profound beliefs in god or regular participation in religion. As long as they confine that to their blogs and Spark Pages, I'm a happy camper. While I look at, and comment on, a lot of blogs and Spark Pages, I just avoid interacting with these pages.

Lee emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

68ANNE 6/15/2014 3:58PM

    I like option number three but I'm biased.

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1SALMON1 6/15/2014 12:57AM

    OK, time (for me) to learn something. I haven't questioned myself about why write a blog, what I intend to accomplish with it, etc. I just blather when I have something bursting to be said, and when Spark seems the best place to say that something. Hmmm. You have (as usual) given me something to think about! Thank you, Lee!

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NELLIEH1 6/14/2014 11:27PM

    Here's a helpful challenge: "Do I ask myself the kind of questions I pose to myself and readers in my blogs?" I assume you are saying..."Is this reality, or just to express my opinion in my writing?" You are right about being forthright in checking ourselves is easy for me to generalize.
And that brings me to another reason I appreciate your blog. Logic is something I never quite "got", so you are helping me to make myself think through sentences that don't make sense to me. emoticon Thanks... emoticon

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DAISY443 6/14/2014 7:35PM

    For the most part, I agree with you.

Comment edited on: 6/14/2014 7:51:33 PM

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ALEXTHEHUN 6/14/2014 4:16PM

    Your requirements seem straightforward enough. emoticon
Your remark about comments and feedback strike very close to home for me. As a teacher, every test and especially every written assignment, is actually a reflection on my teaching. When I receive papers which miss the mark, especially if there are more than one paper going astray in a similar fashion, then I know it is I who failed to explain clearly and thoroughly so as to avoid such misconceptions.

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DRAGON-CHICK 6/14/2014 3:57PM

    Sounds reasonable to me!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 6/14/2014 3:55PM

    **WHO BENEFITS** OH I know you were singing nobody out for sure! I get asked that question all the time (in another venue).

Generally I benefit from reading the blogs that I read, learning what I need or want to learn or dismissing I as it's not relevant to my path. No problems with that.

Frequently, however, I may see a blog title that doesn't appear to "fit in" with what I believe in, and decide to read it anyway. I am always amazed that there is always little something-something that I unintendedly learn from reading such blogs. So for me, it's a learning experience.

I learned long ago that the perspective of any reader is totally influenced by their own life experiences (obviously, right!) And that's all right too.

As for checking the understanding of your readers by evaluating the responses . . . I do the same as well. It is more difficult evaluating the written response, however because it lacks the tone and facial expressions that can give major clues that you've lost your audience!

Interesting blog.

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    I promise not to ask too many questions. LOL. I generally don't ask questions unless I want clarification. I hope that if you decide to answer my questions that I am perceptive enough to realize you are answering it. LOL. If references are reworded too much or embedded in too much unrelated info I may not recognize it as what I wanted to know. People learn in different ways. I'm the type that does best when it is kept simple and to the point. Hit me over the head with it. Don't skirt around it. I understood the paragraphs about deletion I think really well. I'm not polite like you though and would have probably just said something offensive like, "Please, no more God stuff!" LOL. Sorry, it's what I'm like.

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ADARKARA 6/14/2014 3:50PM

    emoticon I particularly agree with the last paragraph. emoticon

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How Human Memory Works, Or Not

Friday, June 13, 2014

I am constantly annoyed by the ads (including the crypto-ads on NPR) for "brain training" designed by "neuro-scientists". Too many alleged scientists profess too much knowledge about human cognition.

That is not to say that scientists know nothing about how human cognition works. Consider some research on human semantic memory. Subjects are briefly shown isolated words in sequence and then asked when presented a "new" word" whether it was one of the ones that was seen before.

With remarkable consistency, the closer in meaning a new, never previously presented, word is to an "old" word, the more likely the subject will "say" they have seen the word before. Most interestingly, antonyms are the closest semantic matches to previous words. Further research shows that antonyms are so close because they generally differ in only one dimension (in "semantic space") from the targeted word.

Does this have anything to do with nutrition, weight, fitness and wellness management?


If you constantly tell yourself that you are NOT fat, NOT overeating, or NOT a slug, are you perhaps rehearsing the exact opposite?

BTW, there are lots of ways to practice this negative-negative pseudo-positivism, IMHO. For example, what's in a name? Is your ID on SP, or elsewhere, is "FormerFatGuy", or "RunningBlubberMan", or something like that?

So what's the alternative?

1. Planning
2. Visualizing
3. Incremental Action
4. Measurement
5. Tracking
6. Analysis & Adjustment

* Success

"Oh, but this is complicated and takes so much time and effort!"

So does cardiovascular disease (including stroke, myocardial infarction, and dementia), endocrine imbalance (including Type 2 diabetes), death (the ultimate!! time-waster), discomfort, unhappiness, negative self-consciousness.

Is the above post science?

He11, no! But, it's as much science as (and maybe a lot more than) "brain training"! Moreover, how much did you pay for the above "advice" vs "brain training"? And, be advised, in both cases, there's lots of ways you could be paying besides direct money transfer.

Lee emoticon

P.S. And, remember what that great psychologist, Shakespeare (:-)) said about such matters:

"Methinks ye protest too much!"

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 6/18/2014 6:44AM

    Train the brain. Use it or lose it. Time to refocus.
Great blog!

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KAREN-IS-HERE 6/14/2014 8:47AM

    I cringe when I see demeaning nicknames people give themselves...

love your blog: three thumbs up!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/14/2014 8:48:40 AM

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LADYRH 6/14/2014 7:49AM

    Thanks for a great blog Lee, a wakeup call for us all.

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2BDYNAMIC 6/14/2014 6:29AM

    I understand the negative names: NotBlubberNow .......... they still incorporate their enemy .............. And when I chose names for my children, they were strong names they all like ......... We have to live with those names and it can be positive or .......... not! emoticon

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KAYYVAUGHN 6/14/2014 5:57AM


Thanks for the information. I do agree with you last statements. We all need to get a handle on a healthy lifestyle and what it means for us.

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1SALMON1 6/14/2014 1:00AM

    I second your comments about brain training. Ditto the annoying ads promoting it.

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TAMWIL2 6/13/2014 11:10PM

    I love this blog especially since I'm studying psychology for my degree and my cognitive psychology class was, by far, my favorite. (The professor is also my adviser by my choice.) I actually did some of these studies as part of the class and found, much to my dismay, that memory truly is NOT as good as we believe it to be. I also learned that the study of positive psychology is a relatively new branch and those researchers are studying how "successful people" set and reach their goals. So much of the advice found here on sparkpeople is backed up by these studies and you summed it up in your "alternative."

As for the brain training, it simply helps to strengthen and create new neural pathways in the brain based on the science of the plasticity of the brain. HOWEVER, knowing this doesn't make the ads any less irritating when they are just games that help you waste time when you could be up and moving.

BTW, my name is simply a mash up of parts of my full name. I was going to choose SunshinenSmiles, nicknames customers gave me when I worked at a convenience store, but I believe it was already taken.

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MISSM66 6/13/2014 5:43PM

    emoticon emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 6/13/2014 5:30PM

    Contrary to my ID, I am neither crazy nor a dog! LOL

Ads do drive me crazy goo.

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SHERYLP461 6/13/2014 2:01PM

    My hubby is negative too, about the news about shows, it seems if anything goes wrong it is directed at him.

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ALEXTHEHUN 6/13/2014 1:39PM

    I found this fascinating. I was aware of those memory demonstrations and the synonym/antonym correlation. But I had not thought to apply this to my self image. It seems logical that one's name, as some sort of expression of self image, would have an influence on outcomes and choices. Before anybody leaps to any wild speculation about my ID, let me just state that it a re-wording of my own name as well as a reflection of my studies in medieval history. In no ways does it reflect my inner barbarian, maybe a little.

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NELLIEH1 6/13/2014 12:54PM

    emoticon.. in all honesty I fell for one of those "improve your brain" ads...not surprising, right? Anyway... in the end, I just didn't want to do all those games...thought it more profitable to track on SP, do a blog, read/read/read, learn new dance steps and piano/guitar music and especially enjoy interacting with others. emoticon Life!!

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LIZSPRINGSTEEN 6/13/2014 12:36PM


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MORTICIAADDAMS 6/13/2014 12:25PM

    My husband hates almost all ads and always comments negatively on those ads too. He thinks they are just a means to gather tracking info on a person. Maybe slip in some subliminal messages like, "Eat more Cocoa Puffs!" Rather than training your brain to be more efficient, he thinks they are changing your brain to be more compliant to their message. He is the type who believes in aging gracefully and if your brain is old, then live with it and your gray hair, bald head, flat feet, sagging eyelids/cheeks/face/apron/breasts/e
tc. I must admit I would like my brain to work as it did when it was 25 but I don't have any faith that the brain trainers can help me.

I've never thought too much about user names, though some of them are really unusual. I would certainly not choose a name for myself like "FormerBigFatHeifer" but some people do. Sometimes user names are merely nothing more than a moniker that someone else gave them, like in my case and yours. Every user name I've had was recommended by someone who knew me. I'm wondering what significance it would have in our case. Do you feel it is better because we chose a name that is not associated with diet per se?

Visualizing is actually a form of positivism, isn't it? It's not tangible or real though it could become that way.

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ADARKARA 6/13/2014 12:24PM

    Love this blog. Those ads drive me crazy also.

To quote Neil deGrasse Tyson, "The great thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it."

I have lost 110 lbs using the "alternative" and not spending a dime on gyms or paid programs. It works.


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68ANNE 6/13/2014 12:18PM

    I would like to hear about not using the word 'not'
How to say
'You are beautiful' instead of 'you are not ugly'

wink wink

Comment edited on: 6/13/2014 12:18:45 PM

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NEPTUNE1939 6/13/2014 11:34AM


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