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The Pluses of Planning

Thursday, January 14, 2010

I'm almost finished with my second week of my New Year's Experiment - waking up at 5:00, doing my housework/ lunch packing/ gym clothes packing in the morning, going to the gym after school, and taking the evening to relax guilt-free. These past two weeks have been great! I've gotten in some really good workouts at the gym, planned my daily meals and have done well with staying within my calorie and nutrient ranges, and have felt really calm and organized. I think it's eliminated a lot of stress for me. I like when I have most parts of my day planned out, especially when they are packed full of stuff. The weekends are my time to ease off the planning and kind of let stuff just flow.
Mornings are a great "me" time - I can sip my coffee, pack a good lunch, check up on my Spark Buddies...
It's also helped me to keep my eating under control at night. For a while when I got home at night, I'd grab some random food for dinner. A piece of bread here, an apple there, some crackers and cheese... hoping it would add up to some semblance of a dinner. It never did. It just led me to too many calories and no sense of satiety. Now I know that I am going to have (X) for dinner. And even if I'm starving when I get home, I have a glass of water and remember that I have the evening planned out. One thing I *do* need to do differently, though, is drink even MORE water when i come home from the gym. I think I'm confusing my thirst for hunger, even though I know there is a difference.

Good stuff I've done today already (because I like to look at the positive!):

Drank a bunch of water
Packed a balanced lunch
Made tuna salad for tonight's dinner
Started a load of dishes
Packed up for the gym tonight
Entered my food for the day

Good stuff that I *will* do today (because I need to have goals every day):

Drink lots more water
Stick to my dinner plan
Keep using hot tea as my cue to stop eating (it's really been working!)
Give 100% at the gym tonight
Give someone a compliment

Goals from yesterday?
Water - YES
Class work - um, no. I think I need to write this into my schedule... it's so easy to put off until Saturday morning. Maybe at school today...?
Put away laundry - YES
Easy on the Hob Nobs - YES, amazingly enough.

Happy Thursday!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALLISON4EG 1/14/2010 10:49PM

    wow, what time do you go to sleep to wake up at 5 and have the energy to do anything in the morning? ;)

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HELLAVAHC 1/14/2010 8:45PM

    Love it! Glad the plan is working. Definitely inspired me to get my butt in gear earlier this week and I felt so much better for it!

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EATNBOOGERS 1/14/2010 2:10PM

    Good for you! Keep it up!

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GINABUG 1/14/2010 9:26AM

    What an inspiration you are! Thanks for sharing your progress. My small steps are not as ambitious as yours but I am learning from you and being inspired at the same time. I LOVE your enthusiasm and optimistic outlook at your new life changes! It's infectious!

Blessings to you and thanks, again!


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PINKCOCONUT 1/14/2010 7:51AM

    Morning m'dear! You've become like my required morning reading these days! Strangely're still inspiring me to get up earlier. I haven't done it yet but I think it's going to happen this year!

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LEARNING2LUVME 1/14/2010 7:43AM

    Great job!! I wish I could do what you are doing, with the get up at 5:00 am to get things ready for the day, but my children are early risers (my daughter was up at 5:03 this morning.) There's no way I would get that stuff done, so as a result, when the kids are in bed I am exhausted and ready to collapse myself. That means messy house, which means stressed and overeating me. Ugh.

Anyway, have a super healthy day today!! You rock! emoticon

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OMG Someone asked me how much I weighed!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

But I actually didn't freak out! I was able to tell her without feeling sick. One of my small, totally shallow goals was to be able to tell someone my weight without being embarrassed. I had forgotten all about that goal until yesterday when I was asked. What an odd feeling that was - blurting out my weight without apologizing for it. Huh.

Last night was a marathon gym session - three classes in a row. Phew! My legs are feeling good today! I learned something from yesterday - I need to eat a little something before I leave school so that my blood sugar doesn't go crazy low, and also so that when I get home from a night like that I don't go crazy eating all night. I didn't do too badly, eating-wise, last night, but I def felt myself eating more than I should have. (Stayed in my calorie range, though!)

I had planned on doing another spin class tonight - I'm going to see how I feel after the abs class tonight, though. I think my legs will be just fine. And I already planned the time, I might as well go. We'll see.

Planned my dinner for tonight already - took some tomato sauce and shrimp out of the freezer for some pasta. LOVE having food in the freezer - makes planning my weekly dinners so much easier!

Off to fold some laundry before school...

Today I will:
Drink at least 4 Siggs of water
Do some class work
Put away my clean laundry
Take it easy on the Hob Nobs after dinner.

Happy Hump Day!


Edited to say - I would NEVER think of asking someone how much they weigh, but the way in which I was asked wasn't a *nosy* way, but rather an interested way. I was asked by the same woman who tells me how great I look every time I see her - she has this great Eastern European accent - and has really pushed me to keep going on this journey. I couldn't imagine being asked the question by anyone but her.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMCG2002 1/15/2010 5:48PM

    After losing almost 80lbs, I had a woman in my church choir ask me how much I weigh on Sunday. I was actually quite surprised that someone as proper as her would ask me something that personal. I've been reflecting on it and trying to take it in the positive way it was intended. My trainer tells me I should be proud of that number, but I'm still embarrassed that I ever let myself get as big as I did. Congratulations on all of your success!

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HELLAVAHC 1/13/2010 8:33PM

    What a feeling! That's awesome... What classes are you taking back to back? That must have been a sweat session!

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RUNNINGWILD 1/13/2010 3:24PM

    I LOVE being asked how much I weigh now =) I especially loved telling the DMV that my weight needed to be changed when I had my license renewed. I think I actually giggled when I gave her the number LOL
You DO look great. Carry on!

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SOUTHGOINGZAX 1/13/2010 1:00PM

    You do look great - keep on kickin it at the gym - three classes, that's awesome! If I didn't know any better, I'd say you're turning into a gym rat.


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SMILEE_EYES 1/13/2010 10:33AM

    I love your planning it helps motivate me too! emoticon

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LEARNING2LUVME 1/13/2010 10:22AM

    That's awesome! What a great feeling to not be ashamed of that number. :)

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EATNBOOGERS 1/13/2010 9:20AM

    This is good food for thought for me, because I *really* don't like sharing my numbers. (Notice that I don't have a ticker up, either!)

So glad you're enjoying the classes. Thumbs up!

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LARSIL 1/13/2010 9:14AM

    It's really awkward when it's one of your students that makes a comment or a question. Over the past couple years, I've gone from 355 lbs. to my current 220 -- and it's interesting to hear the students' comments when they think I can't hear them.

"Wow! Did you see Mr. S? He's lost, like, a ton!"

THAT part feels good. When new students -- who haven't known me for a while -- make comments about "the fat guy", it keeps it in perspective that I still have a ways to go to reach goal.

Balance! Always balance! (And always a tightrope!)

Keep on pluggin' --


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ONEKIDSMOM 1/13/2010 8:42AM

    emoticon Isn't it terrific to have a number you feel good crowing about? I'm almost there myself!

I suppose I can understand the question in the right context: "I'm thinking about losing some weight myself. You look great, and I'd like to think about my goal weight. How much do you weigh?"

Still I don't think I'd ever ask that of someone else... because weight is indeed a personal thing. What's a good weight for you may not be a good weight for me. I freely share my numbers with my siblings who are also dealing with the lifelong challenge of "getting / being healthy." After all, we share a gene pool, and to a certain degree that makes sense from a medical history point of view. But ask someone else? Horrors! If they want me to know, they'll share.


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CFMOSS 1/13/2010 8:12AM

    Big smile - glad you are doing so well and I still love your picture. Have a great day - good goals for the day.

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HEALTHQUESTER 1/13/2010 8:12AM

    I'm glad you had a positive experience from something that had given you a negative one previously! Great job on a number of levels!

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JEM0622 1/13/2010 7:53AM

    That has been happening to me too, along with 'you aren't going to lose any more weight, are you?' I am actually happy to tell ppl what I weigh now...40 lbs later. You rocked that gym last night! ~Julie

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NINJALINDA 1/13/2010 7:46AM

    I haven't had anyone ask how much I weigh (they used to ask that BEFORE I lost the weight, when I said I needed to lose weight. Obviously, I didn't LOOK as fat as I WAS!). I've had plenty of people ask how much weight I've lost, & I never mind telling!

I cannot imagine doing 3 gym classes in a row. I would surely eat everything in my house if I did!

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CARILOUIE 1/13/2010 7:26AM

    It's funny - I didn't even think of the question as rude, even though I would NEVER think about asking someone else! It came from a woman who has watched me lose weight over the last year. She asked in such a way that didn't seem nosy, but just interested. This woman has actually been a really big cheerleader for me - she tells me how great I look whenever I see her.

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    Its those "little" things in life that make your day, isn't it!? An unexpected goal met, learning something new about your nutritional needs, and the ability to do THREE fitness classes in a row! You are one sparked woman!

I love the note of pride in your "voice"'s well-deserved. emoticon

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DEBRA_T 1/13/2010 7:15AM

    I feel two ways about your story: one, it is fabulous that you can tell someone how much you weigh and let it just be a fact (not a revelation of a horrible aspect of yourself that, without your revelation, would remain a secret to the world). But, I am also struck by the inappropriate question. Just because someone asks a question, does not mean you have to cough up the 411. We are entitled to keep personal information private. Do not answer every dog that barks! LOL

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LOSINGITALL4ME 1/13/2010 7:15AM

    Great job responding to a nosy question. I personally would never as someone how much they weith. Oh, well. At least you handled it well. It must have been the day to eat alot. I did the same thing but stayed inside my calorie range also.

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THECARO71 1/13/2010 7:10AM

  Well done you but why is anyone asking others how much they weigh? Keep up the good work and your photo looks great, energetic, happy.

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I am so lucky.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My honey is a chef. A very good chef. And lucky for me, he likes to cook at home.
His birthday was yesterday - we spent Sunday and yesterday celebrating with some really delicious food. Sunday night was striped bass (YUM), cauliflower soup, baby potatoes, candied parsnips, fig nut cake, a bottle of bubbly... last night was pork sandwich, pan-fried potatoes... OMG SOOOOO good. ( I *did* help a bit - I made the cake.)
So anyway, I am very glad that I spent last week carefully tracking ALL of my food. I think it helped lessen the effect of the last two nights' dinners. But really, I think the worst thing was all the bubbly we drank. We like to talk about our "omentums" - a word from Dr. Oz that we saw on Oprah once. The omentum is the part of you that stretches out when you eat too much... if you keep eating too much, it grows. When you eat just enough, it shrinks. We like our small omentums.
So back to goal-setting and tracking for the week.

Today's goals:
- drink at least 4 Siggs full of water
- do a little class work
- Plan dinner (I'll probably do this before I leave for work today)

Yesterday I enrolled in my final two grad classes. Wahoo! It's going to be a lot of work - the session is only eight weeks long, so doing work for two classes in that time is going to be a little crazy. But I think with a lot of planning and goal-setting, I can do it. It's going to be super important for me to keep my end goal in sight.
Another good thing - we are starting to get some stuff done around the house to improve it - window is fixed, heaters are fixed, planned to look at new sinks and faucets on Saturday morning, going next Monday to look at new flooring... it's getting to be a very exciting time around here. Lots to do before the summer!
Happy Sparking!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOSINGITALL4ME 1/13/2010 7:19AM

    You are so lucky. I'm the main cook in our house and I don't enjoy cooking. But I do the best I can. Spark recipes sure help!

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HELLAVAHC 1/12/2010 7:42PM

    I want a tiny omentum, too! Congrats on your good gym session.

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ROGUE_1 1/12/2010 5:52PM

    All that delicious food - sounds fabulous! You are definitely one lucky lady :)

Only 2 more grad classes left? I am so proud of you! I'm looking into schools and programs now. It's hard for me to narrow down exactly what I want to study...But I know I must do so soon.

Great work on getting things taken care of around the house. It sounds like a fun project!

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ETTEZEUS 1/12/2010 1:48PM

    I'm the chef in my house...hubby is the food connoisseur....LOL

Good luck with your last two classes! Study hard! Finish strong.

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BOBBYD31 1/12/2010 1:41PM

    can you send him our way for a while or at least prep the food, freeze it then fed ex to PA. that would save me so much time

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EATNBOOGERS 1/12/2010 12:21PM

    Yes, lucky for you to have a personal chef! ;-) Enjoy your classes.

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SOUTHGOINGZAX 1/12/2010 10:53AM

    A quick note about ways to inexpensively upgrade your house - check eBay for things like faucets, door handles, drawer knobs, etc....for a fraction of what you would pay at a store, you can get some really nice stuff that improves the overall "feel" of your house.

You are lucky to have your own chef - how nice for you! Good luck with the grad school classes!

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GSDMIKE 1/12/2010 9:09AM

    I probably cook 80% of the meals Sherry and I share, but with me being vegetarian and her not, that's to be expected. Good luck with the compressed graduate schedule. Sounds like a lot of work, but getting through it quickly will be nice. Careful with that home improvement stuff. It gets out of hand quickly.

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RUNTRILAUGH 1/12/2010 9:03AM


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2010TRIATHLETE 1/12/2010 8:47AM

    Wow those meals sound delicious! My hubby loves to cook, too. And he actually cooks some delicious meals. Neither of us cook much during the week, but weekends are always a treat!

Congrats on getting enrolled for your last 2 grad classes! I'm sure you'll be thrilled when they're all done! Only 2 more to go! WooHoo! You can do it!

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PINKCOCONUT 1/12/2010 8:01AM

    What a fabulous spread! Yum! Glad you were able to make it "fit"!

Have a great day hon!

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    My hubby likes to cook,too, but isn't home enough.And when he is he uses the excuse that 'I hate this kitchen. if we had a nicer kitchen I wouldn't mind." HAHA!! Thanks alot,pal! I HATE this kitchen ,too, but the kids would have all passed away from starvation years ago if I hadn't used this awful kitchen. LOL!!! Sounds like you've been eating high on the hog but know when to get back to the proper omentum size!!!

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LEARNING2LUVME 1/12/2010 6:58AM

    Your hubby is a chef? That's so awesome!! My hubby claims to love to cook, but boxed mac and cheese seems to be the extent of his culinary abilities. We've been married almost 8 years and he still hasn't cooked much more than that. lol.

Have a super healthy day!!!

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No more Spark Guilt!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

I just read a Spark Buddy's blog about goals; one of those goals was to stay active on Spark. This goal got me thinking about my own activity on SparkPeople. Toward the end of 2009, instead of seeing Spark as an essential tool to getting healthy and fit, I started looking at it as more of a fun website that just happened to be about healthy lifestyles.
I *just* had this breakthrough (really, *just*. About 15 seconds ago). SparkPeople is NOT just a fun website for me, it's absolutely essential for me to reach my goals and to be a healthy, fit person. Replying to blogs, entering nutrition, making fitness minute goals, giving Spark Goodies... these are not just fun things to do (although it *is* fun), they are the actions that I NEED to do to take care of me and make ME my first priority.
When I slacked on checking out other blogs and Spark Pages, I missed out on seeing other people's successes. I missed out on being part of this community that is so devoted to a healthy lifestyle. I missed out on the encouraging words that keep me going even when I sit at a weight plateau for months. When I read about someone with fibromyalgia (SP?) going to the gym and doing a painful workout, I realize that I need to stop my moaning and get my rear to the pool. When I read about someone who was once addicted to sweets now being able to resist a cupcake, I realize that I need to be strong and not eat those extra, mindless, crackers.
So Spark People is NOT a luxury for me anymore. It's going to be a guilt-free part of my day. It's something I HAVE to do if I want to continue on this journey to a healthy lifestyle.

I feel so free!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HALOSUN 1/9/2010 11:24PM

    What a great insight! I feel the same way - reading others' blogs and messages and seeing successes spurs us on to do our best. Good luck - sounds like you've got quite a grip on it!

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CFMOSS 1/9/2010 6:00PM

    Great post -- sparkpeople is a wonderful tool which makes even better connections - providing support for others while motivating me/us onward. Thank you for your insights and expressing them so well. Have a great evenign.

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EATNBOOGERS 1/9/2010 2:20PM

    The thing about SP is that it's about mindfulness. Yeah, it's fun (and positive), but all that stuff serves to keep the goals front and center.

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PINKCOCONUT 1/9/2010 2:03PM

    Totally agreed. I couldn't have made it this far without SP and I believe it to be essential in my current, and future, success!

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ALTHORP 1/9/2010 1:39PM

    That's a really interesting perspective--thinking about it as a need instead of a luxury. Unfortunately for me, when grad school starts up I really have to cut my non-school activities down to essentials and spark gets little attention, but maybe I shouldn't look at it as being so expendable.

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    It is a great tool for learning a healthy lifestyle. I'm hooked for life here.

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LOSINGITALL4ME 1/9/2010 1:05PM

    I so agree. I crave to get on Spark. I have to listen to my family complain about how much I'm on it, but it's worth it to me. I have threatened to get my own laptop - just for me to use. That quieted them up. Keep sparking, I know it helps me to hear encouraging messages from you. emoticon emoticon

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Day 2 - New Plan

Friday, January 08, 2010

Today I got that wonderful phone call - "We have a two hour delay today." I don't like snow days so much, we have to make them up in June. But delays? Give me a delay anytime. Wahoo!
Here's how Day 2 went.
- Woke up at 5:00, got a ton of stuff done.
- Went to school; met a friend for coffee (stayed within my plan!), and then went to the gym for two classes. It was so nice to not have to worry about everything I had to do when I got home. I actually really enjoyed my classes!
- Came home, took a warm bath, made some dinner (again, within my plan. Life has been so much easier now that I know exactly what I'm planning on eating...). Did some Sparking, relaxed with a cup of tea and some crosswording, went to bed at 9:30ish.
Did I feel stressed last night because I didn't pack my lunch or my workout clothes for this afternoon? Not at all! I knew that because I wake up early, I'd have plenty of time in the morning to get all that done. And I did! Lunch is packed, clothes are packed, and I did some dishes, folded some laundry, cleaned up the kitchen... no stress.
I allowed myself to "sleep in" until 5:45 today because of the delay. It's a little fun part of having a delay - getting to sleep in.

So today's plan:
- Leave a little early and get some errands done (the nice thing about a delay is that I can finally get to some places that I can't usually get to during the school day i.e. the bank)
- Go to school for a short day
- Chiro appointment for some physical therapy
- Home
- Swimming (?) - haven't committed to this one yet; I've had a pretty full week of working out. I may call it a day after the chiro.
- Work on my grad paper
- Relax!

It's amazing how accountable stay when I blog... just having my goals written out, no matter how small, makes me really want to accomplish them.

Happy Friday!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SMILEE_EYES 1/9/2010 11:29AM

    That's awesome that you are seem more in control. I just started trying to plan out my meals for the whole day and it is helping a lot. Good job, you are doing great! You're words are encouraging. Thanks

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HELLAVAHC 1/9/2010 9:43AM

    I agree- if I write it out for all to see, I stick to it! I love delay days. We RARELY get them, so it is a treat! Have a great weekend.

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    Hi Carrie,

You have a great attitude, you know? I bet people tell you that all the time. it's really fantastic for me to know I can check in with you and have some of your positive energy rub off on me.

You know, I have three *morning* workouts at the gym (MWF) and two evening workout days (karate) during the week (T/TH). I really like sleeping in on those two days! But lately I have been sleeping in every day....I think I logged 10 hours of sleep last night - one of the dangers of working from home is that it can be tough to set a strict schedule, I guess. But anyway, I'm glad your new schedule is working out for you, yay!

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TABBALOOSA 1/8/2010 8:38PM

    School was canceled here today, but it didn't change a thing for me!! Ha ha. I so hear you on the blogging - it's a really good tool.

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EATNBOOGERS 1/8/2010 11:47AM

    Good job! Sounds like it's working well for you. I was just thinking today that I, too, feel more accountable when I blog about stuff.

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CFMOSS 1/8/2010 7:42AM

    Extra time is great - my son is disgusted that we have a cancellation instead of a delay - he didn't want to have to make the day up - you've been doing a great job of getting up in the AM - blogging, greeting people, supporting people, getting on with your day, being accountable, making more healthy choices than unhealthy choices, getting to the gym or doing soome exercise. Pat yourself on the back for a job well done. Happy Friday to you too.

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