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National weight control registry

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A few weeks back I finally set the stake in the ground and signed up for this study. Today a whole sheaf of questionnaires showed up in my mailbox. I spent most of this evening filling them out. In order to do so, I had to drag out all the calendars on which I had recorded weights... and for that matter, back into my Weight Commander software. I suppose it might be a bit of a statement about my obsession with the scale that I have nearly 20 years of records!

emoticon However, I found out how faulty my memory is, in the process. I had thought that I was back up to my highest weight in 2005. I discovered when I really looked it up, that it was in 2001. Mostly I hung out between ten and twenty pounds under that, even in my heavy phases. That "top" number didn't stay long, either of the two times I reached it... because it was really, really unhealthy and my survival instincts would NOT allow me to stay there!

When you are out of breath from walking five steps to answer the telephone, it's time to *do something*! When you hurt all the time, it's time to *do something*! I never want to go back there again. And that is part of my putting the stake in the ground of joining this study of those who are maintaining weight loss, long-term.

And tomorrow I will fill out the final study questionnaire and send it back.

Life's good... Spark on! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KALIGIRL 7/15/2011 1:02PM

    How cool.
emoticonfor advancing research!

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LINDAJOYWK 7/15/2011 6:14AM

    Very cool! By the way,what is weight commander software?

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LJCANNON 7/15/2011 1:13AM

    emoticonWay To Go!! Spreading Your Spark Nationwide!!
I am so glad to be your SparkFriend. I believe we will help each other--and many others too--to beat the Statistics that say so many people gain their weight back!!

Comment edited on: 7/15/2011 1:14:48 AM

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LAFEMMEDELALUNE 7/15/2011 12:23AM

    What a milestone....helping others through the registry.
Great Job!!
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THISYEARSMODEL 7/15/2011 12:15AM

    Congratulations on your success! And...it's not just you. I have weight charts in my old journals dating back to age 13 or 14. Ridiculous, isn't it?

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_LINDA 7/15/2011 12:06AM

    Wow! 20 years!! You make a good study case alright!! But it seems you have come a long way from your early beginnings. Lessons learned. you only get one shot at good health and you have decided to put the odds in your favor! Wishing you continued success at maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle!!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 7/14/2011 11:19PM

    There's no doubt in my mind (based on what I've read in your blogs) that you've made a fairly permanent change in your lifestyle and way of thinking about food, health, etc., that you'll be able to maintain this new, healthy weight for the rest of your life. I've said it many times, and I'll repeat it here: you are an inspiration to so many of us sparkers. Thanks for all you do to share knowledge and wisdom and to just support and encourage us.

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It came to pass

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

There is an old church joke about favorite Bible verses, which is the source of today's title. Those of you who grew up or have been exposed to the old King James (Revised Standard) edition might remember it. When asked what his favorite verse was, the old man replied "It came to pass". This is a phrase used often in that version, and for those of you who aren't Shakespearean fans or never had it preached, the phrase simply indicates something on the order of "once upon a time", or, "here's what happened".

In any case, the whole idea behind this phrase being the favorite is that whatever is going on in life, "it came to pass"... or rather, life will go on, and this episode of discouragement, or sorrow, or difficulty will pass, just as time does.

What took me down this path this week is work. I went in Monday morning, found several things going not so great, and left Monday night to keep my dinner date with brother and son... knowing that it hadn't passed yet and feeling somewhat stressed, as it was still ongoing. By noon yesterday, there was a plan in place and steps being taken to deal with the interim until that plan can be completed.

It came. It is passing. It will pass. This was a relatively small thing by comparison to major life disruptions, yet even those are something that arise, get emoted over, and life goes on. It came to pass, whatever it is.

When feeling a little discouraged or a little like a back-slider... this too shall pass. When that plateau in fitness, weight management, or motivation hits... this too shall pass. Knowing this makes it easier to come back to center, and live life in balance.

emoticon Life's good. Spark on.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEPPYSUE 7/14/2011 8:22AM

    You are my daily inspiration!

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KATHRYNLP 7/14/2011 8:11AM

    I just hum the tune "Tomorrow-Tomorrow-Tomorrow is another day!"
Good blog; because we can all have those kind of days. We just have to get to tomorrow! emoticon

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OVERWORKEDJANET 7/14/2011 5:35AM

    Timely.

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_LINDA 7/13/2011 1:55PM

    Time heals all wounds supposedly. A lot of people on here use the phrase, this too shall pass. So its obviously a very popular saying. Now the hard part, toughing it out until it has finally passed!!

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KALIGIRL 7/13/2011 12:35PM

    Life IS good and if we didn't taste the bitter, we wouldn't know the sweet.

Speaking of 'bitter' - how 'bout the Saturday forecast?
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BESTSUSIEYET 7/13/2011 11:59AM

    It came to pass ... in the fullness of time ... Our lives are in His Hands, and fretting isn't going to change the stressful situation. Thanks, Barb!

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ELSEEBEE 7/13/2011 10:15AM

    You always give me so much to think about, Barb! Thank you for being my inspiration today! I'm saving this and coming back to read it again!

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DRB13_1 7/13/2011 10:05AM

    I've always liked that phrase, it puts things in perspective
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LOVE_2_LAUGH 7/13/2011 9:33AM

    You are such a wise woman, Barb. Love this blog!

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MARVEEME 7/13/2011 9:28AM

    Let me add to your favorite term another favorite term of mine:
"In the fullness of time"

That phrase has gotten me beyond the "passing stage" quicker to look for the lesson or potential aftermath of the incident to start aligning the building materials necessary for that next phase.

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HOT4FITNESS 7/13/2011 9:02AM

    Thanks for the reminder. I look forward to that "passing moment".

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DEBRA0818 7/13/2011 9:00AM

    Emotions are such a valuable piece of information but they're only a piece. They must be tempered sometimes by rationality, experience and values lest they drag us all over the place for no reason!

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WORDLILY 7/13/2011 8:57AM

    Good reminder. :)

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FITFABJENN 7/13/2011 8:56AM

    Well said. Thanks again for your insightful words.

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SEATURTLE86 7/13/2011 8:33AM

    emoticon emoticon

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4DOGNIGHT 7/13/2011 8:23AM

    Thanks so much! My blog yesterday was an exercise in frustration but getting it down in cyberspace helped to "pass" it on. Already I feel better. Have a great day!

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ANDI571 7/13/2011 8:08AM

    I don't know how many times I have said, And this to shall pass. And it always does.

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My favorite Spark calendar quote came up today

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing -- that's why we recommend it daily." - Zig Ziglar

The first time I read this, I laughed out loud. It is so true. I blog because of the need in me for that daily motivation. I may miss a day here and there, but for the most part, I'm here writing my daily pep talk to myself. Those who follow regularly know I'm all over the map in what I say, too... from the alphabet blogs to the silly stories to life events and philosophy. But the bottom line is that I'm here on Spark for a few minutes (OK, maybe for more than a few) remembering WHY I DO THIS!

Because I like being fit. Because I love that my knees, my back, my feet don't hurt any more. That I can trot up the stairs at work without being out of breath at the top. Because I can even *consider* walking home from work or to the grocery store. Because my body handles the summer heat so much better. Because I like me better when I'm not exhausted all the time. I like having the freedom to make other choices!

That freedom comes from having made it a priority. Whatever it takes to keep you going and making choices to live the life you envision for yourself... may it be yours in abundance today. The motivation to live well can come from many sources. Grab a portion for today.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MNTWINSGAL 7/12/2011 10:31PM

    lol, I have that calendar too, and I think this is one of the better quotes too!

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46SHADOW 7/12/2011 10:09PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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REJ7777 7/12/2011 8:38PM

    I love that quote too!

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ANDI571 7/12/2011 7:52PM

    It has been so hot here, and I just told my husband that last summer we would have been out walking in it. I can tell such a difference this year. That daily motivation is so important. Keep up the words of wisdom.

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LEANJEAN6 7/12/2011 6:51PM

    So good to read how much better you feel!!!---You work hard at it too!--Motivates me--yer blog!-Lynda

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_LINDA 7/12/2011 1:53PM

    I love this quote too :) My motivation is much the same as yours, love the way my body feels when it is fit, and it does even help with the pain of my disease as well as keeping on moving so it doesn't cripple me up. You snooze you lose, got to move it!

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MSLZZY 7/12/2011 9:52AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
What a positive attitude!

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ELSEEBEE 7/12/2011 8:24AM

    Amen! You have said it so well, as you always do, Barb!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 7/12/2011 8:20AM

    My quote/thought for the day? "When I grow up, I wanna be just like Barb!"

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DEBRA0818 7/12/2011 8:20AM

    So true and I believe for me the motivation comes after the doing not before!

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WATERMELLEN 7/12/2011 8:10AM

    Let there be motivation on earth and let it begin with me . . . because that's the only place it can begin, of course!!

Love listening in on your pep talks, though . . . because they work for me too!!

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Advice for newbies?

Monday, July 11, 2011

Now I've done it. Unleashed my brother on the SparkVerse. I've warned him to pace himself... like me, he can be sucked into online things and get burnt to a crisp. Spark is such a rich environment, one has to carefully manage the time we spend here. Each of us finds what works for us as individuals, because the point isn't JUST to be an online community, it is to think through what we want and go get it!

So... that said, my own two bits when starting out is "start with the basics": the food tracker and the fitness tracker. Add other things judiciously as time goes on and you find them helpful. Avoid getting caught up in the video-game-like aspect of Spark Points accumulation! This is NOT a competition where she/he who has the most points wins. It's just another little mind game that helps some of us stay motivated. They will happen quite naturally as you find articles you WANT to read, and as you use the trackers.

For me the key is not knowledge, it is motivation. Day after day, week after week, month after month... for me, the community support is what helps me remember that this is a priority for me. That I want to live healthy and why. I still find useful and new information. But staying motivated helps keep me looking for it!

Happy Sparking, dear brother... and look out Spark friends... whatever self-deprecating thing he might post, MOBYCARP is a force to be reckoned with! emoticon

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 7/12/2011 8:12AM

    MOBYCARP -- what a great handle. And kudos for you for motivating your family . . . yeah!!

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CONCHA77 7/12/2011 6:47AM

    Welcome -MOBYCARP!
Can't wait to meet you! emoticon

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PENNYAN45 7/11/2011 7:11PM

    Now that you have set the example, your brother should do really well here at SP.

I agree with you that beginning by tracking and drinking water is the way to go.

It will be interesting to see how he does here. I sometimes think that women are more used to sharing their thoughts and feelings than men are. And I think that sharing is a very important part of being successful here - for me, anyway.

Although, some men have done a fantastic job here. I should not generalize about men.

WELCOME TO SPARK PEOPLE, MOBYCARP!!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 7/11/2011 6:16PM

    You have a very wise approach to sparking. I sometimes do get caught up in earing sparkpoints and then ask myself why . . . . I hope your brother gets as much enjoyment/knowledge from it as you do.

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DEBRITA01 7/11/2011 4:36PM

    emoticonYou Sparked your brother just as you continue to Spark others on this site. Like you said, it's good to start out simple and build from there. No one can do it all and everyone's SP journey is unique.

Welcome MOBYCARP, you've come to the right place... emoticon

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ANDI571 7/11/2011 4:02PM

    Good wisdom for us oldies also. I too came in guns a blazin'. All the sudden I was exchanging over eating for over sparking. But with time I found the balance I needed. My spark friends are the backbone of my spark experience. You are always there to lift me up and dust me off when need be.

So glad we have had the pleasure of meeting. emoticon

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_LINDA 7/11/2011 3:53PM

    Over Sparking was why I gave up my old name and went private. Its not helping much, still getting friend adds and they even e-mail when I don't add them back!! Aggressive people, but I am standing my ground as I don't have the time, typing skill and connection to deal with keeping up with a large friend's list! Moderation in all thing!
Way to motivate yourself and others! Hope your brother finds this site useful!!

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SLENDERELLA61 7/11/2011 10:35AM

    How exciting to help your brother get started! Very wise words, too. Yep, I know it can be a little overwhelming at first. Also, for the most part it encourages good habits BUT when I found myself staying up to midnight in order to start getting points early, I knew I was out of my mind! The point is health and fitness. The point is not points!! Thanks.

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KASEYCOFF 7/11/2011 8:55AM

    Oh, he's got a great role model - his sister is an A-1 Sparkler!
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MARVEEME 7/11/2011 8:39AM

    emoticon emoticon

Bring it!

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DEBRA0818 7/11/2011 8:22AM

    Woo-hoo! Another family member joins in. I've added him as a friend and hope that he finds the website as motivating and friendly as I have!

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THISYEARSMODEL 7/11/2011 8:19AM

    A trainer on TV said something that was particularly helpful to me. He was talking about the 3 keys we're all familiar with--nutrition, water, & exercise--and said "Do all 3 well, but pick one of the three to go the extra mile with, and do it with no exceptions, as if your life depends on it."

Since I know the amount of exercise I'm able to do right now won't get the results I want, my extra-mile, life depends on it item is food tracking. I've logged every bite into the food Tracker since December 30, 2010, no exceptions. (When I'm away from an electronic device I write down what I ate in a small notebook & enter it into the tracker later.) Changed my life, and the intense focus on one makes the other 2 seem easier.

For your brother: emoticon

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REJ7777 7/11/2011 7:31AM

    A force to be reckoned with, huh? Like his sister? emoticon

I didn't use the trackers when I first started using SP. I'd counted calories in the past and was burned out with dieting. I didn't even want to LOOK at the trackers! I had the good fortune to join the Turtles team almost as soon as I joined Spark. I found tremendous support! Then I started using the fitness tracker. It took several months before I started using the nutrition tracker, and found how easy it is to use. Now, I use both every day. They're great tools. But like you, I mostly come to SP for motivation. I need the support, the "today counts", and "you can do it" that I find here. I used to think that it was cute when people said SP is addictive. I'm not laughing anymore! It's gotta be managed, just like every other area of our lives.

Thank you for being my friend! emoticon

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It is a matter of once every couple of years

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Chatting with my brother over breakfast... I cooked us a nice, healthy veggie omelet, and the topic of how good it is to see one another is never far away. He gets out here (1100 mile distance) only every couple of years. His comment was that each time he comes and stays with a sister (often the other sister in the photo on the front, this is a first staying with me)... he observes us living and incorporating healthy habits into our lifestyles. Then he goes home and does a little bit better.

How like Sparking! emoticon We learn from one another and incorporate changes into our own lives as we can, a little at a time. From him I learned some financial management things. From sister #1 (front page), I learned the "one thing" principle a couple years ago, but have only started really using it recently. On those occasions when we *do* get together, it is usually a sharing of the things that are working in our lives at the moment. Then anyone who has a need can pick up the positive and run with it in their own life.

One of our younger sisters got a new job recently, and we shared stories of strategies that worked in landing it (sage advice for anyone who is in a similar position). We shared our confidence and encouragement in her ability to get up that steep learning curve she's now facing.

Last night we all drove up to the Mellerdramas together, and we got, ta-da, a five sibling photo op. Our youngest sister's hubby kindly took the shot for us:


And we talked a nice stranger into taking a shot with some added offspring and spouses:


We've got him for today and tomorrow, then he's headed back. Tomorrow is a work day for me. So much of this is attitude, but I like to think that Mom and Dad are in heaven smiling. This is what makes me feel slightly sad that I have only one child.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEEZAB 7/11/2011 8:27PM

  what a nice uplifting blog...Thanks for sharing.

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REJ7777 7/11/2011 7:43AM

    What treasures those family photos are! You've created keepsakes of those precious moments when you could all be together.

Our families are similar in that I have 3 sisters and one brother. I'm the eldest sibling, then 2 sisters, a brother, and then my youngest sister. It's such a blessing to be close as a family!

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LJCANNON 7/10/2011 11:28PM

    What a beautiful picture of Family and Sparking in the best sense of both words.
emoticon emoticonI am so glad that you got to spend this time with all your family.

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MARVEEME 7/10/2011 10:56PM

    emoticon emoticon

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MSLZZY 7/10/2011 10:39PM

    How wonderful! Thanks for sharing! HUGS!

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SLENDERELLA61 7/10/2011 9:16PM

    What great family pictures! Wonderful that you can all get together -- at least every once in a while. That you learn positive things from each other is amazing! Yes, you are truly amazing. -Marsha

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_LINDA 7/10/2011 3:17PM

    This awesome! So great to hear you are all Sparking one another and helping each other out! Enjoy the last of your time with him(too bad you couldn't have taken this one day off work)

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WATERMELLEN 7/10/2011 10:56AM

    Very nice!! There is some kind of hereditary personality thing with siblings (for better and for worse!!) which together with the shared history makes it possible to "pick up" wherever we left off . . . yeah!!

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JOHNMARTINMILES 7/10/2011 10:34AM

    In "The Godfather", Clemenza said "This stuff (gang wars) happens about once every ten years, it helps sort things out"

It's the same with your brother, he comes out every couple of years or so and sorts out and goes back and lives good for a while. Even if it doesn't stick, he's better off than if he did not visit and did not observe healthy habits even if only for a short time

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FITFABJENN 7/10/2011 10:32AM

    Whee, that is so wonderful that you got the sibling shot. It has been years since I've been in the same room with all of my siblings.

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