ONEKIDSMOM   133,272
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Accepting awards without feeling one earned them

Monday, January 30, 2012

Yesterday I was puttering around Spark, cleaning up some old teams (I like to limit how many I'm on at a time), and ended up "completing" the 5K your way challenge. I hit the "complete" button because I know I have run 5K with my son and further... but there's something in my procedural brain that doesn't feel like I "earned" the badge it gave me, because... *I didn't do the workouts they recommend in their little training plan in the order and frequency they said*!

So when I started getting congrats notes from my Spark buds on the badge, I felt... what? Guilty? The same thing happened when I belatedly accepted the "completed getting started"... a year late.

Guess I really *did* to 5K MY way, just not Spark's way. If I get results without following things exactly that does NOT mean I "cheated"... and I think that's the feeling I'm fighting. I ran a 5K with my son, the whole way, the second week of the program. Probably because I had quite a bit of residual fitness hanging about... and my marking it completed yesterday was a statement that "I'm tired of this thing that say's I'm in week November something of the program nagging me".

Here's to completing your lifestyle transition *however* you do it... by the book, or "in the spirit"... it's YOUR life, and YOUR program. And emoticon. You *shall* do it, too... because you're worth it!

Life's good... Spark on! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LJCANNON 1/31/2012 10:54AM

    emoticonOne thing about Spark, it gives you permission to "Do It Your Way". And it gives you the Tools and Support to FIND Your Way.
emoticonWasn't it Frank Sinatra who sang "I Did It My Way"? Maybe that should be the Theme Song for Spark People.

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    Heck, a pat on the back is a pat on the back!

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PENNYAN45 1/30/2012 4:52PM

    If there's any place you can "do it MY way" it's here on Spark People!

That is part of the beauty of this site.

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SUE_2U 1/30/2012 4:40PM

    My friend, you did it, therefor you definitely deserve the honor! emoticon emoticon
You worked hard at it. Doing it your way is still doing it, after all. And no cheating, you did it. That's it. Enough said. You rock, totally!
How are you feeling today? I hope you are well, again. emoticon

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_LINDA 1/30/2012 1:53PM

    Doesn't Spark have a 5K your way team? I like that idea. You shouldn't have any guilt. You got the job done and earned the award YOUR way. And that is the most successful way. The way people will stick to doing something is to do it at their own comfort level. I lost my weight with my own food and exercise choices, didn't use any of Spark's resources for that except just tracking it all, and that is the only way I would stick with it.
Here is to following our own path on the road to a healthy lifestyle.
Enjoy your Monday!

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COMPUCATHY 1/30/2012 11:48AM

    It's true...great thing about Spark is...we do it our way...ultimately. The guidelines and support are great...but it is up to us what we do with it...just like life. Spark on...YOUR way! emoticon

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DEBRA0818 1/30/2012 11:44AM

    I have never been one for coloring between the lines, but I think it counts if you make it to the goal too!


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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/30/2012 11:09AM

    We are two peas in a pod. Whenever I get recognized for something I try to downplay it too. Like it was a mistake or something. We really do need to see ourselves through others' eyes. We're much too hard on ourselves. It's that old all-or-nothing and perfectionism combination that gets me every time. Congrats on your accomplishments. You deserve them -- whether you did them by the book or Frank's way.

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MSLZZY 1/30/2012 10:21AM

    emoticon emoticonOne less nagging item
to worry about. You are right. You didn't cheat,
you did it your way and that is what counts!

Comment edited on: 1/30/2012 10:22:23 AM

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MIZCATHI 1/30/2012 10:03AM

    Say goodbye to your guilty heart - you completed it - get that badge and enjoy it! I know what you mean, though... lol!

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MNTWINSGAL 1/30/2012 9:09AM

    No guilt did it YOUR way, just like the badge said. Congrats are still in order!

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KALIGIRL 1/30/2012 8:24AM

    Here's to OUR lives!

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MEDDYPEDDY 1/30/2012 8:01AM

    This is me - as long as I donīt do exactly as instructed I feel like a cheater... working a lot with that mentally.
You are doing great!

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MAGGIE101857 1/30/2012 7:31AM

    I felt the same way about the January Jumpstart Challenge - I ended up leaving the challenge because I was doing my own ST workouts and felt like I was cheating not doing the videos in the program. But in retrospect, I was still "jumpstarting" my program.

It's so hard to keep up with all the different teams, and yet they all have something to offer and you meet so many great people! I have eliminated a few, but then I find another one I just have to join!

Have a great week!!! emoticon

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Finding the tools that work for you...

Sunday, January 29, 2012

I read a Spark-friend's blog this morning, and it got me going on this topic. I may have to blog twice today if another theme hits me later, but this Sparked me: "The most surprising thing that I have learned this month is how much I enjoy writing Blogs and reading your responses."

YES! Each of us, day by day, Spark moment by Woo-Hoo Spark moment, is discovering the tools that work for us, as individuals. Maybe it's reading other blogs, message board posts, the advice of the experts, the great articles that get us thinking about what the next small change in our lives might be. And maybe, just maybe, there are a few of us (cough, cough) who can't keep our fingers quiet... we have to bubble and share! The good, the bad, the ugly. We need to whine out loud when things are rough. We need to crow when things are flying high. We need to remind ourselves often (maybe even daily) of the importance of this journey... of why we're on it!

This examination of our own feelings is important. Some of us can do it quietly and privately, on paper in journals, in a file on our PC's, to a close "in person" friend or family member. But for others of us, a place like Spark, where others are also having to face similar issues feels like a safe place to put it all out there. Well, maybe not quite ALL... but to let others know... "YOU ARE NOT ALONE!"

I often say my blogs are for me. They really, really are a selfish little "all about me" world... but every human on the planet has that inner core of "all about me". What my blogs are about is that "it's OK to start with me... because only then can I be of any service / use to others."

Yes, blogging is a tool that has been working for me. Here's to finding what works for YOU! Because YOU are worth it!

emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BUGGYS 2/1/2012 11:08AM

    OMG, Barb...your blogs are for everyone...I so enjoy reading them and learning from are a master teacher! emoticon

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ANDI571 1/29/2012 11:47PM

    I love reading your blogs. I like writing them, but then I let the inferior me jump out, and I usually delete them pretty quick.

A few of us got together back in November and decided we didn't want to gain weight for the holidays. We started a friendly challenge using points and deductions of points for daily challenges. You would think giving up those deductions of my points was like giving up $100 a time. I don't think any of us gained during the holidays, and I think all of us lost some. We did so good, we turned it into a spring fling challenge.

Finding that one tool is so important on this journey.

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KARIDIAN1 1/29/2012 10:42PM

    I enjoy reading others blogs, and posting my own too. Many times mine may be just the mundane day to day stuff, but everyone has something to share.

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COMETER 1/29/2012 7:56PM

    What a great thing--your blogging works well for you, AND for all of us!

It is indeed a journey, and the shared writing allows us to be on that journey with each other.

Together--a good thing.

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SUE_2U 1/29/2012 3:53PM

    You know, you're blog may be for you, to help get you through, but you're right - it really helps to read someone else's experiences and relate to what they are dealing with, so we feel less alone. Also it can really help encourage us, and give us ideas of new things to try and new ways to get over the humps in our own personal paths. Bless you always, my friend. I hope you're feeling much better today. emoticon

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_LINDA 1/29/2012 12:36PM

    I am grateful you enjoy blogging and are willing to share a slice of your life and trials so that we may learn from you and yes, know that we are not alone in our struggle to maintain a healthy lifestyle!
Blog and Spark on!
emoticon emoticon

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KANOE10 1/29/2012 10:01AM

    Each day I read blogs, I gain some insight into life. I enjoy reading and learning from others. I have found that my own blogging or journaling keeps me focused on what I am doing in my life. I need that focus. Spark People is a wonderful place.
I like your blog and your spark page. You look wonderful and fit! emoticon

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DEBRITA01 1/29/2012 9:18AM

    Although your blogs are for you, they have inspired many others, me included. Sometimes just reading the thoughts of others brings clarity and the feeling that you are not alone in this struggle. Bless you for your openness and willingness to share your journey... emoticon

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KRISZTA11 1/29/2012 9:11AM

Blogging is a good thing for me too.
My family is not as interested in my diet and fitness achievements as I am, so my blogging relieves them from my bubbling - so they only have to hear "Oh this run was wonderful!" each time ; )

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CELEST 1/29/2012 8:40AM

    I love being a sparker...I love reading all about other sparkers. The only downside to sparking is that because no one knows us well....often the way things are put across gets people up in arms. You cant read expression, you cant read motive. We have to be "mature" about what is said in response to our blogging.
But I can handle it so....BLOG are great to read. And having looked at your before photo and now you deserve a emoticon

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MIZCATHI 1/29/2012 8:14AM

    I love your blogs and how willing you are to share your successes and struggles! It's taken me awhile, but I have learned that sharing who I am opens many doors into the hearts of others and that I am not alone to fight the battle. Learning requires an open mind and heart, and blogging invites the knowledge share!

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WENDYSPARKS 1/29/2012 8:13AM


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MSLZZY 1/29/2012 7:54AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MAGGIE101857 1/29/2012 7:42AM

    It's such a wonderful treat to have a place you can do all those things, and no one says "all you talk is about is exercise....calorie blah blah!!! emoticon

I consider myself "honored" to bee a SPARKER and sharing in others' journeys! It is such a nice feeling knowing others are along for the lifetime journey!


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REJ7777 1/29/2012 7:31AM

    You have such a delightful and expressive way of "bubbling over". Your blogs are a delight to read, and I can often identify with what you write. They encourage me and make me think. So, it's win-win all the way - a tool for you and a gift to us. Thank you!

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Weekend update

Saturday, January 28, 2012

First off, let us say that I'm about 1000% better than LAST weekend, in terms of personal health. I was one miserable gal last Friday through Sunday, but the antibiotics the Dr. prescribed Monday seem to be doing what they are supposed to. Halfway through the course, not crazy about the side effects (which are happening despite carefully following the instructions), but happy to be feeling normal again.

In fact, so normal that I stopped at the gym after work yesterday and did a gentle cardio workout on the elliptical machine. This morning had my maintenance check in at JC, and while the metal monster is up, I'm still in the goal range.

Meanwhile, left work on an emotional high yesterday, having got an initial test of new data created and uploaded. There's a whole lot more to go with this project, but it's "off the ground" in construction. And that makes me feel good about the week's progress.

I may have to make adjustments to my athletic goals for the year... still pondering that... we'll see how the reintroduction of training activity goes in the next week. Time, the ultimate scarce resource, will tell.

Here's to a gently active weekend, with extra rest built in... recuperation... ONWARD!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CONCHA77 1/29/2012 12:06PM

    Happy to hear you are feeling better. What exactly do you do at work? Sounds like a tech-y job? Programmer?
Have a great Sunday.

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KATHRYNLP 1/29/2012 9:34AM

    Glad you're feeling better now!!! emoticon emoticon

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JCDROLSHAGEN 1/28/2012 11:38PM

    Glad that you are feeling better. emoticon

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_LINDA 1/28/2012 11:33PM

    That is wonderful news indeed! Way to ease back into it, slow and careful. Enjoy your rest and recovery weekend. Sorry you are having a reaction to the medication, that is a nuisance :( Soon it will be over, and you will be your amazing self again :)

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KARIDIAN1 1/28/2012 10:03PM

    Good to read that you are feeling better and had a good week at work. Getting started on a new project is always a good feeling.

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MOBYCARP 1/28/2012 6:53PM

    I'm glad to hear you're getting better.

Adjusting to lesser athletic goals is tough emotionally. I'm wrestling with that one, too. As Mom used to say, "Getting old is not for sissies."

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DEBRA0818 1/28/2012 4:16PM

    That sounds like excellent progress and news on every front -- good for you! I know you will come up with the exact right training schedule for you considering all the factors and I look forward to hearing all about it!

Continued good healing.

emoticon emoticon

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MIZCATHI 1/28/2012 2:19PM

    So happy for you that you are feeling better and it sounds like on the way to a full recovery. Good also that you gently worked the elliptical for some cardio. You are such a good example!

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DAWNDMOORE40 1/28/2012 12:56PM

    emoticonI am glad you are recovering! Take it easy on yourself! Have a great day! emoticon emoticon

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SUE_2U 1/28/2012 12:21PM

    I am so very happy that you are getting well. It takes time, true, and patience. Take good care of yourself. emoticon

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CEHALLA 1/28/2012 11:44AM

    Great news with the feeling better and the progress at work. Life is always about "adjustments"! Nothing is more constant than change, no matter what we do prevent it.
Keep Sparking!

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FITNESSFREAK10 1/28/2012 11:18AM


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MSLZZY 1/28/2012 11:17AM

    Onward and back to normal this week-just
ehat the doctor ordered. So glad you are
feeling better! HUGS!

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KALIGIRL 1/28/2012 11:16AM

    So glad you are getting back into the swing!

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The number on the scale is not your grade in life

Thursday, January 26, 2012

This one's for all my Spark buddies (and me) who have ever seen the scale go up when you're eating right. In this particular case it is rehydration following illness, and possible side effects of medication. My little device says I'm eating at a deficit, but the metal monster goes up.

It is times like this that challenge all the maxims we tell each other: the scale will do what the scale will do. As long as the behavior is OK, the clothes still fit, you are on the right track. Do not lose heart.

When the medication course is done, when the activity returns, and the behavior with food stays the path... the scale will eventually capitulate. And if it doesn't? Maybe there is a "new normal" in terms of "home range".

But you have to feel good about nurturing yourself, no matter the number on the scale. Patience, and practice!

Spark on! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BUGGYS 1/28/2012 10:01AM

    I only get on the scale once a week at WW and although I get frustrated that the number isn't moving like I want it to, I feel so much better which makes me want to continue this journey. This is a new lifestyle and the numbers will get there!

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KALIGIRL 1/28/2012 8:28AM

    "Patience, and practice!" sounds good to me.
Glad you're feeling better.

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DEBRA0818 1/27/2012 10:35PM

    For some reason, I don't care about the scale anymore. I don't know how that happened, but I just take the daily or weekly number and file it away as information. Of course, I have hopes that I will always see a smaller number but it doesn't bother me if there are fluctuations. I honestly have no idea where this "scale maturity" came from, but I'll take it!

I don't think weight is worth obsessing over, though I do think it is important to follow my diet plan and exercise.

The scale was never my grade in life -- it just took me a while to realize that!


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LENKA763 1/27/2012 3:01PM

    that is the reason why I gave up on weighting in every day.
as you said the clothes fit, I have energy and I know this is "my normal".

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TISHTOES 1/27/2012 2:24PM

    Patience is right! Sometimes you just have to not worry about it.

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COMPUCATHY 1/27/2012 2:01PM

    Awesome true. It can be s "metal monster" we have to be confident in our other tracking to keep our minds from discouragement. Spark on! emoticon

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KATIE33MAHALA 1/27/2012 11:37AM

    This cold won't hold you back long, you do so well. I have to say, reading your blogs sure does seem to hit my thoughts right on the money at times. Wanted to tell you thank you, for at times when I am down, I read something you blogged and it gives me the push to keep moving. : )

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COMETER 1/26/2012 10:57PM

    As ever, you share helpful thoughts about something most of us face.

I realized this morning as I stepped on the scale that I REALLY wanted it to show weight loss, which it did not.

I've been doing great with new habits in the new year, but really, even with all of that progress, when it came right down to it, what I really wanted was progress on the scale. So your reminder came at a good time.

It's a lifestyle, not a number on the scale. Repeat. It's a lifestyle, not a number on the scale. Repeat. It's a lifestyle, not a number on the scale. Repeat. It's a lifestyle, not a number on the scale. Repeat. You get the picture.

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KARIDIAN1 1/26/2012 9:17PM

    I agree with your thoughts. I try not to let the scale variations bug me.

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_LINDA 1/26/2012 1:53PM

    I am so glad you are not worrying about what your scale is showing -well done! So many people can't give up their obsession with those numbers, its not the scale stupid, its the LIFESTYLE!!
Feel better soon, and when you are, you will be rocking it!!

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MSLZZY 1/26/2012 11:26AM

    Never judge yourself by the scale, that's for sure.
Once you are off meds, life will find it's new normal.
The body will let you know. HUGS!

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MIZCATHI 1/26/2012 10:36AM

    You have a good perspective - when you are sick and tired and just plain down and out, there may be a slow down in fitness gains but you will get back into fighting spirit if you take care of yourself!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/26/2012 8:16AM

    GREAT way of thinking about that. Some day, when I grow up, I wanna be just like you. In my case the scale is going up -- but it's for all the wrong reasons. Extended vacations, I am finding, are not a good fit for me. With each nudge of the scale (in the upward direction) my resolve and mental motivation drop. Thankfully we'll be heading back home in a week and a half. Just hoping I have enough gumption when we get there to get back "at it."

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LJR4HEALTH 1/26/2012 8:15AM

    Thanks for the reminder too many times we measure ourselves by that darn scale number and base everything on it

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KATHRYNLP 1/26/2012 8:11AM

    Good advice... and don't forget the measuring tape will show you that you're doing everything right! emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 1/26/2012 7:57AM

    Oh, yeah. Thanks for the reminder!! And: hope you're feeling absolutely great soon.

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SUE_2U 1/26/2012 7:42AM

    That is so very true. I have had this happening to me off and on throughout the whole past two years, sometimes up twenty pounds or more, then back down in a day or two.
I am so sorry to hear that you have been so ill. I do hope you are going to be feeling healthy again very soon. Be patient with yourself, though. It takes time to heal.

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Very SHORT pep-talk!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Because I have to get myself out the door to work:

1. The number on the scale is not your grade in life.
2. The number of steps on your pedometer is not your grade in life.
3. YOU are worth taking care of.
4. LISTEN to what your body needs TODAY!

Now go do it, and have a Sparkly day! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDAJOYWK 1/27/2012 6:23AM

    As always-thanks!

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SUE_2U 1/26/2012 7:47AM

    Wise words, every one! emoticon

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COMETER 1/25/2012 8:03PM

    Very short and very sweet.

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KARIDIAN1 1/25/2012 5:02PM

    Thanks for the reminders- some days I need that.

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REJ7777 1/25/2012 1:59PM

    Lots of wisdom in few words! emoticon

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DEBRITA01 1/25/2012 1:56PM

    It may be short, but it's a powerful message. emoticon

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/25/2012 11:55AM

    I think I need to have that tatooed onto my forhead so I see it every time I look in the mirror. (Which, lately, is as little as possible . . . .)

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LJCANNON 1/25/2012 10:28AM

    emoticonWell Said!!

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MSLZZY 1/25/2012 10:10AM

    Well put-short and to the point! Have a great day!

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MAGGIE101857 1/25/2012 8:35AM

    Brief, but powerful! I will keep it in my mind today and hopefully it will motivate me to get in my ST tonight - because I took it easy this morning and spent the time planning my meals, preparing breakfast and lunch, and catching up on SPARK and my tv programs from last night!!!

Hope you have a great day! emoticon

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BUGGYS 1/25/2012 8:15AM

    Thanks, Barb...I really had to push myself to get in my 10,000 body needed it!!!

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KRISZTA11 1/25/2012 8:13AM

Thanks for sharing : )

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SHARON2014 1/25/2012 8:07AM

    Thank you! I needed to hear that today. emoticon

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