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Survived a work week, thinking ahead to Christmas itself

Friday, December 14, 2012

I'm pleased to have made it through a stressful, chopped up, interruption-filled work week. This morning I was feeling a bit sorry for myself driving to work, but gave myself a good talking to as I drove, and by the time I was through the first meeting and a break walk, I was pretty much OK again.

I met my line in the sand obligations for the day, and I ended the work week with at least one positive note: got something working after the choppy week that *should* have only taken about four hours of uninterrupted time. Ever have a week like that?

My brother talks about "Pointy hair" activities at work. Well both of my meetings today would fall into that category: things you do because you must because that's the way they are done at your organization, even though you have other urgent "real" work to do. If you don't know where the phrase comes from, you don't read Dilbert. I'm usually fairly tolerant of these kinds of thing... it's the reality of my working world. However, this past three weeks, since I got back from Florida, I have been simmering my way to a boil, and as I told one colleague, "if I were a tea-kettle, at this point I would be whistling, loudly!"

Anyway, I didn't get done what I *most wanted* to or *hoped* to get done this work week, but I got *something* done that also needed to be done. I therefore will declare victory for the week and get on with my life!

You can see how dealing with feelings was important this week, right?

So, on to anticipation of the Day itself, of Christmas. Here's the deal: I will most likely be alone that day. That's part of the feeling sorry for myself. It's more than being physically alone, though. I'm working on it, Spark friends, really I am. Self-pity is not a pretty feeling, but you know what? I'm staring it in the face and accepting that it has presented itself to me. Doesn't mean I have to act out based on it. I will treat myself gently in ways that don't involve overeating!

I will wrap a gift or two to myself to open on the day. I will make a nice, portion controlled meal for dinner, featuring things I really like. I will sneak into a church service. I will fill my house with music and candlelight. And I will find something to do that will help someone less fortunate. Because nothing says Christmas like giving. emoticon

It will be a good Christmas, kept in the spirit as it should be.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEDDYPEDDY 12/17/2012 1:57AM

    I will probably be alone on christmas too, daughter spends with father and comes on the 30th of december.

I donīt mind being alone but know I have to plan ahead a lot – otherwise it will be just another day and to feel some sort of self-respect I need to take cae of myself and make the day a little "special". I think I will go to church, if I am lucky they will have "spontaneous choir". Your blog started my mind going on good ideas - I was talking to the woman who looks after doggy during my work and she is alone most of christmas eve (which is the day we celebrate in Sweden) and we talked about getting together and this has worried me a little because I prefer to be alone before being "soical"... but I think I may bring out a puzzle and we can do that together... that is fun!

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MJZHERE 12/16/2012 6:58PM

    I am sorry that you will be alone on Christmas - Christmas for me this year will also be very different and you are a good example to me to plan how I am going to handle it. One thing I do know - early early morning I will be downtown with the homeless handing out cookies, hot coffee, gloves, socks, etc. Started this a few years back and wish I had done it every Christmas. It truly is "more blessed to give than to receive." You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

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WILLOWBROOK5 12/16/2012 4:34PM

    Sounds like you have a very lovely Christmas planned! emoticon emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 12/16/2012 3:39PM

    Oh yes I have weeks like that AND I'm self-employed (so should be able to determine my *own* priorities . . . but not really. Last week was tough as is predictable in my profession as we approach Christmas and emotions run high. Got through it too.

Excellent work planning for your Christmas -- and in particular being kind to yourself. I'm hoping you've chosen a couple really special gifts for you from you. And yup, all of us have Christmases like that too, from time to time . . . my DS won't be with us for the first time in his life which I'm finding very sad as well. Put up our tree, our lighted village, the outside lights this weekend: filled the birdfeeders . . . yeah.

We'll all be here at Spark for Christmas too, so please check in! Always look forward to your wonderful courageous and truthful blogs: and learn so much from you always.

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CEHALLA 12/16/2012 12:09PM

    I feel like I'm going to be alone at Christmas, since none of my kids or grandkids will be coming. But I have my DH, and my Mom, and my sister and all her family I will be spending part of the day with, so I really have nothing to feel sorry about.

I am impressed by your planning ahead, ways to treat yourself, and looking to serve others. I am working towards that kind of life.

Merry Christmas!

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LESLIELENORE 12/15/2012 2:14PM


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SLENDERELLA61 12/15/2012 9:18AM

    Wish you could just drive down the street and be here with me for Christmas!! You'd fit right in with our family beautifully. Hoping next year your son will be with you on the holiday and throughout the year. Good for you for getting something done and putting work in its proper priority. Work can be so frustrating -- and essential. You are smart not to let the frustrations drive you to eat (or drink, for that matter.) Take care and make that Christmas as joy-filled as possible. -Marsha

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ROXYZMOM 12/15/2012 8:39AM

    Glad you made it through the week!

Are you going to run on Christmas Day??

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LEANJEAN6 12/15/2012 7:41AM

    Good for yu Barb!!! --You are focused!-Lynda emoticon

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KARIDIAN1 12/14/2012 11:48PM

    I survived too. Welcome to my work world. At least I am not alone.

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DALID414 12/14/2012 11:02PM

    I survived my work week, too. We made it!!

Enjoy your weekend.

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-AMANDA79- 12/14/2012 9:39PM

    Maybe volunteer at a soup kitchen? I hope it's great whatever you do!

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DLDMIL 12/14/2012 9:25PM

    I should have taken your blogs more to heart and been having those talks with myself. I should have gone for a walk to avoid my boss, but no I wound up trapped in my office with her and the tea kettle did more than whistle, I blew the top off. I told her I didn't want to talk about it but she pushed the subject and got both barrels. It was a good thing she was only working a 1/2 day today, so we could both cool off. She just pushes and pushes and takes the attitude that I am the Director and it is my way or the highway. She never takes other peoples feelings or work load into account and then I am the only department manager that will finally be at the breaking point and stand up to her. It happens a couple times a year. You would think I would learn to leave the building for the day when I am at the whistling point.
Anyway Barb, thanks for your great inspiration and motivation. I will be with you in spirit on Christmas Day.

Comment edited on: 12/14/2012 9:26:05 PM

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COMPUCATHY 12/14/2012 9:09PM

    There are plenty of people out there who could use your assistance...that's for sure. I hope you find many ways to make the holiday a happy one for yourself and others you may be able to reach out to along the way. Hope you have a great weekend! Keep up the good work! Thanks for the encouragement! Spark on! emoticon emoticon

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PATRICIAAK 12/14/2012 9:07PM

    It sounds like you have Christmas in your heart.

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DEBRITA01 12/14/2012 8:43PM

    You won't truly be alone on Christmas...we will all be with you in spirit. And, with the true meaning of Christmas in your heart you will be blessed. The Christmas you have planned sounds like a good one to me. emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 12/14/2012 8:42PM

    (((((HUGS))))) Awwww, Barb, wish we lived close by cuz you could come for Christmas!

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Blank page and feelings

Thursday, December 13, 2012

I have started today's blog twice, and thrown it in the bit-bucket! Some days it just doesn't flow... so starting with a blank blog-page, I dive in and start letting the fingers do their thing. If it's "OK" and starts to flow, I keep it. If not, out it goes.

Today I started writing about anticipation... trying in my mind to tie together the expectation of advent to the expectation of my son's return... it just didn't flow. When I tried to tie it back to feelings of a year ago (when my program was really slip-sliding) and this year (when it's doing pretty great, to be honest)... it wasn't working.

One might ask WHY the analogy wasn't working for me. Here's the deal: I am an emotional eater. A year ago, I was feeding anxiety over my son's impending departure. I managed to get myself in hand and use my participation in events (11 in all in 2012) and training for them to "run away" instead of feeding those feelings.

Now, the anticipation I am feeling is less of anxiety (OK, there is that little bit of "don't let your guard down yet, he's not home yet")... more of anticipation of joyful reunion. In the past, I've been known to feed emotions that are thought of as pleasant (joy, happiness, celebration) as much as the ones thought of as unpleasant (grief, sadness, anger, fear).

In short... it used to be that I'd use *any* emotion as a reason to eat. Excessively. Habitually. Unconsciously.

And the bottom line is: it doesn't MATTER which feelings I'm feeling. What matters is what I *do* about them! Do I look them in the face and say, "I know you, you are _____?" Do I sit with them, ask them where they came from, question their validity... savor them... and wait for them to pass? Do I run away from them? Or do I feed them?

Actions can in fact result in the feelings fading. Sitting with them can result in a resolution, where they become less intense. Acknowledging them as valid or reasoning them away, can give them the freedom to resume a proper place in the puzzle that is my mind.

Today resolution: I shall focus on feelings, and on what I am *doing* with the ones that present themselves to me. I shall not "feed" them excessively. Because life is more than feelings. And it is good.

Spark on! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KARIDIAN1 12/13/2012 9:36PM

    Still a good blog with some great comments and thoughts.

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PATRICIAAK 12/13/2012 9:07PM

    Super blog! well said.
looking forward to the blog that says, 'he's home!'

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DOGLADY13 12/13/2012 8:15PM

    Thank you. I've been doing a lot of work (not on spark) with my emotions. A fair amount of dealing with anxiety, but also realizing that I'm not as happy as I think I am most days. It's complicated and I haven't gotten that far with it. It's a new insight that I need to "sit" with. In any event, I really like this passage in your blog:

"... it doesn't MATTER which feelings I'm feeling. What matters is what I *do* about them! Do I look them in the face and say, "I know you, you are _____?" Do I sit with them, ask them where they came from, question their validity... savor them... and wait for them to pass? Do I run away from them? Or do I feed them?"

Something to think about.

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    Thanks, you added to the feelings I had in my blog

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DLDMIL 12/13/2012 5:13PM

    Another great blog, and congrats on your son coming home soon. I know how tough this year has been, (been there done that). Cheers to you for recognizing your emotions and deciding to do something other than feeding them. You have had a very successful year with 11 runs.
I admire your strength and tenacity. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 12/13/2012 1:56PM

    OMG OMG OMG . . . doing the dance of joy with you! When is your son coming home??? You're talking not just leave I trust!? Oh, Barb, I am joyful for you.

And great, great blog. Yes, it is easy to feed the anxiety and emotions, but in the long run it ISN'T easy becuase of the health consequences.

I can tell exactly my stress levels just by looking @ my pedometer. Lol . . . some days it's up there!

I am just thrilled for you.

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WORLDSERIES11 12/13/2012 1:22PM

    emoticon emoticon

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LESLIELENORE 12/13/2012 12:45PM


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ASHPATCH11 12/13/2012 11:58AM

    Great blog as always :) Thanks for posting. I always eat for you have me thinking about it and going fwd I plan to celebrate in a new way prehaps go karts so somthing sporty and fun!

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-STARRYEYED- 12/13/2012 10:13AM

    Fantastic blog!!! Thank you for sharing your journey & what you have found works for you or doesn't work for you. This really spoke to me today, so thank you, thank you!

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BUGGYS 12/13/2012 8:55AM

    Great blog, Barb...feeding negative emotions is a no-win solution...thinking positive thoughts and moving forward will bring rewards! emoticon

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ANDI571 12/13/2012 8:53AM

    Good blog Barb. Ever since we went away for the weekend a couple of weeks ago, I am feeding something, not sure what. I usually can think it out, but I think this time, it is just being tired. Tired of thinking about it, tired of doing it. I just want to eat normal without always having to track and watch portion control. But you know how it is. As soon as you "stop", all the bad habits resurface. At this point, I am just trying to hold my own until the "want" resurfaces again.

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DEBRITA01 12/13/2012 8:26AM

    The 3rd time is the charm...good blog! emoticon

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ROXYZMOM 12/13/2012 8:10AM

    Well said! Love it!

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SLENDERELLA61 12/13/2012 7:53AM

    Another brilliant blog, Barb!! My take away summary: Action can result in the feelings fading. Sitting with them can result in resolution. Acknowledging and reasoning can put them in their proper place.

Here's to sitting with those emotions and embracing life rather than feeding the emotion and numbing everything!!

Because I rarely go a day without seeing my only daughter I can only imagine how difficult - how much emotion there is - about your son. Looking forward with you to your son's glorious return.

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SEAGLASSQUEEN 12/13/2012 7:47AM


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KANOE10 12/13/2012 7:44AM

    I can identify with you. Not only did I feed my negative emotions with food for comfort, but there is also ironically feeling like you should celebrate with food when you are happy. You correctly point out that any emotion is an excuse.

I am so happy your son is coming home soon! I am also happy that this has been a better year for you. You sound in control and ready to tackle these newest feelings. Life is more than feelings and it is a good life, especially when we are on the road to health.

Wonderful blog! emoticon

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What, you want a report on how it went?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

An additional "key element" dawned on me after the Holiday luncheon yesterday. Besides all that self talk? Choose who you are going to sit with to support your success.

I recognize that this is not always possible... but yesterday I sat around others who were also pursuing a healthy lifestyle. All of us were following the principle of carefully selecting the indulgences. I chose a corn casserole, as I had not spotted any bread stuffing (my favorite, which I had promised myself a half cup of). It turned out to be a great choice, it was really good, and it was portion controlled.

I also allowed myself a half slice of traditional pumpkin pie, since I didn't have my traditional Thanksgiving dinner. And savored every bite, mind you! It was excellent. Other than that, roast turkey is pretty healthy as it is. And the salad I really filled up on? Pretty normal noontime fare for me.

In the end, it was well handled, and I wasn't overfilled... so was able to hop on the treadmill in the evening and put in my 5.4 miles. I started slow, a full 9 minute warm up (5 minutes walking, then two rounds of 1 minute slow jog, 1 minute walk) before settling into the speed work of the evening. My top speed was "crossing the finish line" sprint the tenth of a mile from 4.9 to 5 miles. At 7 mph, according to the TM.

Stretch, showered, slept really well. And this morning... up and at 'em and monitoring for any adverse reaction... which will become really important about Saturday noonish.

Life is good. Spark on! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATRICIAAK 12/12/2012 11:27PM


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KARIDIAN1 12/12/2012 11:07PM

    Good choices and a nice exercise for the end of the day.

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LESLIELENORE 12/12/2012 6:20PM

    emoticon That is great that you were able to indulge without overdoing.

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SLENDERELLA61 12/12/2012 1:58PM

    Success!! So glad you shared. Guess nothing triggered after the event eating, so that is super! The corn casserole and half a piece of pumpkin pie were excellent minor indulgences. Thanks for sharing. I hope to do as well at several upcoming parties!

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LINDAKAY228 12/12/2012 1:11PM

    Awesome job with some special treats and still ate healthy and didn't overdo!

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ANOTHERMOMOF2 12/12/2012 12:41PM

    Good for you! Mindful eating can really help cut intake.

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ASHPATCH11 12/12/2012 11:35AM

    emoticon job!! you are so good at healthy living!!

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DALID414 12/12/2012 11:25AM

    Sounds like a successful day of events.

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DLDMIL 12/12/2012 11:07AM

    Congrats on your choices and your workout. emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 12/12/2012 9:12AM

    Excellent!!!!! Plan in hand, you survive and thrive! HUGS

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CELIAMINER 12/12/2012 7:57AM

    Super advice! I thought back to last year's office party (since morale is too low to have one this year) and realized I had unconsciously done what you did. I sat with people who filled most of their plates with the healthier offerings, and I noted that there actually WERE healthier choices. Maybe they had been there in years past, and I hadn't noticed, but last year I was grateful they were there.

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MSLZZY 12/12/2012 7:54AM

    Healthy choices and a great workout!

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MIRAGE727 12/12/2012 7:45AM

Leading by example! Strong effort, Barb! You so have it! And I'm sure, with your training, you will burn up that intake! Great cardio workout too! I wanna be like you when I grow up!

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WATERMELLEN 12/12/2012 7:31AM

    Well done! And I totally believe-- hanging out with healthy-minded people is really supportive (not just when eating, although it helps then the most maybe!)

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SWEDE_SU 12/12/2012 7:24AM

    that's the way to do it! emoticon

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DMEYER4 12/12/2012 7:20AM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BLUENOSE63 12/12/2012 7:14AM

  Great job!

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You would think

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

You would think that in the third year of maintenance, social eating would no longer be a careful planning thing, but rather dusting off plans that have worked in the past. That may be true sometimes, but not always for me.

You see, it isn't just about what I choose at the meal. It's about how I respond/react internally to comments others might make (criticizing how little I choose to eat, for example... this really happens, people!) It's about managing my own feelings related to the event and the offerings there. It's about my self-talk following the event, and what I choose to do in the hours, days and week beyond it.

Part of this is physiological: recognizing that there are certain foods / ingredients that will flat out trigger me. Some of these I *can* indulge in small portions of, only to find myself binging LATER. Therefore, knowing which things these are, and making the conscious choice that it's easier/better just not to start... and then feeling GOOD, not deprived about that choice. This is where the self-talk part comes in.

Self-talk before: honesty about the risks.
Self-talk during: I am making this choice for me, not for others.
Self-talk after: past is past, now is what counts, live in the now.

Reminder to self: *nothing* tastes as good as fit feels.

Discipline is remembering what I really want, not just for Christmas, but for the rest of my life. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DESERTJULZ 12/12/2012 9:42AM

    To get people to leave me alone for choosing small portions, I pile my plate full with loads of veggies and take small portions of other items.

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WATERMELLEN 12/12/2012 7:39AM

    Oh yeah. And amen sister!!

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LEANJEAN6 12/12/2012 7:13AM

    Self talking is great--You have said it all!-Lynda emoticon

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_LINDA 12/12/2012 1:21AM

    Marsha said it best, you have given us something new to chew on. Actually thinking before, during and after a social situation how you will react and knowing your triggers. Oh to have your strong willpower to stay away from those triggers. Dealing with people who comment on how much you have or don't have on your plate has never been a problem for me as I can tuck it away like a trucker with the best of them :P I start out with good intentions, only wanting small portions or samples of each thing, but when my Mom lays out a spread, unfotunately, there ends up too many choices and my plate ends up too full :( Its hard to narrow down the choices when they are all so good. Being a non cook, gettting to have something with more than one flavor and ingredient and cooked things with lots of spices is like a smorgasboard for me.
Here is to finding that discipline at socials that will mean not going home feeling more stuffed than the turkey :P

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KARIDIAN1 12/12/2012 12:45AM

    We had our Holiday Staff party with tons of goodies and treats. My watchword is moderation.

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SHARON10002 12/11/2012 10:24PM

    Absolutely TRUE!! I struggle in social situations, too, but usually my willpower is overrun. For those of us who grew up on the "clean plate club" mentality from our parents it's hard to just take a taste.

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MOBYCARP 12/11/2012 9:13PM

    I'll try to remember this blog when the office Christmas Lunch comes up next week. It's a double whammy - free food, and takes up the time that I usually use for a walk. If I think about it in advance, I'll probably handle it better than if I let it surprise me.

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SLENDERELLA61 12/11/2012 8:23PM

    Best blog, most helpful blog, I have read in a month or more!! Love the self talk before, during, and after. You are really onto something here. So often I am reading basically the same thing over and over, said in different ways, in different situations. And that can be helpful. But what you have said here I haven't read before. And it absolutely is right in keeping with my own observations and experiences. Very good analysis. And you are also totally right that it isn't old hat. As maintainers we have to look fresh at each situation. Our past successes can assist us, but are not sufficient to meet today's challenges. Thanks!!

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LJR4HEALTH 12/11/2012 7:01PM

    Great advice

Comment edited on: 12/11/2012 7:02:32 PM

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DOGLADY13 12/11/2012 6:20PM

    The Christmas parties have started in earnest. It's hard. Last year I did OK because I was such a nervous wreck from work I wasn't able to eat. This year, I'm feeling pretty good and want to celebrate. I wish I could say I was succeeding, but I'm not. But there is always next time!

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PATRICIAAK 12/11/2012 5:26PM

    Great advice

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ROXYZMOM 12/11/2012 5:05PM

    I love your self talk points. I get asked every once in a while why I am not ordering a drink. I just say I am not feeling like one. By this point, everyone knows I order "weird, healthy food". Some of them have started ordering it for themselves!

II guess my point is, everyone rocks to a different boat. Don't worry about what other's think.

You have a great plan and the foresight to think ahead. And with three years under your belt --- it works!!


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MRS.DOYLE 12/11/2012 1:33PM

    Very useful blog especially at this time of year. I still don't know how to reply politely when people comment on my choices at the work party which is usually awash with beige food. I bring in fruit and veg and others tuck in, so maybe that is good enough for me.

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DALID414 12/11/2012 11:50AM

    I struggle with the qyestion of: That's all you're going to eat? From my mom emoticon She measures love with an overflowing plate of food.

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DEBRA0818 12/11/2012 11:36AM

    It never amazes me how free people feel to comment on other people's bodies and food choices ... as if those things really mattered (to them). It is a constant sort of vigilance to keep the focus on your choices based on what you need (or don't need). Continuing good luck through the Holiday Season!


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DLDMIL 12/11/2012 11:32AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon on your choices to be about you and not others.

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MJZHERE 12/11/2012 11:28AM

    Very good blog. It really comes down to self talk in everything, doesn't it. I, too, know the comments (and looks) about not eating enough. I have addressed this issue with some people who told me they really are just concerned. It made me remember how often in the past I would ask my daughter if she were eating enough (she has always been very athletic and stays thin). I truly was concerned for her - but so wish I could take those words back now.

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 12/11/2012 10:46AM

    Barb, there are days when I wish I could roll you up and put you inside my head. LOL! This is a great blog. So insightful. Thinking before acting (eating) -- now there's a thought!

Enjoy your holiday party today -- you'll make the right decisions and be happier for it.

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LESLIELENORE 12/11/2012 10:08AM

    Very true. Every social situation has its own pitfalls.

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MSLZZY 12/11/2012 9:44AM

    I can relate to the response/reaction to others
and their criticism. That alone would be enough
to put me on the defensive. Left to my own devices,
I do just fine. Sorry others feel they have to judge.
Having discipline is the only way to go. HUGS!

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1CRAZYDOG 12/11/2012 9:40AM

    Couldn't agree more . . . NOTHING tastes as good as being healthy and fit feels. I always remember that when making food choices. You're so right that we have to have positive self-talk to stick to our good choices and not be influenced by others' opinions.


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LINDAKAY228 12/11/2012 9:00AM

    We still have those little voices in our head to deal with. I know you're going to get through this with the tools you have learned to use well. And a great reminder to the rest of us!

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ANOTHERMOMOF2 12/11/2012 8:57AM

    Maintenance is never easy.

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KRICKET57 12/11/2012 8:30AM

    Self-talking, that little voice that reminds me of the choices I am making and why I am making them. Sometimes it is just a matter of listening more to yourself than the outside pressures. Like you, I have people commenting on how small the portions are that I take or how much I do not eat if we go out. I wish restaurants served smaller sized portions and made people ask for more, rather than making me look wasteful for not eating all the food provided to me. Even when I ask for smaller portions there is still too much on the plate.

I think it is great you have given this reminder to listen to ourselves. Thank you.


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ANDI571 12/11/2012 8:29AM


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CELIAMINER 12/11/2012 8:22AM

    Thanks for the reminders to keep self-talk honest and positive. I feel fortunate that I don't have a long list of social obligations during the holiday, only a few carefully chosen ones. I use the word "obligations" because that's what I consider most of these to be. I heard a segment on the radio about the office party being a staff meeting masquerading as a there or you're not a team player. This year, with all the budget cuts and Fed-bashing, my agency has zero holiday spirit, so there are no office parties and no "decorating contests." That alone is saving me a lot of angst this holiday season.

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LEANJEAN6 12/11/2012 8:16AM

    I do a lot of self talking-----We can practice at the Party--LOL----Yu can get us all out for a run too----Lynda emoticon

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COMETER 12/11/2012 8:06AM

    YAY you! And I love that "nothing tastes as good as fit feels."

I was chatting with my sister yesterday and she was noting that in her Weight Watchers group are LOTS of people who comment that staying on the fitness road is a lifelong project, and hasn't become easy, even after years of practice. It takes ongoing commitment and adaptation. Somehow it seems like we could just "fix" it once and for all.

But if it isn't that way, then we've just got to face it and move on.

So, thanks for the reminder to move on!

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Speaking of non-scale victories...

Monday, December 10, 2012

Yesterday I got a visit from one of my younger sisters. She needed to borrow a double boiler for some of her holiday goodie-making, and I was happy to oblige.

It was a brief visit, in which I got caught up on how the family Thanksgiving went. It went about as such events do... we shared a giggle or two over people we love being who they are. For those of you who don't get the family clues around here... I grew up amid the Big Bang Theory gang... part of my family do not get the irony of their decision *not* to watch the show because "the math is OK, the science is off". The point is, many of them ARE the characters.

(MOBYCARP, you are Sheldon, in case you didn't know or have never watched it! I would be willing to bet that at least some would cast me as Leonard's mother.)

Anyway, that aside... the point of this little reminder to myself is about how far I have come. My sis mentioned that she and her family were going through old photographs, and her daughter looked at one and asked, "Is THAT Barbie?" Gasp. She *does not remember me in my heavy, unfit state*! She was in this photo with me, my "really, really before" shot I keep in my gallery. She was the little girl to my right.

That has to be a sign of long-term effort, does it not? The year following that photograph (I believe it was Christmas 2005) I went on "the guy diet" with my son, which basically is putting oneself in training. An injury a year and a half later resulted in a regain, but I have since enjoyed considerable success in getting back to the fit me I most enjoy! But that this important young person in my life doesn't even identify me as someone who "used to be" heavy is an incredible boost to my morale.

Something is working. And despite the bumps and mountains, life is good. Spark on!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 12/11/2012 8:16PM

    So fantastic to get to that stage of maintaining where many people never knew us heavy!! Yay!!

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WILLOWBROOK5 12/11/2012 7:31PM

    Wow, how wonderful to only be thought of as fit and healthy! And what a great and inspiring example you are to others, including me!

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LJR4HEALTH 12/11/2012 7:02PM

    Wow Barb that is so awesome your niece only know you as the "fit" person you are! It must seems like a life time ago (the other you ) Thanks for sharing

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COMETER 12/11/2012 8:10AM

    Woot! and double Woot!

I've been struck by the information lately that our social circles have huge impact on our fitness and weight--what a wonderful thing you're doing for your circle by being fit and celebrating that.

I'm tempted to see you as an exception, and I'm working on seeing you as an example of a regular person who has put in practice the things that we all know. So while I see you as a superhero in many ways, it's important to me that your superpowers are remarkably available to all of us.

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_LINDA 12/10/2012 11:57PM

    How totally cool and awesome is that?? That is fantastic your daughter knows you only as fit and trim :))
Huge non scale victory indeed.
Keep on being the amazing inspiration that you are. Now the question is, what on Earth is Barb going to do next to top her last athletic feat??
Keeping a close watch on your marathon training -if anyone can do it, you sure can!!
You go girl!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 12/10/2012 11:30PM

    Wonderful! You are so fit they don't even remember that you weren't always this way!! Very good. Great blog, too.

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KARIDIAN1 12/10/2012 10:57PM

    That before picture is a great reminder of how far you have come.

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DALID414 12/10/2012 10:41PM

    That's so awesome!

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LJCANNON 12/10/2012 9:42PM

    emoticon What a Huge Victory!! To be known Only as The Healthy Fit Barb is a Milestone that many of us may never realize, but with Your Example & Encouragement, we will continue to aim toward that!!

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MSLZZY 12/10/2012 9:31PM

    A real transformation! By the way, I think Sheldon is a hoot!

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ROXYZMOM 12/10/2012 7:34PM

    Congratulations! You are the maintenance queen!

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MOBYCARP 12/10/2012 7:16PM

    I don't watch Big Bang Theory, but not because of the science. It's just that TV in general isn't worth my time any more, and finding that one show that would be worth watching would require scheduling a session to watch.

My one remaining TV vice is football, and I didn't turn that on this past weekend. I wanted to get some stuff done, and I knew I wouldn't if I started watching.

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PATRICIAAK 12/10/2012 6:02PM


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SHARON10002 12/10/2012 5:01PM

    Great story, Barb. I would love to get to that point! What you have accomplished is amazing!

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TINAJANE76 12/10/2012 4:21PM

    It's so great that you've got to the point where people don't even remember you being heavy. Fit, healthy and happy--that's what you ARE!

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DLDMIL 12/10/2012 2:17PM

    WOW!! You have done an amazing job. Thank you for being so motivating and inspirational. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LESLIELENORE 12/10/2012 11:54AM

    Wow, what a difference! You look so much happier now.

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LINDAKAY228 12/10/2012 11:23AM

    It is really so awesome how much you've changed since that photo and the fact that what your family, especially the little ones, see now and the example you are setting!

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MNTWINSGAL 12/10/2012 11:11AM

    When successful Sparkers post "before" pics, it gives us all hope. Rock on, Barb!

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1CRAZYDOG 12/10/2012 10:15AM

    LOVE Big Bang! I don't honestly know who I'd cast myself as, but would sure hope NOBODY would cast me as Howard's Mom! YIKERS! She's the most dysfunctional of the Moms! LOL

Look how far you've come since that before picture! I look @ my "before" pictures and can't believe how much denial I was in1 But . . . Spark People cleared that one up!

HUGS Glad you got to spend time w/your sis. BTW, prayers continue for your SIL.

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NELLJONES 12/10/2012 10:04AM

    I'm glad you have that really "before" photo. All of mine are long gone through divorce and uncareful parental downsizing. The day will come when you will need that photo to convince people that you really were overweight.

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ANDI571 12/10/2012 9:31AM

    I love Big Bang. I am far from being a geek, but I sure relate to Sheldon on being a germaphob! I had to laugh when you said you would be Leonard's mother.

I just admire you so much. I brag on you all the time and use you as an example. I was out with Kel the other day and told her, that I didn't think I would ever have the "want" to do the things you do, but you let me know there is hope. I've always been told when you get older there are just things you can't do. You are my example that "I can" do anything if I have the desire to do so.

Even now, I have put my goal weight up to 160 instead of 155 like I had it. Deep down I know I could still achieve that 155, but at the moment that would mean changing a lifestyle that I am not sure I am ready to give up. I have been told by a family member, you can't always get down to 155, meaning being older. But I know that is not true. You have shown me that. So for now, I will be content, but will always know when I decide to put the work into it, I can and will achieve a lower weight.

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EBEAMS 12/10/2012 8:40AM

    Barb ~ You are amazing ... inspiring ... and incredible! Thanks for sending ripples through time to the rest of your family (and US!) with your great lifestyle. Continue to fight the good fight, my friend ... Hugs!

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    Wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing!

I'm starting to get comments about having lost weight - I haven't lost much (7-9#) but apparently it is showing. I now weigh about 178. I hope to some day have NSV's that show in pictures like in your pictures. By sharing, you have given me hope. Thank you!

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CELIAMINER 12/10/2012 8:06AM

    What a heartwarming story! I look forward to the day when people don't remember me with the extra 80 pounds on my carcass.


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MIRAGE727 12/10/2012 7:42AM

    Trust me when I say that, after being fortunate to meet my dear friend, Barb, this woman is full of energy & Spark! She's the kind of positive person I want around me! All the best on your Marathon training, Barb!

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HEALTHY4ME 12/10/2012 7:38AM

    OHO OH so gives me hope! I am so happy for you and motivated by you. YOU Girl have done so fantastic!!! HUGS and a happy week for you.

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