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*FOR LADIES ONLY* - A Plea for Advice/Help

Friday, October 14, 2011

Look at how nosey you are!!! LOLOLOL emoticon


I NEED HELP!! It's almost that wonderful time of the month again and I'm already feeling bloated and my cravings are beginning.... Ugh!! No need complaining, right? It happens every month. LOL Just live with it. BUT, I need some advice! How do you deal with your cravings. What are some of the strategies you've come up with to not totally sabotage all your efforts in a week's time??

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MRSSCHENCK 10/30/2011 6:54AM

    I'm just here to get advice, too. Sorry I can't offer much.

For the the salty: I munch on Pringles Fat Free chips.

For chocolate: I find little things that I can graze on. Like a serving of cocoa puffs.

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PINKBEANBOO 10/17/2011 3:45PM

    I'm not one to give advice on this subject because I have the same problem. I'm glad you posted this though because I needed to read the other comments.
I agree with POOKASLAUGH. I have always believed that I have honest hunger right before TOM comes but I've never heard anyone say that we need the extra calories. I really think that it applies to me.
When I'm craving sweets, a glass of chocolate milk helps me out. When I'm craving something crunchy, popcorn with no salt (if you need butter, spray it with 0 calorie butter flavor cooking spray).

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LSBETH 10/16/2011 12:17AM

    I'm in menopause now but I had really bad PMS for decades. I took the highest recommended dose of Evening Primrose oil in addition to my daily EFAs. It was the only thing that kept all of my PMS symptoms down including the cravings.

It also helped if I kept my blood sugar (and I suspect our hormones) stabilized by avoiding anything with refined sugars in it. You'll need to learn the name of all types of sugars to know when its in something. Also eliminate all refined grains (white flour, white rice, etc). It helped somewhat to reduce my caffeine intake (but not enough to get a withdrawal headache though). Eating those foods caused my blood sugar to crash in an hour or less, which triggered more cravings. They also cause bloating & negatively effect our emotions.

Reducing stress was the best thing I found for my cravings since I'm a stress eater. I drank a lot of warm calming herbal teas with a tad of honey throughout the day and during cravings. There's a slew of calming tea choices at health food stores. Camomile was my favorite. I also upped my B vitamins if I felt particularly nervous or edgy and took St John's Wort if I felt sad, depressed or weepy. That stabilized my emotions and I had fewer cravings and more control over the cravings I did have.

Probably the biggest thing was to learn how to put myself first in order to reduce stress. I made my family respect that I needed at least an hour every evening for a lavender (lavender is calming) infused warm bath or just to go out by myself to sit in nature, write in my journal, read a book, go for a walk, have tea with a friend,etc. The family didn't fall apart and the 'crisis' the kids will say they need you for will still be there after your hour, but you'll feel centered and more in control when you handle it.

I also had to avoid talking to negative people and learned how to gently cut people off and leave when they wouldn't respond to my steering the conversation to positive topics. I avoided my drama queen friends and all friends going through heavy stuff if they were just looking for someone to dump on (as opposed to if they really needed my help) by screening my calls or keeping the calls very short. (yes, I confess to pressing my own door bell many times to gently get off the phone or told them right off that I only had a couple of minutes to talk). Reducing stress was a huge thing that helped me control my still is.

I like what others have written here. The walks and exercise are nice because they cause the body to release serotonin and dopamine and that reduces the intensity and number of cravings.

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SCHENPOSSIBLE 10/15/2011 10:54PM

    I've tracked that 2 weeks before TOM is when I get some off the wall cravings. Starting on that Sunday I start taking a supplement called L-gluetamin (I think that's how you spell it) twice a day. It helps with cravings and it's helped me battle the greedy monster. You can buy it at any vitamin store. Good luck!

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CANNIE50 10/15/2011 8:34PM

    Lots of good advice here. I am glad you got such a response (of course you did, Sparklers are wonderfully helpful). Thank you for reading and commenting on my "go just beyond" blog - I am glad you are a Sparkler.

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BEACH_BABYDOLL 10/15/2011 2:49PM

    Praise Him! I can relate. My temptation is anything chocolate and lots of it. Try having your healthier version of snacks around. For example -- to get over my chocolate craving, I'll have sugar free Jello pudding (chocolate). Only 60 calories. If you need the crunch -- try air-popped popcorn (w/nothing on it). It should be just enough to get you through those first few days. emoticon

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NEVERMIND2010 10/15/2011 11:21AM

    Exercise, water and protein. (I think the protein helps the most.) Extra sleep doesn't hurt, either. There's been more than one night that I've gone to bed early to avoid eating.

Hang in there. This too shall pass!

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TEMPEST272002 10/15/2011 11:05AM

    I had to laugh when I followed Leslie's link to one of my own blogs! lol Project PMS has been ongoing & I've learned a few things since I wrote that blog:

1. what POOKASLUAGH says is true - we burn more calories during PMS & so if you can feed your body those cals in a healthy way, then the cravings aren't so bad. Nuts and seeds are a great option. Did you know walnuts help ward off depression?

2. exercise, exercise, exercise - helps eliminate those edgy feelings.

3. For the days I know I'm going to want to just eat all night, I make meringue cookies. Not the best cookie ever, but you can have 18 of them for about 30 calories!

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DAPHNE_RUNS 10/15/2011 9:33AM

    One way to beat the cravings is to give into a healthy way. For sweet cravings, reach for an apple, grapes, yogurt, or maybe a cup of chocolate milk. And for salty cravings have a salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, a cup of soup, a slice of cheese or maybe a piece of bread with peanut butter. Just a few ideas. Fight food cravings the smart way....the healthy way.

You can do this.


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GOURMETLOSER 10/15/2011 8:41AM

    Wish I could help but this is the one time of the month I usually find easier to stick to my plan. I'm so bloated that I don't feel hungry. Now the rest of the month.........

All the usual things apply for the rest of the month so I guess they apply now too. Avoid even starting sweet things, they make the carving worse. Drink well, have healthy snacks, try cleaning your teeth........ etc

I'll be praying for you over the next few days.

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JERSEYFLOWER 10/15/2011 12:11AM

    I eat a lot of rice cakes. The mini ones that are flavored. Crunchy sweetness that doesn't kill the calorie count.

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LESLIES537 10/14/2011 11:49PM

    LOL about the men!!! Ok, I heard your plea and I came running. Had to back track through some blogs to find this one...but it's the best advice I ever recieved and think it could be of great help to you, too!

Just go to this blog and you'll see! I'll send you a link via sparkmail as well.

Keep on being awesome!


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HALLELUL 10/14/2011 11:25PM

    Simple. I get yelled at by my very dear emoticon. Her name is True-Ness. I'm being silly.

But to be real. I won't forget it when I ended my no gum chewing and you tried to encourage me to go longer. I know I didn't listen because I craved the sugary stuff and back I went. Well your words still ring true to bust the door down and do this. So far I'm going for 30 days but I have a hunch I'm going to hear your encouraging words saying go longer.

So back at you. You know the cravings are coming but don't give in. Perhaps find a similar treat that's guilt free. Instead of candy I'm enjoying grapes. Instead of cookies, I'm enjoying Coach Nicole's granola bar recipes. Instead of white sugar, I'm using Maple Syrup. Enough yapping I'll just say....

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DJONES3423 10/14/2011 10:05PM

    I feel for you! I get the worst cravings, and I can eat or drink until my stomach feels like it's going to burst without the cravings stopping. It doesn't seem to matter what I eat or how much water I drink either. I can't eat enough to make the signal get through to my brain that I'm not hungry any more. Distracting myself and keeping very busy seem to be the only "cures" to get through that stretch. I have to keep myself too preoccupied to think about eating. I feel like such a pig, but it happens to me every cycle the day before I start.

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POOKASLUAGH 10/14/2011 9:44PM

    Back in May, I read a book on running that told me that during those few super-hungry days right in the PMS and start of TOM, the reason you get those cravings is because your body actually needs about an extra 500 calories to function normally those days. If you pay attention to this and feed it extra food (not junk, just food, though usually there's a reason your body is asking for fat and such), your body will compensate a few days later by having a couple of not-very-hungry days.

Because I've always done the intuitive, I've always just eaten more on those cravings days, though again I try to eat healthy foods (with fat in them). Consequently, I never gain weight or get bloated during TOM. There were two months this summer where I ignored my intuitive and tried to hold back from eating those days, and on those months I got bloated and gained weight that week. I've given this advice to several others on Spark and every one that has tried it has said that it works.

I think the reason we get all bloated and start gaining weight is because our body is not just retaining water but food too on those days when we're supposed to be eating extra, but if you just eat extra, it will keep processing normally. I had TOM this last week and lost 1.5 lbs. There wasn't a single day of gain, though I had two days where I stayed the same weight, which of course is no big deal.

so that's my advice - take a couple days while you're super hungry and let yourself eat. Not binge, but eat an extra 500 calories or so (or your picture approximate of that). Eat until your body is satisfied. Have a little extra healthy fats. Hopefully if you follow the same pattern as I've seen in multiple people, that bloating will go away and you'll have a few not-so-hungry days in a few days. Good luck!

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KJMAZ2011 10/14/2011 9:42PM

    I've been eating "vita tops" those strange muffin top things.. 100 cal. portions. I like the double chocolate. I also know that I don't crave salads, or veggies in the same way, so I try and make some of my comfort foods. just in smaller portions, and "re-vamped" to be fairly normal in cals.

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ERIKO1908 10/14/2011 9:35PM

    I try to exercise more!! I've heard it is more effective during TOM...and, if it isn't true, I'm just not going to listen to anybody saying it!!! I also try to consume a bit more iron in my food...and more water!!!

Hope you receive some helpful tips!!

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Food Picture Tracking - Oct. 13

Thursday, October 13, 2011

BREAKFAST (9:00 a.m.)

2 slices of Nature's Own Double Fiber Wheat bread; 1 slice pepper jack cheese (2%); 1 cup fresh spinach; 2 slices turkey bacon; 2 scrambled eggs; .5 tbsp Smart Balance Light


LUNCH (2:00 p.m.)

Honestly, the time just got away from me and, because of my very substantial breakfast, I wasn't hungry, so right before I left out for work I ate this:

DINNER (6:00 p.m.)

2 chicken drumsticks; steamed green beans

SNACK (10:40 p.m.)

4 entertainment crackers; 1 tbsp peanut butter



Strength Exercises SETS REPS

Close-Arm Wall Pushups 2 12-15
Bridges 2 12-15
Alternating Dumbbell Biceps Curls 2 12-15
Dumbbell Shrugs 2 12-15
Lying Dumbbell Triceps Extensions 2 12-15
Modified Pushups 2 12-15
Lying Leg Curls 2 12-15
Lying Single-Leg Raises 2 12-15
Wide Leg Squats with Dumbbell 2 12-15
Dumbbell Side Bends 2 12-15
Reverse Crunch 2 12-15
Superman 2
Lying Straight Leg Raises 2 12-15
Pendulum 2 12-15
Scissors 2 12
Standing Dumbbell "Pec Dec Machine" press 2 12

Stretch Before & After Strength Training

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 10/14/2011 4:19PM

    great pics - that chicken looks GOOD!

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TEMPEST272002 10/14/2011 10:12AM

    Great choices! What a great ST workout. Wow, you really put a lot in!

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4AMAZINGME 10/14/2011 9:19AM

    cool idea.

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1NANA4EVER 10/14/2011 8:51AM

    Your breakfast sandwich looks great! It beats my bowl of mixed cereal and fruit by a mile!

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POOKASLUAGH 10/14/2011 8:51AM

    Your breakfast looks delicious!

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GOURMETLOSER 10/14/2011 5:00AM

    Looks good to me. Wish I ate that well! I love your hearty breakfasts.

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ALLIEALLIE2 10/13/2011 11:51PM


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SCHENPOSSIBLE 10/13/2011 11:30PM

    Looks like you had some good fuel for your workout. Healthy Thursday for you!

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DETERMINEDJANET 10/13/2011 11:10PM

    I thought about doing the food photos but just couldn't make myself listen to "What are you doing mom?" LOL GREAT job on the food choices today!!!

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 10/13/2011 11:08PM

    I just love your food blogs. emoticon

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RIVERCITYTOM 10/13/2011 10:39PM

    Great photos. A great looking meal makes it taste better.
Thanks for sharing.

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Food Picture Tracking - Oct. 12

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

DINNER (5:45 p.m.)

2 chicken legs; steamed brussels sprouts

WATER TOTALS: 3 cups (24 ounces)

Walk 20 min/mile 60 minutes; 241 calories

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HALLELUL 10/13/2011 2:10PM

    I should have known better but at first I was like why is she having chicken legs for breakfast and then I scrolled down and was like where is the rest of her food?

Again I should have know better...duh fast day.


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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 10/13/2011 12:54PM

    emoticon Yum

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TRUE-NESS 10/13/2011 12:11PM

    Yes, ERIKO, It was a fasting day. I'm glad someone remembered. :-)

GOURMETLOSER: You made me laugh. :-) Don't be worried or concerned. Wednesdays are typically a church fast day. We fast from midnight Tuesday until Wednesday dinnertime. LOL That's why that's all I ate all day. Last week I started my blog with "Church fast day" so people wouldn't be concerned about me skipping meals. This time I neglected to include that "disclaimer." But, believe me, I EAT!! lolol No need to be concerned. LOL (I don't always fast on Wednesdays with the church, but when I do, it'll show food consumption only after dinner.)

SHERR513: I am really not accustomed to cooking chicken drumsticks, wings and thighs. I usually get only boneless chicken breast. I could put THAT into the broiler (my favorite way to cook. LOL). But the chicken legs I baked at 375 degrees (my hubby bakes his at 350 degrees, I think). It was good. I seasoned with kosher salt, black pepper, lemon pepper, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, paprika and garlic seasoning. I like spice. LOL And, no, I don't have a cut off time at night for eating. You can see that from my other blogs. But, I don't eat and go straight to bed. I wait at least 2 hours, preferably 3, after eating before I get into the bed.

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SHERR513 10/13/2011 9:50AM

    Food looks good.How do you bake your chicken it looks soooooo good! Do you eat your last meal around 6pm?

Comment edited on: 10/13/2011 9:53:15 AM

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GOURMETLOSER 10/13/2011 6:50AM

    Was that all you ate all day???? I'm worried about you!

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4MRSDAND123 10/13/2011 3:12AM

    Healthy! WTG!

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LIS193 10/13/2011 12:34AM

    Looks good!

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ERIKO1908 10/13/2011 12:12AM

    was today a fasting day?? brussel sprouts look DIVINE!!! have a GREAT day tomorrow!!!

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Food Picture Tracking - Oct. 11

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

BREAKFAST (8:00 a.m.)

1 cup cereal; 1 cup milk; multivitamin

SNACK (12:00 p.m.)

6 mini sweet peppers and 2 tbsp of roasted red pepper hummus. I think these sweet peppers are my FAVORITE raw veggie to eat. They are sooo sweet and sooo yummy! You just pop them in or take a bite from the cutting necessary. Delish!

LUNCH (1:30 p.m.)

It doesn't quite look like it does on the packaging, does it. LOL It taste pretty good though.

SNACK (4:45 p.m.)

6 crackers; Laughing cow cheese wedge

DINNER (6:00 p.m.)

This looks like a pretty decent portioned dinner, right? Well, it would be IF that was all I ate. Problem: After I finished stirring in the cheese sauce of the Kraft Deluxe Mac and Cheese dinner (which is 320 calories per cup, by the way!!), I had about 6 heaping teaspoons full of it PRIOR to putting it on the plate!! So, imagine double of what you see on the plate. I was so concerned about resisting the cake, I neglected my other vice (mac and cheese--whether store bought or homemade, doesn't matter) It was a total binge on mac and cheese. BUT, It definitely could have been worse.

Keeping it all in perspective of my total day, it's all good. It happens. Whatever. No problem. It's not the end of the world. So, I won't act like it is. ;-)

BUT, I do think about the fact that for all the calories in that mac and cheese, I could have had a big ole slice of that tempting cake that I blogged about earlier. LOL You just have to laugh! I doubt the cake would have been as filling though...would have been just empty sugar calories... but it would have been satisfying. LOL I have no doubt. LOL

By the way, that cake is almost gone already!! I'll not have to look at it too much longer, I'm sure. One more day tops. :-( Pray for my hubby.

WATER TOTALS: 9 cups (72 ounces)

(2 sets of each; 12-15 reps)

Close-Arm Wall Pushups
Bicycle Crunches
Dumbbell Hammer Curls
Dumbbell Lateral Raises
Modified Pushups
Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press
Calf Raises with Wall
Dumbbell Squats
Lying Abduction
Lying Adduction
Lying Straight Leg Raises

Stretch Before & After Strength Training

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HALLELUL 10/12/2011 9:09PM

    Wow you did all that strength training. You get several WooHoo's for that.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GHK1962 10/12/2011 7:08PM

    Very nice core STs.

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GOURMETLOSER 10/12/2011 8:31AM

    Well done on resisting that cake. Top of the class!

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MICHSTATE 10/12/2011 7:34AM

    I just bought a couple of that Lean Cuisine meal. On Saturday, I heated the meal up and as soon as it was done cooking put it in a bowl with a cup of raw shredded carrots. It was good!!! The carrots made in seem more substantial and were heated up by the food.
Yumm!!! I might do that for lunch today!!!

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POOKASLUAGH 10/12/2011 5:40AM

    Mac and Cheese. I only like the storebought kind (which is odd, since 95% of the time I prefer home made food), but it's another food I shouldn't have around, haha! :D

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 10/11/2011 11:26PM

    I need to get some broccoli. Yours looks so good. emoticon

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Food Picture Tracking - Oct. 10

Monday, October 10, 2011

BREAKFAST (8:45 a.m.)

Multivitamin; 3 Fiber One pancakes; 1 cup 1% milk; Less than .25 cup Aunt Jemima Butter Lite syrup

SNACK (1:20 p.m.)

A large Golden Delicious apple

LUNCH (2:15 p.m.)

2 slices of Nature's Own Double Fiber Wheat bread; 1 cup fresh spinach; 2 oz. rotisserie chicken; 1 slice pepper jack cheese (2% milkfat); spicy brown mustard



DINNER (6:45 p.m.)

2 whole wheat pita bread pizzas: spinach & goat cheese and pepperoni & cheese (made with Hormel turkey pepperoni, italian five cheese, triple cheddar, colby jack and pizza sauce)

*Note: I used Wegman's Basting Oil for the spinach and goat cheese pizza since I did not use pizza sauce. I use this basting oil A LOT (as you can see since it's almost gone). Anytime I mention that I broiled some veggies, I sprinkled this oil on it first.

WATER TOTALS: 5 cups (40 ounces)

It was a high carb day today, huh? What's up with that? It's so unusual for me to have so much bread in one day. Oh well... body must have wanted it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SANYA_SHNICK 10/13/2011 9:41AM

    I LOVE the idea of picture-food tracking. I may steal your idea here. It makes tracking fun! Way to go!

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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 10/11/2011 12:52PM

    looks delish!!

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PEPPERCHILD 10/10/2011 11:36PM

    Great idea - I'm going to give this a try. Keep up the great work!

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ERIKO1908 10/10/2011 11:08PM

    I can look at the pictures tonight...i'm still full from dinner!! :)

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GOURMETLOSER 10/10/2011 9:33PM

    It all looks so good although it looks higher calorie than your description sounds with all the 'lite' things in there. Oh Yum!!!

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JAYLES 10/10/2011 9:32PM

    I love that post pix of what you ate! Great idea!

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CRYSTLE4HIMTX10 10/10/2011 9:24PM

    Looks delicious. Except for the pancakes. Only because I do not eat them. emoticon

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MICHSTATE 10/10/2011 9:19PM

    I love the Fiber One pancakes!!!! I don't add as much water as the box says, and they come out nice and thick and fluffy!!!!

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POOKASLUAGH 10/10/2011 9:18PM

    Body must have wanted it - that's right! I love it. When we really listen, we can eat exactly what our bodies want from us. Awesome. :)

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HALLELUL 10/10/2011 9:03PM

    Oo-oo-oo (me singing in an opera tone) Those pancakes took so good. Were they?? I love, love pancakes but am still having issues with getting them right. Please let me know if yours were as good as they look.

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1NANA4EVER 10/10/2011 8:57PM

    It is my personal opinion that when you vary the amounts of carbs, proteins and fats during the week that your body is less likely to go into starvation mode. I believe if during a week you end up balancing out the 3 you loose just as much as balancing them each day. So a day higher in carbs isn't going to sabotage you. Bottom line a calorie is a calorie and 3500 = a pound (I think :-))

What I have observed about myself is that if I cut out way too much fat, that I will not lose as much. I now am purposely cooking with olive oil to make sure I have some good fat in my diet. I expect the basting oil is doing that for you.

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SHERR513 10/10/2011 8:54PM

    That food looks great! I'm gonna try those pancakes even though i'm not really a pancake eater, but I need the fiber! Thanks for sharing you really inspire me. emoticon

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PURRRPY 10/10/2011 8:53PM

    Love this - a picture says a thousand words. Very inspiring.


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MOMMY445 10/10/2011 8:48PM

    the food looks delicious! thanks so much for sharing! have a fabulous day!

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