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Oct 2019 down 180 lbs.

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Me at my 40th class reunion! Yikes!

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Labor Day 2007 A family get together at Gov. Dodge State Park

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I have a much different lifestyle today than I did before July 2008. I wanted some control over my life and boy did I get it! I wanted to gain some "spark" that would ignite the passion I knew I had for life. I got sparked right away I was so ready for this change. Let me tell you a little about my former self.

I have been heavy all of my life. When I see pics of me much younger I think I don't look fat. What was I thinking! It was a reasonable amount to lose. Now I have 125. Sheesh! Yes I only wanted to get to 200 lbs. I didn't know yet that being sparked would change me so much. Had I known about this sooner would I have gone forward with this new chapter in my life? I can't answer that now or maybe ever. This time I was ready to accept what I was reading. I knew it all before but it didn't take.

The nutrition articles just fell into place. I tried to avoid the Fitness articles! I could barely walk 30 feet without having to sit down and catch my breath. I never thought that one day I would enjoy walking. My sister Thoms1 has been my diet and exercise buddy from the very beginning! We struggled trying to walk block by block! At first I had to use two canes. Becky had COPD so she was wheezing the whole way! We finally graduated to using walking sticks! We needed them due to hip pain. Without them I don't know if we would have continued on in this journey! She would push me and I her! If there is only one thing that you get from reading this is if at all possible get a diet and exercise buddy!

10/07/20 Update
Today's weight 142.1. Spent Feb-April in FL Arrived back in WI May 3rd at 153.2. Spent Jun-Aug 26th in Montana with my sister Julie, weighed 147.2 when I got home. Been bouncing around the mid 140's since. I am happy with my weight. I try to stay within a +/- 3% center weight of 142 right now.

This year has not been a nice year! 2020 can't get over soon enough! My sister Julie is married to a man that loves to cook. Get this, he is as worried about his weight as any woman is! He won't eat his own cooking!
He makes these wonderful meals and Julie and I would practically pig out eating it! Monday would come and we would eat like normal people would, keeping in mind the coming gourmet meals on the weekend.
In that regard I am happy to be home I know I can relax and eat our normal meals. Fat is one of my trigger foods and Wayne's mantra is everything's better with butter.. Julie's is as mother would say, I like to support the Dairy Farmers! Ma never had a weight problem.
Enjoy the rest of 2020, if you can. It is time for me to get outside and walk.

7/20/18 Update
Todays weight 151.5. Need to get back to the 140's then on to
my goal of 139lbs. This has not been my most successful year but I have maintained a 173.5 lb. weight loss! I recently joined a brand new spark team "Otis Is Going Down"! The leader is Charlene. CTYONIT, when she first suggested this team I got very excited. She is so full of wonderful energy! Otis is the man that invented the weight goes up and down and this time it's going downnnn for EVER!! That's the energy CTYONIT gives off.

The other team I can't live without is At Goal & Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance

I hope those links work!

6/17/17 Update
I read an article by Becky Hand the other day, it was regarding nutrients. I have read it before but I must NEVER have looked at the chart! Well, what an eye opener! It had the breakdown for 1200 Calories 1500 Calories ETC. for both Men and Women. Among other things it did state that Spark believes in middle of the road. When I looked at the chart for 1200 and 1500 calories I realized I was going over the recommended guidelines. So, I must adjust the carbs on my tracker. I have already adjusted my sodium to 1500.
Years ago, I had read an article on spark with regards to carbs in relation to people with thyroid problems. Wish I could find it again but as I remember it said people with LOW thyroid problems should always stay closer to the lower end of their recommended guide line. Well, now that I have made the adjustment to my tracker we will see how I do!

The Becky Hand article I referred to above is Titled "Healthy Carbs, Fat and Protein Ranges" The numbers you need to know.

Link to article:

The second article is by (when I find it again I will fill in the blanks)

Link to Maintainer's Team!! Very important to my maintenance!

04/9/17 Update
I can't believe it has been 4 years since I updated this page! Shame on me! I just read a short blog and I made this comment I wanted to add it to this page cause I believe it whole heartedly.

' Moving forward with things we have learned especially about our "old" selves, taking what we need so as not to repeat our "old" patterns and continue on with new good "habits" to make this a wonderful healthy lifestyle "forever"!!! "

My Current weight as of today is 150.3 lbs. I am on Vacation in Fort Myers Beach FL. I am fortunate to be a tag along with my spark buddy sister Thoms1 and her DH. I have found that Sodium is a very BAD thing for me so I really have to watch my nutrients. If I can keep it below 1500 yea me! That is very hard for me to do but so worth it in the long run.

I belong to a team At Goal & Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance. When I started my Healthy Lifestyle Journey I belonged to team 300 Lbs. Plus. Team 300 Lbs Plus saw me from 325 lbs down to my first major goal. They were with me through thick and thin! .Dusty. is such a good team leader! Then I wanted to concentrate on learning about maintenance. 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Team leader of At Goal & Maintaining + Transition to Maintenance started a +/- 3 % Challenge where you get to choose your center goal! I thought that was brilliant! When I could stay within that range after a few challenges I would drop that center weight down by one lb. It has made my life so much better! So, you say "Control Issues"!! You are right but I have some control in my life and that is with my weight. That +/- 3% has been a life saver for me. I will add other comments as I go along on the wonderful journey called life!

05/23/13 Update
I am doing Spark Coach and my challenge for the day was to update my sparkpage with my current weight and to update my goals.
I weighed in at 165.8 lbs. Of course I am visiting my sister in MT and I know her scale weighs about 3 lbs less than mine at home but at least I have a starting point. If I can maintain or lose 3 lbs I will be ecstatic! While away I want to be very mindful of my eating. A treat here and there is fine but not every day! Hamilton has some very good fast food joints which have always been a downfall for me. Now I will have to ask myself some questions. Are you really hungry or is something on your mind? Are you worried? ETC. Gee it is never ending with me. I would like to wake up one day and not have to think of anything. Just go to the kitchen and make my meals without thinking. OH! When I am at home that is pretty much the way it is. Of course I have done batch cooking and it all works out really well. But sometimes it is nice to make a chicken or turkey burger for a change up. I think I have to go food shopping soon and pick up some chicken burgers or veggie burgers. I need a slight change for during the week.

My goals for the next two months while I am here in Mt is:
1. Maintain or lose 3 lbs. Currently 165.8
2. Be mindful of my eating
3. Go to Curves 4-5 days a week and really give it my all while there.
4. Make Julie's life a bit easier while I am here.
5. Walk Paloma every day.
I know I can do this. I will do this.

04/12/13 update
March 18th I had excess skin removal surgery. I had a circumferential abdominoplasty (all the way around the waist area, and an inner thigh lift. My goal for the surgery was to get rid of my big love handles around my waist and to get rid of some of my massive amount of skin on my thighs. I always hated my thunder thighs! After losing all that weight I felt cheated! I would look in the mirror and still see these huge thighs and see all those rolls. Hmmm! I let it fester in my mind for a couple of years and finally decided to do something about it. When I went in for and estimate I was shocked at the cost of both procedures. Well the doctor was able to combine the procedures. My insurance would not pick up any of it! Including the lab work! Oh well! I found out that if I had had weight loss surgery it would have been
more likely that I would have gotten the surgery for excess skin removal paid for by the insurance company. Such is life! However, I did have some money that I inherited from my mother that I decided I would use for this purpose. She had always wanted a facelift but never felt she could justify the cost. Talking it over with my cousin she put it to me like this. Are you worth it? I did think it over a long time and finally made the commitment. If ma was here she might not give her approval but I know when lying in bed at night she would get a smile on her face and give a little chuckle!
It has been almost a month since surgery and I am feeling pretty good. I look in the mirror with clothes on and see straight lines. Goal achieved! I just noticed I am just over 5 lbs heavier that I was back at the end of July. I am okay with that! In fact since the end of August 2012 I have had a devil of a time maintaining. I reset my goal weight to 165 lbs. I would like to maintain that weight for a few months just to see if I can! If I am successful I would like to drop it by 5 lbs to see how I do. Of course the further away I get from 325 lbs the better I like it but for me now it is all about how I feel. I am comfortable right at the weight I am. I love the way I look in the mirror. Anyway, I am glad I did it and more importantly I am glad I did the footwork in order to be able to get it done. My doctor said that my body was ready for this surgery. That is why I didn't have much pain. I did ask him if I was abnormal as far as the lack of pain went. He said yes, I was abnormal. Most people will experience the pain because their bodies are not ready for it. All the exercise helped me to this end. Especially the strength training. So if you are considering this type of surgery make sure your body is ready for it!

07/31/12 Update
Today I weighed in at 163.2 lbs.
Sunday I started a two day low carb diet. My sisters' in-laws have been doing this 2 days out of the week as a maintenance tool. I now understand when the Spark experts say that the only thing that fuels your brain is carbohydrates! I would like to say that my forgetfulness during those two days was due to my age but I know better! I will give this a try for another month and see what happens. I have a low thyroid problem and take thyroid medication, in reading some of the nutrition articles I have learned that I should stay on the low end of my Carbohydrates range. I have a couple of go to recipes now that fit in so well with this range. One is an eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash casserole. I use goat and parmesan cheese. It tastes like I am eating lasagna. Another one is a recent find. Chef Meg did a make over..Slow cooker marinara chicken and vegetables. I doubled the recipe and used a full 24 oz jar of salsa. I call it slow cooker salsa chicken soup. You get 1 hearty cup for 8 carbs and about 140 cals. They are now a staple for lunches and dinner. If you want to see what I eat just access my nutrition tracker.
Almost two weeks ago I had a slight accident on the treadmill. I have been doctoring with my back so have been taking it easy. I try to walk a little bit but for now the dr. wants me to take it easy for another week. That is another reason I have changed my diet somewhat! I'll let you know how things turn out!

07/09/12 Update
Today I weighed in at 162.6 lbs. I still consider myself maintaining! I have had a devil of a time since the holdays (2011). I was dating for awhile and enjoyed it very much. We went out to eat a lot!!! So I was constantly trying to do damage control! I don't want to do that! I want to enjoy my life without having to worry about weight gain. I still weigh and measure except for when I don't! Does that say anything to you? No! I really do weigh and measure unless I go out to eat and then I DO TRY to use my head and remember portion control. I am a much happier and healthier person today. I weigh in almost every day just to keep a check on how I am doing. If I have a high weigh day that's okay! The next day may be a low weigh day. Fluxuation is a part of life! Since joining Spark I have never ever let what the scale says bother me. Spark must have given me a sense of freedom! I love SPARK! I try but am not always successful at staying within my recommended calorie range and I also try to pay close attention to my Carbs/Protein/Fats percentage. I sometimes have trouble keeping my fat in check!
I have been rethinking my goal wt for sometime now and just possibly 150 is to low for me. My body seems to like 165! Oh Well! It is what it is! SparkPeople has been a god send for me! SPARK ON! As of Today I have lost 162.4 lbs
Today I weighed in at 153.8! Woo Hoo for me! Getting back on track after the holidays wasn't to bad for me...well I did have constant thoughts of chocolate covered anything. That has never happened to me before. With my diet buddy's help I have been weaned from them!

Today I am nearing my goal. This past weigh-in I was 161.2. Just 11.2 lbs. to go. Then I will enter another adventure into maintaining! I am excited about it. Watch me continue to grow!

Update 2/12/10: I have been on Spark People for the last 19 Months. I have lost 133 lbs. I had gained 9 lbs during the past Holiday Season so with our Valentine's Day Challenge on Team 300 Lbs. Plus I lost 17 lbs. since Jan. 1st 2010! Woo Hoo for me!

Update: I have been on Spark People for the last 16 months. I have lost 124 lbs. Each new day presents new challenges. How I handle these challenges without overeating is very important to me. I try not to be judgmental of myself or other people.

My goals for 2009:

By Jan 01, 2010 I will:

Be under 200 lbs. Didn't happen until 01/22/10 (198)
Be exercising 5 days a week. Started Jan 3rd 2010
Be walking (nonstop)all over Prairie du Sac and Sauk City. Met sometime in April 09, Continue to walk both villages.
Be going jogging with Danielle (niece)at least once a week. Still working towards this.
Be wearing trendy clothes. They are smaller but I don't know how trendy they are. In a woven pant I can wear a size 16 In a knit pant I wear a size 12 or a medium. I started out wearing size 32 with an expandable waist.
Be wearing knee hi boots. Met 11-14-09 Yea Me!!

12/24/08: 266.8 Lbs.
12/29/08: 265.6 Lbs.
01/07/09: 264.4 Lbs.
01/14/09: 263 Lbs.
01/21/09: 257 Lbs.
01/28/09: 257.8 Lbs. first gain since joining SP. the cookie monster came out.
02/04/09: 254.8 lbs.
02/11/09: 252.8 lbs.
02/18/09: 250.8 lbs.
02/25/09: 246.0 lbs.
03/04/09: 244.0 lbs.
03/11/09: 243.2 lbs.
03/18/09: 242.2 lbs.
03/25/09: 239 lbs.
04/01/09: 238.8 lbs.
04/08/09: 240 lbs. 2nd gain since July 08
04/15/09: 237.4 lbs.
04/22/09: 235.6 lbs.
04/29/09: 235.2 lbs.
05/06/09: 234.2 lbs.
05/13/09: 230.4 lbs.
05/20/09: 227.6 lbs.
05/27/09: 227 lbs.
06/03/09: 226.2 lbs.
06/10/09: 225.8 lbs.
06/17/09: not avail
06/24/09: not avail
07/01/09: not avail
07/08/09: 222.2 lbs.
07/15/09: 222.2 lbs.
07/22/09: 223.2 lbs.
07/29/09: 220.4 lbs.
08/05/09: 218.2 lbs.
08/12/09: 216.2 lbs.
08/19/09: 216.2 lbs.
08/24/09: 213.6 lbs.
08/31/09: 211 lbs.
09/07/09: 214.8 lbs.
09/14/09: 210.4 lbs.
09/21/09: 208 lbs.
09/28/09: N/A
10/05/09: N/A
10/12/09: 207.2 lbs.
10/16/09: 204 lbs.
10/23/09: 204 lbs.
10/30/09: 204.8 lbs.
11/06/09: 202.8 lbs.
11/13/09: 202.6 lbs.
11/20/09: 200.4 lbs.
11/27/09: 199.4 lbs.
12/04/09: 200.4 lbs.

I can't believe another year has zipped by! I was very diligent last year at this time. I did not want to have a gain during the holidays. I managed to even loss a few pounds. We have planned to have a healthified meal. Getting rid of some extra unhealthy calories and fats but I know it is still going to tempt me! I am trying to eat at the lower end of my calorie range to adjust for some of the extra calories I will eat. That is so hard for me now. I look at my report and try to get all my nutrients in the good range. Well if something isn't in that range I try to adjust and usually that adds calories. I think I am turning into obsessive on this point. Maybe for a few days I need to drop some of those nutrients off the radar range and just concentrate on calories!

So, here's the plan:
1. I WILL eat at the lower end of my calorie range.
2. I WILL exercise each and every day. Even if I get just 30 min. a day it will be something!
3. I WILL not tempt Becky or anyone else with food or desserts!
4. I WILL drink all of my water.

Thanksgiving Day!

1. I WILL be AWARE of what I eat ALL day long!
2. I WILL eat breakfast!
3. I will not graze!
4. I WANT to break into onederville before the new year. This will get me there!

My Plan worked very well until Christmas day. The popcorn tins came out and I did not do very well!

12/25/09: 200.8
01/01/10: Will I be under 200 lbs???? NO! 208.8
01/15/10: 201.8
01/22/10: 198 Yea Me!!
01/29/10: 196.4
02/05/10: 196.6
02/12/10: 191.8
02/19/10: 192.8
02/26/10: 194.6
03/05/10: 190.4
03/12/10: 192
03/19/10: 191.4
03/26/10: 189.6
04/02/10: 187
04/09/10: 189
04/16/10: 187.2
04/23/10: 182
04/30/10: 184.4
05/07/10: 183
05/14/10: 180
05/21/10: 178
05/28/10: 176
06/04/10: 178.4 oops
06/11/10: 177
06/18/10: 179
06/25/10: 175
07/02/10: 177.4
07/09/10: 174
07/16/10: 171
07/23/10:on VACA weight will not be Avail
07/30/10: 171.6
08/06/10: 169
08/13/10: 169
08/20/10: 165
08/27/10: 165
09/03/10: 167
09/10/10: 166
09/17/10: 163.4
09/24/10: 163.6
10/01/10: 161.2
10/08/10: 161.2
10/15/10: 159.6
10/22/10: 158.4
10/29/10: 157.4
11/05/10: 157.6
11/12/10: 156.4
11/19/10: 156
11/26/10: 159
12/03/10: 156
12/10/10: 154.4
12/17/10: 156.4
12/24/10: 157.4
12/31/10: 165.2
01/07/11: 157.6
01/14/11: 158.2
01/21/11: 153.8 3.8 lbs. to go to goal!
01/28/11: 156
02/04/11: 156
02/11/11: 155
02/18/11: 153.2
02/25/11: 150.8
03/04/11: 151.6
03/11/11: 149.6
03/18/11: 153.6
03/25/11: 153.4
04/01/11: 147.8
04/08/11: 150.6
04/15/11: 151.6
04/22/11: 150.6
04/29/11: 165 oooops
05/06/11: 152.2
05/13/11: 154.6
05/20/11: 155.4
05/27/11: 153.6
06/03/11: 154.4
06/10/11: ??? Julie (Sister) came to
06/17/11: 165.4 Ooops again!
06/24/11: 158.4
08/13/20: 143.7

Beg Wt. : 325
Cur Wt. : 143.7
Wt. Lost: 181.3
Maintenance Anniversary Date: July 4 2009
(Updated Maintenance Anniversary Form 03/23/21)

I read this on CRAZYGAGRANNY Spark Page
As I read it I thought this is how I feel but she was so eloquent I copied it.
















I just found this poem on another sparker's page I had to copy and paste it! Georiga Kay sent this to a spark friend.

MIRROR, MIRROR ( a poem to make you giggle)

Mirror mirror on the wall do you have to tell it all?
Where do you get the glaring light to make my clothes look just too tight?

I think I'm fine but I can see you won't cooperate with me.
The way you let the shadows play you'd think my hair was turning grey.

What's that you say, a double chin?
No that's the way the light comes in.
If you persist in peering so you'll confiscate my facial glow.

And then if you're not hanging straight you'll tell me next I'm gaining weight
I'm really quite upset with you for giving this distorted view.

I hate you being so smug and wise.
Oh look what's happened to my thighs!
I warn you now oh mirrored wall since we're not on speaking terms at all
If I look like this in my new jeans you'll find yourself in smitherines!

By Jaimee Jones

Member Since: 7/5/2008

Fitness Minutes: 315,096

My Goals:
1. To maintain my weight loss of 173.5 lbs. Current new goal 139 lbs. My maximum weight for when I was in the US Navy! It may never happen and I really won't let it bother me if it never happens but if it did I would do a HAPPY Dance and mark the calendar and thumb my nose to those bad old days! LOL

2. Be mindful of my eating. Slow down and enjoy the experience.
3. Get to the Gym and Strength Train!!! Three days a week.
4. Enjoy my walks and other workouts always!
5. Track my nutrition and fitness ALWAYS!
6 Continue to weigh and measure my food. I may on occasion try to estimate but what the scale says will be my ultimate guide. I don't want to mess with success!

My Program:
1.Aerobic Exercise- 5 days a week along with strength training.

2.Weigh and measure my food. Find out how many calories I can eat without gaining weight.

3.Keep track of my food and drink with the nutrition tracker.

4.Track all exercise on the Fitness Tracker.

5.Stay involved with my teams and the spark community. Share my success and how spark helped me. Encourage! encourage! encourage others.

6. I am working with my sister (Thoms1)so we both can enjoy a new lifestyle.

Personal Information:
I am Susan/Susie. living in South Central WI. I am retired. I love cats. But I am not the crazy cat lady!

Other Information:
Maintenance Anniversary 07-04-09
Starting Weight: 325 lbs
Current Weight: 142.1 lbs
Kicked to the curb: 182.9 lbs
Updated Maintenance Anniversary Form 03/23/21

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