The SparkPeople Blog

How a Single Working Mother Finally Lost the Weight—This Time for Good

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/15/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  14 comments   :  579 views

Like many SparkPeople members, 43-year-old Chris (ASHLEEMICAHSMOM) can't remember a time when she hasn't struggled with her weight. As an elementary school student in Flint, Michigan, she used to sneak the "goodies" out of other kids' lunchboxes.
 
"While I was never really bullied about my weight, I have always felt fat, and I always compared myself to all the pretty, skinny girls," she recalls. Then, when Chris lost her father at 18, she sought comfort in even more food. It wasn't long before her childhood chubbiness had become full-fledged obesity.

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Spark Spotlight: Bobbie Jo (BOBBIEJO1017)

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/12/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  11 comments   :  3,137 views

At SparkPeople, we love helping people accomplish big goals—but we believe it's equally important to celebrate the small successes along the way. Each week in the Spark Spotlight, we'll check in with a featured member about his or her proudest moments, biggest challenges and advice for others on living, thinking and feeling healthier. We hope these quick snapshots will help motivate you to keep moving steadily toward your own goals, week by week.
 
This Week's Spotlight: Bobbie Jo (BOBBIEJO1017)
Age: 44
Location: Sumner, Iowa
 
Small Success of the Week
 
Bobbie Jo posted a "sweaty birthday selfie" to the Community Goal Feed along with a post that she made herself get out of bed for a 35-minute run in honor of her own personal "new year."

What's your overall goal?

My overall goal is to eat healthier and lose some weight.

How is SparkPeople helping you get there?

I like SparkPeople because I am able to get a lot of motivation and information.

What's your biggest challenge right now?

My biggest challenge right now is tracking my food—I feel the only way for me to figure out how to eat healthily is to track what I eat so I can really focus on a healthier version [of myself].

What advice do you have for someone who just joined SparkPeople?

My advice is it takes time. Try to focus on the little accomplishments you make for yourself. For example, I used to grab a quick lunch at a gas station and lately I have been packing my lunches which has saved me money but also lots of extra calories that I was eating.
 
Want to be the next small success we spotlight? Share your successes on the goal feed or in the comments below, and you might be the next person we contact!

11 of the Best YouTube Fitness Channels

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/8/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  136 comments   :  102,321 views

The gym is far from dead, a good group fitness class can be highly motivating and a run or walk around the block can be a great way to burn calories while enjoying the fresh air. But if you're pressed for time, house-bound by nasty weather or just having one of those days when you'd rather not venture out into close proximity to other humans, you can still get a great workout in the comfort and privacy of home.

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Spark Spotlight: Ally (ALLYLIZZY)

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/5/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  35 comments   :  6,248 views

At SparkPeople, we love helping people accomplish big goals—but we believe it's equally important to celebrate the small successes along the way. Each week in the Spark Spotlight, we'll check in with a featured member about his or her proudest moments, biggest challenges and advice for others on living, thinking and feeling healthier. We hope these quick snapshots will help motivate you to keep moving steadily toward your own goals, week by week.
 
This Week's Spotlight: Ally (ALLYLIZZY)
Age: 26
Location: Santa Rosa, California
 
Small Success of the Week
 
Ally is happy to report to SparkPeople's Community Goal Feed that she is down from a size 20 in shorts to a size 13!

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Ladies, Listen Up Because This Go Get It Guide Is For You

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By: , – Alicia Capetillo, Editor-in-Chief
11/2/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  44 comments   :  7,598 views

Every month The Go Get It Guide is your destination for motivation, musings on random goals and probably pop culture references. It's a space where we'll sort through the PR pitches and news, then share our honest thoughts on what's happening in the health and fitness world, what's on the horizon and just what we think of that video the internet obsessed over last week. Check in each month to Spark, Sweat, Smile, Savor and Shop with us!

Sweat: Hulk Arms and Abs of Steel


For decades women have feared the dreaded "Hulk arms" and muscular thighs, steering clear of the weight room for fear that they would build up unattractive, masculine muscle. And so they (and I) gravitated toward exercises that felt tailored specifically for women—Zumba, Pilates, yoga, water aerobics—convinced that these were the ones that would give them the slim, "toned" and defined look that they so desired. For years I only printed out workouts or watched exercise videos featuring women with titles that included words like "toning" and "lean muscle." If the woman in the video looked like a ballet dancer or ex-Victoria's Secret model, I wanted what she was selling.
 
But I was wrong, and so are a lot of other women. A few weeks ago, I talked a friend into doing a 12-week training program focused on resistance training. After picking up running and dropping nearly 40 pounds, she was determined to continue working on her body and improving her health but had hit a bit of a plateau. While her endurance was on point, she wasn't noticing changes in her body anymore and asked, "What more can I do when I'm already doing all this running?" "Strength. Training," was my only answer; resistance was her only response. After throwing out facts and relatable anecdotes and flexing maybe a little bit, I was finally able to convince her to add some weight to her cardio-fueled routine. By the end of this post, I hope I've convinced any non-believers, too.

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The Advice That Changed SparkPeople Members' Lives

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/1/2018  12:00:00 AM   :  43 comments   :  9,201 views

Everyone has their own turning point. For some, that "a-ha moment" might come from seeing an unflattering photo of themselves. For others, it might be having to ask for a seatbelt extender on an airplane, or not being able to keep up during a family hike. Maybe it comes in the form of something much more serious, like worrisome test results from the doctor or a life-threatening medical emergency.
 
While these instances can change a life around for the good, not everyone experiences them. Sometimes, a turning point can be as simple as a a single piece of advice given in a time of need.

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