HERCKLE

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Herckle with Sock Monkey



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Hercky in Connecticut Snow



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The date: Dec 2, 1972. The occasion: the day of our marriage! I weighed 120 then.


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Hello and thanks for stopping in today! Hope 2007 is brimming with hope, health and happiness.

Btw, Herckle (Herc, Hercky, Herckleperckle, etc.) is a nickname for my beloved 13-year-old mutt, Hercules.
I adore my family: husband of 34 years and two adult children . . . and Herckle, of course!

My name is actually Dale. I am 58 years old, 5'4" and weighed 203 pounds when I began this program on September 1, 2006. Thanks to SP, I had a concrete program to get me going, a helping hand to step it up, and a warm and welcoming place to reach out to others like myself.

Before I had completed my first 3 months here, I reached my Christmas Day goal of getting down to 168! And I am down even more now. So I am tickled as can be--and I determined to continue to make progress.

More importantly, I have regained the ability to be me--more active, more confident and more capable of coping with everyday life--an entitlement I thought I had lost forever.

I fully intended to keep going without a break. But I found Thanksgiving was difficult for me. I am back on 'the program' once again, though, as I want to live life fully--and feel I can do so best at my wedding weight, 120.



My Story--The Past, The Past

To be truthful, I started having an issue with weight in the 10th grade--at the time of my parent's divorce. I have been a successful dieter in the past, but, like my mother, who I lost on Christmas Day, 2005, I am a yo-yo dieter. So my weight has been as low as 112 and now, the high (when I finally allowed myself to step on the scales again in late August, 2006) was 203.

Things became particularly problematic for me--with my weight at 135-- after I took early retirement at age 55 and then couldn't land another job in my field. I was devastated. I was on the computer all day long, trying to find jobs. Although I came close on a couple of 'down to the last two candidates' interviews, I found myself to be the loser.

My experience, skills and (at 135 lb) my image were not holding me back. What was was my age--55. I think it took me two years to put on all the extra weight--and all from overeating due to the stress I felt. When I realized that I'd never land another corporate job like the one I had, I kind of gave up, and 'let myself go.'

I ate all day long --not huge amounts, but when you eat the day through, it does add up. I typically wasn't hungry, and my choices were terrible--cookies, candies and doughnuts--whenever the urge hit. And that was in addition to the balanced meals I was cooking for my husband and myself at dinnertime and on weekends. Soon the 'grazing 24-hour' thing became a habit. And then the habit became an addiction. I truly believe that.

That's when I started having health problems:

* The two herniated disks in my back became unbearable, so walking Herckie became a monumental task.

* I developed high blood pressure--after having had low blood pressure all my life--and that made it hard to clean our home like a tornado, as was my custom.

* I started getting nosebleeds and migraines.

* I developed GERD (acid reflux).

* I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease. (A year and hundreds of huge aqua pills later, that was found not to be true. I still do have IBS issues, but not Crohn's.)

* I suddenly had tennis elbow and carpal tunnel syndrome in both arms/hands.

Even with medical intervention and supervision, my quality of life was deteriorating. I was (and still am) on antidepressants (chemical imbalance) which, thankfully, did make it possible for me to have a good attitude and concentrate on the positives in my life. But I think they also are a factor in the weight gain (in that I didn't worry too much while rewarding myself by stuffing my face with a chocolate donut) after, say, I walked Hercky or made the bed. I made excuse after excuse to myself.

Although the weight is a huge factor in my self esteem (when I choose to think about it), I know it is an absolute burden with respect to my ability to do the things I like to do.

I am a huge walker. My husband and I used to go camping, and walking trails was something we both enjoyed. I knew that my extra weight had to be exacerbating the pain from my herniated disks. I just couldn't get motivated to do anything because my body seemed to be shutting down, little by little.

And of course, the overwhelming fatigue--whether from the meds or not--was just the last nail in the coffin, so to speak. You could have called me a shut-in until recently--though I almost always took Hercky on at least one walk per day. (My husband did the rest.) I disliked eating out or going places because I was too tired, but also because I was afraid someone might recognize me. Because the change in me would have registered on their faces. And I didn't think I could have taken that on top of everything else.


Here and Now

After an appointment with my doctor on August 30, 2006, I finally felt motivated to DO something about the extra pounds that have been dragging me down in so many ways. I decided to lose 80 pounds total, to get back to a comfortable weight of 120. I am off and running, for sure!

I found SparkPeople by a fluke and am just thrilled with it. My family members are completely supportive of my efforts, and that helps tremendously.

So here I am, at minus 44 pounds and continuing this walk with you. I am determined to do this so I can enjoy the years ahead, whatever they may bring.


Member Since: 8/31/2006

Fitness Minutes: 75

My Goals:
My primary goal is to recapture the ability to enjoy life outside the confines I have built for myself. That means dropping a total of 80 pounds.

I have rid myself of 44 pounds to date--I'm a bit over halfway there! And I am digging in to make the rest of my padding ancient history, too!


My Program:
Trying to stay between the 1000 calories per day that my doctor recommended and the minimum SP recommends for me (1200 calories)--to satisfy the nutrient values. And I am making a point of walking 120 minutes per day minimum. I have also added strength training exercises.



Personal Information:
Name: Dale (aka Herckle)
Birthdate: 11-11-47
Home: Wilmington, DE





Other Information:
2 wonderful children, both on their own now
1 hubby
1 perfect child, my Herckle!

Lost my mother to breast cancer (after a 24-year battle with it) on Christmas Day, 2005. She also had a weight problem most of her adult life, developing diabetes and congestive heart failure. She should have lived much longer than her 74 years. In her last few years, she finally got control of her weight and diabetes, but it was too late. At the end, the cancer had spread to her liver, lungs and brain. She had a series of strokes CAUSED by the cancer, followed by a heart attack. (The physicians did list her death as caused by breast cancer.)

In all those years, she never gave up. And her strength and spirit are in me. So I will not give up on life, either. Gonna make it to a healthier me NOW.




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Comments
  • v YAMAHANANA
    Dale, just read your site and I can tell you that I know how it is to lose a mom, it is hard, also we have lost my mom in law so now my DH have no moms. My heart goes out to you.
    You sound like a fighter and I know that you will make your goal weight and become that healthier and better you.
    You go Girl!!
    Barbara
    5337 days ago
  • v MARIJEIGHN
    Morning Dale Just wanted to tell you I added you to my friends on my page. I did have my cake yesterday !!! It was soooo good. MJ
    5339 days ago
  • v SLAPOJACKS
    Howdy, I finally had time to come thank you for your comment on my sparkpage LOL.. sorry.. I get so busy and involved with SP and getting jokes together for the Jokes topic in OVERCOMING OBSTACLES ("O.O." for short)..forum, just to make sure we're all laughing on this journey together, I sometimes think "cool, I got a comment from a sparkfriend" I'll get it right after I do this..then "this" comes along..and oops..something else comes up LOL.. well.. better late then never at all right? lol.. well, at least you know where to find me.. (under "JOKES FOR OUR FAMILY") LOL

    I'm thrilled you are part of "O.O".. my wish is for "O.O." to become a common meeting place for every person here on sparkpeople some day. ( that everyone on sparkpeople has a place to meet.(.wether they attend to other groups, that's always okay)..but I feel it is important that there is a place like that.. take care, and I look forward to reading your posts, even though I don't respond too much, is cuz I'm not really quick at typing or spelling (being French & all).. but doesn't mean I do not read them, and consider them.

    Jack
    5344 days ago
  • v GRAMMAALI
    Thanks for looking at my page. I am blessed and have to remember to count my blessings, because life is very overwhelming. One thing at a time and trust God. I know you can do this. I believe that whatever is taken away from us there is a reason or purpose even if I don't know what it is, and I count the blessings I do have, and try to do whatever it is I can do. Feeling sorry for myself is so easy, but something I purpose not to do. Sometimes just talking it out with someone can give me the answers I need for myself.
    5346 days ago
  • v PIGMOMMA
    Dale,
    You are a great friend and you love dogs that makes it almost perfect. The question is, are the dogs the center of your life? I sometimes think my dog owns me instead of the other way around. I hope she reacts well to Mollie when she meets her.
    Becky
    5348 days ago
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