First Public Failure?

May 30, 2008 at 8:19 pm (Daily Workouts/Eats)

I’ve been contemplating what to say in this post all day long.

And I still haven’t figured out what to say.

Wednesday, I said I was going to: 1) leave the cereal alone, 2) not have any yogurt, and 3) have my first AN day on Thursday. Things didn’t go quite as I planned, to say the least. Before Wednesday night was over I had had a yogurt and one bowl of cereal. Now, I didn’t feel too badly about this because as far as my typical night-time eating goes, this was extremely mild and controlled. ūüôā

Thursday was going along pretty well. I was kind of bummed that I had to go into work earlier than¬† usual and therefore didn’t have time to workout before I went in, but I had my normal oatmeal breakfast and was in a pretty good mood. I was extremely busy at work, and the day went pretty quickly. There was a deck party going on for lunch upstairs on the top floor of the building – I ate two small sandwiches, a few chips, 6 petite-bite brownies (*cringe*), a little potato salad, and a diet 7-Up (the only non-caffeinated soda available; I don’t usually bother drinking diet if I’m going to drink soda). I ate green grapes I’d brought in a small baggie, and had nothing else all afternoon except some water because there was nothing available and I was too busy to go find something. Things really started to go south when I got a call in the late afternoon from the paralegal handling our bankruptcy. Without going into ridiculous details, we are trying to file for bankruptcy and life just keeps messing everything up – more so than it already has to make us resort to filing in the first place. So I had a conversation with her, and that just turned my whole mood/aura/whatever sour.

I left work about 4:45, after trying to leave at 4:30 and headed home. To find that my husband had fed my daughter nothing but cold cereal all day, that my son had been up for so long since his nap that he was almost impossible to handle, and that there were no plans for dinner or anything thawed to cook. And that he was going to leave shortly for work. I got grumpier and grumpier. But all that was really bothering me was the bankruptcy. It was so stupid. I was short with K, P, and K2. Short with the dogs. K made us tuna sandwiches and left for work …. and I started eating. Mostly cereal, and the other yogurt.

So then I finally felt a little better, but felt guilty instead. And I didn’t really feel better until the kids were in bed and I was relaxing.

That was way more detail than necessary, but I wanted to document how the non-plan day happened. What led to it. Perhaps I can learn from this and do better next time I get grumpy and frustrated by life.

The cereal is gone. The yogurt is gone. While we still have food in the house, we don’t have anything that makes me want to snack unnecessarily. I worked out hard today. Haven’t had a stellar day nutritionally, but I got a lot of work hours in as well and had a healthy and satisfying¬†lunch (notice I can’t say the same about breakfast and dinner).¬†

Still planning on starting my first fast tomorrow night.¬†K2’s official first day without nursing even once was yesterday. And I’m not even swollen or sore today, so I think that is a signal my body was done producing milk anyway. K2 seems fine, not missing it at all. We still spend some quiet time together in his room when he takes his night-time bottle.

That’s all I’ve got to say tonight. More this weekend on my first fast¬†in over 4 years and how it goes.¬†


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One more down

May 28, 2008 at 9:17 pm (Daily Workouts/Eats)


Went to the gym to do TWO today, instead of doing it at home like I was considering. It was about 1:40 until 2:30, so it was a quiet time at the gym with not a lot of traffic. Which is just how I like it. ūüôā Kept the lights in the little room dim and tried not to let watching myself in the mirror throw off my balance.

It was a good workout. Shaking, sweat dripping in my eyes. Love it.

I’ve had breakfast (oatmeal w/ cottage cheese, coconut oil, sugar, craisins, little milk), an egg salad sandwich (2 hb eggs, 2 slices wheat bread, little mayo and mustard), and a pear (post-workout). I need to start thinking about dinner, and if I’m going to be able to get to the store today. I’d like to start my first all-natural day tomorrow but as it stands right now I don’t have enough natural food in the house to make it possible. I’m going to have a long day at the office tomorrow – more than¬† the usual 4 hours in the afternoon. So I need to be prepared with food so that I don’t get hungry and go looking for food across the street or upstairs in the chocolate jar.

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Three blogs in 1 day- is that too many?

May 28, 2008 at 8:41 pm (Uncategorized)

But I just had to¬†put in some small triumphs about my shopping trip. Lame minutiae, probably, to most people. But for me, I feel I should document a successful shopping trip¬†– since so many shopping trips for me end in lots of junk food in the house, and a binge, or two, or three, mainly at night after my husband leaves for work and the kids go to bed. But THIS TIME, I purchased a ton of fresh food: fruit, veggies. And a few bargains that weren’t on my list. I did buy some cold cereal that I really like, but it was on a great sale and I’ve buried it back in the cupboard. Thinking about putting it in rationed baggies. Of course, I won’t be able to have that at all on my all-natural (AN) days, or on my fasting days (of course). The other cereals I got are primarily for P and K, since they like them and I can leave them alone.

The only other food that I purchased that is a trigger food for me was 2 vanilla yogurts. You might wonder, what is trigger-y about yogurt?? Well, I love yogurt, to start with. AND, I¬†like to put a packet of hot chocolate powder over it and have it as a yummy substitute for ice cream. This will only appeal and not make you want to gag if you like the texture of dry hot chocolate powder, which I think would probably be a select few. I know, I’m weird. But I only got 2 individual yogurts (instead of a tub), and I’m not planning on having any today (or tomorrow since it is an AN day). Rationing and¬†anticipation, that’s the ticket!! ūüôā

Okay, off to put P to bed since K2 went down early after his dinner. Then I need a shower – pretty gross but I still haven’t had a chance to shower since I went to the gym this afternoon!! Eeewww! ;-{

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Gotta think of clever blog titles

May 28, 2008 at 5:29 pm (Daily Workouts/Eats)

Memorial Day was a couple days ago. Usually, I use holidays as a reason that I ‘deserve’ a break and I rarely work out. But, as I mentioned at the end of my Success Story post, I decided to use the extra time to do some instructional workouts. I did them at home, since I didn’t know what the gym hours were on Monday and didn’t feel like finding out. It took me about an hour and a half to do¬†the 2 instructionals, and I was a shaking, sweating mess by the end of it. P was busy watching Sponge Bob (I hate that cartoon) and K2 was asleep, so I was largely uninterrupted. P started bugging me for food toward the end, but I was able to hold her off until I finished. I thought that I’d remembered all the tips from the last time I did the instructionals about 3 years ago, and I thought my form was pretty good. I have to remind myself to tighten this or that while doing the workout, but my alignment is okay. But there were a few things in the instructionals that¬†were definitely good reminders – stuff¬†I hadn’t¬†remembered and that I think I’m ready to integrate.¬†¬†One of the things was keeping my shoulders parallel and straight when I twist during T-Tapp Twist, pulling the front shoulder around so that it is aligned with the other one. I will try and recall it all when I’m doing the TWO today at the gym.

I ate breakfast, and I think I remember having a lettuce, hard-boiled egg, grated carrot, Ranch dressing salad for lunch. Then we went up to Monument to my parents’ house and I had some M&Ms before our BBQ. Had a hamburger with lettuce, cheese and bacon, and a hot dog with cheese, and potato salad. Some lemonade. A few more M&Ms, but then we left before dessert was ready, and it was an apple-filled pastry which I don’t mind passing up. Then, I waited for K to get home so I could go to a movie with my SIL. We got there too late to stop at the concessions, which I had fully intended on doing so that was probably a good thing. But then, after the movie, K texted me to ask me to get him a 10-pc McD’s meal and bring it home to him, and I ended up getting one for myself. I didn’t drink all the Sprite, and I left one nugget, but I ate all the fries. And that was at about 12:30 at night, so it definitely wasn’t a good idea; McD’s is never really is a good idea, and even less so in the middle of the night.

The BBQ was fun and enjoyable to sit around and talk with my family. I was feeling particularly grateful that day, since we had all found out that morning that a dear family friend of ours, a 26 year old young man with a wife who is expecting their first child, was missing (for 3 days) and then a few hours later they found his body. SO sad and tragic and unexplainable. Here is the update site for what started out as the site to help search for him, and turned into a site to memoralize him.

The movie I¬†saw with the SIL was “What Happens in Vegas”. It was okay,¬†nothing to rave about it. It had a part right as the credits were starting that was probably the funniest part in the whole movie and kept SIL and I laughing all the way to the car. She really wanted to see¬†“Baby Mama”, which I wouldn’t mind seeing but could wait for¬†the video. But we weren’t early enough to see that.

Yesterday, I stopped giving K2 his morning nursing session and started him off with a bottle. So the only time I¬†nursed him yesterday was around 7:00, after he¬†woke up from his nap and I’d¬†given him a¬†bath. The plan is to nurse him at night (if he’ll let me) for the rest of this week, and then by June 1, to not be nursing him at all. June 1 is a Sunday, so¬†I’m going to start my first fast on Saturday night after dinner. Should be interesting to mix fasting with possible engorgement as my body figures out it doesn’t have to make any more milk. ūüôā I’m going to make it a religious fast, where I start off with a purpose or something I need help from the Lord for. I will pray at the beginning and try to keep that prayer in my heart the¬†entire fast. Pray¬†at the end before I break the fast. This kind¬†of fast also calls for no liquids, while I think on¬†the intermittent fasting plan, you can have¬†water. Sunday night, I’ll have¬†a healthy dinner, and Monday will be my first all-natural day.

Up until then, I’m¬†just trying to make¬†wise choices and only eat when I’m actually hungry.¬†¬†This is made easier right now by the fact that we don’t have any of my trigger foods in the house. But on the flip side, we don’t have very many all-natural or non-trigger foods either. We’re out of¬†almost everything except canned goods and some rice. ūüôā I really need to go shopping for some more veggies/fruits and eggs. But I’m not going to buy any of said trigger foods, such as white bagels, vanilla yogurt, candy or chocolate, granola bars, or my favorite cold cereals (can you say, Reeses Puffs?). I’m not sure when I’m going to go shopping, maybe I’ll have the guts to take both P and K2 to the store by myself for the first time ever tonight. We’ll see.

NOTE: I need to take some pictures of myself in something sort of tight/semi-revealing. Maybe my swimsuit? I need a visual gauge to go by for later progress. Also, I should probably take another set of measurements since the last ones I have are from end of March and I’ve gone up and down since then. Not sure if I’m still down. ūüôā Last I checked, weight was between 235 and 237, but I think that had a lot to do with McD’s in the middle of the night. I’ll try to weigh in tomorrow before breakfast – but I’m trying not to put too much importance into that number.

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Success Story (futuristic)

May 26, 2008 at 4:53 pm (Success Story)

Okay, now that I’ve gotten my fitness history documented, I’m going to give my futuristic success story a go. Its going to be pretty simple because I’m not going to put the little synopsis of my health struggles in the beginning like most success stories have.

“It is now January 2009. Over the course of the last 7 months, I have lost 80 pounds and even more inches¬†by making some simple, but important, changes to my life. Having decided that counting calories, points, or macronutrients was just not something I was ever going to be willing to do, I decided to go a more laid-back, long-term¬†route. So I incorporated three different lifestyle changes that made sense to me and that I thought I could live with in the long run.

First, I worked on re-establishing my work out habit. To do this, I committed with myself to go to the gym three times a week. I¬†tried out a few different workout routines, and settled on doing T-Tapp using¬†a little portable DVD player, plugging it into an outlet in whatever empty workout room was available. Doing this at the gym instead of at home gave me the advantage of not having any distractions (kids, husband, dogs)¬†and also having mirrors to monitor my form (since T-Tapp is all about proper form). I could do¬† other workouts, like treadmill or weights, if I got bored or wanted to mix it up. Which I did a few times during the last 7 months. I still¬†go (and will continue to) to the gym three times a¬†week. A key point to this was not beating myself up¬†if life got in the way and I missed a day. On my off-gym days, I walked my dogs, took runs by myself, and occassionally did a workout video at home, like one of my dance videos. Again, not beating myself up¬†if I didn’t get anything physical done. The goal was 5 days a week to get some form of physical activity for at least 30 minutes, and I did pretty well. Not letting¬†guilt override my efforts and¬†minimize what I’d accomplished was key for me, since depression¬†has been something I’ve struggled with overcoming.¬†

Second, as¬†soon as I stopped nursinng my son in June, I started intermittent fasting twice a week. Usually, I would fast from Tuesday night after dinner to Wednesday night, and again on Saturday night after dinner¬†to Sunday night dinner. This was an easy, unstressful way to create a weekly caloric deficit without counting calories, points or someting like that. Since I’ve fasted monthly for religious reasons for most of my life, I was familiar with going from dinner on Saturday to dinner on Sunday. But it had never occurred to me to use this method for controlling my weight. I did a lot of research on this to make sure it wouldn’t endanger my health or send my metabolism running for the fat-wand. It worked marvelously – on fasting days I didn’t have to think about food at all. I was energized and had to make sure I had a lot to do on those days since I had so much energy and the extra time of not having to worry about food (except for the food I fed my kids). When I wasn’t fasting, I ate normally, trying to make good decisions about eating healthily. If life got in the way of those days being my fasting days, I would switch them to a different day. No biggie.

Third, I established 2 days a week when I wasn’t fasting to eat only all-natural foods. Usually, I chose Mondays and Thursdays for this, to make sure to fill my body back up with the nutrition it needed on the days after I fasted and to make sure that I didn’t over-do it as I came off the fast. I allowed some dairy products on all-natural days, but mostly it was natural protein sources such as lean meats and eggs,¬†and¬†fruits and vegetables. This left 3 days a week when I was eating as wisely as I could without obsessing about it, allowing snacks and treats in moderation.

These three changes made a huge difference and allowed me to lose weight in a method that I could both live with and enjoy. I definitely wasn’t perfect at it, but I tried to keep in mind¬†that it was a progression, not a race. I made plenty of mistakes, but I just got back on the plan afterwards instead of letting it derail me for weeks, months, or years like I had in the past.”

Okay, this is kind of lame. Its not very inspirational – reads like a plan more than a success story. But since I’ve never had a success story to write, I don’t have a lot of practice. So I’m going to go forward with this one and revise it if I have to after a few months. In this success story, I’ve basically set a huge goal for the next 7 months. I’m going to try not to think about that and just take it one day at a time while doing what I’ve said I did. ūüôā

Okay, it is Memorial Day and I gotta exercise before we go to¬†my parents’¬†for BBQ this afternoon. Since K could get up at any time and decide to go buy a car, I decided to work out at home today and do Instructional #1 and #2 to refresh myself on form tips for the T-Tapp Total Workout (TWO) at the gym on Wednesday.

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My history/My Plan Part 2

May 23, 2008 at 11:30 pm (Plan)

Its proving¬† harder to write a success story in the fictional future than I had thought, so after I finish establishing my history and plan, I’ll attempt it again in my next post.

At the¬†very end of 2007, December 31st to be exact, I went back to the gym. The gym that I’ve been a member of, paying a monthly membership, for¬† over 3 years. The gym that I only attended regularly for about 6 months after I signed up with a 3 year contract. So, I went back. For the first couple weeks, I did cardio and some un-focused weight lifting. I was just trying to get comfortable with the idea of being there. I had established with my husband that I was going to go to the gym 3 times a week, when he woke up for the day, M-W-F. I didn’t change my eating habits, and in my head that wasn’t important. Because as someone that was technically obese, just adding working out to my life without changing the way I ate would make me lose weight. I assumed that since I was so out of shape, a small change would initiate weight loss and that I could address my eating issues when I plateaued from just working out.

Well, nothing happened that I could tell. I didn’t lose weight. About the end of January I stubbed my toe very hard, hard enough¬† to talk myself out of going to the gym for week, and then another week. Until I ended up not working out for most of the month of February. March came and I decided to start working out again and try my darndest to establish an unnegotiable habit, regardless of results (or lack thereof). I worked out a minimum of 3 times a week all through March, sometimes more. I also tried (often unsuccessfully) to moderate my eating habits and eat three meals a day with a couple of healthy snacks. At the end of March I redid my measurements that I had taken at the beginning of December. I had lost over 16 inches all over my body, including 3 inches around my hips. Not much had come off around my middle, which is apparently going to be my most stubborn area. Not surprising considering how much of this fat I think was brought on by stress. And babies. ūüôā

Since the end of March (and it is now almost the end of May), I’ve managed to basically maintain the inch loss (and the 10 pound loss that came when I was sick during February). I did a few weeks of something called Turbulence Training, which is mostly bodyweight circuits and interval cardio three days a week. I was getting bored and frustrated again with the lack of results, though, as much as I said I was going to do this regardless of results, for my health.

I’ve been wanting to incorporate T-Tapp workouts into my life for a while. But since they are videos that I do at home, I have a hard time being consistent with them. Going to the gym and getting away from the house (kids, dogs, husband) was part of what was keeping me getting at least the 3 workouts a week. Walking the dogs or doing a 15 minute T-Tapp workout on Tuesdays and Thursdays was happening pretty often on Thursdays, rarely on Tuesdays. So about a week ago, thanks to the helpful ideas of the ladies on the T-Tapp forum, I decided to take my portable DVD player and do T-Tapp at the gym, trying not to think about anyone that might wonder what weird workout I’m doing. T-Tapp is supposed to have fabulous benefits from aligning a person’s spine, building muscle mass without heavy weights, amazing inch loss, to lymphatic cleansing. But I’ve never done it consistently for long enough to test any of the claims. But I’m a regular on the T-Tapp forum, and there are a lot of amazing success stories out there with T-Tapp.

I started doing that last Friday. I did T-Tapp TWO at the gym on Friday, Monday, and Wednesday. Tuesday I went for a walk/jog with the kids in the stroller and Cloud strapped to the handlebar. Yesterday (Thursday) I went for a quick 10 minute walk with the kids in the stroller, but it was windy and a bit too chilly for Kimball so we didn’t stay out the 20-30 minutes that I wanted to.

cAs far as any eating plan goes, I have a lot of ideas that I have a hard time instigating. It is hard to overcome the deep-seated habits I’ve established over the past 4 years of eating whatever I want whenever I want it. But here are a couple of the ideas:

When I stop nursing Kimball, which I hope will be within the next couple of months, I want to give Eat-Stop-Eat¬†a try. Fasting is something I haven’t done regularly in almost 4 years, what with nursing and being pregnant. But I remember the clean feeling at the end of a good fast. Obviously, a fast that isn’t for spiritual reasons won’t have the exact same effect, but I can’t imagine that intermittent fasting will have anything but positive affects. Especially since I hope it will help me to forget about food for a while, something I am almost always thinking about.

Natural Made-Man Made eating is another thing I want to try again. Establishing a couple days a week that I only eat Naturally made foods can only have positive health benefits. As long as I have those naturally made foods available and eat enough to be able to resist urges to binge on anything at arms reach. I just need to establish the days, and make sure I have enough options in the house to actually have something to eat that is natural.

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My History/My Plan Part 1

May 23, 2008 at 7:47 pm (Plan)

So I had this idea that writing my success story before it happened would be a positive mental exercise. And then I had this other idea that my current test-drive of the T-Tapp total workout should be documented in a blog. If anyone by some random chance ends up reading about it, it can keep me accountable. It will also free up a lot of space in my journal if I’m writing about my weight loss endeavors somewhere else. ūüôā

So, my first entry is going to be a short success story, like the hundreds of success stories I’ve read about on, magazines, on TV, on other people’s blogs. Never thinking that I’d ever manage to have a success story of my own because I’ve failed at this so many times.

“My name is Farah. I’m 32 years old, a wife, a mother to 2 wonderful children (referred to herein as P and K2). P is almost 4 – a wonderful little girl with lots of attitude and energy. K is almost 8 months old – learning new things every day and giving away lots of smiles. My husband, K, owns a commercial cleaning franchise that he works at at night. We’ve had a lot of stress in our almost 5 years of marriage, and I think that has contributed largely to my weight problem, although it is by no means the only factor. I’ve struggled with my weight since I was a teenager. I hit puberty at the same time that I decided to become a book-reading hermit, and the weight packed on. But looking back, I know I wasn’t as big as I thought I was. I think my heaviest was about 180. Then, my senior year¬† in high school I got braces. And got totally paranoid that if I didn’t brush and floss every time I ate that my teeth would have holes in them when I got the braces removed. That cut down on snacking a great deal, because who wants to brush floss a gazillion times a day? I started to lose weight. About the same time, I was in a weight-lifting class that took the place of my PE credit for senior year. I enjoyed lifting and adding that to my life made me lose more weight. I don’t remember how much I lost or how fast, but I remember I started to feel a lot more comfortable in my own skin. Soon after high school, I went off to college. While there, amidst the other many experiences I had, I stayed very active. I lived in St. George, UT and went to Dixie College. It is desert there, and pretty warm year-round. I roller-bladed, ran, rode my bike a lot, swam, lifted weights, etc. I continued¬†to eat a lot – I don’t remember ever really going on a diet while there. When I moved home after graduating, I was getting ready to go on a mission for my church¬† (I’m LDS), and I went on phen-fen for a couple months, dropping quite a few pounds. Then I stopped taking it; soon after that it was banned. Then, I went on a mission for my church to Brazil for 18 months. While there, I ate a lot (I LOVED the food there), but walked miles every day all day, mostly in the sun, sometimes in the rain. But almost always sweating. ūüôā I definitely didn’t gain any muscle, and I did get bigger. But I didn’t come back to the states too huge, at least in my memory. I had some fitness to regain, but it wasn’t insurmountable.¬†I started dating someone and together, we packed on some pounds. When I left home to go back to college and get my bachelors at BYU, I was again at my heaviest, although I don’t remember how heavy.

Soon after I got to school, I started exercising regularly again and trying to watch what I ate.¬†Then I went on Herbalife for a while – 2 shakes a day, a lot of supplements, and one regular meal. I lost weight pretty rapidly,¬†at least 30 pounds. And I stayed right about there, getting more and more fit but not losing a lot more weight. Which was fine with¬† me. I came home after graduating and kept working out obsessively, 7 days a¬†week, right up until I started dating the man that became my husband.¬†I worked out¬†pretty consistently the whole time we were dating, but soon after we got married I quit¬† my gym to try and save us some money¬†– thinking I’d work out at the apartment¬†complex gym. Which turned out to be pretty unsavory. Also, 2 months after we got married I¬†discovered I was pregnant. And that is when my descent into obesity began in earnest.¬†

I was so tired,¬†nauseous, and surprised to be pregnant so fast (I¬† know, biology works like that). I stopped working out, though gradually, and I ate, a LOT. I gained 80 pounds with that pregnancy. Yikes, I know. I topped out at just under 240 lbs right before I had my daughter, P. She was a beautiful 7 lbs, 2 oz. I nursed her for about 8 months, all the while trying to diet and exercise the weight off. I lost quite a bit of the weight I had gained and as soon as I stopped nursing her I tried Herbalife again. Along with inconsistent tries to do Body for Life (BFL), I got down to 175 lbs and in okay physical condition. Then, I got impatient. Frustrated. Lazy. Also, life started to get really messy. My husband opened up a auto-mechanic shop that over the year of mid-2006 to mid-2007 put us into so much debt we’re now filing for bankruptcy. That process produced a lot of stress. Amid all of that, I got pregnant again and then had a miscarriage, which my body didn’t handle on its own so I had to have a D&C. That was on September 7, 2006. At the beginning of 2007, I made an effort to overcome the financial stress and the affect it was having on my health/fitness, and I joined Weight Watchers. I joined with my mom, and my sister started to count points on her own. 2 1/2 weeks after I joined (and lost 6 pounds), I found out I was pregnant again. While excited about bringing another child into our family, I was kind of bummed that now I was going to get big and awkward again, right when I was finding a groove for losing weight. When I got pregnant, I was fluctuating between 215 and 220 pounds. I gained a little over 50 pounds with that pregnancy. I didn’t really ever get an exercise habit going during the pregnancy, though I tried a couple times, and I basically ate whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. In theory, I didn’t gain as much weight during that pregnancy, but since I started out over 50 pounds heavier, I still got to my highest weight ever. During the month after I gave birth, I lost 30 pounds effortlessly. The weight from the baby, all the fluid¬†I’d been retaining (I swell really bad when I’m pregnant), and a few pounds of muscle, probably. I then stalled at 240 pounds, and stayed there for a couple months, THINKING about all the things I could and would do to lose weight. Implementing plans IN MY HEAD almost daily.

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