Sunday, November 28, 2010

Weekly weigh in and Holiday wrap up

Thanksgiving is over and our family has gone back home.  I was secretly worried about the holiday dinner and how I would get through it, but everything went fine.  I had intentions of taking before and after pictures of my plate but then forgot all about it.  I was able to eat a small piece of turkey breast, about 3 tablespoons of stuffing and about 2 tablespoons of mashed potatoes (no butter).  I was full but not uncomfortable.  No dessert for me, and I didn't miss it at all.  I had a nice cup of coffee and enjoyed my company.

My goal this week was to make it to the gym 3 times but I actually made it there 4 times!  Twice my hubby went with me and got to witness what a crazy woman I am in the spinning class.  He is very motivating and kept saying "You're doing great.  Good job!".  It was really fun going to the gym together (we never have before).  I think he's hooked now, too.

I've learned a lot about my band this holiday season.  I learned the hard way that the band is unpredictable.  I had no problem with the turkey on Thanksgiving but when I ate a home made enchilada made with the left overs, it went down fine, but then haunted me for hours to follow.  How does that make sense?  I've also learned that on the days that I work out really hard, I just can't eat most solids.  It's sad but true.  Spinning or running causes swelling around the band area and makes it impossible to eat.  I now know on those days to stick to soft foods and liquids and I'll avoid a lot of pain and slime.
I've also learned that the holidays don't have to be so much about food.  They're for me more about being with family, having good company and conversation.  I can enjoy all of those things without gorging myself on fattening food.

On that note I'm happy to announce that I actually lost weight during this holiday.  My total weight loss to date is


I'm pleased with that number.  The band and I are working well together.  Now, I know many of you Bandster Bloggers have set up a holiday challenge for Christmas.  I haven't officially joined that group but I can say that my personal holiday goal is to be down at least 35 by the time we go home for Christmas.  Phil and I are up to the challenge!  We can do it!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hair, Hair, it's Everywhere!

I remember that line from Dr. Seuss' "The Hair Book", a favorite around our house.  I feel like I could be one of the characters in that book now.  I'm shedding like a dog in July.  I've always had a ton of hair and it grows at an alarming rate.  I go to get a good cut at least every 5 weeks.  I also typically lose a lot of hair daily.  I remember my Mom saying she'd have to vacuum the bathroom walls after I was done drying my hair!  However, it has started to fall out even more now and it's starting to scare me.  This happened to me after my kids were born, which my hairdresser tells me is normal with hormone changes.
Somehow I had myself convinced that hair loss was not going to happen to me after Lap Band surgery.  I figured since I don't have mal-absorption (like with Bypass), I take my vitamins faithfully, and I'm losing weight slowly, that hair loss just wouldn't be a problem.  WRONG!  It's shocking how much comes out just while in the shower.  Yuck.  So, at the advice of my BFF, I'm taking Biotin.  I'm anxious to see if it helps.  I know other Bandsters swear by it, so I'm giving it a shot.

As far as the weekly weigh in goes, I didn't post one because I have nothing to report.  After my slight un-fill, I have stayed the same.  I'm just happy to be able to eat again without pain.  That's success for me this week.  I am making a commitment to myself that I will go to the gym 3 times this week, including Thanksgiving day.  They're having a special power cycling class on Thursday morning and I have no reason not to be there.  We'll have plenty of house guests who would be more than happy to take care of the kids while I'm gone.  I figure if I'm not losing pounds, I can at the very least build muscle and tone.

My bariatric center had their big annual clothing sale over the weekend.  They take donations of clothes that people have "under grown" and put everything on display, all items are sold for $1 each.  I figured this was a great way to pick up a few items to get me through so I don't have to spend a lot of money while still losing.  Sadly, I only found 4 items to buy.  One of the coordinators said "Well, you're little.  You'd have more to choose from if you were larger".  I told her I love her and she could call me little any time she wants!  I think I might be at the point where I'm having trouble wrapping my head around the new me.  I bought a pair of shorts that I figured would fit me next Summer.  I came home and tried them on and wouldn't ya' know, they fit me NOW!  Sheesh, do I still think of me as the BIG me?  I need to work on that.

So, until next time, be well and have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

3 Month Bandiversary, update and pics

Here I am 3 months post surgery.  Unfortunately I had to celebrate today by going back to the surgeon to have half of that last fill taken out.  It's been a week and I've been literally surviving on protein shakes and popsicles.  I couldn't live like that any longer and finally broke down and made the call.  I kept thinking it was swelling that would go down and I would eventually get to the point where I could actually eat solid food.  Well, that never happened.  In fact I had a horrible sliming episode again yesterday while in line waiting to pick up my daughter from preschool.  Just awful.
The positive side of that is the whole not eating thing has of course caused me to lose even more weight.  I'm now comfortably in "One"derland.  Do you know what that is?  I'll let you figure that one out.
I also weigh at least 5 pounds less than my hubby.  That was a big goal of mine.  I think most women would like to be smaller than their man, right?  However, him being a man, he'll probably catch up to me again in about 5 seconds so I have to enjoy this victory while it lasts!
Before my wonderfully supportive husband went off to work, he took my 3 month picture and then said "WOW, you're really going to see a difference".  Here are the comparison shots.  Day one after surgery, and today.

August 18, 2010
November 17, 2010

The first thing I noticed once I put the pictures side by side is the amount of 'me' that used be in front of my arms, as compared to now.  Wow, that was a lot of belly.  The butt is still plentiful, but much smaller these days.  What differences do you see?

I broke down and did a little shopping yesterday.  Hubby kept saying I was wearing my 'big girl pants', so it was time.  At first I tried on some pants a size smaller than what I normally wear and I was so mad/depressed because I couldn't get them buttoned.  When I left the dressing room and went to put the pants back on the rack, I realized I was standing in the Juniors section!  Ah, OK, that explains it.  I made my way to ladies, grabbed some 16's and 14's, and guess what?  The 16's were way too big in the waist!  I came home with some cute little size 14 jeans and they look good.  It sure feels good to not have that darn 'W' after the 14 too.  I'm officially just a regular lady now.
Here's my attempt at taking a picture of myself in the mirror since I was the only one around this morning.

I feel good, and I feel like me again.  It's a great feeling when I bend down to put socks on and I'm not met by a bulging belly roll.  I have more energy and I'm pretty sure I smile a lot more now.  I think that's a victory!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Bump in the Road (Hiccup)

I've been having a terrible time since my last fill.  It was only .5CC but let me tell you, the third fill is a doozie.  Sure, it has helped me lose weight faster, but that's because I can't eat.  On Wednesday, the day of the fill, I stuck to liquids for the rest of the day, as the doc ordered.  I even tried some really runny oatmeal for dinner and couldn't get it to go down so I just skipped dinner altogether.  Thursday and Friday I got through the day on SF pudding and fudgecicles.  It seemed anything else I even tried just wouldn't go down and caused discomfort.  That brings us to Saturday, a day I'd like to forget.  I made my protein shake in the morning and had about half of it and then went to the gym.  I worked out like an animal for an hour, it was amazing.  I came home and had to rush to get my daughter ready for gymnastics.  I decided to scramble one medium egg and eat that since we would be at the class for two hours.  Everything seemed fine until I got to the class.  I had to run out in the hallway and slime into my hands while frantically looking for a bathroom!  It was nasty and I'm so happy nobody else was in the hall with me.  To spare you all the gory details, this happened 4 more times, just from one tiny egg!  Later in the day we went to a party at some friends, and I had 2 TEASPOONS of food.  I ate ridiculously slow and chewed like nobody's business.  Let's just say there was a repeat performance all the way home.  Thank God my kids were getting cranky and we needed to go home because it could have been pretty embarrassing.
So, today I am sticking to liquids all day, no matter what.  Hubby thinks there's some irritation and swelling going on and that I need to give my body a break.  I agree.  If things aren't better by tomorrow, I have to go back in and have the .5 removed.  I really didn't want to have to do that because before this fill I felt I was able to eat too much.  However, no amount of weight loss is worth the pain I have been through over the past 2 days.  I can't live like this.
I can't believe I made it through 3 months without a single complication or complaint, and then this happened.  Trial and error I guess.

With all that said, let's get on to some good news.  Yesterday was weigh in day, and since I was too sick to post it, here it is!
To date I have lost a total of...


Remember I wanted to lose 25 by Thanksgiving, so I'm so pleased to be past that already!  Hubby says I'm melting away before his eyes.  I just wish it was because I was eating healthy foods in small portions.  Unfortunately, this loss is because I'm not eating at all!  Hopefully things will be looking up this week.  I'll be updating soon!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Things Every Woman Wants to Hear

I went in for fill #3 today, and a 3 month check up.  I saw the doc first, which is a little weird isn't it?   Don't you usually see a nurse first?  Anyway, he comes in all smiles and says "Wow, you've lost 4 pounds in 3 weeks, that's great!  I didn't expect to see that at this point and I know it's because you're doing all the work, it's not the band".
Well well, tell me more great stuff to make me feel good about myself!  He went on to tell me that I have very little in the band at this point and most people don't see that kind of loss until the 3rd fill, and he's so glad I came in so we could tighten things up a bit.  Okie Doke, that's what I'm here for, filler' up!
I was all braced and holding my breath thinking it was going to hurt like hell, and then felt like an idiot because it didn't even hurt at all.  I told him we must be getting good at this because I didn't even flinch.
I then decide to confess that my port area is pretty much tender all the time.  Not really 'pain', but a little sore.  His response is "Well, you're SO LITTLE that the port is sitting right on your muscle tissue and it's constantly being irritated".  Um, excuse me, SO LITTLE is not an adjective ever used to describe ME!  I was laughing on the inside, trying not to beam too much.  I'm sure I blushed.
So far I've just had water since leaving the docs office.  I can actually feel it trickling down which is totally freaky.  I'll have oatmeal for dinner tonight, and then tomorrow will be the real test to see if I can eat.  I'm a little scared as well as excited.  Scared because of the fear of food getting stuck.  Excited because I'd LOVE to see a big loss this week.
The doc says that at this point I just make my appointments on an as needed basis.  If I feel like I need a fill, I call.  That's it.  I'm thinking I'll go in once before the end of the year since our insurance sucks and with the new year comes a new outrageous deductible.  Might as well get it in while it's free, right?
So, that's it for now peeps.  Be well!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Revenge of the Slime Blob!

For those of you who are reading this and are not weight loss surgery patients, I'll explain a little known phenomenon called "Sliming".  It's what happens when we eat something that's just too big or too sticky to make it through the 'hole' (stoma) leading to the stomach.  The offending food item gets 'stuck' and wants to either come up or go down, but can't.  That's why it's drilled into our heads to take tiny bites and chew everything down to a paste like consistency.
All the bandsters talk about it, and I thought it had happened to me, that is until it REALLY happened to me yesterday.
Here's the offender...

Actually, I'm the offender, because I didn't follow the rules, but right now I'd rather blame the darn chip!
I've had these chips many times before without a problem.  However, I usually have them with a bit of hummus or some tuna.  I'm pretty sure this was the first time I ate one dry.  Good Lord, what happened next is something right out of a horror flick.
Picture me, at the sink, feeling like I'm going to either choke to death or have a heart attack (or both).  My kids are asking "Mommy, why are you spitting into the sink?".  I'm trying to answer them but it hurts like hell to try to talk while having a chip lodged somewhere between my esophagus and my stomach.  This weird squeak sound keep coming out, and I feel like I have to burp.  Here comes the slime.  You know that feeling that comes over you just before you throw up, when your mouth starts to fill with saliva?  We've all been there.  Now multiply that by 1000 and you have "Slime".  It's gross and all you can do is keep spitting and hope it stops.  Then, all of a sudden, a huge atomic bomb mushroom of slime expelled itself from my body (no chip as far as I could see), and then it was all over.

Like I said, I thought I knew what all these other people were talking about because I had felt that feeling of a piece of food being 'stuck' and even had slimy mouth before.  However, when that happened all I had to do was sit and wait patiently for the food to eventually make its' way down and the feeling to pass.  THIS was totally different and a million times worse!
I have been initiated into the Bandsters Slime Hall of Fame, and I am so not honored.
Let's just chalk this up to a lesson learned and move on.  Please, OH Please, don't let that happen again!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Moving right along

Here we are at weekly weigh in day once again.  I must say I wasn't expecting much when I got on the scale this morning, for a couple of reasons.  First of all I'm sort of getting used to losing just ounces each week.  Also, my rings were so tight this morning I couldn't even get them off, a sure sign that I'm retaining water.  Well, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw a 1.5 pound loss!  WOW, Imagine if my rings weren't tight, it would probably be more (at least that's what I'm telling myself).  So, my total loss to date is...


I'm happy with that.  My own personal goal is to be down a total of 30 by Thanksgiving, and I'm a smidge closer than I was last week.  Hooray for me and Phil!  Yup, that's what I'm naming my band.  Get it? "Phil" (Fill).  Here I thought I was so cute and trendy by wanting to name the band, then I find out by reading lots of other blogs, that so many bandsters name their band!  So much for being unique.  That's OK, Phil and I don't mind.

I decided I do much better with food choices when I document everything.  The dietitian says I'm not supposed to be counting calories but I'm a perpetual Weight Watcher and I need to hold myself accountable.  So, I pick 3-4 days a week to journal my food.  I write down the item, calories, fat and protein.  I've been getting AT LEAST 75 grams of protein a day.  Calories are all over the place, anywhere from 750-1200.  I guess the good thing is that if I'm eating that much protein, there can't be much room for other junk.  Is that much protein good for the kidneys?  I seem to recall hearing something about kidney damage when the Atkins diet was all the rage.  I'll have to look that up.

I had the week off from personal training because the kids had off from school for conferences.  I'll be back at it this coming week and I'm ready to feel the pain.  Hubby says he can tell I look more toned.  I'm glad he notices these things!

I have my next follow-up with Dr. Hottie on Wednesday.  I'm sure I'll have more to write about then.
Until then!