Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Daily Stress

Every day has stress and obstacles. It is so easy to absentmindly reach for a candy bar or a bag of chips when we are stressed or upset or preoccupied. Keeping on track is harder each and every day.
They say that it takes 21 days of doing something over and over for it to become a habit but how long does it really take to undo a lifetime of doing things over and over? I suspect it is more than 21 days. Take each day as it comes. Face each obstacle head on and don't give up or give in.
Make a list of bad habits that you would like to change. Nothing major, just small ones at first. Then, pick one and decide what the change will be. Start on that immediately with the mindset that if you do slide you won't give up or say "there's always tomorrow". One slip up or even two does not make you a failure.
I chose giving up soft drinks as my first change. I am now soft drink free and I really have no desire for it. Occassionally I think I bet that tastes good but I no longer have an overwhelming desire for a Coke or Big Red. I, dare I say it, ask for ice water only when we eat out. That is something I would have NEVER done in a million years.
My next goal was to bring my lunch to work daily. I cut my eating out way down. Now eating out is a treat, which is the way it should be. It feels good to say, no thank you I brought my lunch.
I am still working on small goals because in the long run, those small goals add up. In this case up to 36.5lbs of weight loss.

Motivation Tip #6
Friends. Yeah, I am not much of a friends person. Actually, I really don't have any. I have had a lifetime of so called friends who turned on me and I was always loyal to the friendship. So that is my new goal. Work on friendships. You need people to share with that are understanding.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Long time no blog

Life gets in the way and there you have it. Isn't that the truth now-a-days? We have so much going on that we forget to take care of ourselves. I've had some swelling on my legs this week. Again, most likely too much sodium and/or not enough water intake. I am having a hard time getting enough fluids. I only drink Vitamin Water Zero and I only drink about 40 oz a day if that. Some days much less and that is usually when my legs and feet swell. Funny how before when I was drinking soft drinks I had no problem drinking 120 oz of soft drinks or more a day!!

So, I guess my topic today is water. I hate the stuff. Yep, can't help it but I just can't stand plain water. The taste or lack there of  just makes me gag. This is why I prefer flavored water but I don't use anything with aspartame in it. I prefer Stevia which is in Vitamin Water Zero. I also am careful about sodium in the water. There just shouldn't be. I know a lot of people that like to drink Propel but that has sodium in it and really isn't meant for daily intake unless you are exercising or sweating of some sort.

Getting water in daily helps to flush excess fluids out. Weird sounding, I know, but that is what the doctor's tell us. It helps to flush out waste and keep our body and skin hydrated. Increasin your water will also help with loose skin as you lose weight. A lot of times skin will hang if you don't get enough fluids. So, in a nutshell...HYDRATE HYDRATE HYDRATE

Motivational tip #5  Give yourself a break. Don't be so hard on yourself that you end up sabotaging yourself. While I don't agree with well I screwed up that meal, there is always tomorrow. Don't beat yourself up over it but definitely don't wait until tomorrow to get back on track. So you had a "bad" meal. One meal isn't detrimental to all your efforts. Just continue on with your day but stay on track. Waiting until tomorrow to start new just puts off what you need to do. Eventually you say well this week is shot, I'll just start my diet again next week and so on.

Saturday, June 19, 2010


Oh ladies, you will understand this. I had a major breakthrough today. It was unbelievable. It was incredible. It was..............are you ready for it? My great news is.....I CROSSED MY LEGS TODAY!! Yep, that's it. I haven't been able to cross my legs in years. I actually sat like a lady today. WONDERFUL!!

My dad thought I was little off the wall. My mom was thrilled though. She marvels in the little things. We had a little cookout today with some family. All in all, it was a nice day. I cooked out and made burgers, hot dogs, mac n cheese, baked beans, salad, and watermelon(mom brought this). I behaved and had my 1/2 burger, 1/4 c mac n cheese, 1/4 c. baked beans, 1/2 c. salad.

Then hubby and I went to Bingo. There we had split a nacho supreme. Which was just tortilla chips, chili and sour cream. Other than egg beaters, laughing cow cheese for breakfast that is all I had all day.

Anyhow, that was way off subject. Back to the leg crossing. It made me feel so good to cross my legs after all these years. It wasn't a major thing but it was significant in that I am doing things, no matter how minor. that I have not been able to do in years. Progress!! Keep trekking forward and the rewards follow.

Motivational Tip #4
Weightloss motivation is what you truly want not willpower. I don't have much willpower but if this is something I really want then that gets me going. List all the reasons why you want to lose weight. Add to your list as you go along. Read the list every morning or when you are in a rut. It kind of puts things in perspective.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Life's little stresses

It is easy to let life get in the way. Too many times have I let what is going on around me define what and who I am. I let the stress take over and that isn't good for anyone and it can certainly sabotage any weight loss efforts.

My job, like so many others, is very stressfull for me. It's not something I can change right now. How I deal with it though, I can change. Rather than let it eat away at me and ruin all my efforts, I have to at some point just LET IT GO. Yes, much easier to type that than it is to actually do it.

Letting stress interfere causes depression and that of course causes overeating or causes you to make bad food choices because you "need" chocolate  or fried cheese. It does't have to be that way. Really, it doesn't. I konw you are thinking "oh, but I do need my chocolate or that tub of ice cream."

Don't let stress win. Keep your eye on the prize, on the long term. But remember, a slip up now and then is just that a slip up. It doesn't mean you have ruined it all and you can just start again next week. That is the basis of yo-yo dieting. One slip up does not make you a failure.

I have to confess, I LOVE Dove chocolates. The ones with the melting chocolate center or the caramel center. I call them "a little slab of heaven". I would have a few a day. I mean after all they are small. Right? This little delights sit on a desk right next to me. I can just roll my chair over to get some. Yeah I don't even have to get out of my chair to walk to it. When I gave up soft drinks in March, I have only had 2 since then and you what? They weren't as good or satisfying as I remembered. What was I thinking?

Evidently, I have new habits in place that make my old habits seem not worth it. I have absolutely NO desire for a soft drink. Not even a sip. The chocolates, so not worth it. Now, ice cream? I like ice cream. Do I love it? No. Do I eat it when I am bummed? No. So I continue to have Skinny Cow ice creams. The fudge bars are my favorite. My vice when I was bummed or stressed has always been real food. I would pig out and not even realize it.

Okay, I have a warning for those that eat at Jason's Deli, if you have one around. BEWARE!! Yes their food is delicious. They claim to be healthy and organic. "Food you can feel good about." No you can't. Go to their website before you go there again. Check out the nutrition information. You will be horrifed by the calories, fat and sodium content. Their infamous Nutty Mixed up Salad. It is organic and supposedly healthy. 45g of fat.

Motivational Tip #3

Promise yourself a reward when you reach certain weight loss goals. Having something to work towards makes the journey that much more enjoyable. The proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. Rewards could be a new shirt, purse or girl's day out.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Eating Out

Weight loss surgery and eating out. Coincidence or nightmare? Neither. Honestly, I don't think that I eat really small portions, I eat what should be normal size portions. In America, we have become more "supersized" in every way.

What to do about this? Simple. No really, it is. When I eat out I immediately cut my meal in half and put it away in a "to go" box. It really does work. Out of sight out of mind. I always take food with me to work, as I have mentioned in previous posts. But let's be real here, I WANT to order take out with the gang or at my work they have Picadilly's restaurant bring in lunch twice a week that we can purchase and sometimes it is something I want. Well guess what? I get what I want because I can have whatever I want just in moderation.

Here's some examples. Tuesday, Picadilly's brought in lasagna. Yes it was carbs but I have barely had any carbs for months. So I had a treat. I had lasagna and they had a small salad bar. So I fixed a plate of salad but had my own dressing with me. I went back to my desk, took out an extra plate and cut my lasagna in half and took 1/2 my salad and put those in the fridge. What I had left was plenty. Today was a "bad" day. Well not really. We ordered Famous Dave's. It is BBQ. I ordered the BBQ chicken sandwich w/pepper jack cheese and garlic mashed potatoes. So, again, I cut my sandwich in half and took half of the mashed potatoes and put it in the fridge. I took off the thicker part of the bun and ate the 1/2 of sandwich and potatoes. I ate with my co-workers. 4 hours later I ate the rest of it. Two meals for one price. Quite handy. This is something ANYONE can do. It is a habit you can develop. I have a card that identifies me as a lap band patient so that I can either order smaller portions or off the kids menu. That is really embarassing to me so I just put half away for another meal or we share a meal. We love to get fish. My husband and I have always shared a box for two. We never had any left. It was 4-5 pieces of fish, fries and hushpuppies. Now, that same box feeds both of us and my daughter and we usually have a piece leftover. I can only eat 1/2 a piece up to a full small piece. It's about taking control and it is said that it takes doing something continuously for 21 days to become a habit. I think this is a habit. My band helps in the background but it is my habit of putting half of my food away that I think keeps me in check.

The key is to learn what it means to be hungry and no longer hungry. There is a difference in being no longer hungry and being full. If you are full, you ate too much. I am getting better about stopping when I am no longer hungry. If I have to unbutton my pants I have gone too far.

Motivational tip #2
You thought I forgot didn't you? I know I have been rambling so far. Here's tip #2. Document your progress. Take measurements, weight, keep a journal. Take pictures along the way. It is encouraging to look at how you have been doing because it just is the nudge you may need to show it is possilble.
I take measurements of neck, chest, waist, hips, thigh, calf, bicep and forearm once a month. I weigh myself once a week on the same day at the same time wearing the same clothes. It's best to weigh yourself first thing in the morning. I happen to personally use this journal the Dieter's Diary. It is very handy for me to keep track of what I am doing.

Till next time, happy eating!

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Motivation is so hard to keep up. Motivation is personal. Some days I have no motivation at all it seems.

Everyone needs motivation for just about everything. My job is my motivation to get out of bed during the week. My kids are my motivation to get up on the weekend, just mainly because no telling what trouble they would get into if I didn't.

So, what is my motivation to keep on track with the help of my band? Notice I said the help of my band. More on that later. My motivation to keep on track is several things. Health, weight loss, self esteem, success. I want to be more healthy and no longer dependent on my diabetic medication or my blood pressure medication. My weight loss is a no-brainer. I need to lose weight to make the 1st reason possible and to help the last two problems as well. Not to mention the fact that it would be easier to move around and get up and about without this massive amount of weight weighing me down. No pun intended there. Self esteem, well what can I say. I have none really. I am so embarrassed by myself that I can't stand myself sometimes. I truly believe that no matter what great things I accomplish in my personal life or work life, people always look at my weight and discount everything I have done. Yeah, I know, you think that is ridiculous. That is just the way my thinking has turned over the years. No matter how much I know deep down, that is bull but I think it just the same.
Success. Well what can I say on that. Successful weight loss, medication reduction, increased self esteem. Those are my ultimate goals.

Now to the band as my helper. Remember as it is pounded into your head over and over. THE BAND IS JUST A TOOL!! Nothing more, nothing less. You take care of your tool and it will take care of you. However, you must remember that the user is responsible for how well the band works. You can't blame the band if you gain weight. It didn't make you eat a quart of ice cream or that chocolate cake. It didn't force you to go through McDonalds for a cheeseburger or two. Of course, if you really want that cheeseburger, you can have it. ALL THINGS IN MODERATION. Nothing is really off limits unles syou make it off limits. Work with your band not against it. If you work against it, and blame it, then you are only hurting yourself in the long run.

Motivation again is the key. Just in exercising you need motivation. I like motivating music to keep me up and about. Fast beat music keeps me moving. I have created what I call my "flavors of the day". I listen to artists like Eminem, Usher, Lady Gaga, Timbaland, Justing Timberlake, Jennifer Lopez, Daddy Yankee etc... find what music gets you moving and load up your mp3 with it and get moving. My Zune is always filled with my favorites and I am always creating new folders with mixes of musics so that I have a choice depending on my moods. I download movies as well.

What motivates you? Work on that list. I do everyday because my motivations change daily. As long as you sit still and watch life pass you by you won't get the rewards of your new life with the band.

Motivational Tip#1  Make your target believable and attainable. If you set the bar so high that there is no reasonable way to reach it within a reasonable time period then what is the point? Make it reachable. Small goals lead to large rewards in the long run.

Look for Tip#2 on my next blog.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I'm a LOSER!!

Yep, there I have said it. I AM A LOSER!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And that is actually a compliment to myself. Today was my 1st post op visit and 1st fill. I was nervous. Let's be honest, who wouldn't be afraid of someone sticking a LONG needle in your stomach?

Anyhoo, I get to the doctor's office and it is time for weigh in. I am down 14.7 lbs since surgery (May 12th) for a grand total to date of 33 lbs. I was so excited and so were they. My BP was down. 111 / 70. The best it has ever been. I haven't taken any meds for heartburn since surgery.

I had a long talk with Lori about my band, eating, symptoms, fills etc. It was very enlightening. So I learned that my doc doesn't put anything in the band during surgery so that it allows you to heal faster. He also has a very short liquid phase. He has found better success with his patients if he has them re-introduce foods slowly as soon as possible. He finds it leads to less cheating. Meaning when some are on the liquid phase they get so tired of the liquids they tend to start eating early. The problem is they probably have liquid in their band and that is the reason for the long liquid phase. GOD BLESS HIM FOR THAT!! I will take food/slow weight loss to liquids/faster weight loss anyday!

I am supposed to be eating a salad plate size meal. That is more food than I usually eat or even thought I could eat. 1200 calories a day. I should not be hungry more often than every 4 hours. Well that is not happening right now, I am hungry every 2-3 hours. So....my 1st fill. It did not hurt at all. Didn't even feel it. We were chatting then she said she was done. Sweet! I sipped water and it felt a little stuck then she was saying "wait for it" and lo and behold my throat gurgled, a little burp and down the water went. I was on mushy foods all day. Tomorrow I can start eating all foods again.

I go back in 3 weeks for a follow up to see if I need another fill and to see how much weight I have lost. She said they would like to see me lose another 100 lbs in the next 3 years. Slow as you go weight loss. I will also see the nutritionist that day. She can help me with food choices and if I am just bored with my eating.

I am on the slow track to weight loss and boy does it feel good.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

29 lbs LOST!!

I am officially down 29lbs total since March 25 and 10.2 since my surgery May 12th. What an accomplishment for me. Yeah Me!! I bought myself some flowers for my vase. Just a little pat myself on the back treat and no calories, even better!

 About 2 years ago I was in a program at work called "Count Me In". I had lost 25 lbs in 10 weeks. It was a lot of work. It took a lot more planning than I am doing now. Not sure why because I am basically following the same principals. With CMI, I would eat every 3-4 hours. That's what I do now. The bad thing about CMI is when I stopped severely watching my food I gained 35 back in about a month. I think preparing for the surgery and adjusting my eating before surgery helped me develop some new habits that for now seem to be sticking with me even though I have no restriction right now. That is encouraging.

Next week is my 1st follow up appointment. I am both excited and scared. I am worried they will say I am not losing fast enough. I seem to be hearing that a lot lately. I will try to remember to blog that day on what that is like. I am visualizing it and I am more than scared about them accessing the port. That creeps me out a bit.

Overall, I am happy with how things are going. I lost 2 lbs this last week and that is a good number. Slow weight loss means less of a chance of hanging skin. I would rather my skin readjust so plastic surgery won't be necessary. I am handling my new life right now. I expect some adjustment after a fill but we shall see.

So my final thought to ponder today is do stretch marks fade away? I ask because mine seem not as prominent as before and they ITCH like crazy!!