Monday, July 26, 2010

Follow up visit today. Lost another 8.5 lbs. Total Loss 45.5 lbs

I had my follow up visit today. Good news, I am down 8.5 lbs since my last visit 3 weeks ago. My BP was 108/72. The best ever!
I didn't need a fill today. I was feeling guilty during vacation because I had no problem eating a salad-size plate of food. Turns out that is exactly what I should be eating. Somewhere along the way I forgot that and have been eating much less. I am in what they call the green zone and didn't know it. I can eat a salad-size plate of food and not be hungry for 5-6 hours. Right where I need to be and the fact that I was on vacation during those 3 weeks and I am bloated right now means I exceed the amount of weight each week I should lose. Remember Bandsters should lose about 2 lbs a week. So no fill today. I go back in a month to see how this is working for me. She said that's not to say I won't need a fill in a month after I have lost more weight.
Now the bad news, yeah you know it's coming. I hadn't gotten my lap results from a month ago so I asked about them. Apparently, the lab didn't send them. They pulled the results and reviewed them. She called me back to talk to her for a minute. She said she knew why my knee and joints were hurting. I am potassium and Vitamin D deficient. Severely Vitamin D deficient. It should be "30" and mine was "8". I now have to take prescriptions for both. But those deficiencies cause my achiness, joint and knee pain. Here's hoping I feel better soon.
On to other news, I got a Nordic Track recumbent stationary bike this weekend. I have used it twice already. I really like it. My knees and hips don't hurt when I use it. Granted I can only do about 3 min but I am working on it.
I also bought a pair of Avi Motion shoes by AVIA. They are similar to Sketchers Shape-ups. I tried the Sketchers and they were stiff like my regular Sketchers which hurts my feet. I have worn the AVIAs two days now for about 10 hours each day. I walked the malls yesterday and had a lot of running to do today including the grocery. No problems. This morning I work up and my calves and lower butt cheeks were a little achy but now I don't know if that is from the shoes workout or my vitamin deficiencies. The jury is still out. I will have to let you know.
Tomorrow I go back to work. My vacation is sadly over. I had planned on wearing my new workout shoes to work but we have to wear business casual Tuesday thru Thurs. Hopefully I get to wear them Friday and let you know how I did wearing them 10 hrs at work.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Another measure of success

As I said before I don't measure my success by the fit of my clothes or even the scale, ok the scale maybe. I had a new "measuring" experience yesterday and it is one I had not thought of until I was on my way there. I am a procrastinator when it comes to getting my hair done. I know, crazy right? I have not had my hair cut or colored since March. I let my hair grow and my color fade until when I look into the mirror, the first thing I notice is the gray then it is time to get my hair cut and colored. Hey, it's my system and when I pay $100 for a cut and color then I figure it evens out.
So, I came back from vacation and well ALL I saw was gray hair. I went in yesterday for my standard cut/color with my favorite stylist, Amy @ Salon Delonjay. She is fabulous!! Anyway, they have you put on a black "coloring jacket". Well they are one size fits all but it never fits me. It is tight in the arms and I can't wrap it around me at all. So my solution so it is not so noticeable to the other ladies there? I wear a black shirt that is 3/4 sleeves so it blends in and looks like it fits. Crazy isn't it? Well I wore my usual black top yesterday more out of habit than anything. Of course, I rationalized it by telling myself I wear black that way if any color happens to get on it, it won't show. Yeah right!
Anyway, I get there and put on the jacket and you know what? The sleeves were too big for me. I could pull the front almost all the way together. YEAH VICTORY! I figure by the time I drag my butt into there for another cut/color it will fit just fine. Oh and by the way, My hair looks FABULOUS!!
These little accomplishments are the ultimate motivation tips. Take time to notice the little differences the weight loss makes. I feel so much better about myself when I do. Even when I look in the mirror and I don't really see a difference and no one ever says they see a difference, other than my mom and let's face it, she is biased anyway. LOL! These little differences are actually huge in my book because they are things that I take notice of each and every time I do them. It's like a little pick me up.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Rough patch & measuring success by the bathroom, no really!

Ok, so I have been on vacation out of town for a week. This has been a very difficult Lap Band week. I usually do not have problems eating but this week...HORRIBLE! Food gets stuck everytime and I don't know why. I mean, I have some ideas but still...
It seems, for me anyway, if I wait too long between meals my throat closes up and everything gets stuck but not at first. No, it waits until I am part way through the meal and then BAM!
 It got so bad at one restaurant that I had sliming going on and had to rush to the bathroom. Once inside, apparantly a little girl had gotten sick ALL OVER the bathroom floor and cans. I covered my mouth with the napkin I was so graciously holding because I wasn't sure I would make it to the bathroom. After everyone cleared the bathroom, it came up. Not a lot and it wasn't from my stomach pit either just in my throat. I felt instantly better. I went back to the table and sat down. I took a sip of water and BAM! It hit me again. This time it was PAINFUL. It felt like someone was stabbing me in the chest and twisting the knife. I have never had that before. I made my way to the bathroom once again. I am sure the poeple sitting by the bathroom thought I was purging my meal. They looked at me funny. Anyway, the bathroom still not cleaned, ewww, and it was packed. No dice for me. I went back to my table and contemplated going to the car to heave ho. Then all of a sudden, it was gone. All the pain, the stuck feeling. I had three bites of mashed potatoes and one bite of fish. I was done but still OH SO HUNGRY!! I just couldn't risk it again. Now everything gets stuck. I think it is because I waited so long between meals and then when I ate I was starved and probably ate too fast in addition to my throat being tight. Not a good combination. But think about it, don't we all eat like ravenous pigs when we haven't eaten in a long while? It is something we should all remember, band or otherwise, don't wait so long between meals.

Now...measuring success. I don't have very many ask me how I am doing or how much weight I have lost. A few have asked "Do you notice any difference in your clothes?". The answer is: not really. I notice the difference in the bathroom stall. Yes that is right, the bathroom stall. See, at work we have 5 stalls. They begin very narrow and progress to what we call the luxury suite. A very large and spacious sought after piece of real estate in the bathroom at work. I always went for stalls 3-5 because they were the biggest. The 1st few stalls were too narrow. I would have to turn sideways, suck in my stomach and step back behind the toilet to just close the door. Then I bumped everything in there. The other day I had no choice but the 1st, most narrow stall. UGH! Imagine my surprise when I stepped right in without turning sideways or stepping behind the toilet. to close the door. I stepped in and closed it up. I didn't bump a single thing. VICTORY!!
So now when someone asks me do I notice a difference in my clothes, my answer will be "No, but the bathroom fits me just fine now."

Sunday, July 11, 2010

What a stressful week

This week has been so stressful. It seems like it lasted forever and I didn't get a whole lot accomplished. I was in training all week. It was more of a refresher course for my position. We had a schedule to follow and guess what? It does not follow my eating schedule. Needless to say, at times my stomach made very loud and rude comments all on its own. I often wondered if people could hear my stomach and now I know. YES THEY DO~~very embarrassing.
I had to be at work earlier than usual all week and I had to work on Friday which is my off day so I was all out of sorts. I made the cardinal mistake. I didn't prepare my food for the week. I had my waters and a snack or two but for the most part,but, I didn't take my food like I normally do. Boy did I pay for that!
Not only was my stomach really pissed off but I didn't feel good most of the week. I would run late every morning because of the time change at work and I wouldn't have time to put together a lunch and in the evenings I was supposed to get off early but because I was in training I was behind on my work so I stayed late to try and catch up. By the time I got home I was done for the day. More than done!
Vacation trip is coming soon so I am preparing now for it. A long car trip and my stomach makes for a bad time. A cooler will definitely come in handy this time. Now during the day at the beach, that will be something. We have a room with a kitchen so I have that going for me. Staying on track and hydrated are my number one priorities aside from just having fun!

Motivational tip #9
Visualize, Visualize, Visualize. Picture yourself where you want to be at the end of this journey. Picture how you see yourself. But please be realistic. If you were NEVER bean pole skinny, why think you will get that way? At least you won't and be healthy. Everyone has their weight limit. It is where your body says I can't go any lower and still function right so make sure you aren't setting those sights too high. But seeing your "after" picture is a great motivation. I have a friend at work. We call ourselves Twitches. Twin/witches cause we are just plain mean. Just kidding. Anyway, she is thin and is constantly saying her butt is too big or something. Yeah whatever...skinny twitch! I tell her often that just one of my thighs is wider than her entire body. I call her my "after" picture. Now I know I won't get that thin. Heck in high school I was never that thin but I know I can look just as good at whatever weight is right for me. Who knows, maybe I will even look better than her! Oh the possibilities...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Suck it up Buttercup

You know how when you are overweight and your legs, knees or back hurts and they tell you to lose some weight? Well guess what, that doesn't always work. I have lost a good amount of weight so far and you know what? My knee is killing me!! It hurts worse than ever before.
So I make an appointment with my regular doctor. We do the meds check while I am there and she checks my at-home BP machine and deems it accurate. We discuss my meds and how we are going to start getting me off them once my BP hits a certain level. Then on to my knee.
I have had what I call flare ups for years in my knees and my hips. This time, my knee hurt on the front below the kneecap. I can't even walk down stairs without it giving out. She did x-rays and said that I have arthritis in my knee. The cartilage is worn away on the right side of my left knee. What can I do? Not much. Walking is a no no. Treadmill, definitely out. She said walking is the worst because of the pounding your knee takes. She suggested a stationary bike and exercising in a pool. Well stationary bikes are okay but I prefer the recumbent bike. It feels better on my back. No luck with the pool. She said I can take 600 mg of children's liquid Advil 3-4 times a day. Okay so what pharmacist is not going to think I am mixing something up in my garage when I go in there and buy several bottles of children's Advil?
When my knee feels better I can use my elliptical. Kind of sucks. I will be 40 yrs old at the end of month and now I am arthritic. Happy Happy Joy Joy.

Motivational Tip#8
Keep it moving. Get those aches and pains checked out right away. It's hard to stay motivated if you hurt. It's worse to find out that you wasted too much time and now the damage is done. I wonder, had I lost weight sooner would my knee be so arthritic now? The world may never know.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Another doctor visit & a visit with the nutritionist

Well, it has been 3 weeks since my last fill. I went in on Thursday for a check up and fill. My 10cc band now has 4.5cc in it. She said I will probably need about two more tweaks. My BP was great. 112/72. I am still on my BP meds but hope to change that soon when I visit my regular doctor.

Now the important news, as of Thursday I am down 37.5lbs officially! I was retaining fluid this week so as expected when I weighed today I had lost a lot more. My scale weighs more than the doctor's which is good in my opinion. My swelling was gone so I weighed this morning and I was down a total of 41.5 lbs. I will take it either way. It's exciting so far that I have not gained anything back. It is a miracle in my book. I am still keeping in mind that while I would love to continue to lose weight each week, there is most probably going to be times that I either don't lose or possibly gain. It can happen. That's okay too. That is life and I must deal with those hurdles as they come. But in the mean time, I am very excited for what I have done so far. I have to say it is not a struggle at all. Which is not to say it wasn't before. I have learned a lot of lessons along the way to get where I am. I hardly know the band is there unless food gets stuck. I listen to my stomach and when I get the slightest feeling of being full I stop. Oh, don't get me wrong, I have tried to push it a little farther and believe me, my band suddenly makes itself known and I am miserable. I have also learned to not eat more than what I put on my plate( sometimes not even that much) and I always use a small salad size plate. I never go back for seconds. I know in my head that if a little later I am hungry again, I can get more if I want it. Turns out I usually don't want anymore.
Learn to listen to your stomach and your hunger even if you haven't had the band surgery. If you have the stuffed bloated feeling then you have eaten way too much. You should never feel full, you should feel satisfied and learning just what that feeling is, is the hardest part. Once you learn that though, it is easy from there. My Band can't teach me that. It has nothing to do with that. The Band gives me consequences if I overeat but it can't teach me when my hunger is satisfied.
Eating should be an event, not something you do quickly to get it over with. I have to sit down and actually take time to eat and eat slowly. I have a lot "listening" to do and I can't do that if I am eating on the run.

Well, my meeting with the nutritionist was interesting. I am making good choices, however, in my quest to reduce carbs I have reduced them too much. She said I need to up my calcium and breads. I don't eat bread because it gets stuck but she suggested the deli thin sandwich bread or thin bread and slightly toast it for a sandwich. She said I also need more calcium like milk. I find it impossible to just drink a glass of milk. I can't drink while eating so that to me is gross to drink milk by itself. A few things to work on, I guess. The most interesting thing she told me was about eggs and egg beaters. The American Heart Association now says we can have up to 4 whole eggs a week. The problem with cholesterol is not in natural cholesterol because our bodies know what to do with natural cholesterol, it is in saturated fats that we have problems and should avoid those. Good news because I love eggs. I told her I was eating egg beaters. She quoted a lot of medical journals and research on this as well as the whole eggs. She said in other countries the yellow coloring in egg beaters is considered a carcinogen. EWWW!! Plus in addition, as if that wasn't bad enough, we are paying high dollar for the container and packaging which is harmful to the environment. Make sense.
We discussed cheese because, well, I LOVE CHEESE. She is a fan of laughing cow light cheese. She also suggested Kaukauna lite cheese. I am putting that on my list. She also suggested the book "Eat this not that". Now she doesn't recommend the diet itself because in reality most of what is in there even in the "eat this" category is not the best but the book gets you thinking about the differences and the choices out there to make.

We discussed what and how I eat and she said I was an inspiration and prime example of how to do this right. It made me feel good. So, my carrying my lunch cooler with me is a great idea and keeps me going strong. What once would have been temptations because I didn't bring food with me is now a choice because I have food with me and it really feels good to say "No thank you, I brought my lunch."

Motivation Tip#7
Celebrate the small accomplishments. Those small accomplishments add up to large hurdles crossed. Celebrate all of it because you deserve it. Whether it is a new outfit or accessory or just getting a scoop of real ice cream. It is your day to shine so enjoy it!!