Weight Tracker


So another month has passed and I'm back for another weigh-in. I'm down to 269# as of today. That means I officially have double digits until my goal (170) and my BMI is 39.7--I'm not morbidly obese anymore...woohoo!!!

I've also made it back to the gym after my unfortunate back spasm-y deal a couple of weeks ago. I ran 30 minutes today starting at a 4.0 and working my way up to a 5.1, then I worked out with my trainer for an hour. I can do ab workouts again. I don't know if I'm excited about that or not. I have a feeling I will have some very sore ab muscles in the morning. Oh well, it's just the price I have to pay to get skinny.

I also have an updated album posted with some progreess pictures for anyone interested...
...2 months later

Anyhoo, with out any further ado, here are my updated stats...

Weight: 313.4#
Chest: 52.5”
Waist: 51.5”
Hips: 59.5”
Thigh: 29.5”
Calf: 20”
Arm: 21.5”

Last month
Weight: 281.0#
Chest: 51”
Waist: 45”
Hips: 58”
Thigh: 29.25”
Calf: 19.75”
Arm: 20”

Weight: 269#
Chest: 50"
Waist: 45”
Hips: 58”
Thigh: 28”
Calf: 18.25”
Arm: 19”


The Skinny on Feeling Better--or the Lack Thereof

I had an interesting reaction to something someone said the other day. I saw one of my neighbors and she was complementing me on my weight-loss, which was nice to hear, but then she said something about how I must feel so much better. I just shrugged, but for some reason I felt myself getting defensive, especially when she seemed incredulous at my non-committal reply. I don’t know why it bugged me so much. My first thought was that I was annoyed because everyone just assumes that because you’re fat you must feel like crap all the time. Well the truth is, I don’t and I didn’t. I have an active job and I was working out regularly long before the surgery or the weight-loss. Other than very mild sleep apnea and occasionally getting a muscle spasm thing-y in my lower back (which I suffered from all last week--40 pounds lighter than the last time I had it) I’m healthy. I figured that the assumption that losing 40 pounds should somehow make me feel like new irked me.

In hind site, maybe the reason it bugged me so much is because a part of me had similar assumptions. Not so much about how I feel physically, but about how I feel mentally. Losing 40 pounds should feel better. I should feel better--about my weight, about my life…but I don’t. I know I’m not even a third of the way there yet and I know that losing the weight isn’t going to fix my life, but what if I never reach goal? What if I just lose the average 50 something percent of my excess weight? Will I feel any different then? And what if I do reach goal? Will that feel different? Or will I have only gotten rid of the symptom of my unhappiness and not the cause. Will it all be the same only in a different body? That’s a scary thought but a very real possibility.

I know that in large part, I use my weight as a defense mechanism. If I go to party or a bar, or any other social situation, and I’m ignored, well then it’s because everyone else is superficial and judgmental, or insert adjective that makes it not my fault here. See, the thing is people can’t reject me if they don’t know me and my fat makes it easy for people to not get to know me. By being overweight, I have an excuse not to get close to people—not to really let anyone in.

I hate to be one of those people who blame all their problems on their mother, but I do think she’s a large part of why I feel this way. You see, she’s manic depressive and throughout my life she has suffered through some major suicidal periods. Even when I was still just a kid she would tell me how she wanted to kill herself and how she had nothing in her life worth living for. It was this huge burden to have on my shoulders and in the long run I wound up resenting her for it. Now I think one of my biggest fears is to be like her. I’m afraid to let people get close to me because I’m afraid that I will be a burden to them. I hate to even ask people for favors like picking me up from the auto shop when I have to drop my car off for an oil change, let alone burdening them with the big stuff. So I don’t. I keep people at a distance so that I can’t hurt them like my mother hurt me. I keep them at a distance so that they never wind up resenting me like I resent her.

And the thing is, losing weight is not going to change that. It’s not going to make me feel better about opening myself up. It’s not going to suddenly make it easy for me to let people in and cure my loneliness. So when people ask me if I feel better, maybe it just bothers me because a part of me knows that the healing I need to do, isn’t coping with diabetes or hypertension, or any other problem that can be solved by simply losing weight. And since everyone who’s ever tried to lose any substantial amount of weight knows how un-simple it is, it’s hard to imagine what it’s going to take for me to “feel better.” And what if I never do?


The Skinny on the Hard Days

Remember in my last post I wrote about how there would be days when I didn’t have the strength to even try to say no to the indulgences I used to consume? Well, I think today was on of those days. Not that I went on a binge or ate myself sick or anything—but the “rules” definitely didn’t seem to apply.

Strike number 1…I left the house without breakfast as I was running late for an appointment. Luckily I had an Atkin’s protein bar in my bag which is actually a pretty typical breakfast for me. After my appointment I figured it was time that I could start drinking so I stopped off at 7-11 and bought a 1 liter bottle of water—it is now 8’o clock here and ¾ of the bottle still remains. I had some more errands to run in the afternoon and for lunch I stopped off at a bagel place and got a made to order salad with chicken in it. Not a bad choice per se, but I decided “to hell” with the diet dressing and had it loaded up with some creamy Russian goodness. I made no attempt to eat the chicken pieces first and though I only ate less than half the salad I probably ate about 10 forkfulls past “comfortably satisfied.” To top it all off—I ate while driving, stuffing a few huge mouthfuls in at each stoplight and taking well over the recommended 20 minutes to eat. Shortly after I finished lunch I got one of my undeniable cravings for diet coke and had actually convinced myself—“what the hell, let’s try it. One carbonated beverage isn’t going to kill me,” even though carbonation was the one and only forbidden “food” as per my doctor. By the time I got to the next 7-11 I had managed to switch my soda craving for an iced tea craving. Not as bad but still full of sugary empty calories. By the time the evening rolled around I was fighting more sugary cravings and stopped off for another iced-tea and a chocolate bar. On the bright side I managed to only eat half the chocolate. Then for dinner I had this pork and rice thing my mother makes which I’m sure is super fattening and I ate the rice before the pork. Man I’m full now. Sad to say, I kind of like the feeling.

So let’s see—how many guidelines did I ignore today? There was the 8 glass of water, the no “drinking calories, the stopping when comfortably full, eating for 20 minutes only, not doing anything else while I eat and that minor, little eating protein first thing…I think that’s pretty much all of them. I don’t have any idea how many calories I consumed since I have no idea how to log half the stuff I ate into MyFitnessPal, but I’m sure it’s more than the 1000-1200 I usually consume.

Well, what’s done is done. Tomorrow is a new day and I just have to keep on keepin’ on. So I guess the question now becomes, why was today so hard for me. Maybe it’s just that I miss my favorite foods. Or maybe it was my weird schedule—I always find it harder on days when I don’t work. Or maybe it was the session with my shrink this morning ( the psychiatrist I saw for surgical clearance suggested I keep seeing him to help me through this journey). Now logically you’d think that seeing him would help, and I think in the long term it does, but probably less so in the short term. I mean, it’s very disconcerting sitting there having him ask you questions you can’t possibly have answers for like “why are you sad?” (as a general life question, not about anything in particular) and “how do you feel in public?” and “what can I give you to make you happy?” I mean honestly, it’s weird and uncomfortable and it makes you think about things that you’ve never thought about because you’ve always just stuffed them down with food. And so maybe after a session of that, perhaps I just wanted to stuff those feelings back to where they were.

I guess I’m going to have to get used to confronting my emotions. It’s not something I’ve ever done before, but going through this journey to the newer, skinnier me, means giving up the coping mechanism I’ve used to avoid those emotions all my life. They may not be easy to deal with but they’re mine and they’re just the price I’m going to have to pay to be happy. I guess that’s the answer to that last question my shrink asked.


The Skinny on the Ups and Downs of Banded Life

I’ve been a bad, bad girl…abandoning my blog for almost 3 weeks. I’ve been busy trying to get everything in order with the bank to buy my co-op apartment which I will hopefully be getting in the next week or two. I also have my sister’s wedding and have been doing some stuff with her as well as getting started on plans for her shower. Then of course there’s just the fact that I’m a lazy bum. I’ve spent much of my free time the last week or two catching up on episodes of Doogie Howser, M.D. courtesy of Hulu. I used to love that show and apparently I don’t remember a single episode of it. I’ve also been reading a lot. I’m on my forth book this past month. So you can clearly see why I’ve had no time to write.

Despite my lack of updating, a lot has been going on. I believe the last time I wrote was just after I got my unfill and the first day I started solid food. Well, for a day or two there I was feeling great. The unfill was a very welcome—I could finally drink water without chest pain. And for a few days there I felt great restriction. But the sweet spot did not last. Eventually my appetite returned full force and as I realized that not only was I hungry, but I could eat anything, I started making some bad choices again. I tried a slice of pizza. It went down great. On the bright side, I only had 1. I was still hungry, but I ate some good healthy chicken afterwards to fill me up. I also tried bagels. I scooped out the insides to help me out. One day at work someone brought in some left over candy from Easter (how on earth anyone could have Easter candy left over a month later is beyond my comprehension, but I digress). I learned a very valuable lesson that day—I can NOT eat just 1 or 2 pieces of candy. No, as soon as I have one bite, I am overcome with the need to stuff my face with it. Now at least I know that I can only have a taste of candy if a taste is all that’s available to me. And then of course there was the donut that the pharmaceutical rep brought in one day. I also started eating faster and faster as the days went by.

Now I know all of this sounds bad—I was definitely straying from the guidelines my nutritionist gave me, but I was still keeping my calories down to around 1200-1300 calories most days. Of course since my body was in starvation mode from over a month of 600 calorie a day liquids and mushies, my weight loss stalled but I did manage to lose almost 3 pounds between the time of my unfill and last Tuesday when I went back to Dr. G’s for my 6 week post-op appointment.

The appointment went well. I called ahead to make sure I didn’t have to fast or go on liquids prior to the appointment and was assured that it wasn’t necessary. I ate a reasonable breakfast (whole wheat English muffin, 1 egg and a slice of American cheese) and got there in the early afternoon. Dr. G asked me how I was doing and I told him that I was doing alright but I was hungry again after the unfill. He asked me how I was doing keeping my meals to 20 minutes and how my food choices were. I admitted that I had had a few indiscretions and that I was afraid I was starting to eat too quickly but that overall I was managing okay. He agreed to give me a fill but made me promise to take my time and chew well. I agreed and he sent the PA in to do the fill. The PA came in and asked me some of the same questions, then prepped my stomach over my port, filled a syringe, and stuck me with a big needle. It was a quick pinch, but hurt less than giving blood and it didn’t bother me at all. She filled me with 2.5ccs (they had previously removed 3.2ccs) so that I know have a total of 3ccs in my 10 cc band. She gave me my post fill instructions—24-48 hours of liquids followed by 24-48 hours of mushies. All of Tuesday and Wednesday I stuck to my liquids and Thursday and half of Friday I was on mushies before reverting back to solids at dinner time Friday.

The fill was good for me, although it’s still too early for me to tell if it worked. I do think I’m feeling less hungry and the post adjustment diet got me back on track. It was long enough to get my mind back to where it needs to be but not so long that I feel the deprivation that I felt from the post-op diet. I’m definitely making better choices, watching my speed and making sure to chew to goo.

The only thing I didn’t have to get back on track after the fill was my exercise regime. I’ve been going to the gym at least 3 times a week for cardio and I’ve started working out with my trainer, J, again. I can now run on the treadmill for an hour starting at a 4.0 mph pace and working my way up to a 5.0 mph. If I can keep that up I definitely think I should be able to meet my goal of running a half marathon by the end of September. Of course this weekend I didn’t get to the gym since I hurt my back at work yesterday. Well, technically it’s not my back so much as my butt—I apparently have a weak gluteus medius muscle. That’s the muscle that’s just below the small of your back. The left one seems to be my bad one. I’ve had trouble with it several times in the past. Usually some pain meds and rest and I’m feeling better in a week but it’s pure agony in the mean time. I think I might give in and go to a chiropractor this time. Hopefully I’ll be back to the gym before long.

Anyhow, after the fill Tuesday, I’ve lost another 6.5 pounds for a total of 40.5 pounds since I started the pre-op diet 8 weeks ago. Also, this past week at work one of my clients noticed that I’d lost weight and told me how good I looked. This was the first person who didn’t know about my surgery to mention that they noticed a difference in me.

Things definitely aren’t as simple as they were when I was on liquids and mushies. Back then it all seemed so easy and I started getting complacent. I was starting to think that this was going to be cake but the truth is, this is something that I’m going to be working at every day for the rest of my life. This isn’t news, I’ve always known that the lap-band was just a tool to help me get where I need to go—that the real work was up to me. And since I’m only human, there are going to be slip ups along the way. There will be days when I’m less dedicated than I should be. There will be days when I look at a donut or an ice cream sundae or some pizza and I don’t even have the will to try and fight the desire to eat it. Those days will happen and it’s not going to be a straight shot to victory here. All I can do is remember what I’ve gone through to get here, remember what I’m trying to achieve and take it one bite at a time. If I do that then hopefully the good days will be more frequent and the bad days won’t really be so bad—after all, we all need a little indulgence sometimes and accepting that doesn’t automatically equal failure.