Thursday, June 23, 2011

Happy 6-Month Bandiversary to me!!!!

Today marks 6 months since my day of surgery. I am so happy with my progress to date and so completely satisfied with my decision to be banded.

Then: On the day of surgery I weighed in at 260lbs and wore a size 26/28. (My highest weight prior to surgery however was 298!)
Now: I currently weigh 220 lbs and wear a size 18/20 and even a couple 16’s!!!

Then: I didn’t ever exercise in the year prior to surgery
Now: I exercise 5-6 days a week, 40-60 minutes a day

Then: I ate generous portions at restaurants, always afraid that I would have to start an extreme diet “soon” and would “never” be able to eat that particular food again.
Now: I still order the same favorite restaurant foods, but ask for a to-go box immediately and eat ¼ to ½ of the serving. I also try very hard to be completely aware of the caloric repercussions whenever possible. I never have room for desert.

Then: In the year prior to surgery (not counting the months on Medifast right before surgery) I didn’t track the foods I ate and didn’t care about calories.
Now: I track calories 5 days a week and make more “conscious” decisions on the weekends (even though I choose to not track closely during that time). I now know that I probably took in about 3000 calories a day when I was not “caring” about my intake. Now I take in anywhere between 1000 and 1500 calories a day.

Then: For several months prior to surgery I was on Medifast, which was effective for weight loss but torturous on my digestion and hormones. My body does not like soy.
Now: I just sold the last of my Medifast products and enjoy eating REAL food with daily Whey protein shake supplements to keep my protein numbers high since I’m working out so much.

Then: I would eat fast-food 5-6 times per week
Now: I not only don’t have hardly any cravings for fast-food (although I do still occasionally crave a taco from Jack in the Box), but I also pack everything I need to get me through my work-day and it nukes faster and is 1/5th of the calories of anything I can get anywhere else, so I don’t bother! If I’m ever in a position where something fast is necessary, I really do consider calories before putting it in my mouth. Just because it’s high calorie doesn’t mean I don’t eat it though…but it does mean I make adjustments as needed.

Then: I would order a pizza once every 2 weeks or so, and could easily eat 3-4 pieces in a sitting.
Now: I make little mini pizza’s if I have a craving. The 200 calorie portions from Digiorno are PERFECT in a pinch. I have also discovered that you can make a delicious little pizza on one of those sandwich rounds. Higher in protein and fiber and lower in calories that way! I do sometimes miss the chewy crust and full flavor of my old favorite pizza. But if I don’t have several people to share it with, I don’t want to order it so I haven’t had it in 4-5 months now.

There are a FEW minor negatives as a result of being banded, but nothing that would make me change my mind about having it done.

  1. I did lose hair for a while, but that has finally stopped now. It was incredibly noticeable during showers and when I was getting my hair done. Not to mention the layer of fur the backs of my clothing would harbor. I would say it probably started sometime in February and finally normalized to a normal rate of hair loss in the last two months…thank goodness. I never had bald patches or anything, but the amount in the tub drain after a shower probably increased by 4 or 5 times the usual amount. It was disconcerting but it did finally end. For the record, my protein consumption has always been within the recommended range and I never took any specific supplement for hair loss, it did just end on its own. 
  2. My new “full” signal is a dull ache in my mid back on the right side. It’s totally bizarre and unfortunately does not start hurting until about 20 minutes after I have eaten “too much”…so it’s not a very useful full signal. This has become less cumbersome now that I am at my sweet spot because I can easily eat my appropriate portion of food and stop and generally speaking do not get the back-ache very often….but I do still get it occasionally. It’s not horrible…just annoying.
  3. My nose runs a lot now…runs more often after eating, but in general I go through more Kleenex now than I used to. I have no idea how it’s related, but I know it is. My sister, who is also banded, gets a runny nose after eating, too. She also gets what we affectionately call “the yips”…thank heavens I don’t get those. She keeps hoping I will but it hasn’t happened yet. I also sneeze ALL THE TIME…like 5-10 times a day. This is new…but not any kind of deterrent.
  4. I can still eat as many tortilla chips as I want. The band does not stop this in any way. That’s a little disappointing since those are my go-to munchie food. I have to learn to just avoid them. I still eat too many at a Mexican Restaurant. I probably would have lost more weight by now if I had never learned that they were easy for me to eat. :( 


But that’s it…those are all my negatives. Like I said, nothing that would stop me from doing it again.

I love my band!!!

Highest Weight - 298
Current Weight - 220 (Size 16 dress!)







Tuesday, June 14, 2011

220.8 and currently at my sweet spot!

My dalliance back into the 230’s didn’t last long…as the weekend and/or period water weight started to shed, it came off fast. Thank goodness! The .25 fill I had just before leaving for Whistler has finally kicked in and has me at a perfect “sweet spot” right now. I even survived my period without eating a horse…or a large bag of Doritos.

I had a weird experience last Thursday that caused me to not exercise for the last few days. Due to dinner plans last Wednesday evening, I did my regular workout Tuesday night for 1 hour on the elliptical and then an hour again first thing Wednesday morning before work. Both sessions were heavy sweat sessions so apparently I lost a ton of electrolytes. I thought I had myself covered by drinking a G2 after both sessions and upping my potassium supplement but considering what happened over the next few days, I guess I was wrong. Wednesday night I had my usual “low potassium” leg/foot cramps over night, so I knew my potassium was low and thus supplemented all day. Regardless, Thursday I continued to feel tired but not enough to trigger any serious concern.

However, when my trainer showed up at 7pm for our workout, things suddenly went crazy. On our first exercise my arms fatigued way too soon….but what was worse was that I kept getting dizzy. At first I thought I was just going through my usual “first 12 minutes are the hardest” doldrums, but it didn’t let up. About 10 exercises into a 15 exercise session I gave up. The dizziness was freaking me out, the fatigue wasn’t making any sense…I just couldn’t do it anymore. I apologized to Mark and sent him home and then mildly freaked out. I had so much I still had to get done that night, which included a trip to the grocery store. I drove to the store and then proceeded to sit in the car for 5 minutes before going in feeling like I was going to hurl. I finally went in and bought just what was on my list and nothing more (which is so unlike me!), and then came home to get started on my shredded beef recipe that needed to be finished by morning.

I continued doing all the work for the beef to get it in the slow cooker before I could get into bed. Finally getting to bed about 11pm, I realized I hadn’t eaten anything since about 3pm…but the thought of food was not appealing at all. I set my alarm for 5am so I could turn off the slow cooker and then went to bed…and proceeded to be plagued for the rest of the night by continuous Charlie horses in my ankles and toes. UGH! So obnoxiously painful! I didn’t get a minutes rest that night. I drank more G2 and took more potassium but it was just a long, LONG night.

Friday I was up early to shred the slow cooked beef, but was just utterly wiped out from the lack of sleep the night before. It was a challenging day. Then at one point my knees actually buckled and I fell into the dishwasher…haven’t had my knee’s buckle in forever. By now I decided I needed a blood test for sure because this was getting out of control.

So results from the blood test are in, and after 48 hours of supplementing the hell out of myself with prescription potassium, my blood serum level was at a whopping 3.8….3.7 is the start of the normal range. So clearly it was low before.

I’m once again contemplating discontinuing use of my water pill…but am so not looking forward to the 10 lb rebound of weight and the puffy legs. I just can’t decide how to deal with this.

Anywho…it’s hard to post very often due to limitations at work and my workout schedule but I do try to read everyone’s blogs on my phone. I just can’t reply on my phone, which ticks me off. Anyone know of an app that allows me to read AND comment? I’m currently using Google Reader…I can’t believe it doesn’t let me comment. UGH!

That’s all for today…can’t wait to get below 220!!!