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Monday, January 6, 2014


First weigh in of the new year and I have finally reached the 100lbs lost goal..... Go me...

Monday, December 30, 2013

Body Image

When I weighed 349 lbs I told myself that I wasn't really that big.  I would compare myself to others and say "I may be fat but I'm not that fat".  The truth is I was fat, fat, fat, fat.  I convinced myself that I knew I was fat and I was comfortable with it.  But that was a lie.  I was never comfortable with being overweight.  I was always very conscious of my weight and tried to hide it with clothing and I tried to hide myself.  "This false perception is a subconscious coping strategy to protect us from the brutal truth, the truth about how big morbidly obese really is." (http://www.populararticles.com/article12490.html)
It's funny the things you learn to accept over the years.  Like the way people avoid you, the way people look and then whisper to their friends and laugh.  The way people ignore you or treat you like you are disgusting/dirty.  I have been ignored by waiters, food servers, sales clerks and others on numerous occasions.  In fact there was a time in my life that I would have never gone out to eat by myself, just because of the way people looked at me.
I hated shopping even in the big size stores and don't even ask about trying things on.  I told myself that it was okay that I was overweight and that I was comfortable with it.  But in truth I never was.  I never really looked at myself in a mirror, even to put my make up I would look but not really see myself.  I hate having my picture taken.  Why because pictures don't really lie.
The worst part of this is how I dealt with it.  I ate, drowned myself in over eating and food.  My life revolved around food.  I would be eating breakfast and I'd be planning my snack, lunch and dinner at the same time.
Now here I am almost 100lbs lighter and when I look in the mirror I still see a big fat, fat, fat person.  I know it sounds crazy but I see myself as very fat.  As I've lost weight I've become very critical of myself.  People tell me how great I look and all I can think about is all the fat rolls I have.
I still have trouble buying clothes that fit because I want to buy items that are smaller but that are still loose and hide my body.

So how do I get through this and have a somewhat healthy attitude about my body and all the work I'm doing to become healthier?
One thing is going to yoga three times a week.  Three times a week I put on exercise spandex pants (form fitting) a sports bra and razor back form fitted tank top.  I stand in class with 10-15 other skinny people and proceed to do Bikram yoga.  Am I able to look in the mirror at myself?  Well it's hard because what I see is this huge fat woman with flabby chicken wings for arms and fat rolls stuffed into a form fitting yoga outfit.
It's hard to look in the mirror, I find myself focusing on spots in the mirror that I'm not in.  I force myself to look in the mirror at the beginning of class and during several of the postures.  This is a very uncomfortable and difficult challenge for me but I force myself.
The other thing I've done is work on buying clothes that fit and may be a little snug.  I'm trying not to hide behind the clothing but it's hard.  I still want tops that are baggy and hide me.  The hardest part of the clothing is wearing bras that fit and lift instead of flatten and push down.
I know I have a long way to go to accepting my body as it is but I will keep trying.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Bikram yoga

Well, Wednesday saw my 13th Bikram yoga class since 11/17/2013.  I'm still a little shocked that I keep going back but the improvements I've had in my joints in the last 4-5 weeks is well worth the torture session.
When I started my knees were stiff and I could not kneel.  Now kneeling is not a problem and my overall joint pain 75% reduced.  After suffering for so many years with chronic, ankle, toe, hand, wrists, knees and shoulder pain.  To have such a decrease and during the cold months is amazing for me.  For example I spent the day running back and forth organizing a party at work, I had to make multiple trips and carrying things etc and was on my feet for several hours, in flat dress shoes no less.  Last year this nearly did me in and I was barely able to walk to my car.  Today I may have been a little tired but I was not in pain, my knees and ankles are not stiff and swollen.
While the 90 min sessions are pure torture the benefits have been so amazing for me.  Just to have a some pain relief that does not require medication is wonderful.
As to the yoga poses yes I can do many of them.  I have trouble with some of the balancing ones as I have very little core strength, but each class sees some improvement.  I have learned that I need to push myself until it starts to hurt and then back off on the pose.  I have over stretched a few muscles a few times so I'm learning to listen to my body.  Each time I focus on improving only one pose out of the 26 and not all of them.  The last class was the best yet and I noticed that I'm getting better at controlling my breath.  Over all I enjoy this type of yoga, I like the challenge and I'm so happy with the improvement in my joints.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

8 months

Well it will be 8 months tomorrow since I've had my gastric sleeve.  Last week I bought my first pair of size 18 jeans which I still can hardly believe.  I can't remember when I was able to last wear a size 18.  Other changes include regular exercise for the last month I've been going to Bikram yoga 3 times a week and yes i have survived every session.  Although I will admit several of the sessions I did wonder if I was going to survive the torture chamber.  the thing that keeps me going is that I see people much smaller than me not able to many of moves or they have just as much trouble as I do.
I would go more often but I truly do need a day in between to recover my body.  It takes me longer to get the fluids in that I need the day of and the day after.
The biggest change is how much my life does not seem to revolve around when and what I'm going to eat next.  Food just does not seem that important.  I do notice that I graze more when I'm bored or not busy with something so I'm watching my self a little closer.  I am grabbing more fruit and not going for the crunchy high calorie snacks so that helps.  I've also found that drinking a cup of tea helps also.
 I think the worst thing is that I still see myself as being extremely obese,  I'm still very body conscious and when I look in the mirror I don't see that I've lost any weight.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Yoga adventure

Since I have plateaued for a month now I decided to try something different for my exercise routine.
Of course a Groupon offering made it easier to decide.  This morning I went to my first Birkum Yoga class (http://bikramyoga.com/)
Conducted in a heated room, Bikram Yoga safely and effectively detoxifies the body through perspiration, stretches and tones the muscles and delivers fresh, high speed oxygenated blood to every cell and organ in the body.
Bikram's Beginning Yoga Class is a series of twenty-six Hatha Yoga postures and two breathing exercises designed to provide a challenging, invigorating, rejuvenating, healing and effective yoga experience. During this 90 minute class, you work every muscle, tendon, ligament, joint and internal organ in the body. 

The goal of the first class is to just stay in the heated humidified room.  That was a challenge toward the last 30mins of the class.  You are moving through poses and the sweat is flowing off you like you are standing in a shower.  Several of the poses I was unable to do due to flexibility but I know that will come.  Another hard part was getting into the pose when you as so slippery with sweat and trying to stay in the position.  I managed to stay in the room the entire time it was a great relief to step out to a cooler room once done.  I felt pretty good just tired.  It is now 4 hours later and I'm still drinking water to rehydrate and I fell wiped and have no tolerance for heat.  It's 70 degrees here and I had to turn on the air conditioning because I'm hot.
Yes I will be going back and I know that it will get easier.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Little things

"Just because your miracle doesn't look like the miracle you were expecting, that doesn't mean it isn't the one you've been waiting for" http://www.live-inspired.com/Fight-On-P1257

I was asked today what things in my life have changed since I had bariatric surgery.  My attitude towards food and the way I eat of course are the biggest.  But upon reflection I realized that a number of other smaller changes have occurred. 
I have re discovered my love of tea.  Not just any tea but a good cup of herbal tea.  I actually had to buy a tea pot, cups and saucers.  Drinking tea from a cup and saucer makes the tea better and serving it from a ceramic tea pot seems just perfect.  I really enjoy my evening ritual of making and drinking a pot of caffeine free herbal tea before bed.  It has reminded me how important the little things are and that sometimes simple pleasures make a much bigger impact than you realize.  I feel more grounded since I have started this ritual again and have been able to handle the high stress in my work life much more calmly.   I now have a hot water maker in my office at work and spend the first hour drinking a cup of zen tea every morning while addressing my email. 
So yes re discovering my love of tea has changed my life.  This would have not happened without my having bariatric surgery.  I have been to addicted to Coke Zero and Diet Coke to even think about enjoying a cup of tea.

Monday, October 14, 2013

6 months after surgery

Well it's been 6 months since surgery.  It's hard to believe.  I keep thinking how people say having bariatric surgery is the easy way.  I hate to tell them it is so far from the easy way.  Your life and the way eat changes whether you want it to or not.  If I eat one bite to much I'm throwing up, I have tripled the number of pills I take even though they are all supplements.  You have to keep track of how much protein and water you have every day.  You actually have to set a timer to remind you to eat.  food doesn't taste the same as it used to.  I still am not able to eat salad, tomato soup, eggs and shrimp. There are things I think will be good that after one bite I never want to eat it again. 
While the benefits definitely out weigh the inconveniences it is far from the easy way out obesity.  I spend more time tending to and monitoring my weight and food intact than I ever did on any diet.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013


I finally wore the new scrubs I purchased the week before I had surgery.  They are 2 sizes down from then.  As I was posting the pictures earlier I realized how much weight I have lost.  76 pounds is a lot. To put it in perspective pull out a pound of butter/margarine (or 4 sticks).  I've lost 304 sticks of butter or 76 pounds of butter.  I wish I could get a picture of 76 pound containers of butter.  I think it's amazing how we don't really think about our weight in terms of food products.  But I know I have eaten my weight in butter over my life time probably 3-4 times.
Yes I feel better although I have periods where I'm tired and that is more related to low blood sugar and forgetting to eat.  I'm also working on lowering my last blood pressure medication and my blood pressure is lower than it should be at times which adds to the tired feeling.  However my labs look great and that is because of the juice plus, zinc, B12, calcium, and iron.  I also am strict about getting my water and at least 90 grams of protein in a day.
I'm asked all the time if the surgery was worth it.  The answer is yes and I'll never regret finally doing it.

4 months and 76lbs pounds gone

8/18/2013/4 months after surgery-273lbs

3/29/2013-2 week to surgey-349lbs

Monday, August 5, 2013

107 days and counting

It's been 107 days since my surgery. Everything seems to be going smoothly.  The weight loss tally so far is 70lbs lost.  I'm told frequently that I don't look like someone who has had bar attic surgery.  Because I look healthy and do not have a grey sickly tinge to my skin.  I know may people start to look wiped out around the three month point.  But I'm very careful about following the rules of getting enough protein and water in everyday.  I also make sure to take my juice plus, B12, zinc, calcium, and iron.  These things are very important to keep you well nourished after surgery. But the protein and water are the highest priority.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

July 30, 2013

Today the Doctor stopped one of my blood pressure medications.  I'm so excited to finally see some of the medications starting to be dropped off.  Now I'm just waiting for my first set of labs to come back......

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A Day in the life.

The morning starts with B12 and a blood pressure pill

Breakfast 0900- 30 grams of protein

1030 starts the first liter of water

1130 need a little stress reducing, 6 M&M's

1pm it's lunch time- another 30grams of protein

2pm starts the second liter of water for the day

3pm a little cinnamon coated nuts- 15 grams of protein

It's 4pm and I still have about 3/4 cup of water to drink to get my 2 liters in.

530pm- it's dinner time-14 grams of protein with a little carb

Whats left after dinner,  I could only eat the slider patty and half the bun.

7pm I needed a lime Popsicle as the slider was a touch spicy.  This is a mini one

8pm I start taking my Juice plus, Calcium and night time pills.  This will take me 1 hour.