Monday, August 31, 2009

More energy!

So i got back on track today, and I found it amazing that my energy came back pretty much immediately. I'm doing shakes and soft healthy foods to get myself back in gear, and although i was kind've hungry today, I felt great and have lots of energy!

Definitely energized and motivated to make my next goal. Only 8.5 pounds in three week. Everyday I make the right choices, it gets closer!

The band must be working

Because despite last week's pig out, I still lost a pound and a half.

It's all about the smaller portions!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

More reasons to keep going

Just reminding myself of all the reasons I have to get back on track despite the pig-out week I just had.

I have more energy than before and my moods have evened out without the sugar highs and lows. And what I'm most excited about are all the old clothes I'm fitting into. It wasn't actually just a top or two this week, but a bunch of clothes. It's like I have a new wardrobe (almost).

And I went shopping this weekend and fit into a smaller size. Yay!

Doing the Math

So I just did the numbers and in order to make my next mini-goal, I have to somehow either eliminate or burn 1384 calories per day between now and Sept 26th.

Aggressive but possible. Either I eat 1000-1100 calories a day (which the lap-band nutritionist would approve), or I eat 1300 and guarantee I include enough exercise to make up the difference.

I think having to get back on track to make my next goal is perhaps just what the doctor ordered.

This goal is quite important to me as I haven't seen some of the ladies who will be at my bridal shower for years, so it'd be nice to look good!

Revised goals

Based on my experience getting to my second goal of 25 pounds lost, I realized that my forthcoming goals were just too unrealistic. I made my first two goals, but the second was tough, and that was while I was on the post-op diet.

So going forward I just don't think that 15 pounds in 3 weeks is reasonable. So I've updated and included my new goals both below on in the right hand column.

15 pounds lost
by surgery date (8/4/09)

25 pounds lost
by end of post-op diet (8/25/09)

35 pounds lost
by bridal shower (9/26/09)

40 pounds lost
by 35th birthday (10/16/09)

50 pounds lost
by wedding! (11/7/09)

65 pounds lost
by New Years 2009

75 pounds lost
by honeymoon (Feb 2010)

85 pounds lost
by our big work conference (3/23/10)

100 pounds lost
by June 2010

110 pounds lost (my high school weight!)
by August 2010 (my band birthday)

125 pounds lost
by 10/16/10 (my 36th birthday!)

Make me stop!

I've kind've been taking a break since I hit my goal on Tuesday. I had a bunch of plans that involved eating out this week and ended up eating out a whopping five times!

In general, I hadn't really eaten out post band, so that was a new experience. I didn't at all have trouble getting anything down. I've had bread and greens and rice, no problem.

I'm such a foodie that I love eating out, so I was quite thrilled to go and try new things. I'm sure since I hadn't eaten proper food in a while (beyond soft foods) I was making up for lost time!

However, the whole point of the band is that it doesn't let you overdo it, so I found that my eyes were waaayyy bigger than my stomach!

So i filled up easily and did ooookay at dinner. But the trouble came when i kept thinking about my leftovers and as soon as I could get a little more down, I finished the rest!

This happened every time almost, and I just ended up feeling gross!

This definitely can't continue. I'm eating for my old appetite. Going to try and get myself back on track by having some protein shakes again.

My other new rule is that I'll no longer be taking leftovers after a meal!

A "funny story" from the gym

I was shocked when I read this story from The New Me. I don't want to give it away but it has to do with overweight people at the gym.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Before & After Pics, 25 pounds down!

I feel fabulous today. I was so excited when I met my goal this morning, I was dancing around the apartment. It inspired me to pull out an outfit I haven't worn in forever, and I was in a fab mood this morning on the way to work.

Unfortunately, these before and after photos don't quite show how different i *feel* before and after. And when i first looked at them, I didn't really see the difference actually. (Esp after those super flattering headshots from last week!) I of course see how much further I have left to go. I'm probably one of few who would actually like to see my chest significantly decrease in size. ASAP!

In regard to seeing the before and after difference, it's actually hard to photoshop the before and afters sometimes as the perspective is different (matching up similar points, like elbow, chin, etc), but somehow in one pic I'm shorter? It's all the angle the pic was taken from I'm sure.

I am wondering if my upcoming goals are realistic however. I think the next two aren't. So I'm reserving the right to edit them in the near future. Don't want to set myself up for failure!

Woo hoo! Mini-goal accomplished!

I've now lost 25 pounds, and more significantly to me today, I met my second goal on schedule!

Woo hoo!

A new profile pic is coming, especially since I fit into some clothes I haven't worn in a long while!

Monday, August 24, 2009

25 pounds is a relative thing

I was mentioning to someone my weight loss, and she was really excited about 25lbs (tomorrow i hope) and how much that is.

And if I were smaller, that might be a lot. As in, almost all of it!

Not that I'm not satisfied with my accomplishment. I'm fine with where I am in the process, but it's only about 20% of what i want to lose.

However, I'm getting to the part of the weight loss where you say how much you lost, and people can see that you still have lots more to go, and it becomes obvious just how bad the weight problem was to begin with!

I know this is why some people don't like to say how much they've lost because then people can do the math and know where you started!

uh oh!

Now I'm getting obsessive

I have just 1/2 pound to make my goal tomorrow. So i took a long walk at lunch and am going light on the food today.

In fact, I'm so distracted by this need to make tomorrow's goal that I've entirely forgotten about the fact that I can eat normal foods tomorrow. Except those that are off my list entirely as a lap-band patient.

Can't wait to have a piece of toast!!! I'm specifically thinking bruschetta. Or a grilled cheese sandwich...

More on all that later. For now, liquids and soft foods and half a pound to go!

The dogs will be getting a LONG walk tonight!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

My clothes don't fit (including a before pic!)

The positive side of my last post is that when I went to get dressed yesterday, two of my favorite tops didn't fit. Despite them being my faves, I am perfectly okay with that! Yay!

One of them is the coral colored shirt in my pic on the upper right-hand column! The other is what Clarissa called my blue milkmaid shirt. :)

Or more accurately, I was "The Milkmaid" when I wore it. Shown above!

I miss eating!

In contrast to my last post about being only 1 pound away from goal ( i have to keep perspective), I also really miss eating. I don't mean literally eating but eating like I did before.

This morning, we took the dogs for a walk, and I missed going to the bagel shop for a weekend breakfast. Went to the movies yesterday and I just really wanted a diet coke! Not to mention candy and popcorn.

And last night, after a long day, I would've LOVED to have ordered a pizza.

Usually this change is affirming and positive, but on occasion it's just a total bummer!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

One more pound until my next goal!

I'm happily shocked that I've gotten so close to my next goal so soon.
Now it seems so attainable!

One more pound by Tuesday and I'll reach my second mini-goal of 25 pounds by the end of the post-op diet! Yay!

I'm going to try and walk my butt of this weekend (literally)!

Friday, August 21, 2009

My stomach is full...

...but my mind is still hungry.

Even when I'm Thanksgiving-full! It's so weird!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

New pics

Haven't done a recent full body comparison in terms of before and after pics. I've only lost another 3 pounds since the last one. I was going to do one, but at this point, I may just wait until I've reached my 25 pounds lost goal!

It's crazy because I'm still higher than my average weight. And yet, I'm getting so many compliments, and I've noticed the difference so much in my clothes that I feel really confident and I feel like I'm lighter than my norm.

So while I will wait for the full body pics, Alex snapped this photo of me above on the subway on the way to work this morning, and I thought I would share. (Sorry to all my Facebook friends, as this photo is old news already!).

Alex has been so sweet and supportive during this whole thing. And he's been super enthusiastic about my weight loss too (Of course he was supportive even at my biggest too!)

The photo below is my new Facebook profile pic, taken with my web cam at work. It's a bit of a cheat, because I can see myself on screen and pose accordingly! So I got it to be super flattering, and made myself look a bit skinnier than I would've otherwise. In fact, someone contacted me privately and was like, have you lost weight!?!

Mmm...Edamame Hummus

I was wandering around Whole Foods today after a doctor's appointment and discovered "Edamame Hummus" in their prepared foods area.

I've been on the lookout for new soft food options. This one is particularly good since the lap-band diet requires high protein.

AND it's really good!

Image via the Food Network. They also have a great recipe here.
It just happens to be from Ellie Kreiger.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Overcoming Stress

How to Turn Stress into Success -- powered by
[Had to remove the video, as it kept autoplaying. However, click above to watch it!]

Alex has been completely overwhelmed lately, and this surgery and weight loss experience has been stressful for me as well, so I tuned in when I saw this video that other times I might have dismissed.

I like what the woman in this video is saying about how once you overcome an obstacle, the body reacts to stress differently and what once might have been perceived as stress, instead becomes an achievement and an obstacle you overcame and can be proud of. You're then ready to tackle the next hurdle.

At the end she compares it to exercise as well. Some people might freak out at the thought of say squats (guilty!) and a crazy hard workout; however, once you do it and have accomplished it, you're bolstered and more confident.

Check it out.

Video via the Livestrong website.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Slowly but Surely

So a part of me wants to jump on the scale and see 5 pounds gone all at once; however, it doesn't really work that way when you weigh yourself everyday! ha!

Slowly but surely, the weight is coming off however. I lost another pound this morning. I'm up to 22 pounds lost and now I only have 3 pounds to go until my next major goal (See the right-hand side bar). That's three pounds in 8 days.

Can i do it!?!

Sunday, August 16, 2009


So it feels like the band is serving its purpose. Yesterday, for example, I still had calories left for the day and had exercised tons and wanted to eat something, mentally.

However, my stomach just said no.

Today, I feel like I pigged out. Today was a low-key day, and I just hung around the house and ate. I'm tired and overdid it yesterday, so today I chose to rest.

However, at the end of the day it was only 1300 calories that I did eat, and feel a bit ug, like I ate too much.

Teensy Tiny Silverware

So one of the tips I've come across a handful of times is to use tiny silverware when eating. I tried it today with the teensy tiny silverware shown here and was surprised how effective it was. It made me feel like I was eating more than I was.

I went smaller than even a typical teaspoon which is recommended. I've included a photo of our regular silverware too so you can see the comparison in size.

I just happened to find them here in NYC at Fish's Eddy.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

New hair! (I Cut It All Off!)

On a whim today, I decided to get my hair cut. Here's the before and after...

It's been ages, and it had gotten so long that I almost NEVER wore it down. The one day I did want to wear it down, it was awkward and I hated it. Usually I love my hair when I bother to wear it down...

So I asked for it to be cut below my shoulders. She overdid it a bit, but I do really like it. I'm just concerned that it won't be long enough for this come our wedding date. My hair grows fast though so fingers crossed.

At the end of the day, the hairdresser took off like 7-8 inches! Crazy!

Subtle color change to come too, although based on the color in the photo, you'd think I already did color it! I think the bottom was darker than the top, so now that it's gone, it looks lighter (it's really my gray hair though... ;)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Gmaps Pedometer

So I'm revisiting using the Gmaps Pedometer I posted about previously since walking is my main form of exercise right now.

It tracks your walk, the exact distance, and if you turn on the feature, it'll also show calories burned based on your weight.

I'm thrilled to see that my evening dog walk burns off 120 calories! My daily commute burns 150 calories a day (75 each way). And my walk back from Whole Foods today burned 130 calories.

All in all, 400 calories! I'll take it!

I really like how much lighter I feel. Having lost 20 pounds makes a difference in my mobility. I had really started to notice things being harder this year physically, and I really think it was that extra weight.


By the way, for those of you who knew how bad this week was for me, I FEEL SO MUCH BETTER!


I just pigged out on humus

Okay, so control is going to be an issue.

Since it's pretty soft, I decided to allow myself some humus after I went shopping.


I'm going to have to control myself. I've decided to limit my calorie count to 1300 calories per day, plus exercise of course. I'm already walking quite a bit between my commute and the dog walks. Will join the gym once my stomach is healed up a bit more.

I got that recommended calorie count from which has lots of great diet stuff.

My first post-band shopping experience

I was taken aback that it really was different shopping post band. I stocked up on TONS of protein shakes previously, so the couple of other grocery store trips I've made have been in and out to get a specific thing.

However, since I'm on to mushes tomorrow, I decided to make a pilgrimage to Whole Foods knowing they'd have tons of specialty vegetarian foods. Boy did they ever.

I had a mixture of emotions.

At first I surprised myself by not wanting lots of things, but then as I shopped I was part excited by the things I was seeing, but the other part of me was really angry for doing this (lap-band) and was mad that I can't eat so much of what I was seeing.

Everywhere I went there were chips and some of the soft foods I was buying would go SO WELL with tortilla chips! And, Whole Foods sells my favorite tortilla chips, Green Mountain Gringo.

Lots of things made it into my basket, but I had to do my usual little purge at the end as there was no way what I was buying was within my 10lb carrying range.

I had to remind myself there will be plenty of time to buy more stuff. Definitely planning on putting a couple of things I bought in the food processor. For those of you out there also on the mush diet, Amy's has a "veggie loaf" that is very soft (shown third to last here). A few of their frozen foods looked ideal to stick in a food processor.

The biggest find! A vegetarian mousse / terrine. Yay!

Of course being in New York without a car, I don't always get over to Whole Foods without a big shlepp, but I'll make a point to.

My other big question was how much to buy. I don't have a sense of how much I'll be eating per meal yet. However, my goal for myself is 1300 calories. Perhaps higher than we're supposed to have, but with exercise, I think I need that to stay sane.

More to come on how the weekend goes...


So I learned something new today! Hiccups are a side-effect of the surgery! Ack!

I couldn't figure out what that weird feeling was, as sometimes they aren't quite a whole hiccup. I might only get one or two hiccups too.

Mine are uncomfortable, not just annoying. Just feels like pressure.

I looked it up and it's VERY common post surgery supposedly. Many people have said they'll go away within a month, fingers crossed.

Hiccups are caused when the diaphragm is irritated or for many lap-band patients when they eat too much.

Perhaps my stomach is just super sensitive right now though because I'm definitely not eating too much!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Good Advice

Just read some good advice on Bandit Blossom's Blog. I'm copying the items below which I would like to try and follow myself.
  1. I am eating with a teaspoon again and making sure each bite is only half a teaspoon size
  2. I am chewing each mouthful properly
  3. I am having as little distraction as possible when I eat (ie no TV)
  4. Keep each meal to 1 cup, measured!
I've altered her #4 a bit however.

She's been very successful to date. Check out the links at the top of her blog for pics, including the progress pics. She's really undergone a complete transformation!

Thanks Bandit Blossom!


Ok, so I FINALLY got some relief!

Between my therapy session today and a number of stress-reduction techniques she taught me, the thin potato soup (minus the potatoes) that I had for dinner (ie: NOT A SHAKE OR JUST BROTH), PLUS the meal planning I'm doing because Saturday I can friggin "eat" again (even if it's mushes), I feel like I can breathe again, and I'm finally not so friggin depressed.


Time To Fess Up

Okay, so I totally cheated on my liquid diet. Well, as much as one can given that my stomach really isn't ready yet for anything other than liquids.

I was so distraught last night that I decided it just wasn't worth being that upset when just a couple hundred calories might make me feel better.

So i dug out some little bit of ice cream in the back of the freezer that somehow managed to not get tossed during the big fridge purge. (I never made it to the freezer). Soooo, I had a scoop of ice cream mixed with some skim milk for a very watery vanilla milk shake. Not the best milk shake ever but for the moment it did the trick for less than 200 calories.

However, at this point in the game, I don't think the fix is that simple. So then again, this morning I was still in a rotten mood, so on the way to work I got a tall "skinny" mocha frappaccuno from starbucks. It helped. Was super cranky in my first meeting but now I'm finally feeling that sigh of relief. Again 280 calories for the whole thing. I decided if that's the only bad thing I add to my diet today, I'm okay. Not that it's not a slippery slope.

The amazing thing was that after having less than 1/4 of it, I was full! I haven't had that much of anything to eat or drink since I had the band put in to be able to notice. So instead of drinking the rest, I put it in the fridge to have throughout the day.

Before and After Video Blog

Check out Melting Mama for a really great before and after video blog...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Post-Op Follow Up with Surgeon

So today was my one-week, post-op follow up with my surgeon at NYU. First was the esophagram which was fine and then the appointment with my surgeon.

When I saw the surgeon present at the orientation, and when we talked to her briefly afterward, she seemed fine. She also seemed fine when I had my pre-op appointment with her.

However, I did take note in my pre-op visit when she asked me to remind her later where she was suggesting putting the port (It's different for me since I'll want to get pregnant later).

I guess I assumed I had a file for that kind of info.

I tried to just forget when she asked me immediately before surgery to remind her how she had said she was going to do the surgery (as in the placement of the incisions). I asked her if she was kidding, but she just asked the question again. So no, she wasn't kidding. Again, don't I have a file with that info?!?

So all of that I was able to forget about. However, today, I was definitely put off. I had a few concerns and she just rushed through them and cut me off when I was trying to talk. I thought through it again because I was cranky, but I stand by my position on this. Her bedside manner is LAME. Plus she never seems to remember me. Of course, that's a common thing with doctors.

I was most irritated when she kept poking the incision over my port trying to prove a point about where the port is. First of all, I know that's where the port is. Second of all she could tell me instead of poking around the incision. I asked her three times to stop because it hurt, and she just said I'm trying to show you where the port is.


Anyway, I didn't get much help with the pain I've been having in my stomach. Finally, I got her to suggest Prilosec. Originally, she just said it's impossible that I'm having heartburn.

BUT, the x-rays were fine and I'm doing fine I just have to figure out what's up with all my anxiety!

Can't wait until Saturday

This week just sucks. How's that for a positive attitude?

Was rather emotional after my appointment with my surgeon today, so I ended up taking the day off. I think I'm just all messed up with not eating. I cannot WAIT until Saturday when I can eat at least mush. This thin liquids diet is killing me.

It's not temptation or anything, it's mostly just how i feel. At first i was high energy before the surgery but I feel like I need some sustenance to feel better. arg.

Can I just sleep until Saturday? That'd be ideal.

I've already been thinking about what I can eat this weekend. Hummus, egg salad, Greek yogurt, pudding, and more. That's just off the top of my head. I can eat anything that I can put in the food processor and make into a smooth texture.

I'll still be good calorie-wise, but I'm definitely going to be experimenting!

More on my appointment with my surgeon in another post...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Another not-great day

Today was another difficult day. I hope this is the hardest part because this week has been difficult. Today I was just in the same bad mood from yesterday, and i had a knot in my stomach all day.

Tightness around the port/diaphragm; it felt like the fluid wouldn't go down -- but it did. Then later in the day I got the worst heartburn and the incisions felt hot again and I wasn't as mobile as usual.

At that point I was done with my meetings at work, so I just packed it in for the day and came home and slept.

I feel better now. I have an appointment with the surgeon in the morning as well as another esophagram to check on the band. Not looking forward to that commute over to NYU however!

"Did you have the Lap-Band?"

So it happened for the first time today. Someone who I hadn't told about the surgery asked me if I'd had it.

She's a friend in the office, but I didn't trust her not to tell other people, so I didn't share the big news. I just told her I'd be out last week, and I guess that someone else told her that in general, I'd had surgery, just not what type.

So today I wasn't feeling great, and she saw me on my way out and we chatted. I was rubbing my stomach because I had bad heartburn, and she said, "did you have lap-band surgery?"

She commented on my weight loss as well, but I told her that I'd actually had a hiatal hernia repaired and they'd put me on a liquid diet.

I might end up telling her later, I'm not sure, but it didn't take much for her to guess. I wonder who else has guessed but just hasn't said anything!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Reality, frustration and emotional eating...

Okay, so one more vent. You know what makes this harder than a normal diet? (The thin liquid diet specifically) It's so extreme. There's no small amount of any food you might find satisfying or soothing. The liquid diet removes all emotional eating from the equation, so even if I'm not hungry and even if I don't have a specific emotional crisis to get through, and even if I am not eating because I'm bored, I'm still left unsatisfied.

And really it's way more than that. For most of us who eat for emotional reasons, it doesn't have to be a big binge because we're upset. It's the small little comforts throughout the day that ease the tension. Even when we don't realize we're doing it.

So the worst and hardest part of this is that without all those little "releases" throughout the day, I'm left just tired and cranky and unreasonable.

Imagine how you feel after a long day on your feet and you haven't eaten. You know those days where you're with friends walking and walking and no one can find or agree on a restaurant. And after a while of being polite and nice to each other, you just start getting testy and you're tired and your temper starts to show.

That's how I feel sometimes. The problem is that I can't go sit down at that restaurant and have that meal. The protein shake is small and just absolutely does not provide that relief. I don't get that sigh that you get after a meal, not even that breath of release before you get full. Any of you long-time dieters probably know what I'm talking about (stop eating after your first sigh...)

But I'm also not physically hungry, and I recognize that.

Instead I'm left to find some other sort of salve. I'm tired so exercise isn't it, I'm worn out, talking isn't it, not sleep, not journaling, not tv and not the computer. Not even shopping shockingly enough. I was a little worried it would be.

From all my research before opting in on this procedure, I know this is that one big bad thing most lap-band patients struggle with! I just haven't read what the solution is...

Any words of wisdom from people who have been banded?

How do you take compliments?

Our director at work (who I mentioned in my last post doesn't know about the surgery) commented today that I "look good" post surgery, and I assume he meant the weight loss.

I told him the doctors have me on a liquid diet and that was that. This is at 20 lbs down. As more weight comes off, more and more questions and comments will come up, especially from coworkers I'm sure.

When I lost a bunch of weight the first time, I was so proud of all my hard work that I loved when people commented on it, and a lot of that did come from coworkers since you spend so much time with them everyday, especially in a large-ish company.

However, outside of my circle of friends and family who know, I'm not sure how I'll react when people comment on my weight loss this time. There's this sense of not wanting them to know my secret! And when people do know, there's this notion that you didn't work as hard at it because you had surgery. So far, this is definitely harder than when I lost 100 pounds on my own. More extreme.

First day back to work

Today, my first day back to work, ended up being a long day. I was as low key as possible, especially on the commute, but I do have a bit of a walk on top of the train ride, and there were some stairs. (They've said to be careful with the stairs.)

Once I actually got to work I felt a bit tired and run down, but I managed. However now, after work, I'm just pooped and definitely cranky and a bit down in the dumps.

The day itself was fine. I was functional, and I didn't worry too much about food. But I was definitely wanting the day to be over!

On the way home, I noticed that the area around the incisions is hot and feels a bit feverish. I'm pretty much just going to crash out after taking the dogs out and having my "dinner" shake.

My boss called later in the day (she's been out of town on vacation) just as I was leaving and was checking in on things, asked about the surgery, then was asking casually whether I came into work the end of last week. I'm sure this didn't help my mood as she specifically told me in advance that I could have the time off as did our director (she had me ask him too since she was going to be out of town). We had agreed on two days of no work for the surgery on Tues and Wed and then Thurs and Fri working from home if I felt up to it. I did remind her that this was the original plan. Anyway, it definitely bothered me that she brought it up, as she can be weird about any of us taking time off -- needless to say I took it as a criticism. I told her previously what the surgery was for, and she casually mentioned that these should be "vacation" days too, but they are definitely going in my file as sick leave days.

I'm sure I'm overreacting, but my non-food-eating brain isn't being entirely rational at this point in the day. I'm definitely stressing out way easier than usual.

So I kind've regret having told her, but on the other hand, our director, her boss, I didn't tell, though he knows I was out for surgery. But it ends up being weird having conversations about the surgery (how am I doing, etc) and leaving this big gap and just not saying what it was for. Mostly, I think it'll just soon be pretty obvious which is why I did tell my boss. I just wasn't comfortable with lying. And when I tried to just be vague, she was full of questions, so when it came down to it, I had to either lie or be truthful, no middle ground. Seems as though there would be complications no matter which option you choose!

Curious how others handled their situations at work.

An inspiring quote

Just came across this great quote on a message board today and thought I'd share.

"I will view this band like I do my wedding rings. It is my commitment to losing the excess weight and living the rest of my life in ONEderland."

Love it!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Weight Loss Goals

Just added some weight loss goals to the side panel on the right.
So I can consistently keep track of where I am and where I'm headed...

Small goals are attainable, and I've already got one crossed off the list. Yay! For the foreseeable future, I'm most eager to reach the 40 lb goal as that'll get me into a bunch of clothes that haven't fit for a while.

I'm happy with the 2009 goals. Though I think my 2010 goals may be too ambitious, so I reserve the right to adjust those come next year!

15 pounds lost
by surgery date (8/4/09)

25 pounds lost
by end of post-op diet (8/25/09)

40 pounds lost
by bridal shower (9/26/09)

50 pounds lost
by 35th birthday (10/16/09)

60 pounds lost
by wedding! (11/7/09)

75 pounds lost
by New Years 2009

85 pounds lost
by honeymoon (Feb 2010)

100 pounds lost
by TESOL (3/23/10)

110 pounds lost
by June 2010

125 pounds lost
by Aug 2010

I've been using visualization techniques and these small goals are useful for that as I can see myself and how I'll be at each stage of weight loss.

I should put pics of myself at each of those weights over the years as an extra added bonus! Except this time I'll be moving forward...

Post Op Recovery has been a series of TV Marathons

I rented a handful of movies, but instead post op recovery has been a series of TV marathons. First Monk, then In Plain Sight (which i hadn't watched before, but like), NCIS, and now Law & Order Criminal Intent. Looks like we've basically just stayed put on the USA network.

The TV is fine and I'm not overly tempted by the food commercials as I don't have much of an appetite, but I must admit I'm bored. (I've been at home for five days!) And being bored does make me want to munch, out of lack of anything to do rather than anything else. What I'd really love are some nuts or popcorn or chips.

Mom left this morning, I slept half the day, and I'm back to the computer and TV.

Physically, I feel fine even without any of the hydrocodone they prescribed me. I've surprised myself that I do get tired when we went on walks with the dogs this weekend. So my stamina isn't back yet, but I'm not in pain at all. The gas pretty much was gone after the first day (That was worst in the hospital). I had some soreness into day two and since then the only bother has been a little bit of heartburn. I have a twinge here and there at the incision site if I overdo it but otherwise I'm all good. Just waiting for my full on energy to come back.

Tomorrow I have my daily commute which involves a walk and stairs on both ends on the subway, so we'll see how that goes. Definitely taking the local train rather than the express so that I can be sure and get a seat, plus, less stairs.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Mmmm....Tomato Soup

I'm finally eating, well drinking actually since I'm on the liquid diet. No veggies this time. Only thin liquids.

My appetite isn't entirely back, but I'm okay to eat. And I am staying to about 800 calories a day.

Just got back from the grocery store with mom. She was nice enough to carry the groceries back. I decided to try some new soup, and since tomato soup is on the "approved" list, I tried this V8 tomato soup shown above.

Yum! I'm sure some of it is that it's the first thing I've had all week beyond protein shakes or vitamin water, but it's really good soup. I just mixed it with a bit of lactaid skim milk to thin it out a bit...

Heart Bandages

Check out these fun heart bandages my surgeon used!

The one shown is the big one, but there were actually four more small ones, each with a heart embossed on it. Five total incisions.

I actually just took them off yesterday, as instructed. The steri-strips that are left will dissolve on their own. The incisions have started to itch a bit too which i guess is a good thing!

(Who knew I'd ever post a photo of my stomach on the internet!)

New Before and After Pics

I've promised to add new pics weekly.
This is my first post op before and after...

Friday, August 7, 2009

Silly MadMen Fun

I just discovered a new app on the MadMen website,
Make yourself over in the style of 1950's Madison Avenue advertising executives.
Here's my first one above...a pretty good likeness I think.

But then for fun I went back and put together an "after." That's "me" on the right in the final photo. I love it! Talk about something to aspire to.

Yay Flowers!

Yay! Flowers! That's definitely a fun part of recovering. We have the fan going and it brings across a lovely scent of flowers as it passes.

Thanks everyone!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

My Lap-Band Procedure

So I had my Lap-Band put in yesterday, and so far it's a success! These pics are of me in the hospital afterwards.

As I've mentioned it was through NYU's Program for Surgical Weight Loss. I had an appointment to be at Tisch Hospital at 6am, and my surgery was at 7.30 a.m.

It was a bit weird because I actually walked into the operating room rather than being wheeled in. Mostly, I was super excited beforehand. The only thing that made me even slightly nervous was all the people in the OR and the medical student who asked if he could observe.

I wasn't entirely comfortable with that, but I said okay.

And I do have a weird thing about the IV in my hand, and it didn't help that they had trouble getting the needle in. The last thing I remember before surgery was saying "no, no, no" and shaking my head as they tried to get the IV in, but the IV had the medication so that kicked in pretty quickly.

Then I woke up with some pain from the gas they pump in for the surgery. One of the doctors said some of my pain was likely from a bundle of nerves that were probably disturbed near the where the lap-band was placed. (NOTE: The surgeon strongly disagreed with the other doctor's assessment when I had my check up...)

That secondary pain has lessened a lot. I'm also pretty horse from the tubing they put down my throat. My stomach isn't very sore in general.

But I was up walking around after a few hours and can get up and down on my own. I'm probably one of the few people who would've preferred to stay in the hospital. The bed was just easier to maneuver. But I could've gone home as early as 4pm that day since things went so well. Instead I opted to leave around 8pm.

I've mostly been sleeping since I got home.

More later.

Wedding Blogging Makes Me Want Cake

Thought I'd read through my favorite wedding blogs tonight as a distraction, however, too many blogs feature cakes.

And the DVR has a bunch of unwatched episodes of Cake Boss!

I did it! I'm banded...

more details to come...

My final "Before" pics

Alex took these pics of me just before I left for surgery.

The last one is me super excited. I was just so high-strung the day before the surgery, and the closer it got the more elated I got! I figured I'd get nervous, but I didn't really.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Woot! I made my first goal!

I made my first goal! After I saw how fast the weight was coming off, I made it my first goal to lose 15lbs before the surgery. And that officially happened this morning. And it put me in a new weight bracket I'm happy to be in.

Needless to say I was dancing around the house singing all morning.

I also want to get a new haircut before I go back to work from the surgery. A symbolic change as my hair is just out of control! We'll see if I'm mobile enough for that however.

My next goal is another 10 pounds this month while I'm on the thin liquids and then the mush diet.

Then another 15 pounds from there to fit into all my old "new" clothes I barely got to wear the first time.

In total, I want to lose 60 pounds before the wedding Nov 7th. 45 more pounds to go in three months. Aggressive but possible, I hope.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Inspiration Pics: More than 100 pounds down

This woman started about where I did and is more than 100 pounds down. In the second pic, you can see that her partner has lost some weight too!

Just a note, I don't actually know how she lost the weight. But it's inspiring none-the-less

Images via Dothezonk on Flickr.

More Weight Loss Inspiration

It's good to remember why I'm doing this.

Melting Mama is always an inspiration. Here's a pic of her and her husband before and after. I follow her blog as well, she's always got great posts.

For gigles, here's another after pic below with both her and her daughter in her fat pants.

One more day!

It's Sunday night so only one more day until my surgery!

I really really wish I didn't have to work tomorrow, but I do. However, I have the rest of the week off after that. I did agree to work from home Thursday and Friday if I feel up to it. At least just to check in on email.

I'm partially looking forward to this week because I get to stay home! I won't be having a proper vacation for a while, so I'll take what I can get. Everyone at work is taking vacations, and after the last few very hectic weeks at work, I'm happy to have the down time. I know I wont feel the same way post-surgery when I'm in pain and bored though.

As for today, I'm just trying to get stuff done before surgery. It rained today and that seems to have been all the excuse I needed not to do a bunch of stuff!

After surgery I wont be able to lift more than 10 pounds for more than a month as at least one of the incisions will cut through the muscle (to get the lap-band and port in place), so I had wanted to refinish a table but it rained.

Originally I was told that I could call Friday to find out my surgery time, but that was incorrect. I have to call after work Monday night to get the time. So I'll email friends and fam then with details.

I've just been rereading my surgical materials this weekend. On Tuesday I can't have any fluids or solids after midnight. Then I'll begin the thin liquids diet for 10 days. At least two protein shakes a day after the first day or two.

The countdown has begun!

Weight Loss Goals

I have a number of goals for myself once I lose weight.

One of those goals is to go to an amusement park. In general, I want to travel more.

I also want to buy some lingerie from Victoria's Secret and shop at normal stores like H&M and Ann Taylor.

It's fun to think about...

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Food is everywhere!

Oy! I consider myself highly suggestible, so it doesn't help that food ads and food references are EVERYWHERE!

Walking the dogs today, there was a Domino's pizza guy in the street shouting about their $4.99 pizza deal (times must be tough if they've taken to the streets for advertising!) But hey, it would've totally worked for me if I weren't on this diet.

And then later pizza came up in conversation.

And now I'm watching an ad on TV for a flaky toaster strudel. Mmm... Then Sonic, which I love, but there aren't any here that I know of.

We just didn't even bother watching one of the shows we like, Cake Boss. For obvious reasons!

Now I can see why NYU doesn't recommend that we watch TV post surgery.

A new wardrobe awaits

So we took a trip over to our storage unit today, (a walk, more than a mile, yay!) and I was wowed by all the fun clothes I had stored away!

I lost some weight last summer and bought some great new clothes. However, I only got to wear them a couple of times.

I don't think they'll fit me just yet as they are one more size down, but I'm hoping to squeeze into them by the end of August. That's my goal! Actually not squeeze. That I could do now. I want a flattering fit!

Boredom is my enemy

The weekends are the hardest. Totally want to munch even if I'm not hungry.

Usually, I'm pretty good about keeping a food journal. I'm particularly good about remembering what I've eaten, down to every little calorie, but since there's no variety in my diet, I can't keep it straight.

Did I have two shakes today or four?

I'm guessing three or four...but i also had a salad for lunch and steamed veg and soup for dinner.

I'm thinking I should set out the number of shakes I should eat each day so there's no question. Kind've like using a daily pill keeper so you know if you've taken your pills.

Wow, I'm not even 35 and my memory fails me!


Was just rereading through all my lap-band materials. I have two folders one of which I just always carry with me. That's proven to be quite useful given all the prep that has been required.

In rereading through my pre-op diet list, it says I should have 1000 calories per day. That is 5 protein shakes plus I'm allowed the things I've mentioned previously like coffee with skim milk, sugar-free jello, broth and up to two cups of certain vegetables.

The problem is that five Ensure shakes and the other items add up to more than 1000 calories per day. Even if I don't go crazy withe the broth, etc. On some days I've instead done 4 protein shakes per day to stay under 1000 calories.

In any case, I've completely avoided any fats and have certainly lost weight, but perhaps the nutritionist's paperwork needs a wee bit of clarification.

Went down a size!

Okay, so first off, this isn't my butt! However, these are my jeans. I just went down a size in my jeans. Yay! (I just happen to have three very similar pairs of jeans in three sizes! I just kept buying bigger sizes as I needed to... So I'm in the middle size now, though they are quite fitted.)

In general, my clothes are starting to fit again. A bunch of things had gotten too tight recently. Though I'm excited about the weight I've lost, I'm also frustrated that I'm still higher than my average since I gained like 25 lbs this year. Just ridiculous.

I must have gained even more than that since this time last year as I had gone on a no-sugar diet and lost some weight last August. Talk about gaining it back and then some!