18 November, 2015

Week 7

My weigh in this morning was 271.7 that is a loss of 43.3 lbs so far. 
Wow, just to think that I have almost lost 50 lbs in 9 weeks (counting the preop diet). That is an average of 4.8 lbs a week. I think I like the steadiness of 2 lbs per week as I know the first couple of weeks were water and my body adjusting. 

I have increased the types of foods I am eating and also the amount. Dense food make me fuller, faster, so this makes getting my protein in harder. I have been able to do both liquids at 64oz and protein at or above 60g for 2 days now. 
I did have my first dumping episode the other day. I tried having a few Fritos with my refried beans and salsa. This was not pleasant. I got the sick feeling in my tummy but never threw up more than slime. I felt clammy and had shakes. This turned into tummy cramps and I had to go lie down. I will not be trying that again, or any bread- chip- carbs, for a while. 
Protein first, vegetables second, carbs last. This is what the nutritionalist and doctor recommends. I will try to only get carbs from the vegetables I eat for a while longer. 

Baked pepperoni chips: these are the bomb for crunch!!
1 Pkg low sodium turkey pepperoni
Lay in single later on baking sheet
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes
Cool on paper towels to absorb grease (pat a few times with another paper towel. 
Not sure how long they last but 16 pieces is 70 calories and 9g protein. 

Water- I still don't like plain water, but I am learning. 
Decaf coffee- this is my go to in the morning and night. I picked up some sugar free syrups from world market. 
Regular coffee- I missed regular coffee. I asked the nutritionalist if I could have it again. 1 cup as long as I drink 1.5 cups of water. Well, I tried it. I got the caffeine buzz. Then I got the caffeine crash. I swear it lasted more than a day. I just couldn't find energy. So, lots of water to flush the system and my energy is back. I'm sticking with decaf for a bit longer. 
Decaf tea- decaf black tea, not a huge fan. Decaf Constant comment, Egyptian licorice or licorice mint OMG yum! No sugar necessary. 
SF Alpine Hot apple cider- I love this drink! 
SF hot  chocolate- I add this to my decaf coffee once in a while. 

I am walking a mile to a mile and a quarter 6 days a week on the treadmill in the morning. I also try to walk outside in the afternoon weather permitting. Monday was beautiful and I walked the boardwalk here in GH. 
I did not walk the pier  because I don't feel secure enough on my knee to do that yet. However, this was an accomplishment because I had never walked from one end of the boardwalk to the other and back before.  I did take my knitting and sit at the end for a bit.

It is also the first time I have hit 10k steps since getting my Fitbit. My ankle was a bit sore after but I felt accomplished. I think I need to get new tennis runners. Maybe ones made for walking. 
Today a new addition to my fitness routine showed up. The ladies at Knittin'in the Mitten chipped in to help me get a Weider ultimate body works machine. It's like a Total gym but I liked the reviews on this better and it was 1/2 the cost. 
I look forward to getting it set up and in use soon. 
I also have Dumbbells I use for exercises I was given and have asked Boo if I could borrow one of her exercise balls. Soon. 

Non- Scale Victories:
I can cross my legs. 
I can curl up in the chair. 
I had to buy smaller undies because the old ones were falling off. 
I bought a pair of fleece lined leggings and they fit. 
I walked the boardwalk.
I did 10k steps in one day

Just me:
I'm happy. I am learning to like myself instead of ignoring myself. I do not react well to negativity or judgements. I have been told I am a bit mood swingy. I'm relearning what it is to want to live. Give me time, I will be me, just a whole new me, once again. 

14 November, 2015

A necessary vent

I do love my friends and try not to upset them, I guess a few do not have the same feeling towards me. I have talked about letting go and taking the negative out of my life. A few things have been bothering me and I am using this space to talk about it. 
When did friendship become a competition? 
I am a bit confused. I am not the type of friend who is in competition with anyone I know. If playing a game, I will compete but in life, we are all equals and each just trying to survive the best way we know how. 
I did not have gastric bypass because I wanted to lose more weight than you on a diet. I had gastric bypass because I was morbidly obese and was losing the will to live. I found a spark and now want to live again. I am proud to be your friend, I will support you in your endeavor to exercise and lose weight as well, but please do not compete with me. I am out of the race. I do what I have to do for me. I do not feel that I have to exercise 8x a day in order to get fit. My doctor has me on a balance of exercise and healthy eating that is exactly what I need. If you are not my doctor or my husband, please do not advise me on what I should be doing.  Yes, this has upset me and I know I would blow my top if I actually told you this in person. 
Another thing-
A different friend- 
When did friendship become tit for tat? 
Friends do not keep track of who called last or who paid for the last cup of coffee you shared. In the last 5 years, my health went down hill and I have begun to slowly crawl out of the 6ft deep hole I had been digging. When I see you in public and say we should get together, telling me I stood you up is not the answer I expected. Why did I not show up? Was I going through something that you were too self absorbed to notice? No, a real friend says sure, would Thursday for coffee work for you? 
Maybe I am old school, but I don't think there is a time limit on a friend date and we should just be thankful we have someone we can call a friend. 

13 November, 2015

Soup Weather

A storm has rolled into West Michigan. It is very windy outside, snow flurries with sleet and hail. It is truly the end of autumn and the beginning of winter even if the calendar says we have another month. Winter to me means big pots of soup. My husband, Sarge, really didn't like soup when we first moved in together. Over the years, he has learned that I make hearty soups, not soups that need a sandwich to go with in order to make you full. It's all about the protein and fiber that is in the soup. 
He got used to it because I love soup! I could eat it for lunch or dinner most nights of the week. I don't always make him eat soup, today I made him a pasta dish as well so he had a choice. 

Yes, I almost always cook in cast iron. 

Here is the soup I made today:

Chicken and vegetable soup

1 lb cooked smoked chicken- shredded
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup fat free Italian dressing
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can pinto beans
1 tbl better than bullion chicken
4-6 cups water

In Dutch oven or large pot put dressing and bring to a boil. Add chopped veggies. Cook until tender. Add remaining ingredients and bring back to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes. 
Serves 8
218 calories, 21g protein, 6g fat per serving. 

I try to get 20g of protein at each main meal and this not only makes my tummy happy but it also gives me the protein I need. 
The dietitian told me to go up to 900 calories so my body doesn't go into starvation mode. I'm trying, it's not an overnight process.

Next up for me will be Italian wedding soup with fresh spinach and mini meatballs. Mmmm I'll post the recipe when I make it. 

11 November, 2015

Six week post op

Today I had my 6 week check up. 
I started at 315 lbs. according to the doctors scale, I am now 274.6
Take off 3 lbs for clothes and that matches what my scale says at home. I'll take it. 
I skipped last week on the blog because I was at Knittin' in the Mitten knitting retreat. Yep, the one I host. I think everyone had fun. 
Monday was a day of returning everything and Tuesday I had an MRI about the eviction of barnacle bill the cyst. I'll know more by Friday. 
As to my weight...
I'm happy at 6 weeks out. The doctor, dietitian, and exercise specialist are all happy with where I am. None of them want me to go further with exercise until the cyst is gone. I do need to start taking iron again and will be taking it for a while with the type of surgery I had. I'm also going back to celebrate vitamins instead of the Flintstones complete chewable vitamins. The celebrate are more suited to the actual counts I need. Plus, the celebrate taste better. 
My true happiness: 
I can go back to real food! As long as my pouch can handle it I can eat it in small portions. I still have to introduce foods slowly like you would to a baby. One food at a time. I'm still not allowed alcohol, but I'm not a big drinker, so this doesn't bother me. I am able to introduce more meats, some breads (toasted or crusty) and can now try rice and white potatoes. First will always be the protein portion of my diet, then the vegetable and next the carbs. This is so I get the nutrients that I need. The dietitatian was very happy that I am a foodie that wants to get rid of processed foods and artificial sweeteners. I can try to introduce honey and agave into my diet and see how Tazzy reacts. 
Yep, I'm excited about food. Weird thing is I'm not hungry, but now I know that when I feed myself I am not just putting processed crap into my body. I have been gluten free since mid September. It was advised that I try gluten free bread before going full wheat so it will be easier on my tummy. It was also advised that I keep some easy foods on hand for when Tazzy says no about what I am feeding it. If I get sick or have dumping, I will want to step back to soft foods for a day or two. I have not had this happen yet, I know one day I will. 
This last weekend I had my first interaction of negativity since I began this journey. I don't want to go into it here but suffice it to say that if I say I am going to do something, do not tell me I can't. I talked to my doctor about the negativity and was told that I now have a goal. They do not believe in saying you can't do something unless health or life is in danger. So, I am saying this again, if you want to be negative, go talk to someone else. This is a positive space and really, with everything I am going through, my give a fuck is broken. The real me is coming out and I very much like myself. 
Thank you to all for your support. 


28 October, 2015

Letting go- Week 4 post bariatric surgery

I am now into stage three of eating post hospital clear liquid. 
Stage one was liquids only- broth, protein shakes, popcicles, jello.
Stage two added yogurt, refried beans, ricotta or cottage cheese, maltomeal, cream soups, and mushy veggies.
Stage 3 allows me to add some meats. I'm not allowed red meats, pork or lamb. It was suggested I try turkey lunch meat first as it is thin and moist. I can also add eggs. This is if Tazzy allows me to add these things. 
On Saturday I added 1 ounce of Oscar Meyer mesquite turkey. Tazzy didn't hate it, but was a bit more active than normal. I was ok. 
On Sunday I tried a low fat string cheese. Ate it very slowly and chewed..and chewed..and chewed. So satisfying! 
Tuesday night I added enchilada sauce to ground turkey. Added a bit of refried beans and ricotta cheese as sides and was very happy with my meal. 
Today, 4 weeks from surgery, I had one scrambled egg with 2tsp of shredded cheese and cracked pepper. I was told to watch out for eggs as some people cannot digest them well. It's been a half hour since I finished and all seems ok. 
However, I was adding the meal to my fitness pal. Now, for the last two weeks I have had a triple zero Greek yogurt and 2 tablespoons of PB2 for breakfast. That is 165 calories and 20g of protein. The egg and cheese- 190 calories and 13g of protein. I'm supposed to get over 60g of protein a day. I think I will have eggs on special occasions but for now, I will stick with yogurt for breakfast. 
I found an article on proteins: http://www.womenshealthmag.com/food/high-protein-foods and will be trying out different items so I'm not stuck in a rut. 

I did have a loss this week I am at 281.4. We got a new scale that measures everything. I'm going with my top weight from the doctors office of 315lbs and I have lost 33.6lbs since all this started. I will take the small loss and walk with it. Oh, walking, I am up to 40 minutes at 2.5mph. Huge advancement from where I began. Knee twinges have been less this week. I'm thinking of buying a Weider Ultimate gym, like a total gym but reviews are better on Amazon. I won't be able to use it until I am cleared by the doctor on exercising abs and cleared by the GYN about my cyst. 

As to Barnicle Bill the cyst- yes, I named it. I name everything! The doctor wants me to go in for an MRI on the 10th. I have to do blood work on the 2nd for it. I hope eviction day comes soon after. I'm not in pain, just really don't want to hang on to something that is not necessary. 

Talking about hanging on to things that are not necessary, part of losing weight is also finding myself. Not a midlife crisis type of finding myself, but getting back to who I feel I am. Part of that is letting go.

 Letting go of stuff- 3 trips to goodwill so far.

Letting go of the negative- I'm a positive person who is a realist. I don't care for negativity in my life and even the smallest amount can affect my attitude. Dance when you can, dance harder when you shouldn't! 

Letting go of toxic people- in my "oh so wise" 46 years of life, I have learned that my gut is something I have to listen to. When someone comes into my life, I get a gut reaction on how I feel about that person. Lately, a few people have come into my life that have given me a sour tummy. I talked it over with my husband, Sarge, and these people do not need to be in my life. I don't just mean acquaintances, some of these people are related by blood or by marriage in on way or another. I can be civil, as an adult we have to be in certain situations. However, my home is my safe zone and no one enters who is toxic to that environment. 

Letting go of food- I thought food was my friend. I thought food was my empathy partner. When I couldn't get emotional with people or needed to lick my wounds, I turned to food. Now, not so much. I have to remember to eat. I'm not hungry. I don't graze. Yes, I'm only a month out but Sarge asked me last night if I was hungry and the honest answer is no! I still love to cook. Watching him eat and enjoy food is worth the time it takes to cook. Food is something I need to survive not something that gives comfort. This is the change I needed. 
Preop- 3.5 weeks. Same outfit. I can see small changes. 

That is it for this week 

22 October, 2015

Three weeks post op

My scale held steady this week. I had read about the week three stall online. I was prepared, but it's still a bit disappointing. But, my body is "normal" and it is adjusting from not only the surgery but also from the lack of caloric intake. I'm getting better at getting my 64oz of water and my 60g of protein. In order for me to see that everything was ok, I asked Sarge to retake my measurements. It has been 5 weeks since I took the preop measurements. I am very happy with the results. 
I think I will do this at least once a month for a while. 
I have had another non scale victory. I was on the treadmill one morning and I knew my yoga pants were loose, but I didn't think they would fall off...yeah...good thing I was at home. I can fold over the top of these pants and put a drawstring in, so I am planning on doing that,soon. They are super comfy pants for exercising. 
Let's talk food! I'm on mushy, puréed food right now. Refried beans, ricotta cheese, Greek yogurt, steamed vegetables, cream soup. I could not stomach the hot protein foods from the doctors, so I gave them to the clinic to hand out as samples. If I had had a sample of these, I would never have bought them. One more week of mushy foods then I will try introducing meats, eggs and more real foods. 
I feel good except for my knee which twinges every time I stand up. I also have the barnacle of a cyst. On Tuesday I had an external and internal ultrasound. It is 13cm by 11cm. Yep, grapefruit size. I'm supposed to hear from my doctor on Friday so I will know soon what is going on. 
I think that is all for this update. 

14 October, 2015

2 weeks out

This last week has been full of changes. 
I was allowed to have soft foods again. My first choices, refried beans with low fat cheese and salsa, mashed potatoes with gravy, cream of mushroom soup, or yogurt. Yum! 
30 minutes before I eat, I stop sipping, I don't start sipping until 30 minutes after I eat. This gives time for the food to digest without being pushed through. I was worried about never feeling that "full" feeling. I have now felt it and know the signs to back off and stop. I won't move on to the next introduction of foods until week 4. 
The scale has been going down. Oh boy has it. 
I was 315 when I started a month ago. That makes for about a pound a day. Wow! 
September 14th
October 14th 

I don't see a lot of change except in my hands and face. 
But I can feel the change as I can walk 20 minutes without being winded. 
I working on a mile, not there yet. 
I have energy! I think the house is getting cleaner than it has been in ages. 
My knee gives me twinges. The last day or two I have had to massage it and put biofreeze on it. Not sure what is up with that. 
Hardest thing right now, getting in my water. 64 oz used to be a breeze to drink. No, not do much. I have done it the last 2 days. 
Next up, I go to see the gyn about that cyst on Friday.