Happy St. Patty’s Day! One year surgaversary!

Hey guys! Happy St. Patrick’s Day! 🙂 I am the worst blogger in the whole world. Lol. I need to find to time to write more. I have been epic-ly busy: working two jobs, going to school, attempting to run, and having a social life. It’s great but exhausting! 🙂 I wanted to give you a long post of what’s been going on since I last wrote a real post (like in July) but so much has happened… so I’ll just do a quick recap!

Weight loss

Weight loss has slowed/stalled drastically. This is a mixture of me not following the protein/water restrictions but it’s still going down… just very slowly. I’m working on getting my butt back into gear. Today’s weigh-in is slightly less than it should be because I’m extremely dehydrated… so really, it should be a little closer to 167ish. I did the 5 day pouch test 2 months ago and it was very helpful and hard at the same time. But then a lot of stressful things happened (just being overly busy) and I got back out of the protein counting and tracking. Going to attempt to do the pouch test again next week.

Highest Weight (Jan 3, 2013): 251.6 lbs

Day of Surgery (Mar 6, 2013): 231.5 lbs

One Year and 11 days Post-Op (Mar 17, 2014): 166.2 lbs

Total Loss: 85.4

Sometimes I don’t feel the difference… I still have pudgy tummy and all that jazz but comparing pics from the start until now, it gets me very emotional. I feel a million times better than this time last year. Overall, I’ve made many better choices than before. I’m healthy now and can do so many things that I couldn’t this time last year. I am grateful every day for Dr. Singh (my surgeon) and the second chance this surgery has given me at life. I still have about 17 lbs to go for my personal goal (150 lbs)… and about 37 lbs to goal for my “healthy range”/surgeon’s goal (130 lbs).

One Year Surgaversary

Exercise

Race  Bibs Start 2014Exercise, I’ve actually been doing really good at. I have signed up for a lot of races for 2014 to keep myself on track. I have also started a run-walk 10k program found on Coach Jenny Hadfield’s website. She has a bunch of different programs for varying race distances and for runners of all kinds (even people who never run before). It’s really great.

My goal this year is to fill my entire closet door up with race bibs! Do you think I can do it? I hope so. I have planned for about 18 or so races this year. Working my way up to a half marathon (which I’m super scared of)!!! But with lots of motivation and practice, I hope I will make it there.

I just did my first 5k of the year. The Kelly Shamrock 5k in Baltimore with my friends Christy and Brian. We had a lot of fun even though it was very cold (low 40’s). Thanks to the two of them for running at a slower pace with me and pushing me (they are both excellent runners), I was able to achieve a Personal Record (PR)! I finished in 35:59. Never in my life did I think I’d be able to do that. It’s very exciting!

ShamrockRun_01 ShamrockRun_02

I will post my race schedule when I have some more free time. Going to have dinner and hang out!! 🙂 We got a snow day today which means both my jobs are closed. Woot! Gonna enjoy it.

Personal Life

Things have been going good. Started working a second job to pay off some of these stinking student loans and to save for a house. So, I’m working 60 hrs a week. Fun stuff. I also decided to take a class at school… not sure why. I must be crazy. I’ve been doing lots of fun things with my friends and family. This weekend coming up we are going to an 80’s cover band concert where everyone dresses up. It’s going to be lots of fun.

I can eat anything now… nothing holding me back from being a normal person in front of others and skipping out on certain places because of food or getting sick anymore. That was bad last year. Thank goodness it didn’t last forever.

Life is good! 🙂


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Ten Month Surgaversary

Hey everyone! Sorry for the lapse in blogging. I promised I’d be back after my vacation with an update but then I went through a break-up and just needed some time. Don’t worry… I’m doing fantastic. I’m in a new relationship but I don’t want to jinx it by talking about it so soon. So, that will just have to remain a mystery for now. Lol.

Anyways…. Today is my TEN MONTH SURGAVERSARY!! Well, technically the 6th was but I couldn’t post in time. So, here’s an update photo.

10 Month Surgaversary

Highest Weight (Jan 3, 2013): 251.6 lbs

Day of Surgery (Mar 6, 2013): 231.5 lbs

44 Weeks Post-Op (Jan 6, 2014): 170.6 lbs

Total Loss: 81.0

What’s been going on?

I’ve been slacking with tracking and the holidays were no help with staying away from sweets. BUT overall I went down a few pounds but the scale has barely been moving the past few months. To get back on track, I’ve decided to partake in the 5 day pouch test. Which you can read all about here: http://www.5daypouchtest.com/. It’s used to get back on track and is supposed to help shrink the pouch. I’m not sure how well it works but figured I’d give it a try.

My main goals for the 5 Day Pouch Test are:

  • Start tracking my protein and water intake on MyFitnessPal again
  • Get a minimum of 70 grams of protein in per day this week
  • Drink a 64oz of fluid per day
  • Get the scale moving again

Here’s a side-by-side image of me from November… When I was at 75lbs down. I never really notice the difference as much as I do when I put these images side-by-side.
75 lbs down

Blogging plans

For the near future, I’d like to do a review of my time away and what’s been going on. I also want to let you know how the 5 Day Pouch Test turns out. Then I’d like to set up some kind of schedule… post maybe twice a month or so. It’s hard to find the time these days and I’m starting classes in a few weeks, so twice a month might be all I can do.

Talk to you all soon.

Xoxo

 

Update Photos && Graduation

Here are some of my graduation pictures and a new one taken today (very bottom). 🙂 I’m much more photogenic now that I feel comfortable in front of the camera. 🙂 I also added pictures to the Week 11 post about the river tubes.

Graduation Ceremony

Graduation Ceremony

Right after the ceremony.

Right after the ceremony.

All cute in my cap and gown!

All cute in my cap and gown!

Graduation #4.  Oh yea! 1.  High School 2.  Associates Degree (though I have 2 of these, I only walked once). 3.  Bachelor's Degree 4.  Master's Degree

Graduation #4. Oh yea!
1. High School
2. Associates Degree (though I have 2 of these, I only walked once).
3. Bachelor’s Degree
4. Master’s Degree
Will there be a #5?? Who knows.

Finally finished my Master's degree!  Woot woot!

Finally finished my Master’s degree! Woot woot!

My pretty new graduation dress.  :)

My pretty new graduation dress. 🙂

My other new dress.  I love that I can wear stripes now without looking like a fat cow.  Lol.

My other new dress. I love that I can wear stripes now without looking like a fat cow. Lol.

 

Questions and Answers! Haley, these are for you! :)

In a previous post, a fellow blogger, Hayley (from Addicted to Sugar) asked a few questions and I thought that they were something that would merit their own post since others are probably interested in the response as well.

Hayley said …

… I wanted to ask you somethings. Do you feel any different now, knowing whats gone on inside of you, it’s a big change, does anything feel strange or different? I’ve been wondering about that.
Are you getting any side effects? Is there anything you can’t eat now. Can you drink when you eat.. this bit worries me, being diabetic I have a drink with me at all times! lol
So far, was it all worth it?
Sorry if thats alot or you don’t want to answer, I watched something the other day and it’s scared me a little and I have my meeting this week, so getting all nervous! …

Truthfully, I do not feel much different… physically or mentally. I know it probably sounds so weird because I know I’m different now than I was a few months ago but I never saw myself as that big until after the fact. Physically, I’m starting to notice changes… I’m shrinking and I can feel areas (like my back for instance) that just feel smoother… not as many fat lumps. I look in the mirror and am shocked at my reflection (especially when I put on my old clothes that used to be tight). Mentally, I still feel like the same me inside, though I do not socialize by going to all food events or bars now and when I do, I have to make better choices. The mental thing is the hard part. You have to be careful not to fall back into bad habits and you have to deal with your mind craving things that your body doesn’t need. That part will be an everyday struggle after you get your hunger back. Sometimes I feel sad that I cannot partake in my old habits and binge on delicious but horrible-for-you foods. BUT I know that this is what is better for me and occasionally I’ll have a bite or two of something that isn’t great for me but it satisfies that craving.

Side effects… OMG! This topic would have made me cry a few weeks ago. I had so many problems with solid foods in the beginning. Every time I would eat meat (to get my protein in), I would get the foamies (dry heaving followed by spitting up white foam, along with bad chest pain). It didn’t just stop at meat… it seemed like most things I tried would make me sick. And then I got sick from my protein shakes because I had them way too much. This wasn’t a problem consistently but occurred on and off for a while. Finally something switched between weeks 10 and 11. Since then, I haven’t been having any issues with solids. Maybe I’m learning to chew more or eat slower (the two main causes of the foamies are doing these incorrectly). You have to really focus on eating post-op. Do not hold a conversation while you are eating or watch TV because then you do not pay enough attention and you eat too fast. You really need to be alert of your body (and how it reacts) when eating, especially the first few months post-op. Since your body is healing, each day may allow you to add a little more food or it may make you sick. You may not be able to tolerate a certain type or texture of food. If something makes you sick one meal, try it again in a week and it might go down fine. You are relearning how to eat and what you can eat. This can be an EXTREMELY frustrating process.

Drinking with your meals is a no-no. You are supposed to stop all fluids 30 minutes before a meal and wait 30 minutes after a meal to start drinking again. Does this mean you cannot have fluid if you absolutely need it? No. I always order a water with my food, just in case something gets stuck or if something is too hot. But that’s only in case of an emergency (and you should only take small sips if you need it). Your new pouch will not have enough room for food and liquids. So do not drink fluids with your meals or you may not get in enough calories throughout the day. There have been times when I’ve got food stuck and thought drinking would help that. I was sorely mistaken. If food gets “stuck” in your pouch, it normally means that your pouch is full and the liquid will not be able to go down… there is only one way for it to go and that is back up. This can have you running for the bathroom. It’s not a pleasant feeling and I highly recommend following the rule of waiting 30 minutes before and after a meal to drink.

Foods I cannot have… I have been having less issues as time goes on with foods but some foods that I cannot deal with are pastas, breads, and doughy textured foods. These foods get moist going down your throat and ball up (imagine a ball of play-dough) and get stuck in your pouch. Now, if it’s a really crunchy bread (like a biscotti or cracker) I do not have any issues. It’s weird. I thought crunchy things would bother me but they go down the best. Before surgery, I never liked crunchy foods but not they are my saving grace. Meats used to bother me but I’m slowly trying them again and am having much better luck now at almost 3 months out. Seafood seems the easiest to eat which is great because I’m from Maryland and we love our crabs and steamed shrimp (covered in Old Bay seasoning) here.

Was it worth it? Heck yes! If given the choice again, I’d make the same decision. There will be moments when you are sad and regret your decision (mostly when you are getting sick from eating) but after you learn how to eat for your new body and after your body has had time to heal, you will absolutely love everything about your new life. I am almost back to my high school weight and I have never felt more comfortable in my own skin than I do now. I feel sexy for the first time in my adult life. I feel happy that I can run around with my niece and nephews without wanting to pass out… I even jumped on the trampoline the other day with them which I never thought I could do again. Clothes shopping is the most amazing thing ever (I may have a slight addiction to shopping. Lol). I can wear heels and wedges again without my feet screaming for release. Exercise is easier (even though I still don’t really like it). And it’s almost swim suit season and I’m actually looking forward to it this year. I feel that surgery has given me a second chance at life and I do not intend on wasting it.

Feel free to ask me anything! I love to share my experiences and would love to hear yours. Visit my Contact Me page.

 

Week 11: Weigh In

Highest Weight (Jan 3, 2013): 251.6 lbs

Day of Surgery (Mar 6, 2013): 231.5 lbs

11 Weeks Post-Op (May 22, 2013): 196.4 lbs

Total Loss: 55.2

Weight_20130522

Sorry I didn’t post yesterday when I weighed in. I went swimming in the bay with my roommate/bestie! 🙂 I’ll post pictures when I get home. We got rafts and decided to test them out. This is the first year we’ve lived by the bay (within walking distance from the house) and we were so excited to finally have nice enough weather to enjoy it. Now, if only I had a base tan. 🙂

My goal for next week is 194.0. If I start walking more (I’ve been slacking hard core in the exercise department these days) and getting in lots of protein, I think I’ll be able to make my goal. Wish me luck.

Oh yea. And I got an A in my last class of my master’s! Woohoo. Graduation ceremony is tomorrow morning. Pictures to come from that as well. 🙂

After graduation, I will post a more detailed post about some things I wanna talk about. I just don’t have much time today to do that. 🙂

Photos as promised… Sorry it took so long to get them up.

One of my best friends, Sarah B... (my other best friend is name Sarah K.  lol).   We were getting our tan on.

One of my best friends, Sarah B… (my other best friend is named Sarah K. lol).
We were getting our tan on.

My albino legs... Told you I need a tan.

My albino legs… Told you I need a tan.

Me with my new river tube! :)

Me with my new river tube! 🙂