Weigh-Ins are on MONDAYS - Updated July 3, 2017

Surgery Date: October 20, 2009:

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Not contributing to the childhood obesity epidemic...

and not contributing to my calorie count for the day...trick-or-treaters can choose either eyeball bouncy balls or vampire teeth.


Friday, October 29, 2010

Weigh-in Day...and the Results are...

A loss of  2.1 lbs.  I am so glad that that crazy plateau is busted!

Pounds to lose to get to goal: 4.3

Total lost: 106.7 lbs

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Confession Time

I went to a lunch meeting yesterday at a Chinese restaurant in town. 

Our hosts were so kind to make it a Halloween themed meeting for us.  (note: hint of sarcasm).  Therefore, "Fun Size" Reeses PB cups, KitKats, M&Ms, Twix, etc were spread down the middle of all the banquet tables. 

I bet you can guess what happened next...

While waiting for the food to arrive, I enjoyed:
  • 1 KitKat
  • 2 M&M Peanut packages
  • 1 Reeses PB cup (the reg size, not minis)
Then I ate:  Mar Far Chicken...not sure why people think this is Chinese.  Anyways, it is chicken pieces breaded and deep fried. with lots of sweet/sour sauce.  Yum. 

A lunch of poor food choices.

That is all.
PS: Weigh-in tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Want to Know What Makes Me ANGRY!?!!?

Are you ready to get angry too?  Well check out this article on Marie Clare.  

THIS BLOG by a bariatric doctor did an excellent post on this article today.  Love that response comment he posted by Jezebel.

What do you think?

PS: I love, love, love that "Mike & Molly" Show.  Just watched it on the DVR last night.  :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fat No More

My surgeon's practice put on a special seminar last night that featured a 2 hour presentation/talk from Gail Engebretson who is 7+ years out from gastric bypass surgery.  She has maintained her weight loss of 170lbs and has written this  BOOK called "Fat No More; Long-Term Success Following Weight-Loss Surgery".  I will be reading the book over the next few weeks and will post a review.

The main theme of the evening was fear on gaining the weight back.  This was perfect for me as this has been something that I have been thinking about lately.

During the break, I did get a chance to speak with Gail briefly.  My question..."Do you still count calories?"  The round about answer she gave me was ...yes, sort of, I keep an eye on what I eat daily.  Hmmm....I'm still thinking about that...

Once I am done reading the book and review, I will pass the book along to the blogosphere with a giveaway of some sort.  It's a signed copy too!

Monday, October 25, 2010

How I make it happen...at work

Here's how I make my healthy eating/lifestyle happen while I am at work.

This is all routine for me now, but it took awhile for it to become second-nature. 

Here's a pic from my desk today:
From Left to Right:
  • Pink Post-It Note: I start a new note each day and keep track of protein and calories.  I take it home with me at the end of the day to keep tracking my intake.
  • Vitamins.  I take my B12 and Calcium/D chews in the morning at work.
  • Water    I use a 16.9 oz bottle so I have to get up every few hours to refill it in the cafeteria. Keeps me moving up and down the hallway.  I know that I am on track if I have drank at least 4 bottles before I leave for the day.
  • Mini-Fridge: I know that not all of us have this option, but there is usually a communal fridge in most offices.  If you open my mini-fridge right now you will find: 4 x Fage 2% yogurts, Skim Milk, and String Cheese.  If you ask my male coworkers what they think is in the mini-fridge, they'll say beer.  :)
Here's a pic of my desk drawer:
From Left to Right:
  • Sugar Free Oatmeal: 100 calories and great in a pinch for a quick snack
  • Hot Cocoa mix: 25 calories
  • Soup (at the top): 70 calories
  • Crystal Light drink mixes (Target flavors are the best in my opinion)
  • Calcium/Vit D bites
What do you do to be successful with your healthy lifestyle while you're away from home?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Playing "Jared"

Yep, I guess it's about time for me to show some "Playing Jared" photos...You know Jared, from Subway?  I eat Subway a few times a week. :)  Usually a english muffin size Sunrise sandwich with no bacon and with egg white. For lunch.  yum.

Anyways, back to Jared, here he is:

Now it's my turn!  I saved two pieces of clothing from my "before" days.  A pair of shorts and a pair of work pants.  They were TIGHT before I began my journey, I remember the waist bands used to rub on my belly and leave red marks by the end of the day.

please ignore my fabulous workout hair....

Size 22W Jean Shorts:

Size 22 Petite Lane Bryant work pants:

Friday, October 22, 2010

Weigh-in Day...and the Results Are...

a loss of 2.3 lbs!  WOO HOO!  I think this plateau is busted!

6.4 lbs to GOAL!

Thursday, October 21, 2010


First of all, thank you all for your fabulous and supportive comments on my Bandiversary post yesterday.  You guys are the BEST!

Onwards to today's post....

I have noticed a new phrase has worked it's way into my vocabulary... I said it on Monday, then again I said it yesterday.

What phrase is it you ask?

"I'm not brave enough"

Yeah, pretty pathetic right?  Where is this self-defeating attitude coming from?  Hmmm...

Example?  My workout clothes. 

I have always gone with the "safe" big T-shirts and stretch pants. Isn't that what all the Big Girls wear to workout?  Heaven forbid I show anyone my batwing arms and wobbly bits! Gasp!

Wait a minute, I'm not really one of the Big Girls anymore...a Big Girl is disguise now.

So, on Tuesday this is what I wore to Zumba class.  I was a little uncomfortable and out of my comfort zone, but as the class went on, I noticed that I could move more freely to the music.  I had a great time and just let my batwings flap, flap away! :)

PS: tomorrow's weigh in should be good!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Yes, it has been exactly a year since my surgery.  Time has flown by!

This post is for all the pre-ops and newbies looking into gastric banding surgery.

I hope that I can provide some insight into what life has been like for the past year.  Please keep in mind that each bandster's journey is unique.  I don't think that there are any words of wisdom below...but rather what I did along my journey to make the band work for me.  Keep in mind, everybody's journey is different.

Looking back on my mindset back on my day of surgery, Tuesday October 20, 2009, I remember how I was so determined to make this final weight loss attempt a complete success.  I had tried everything...Weight Watchers many, many times...Atkins...South Beach...you name it, I had tried it.
I have almost lost all of my excess body weight...Wow...a strange concept...I am still trying to wrap my head around that

Why do I think that I have been successful with my band? Sure, I try to keep doing all the things that I shared in THIS POST back in January, however I'm not anywhere close to perfect, so there are days when I don't do any of those things.

Here are some other reasons why I think that I've been successful with my band:
  • I tell everyone and anyone that has asked "how are you losing weight?" about the band.  For me, this is a way to keep myself accountable.  It is also a chance to share info with others that may benefit from learning about different options of weight loss surgery that are out there.  My response to that question usually goes like this "Well, I eat about 1200 calories a day of high-protein foods, exercise about 4 times a week, and I had lapband surgery in October"  My hope is that they realize that it's about more than just the band.
  • I have a very "black and white" mentality about a lot of things in life...in my brain things are either "right" or "wrong".... and "on" or "off".  Therefore, I really threw myself into this journey of being a compliant lapband patient.  Don't worry, I am trying to find those "gray" areas in life and on this journey...it's still a learning experience each day.
  • My slight obsession with personal finance and budgetingSuze Orman is my BFF....catch my drift?   I don't buy anything over about $500 without researching it thoroughly on Consumer Reports, Cnet.com, and making at least 1 spreadsheet.  OCD? Structured?  Absolutely.   Since my insurance coverage through work is CRAP, I was/am a self pay patient.  I was (and still am) focused on the THOUSANDS of dollars that I spent on the pre-op appts, surgery, and aftercare.  Can you say E.X.P.E.N.S.I.V.E.?  But totally worth each and every penny.  From my calculations, that's about $161 per pound lost.  I would probably be driving a new-to-me (used) Honda if I hadn't had the surgery.  Therefore, I sometimes remind myself of the analogy that I wouldn't put sand in a new car's gas tank, then why would I shove junk food in my mouth.
  • A FABULOUS surgeon's practice that is very aggressive with fills (Hi Reeger! NP Extraordinaire!).  The aftercare is SO IMPORTANT.  Sure, I could have found a cheaper surgeon farther away, but I personally wanted to be close to my surgeon's practice in case of any problems and for fills.  My surgeon's office is about 4 miles from my house and work.  I can get fills/unfills pretty much as often as I want (within reason, of course).  I have heard horror stories from my support group where patients had to wait 6 months post-op for their first fill at other practices. yikes!  I had 4+ ccs in my band at surgery and even passed up my first fill at 4 weeks post-op because I didn't need it.  Check out how fast I dropped the weight back then.  I love my Lap Band.  The Realize band is empty until the first fill in the office.  I have learned from others in my support group who have the Realize band that there are sometimes hunger issues early on - before any fills. 
I my opinion, the band is not a cure all or a quick fix for weight loss.  Here's my take on it:
  • The band does about a 30% of the weight loss "task."  Keeps me full longer and keeps my portions small.
  • 70% is MENTAL.  Yep, in my opinion, it's mostly up to me and my mind.  There's a lot more mental work involved than I originally thought at the beginning of this journey.  I have to make correct food choices, whether to exercise or not, take my vitamins...etc.
  • Am I still tempted by foods that I shouldn't eat?  ABSOLUTELY...every day...isn't everyone? Would I rather sit on the couch after work and watch TV instead of going to Zumba or for a power walk?  YES.  Therefore, one of my biggest fears is that my old behaviors will creep back in to my life and I'll gain all the weight back...
What have I GAINED from this experience?
  • An incredible network of support and friendship that I never expected to find in all my fellow bandsters and weight loss bloggers.
  • An understanding that for me, the band is for appetite suppression and not extreme restriction to the point of only being able to get liquids down.  If I eat a sensible small protein-based meal (1/2 a cup to 1 cup), I will not get hungry for 4-5 hours after.  That's what the band is for me.
  • A huge amount of respect for those who can make exercise a daily part of their lives.  No days off, just "gotta do it" attitude.  I still struggle with exercise, but I know that it is the key for me to keep the weight off.
  • The concept that there is no "done" on this journey.  There are goals to achieve and check off my list, but I will never be "done"....there is only "now"
  • And of course, a whole new wardrobe of size 8 bottoms and medium tops! YAY!
What have I LOST from this experience?
  • 102 lbs!  Another YAY!
  • The need fo prescription blood pressure meds
  • Knee pain after walking or up just one flight of stairs
  • Waking up in the morning with back pain
  • Swollen ankles and feet at the end of the day
  • The need to sleep all of the time...I was so tired.
  • My size 22/24 clothes
  • My size 44DD bras (yikes!)
What do I wish that I had done differently on this journey?
  • Taken my measurements (waist, hips, thighs, neck, wrist, etc) pre-op.  When the scale was unkind to me at a weigh-in, it would have been nice to see the measurements shrinking.
  • Better understood that each bandster's experiences are their own and we're all unique in our journey with this band.  I wish I hadn't compared my self to other bandsters. 
My recommendations for pre-op bandsters:
  • Ask your surgeon to take pics of your band when they're inside you on the OR table.  My band photos that I keep on my fridge is a daily reminder of this lifestyle that I chose. It might be a little gross/graphic, but it's a good reminder for me.
  • Find a chewable multi-vitamin you can tolerate the taste/size of...I still haven't found the one I like.  I keep bouncing back and forth between Bariatric Advantage, Bariatric Fusion, and the Unjury brands.
  • Find a way to make yourself accountable.  I do this with my Friday weigh-in posts.  I weigh in and post it every friday here on my blog...good or bad...I post it.  I will continue to do this when I enter maintenance.  Find your method of accountability.  Maybe a good friend? I have even heard of people who tweet their weight loss/gain for the week.  Whatever works for you.  I have a friend that will occasionally ask for me to text her a photo of me from the Gym/Zumba Class/etc to keep me accountable to exercise.
I am sending out BIG thank-you's and hugs to everyone that have been a part of my journey so far, in the blogging world and in my real live day-to-day.  I have appreciated your support and continued encouragement...I love my cheering section!

Monday, October 18, 2010

This Week's Mantra

"If hunger isn't the problem, then eating isn't the solution."

Not sure where or who that came from, but I like it.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Weigh-in Day...and the results are...

a LOSS of 0.8 lbs...YAY!

Do you know how much I worked this week for that 0.8 lb loss?!?! 

1100 calories a day and 50+ grams protein.  A solid 7 days of no junk, overeating, etc.  Probably the most focused and dedicated week ever post-op.

My exercise that I did this week:
  • 3 Zumba Classes
  • 1 Zumba Toning Class
  • 2 x 45 minute power walks
I am also starting to see that clothes are fitting better even though the scale isn't moving as much. 

Back in mid September I bought these size 6 jeans that were "someday-I-will-fit-into-them-jeans".  They barely zipped...a serious tourniquet...blood supply to my legs were being cut off.  LOL.  Well, I tried them on the other night and while there is still some serious muffin toppage going on....they are fitting better.  So I am seeing progress in other ways.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


No, this is not a Halloween-based post, but rather to report that it looks like I lost my first follower.  It happened sometime after my post about the shooting range.  I scared someone away, I guess.    I am thinking that I might scare some followers away with my 1 year bandiversary post next week too on 10/20.  Should be interesting...

Anyways, I have been really focusing on my calories/protein intake (1100 calories/50+ g per day) this week.  I am determined to break through this plateau.  I've Zumba'd twice and taken 2 x 45 min power walks so far as well.  I read about how the last 10 lbs are the hardest to lose back early in my journey and they certainly weren't kidding around.

I would also like to report that I am in the "green" zone as well with restriction.  With a good protein-based meal of about a cup, I don't get hungry for about 4-5 hours.  Finally.

Happy Wednesday!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A First

This post doesn't really have anything to do with the band.

The political issue of 'Gun Control' is a very personal decision for each person.

My only exposure to guns has been on TV, in the movies, and the nightly news.  Therefore, in my mind, guns are for shooting people.  I have never really seen guns presented in real life as a tool for hunting, a means of self-protection, etc.

So, I move to Oregon 3 years ago and BAM, it seems that everyone owns guns here.  Yeah, it's kinda wierd for this sheltered "indoor girl."

My good friend is a hunter and and has guns for protection.  I have never before had a friend that has owned a gun or hunted.  I guess that's what I was in for by moving to the wilderness of Oregon! :)

Anyways, she's been asking me for over a year to go to the shooting range with her and her family sometime.  Well, today I finally took her up on her offer.  It was a good experience and glad that I had the opportunity.

I just don't think that I'll be running down to Wal-Mart (or wherever people buy guns) and picking one up anytime soon.

Here are some pics:

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Vanity Sizing Strikes Again!

I've seen a few articles lately on the issue of vanity sizing...

What is vanity sizing?  

Well, according to Wikepedia: "Vanity sizing, also known as size inflation is used to refer to the phenomenon of clothing of the same nominal size becoming larger over time."

I encountered vanity sizing today at Kohls.  I am ususally a Med/Large in most tops....well, this sweater fit perfectly...and guess what size?  Petite Small.  Crazy!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Weigh-in Day...and the results are..

A gain of .3 of a pound....yeah, pretty much maintaining...I am going to increase my exercise this week to bust through this plateau.
The last 5 weigh-ins have been hovering around the 154-155 range:

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

NSV Alert!

I went to Zumba class last night.  We begin a new session every 4-5 weeks with our city's park and rec dept.  Last night was the first class of the new session.  

Before class, we were all standing outside waiting for our teacher to arrive.  Then a new student walks up to me as asks "are you our instructor?"


I thought to myself... Are you asking me...this fatty...if I am a Zumba instructor?  Sometimes I feel like I still look like this:
I just smiled at her and said "nope"

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

WOW! The giveaway of ALL giveaways!

"The Live My C.H.O.I.C.E. contest."     www.LapbandChoiceContest.com

The folks over at Allergan (the company that makes the Lap Band) have a new contest as part of their CHOICE Campaign.  Through this contest, three inspirational people will receive a LAP-BAND® System procedure and one year of follow-up care, compliments of Allergan, Inc. (surgeon will be of the winners’ choosing).


Information about the contest:
  • Currently, approximately 15 million Americans are 100 pounds or more overweight; however, only 1% of the clinically eligible population is being treated through weight-loss surgery.
  • According to the ASMBS (American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery), about 25% of potential weight-loss surgery patients are denied insurance coverage three times before getting approval, with 60% of these patients reporting worsening health during the waiting period.
How to Enter: To enter the contest, all you have to do is submit a short essay or video about how your weight has impacted your health and your life, and why you think the LAP-BAND® System may be the tool to help you achieve your weight-loss goal. A family member or close friend may also submit a story on someone’s behalf. 

Enter Contest/Submit Your Story Page Here: https://considerer.lapbandchoicecontest.com/contest.aspx

Contest Rules: https://considerer.lapbandchoicecontest.com/Rules.aspx

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Quiche a la Lap Band Gal!

Here's an easy go-to meal that I sometimes have on the weekend.  

Mix up the following items and pour into a ramekin or mini quiche dish sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 375 F for 20-25 mins.   Total Calories: 275   Total Protein: 37 grams

1 Container of Egg Beaters: 60 cal  12 g protein
3 oz left over chicken breast:  120 cal  20 g protein
Spicy Three Pepper Hummus (2 TBSP): 50 cal  2 g protein
1/2 oz cheese: 45 cal   4 g protein


Friday, October 1, 2010

Weigh-in Day...and the results are...

a loss of .4 this week....not too bad considering the weekend in Chicago.

9.2 lbs to go to GOAL.

Total lost:  101.8 lbs

Have a great weekend!