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

Surgery Date: October 20, 2009:

Monday, December 31, 2012

There Are Years That Ask Questions...

...and there are years that answer questions.

2012 was a year that answered a lot of questions for me.

I rang in the new year with some celebrations and dancin' in the kitchen (and Christmas stockings on my feet...shouldn't those be hung by the chimney with care?). Nope.

In February, with a trip to London, I discovered the answer to the question: "Am I strong and fit enough to climb up onto those monuments at Trafalgar Square?"  Yep!

In April, I found out the answer to the question: "Can I snow-shoe for two hours over hills and into the valleys?"  Yep.  I did.  Didn't even get winded!

Crater Lake
And then I learned the answer to the question: "Am I brave enough to stand up in front of a crowd and Karaoke?"  Abso-freakin-lutely!

I also figured out that paint-balling is fun for about 20 mins and then it's just kinda lame:

Can I jump out of an airplane?  More importantly: Is my weight low enough to meet the weight restrictions? Yes.

How many Non-Scale Victories (NSVs) and "firsts" did I experience during the year?  Too many to count:
Airplane seat NSV:
Cross my legs and tons of seat belt left over!

Fittin' into some sexy boots - over the calves!

First Bikini!
First jet-skiing!
How many Zumba and Jazzercise events can I shake my booty at? Lots.

Then I had to ask myself the tough question: "Where was my career headed?"

The answer: to California. Lots and lots of job interviews!
Golden Gate Bridge

I learned that the answer to the question, "how many boxes can your entire life's belongings fit into?" Exactly 138 boxes.

I found out that I could get back into lap swimming - which I hadn't done for years!

And where did I end my year?

I was back in the kitchen.

Enjoying a frosting-coated Christmas cookie and a vodka-spiked latte.

I wonder what 2013 will bring?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Weigh-in Day...

Today is my 179th weekly Friday weigh-in since I began my surgeon's pre-op diet in August of 2009.

  • Starting weight: 258.8 lbs
  • Goal weight: 145 lbs
  • Last week's weight: 142.4 lbs
  • Today's weight: 141.4 lbs

Looks like I actually lost about a pound over the Christmas week.

Still below goal.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Could You Save Your Own Life?

A friend of mine from high school posts the same exact email on her Facebook page each and every December 26th.

She's been doing this Facebook posting tradition for eight years now.

It's the email that she wrote to her family after living through the Tsunami in Phi Phi, Thailand on December 26th, 2004.

In her email she speaks of how she was sitting on the beach enjoying her vacation.

Hanging out in her bikini eating breakfast when she heard what sounded like the loudest thunder she had ever heard.

She looks over her shoulder to see a wall of black water headed towards her.

And she ran.

She ran up the nearest (and only mountain).

And she ran up over a mile and half of stairs.


She ran.

Up that mountain.

Up so many stairs.

She talks about how she passed people on the stairs who weren't fit enough to make it up the stairs and were swept away by the wall of the sea.

Not everyone could make it up the stairs fast enough.

She evens grabs a toddler on the way up and continues her run up the mountain, carrying him to safety.

She mentions how relieved she was that her usual daily exercise routine back home in the states involved the stair master.

There's no way that she would have been able to save herself from the Tsunami if she hadn't been in such great shape and so fit.

Then she mentions that once she reached the top of the mountain that there were so few people there.

So many people who couldn't climb all of those stairs were gone.

Into the sea.

Villages and people.

Gone forever.

I suppose Darwin was correct.

Survival of the fittest, right?


Over 230,000 people died due to that earthquake and the following tsunami.

I am so happy that my friend is alive today to tell the story of that fateful day on the island of Phi Phi.

Now, where was I on that same Christmas of 2004?

I was busy stuffing my face with Nutella filled crepes in the City of Lights.

Vacationing in Paris.

We woke up that morning in our hotel room to see horrible devastating scenes on CNN of the Tsunami.

That same Christmas of 2004, at 245+ lbs, there was no way that I would have been able to climb even one flight of stairs without becoming out of breath and having to stop to rest.

My health was not on my mind.

Being fit was not important.

Now, let's fast forward.

To just a few days ago....to the Christmas of 2012.

I am proud.

I am proud that I am now healthy enough to be able to save my own life.

I can walk up flights of stairs without becoming winded.

I can now walk a mile without stopping to rest.

And that's why I continue to fight this fight.

That fight that I fight each and every day to stay fit.

Why I put exercise at the top of my priority list now.

Why I go to Zumba now.

Why I ride that treadmill now.

Why I do, what I do.

...after Zumba

Sunday, December 23, 2012

What Happens in the Dressing Room...

I wandered into a very quiet and empty White House Black Market the other day.

The sales ladies had these really bored yet eager looks on their faces.

I ignored them and started perusing the clearance racks. There is no way I would pay full price at that store. As my previous Oregonian self would say: "Spendy!"

Anywhoozle, I didn't think I would find anything good and would be out of there in a few minutes, but oh no...

Those sales ladies had other plans for me and quickly convinced me to start a dressing room.

I ended up in the dressing room with some dresses, jeans, and a few tops.

I remember how back in the day when I was a fatty, I would settle for clothes that were just "OK".  I never felt that "WOW!" when trying on clothes.

I settled on whatever didn't make me look too fat and covered up all my wobbly bits.


I must have that WOW! feeling when I try something on or it just doesn't come home with me.

These jeans are a perfect example of a ho-hum, not exciting, not the most flattering jeans (size 6).  So I didn't get them. But the shirt turned out to be awesome! (size small). The sales lady said the jeans were too big on me and brought me a size 4 (no photo).  They were the winner. Sorry no photo of the 4s:

How can I be a size 4 in jeans yet this size 8 dress fit me perfectly and is a "WOW!" in my book? Yep, bought it! Another clearance find! 

This black dress was almost a "WOW!" but I didn't like how I couldn't wear my normal bras with it - Still a cute and classic little black dress though.
But do you see that blue pattern strapless dress hanging right next to me?  OMG. Loved it. A size 8, fit in every way, except over the chest. I could connect the hook, but the side zipper wouldn't go up.  Therefore, I needed a 10 and since it was clearance, that 8 was the only size they had.  Boo.  Sadness.

But just between you and me: I did a little twirl in it in the dressing room in that blue dress.  Totally twirl-worthy!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Weigh In Day & Flashback Friday!

Goal Weight:  145 lbs

Today's Weight: 142.4 lbs

Still rockin' my goal weight!


Now let's flashback in time.

To a much warmer day.

And a warmer locale.

No winter rain.

No chilly wind.

But we will have to add an extra ~115 lbs.

Back to the summer of 2006: Spanish Wells, Bahamas
~255 lbs
Always remember: there's no such thing as too much sunblock!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

How I Get My Lap-Band to Feel Tighter Without an Adjustment Appointment

Yep, this trick only took me about a year and half to figure out.

I can be super slow on the uptake sometimes.

I have discovered FIVE things that make my band FEEL tighter:

  • Stormy and rainy weather (AKA Low Barometric Pressure)
  • Mental stress (work drama, life drama, etc)
  • Too-tight sports bra.
  • Aunt Flo
  • Sinus / seasonal allergies

Since I can't control the weather. Which would be awesome by the way.

And I can't control the occasional life stress that comes into my life.

What do I do when my band feels loose and can't or don't want to get a Lap-Band adjustment appointment?

I stop taking my allergy medication!

A no brainer, right?

I usually take a Claritin each night.

But after not taking my Claritin for about two or three nights, bam! I wake up with what I would like to equate to approximately .2-.3 cc fill.  But without a adjustment!

No needles.

No making an appointment.

No taking time off of work for said appointment.

No 24 hrs of full liquids after said appointment.
By the way: an adjustment hurts WAY LESS than a eye brow wax.
I may be a tiny bit more sneezy but it's not that noticeable and is totally worth the extra restriction.

The best part? My hunger is reduced dramatically.

Is there something that makes your band feel tighter? Tell me:

Monday, December 17, 2012

What Day is Today?

Two years ago today, on December 17th, 2010 (a Friday), I stood on my scale on a dark and chilly morning, just before heading to work.

What did I discover?

I was at my goal weight for the first time.


I've maintained my 115+ lbs weight loss for two years now.

What does maintaining my weight loss mean to me?

This photo pretty much sums it up.  A quick snap of me at this weekend's White Elephant Christmas party.
I wore this same sweater last Christmas too.

Thinking back to the days when I was a fatty, I can remember what it was like to have to go buy a new shirt, dress, outfit, etc before a party or special event because nothing in my closet fit me.

Everything was too small.

Always too small.


But now, I can go look through all the fun clothes that I have hanging in my closet and know that they will fit me.

And to me, that's what weight maintenance is all about.


Friday, December 14, 2012

Weigh-in Day & Holiday Glitter Toes

Goal weight: 145 lbs

Today's weight: 141.0 lbs

Still below my goal weight!

Happy Friday!

Monday, December 10, 2012

After Spending Thousands of Dollars on My Lap-Band...

"You get what you pay for and pay for what you get..."

My Lap-Band surgery and the three years of after care has cost me approximately $18,826.

Yep, I've kept track.

That means that I've spent about $159 for each and every pound i've lost.

Sometimes when I'm sitting in my used 2002 Honda Civic with its small dents and the inside panelling peeling, I think: "I could be driving a NEWer car right now instead of getting that Lap-Band..."

Welcome to crazy-town...comparing my weight loss to a car.

Anywhoozle, let's now talk about some good news:

My Lap-Band adjustments are COVERED under my new health insurance plan at work!

I've located a bariatric surgeon near me and I've become their new best friend by calling to try and get a band adjustment appointment for the first week of January (when my insurance kicks in).

Yay! Let's do the happy dance.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Weigh-in Day & I'm Not Afraid Anymore

Goal weight: 145 lbs

Today's weight:  140.8 lbs

What am I not afraid of anymore?

Wearing horizontal stripes.

As a fatty, I NEVER wore anything with horizontal stripes because I thought that the stripes made me look fatter.  

Well, I can tell ya, I fear no more!
Now that you've lost weight, what are you no longer afraid of?  Tell me:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

A Conversation That Never Would Have Happened Before My Lap-Band Surgery

A coworker cruised past my office door today and said to me, "Every time I pass by your desk, you're always drinking water!"

My not-so-delicate-shoot-from-the-hip instant response, "'Cuz if I don't, I feel like crap."

She nodded in agreement.

...and then we had a convo about how drinking water makes her feel better too.

Then we wondered and discussed how many people are probably walking around in life feeling like crap and don't know it and think it's normal to feel so DEhydrated?

But I remember those dehydration headaches very clearly!

I also remember how sluggish and blah I used to feel.

My goal for water drinkin' is 90+ ounces each day.

That's not including my usual coffees or milks or protein shakes.

I try to remember to fill up my 30 ounce water bottle three times a day.

I've finally kicked the disposable plastic water bottle AND Propel Zero habit.

My teeth and the environment say thank you.

Do you have any tricks or tips to getting in your water each day?  Tell me:

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

How Many Days?

...the Wii Fit told me last night that I've been using the Wii for 1,041 days now.

When I first got my Wii Fit, it used to makes this really sad noise.  Kinda like "Wah-wah" (like the Debbie Downer noise) and tell me that my weight was "obese."

Then when I lost some weight, it sadly told me that I was "overweight".

Kinda a shameful experience.

But, since I reached my goal weight, it's COMPLETELY different.

It now claps, jumps up and down, and shouts, "THAT'S NORMAL!"

I've come along way with my Wii!

I'm patiently waiting for Jazzercise for the Wii.

Will you please invent it?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

New Banded Blogger Alert!

Hollee was banded on September 17th and has started a blog!

Stop by and say hello at Hollee's Weight Loss Adventure.

Here's a "now" pic of Hollee...she's 50+ lbs down!

That's a lot of hard work.  Well done Hollee.

PS: If you have started a blog about your weight loss journey and would like to receive a shout out from yours truly, then post a link to your blog below and I will be your newest follower (in a non-cult like way, of course).

Monday, December 3, 2012

What Happened This Weekend?

Other than enjoying delicious hot apple cider at a local farm and a chilly holiday hay ride through the apple orchard with friends:

I did something that I've done every Sunday night for about two to three years.


Each and every Sunday night I cut up a rotisserie chicken and portion it out into 3 oz. portions.

I know, what an exciting evening.

I do this because I have no time during the week to cook and I can throw a chicken portion into a quick cheese sauce (a recipe for another day) or on to a salad at work during my lunch hour.

This prep that I do on Sunday nights (which also includes hard-boiling eggs and I'm not going to show you boiling eggs 'cuz that boring) help me stay on track during the week with my food choices.

Without further delay...here's the photo montage of what happens in my kitchen each and every Sunday:
Cooked chicken bought from my local hippy-skippy grocery store.
Organic. Free-Range.
This chicken probably enjoyed some PBS cable TV
before it's death. No doubt.

Hack it up.
Chop it up.

Whipped out the food scale and my little food containers
(that I buy at Smart 'N Final)

Weigh-it out. I do 3 oz. portions.

Put on the lids and label those bad boys.

Into the fridge.
This entire process takes me about 5-6 minutes when I get home from the grocery store.

These portions last me until about Wednesday. Probably one a day.

That reminds me...do you know Karla over at "Daily Thoughts"?

She rocks some pretty awesome preparation with her food and cooking. Please go say hi to KarlaShe is always inspiring me with her dedication to preparing her portions and meals.

Do you have a routine that you follow with your food prep during the week that helps you in making good food choices?

Tell me about it. I wanna know.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Weigh-in Day

I've been way too busy to actually post here on the blog, so I'm pretty much doin' drive-by Facebook posts these days.

What I eat.

What I'm doing for fitness.

Really fabulous Non-Scale Victories (NSVs).

Ya know....just the usual daily stuff that I do to maintain my ~119 lbs weight loss.

Anywhoozle, onwards to this week's weigh-in:

Goal weight: 145 lbs

This week's weight: 140.6 lbs

Happy Friday!

Friday, November 23, 2012

After Turkey Day Weigh-in

Goal weight: 145 lbs

Last week's weight: 141.4 lbs

Today's weight:

Hope you had a fantastic turkey day!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Four Thanksgivings With a Lap-Band

Let's travel back in time and visit each Thanksgiving since I was banded in October 2009, shall we?

Here I am at approximately 5 weeks post-op at Walt Disney World in Florida. I remember being SO SUPER careful about my food choices and chewing. I wish I was still that careful - but I'm not.
Thanksgiving 2009
~ 225 lbs

Here I am in 2010 - serving pie.  Yep, that's my plate sitting there front and center.  A BIG ol' slice. Yum.

Thanksgiving 2010
~ 150 lbs
Here's last year's Thanksgiving - I pretty much went from Jazzercise that morning to throwing on my apron and cooking up a storm.
Thanksgiving 2011
~ 140 lbs
I am thankful for my Lap-Band.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Suck. It. In.

What's my plan to NOT overeat on Thanksgiving Day?

I'm going to wear my skinny jeans.

Muffin top and all.

...And not the stretchy kinda skinny jeans that feel like spandex.

I'm talkin' about those jeans that I never wear that are hanging in the waaaaaayyyyy back of the closet.

With minimal stretch to them.

The ones where I fold up my loose belly skin and stuff those skin folds into the waist band.

A tourniquet.

Good times.

Wish me luck.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Recipe Alert! Cottage Cheese Pancakes

These are super easy, low cal, and high in protein!

I posted this pic on Facebook this weekend and you guys asked for the recipe.
They aren't this yellow in real life.
Ask and you shall receive.

I've been making these pancakes since my surgeon OK'd me to move from the "mushies" to "soft foods" stage of the post-op diet. (at approximately 4 weeks post-op).

These pancakes can be made savory.

They can also be made sweet and cinnamony.

Here's that sweet version:

  • 1/2 Cup (~114g) low fat cottage cheese
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 TBSP (~17g) white flour
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 2-3 packets of Splenda
  • Cooking Spray (I use Organic Olive Oil Spray)

Combine cottage cheese, egg, flour, cinnamon, and Splenda in a small bowl or measuring cup. 

Spray frying pan and make 3-4 pancakes about 4" in diameter. 

Cook on each side for about 4 minutes. 

Makes 1 serving. 

250 calories; 22 grams protein.

I top the pancakes with a 1/4 cup of sugar-free maple syrup which adds 20 cals.

I think I will try adding canned pumpkin to this recipe one day. That may kick it up a notch.

Adapted from this recipe: http://www.bariatriceating.com/2011/11/04/cottage-cheese-pancakes/

Friday, November 16, 2012

Weigh-in Day & Post-Move Assessment


That's what she said.  A "post-move assessment."

Sounds like a phrase that would appear on a Bullsh*t Bingo card.

My faves are "synergy" and "touch-base." But really...there are so many good ones!


Let's recap all that has gone down in my life in the last three months:
  • I went through many, many job interviews...phone interviews, in-person interviews...even twelve in one day.  Seriously.
  • I accepted a new job in California.
  • I quit my job in Oregon.
  • I hunted for a new place to live in California.
  • I packed up my house in Oregon (ok, so maybe the movers kinda did this). Just so you know, supervising and delegating burn tons of calories. 
  • I lived in a hotel room for about two weeks.  With a cat.
  • I unpacked the entire contents of my house at my new place in California.
  • I started my new job in California.
As they say, moving and changing jobs are among the top five stressful things that can happen in one's life.

Yep, lots of stress.

But it's all good stress...I suppose.

And lots of chances to turn to stress-eating. 

Of course, I did stress-eat on occasion, but more often than not, I stayed on track with my food choices.

I've also had lots of opportunities to not make exercise a priority. 

But I've been rockin' 4 or 5 Zumba and Zumba Toning classes each week. That's 240-300 mins of fitness each week.  

When I stood on the scale three months ago it read: 139.8 lbs

This week's weigh-in: 141.4 lbs

My weight has pretty much remained in the 138 lbs -- 142 lbs range for the last three months.

Still below by goal weight of 145 lbs.

Let's high-five, right?

Rainbows and butterflies and puffy sparkly hearts all around, right?

Ummm...OK...I guess that I should be happy about that accomplishment.

But in case you didn't know, it's not all about what the scale shows.

It's not always about my actual weight.

Without Jazzercise in my life, there is less strength-training and more cardio goin' on.

Therefore, my size 6 pants and jeans are fitting a little snugger and tighter than I would like.

So what's a girl to do?

Get back into more strength-training.

Anyone have the Jazzercise DVDs?  Are they any good?

Or maybe I'll explore the exercise classes options in the On Demand section of my cable TV.

I'm thinking that I should take measurements.  Just the hips and waist.

Ya know...the bits that I actually care about I guess.

As long as I make the process and game-plan as user-friendly as possible and find that I can meet my goals at the end of the day, then the bottom line is that my pants will fit much better.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Ten Things Thursday

1.  Have you ever tried to put into words and describe what genuine "restriction" feels like with a Lap-Band?  Fullness in the chest... or maybe tightness right between the ta-ta's?  How would you describe "restriction"?

2.  My new fave TV show is 'The Mindy Project' - if you haven't seen it yet, go forth to your DVR now and record it.  There was even a Lap-Band reference in this week's episode.  You're welcome.

3 1/2.  I was recently asked how much food I now eat compared with how much I used to eat before banding.  When it's not the weekend (see # 5 below), I would say it's about 1/4 to 1/3 of the portions that I used to eat.  But I can always eat more, but rely on my food scale daily to keep my portions in check.  Example: Pre-band: I'd eat an entire box of Kraft Mac n' Cheese....easily. With a big sugary coke to wash it all down. Now? I could probably eat about 4-5 forkfuls before I would start to feel the need for protein.  I guess my food choices are much, much different also, not just the quantities.

5.  Lately, I've been eating sooooooooooooooo much sugar on the weekends.  Cake.  Cookies. Eating out.  Yuck. I think that I turn back into my inner fat girl every Friday night.  I need to reign this craziness in.  No more "fat girl weekends" for me.

2.74.  Pemberley's currently at her all time highest weight. I feel guilty. I've been giving her WAY too many treats, or as I like to call them "cookies." Here's Pemberley eating a cookie this weekend:
7.  I can't wait to see "Anna Karenina."  Should be good! Unfortunately, it looks like it'll only be showing at the independent hippy-skippy theaters.  

8.  Less than 5 1/2 weeks until Christmas.

3.8.  I can't count....or do math.  I actually used my calculator today to multiply 8 x 9.

10.  Have you made a game plan yet on how not to overeat at Thanksgiving?  Me either.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Do Fat People Have Souls?

I just found this article written by a weight loss surgery patient.  

It's a MUST read.

It's called, "I Once Was Obese and Now I’m Not. Please Don’t Applaud Me For Losing the Weight" by Shannon Chamberlain.

Shannon has a blog too.  It's called, "Do Fat People Have Souls?"

Go check out the article and let me know what YOU think.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Weigh-in Day...

Goal Weight: 145 lbs

Today's Weight: 139.2 lbs

Here's the crooked, very early morning pic to prove it:

Happy Friday!