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

Surgery Date: October 20, 2009:

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Where Does The Loose Skin Go?

It goes nowhere.

It's still here.

3+ years later.

2+ years at goal.

Still here.

Stretch marks too.

In the spirit of "keepin' it real," let's gather 'round and discuss my loose skin.

I'm among friends, right?

I think that I have oodles of loose skin around my belly compared with other parts of my body.  

It just seems to hang out around my middle.

When I'm doing my girly (knee) push-ups in the living room all of that skin just dangles at my belly.

This is why I love high-waisted workout pants and tight tank tops.  

They keep the entire situation contained.

The tanks also hold the skin in place when I jump up and down and shake my booty at Zumba.  If I don't wear something tight, it hurts (a little) when all that skin flops around.

Up close view of the belly wobbly bits:
Side View:
Remind me to get those cat toys out
from under the cabinet.

When I look down while doing a push-up:
My port is in there somewhere - like a treasure hunt!
You would NEVER know that those wobbly bits are hiding under there...right?
Call me David Copperfield. 

A magical illusion indeed.

I don't think that I would/could ever have a tummy tuck.

Not my thing.

I dig my body, loose skin and all.

Never say "never" I suppose.

Now it's your turn: are you brave enough to show some loose skin on your blog?  Tell me all about it.

Electric Lady Band did an awesome blog post on loose skin a few days ago. Check it out.

Friday, January 25, 2013

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

Goal Weight: 145.0 lbs

Last Week's Weight: 143.0 lbs

This Week's Weight: 142.0 lbs

And so maintaining my weight continues...

PS: Guess who has an appointment with the surgeon on February 8th for a Lap-Band fill? That would be moi.

PSS: Do you live in the Phoenix area? I'm heading to Phoenix soon if you'd like to do a bandster meetup.  Email me at lapbandgal at yahoo dot com.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

It's Like Licking a Piece of Chalk

Since my new surgeon will only do an adjustment to my band after a barium swallow (a new patient requirement), I went yesterday to get 'er done.

I suppose that it's a good idea to take a looksy.

I've heard this same procedure be called: flouroscopy or barium swallow or upper endoscopy.


So many names for the same procedure! 

Make up your minds people.

Let's just call it a Glamour Shots photo shoot. 

There should be a white feather boa involved an abundance of way too much magenta lipstick. 

Anywhoozle, the flouroscopy doctor (I'm sure he has a super fancy doctor title) who performed the procedure was very informative and told me so much about my band.

I swallowed that oh-so-delicious chalky barium and the photo shoot began.

We watched the barium travel down my throat and past my band.

He said that my band:
  • Looked perfectly placed.  He offered up some awesome trivia like: Did you know that a band should be at a 45 to 50 degree angle? Get your protractors out!
  • That the pouch above the band was not stretched out.
  • That my band was "pretty loose" and that he could easily see an additional 1 full cc added.
Now I will show you pics of each flouroscopy that I've had done since being banded. 

Because nothing screams "excitement" like medical images of yours truly.



2013 (yesterday)

Monday, January 21, 2013

What Did I Do On My Birthday?

Instead of sleeping in on Saturday, I woke up bright an early and met my friend Amy for a color run 5k.

What is a color run, you ask?

It's a 5k and every half mile or so along the course there are stations where the color run employees throw colored cornstarch at the runners as they pass by.  Every station is a different color.

Fun, right?!?


Here are a few photos from Saturday:
Pre-race and color-free.
A super sexy fanny pack too. Don't be jealous.
Waiting for the 5k to begin...along with a UNICORN.
Run! Can you tell that the first color station was PINK?
Mid-race photo op!
The race employees left the yellow station unattended,
so we had fun digging through the boxes
and having a color-throwing fight!
Whew! 5k over! Time to Par-tay!
Post-race concert and party. I burned way more calories
while dancing at the concert than I did during the 5k.

What do I eat after a 5k?
Pancakes! Duh.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Weigh-in Day!

143.0 lbs.

Still below goal.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

5 Things That I Wish That I Knew Before I Had Lap-Band Surgery

I feel like I went into the process of getting a band with both eyes open.

I knew before surgery that I would have to count calories, proteins, drink buckets of water, take my vitamins EACH AND EVERY DAY.  That I knew.

For me, I pursued weight loss for the sole reason of improving my health.

I was a pretty confident big girl.

I owned it.

I wasn't in it for appearance improvement or to fit into a certain size jeans.

But what unknown things were waiting for me in the land of weight loss with a Lap-Band?

If I only knew.

Here I am two weeks prior to my surgery. My surgeon makes patients stand up against the door for an official pre-op photo:
October 2009
So, without further delay....

5 Things That I Wish I Had Known Before I Had Lap-Band Surgery:

5.  That Exercise is Required.

I thought that I wouldn't have to exercise to lose weight.

I hated exercise.

It wasn't fun.

And why would I waste time sweating when I could be spending my time watching reality TV and camped out on the couch?  Seriously. A no-brainer.

At approximately three months post-op, I realized that I was delusional and would need to exercise.

I am pretty sure that I wouldn't be as successful as I have been with my band if I hadn't gotten down with exercise.

I now know that I have to sweat and work it to see results and to ensure that I do not become a fatty again.

4.   People Would Treat Me Different When I Lost The Weight.

This is one of the issues that I still struggle with.

It bugs the crap outta me.

Most of the time people are nicer now.

Sometimes old friends don't recognize me.

It's weird and awkward.

Because in my brain, I look like that girl that you just saw standing in front of that door.

Not like this:
I've said it before and I'll say it again: the only living being that treats me the same now at 145 lbs as when I was 258 lbs is my cat.

3.  I Thought That I Would Have My Lap-Band Forever and Ever and Ever.  

But I learned about a year ago that most medical silicone devices have somewhat of a limited life span. I had no idea that, for example, women are usually replacing their silicone breast implants approximately every 10-15 years.

I've now know and accepted the fact that I will probably either need to replace my band one day or not have a band at all.  I'm OK with that.

2.  That 80% of the Weight Loss and Weight Maintenance Job Would Be Entirely Up To Me.

I learned pretty quickly after being banded that the band will never stop me from making bad food choices.

Ice cream? Sure!

Cookies? Of course!

Taco Bell drive-thru? Yes, please.

Those wonderful yummy things will always go right past my band and into my tummy.

It's up to me to choose lean proteins and veggies.

The 20% of the job that the band does do is keeps me feel fuller longer.

It's a pretty fabulous thing that my band does for me. No more hunger (usually).


Every time that I had lost weight before getting banded, I would lose some weight (about 20-30 lbs) see  results, and then stop losing weight by going back to my old behaviors.  Then I'd gain all the weight back.

With my band, I learned at about the 30 lbs lost point that I would have to count calories, proteins, drink buckets of water, take my vitamins, and exercise every day and FOREVER.

Forevers a long time.

There is no finish line on this journey.

Now at three years post-op and two years at goal, I'll ask the question:

Would I still get a Lap-Band now that I know all that I do?


In a heart beat.

I love my band.

Monday, January 14, 2013

How Often Do You Shake? And: Time To Shred It!

For me, I drink protein shakes maybe once or twice a week. 

I usually don't depend on shakes for my nutrition unless I am super busy.  

I like to eat REAL food that I get to chew.

Chewing is seriously under rated.  

Anyone on the pre-op/post-op liquid diet can vouch for that.

Typically, I go the shake route when I don't have time to cook or I forgot to prepare or plan my meal.

Here I am grabbing a quick shake on the drive home from work and on my way to Zumba:
Unjury.com  Chocolate Splendor flavor. YUM
On a completely random and separate topic: 

I began the Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred It DVD program yesterday.  

The DVD cover claims that you can lose 20 lbs in 30 days. 

Since I don't want or need to lose 20 lbs, I am following the DVD program for strictly vain reasons: I want my arms to look like Jillian's arms.

I will be rocking those tank tops and short sleeved tops in the Spring!

So far the workout has pretty much kicked my booty. 

My arms and legs were super shaky at the end of the workout.

See? I have the hair to prove it:

And I'm still on level ONE. Yikes.  I'll be posting my daily Shred It Workout updates on Facebook.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Appointment With the New Surgeon

I didn't get a band adjustment at my appointment yesterday.

My new surgeon prefers to take a looksy at my band with via flouro (barium swallow first). A new patient requirement.  I get "why" but I still want a fill.  Oh well.  Safety first I guess.

Onwards with the hunger.

Good times.

Anywhoozle, so you know that lovely questionnaire that most bariatric practices make you fill out prior to the visit with the doc?

Ya know, the one that asks you questions like:

  • What are you eating?
  • Are you vomiting?
  •  Do the purple elephants talk to you when you're feeling lonely? 
  • Are you exercising?
  • Are you taking vitamins?

Yep, my new surgeon has one of these very useful questionnaires too.

But there was a new-to-me question on that sheet of paper:

Any psychological problems, addiction transfer, substance abuse?

In those exact words and phrasing.

Excellent question! More people need to talk about these issues with their bariatric surgeons.

I wonder if patients would really answer this question honestly?

What do you think?

Friday, January 11, 2013

Weigh-in Day & Guess Where I'm Going Today?

Goal Weight: 145 lbs

Last week's weight: 142.4 lbs

This week's weight: 142.4 lbs

Exactly the same.


Where am I going to today?

To meet my new bariatric surgeon.

I need a fill.

So hungry.

But I've heard that this bariatric practice requires a barium swallow (a separate appointment) before they will do a fill on a new patient.

I am prepared with the video of my barium swallow from March - saved in my iPhone for them to watch. Hopefully that will work?

Doubt it.

I am perfecting my powers of persuasion as I type this.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Can You Resist the Chips?

There has been a change in managers at my local Baja Fresh.

The new manager is the bomb dot com.

He's my new BFF.

For reals.

He says that he used to manage a Baja Fresh near the Castro in San Francisco.

He has a really fun Latino-flavored lisp and talks a lot with his hands.

He gave me a few hair product tips for my unfortunately frizzy hair that I was rockin' last night when I stopped by to pick up dinner.

He's a keeper.

Why is he so awesome?

He sold me this ginormous bowl of protein to me for $4.77!  Over a pound of food!

Black beans, cheese, chicken.

After filling up lots of little cups of salsa and cilantro at the Salsa Bar and not taking a bunch of empty clean cups home with me in my purse, I tried not to dance out the door to the Zumba-type music that they have playing at a crazy high volume:

I took that bowl home and got THREE meals out of it! 


That's what she said.

Those tupperwares are the 1 cup size.
Who says you can't eat fast food that's healthy and cheap?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

That Can't Smell Good.

Did you hear about the latest weight loss device?

It's a stomach pump.  Made by the peeps that make the Segway.  Not yet FDA approved.

Go check out the video HERE.

The practical side of my brain has lots of questions:

Why haven't I ever heard the Lap-Band port be referred to as "discrete"? Because my Lap-Band port is discrete.

The stuff that is pumped out is essentially barf, right? I personally only want to see my food once.

I wonder if that would be socially acceptable to publicly pump one's stomach?

Or maybe excuse oneself to the restroom?

Where do you keep the barf when you're done pumping? In your purse? In your glove box of your car? trunk? Hopefully there's a trash handy. Or maybe you clean the container? ewww...

Sounds like a lot of clean up to me.

Wouldn't people get hungry again the moment the food is pumped out?

Sounds like a vicious circle to me:

  1. I'm hungry
  2. I'll go eat a bunch of food
  3. Time to pump!
  4. Uh oh, I'm hungry again.
  5. Time to eat a bunch of food
  6. Time to pump!
Hmmmm...sorted of a medically-assisted and mechanical version of Bulimia?

Would it help the binge eaters continue the cycle?

What do you think?

Monday, January 7, 2013

Banded Bloggers Alert!

Check out these newbie bandster or soon-to-be-bandster blogs - say hello and tell them that I sent ya:

One Hitch At a Time

Banded Strong

Shrinking Me: LapBand vs. Fibromyalgia

Changing From Caterpillar to Butterfly

The Fat Girl Thin

Banded Pumpkin

And now a random picture of Pemberley. She can touch her tongue to her nose. Can you?

Sunday, January 6, 2013

My New Game That I Play

Now that I have tons of opportunities to enjoy lots of delicious vegetarian foods each and every day at work, I have a new game that I play called:

"Let's make this vegetarian food non-vegetarian"

Sometimes, this game is also called:

"Let's make this VEGAN food, not-so-vegan"

Why do I play this game?

Because I am always looking for ways to increase the protein in my food choices. 

And for me, protein usually means: add MEAT

Here's my latest creation which I shall call:

Chicken Chili Combo

Calories: 250
Proteins: 28


Microwave the chicken and the chili for about 1 to 1.5 mins.  Cover it or it splatters inside the microwave. Good fun!

Spoon the yogurt on top. (tastes like sour cream)

Sprinkle the onions on top.

Can you handle how complicated this recipe is?


Friday, January 4, 2013

Weigh-in Day...

Goal Weight: 145 lbs

Last week's weight: 141.4 lbs

Today's weight: 142.4 lbs

Still below goal, yet one pound up from last week.

I guess eating half a box of See's chocolates will do that:

Happy Friday!