Four Months Down, A Lifetime to Go

Another NSV:

I finally broke down and bought a ring guard for my diamond.  I had to tighten it up some more when I got home.  I need another one for my wedding band too.

I finally broke down and bought a ring guard for my diamond. I had to tighten it up some more when I got home. I need another one for my wedding band too.

Yesterday marked four months since I had my sleeve surgery. In the past four months, I have:

  • Lost 72 pounds, for a total of 109 pounds lost (this includes what I lost prior to surgery).
  • Lost a total of 51 1/4 inches all the way around my body (I take new measurements next week).
  • Discontinued my diabetes medication and had my a1c reading return to normal range.
  • Had my blood pressure medication dropped to the lowest dosage possible.  I have a feeling at my 6-month checkup, my PCP will take me off my medication altogether.  I can only hope.
  • Dropped 3 pants sizes and 4 shirt sizes, and am continuing to get smaller as the weeks go by.  I need to find a tailor, pronto!
  • Been able to teach standing up most of the day, instead of sitting for the majority of the class period, as I did pre-op.
  • Learned the value of support groups and therapy and their roles in my success so far.
  • Begun moving so much more during the day than I ever used to.  I feel weird sitting still for long periods of time now.
  • Run again, after not doing it for 20 years.

I have accomplished more than I expected I would, and more than I thought was possible.

I am anxious to see what the next couple of months will bring for me, healthwise.  I continue to lose hair by the handful–so much, that the top of my head is pretty embarrassingly bare.  I haven’t had a haircut since August, and am in terrible need of one, but I’m scared to get it cut for fear I will look awful.  My hair is not as thick and full as it once was, and is actually very fine and thin now.  I don’t know if this is a result of surgery or getting older.  Whatever it is, I don’t like it, and I miss the hair I had when I was younger.  I’m sorry I ever cursed having a full, thick head of hair.   Loose skin?  I have it–arms, legs, sides…it’s everywhere.  Plastic surgery may be a necessity rather than for vanity purposes, because I can already see where this loose skin is going to present problems–it already is.  I’m also still waiting for the supposed crazy mood swings and irregular periods that I keep reading will happen due to all the hormones that are supposed to be released from all this fat that I’m losing.  None of that has happened to me–thank goodness.  And I’m not waiting for it because I want it to happen–I’m waiting to see if all the crap that others have said is supposed to happen to me post-op is going to happen at all.

So far my post-op life has been pretty good for both my physical and mental health–I have no major complaints (okay, so the hair thing is bothersome).  I’m losing weight at a pretty good clip.  The data I have collected on myself thus far support this statement:

No real pattern here, but there's also not enough data here to demonstrate a pattern at all.

No real pattern here, but there’s also not enough data here to demonstrate a pattern at all.

I don’t know if I can make a prediction about the next month based solely on what I see here, simply because there is not enough data to demonstrate a pattern.  I hope that I can lose anywhere from 10-15 pounds in the next month, though.  This will put me on track to hit my surgeon’s goal by March, which is when I’m aiming to hit his goal.  Again, I can only hope.  Sticking to my doctor’s plan (with one tweak for increased protein–his plan states 60 g as a minimum; I get 80 g as a minimum daily now) has worked exceptionally well for me so far, so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?   I’m just going to keep chugging along, logging everything I eat, trying to hit my walking goals daily, and planning nearly every meal so that I have a shot at long-term success.  The success I’m experiencing now is fantastic, don’t get me wrong.  But I still want to be successful at 1 year, 5 years, 10 years, and 20 years out.  But those times are far away from now.  I’ve got to learn to suppress the long-range planning part of my brain and focus on the now, though.  How will I get through tomorrow?  How will I get through next week?

Today’s eating was pretty good, lots of beef–I think I’m craving the iron.  Odd, because I’m taking a supplement every day.  Pre-op, I didn’t eat nearly as much beef as I do now, and now I eat quite a lot of it.  But today, I got in 90 grams of protein, and 38 grams of fat.  Carbs were under 50 grams at 42 grams.  My body feels better when I have closer to 50 grams of carbs every day.  I simply can’t function when there’s less than 30 grams.  How some people do this on the regular, I will never know.  These are also the same people that believe there is only one way to skin a cat in VSG land–600 calories, 80 grams of protein and 20 grams of carbs.  Personally, I disagree with this approach.  When I was consuming only 600 calories, my weight loss was very, very slow.  My doctor’s PA informed me that should I continue to eat at that calorie level, I’d slow down my weight loss (she was right), and that my metabolism would be screwed up.  After I cranked up my calories consumed to between 800-1000 daily (I aim for 900), my weight loss sped up considerably, just as she said it would.  So I’m going to keep doing what I’ve been doing for the past two months, and see where it takes me.

image

Today’s food choices, from upper right: multivitamin and calcium supplements x2, iron supplement; beef tenderloin en brochette, caramelized onions (which I barely touched, in favor of the zucchini) and grilled zucchini slice; vegetable beef soup; turkey jerky; herb crusted beef tenderloin, leftover Boston Market green beans, and a potato wedge (it didn’t get eaten); Rudy’s bacon, egg, bean and cheese breakfast bowl.

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