Post-Op Week 24 Progress Report and Holiday Week Plan of Attack

This week’s date with the scale ended really, really well. In fact, it was much better than I expected.
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I had not expected to lose quite as much as I did, but I will definitely take a 7.2 pound loss any week, especially during the holidays!  I was expecting maybe 2 or 3 pounds, but not 7!

I’d say I navigated Week One of Holiday Eating Hell pretty successfully. As we go into Week Two of said eating hell, I’ve got a game plan in place to make sure I’m just as successful come next Sunday. I’m closing in on 100 pounds gone since day of surgery. I’m really hoping I hit it before my 6-month appointment on the 2nd. That would be an awesome way to begin the New Year.

I have a plan for my eating, my activity, and my mental health.  Here it is.

EATING:

As always, protein first.  I’m sticking to my minimum protein goal of 80 grams each day, plus my water goal of 14 cups or more each day.  I’m struggling to get enough to drink these past few days.  I’m not sure if it is because I am on holiday from school, or if it’s because it’s winter and I have always struggled to get fluids in during winter, but I’m setting a goal to get at least 80 of those ounces in before 5 pm each day.  Unlike some of my fellow sleevers, I have had no issues drinking just plain water–in fact, it has been one of the easiest things for me to drink post-op–and really like drinking just plain water anyway.  Thankfully, I was drinking lots of water before surgery so drinking it post-op has not been an issue at all.

Measuring food, whenever possible.  When I am eating away from home, this is tougher to do, but I am getting quite good at estimating quantity since I have been measuring out foods since I was moved to softs back in August.  I also tend to overestimate calories in MFP rather than underestimate.  I always measure everything I eat when I am here at home so that I do not overeat.  This has been one of the things that I feel has helped me to be successful.

Getting in non-starchy veggies first, before starches.  I will say that for our Christmas dinner, I have planned for us to have a citrus herb roast chicken, (which I am going to brine starting tomorrow), a sauce made from the pan drippings, and roast Brussels sprouts with boiled new potatoes with garlic herb lemon butter.  It is going to be AMAZING.  But you know I will be eating my Brussels sprouts first before attempting the potatoes (and they are tiny potatoes–those creamer variety).

Making sure each meal has a minimum of 20 grams of protein.  I found that this really helped me last week, especially if breakfast was protein-rich.  This is something I think I will continue beyond the holidays because it eliminated the need for my usual mid-morning snack some days.   This helped me stay satiated until lunchtime.

Logging every bite, lick, sip, and taste.  If I eat it, I track it.  This is a behavior that I am pretty sure I will not give up or suspend.  It keeps me honest and accountable.

ACTIVITY:
I am going to the gym tomorrow evening after we get all our running around in town done.  I’ll be spending some quality time with the treadmill and recumbent bike to stave off any eating peccadilloes I may commit this week.  I will also go on Christmas Eve, and on the day after Christmas.  If it is warm enough (and dry), I’d like to go walking in the neighborhood like we did on Thanksgiving Day.  I’m also going to play some Wii tennis, and when watching TV, get up and walk in the house during commercial breaks.  The way I see it, during an hour long show, there are about 18 minutes of commercials.  That’s a golden opportunity to squeeze in some activity right there!  Also, while I’m watching, I will use my medicine ball to do some arm exercises.  Last night while we watched SNL, I did 3 sets of 15 reps of both bicep curls and tricep extensions.  I think if I keep doing that, perhaps my arms might not be so flappity. 🙂

One of my friends set a goal to get in X number of workouts during the year.  I think I might do the same thing too because it will give me something to aim for.  I think if I aim for 100 workouts over the next year, that is a realistic goal because it is one workout roughly every three days.  I think I can do that.  Now to think of an incentive for getting it done!  Suggestions are welcome.

MENTAL HEALTH:

While I’m not planning to eat like no one’s watching, if a cookie or a chip with dip makes it to my mouth on Christmas Eve, I’m not going to beat myself up over it either.  I’m finding week by week that moderation really IS the key, and that because while this weight loss portion of my life is a temporary phase, maintenance is forever.  Maintenance is where I plan to spend the rest of my life once I get to goal, and what better time to start learning it than now?  It may be an unpopular way to approach this way of life, but this is what is working for me.  And I will continue to do it until it doesn’t work for me, at which time I’ll investigate why it might not be working, troubleshoot, and move on.

My mantra courage over comfort applies now more than ever.  This will apply to more than just situations that involve food.

I’ve got to work on being kinder to myself.  There are days I look in the mirror and I am really quite unhappy with what I see:  sagging boobs, flappy arms, rippled thighs.  But I also know that this is the body I’ve made for myself as a consequence of having been overweight for my entire life.  I just filled it out better when I weighed 400 pounds, but I was physically and mentally miserable.  Now I’m physically feeling awesome, and working on feeling just as great mentally.  I think every day I will write something positive about myself that I really like to remind myself that I love me and that I am worthy of my own love.

Finally, I’m going to read Mindless Eating and begin working through The Beck Diet Solution Weight Loss Workbook.  In our group meeting last week, our facilitator, Julie, talked about Mindless Eating as a part of our session on mindful eating (which I will write about tomorrow).  I’d heard of this book and decided to buy it (while we were in group; hooray Amazon app on my phone!) along with the Beck workbook.

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I think reading these two books will be really helpful as I continue on during this weight loss phase.

I will also reach out for support when I need it.  Even though our group meeting isn’t getting together for the next two weeks, I have plenty of support from my therapist and from my online support groups which I can leverage should I need to (and I likely will!).

I am hopeful that the planner in me has planned adequately for everything this week is sure to throw me.  So, holidays, BRING IT.  I’m ready.

Today’s food was pretty awesome.  I got in great protein at every meal, and was able to stay fairly low in fat and carbs today:  91 protein, 40 carbs, 37 fat.  I was also able to get in some veggies with the green chile stew I ate (carrots, green chiles, tomatoes, onions, potatoes) and lots of lean protein (turkey, beef tenderloin).  I think the fattiest thing I ate today was a half of a leftover salmon filet from dinner the other night, but it was a good way to begin the day.

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Today’s food choices, from upper right: leftover salmon filet; Trader Joe’s Monterey jack cheese stick; roast turkey slices; baguette slice; multivitamin and calcium supplements x2, iron supplement; Rudy’s smoked beef tenderloin, pinto beans and green chile stew (ate about a tablespoon of each); leftover green chile stew with Rudy’s smoked beef tenderloin chunks.

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2 responses to “Post-Op Week 24 Progress Report and Holiday Week Plan of Attack

  1. bite it – write it …. never stop doing this! Please keep stressing the need for support groups! It is one of our most critical needs after the “medical” stuff … I am happy to be returning to the medical insurance I had when I had my RNY (Kaiser Permanente) on January 1 because they are one of the few/better support group options in our area!! Can’t wait to get back into the support!!!! Merriest of Christmases to you – you are doing so awesome! And are an inspiration to me!

    • I really honestly believe that the mental aspect of this whole process is so much tougher to deal with than any doctor will tell you, unless they themselves have had WLS (and there are some that have). The book my surgeon released last month does a pretty good job of giving readers fair warning about the various facets of psychological issues that may and will arise for someone who has had WLS, but unless you’ve lived it, no one can really adequately tell you what it’s like.

      I’m glad you will be getting the support you need from your insurance again. 🙂 Support from a structured group is so important and I’m lucky to have found all that I have. I hope you and yours have a Merry Christmas too!

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