Post-Op Week 73 Progress Report: Vacation Damage

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Up 4.4 pounds this week but I know exactly why.  I ate way more starchy carbs than usual while on vacation last week.  This was a conscious choice I made, and I’m not sorry I did it.  I knew what would happen if I did it, and I knew what the consequences would be.  So I’m not surprised that I saw a jump on the scale this morning.  I am surprised it wasn’t greater!  But I’m also glad it wasn’t greater.

The increase in carb intake also means that my body stored whatever excess I didn’t use as glycogen, which retains water.  Couple that to the increase in sodium that comes with eating every meal on the road and it’s a recipe for a weight gain.  Needless to say I’m glad to be eating out of my own kitchen again, or at the very least, eating at restaurants whose menus I know like the back of my hand!

I was very active while we were gone, but this uptick on the scale provides proof that what goes in your mouth has a more drastic effect than how much you move!  I also elected to track water, activity and vitamin intake while I was gone.  I did not track food, as I knew it would be difficult to do given that I was in a city where there isn’t exactly an abundance of healthy food choices available.  Probably the healthiest thing I ate each day was breakfast, which was always scrambled egg whites, sausage and a couple of bites of home fries made with new potatoes and onions.  The rest of the time I was at the mercy of whatever restaurants we ate at, and I did attempt to make good choices when we dined but it was tough.  I did manage to get my gallon of fluids in each day–mostly in the form of unsweet tea sweetened with Splenda, but I also carried a water bottle with me everywhere we went.  We did quite a lot of walking, as New Orleans is a pedestrian-friendly city.  We stayed on the outside of the French Quarter in the Central Business District, so we had to walk into the Quarter whenever we wanted to go places.  Our hotel wasn’t so far away from everything that a car or a cab was necessary–it was less than a mile to the Quarter, and less than a mile to Jackson Square so we just hoofed it.  We did drive to the Garden District, but we parked and walked the entire time we were there.  Thankfully the weather was nice (if a bit chilly) all week long so walking around everywhere was not a big deal.  In fact, we looked forward to being able to walk around everywhere without being so exhausted and achey.  The last time we went to New Orleans was my 40th birthday nearly 2 years ago, and I can honestly say that our trip this time was much more enjoyable.  Not carrying around that extra 180 pounds made a huge difference!

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Left: Me on Bourbon Street, 2010. Right: Same spot, different me, 2014.

I’m back home now, so I am back to my usual eating patterns this week so I am hoping to see a downward trend on the scale this time next week.  I’m not sure why, but vacations seem to be license for me to throw good habits out the window.  I do have to remember that a couple of years ago, I made much poorer choices about food and activity and ate so much more and moved so much less so this temporary bump in the road is just that–temporary.  While my eating choices were far less than perfect, I did work out a couple of days while we were gone, and I made sure to try and hit my step goal of at least 9000 steps daily each day (I missed it one day by a handful, boo).

I did hit my 100 workouts goal while we were gone so I am aiming for at least a dozen more before 2014 ends.  My 2015 goal will be a bit higher than this past year’s goal was, but I’m not sure how much higher.  This week I am going to aim for hitting the gym 3 times, as I will be traveling again on Friday.  I’m spending the rest of the afternoon prepping meals for the week so I have no reason to eat way off track.  I’ve got chicken breasts rubbed with barbecue seasoning and sauce in the oven now, and I’m going to throw some green beans on the stove here after a bit so I can pack those out for my lunches and dinners this week.  I’ve also got some carrots I’m going to roast, and some zucchini I’ll probably turn into calabacitas to snack on this week.  I’m craving vegetables and had a definite lack of them last week while I was away.

I’m also trying to think of ways to get my stress levels in check–I am back to work tomorrow for the next 3 weeks, and then we are off for Christmas break.  I have a ton of project deadlines to meet in the next two weeks.  Stress management is something I really need to get a handle on, as stress is making it tough to stay on track.  After my new swim clothes come in, I’ll hit the pool more often.  When it is cold out, I break out in hives so wearing my usual swim gear is out of the question as I get cold very easily.  I ordered a rash guard and swim capris from Lands End, so I’m hoping those things will keep me warmer in the water so I can get back in and swim since it is one of the four exercises my ortho has approved me to do.  Swimming is also great stress relief for me, so as soon as those things come in, I’m all about getting back into the pool.

I also need to get back into my regular gym routine, because at this point, putting on muscle is what is going to help my weight loss along.  The bummer about this is that I can only do upper body strength training as I have been forbidden by my ortho guy from doing any weight lifting with my legs until after I have surgery in the spring.  *sigh*  At the very least, I can tighten up what muscle I do have in my upper body to mitigate how bad all the extra skin looks.  I’m guessing I am carrying around about 25 pounds of extra skin all over, which will stay with me as there are no plans for plastic surgery to remove it.  This is causing me to rethink my goal weight in a big way.  I’m starting to wonder if getting to 170 is even reasonable with all this excess skin, and I’m thinking that it might not be.  Getting to 190 would be, though, and I think I could be okay with that.  I might have to be okay with it whether I like it or not.  I just need to learn to accept that this is the body I’m being left with and that it is okay, wrinkles, lumps, bumps, loose skin and all.

 

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2 responses to “Post-Op Week 73 Progress Report: Vacation Damage

  1. I have always thought the excess skin is so much better than the alternative … the excess weight. Glad you enjoyed your visit to New Orleans – now back on track! Have a wonderful week.

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