Tuesday, September 28, 2010


So here's where I get kind of preachy and soap-boxy. Does it help that I realize it?

I spend a little time on some lap-band surgery online forums, and there are two things I've noticed:

1)There are a lot of posts from people who are frustrated with how they aren't losing at the rate they'd like/expected with the band ("I thought it would be easier than this!", "Why do I see other people losing every week when I go weeks without losing?")


2)There are a lot of posts about "cheating" and requests for people to validate that cheating.

Might these things be related?

Now, don't misunderstand-- people can lose at different rates and you could do everything "right" and still get stuck at a plateau or have the weight come off slowly and I know that is true of a lot of people. Also, no one is perfect and I'm sure many many successful bandsters go off-program at least occasionally. But it seems like I see a good number of people posting both of the above comments and I'm really curious about why they don't see the connection. I've decided I really don't want to be one of the latter types.

My goal is to follow my surgeon's program as closely as possible.

My goal is to try not to "test" my band to see if I can still eat foods that I know I shouldn't be eating, because what the heck am I winning if I beat the band? NOTHING. I seriously doubt I will be 100% successful at this, but I have absolutely no plans to "check" to see if I can still eat everything I did before-- to what gain? (weight gain, hahaha, ba-da-bump)

Yes, that means that I'm going to give up some beloved foods for a while until I an figure out IF I can safely work them into my diet in moderation (and that probably won't be until I've reached a maintenance stage-- I'm looking at you, french fries). Yes it means that sometimes I will get frustrated with craving things that have no nutritional value and will set me back (cupcakes, anyone?). But I know I can do it, and I know, after looking at the bill that was submitted to my insurance company for this surgery, that I damn well better do it!

So yeah, bandsters, give yourself a break and don't go into it looking for ways to beat the system. You're just screwing yourself if you do that, and why bother with the surgery if you aren't interested in changing your lifestyle?

A Little Over a Week In. . .

. . . and feeling pretty good!

One of the things I've noticed from being involved in online forums is that different surgeons have vastly different pre-op and post-op diets. So since I'll be talking about my post-op diet today a bit, I thought I'd give a sense of what my surgeon has me doing.

- 2 days of clear liquid after surgery
- 7 days of full liquids (basically add yogurt, protein drinks, and cream-based soup with no chewable chunks)
-7 days of "mushies" (mashed potatoes, oatmeal/cream of wheat, scrambled eggs, mushed banana)
-7 days of soft foods (cheese, refried beans, baked fish, veggies cooked super-soft, cottage cheese)
-4 weeks of adding in lean meats; after that, I can try nuts etc.

So right now, I'm on my second day of mushies. Yesterday I had half a yogurt, 3 tablespoons of hummus, a wedge of soft Weight Watchers pepper-jack cheese, and about 3/4 cup of pureed chili. Today I've done a protein shake and probably about 5 oz of broccoli cheddar soup with actual chunks of broccoli that I have to chew-- my teeth don't know how to function. I'm actually looking forward to a dinner of scrambled eggs tonight- ha!

So warning-- here comes my neurosis. As a low-carb convert, I am having a really hard time with my post-op diet. It is all carbs until I can start eating veggies and fish next week. I dropped over 30 lbs pre-op following a low-carb diet and I just hate that I'm "losing ground" by eating all of this carby stuff. I realize how crazy this is! I have to eat, and it just so happens that things that can be in liquid/soft form are mostly made up of carbs. I'm trying my best to choose things that are low in sugar, but there's only so much you can do.

I know I'm doing fine, because based on my scale, I've lost 14 lbs since my surgery date. That's 14 lbs in 11 days, largely brought about by the fact that I barely eat anything (yesterday was a LOT for me to eat, comparatively). But I sort of hate that I'm going to have to "detox" again, when I already was through that sugar-craving period.

Still, I'm happy! This was a good decision for me and I can tell it's going to work. Yesterday, a friend who doesn't know about my surgery, commented that she can't get used to my new haircut because every time she looks at me, I look *different*. She said she can't figure out what it is, so it must be my shorter hair. I just laughed and agreed, though I knew on the inside that it's also that my face especially looks different and she's noticing it without realizing it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I'm Banded!

Surgery was Friday and everything went well. I now have a band and am in the recovery phase.

I have absolutely no hunger yet. I believe I get my first fill at my two week appointment. Maybe if I am very lucky I won't have too much of the "head hunger" I've heard other people deal with.

Not that I haven't had any of that. Even though I'm not physically hungry, I do get "hungry" when I see a burger advertisement on television. I'm a Pavlovian dog, salivating at the sight. Nom nom nom.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Doing the Old Pants Dance

Oh, my somewhat ratty old army green cargo pants, how I've missed your soft cotton comfort. See, you're a size 20 and I haven't been able to wear you for a very long time-- so long that I've forgotten how long it has been. But today, you are comfortably hugging me, fitting perfectly, not at all tight-- just like you should be. My butt welcomes you home.

One week before surgery, and I'm 32 pounds down from my high weight. And best of all, those are 32 pounds I will never see again. The best thing about this band process is that I know, for the first time as I'm losing weight, that every pound I lose is a pound gone forever, not just for a little while.