How Weight Loss Surgery Saved My Life

by sandi on October 26, 2010

My friend Gloria and I in my old pants. Can you believe it?

 

I have been fighting the fat war since I was 4 years old. I finally won the war, leaving only small skirmishes that crop up regularly. My friends tell me these little battles are what a “normal” person always deals with. 

 Just five years ago, I was 424 pounds, had arthritis in my right knee, and had trouble walking across a parking lot. My asthma forced me to stop and catch my breath several times across those parking lots. I rented a scooter to be able to take my grandkids to Disneyland. I let my husband go into the market while I waited in the truck. People looked fearfully at me when I was getting on a plane, hoping I wasn’t sitting next to them.  In March 2004 I had a hypertension crisis that got my attention. To this point, my arthritis, asthma, reflux, and sleep apnea had not yet been enough to make me take notice. 

I have succeeded at most everything I have tried in life — I have a wonderful marriage of more than 40 years to my soul mate, a great daughter, four awesome grandchildren, and a successful business I built from scratch over 20 years ago. But I could NEVER get a handle on my weight for longer than five minutes. 

On 5/28/2004, at 55 years old, I had life-changing, and life-saving, Lap-Band® surgery. Within 28 months I had lost 250 pounds. Now, more than five years after surgery, I am holding at 175 pounds and loving it. I am off all my medications and move freely and vigorously through my new life. 

 With the help of this tool and a great support team I have reached a place where it is fun to go anywhere and try new things, and I actually enjoy looking at pictures of myself (well, most of the time). 

 If you are struggling with your weight, you may find some useful information and solutions here. I have created this blog because something like it would have made a big difference to me when I was going through the decisions and the process myself. 

 As the old saying goes, information is power. If you are struggling with your weight, I want you to have the information you need to answer the questions you have so that you can make the best decision possible for you to have a richer life. 

 I hope you find this useful. I look forward to hearing from you.  

Take a look at some of our Gastric Banding Tips —  Here

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Our New Book – Is Lap Band Surgery For Me?

by sandi on October 26, 2010

Our new book is now shipping on amazon!  Read an excerpt here.

Visit us at www.bandedliving.com

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Fitness Is A Way Of LifeAs I worked out with my trainer this morning I realized just HOW important fitness is to me and WHY.  After weight loss surgery, as the weight came off I was excited to shop for new clothes and try doing physical things, like walking around the block, or the down to the beach through the sand.  These were things I hadn’t done in years and they felt great.

As more weight came off I realized just how out of shape my body was, and knew if I wanted to be able to make that around the block a short hike, or that down to the beach through the sand a long stroll on the beach I would have to work harder.

Fitness Is A Way Of LifeI did work harder and little by little I improved over time.  The clock was running then.  Not only was I losing weight and building my stamina a little, I was getting older.  Here I sit today, chronologically 69 years old and in much better physical condition than I was 13 years ago.  I not only weigh much less, I also have muscles to support my frame.  I did this by taking that first walk, then taking that first swim, then making the little daily changes that helped make positive body changes. 

Today was a significant day in the gym for me.  I worked with my trainer on my back and shoulders, with varying weights, varying exercises and varying numbers of repetitions.  This was hard work, but I enjoy it and live the benefits of it so I push hard.  The part I didn’t realize until I had completed the last set was that between each of the shoulder and back exercises I was taking a bar that weighed 30 pounds and doing 10 bicep curls with it.  Well, I did a lot of different exercises and at the end of my hour I had done 60 bicep curls between all of my other work.  My hands were shaking as I completed #60, my arms were exhausted.  I DID IT!! 

Fitness Is A Way Of LifeWho would have thought that I would even want to do this 13 years ago.  I continue 5 days a week at the gym because I can, it feels good, it allows me to continue living an active life outside of the gym, enjoying hiking and biking and swimming and fishing and traveling as I work to keep that “REAL AGE” clock at a number lower than my chronological age.

I was given the gift of a second chance at life and I plan to enjoy every moment of it.

 

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Time To Drink As I continue this amazing journey to health and wellbeing that I began in 2004 I find that when I forget who I am, a weight loss surgery patient, some of the success habits can get left out of my days.  Funny thing about The Success Habits of Weight Loss Surgery Patients, they are pretty much the success habits for healthy living, weight loss surgery, or not.

It’s 4PM, I just had a protein snack about 30 minutes ago and I am feeling hungry.  Hmmm, this doesn’t make sense to me.  Why am I hungry?  So I review what I have had for food today and find that I am right on track for a good day food wise – 333 calories and 39 grams of protein so far.  Wait a second, that’s kind of low, but I’m not sure I’m actually still hungry.

Time To Drink So what’s next?  I check my water.  My goal is to drink at least 80 ounces of water today.  So far I have had 56 ounces.  Hmmmm, maybe I’m thirsty?  Out comes my bottle and I am sipping on it as I type this.  It feels almost right, but not quite there.  Why do I drink so much water you ask?  The docs tell us to drink 64 ounces so one more glass would get me there, right?  Yes, 1 more glass would get me to 64 ounces but my body craves more.  Here are the benefits of drinking more water for me, you decide for yourself:

  • Less hunger – this is a big one.  When I think I am hungry I can grab a bottle of water, sip away and then check in with myself in 15 minutes to see if I’m still hungry – many times I am not;
  • Time To Drink More regular – high protein can exacerbate constipation issues; water is one major cure;
  • I do not get super sore after pushing hard at lifting weights and doing other exercises with my trainer – no more of those same day “I can’t moves”.  Water moves toxins out of the body and when I am properly hydrated I get little pain with ample muscle gain;
  • Water keeps me happy without headaches, fatigue and lack of focus… even just a little bit of dehydration can have these symptoms, so try drinking some water before you reach for the Tylenol;
  • Water helps my kidneys function properly so my liver can burn any stored fat.  My kidneys can’t work properly without sufficient water and that then loads the liver with the job of filtering the waste out of my body (and yours).  When that is happening the liver can not do it’s job of metabolizing stored fat and turning it to useable energy, hence less weight loss and possibly more fat cells in my body;
  • Water can positively effect my mood, since not enough can put me in a bad mood (makes sense- things are not working at any sort of optimum level when my body is needing water so why not give it what it needs;
  • Water improves my skin – I’m 69 I need all the help I can get

These are just some of the ways that water benefits my body.  Guess what?  It benefits your body the same ways.

Time To Drink Now that I have finished writing this, and prepping dinner and checking Facebook I have finished another 33.8 ounces and my water consumption is now at 89.8 ounces for the day.  Am I still hungry?  Yes, but dinner is not for more than 2 hours so I am going to have a hard boiled egg with some salsa for a snack.

Just keep sipping folks.  Water is life.

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Sugar TRULY Is EvilAs I move through my 14th year after weight loss surgery, Lap Band Surgery to be specific, I continue to learn that sugar is NOT my friend.  And yet I am still taken in by the smells, the tastes, the ease with which I can swallow and digest it no matter how many times I remind myself.  So I’d like to share my Jewish Holiday saga with you all today since Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanza, New Year’s Eve and the mad rush of food and festivities will soon be on us.

I was heading to a family dinner for Rosh Hashanah, or the Jewish New Year.  I was asked to bring dessert.  My usual would be a fresh fruit salad with the piece de resistance being some local Oxnard strawberries.  For those of you who do not know Oxnard CA grows some of the most delicious strawberries in the world.  This year I didn’t choose a fruit salad.  I wanted to make a traditional Jewish New Year dessert.  Since part of the traditional dinner is apple slices dipped in honey to signify a sweet new year, honey cake is also part of the tradition.  I love to cook, I hadn’t baked in forever so off I went to the internet to find what looked like the best honey cake recipe to me.  It was, and THAT my friends was the problem.  Here’s what went into the cake:

  • Sugar TRULY Is Evil3 ½ cups flour, 2 eggs, baking soda, baking powder, 1 cup honey, 1 ½ cups sugar, ½ cup brown sugar, 1 cup coffee, ½ cup orange juice, 2 ounces whiskey, 1 cup canola oil, cinnamon, cloves and allspice.  This is all topped with ½ cup sliced almonds.

The calorie load on this cake was 6,193 calories.  Oh MY!  I had not even thought about this as I was measuring and mixing.  I was having too much fun in the making.  Since my pan made about 16 servings that is just about 387 calories per slice of honey cake.  Who would have ever thought that this “plain” cake, with no frosting, just some healthy almonds sprinkled on the top could possibly have that many calories?  That is probably around the same number of calories as dinner was for me. 

Sugar TRULY Is EvilAnd, if you thought, well why did you eat it if you already knew it was 387 calories per slice my answer is simple – I NEVER figured out the calories until just this moment.  Probably because I didn’t want to know.  Oh, and MOST of the calories in the cake are from sugar – white, brown or honey with another 25% coming from the flour, which is turned into sugar immediately in our bodies.  One slice and I was on a sugar high.  That would have been fine if it were just ONE slice.

When packing up to go home I grabbed my cake carrier, which I hoped was empty, but alas, my sister in law had put about ¼ of the cake in it.  I had seen cake on a plate in her kitchen so I thought that was it.  There were 8 of us at dinner that evening so what I saw left on her plate was ¼ of the cake as well.  None of this mattered to me until the next morning when I woke up – HUNGRY, not a typical place for me.  Was it physical hunger or head hunger because I knew the honey cake was on the counter in the kitchen?  I didn’t take the time to assess my body, I just made a cup of tea and……..yup, I sliced a piece of honey cake.  Tea and honey cake for an early morning snack (5am, breakfast is typically at 8 or 9).  Even with my band I can chew the honey cake and sip on the tea enough to make the whole thing liquid so it slides right down.  Oh no, drinking while eating…  I was breaking all the rules.

I spent all of that day and the next hungry for anything sweet or salty and found myself indulging more than necessary.  I didn’t track my calories, skipped lunch for a piece of honey cake the next day, didn’t have enough protein and it wound up kicking me in the butt.

I was tired, grumpy and lethargic.  I do not like feeling that way, especially when I have to take accountability for it.

Sugar TRULY Is EvilI did not get on the scale because I was bloated, feeling miserable and chose to not add to the negativity I surrounded myself with.  I spent the following day recalibrating my hunger signals by feeding myself protein any time I felt hungry and drinking 3 liters of water.  My head was still foggy and I went to bed with a headache.  Today is better.  I have protein planned for the entire day, with low carb produce on the side.  I woke up and hard boiled some eggs for extra snacks, there is lunch meat, yogurt and cheese in the refrigerator, I have chicken salad made and portioned and am ready to get rid of this carbohydrate bloat, the sugar withdrawal that is giving me a dull headache and the head and physical craving for sugar that annoys me to no end. 

Sugar TRULY Is EvilOnce again I am putting myself through this withdrawal from sugar and asking myself if all that honey cake was worth it.  I haven’t answered the question yet; however, I do know I few things:

  • Do not believe just one can’t hurt me;
  • If I decide to bake again leave it all at the host’s house;
  • Think before I mindlessly reach for it just because it’s there;
  • Finally, I had the option to throw away the cake I brought home but didn’t even acknowledge that until right now although I have done that many times;
  • SUGAR is NOT my friend nor will it ever be.

I am a work in progress and continue to learn how to step out of my own way to maintain the successes in my health and fitness that I have worked so hard for.

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Living My Life Out Loud
Living My Life Out Loud
Living My Life Out Loud
Living My Life Out Loud
Living My Life Out Loud ;

As many of you already know I turned 69 years young last week.  I was fortunate enough to be able to celebrate my birthday on the Island of Kauai with my husband of 49+ years.  I wake up 2 hours before him, even in Hawaii on vacation.  He knows this so my birthday card was set surreptitiously on the coffee pot by him during the night.  I awoke to it blocking my access for my first cup of tea.  Right after I got the tea brewing I opened it and read it by smartphone flashlight and the tears started rolling down my cheeks and the smile on my face was huge.  I realized he knew me, really knew me and I was getting to know myself as well through his eyes.  It was an amazing realization.

The birthday card was simple, and in its simplicity it defined me, and him as well.  It said the following:

                It’s your birthday

                Live out loud

                Sing your song

That’s it and it had me laughing and crying and incredibly grateful for being alive.  Since I had my weight loss surgery in 2004 that is exactly what I am doing.  I am living my life out loud, doing things I tried to do before, but couldn’t; doing things I would never have tried before; chasing waterfalls, chasing rainbows just for the JOY of the doing.  I sing my song on line daily to some of you who want to hear me, and others who may be tired of it.  That is just who I am, no apologies, so happy to be able to wake up each day and continue to work on ME for ME and become the best ME I can be whether it’s in the gym, in the kitchen, or outside hiking, biking, swimming, on line, or just taking pleasure from the day in whatever it has to offer.

I share my journey and what I have learned with you all in the hope that you will find a nugget of truth, inspiration, motivation, knowledge from what I share that will enable you to enjoy the life you choose.  I spent my 8 glorious days on Kauai totally comfortable in my own skin whether it was showing in a bathing suit or covered by clothing.  I was free to just LIVE.  I think I got bit several times by the Aloha spirit and will not let it go in my life ever again.  This freedom to be is priceless.

I am sharing a few of my pictures from this vacation with you, my on line Ohana (family) in hopes that the Spirit of Aloha invades you as well.

Till next time I will continue Living Out Loud and Singing My Song!

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Packing My Suitcase Then And Now
Packing My Suitcase Then And Now

I am currently getting ready to leave on a vacation to celebrate my 69th birthday, and as I reflect on previous vacations and the horror around packing I am once again thrilled with my life as it is today, vs as it was prior to weight loss surgery.

I am dreaming of getting showered and dressed for dinner after a day spent lounging and swimming on the beach and this is how it was for me prior to 2004, and how it is for me today:

THEN:  Oh my gosh do I have a bathing suit that still fits me.  I better go look and try them all on and see which one will work.  And then prayers said to myself that one still fits

NOW:  My two piece is in the top drawer of the armoire.  I will grab it and a tankini and toss them in the suitcase

THEN:  What do I have that looks halfway decent that I can wear out to dinner in a nice restaurant?  Time to drag everything out of the closet in the largest size and try it all on and decide what works and doesn’t make me look like a cow.

NOW:  I’ll pack a few pair of leggings, a few tops, a sundress or two and I’m good to go.  Oh, better not forget to pack my work out attire, my bathing cap, and swim goggles.

THEN:  I’ll get some chocolate dipped almonds and some pretzels for the flight and pack them in my carry-on.  I can get some chips and a Coke at the airport to bring on the plane.

NOW:  I’ll pack a protein bar in my carry on and grab a salad or a wrap to share with hubby for dinner at the airport, along with my liter of water after I get through security.

THEN:  I’ll buy everything I need once I get there.  We’re going to eat every meal out anyway and I can get lots of snacks for the room if there is no mini bar.

Packing My Suitcase Then And Now
Packing My Suitcase Then And Now

NOW:  I’ll pack some protein bars and some almonds in my checked bag along with protein powder, shaker bottle, and all my vitamins and supplements and my tea for the room.  I know I can throw these in my backpack when we go hiking.  We’ll pick up a case of water, some yogurt, hard boiled eggs, and lunch meat for a quick breakfast or lunch in the room.  I won’t overdo the calories the entire week.  I hate eating breakfast out – it’s a waste… lunch is ok as long as there is shrimp cocktail, raw ahi tuna or fresh mahi-mahi, but I prefer either a turkey and cheese roll up or some ahi poke (available at the supermarket in paradise), and save the gourmet stuff for dinners.

It’s different now.  It’s wonderful.  I make sure that my needs are accommodated with the planned food for breakfast and lunch in the room if we want that or are hanging at the pool or local beach.  I am not planning high calorie, junk food snacks and meals for the airport or the hotel.  I continue to live mindfully, planning for high protein foods, water, fitness and supplements rather than a week of unlimited food and drink and doing nothing.

Packing My Suitcase Then And Now
Packing My Suitcase Then And Now

Oh, I still do a lot of relaxing like sitting in the sunshine reading a book, swimming laps for a while and then drying off in the warmth of the sun, enjoying a nice dinner, and yes, a cocktail or a glass of wine.  I go hiking, snorkeling, fishing, and will try stand up paddle boarding again.  I LIVE my life and am grateful for all that I am physically able to do now that was not possible for me at 424 pounds and over 13 years ago.

In addition to that I can dress up and feel good about how I look and how I feel or dress down and feel good in a bathing suit and cover up.  I can just FEEL GOOD.

I am neither focusing on food nor worried that my clothes will not fit.

The NSV’s (Non Scale Victories) that my weight loss surgery has provided me include stress free packing, stress free vacationing, and truly enjoying just being ME.

Have a wonderful week everyone.  I am off to paradise…  Happy Birthday To Me!

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Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day
Make Time For YOU Every Day

We all lead busy lives.  Whether we are in school, working, or both.  Whether we have significant others who require our time, kids, moms and dads and other relatives.  Bosses who are less than understanding.  There ALWAYS seems to be a reason to put ourselves, our needs and our priorities at the end of that very long list.

I don’t have time to________________________.  YOU fill in the blank.  Is it cooking, exercising, drinking your water, taking your vitamins, making a doctor’s appointment, making your lunch, eating breakfast, preparing dinner, relaxing – or is it all or most of the above? 

Has this been what is keeping you from reaching your goals, your vision of success and getting healthy in mind, body and spirit?  Did I hear a yes?

Guess what?  Those are all the excuses we use to NOT do something for ourselves.  Let’s chat about the difference between reasons and excuses…  I’ll go to Webster’s first:

Reason:  a cause, explanation, or justification for an action or event

Excuse:  an explanation or a reason for an action

So you see reasons and excuses are the same thing.

What is happening inside my brain when I say I don’t have the time to prepare my lunch is that I am justifying why I don’t do it.  I wonder how much time I have spent justifying it, or reading the morning paper, or catching up on Facebook, or reading my work emails, or sitting and watching the news and weather.  What might happen if I just spent a few minutes and put my lunch together to bring to work/school with me?  Hmmm might I avoid the fast food and/or vending machine trap?  Perhaps after I ate my lunch I would have a few minutes left to walk around the building, or up and down the stairs instead of waiting in line at the drive through, cafeteria, or wherever else lunch might be happening if I don’t bring it with me?

How about your vitamins?  That’s another one – I don’t have time throughout the day to take them as I should so I just don’t take them.  Another story I have heard many times.  What if one day a week you put all your vitamins together for the week in a pill case, separated by day and then spent another few minutes setting alarms on your smart phone.  Hmm, might that be a time saver, life saver, and reminder all in one sitting?  Or, do you prefer to have to go to the doctor’s for that Vitamin B12 shot or worse yet, the hospital for those iron infusions.  What’s the least amount of time and energy output for the best result?  We all want that BANG for the BUCK, right?

Those are two examples of not having enough time for the “have tos” – the basic rules after weight loss surgery that all of our docs have given us.  There is much more to this though.

Yes, when we figure out how to time manage our lives to fit in all of the rules, that is great.  We are doing wonderful things to and for our bodies, and our long term health.

There is more though, much more to this journey to health than just following the rules.  It is important to acknowledge and take care of yourself DAILY so that you are feeding your body, mind and spirit.  How do you do that?  Create a space just for YOU in every day.  Just like with everything else you are learning to create as new habits, doing this consistently is important to the process.  It’s your time to LOVE, HONOR and RESPECT yourself.  How you do it is up to you and it may vary each day.  You are all wonderful employees, great moms and dads, super sisters and brothers, outstanding grandparents and aunts and uncles, the best friends ever.  Your awesomeness shines daily in all of these areas.  How about as just you?  What have you done just for YOU today?

Don’t have the time to take care of YOU?  I beg to differ.  I bet if you spent a moment thinking about it, or maybe even 5 minutes thinking about it with your mind cleared of everything else you might just figure out when and how you could carve out that little bit of time – begin with 15 minutes if that’s all you can find, but find it, carve it out and repeat it each day.  Is it just when you wake up?  Is it just before you go to bed?  Is it when you get home from work or school?  Is it just after the kids are in bed and the house is quiet?  Is it after lunch, before you get back to the next conference call?  I know, and you know, the time is there.  I promise you the benefits to taking the time are there as well.

What are you going to do with this time – this 15 minutes, this half hour or however long you can just be YOU – uninterrupted?  That is your decision.  Make it something that has you feeling good about yourself.  Here are a few suggestions, the sky and your imagination are the only limits:

  • A cup of tea and a chapter in a book you’ve wanted to read;
  • A walk in the park or around your block to stop and smell the flowers, see the sky and listen to the birds;
  • A short meditation, either guided, with music, or just the quiet
  • A hot bath, perhaps with candles and music
  • A few minutes of stretching and breathing
  • Dancing to your favorite song
  • Singing out loud
  • Shopping for a new _______
  • Getting a manicure or pedicure or both
  • Getting a facial
  • Getting a massage
  • Buying or picking flowers and arranging them in a vase
  • A walk on the beach

I could go on and on.  The one sure thing is that you get to be YOU and relax, and not be responsible for anyone but YOU for a few minutes every day.

What might happen then?  Think about it.  You are worth the self love and the self care.

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How I Get Back On Course After A Wrong Turn Here I am over 13 years post-op, a bariatric coach and educator for others and once again, life happened and even with my meal plan in place sugary and salty carbs won.  My excuse is that I had a couple of bad nights…  REALLY bad nights.  THIS IS AN EXCUSE, not a reason.  While my body chemistry may have been asking for the carbs because of the sleep deprivation, I made the choices and put the food in my mouth.  One night I slept a total of 2 hours, and the other a total of 2 ½ hours.  And then it was Friday, my date night for the movies.  So we ordered a large popcorn, no butter and hubby had a coupon for some free chocolate candy.  He didn’t say no, and I didn’t say no either.

I ate my share of the popcorn, my share of the chocolates and felt like a stuffed pig.  As if that wasn’t enough we then went out to dinner.  Thank heavens it was to a sushi restaurant so the worst damage I did there was to have my spicy tuna on toasted rice cakes.  It was heavenly.  This was still not enough so we picked up a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and some ridiculous flavor of Oreos, and yes, with a cup of tea I indulged in both.  How many thousands of calories do you suppose I ate?  I stopped counting before I walked into the movie theater.

Spent the night tossing and turning – again- this time from the discomfort of too much food, too late and woke up hungry in the morning, not typical for me.  Gee I wonder why?  Could it have been from my sugary indulgences the day before?  YOU BET!

How I Get Back On Course After A Wrong Turn

How I Get Back On Course After A Wrong Turn That was Sunday morning and I vowed to eat protein all day as I prepared my breakfasts and lunches for the next few days, AND planned my dinners then did my Farmer’s Market shopping.  I succeeded until we went to the movies again Sunday evening and the popcorn called my name – LOUDLY…  This time we came home and made a Caprese Cauliflower crust pizza and had a glass of wine with it…  Much better than ice cream and cookies, but, oh wait, there were cookies and ice cream left – 2 cookies and a few tablespoons of ice cream.  Couldn’t have that now could we?  I finished those up and proceeded to pass out (probably in a carb coma) watching TV.  I slept reasonably well Sunday night and woke up a little hungry again.

Monday was here and with it came a long workout – 45 minutes elliptical and 60 minutes weight training.  I vowed to eat only protein and produce and succeeded.  I hate the bloated feeling I get from carbs and I wanted it to be gone.  I also knew that if I waited too long to eat I would be searching for and finding something (which typically means going to the store and suddenly having it jump into my shopping cart) with carbs to satisfy my hunger.  Fortunately, on my heavy gym days I have some of my shake before my workout and the rest when I am done for recovery protein.  That is what I did and I continued to eat any time I thought I might be a little bit hungry all day long…  Protein and produce ONLY.  My house is always filled with healthy foods and that is what I reached for.  I vowed I would not log my calories or my protein, my goal was to simply get through the day satisfied and flush my body with lots of water, get rid of the bloat, and get myself back into my typical eating pattern.

How I Get Back On Course After A Wrong Turn It felt like I was eating and drinking all day long… I was, but it worked.  I had no hunger, no emotional craving for crap and went to bed Monday night and slept well, waking up Tuesday morning feeling refreshed and lighter, with the bloat gone and was able to eat my planned foods and enjoy them.

So that you understand that I REALLY was eating all day long here’s how it went (I tracked it after the fact, not during):

  • Shake 230 calories/30 grams protein
  • Egg frittata 132.5/24.75
  • SF decaf mocha 50/0
  • Chicken salad 158/18.1
  • Hard boiled jumbo egg 90/8
  • Spinach, cucumber, tomato salad 73/5
  • Salmon with apricot/habanero and asparagus 256/27.7

How I Get Back On Course After A Wrong Turn That adds up to 1144 calories/122.55 grams of protein.  Along with this I drank 105 oz of water.

I’m a bit behind on water today but I will not quit until I reach 80 oz minimum before dinner, and it’s 5PM now so I better start sipping… I have fed my hunger today as well with 2 meals and 1 snack and have a great dinner planned for about 7PM.

I am neither headachy or grumpy.  I feel great.

After 13 years I know how to turn the switch from OFF to back ON and act like a WLS patient so I continue to go through life with ease, Living My Best Life.  

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How I Streamline Meal Planning And Prep To Keep my Success After Weight Loss Surgery

August 16, 2017

Most of you know I had Lap Band Surgery in 2004.  I lost 270 pounds and am maintaining that loss.  Did the Lap Band – or any weight loss surgery for that matter, do it for me?  NO… As you all know, we have to do the work as well.  I admit it – I […]

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Is It Really Hunger OR Am I Tired?

August 9, 2017

Here it is, a few years later and I find myself hungry today.  I stop, apply HALTS and realize I am tired.  I had a bad night of insomnia last night.  Good thing I am following a Kick Start eating plan this week – super low carbs, lots of firm protein, and low carb veggies.  […]

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A Positive Attitude Is What Has Brought Me This Far in My Successful Lap Band Journey

August 2, 2017

I was thinking about what I was going to share with you all today and my head went to the place of “I can’t come up with anything new”.  While that may be true, when I look at what I have done to lose my weight, regain my health and life, and be an active […]

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Going That Extra Mile for Long Term Success After Weight Loss Surgery

July 26, 2017

“At 211 degrees water is hot.  At 212 degrees it boils.  And with boiling water comes steam, and with steam you can power a train.” Sam Parker Putting forth that extra effort, being persistent in the continual application of “steam” (extra effort) to whatever we undertake will get us extraordinary results.  Extraordinary results begin with […]

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Daily Action Plans For Long Term Success After Lap Band Surgery

July 19, 2017

Been thinking about Daily Action Plans today and I went into a detail of what my days will look like this week to achieve my goal for the week which is to lose about 2 lbs.  As I wrote my plan for my meals (all delicious by the way) and my fitness and my water […]

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Long Term Lap Band Success – The Rules – Why Do We Resist Them?

July 12, 2017

As I am embarking on my 14th year after weight loss surgery and maintaining a 250+ pound weight loss people often ask me how I do it.  My answer is really not very complicated – I followed the rules my doctor gave me before surgery and I continue to follow them all these years later.  […]

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Long Term Weight Loss Surgery Success and The Trigger Foods Of Summer

July 5, 2017

A trigger food is a specific food that sets off a course of overeating where control is lost.  The most common trigger foods are calorie-dense, highly palatable foods that are often combinations of sugar and fat (e.g.  ice cream, cookies) or fat and salt (e.g.  nuts, potato chips, French fries). Yale university researchers had both […]

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Thirteen Years After WLS And Still Journaling

June 28, 2017

I am 13 years and 1 month Post-Op.  My weight loss surgery has afforded me a new, healthy life which I am grateful for every single day.  Wouldn’t you think that after 13 years of eating “right”, exercising regularly, staying hydrated and taking my vitamins, I could put my food journal away and just “live” […]

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Emotional Eating Doesn’t Serve My Long Term Success After Weight Loss Surgery

June 14, 2017

I am human, and the nature of human beings is that we are not perfect.  I am not perfect. Every now and again over the past 13 years I seem to let it slip my mind that I am a weight loss surgery patient.  It’s usually during times of stress, be they family, financial, medical […]

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Being Sick Totally Cramps My Style In Ways I Never Would Have Thought About – Long Term WLS Success

June 7, 2017

I left for Portland, OR and the WLSFA annual Meet & Greet on Wednesday, May 17th.  I was all packed for a weekend of panel discussions, costume changes, seminars and fun.  That’s what I had – a great time! Sunday afternoon, as we checked out of the downtown Portland Hotel, moved to a hotel by […]

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