Tag Archives: weight

Another One Bites The Dust

Yesterday, I said that I would weigh myself this weekend and post a picture of my weight on the scale.  Well, I did that this morning.  So, I’m going to post that picture here.  As you can see, I am down another pound from yesterday’s numbers.

weight

I now only have 50 pounds to go until I reach my goal weight.  This is absolutely amazing to me.

When I started this journey, I weighed 298 pounds.  To get to 125, I had to lose 173.  I have lost 123 pounds or 71% of the weight I need to lose to reach 125.  I am almost there.  O.M.G.

Today I have the whole day to myself.  My brother is in Pittsburgh visiting my mom, who got her cast off her arm this week.  His wife and daughter are with him, so no adventures in DC this weekend.  My sister is off boating with her husband.  I have plans with friends tomorrow, but I am being left to my own devices today!

I have some work I have to do.  I need to get to the gym.  I also plan on getting some writing done today.  And grocery shopping absolutely has to happen.

I will keep posting pictures of the scale as I continue to lose weight.  Hopefully, I can get close to my goal weight eventually!

Have a great Saturday!

 

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To Reveal Or Not To Reveal…That Is The Question

Yesterday, apparently Mika Brzezinski from MSNBC’s Morning Joe tweeted her weight and this made news.  Not only did she tweet her weight, she took a picture of the scale while she was standing on it and tweeted that picture.  I’ve never done that, but you know what…I will do it some time this weekend!  Furthermore, I promise to always take a picture of what the scale says when I post my weight on my blog.

mikaI’m not sure this is actually news but, considering I that my blog is all about weight loss, I wanted to take a minute to talk about it.

As someone who put her weight on her blog from day one, I have to say, Bravo Mika!

Conversely,  this was discussed on theToday Show, and the female host there would not reveal her weight.  At first I was like, “Oh come on, it’s no big deal!”  But you know what?  That’s her choice.  And she made some great points about what the focus on the scale says to young girls.  I applaud her decision as well.

http://www.today.com/video/today/52763659#52763659

This is not an easy decision.  Once I decided to blog about my weight loss journey and my gastric by-pass surgery, I decided that the best and most honest way to do that was to openly tell people my weight.  I had never done that before.   Weight and emotions are so tightly wound together, it can be a real struggle to openly discuss.  It was very difficult for me to put my weight up on the internet for the whole world to see when I weighed close to 300 pounds.  It was embarrassing.  It was also really admitting to the world and myself that yes, I am fat…really, really fat.  Even though I knew I was that I was fat, as long as I did not reveal my weight openly, I could continue to pretend it was not the problem that it was.

Let’s face it.  When you weigh close to 300 pounds, there is no way to really hide it, even from yourself.  So for me, to put it out there and to be really, truly honest about how much I weighed, was liberating.  I was finally able to take steps to fix the problem, even if that step was extreme.

Today, I have no problem telling people how much I weigh.  It’s still on my blog.  I weighed myself this am, in fact.  I tell people all of the time.  I weigh 176 pounds.  I am proud of that.  I’m delighted to tell people that.  I tell perfect strangers.  Openly.  Willingly.  “Hi! Guess what?  I weigh 176 pounds!”

You know what else I tell people?  I used to weigh 298 pounds!  I have lost 122 *&$##ing pounds!  I so totally rock!

(I love to see the look on their faces when I tell them that!)

Yeah, I’d like to lose another 51 pounds.  My goal is 125.  I would love to get there.  But you know what?  If I don’t I’m OK with that.  What I’m not OK with now is pretending any longer.

So, thank you Mika for keeping it real and being truly open about what you have been through and where you are now.  I hope to always be as candid as you!

Follow Mika on Twitter here.

Follow ME on Twitter here!

Back On Schedule

Yeah, I seem to have fallen off the blogging bandwagon there.  After my stepfather’s death and my week in Pittsburgh, I kind of lost steam.  I want to get back to focusing on blogging and my weight loss journey.  I was blogging every day for a while there, but life has just been crazy the past couple of weeks.

So, health-wise, I seem to be doing OK.  I had my annual physical last week after I returned from my sojourn in Pittsburgh.  My blood pressure was slightly elevated, (140/85), but I’m sure it has to do with the stress I have been under.  My doctor didn’t seem too worried, but she asked me to monitor it on my own.  I have and it’s come back down to the normal range, (120s/70s).  We are trying to see how I do sans medicine for a while.  I am happy to do that since prior to the surgery I was on three meds a day just to keep it down below 225/125.  Yeah, I was that sick.

Today I joined my brother and my niece in DC at the Smithsonian museums.  She’s 5 and her favorite museums are the Natural History Museum and the American Indian Museum.  We took her to the American History Museum.  I think that one is a bit above her head at he moment, but she fared better there than she did at the Art Museum.  The guards near the Matisse may never be the same again.

She liked the Kermit the Frog at the American History Museum and was completely nonplussed by Dorothy’s ruby slippers.  In her defense, she has not seen the Wizard of Oz yet or she may have appreciated them.  I thought she might like them anyway since she has her own pair of sparkly ruby-red shoes, but no.  She just looked at them and asked if we could go see the bugs now.  Oh to be five!

We did take her to see the bugs and she totally fell in love with the bees in the bug room.  The Smithsonian has a pretty cool beehive setup.  You can watch the bees come into the hive through an entry they have on one of the windows.  The bees then make their way over to a hive which they have set up on a fake tree.  It’s actually pretty cool  My niece kept asking where the queen bee was.  I didn’t really know what to say to that.

I know I have talked about our treks into DC to the Smithsonian before, but it was so nice to get my life back to the new normal.  I love being able to walk around the city and then wander through museums.  I could never do that before the surgery and before my weight loss.

I have noticed something else recently too.  I’ve become much more confident on stairs.  I no longer have to hold the handrail and go down one at a time.  I still do sometimes just to feel more secure, but it’s not always a necessity.

Today for instance, I was walking down the steps outside of one of the museums.  I was holding my niece’s hand and she tripped.  I was able to stop, keep my balance, and pull her up before she hit the ground.  I was not even holding the hand rail.  If she was with the “Before Colleen”, she may have tripped down the stairs and hurt herself.  But the “After Colleen” had no problem making what could have been a big accident a non-event.

Drum Roll Please…

Today is a momentous day.  I had my gastric by-pass surgery October 24, 2012.  Today I am 4 days short of the six month mark,  Today I surpassed a major milestone.

Today, I weigh 197.  I have lost 101 pounds in six months.

dc-fireworks

I can hardly believe it.  I am overjoyed that I have passed this milestone, but I have to admit I have been struggling recently.  Not really with the weight loss.  I have been losing weight pretty steadily.

I have been feeling this restlessness and a growing emptiness inside me.  I’m not sure what it is, exactly.  I think part of it may be loneliness.  I have lived nearly all of my adult life alone and on my own.  I have watched all of my friends and family around me build lives, get married, have children while I have stagnated.

But I do not think what I am feeling is just loneliness.  I have been really struggling over the past few weeks to define it.  I have had many semi-sleepless night going through my emotions and everything I have been through.  I think part of my introspection is a result of this blog.  I also think part of it has to do with several of the personal essays I have written recently.  I have spent much of the last year really delving into my life.  I have examined many reasons why my life has turned out the way it has.

Ultimately though, I think this restlessness and emptiness are necessary.  I have this growing, overwhelming desire to fill my life, that emptiness with something substantial, but what that is I really do not know.  I’m not sure that I can really narrow down that desire to just one thing.  It feels more like I want to fill it by experiencing everything.

I think the emptiness was always there.  I just buried with food, video games, anger, and depression instead of dealing with the problems in my life.  I let that behavior go on for far too long.

This surgery, this weight loss has given me the opportunity to change all of this.  The question is, what do I do now?

Dealing With New Insurance, Etc.

So, I have to go see my primary care doctor next week and the week after that, the bariatric surgeon.  Since changing jobs, I had to jump through all kinds of hoops to make sure that I have the correct plan that covers both of my doctor’s offices and covers what I need it to cover.

I spent an hour on the phone arguing with the insurance company to make sure that I had everything lined up for my appointments.  Then I had to call both doctors and get the appointments moved around and all of the new information to them.  It was a hassle, but it’s done now.  I hate dealing with this stuff.

I had the same insurance for seven years.  I was pretty much on insurance auto-pilot.  I knew my plan.  I knew what I needed to do.  I knew how much to set aside every year in flex-spending to cover what I needed to have done.  Now I have to re-learn everything all over again with a whole brand new insurance company and a brand new plan.  What a freaking nightmare.

I think I have everything covered, though.  I see my primary care doctor on Tuesday.  Then I see the surgeon’s on the Monday after that.  It has been three months since I visited the surgeon.  I have not seen my primary care doctor since before the surgery.  She will be so shocked to see me.

I have to get some blood-work done for the surgeon’s office and I also will probably have to get some basic blood-work for my doctor as well.  My workplace did a blood screening recently and my numbers were pretty good.  Cholesterol – normal.  Triglycerides – normal.  Good cholesterol – a tiny bit low.  Blood sugar – normal.  So, yeah everything is looking much better than it did 6 months ago.  I am going to take those test results with me to my doctor.  I will have my regular preventative care check up in July.

Wish me luck.

My Expanding World

Now that I am getting smaller my world is getting bigger.  The one thing about my being obese is that it was very hard for me to move around.  Walking to shop area of my neighborhood was out of the question.  Between back pain and asthma, I could barely walk to the lobby of my building.  It was horrible.

Now that I have lost 86 pounds, I feel so much better.  I am walking a lot more and that is such a liberating feeling.  I am walking a lot every day now and I love it.

Yesterday, WordPress sent me an email from the Daily Post called Phoneography Challenge in which they instructed their bloggers to take their cell phones and hit the streets in their neighborhood, take pictures, and write about it.  I really wanted to do this yesterday, but I did not get a chance yesterday because of work and the general exhaustion that followed.

Today is such a beautiful day here in Northern Virginia.  The sun is shining.  The birds are singing.  Everyone is out walking their dogs, (big thing in my neighborhood).  I just could not sit still inside my apartment in this weather, especially after the horrible cold, windy non-snow storm we had earlier in the week.  I had to get out.

I left my apartment armed with my iPhone and laptop and marched myself down the hill to Shirlington Village to get some pictures, have some decaf cappuccino in my favorite café, and write a blog post with pictures.

I love the area of Arlington where I live.  There are quite a few restaurants, some specialty stores, a grocery store, a library with a theater inside of it, a movie theater where the independent movies are run, and lots of places where you can sit and read, or socialize.  It is a walking village, so there are people walking all of the time, especially with their dogs.  There are even bowls of water on the sidewalk, which there were none out today unfortunately, in case your dog gets thirsty.  Humans have to pay for their drinks.

The first thing I saw was this is the tree outside of my apartment building.

tree

 

So, here are the pictures I took today on my trek through Shirlington.  This first one is of a shop that sells locally made olive oils and vinegars.  I love this shop.

ahlove

 

Busboys & Poets is my favorite restaurant.  It is named after Langston Hughes who worked as a busboy at the Wardman Park Hotel in the 1920s.  He literally went from busboy to poet.  They have good food and provide a great space in the community for art, culture, and politics.  Love this place.

 

busboys

 

 

Someone knitted a cozy for the bus stop sign.  I thought that was cute. busstop

 

Cakelove is a locally owned business.  The cakes here are awesome.  They do sell cupcakes, which works very well for this community as people can grab a yummy cupcake while walking their dog.  They also have cakes.  I ordered one today for my sister’s birthday.  The best part about their cakes is that they make gluten-free and vegan cakes and cupcakes.  Probably the best cake I’ve ever had.

cakelove

Cheesetique is a locally owned shop that sells, well cheese.  They also have a restaurant side which serves the best mac&cheese in the country.  Don’t take my word for it,  Food & Wine thinks so too.cheese

 

How nice they provide doggie-doo-doo bags. dog

 

You have no idea how hard it was to get a photo of this fountain when there are no people sitting all around it.  To the right there is a small boy and his mother.  You do not see them here because I really tried to get the picture with no one in it.

fountain

 

This is the Shirlington Library.  It is the only library I know that has a theater included.  There are plays there all the time.

library

 

Cool street lamps and my thumb. light

 

 

I got a salad at Medi, which, as you can plainly read on the napkin, is a Mediterranean restaurant.  I had not been there before today.  A friend of mine goes there quite frequently and raves about it.  It kind of works like Chipotle.   You decide if you want a pita wrap, a salad or a rice dish, choose your meat which are chicken, steak, lamb, or veggies, then choose toppings which are a combo of sauces, veggies, and cheese.  I chose chicken because as my friend Bobby reminded me through peels of laughter, that lamb is red meat.  I still cannot have red meat just yet.  The food here is delicious.medi

 

Cool sign. sign

 

Thai Shirlington restaurant where I got sick from dumping syndrome after having the soup.  My own fault, really.   I had the soup about a month after my surgery.  Nonetheless, their food is delicious.thai

 

 

 

The movie theater where the independent movies are shown.

theatre

I enjoyed my walk, coffee, and lunch today.  It was great to get out of the apartment and walk around.  I will have to do this more as the weather improves.

village

 

 

Thank you for visiting Shirlington!

 

Being Prepared: It Is Not As Easy As It Looks

Now that I am working at an office again, I have to spend a lot of time preparing and being ready for my day as far as food and vitamins go.  Staying on schedule as far as food/drink/protein/vitamins is very important post surgery. 

When I worked from home, it was pretty much a no-brainer.  I could cook when I want.  Take my vitamins and drink my protein as necessary.  Everything was right there with me.  It was easy.

Now I have to make sure that I have two protein supplements, all of my vitamins for the day, my lunch for the day, and money to purchase food in case I forgot something.  Not to mention, I have to factor in a 30 minute breakfast window into my morning routine.  I normally just barely have time to shower, dry my hair, style my hair, get dressed – keeping in mind that he getting dressed portion of my routine includes squeezing myself into some Spanx – find everything I need to take with me and dash out the door in time to catch the bus to the metro.  Now I have to take 30 minutes to have breakfast?  What a P.I.T.A.

I tried eating breakfast while I dry my hair and get dressed, but that has not been working out too well.  I start eating and then forget I was eating and end up throwing it away.  Or I eat too fast and get a stomach ache.  Not good.

I could wait to get to work to have breakfast.  If I do that, I have to carry one additional meal with me on the Metro.  Plus that puts my breakfast too close to lunch.  So, I either put off lunch until later in the day, have my meals too close together, don’t get enough water in, skip a protein supplement so that I’m not too full for lunch, or some combination of the aforementioned.  It just throws my whole schedule off if I wait. 

It has been a struggle to get the combination right, but I think I have a good system going.  I have also done some things to help me streamline the morning process.  I pick out my clothes the night before.  I prepare at least 3-4 days of breakfast and set it aside in refrigerator to only be used for breakfast.  I make 3-4 hard-boiled eggs, small pot of oatmeal, and some kind of fruit.  I also keep extra non-fat plain greek yogurts handy just in case.  I make my lunches ahead of time too.  Then I pack up everything I think I might need; laptop, keys, vitamins, protein supplements, etc.   In the am there is less gathering and less prep work.

Here was my am schedule last week:

  1. 6:30am  – wake up and shower
  2. 6:50am  – dry hair
  3. 7:10am – get dressed
  4. 7:20am – gather everything I need
  5. 7:30am – dash out door

Here is my new and improved schedule for this week:

  1. 6:00am – eat breakfast
  2. 6:30am – shower
  3. 6:50am – dry hair
  4. 7:10am – get dressed
  5. 7:20am – gather everything I need
  6. 7:30am – dash out door

In between all of this in my crazy morning routine, my sister calls me nearly every day.  We have our daily sister-chat in the morning otherwise we would never have time to fit in a good gossip.  Some times we talk for a full 30 minutes, but most days, we barely have 5-10 minutes to talk.  It’s quality not quantity that counts right?

I hate getting up at 6:00am.  It is so early, but I found I had to make starting my eating schedule off properly a priority.  Some days this may shift a bit as I have some flexibility with my starting time.  And days like yesterday where the government was closed, I can work from home which helps. 

I just cannot afford to lose focus just because I am working in an actual office now.  Staying on the proper food/water/protein/vitamin schedule is too important if I want to continue successfully losing weight.