Tuesday, April 26, 2011

win2lose weight - two month update

So I started this latest weight loss journey about two months ago.  I met with my friend, Jenny, to try her products and work on losing weight with her assistance and guidance. 

My first weigh in was on February 28, 2011.  (She has a super fancy scale, but I try to keep in mind that I weigh in on my own scale in the morning without food in my belly or clothes on...and on her scale, I've eaten throughout the day and I'm wearing clothes.)

Weight:  232.6 pounds
Body Fat: 43.2%
Body Water: 41.3%
Muscle Mass: 125.4 pounds
Bone Mass: 6.8 pounds

Last night, April 25, 2011, I weighed in again.  (I weigh in weekly but figured a weekly report isn't necessary since I do everything at a snail's pace.)

Weight: 232.0
Body Fat: 43.2%
Body Water: 41.3%
Muscle Mass: 125 pounds
Bone Mass: 6.6 pounds

So, yeah, it's nothing to write home about...I lost a little over half a pound and gained some muscle.  You would expect with watching my calories and exercising, even if I'm not religious about either, I'd have lost something more than that.  But I still consider it a success that I haven't gained (especially considering I had almost a month's hiatus on exercise thanks to the Stiletto Incident)!  Here is my win2 lose weight post from a couple of weeks ago. 

I joined an online support group for weight loss surgery patients more than a year out.  Many of the people on there are 7, 10, 12 years out from surgery, so it's been nice to get advice from people who are further out than I am.  It sounds like having 25-30 pounds to lose (again) is kind of common around 7 years out.  So, although it sounds like I'm in good company, no one has the magic fix to help me lose the weight (oh yeah, because the magic fix doesn't exist for anyone).  It sounds like they also lose weight very slowly now. 

I also tested my pouch (stomach) a couple of times with the "cottage cheese test," to see if it has stretched back out.  It hasn't.  My pouch holds about 8 ounces.  The normal gastric bypass stomach holds 5-9 ounces (you start at around 1 ounce and then it does stretch a little...and the average human stomach normally holds about a quart but some people can stretch theirs out to 2-3 LITERS).  So, I am still limited on how much I can eat in one sitting, but there is nothing stopping me from grazing all day and eating too many calories if I am really motivated to do so. 

I have been trying to play around with the products to make sure they are working for me since, as long as I am taking the product, I should notice my muscle mass changing, even if my diet and exercise regime aren't pristine.  As a gastric bypass patient, I am malabsorptive, so taking pills doesn't always work for me.  I initially tried BioLean, then switched to BioLean Free.  I did some research about how and where the product is absorbed.  Most websites talk about how the product dissolves very quickly in water.  Something that dissolves quickly is usually made to absorb in the stomach and/or upper intestine.  And that just isn't an option for me anymore.  Jenny's sister is a doctor and was visiting from out of town, so I got to meet her last night (along with her mom and dad...very nice people!).  She suggested taking Vitamin C with it to see if that helps with absorption, but also agreed that it's possible that the product just won't ever absorb properly in my body due to the surgery.  (Vitamin C helps with iron absorption, so that's why she suggested that it could possibly help with BioLean Free absorption.  Check out info about Vitamin C on the Mayo Clinic website here.)

I did switch my breakfast from my protein shake to an English muffin and Morning Star vegan sausage patty.  I was hoping having something more solid in my stomach would help slow down the digestion process and allow the product more time to be absorbed.  And then I drink A LOT of water when I take the BioLean Free (which is counter-productive for a weight loss surgery patient since drinking water after eating pushes the food through faster, causing you to be hungry sooner...I just can't win).  I can definitely tell the difference between the days the product is able to fully dissolve and the days it doesn't.  However, if I benefit most from the product going through my stomach and upper intestine, I'm missing out on that. 

I also found a website to help me figure out how many calories I should be eating.  It's called Scooby's Workshop.  It seems to be more for body builders, but I like the theory behind it.  You enter your stats, the percentage by which you'd like to cut your calories, and it tells you how many calories you should be eating.  I attempted to tell it I wanted to cut 25% of my calories.  The website actually warned against it, saying you shouldn't do so without consulting a doctor.  The theory behind it is that cutting your calories that much causes your body to freak out and hold on to as much weight as possible so that you don't starve to death.  My body may already be sensitive to this phenomenon, since the last time I tried to lose a lot of weight, I did almost starve it to death.

Anyway, according to my new friend, Scooby, I should be eating 2,832 calories to maintain my weight and 2,266 calories to lose weight (20% calorie reduction).  You are supposed to recalculate your calories for every five pounds lost.  It seems to be working pretty well for me.  I had cut my calories to 1,800 and then 1,500...and all I got was crabby and hungry, which made me binge.

I have cut a lot of fast food trips.  Even if I stay within my calories, I know that fast food holds almost no nutritional value.  I am no longer drinking my daily Vitamin Water.  I am trying to eat lots of fruits (mostly grapes, watermelon and tangerines/cuties).  I am allowing myself Trader Joe's triple chocolate cookies as my day time snack (only 130 calories each) and, at night, if I have enough calories, some ice cream.  This keeps cravings down.

I am almost done with Couch to 5k (three runs left...including my Brazen 5k on Saturday morning).  This week, I transitioned to trail runs from the treadmill (sucks...way easier to slow down and walk without the threat of the treadmill's moving belt tripping me and ripping my face off).  Next week, after my final Couch to 5k run, I will start the Bridge to 10k.  However, I will probably stick with the first week's workout for awhile to start learning how to speed up.

So my workout plan is:

Monday - weights
Tuesday - running/yoga
Wednesday - weights/Twirly Girls
Thursday - yoga
Friday - weights
Saturday - spin/yoga or Twirly Girls
Sunday - OFF

I know I'll miss a day or two in there but I don't beat myself up about it.

So, I've made all of these positive changes...why isn't the weight dripping off?  Slow and steady wins the race, right?  For now, just call me The Tortoise.

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