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Monday, November 30, 2009

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas....

We took the kids to "Christmastown" yesterday in Williamsburg.  What a beautiful setting they created.  Its the first year they were open for Christmas and I have to say they did a great job!  I was looking forward to the decorations and letting the kids see Santa.  We weren't disappointed!  The above pic was from a penguin exhibit.

This is the Entrepreneur and Busy Bee on the carousel.  He tried to not look like he was having too much fun on a "purple girly" horse.   The Entrepreneur loves nutcrackers - and all things German - so we bought him one in one of the German shops.  He doesn't know this but he was concieved (I know TMI)  in Germany when Mr. Coconuts and I visited there for two weeks one Summer.  Germany (Southern) was one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen on Earth.  It was like living in an epic Storybook.  Seriously.   He's placing it in a special place in the house as part of his Christmas decorations.

This is a picture of a single chandelier in the Festhaus.  They had all of "Germany" decorated like the North Pole, had Santa's workshop, all kinds of local vendors, mulled wine, cider, hot chocolate.  I was in COZY paradise!

And this is Busy Bee.  She's banging her head and rockin it out to a German Christmas carol.  *sigh* she gets it from me.......
On the eating front, I've gained 2 lbs, but for some reason I couldn't eat a whole lot yesterday.  I have to say it was wonderful to be able to put on any pair of size 16 jeans and they fit.  You know?  They FIT.  I didn't feel like I normally do around the holidays and think about all the weight I need to lose and things I need to not eat.  I ate very little and I felt really good, really positive about that.  Instead of the negative thinking my mind was filled with positive thoughts about myself and that this time it really is different.
I'm so happy to have this band!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

I am thankful for my band!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I am thankful for my band and thankful that I won't overeat today.  I am thanfkful that my family is healthy and warm today and I'm thankful that I am doing something about getting healthier everyday by losing weight.  I'm healthier than I was last Thanksgiving.  And I'm thankful to share this journey along with all of you!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Did a day of liquids improve restriction?

In a word:  Yes.  I do believe so, but I also don't know just how long it might last.  So Cara and I decided to a day of liquids yesterday.  We both have lost restiction and we wanted to experiment to see if a day of liquids improved things.  I do feel some improvement in restriction today, yes. 
Breakfast:  Starbux coffee
Snack: none
Lunch:  Salad with grilled chicken on top and could not finish it the salad, but finished the chicken.
Dinner:  4 potstickers and a 1/4 cup green beans.
Getting lunch down was slower than dinner - but that's normal for me.  I do feel like I am fuller on less - so I do feel some restriction - but its not like it was.  That's for sure.
I weighed myself yesterday and then again today - I did lose .5lb overnight.  I realize though, that could be anything - probably water retention. 
Cara?  how did you do?  Thanks so much for doing this with me.  Knowing you were doing it to made me get through yesterday - which wasn't really so bad after all.  I had moments where I wanted to eat something solid - but I knew I'd have to report it back to Cara so I didn't! 

Monday, November 23, 2009

What I want to know on other's blogs

When first reading everyone's wonderful blogs and reading all the boards out there - one of the things I really wanted to know and understand through everyone else's experiences was - as they went through the weight loss process, how much and what types of food were they eating (I still appreciate it when everyone details this from time to time to guage my eating) and what 'size' pants they were at certain weights.  I know we're all shaped differently and are different heights which makes all the difference in the world.  That's why I always tried to find someone at a similar height, age and build to sort of guage myself against.  So for anyone who is in search of the same info - I wanted to share my stats in this area:
Age:  40 (so weird to type that b/c I don't 'feel' 40)
Height: 5'4"
Build:  medium
At my highest weight, 236 = size 18W were snug - I was pushing it, size XL top, 40DD bra.  No hope fitting into a regular 18 (non-"W" Women's).  Felt a lot of my weight in my butt/hips and my waist.
At 220= size 18W were big/loose, size XL top, 40DD bra.  Regular 18 fit ok, size 16 - no way b/c too tight in the waist.  Felt the loss in my waist only.  Size 16 jeans - could button but muffin top made it unwearable in public.  Size 14 jean - couldn't even zip.
At 206= size 18W are to big to wear, size XL top, 40DD bra.  Regular 18 are almost too big, size 16 fits perfectly.  Felt loss in my waist mostly but also now my hips b/c the regular size 18 dress pants fall a little low and I have to keep pulling them up.  Size 16 Levi/Gap jeans - fit well in the waist, loose in the legs and hips - I prefer them a little tighter.  Size 14 - I can zip & button - but they are a little too tight in the stomach to wear in public.  I even notice a difference in my work out clothes - the pants are much looser in the butt and waist and the tops are more comfortable b/c they are more loose.  LOVE IT!  I still wear an XL, mainly b/c of my boobs which are still filling the 40DD cup.  I actually would really like my boobs to get smaller b/c I think I'd look thinner with smaller boobs. 
So what will 195 bring?  That's 10 lbs from here.  A size 14 maybe??

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Liquids tomorrow

Ok, so Cara and possibly Dinnerland and I are going to try all liquids tomorrow in hopes of possibly bringing back some restriction.  We are weighing ourselves Monday a.m., we already know our restriction has decreased so we're going to try an experiment to see if this helps:  all liquid Monday.  We don't expect a weight loss overnight or anything - we're just looking for a difference in restrction on Tuesday and hopefully beyond. 
I did pretty good today - I ate earlier than normal in hopes of eliminating the evening eating I've seemed to start doing lately.  It did help me in that area tonight.  I had some vegetable soup I made the night before (a pre-planned idea to help me get more veggies in) for lunch, ate 2 cookies (eek), 3 potstickers for dinner, raisins/walnuts/almonds/choc chip trail mix for snack.  I've not done too badly.  I went to Target today, bought some Xmas presents, and bought myself a Gingerbread Skim Latte at the Starbucks.  I felt all Christmas-y and it just seemed like a cozy thing to do.  But put the breaks on the sleigh - Blech! - it was yucky!  And I love pretty much all things Sbux.  So, back to my regular grande coffee with cinnamon.  Much cheaper, fewer calories, and tastes much better.

How far along is everyone else in the Xmas shopping dept?  Any good deals out there I need to know about?  I got some great deals on toys at Target today.  They also do price matching with Toys R Us, Walmart, etc.  for anyone out there like me with kids!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Living in the moment

I find myself constantly living in the moments I'm working toward.  I don't live in the current moment. I think about my financial plan as I prepare to be severed from my job, I think about what I'm going to do when I finally lose this weight, I think about the kind of things I'm going to make when I have the time, I think about the trips we're going to take as a family when we get the time to organize them, I think about what I'm going to eat next week and what I need to take out of the freezer or shop for to make a great dinner tomorrow.  I was reading a Martha Bombeck article in the new Oprah magazine today that talked about living by and making decisions by your instincts.  Which I do a lot and its worked out well so far.  It also talks about the importance of appreciating the moment and paying attention so you are calm and can better listen to your inner voice that is your intuition. 
I realized that I'm so busy planning and multi-tasking all the time, I'm not doing a good job of living in the moment.  I never have enough time to sit still, I'm crazy busy all the time trying to keep this whole spinning, juggling, evolving work/family/life balance thing going.  There is rarely time to rest and appreciate.  I think Amy does a good job trying to express this and the importance of it.  From appreciating the body you have now and finding the things you like about it.   I think that's my hangup with Facebook.  I don't want to see my old friends or allow them to see pictures of me until I'm the person I envision myself as - and I've got much of that framed around what I weigh.  Living like you mean it.......right now.....not waiting until this or that happens.  I know the importance of doing that - but actually practicing it is another thing all together.    Sometimes I'm better at it than others.  I just need to re-align my focus - which includes slowing down and appreciating what I've got right now.  It also includes getting the great exercise habits I had going there for a while back on track.  Good thing tomorrow is a new day.....I feel optimistic that I'm going to make that happen and re-balance things again.  They're just out of whack b/c of my workload.  Time to re-prioritize and re-balance.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Losing restriction - how do you keep it longer?

I was able to eat normal at lunch today.  I had Mexican.  Gosh I love Mexican!  I had more than 2 cups of food.  At dinner, I met friends at a bar, had one drink and was able to eat a lot of bbq chicken nachos.  I'm  full - but I'm finding I really can eat much more than just 2 weeks ago.  Why is that?  I've not lost enough to justify that its fat loss around my organs/stomach itself.  I also have felt hunger pangs more often.  Its kind of scary to be able to 'over'eat again - much more than just a cup at a time.  I think I really need to restrict myself to lots of vegetables and protein.  Its so strange and it truly scares me.  I've also been able to eat salads (not complaining) its just the volume that scares me a little. 
Do I go on liquids for a day?  I absolutely do know that the earlier in the day I eat, it almost primes my stomach/band and enables me to eat more at a sitting as the day goes on.  If I wait to eat until 11 or 12, I'm more restricted at lunch and end up eating less.  Then if I skip an afternoon snack, and go longer without eating, the more restricted I am at dinner.  Then as soon as I start to eat, especially since I'm eating slower, I find that I can just keep going without getting terribly uncomfortable.  I never get stuck - I know that's a good thing and I'm thankful - but I don't really even get close to that place. 
I do know now why I dropped those 3lbs right away and got down to 206 - yep you guessed it!  I was PMSing for sure and now that (as Amy put it hilariously) I've paid a visit to the Lady Station - it explains everything.   Another note, I've got the Mirena IUD, and I'm not supposed to get my period but every 4 mos or so.  I now get it monthly - albeit very light and only for a day or so - perhaps its my eating (or lack of) that's triggered that. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Guess what??? 206.5 today! Woot!

I couldn't believe it when I got on the scale today....OMG.  It may only be temporary, but how cool to see that on the scale!  I went to a concert with my sister tonight (All american rejects) and I knew I'd have to leave from work b/c I wouldn't have time to make it home first.  I went to pack jeans to change into after work and none were clean.  So I 'chanced' trying on my size 16 Levis from 4 years ago that were in the top of my closet shelf waiting to be worn again someday.......and they FIT!!  Even a little loose!  So for the heck of it I tried on my size 14 Levi's - guess what! - yeppers!  I could zip them and button them but they were much to tight to wear in public.  BUT I COULD BUTTON THEM!!!!!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Why do people tag you in Facebook?

I hate having pictures of me tagged in facebook.  I don't use facebook, I login about once every six months.  I have nothing against it, I just don't have the time to keep up with it.  I do like that I've connected with some old friends from HS and all my aunts, uncles, and cousins.  I just don't like pictures of me and while I know they mean well, I just don't like it.  So I go in and untag myself often now.  Don't tag people in pictures unless you know for sure they don't care. 
Not sure if this is the same for all of you, but my gosh, I feel like I'm in HS again when I'm in there.  I get all insecure feeling when I see pics of myself.  Even my mom tagged me in a photo the WEEK I had surgery (actually she didn't know and it was 5 days afterwards) and I was at my heaviest of all times.  Understand my sisters and my mom are all of normal weight, so we when I'm next to them, I can't hide! LOL.  Anyway, what pain in the butt to have to check facebook so I can untag my pictures.
On the flip side, it motivates me to want to lose weight.  It makes me feel competitive in a bad sort of way.  I don't even like to admit that it makes me feel that way b/c I'm not shallow nor insecure.  Its got everything to do with my ex-boyfriends, friends from HS, and not wanting to look like I've totally let myself go, you know?  I want to look like I've got it all together - and not failed at being healthy and fit.  It also makes me glad to have this band and glad that I'm going down this path. 
I always think its interesting too the pictures that people choose to make their facebook profile picture.  Its like an insight into that person's mind's eye.  Its the best version of themselves.  Sometimes its people with their kids, some women I've seen have ridiculous pictures!  Here's mine:

Its me and my boyfriend.....I pretended I was Jennifer Aniston.  You know, the older woman.  Everyone knows how much I joke about me and JM being a future couple.  If you know me, you know how ridiculously appropriate this picture is.  It was an awesome day!  I don't think I look 'bad' - I think I look pretty good.  Heck, I was BEAMING.  And hey, my body is cut out of the shot!  That's some insight into my mind's eye!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

3rd Row Tix and I didn't gain!

Today is a GREAT day!!  Not sure if all of you know of my affection for John Mayer - love him!- and my sister and my shared hobby to be groupies.  We do have a friendly competition going on how many good looking male celebs we can stalk meet and get our pictures taken with.  Just so you know, she's kicking my ass in that dept,  She's met Josh Groban, Michael Buble, Matchbox 20(Rob Thomas-swoon!), Maroon5, Duran Duran, Pete Wentz, Gavin Rossdale, and a lot of others.  She even got me the opportunity to meet John Mayer, get my picture with him, and it was AWESOME.  So, back to why its a great day:  I just pulled 3rd row tickets to his show in Charlottesville at UVA!!  And while I was doing that she pulled 14th row in Washington DC.  Both venues aren't very far - they're about the same distance from where I live - sowe decided to go to both!  We haev so much fun together when we go - we get to be 17 again.  We're going to have a blast!  We always do. 
The 2nd reason its a great day - I've eaten A LOT of chocolate and more calories than I should over the last 3 days.  I was convinced I'd gained weight for sure - hopped on the scale this a.m. and.......NO GAIN!!!!!!  I honestly cannot believe it!  This is exactly how the band help us - I've been overeating and eating some of the wrong things (chocolate) and carbs (mashed potatos, chicken and dumplings, cheese and crackers) and I've not gained.  In the past, I would have gained 5 lbs, given up on my efforts, and gained more.  That relentless cycle!  This time, my body was good to me, no gain and that had motivated me!  Motivated me to work out this weekend and EAT RIGHT! 
Oh, its a great day!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thanks everyone!

Just wanted to say thanks to all of you who commented and wished me get well wishes and bad husband empathy!  He's still totally unaware, but not to worry girls, I'm a passive aggressive woman scorned professional - so trust me - HE KNOWS and will pay a price.....(evil laugh). LOL.   The ones we love the  most just frustrate us the most sometimes.   Thanks again though for all the comments - I've never felt so supported - you sort of came to my rescue - when I really just some sympathy and I really appreciate it.  Some of you who never commented on my blog before did just to try to make me feel a little better.  And it DID make me feel better!  I simply didn't expect to feel that much better.  It never really occurred to me -  that all of you - whom I've never actually seen or had a physical conversation with - could make me feel so........well...... validated and supported.  This blog is an amazing thing.  It makes me think of how amazing it is that women (and some men) are an amazingly supportive and fiercely loyal to each other - even when they don't really 'know' each other.  They see one person sinking and the group comes together without even blinking an eye to provide support and pull that other person back up again.  I'll bet none of you even thought of that - it was just natural for you.  I sure am glad I'm not a man!  How boring would that be?  You wouldn't be able to shave your armpits, can't have babies, and ewww, we'd have balls! Yuuck!  Hope Gen's Jacks&^t  doesn't see this......I'm sure guys would hate all the yucky stuff women have to deal with too.    I'm jus' sayin!  I'm glad that I'm a woman and that women for the most part have that instinctive ability to pull the fallen up.  Men just would step over them on their way to the electronics store......
Ok, on to other things. 
My weight is back to where I was 209, I'd gained like 4-5lbs of water after I got that steroid, that I lost like overnight.  My energy is back and I'm actually gearing up to exercise.  I need it for the stress relief, the mood bost, and the muscle toning!  I've been in a funk - just generally pissed off - because of all the stuff you already know about my boss, my impending job loss, and being sick just made it harder.  I decided today that I simply couldn't deal with more interruptions at work, so I took my laptop and went to a local coffee house to work.  Its raining like crazy here and I had just a bunch of misses at work that I was making bigger than they needed to be.  I up and decided that I was taking the rest of the day off, packed my computer up, and left to get my kids early from the sitter with a total attitude/funk.  I'm sure I'm pms'ing.  On my way, I decided to stop at Target to get some cookie dough to bake cookies for my kiddos.  On my way to the grocery section I was sucked in to the girl's dept and picked up a few things.  I was still feeling all sorry for myself and generally P'd - when I spotted a mom my age, with a 9-10 yr old boy in a wheelchair who clearly had physical and mental disabilities.  I realized just how STUPID and SELFISH I was being.  I think I have problems?  I'm all pissed off b/c of my job and feeling blue over trivial BS and here's this mom with so much more to deal with and a child with health issues.  What a smack in the face - and I needed it!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Diagnosis: Pneumonia

I finally went to the Dr yesterday b/c I simply couldn't take the shortness of breath and chest pains from the pressure of all this crap in my lungs.  Had x-rays done and left with prescriptions for a steroid, zpack (antibiotic), and an inhaler.  The inhaler gave me relief almost immediately.  Never ever used an inhaler before but it sure helped to open my lungs up and take that pain and pressure away.  The zpack is a great antibiotic that works in only 5 days!  Today is only the 2nd day of use and I already feel better.  I still have a fever and am sweating one hour and shaking from feeling so cold the next hour.  I've never felt like this before - had a splitting headache and stiff neck and neck pain all night and this morning.  When I do breathe in and out it sounds like rice crispies in my lungs.  Popping and wheezing. Yuck!  I'm glad I rarely get sick, I've certainly never had this before, and it sucks!  As the day goes on, I'm feeling better and better!
That brings me to another topic.  As sick as I am, and I promise you, I'm a pretty strong chick when it comes to pain or sickness or whatever.  I only tell you that to put into perspective that I'm not a complainer nor do I rely on my spouse to take of me, ever.  I remember being a little peeved each time I had a child - peeved at my husband b/c he never even seemed to blink an eye at what my body had just gone through.  As if it was not hard or taxing.  I guess I just was peeved b/c he never really 'took care of me' when I was clearly not feeling well and had a legitimate reason for it.  Fast forward to this morning.  I feel worse than I have in years and he's just not even AWARE.  I got a "how are you feeling?" as he passed through the living room into the kitchen.  I have bloodshot eyes, I'm holding my head, and look like someone who feels pretty darn sick.  He just does his little routine and off he goes to race and leave me with the kids all day by myself.  Keep in mind, my 3yr old is non-stop talking, wanting, asking, eating, drinking, playing.  Of course she is, she's 3.  She wears me out when I'm 100%.  I'm not looking forward to the day and he's gone from 9am until midnight tonight.  I guess I just wanted a little empathy, a neck rub?, a "do you need anything today?", or "I'm sorry I'm going to be gone all day, I know you're feeling pretty bad".  Instead he handled it by ignoring and not acknowledging how badly I was feeling.  Sometimes you just need a little empathy from your spouse, you know?  It made me really feel resentful and unappreciated. grrrrrrrr.  Its one of those underlying things that has always been there and will never go away.  Something I just have to accept but it rears its ugly head every once in while until I get over it.
Ok, enough about that.  So do you want to know what I'm going to get my sisters for Christmas?  I know its early, but if I don't start now, I'll never make it.  I'm going to get each of them personalized with their kid's names on them.    The pic below is from the seller's shop on etsy: cinnamonsticks

So I've decided I'm picking my own Christmas present this year and its going to be this, from here, I think: 

Friday, November 6, 2009

208.5 today - met goal

I set a mini goal to meet 208 by 11/6 and despspite that .5, I'm considering that goal attained.  My chest cold has come back b/c I stopped taking the horsepill antibiotics - like an idiot.  Having a cold means I cannot eat at all - I wonder why that is.  Yesterday, I kept trying to eat, but just couldn't.  I managed to get down some high protein greek yogurt, couldn't stomach any soup, and milk.  That was it.  My chest is just so weighed down, eating makes me feel ill.  I don't like not eating much - b/c I don't want to totally screw up my metabolism.  I'm going to be very careful to get the calories in today that I need.  And the vitamins too.
I'm dreaming about what it would be like to be in the 190's again.  I honestly can't even imagine or know what my body is going to feel like.  It was just before I got pg with my now 3yr old daughter that I weighed 199 for like 10 seconds.  I was working out everyday and working out 2 days with a personal trainer.  I was taking adipex, and appetite supressant and eating 1200 cals per day.  I was much tighter and smaller b/c of all the working out than I am now but I don't even remember what clothes I could wear.  I'd really love to be there by the end of December and I think I can do it.  My goal is to get these 8.5 lbs off by the first week in December.  I also need to start exercising.  Next goal - walking.  I'm not going to push myself hard.  I could run, but I just don't want to - so I'm making walking a simple goal that I can attain......

Monday, November 2, 2009

Losing restriction - ruh roh.

I was 218 on 10/12, I was 209.5 on 10/31.  That's a 9lb loss in 3 weeks - or about 3lbs per week.  I'm very happy with that.  The reason I'm writing this out is because it seems like it took a long time and I thought "well that kind of progress can't continue, my body just hasn't rejected the loss and figured out how its going to plateau yet." (wow, that's pretty negative -what I just wrote.  Am I working with my body as an ally or fighting against my body mentally and seeing my metabolism as an adversary? - thoughts to ponder later).
Only three weeks have gone by since my 2nd fill and it just seems like a long time since I got the fill.  This progress is really amazing!  I know I can't expect numbers like these but I've caught myself again writing out every 10 lb goal on paper and how long I think it will take me to get there.  Just so you know - if I lost steadily at 10lbs for every 4 weeks, I'd make my goal of 140 by my next birthday in June 2010.  In reading Cara's and Catherine's blogs - I can't help but dream about what it must feel like to have lost what they have and translate that to me and what I could look/feel like.
I measured my waist today and I'm surprised to know I'm 45 in at my waist sitting down, 41in at the same place standing up.  That explains a lot about why your pants feel tighter when you sit down.  For the rest of my measurements:  39in below my boobs, 14 3/4 upper arms, 11 1/2 forearms, 24 in thighs, 17in calves, 46.5 hips.  I measured my forearms b/c its a place I'm selfconscious about b/c I feel like I just have big forearms - wheras most women have very slim forearms and wrists, I do not. :) But I will! Someday!
After weighing consistently at 209 for 4 days, I hopped on the scale this a.m. and weighed 214.  What the heck?  I drank lots of milk and water yesterday - I was soooo thirsty.  I know that was part of it.  I also ate halloween chocolate over the weekend and have lost some restriction.  I'm curious what I will be tomorrow morning when I weigh myself.  210 I hope?
Today I had a coffee for bfast, ate grilled chicken and mashed potatos for lunch (2cups), ate grilled chicken, mashed potatos and green beans for dinner (2cups).  I had chocolate covered raisins around 4pm at my desk - a couple handfuls too many.  I ate a halloween-size mini twix bar after dinner.  Now, I'm eating raspberries.  Yep - the restriction is fleeting but I think I can control that by keeping myself from grazing through the day.  Its almost like once I start eating, the band or my stomach gets more and more relaxed and I can eat more.  Anyone else see that happening?  If I can hold off eating, I seem to do better with restriction later.  Its almost like, the more I graze with real food (not liquids), the more the band opens up.  I think I'm going to stick with some protein shakes tomorrow and soup for lunch so I can test my band at dinner and hopefully be more restricted for dinner.  I can't stall now!  I wore size 16 Gap jeans this weekend and need to progress further!  I've got to make it to 200 by Thanksgiving and now that's only 24 days away!
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