About Me

My name is Sara and I am on the quest for a better me! I was banded on May 23, 2012. Come join along and help me stay accountable!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

I'm here, I'm here!!

Hey folks.  Just wanted to drop in and say - I really am still here.  Things have been busy.  But that is good.  Banded life is better.  I recommitted last fall, and have had another 3 fills since then.  I'm down just short of 50#'s now.  I'm steadily losing pounds.  Its a good thing.

See!  You can actually see a difference!

Part of this is that I think I'm finally at a point where I actually have restriction.  Just with these last two fills I've figured out that I actually have a tool requiring behavior modification!  The other part of this is that I am actually moving.  I got myself an activity tracker (I have a jawbone up24) and started using that gym membership I pay for every month.

Here is me - post treadmill workout.  And guess what.  I'm actually doing things!  I "ran" for 22.5 minutes the other day.  IN A ROW.  AND DIDN'T DIE!  woo-hoo!  

Anyway,  I got back on my blog page, and am kind of sad that there are a lot of people I started this journey that aren't on the same journey anymore.  Lots of us stopped posting after a year.  This journey is hard.  I know that.  I fell off the wagon big time.  But the good thing is, we can pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and keep on keepin' on.  

While I'd like to say I'll be posting a lot,  chances are it won't be as often as my pre-surgery excitement posts.  That energy is hard to beat.  But it will be more frequent then it has been.  

Monday, October 14, 2013

Going off the rails on the C-R-A-Z-Y train!

I've noticed a little something lately.  I've noticed that I'm a little crazy.  Emotions overboard lately.  I've always been a little emotional, but frankly its becoming a bit too much.

Let me run a couple of examples by you.

I'm currently in the process of assisting with the training of a service dog.  Its for a great cause.  I've been involved with the organization for a while.  The dog is adorable (see pics below)


However, Friday night, I went to my dad's house for our first fall firepit.  Chill time to hang out.  The puppy backed into the table and knocked my drink off.  Mind you this was a diet coke.  Not even a "good drink."  What happens, I break into tears.  TEARS I tell you! Really?

Then, Saturday, we were at training class.  This week's outing was going to a Halloween store.  My puppy has a hard time with parking lots.  It took us a long time to cross the parking lot and even get to the store.  There were 7 other dogs there of various ages and when walking around the sidewalk they were all doing well.  My puppy  not so much.  She gets a little freaked out around cars, and this shopping center was CRAZY busy.  So what happened when one of the advanced trainers came to ask how we were doing.... you guessed it, complete and total meltdown!  Tears again.  For real, standing on the sidewalk in public just crying.

So I ask you, as it is no where near *that time of the month* why the heck am I so crazy lately??

For real, I'm up to suggestions.  I don't feel depressed, I'm not avoiding my life.  I just don't know what is UP with me!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

9 months later

9 months,  its been 9 months since I blogged.  I could have had a kid by now.  I didn't :-)  Instead, I've been avoiding my band for a long time.  I hadn't been back to the doctor since last September.  That is a long damn time!  I still went to the support group meeting once a month that my hospital provides.  I sat, I listened, I got grumpy, and then I got real.  I had a minor breakdown a few months ago, and finally let the people at the meeting talk me into making the big return appointment.  When your doc is known for being a bit "mean" (okay, real, but its not fluffy, real talks) and you've been away for 7 months, and you've gained back most of the weight you've lost (I was back up to 306) it can be a very daunting experience to go back.

But damn, 306,  while it wasn't up to my heaviest, I crossed back over the 300 mark and that was not okay.  So I made the appt.  I bit the bullet, and took my beating (verbally).  We talked about how I had a major life changing incident (the car wreck) and then just totally jumped off track.  I got a fill.  A good one (though I didn't get to see the exact amount).  In fact,  I think I finally understand how this thing is supposed to work.

That re-commitment was on Wednesday, August 14th.  I went back this past week for my 8 week checkup and I was down.  I was down 16lbs!  That is 2lbs a week!  I will take it!

We decided since I'm losing well, that we didn't need another fill, and I've scheduled another 12 weeks out.  I want to lose another 15 lbs before I go back.  Thats a big goal for me.  I have about 2 lbs until my lowest I've ever been (since the start of this journey), and 15 lbs would put me in the 270's... somewhere I haven't seen for probably 10 years.

But its doable.  It will be done.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Random musings and personality questions

I really am trying to get better at the blogging.  I am getting better at tracking.  I've tracked everyday this week on MFP and now have 4 friends on there!  2 of which are bloggy friends - YEAH!  User name is sjsanto if anybody else wants to join the party.  So far so good with regards to the tracking.  Its a lot different than WW points - The numbers are so much BIGGER!

So I go back to WW for my weigh in tomorrow night.  First official weigh in since pre-holidays... I really am hoping to be able to talk my sister into forgoing the WW and sticking with MFP.  I can weigh myself naked in the am rather than clothed in the evening - and save myself $80 a month!  I sent her a friend request, she created an account, but hasn't tracked anything.  Shes younger than me, and has been heavier less, so I'm thinking she's just not there yet.  I want to support her, but really need to focus on me.  

Which brings me to my next point.  I"m always so worried about what other people are thinking, saying, feeling, etc.  It kind of sucks.  I mean - really its helpful, especially since I work in healthcare, but really it is kind of draining.  Not only am I always thinking - but I'm constantly comparing.  Since I've gotten back on track I keep reading your blogs and noticing just how much i'm "behind" the people that got banded around the same time as me.  I know, I know.  Everyone looses differently.  And heck, I'm the first to say I'm not exactly an exercise machine.  But its hard.  I'm a competitive person.  And if I can't win, succeed, get first place, than why do it at all :-(

A few years ago, my sister, who works in corporate finance, gave us all a book for christmas that was called Strengthfinder 2.0 by Tom Rath.  It has a quiz and gives you a list of your top 5 strengths.  Without boring you with the excel charts and comparisons (yes my family is full of geeks) My top five are:

top 5 for sara
You are inquisitive. You collect things. You might collect information—words, facts, books, and quotations—or you might collect tangible objects such as butterflies, baseball cards, porcelain dolls, or sepia photographs. 
You want to be very significant in the eyes of other people. In the truest sense of the word you want to be recognized. You want to be heard. You want to stand out. 
Yours is the kind of mind that is always looking for connections, and so you are intrigued when seemingly disparate phenomena can be linked by an obscure connection. 
Competition is rooted in comparison. When you look at the world, you are instinctively aware of other people's performance. Their performance is the ultimate yardstick. No matter how hard you tried, no matter how worthy your intentions, if you reached your goal but did not outperform your peers, the achievement feels hollow. Over time you will come to avoid contests where winning seems unlikely.
"Wouldn't it be great if . . ." You are the kind of person who loves to peer over the horizon. The future fascinates you. As if it were projected on the wall, you see in detail what the future might hold, and this detailed picture keeps pulling you forward, into tomorrow. When the present proves too frustrating and the people around you too pragmatic, you conjure up your visions of the future and they energize you.

The two that I want to bring attention to are Significance and Competition - basically it says that not only to I compete at everything - but I want to you to tell me I'm doing a good job while I'm doing it. Its hard because I don't feel like I can tell myself I'm doing a good job. Because if I'm being honest with myself, I'm not. I eat crappy foods (less of them, yes, on most days) but still very crappy. I don't exercise ( yes my ankle is still busted, but I could probably do some weight lifting / or gentle yoga. I even break the cardinal rule and drink while I'm eating occasionally. Its no good. And change is hard folks.

Without sounding like a broken record, I know that I can only change the choices from now on. Which is why I've started back to tracking, and #1 on my list tomorrow is to call a PT to help rehab my ankle back to its normal (albeit shaky) strength and move forward.

So Congrats to you for making it to the end of my most long winded (and definitely somewhat depressing) post. In good spirit, it is now time for a stretch break. ** In all fairness, I did not create this, but snagged it from Pinterest**

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Blast from the Past

Hey folks -

I know, I know... its been a while.  A few months in fact.  The fact is, life got busy and I got lazy with regards to my band.  It surprises me that it happened that quickly.  But, from reading all of your posts  (i'm still keeping up!) and the thousands of other internet blogs, posts etc, I know that this is not the end, and I only have to make the commitment to start again.

So to be horribly cliche, its a new year, and I'm beginning again.  I joined my fitness pal (sjsanto) and am looking for friends, if you use it as well.  I'm still going to WW but do to some financial changes I'm trying to move my sister and I to a "free" version (I've been supporting her for the 2 years - $80 a month in fees is killing me!)

Quick updates of the last couple of months - I started back to grad school - Went on Vacation - and totaled my car.  I hobbled away with a badly sprained ankle and some bruises, but the car was totaled, hence the "financial changes"

We'll start with some pics of my vacation - This was the solo cruise I took to the Caribbean   It was absolutely fantastic!  I went completely on my own, but met some fabulous people, had a great time and had some new experiences.

With regards to the wreck - Lets just say ouch.  Almost 6 weeks later, my ankle is still wonky, and hurts to walk on for any period of time.  Which has made gym work nearly impossible.  I'm going to start back with gentle yoga this week, and seek out a physical therapist next week to help figure out what I can do to get healed.

Just in case you were wondering - Heres a few pics of the wreck -

Yes, the last one is my beloved Ipad - No, I was not actually using it when I wrecked, but I was putting it away.  Do not drive while distracted.  Its no good!

I just want to say thanks to you all for sticking with me through my hiatus - I've been following your posts!  I was kind of scared that I'd come back and have no followers to speak of, so I'm very glad that is not the case!

Friday, October 5, 2012

so much for wkly blogging - life's been crazy!

I know I said I was going to be blogging at least weekly.  I have to say, last night was the first night I've slept a true "sleep" in probably 2 weeks.  Life has been insane!

A couple of weeks ago, we had finals week at school so I pulled an actual all nighter, to grade finals.  UGH.  I haven't done that since college! At least in college I could usually find time throughout the day to catch a nap.  Nope... Now that I'm a working adult I had to stay busy until 5 the day after!  The all nighter was partly due to the fact that my mom's birthday was the night before.  My sister (who has been living in Colombia, South America for 2 years ) was back in town, so we went out for my Mom's birthday.  We have a place called Uptown Art in town, where normal people can go and feel like they are an artist :-)  It is nice because, while you all do the same picture, everybody's own skills make it slightly different.  They serve wine and appetizers and its a nice night.  But I didn't get home till 10:30, so I didn't start my grading till after that!

Then last week, we had this little thing called my sister's wedding.  All sorts of stuff going on.  Both sides of the family were in town, and since they no longer talk (after the divorce) me and the rest of my siblings spent most of the week going back and forth between events.  Here's a pic of the family with both brothers-in-law. 

It really was a great experience all the way around.  Though, it reiterated the fact that I am not made to wear 4 inch heels.  OUCH!

In between all this, I've been working on my own school work.  Did I mention before I started grad school again?  I'm so bad!  I can't pass up free school so I started an MBA program.  My previous degrees I was able to just go with the flow on.  This one is so different!  It is a totally new language for me.  So i find myself looking up terms in the glossary and taking twice as long to do assignments than I should.  Grr!  In fact, I should be working on my final paper right now.

So, on the band front things are going better.  I went in a couple of weeks ago, and got an itty bitty baby fill (.5 CC) and a big talking to from the doc.  He thinks I'm fighting the band.  Chewing too much and eating too slow, so that I can still eat more than I need.  :-(

I have had two weeks of losses, which is good.  I even lost 2.2 lbs the week of the wedding.  I think it is actually because we were so busy and ate out a lot.  I do better when I'm busy and actually do pretty good when we eat out.  At home I go back to grazing which adds up to bigger calorie counts. 

So, I'm moving in the right direction.  Now that wedding is over etc, hopefully life settles a bit and I can get back on track with my C25k.  

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Week 1 on the new goals

I'm here.  I said I was going to be checking in more often, and I really am.  I lost this week!  -1.6 to 299.4

I'm back under the ugly 300 and I'm really planning on staying under it!

I go in this week for my next visit with my doc, and I'm not looking forward to the "talkin' to" that I'll probably get.  I definitely don't feel like I'm in any sort of "green zone"  Some breads give me a rough time, but if there isn't breads, I can eat way more than I need to.  I have been trying to stop anyway, but it just doesn't keep me full.  So, I'm looking for another fill this week.

I am keeping up with the rest of my goals though.  I've been at the gym, continuing my C25K prep.  I just finished week 3 today.  Next week comes the dreaded 5 minute jog.  Yikes!

On the life side - My sister is getting married next week and so I've got a TON of stuff to get done this week in prep.  I have people staying with me while they are in town and I hate that since I'm always worried they are judging me for my decor / organization etc.

Anyway, I'm here, I'm progressing (slow, but moving forward) and while I'm not posting a ton, I still read all of yours, so please keep putting it out there.  I get my inspiration from you guys!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Checking in

Its been just under a month since my last post.  This fits my typical scenerio in that I "obsess" over things at first, and then slowly fall off the path.

Here's what's been going on with me.

Eating - amount of food has definitely gone down, but I'm eating small quantities of bad foods.  I have horrible cravings for salty crunchies... I have always been one that could pass over all sorts of chocolate for some yummy chips and dip.  Any suggestions of other foods to satisfy the craving without the calories of the chips?

Drinking - I have been increasing my water, averaging about 40 oz a day.  Still not near what I should be, but let me say, that is a HUGE improvement over what I did in the past.

Exercise - Here's the part where I really feel like I've made some progress.  For the last 3 weeks I have been at the gym a minimum of 3 times a week, sweating hard!  I had been doing water aerobics, and while it was moving, I didn't really feel like I was working hard.  So, I've given into peer pressure from my real life friends and started a couch-to-5k program.  I'm in the middle of week 2 and so far, so good.  I have always been athletic, and enjoy movement, but would like to be able to jog a block without dying!  We've been doing Yoga after the treadmill 2 out of the 3 days, which I feel like is getting maybe, slightly, a tiny bit easier...

I think I've just been up and moving more in general lately.  Here's a couple of pics of my sister and I at a mud volleyball tournament to benefit the March of Dimes.  It was a lot of fun, and I had jelly legs for 3 solid days from trying to move in the mud!  The first one isn't actually our team, but I wanted you to see what the courts actually looked like.  They literally dug out some holes and filled with water!

So, I've given you a brief update, and now, I want to set some goals for myself.  

1. Continue C25k.  3x a week minimum exercise.

2. Increase general water consumption to a minimum of 50 oz a day.  Very doable I think.

3. STOP BUYING CHIPS!!!  As my WW leader would say, they are a RED light food.  There is no stopping me if they are in the house, so I just need to stop buying them.  Easier said then done lately, but this is the first step of kicking the habit. 

4. Check in and post at least 1x a week.  I'm not sure I can do more, though I still enjoy reading all of your posts, but I definitely need to check in one time each week.  

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

woo-woo! My band works!

Yep, it is Tuesday, official weigh-in day, and I'm kind of excited.  Do you see my ticker --->    Here's the stats:

Last week 302.8
 + 2.2 CC fill

This week 295.4!

Loss of 7.4 lbs!

Happy Dance - Happy Dance!!!

Now, I know that is not normal.  I know the band is slow and steady.  That's what I want.  I also know that this week includes 2 days of liquids after my fill.  I also know that on one of those liquid days, I counted a yummy blizz@rd treat as a "liquid."  Oops.  But my band works!  When I am sticking to those 3 meals of solid foods, I'm full at 1/2 - 2/3 cup of food.  Woo-HOO!

Just had to share.

P.S. - a friend of mine is currently in labor (10 wks early) with her twin boys.  Send out some good thoughts to whoever / wherever you send good thoughts so that both mom and babies are good!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Hello band.... it is nice to finally meet you!

Tuesday I got my 2nd fill.  Added 2.2 cc's to my 1.5 for the first, total 3.7.  Then liquids for 48 hours.  Real food today.  HOLY MOLY  is what I said both at lunch and dinner.  Apparently I have a band in there!  Most of the time I bring leftovers for lunch, but I spent the day in the car traveling for work, so I brought a homemade wrap (i.e. not a huge wrap.)  I made it about 1/2 to 2/3 and got pressure in the chest.  Well, that is new and different.

Dinner time - my mom asks me to meet her out for dinner.  I warn her at the beginning that it is my first day of real food, so "we'll see" what happens.  Got a 2 for 20 type meal which comes with an appetizer.  1.5 mozerella sticks and pressure.... really? 10 minutes later I got my meal and ate 1 1/2 of my riblets (the bbq rib version of the chicken strip) and HOLY CRAP.  Any pressure I've felt before was cake compared to this.  I got dizzy, was burping all over the place, trying for like 10 minutes to wish and hope and pray it would go down, but nope.  1st day of real food and first PB :-(  Felt brilliant after the bathroom trip, but I'm done for the night.

I spoke with a friend afterwards (naturally skinny, but SOOO on my side for this whole process) and she put it like this.  "you just had to find the edge!  Now you know and will stay away from it."  Amen.  I'm staying away from the edge.

But, I'm super excited that I really have a band.  I was beginning to think it was all an elaborate prank!