Sunday, June 12, 2011

Almost 2 years out.

In just over a month, I will be 2 years post-op. As of today I'm sitting at 219 pounds, and (mostly) in a size 14. For those of you who have read over my progress in the past, this means I've gained some of my weight back. This little relapse has been incredibly hard on me, but I know I have no one to blame but myself. So, this week I've started two things to get myself back on track and really stick to a plan. In my past posts I have promised myself my 170 pound goal, and have yet to achieve it. Now, not only will I be using Endomondo ( to be tracking my exercise, I will be using MyNetDiary ( to track my daily caloric intake versus my set plan. Both of these are applications that can be accessed via a mobile phone or the internet. I choose to use both.

Next, I'm going to provide a few progress photos, seeing as I've basically abandoned this for a year.



October 2010

December 2010

April 2011

June 2011

Looking over old photos, I know I've made considerable progress over the last two years. In my heart I know that it's not enough yet. I've become comfortable, and have stopped being aware of the food I'm putting in my body. It's time to regain control, and finally kick that last 50 pounds that is keeping my from my goal.

Per my plan in MyNetDiary, I would like to be at 170 pounds at the beginning of January 2012. The planned caloric intake is 1424 per day, resulting in approximately a 2 pound loss per week. If I stay within these guidelines, and add to it walking exercises... I think I can come pretty close to that.

In addition I'm listening to "Lose Weight with Andrew Johnson" ( another application for my phone that I listen to at night. He goes through the deep relaxation process (Which I already do and LOVE with my other guided meditation programs) but then focuses on not wanting fattening or sweet foods, and being happy with eating healthy and nutritional foods. It may really be a bunch of junk, but it's putting positive thoughts, and thoughts for breaking bad eating habits... for $2.99, I'll give it a try, in addition to my other programs.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

I think it's been a while since I threw a real post here.

As of today I hover somewhere around 208. With quitting my job in April, and moving from Metro Detroit to Jeff City, there was 2.5 months where I really just sat around the house. I wasn't doing massage (as I'm not licensed in Missouri) and was unemployed. Admittedly I was very homesick. But who wouldn't miss ICHQ all all the wonderful people there?? I watched my weight go up and down with my lack of activity, and sudden spurts of "OMG I HAVE TO DO SOMETTTHHHIIIING"

Job hunting was depressing, and I found myself going back to food for comfort. Ice cream and chocolate, have always been my downfall. They continue to be.

So, since my 101 pound mark, at 10.5 months, I've only lost 2 additional pounds. I passed my one year mark on 7/20/10. 103 pound loss total, at one year. It's amazing what a year can do, and I'm proud of that accomplishment. I'm finding that my size 14 jeans are getting loose now, and I cannot wear any pants without a belt. I'm giving more and more clothes away.

However, I still have 38 pounds to loose, to be at my goal. I'm going to really start watching what I'm eating again... less carbs, more protein. I still can't stomach protein shakes though. Between the taste and the sweet, It makes me want to be sick.

I also plan to start walking after work. Even if it's only a few blocks, it needs to be done. I'm anxious to get my license for massage in Missouri, so I can start that type of work again. I lost so much weight when I was working as a therapist. When I was actively using my body everyday, and no longer behind the desk.

I'm putting my goal at 6 months to loose the 38 pounds. Putting it out there for everyone to see. And putting it out there to hold myself accountable for that goal.

Dear January 2011, you will see me at a slim 170 pounds.


Tuesday, June 8, 2010


So today was my date with the scale. To my surprise It stopped at 210 pounds. Which is 101 pounds down from my 311 pound heft about a year ago. A majority of that (87 pounds) has been lost in the last 10 months.

I'm glad to walk around a happier and healthier me.

On a side note, I've moved from Detroit, MI to Jefferson City, MO. So, I've got a new town, and a new life... I'm ready to dive in <3


Monday, March 8, 2010

Photo update

So these photos are taken almost 9 months apart. There is at least an 80 pound difference.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Never too late.

Several years ago I made a New Years Resolution. My resolution was to be a size 16 by the end of the year. The end of the year came and I was still not in that size 16. I was crestfallen, but life went on. When I began this journey I was in a size 24 pants. 24 pushing 26 to be honest.

Today I went to ICHQ. I went there wearing a pair of low rise size 16 jeans. It's my first weight related accomplishment in 2010. It may be 3 years to late, but I've finally achieved that goal.

Humility aside, I'm proud of myself.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Off Track Already...

I cannot wait for this damned holiday season to be over! So much focus is put on food and eating durring this season. If I see another cookie or pie I may just have to be sick!

Now, prior to surgery, my downfall was sweets. Cookies, cakes, chocolate, ice cream. They all had my number, and I loved each one fully, and without prejudice. They were my comfort in times of stress or sadness. They were my friend, and always there.

No matter what they tell you about not being able to tolerate sugar, (especially with the RNY bypass) everyone is different. Each body reacts differently to sugar, and as your healing progresses and you are further into your recovery, the more your body will tolerate. Sugar included.

For my first bout with sugar was with a protein cereal about 10 weeks or so after surgery. It ended poorly, and I was in excruciating pain for hours. 1/2c of this cereal... I think it was 9g or 11g of sugar per serving. Coupled with the sugar from my Silk (as I found I wasn't as dairy tolerant as I thought I was). It was a disaster.

Further on it got easier. I was able to tolerate the natural sugars, honey... fruit sugars, and eventually refined sugar. Cookies, pies, chocolate and ice cream... my friends were finally back in town.

I found that the stress or sadness I experienced had never left, and that I was able to tolerate my comforters again. I found that it was easy to derail yourself... one cookie at a time. Not to mention I looove to bake, and that my mum's business is "Angie's Sweet Treats". Not that it's an excuse, but it is defiantly a contributor.

So for the summary to all of this nonsense, I have a resolution for the new year. To get my dumb ass back on track and stop lollygagging about, and screwing up my goals. Refined sugar, to hell with you. New gym, at least twice a week (now that I have school in the evenings again).

I'm 5 months post op and have only lost 70 pounds. I'm proud of where I am, but I know I can do better. And my streamlining my nutritional intake (again) I hope to regain a loss of 10-15 pounds a month for the next 6 or 7 months.

So here's to the chicken fatoosh salad, and unsweetened ice tea I'm having for lunch.

Time to get myself in gear.


Monday, December 7, 2009

240 Pounds!!

Today I had to get new scrubs for my new job as a massage therapist!! The top was an XL, and the bottoms were a L!
First time I've ever fit into a Large!!!

Small accomplishments are not always that small :):):)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving Ect.

With all of the bad that has transpired this last week I can't really complain. Tons of celebrating!!! Thanksgiving, My Da's birthday, and a new job offer! So we've had tons of rich and delicious food, and many drinks.

With all of that, I've still lost a pound this week... sitting myself around a comfortable 65 pound weight loss since 7/20/09.

Below is what I've learned:

Must be extremely limited. It’s all calories, carbs, and sugar.
Not that I’m a beer drinker, but the lovely men of Icrontic (Rob, and Brian… that’s you <3) introduced me to a few beers that don’t make me retch immediately. I couldn’t finish 1/3 of a bottle… It’s heavy and carbonated…
Wine… I love my wine! Had a glass on Thanksgiving, and one last night for celebratory purposes… Was able to consume more wine than beer…
Liquor isn’t really my friend anymore  While expected this still makes me a little sad. My favorite drink is an Amaretto Sour. Simple and sweet. Prior to surgery I was able to drink 2-3 over the course of an evening and be fine… Now I can barely get through one without feeling it.

I’ve found that liquor has the biggest impact in the alcohol world… So if you’re drinking socially, stick to something you can sip throughout the evening.

Always stick to your protein first. It doesn’t matter how tempting the roll is, or Grandma’s homemade mashed potatoes…. Eat the turkey first! You will stuff your pouch full of carbs… and not have room for what your body really needs. You’re only able to take so much in now... choose wisely.

Thanksgiving was probably the best day of this weekend. There was turkey, small scoop of mashed potatoes, ½ a heat n’ serve roll, some sweet potato (cinnamon only) and my wine. Sure… again carb heavy on what got on my plate… but the turkey was eaten first… and nothing else on the plate got finished. And again… Didn’t over eat or feel sick.

Better yet. Didn’t have the urge to eat, eat, eat.

All in all I’ve feeling good about the way things are progressing.
I still look in the mirror and see the 311 pound me. But I’m finding that I’m more comfortable in social settings. And I feel people perceive and react to my differently than they use to.

Life is changing dramatically. Everyday I find that one challenge I faced isn’t as hard as it once was. Everyday always brings a new challenge though.

My latest is being defined by other by having Gastric Bypass. Difficult to explain, but I promise to touch more on this later.

XO- Amanda

Friday, November 6, 2009

Week 14 photos

Behold my week 14 photos...

Not much to see I know, not much has changed.

Steven and I are starting the gym. I'm a little apprehensive as I really haven't been to the gym in over two years, and as I enjoy walking... I hate the smell of dude sweat and the spray cleaner for machines. Give me the smell of Michigan's autumn leaves any day.

Monday, November 2, 2009

250 Pounds!!!

Alrightly faithful followers!!! I know you're all clammering to know what's going on in my little journey...

Well lovies, today I stepped on the scale and saw it stop at 250 pounds.

250 POUNDS!!!

That's nearly 60 pounds gone in the 3 1/2 months since surgery!!!

As you can tell, I'm more than a little excited!

On another note:

I'm finally starting to feel normal again. My hair is falling out in handfuls :( It's a good thing I have thick dark hair.

But eating. Splitting up a meal right away when we eat out. It's feeling normal... eating what's on the plate... and stopping when I'm full.

I haven't been sick in weeks, and I'm very grateful.
I will tell anyone that the first few months were the hardest... It's discouraging and heartbreaking. Anyone who watched me in the first few months will attest to that. Steven, Mum, Da... they know. And to a degree I know it was heartbreaking for them (especially my Mum)

It gets easier.

I've lost almost 60 pounds... and I've only gone down one pant size... I could hardly believe it!!!! But my Aunt threw her arms around me for a hug the other night, and commented on how easily her arms went around my shoulders... It really hit me then... It's not the belly or thighs I'm loosing in (although I have no butt to begin with and that has shrunk.. :( ) It was a majority in my back that I lost.

It's where I really wanted to loose as well... My body is beginning to feel more proportionate to me now.

There have been so many changes in these few months... I can hardly stand the anticipation of what the next few months will bring.

It doesn't all fall off at one time... It's bit by bit... stay focused. :)

On a side note:
For Halloween we dressed up Friday at work... I wore a skirt for my costume... It was an old skirt, and I knew it was too big... but I thew on some hose, and my spanx anyway... While walking up to my building, I felt my skirt brushing my lower calf... I thought "I don't remember it being that long" Two seconds later it was around my ankles, and my arms are full... It ended up safety pinned to my tank top for the party the next day.

In short... don't under estimate a size or two too big. lol <3<3

Friday, October 16, 2009

My White Chili

Another quick and super easy the recipe for you all

48 oz Swanson’s Chicken Broth
2 lbs cooked Ground Turkey, Shredded Turkey or Shredded Chicken
48 oz Great Northern Beans
1 Can sweet corn
½ large sweet onion, chopped
3 chopped green onion
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp oregano
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
4 oz chopped green chilies (mild)
1 handful chopped fresh cilantro
2 tbsp minced garlic

Throw everything in a Crockpot on high for 4 hours.


Saturday, October 3, 2009

8 week photos.

I forgot to add these for you <3

Too long.

So, I see it's been over a month since I've posted here. Life has been busy, and I have been lazy <3 walah... guess that's the trick.

As for food...

I've found that I can no longer tolerate the protein shakes... they make me want to vomit after one sip :( However, I have been cleared by my dietitian for protein bars!!! So happy.. Below is the bar I've found most satisfying!

Protein Plus - High Protein Bar - Reduced Sugar | POWERBAR
22g Protein. 1g Sugar.

Peanut Butter with chocolate. I can only eat about half a bar at a time, they're very dense. But delicious! And full of the protein that we so desperately need.

In addition, I've been cleared for nuts as well, peanut, cashews, almonds, walnuts... here I come!!!

It takes care of that "I need a crunchy salty snack" feeling... My personal favorite is cashews with sea salt.

As for food on the go... Wendy's Chili is still a big favorite!!! I still sneak a fry or two from Steven... but I wouldn't recommend that to anyone <3 quesadillas are great! cheese and chicken with some peppers and a crisp tortilla. also (from Ram's Horn) the Chicken and Cheese wrap, with the low fat Italian dressing. Has chicken, cheese, tomatoes, and lettuce in a crisp tortilla a wrap.

About two weeks ago I was also cleared for salads... so far I've only dove into a grilled chicken salad (that consisted of chicken, cheese, lettuce and tomato, with low fat Italian dressing) but it was a little heaven on earth. Kinda getting back to what I REALLY loved to eat pre-op!

Oatmeal is still a favorite... plain with splenda. Special K has a protein enriched cereal!!! It's great!!! TRY IT!!!! and for my sweet snack, I have a handful of LIFE cereal, dry.

Laughing Cow, light, spreadable cheese... plain or with reduced fat crackers... YUMMY! Get low fat dressing... learn to like spices and herbs... you're going to need variation, because the same thing gets boring (especially chicken)

If you have a Target near you and like fun nut combinations... look for "True North" in their snack isle. my favorites so far are the Pecan Almond Peanut Clusters, and Citrus Burst Not Clusters (which taste like PB&J... soo yummy!) They also have peanut butter blended with different things (ie, cinnamon, cranberry vanilla, and dark chocolate) all have pretty low sugar... and I picked up the cinnamon one yesterday... I'll let you know how it goes.

For portion control.. get smaller bowls... get smaller plates!!! I get the little "dessert" bowls... they're great for cereal in the morning... (because if you're anything like me and loooooove a HUGE bowl of crunchy cereal in the morning... It's a life saver for portion control)

I hate to say this... but post surgery... it's really all about food. What can I eat... how much... and if you though you were food obsessed prior to surgery... prepare for a 10 fold increase.

So... that's what's been going on food wise the last month or so... PS. Scrambled eggs still make me sick, as well as ANY CHINESE FOOD! Chicken and Veggies, Chinese style... equal much pain!!! Just avoid it! Also... I'm sure you know, but avoid dry chicken... it sucks!

I'm wearing a size 22 jeans right now... haven't ventured to see if I can fit the 20's yet.... The hard thing is really mentally accepting what's happening to your body. If you're like me (and I'm sure many people have similar stories to mine) It's a yo-yo with the scale... up a pound, down two, up three... for MANY years.... then all of a sudden you're losing 2 pounds... then three... then five.... all of a sudden you've lost 50 (me so far!!!) and you can't really wrap your head around it. I thought I was going to be able to... and it's much harder than I thought.

I was getting into the shower last weekend, and saw myself naked in front of the mirror (something which I regularly avoid) and it kinda hit me... My body is changing!!!! It's different... I have hips!!! It's something that you don't see as much as others do... because face it.. .if they're not living with you they're not seeing you everyday... and losing pound by pound doesn't make much a difference if you're watching it everyday... but if that someone doesn't see you for 3 or 4 weeks... and you've dropped 15 or 20 pounds... they're the one who has the shock and awe...

Perhaps that is enough of my thoughts for one day.

As always, that's for reading... I hope my experiences can help someone out there..

Much love,
Amanda XO

Friday, August 21, 2009

Anothers Perception

So the other day I arrive at my cousin's house for a little get together. It's about 6 pm, and I have eaten since 2. So my cousin invites me to get a plate of whatever I could eat, and enjoy. I set my purse down and said "Thanks, I'm actually hungry!" My grandmother turned to me and said "No you're not... It's just in your head!!!"

I actually laughed, then explained that it had been several hours since I last ate...

Apparently having gastric bypass mean that you will never be hungry or need to eat again... :)

I love my Grams.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Amazing Shake!!!!

Okay... so I was looking through my cook book looking for something nice to take to a potluck next week.

What I came across was something called Protein Power. I modified the recipe a little and it was AMAZING!

1 1/2c Ice
1 1/2c Light Soy Milk
2 tbs Sugar Free Hot Cocoa Mix
1 tbs Dry Milk
2 tsp Banana Cream Sugar Free Instant Pudding
2 tbs Smart Balance Peanut Butter (Mine has a yellow cap and 2g sugar per 2 tbs)

Mixed it all up in a blender and it came out kinda like a thick shake... chocolate peanut buttery goodness!!!

Had to share!!! soooooo good!

Took my 4oz, and stuff the rest in a insulated mug in the freezer to take to class tonight.

Hell, I bet it would even freeze and turn out like some semi-ice cream, for those who are feaning for some?

Hope you all enjoy!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Week 4

So today is my 4 weeks post-op. Justly, I had to run to the scale and check how many pounds down I am... I am proud to announce that I have lost 21 pounds in those 4 weeks, and 32 pounds total!

So for food updates.

Pureed land... it sucks.
Mashed potatoes and refried beans only take you soooo far.

I did find that I fell in love with a little something I like to call lasagna paste.
1/4c Ricotta Cheese
1/4c Italian herb tomato sauce
Pinch of mozzarella cheese...

Nuke it and ta-da! Lasagna paste.

I am finally now on to soft foods. I found that my belly enjoys over easy eggs much more than scrambled!!! I also have a bit of a love for salsa at the moment.

Otherwise the biggest news yet is that I'm down a size as well.

Today I picked up a pair of 22 jeans, and they fit first time. No too big in the hips and fine at the waist... of vice versa. It was just lovely. Not sure I can wear them long... but today. I'm in love.

Also want to throw another thanks to my Steven. My poor guy has been dealing with my bitch fest all week... He's a trooper. I love him.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Pureed Foods...

So my lovelies, I received my Isopure today!!! BIG SPECIAL NOTE!!!! IT DOES NOT DISSOLVE IN HOT WATER!!! Perhaps hot food, but we needed two takes just to make some mashed potatoes tonight. I made some Hungary Jack with their smallest portion. I dissolved about half a scoop into the cold water and then heated it. It gets frothy... but added some silk, and the potato flakes and then WALAH!!! Yummy Potatoes!!! Spray with your I Can't Believe It's Not Butter (ICBINB) and some garlic seasoning... perfect :)

Protein Lemonade = Bad... :(:(

More goodies:

4 oz fat free refried beans, 2 pinches reduced fat Mexican blend cheese, more than a little taco bell mild sauce... = NOM!

Also, 1 low fat cheese stick dipped in hummos!!! Very Nom!!

Also I tried a scrambled egg this morning... Sigh. It was bad news :(
One Organic large brown egg. Added silk, and popped it in the microwave. When all said and done and scrambled I added about a half a slice of reduced fat pepper jack cheese. Melt and scramble more.

Now, I don't know if it was that I woke up feeling ucky, or the the egg this morning... but I felt TERRIBLE until about 1 pm today!

Drinking water hurt... I only had about 2 spoons of applesauce at lunch that also hurt... I finally nibbled some Gerber Graduate Puffs (Peach) and that seemed to do the trick... I've been able to eat and drink just fine for the rest of the day...

So... Beware the egg... I guess.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

So, for the first time in my life the other day, the smell of french fries and chicken strips nearly made me vomit. Not that I was eating them of course, but they were in the same room that I was.

So here are the things I've come to love in my one week post-gastric bypass.

1. Crystal Light Natural Lemonade.... Perfect with crushed ice!!!

2. Dannon Light & Fit 4 oz yogurts. Perfect portion wise!!!
Low Sugar, Okay Carbs
BEWARE: Has fruit pieces. Eat around them or strain your yogurt (bound to be messy)

3. Chicken soup broth!!!
Go to your local coney island. Get a huge to go container of their chicken soup (mostly broth please)
Take it home, strain out all of the pieces that are not broth and pitch them.
Let said remaining broth cool. When cool skim off the nasty orangy grease layer on top. Do this slowly to get as much off as possible!!!
Heat up in 4 oz portions in a mug and enjoy.

This tastes MUCH better than any chicken broth I have bought yet.

The cream soups I have tried have all been okay... nothing note worthy though

Now for the BADDIES!!!

1. Vitamin World Unflavored Soy Protein Powder!!! YUCK!!!
This stuff tastes like potatoes to begin with. When added to ANYTHING it changes the consistency to that of mashed potatoes.

2. I have found that mixing above soy protein powder with jello ends very badly!!! You get a tri layer effect from this! The bottom, a thick gritty (potatoey) fruit flavored bottom layer, a not quite solidified middle layer, and a foamy, frothy, full of little soy powder chunky top layer.

It's just very bad. Don't attempt it!! :(

For an up side to the protein powder I have been recommended to try the following from a very trusted source:

Isopure Whey Protein Isolate - Unflavored


That will give those of you who are interested all the fun facts about this!! I will be picking up some soon (as pureed foods are only a week away!!!) I understand it should mix well with the applesauce and mashed potatoes I'm waiting for!!!

A few more tid-bits.

DO TAKE a half hour to eat your 4 ounces of yogurt!

You WILL HURT if you eat or drink too quickly! Not that this is end all be all pain, I mean you just had abdominal surgery... but it is very unpleasant!!

Get off your pain meds as soon as possible! Today is my first full day with no narcotic pain meds, it's glorious!! (Plus Lortab Elixir tastes nasty!!!) Tylenol only for me!

Okay, so I have 6 incisions, the largest being about 2 inches and on my right side. As all of you know (or should know) your stomach is on your left. What they do is move all of your organs around using this 2 inch incision on the right. They rip up the fascia that holds you all in place. This hurts most of all. None of my other incisions hurt. If anything they are itchy because they are healing... But not being able to get up with hurting on that right side is getting old fast!! I didn't even bruise badly (I put ARNICA around the incision sites once or twice a day <3).


Well that's it for me tonight... Thanks for tuning in!!

XO - Amanda

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Post Surgery Update

Soooo, I went into surgery on Monday. My pre-surgery weight was 297. 11 pounds down from my last weigh in. So, that is proof that 8 oz protein shakes, 4 times a day, 1 serving of fruit and a high protein meal will help you loose weight, even if you don't like it.

Surgery went better than expected. I was out of the OR in 80 minutes and in my own room by 11 am. Anesthesia sucks. My throat is just starting to feel better. In addition, pain medication sucks... I'm just starting not to feel nauseous with it.

But all in all, I'm living life one half cup of Yoplait at a time. Creamed soup, crystal light lemonade with ice... and disastrous results trying to make high protein jello.

Sleep lots, and have TONS of support. Life will get back to normal.

Lots of love

XO- Amanda

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Pre-Op Photos

So, those are my before photos. Taken Friday, July 17, 2009. 3 days before surgery. If anything I've learned through massage school it was to accept your self. I mean, we had to get undressed, walk around in sheets and have perfect strangers massage our near naked bodies, on the very first day of class. So world.... this is me. I can't wait for my arms to lay straight to my sides.

Surgery is scheduled for 8:00 am on July 20, 2009. That's tomorrow. I can hardly believe it's all come so quickly. People keep asking my if I'm nervous. I can't say nervous, but the anticipation is killing me. It's like being a child and waiting for Christmas. You just NEED it to be here already.

The psychologist talked to up about the self arguments you have just prior to surgery. It's true. I can't tell you all how many times I've gone back and forth about how I don't really need this, I'm blowing things out of proportion, There are people out there who need this more than I do. And the truth is: I do need this, everything else I have done in past years to manage my weight has absolutely failed, and in turn I felt like a failure for being unable to control it. I'm not blowing things out if proportion, my life will not get better if I cannot lose this weight. I will develop type 2 diabetes, and probably some more very serious conditions. And it is true, there are people out there that need this more than I do. But I need to do this for me, take care of myself, and then I can help better take care of others.

Such is life.

I'll update in a few days and let you all know how everything went.

Much love!

XO-- Amanda

Friday, July 10, 2009

Gastric Bypass: Not the "Easy Way Out"

Recently, I was told that someone very close to me thought I was taking the "easy way out" with my decision to have gastric bypass surgery.

Aside from being hurtful, it really made me question my support system. In the end, I decided that (again) I am doing this for me, and that's what matters most. This person will very quickly see that there is nothing truly "easy" about having this surgery, the peporation or what a life changing event this is.

It is now 10 days until surgery. I am drinking 4, 8 oz. protein shakes a day. All I have right now is a chocolate flavor, and am very much looking forward to getting the lemonade flavor next week. I only wish that every protein shake out there wasn't sooooo sweet. Vanilla, Chocolate, Strawberry, Fruit Punch, Lemonade, Tropical Punch, annnnd Peanut Butter Chocolate. Need to get the unflavored protein powder as well, add it to chicken broth, and other softer foods.

Anyway... once again I was scouring the Internet for people's personal WLS stories. I cam across a blog that displayed the 7 reasons WLS is not the EASY WAY OUT! I'd like to share that with you. I'll post pre surgery photos soon.



Re-posted from:

Have some respect for WLSers! Here’s why:

1. Hell Week.
The days immediately following surgery are the most intense, miserable experience you can imagine. You have been through major surgery and your body will not let you forget it. The pain is bad enough, but the fatigue is worse.Then there is your sudden withdrawal from food. You see it everywhere: your family’s meals, in commercials. You will experience cravings that drive mental anguish to new levels.Hormone levels go a bit haywire, and depression is common. So are vast mood swings. You may well feel like you’re just going insane.All this leads to a serious case of buyers remorse. Why on earth did I do this to my body? Of course, this regret contributes to the mental anguish.Hell Week can be as short as a few days or as long as a couple of weeks. And everyone goes through it.

2. Dumping.
Most gastric bypass patients will experience dumping at least once, some more often. Dumping happens when food (which hasn’t been broken down as thoroughly as it was before surgery) enters the small intestine too quickly. You start to sweat. You’re nauseas and you may even throw up. Or you could have diarrhea. And then you are exhausted and want to sleep.It’s the most miserable feeling you can imagine, and you will do anything to avoid experiencing it again.

3. Suddenly removing food from your life is traumatic.
More so than you can imagine. And it’s not like you can sneak around and cheat like you can on a diet – at least not for a long while. It’s as if a close friend has died.Then there are the emotional ramifications of this loss. You have to do “brain surgery‿ on yourself, discovering why you overate to begin with and how to change destructive behaviors. It can be very uncomfortable, even though its healthy in the long run.

4. Complications.
There are lots of potential complications and some unpleasant side effects. You can develop infections from surgery. You could develop gall stones and need your gall bladder out. You could develop a stricture (incredibly painful!) and need more surgery. You can develop reactive hypoglycemia, have food blocking the exit of your pouch (again very painful!) or become constipated. Or you could just have painful, smelly gas.

5. Vitamins.
With gastric bypass, the part of your intestine that absorbs much of your nutrients is bypassed. So you must take a range of vitamins every day for the rest of your life. This can mean anywhere from 4 pills up to 12 or more, each and every day. If you don’t take vitamins, or if the ones you take aren’t good enough, you can develop life-threatening deficiencies. You may wind up having to take regular shots or get regular blood transfusions. Either way, it’s no walk in the park.

6. Protein and water requirements.
In addition to constantly popping vitamins, gastric bypass patients must get 60 – 80 grams of protein and 48 – 64 ounces of water every day into a pouch that holds about 1 cup at a time. Lets just say that’s not easy and requires constant effort.

7. You still have to watch what you eat and exercise.
This is the biggest myth out there – that having gastric bypass surgery means weight magically falls off of you with no effort. And while you may lose some weight without exercise, if you want to see real results you have to get moving. And you can’t just shove anything in your mouth, either. Even if you happen to be one of the “lucky‿ few who can eat anything without dumping, unhealthy foods will stop weight loss and start regain. Just like they will for anyone else

Monday, June 29, 2009

My time is coming.

Well, I will be 25 in one week... and my surgery is three weeks from today.

I'm not nervous for my surgery. I know what is meant to happen will happen. What I can't seem to wrap my head around is how I may look. The dreaded skin folds, or will it not be too bad. Skin looses memory, it becomes damaged. Where my skin may look just fine on my 307 pound frame, it's still a mystery what it may look like on a 250, 200, or 150 pound frame. I'm prepared for the fact I may need skin removal. But I've already made the decision not to do so until Steven and I are done having children. I think that is the wisest choice.

In addition to how my skin will look, I have a rather large tattoo on my lower back... Now... with the weight loss, what will it look like (besides a giant red penis... I could kill the "artist" for that) (which will be recolored!!!! After the weight settles)

Anyway... I've seen where they have done the skin removal from the back too, and left a tattoo literally cut in half. the tattoo is just on my back now... but when I loose the excess weight.. where will it end up? Hip to hip? Wrapping around my hips? Just don't know.

So, surgery in three weeks, pre-op instructions next week. Everyday I get a little more excited.

My next tattoo? My surgery date, small and delicate, where I can see it always... To remember the day I worked towards. The day that will change the rest of my life. To remember the struggle of 25 years of being fat (yes, from what I understand I was a chubby baby too). And to forever remember the day I took the first real (irreversible) step towards a healthy future not only for my but my family, and the children I want.

Enough of my babble... Goodnight



Thursday, June 11, 2009

This is me

Hello. My name is Amanda. I'm 24 years old, 5'8" and currently weight 307 pounds. I wear a size 22/24. I've thought about, researched, and put off initiating gastric bypass since I was 18. I've been overweight for as long as I can remember. It wasn't until late 2008 that it really hit me. And it hit me with this photo. My sister-in-law took this photo. All I could think was "Who is that person, and what are they smuggling under their shirt?!" That person was me. On a day that I thought I looked pretty fantastic. My pre-diabetic, insulin resistant body was putting on more and more weight. My joints hurt, ached, and throbbed. My headaches were more sever than ever. I was training to become a massage therapist, eating healthier, and was more aware than ever of what I was putting into my body... Still the pounds piled on. From August 2008, to March 2009 I had put on nearly 40 pounds, despite my best efforts.

It was in December of 2008 that my boss secretly had gastric bypass surgery. When she told me about it... I just needed to know all of the details. She gave me her surgeon's number, and before I knew it I was calling the Beaumont Weight Control Center. I set up to attend their seminar in late December. I gave myself a month... double checked with my insurance and gathered up $600 for their lifetime program... by February 2009 I was ready to meet with the doctor and start my process.

After 13 vials of blood, several EKGs, a stress test, a sleep apnea test, a psychological evaluation, and a meeting with both the dietitian and exercise specialist, I was approved by my doctor to undergo gastric bypass surgery. My file was then sent to my surgeon. I had to wait 6 weeks for that appointment... meet with a group, then one on one, and was then approved by my surgeon. Then I waited for another month for my surgeon's office to get everything sorted out with my insurance company. Then they submitted my file...

I received my rejection for surgery in May 2009. I was devastated... My prior medically supervised diet, and the time I had been with the weight control center added up to 8 months of documentation... when my insurance company only required 6 months... I was told that we would wait, and start an appeals process. my surgeon's office resubmitted with additional medical, and it almost worked like magic. On June 4, 2009 I received a call from my surgeon's office saying that I was approved!!! I was absolutely ecstatic!! We scheduled right there, and now I'm simply at the end of my waiting!!!! July 20, 2009 is my surgery date.

My plans, and hopes for this blog is to put my experience out there. When I was researching, I was pulling up as many photos, blogs, and forum postings as I could!! Each and every one helped me!! I know what works and what to absolute avoid!! I hope to post meals and recipes that work well for me, in hopes that it may help someone else considering this. This is a life changing experience and I'm very excited to document it.

I have been lucky to have tons of supporters!!! My boss, and friend at the office have been so kind to give me clothing to help in my transition. I currently have more clothes that are way to small (at the moment, but not for long!!!) than those that I can wear. I'd like to put thanks out to my supporters... My biggest fan, Steven, my boyfriend. He has been at my side for almost 3 years, and has always been a positive force. I am very lucky to love, and be loved by such a wonderful man. Second, my parents!! Lynn and Angie. Mum, and Da!! Thank you for worrying about me... but thank you for supporting my choices in life... even if you didn't always agree.
My best friends at Irene's! Kira, Justin, Heather! I love you all! This would have been much harder (though I would still make the same decision) without people who love me, and cared about me more than to just say "Uh huh" They all love me enough to ask questions... quiz and even drill me to make sure I know the answers!! That I'm a unofficial expert before I go through with this. Just... THANK YOU!!

As I said prior... I weigh 307 pounds. My BMI is 48(point something). Other than the pre-diabetes, insulin resistance... I'm really healthy! No sleep apnea, no blood abnormalities. Clean! Which makes me a great candidate for this! I hope, when all is said and done, to loose 140-150 pounds. Today... that is my goal.

I will keep you posted!!

XO - Amanda