Saturday, 30 January 2010


Another day, another 1lb loss. Surely this can't go on for much longer?!

17st 9lbs - 247lbs - BMI 41.1 (not morbid for much longer...)

There must be a great big plateau heading my way soon. All you expert bandsters out there - for how long after surgery did you consistently lose weight? How much did you lose before you plateaued (or, dare I say it, even gained during Bandster Hell)?

Last night's 'one little drinkie' turned into a marathon four-and-a-half hours at the pub and three glasses of white wine. That's the latest I've been out since I don't know when! The joys of being a new mum, eh? But this weekend hubby and the small boy have gone oop north to visit Grandma and Grandad so I had a little bit of time to myself, which was lovely! I went to the hairdressers, did a little shopping, went for coffee, read my book, read a magazine, did some work (boo hiss). And, as a treat to myself for losing a stone, I bought three new books:

The Children's Book is our latest Book Club offering; The Little Stranger is the next Book Club offering, and Tea-Time for the Traditionally Built (love that expression, might have to adopt it) is the latest in the No.1 Ladies Detective Agency series which I love. Has anyone read either of the Book Club books? Do you have anything you'd like to say about them? Good or bad?

Oh, and after my dilemma of 'should I tell, shouldn't I tell', no one commented on my weightloss when we met up last night, although a couple of people did say I looked nice. Might have been my hair though, since I'd 'just stepped out of a salon'!

Friday, 29 January 2010

More than a pebble, but not quite a rock

I've lost a stone! Yee-haw. 14 whole pounds have disappeared into the ether, never to be seen again (I hope).

17st 10lbs - 248lbs - BMI 41.3 (still morbidly obese. grr)

Good news is that I only have to lose 8 more pounds to be considered 'obese' (albeit 'Class II obese'), which sounds soooo much better than morbidly obese, don't you think?! Imagine being pleased to be able to announce 'Hey, listen up everyone, I'm OBESE!'

After my last post and the verbal kick up the behinny from Tina, you may be pleased to hear that today I went to Starbucks and had... wait for it... a tall skinny latte with sugar-free vanilla syrup, coming in at a total of 90 calories. Compared to the grande hot-choc with cream which comes in at a whopping 370 calories. Now I just have to make sure my brain doesn't come up with some sort of plan to convince me that because I saved 260 calories in Starbucks I have to replace those calories with something else! Although I am going out for a drink with former work colleagues tonight and will prob have a glass of sauv. blanc, but (I'm pretty sure) it will only be one.

Which leads me on to the perennial dilemma of when/what to tell people about my weightloss. I know I only talked about this about three posts ago, so can you tell it's bothering me? I was playing the scenario over in my head as I walked home from town this afternoon. Chances are no-one is going to notice that I've lost weight yet; a stone isn't really enough to make a difference. BUT, what if someone does notice? What if the convo goes something like this:

Friend: Wow, Justine, you look so totally utterly amazingly fantastic. Have you had your hair done? Eyebrows plucked? Or, wait a minute, have you lost an entire stone in weight since I last saw you only about a month ago?
Me: Oh, thank you dear Friend. Yes, you're right I have indeed lost an entire stone and reduced my BMI from 43.2 to 41.3 in the past three weeks
Friend: Wow, I'd love to lose a little weight myself. What's your secret
Me: Ummm.

And there we have it. What do I replace 'Ummm' with? I know I probably won't face that dilemma this evening, but it will happen at some point. It's not that I'm against telling a little white lie here and there when it's necessary, but I don't want to get myself into a situation where I've told Friend A one thing about how I've lost weight ('I've just been cutting down' - the truth, but not the whole truth) and Friend B another ('I've had a gastric band fitted'), and then Friends A + B get to talking and they realise I've told them different things, and Friend A feels upset/annoyed/disappointed because I didn't tell her the whole truth; and then either Friend A or Friend B or both of them meet with Friend C before I do, and they tell her and then I get annoyed because it's my news to tell, and so perhaps I shouldn't tell anyone at all, but surely the truth will out at some point... and on and on it goes. On top of all this is the fact that I'm actually quite a 'share-y' person when it comes to news/gossip - I love me some gossip - and I'm quite happy to tell people what I've had done but, and I liken this to being pregnant, I feel like I want to be the one to tell everyone who knows me that I've had it done and not for Friend A to tell Friend B to tell Friend C. I know I can't stop that happening as I can't get to everyone first, unless I hold some sort of meeting and announce it.

OMG, I'm rambling again. Must be a lack of sugar, or carbs, or something. I'm going to stop right now and have some (small, mushy) food and then go out and see what happens. I'll let you know.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

NSV, sort of, kind of

Well, it's not an NSV in the traditional sense, since most NSVs revolve around weightloss, getting fitter, clothes looking good, etc, etc. But, guess what? My NSV revolves around food; well, drink.

Today I had another hot chocolate with whipped cream - hey, I'm like a dog with a bone here, no way was the hot choc going to defeat me, despite my claim that I was going to learn my first banded lesson and not drink it anymore. And, guess what? It would appear that I have battered my band/stomach/whatever into submission because today the hot choc stayed in! Woohoo!

Have I done the right thing? Should I have given up on the hot choc? It's not like it's vital to my wellbeing and, prior to being banded, I wouldn't even have worried about having them this often, in fact my favourite drink at a coffee shop is a latte (esp. gingerbread latte). So, what's it all about? I'm not sure I can explain it to you all because I can't really explain it to myself. It's something like this: my head hasn't caught up with the band situation yet, I don't think. I can't yet let go of the fear of 'going without'. When I go to a coffee shop, I consider it to be a 'treat' despite the fact that I go probably 4-5 times a week. Treats don't happen that often, do they? Surely something that occurs so regularly is just 'something I do'. So, I should stop considering my coffee shop visits as 'treats' and perhaps then I'll stop ordering 'treat'-type drinks. You see pre-band, I could never go into a coffee shop without ordering a cake 'as a treat' (whether or not I was hungry, and more often than not I wasn't hungry, but still ate it) so now that I can't have the cake I'm looking for a liquid alternative and that's where the hot choc and cream comes into play. Before I was more than happy with a latte as 'my' drink, now it has to be a hot choc - grrrr, why am I doing this? Because I'm 'missing out' on the cake and I know I'm thinking to myself 'as soon as I can eat cake again, I'll go back to having just a latte'. ARRGGHHHH! A (gingerbread) latte is a really enjoyable drink, so why can't I be satisfied with one? Why do I have to order a drink that 1) I wouldn't usually bother with, 2) caused me no end of discomfort the last few times I drank it and 3) is laden with sugar and fat? It's the whole issue of re-training your brain as well as your stomach, isn't it?

I'm sorry if this post seems like a lot of rambly nonsense but it's hard to explain concisely!

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

(Un)lucky Number 13

That's how many pounds I've lost! Wow-a-rama. Just 1lb short of a stone. Double wow-a-rama. And I've lost all that since 3rd January - that's just 24 days. Triple wow-a-rama.

17st 11lbs - 249lbs - BMI 41.4 (still morbidly obese...)

The photos above were taken yesterday (26th Jan); I'm afraid technology is not my friend and I have no idea how to put them side by side with the previous photos (taken 3rd Jan). Perhaps one day I'll work it out, but don't hold your breath.

P.S. I avoided hot chocolate (with cream) and went for the gingerbread latte on today's visit to Costa after taking this little man to Rhymetime (gratuitous shot of the small boy)

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Remember Lesson No.1?

You should do, it was only yesterday that I pronounced that I had learned 'Lesson Number One on the Journey of the Band'. And you'd think that perhaps I also might remember what that lesson was, and take heed. But tish and pish to all that. Guess what I decided to have this afternoon when I took the small boy out for a walk? Yes, that's right, a hot chocolate with whipped cream. Lovely it was, too. Accompanied by nearly an hour of reading my book while small boy slept soundly in his pram. Then we toddled home and about 30mins later the stomach cramps started and dumping followed. Please, please, please can I now have learnt my lesson?!

The dietician called this afternoon to see how I was getting on. I think things are going well, and told her that. I wasn't completely chuffed to hear that I have to be on the puree diet for four weeks - arggh FOUR weeks of eating the sort of food that even small boy has grown out of - how many ways are there to get creative with purees? As I type, I'm eating an 'Innocent' tasty veg pot (well, I'm eating some of it) which consists of 'indian daal curry with spicy cauliflower, chickpeas and fresh spinach' according to the label. So, I whizzed it in the blender and it's all of those things, just pureed. Hubby had a taste and pronounced that it would be very nice 'with a blob of mango chutney on the side', to which I replied 'yes, and a naan bread and a couple of onion bahjis'; well, I can dream. I fully intend to get my sticky paws on a veg korma in the not too distant future. Should do quite well in the blender.

A question (or several) about restriction: How do you feel it? How do you know when you are full? Do you get restriction without having had a fill? I'm assuming there is some restriction in the first week (or two, or three?) after surgery due to the swelling, and I certainly feel like I have some. It's taken me a couple of days to work it out, but my feeling of restriction is like back ache, or possibly indigestion but felt just below my shoulder blades, sort of where my bra strap goes across my back. Anyone else feel this?

Monday, 25 January 2010

A Milestone Reached!

Weighed myself today (makes a change, eh?!) and I've lost another 1lb. That means I've reached one of my 'milestones' - 250lbs. That's 12lbs down. I'm just a little bit pleased!

17st 12lb - 250lbs - BMI 41.6 (morbidly obese)

I typed "250lbs" into Google as I wondered whether 250lbs is known as anything else, eg "half a ton", or something equally delightful! The image above is one of the first things that comes back from the search. It's a body scan of a 250lb woman next to a body scan of a 120lb woman. Food for thought, quite literally!

Today I met some friends for coffee and a "book club" discussion. We are a book club in the very loosest sense in that there are only three of us and discussion of the book we have read tends to last no longer than two to three minutes, with the rest of the time being taken up gossiping. Sounds perfect, don't you think?! Usually we meet over a meal, but today for various reasons it ended up being in the afternoon, which obviously suited me much, much better. Neither of these friends know about the band, and although I wondered whether I might feel like telling them when we were together, the opportunity didn't arise so I didn't say anything. I wonder how I will broach the subject when people start to say to me 'Have you lost weight?' (here am I assuming they'll actually notice!) Will I say 'Yes, I've been cutting down', 'Yes, I've had a gastric band', 'Yes, I've been on a diet'? Only time and circumstances will tell, I guess. I think though, that you have to be consistent, otherwise you risk tying yourself up in knots trying to remember who knows and who doesn't know about the band. Which leads me on to thinking about why there would be a reason not to tell someone about the band? But I think that's a discussion for another day.

Anyway, the whole point of me telling you that I met friends for coffee and "book talk" was to say that I resisted the urge to have a hot chocolate with whipped cream and went for a gingerbread latte instead. And guess what? No dumping! Lesson number one on Journey of the Band learned: no more hot chocolate and whipped cream for me!

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Weightloss Worries (+Dumping)

I weighed myself today and I'm down into the next stone - I had to get on the scales three times to check it was right, but there I am:

17st 13lb (251lbs; BMI 41.8; morbidly obese)

That's a total loss of 11lbs since 3rd January (and 4lbs since day of surgery) and a change in BMI of -1.8. Things are definitely moving in the right direction:

Tell me, then, why aren't I jumping for joy? Why am I worried? Why do I just keep thinking 'When am I going to put this weight back on?' Several reasons:

1) Every diet I've ever been on has failed. That's pretty obvious, otherwise I wouldn't have topped out at 262lbs and felt the need to have WLS. It's not that I'm waiting for the Band to fail me, or for me to fail the Band, it's just that I've not yet got my head around the fact that this time when the weight goes, it goes for good. I'm too much of a newbie-bandster for that to have sunk in. I've not had enough bandster experience yet, have I?

2) Everybody knows when you lose weight quickly it rarely stays off. Doesn't your body just go in to starvation mode so that the moment you start eating "normally" again, the weight comes back with a vengeance?

3) Being on liquids/purees/mushies isn't going to last forever (unless I keep it that way, I guess!), and when it stops and I'm in 'Bandster Hell', then surely I'll just put the weight back on. OK, maybe not all of it, but I'm guessing some of it is going to come back, and that is what is stopping me from getting overly excited about the weight I've lost so far. I don't what to sound ungrateful because, believe me, I am really pleased to have lost this weight, I guess I'm just not taking it for granted, yet.

And on to other matters, of the toilet variety (you can stop reading here, if you like!) I had a 'dumping' episode today, which makes me think that's what happened to me yesterday too. Does this make me a very bad bandster?! Surely I shouldn't be dumping already. Yikes. And the culprit was the same as yesterday - a hot chocolate with whipped cream. About an hour-and-a-half after finishing it in Starbucks my stomach started cramping up. Yet again, we were out and about (this time in Henley-on-Thames) but luckily it's only 6 miles from home so I didn't have long to wait for the comforts of our own loo.

I looked up 'dumping' in the book Catherine ( )recommended Weight Loss Surgery with the Adjustable Gastric Band by Sewell & Rohrburg. This is what is says (slightly shortened by me): the rapid addition of large volumes of water from the bloodstream into the intestine in direct response to eating a large amount of sugar or carbohydrate [or a hot chocolate with whipped cream]. Common in GB patients because the stomach normally serves as a buffer, allowing only small amounts of highly concentrated sugar or carbs to reach the intestine at any one time. Symptoms can include sudden crampy abdominal pain, nausea, bloating, diarrhoea, lightheadedness, sweating, rapid heart rate, dizziness and fatigue.

Clearly, that's what happened to me, but I don't really understand why. It says that the 'stomach normally serves as a buffer', so why is my stomach not acting as a buffer now? My stomach is still there, it's just been divided in two. Anyone else suffered from dumping? Do you have a better explanation for it?

Anyway, enough from me, hope you are all well!

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Toilet Talk (you may wish to skip this post)

Day Three Post-Op

All seems to be going well, so far. Didn't need to take any painkillers today, which I was pleased about. However, we took a trip out to the Cotswolds this afternoon, and just as we started on the drive home (about 45 miles), my stomach started really hurting. BUT, it wasn't because of the band, it was because I hadn't been to the toilet (number two) since Tuesday. On Thursday when the dietician saw me just before I left the hospital she asked me if I was prone to constipation, and I was able to tell her in no uncertain terms that I was not. Quite the opposite, in fact (but I didn't tell her this, she didn't need all the extra info that you are getting!) Probably as a result of all the rubbish I eat (used to eat...), all that fat helped 'things' slide out with no trouble whatsoever. However, I'm presuming a combination of nerves, surgery, no 'proper' food, and probably dehydration meant I hadn't been to the loo for FOUR days, which is at least three days longer than usual. Perhaps it was the car ride over all those potholes that have appeared since the snow, perhaps it was the longest walk I've had since coming out of hospital, or perhaps it was the hot chocolate with whipped cream that I had at lunchtime, but something got 'things' moving. Except, at first I didn't realise that was what it was and I thought it was something to do with the band giving me a stomach ache, although eventually the wind (not the weather type of wind) gave it away; and still we were about 40 miles from home. I don't know about you, but I can't do that sort of thing in a public toilet. Number ones are fine, cos as least you can hover; but number twos can be performed in public toilets in absolute emergency situations only and, strangely enough, I didn't see this as an emergency. But boy, was I glad when we finally got home, and I'm very pleased not to be bunged up anymore! I may start sipping on the prune juice as the dietician suggested, as I may not be able to take my lack of constipation for granted any more! Without getting too personal, has having a band affected anyone else's bodily functions? For the worse/better? Do things settle down? Is there anything you do/eat/drink to help?

Friday, 22 January 2010

One of my stomachs is hungry!

Day Two post-op
I'm sure in all of the blogs I've read about the days immediately following surgery everyone has said 'I wasn't hungry'; not me, 'one' of my stomachs has been rumbling today and I've been craving 'proper' food! Has anyone else felt like this just after surgery?

I've been sticking to the post-op liquid diet as much as I can, but I'm finding it difficult to stick to the hourly list: 7am protein shake (100ml), 8am milk (200ml), 9am fruit juice (100ml), 10am protein shake (100ml), etc, etc. Bit tricky when I didn't even get up til 9.30am! What do I do, ignore the 7-9am options or start with the 7am option and try to squeeze things in?! In the end I decided to just manage what I could from the list and take it as a guide rather than something that is set in stone. So today I've managed 200ml protein shake; 400ml tomato soup; 200ml fruit juice and 175ml of jelly; plus water sipped throughout the day.

The pain is much, much less today; in fact, I didn't take a painkiller until about 2pm, which was good. We all went out for a walk in the afternoon, but I think I overdid it and had to take more painkillers when we got back; still, it was good to get out, and we even went to Starbucks where I had my first latte since before starting the pre-op diet - yum!

Also had my first shower today, which felt great and afterwards I took the dressings off my 'wounds' and put fresh ones on. All seem to be healing ok, except the top one (which, incidentally, is much higher up than I had anticipated, just between my breasts) which looks a little inflamed.

Day One post-op
Going backwards, I know, but just wanted to fill you all in on what happened/how I felt.
Woke up about 5am having had 6 hours solid sleep, which I was really pleased about considering how much pain I'd been in the day before. The nurse gave me some painkillers and anti-inflammatories and I then dozed til about 7am when she came back with a vanilla protein shake - the first thing I'd had except water since 9pm the night before the op - boy, did it taste good! From then on in, it felt like a liquid conveyor belt - milk, fruit juice, another protein shake, and at the same time water, water, water. I dozed off again from about 10.30-midday so was saved from having to guzzle yet more liquids! The dietician came to see me to check how I was getting on and to make sure I was all set for going home and then at 1pm hubby came to collect me. The nurse gave me my pankillers and the fragmin injections for the next ten days, and off I went.

Got home about 1.30pm - so lovely to see my little boy and mum who was helping look after him. By about 3.30pm I was back in bed, worn out and I slept through til 6.30pm. Spent the evening in the armchair sipping water, soup and a jelly. Off to bed about 10.30pm; took a while to get off to sleep as I found it difficult to get comfortable - having to sleep on your back constantly becomes a little bothersome after a while; luckily, I've found that I can also sleep on my right side with a pillow tucked under my tummy (just like being pregnant!) Slept through til 9.30am, which was bliss.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

I'm officially a bandit!

Thanks to everyone who left a 'Good Luck' comment after my last post, it was very kind of you and much appreciated.

Anyway, this is a quick posting from my hospital bed to let you know that the operation went very well, so well in fact that I only had to have four incisions instead of the usual five as the surgeon didn't need to use any extra retraction (that's what he told me, not entirely sure what that means, but one less scar to heal is fine by me!)

I must admit that since coming out of the recovery room things have been pretty uncomfortable, indeed downright painful, in the tummy area and I've been taking a lot of painkillers - guess I must have a low pain threshold, what a wimp!

So that's all for today - I feel another nap coming on...

Hope you are all well.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Days Nine & Ten (the last) + Pre-Op Assessment

I don't know what was in that slice of cake I ate but it had the effect that eating cake usually has - the scales reported a weight GAIN of 2lbs. Ouch! Serves me right for breaking the diet. Fear not though, even I am not daft enough to think that one slice of cake could lead to a 2lb weight gain; it's that 'time of the month', so I'm going to assume that's what's to blame (great timing getting my period just as I go in for the banding operation!)

Monday afternoon I headed over to the hospital for my pre-op assessement; I'd been told to allow an hour, it actually only lasted 20 minutes. The nurse took my blood pressure, took about three phials of blood, took swabs to test for MRSA (even though the results won't be back in time - more about that in a moment), weighed me (I've lost nearly 2 kilos according to their scales, although kilos mean nothing to me, but I've lost them, so that can only be a good thing!), and took a urine sample. We had a chat about a few things (nothing important), she asked if there was anything I wanted to know (my questions were about what time my op might be [she didn't know but I have to be at the hospital for 7.30am], whether I needed to bring in anything to eat/drink [no, all. provided by hospital], and could the durgeon write me a sick note for time off work [probably].) And that was that. Nothing to worry about. The only niggle was the MRSA thing - because I was in contact with my father who had MRSA back in October, it's possible that I have picked it up (equally possible that I haven't, or that I have picked it up from someone/where else, as anyone can), as a result, the hospital will have to assume I do have it and take the necessary precautions and keep me in isolation, apparently. So, there we go.

Food intake for the day:

porridge and milk
coffee and milk

tuna and salad sandwich, plus tomatoes


pasta with tuna, tomatoes, onions, peppers
Weight Watcher yoghurt

Day Ten - last day on the pre-op diet; day before going for the operation!

The day seems to have flown by. I took small boy over to the health visitor to get him weighed - he's put on just over 1lb since the end of November and now weighs 24lb 7ozs (hopefully I'll have lost that much soon!); he hadn't put on weight on the same scale as usual, but that might have something to do with the fact that he's going through a phase of only really wanting to eat toast and breadsticks. Fussy little critter.

I then spent an hour or so wandering round Henley, where I also had my lunch (not quite diet-worthy, but near enough) before heading home. My mum had arrived to stay for a few days to help with looking after small boy while I'm in hospital/laid up afterwards.

Food intake for the day

Porridge with milk
coffee with milk

croque monsieur with salad
coffee with milk

mango chunks

pasta with tuna, tomatoes, onions, peppers
Weight Watchers yoghurt

So, this is it. I'm all packed and ready to go in the morning. I'm staying in overnight, so probably won't be blogging again til at least Thursday. Let me wish you all well on your diets, and to any of you who are having the band before I get back online - I look forward to hearing all about it, soon!

Monday, 18 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Day Eight

One week in and the scales are my BFF - I've lost 8lbs! Yeee-haw.

We took a family outing to the Cotswolds in the afternoon in the hope of finding the perfect house in the perfect village (and for the perfect price.) Shipton-under-Wychwood was our first port of call, but we're not sure it's the place for us; Chipping Norton, our perennial favourite, was the next stop. First, we called in at the antiques shop, but didn't see anything that really grabbed us, then it was a quick 5-mile jaunt in the direction of Moreton-in-Marsh to drive past a house hubby had seen on the internet - looks promising. Then it was back to the wonderful Jaffe & Neale bookshop/coffee shop in Chipping Norton where we had a drink and a slice of cake each. Eeeek. Rewind, what was that? Yes, a slice of cake EACH. I succumbed to the coffee and walnut cake. Boy, was it good. As I said to hubby, cake tastes better when you don't eat it so often.

My food intake for the day:

Porridge and milk (1 starch, 1 dairy)
coffee with milk

Tuna, rocket and spinach sandwich; cherry tomatoes (2 starch, 1 protein)

Slice of cake (whoops!)
Coffee with milk
Mango chunks (2 fruit)

Jacket potato with cottage cheese and tuna (2 starch, 1 protein)
Weight Watchers yoghurt (1 dairy)

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Day Seven

Not much to report today; still feeling hungry, but I think this is more to do with wanting to eat some different food, and that's entirely my own fault for not varying my intake more. Trouble is I'm lazy, in my food choices as well as in other things (ie exercising, or the lack of it.)

News from the scales: I've lost another 1lb! So, that's 7lbs in total; just 87 to go...

Being the weekend, we had a relaxing day, spending the morning at home (I squeezed in an hour's work while hubby and the small boy were taking a nap), and then a trip to Henley in the afternoon. It was nice to go out for a walk and not have to trudge through snow/ice/slush, as the weather has finally changed - we now have rain... Our first stop in Henley was Starbucks; we headed straight there because small boy had fallen asleep and hubby & I were both desparate to sit down and read our books in (relative) peace - we got about an hour of reading/coffee/tea drinking done while the small boy slept contendedly in his pram. Bliss. (We've learnt that you take pleasure where/when you can when you have a small child!)

Food intake for today - it's a little bit different (but not much):

porridge (1 starch) and milk (1 dairy)
coffee with milk

half a tuna sandwich (1 starch, 0.5 protein)
large coffee with mlik

half tuna sandwich (1 starch, 0.5 protein)
mango chunks (2 fruit)
hot Ribena

Jacket potato (2 starch), with cottage cheese (0.5 protein) and tuna (0.5 protein)
Weight Watchers black cherry yoghurt (1 dairy)

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Day Six

Day Six found me hungry; it also found me still teetering on the edge of the plateau. But, back to the hunger. My tummy wasn't rumbling, I wasn't feeling weak and/or feeble, I didn't have a headache, but I was still HUNGREEEEEE. Is this the fabled head hunger? I guess it must be. The weird thing is, I wasn't hungry for chocolate, or biscuits, or cake as I think I would normally be, what I really wanted was something like a piece of toast or a bread roll. It's not like I can't even have those things on the pre-op diet anyway, so I just don't know how to 'pigeon-hole' the hunger I was feeling. Suffice to say, the broccoli and cauliflower I ate in an attempt to assuage the hunger, didn't work. The trouble was, I had friends coming round for dinner so I had to hold out until about 8pm, whereas usually I would have eaten by about 7.30pm. But when dinner arrived it was soooooooooooooooooo good!

Here's my food intake for the day; pretty much 'same old, same old', I'm afraid!

porridge (1 starch) and milk (1 dairy)
coffee and milk

large coffee

Emmenthal cheese and mushroom flatbread (2 starch, 1 protein)
Hot chocolate (not on the diet, but I sooo wanted a hot drink that wasn't coffee, and I don't like tea; I did get it made with skimmed milk)

mango chunks (2 fruit)
broccoli and cauliflower
hot Ribena

jacket potato (2 starch), tuna (0.5 protein), cottage cheese (0.5 protein)
Mullerlite yoghurt (1 protein)

Apart from the hunger, I felt something else today - I felt good about myself. I feel like I've taken control of something (food? my body?), and it feels good. I may only have lost 6lbs, but those 6lbs are never coming back, and that feels so empowering. Does that sound odd? Yes, I have another 88lbs to lose before I get to the weight I've chosen as my goal, but at least I've started the journey. I no longer have 94lbs to lose, just 88.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Pre-op Diet: Day Five

ARRGGGHHH! I've plateaued! Tee hee. I weighed myself this morning and those pesky scales just blinked back at me: 18st 4lbs. Pah. This is probably the point in any "normal" diet where I would give up (or at least cheat a bit); but not this time. No, sirree. This time is much too important. That's not to say I haven't been tempted - today, for instance, I went in to town with DC and as I was walking along the main street towards the toy shop to exchange one of the three bath toys he was given for Christmas, my eyes struck upon the Cornwall Pasty Shop next door - my mouth watered, but that was all! And then this afternoon when I was feeding DC, I eyed his peice of hot, buttered toast (just about one of the only things the little tinker will eat at the moment - he's going through a bread phase it would seem) with some longing!

At the point when I would usually list my daily intake, I can simply say "See Day Four", because I ate EXACTLY the same things as I did yesterday. Maybe I'm losing weight because my body is too bored to bother saving any calories from this same old, same old. Still, I'm happy and, more importantly, not (too) hungry.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Day Four

No headache from the diet today, just one from the ongoing snow! We've had snow here in Reading for over a week and a half now (photo shows last Monday evening when it first fell)) and it was just about starting to melt, and what happens overnight and this morning? We get more of the darn stuff. Hey, the novelty has well and truly worn off now, and that's for people who actually like snow; I can't stand the stuff although, truth be told, that's because of my weight. The thought of falling over in the stuff and being seen as "the fat woman who slipped over in the snow" is absolutely mortifying. I also broke my ankle about six years ago, and that makes me quite wary of any slippery surface. Still, at least now I have darling small child, which means when I go out I have a pram to hang on to - so far, so good, I've not (yet) fallen over!

Anyway, the result of the extra snow last night and this morning meant that I really didn't feel comfortable making the 40min drive to the hospital for my pre-op assessment, especially because hubby went away on business this morning so it would just be me and Delightful Child (DC) in the car. There was no way I wanted to take a chance on driving in the snow. Luckily the hospital were able to offer me another appointment on Monday afternoon - the joy of going private!
Anyway, Day Four of the pre-op diet was fine. I feel like I'm getting in to the swing of things (famous last words...) and the fact that I've lost another 1lb is really helping motivate me. That's 6lbs in total, so I'm now down to 18st 4lbs (256lbs). Here's what I ate/drank (apologies if this is getting boring, but one thing you'll probably notice is that I'm tending to eat the same things day after day!):
30g/1oz porridge oats (1 starch) with milk from allowance (1 dairy)
coffee with milk from allowance
cheese, mushroom and rocket flatbread (2 starch, 1 protein)
large coffee with milk from allowance
mango chunks (2 fruit)
made myself a hot Ribena but didn't get chance to drink it due to looking after my darling boy!
turkey breast (1 protein), with tomato, mushroom, pepper and onion sauce (free vegetables), over pasta (2 starch)
Mullerlite yoghurt (1 dairy)

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Pre-Op Diet: Days Two & Three

Day One seemed like a cinch in comparison to how I thought it would be. Day Two, not quite so much - I felt huuuungry! Not all of the time, but whenever I did feel hungry I knew that it was at that point I would usually have reached for a biscuit (or two) or a bar of chocolate (never a piece of fruit, of course!) So I had to either distract myself, or find something to eat or drink that would be allowed on the diet. Here's what I ate/drank (I'm not logging water - that would get tedious!) on Day Two:

30g/1oz of porridge oats (1 starch) with milk from allowance (1 dairy)
coffee with milk from allowance

Laaaarge coffee with milk from allowance

1 slice of toast (1 starch) with 175g baked beans (1 protein)

Mango chunks (2 fruit)
Hot Ribena

6 tbsps pasta (3 starch), tomatoes, mushrooms, pepper (free vegetables)
Mullerlite yoghurt (1 dairy)

I realised later that I'd missed one of my protein servings; hopefully that's not too big a deal.

Most interesting news from Day Two was that when I weighed myself first thing in the morning I'd lost 3lbs since my initial weigh-in on 3rd January, taking me down to 18st 7lbs (259lbs).

Day Three
I woke up at 7.30am with a real stinker of a headache. I've heard about hunger headaches and wonder if that's what this was? Luckily after a couple of solpadol and a large glass of water it subsided. I also woke up hungry and felt a little bit weak and feeble (shouldn't have missed that extra protein portion yesterday!) Usually I wait an hour or two after getting up to have my breakfast (often from necessity, due to having to pander to my little boy's every whim), but today I had eaten it within about 30mins of getting up. But the good news? I've lost another 2lbs! This is the best diet I've ever been on! Perhaps I don't need a gastric band! (Iwish). So, I'm now down 5lbs to 18st 5lbs (257lbs). I'm getting an idea of what it must feel like for all those bandsters out there whenever they weigh themselves - it feels good!

30g/1oz porridge oats (1 starch) with milk from allowance (1 dairy)
coffee with milk from allowance

cheese, mushroom and rocket flatbread (2 starch, 1 protein)
laaaaarge coffee with milk from allowance

mango chunks (2 fruit)
hot Ribena drink

jacket potato (2 starch); cheese (1 protein); stir-fried pepper, mushrooms and onion
Mullerlite yoghurt

Tomorrow is my pre-op assessment at The Shelburne Hospital, High Wycombe (about 40min drive from home). I'm not sure what happens at this assessment; I've been told to allow an hour, so sounds like plenty could occur!

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Pre-op Diet: Day One

I've hardly been looking forward to starting this diet; it's fairly obvious that I find dieting hard, impossible really, or else how would I have ended up this size and on the cusp of undergoing an operation to deal with my weight?

But here I am at the end of day one, and it's all gone fine (so far...) I know there are as many pre-op diets as there are hospitals and surgeons; my diet lasts for ten days and limits the daily portions as such:
starch - five
dairy - two
protein - two
fruit - three
2 tsps margarine or 1tsp oil
vegetables (except potatoes, parsnips and sweetcorn) are unlimited, as are tea, coffee, diet drinks

Today I ate:
Breakfast - 1oz porridge oats (1 starch) and milk from 200ml allowance (1 dairy)
Lunch - 1 slice toast (1 starch) with tbsp of margarine and 175g baked beans (1 protein)
Mid-afternoon - mango chunks (2 fruit)
Dinner - 6 tbsps pasta (3 starch), pureed sauce made from tomatoes, onion and cabbage, 135g chicken (1 protein)
Later - 1 Mullerlite yoghurt (1 dairy); 1 satsuma (1 fruit)
I also drank three mugs of coffee and plenty of water throughout the day.

Hubby is also following this diet to offer me extra support (although he did have a couple of slices of Christmas cake this afternoon when some friends came round - he could hardly leave them to eat cake on their own, could he?!)

Bring on day two!

Saturday, 9 January 2010

The Final Countdown

Tomorrow I start on the ten-day pre-op diet. So, for this entire week I have been eating like a woman possessed ('What's new there?', you may ask, and rightly so), making sure I have had all of my favourite meals - it's been like the condemned man's final meal every night this week:

Monday = sweet and sour king prawn balls and chips from the Chinese takeaway
Tuesday = pasta with homemade tomato and courgette sauce plus chorizo
Wednesday = the most fabulous belly of pork with crackling, roast potatoes, pigs in blankets, cabbage and sprouts, cooked by hubby (note Christmas jigsaw underway on dining table!)
Thursday = fish and chips from the chip shop
Friday = chicken fajitas

This morning hubby, small child and I went to John Lewis for their fabulous Full English breakfast; I've just eaten a doughnut for 'afternoon tea', and may well have another... And tonight is going to be chicken fajitas again as I enjoyed them so much last night, followed by jam roly poly!

Tomorrow my body will probably go in to shock.

Friday, 8 January 2010

Horrendous photographic evidence!!

I don't know about you, but I always think that photos really help to make any blog more interesting and with a blog like this that's supposed to be chronicling weight loss (hopefully!), photos are, I think, extra interesting and also important.
I'm really hoping that the photos I post here will spur me on when I'm going through hard times (I'm not naive enough to think that this is going to be an easy journey.) At some point I'll be able to post photos that actually show a difference but, until then, I'll have these absolutely HORRENDOUS photos of what I look like now, to inspire me to not look like this for much longer!

Talking of being naive, whenever I picture in my head what I look like, I don't look anything like this!
Firstly, my stomach can't really be that big, can it? Yes, I only gave birth nine months ago, but I don't think I can blame my pregnancy for all of it, can I?!
Secondly, in the side 'portrait', my chin also seems to have taken on a life of it's own - is it really that big and stick-y-out-y? Has my chin put on weight just like the rest of me?
Thirdly, my glasses look dreadful. Think I'll start saving for laser eye surgery, just as soon as I can pay off the gastric band surgery fee!
Talking of paying off the surgery, that's going to be a while down the line because I only got round to actually paying for the operation today (when I say 'paying', I mean putting it on two credit cards...)

Thursday, 7 January 2010

Begin at the beginning

Let's set the scene. I'm not new to blogging; in fact this is my third blog. I am, however, new to blogging about gastric bands, or lap bands; more importantly, I'm new to blogging about actually having a gastric band. For, in just under two weeks time (13 days no less), I will indeed be the proud owner (wearer?) of a gastric band.

I've been overweight forever. Quite literally. I was 8lb 13oz when born - not a gargantuan baby, but not exactly a slip of a thing, and it's been uphill ever since. There has never been a time in my entire life (of the parts that I can remember, obviously), when I haven't been overweight. I was always the biggest girl in my class; nearly always the biggest at university, and nearly always the biggest wherever I've worked. I think the lowest I've weighed in my adult life was somewhere towards the top end of 11st (about 165lbs), when I was about 26. At the time I did think I was fairly slim (for me), and I was certainly very happy being that weight, although that's not to say I wouldn't have been even happier had I weighed more in the region of 10st (140lbs). But I only got down to that weight because I was stressed and throwing up all the time, which wasn't exactly a healthy way to have got thin(ner), and since it didn't continue, I started putting weight back on.

When I met my husband in 2003 I weighed about 15st (I think - my memory really is terrible.) I was very self-conscious of my weight, but clearly not enough to do anything about it as, six years later, I now weigh in at my heaviest ever (if you don't count the fact that I got up to 19st 12lb when pregnant...)

18st 10lbs (262lbs), BMI 43.2, morbidly obese

About three years ago, a very close friend of mine had a GB fitted. At the time I remember thinking 'crikey, I'll never have that done, imagine not being able to eat whatever you want, whenever you want'. Well, look where eating what I want, when I want has got me!

I'm 5" 5' tall and apparently should weigh somewhere between 8.5-10.5st. So, even if we take the highest of those, I need to lose 8st 5lbs (117lbs). My goal though is to get down to 12st, which means losing 6st 10lbs (94lbs). I have no idea how long this will take, but at least with a GB once the weight is off, it should stay off. Not like with all the diets I've ever been on...

So, that was by way of introduction; I'll keep you up-to-date with how it all goes from here on in!