W00T! Aw Yeah Baby! I’m at the Grown Up Table Now!

It was always my dream to own a trenchcoat.  A gorgeous, camel colored trenchcoat.  I think they are classic and sophisticated looking.  And for years, they didn’t make them in my size, and if they did, they were not flattering – it looked more like a big ass camel colored tent.

So, last fall, I decided that I was going to reward myself with one for the spring.  I ordered a lovely trenchcoat, size 14, from Chadwicks.  It came shortly and it was beautiful.  Gorgeous.  And too small last fall.  But that’s ok – it was a spring coat.

And my body has changed in six months.  I’ve lost body fat and inches, even if the pounds have been creeping off slowly. 

Besides, it’s a Spring Coat.  Meant for warmer weather.  Which we have not had.  Until this weekend.  It is supposed to be nearly 70 degrees today before I leave work, and it was nearly 50 this morning.  Now, I had tried the coat on a few times this winter, just to see….but it was always a bit tight and kind of gaping a the buttons.  No pretty.

But this morning, I crossed my fingers and thought, “What the hell?”  And I put my beautiful camel colored trenchcoat on.

And it fit!!!!

Size 14!!!  A REGULAR size 14.  Not a plus sized 14.  REGULAR.  From a shop that runs small!! (I can wear some 14s already…but my coat…my beautiful coveted coat…well, I knew it was going to run small because Chadwicks does).  And it looks great.  And I felt grown up.  Now, I know that sounds funny coming from a 38 year old woman who has 8 grandkids…but I felt like a grown up. 

You see, when you are fat, you feel like you are perpetually dining at the kids table.  A metaphore so to speak.  As if to say, I want all those pretty grown up sophisticated things, but they don’t fit, and therefore I have to settle for wearing clothes that look as if they were designed for a 70 year old woman to wear on a cruise, or items that were made by Tessie the Tent Maker.  The constant wearing of clothing from the Kid’s Table.

But today, baby, I graduated to the grown up table.

In a beautiful, gorgeous, sophisticated, glamorous, Audry Hepburn style camel colored trench coat.

And because of that, I rock.

Pictures tonight, when my hubby can take ’em!  I actually woke him up this morning before work just to tell him my coat fit.  Yay!

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The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

So – the good – I’m still losing (yay!).  And my doctors are thrilled at that.  As am I.  My pouch has remembered what restriction is.  I’m upping my protein and lowering my carbs.  And I thank God every day that I can’t tolerate sugar.  I was watching a news blurb the other day (I think on CBS, but don’t hold me to it) that said that Gastric Bypass (as compared to the lapbad and the sleeve) is still the gold standard for weight loss surgery.  I don’t know if I agree with that article (they were comparing the amount of excess weight loss and the instances where diabetes was made better as a result of the surgery), but it was the right decision for me and my sugar and crap food addiction.  I’ve now lost 75% of my excess weight (going by a goal weight of 150), my diabetes is in remission, my heart disease has reversed itself, my sleep apnea is gone, and I feel so much better.

The bad – the excess skin is start to cause issues.  My eczema has flaired where there are larger amounts of extra skin on my back and under my breasts.  Not much the doc can do for it except tell me to take quick showers with lukewarm water and moisturize.   At least it wasn’t skin infections (although I am starting to get sores on my rear where my extra skin hangs down over the tops of my thighs – how pretty).

The ugly – the right knee is buggered.  I have to call today to set up an x-ray.  It’s grindy and poppy and sore to the touch – the same as the left knee was before my last surgery.  And it’s not attributed to excess weight but instead it’s a result of degenerative joint disease which runs in my family.  Oh well.  I don’t want more surgery.  EVER.  But oh well.

So, that’s what’s going on.

This Was Unexpected – But a Good Unexpected

I had thought for sure that my body had just reached a weight that it was happy at.  Afterall, I haven’t weighed less than 200 pounds since, well, since the 7th grade, so I’m sure when it got under 200, it wasn’t sure what to do. 

It’s been no secret that my weightloss has been hella slow for nearly six months.  I was crushed about it before, but in the past three months had truly gotten to the point where I was ok with it.  I was healthy, and happy and that was all that mattered.

Until this week.  My body has not only decided that “Oh yeah we have a pouch!  We have restriction!!  We can not eat very much!!!  Throw on the “off” switch!” BUT it has also decided to let go of some weight.  That’s right!  I’m losing again!  Can I get an Amen?

I’m moving slowly downward, but have learned only to use the scale as a tool for saying, “This works” or “This definitely doesn’t.”  I no longer flog myself if the numbers go up slightly – there’s no point.  Just make an adjustment.  But by God, I’m freaking LOSING again.

I’ve decided I’m going to “count” the weight that I am on the first of the month.  I may take some new progress pics as well.  I’m solidly in the 180s now (yay!) and am hoping to be close to my goal weight by my 18 month follow up in May.

Whatever triggered my body to let go, I am thoroughly happy.  I’m less than 15 pounds from my surgeon’s goal weight now.  Yay!

Stress Eating Rears It’s Ugly Head

Those of you who follow my “life” blog  know that we had to put our sweet dog down yesterday.  She was full of cancer and it was in her best interest to relieve her of suffering.

Sadie was, for all intents and purposes, my baby.  I’m unable to have children of my own (and I love my step-daughters incredibly much) and Sadie and my kitties are my stand ins for that mothering instinct.  We had gotten Sadie nearly six years ago – adopted as an older dog that no one wanted due to her size.  She was the Best. Dog. Ever.  She had the sweetest temperment, adored our small grandchildren, was loving and faithful, nursed me through illness and surgery, and protected me from harm.  She never barked or growled (except at the UPS man) and I know we’ll never find another dog like her.  We plan on adopting another dog, but not until we return from a two week vacation in May/June.

Yesterday was hard on me.  We knew in the morning that we couldn’t get her in until the evening, and I was working from home.  I had to keep looking into those gorgeous brown eyes knowing that when we took her for a ride later, she wouldn’t be coming home with us.  To make things more traumatic, my husband elected NOT to have Sadie creamated and disposed of by our vet, but bring her home and burry her – not an easy feat since she was over 100 pounds.  That meant that I had to help him get her out of the car, deliver her to the back yard, and put her in her grave.  I did not handle it well.  I was ok until her sweet brown paws and velvety ear peeked out from the blanket they had her wrapped in and I lost it all over again.

And my brain went immediately during the day to stress eating.  I recognized it, and curbed it, but I’m amazed that even after all this time, and all the behavioral changes I’ve made over the past three months, that I immediately thought, “Chocolate is all that will get me through this horrible day.”  I am proud of myself for recognizing it though – and when I did snack, it was fruit or sugar free pudding.

In other news, I had my 15 month follow up yesterday.  I’m still solidly at 189 (yay!) and was down about 5 pounds from my 1 year appointment.  They are thrilled with the strides I’ve made on emotional eating and with my exercise routine.  My body fat percentage is now 40% instead of 41.5% – so I’m going in  the right direction.  I’m hoping to be down another 5 pounds by my 18 month follow up in May.  And, they are going to re-do my labs now instead of at 18 months because I’ve had a huge issue with constipation and leg cramps, so I think they are going to have to tweak my supplements.  I’m thinking I need LESS iron and MORE potassium.  Otherwise a good report!

Dear Pouch,

Eff You.  What the great hell are you doing to me?  Why are we so freaking picky today?  Seriously, you are rejecting everything I put down there.  Tummy ache from freaking hell.  So eff you and the horse you rode in on.  I’ve ignored the copious amount of chocolate my co-workers have given me.  I’m eating all approved foods – foods you have signed off on before.  So knock it the hell off.  I have work to do and dumping this afternoon is Not. In. My. Freaking. Plans.

And…and and and and and…it’s Valentine’s Day – so if you think for one minute that I’m not taking part in my steak dinner tonight, you can get bent.  I know you are taking revenge upon me for the overload of grease yesterday, and YES, I deserved it yesterday when you went on the attack…but today not so much.

So cool it.  Simmer down.  I refuse to be in pain after eating plain greek yogurt and an orange.  And not even a whole orange – a freaking SLICE.

So eff you Pouch.

No love,

Me….the bitch who decides if you get anything or not.

Product Review: Shake Weight For Women

In January, as part of my effort to start to really work on toning, I saw an ad for the Shake Weight (as seen on tv!!) at Walmart for $20.00.  I figured what the heck – I’d give it a try, no matter how hokey it seemed.

So, I’ve been using it at least twice a week for the past month, and I do in fact see a lot of toning in my arms and chest.  The weight itself is light weight, and easy to use, although you do feel a bit silly.  You grasp it in your hand, and well, shake.  By holding the weight in different positions, you can work on your shoulders, biceps, triceps, and chest. 

The weight comes with a six minute DVD – it includes instructions on holding the shake weight correctly – keep your wrists rigid, or you can get injured.  The DVD workout is a pretty good one – for six minutes.  It has you not only shake the weight, but uses it in reps to tone and strengthen by just lifting in different positions.  And you do feel the workout when your done.

I can’t totally attribute the toning I’ve done to just the shake weight.  I’ve included it as part of my entire workout routine – which includes not only the shake weight, but also cardio, weights, strength bands, and various arm exercises.  I do see a difference though, and the days I do use the shake weight, I can definitely feel a workout.

My one complaint is the instructor on the DVD.  She is far too skinny and almost looks anorexic.  And she’s a bit annoying.  But once you have the routine down, you don’t need to use the DVD anymore, so it’s just a minor complaint.

I wouldn’t spend $20 on it again, but it is a product that I’ve encorporated well into my workouts.  It’s definitely not something I’d tell you to “OMG GO GET IT NOW!!”  but hey, I don’t NOT recommend it either.  It is, well, it just is.

Hungry Girl’s Brownie Bites (Sugar Free Edition)

I made these for the superbowl party today:

Ingredients:

1 box of sugar free devils food cake mix

1 15oz can of pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix, just pumpkin)

1 tbsp of pumpkin pie spice

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.  Spray 2 mini muffin tins with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, mix the cake mix, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice.  This will be a very thick batter – very thick.  You’ll be tempted to add liquid to make it easier to mix – DON’T. 

Divide mix into the muffin tins.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool in the muffin tins for 10 minutes and then on a wire rack until completely cooled.