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6 months out... again?...still?! (...In which I can't count)

Kio

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So first let me say, no one ever told me there was going to be a quiz. I've been saying "I'm 6 months out..." all month - not so!  I was IN THE MIDDLE of my 6th month.  So in fact the last few post titles are false, because I'm a loser and I have no math. :blink:

As of today, I'm officially REALLY 6 months out.  *counts slowly on fingers to double check* Yep. I am ending month 6 and starting month 7 today!

This was another low loss month, thanks to the unpredictability of my period. My lowest yet, actually!  I only hit 9# down this month - and the placement of that one as the last pound lost in month 6 instead of the first one in month 7 was an executive decision on my part, to make myself feel better.  I probably lost it before midnight last night instead of after midnight - right?! ;)  That's my story.

So the good news is, my period did finally arrive and busted what had been a 3 week stall.  That was my longest stall yet.  I kept meaning to stop weighing daily - I just couldn't make myself do it.  And I may just not be that girl! I can skip a day here and there, but overall I just need to know where things stand.  I think if I got to the end of a month and found I was only 5 lbs down for the month - at this point in the process - I would wig out a bit.

What I DID do, though, is check my average rate of weight loss per month - and that is a very respectable 13.67# per month so far!  Plus, I just went back in time - I've been re-reading this blog from before surgery up to now.  At the end of my 3-month post, I found this:  "...and I honestly can't wait to see where I am at the end of month 4, and month 5, and month 6... Assuming I keep losing at a rate of around 15 per month, in 3 months I could be around 210.  And THAT would be a number for the record books for me - the last time I was anywhere near 210 I was actually 212, and it was 1995... "  So in spite of two "lowish" loss months (10 and 9 lbs respectively), here I am at the end of month 6 sitting at 216#.  Just about where I predicted!  4 more # and I'll be at my 1995 weight. And I think I'll also be in the neighborhood of 200 (still above, but near!) by my birthday in April (which is the 9th, so one day past my measurement day anyway).  In other words - big picture, I feel right on track.

Looking at my stats a little differently... I started out with 215# of *excess* weight.  I've now lost 139# of that, which is 65% of my excess weight gone.  Which leaves me at 216# today.  My total weight right now is just ONE POUND HIGHER than my original excess weight total! And I only have 77# to go to my final goal.  And only 46# to go to reach my mini-goal - which was to get down to Leah's weight (170). 

I've actually thought about changing my goal to be Leah's weight, period - because maybe I should let that be my "I have DONE it!" point.  I've always thought Leah looks fine as she is, and is a good healthy weight.  Granted, I have thought this mostly from my status as a 355# person - but I still think it. All that remains is to see how her weight looks and feels on MY body.  But since I have this tool, I want to work it as hard as I can for as long as I can to have a "buffer" - if I can get to 140 or lower without looking or feeling gaunt or unhealthy, I want to!  I dunno.  I keep talking myself into and back out of resetting my goal in the ticker and sidebar at 170.  (One thing is sure - 170 is when I will stop talking about how much weight I lose around the house!  I don't see that going down well if I keep losing.  ;) )

I've had some cool NSVs this month.  I went for the Winter Walk, which was 2 miles and cold and wet, but awesome to be able to do.  And day before yesterday, at work, I went both up and down the big flight of stairs in our office with my team and went like a normal person - barely holding the rail, just for balance, and not having to get both feet on a single step before moving up to the next with both feet.  One foot on one step at a time!  And down the same way!  Ok, down I felt a LITTLE wobbly, but I made it, and it didn't even hurt.  I've had some more compliments come my way - one from a neighbor I haven't really seen all winter, and one from a neighbor I've never even really spoken to, we've just seen each other around (usually during Shoveling Events!).  So that was kind of cool.  :) 

As for my overall status at 6 months out?  I feel really good.  My back has continued to bother me at random times, but I think the overall trend in that area is better.  I feel stronger, more energetic, more capable.  I can do a ton more around the house and the yard.  I sometimes feel almost normal!  There are still things I can't do, but there are a lot fewer than there used to be.  Exercise is easy and fun - I walk up to 3.5 miles a day now, if I break it into two walks, and it's never really hard anymore.  Plus I got an under-desk elliptical machine - basically just pedals with resistance - that I use a lot throughout the work day to keep my blood flowing.

Eating has become easier - I can eat a full container of yogurt at a time, and meals with more than one thing in them (though they're still very small meals). I stay on plan, and I probably still eat only 800-1000 calories a day - though I've had some days a lot lower than that, here and there.  Most of the time I hit my protein goal of 65g/day, and a lot of the time now I get up to 80-85g of protein a day.  My net carbs stay under 50 a day, which is where I seem to do best.  I've been doing really well with water lately, too - I almost always get 64 oz in, sometimes more!

In terms of WHAT I'm eating... I still do a protein shake every day, sometimes two if I get too busy to stop and eat.  I still eat a lot of yogurt - now mostly in the form of Dannon Light & Fit Greek yogurts.  I make low-carb meat dishes in the instant pot - most recently a hamburger stew that was really good.  I occasionally make some of the Eggface ricotta pancakes, though those have some bulk to them and I can usually only eat one, maybe two.  I recently found some sandwich thins I like that are high in fiber content and low in carbs - they come with a "top" and a "bottom" and I only ever use one or the other per day.  It's a nice, on-plan delivery system for lunch meat and cheese, and they don't give me any cravings, so I'm pretty happy.  I've added some sodium-heavy things to my rotation - cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup, or cheddar or parm cheese whisps (which are just baked cheese, super low carb).  I've added a new probiotic in addition to the PB8, and I still take fiber gummies every day; I've also gotten better about remembering to do miralax every day - so my constipation problem has abated for now, and hopefully for good if I stay on top of things.  I really can't afford to let those things slide, because the alternative is SUPER PAINFUL and no fun at all. 

The last issue for updating is my skin, which - yeah, it is super loose right now.  Maybe it will tighten up, maybe not, but I can't deny that it's getting kind of annoying.  My arms basically look like they belong on a giant flying squirrel, and my thighs are actually uncomfortable in bed sometimes, because of the way things almost fold over completely.  The more I lose, the more I think I may actually look into plastics eventually.  But I think that is far in the future - maybe even a year past goal weight, assuming I get to goal.  For one thing, I don't really relish the idea of another surgery (or more than one...).  And for another, it'll have to be self pay, and I have no idea how I could afford it.  It's just an annoyance right now, not anything dire - and it may improve as I lose weight, so I'm not making any decisions right now. :) 

And that's my endless update for the first six months - thanks for sticking with me!! =D

 



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Girl, you and I are having the same pattern of stall/weight loss around monthly cycles, and I *feel your pain*. I only lost 1 pound a week for the first two weeks of this month, and was about ready to start smashing things with a baseball bat. :) I'm glad your stall finally broke! Nine pounds down when you're only just above 200 is GREAT. Some perspective: I was only losing 10-11 pounds a month pre-op when I was in the high 300s. So yeah, 9 pounds: still amazing loss. 

My arms are also the bane of my existence, and I feel like they make me look bigger than I am. This is not a thing I would have said out loud in my previous life, so that's weird. (Who cares if I look bigger? And yet... )  I hear you on plastics becoming more and more a consideration. 

So happy to hear about all your activity and movement triumphs! Yay for taking the stairs like a normal person again! 

 

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You are doing great Kio. Just on the floppy arms issue, they do improve with time, but in truth they may never be something you want to show off in public. I'm probably in the same boat with you as far as reasons not to have plastics....and I'd need to win a lottery to be able to afford it. I look at my loose skin quite critically at times and wonder just when I'd be able to stop having plastic surgery if I ever started....even my calves and lower arms look horrible some days.....then I just cover up and get on with my day. I suspect I'm probably just too old to let vanity mean so much that I'd put myself through what sounds like very painful and expensive "elective" surgery. I may have to rethink that though if skin breakdown was to become an issue for me.

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@Kio

Thanks for the post, and even bigger thanks for your honesty and perspective. The biggest of course is the congratulations on your accomplishments, weight loss and health improvements!

Now, having spent 2 hours shoveling today and dismayed at the tree branches lost today... maybe it's time for the Metro Boston crew to set a first date for the first bike ride of the year... we can call it the Annual Kio 6 Month Ride for now - weren't we talking about a Middlesex ride? March 30 or April 1?

 

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@Kio congrats on your six months! If it seems like seven months to you, it's probably because things are going well :)

Getting back to a weight you last saw in 1995 will be so exciting!!!! You're getting close now. I think your current thinking about GW is helpful - it can definitely be a movable goal. You don't know how you'll feel until you get to a certain weight. Being open to change in response to more information is the sign of a good mind. 

It sounds like you're achieving your intake and exercise goals - that's great. Can you believe you have exercise goals now? ;) Your body must be feeling so much stronger and healthier. Isn't it great??? :D 

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On 3/8/2018 at 4:56 PM, TammyP said:

It's always a treat to read your blogs Kio!  You are doing fantastic lady!

Thank you!  I'm definitely still riding the honeymoon wave, so I don't know how much credit I deserve... but I'll take it anyway!  :):):) 

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On 3/8/2018 at 4:37 PM, kristinwitha_k said:

Girl, you and I are having the same pattern of stall/weight loss around monthly cycles, and I *feel your pain*. I only lost 1 pound a week for the first two weeks of this month, and was about ready to start smashing things with a baseball bat. :) I'm glad your stall finally broke! Nine pounds down when you're only just above 200 is GREAT. Some perspective: I was only losing 10-11 pounds a month pre-op when I was in the high 300s. So yeah, 9 pounds: still amazing loss. 

My arms are also the bane of my existence, and I feel like they make me look bigger than I am. This is not a thing I would have said out loud in my previous life, so that's weird. (Who cares if I look bigger? And yet... )  I hear you on plastics becoming more and more a consideration. 

So happy to hear about all your activity and movement triumphs! Yay for taking the stairs like a normal person again!

Sister!  Yeah, it's super annoying, isn't it?  I was thinking this morning that I wish I'd tracked my weight loss between periods, instead of by months post surgery - I'd probably be feeling a lot more secure about my progress right now.  But I've never been a period-tracker, and a few years without ever having them would have killed any tracking impulse anyway.  But since my period started/stall broke, I've gone from 221 to 213.  I THINK today will be my last weight loss day before the water retention starts up again... so my next stall is right around the corner (grrrrrr). 

I'm finding my belly THE most annoying part of me - I can see that my arms and legs are getting smaller, even though there's loose skin that is getting progressively less comfortable (mostly when I'm trying to go to sleep).  But my belly is still my most WLS-resistant part, and I can literally pull my size 18 jeans down below my butt in the back with ease - while the front still feels overly tight whenever I sit down.  Plus, I can grab huge handfuls of denim in the thigh area now, but my belly won't let me go down to 16s yet. 

The sad thing is I'm in debt-reduction mode (thank you, zombie student loans) and I'll be totally debt free about the time I would start looking into skin removal surgery - just in time to go BACK into debt!

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On 3/8/2018 at 5:33 PM, Aussie Bear said:

I look at my loose skin quite critically at times and wonder just when I'd be able to stop having plastic surgery if I ever started....even my calves and lower arms look horrible some days.....then I just cover up and get on with my day.

That's exactly what I do now... cover up, and get on with my day.  I suspect that will be fine for me all except the 2 weeks or so of really high temps we get here in the summer... most of the time, I can get chilly in a warm breeze.  And maybe for those two weeks I just stay home?!

I don't know.  It's not out of the question for me - a lot of the people I know in RL who've had WLS just accept eventual skin surgery as a matter of course, so it's hard to rule it out.  But like you, I think, where would I STOP?  My lower arms are a bit saggy from certain angles, too.  My calves are still holding onto their size right now, but I can see them getting unsightly someday soon, too.  I guess it will come down to (a) how much debt am I willing to take on and (b) how vain am I, really....??

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On 3/8/2018 at 6:27 PM, Gretta said:

216, @Kio! 216!!! Simply wonderful! You are rocking this! I'm so happy eating has become easier. Kudos to you for getting out there and moving in the cold!

Thank you!!!  (and...213 today!  :D)

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On 3/8/2018 at 7:09 PM, BurgundyBoy said:

@Kio

Thanks for the post, and even bigger thanks for your honesty and perspective. The biggest of course is the congratulations on your accomplishments, weight loss and health improvements!

Now, having spent 2 hours shoveling today and dismayed at the tree branches lost today... maybe it's time for the Metro Boston crew to set a first date for the first bike ride of the year... we can call it the Annual Kio 6 Month Ride for now - weren't we talking about a Middlesex ride? March 30 or April 1?

Thanks, @BurgundyBoy!  I'd be totally on board for a bike ride... only my bike is still in a bad way.  Raccoons got into our garage last fall and trashed it, which included eating/shredding my tires.  :(:(:(  Repairs are waiting until we're solidly in spring... but maybe I could grab one of those limebikes that are everywhere these days?  I've heard they're not great bikes, but one might be sufficient for a friendly cruise...

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On 3/9/2018 at 12:14 AM, Jen581791 said:

Can you believe you have exercise goals now? ;) Your body must be feeling so much stronger and healthier. Isn't it great??? :D 

It really IS great!  Just the past couple of days I found I can actually run - not RUN run, but jog fast enough around the living room and kitchen to get the dog to chase me.  =D  Before I could only sort of shuffle, but now I can ZOOM.  And that is awesome because this dog takes a lot of zooming to get tired out!  I can stand on my tiptoes now, and kneel down to look for dog/cat toys under the sofas.  I can stand at the sink to do dishes - instead of pulling up a stool.  It's all just kind of amazing - and super fun!!

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@Kio  Sounds like you have very aggressive raccoons in your neck of the woods...

Nah, just invoke the Magical TTF Bike Mechanic, nicknamed "BB" for short, and he/she/it will, with white glove service, assist you in putting new tires on, no reason to rent a bike ($$) as well as get replacement tires. Apparently this Bike Mechanic is a dedicated person ("whack job" in New Englandese) who only cares about getting people onto bikes. I understand that in an alternate universe, the many years Bike Mechanic "BB" spent setting up and fixing bikes was... irrelevant to his/her/its career, but important to the happiness quotient. 

Not to be needlessly obtuse, happy to help with getting tires and new tubes on if needed. I travel with tripod bike rack (when needed) for repairs. Maybe we can induce @NerdyToothpick even though as I recall she had an accident a while ago and has eschewed cycling for now...

 

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11 hours ago, BurgundyBoy said:

@Kio  Sounds like you have very aggressive raccoons in your neck of the woods...

Nah, just invoke the Magical TTF Bike Mechanic, nicknamed "BB" for short, and he/she/it will, with white glove service, assist you in putting new tires on, no reason to rent a bike ($$) as well as get replacement tires. Apparently this Bike Mechanic is a dedicated person ("whack job" in New Englandese) who only cares about getting people onto bikes. I understand that in an alternate universe, the many years Bike Mechanic "BB" spent setting up and fixing bikes was... irrelevant to his/her/its career, but important to the happiness quotient. 

Not to be needlessly obtuse, happy to help with getting tires and new tubes on if needed. I travel with tripod bike rack (when needed) for repairs. Maybe we can induce @NerdyToothpick even though as I recall she had an accident a while ago and has eschewed cycling for now...

I'll totally take you up on the offer of some mechanicking!  I actually went out to the garage this morning to assess the State of the Bike, and while it's definitely in need of some love, it may not be quite as bad as I thought.  The tires that got destroyed were snow tires, and I was able to put the normal tires back on and inflate them.  I'll have to see if they hold air or not - it's been quite a while since I was able to bike, so I have no idea how they've held up. 

Other issues are hopefully a little easier to deal with.  There seems to be something wonky with the brakes, they may just need to be adjusted so they're not in constant contact with the wheels... and I think things need like... general oiling/tightening?  I rode a tiny way, just up and down the street, and the gears shift and the tires spin.  Then my hands froze, so I came home.  :) 

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5 hours ago, Kio said:

I'll totally take you up on the offer of some mechanicking!  I actually went out to the garage this morning to assess the State of the Bike, and while it's definitely in need of some love, it may not be quite as bad as I thought.  The tires that got destroyed were snow tires, and I was able to put the normal tires back on and inflate them.  I'll have to see if they hold air or not - it's been quite a while since I was able to bike, so I have no idea how they've held up. 

Other issues are hopefully a little easier to deal with.  There seems to be something wonky with the brakes, they may just need to be adjusted so they're not in constant contact with the wheels... and I think things need like... general oiling/tightening?  I rode a tiny way, just up and down the street, and the gears shift and the tires spin.  Then my hands froze, so I came home.  :) 

Well, if the wheels go around and the brakes aren't pressing against the wheels ALL the time then there is hope! Maybe we can take photos and post selected ones for the new thread we'll start on bikes and biking after WLS.  

Let's regroup after this next storm. Can't believe we are having another now!

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1 minute ago, BurgundyBoy said:

Well, if the wheels go around and the brakes aren't pressing against the wheels ALL the time then there is hope! Maybe we can take photos and post selected ones for the new thread we'll start on bikes and biking after WLS.  

Let's regroup after this next storm. Can't believe we are having another now!

Sounds good!  I can't believe they're using "bombogenesis" in weather forecasts again...!

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