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Archive for the ‘weight loss rewards’ Category

Autumn has (almost officially) arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2014 – it’s time to reach new heights! Wednesday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the work week, and will give me a positive outlook for the weekend. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Wednesday weight loss updates called WonderFALL Weigh-Ins.

Week 68 was busy, hectic and long.  So much so that I didn’t even have time to write a weight loss update.  I actually didn’t even have a chance to weigh in at all until this morning.  So, here’s a midweek weigh-in update. Even though the week was super busy, I did a good fairly job with my meal planning, eating, and exercising.

So, how’s the scale looking?

When I weighed in this morning, I was 171.0, which is a loss of 1.2 pounds this week, and a loss of 106 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 144 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 21 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. I’m really happy to see this loss, especially because I haven’t really been putting as much concentration on weight loss this week.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve made great meals, gotten in some solid workouts, and continued to eat within my meal plan.  The nice thing about this point in my journey is that I don’t have to think about all of these things as much as I used to.  They’ve become such a habit, such a way of life, that I can go on “auto-pilot” during a crazy week and still see a good result.  That makes me feel awesome.

This week shouldn’t be quite as busy so I’ll have more time to concentrate on working out and meal planning.  I’m not going to go into too many details here, because I’ll write a weekly workout plan post in a few minutes.

I’m so close to reaching the next weight category – the 160s!!  I can’t wait to hit that section, because I haven’t been at that weight since I was 18 years old.  It’s so cool that now at 43, I’ll be even fitter than I was when I was 18. Back then, I wasn’t wearing size small and medium tops or size 10/12 pants, and I think the difference is that I’ve really changed my entire body with the cardio and toning workouts I’ve been doing.  It’s amazing to see such a transformation in my body, and each time I hit a new NSV with clothes, it’s so surreal to me.

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Until Wednesday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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Autumn has (almost officially) arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2014 – it’s time to reach new heights! Wednesday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the work week, and will give me a positive outlook for the weekend. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Wednesday weight loss updates called WonderFALL Weigh-Ins.

Week 67 was a pretty good one. I made some great meals, got in a few strong workouts, and even took a long walk when I wasn’t feeling that great over the weekend.

So, how’s the scale looking?

When I weighed in this morning, I was 172.2, which is a maintain this week, and a loss of 104.8 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 142.8 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 22.2 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. I can’t lie, I’m disappointed that I didn’t see a loss on the scale this week, because I’ve been putting in work and eating right.  But when I look at the week, I did skip two weekday workouts and I wasn’t feeling great this weekend, so I didn’t do as much as I normally would have.  I ate a lot more carbs and less protein than I should’ve late last week (in the form of a chicken pesto pizza that lasted for 3 meals). I’m not too upset about this maintain, because I know it’s only temporary.  It also shows me that at this point in my journey, I need to push harder in order to see a loss on the scale.

So far this week (the past two days), I’ve been getting in strong workouts, following the Tone It Up Frisky Fall Challenge.  This morning my legs are really feeling the squats, lunges, and other moves that I’ve been doing.  I love pushing myself with the toning workouts.  I’ve also resumed C25K, and I was pleasantly surprised that I felt strong in my runs even though I’d taken so much time off from running training.  My main workout goal this week is to make sure I get in all my weekday workouts, not allowing myself to skip any because I’m tried, which usually happens around Thursday or Friday.

In terms of food, things are going well. As I mentioned above, toward the end of last week and into the weekend I wasn’t making the best food choices.  I kept my calories under my daily goal, but I wasn’t eating enough protein and veggies.  I know this is a main reason the scale didn’t move this week.  I know better.  I know that in order to lose weight, I need to eat well, not just keep the calories within my limits.  It’s much more important to keep WHAT I’m eating in check.  Eating out several meals in one week doesn’t lead to weight loss.  It would’ve been better for me to eat that chicken pesto pizza for just the one meal and leave the rest.  I need to release myself from the idea of “wasting food,” and continuing to eat a heavy carb and fat with little protein meal several times just so that I don’t feel wasteful.  Indulging for one meal is one fine, but eating that same meal three times because I have leftovers isn’t good for my weight loss goals. From now on if I go out and indulge in a meal that doesn’t really fit in with my plan, I’m going to enjoy that one meal and leave the leftovers at the restaurant because it’s just not worth the damage it does. So far this week, I’ve done a good job with balancing my protein, veggies, and carbs.

If anything, this maintain is going to spur me to push myself harder this week.  I don’t want to see another maintain on the scale next week, and I’m determined to make sure that I see a new loss.  I’m so close to a new weight “decade,” and I’ve love to move into the 160s next week which is completely doable – I’d only need a loss of 2.4 lbs.  I’m going to keep that number in mind and use it to motivate myself in my workout and in my food choices.  Here’s to moving forward!

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Until next Wednesday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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Autumn has (almost officially) arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2014 – it’s time to reach new heights! Wednesday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the work week, and will give me a positive outlook for the weekend. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Wednesday weight loss updates called WonderFALL Weigh-Ins.

Week 66 was really good.  I’m getting into the swing of this new schedule, and making it all work with my food prep and workouts.  When I can, I’m working out in the morning; when that’s out, I workout after work.  Add to that lots of fun with family and friends over the Labor Day weekend, and it was a nice week for sure.

So, how’s the scale looking?

When I weighed in this morning, I was 172.2, which is a loss of 1.4 pounds this week, and a loss of 104.8 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 142.8 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 22.2 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. I’m really happy with this loss because I had a similar loss last week.  It’s nice that I’m back on a losing streak, even with so many changes in my work life.

This week I have been pulling out some old recipes to enjoy, including the Lowfat Curry Chicken and a new stir fry, which had tofu, mushrooms, onions, zucchini, sugar snap peas, and edamame.  It’s nice to make big pot meals that I can eat several times throughout the week.  I can’t wait for the weather to get cooler so I can start making my favorite crockpot meals.  So hearty and easy!

Workouts have been really good this week: spinning, elliptical, biking, walking Sofi, and of course, my Tone It Up routines.  The other day I had a hair appointment, and my stylist asked me what races I have coming up.  I told her that I’d taken the summer off from my C25K training, and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to run anymore, that it was so hard for me.  And then I stopped myself and said, “you know, that’s not like me at all.  I never give up on something just because it’s hard. I really need to get back with my C25K training and make my goal to fully run a 5K happen.”  And so that’s exactly what I’m going to do.  The Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving is about 11 1/2 weeks away, which is more than enough time to complete the C25K training and continue afterward so that I can improve my runs before the 5K.  So, starting next week, I’m going to get back to running intervals, working my way up to full 5K runs, and I’m excited!

I watch TrulyJess‘ vlogs on YouTube almost every night (if you’ve never seen her videos, watch them, she’s such an inspiration!), and one of her sayings is that weight loss, training, etc is You vs. You.  In other words, I’m not in competition with anyone else, except myself.  And the 5K training is a perfect example of this philosophy.

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Until next Wednesday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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Autumn has (almost officially) arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2014 – it’s time to reach new heights! Wednesday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the work week, and will give me a positive outlook for the weekend. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Wednesday weight loss updates called WonderFALL Weigh-Ins.

Week 65 has been wonderful! I had a great weekend, filled with bike rides, walks with Sofi, spending time with friends, watching my 49ers win, and relaxing after a very busy first week on the new job.  So far this work week has been really productive.  I’m finding my rhythm as I meet with new teachers, gather resources for them, and keep track of all the notes and paperwork. I can already tell I’m going to love this new position, and I’m so glad that I took the chance and went for one of my goals.  Monday I rewarded myself with a shopping spree at Dress Barn, buying tons of new clothes for my fall wardrobe.  The neat thing about this shopping trip was that I think these clothes might last for more than one season.  I’m wearing tops/sweaters in size medium and small (SMALL!!!!!), skirts in medium, and 2 pairs of pants in a size 10! I got a great camel-color water-resistant hooded trench in a medium that I can’t wait to wear because it’s so flattering. 

So, how’s the scale looking?

When I weighed in this morning, I was 173.6, which is a loss of 1.6 pounds this week***, and a loss of 103.4 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 141.4 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 23.6 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. ***The cool thing about this loss is that it only reflects the last two days, because my last weigh-in was on Sunday.  1.6 pounds in two days is phenomenal!  I’m on a losing streak, and I’m loving it! Especially considering how busy my days have suddenly become.

What am I doing differently?  Lately I’ve been concentrating on making sure to get several servings of veggies in with most meals, and I think that’s making a big difference.  I’m still allowing myself the popcorn I love, but only a few times a week.  And of  course, protein is at the heart of every meal I eat. And I’m still getting plenty of exercise and drinking lots of water. Still, I’ve also been having a few glasses of wine on the weekend, but that doesn’t seem to be affecting my weight loss in the least, which is nice.  I love this lifestyle that I’ve created!

In terms of exercise, I’ve been really proud of the workouts I’ve been fitting in.  I did wake up early on Monday to get in a before-work sweat session, which left me feeling super energized and positive all day long.  Most days I’ve worked out in the afternoon, and I enjoy those after work sessions as a way to transition from work mode to relax mode.  As long as I’m getting a workout in, I’m ok with whatever time of day it is.  I actually enjoy working out now, so I look forward to moving my body, rather than dreading it as I used to.  I really think one of the reasons is the communities of support that I’m part of on MyFitnessPal and Instagram.  I love snapping post-workout pics and tagging them with with my ToneItUp hashtags, and seeing all my #TIUsisters’ posts, too.  On MFP, every time I workout it posts a status, and the outpouring of love I get from my pals spurs me on and makes me smile.

As much as I’ve absolutely enjoyed this summer, I have to admit I’m really looking forward to the true start of autumn.  The crisp, cool mornings and evenings.  The sunny days that aren’t ever too warm.  The changing colors of the leaves, the decorations, and the outfits.  Not to mention all the fun that comes with football season, pumpkin patches, Halloween, and simply sipping cups of coffee, tea, and maybe even a pumpkin spice latte or two.  This year I think I’d like to go apple picking, because it just sounds like so much fun and I’ve never done it before.  What are some quintessential fall things you love to do at this time of year? Help me create a fall bucket list.

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Until next Wednesday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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I wanted to do something with my friends to mark the fact that I’ve lost 100 pounds.  My friends have been there for me through thick (literally!) and thin (soon we’ll be there!), and I wanted to celebrate with them too.  A few weeks ago a couple of my girlfriends and I headed to one of my favorite wineries for to imbibe, but I also wanted to do something fitness-related, because one of the best things about losing all this weight is the fact that I can be so much more active.

Since I love riding my bike, it seemed like a natural fit.  I chose this past Saturday, November 16th for our jaunt, and crossed my fingers that the weather would hold up, which it did.  It’s so difficult to get everyone together, especially on a Saturday afternoon, so I was really happy that my sister and Tinkerbell were able to come on the ride with me.

2013-11-16 13.50.37 I wanted to get a quick selfie to capture my happiness.  It was a gorgeous, clear, sunny day, I was going bike riding at LG Creek Trail, and I was going to get to spend some time with two of my favorite people in the world.  Of course I have a huge smile on my face!

il_570xN.499253980_sarr Before we ever left for the bike ride, my sister gave me this adorable bicycle basket tote bag.  She’d bought a different pattern for herself months ago from Gypsea Blue Bags on Etsy, and I loved it so much that she decided to buy one for me in honor of my 100-pound loss.  How special of her!  She bought the perfect colors, knowing that I want to buy myself a red beach cruiser for my 100-pound reward.

For those of you wondering why I want to buy another beach cruiser when I already have one, the reasons are simple:

  1. I love the ease of beach cruisers.
  2. I love that beach cruisers allow me to sit up straight – no slouching = great posture.
  3. They’re just fun!!
  4. I wanted a red one when I originally bought mine, but it was going to be a special order, and because I wanted it THEN, I went with the peach one I have.  But for the past 5 years I’ve regretted not getting the red one, so now it’s time.

So, I’ll be buying this cruiser for myself very soon:

chubbyscruiserBut back to our fun day riding bikes…

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The first amazing thing was fitting our bikes on the back of my sister’s little Vibe.  Her bike is no problem, but my bike is a whopper.  It’s long, heavy, and very awkward to transport.  But together, LC and I were able to get it on the bike rack without too much effort.  I’m glad to know that we can fit it on there, because it means we can go on lots of bike rides to fun places that are a bit farther out of the way.

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As much as I love that we are all in this group selfie, I hate that I was scrunching down so that it looks like I have a huge double chin. I know that sounds vain of me, but considering this is all about losing 100 pounds, I want the photos to reflect that. I guess I’m even more glad now that I took that selfie, above. Still, I do love that all three of us are in this photo – love these girls!

The LG Creek Trail is absolutely beautiful, peaceful, and serene, although these photos don’t do it justice. But believe me, each of us commented at different parts along our ride about how pretty the surroundings were.

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We rode the trail until we were at the edge of Vasona Park and decided it was time to stop for a quick water break.  Look at this view!  It was even more vivid in person.  At this point, we decided to turn around, because the entrance to Vasona from this side is very narrow, with lots of uphills, and we weren’t all sure we were up for it.

2013-11-16 14.30.00All told, we rode for an hour and had the best time.  We chatted, laughed, and just felt so alive there on the trail.  I even had a chance to take this pic, which I adore.  Pretty good camera work, if I do say so myself, considering I was pedaling as I took it.

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I can’t think of a better way to celebrate this milestone weight loss than riding my bike on a beautiful November Saturday afternoon with my girlies.

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This morning I woke up before my alarm because I was so excited about my 6-month post-op check-up.  Going into today’s appointment, I knew the doctor would be pleased with my weight loss, and I knew the nutritionist would be happy about my food logs, but beyond that, I wasn’t sure what my lab results would show.  I’ve been fairly consistent with my vitamins, but there have been several days or even whole weeks where I simply forgot to take the vitamins.  Which isn’t good, especially since I need to take them for life.

First up, I weighed in at just a pound over yesterday’s weigh-in, which is great, because I had clothes on at the Kaiser scale and I’d had a protein shake. My blood pressure was good, too.

Food
I met with the nutritionist first who was very happy with my food logs on MyFitnessPal. She liked my protein-to-calorie ratio, and the fact that my carbs were low.  She did say that she’d like me to get more calories in.  My daily average is about 850-900 and she’d like it to be around 900-1000.  I’m not really sure how I can add more calories in, unless I add in a snack, because I can’t eat more than I do at each meal.  I don’t want to get overly stuffed and feel uncomfortable.  So, while I understand her goals for me, I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing because it’s been working, and my weight loss has been very consistent.

Vitamins
Next up, I met with the doctor, and I was very interested to hear the results of my lab work.  I’d received the lab results from Kaiser via secure email two days after the blood was drawn, but I didn’t understand how to interpret it.  My main concern was with my iron levels, because for years I’ve been borderline anemic.  I’m really happy to report that I am not anemic, or anywhere near it!  This is fantastic news!!  The rest of my labs were all good – I’m not deficient in anything.  When I told the doctor that I’d been having some trouble remembering to take my vitamins, especially with the time that I need to allow between them, she said that I could take them just twice a day.  What a relief! For some reason, I thought that because my multivitamin has iron in it, I couldn’t take it with my calcium, and in fact had to wait two hours in between.  The doctor said the iron in the Multi is negligible, and that she’d much prefer me to take all the vitamins in two doses if it meant that I remembered them.  She also said that she really liked the Celebrate Vitamins that I’d been taking because it was a good quality brand.  So now I’m taking these vitamins, once in the morning before school and once in the evening before dinner:

Nightly before bed, I’m taking 1 Celebrate iron + C

And two times a week, I take 1 Nature’s Bounty sublingual B12

Because it has been a bit difficult for me to remember to take the vitamins consistently, I asked the doctor if we could add an extra set of labs at the 9-month mark, just to keep me accountable.  Now that I have this new system of taking the vitamins it will be easier to remember them, but knowing that I have the bloodwork in February, I know I’ll be more likely to remember them.  The doctor said that she’d absolutely do that for me, and that she was glad that I asked for what I needed.  She did say that she won’t be able to make an appt with me, but that she’d be in contact via email once she reviewed the labs.  Another great reminder to ask for what you need.

Weight Loss & Exercise
The doctor said I was “a rockstar” for my weight loss progress. She was impressed not just with how much I’ve lost in these 6 months, but how consistently I’m losing. She also really happy with my exercise routine.

I left the appointment feeling so good about myself and all that I’ve accomplished.  So good, in fact that I celebrated in a few ways:

2013-11-18 13.12.20 My water intake is always decent, but when I saw this cute tumbler, I thought, why not make it fashionable, too? It was an inexpensive gift to myself that helps me keep my H2O flowing.

Since I was home early today, Sofi and I went on a 50-minute walk through the neighborhood.  It was a beautiful, crisp, clear day, so I wanted to take advantage of it while I could.  (Rain’s in the forecast for the next 3 days).  We were having so much fun out there that I decided to try a bit of jogging toward the end of the walk.  Nothing major, but I did decide to start jogging at about 15-20 seconds at a time.  I started at one landmark and jogged until I hit the next one.  Sofi loved going faster, so maybe I’ll incorporate short bursts of light jogging more often when we walk.

2013-11-18 12.48.04The last celebratory item came out of necessity.  It was absolutely freezing today, and I have no long sweats/yoga pants that fit.  All the workout/loungewear that I have are cropped, and those are getting too big.  When I think of milestone-worthy sweats, one type come to mind – Victoria’s Secret.  I didn’t think they’d have any that I could fit into, but then I saw these boyfriend pants aka sweats, which go up to a size XL (16). I know they may be a tiny bit tight when I get them, but I am sure that before Christmas, they’ll fit great.

vsboyfriendI love these and can’t wait to wear them!!

Today’s been a really awesome day in every way.  I’m glad my health is great.  I’m thrilled that I can move more.  And I’m stunned that I can fit into (or soon will) clothes from VS!! 2013-11-17 18.27.56

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Autumn has arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2013 – it’s time to reach new heights! Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend, and will give me a positive goal to begin each new week. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Sunday progress updates called Fabulous Fall Weigh-Ins.

Week 18 was exciting! I got a wonderful surprise from a very generous friend, started practicing for our faculty powder puff football game, and I attempted to go stand-up paddle boarding.

So, how’s the scale looking?

I weighed in this morning at 223.2, which is a loss of 1.2 pounds and a loss of 53.8 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 91.8 pounds from my highest weight!! 

I’m really proud of my continued success on the scale, and when I stop to think how far I’ve come in such a short time, I really am amazed.  I am so thankful that I had the surgery, especially now that school is back in session and it’s shaping up to be such a hectic year for me.  I know my tool, and my success, has helped me incredibly.  Now that I’ve lost 92 pounds, moving through the world is so much easier.  I’m able to do so much more and it’s all so much more effortless.

Life is so good,and I feel so lucky to be able to truly live each moment taking all the small steps that reveal successes daily.

2013-09-28 09.17.04Until next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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Autumn has arrived! Which means that life is back to normal – school’s in, my schedule is busy, and obligations abound. But I won’t use those as excuses to slack on my goals. The great thing about fall is that the weather is cooler, which means that those wonderful fall fashions will keep me motivated. Plus, crisp temperatures mean that it’s never “too hot” to workout. I’m going to relish my nightly cup of steaming hot tea as another way to keep my water intake up. I look forward to all those hearty, satisfying and wls-friendly soups, stews, and crockpot meals that I’ll create for myself. This year, the changing season will mark new milestones that I haven’t seen in 5, 7, 10+ years! Bring on fall 2013 – it’s time to reach new heights! Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend, and will give me a positive goal to begin each new week. Throughout the fall, I’ll be giving Sunday progress updates called Fabulous Fall Weigh-Ins.

Week 17 was another busy one, which makes me all the more grateful that I have this new lifestyle in check.  I’ve come to realize that this school year is just going to be much busier for me for a number of reasons, but thanks to all the changes I’ve made personally, I’ll be able to handle the added pressure without derailing my progress on the scale. That fact makes me feel amazing!

So, how’s the scale looking?

I weighed in this morning at 224.4, which is a loss of 4 pounds this week, and a loss of 52.6 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 90.6 pounds from my highest weight!! Ninety pounds down!!!  Over 52+ pounds off in just a little over 4 months!! I am so proud of myself and stunned by these results.

When I see this sort of progress, I realize that my decision to get the VSG surgery was one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself, just as I knew it would be.  I think back to myself 1 year ago, 3 years ago, 5 years ago and know that all of my perseverance through the terrible struggles with the scale was to get me to this moment.  Even as I was failing and had almost lost all hope, there was a small spark, a tiny voice in my head, telling me to keep going because I could do it.  Once I made the decision to get the WLS, I knew that the tool would be the missing piece of the puzzle, and it’s proven to be.

Now that living this post-VSG life has become second nature to me, I think it’s time to make some milestone goals for myself.

  1. I will hit 100 pounds off by November 1st.
  2. I will get to ONEDERLAND (199 or less) by the end of 2013.
  3. I will reach my ultimate goal of weighing 150 lbs before my surgiversary on May 20, 2014.

Given my average weekly weight loss (~3 lbs per week), these goals are completely reasonable and achievable.  The nicest part is, I’m not going to have to do anything extraordinary to reach them.  I’m just going to keep up with the food and exercise plan I’ve been following, and I know the weight will come off.

Way back when, I’d set up some rewards for myself for losing weight, and I think they still hold true:

1.  When I hit 100 pounds off – buy a new, red beach cruiser.  I love my beach cruiser, but I hate the color.  When I went to buy it, I wanted a red one, but they were going to have to order it for me.  Being as impatient as I am, I didn’t want to wait, so I settled for the one they had in stock.  Now it’ time to get the bike I really want.

2.  When I hit Onederland – buy an outfit from a non-plus size store.  I know I’ll be able to buy a top from a non-plus size store (I could fit one now), but I’m not sure of the bottoms.  I’m wearing 20s or 18s, depending on the pants, but with another 24 lbs off, maybe I’ll be able to fit into 14s?  I’m thinking that maybe a store like New York & Company will have something that will work.  Any other suggestions for stores with generous sizing?

3. I’ve always said that when I hit my ultimate goal of weighing 150 lbs, I’m going to buy an entire outfit from Anthropologie.  I love so many of the silhouettes I see at the store, and have always longed to be able to buy more than just their housewares. This is going to be a huge reward!

It’s so fun to think about reaching these milestones and knowing that they’ll happen in the very near future, not a faraway and nebulous “someday.”  I saw this quote on Instagram this morning, and it really does encapsulate how I’m feeling:

20130922-141041.jpgUntil next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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On Wednesday I had my 3-month post op appointment, which was informative, but because it was done in a group setting, it was sort of boring. The group was comprised of WLS patients who all had surgery around the same time I did. A few of them had already hit the 4-month mark, but most of us were around 3 months.

Food
It began with a talk with the nutritionist who gave the standard information about food: amount, portion size, balance, etc. I’ve always eaten really well, and understand how to keep my menu balanced, so I didn’t learn anything new. She did say that she doesn’t recommend using protein shakes as meal replacements, but because I’m not a huge fan of breakfast foods, I’m going to continue having my shakes in the morning. Once in a while I’ll replace the shakes with overnight oats or crock pot oatmeal (to which I’ll add a couple of scoops of protein powder). My lunches and dinners are going well, and I’m figuring out ways to keep the variety high. At this point, they recommend that I eat between 800-1000 calories per day, which I am most of the time. Most days are somewhere between 800-900 calories. They also recommend getting around 80g of protein per day, which I’m definitely fitting in, most days I try to get closer to 90g.

Vitamins
Next the bariatric department doctor came in and answered a bunch of questions, which was great. She even gave some helpful tips about cutting down on the number of vitamins we need to take each day. She suggested Wellesse liquid Calcium, and the reason I like it is because I only have to take two 2-TBSP servings to get in the required 2000mg per day. Little things like that are going to make it a lot easier for me to remember to take my vitamins, which I’ve been really failing at lately. She also said that she thinks it’s “rubbish” that we can’t use straws, which made me happy because I’ve been drinking with straws from the 3rd week post op. I was surprised when the doctor said that she “shrugged her shoulders” at carbonation. She said that immediately post-op carbonation was too harsh for our stomachs, but at this point if we want to have some carbonation from time to time, we can. I’m not a soda drinker, but I do enjoy having sparkling water now and then. The doctor said as long as the carbonation didn’t cause us any discomfort or excessive belching, it should be fine in moderation. I’m not going to go out and buy a bunch of sparkling water, but it is nice to have the option.

Hair Loss
One thing that’s been really disturbing is the amount of hair I’m losing every time I wash it. I’m not talking the normal 100 strands of shedding, I’m talking whole handfuls of hair. Mounds of hair. Yes, I have a lot of hair, and it’s very thick, so I’m lucky. But with the amount that I’m losing every time I wash it, I’m getting worried about what I’m going to be left with when this period of hair loss is over. The doctor said hair loss begins around month 3 and lasts through month 6, and that it gets worse before it gets better. She said that Biotin and other supplements don’t have any affect on the hair loss or on the regrowth, which is just as well, because when I did take Biotin, I broke out terribly. The only thing that helps is to keep up with my Iron intake. My family and friends tell me that I’m the only one that’s noticing how much smaller my ponytail is getting, but it doesn’t stop me from being concerned. Although, I still wouldn’t change a thing, I’m so glad I had this surgery and only wish I’d had it sooner.

Reward
After the appointment I decided I was going to treat myself to a little shopping. I’ve been trying my best not to buy anything, because I know that it’s only going to hang in my closet for a short time, but things are getting a bit desperate. I have no work pants whatsoever, and while I can wear jeans any day I like, I really like to try to wear them only on Thursdays (when we wear college gear to promote that college-bound culture) and Fridays (when we wear blue to show school spirit). Once winter hits I wear jeans more often, because I think sweaters help dress them up, but for now, I wanted some work pants. I went to Kohls, where I have never really shopped for clothes in the past because I was too big to fit into most of the Womens (Plus) sizes. I got some really great pieces:

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This one looks great on because of the black color blocking on the sides. It’s really flattering. Plus, I can wear this on school color Fridays.

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Another one to wear on school color Fridays. It may not look like it on the hanger, but this one shows off my waist really well.

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This one was too cute to pass up. I can wear it on blue Fridays, and I like the whole Superman thing. I did customize it by cutting out the crew neck and cutting more of a v-neck. This is a men’s large, and a year ago (or even 6 months ago) I would’ve been too big for a men’s 2XL.

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I really like these pants because they look like dressy grey pants, but they’re actually denim. They’re a wide-leg cropped pant, and I love them.

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These pants were the ones that blew my mind. They’re just regular, black work pants that I can wear with anything, but there’s something special about these…

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THEY’RE A SIZE 18!!!!! They’re a bit snug in the hips/thighs, but they zip up and button without a problem. This is incredibly exciting!

I started out in a tight size 28 pants, so the fact that these pants are a size 18 is amazing to me.  I am over the moon that I’m able to fit into these.  I seriously can’t believe it.  This is ridiculously fabulous!!!

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bilbl_mainLast week a friend of my on MyFitnessPal wrote about how she had just purchased a great new machine for her home gym.  It was a ProForm Elliptical/Recumbent Bike Hybrid that HSN was selling for $399.  The thing that got me to look at it was that they were offering it for 5 payments of $80, which is much more manageable on my budget.  Plus, free shipping!

I was SO tempted, but could I justify buying it? I already have a great membership to 24 Hour Fitness that I have at such a great deal ($99/year) that I will never give it up.  Plus, I really like the classes (Zumba, Aqua, among others that I want to try) and the interaction with people that the gym offers.  But the thought of being able to roll out of bed, put on my sneakers, and just hit this machine was really too much.  And those two machines are my favorite cardio machines at the gym.

I  checked out all of the reviews I could find online, and the only negative people found was the time it takes to put it together.  All the other reviews were positive, mentioning how solid the machine was, how smooth, how much they enjoyed it.

I’m sure you can guess where this is heading.  I’m not one to deny myself much if I can help it. And after all the factors mentioned above, I was sold.   So I ordered it, and as of today, I am the proud owner of a great new piece of workout equipment.

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I can concur that it is a b!tch to put this thing together.  My dad is a master at stuff like this and it took us about 2 1/2 – 3 hours to put it together.  It wasn’t difficult to follow the directions because everything was outlined and organized so perfectly, but it just had SO MANY STEPS.  Luckily for me, my dad is a patient man who will do anything for his daughters, so we got it done and all it cost me was a 49ers sweatshirt.  (Yesterday as I was purging and organizing my closets I found a sweatshirt that I’d purchased for myself long ago but never worn.  Now it’s too big for me (:)!!) and so I gave it to my dad).  Yes, I know just how special my dad is.

After recovering from putting it together, grabbing some lunch, and answering some school emails, it was finally time to give it a go!

I loved it!  It’s not as easy as the machines at the gym, but it does work really well.  The elliptical mode especially got my heart rate up in no time.  The bike was great, too.  This machine is really built solid, and is worth much more than the $399 price tag.  I’ve seen ellipticals on Craigslist selling for $400 – used.  This is a MUCH better option. All told, I was on the elliptical for 15 minutes and the bike for 25 and I burned 570 calories, which is great!  I can definitely see myself using it in the morning before school.  That way, my after school workouts can be more focused on strength training/C25K (more on that in another post).

I love that I was able to reward all of my hard work and success on the scale with a piece of equipment that will spur me on to even greater success.

What’s a reward you’ve given yourself recently to celebrate a success or to motivate you?

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