Posts Tagged ‘YouTube’

This month I’m participating in 30 Days of Thanks (#30DaysofThanks) by writing a blog post about 30 things I’m thankful for. To join in, go to the link above. The best part is, you don’t need to have a blog or even be on social media to take part in the project; you just need to be thankful. I can’t wait to see how my life might change by spending the 30 days in November giving thanks for things in my life — every single day.

Today I’m thankful for social media – FB, Twitter, YouTube – because of the ability they give me to keep up with my friends’ lives.

On FB, I’m able to share my life with my friends through photos and posts about everything from hitting the gym for a Bella Tri to a a great new movie I just saw to how important they are in my life.  I’m able to connect with friends from high school whom I haven’t seen since we graduated in ’89.  I’m able to keep up with former co-workers who’ve moved across the country.  I’m even able to follow along as my cousin and his wife go to China to adopt a baby girl and bring her home in time for Thanksgiving.  Yes, it’s a timesuck, but a welcome one, because what’s better than keeping in touch with friends and family?

Twitter is where I connect with a lot of my blogging and YouTube buddies.  While I’m not on there as often as FB, I do go a few times a week, and I’m always glad for the interactions.  There’s something about the succinctness of 140 characters that makes my time on Twitter so rich.  No wasted words, just full, heartfelt sentiments.  It’s like poetry, really.

YouTube is the place where I have learned so much about the VSG surgery that I’m going to have.  I started by simply following people and watching their videos, but after commenting and getting to know them, I have made real friends.  Friends like BeautyJunkie824, who lives so close, but whom I would have never met if it hadn’t been for her YT videos.  Or PinkFishLilly, who lives across the country, but who is a kindred spirit.  Not only because she shares my Italian heritage, but because she is so real.  She is one of the most generous people – in spirit and action – who I know.  The interaction of hearing about someone’s life through their own voice on video is amazing.

I’m grateful for social media.


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This week has run the gamut!  From Fat Girl to hard work and determination.  Here’s the video:

Week #3 mini goal: getting at least 7 hours of sleep every single night.  It’s going to be sweet dreams for Bella this week!

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For those of you interested in following along with my videos to the YouTube challenge I’m participating in, feel free to watch this video.

Week 2 mini goal: getting in 60 minutes of exercise, 6 days a week, with a minimum of 30 of those minutes coming from “intense” workouts.

The photo I mention in the video is this one (click it to see it full size):

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I’ve been making videos on YouTube infrequently for the last 10 months or so in order to document my journey to Lap Band Land.  I also thought that the videos would be good for anyone else who was using Kaiser to have their surgery.  I hadn’t found much information about Kaiser and Lap Band on YouTube, and it would’ve been helpful for me, so I figured it would be nice for me to make the videos and pay it forward to someone else.

With that said, it had been over 2 months between videos.  Life got hectic, stuff happened, and I’d much rather write on this blog than make videos.  Anyway, one thing that struck me was that I’d lost quite a bit of weight in between videos.  So I did a quick screen capture of each one, and I definitely see a difference.

Taken February 5th, at 311 lbs:


April 10th, at 286 lbs:

I can see my dimples a lot better in the second shot, and my double chin is smaller.  Also, my face just looks less puffy than it did in the first shot.

What do you think? Can you see the 25-pound weight loss between the two images?

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Wow, do I have a lot to tell you. So much so that I decided to make my life easier and make a YouTube video to get all of the information I learned today out. (And I only recorded a fraction of what I was told during the 2 1/2 hour meeting). The thing is, I’m verbose, as you know, and my videos are no exception. I ended up recording over 30 minutes worth of video, so I broke them down into 4 different sections so that YouTube would accept them. I also think I have different topics that I cover, so you can feel free to watch all or some of them, as you wish.

Overall, the meeting was really great. It was held by Dr. Larry Dennen of the Kaiser bariatric center that I’ll be attending for all of my appointments and surgery.  He was the nicest, funniest, most down-to-earth surgeon I think I’ll ever meet.  I really hope that he’s the one that will be doing my surgery, although my next appointment is with Dr. Eric Hahn.  (I’m sure he’s nice, too).

This first video goes over my overall reaction to the day, as well as outlining the Process that Kaiser will have me go through to get the surgery.


Step 1: Referral of Primary Care Physician (DONE!)
Step 2: Orientation (DONE!)
Step 3: Multi-Disciplinary Consult Appt. (Next!)
Step 4: Pre-Op Psychiatric Evaluation
Step 5: Pre-Op Appointment and Schedule Surgery
Step 6: Surgery!
Step 7: Follow-Up Appt. (2weeks, 6weeks, 12weeks, 6months, 1/year for life)


The second video goes into Kaiser’s Program Requirements, one of which is going to be CHALLENGING, and I’m going to need your support to be able to reach it.

Program Requirements:

  • Quit Smoking!
  • Avoid Pregnancy for 2 Years After Surgery
  • Regular Exercise Program (30-45 minutes, 3-4 times a week)
  • Attend a Support Group for Bariatric Surgery
  • Attain Pre-Op Weight Loss Goal
    • 5% – 10% of highest recorded total weight (15-30 lbs for me)
    • For an improved state of health
    • To remove fat from around the organs, especially the liver
    • Not about “qualifying”

“People who stay engaged with a program are 25% more successful in keeping the weight off and sustaining it long term.”


The third video is all about the Nutritional Plan that Kaiser wants me to follow in order to lose weight.  It’s eventually the way I’ll be eating for life, so it’s good to start practicing these principles now.  I didn’t mention in the video (although I mention EVERYTHING else) that they really stressed Protein first.  The nutritionist was so adamant about it that she said she wanted us to eat in stages: protein, then veggies, then starch.  I’m not sure I’ll do exactly that, because I like having a bite from each category, but the bottom line is, once the surgery hits, you get fuller fast, and you need to make sure you get your protein in first, so that point is well taken.

Pre-Op Meal Plan

1200 calories a day

  • 70-80 grams of protein
  • 130 grams of Carbs
  • 30 grams of fat
  • at least 64 oz of water (non-caffeinated fluid)

Broken down by meal, this means:

Breakfast: 2 protein, 1 fruit, 0-1 starch, 1 milk, 1 fat
Lunch: 2-3 protein, 2 veggie, 1 starch, 1 fruit, 1 fat
Dinner: 3 protein, 2 veggie, 1 starch, 1 milk, 1 fat

Not too difficult.  They offer several sample meal plans that look healthy, satisfying and very achievable.  Granted, in my “summer off” of counting and measuring I’ve been eating more than this everyday, but I really don’t think it will be too difficult for me to get used to this meal plan.

The thing that might be a bit tricky at first is the fact that they don’t want you to drink water with your meals.  After surgery, the water might help push the food down, making it easier to eat too much and negate the Lab Band.  So it’s good to get into this habit now.  I’m not allowed to drink anything 15 minutes before eating or 30 minutes after eating.  I always drink water (or coffee) along with my meals, so this is going to be tough!  But again, I’m going to need to be able to do it after the surgery, so I’d better get used to it, right?

I’m going to use the BodyBugg program to log my exercise (calories burned), my goal for which is 2700 calories burned per day.  I’m thinking I should probably go ahead and use the BB program to log my calories as well, so that it will be all in one system.  The last time I tried using it, it was very clunky, and had very few name brand foods that I was eating, which was annoying, because then I had to input them all by hand.  I suppose that’s how any online system is, though.  Once you take the time to put the food in, then it’s there and you won’t have to do it again.  Do any of you log your calories with the BB program?  What are your thoughts? The one thing I don’t like is that there isn’t an iPhone app (that I’ve found) for the BB, so I’ll need to log all of my calories in on the computer.  It’s not that big a deal, because I’m around a computer all day at work, and I obviously have a computer at home, too.  It would just be even that much more convenient if I could do it on the phone, too.  If I hate the BB program, I may use something like LoseIt or the equivalent, which does have an iPhone app.


Finally, the fourth video is all about the vitamin that I have to take now.  And I mean, I have to take a whole lotta vitamins!

I go into detail about each, but there are so many of them that I had to buy a pill organizer.  (No, I don’t feel geriatric, AT ALL).

I also wrap up about my thoughts, my excitement, and the fact that this Wednesday is going to be my first “official” at-home weigh in towards losing the 20 or so pounds (and more once I have the surgery).  Today when they weighed me I was at my highest recorded weight ever – 295.  Yikes!   But, there are a few caveats – I had on jeans (which I would never do if I were really weighing in, because they’re too heavy) and also I really had to pee.  I had just finished a large coffee and didn’t have time to get to the bathroom.  So, I think my weight is really lower than that, and since I’ll be weighing in at home for the majority of this while I’m trying to lose weight, I might as well start weighing on Wednesday, so you can look for that.

I’m really excited about the process continuing, but I’m also excited to get back to really being on a weight loss plan.  This summer has been nice in that I wasn’t obsessed at all with what I was eating since I wasn’t counting anything.  (I overindulged, but I never binged, which is saying something). I feel like now that I’ll be back to preparing my food at home and measuring everything, counting and tracking calories, working out and logging it with the BodyBugg, I’ll finally be back in the fight with all of you, and that will be nice.  I’ve definitely felt a bit like I’ve been on the outside looking in these past 2 months, and I’m definitely ready to get back in the ring.

See you all Tuesday, with an update on my eating.

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Yesterday I went to the informational meeting at Kaiser about the Lap Band procedure.  Since I just got my Flip video camera, I decided to make another video.  I thought I would record it and it would be up within a few minutes.

Oh, how wrong I was.

I am quickly learning that in order for this whole uploading video process to go more quickly and for the final product to be of higher quality, I need to make videos that are under 10 minutes without the need for editing.  I have spent hours editing this video to get it to be under the 10-minute requirement on YouTube.  The editing itself only takes a few minutes, but importing video and then saving it takes 45 minutes for each process.  Ugh.

I just have to keep a little timer near me when I record so that I can keep track of how long I’m taking.  I also have a tendency to go off on mini tangents when I’m talking (especially in videos) so I have to be better about sticking to the topic at hand to save myself a lot of time and trouble later.

Still, it’s worth it to have a good video representation of the way I look now, because all of these videos are going to become my “before,” and that’s exciting!

BTW – Lulu makes a quick cameo in this video, too.  😉

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If you’re a long-time reader, you already know most of the info contained within this video, but you might be interested in watching it because Lulu makes a cameo appearance.  🙂

BTW – The quality isn’t what I expected it to be, but I think that’s because I had to edit it in iMovie and then compress the file, so it didn’t come out as clearly as it otherwise would have. At least I hope that’s what it is, otherwise, I spent a lot of money for nothing.  (Although it is nice to have a video camera).

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I feel like I haven’t posted in so long, and a couple of you have been wondering where I’ve been, so I thought I’d write a post and let you know what’s been going on.  It’s going to be a long one, so hopefully it will fill the void nicely.

First of all, I’ve been loving having Lulu around, and as Tina said, she has definitely stolen me from this blog.  😉  She and I have been having a lot of fun taking walks, visiting dog parks (although she’s still really shy and seems to like the people more than the dogs), and generally just having a great time together.  She’s such a love, a joy, and a great addition to my life.

Ways that Lulu has changed my life already:

  1. Since Lulu has been here I haven’t fallen asleep on the couch once.  Mostly because she lays on the couch next to me, and there isn’t a ton of room to lay down.  LOL.  I mean, I know I could move her and lay out if I wanted to, but I actually enjoy staying awake and then going to bed when I’m tired, rather than waking up half lit because I fell asleep on the couch.
  2. Due to #1, I’ve been keeping up with my skincare routine, and it’s showing in my skin.  Cuz if you fall asleep on the couch and then wake up at 2am, the last thing you really want to do is remove makeup, cleanse, and moisturize, ya know?  It’s been great to keep up with my nightly regime, and I love how good my skin is looking lately.
  3. The house is clean, clean, clean.  Part of this is that I have time clean a little bit each day, rather than saving it all up for the weekend, like I do when I’m in school.  Part of it is the fact that I don’t want to leave things lying around for her to get into.  And part of it is that I’m just more inspired lately to take care of things right then and there, rather than putting them off.  Like emptying the dishwasher – it really only takes 10 minutes, tops, but I seemed to always put it off until I HAD to empty it.  Nowadays, I empty it while keeping an eye on Lulu as we’re hanging out in the kitchen.  I like to keep my place clean anyway, but now things are looking fairly spotless all the time, which is great.  So, although Miss Lulu is absolutely terrified of the vacuum and avoids it at all costs, she’s inspired me to keep things clean and tidy all the time, and I love it.
  4. I’ve been eating most meals in the breakfast nook, while reading, rather than in front of the T.V.  I should’ve been doing this all along, and I do find that I clean things up right after dinner, unlike when I was eating in the living room.  T.V. definitely breeds laziness; no big surprise there.
  5. Speaking of food, I have not snacked at all since Lulu got here.  It’s a lot more fun to spend time playing with her than it is to eat.  Because I’ve had a lot of appointments since the summer started, I really don’t have a lot of time to snack, which is great.
  6. I feel like I have something/someone to focus on other than myself, and it feels great.  It’s nice to fall into the routine and rhythm of a day with her.

Doctor, Doctor

In other news, I’ve had a couple of doctors’ appointments that I’ve gone to this week.  As you guys know, I had an appointment with my primary doctor because I was getting bad headaches almost daily.  In the course of the appointment, I had a really high blood pressure reading, and the doctor suggested I look into the lap band procedure.  (More on this later).  A follow-up appointment had my blood pressure in more normal ranges, and it was there again today.  Although the doctor did say that it’s still slightly high, and she’d like it to be under 130 (it was 136 today).  Here’s where the possible TMI section of the post starts, so you may want to skip to the next paragraph. One of the other things that has been going on with me is that I haven’t had a period in over 2 months.  Which is very unusual for me.  Even though I have an IUD and they say that it can cause irregular periods, mine have come every month like clockwork.  Until recently.  I thought that maybe everything was connected, or maybe the IUD had moved, but an uncomfortable gyno appointment (internal ultrasound, ugh) confirmed that the IUD is still in the proper place.  The GYN said that it may just be causing irregular periods now, even though they’ve been normal for the past 3 years that I’ve had it.  When I mentioned this to my primary physician today, she said that the missed periods are most likely because of the IUD, but that they could explain why I was getting the headaches – increased hormones.  The thing is, I’ve been headache free since I got Lulu.  Correlation?  Coincidence?   I do think that life has become a lot less stressful since I’ve been off for the summer, and Lulu definitely brings me a lot of joy, so she probably helps to keep me relaxed.  The bottom line is that my health is ok, and I’m not having terrible headaches, so I’m thankful.

Taking a break from weight loss

What hasn’t been going well is the whole dieting/weigh loss thing.  I’ve gained a few pounds (+3-5 pounds, give or take) ever since I first got the news about the possible high blood pressure/lap band idea.  But the thing is, I’m ok with it.  I haven’t been going wild with eating everything in sight, and as I mentioned before, I don’t snack at all. I haven’t been working out, other than taking Lulu on walks, so there’s absolutely room for improvement there.  Otherwise, though, I’ve been enjoying this break from counting Points and worrying about the scale. Because of this break, I don’t feel like I have that much to say on this blog lately.  Which makes me sad.  Don’t get me wrong, taking a break from the dieting has been a good thing for me and my state of mind, but not blogging is weird to me.  Writing about my life is so natural to me, and when I’m not doing it, I feel out of sorts.  So the goal for the next few weeks is to do activities that are exciting enough for me to blog about them.

Lap Band

In terms of the lap band, I go to the informational meeting on July 15th and I can’t wait.  I’ve been doing my own research through watching YouTube videos of others who have had the Lap Band, reading blogs of “banders,” and looking things up on Google.  I feel like I have a very good idea of what happens after the procedure and what life (and eating) will be like while living with the Lap Band.  In true Bella fashion, I’m just very impatient to get the process started.  My doctor said that once I go to the meeting I should email her and she’ll give the referral/recommendation so that the process can begin.  I’ll find out more specifics after the meeting, but what I know so far is that they’ll require a series of classes, evaluations with a psychologist, meeting with the surgeon or other doctor, as well as the requirement to lose 20-30 pounds following a restricted diet.  Following a diet isn’t going to be difficult for me since I consider myself a professional dieter, but the thing that does concern me is that if I haven’t been able to lose weight following WW, will I be able to lose weight following their prescribed diet?  Although if I think about it, I’m sure that most of the people who get the Lap Band are in the same boat as I am, and when their doctors require them to lose the weight, they do it, so I should be able to, as well.  Knowing it is part of the process of getting the Lap Band will no doubt light a fire in me, and I’ll employ the same gusto that I approach any challenge that’s placed before me, and I know I’ll be successful at it.

Birthday & 4th of July Weekend

My birthday is tomorrow and I’ll rerun a blog I wrote a couple of years ago about why my birthday is always so special.  This year it’s going to be a lot more low key, which is fine with me.  My parents and I are going out to dinner at a seafood restaurant which they’ve raved about, so that will be nice.  I do miss the days when a group of friends and I would get together to celebrate, but because my bday is around 4th of July, it’s always difficult to work it out because of out of town plans.  Next year I turn 40 and I want to do something big – I’m thinking Vegas, baby.  I went there on my 30th bday, so maybe I should go again now that another decade has passed.  As far as the 4th, Lulu and I are going over to my parents’ house for a BBQ.  I got off easy with only having to bring some rice krispy treats.  Monday my sister is off of work, so I think she’s going to bring my nieces so that we can all go swimming at the pool.  Looking forward to it.

If you’re not blogging, what are you doing?

As I mentioned above, I haven’t been feeling like there’s a lot to blog about since I’m taking a break from the whole weight loss thing right now.  As things come up I will definitely write about them, but if you don’t see too many posts between now and July 15th, do not worry.  I’m fine.  I haven’t given up.  I’m just vacationing from weight loss for a bit.

I’ve  been spending more time reading on the Kindle than I usually do, and I’m loving it.  I think that reading the writing of authors I admire will help me become a better writer myself.  I was talking to my friend Alice the other day, and this summer she’s hoping to finish a book that she’s spent the past few years writing. Hearing her talk about that really inspired me to get off my ass (so to speak) and start working on the book that I want to write.  It’s item #18 on my Life List, so I think I’d better get to it.  The plan is to start writing a little bit each day, beginning tomorrow, July 2.  I’m not sure exactly what the book will be about, but I know it will be non-fiction about my life.  I don’t want to write another weight loss memoir, and no one needs to read another single girl’s guide to dating after 38.  So while I’m not sure what it will be about, I am excited to see where it goes.

I’ve also been meeting with lots of my friends, which is nice.  I feel like I haven’t seen some of them in so long, so it’s nice to have the time to be social.

Something new

Up to this point I’ve kept my blogs anonymous (except for a few photos here and there) because of my job.  I had a bad experience in the past (on a different blog) where a sneaky student found a blog I had written that had some details about my life as a single girl who was dating a lot.  Because of being burned by that (my principal found out and suggested that I remove the blog, which I did), I’ve been fairly cautious about being too public on this blog.  But the more I think about it, the more I wonder why I’m letting fear rule how I share my weight loss journey.  I mean, so what if students find this blog?  Ok, I might not want them to know some of the TMI details that I discussed in the paragraphs above, but seriously, so what if they did?  Does it undermine me as a professional?  Well, maybe.  So I might keep those types of details fewer and farther between.

Still, I’ve been wanting to make some weight loss videos and post them up here.  The YouTube weight loss community is strong, and while you guys are my first loves in terms of online weight loss support, I’m sure that as I begin this lap band journey, there are a lot of people out there who might offer some additional guidance who don’t read blogs.  Plus, I like the idea of approaching this journey in a multimedia way, as Mary does on her blog. I’m not going to reveal my real name, so I’ll be Bella on YT as well, but I think it might be nice to have a video record of myself before, during, and “after” the lap band.  So you can expect those types of posts from me now and then until I get the surgery, and then they’ll be at least weekly.

Wrap it up, this is over 2000 words!

I hope all of you have a fantastic 4th of July weekend, and please know that although I’m not posting as much as I usually do, I’m reading what you’re righting, and I’m here enjoying life.  I’m planning on using Twitter a lot more so you can “follow” me and what’s going on day to day by checking out my sidebar.

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After spending several days processing everything, I am finally ready to let you guys in on what’s been going on with me.  I debated whether or not to include this information on the blog, because I know that everyone is going to have their own opinions, and while I value hearing others’ views, I really don’t want or need any criticism about the decisions I’ve made.  At the same time, I have always been very open and honest on this blog because I want to document my weight loss journey – the good, the bad, and the frustrating.  And I’m not about to change that now, just because I would rather not read negative comments.

Thursday I went to the doctor because I’ve been getting really bad headaches every day for weeks now. I thought it was allergy/sinus related, but it turns out my blood pressure is really high. High enough for the doctor to be “very concerned.” (In all that she was about to tell me, I forgot to even ask what the actual blood pressure was, if you can believe it. I think I was in shock).

Anyway, she said that she believed my blood pressure was so high due to my weight. My feet have also been getting really swollen lately, and she commented on that was well. She said that the headaches and swollen feet are an indication of high blood pressure, and it was serious enough that I needed to get on blood pressure medication.  Just to be sure that it wasn’t allergies, she did prescribe a nasal spray for me to take for a week, but she said that she wanted me to come back in one week (when the nasal spray would have alleviated the allergies) and if my blood pressure was still high, she was going to put me on the blood pressure medication.  I really couldn’t believe what I was hearing.  Although I’ve been obese since high school, I have never truly had a medical problem because of my weight.  This was a shock to my system to know that I have finally gotten to the point that I need to take medicine due to complications regarding my obesity.

As you guys might remember, I have gone to my doctor before, expressing my frustration at the lack of progress with my weight loss.  For someone who is fairly diligent with weighing and measuring food, tracking what I eat, and getting in activity, I have seen relatively little progress for the last two years.  Sure, I’m not perfect 100% of the time, but for the amount of effort that I put in, I should see more progress by now.  Many of you compliment me on my perseverance, but I have to be honest and tell you that it’s extremely hard to keep a positive outlook when the progress is so minor.

But back to the doctor. Six months ago when I expressed this frustration (and was brought to tears as I talked about it), she told me that I had to be patient. That I couldn’t expect the results to happen overnight.  Which is what I’ve been trying to do.  But Thursday she was concerned enough with my blood pressure and my lack of progress in terms of losing weight that she suggested that she’d like me to consider having bariatric surgery. I told her that I didn’t want to do gastric bypass, because it was too invasive, and she said that she would recommend the lap band procedure. She signed me up to attend an informational meeting so that I could find out more about the entire process, and she said that if I felt it was something I could do, she would definitely refer me.  She also said that Kaiser has an entire process and procedure with any weight loss surgery.  “They’re only going to approve you for the surgery if they feel you’re going to be successful with it.  They’re not like some of the other private places that will approve anyone because they’re interested in getting your money.  Kaiser has a team of doctors that will evaluate you, including a psychologist, nutritionist, and surgeons who will ensure that this is the best solution for you.”

I was just shocked that it’s come to this. I always looked at weight loss surgery as sort of giving up (not that I’m judging anyone who’s had it, just for me). I always thought that if I put my mind to it, and ate well and exercised I should be able to lose the weight on my own.

The thing is, I have been dieting on and off since jr. high to no real result. And I know that each time I diet, lose weight, and regain it, I am slowing down my metabolism even more. At this point I think my metabolism is so destroyed that the lap band surgery may be the thing that I need to do to get myself to a healthy weight once and for all.

That’s what I meant when I said that it was something that is making me rethink everything. I know it’s going to be a huge shift in lifestyle, but I do think I’m ready for it. My #1 goal for years now has been to lose weight, and I just can’t seem to make it happen.  I realize that lap band surgery is just a tool to help control portions, and not a magical surgery that will guarantee weight loss.  One of my friends had the lap band surgery 2 years ago, and she has only lost 20 pounds.  Admittedly, she hasn’t follow the “rules” outlined as part of the new lifestyle and food restrictions that go along with the lap band surgery, and actually has it “opened” all the way up, so she hasn’t utilized it the way that it should be.  So, I have a very real cautionary tale to show that the surgery itself is not a miracle fix for obesity.  Having a lap band still requires hard work, healthy eating, and exercise.

I’ve spent every day since Thursday thinking about what having the surgery would mean, researching the process and procedure online, and watching tons of YouTube videos made by people who have had the lap band procedure done.  It’s been really good to see the realities of life with the lap band.  The average weight loss is 1-2 pounds a week, so it’s not a drastic weight loss by any means.  It does require a special diet, especially in the first couple of weeks after the band gets “filled” to be tighter around the stomach.  But by and large you can still eat lots of different types of foods, and it’s not as much of a dietary restriction as the gastric bypass is.  I’ve discussed all of this with my family, and they completely support the decision to find out more information about the lap band and eventually seek approval for the procedure.

I am so thankful that I went to the doctor when these headaches persisted, because I listened to my body and was able to catch a dangerous health risk before it got more serious.  I am approaching the lap band process with an open mind, and I look forward to finding out more when I go to the informational meeting in July.  This isn’t going to be a 1-2-3 process.  From what I’ve read (although I will find out for sure in July), the process takes 6 months during which time I’ll be attending educational classes, requires me to show that I can lose 20 pounds on my own by following a suggested nutrition plan, and involves lots of different physical and psychological exams.  Kaiser will cover the surgery because it is a health risk, but they also want to make sure that the patient understands the risks, knows the lifestyle commitment, and is full informed about the entire process. Which makes me feel very comfortable.

My Weight Loss Plan Moving Forward

One of the main things I’m trying to do right now is stay calm and alleviate stress as much as I can.  I’ve thought long and hard about what this means in terms of my weight loss efforts at this point, and I’ve come to some decisions and changes that I plan to make.

  • I’m going to continue to track my food using WW eTools, but I’m going to approach it in a more intuitive eating manner, rather than being overly obsessed with the number of Points I’m eating.
  • My food choices are going to revolve around eating a balanced diet of protein, dairy, fruits & veggies, and whole grains, as they have for the last year or so.
  • I am going to continue to live an active lifestyle, incorporating a variety of methods in order to keep exercise fun so that I’ll look forward to it each day. One of the ways I’m going to be active is by joining Scale Warfare’s EA Sports Active Challenge, maybe you should too.
  • I will continue to write on this blog. I considered taking a hiatus from it, but I love writing too much to give it up.

Changes to the Blog

  • I’ll still keep you guys updated on my weight loss journey, but I’m going to be writing more about the fun and interesting things that happen in my life that don’t revolve around weight loss.  I’ve been feeling obsessed/single-minded for the last couple of years, and it’s time to start living life and not focusing so narrowly on weight loss.
  • I’m not going to write weekly weigh-in posts anymore, at least until the summer is over.  I’ll still be monitoring my weight, but I don’t want to post about it anymore.  I put so much pressure on myself when I lose “too little” or gain “some,” and I just don’t want to focus on that anymore.  I want to use the fit of my clothes to be more of an indicator than the display on the scale.
  • I’m not going to write in such a regimented or planned way anymore.  No more designations for topics based on days of the week (i.e. Fitness Fridays).  I’m going to write posts as the mood strikes, and not because I feel that I “have” to.

What won’t change is that I will still need and want your support, encouragement, and comments.  I will still keep reading everyone’s blogs because they’re so inspirational and motivational to me.  I am looking forward to the positive changes that I’m making in my life and on this blog. I feel such a sense of peace and contentment.

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This is one of the most inspirational videos I have seen.  I first saw it last year, and I couldn’t wait for the new edition to come out this year.  In fact, I was planning on submitting my own contribution to this, but unfortunately, I missed the deadline. Take the time to watch the whole video, because it will be 10 minutes that will inspire you to do your best, and I can’t think of a better way to spend 10 minutes.

Here are mine:

I CAN do better than I’ve done in the past. I CAN achieve my goals and become the person I know I am inside.
I WILL stay strong in mind and attitude. I WILL finally realize the dream I’ve had for most of my life.
I WANT to run a 5K before the end of 2010. I WANT to become an inspiration to others through action and not just words.
I WON’T quit, no matter what.  That word just isn’t in my vocabulary. I WON’T stop persevering.

What are yours?

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