Sunday, July 30, 2017

Mindfulness & Post WLS

Yo Whirled,

I'm writing to give yall' my monthly WLS update and tell you my story so far on this weight loss journey.  I realize, that if you are here reading this right now, you either are considering getting WLS or just curious about what life is like for a person who actually went and had their innards changed because they needed to lose a significant amount of body weight to be gone from their bodies like myself.  

What I have to tell you is, even if you lose a large amount of weight, you will still come to the place in yourself that you will need to face that has mostly nothing to do with food or exercise or dieting when it comes to getting to your weight loss goal.  

You will still have to deal with the emotions, the addictions, and for some of us, the past traumas that were never released from the body itself, before you can get real long term change.

I have been a mindfulness tourist for many years.  I was happily distracted by turning over cosmic and mystical rocks, finding hidden truths in EVERYTHING. I was trying to understand the what, why and who of Life and existence.  I was a bitchin good dreamer, that became good at controlling my dreams and have been embarking on OBE exploration.  I guess you could say I was never a faith based person.  I wanted the straight dope answers first hand and am ballzy enough to defy everything I was taught and look behind the curtain and go straight to the Source myself to find the real Truth I was aware of inside my Core.  What I have found out so far is outstanding!

My curiosity and courage have made for a full rich inner life. With not much to show on the outside to the world as far as earthly success, I have lived an outstanding and beautiful full life on the inside so far.  The more I learn the less I seem to know, and it's damned exciting but also a great distraction from feeling while being IN MY BODY.  It's time I embrace and feel and release my past wounds from my body.  They are sitting in my gut, they ARE MY GUT.  Do you have parts of your body that are holding onto the past?  

I spoke with a practitioner of Somatic Experiencing this week.  I will need to hold someone's hand while getting through them, and help to get these old unresolved parts out of me and released from my body.  I am going to do some sessions. I'll let you know how it goes.  My intention is to have a lighter heart and flatter tummy.  I still feel sexy, sassy and am grateful for every moment I am alive no matter what the scale says or how many new wrinkles may show up around my eyes. I do laugh a whole lot, Dem Be Laugh Lines Dammit. : o  

My weight has remained the same this month.  It goes up and down.  I am far from my goal weight, but feel good at a size 16.  It's way better than where I was 2 years ago at a size 28, that is for sure. I am sure I would feel more confident if I were smaller.  No one can be skinny enough or rich enough right?  Mindfulness and the practice of being more present in every moment has been changing my eating and movement on a daily basis.  

Having this tiny tummy has been the best thing ever for managing portion control.  I just can't eat very much in a sitting, but don't be fooled. You can regain the weight all back if you are not careful. Body image, self worth, self acceptance, and choosing to make your body feel good while you are in it, is what makes the quality of life worth living.  I am still trying to figure this part out.  I have a feeling that once my "Change of life" part subsides, I will find balance again.  I know I will get to my weight loss goal eventually.  My spirit is strong, my body will catch up soon.  

Some days I am frustrated and discouraged. Other days I am angry and push myself, hurt myself in the process and then mend.  I spent a lifetime weighing food, starving, obsessing about swallowing calories and drinking gallons of water every waking moment. WLS does not change this part. You still will need to watch yourself, but with a small tummy and not having the Hunger hormone any longer, you won't feel as hungry or be able to eat as much.  This is a huge bonus for those of us who have had the sleeve gastrectomy surgery. 

Life post op long term is mostly psychological, emotional and personal when it comes to weight loss success.  How you deal with stress, grief, pain, loss, anger, sadness...it's all related to food, connection, feeling safe, secure and how you care for yourself.  All of this stuff affects your body weight, and quality of life.  How do you define quality of life?  For me it's loving and accepting myself where I am and being able to experience joy, love, freedom and creating new things and sharing them with fun, deep thinking, smart ass friends.  Good people and good times. 

I am learning how powerful intention is in my ability to change myself. I'll report more on that part next month.  Hang in there beautiful peeps.  You and I will get there, one breath and step and a time.

The best cure for the body, is a quiet mind.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Updates, finally...

Wow, it'a been awhile since I posted an update.  I just have not wanted to report on my progress.  I have basically stayed at the same weight, but went up and down since.  I gain 7 pounds and then lose it. It's been frustrating and a bit discouraging, but my ass shrinking has plateaued for now folks.  I wished I would have made my two year goal, but I am happy at where I am for now with my size and my MoJo.  

I am in full menopause currently and have been experiencing the severe joint pain I was having after the full hysterectomy surgery I had last fall.  They call it "Menopausal Arthritis".  I hurt in all of my joints like friggin hell.  I am still on the high dose of Climara HRT Patch to relive all of the other hellish symptoms.

Other than joint pain, and the halt in my weight loss, I am doing pretty good. I am a goofy girl that plans fun things and goes and does them. I am an optimist. I stay focused on the good things that are working, even when I can barely walk up and down the stairs, joints, knees, elbows, wrists, neck, hips... aching pain.  It's so weird.  I'm young and feel like an old woman some days. Let's just say, you aren't going to see me run a triathlon right now.  

I do sit-ups and have one of those twist boards that is helping strengthen my core.  When I do seriously exercise, I take pain meds before so I can get some cardio in, but when they wear off - I suffer big time.  I just keep my carbs and calories very low these days to make up for not working out as much. It is tough.  I take it a day and a week at a time.  I am grateful for my life and the good health I do have.

The thing that I have learned about living with my sleeve is now after 2 years is, my digestive system has really changed.  I have a sensitive stomach that gets dumping syndrome from eating any kind of sugar. It's kind of a blessing, but sad. My body just can't handle it well.  It's a pleasure and pain thing, and not in a good way.  

I do get hungry (nothing even close to what I was like before surgery however) and eat small portions, but you can eat a lot if you give it time. That's where anyone WLS person can get into trouble and put the weight, back on.  It still all comes down to not using food to soothe yourself and finding other ways to find comfort.  

I'm really into vanilla & coconut oil bubble baths.  I am a walking, squeaky cleaned, extra soft, vanilla cookie in a skirt.  Comfort.  I was doing strict keto to the point where I was almost doing zero carbs for weeks, but that was not realistic.  "If it's not sustainable, it's not maintainable."  The key for me is everything in moderation.  I like to taste things, not really eat them.  This means I stop eating when I feel satisfied, not when I am full.  

The intermittent fasting protocols work for me too.  I keep testing how long I can go without breaking a fast.  I am still experimenting and exploring with eating and my relationship with food.  At the end of the day, I accept myself where I am today.  I am a work in progress. I am lovable just as I am, but I sure can't wait to get through this change of life thang.  

I believe that once my body is done with this menopause, getting my hormones and metabolism balanced again, I will feel much better.








Friday, April 14, 2017

5 pound loss!

Hi All,

I'm better this month.  I got some help at work.  Less stress, yay!  I lost 5 pounds, finally.  I have been eating higher carbs than usual, but I feel balanced.  I am still in full ovarian shut down/menopause since my hysterectomy and still on the HRT patch.  The Climara patch and taking DHEA has been a life saver.  My energy level is higher and I'm happy and grateful for my life.

I feel like a 12 year old girl! 

I am trimming up and feeling sexy and sassy.  My motto this year is, "Don't grow up, it's a trap."  It is really the theme of my life.  I guess it's because I was the oldest of the kids in my family, and dealt with many grown-up serious things as a child.  I feel like I am making up for it now in the last half of my life.  Joy, happiness, silliness and hard work and play are what I'm about now.  

I have been looking on Match.com occasionally, and all I see are old geezers in my age range.  It's weird and kinda scary.  How old am I?  I know sexy guys who look old, but are fun and young at heart.  All of them are married a long time, lonely as hell, safe and secure and stuck in a sad purgatory.  I won't date another woman's man.  I want one of my own, who can love me without stifling my independent spirit and can give me room to breath.  Is that even possible?  Are all the good ones taken?  I sure hope not.  I have so much love and affection to give someone.

I'm having a total blast restoring my VW Leopard Lair 1973 T2 Camper Bus.  I bought a heavy duty sewing machine and am learning how to make some cool stuff. I have some events happening this year.  It feels good to be back on a creative track again.  I miss singing and am still looking for a jazz rhythm section for my new jazz music project.  I'm keeping busy and on track.  My weight loss journey has been slow, but steady.  I only weigh myself once a week.  I don't get obsessed about it anymore.  I know my body is changing and adjusting.

I feel beautiful, sexy, and happy.  I think that is what matters, but being at a healthy weight for my height is taking longer than I expected it would after VSG surgery.  I accept myself where I am at this moment, yet I know that the little things I do everyday with food, self care and movement, make the biggest difference in my body long term.

STAY TUNED FOR LESS OF ME!




Friday, March 3, 2017

Up and down...

I have been a bit behind in posting my updates. My day job has been so stressful that I have been working day and night and weekends for the past 4 weeks.  They laid off someone and we are short a person while at the same time things have gotten even crazy busier.  I work at a Biotech start-up, so it is intense, but as of 2017 it has become like a meat grinder without any relief in sight.  It has worn me down and I am in serious burn-out.

I wrote a formal letter asking for help.  We met to discuss options. We will see how it goes.  I love the people I work with, and want to stay.  Biotech recruiters have been calling me, and my old company even sent me an email asking how I was doing.  I have not responded.....yet.

I'm in menopause, on an HRT patch.  I haven't walked or exercised in 3 weeks.  My eye started twitching, I am losing sleep and am just physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted.  I was in deep ketosis since January 1st, and feeling great.  The scale would go up and down, but the inches were melting off me.  The scale not going down feels like I am failing.  I thought I would try a "Carb Nite" to see if it would help trick my body.  This was not a good idea.  I feel awful. Sugar and bread are like a drug.  They make me feel worse than a cheap tequila hangover.  Once you have been off it for a while, then are back on it, you really feel the difference.

I realize for me doing a Keto lifestyle is actually not about weight loss for me like it once was. It's about feeling clear headed, not craving food, or feeling bloated.  Being in ketosis keeps my blood sugar down which helps my mood and my energy levels stay steady throughout the day.  I have more stamina and don't get hungry very often so I can do intermittent fasting for longer periods of time.

Eating high fat has made my skin and hair better and I have lost almost a whole other dress size.  I find that eating Keto (LCHF) is not always easy to do, but allows me to feel physically really good, but I have not lost many pounds. They keep going up and then down.  I am one pound higher than last month, but I am smaller all over.  I am frustrated, but not discouraged.  I don't do well fasting for more than 16 hours at a time. Going any longer than that, triggers my old dieting cycle.  For 30 years I would fast for days, feel freak out deprived, then crazy binge on food.  That is how I ended up so big over time.  Keeping my calories to 1200 a day, and my keto macros dialed in, still the pounds are not going down.  Stress, and more stress.

I am up one pound from last month,
but my tummy is flatter, my waist is smaller.
I am into a woman's size 16, so that is good.

But why is the scale not going down?  I have put my jazz music project on hold, and that is hurting my spirit and soul.  I need time and energy to create and rehearse and work on that part of my life that brings me joy.  If I could survive as a full time vocalist and artist, I would be in my bliss.  I would like to work four days a week and have three days to work on what I love most. These days I get out of bed, go to work non-stop and then go home and go straight back to bed and pull the covers over my head.  I never thought my day job stress would rob me of my passion and joy as much as it is.  It's time for a change.

Take it from me, having my sleeve is saving my ass when it comes to portion size control.  I can't eat very much, but one still has to deal with new ways of comforting, rewarding and soothing yourself, with and without food.  A person can regain the weight they lost after WLS.  Finding a healthy lifestyle food wise that you like and that works for you is key.  I am still trying to figure out how to get to my goal weight and then stay in maintenance.  It is tougher than I thought it would be.  I see all of these other people out there who have successfully made it to their weight loss goals much sooner than I have.  It's going to take as long as it takes.  I won't give up, but my stress level has really taken a toll on me.

My workload has become way too high. We are working on a plan to reduce this.  When you work full-time plus and are not taking good care of yourself to make deadlines, that is when you need to rethink your whole life.  I am.  I just put my foot down.  I have new boundaries.  I am working only 8 hours a day and no longer taking my work home.  I am taking an hour lunch break everyday, which is a chance for me to get out and walk/jog my favorite route.  I must do these things to keep my health and balance intact.  I need to stay grounded, and remember self care during these crazy intense times.  I must find time to be in my creative space every day to feed my soul and express the profound beauty I see in the world in inspiring ways.

I dream of a life where I get to work performing and writing original music, traveling, and writing.  I see myself getting up in the mornings and running/walking on the beach. Doing a morning and yoga meditation practice.  I imagine sharing my life and home with a big fun sexy sweetheart of a man, who gets my weird sense of humor and is not afraid of swimming into the deep end of the pool of the unknown parts of life together.  I bet we would have a cat and a dog and live near the sea.  How do I create this as a reality in my life?

I don't think I will ever actually retire, just once I have the basics taken care of,
I will begin to live a life I was meant to live.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Happy 2017 my friends!

Hi Boy & Girls and Undecided,

It's time to give yall' my monthly progress report.  I had gained a little as expected over my birthday celebrations and the holidays, but am 5 pounds down since my last post.  Yay!

Every morning, I try on this one new cute little winter jacket I bought that I have not been able to fit into, by a long shot...  I mean like it was way too small and no where close to buttoning.  This morning I was able to button the top button.  That is what's a trip about a ketogenic diet. You lose more inches than pounds.

My Ketonix breath tester broke and I am sending it back to be repaired.  I have been using the ketone test strips and they show that I am in deep ketosis.  It gives me reassurance I'm on track, and the jacket proves it.  Once I am in deep ketosis, it feels like I am losing around one to two inches all over per week.  It's crazy amazing.

More than anything, I feel good on many levels eating ketogenic lifestyle.  I know it's not for everyone, but it really works for me, especially with a tiny tummy.  My head is clear, my gut is calm, I sleep better.  I don't have cravings like I used to.  I am not hungry every 3 hours like I used to be.  I feel more grounded emotional and energetically great.  I am on track. Keto is the best thing besides my sleeve that I have ever done for my overall health!  My sleeve helps me not overeat. Eating keto, helps me feel awesome everyday!

My goal is to keep losing an average of one pound per week on Keto until I reach my goal weight, to get down between 145 - 155 lbs. long term and than maintenance after that.  That means in 19 months, I should be at 155 lbs.  It's slow but steady.  I am glad I found a food lifestyle that makes me feel good, where I don't feel deprived, can drink hard alcohol on the weekends and eat bacon whenever I want. : )

I make it a point to not drink Monday - Thursdays, but Friday is my party night.  I live in San Francisco, and the options are endless here for fun. When I order a drink in a bar, it's Champagne, Prosecco or a nice glass of Malbec wine or my go to is Cuba Libra Diet for happy hour.  I do love vodka. I am a Grey Goose Le Citron Martini girl.  I am not on a diet, I am living a Keto Lifestyle, so being able to live and do pleasurable things including drinking on some weekends, makes my lifestyle enjoyable and sustainable.  When I go to some parties, I have been known to bring my own organic sugar-free cocktail mixers.

I am aware that other Sleevers out there have had much more weight loss than me and faster.  I am okay with where I am and trust in my process.  I am learning as I go.  Fat fasting and intermittent fasting protocols have been helpful to blow through a weight loss plateau.

I also wanted to report that since my full hysterectomy 4 months ago and the experience of being in full ovarian shut down even after keeping my healthy ovaries, being on the HRT patch has most likely helped and hindered my progress.  Hormones play a huge role in ones metabolism and well being.  I am feeling balanced, happy. I am not having mood swings, night seats, hot flashes or depression at all.

It's all about quality of life.  I know I'm at an age where I am in full bloom, and my petals may begin so slowly fall off for the next 30 years so to speak.  Accepting and loving myself as I morph into each phase of me and role I choose to create to express me with from here on out, it's all about the quality of each moment. THE QUALITY OF LIFE.  For me that requires, Music, Art and Debauchery with wonderful people to share it all with!

My weight-loss journey was not about food.  It's been about finding new ways to comfort and soothe myself, accept my body and love myself where I am at, flaws and all.  

Over all, it's been about creating a life I don't need to take a vacation from. This means I have developed good solid boundaries and have learned how to say no.  Managing the stress and still working full time while I pursue my hearts passion of jazz, glamping and designing. They bring me joy.

I am being patient with myself and compassionate, but I am not slacking either.  Part of trusting oneself is about earning respect and actually following through with your goals, and celebrating your own personal victories.  These have been the keys to a happier life.  I want to thank you for following along with me on this journey.  I wish you luck with your new goals for 2017.

It's all a big experiment, this thing we call life.  If you find something that works for you, stick with it.  I know for me, if it's convenient, I will do it.  I have been drinking 32 ozs. of water daily, and that was something I never did in 2016.   Your focus and intention creates your way.

IF I CAN DO IT, ANYONE CAN!
TALK TO YOU IN FEBRUARY!





Friday, December 2, 2016

Holidays, Birthdays & Fat Asses

Hi All:

I regained the weight I lost.  My hormones are all fucked up do to what I ate over the Thanksgiving holiday, HRT and I have been struggling with my weight-loss, but I am feeling good mood wise, not having the menopausal arthritis as much (my knees are better than they were, but bad enough that I have a tough time getting up the stairs this week), I'm still trying to find balance and get back on track.  

I am doing great after my recent hysterectomy, and now with the ovarian shutdown, am trying to manage the full on throws of menopause.  Yes ladies, even if you keep your precious ovaries intact, you can still go straight to menopausal hell. I am finding my way through it okay.  I feel young at heart more than ever. I am full of energy.  I am still pinching myself daily because I was suffering so badly for so long, feeling this good now is a miracle for me.  I am in need of getting my head straight on a daily basis and got off track.  I love YouTube and following my friends there.

If you need motivation to get back on track, here is one of my favorite HONEST and hilarious YouTube Channels: ScottTheTruckDriver  He is sort of the Man's man of weight-loss success. I adore his sense of humor and knowledge, but mostly his honesty in what he has tried out on himself and what has and has not worked for him. He delivers his truth like a Real Truck Driver, because he is one! LOL!  He also is an amazing photographer.

Here is his latest video:



He has great success with Fat Fasting to guarantee he gets into ketosis and then blows through his weight-loss plateaus with ease.  He inspires me.  I am finding it is all about convenience and routine for me.  First, I don't like cooking during the weekdays, so finding the secrets to keto-take-out have been key for me, with my work life style.  Second, emotions and stress are a huge factor in my eating. 

This is why I love the ketogenic diet lifestyle.  I don't ever feel deprived. But sugar is my drug of choice.  Once I eat it, I spiral out of control and then feel like crap.  I am experimenting with making some things that are sugar free to help me with this psychological, emotional part of my world.

The truth for me is, it starts right now.  I am one of those people who can pick up a pint of ice cream and eat it while saying to myself, "I will start back on track tomorrow."  and keep saying that week after week until I get fat, avoid the evil scale in the morning and keep my head buried in the pile of sugar deep enough, so I won't come to my senses and get off the ride that is making me sick.  BEING IN THE NOW, is key to everything really.  

Depression is being in the past, Anxiety is being in the future, Being Here Right Now is all that actually IS. Every decision we make in this moment determines our path.  

Even a very small change right now makes a huge change long term.  Think of a plane headed for a destination.  If it changes just 1 or 2 degrees, it will end up completely somewhere else long term.  Think of this when you get hungry or thirsty. I know where I want to go, yet people like Scott and myself are learning and experimenting on how to get there. This is what this blog is all about.

I can love and accept myself where I am right now, but I want to feel and look better.  Being the best me I can be, increases my energy and attitude.  Makes me think better and be a better expression of me.  Every person has a light and a dark side. When we can except both parts fully within ourselves, you can come to the realization that you aren't really your body, or your ego - You are this electric light body walking around in a meat suit.  

I discovered that I need to manage the meat suit better, and the biology of that process really messes with the emotions.  This realization helps me often because I have been able to pop out of my body with full awareness, including senses.  I'm still experimenting with this, but it gives me comfort to know that I am not stuck in my body or this 3rd dimensional matrix.  I am not a "Faith" based person.  FUCK THAT SHIT, I will boldly go and find out the truth all on my own first hand. 

But the body is still my vessel and I like being in it.  I love pleasure and feeling good, out of pain and love it when during a fast, MY BRAIN BECOMES SHARP AND CLEAR.  This is where hormones, balance and knowing what works for your body and lifestyle are so important to the quality of your life experience.  You want to enjoy all of the wonderful pleasures of life, but not fuck yourself up in the process. IT'S A SKILL TO FIND SUCH BALANCE.

Every body and person is unique and only you can figure out what works for you, based on how you feel and the results you get.  This is why I dig Scott the Truck Driver so much.  He is putting himself out there and we get to follow along.  I am doing that here.  We have ups and downs, and this holiday season can be tough for those trying to lose their fat asses.

I find that if I have food I like that is easy to grab, I stay on track.  My birthday is next week, then Christmas, New Years...the food, and parties are endless! I will take it a day at a time.  I will indulge on the weekends, and manage during the weekdays. I wish you success and very happy holidays along your weight-loss journey.  ENJOY BEING FULL IN THE MOMENT.  If you do decide to eat something off your plan, really savor it!  Be fully in your body and allow all of your sensual pleasure to engulf you completely!  LIVE & LOVE BEING ALIVE!  

Love who you are with!  Laugh, Love & Live Fully, you are getting closer to death every second.  When you are at the end of your time here, will you look back at your life and say you enjoyed every moment you could of it fully?  You can trust yourself.  You can find the balance you are seeking.  You can live in that balance and fully....
BE HERE NOW!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!


Friday, November 18, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving Week!

I lost 2 pounds this week and right before the big Thanksgiving holiday.  Lots of parties coming soon.  I have not  been hard core Keto, just eating when I am hungry and stopping when I am full.  When I say full, I mean that first feeling of full.  I don't like feeling sick.  When you have a tiny tummy and you are really hungry, you can make mistakes.

Either you eat to fast and feel sick, or you eat the wrong things that won't sustain you and you feel icky.  When I eat protein first (Eggs, meat high in fat etc.) and then veggies, I feel good for hours. The amount is small, so doing takeout is actually easy with a VSG LCHF lifestyle.  But don't be fooled, you can eat slowly and eat a lot of calories.  This is where sugar and flour can be the obstacle to your weight loss success.

I find that not depriving myself a bite of something has helped me more psychologically from feeling deprived and craving or feeling guilt or obsessed about "forbidden foods'. I say there are no forbidden foods. Everything in moderation, but sugar and flour are as addictive as any hardcore drug out there. I feel better when I don't eat them, but they sure taste good.  The buzz from eating them, feels great for a short time. Then comes the icky feeling.  It's remembering the icky feelings is what makes it easier to eat what is best for me first.

This is what's makes having VSG surgery so valuable if you had problems stopping eating.  Make those bites count.  Enjoy what you are eating, emotionally and physically. You will find what works for you and your body.  TRUST YOURSELF AND YOUR PROCESS.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday week and I'll follow-up with yall' soon.

May your Thanksgiving holiday be full of excitement.