Thursday, September 24, 2009

The "Easy" Way Out?

My weight loss surgery was was almost 27 months ago. Most days, I feel absolutely great. I don't really have many food intolerances as long as I stick to moderation as my guide. Every once in a great while, for some reason unknown to me, food gets "stuck" in my stoma (the opening between my pouch and my small intestine). The result is that I have a great deal of pain just beneath my breast feels like something is cutting me from the inside out. And then the foaming starts...and eventually, if I'm lucky, the puking will start to get rid of whatever is stuck. On rare occasion, taking papaya enzyme will help it pass through without vomiting. But, as was the case yesterday, no dice. The episode lasted a full hour yesterday. I have only had one that was worse, about a year ago...and that resulted in having an endoscopy to make sure everything was ok with my pouch (which it was).

For me, this kind of vomiting is really forceful and feels like I will actually purge my pouch itself. And it leaves my eyes with broken capillaries all around. So, for anyone who thinks that weight loss surgery is the "easy" way out, think again. I have it pretty good...this happens very rarely for me these days. For some, it's more often. Even with this as occasional disturbance, my gastric bypass surgery was still the right choice for me. This is what my eyes look like the day after. Blech.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Third 5K Done

Yesterday was the worst race I've ever run...for so many reasons. When I woke up yesterday morning, I felt really blood sugar issues shaky. I hadn't ever felt like that pre-race. Having consumed more than normal amounts of carbs the night before, I suspect I was having aftereffects of late dumping. I strayed from my normal routine pre-race as well. I had my coffee like I always do, but I had a high protein breakfast of some turkey jerky and then, for carbs, a banana. I had two FRS chews just before the race as well as a 20 oz. bottle of water because the jerky was so salty. I felt parched. My optimism had been high...I had great hopes for completing the race in my best time ever...under 30 minutes. I even aspired to make 28:30. I had a goal. I've never set one that was quite that specific for myself in a race...just wanted to finish and be faster than the time before.

It was a beautiful fall morning...very cool and crisp and brilliant blue sky. I was mentally optimistic, but physically feeling really off. At the start, I took off in a sprint. And within the first mile I had to start walking. I felt blood in my throat from coughing/wheezing. With the the colder weather, it probably would have been wise to use my inhaler that morning, but I didn't think of it. And so, my airways did not respond well at all. Next, the abdominal cramping started. I kept trying to run, and did complete the first mile in under 10 minutes. But by mile 2, that abdominal cramping turned into something I knew would be really bad. I needed to find a rock or tree to escape behind, or a bathroom desperately or there was going to be a really horrifying incident for me. I scoped out all of the houses as I ran, looking for someone outside (it was after all, only after 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning). Finally, there was a woman who had been out in her yard headed back inside. I ran over to her (after Martha passed me on the route, asking if I was okay and I said no, but I didn't need help but I did need a bathroom, to keep on going). In the most pleading voice and face I had, I asked if I might use her restroom as my stomach was not cooperating with me during this race. She skeptically looked me over, apparently decided I was harmless and indeed in trouble, and said "let me get my husband out of there." And so, I polluted some poor strangers' bathroom in the lovely town of Rowley. Thank heavens for Febreze. I thanked them profusely and they graciously said not to worry, they had a daughter who was a runner and so they understood. And then, I was on my way.

Within 1 minute of being back on the race route though, I was uncertain I would complete the entire race without yet another stop (or accident in lieu of a stop). But yes, I did indeed finish the race. I had my worst time ever: 38 minutes 10 seconds. But, I did indeed finish. Yesterday I felt so physically awful (I wheezed for the rest of the day even with inhaler use, and my stomach is still not quite right today), that I told myself I was never going to run another race. I was done.

Today, I feel a little better...and I decided to write a little about it. And after talking to Martha this morning, who by the way completed the race in her best time yet--woo hoo Martha!!!--well, we have two more this year to complete to be 2009 Road Race Series Finishers. That was our goal, and we will make it. I'm not sure it could get worse for me than it was yesterday anyway...well it probably could, but I'm not going there.

As for yesterday, I can literally say "shit happens." It does...and then you move on.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday, Monday

*sigh* So where do I even begin? It's been almost a month since the last time I wrote. I think there's been so much swirling about in my head and in my life that I've just been unable to put it all into words.

My third 5K is coming up this Saturday. Martha and I will run it together and then, in October, we'll run the Witch City 5K. My dear friend Melissa will be visiting from Iowa at that time, and she will be running it with us as well. One thing that I would have never anticipated being a benefit of having WLS is meeting so many other truly awesome people who understand the kinds of struggles I've had with food, weight, body and self-esteem issues. I met Melissa through the RNY board on OH. Melissa has inspired me since I was a pre-op and it was from her that I got the idea to take monthly pictures of my weight loss progress. Over the past few years, we've gotten to be very close, and we struggle in some very similar ways with eating properly, exercise, how much we eat, being people pleasers, etc. I have the distinct advantage of being older though and so, I have more wherewithall to let go of the people-pleasing stuff. But hey, with me coaching her she'll learn. ;-)

Zachary and I took a vacation out to Iowa to visit with Melissa and her husband. We spent several wonderful days relaxing, talking, laughing and just generally enjoying our time together. We have similar issues with reactive hypoglycemia post-op and though she says she has bad gas issues, I far surpass her in this area...I know, something you all wanted to know. For the record? I was just as bad did nothing to make me worse.

I've been dating here and there, but I think I'm going to take a good break from it for a while. I don't really care for setting myself up to be hurt, and I don't really like feeling like I'm hurting others when I'm not interested...and so, a break it is. Besides, my mind has really been rather preoccupied with thoughts and feelings for someone. Until I can really get my head and heart around that, I'll just continue to compare everyone else to him and they'll fall short. I've thought about both how lonely it is to be alone/without a partner, and also how glad I am at times that I have no one else I'm responsible/accountable to. What a double-edged sword.

It's a Monday, and there's been a lot of sadness/heavy heartedness/worry at work. A coworker lost his mom over the weekend...he'd already lost his dad. So at a pretty tender age (he's still under 30) he's been orphaned. It makes me sad...I was young, but he is even younger. Add to that a very close coworker (and friend) of mine has a aneurysm. Hopefully he'll be fine but I'm definitely thinking about him and worrying.

Add to that family stuff that just makes me nutty, school starting (and I can't believe I have a child in third grade already...where did the time go???) and well, I just really feel like the Earth is spinning way too fast and my life with it.

I'm struggling with about 7 lbs. that I'd really like to get off to be back where I'd like between 118 and 120. My clothes all still fit, but it's irritating to me. Staying on track is hard...exercising the majority of the week is hard. I still log my food every day...even when I haven't eaten as I should. In an ideal day, I consume about 1600 calories, 45 to 60 g of fat, between 180 and 220 g of carbs, 40 to 50 g of fiber and between 110 and 120 g of protein. Additionally, I drink between 100 and 120 oz. water daily (typically...sometimes it's more). I seem able to stick to this for 2 or 3 days at a time...and then I have some kind of transgression. I'm trying to do better in terms of the things I eat during the transgressions and at least keeping them protein focused. The resulting blood sugar drops from less protein-dense choices aren't worth it. I think that part is finally getting through to me.

I watch diet ads and fads and was thinking this morning that it's really kind of weird to not be looking for a "diet" to lose weight with. That I know all I really need to do is stay focused on eating properly. There will never be another "diet" (I thought this as I was watching some infomercial for something called Slim 6 I think). It was the first time I really had that realization. Diets are done for me. This is just how I live...eating the RIGHT way. But that is hard. It sounds so simple, and it is...but it isn't easy. And I wonder if worrying about these 7 lbs. is really worth the agonizing I'm doing...but I'm afraid that if I say "eh, it's just 7 lbs." that it will become 10, then 15, and then 20...and I simply cannot go there.

I think I need to resume setting goals for myself weekly, monthly, or whatever...and one of them needs to be to have a daily meditation practice. I bet it would help "slow down" the spinning that feels so out of control sometimes.