Thursday, April 29, 2010

Another good day

I'm loving going to the gym! (Both for the exercise and the people watching). Yesterday, I saw a really obese man on the recumbent bike. You'd think "Good for him!", right? Wrong. He was just sitting on the bike, feet on the floor, doing nothing but watching TV for over half an hour (could have been longer, but I stopped paying attention. Plus, he was there when I got there.) And then there was the other end of the spectrum- the aneroxic girl. I'm not kidding. She looked like a Holocaust survivor. She was on the treadmill the whole time I was there (an hour), fully inclined, about 4 mph. You could see all the vertebrae in her upper back and neck where her tank top didn't cover. Her shoulders were bony and knobby, and her "biceps" were the size of my wrist. Perhaps "biceps" is the wrong word. Maybe "humerus" would be better, since it didn't even look like her bones had any muscle on them. She was holding onto the bar in front of her while she power walked up her steep hill, and I was so afraid that the ball joints in her shoulders were going to pop out, and her arms would be torn from her body as she flew off the end of the treadmill. I could just picture a crumpled, armless heap of bones on the floor, and a pair of arms hanging from the bar on the treadmill.

Anywho.... here's what I did today:

Bike 15 min- 85-100 rpm; 5.4 mi
Calf extension 3x10 @ 50 lbs
Leg curl 2x10 @ 50
Leg press 3x10 @ 70
Hip adduction 3x10 @ 90
Hip abduction 3x10 @ 100
Glutes 2x10 @ 60 (for each side)

For the first 2 weeks, I'm working on building some muscle. Then, I'll switch to lower weights and higher reps to go for stamina, endurance, and muscle tone and definition. But if I want definition, I need something to define first, hence the heavy lifting now. lol

Oh, and I forgot to mention - I'm at 200 pounds today, was 201 yesterday, so tomorrow might be the day I hit 199. I'm so excited to weigh myself in the morning!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Missed a day, but back on track

Yesterday, I was sick as a dog. I woke up feeling like I was gonna puke, and did. Once. Then a short time later, started getting stabbing pains in my stomach and abdomen that lasted all day. I threw up again (once) before I went to bed. Today, my belly hurt, but it was more of a sore hurt, like from my muscles contracting so much with the pains.

But I hit the gym today and did upper body. Here's what I did:

Bike 15 min @ 85-100 rpm; 5.5 mi
Triceps press 3x15 @ 50 lbs
Biceps curl 3x10 @ 40
Shoulder press 2x8 @ 30
Row 3x10 @ 40
Lat pulldown 3x10 @ 50
Chest press 2x10 @ 40
Fly 2x10 @ 50

My arms will probably feel like noodles in about an hour. lol

Monday, April 26, 2010

First time in the gym since 2/8/2008!

And DAMN it feels awesome!!! It feels so good to be active after being sick and sedentary for so long. I tried my best to start out "slow", but I find it hard not to try and give it my all. Here's what I did today:

Bike 5 mi in about 10 min
Calf extensions 3x15 @ 30 lb
Leg press 3x15 @ 30 lb
Leg curl 3x15 @ 30 lb
Leg extensions 2x15 @ 30 lb (I could feel this one in my basketball knee, so I didn't push it.)
Treadmill 5 min @ 3mph, incline 5; 2 min cooldown

I feel like I could have done more, but it's been so long since I've done anything, and I didn't want to mess around and hurt myself, since I don't really know what kind of shape my muscles are in after all this crap I went through. Hey, it's a start, right? Tomorrow: arms and chest.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Progress report #1

I was going to number this by week, but didn't really have a starting point. I guess I could've started from the point where I got down to my pre-pregnancy weight, but I don't have a picture of that. I have a picture from 3.5 weeks postpartum, when I was 9 pounds down from my pre-pregnancy weight, so I guess I'll use that as my benchmark for pictures. I don't have measurements from then, though.

Today, I weighed in at 202 (26 pounds under my pre-pregnancy weight, and 45 pounds down from my last day of pregnancy. I'm 10 weeks postpartum.)

Here are my measurements:

BICEP(if you can even call it that lol): 14.75"
BUST: 47.25
BELLY(taken at largest part of belly): 41.5
HIPS: 47.75

And the pictures: (I'm wearing the same jeans every time for comparison. I'll call them the "benchmark jeans" lol)

(One day, there's gonna be definition here. I swear.)

I should be in the gym by Monday. I have a wicked sinus infection and just got put on antibiotics today, so hopefully they'll have me feeling better ASAP. Last night, it felt like my nose, cheekbones, and eyesockets were breaking, and I had sinus pressure up past my hairline and in my jaw. NOT FUN. I'm coming, Planet Fitness. I promise.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Measurements and progress pics

I've decided that once a week, I'm going to post my current measurements, and pics of my progress. Since my target area is my belly, that's what I'll focus on, using the same pair of jeans as a reference point every week. I should have started this a while ago when I began keeping track of my diet, but alas, I didn't. But I'm definitely not where I want to be yet, and you have to start somewhere, right? I think I'll take the pics & measurements on either Friday night or Saturday, since that's when I'll have the most help with the baby and thus the best chance of actually getting it done. So be on the lookout as I post pictures of my fat, flabby belly to compare week to week, and to use as motivation so you guys hopefully won't have to look at that for long!

I weigh myself every morning when I get up, and I'm losing about 0.5-1.0 pounds a day. Yesterday I was 204.2, today I'm 203.4, and I didn't "use the bathroom" yet this morning. I know I'll be down to 203.0 or less as soon as I "go". lol

In other news, I'm sick as a dog. I've had a stuffy/runny nose and sinus pressure the last couple days, but now my chest is congested and my sinuses are pretty blocked. Of course, this happens as soon as I'm able to go to the gym. I have the worst luck and can't win. I was still gonna go today, but I woke up in worse shape than I was yesterday and because it's in my chest now, I'm having some difficulty breathing (my lungs burn). Since I have sports-induced asthma, hitting the gym right now is probably not the best idea, so I'm gonna wait a few days til this clears up some more. I can probably handle a stroll around the neighborhood. It's not much, but it's better than nothing.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Cleared to hit the gym.

My post-op appointment today was seriously only 3 minutes long. Here's how it went:

Dr. M: "How are you feeling?"
Me: "Great!"
Dr. M: "Let me see your incisions."
(showed him)
Dr. M: "Looks good. Any questions?"
Me: "When can I go to the gym?"
Dr. M: "Now. Just start out slow. See you in a month."

Good thing I don't have co-pays for post-op appointments, because there's no way in he'll I'd pay $15 for that. That's $5/minute!

So tomorrow, it's on. I'll be in the gym, even though I have a cold and my nose is running like a faucet. I don't care. I. Miss. The. Gym.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Healing nicely.

I hope I didn't just jinx myself.

The recovery from this surgery went so much more smoothly than my last two procedures. I feel great. I'm down to 205 pounds, and I'm super excited about the prospect of breaking 200. I think once I do, I should treat myself to something nice, say maybe... a pedicure and a new pair of shoes? Not just regular shoes- I want a nice pair of strappy heeled sandals that I can wear on our cruise.

I've been doing really well with my diet. I ate out for the first time since I started eating well, and I think I did a pretty good job. Granted, I had to search through nutritional information online for several restaurants before I could even make a decision as to where we would go, which was a little time consuming, but worth it. Just seeing the nutritional values for foods at popular restaurants was enough to make me not even want to walk through the door. Now, when I see the fast food I once enjoyed, I don't think "Mmmmm... I wish I could eat that." Instead, I think, "Wow. Calorie city!"

I ended up choosing Red Robin. Their website is awesome- they have a program where you can customize your meal and it will calculate the nutritional value of your order, which was REALLY helpful, especially since I never eat things as they're made. It sure beat the hell out of searching through a PDF with lists of numbers. At Red Robin, I got the Bruschetta Chicken Burger, which normally has 832 calories and 48 grams of fat the way it's prepared, and that's not including the fries it comes with. I was shocked by that- I think it's easy to assume that the grilled chicken sandwich is the better choice on a menu, but it was just as bad as their loaded burgers. So I used their online Customizer to mess around with condiments and toppings and to build my meal. The way I prepared the sandwich, and with a side of apple slices, I managed to turn it into a meal with 557 calories and 18 grams of fat. That's a little high for what I normally eat, but it beats the hell out of it's original nutritional value. There are times when you have to eat out, and it's just about making the best of it.

I'm hoping to be able to hit the gym next week, even if it's just for light workouts to start. A light workout is better than no workout. I have a post-op follow up with my surgeon on Monday, so we'll see what he says.

Friday, April 9, 2010

And the challenge begins...

Today's surgery went well. I was out of the operating room in less than 90 minutes and they were able to do the surgery laparoscopically. I have 3 incisions- one by my navel, one below my sternum, and the other at waist level on the right side. They don't hurt too bad. I tried to change the way I was holding little man earlier (my mom brought him over to me- I didn't pick him up and carry him), and I felt a pull on the incision on my side, so it's felt a little more tender than the others. I might feel them more tomorrow, or maybe it'll stay the same. I can't really remember how the incisions felt for my 2 pelvic laparoscopies. But boy do I remember what the trapped gas felt like. Ouch! NOT looking forward to that. I'm trying to get up and moving as much as possible (I find it easier to move with where these incisions are, compared to the pelvic surgeries).

And here's where things start to get tricky- now I won't have excruciating pain anytime I eat a normal amount of fat. I should pretty much be able to eat whatever I want. The good thing is, this gives me more protein options. Now I can eat peanut butter and beef, which I wasn't able to eat before. I was limited to chicken and turkey breast. But now I really have to kick my willpower into high gear. For dinner tonight, I had a baked pork chop, even though I'm not really big on pork chops. But it was something DIFFERENT for once, and I couldn't get to the store to get anything I really wanted. Like tacos would be nice, with really lean ground beef, low-fat cheese, and lots of lettuce as a filler. I'm going to start looking for recipes that allow me to change up the flavors of my meats while still keeping them lean and not compromising on taste.

I'll also look for recipes that allow me to make usual comfort foods (like macaroni and cheese, au gratin potatoes, desserts) in low-calorie forms. It's possible, but it's probably going to be a process of trial and error before I find ones I really like and will make again. Let's face it - with a lot "good for you" recipes, the picture they provide looks WAY more flavorful than the dish actually tastes! So the hunt is on for some good recipes.

Today on the way home from the hospital, I had my mom stop at the vitamin store so I could get some Muscle Milk Light to really boost my protein during the day. I wanted the Cake Batter flavor, but all they had was Strawberry Milkshake, so I got it, and it's pretty good. I also need to work some more fiber into my diet and make my carbs really count.

Now to just wait until I can go to the gym. *sigh*

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Surgery tomorrow.

One last hurdle until I can really start working out. As much as I need the surgery, I don't want to have it. I don't want incisions through my abdominal muscles- I don't need them to be any weaker than they are, and I don't want anything that could cause an injury later on when I'm working out. The hardest part is going to be having patience while I recover- I have a high pain tolerance and I don't want to push it and end up hurting myself. Since I'm already itching to go to the gym, I'll be even more eager as more time slips by. I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it, huh?

The other thing I'm worried about is being able to eat whatever I want again. I'll tell ya- having the fear of God put into you by the threat of a gallbladder attack is an AWESOME diet tool. lol However, although I'm keeping my fat and calorie intake at bay, I'm not getting enough variety to get the nutrition that I need, and I don't want my body to go into survival mode and shut down on me, preventing weight loss.

I know everything is all about moderation, and I can still have some of the foods I used to enjoy, but in a world of out-of-control portion sizes, it's so hard! I mean, a pasta entree from Applebees contains enough servings for a few people, but it's not a family style restaurant. It's supposed to be eaten by one person. Let's say I'm on the go and get a blueberry muffin from Dunkin Donuts. That muffin is several times the size of a normal muffin portion. So the logical thing would be to only eat a little bit of it, right? Well, that's all well and good, but then the rest of the muffin is sitting there, taunting you. And you don't want to throw it away and waste the money you just spent on it. So you eat the rest of the muffin. I guess the moral of the story is: make your own muffins, and make them the right size. I'm just going to learn how to be ready for on-the-go situations- have food weighed out and packaged so I can just grab it and head out the door. I think also doing research about the nutritional information for popular restaurants is key- it would be a good idea to know at least one item I can safely order off a menu in a pinch. Let's face it- this is the real world. I can't be home in my kitchen 24/7.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Cleared for surgery, and another funny message.

Finally. I've been cleared to have my gallbladder surgery, which I desparately need- last night my gallbladder was acting up, even though my diet has remained the same and I haven't eaten anything new. It was so frustrating. It wasn't a full blown attack, but more of a threat or a message from that little sac of bile. The pain started at 11 pm, so I went to sleep, since that's the only way I can escape the pain. I woke up at 12:30 and it was still there, so I had to force myself back to sleep. When little man woke up to eat at 4:30 am, the pain was still there. It wasn't as bad as it had been, but still lingering nonetheless.

So, my surgery is scheduled for this Friday (April 9). Hopefully everything goes well and I recover quickly. It's felt so good to be able to be up and active this past week, and I don't want to stop. If all goes as planned (which I've learned nothing ever does! lol), I should be in the gym within a few weeks to really get this whole thing started.

I went for a 35-minute walk today with Marius and Fame, and it was nice. I'm definitely feeling it in my calves and quads, but it's a much welcomed feeling! As for the weight loss, I'm down to 208 pounds. I'm offically 20 pounds below my pre-pregnancy weight. When I weighted in on FatSecret yesterday, I got this message: "You are losing weight at a rapid rate: 7.0 lb/week. Select OK to accept your new weight or Cancel to enter an alternate value." Apparently they thought it could be a mistake, which makes me feel good!

Friday, April 2, 2010

35 pounds in 2 weeks?!

No, I didn't lose that. I wish it were possible, but I think that requires a tapeworm or something! It wouldn't be healthy, that's for sure.

I did a Google search for an online diet tracker. I want to be able to keep track of my calories, fat, carbs, protein, and fiber, but am wayyyy too lazy and short on time to have to write everything I eat in a notebook, look up the nutritional values, write that information down, and then do the math. No thank you. I know if I had to do that, I'd just say screw it and give up.

I checked out a few websites, and the one I liked the best was FatSecret. It's very user friendly and has a HUGE selection of nutritional values for foods of different brands, plus it has a feature where you can add foods to the database if you can't find them- just copy the values from the package. You can also add recipes. You just type a food into the search box, choose the amount you had, and add it under a meal category (breakfast, lunch, dinner or snacks/other). It keeps running totals for you throught the day, plus provides a breakdown of the total values for each meal. FatSecret also provides a similar exercise log, where you choose the activity, intensity, and amount of time and it calculates the amount of calories burned by that activity.

I've been watching what I eat VERY carefully (even weighing/measuring things out) and have been logging everything into my food diary. The website says that based on my height, weight, and activity level (sedentary), I would consume about 2800 calories per day. However, I haven't exceeded 1,000 calories in any of the 4 days since I've started keeping track. In fact, in the last 3 days, I haven't even hit a combined total of 2800 calories. It's not that I'm not eating- I'm eating 3 meals a day plus a snack, but I can't eat that much. From being so sick and the head pain and medications making me throw up, I wasn't able to eat much (sometimes not at all) for several weeks, my stomach is small and I get full easily.

There's a section where you can "weigh in" and report your weight anytime you weigh yourself to keep track of your progress. On the first day, I was 213 pounds. On the second day, I weighed in at 210. When I hit the 'submit' button to weigh in for that day, a message box appeared on the screen, which said, "You have lost 3 pounds (1.4%) in one day. At this rate you should reach your goal weight in about 2 weeks." The goal weight I entered was 175. That's 35 pounds from the current weight for the weigh in! It would be awesome to shed that much, but totally unhealthy to shed it that fast. Perhaps I'll shoot for a pound a day! lol (kidding)

It was 75 degrees outside today, which is AWESOME for the beginning of April in upstate New York. Even though I can't do much, I was able to take my son out for a leisurely stroll. It was only 30 minutes of slow walking, but still- it's something, right?? Plus, I had my abs tightened almost the entire time.