Wednesday, December 26, 2012

After Christmas Update

We had a wonderful Christmas and had the family here for a very nice time. Good food and family. I was able to eat my normal small amount and stayed on program. As I have said before I felt a little down not being able to eat all the goodies, but am happy with my life at this time. As part of our Christmas celebration Jackie and I planned on going to a movie. We went to the theater to see Les Miserables at 11:20. It was sold out but we did get tickets for the 2:20 showing and what a wonderful experience it was. My review of the movie follows. I know this is not really part of my weight loss journey, but it is part of my life and I want to share it with you.

Les Miserables a story of repentance, redemption, and salvation. I have seen the stage play at least 3 times, Have the music, several different ones. Never read the book. Kind of understood the story from seeing other movie productions and stage plays. Never really understood the story until I saw the movie last night.

What an experience. I am not one who normally likes musical movies. But I want to say that only the brain dead music hater would not love this movie. The singers for the most part may not have been as good as some of the people I have heard on stage, but what the director did was to have them sing/act. That is sing on stage live as they acted. It was extremely effective. You could see and hear the emotions in what they were doing instead of just lip syncing to a prerecorded sound track done in a studio. 

The scenery is outstanding and spectacular. The performances of the actors was amazing. I had to take many occasions to wipe tears from my eyes. I was not the only one in the theater to do so. I could hear other people sobbing quietly around me. It really effected me emotionally especially at the end. I did not want it to end and can assure you I will buy it when it comes out. 

The only drawback was that it was not shown here in an IMAX theater. The music as good as it is could have been much louder. But as there is very little dialog that is not sung, maybe they did not want the music to overpower the words. But the theater I was in had the volume way to low. 

Please go to the movie with someone you love. I never realized the background religious meaning of the story. In this world today it is great to see something of value like this coming out of Hollywood. I have seen most of the pictures nominated for the Academy Award, and as much as I loved Lincoln, this film is better and Hugh Jackman is the best actor of the year in my opinion. 

Saturday, December 22, 2012

New Christmas Outlook

Well it is just a few days until Christmas. Now that there is just Jackie and myself here in the house, Christmas is not the same. Jackie still loves to listen to Christmas music, and we put up a tree and decorate the house inside at least. But there are no kids at home anymore to add to the excitement. 

Because some of our girls live out of  state we just send them money as we have no idea what they want and feel our daughters know best what to get with the money for their families. It is not as much fun as going out and getting presents and wrapping them to put under the tree, but as we are getting older it is much easier. 

This year for the first time in our married life Jackie is not baking cookies and other treats as neither of us can have them, me for sure after my WLS and Jackie has elected to not have things like that around the house to temp either one of us. I usually get a good box of chocolates for Christmas. That is the only time of year that I got stuff like that, but this year I will not be doing that and don’t plan on doing it for the rest of my life. To be honest, I miss the smells and eating the cookies and things. It is hard to realize I will never be able to eat as much of that stuff as I used to do, but that is exactly why I always gained weight during the holiday season. I always told myself “Oh well it is only during this time of year and I am going on a diet after the first of the year. May as well enjoy the stuff, I am not going to live forever and I deserve it”. Yah right, that is what I said for every conceivable celebration, my birthday, anniversary, other peoples birthdays, other holidays, even ones I made up. Added up all year long and that was a lot of just letting myself go and thinking I would make it up someday. 

I miss the stuff but have some things that I really like better. Jackie and I can not buy Christmas presents without talking to each other about what we want. At our age we are lucky enough if there is something we want we just buy it for ourselves. Within reason that is. Normally we tell each other what we are going to buy, but if either one of us wants something we do it. Well Christmas is about the same. There is not really much we want and sometimes have to think of something to tell each other we want for Christmas. These days for me it is new clothes. As I am much smaller than I was and much of what I have is way, way, way to big now. Jackie took me out Christmas clothes shopping a little while ago and I got some real neat things for my Christmas presents. Being able to have new cool clothes and look good in them is much better than eating all that sweet stuff for Christmas I used to have. Of course Jackie took it all away and will not let me have it until Santa brings it Christmas morning but that is fun to look forward to as well. I did the same for her. She picked out several new things she likes and Santa will give her that stuff Christmas morning.

So yes, I miss the cookies, candy, and other Christmas treats around the house but I really love the fact that I can now have other things that I enjoy just as much and I don’t have to tell myself that it is OK and I am going on a diet after the first of the year. Now I am thin and loving it. Eating all that stuff is no longer worth it to me. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

6th Month Evaluation

Well yesterday I went to my 6th month WLS evaluation with Dr. Landers at the Bellevue Group Health Hospital. I had all my blood tests the week before and basically the Doctor and myself went over the results and he gave me time to talk about my experience and any problems or questions that I may have had. He said I had already meet the 80 percentile figure that he wanted and expected me to lose because of the surgery. All the tests results were excellent and he and I were very happy with the outcome so far. 

He said something to me that was a little different. He is now describing the WLS as a “kick start”. Not a permanent fix for weight loss but a way to get your life style in order and give you a tool to help you keep the weight off for a lifetime. But he talked about many patients who do not keep the weight off past 5 years and in his experience most of these people just could not keep the rules as provided for them and life kind of got in the way and they started eating more and more each day and eating things that they shouldn’t like foods that are high in carbohydrates. He also told me that people like me who lost fast or most of their weight in the first 6 months or so are the most successful. We both feel that because of my past problems of just eating to much at each meal and no history of grazing in the past, that my chances of keeping the weight off is much better than most. He also likes the idea of how supportive Jackie is to me, including that she has lost weight herself just eating along with me and not getting things in the house that would cause me a problem.

He said the best thing I have done for myself, is to get rid of diabetes. It is now gone from my life. No meds at all and my A1C is way down and falling. He feels in my case that this will be the biggest factor in me having a good health life in the future. 

He was very happy with my progress and does not have to see me again for 6 months. He expects that I will be at my goal of 165 pounds by then and we will adjust my diet to a maintenance mode. That will be the next big challenge and I am looking forward to it 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Using Menu Tracking Software

An example of what MFP looks like
One of the best things I have ever done on my journey to lose weight is to use a product that is free on the Internet called Or MFP as it called by those who use it. All you have to do it sign up get a password and log on and start tracking what you put in your mouth. Go to foods and you will see highlights for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. You can customize it to include snacks as you wish. It comes with a standard set of goals based on the profile you enter on yourself like you height and weight. But you can change those standards to anything you want to have as your goals. When you want to enter a food you ate, just put a description of it in the search area after you select add food and you will see several possible foods listed. Just click on the one that matches and say add. You will have everything important to that item put on your log including things like calories, fats and other things you may want to list and you can modify the report any way you want. You can also print the log so you can share it with who ever you want including your doctor and nutritionist. Try it and you can use it to plan your meals and keep track of how you are doing.