Post Op Day 504 (Week 72 stats)

169… we meet again.

SO frustrating because when I weighed on Sunday I was still at 168. UGH. Whatever.

The good:

  • Not much good this week, unfortunately.
  • I did get my crazy meds adjusted slightly when I went to my psych doctor on Monday. I’m still waiting to see if it makes any difference.
  • I’ve been running… low pressure, early AM on the treadmill, 3-4 mile type running. But that’s ok. It’s something.
  • I’ve managed to add alkaline greens to protein smoothies a couple of times this week and am going to amp that up until it’s a daily thing. No idea if it’ll make one iota of a difference but I like the idea of it.
  • My eating is still on track, no junk and no snacking. I even walked past my old friend Dried Mango on Sunday at the grocery store and was like nahhhhh I don’t even want that. Win!

The bad:

  • I lifted weights one sad time this entire week. I’d like to use the excuse of “there’s no time” (which is true) but I acknowledge that I haven’t been making it a priority. Nor have I had the energy/will to live.
  • I’m off on yet another overnight “retreat” for the next three days and I’m dreading it.
  • I had a total meltdown on Sunday after dealing with rental cars and working most of the day… I told B I’m ready to just quit this job. I’m determined to stick it out for a while longer – to ideally hit the one year mark – but I’m done.
  • I have this quote stuck to the mirror where my weights are… need to remember it

 

The Upcoming Week:

  • I’m running a half marathon at night on Saturday and I’m looking forward to it. It’s a dress up fun one – alien themed, quite appropriate considering the upcoming eclipse.
  • I have my dermatologist appointment on Monday and hope to get some answers about my rash-o-rama. It’s moderately better – my wooo-wooo “Oregon Grape Root” creme that internet people say works, is actually working. It’s way less red and way less itchy. But still there.

Recap:

Highest Weight Pre-Op: 331
Surgery Day: 322
One Year (Week 52): 168

Week 53: 167 (-1)
Week 54: 168 (+1)
Week 55: 166 (-2)
Week 56: 167 (+1)
Week 57: 167 (-0)
Week 58: 170 (+3)
Week 59: 168 (-2)
Week 60: 170 (+2)
Week 61: 168 (-2)
Week 62: 170 (+2)
Week 63: (no weigh in)
Week 64: 169 (-1)
Week 65: 171 (+2)
Week 66: 171 (-0)
Week 67: 169 (-2)
Week 68: 169 (-0)
Week 69: 169 (-0)
Week 70: 169 (-0)
Week 71: 168 (-1)
Week 72: 169 (+1)

Post Op Day 450

I tried. I tried twice and I just couldn’t do it this morning. My long run. It just wasn’t happening.

On my first attempt I drove an hour to a trail where I could run a loop twice to get in my miles. I arrived to find the trail completely overgrown. Like I needed a chainsaw or some hedge trimmers in hand to make it through. The trail was awful and completely covered in super thick spider webs (my reaction to those stringy awful fishing-line-thick webs is the gif below). No one had been on that trail for a while. I tried for about .5 a mile before giving up and turning back. Frustrated because 1) I’d driven an hour and 2) this was at a friggin state park. Trim back the trails, darn it.

SO I headed back towards home and decided to go to my old reliable 8-mile trail by the lake. The trail had been open for about an hour and I hoped that at least one person had hiked it before me so all the spider webs would be cleared. But no. No such luck. I once again made it about .5 a mile before walking into an enormous spider web and having the spider land smack on my chest. NOPE. DONE.

So I turned back and thought, well… I have a protein shake with me, I’ll drink and it and sit and wait for someone else to arrive and go ahead of me. Smart thinking, right? It’s a popular trail. Someone is bound to arrive soon. So shake, shake, shake, open, sip and AIGHHGHGHGHGHGH it was lumpy and had a lot of solids in it and was just wrong. I had to spit it out. (has that ever happened to you with the ready-t0-drink shakes in the tetra packs? I get a “bad” one every so often. SO irritating.)

Irritated and hungry I gave in.. not happening this morning.

There might still be a chance for me to get my run in later. I don’t know. I feel really awful today. Just drained. Batteries at zero. I awoke at 2am this morning and could not get back to sleep.. this girl does not function well on 4-5 hours of sleep. I also have what passes for a period today. I also am still incredibly rashy. I also really just kind of want to cry. Ever have those days? Ugh.

I figure, at the end of the day… it’s just a run. Who really cares if I do it or not. I know that’s a “bad attitude” but it’s the truth. I run a lot. I pushed hard on my run on Wednesday. I have a half marathon one week from today. I am 10000% confident I can run that distance, especially on a flat road course. I know I need to do some easy(ish) runs this week. Nothing bad will happen if I don’t get in today’s 12-14 miles. It’ll be alright. The world will go on. I could, instead, jog 3 or 4 miles.. and yep.. world would keep right on spinning.

I have to say though, that this morning after wussing out of two different trails because of: spiders, branches, overgrown bushes, and downed trees that I’m second guessing my ability to succeed at trail running. Like, why am I doing this again? Why isn’t running in my neighborhood perfectly adequate? There are no massive terrifying spiders on the sidewalks where I live! Why do I have to do the hardest thing possible? Could there be a world in which I could trail run without actually having to…. run on trails??!?!  hahaha

I’m sure I’ll change my attitude about it once I have some sleep and start to feel better. But right now, my treadmill is looking mighty nice.

Post Op Day 498

So let’s talk about something kind of gross and bothersome: The rash on my body continues to get worse. Have I talked about this here? I can’t remember. It’s itchy and gross and keeps spreading. I’m 99% sure its psoriasis (what an ugly word!). I had my first big “flare up” about this time last year – at that point it was all on my scalp. It still is. It comes and goes from there, but this is the first time it’s appeared on my body. It’s awful!  It’s on my side near my bra, on my hip, and on my thigh leading up onto my stomach. It’s also in small areas on my arms, but not super bad there thank goodness. As a result of this (it’s been going on for about 3 weeks now), I’ve been reading a lot and thinking a lot about:

  • Psoriasis triggers…. “they” (online sources, my dermatologist) say a lot of it comes down to: #1 Stress and #2 Diet.
    • I am most certainly under a tremendous amount of stress and the first flare up on my scalp last year occurred right about the time I transitioned into this job. So I for sure see the ‘mental’ stress connection. There’s also the ‘physical’ stress connection, like from training and from surgeries.. and from the awful allergic reaction I had (surprise!) about three weeks ago. I was reading that an influx of epinephrine can trigger a flare up. I guess combine that with mental stress and there you go. Explanation. I hate to sound like “that person” though and say: so it sounds great to reduce stress… sign me up! But when am I actually supposed to take time to meditate/breath deeply/vacation… and how do I deal with stress from the onslaught of emails/work when I get back to what I was doing before I took my break to destress??!?! I think the answer is to retire now and move to an area with lots of hiking/trail running options and do that instead of working. 🙂
    • As for diet, the most common “cure” is to eliminate highly acidic foods, or to – at a minimum – balance out acidic foods with an alkaline food/supplement. I bought some “greens” powder supplements last weekend to add to my smoothies and invested in some good quality chewable magnesium as well. It’s hard for me as a post-op-gastric-bypass-person to get my head around how to eat from the alkaline food list and still get in the protein I require – even from soy and fish. The sheer volume of leafy greens, beans, etc that you’d need to eat would far exceed my stomach’s capacity. I’m looking forward to talking with my dietitian next month about this. For the time being I’m adding in the “greens” powder (this is the kind I bought – it doesn’t taste bad, surprisingly) and seeing if I see/feel any impact.
  • I’m also toying (still) with eating a vegan diet one day a week. I don’t want to make my life more stressful than it already is, but the more I read the more I think a plant-based diet is key. Looking forward to talking about this, too, with my dietitian next month. So the “one day a week” thing, I thought, might be a way to dip my toes in the water without going full-on. It’d also give me time to eat up the healthy/non-vegan things I have (like protein powder/bars/sauces/etc) without tossing it all in the trash. Maybe I’ll then go to 2-3 days a week and figure it out from there.
  • I’m also super curious about the “protein myth” and am reading more about that. What I’m referring to is the idea that as a society we believe that high protein is good so higher protein must be better! But people are starting to question if we actually need as much protein as “they” say we do. Not to get all conspiracy-theory on you, but it’s fascinating to me how impact money is on the dietary information we receive. Like, how certain organizations (say, American Cancer Society or American Diabetes Association) promote diets that include a predominance of foods produced by the companies that fund those very organizations. I don’t know – not saying that what they promote is necessarily bad for you, just that it’s most certainly influenced by those dollars. So I’m curious about the whole protein thing and who is benefiting from the protein-crazy society we’ve become. And I’d love to actually hear a definitive answer to the question: “how much protein do I actually need as a post-op patient?”

It’s hard to know what to eat or what to do! No wonder all of us have struggled with our diets and weight and everything else. It’s no surprise to me that the entire world struggles! We get so much conflicting information. I guess the bottom line for me is that I just want to feel better. I want to be less itchy and less stressed out and less prone to allergic reactions and I want to feel better fueled for my running endeavors. I’m going to keep trying to figure it out!

 

Post Op Day 497 (week 71 stats)

168!!!!! Partayyyyyyyy!!

Minus one big ole pound this week but by golly it’s been a long time coming so I’m celebrating it.

The good:

  • The running continues to be the very best thing. I’m one million percent proud of myself for getting my runs in and tackling that 13 trail run last Saturday. I’m looking forward to another good long run on this Saturday. Going to shoot for 14-15. I can do it!
  • I got up and ran 7 miles this morning that truly felt effortless. If you’d told me a year ago that seven 10 and 11 minute miles would be a breeze I would never ever have believed you.
  • I got weights in 4 different days. Not shabby.
  • I wore a dress on Saturday night out for a little date night with B… size 8, H&M!! And with a strapless bra!! Who am I??

The medicore and the bad:

  • I had (and am having) A LOT of stress right now with work. I can’t even tell you how bad it is. And we spent two full days at a bullsh*t teambuilding retreat this week and we have THREE MORE DAYS NEXT WEEK. I can’t handle it. We’re talking 80-90 emails a day that compound and I haven’t had a computer to even begin to address any of them. It’s just toooooo much.
  • On the note of the retreat, several of the activities were weight restricted and capped a person’s weight at 200-260. That eliminated about a third of my coworkers from participating in several things. Two years ago it wpuld have prevented me too. It was wild to be one of the 2 or 3 thinnest people. Still can’t get my head around that.
  • On the topic of coworkers and their weight, it fascinates me to listen to people talk about what they eat and then to actually watch them eat and note the differences. One girl always talks about how she’s ‘low carb’ and she ate pizza and popcorn and fresh fruit and biscuits. Another says they do Whole 30 at home…. She went to town on nachos. I’m in no way the food police and I’d never say anything. The thing that fascinates me is the enormous gap between who people think they eat versus how they actually eat. We have a knack for deceiving ourselves!

Recap:

Highest Weight Pre-Op: 331

Surgery Day: 322

One Year (Week 52): 168

Week 53: 167 (-1) Week 54: 168 (+1) Week 55: 166 (-2) Week 56: 167 (+1) Week 57: 167 (-0) Week 58: 170 (+3) Week 59: 168 (-2) Week 60: 170 (+2) Week 61: 168 (-2) Week 62: 170 (+2) Week 63: (no weigh in) Week 64: 169 (-1) Week 65: 171 (+2) Week 66: 171 (-0) Week 67: 169 (-2) Week 68: 169 (-0) Week 69: 169 (-0) Week 70: 169 (-0)

Week 71: 168 (-1)

Post Op Day 494

I’m not going to lie: I went into yesterday’s “long run” feeling a little apprehensive. I knew I needed to run about 13 miles and I wanted to do it on a trail but it’s been raining so much this week I was worried about any trail nearby being a mud puddle. I was also anxious about taking 3 hours out of mine and B’s “kid free weekend” to go run. We put our heads together, though, and came up with a plan to drive about an hour away and for him to drop me off at a point on a 22-mile loop and I’d run towards him clock-wise, while he’d go and park at a different point and hike into meet me counter-clock-wise. Sounds good, yeah? I was anxious though about the hilly and rock terrain and how long it’d take me.

But.

But…. it was seriously amazing. It was THE BEST long run I’ve had in I don’t know when.

screenshot-connect.garmin.com-2017-08-06-06-55-04

IMG_5706

I’d say about 75% of the trail was like this….

20170805_085114

With the occasional nice and smooth trail like this….

screenshot-connect.garmin.com-2017-08-06-07-01-33I set out intentionally “slow” taking the first five miles at a 15 to 16 min/mile pace. I wanted to keep my heart rate under control and I wanted to make sure I didn’t crash and burn!

Then I stepped it up a little for the next six miles, hitting 12 and 13 min/miles for a while.

I had to take mile 12 a little slower than I would have liked due to an incredibly messy section of trail – tons of trees down, lots of water pooling between rocks on the trail, plenty of mud and a decent climb.

Then I was back on it for mile 13 and done! I passed by B just before I got to 13 and kept going til I passed my mileage and waited on him to double back to me.

We then hiked the rest of the way – slowly – back to the car.

I felt SUPER though and feel confident that I could have kept going and ran the last segment back to the car with no problem.

THAT NEVER RARELY HAPPENS!! lol

That run gives me a sense of confidence that I didn’t have before – I now feel pretty good about the idea of running a 25K race. Maybe it wouldn’t be as lofty as a goal as I initially thought. Maybe I CAN do that distance. Maybe!

After my run and then our hike out…. you can probably guess what we did. HAMMOCKS! This was my view:

20170805_121249-EFFECTS

It was SUCH a pretty day!

YAY for such a good, empowering, feel good run.

LESS YAY for for having such a darn efficient smaller body this year. Last year B and I hiked a 9 mile segment of this exact trail – from about mile 4 to the end of my run and for those 9 miles I burned THREE THOUSAND CALORIES. For the run I did yesterday – four miles longer and in about half the time – I only burned 1,600. UGH. LOL

 

 

 

 

Post Op Day 491

I seriously almost stopped and wrote this post the minute THIS happened this morning:

HOLY MOLY… a 34C. A C?!?!?!?! I seriously – no joke – have not been a “c” cup since like the 6th grade. Seriously. I needed a new sports bra (I only wear this one) for running and thought why not try it, at worst I have to return it for the D cup. But it fit. SO WELL. I was not bouncy bouncy at all today on my run. Total win for my deflated boobs!

Other random things:

  1. I have a bar problem. Not a bar bar problem.. a protein bar problem. I’m sure, just like everyone does, I eat a ton of something I like then promptly forget it ever existed when I move on to the next thing I like. Half empty protein bar boxes end up in the back of the pantry, bars that got squished from being shoved in a backpack or lost in the bottom of my purse rarely make it out again… but today I decided to organize. I freed up a shelf in a cabinet and wah-lah. I’m almost embarrassed to post this. It shows just how much I buy bars! (and then never eat them) From left to right: Power Crunch Bars (a long time favorite), ONE birthday cake, RX Bars in front of those, Elite bars in cookie dough, chocolate PB, PB, and Birthday cake (my obsession bar right now), pure protein “balls”, a mix of Supreme Protein and Fit bars, Cake Bites, Quest PB Cups, Complete Cookies in Snickerdoodle in front of those. I seriously will never eat all of these. I usually wind up “donating” them to B’s protein bar stash when I get tired of them. I could host a protein bar tasting party with this stash. No one would come, but I could! LOL.
  2. I ran somewhere “new to me” on Tuesday and it was super duper. I have been all over this particular park a hundred thousand times but never actually walked on the trails (there’s only about 5 miles of trail) because if I’m hiking I want a mountain and these are flat as  a pancake. But perfect for getting my run on! 
  3. I ran 4.5 miles today on a much more technical trail (tons of uneven rocks, gaps to jump across, big ledges to step down) and it took me FOREVER. Trail running continues to infuriate and challenge me in equal measure.  Interesting to note, though, that last summer when I first hiked this trail – my heart rate was so incredibly high that B was worried I was going to die. It was like 170s+ the entire time (hilly, hot, humid doesn’t help). This year… I RAN IT (well, most of it, lol) and my heart rate stayed between 120-130. Progress, people!
  4. I’m trying my darnedest to find a 25k to run this fall. The most ideal one nearby is on December 9… unfortunately that’s one of the few-and-far-between Saturdays I have to work to prep for a big ole training. UGH!  Trying to find one that: 1) doesn’t occur close to another race I’ve already registered and paid for, 2) is within driving distance, and 3) is on a kid-free weekend. No luck yet, but I haven’t given up!

 

Post Op Day 490 (week 70 stats)

Surprise…. I still weigh 169. Another week holding steady… four weeks now at that exact weight no matter when I step on the scales! I guess that’s good. Not what I’m wanting, if I’m honest, but it’s 1000000x better than gaining.

How’d it go this week? Pretty ok…

RUNNING

  • Thu: 2 miles on the treadmill (it’s literally all I had time for!)
  • Fri: (rest)
  • Sat:  Race of Death. 9~ trail miles. Already talked about this!
  • Sun: Hiked two 4.5 mile trails. Took it pretty easy!
  • Mon: 4 miles on roads – hot already for an early morning run, but I managed to do the progression run I was supposed to do.  11:46, 11:02, 10:18, 9:54. So yay for that!
  • Tue: 8 miles on trails – this was a really good run! It wasn’t incredibly hot or humid (a rarity!), especially for midday, and I felt really good. I set my watch to alert me to heart rate zones and I stayed in “zone 3” and “zone 2” the entire time. I honestly could have kept going and going and going. I love when that happens.
  • Wed: (rest)
  • Next week (and beyond): I’ve got a loooooong run on the books for this weekend to prep for the half marathon I have on Aug 19. I’ve also been eyeing training plans and looking at 25k races to target. YAY!

WEIGHTS

  • I did less good this week. Sigh.
  • I lifted: today, Monday, Thursday and that’s it.
  • Ho hum
  • Next week: Going to get weights in as much as possible until I have to go out of town on Tuesday.

FOOD

  • I did a GREAT job this week with food (which is part of why not seeing that 169 budge at all is frustrating).
  • No excess snacks, no chocolate, no dried mango
  • I didn’t even eat like crazy after my race Saturday
  • I stayed hydrated
  • Next week: Keep on keeping on!

MISC

  • Work is entering the “absolutely insanely busy” time period. This month and the entire month of September are completely full with way too much travel. I get a break in October then November is nuts, then another break in December.
  • I can make it through this!
  • I’m doing my best to keep my stress levels in check but it’s hard. I’m also doing my best to carve out time for me during the work day: sometimes that looks like going for a run in the middle of the day and sometimes that simply means scheduling myself a break and actually taking time to eat my lunch/go to the bathroom/drink adequate water!
  • I have some weird rashes going on on my side and hip and I really don’t know what’s causing them. B is blaming stress (much the way my scalp gets all inflamed when I’m stressed out – it is right now). I don’t know.
  • I have an overnight work trip next week that I’m kind of stressing about. It’s so stupid – it’s a “teambuilding” thing and we are literally staying IN BUNKBEDS in one room, all together with showers/restrooms down the hall. Yes. You read that correctly. Adult peoples in a dorm/hostel-style bunk bed room. There’s about 30 of us. I just can’t deal with it. There are three very overweight women on my team who have been stressing it too and are kind of loud-mouths about their concerns. I get that they have a genuine concern about their ability to fit in a bunk bed/climb up to a top bunk (2 years ago I’d have been stressing about the same thing!), but the way they discount or dismiss my concerns is really annoying. They’ve literally said “you’re skinny, you have nothing to complain about” when I said I’d rather not have a top bunk. And when I mentioned that I go to bed ridiculously early and get up early to run/workout they were like “Ohhh hellll noooo…. we stay up until 1 or 2am most nights watching TV/playing online/talking so you’ll just have to stay up or bring ear plugs but don’t you dare wake us up early…”
  • I wish I could be sick next week and skip the whole thing.
  • It’s only 48 hours at this teambuilding place. I can survive it. I know I can.

 

Recap:

Highest Weight Pre-Op: 331
Surgery Day: 322
One Year (Week 52): 168
Week 53: 167 (-1)
Week 54: 168 (+1)
Week 55: 166 (-2)
Week 56: 167 (+1)
Week 57: 167 (-0)
Week 58: 170 (+3)
Week 59: 168 (-2)
Week 60: 170 (+2)
Week 61: 168 (-2)
Week 62: 170 (+2)
Week 63: (no weigh in)
Week 64: 169 (-1)
Week 65: 171 (+2)
Week 66: 171 (-0)
Week 67: 169 (-2)
Week 68: 169 (-0)
Week 69: 169 (-0)
Week 70: 169 (-0)