I’m a mad scientist.

Between tabulating calories and inches and plugging in data for numerous health-related charts and graphs, I feel like the calculator has become my fifth appendage.

(Does the head count as an appendage? If so, make the calculator my sixth. Whatever.)

Based on what I’ve read, the short-term weight loss result of gastric bypass are 35% of excess weight at 3 months, 60% at 6 months, and 75% at 12 months. Then weight loss supposedly continues for another 6-10 months at a slower rate.  Another stat is that–even after achieving a weight loss of 100% of excess weight–the long-term average is a loss of 50% of excess body weight. So. Running the numbers, I’ve been interested to see whether it is worth my effort to truly try on this 6-month physician-supervised diet. Based on the numbers, it’s really not! Here are the stats:

If I start at 354 (current weight) and lose no weight before surgery, then assuming a goal weight of 130, I would weigh 275 at 3 months, 219 at 6 months, and 186 at 12 months.

If I work my darnedest to lose 60 pounds before surgery (my personal goal), then I would weight 300 at surgery, resulting in a weight of 240 at 3 months, 198 at 6 months, and 173 at 12 months.

So if I bust my ass to lose 60 pounds before surgery, I am essentially accomplishing a 13-pound difference at the 1-year mark. Hardly seems worth it, right?

Well, I’ve also figured that losing 60 pounds now might actually be easier than losing 13 then, since by then I will be at a plateau and I will have shocked my body into a new metabolic state. Now I can effect the same change with perhaps less effort.

OR…

Maybe it’s harder now, since I don’t have the gastric bypass tool working in my favor, and I’d be better off NOT losing weight now since I could lose those 13 pounds of different so much easier at the end.

BUT…

Rachel’s wedding is in December, and I need to fit into that size-24 David’s Bridal gown. Plus, my feet hurt now. My back hurts now. My neck hurts now. They won’t hurt at 173 or 186, so I need to do something for myself now. 

Plus, statistics are just statistics and I could very easily be an outlier.

If I spent half as much time exercising as I do thinking, I would have avoided the dilemma entirely!

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Dude. I need a pool.

Why? WHY can I not find any fitness center that offers water aerobics either before or after work? What? It’s because other people don’t want to play in pools before 7 am or after 7 pm? Oh.

And it sucks.

I found the class I want. Mostly old ladies. Cheap as dirt ($2 a class!). Nearby. Outdoors. But the damn thing is from 8:30-10:00 am. On my next day off, I plan to go try it out to see if it’s worth rearranging my work schedule.

In the meantime, I’m investigating every YMCA within 10 miles of my commute to or from work. There’s got to be something. Because, sadly, walking won’t be my cure-all exercise just yet. I can barely get 1 lap around my street (a third of a mile) without chest pains, leg cramps, etc. It’s a damn shame, really.

Other updates: still waiting on my sleep apnea equipment, though I feel like I’ve been sleeping rather well lately. Maybe my mind is playing tricks on me?

I am desperately trying to lose 5 pounds before Friday. Unrealistic? Probably. But I really want to get under 350 for my next doctor’s appointment. I actually miss being able to step up on the scale!

I need to start re-compiling my medical files. During a burst of wind, my documents flew everyone and as I raced around the parking lot (heart nearly jumping out of my chest), I stomped on the soiled papers and shoved them into a grocery bag. Lee mistook that bag for trash, and now my records are no more. Must get busy!

Webtools

Today I joined fitday.com and fertilityfriend.com in order to track my health. FitDay has already proved a valuable resource, though I apparently went over my allotted calories by more than 200 today. Tomorrow is a new day! The goal is to get below 350 before the doctor’s appointment next Friday. I know I can do it!

Also, I’ve been trying like hell to find a water aerobics class to join. Unfortunately, the only one available runs from 8:30-10:00 am, which would keep me from getting to work until 11:30 or so. No can do.

Taking a breather

mirageswift.jpgLast night was my second sleep study, and it was way better than the first one. First, this technician wasn’t taking out decades of aggression on my skin with liquid sandpaper. No, he was rather agreeable and went way beyond the call of duty to make me comfortable. Get this: he helped me get my hair into a proper ponytail at just the right angle so that I could sleep comfortably. This is not small feat.

You see, the elelctrodes affixed to the scalp during a sleep study rely on a clean, unvarnished head of hair. That means no styling products. And on me, no styling prodcuts produces a bozo-like fluff of hair that quite resembles a pomeranian with dreads. Seriously. But this technician carefully parted my hair and carefully smoothed it down and ever-so-gently held it up as I wrapped it into a bun at just the right angle so as to not detach the electrodes and fit between the straps of my sexy CPAP mask. He deserves an award, really.

So. Part of last night’s goal was to have me choose which style of mask I liked. I happen to know there are literally hundreds of masks to choose from, but the tech only brought two in. (immediately, I wanted to see ALL my options. I mean, that’s like showing me two dresses and telling me to choose one for prom. Uh, no. You MIGHT get a decision from me after I’ve tried on about 100 dresses!) He had one mask that covers the nose completely, and one that has little prongs that go in each nostril and sits underneath the nose above the upper lip. The tech explained that he had tried them both, and that he preferred the one that covers the entire nose. Upon looking at both masks, however, I knew immediately that I couldn’t deal with a big plastic cone sitting atop my nose all night. I thought it would be hot and cumbersome and send me into a fit of hysteria. I opted for the pronged-nose-insert approach.

And I tell you, it wasn’t half bad! He set the mask on my face and let me get used to it. Then he said he’d turn on the machine and let me see what the air feels like. I was scared to death. Having suffered from asthma for most of my childhood, I’m not one to remain calm when the inability to breath sets in. He gave me a 4-second warning that the air would start, and when it did, I ran through a series of emotions in about half a second. First, the air started blowing and I inhaled. (Not bad!) Then I tried to exhale. (I can’t find words to describe how weird that felt). Inhaled again. (ok, this is easy!) Exhaled. (I think I get the rhythm now). And then I tried to say to the tech, “this isn’t so bad” and the very moment I opened my mouth, the pressurized air that was whirring through my nose came streaming out of my mouth. I couldn’t speak! It was like having a wind tunnel run through my face. I gasped, choked, shut my trap, and began breathing normally again. Lesson learned: no talking with the mask on!

Once I got the hang of it, I settled into bed and the tech turned the machine back on. In about 10 minutes, I was able to fall right to sleep. I did wake up a few times as they increased the air pressure, but overall it was a very restful night’s sleep. My only complaint is that I couldn’t take a machine home with me this morning! Instead, it will take about 10 days for the doctors and insurance companies to get it straightened out and the equipment delivered. I’m excited! I hope the machine comes in black & stainless steel to match our other appliances….

Recipe link

FMI (for my information): http://swords.cc/ohcc/bariatric_recipes.html

Ode to my husband

Have I ever told you, o internet, how much I love my husband? He is so, so, so, so, so, so, so good to me. Except for one thing.

He keeps trying to give me stuff I’m not supposed to eat!

He’s not a sabotager, he just feels bad for me when he sees me dieting. He doesn’t get it… I’m HAPPY to eat vegetables if they’ll help me escape from my weight! God love him, he is just trying to show me he loves me! With snickers bars. And nachos. And m&m’s. (by the way, why is it that he can eat that crap and not gain an ounce??)

I don’t think he “gets” it yet. I’m serious about this change. The old ways for me are history!

Hot doc!

I had an echocardiogram this morning at Dr. R’s office. Incredibly easy procedure, except for the fact that the technician was hot! It’s awkward enough to lie in a paper shirt while an ugly technician sonograms around the boobies, but when the doc is hot, it’s a whole new ballgame! I think I made him nervous too… he kept tripping over his words and getting embarrassed. No need for that though, since his first question was, “how old are you?” and I completely blanked. I forgot my own age. For like 10 seconds. Anyhow, I go back on the 25th for labwork and echo results. I’m excited!

I got the results from my sleep apnea test. Apparently, I have “hypopneas” 20.4 times per hour (more than TWICE the diagnostic threshold). In around five and a half hours, I stopped breathing 116 times, sending my body into distress over and over again. In the worst examples, my oxygen saturation plummeted down as low as 66%. No wonder I’ve been feeling kinda stupid lately! I go back on mother’s day (yippee!) for CPAP treatment. The secretary promises I’ll feel like a new woman the next morning. Can’t say I’m not looking forward to that!