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Matt Z


Ok so lets start this out with a bit about me.

My name is Matt

I'm currently 32 (birthday Nov 15)

I'm married

I have 2 boys

I have many many many hours of tattoo work, with lots still not finished

I have my septum and lobes pierced, my septum was stretched up to 00ga, but is now without jewelry, my ears are just shy of 1 3/4ths of an inch

I'm a Veteran

I'm an Information Technology Security Degree holder

I'm a contractor for the Department of Defense


I was overweight as a child, was made fun of left and right. I was my mom's eating buddy, my extended family was mostly Italian so there was lots of "manga manga" going on. We were expected to eat and eat quite a bit, which I did, of all the wrong things. We moved around a bunch. When we lived in Florida, a combination of the heat, increased activity and better eating choices lead me to lose quite a bit of weight. I was now "fit and trim" for my return home and subsequent high school years.


I Joined the Air Force in 1997. I was over what the Air Force wanted me to be weight wise compared to my height. At 5 foot 9 inches I was to be at or under 189 lbs. I was 200/210, but still very fit and active. Most of the weight I attribute to my muscle strenght. but alas, I needed to be under 189, so I did everything I could think of, from starvation, to dehydration, jumping jacks in the sauna, you name it, I did it. And I made it in. During basic training I widdled down to an amazing 170 lbs. Sure I looked good, but I didnt' feel all that great being that small. Looking back at photos, the thoughts I have range from "I look sick like I have aids or cancer" to "damn I was sexy". After basic was technical training, during these months in Mississippi, I slowly got back to my "normal" weight, floating around 200. But no one noticed and I wasn't flagged for any weigh-ins. After tech school came my assignment. Fort Meade, Md. Things went fine, but being an IT job, sitting lots, working odd hours, overnights, etc, the muscle weight was replaced with flab, and after a year or so at my duty station I was poked for being too chubby. I was pointed to a co-worker and ex body builder for assistance. I followed his orders and begain doing some "not so healthy" things to lose weight, which didn't happen. Quite the reverse actually, I was consuming massive amounts of protein, water, carbs, I was working out 2 hours or so a day in the gym, yet in 3 months, I actually gained 80 lbs and I didn't know why. Turns out that part of the suppliments I was taking had triggered a massive hypothyridic response, my thyroid shut off, all the carbs, protein and calories I was injesting was being converted directly to fat. The Air Force did not like that at all. I went to 3 nutrition classes, did mandatory supervised exercise, wore a heart monitor and had my exercise tracked. The last 2.5 years of my enlistment was met with medical work ups, exercise, and warnings of being kicked out. I did everything I could to make until my contract was released from stop loss due to 9/11. My original out processing class turned into a stop loss class half way through. For those that don't know, stop loss is when the military says you can't leave, even if you have completed your signed contract, if they have an official need to keep you, they can. So my last full year was hell. Weigh ins, tapings, blood work. All in all, I made it out by the skin of my teeth. Which is sad because I signed up, with all intentions of doing 20+ years.


I bounced around jobs a bit, got my degree and started doing IT work for the government. And I love it. I do not however love the weight I've been stuck with.


I'm being banded on the 18th of Nov. I was hoping for my birthday, but my surgeon doesn't do surgery on Tuesdays. Sigh. Friday is close enough.


I'm glad I found this website, the information and support from it's members has and will prove to be a very accepted crutch.

Thanks for reading and Stay Strong!


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Welcome! This site is a great resource. The lap band is the best thing I have ever done for myself. I wish you all the best on your journey!

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hey matt; we talked before on the december bandsters post.

This is the best birthday gift we can give to ourselves. my birthday is next thursday the 17th (fellow scorpio) and that is the day i start my two week presurgery diet. i am italian originally from brooklyn new york and i can certainly relate to the Manga. way too much of that going on. a plate of pasta as a first dish and a second dish of some sort of meat. here's to a thinner us in 2012 and the many many many extra years we incurred. good luck on your surgery.

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Wishing you the best of luck Matt! Please keep us posted. Looking forward to reading more of your blogs. :) I was banded September 30th and so far so good.

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Thanks all!

Tracie... I'm glad beyond expression to have found this community!

roeroe, you for got the salad and roll upon roll of bread, followed by some more bread soaked in liquore topped with cream and more sugar lol

Arnetta, Thanks for the support, I'm going to try to keep my blogs to a weekly basis, prob Friday's or as needed and try to keep them as interesting as possible!

I look forward to chipping away this armor of fat I have encased myself in..

Thanks again all.. and Stay Strong!

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Congratulations! It is going to be a long journey so don't give up. Come here or go to the chat room and get support. I don't know why you mentioned the tatoos and the peircings, but since you did, I'll ask. Do you think weight loss will affect any of them? I have always wondered why people get so many tats and piercings. And if you get plastic surgery after you each goal. how that will affect you tats. Sorry, just curious.

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No need to be sorry! I have no problems answer questions about my modifications.

I mentioned the piercings and tattoos just as part of my introduction as It's part of who I am, what makes me, me.

All of my ink, less 2 or 3 pieces, are on my arms and legs, so I won't have to worry about weight loss too much and I did that on purpose. All of my tattoos have meaning and I wanted to ensure that they would be unharmed by any needed weight loss or surgery. The ONLY part that is in jeopardy are my arms, my left arm, I'm not too worry about so long as the piece on the outter portion of my arm is not touched (the piece is unfinished due to the artist, a friend of mine, died in the Station Nightclub Fire) my right arm, an in progress stained glass window, the parts that would be removed are not filled in yet, so as long as the portraits of my wife and kids doesn't get messed up.

Why did I get my tattoos? To "bookmark" monents in my life, to memorialize friends and family or to other meaningful events. My ink is for me, and for no one else, it is coverable at work if my employer doesn't allow visiable tattoos and that is of no bother to me at all.

Why did I get pierced? I grew up watching national geographic, I got my septum peirced as a "right of passage into manhood" I got my lobes pierced and have been stretching them to find out "why" many tribes do it. I have learned quite a bit in attempt to reach my goal of 2 inches. Patience is a big one, accepting that fact that you sometimes have to take a step back in order to take 2 steps forwards and I have learned how to interact with people better, to watch and decode body language and how to break through to them. I had an "industrial" piercing (2 piercings with a single bar though them in the ear, usually in to adjacent locations of the outter cartlidge area) which were a gift from a piercer friend of mine for my birthday, those have been removed however for personal reasons.

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