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Gastric Sleeve Patients
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Everything posted by Diana_in_Philly

  1. Diana_in_Philly

    Personal preparation for surgery

    To the extent you can start working out, do so - even if its just walking around the block or on a treadmill. I started working with a personal trainer who knew I was going to have surgery to being to do what I could. I spent time getting my head in the right place - eating as if I were already post-op - protein first, drinking lots of water, not eating and drinking at the same time.
  2. Diana_in_Philly

    Solid food progression

    I'm almost 3 years out. Here's what my day looks like: Breakfast - shake with 1 cup of Fairlife Skim Milk, protein powder and frozen fruit of my choice and coffee (35-ish grams of protein) Morning snack - Skyr Icelandic provision yogurt and a piece of fruit (10g protein) Lunch - Mixed green salad with 4 ounces of chicken and 1 tb of balsamic vinaigrette (31g protein) Afternoon snack - cheese (1.5 ounces) and grapes or another small fruit (10 g) Dinner - 3-5 ounces protein, small salad and small veg (asparagus, broccoli, etc.) 20+ grams of protein depending on the meat at dinner. I usually add another shake in and some carbs, but that's because I work out for about 1.5 hours each day burning anywhere from 700-1000 calories in a workout and I can't go into that much of a deficit or my body will eat muscle instead of fat. I'm training for a major competition. Hope this helps.
  3. Diana_in_Philly

    Can you visually see your weight loss?

    This is so hard. I'm almost 3 years out. I've lost 150 pounds. Yet, there are some days, I pull my clothes out of the closet, look at them and go - that can't be mine, it's too small. I consistently go to the wrong size racks in stores. My head says I'm still 300 pounds. When I see photos - then vs. now type things, I see it. But, when I look in the mirror, I still see the fat girl. FWIW, I'm an avid athlete now and work out almost daily. I'm ranked in the top 25 of my sport for my age group in the US. I work with a personal trainer and I can deadlift 235 pounds and squat 225. Yet, I still see myself as a size 26 and not a size 6. The head is the last thing to get on board.
  4. Diana_in_Philly

    Working out after surgery...

    I followed my team's directions. I was allowed to do as much cardio as I could tolerate after surgery but not to lift anything heavier than 10 pounds until after my post-op appointment two weeks post surgery. My surgery was on Tuesday. I was home Wednesday and on Saturday I spent half an hour pedaling very slowly on an elliptical recumbent bike at my gym. I walked as much as I could. I made sure I stayed hydrated and stopped when I was tired. Once I was cleared for weights after 2 weeks, I went back to working with my trainer who I had been working with before weight loss. I was doing stuff with dumbbells almost immediately, again listening to my body. I'm now almost 3 years out, deadlift 235 and squat 225. I can clean 85 pounds and I'm a 5'3" 57 year old woman. Follow you're docs instructions and listen to your body.
  5. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    I was a shmoo who struggled too - but I happened to find a sport I love. Did I ever think I'd be ranked in the top 25 of any sport at age 57 - NO WAY! But now, I've become one of those people who gets grouchy if I don't work out. Also, look at what you are eating and see where you can get the most bang for your buck. So if we go by ounces, 4 ounces Tilapia 20 g 100cal 4 ounces chx brest 26 g 125 cal 4 ounces sirloin 22g 200 calories So if you are trying to stay around 1000 calories a day, 8 ounces of tilapia will get you 40g protein and 200 calories if you bake it plain. Add a little oil and you add a few calories, but that's a lot of food for 200 calories. Then you can have a nice salad and and a veg and maybe a little carb. Remember, carbs aren't necessarily the devil. Our body needs them and if we don't give the body enough carbs, it will start to make energy from muscle which is not good. Be smart about what you are eating - timing things and timing your snacks.
  6. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    Generally, I measure leafy greens for salad in cups. Protein always by weight. I don't worry too much about weighing or measuring other vegetables because I'm usually toast after about 4 or 5 bites. So I'll only put 1 broccoli spear on my plate or three asparagus. On the other hand, I usually have about 1.5 cups of salad with my dinner, usually accompanied by 1 tablespoon of whatever dressing I feel like. (Usually some kind of balsamic vinaigrette). Eggs are done by count rather than weight or volume - Usually I measure things like chicken salad or tuna salad by weight when I make it - e.g. 3 ounces of tuna, 1 tablespoon of mayo, 1 T of dijon, etc. But if it's been prepared, then I use volume (e.g. deli egg salad from the grocery store.)
  7. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    Usually with dinner there's a salad or green veg. What I'm showing there is purely my protein. I have to force myself to get to 100g carbs, but if I don't my athletic performance starts to suffer - so there may be rice or quinoa or a potato at dinner. Or a few tablespoons of granola in with the yogurt. But last night, I had 6 ounces of rib eye steak - left over from a night or two before and that was it. I didn't feel like anything green and was full after the steak. I always eat my protein first then if there's room I eat the rest.
  8. Diana_in_Philly

    Whey protein isolate

    Each is different - I find the vegan ones (which are pea protein) have an odd aftertaste to me. Folks who cannot tolerate dairy go with collagen proteins or other non-dairy ones. The best protein is one you can tolerate the taste and texture of. Try a few in single packets. My two go-tos are both Whey Isolates for powder - Optimum Gold Standard Whey Protein and Lifetime (sold at the Lifetime Athletic clubs). For pre-mixed, I like Premier.
  9. Diana_in_Philly

    How do I log weight & food?

    I use My Fitness Pal to track food and weight. It makes things so much easier. There are a number of apps.
  10. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    FWIW - I have tried to eat 120 grams of protein from just food sources and I cannot do it. I cannot stomach that much food. Here's my average day: Shake with milk and fruit - 40g Skyr Icelandic Provisions yogurt 13g Chicken on greens for lunch 25g 2 ounces cheese 14g 5 ounces beef 37g So, that puts me over my 120, which if I subbed out 2 eggs for the shake in the morning, I'd be way short. If you look at what I'm eating, I am getting the majority of my protein from food sources - but I've been working with a sports RD who has experience with bariatrics to hone my macros because I train about 1.5 hours every day (hard -- 800 or more calories burned in a session) and I'm trying to add muscle but not cannibalize what I have. Trying to get my body fat down to about 25% - sitting around 30% now. Certainly, it is doable, but what I think your team is saying is don't replace two or more meals a day with shakes and bars.
  11. My personal rule, 2.5 years out, is no more than 10 g of sugar, unless its at breakfast, 15g. (All bets are off if the sugar is from fruit - I'm talking about processed sugar.)
  12. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    Part of being able to do it is a shake in the morning - a scoop of protein powder, a cup of Fairlife Milk and a handful of frozen fruit in the Ninja - that's 30g protein for the protein powder and 15 for Fairlife so 45 grams right there. It's being smart about how to eat. One snack is either Oikos Triple Zero or Skyr Icelandic - 13-15 grams of protein right there. Four ounces of chicken at lunch - another 25 grams. Know your numbers and use them.
  13. Diana_in_Philly

    Am I eating too much?

    2.5 years out. Work out 1-2 hours per day - hard. (I am a competitive athlete at age 57). Eat about 110 gram protein and 100 grams carb daily to about 1500 calories. (It keeps my muscle mass up - getting the carbs in as been tough.) I eat three meals and two snacks. At six months, I was eating about 800-1000 calories with 100 grams of protein with 3 meals and 2 snacks.
  14. Diana_in_Philly

    What did your work out routine look like post op?

    I started on an elliptical recumbent bike at the gym within a week of surgery. I was cleared to start weights at 3 weeks after my post-op visit and told to listen to my body - if it hurt - stop. My surgery was August 23, 2016. In April 2017, I began fencing foil (as in en garde). I am now nationally ranked (24th among women age 50-59 and 33 among women over 40). I fence, on average, 6 hours a week. I compete against kids I could have given birth to. I started taking a cross fit type class in June. I deadlift 235 and back squat 225. You can do as much or as little as you'd like once you are given clearance by your docs. I was 56 when I had my surgery and 246 pounds. I sit around 150 now - most of it muscle. I started working out before surgery to prepare myself. I couldn't do a lot at 270 pounds, but I tried. You should be able to do whatever you want.
  15. Diana_in_Philly

    Pre Op Liquid diet

    Not trying to argue with you, but if you had said something like "need to vent" maybe we wouldn't have responded as we did. You asked for help. You wanted suggestions. Folks are giving them to you. Yes, I'm 2.5 years out from my surgery, but I remember what it was like and I used the 3 months prior to my surgery to get my head in the right place and get myself started eating as I would be post-op. I make a choice every morning when I get out of bed to follow the plan - just like an alcoholic makes the choice every morning not to take another drink. If you've waited to do that until your pre-op diet, you have done yourself a disservice. Please reach out to your doctor's office to find out what his/her rules are so you have more guidance.
  16. Diana_in_Philly

    Pre Op Liquid diet

    Do not eat a pizza. Do not chew and spit it out. If you can't buck up to follow the rules for your pre-op diet, you aren't going to be able to survive post-op. Pull on your big girl pants. Make your shakes interesting - I use Fairlife Skim Milk (13g protein in 1 cup), a scoop of protein powder and then add, as I want: Frozen fruit Sugar Free coffee house syrups PB2 Raw spinach So - my go to when I need to feel like I'm a grown ass woman is my caramel frappucino - 1 scoop chocolate protein powder, 8 ounces cold coffee, a few squirts of sugar free caramel syrup, and ice. Put it in the blender and hit the button. You won't even realize it's from your kitchen. If you get in 60-90 grams of protein a day (you should be tracking all your food at this point) and drinking 64 ounces of water a day, you won't be physically hungry. You are dealing with head hunger. Each time you feel that, go on pinterest and pin a cute outfit to wear at goal weight. Make a bucket list of what you want to do when you lose weight. Go for a walk. You should be using soups (but not creamy high calorie ones), sugar free jello, sugar free pudding, sugar free popsicles. Add crystal light to your water. Drink 8 ounces of water and weight 10 minutes every time you think you are hungry. I make shakes with chocolate protein powder, milk, caramel (sugar free) and a scoop of PB2 and ice in to the blender for a snickers bar. Use Pinterest to find shakes to make. Experiment. keep yourself busy.
  17. Diana_in_Philly

    I know it's nobody's business BUT

    Everyone has to reach their own conclusion on this depending on their community/circle of friends. I told my husband, my two teen daughters and my best friend. My sister and my mother didn't know and still don't. I have been losing weight and gaining weight all my life. I told work I needed to have an abdominal surgery and would be out for a few days (I work from home 3 out of 5 days so it didn't affect the office much). If people ask how I've lost the weight, I tell them a very high protein diet with no white flour or added sugars and that I drink close to a gallon of water a day. I tell them how I work out for an hour a day, minimum, seven days a week. Now, at 2.5 years out, there are a whole lot of people who never knew me at my old weight and others who knew me then who don't recognize me now (and I'm fine not letting them know who I am). But I knew neither my sister nor my mother would be supportive. I didn't need that while struggling to make my decision and in the first month or so after surgery. I am a private person.
  18. Diana_in_Philly

    Losing weight before surgery

    Before you even think about putting something to eat in your mouth, drink 8-10 ounces of water and wait 10 minutes. Make sure you are getting in 64 ounces of water a day. Track EVERYTHING. Get moving - walk around the block - do something. If you drink water, stay low carb and are honest in tracking everything you should lose. (PS - throw out all the crap that might be tempting you in your pantry - if it's not in the house, you can't eat it.)
  19. Diana_in_Philly

    Having the Sleeve with bad knees

    I'll try to keep this short, but here's my story. Was told, easily more than 10 years ago, needed both knees replaced. I'm bone on bone in both knees. I did the sleeve for the same reason. You don't put any stats, but here are mine - Summer 2015 - Over 300 pounds. April 2016 - 272 and start process. Surgery August 2016. Currently about 152 (depends on day and time.) I'm 57 years old, mother of two (ages 16 and 19) and 5'3". Before my surgery, I joined our local YMCA so I could do water walking and other stuff in the pool - it was the only thing that didn't hurt me. I was so bad that when I did college tours with my daughter in 2016 prior to surgery, I'd make it half way through - find somewhere to crash and have to take a Vicodin to make it back to the hotel. Then I'd need another to sleep through the night. As the weight came off, I felt better. Do I still need to have my knees replaced? Yep. Am I going to do it right now? Nope. I'm a little busy. In the last 2 years, I've taken up fencing (as in en garde). I am currently ranked 24th among women ages 50-59 in the US and 33rd among women over 40 in my weapon (foil). Do I still get Synvisc injections and cortisone injections - yep. Do I use Vicodin to control pain - only after competing - which will generally mean fencing anywhere from 8-10 bouts over a 3-4 hour period (during which I will burn about 1400 calories). I'm not planning on having the knees done until I get good enough to qualify for a Veteran (that's what we call fencers over 40) World Cup Team and fence for my country. Then I'll have my knees done because I'll have to take most of a year off the fencing season. Did surgery help? Yep. I'm down about 150 pounds. My best advice to you is before you have your surgery find a gym and meet with a trainer. Talk to them about your goals and have them set up a plan for you for after surgery. It was the best thing I did - it made me accountable to someone - even if it's water walking or walking on a treadmill or riding a recumbent bike. I started on the recumbent bike and would ride (albeit slowly) through episodes of shows I wanted to watch on Netflix. It worked. I now work out 7 days a week - 3x week I do a crossfit type class (I deadlift 235 and back squat the same), fencing 2 days a week (for about a total of 6 hours), Pilates and work with a personal trainer. All that money I used to spend on junk food I now spend at the gym. Best of luck.
  20. BMI is so screwed up. I'm down about 150 pounds. I weight 152. (I started over 300). I have not had plastics and would probably lose about 15 from that. However, according to the BMI chart, I'm overweight - I wouldn't be "healthy" (and at the high edge of it) until I hit 140. I know what I look like at 140 and I look stupid. (I'm very busty.) That being said - I can deadlift 250 pounds, back squat 235 pounds. I'm ranked no. 24 nationally among women aged 50-59 fencing foil and no. 33 nationally among women over 40 fencing foil. I wear small or medium tops and size 6 pants. I'm a lot of solid muscle and most folks think I weigh 125. BMI does not take into account mass from muscle and that muscle weighs more than fat. I think I look damn fine right where I am.
  21. Diana_in_Philly

    To tell or not to tell?

    My husband, my two daughters (teen agers) and my best friend. That was it. Didn't tell my work, my mother or my sister. Told work I needed to have surgery and would be out for a few days. When my diet changed after surgery, I told people it was doctor's orders. When people have asked how I have lost 150 pounds I say I eat 120 grams of protein a day. I do not eat anything with added sugar. I do not eat white flour or regularly eat bread. I limit my carbs to about 100 g per day on days when I work out otherwise, 70 grams. I drink almost a gallon of water and work out for a minimum of 1 hour a day. All of that is true. It is how I have kept 150 pounds off for 2 years now. It is your body and your choice. If you were having a GYN procedure, would you tell people?
  22. Diana_in_Philly


    Age is a number. I had my surgery in August 2016 at age 55. I'm 57 now. I've lost about 150 pounds. I am a nationally ranked fencer in my age group (24th among women 50-59 and 33rd for all women over 40), can deadlift 235 pounds and back squat 225. What's old? I have more energy than either my 19 or 16 year old daughters. I'm in better shape. I regularly get checked out by people at the gym (especially from behind) who are then a bit surprised when I turn around and they realize I'm not 30. (Although I look pretty good for my age.) Age is a number. Don't let it define you. the only regret I have is waiting until I was 55 to do this.
  23. Diana_in_Philly

    Insurance Inquiries

    Every insurance policy is different. From what you are saying, your Cigna policy has an exclusion. Submitting paperwork will not do you any good - it is not covered. You either need to wait until you can change carriers to someone who does cover (check before enrolling) or go self pay. There probably are Cigna policies which cover bariatrics, but it appears yours does not. Having the doctor submit won't change that.
  24. Diana_in_Philly

    Working out

    So here is my average week: Monday - Fencing lesson and class (I fence foil competitively on a national level) 2.5-3 hours Tuesday - Cross fit/ Olympic Lifting class 1 hour Wednesday - Repeat Monday without the lesson Thursday - Repeat Tuesday Friday - 1 hour Reformer Pilates. An Hour of upper body and ab related lifting Saturday - 1 hour Cross Fit/Olympic lifting class Sunday - Tournament Day (fence 3+ hours) or agility and upper body and plyo at the gym. Some weeks I have regular doubles - so today I did my Olympic Lifting Class and then did a fencing lesson. Tomorrow I'll have a tournament. I'm probably in the gym/working out 15-20 hours a week. I work full time, I have two kids (one in college, one in hs) and a husband. If I don't work out, I get nasty fast.
  25. Diana_in_Philly

    2 Years Post OP and struggling

    In order- there is no easy way to get rid of the carb sugar cravings (in my opinion) other than going cold turkey and just doing it. Suck it up. Don't eat anything more than 10g carb per serving and go back to logging your food. Everytime you want something sweet, drink water or crystal light. Make sure you are getting at least 100 ounces of water a day. Personal trainer - yes. Accountability. If you have paid for it and have someone tailoring a plan for your needs, that is the best thing. Group accountability is great too - some kind of class where people will make you accountable if you don't show up. (I do a cross fit type class - if one of the 7 of us is out - we know and often worry that they are sick, etc. If they just miss, we bust their butt about it.) Get back in the gym. Now. Abs are made in the kitchen but perfected in the gym. You want those clothes to fit better, start doing some resistance training. Get some cardio in. You got this.

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