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Surgeon TestimonialJeffrey Friedman M.D. I originally started my journey towards weight loss surgery with a different local surgeon. I didn't get to meet the surgeon, but for my insurance I met monthly with the nutritionist / dietician. The first visit with him had me leaving embarassed and angry... with only a few paper handouts to show for the visit. His assumptions and comments were what I expected from the general public, not a weight loss professional. I decided it was a "standard 1st visit speech" so I went back again the 2nd month. I received another fistful of handouts and instructions to cut out "all those deep fried foods" - even though he never reviewed the carefully documented food log I had in hand (which did not list any fried foods). Again, the 5-10 minutes he spent with me left me feeling humiliated and unsure.
I decided I would rather go through life struggling with my weight on my own than to deal with the frustration and embarassment.
And then a friend suggested I visit Dr. Friedman. WOW. What a difference.
The instant I walked in the office door I was greeted with a pleasant waiting room and an even more pleasant lady at the desk, Betty. Dr. Friedman came to the waiting room to get me and I had a consultation with him before even meeting the nutritionist. He was very friendly and down to earth. I wasn't even sure I wanted to go through with surgery, so Dr. Friedman reviewed all of the potential complications, risks and benefits. He sketched out the surgery on a piece of paper and wrote down the various medications and vitamins he would be requiring of me. When I left HIS office, I felt confident in my new decision to have RNY Gastric Bypass, and confident in my decision to have Dr. Friedman as my surgeon.
Throughout the remaining months of my insurance required visits, every visit was pleasant and reassuring. There was no rushing through and no "handout only" consultations. Every time I met with the nutritionist she explained her expectations, why she had them and how I could meet them. The nurse was WONDERFUL about making sure my anxiety and claustrophobia was addressed and made known to the entire team who would be involved in my surgery.
The morning of my surgery I expected to be frantic... but I was very calm and confident that I was placing my life in the hands of a great surgeon who had genuine concern for me as an individual, a friendly and thorough OR team who would see to my needs (especially the anxiety and claustrophobia, if the need arose) and I had advocates in both my surgeon and his nurse.
I woke up from surgery with mild pain, but mostly wanted something to moisten my mouth. I had very little pain throughout my stay (Tuesday morning - Thursday afternoon) and it was always addressed with reasonable quickness by the nurses on the floor. The nurses and techs were caring and attentive. Even the housekeeping staff seemed like my own personal cheer squad as I took my walks in the middle of the night.
Dr. Friedman visited me each day and checked on how I was feeling. He never made me feel like my questions were dumb or insignifcant.
I am only a week post-op and I feel great! I had my first post op visit and everyone in the office was happy and proud for me. It was like celebrating with friends instead of the usual feeling you get in a doctor's office. There is a 5yr aftercare program, so I feel good knowing I have resources available to me for the "long haul."
I adore Dr. Friedman and his staff.... and I feel like they are sincerely interested in playing a part in my success so that I can really LIVE life
- Animal Rescue - I foster horses that are seized by the county
- Cats - 4 of them inside - Diva , Leroy, Boots and Lil
- Dogs - I have a 110lb yellow Lab named Rio. He means more than this line lets me write.
- Horses - 2 horses - 29yr old Skye and 2yr old Buddy
- Gardening - LOVE my garden! Even at my highest weight I was out there in the Florida sun
Rough Day on May 31, 2012 8:24 pm
Today is just a down day. Nothing happened - the day itself has been perfectly fine! I had to wake up early and take Riley and Frank to the vet. I had them checked over, vaccinated and microchipped. Riley had heartworms, but he is young enough and healthy enough the vet said just keep him on the medicine (the treatment is short supply anyway). They both got a clean bill of health and the vet is letting me make payments.
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I left there and went to buy dog food and rabbit food. I also got Frank a red collar and leash. They didn't have a color I liked in Riley's size, so he just keeps Rio's old collar for now.
Dropped them off at home, and went to my parent's house. They had gone for bloodwork, etc so they weren't home. I fixed some lunch then headed home to change and get to spin class early enough to reserve "my" bike. I had plenty of time and got my bike by the fan. Class was TOUGH, but it always is, and I finished it - sweaty and breathless with trashed legs, but I finished it.
After spin I showered and headed to work. It was crazy busy and there is some stress, but nothing that can't be fixed easily enough.
I worked up my nerve and filled out the membership application and a check for the fee to join TriGulfCoast - a local triathlon training group. They start on Sunday June 10 and meet every Sunday at 0630 to train. Their schedule is on their site http://trigulfcoast.org/mere-mortals/http://trigulfcoast.org/mere-mortals/ . It looks tough!
For my meal break I went home to help my mom. Evidently my 78yr old dad has really hurt his back / hip. He had problems with it a couple of years ago, but it is giving him problems again. He is stubborn and hardheaded, but it is bad enough he is using a cane, took a pain pill and is calling the doctor. Worrisome. Especially since he does SO much of my mom's care.
I left my stamped, addressed envelope for my dad to mail to the tri training group - so I won't chicken out :) I told my mom that is why I was leaving it there, and she said she didn't see any reason for me to doubt, that I can do anything I want to, I've already proven it (my mom is NOT an encourager / nurturer, so that meant a lot)
Tonight is an early work night... no staying until midnight (hopefully, not looking good at the moment - employee stuck on a phone call). But maybe I can get some rest.
This all sounds good doesn't it? Lots of things going my way!
But I am having so many doubts about myself. I regretted emailing the Tri group for information, because I look "stupid" (logically - I don't look stupid, I look curious and interested); I am terrified of showing up at the training and being rejected or failing (logically - I am not 353lbs anymore, I won't stand out in the crowd THAT much; and I work hard and know I can meet the minimum requirements physically; also, that is why they exist - to train couch tri-wannabes to become the real deal). I am afraid of my social awkwardness - I have so much trouble meeting new people and I am always afraid of not being able to carry my part of an intelligent conversation (logically - people always say their family and friends "love" me when they meet me; people at work call me their "favorite care bear"; my friends are fiercely protective of me; even my counselor says I am fun to be around and he considers me a friend).
And then I came back to a reply from the Tri Training group
Hi Lori, and Welcome to Tri Gulf Coast!
I'm looking forward to meeting you on the 10th at the first Mere Mortals session! First of all, just the fact that you're working out with a personal trainer on a regular basis tells me that you have no reason to feel intimidated. The cardio work you're doing with her will be a big help on your weekend workouts with the Mortals.
Over time, we will slowly build up to our final workout, which will be a practice session on the same course as the SRI Tri. That includes a 600 yard swim, 18 mile bike, and a 3.1 mile run. As you read those, which sounds the most challenging?
For most, it's the swim, but that depends on your background. Talk with your trainer about each event, and be honest with her about how prepared you feel for each one. She may have suggestions for how to alter your workouts to help you in the areas you need it most. I'll be happy to offer advice as well.
One of the biggest benefits of Mere Mortals is that you'll also get a lot of advice and feedback from your fellow Mortals. The group is made up of people with widely varied backgrounds, from the many who are preparing for thier first sprint race, to people who've completed multiple Iron-distance races. There are also USAT certified race directors and triathlon coaches in our group. I even expect last year's state time trial cyclist champion and a former Olympic medalist swimmer to attend some of our sessions. All of these experienced people come to Mere Mortals because they are inspired by the energy that new triathletes like you bring to the sport.
So don't be intimidated! Come out and meet some great people and have fun with your training!
Sounds super nice, huh? SO maybe I will be ok. Maybe this is my change to stretch more than physical muscles, this will also stretch my emotional and trust muscles? I am excited again. Still scared. Will probably be scared sick the night before, but I am going to do it. Just to prove to ME that I can.... because I think I am the only one who doubts.
Vitamins in except iron... will have to stay up later for that; water in, need more since I work with the trainer super early in the morning
B - mint cookie made with water
L - tilapia w/ cheese and onion, steamed cabbage, stewed squash
S - 2tbs PB on ww foldit
cottage cheese and SF jello w/ fruit
- PB&J quest
D - scrambled egg w/ shrimp and LC cheese, slice of tomato
Calories - 1241
Carbs - 80
Fat - 52
Protein - 123
Sugar - 22
Fiber - 32
Tired and Happy on May 30, 2012 9:06 pm
Another tiring but good day. I was up late last night with a beeping smoke detector (low battery) and a 110lb dog that was freaked out by said beeping. Poor Rio had a meltdown everytime I would try to get to the detector (have to stand on my bed). I guess he was protecting me from getting near that horrible sound lol.
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I really didn't want to get up this morning, but I dressed and headed on down to my parent's house to help my mom. I planned to go straight on out to the pool after helping her to her chair, but my dad needed to run some errands so I stayed around with my mom until he got back. Then she needed some extra moving around so I was even later getting out to the pool. Pretty proud of myself though - instead of wimping out and going home for a sorely needed nap, I did water treading for a 6min warm up, then swam 213yds (8 laps) freestyle and 213yd backstroke. I managed pretty well without stopping, until I got choked and couldn't stop coughing. need a plan for if that happens out in the Gulf of Mexico.
After swimming I dried off and went in to have a late lunch, then showered and headed to work. Got some bad news about one of my employees, so a little stressed about that and while I was already eating (quest) when I got the call, I noticed kind of an "urgency" to my eating after the call. Think about that one.
Have an appointment at 9am to take the new dogs to the vet, will probably take an hour (I like to talk to my vet). Then I'll head home and try to get a quick nap before time to go reserve my bike for spin class. The class starts at 1215 but if you aren't on a bike by 12 you don't get a bike. SO I get there early to get "my" bike by the fan :)
After spin - shower, work , staff meeting and a plain old 8 1/2 hour shift!
Friday - trainer at 830 (yikes) , counseling at 11. Might go try to get some new running shoes and a bike helmet. Then I am getting a pedicure!!! ME... a Pedicure!
Saturday morning my older nephew wants to go ride horses at the state forest. It is so hot we will have to leave at 545-6am to make the hour drive in time to ride before it is too miserable for the horses. Then hustle home, change clothes and take all 4 dogs to the vet for their charity dog was (benefiting a wounded warriors type charity), then home for my own shower. Friend is coming over at 3 to put on makeup for me and then at 5 (or 6?) I have studio photos with Rio. I am STOKED because I have 2 different pair of pants that fit and several shirts. My friend is going to help me pick a couple. YAY!!
After the photos Saturday I am done. I'm declaring Sunday an unoffical rest day even though I won't have any "formal" exercise on Saturday. I'll start back biking and swimming on Monday, hopefully Tuesday or so the trainer will have a plan on how to adapt the tri training program to what we do, and she can help me schedule better.
Multivitamins in, I think just 2 calcium. Just had cottage cheese so I don't know if I will be up late enough to get iron. about 70oz of water - not enough
B - mint cookie / skim milk
L - tilapia w/ co-jack cheese and onion, steamed squash and cabbage
S - Quest
D - tuna fish w/ real mayo on a foldit, squash and steamed cabbage
S - SF ice cream
- cottage cheese and SF jello w/ fruit
Calories - 1249
Carbs - 95
Fat - 44
Protein - 125
Sugar - 26
Fiber - 33
Sprinting a mile.... kind of on May 29, 2012 8:54 pm
So today I did indeed workout with the trainer...and she wore me out! She did warn me at the beginning that when I left she wanted me "totally gassed, out of breath, exhausted".
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3 min warm up on elliptical
6 rounds, 8 reps each
12" box jumps ( a few times I did 2 back to back!!), low back machine w/ 15lb rows 2 rounds, then 20lb; 40lb dumbbell swing, last 3 rounds 45lbs; 20lb dumb bell chest press
THEN - 45 sec sprints, 15sec recovery on treadmill - 10x ; started at 6.0 and worked up to 7.0!! She had me start at 6.0 for 2 rounds, then 6.3, 6.5, 6.8 and 7.0 each for 2 rounds!! The last 2 rounds she gave me a 30sec break. I actually didn't do too bad, if I say so myself! I went .99 miles in 10 mins , but I don't know that the time is correct since we were pausing and such (but that pauses the time too, so maybe).
Anyway... good stuff.
I slept ok last night, after rescuing my Asics running shoes from Frank the dachshund dog (chewed the corner of the rim off, jerk). I needed some new ones anyway before photos Saturday and my 5k next week... but really?
I woke up shortly before my alarm and got up to go help my mom. I remembered too late they were gone shopping and I could have stayed in bed! fed my chickens and went to my parent's house to lay on the couch and wait for them. I felt So drained and awful. When they got home I helped unload groceries and get my mom settled, then I headed home to try to rest. I dozed about 20 minutes, then up to go make a deposit in my account and workout with the trainer.
The website trinewbies.com has a couple of Tri training programs free to print, so I printed one and took it to the trainer. She is going to look over the program and start tailoring some of my workouts to go along with it. I am still going to do some on my own. I just have to be careful of the fatigue in my legs. I figure if nothing else I can swim lots, since that is my weakest area at this point.
Tomorrow my mom has bloodwork, so I need to find out if I need to get up early or if I can sleep late. I also need to swim 200yds tomorrow. I'll probably make Nik's Chicken Pot Pie if I have everything, it is super easy and I can let my dad do the oven work while I go take a nap before work - 9hr shift
Thursday will be busy - I'll get up and help my mom, then take Frank and Riley to the vet for shots and microchips. By they time I drop them off and change clothes it will probably be time to head to spin class (so I can make sure I get MY bike :) ). Spin class straight to work, staff meeting, - maybe just another 9hr shift!
Friday - workout with the trainer at 830, counseling at 11; hopefully go to Academy to buy a bike helmet and lock so I can start working on riding to work (only 4 miles but a killer hill on the way!).
Saturday - horseback riding at 530am with my nephew, dogs to vet for baths (charity dog wash), then photos that evening.
All vitamins in.... over 64oz in... need more though;
B - Foldit w/ 1Tbs Pbutter
S - cheezit homemade
L - immediately post workout - Quest
S - Quest
D - scrambled egg w/ shrimp, LC cheese, onion, P28 toast w/ move over butter
S - cottage cheese and jello w/ fruit
- probably some turkey pepperoni and LC cheese before the night is done
Calories - 1197
Carbs - 63
Fat - 52
Protein - 110
Sugar - 24
Fiber - 49
Carbs - 22%
Fat - 39%
Protein - 39%
15 Minute Mile on May 28, 2012 7:00 pm
Not impressive - I know. It isn't even as "fast" as my average pace at 5ks (14:02 one time, 13:34 another). But this was different. It was training for a Triathlon.
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I slept pretty well last night and woke up at 6am (vs at 9 with my alarm!). I decided to go ahead and get up to workout again. I had a protein w/ water before going out. Today's task on the Tri training program was a 15 minute "run". Their run plan is 5 minutes brisk walking, then stretch, then jog 1 min walk 1 2x. Then you run 1 min walk 1 min until you hit the 15 minute mark. I actually went to 16 to make up for the stretches. And I went a mile. It felt GOOD even though the humidity was suffocating. I think working out early in the morning when it isn't AS hot but still heavy humidity will benefit me for the summer 5k races.
When I got home from the run I changed into my bathing suit / shorts, grabbed a t-shirt and my towel then headed down to my parent's house. It was still way too early to go in to help my mom, so I swam 213yds freestyle, then another 80ft back stroke mixed with breast stroke. I spent 6 minutes treading water.
Awesome! I didn't have to stop, but I did start pausing and struggling on the freestyle. Guess I will still try my hand with the Mere Mortals training group.
After the pool I fed my horses and chickens, took a shower and dressed in my comfy sweats and T. Then I went down to help my mom. I had about 1/4c of cottage cheese with a big strawberry and then we got her in her wheelchair. I stuck around for about 30-45 minutes so she could do some cooking and walk around some, then we put her in her recliner for the day. While she was "walking" I fixed my lunch for work as well as a snack for work. As soon as she was settled, I went home, turned down the AC and went back to sleep. I slept great. Contentment makes a soft pillow.
I woke up, dressed for work and headed back to my parent's house. My dad had made BBQ ribs and left me a couple without sauce. So I ate ribs and veggies - YUM. Then it was time for work - so I put ice bottles in with the rabbits (97*) and headed to work. It has been super busy, I've been pretty tired, but still content.
My finances are tight (actually, they are an abyss of hopelessness) so I was going to cancel my session with the trainer tomorrow. The normal training program that I sign up for is off this week so I wanted to do just a separate session. I emailed to see if I can pay on Friday, and if I can I'll do an hour instead of the original 30min I asked about. If I can't, then I will do my Tri training 5 mile bike on a stationary bike and then do core / back.
On the lines of finances, I am trying to figure out how to register for the Tri training group (*40), get a bike helmet, a swim lap counter and a swim cap this weekend on a short check. :)
I am having photos done on Saturday (these are already paid for!). Back in November I had photos done with my dog, Rio. This is a continuation of that package and will be primarily studio photos. I am actually excited! Then next Wednesday will be photos of Riley and Frank (if they will behave) and hopefully a couple of all 4 dogs - I think that would be awesome!
Today I have eaten quite a bit, but I feel ok about my choices. The worst thing were the ribs, and I don't eat them often at all. Oh and the Syntha 6 protein I used is high calorie as well - but I have 3 huge jugs of it (chocolate, strawberry, cookies n' cream), so I may have to do lots of watery shakes to get rid of them without adding milk calories.
So ... 2 1/2 hours left at work tonight, then home to help my mom, tend my rabbits, gather chicken eggs, feed the dogs, shower and bed.
Tomorrow - plan to sleep until 920, help my mom, feed the animals, maybe fix lunch. Then I'll be at the gym by 1 to either work with the trainer or do 5 miles on the stationary with some core /back work. Then work 10hrs.
Wednesday - bike 5 miles (if I don't on Tuesday) and swim 200yds; maybe cook for my parents? work 10hrs
Thursday - Riley and Frank to vet for shots / microchips; Spin; work 11hrs
Friday - rest, counseling, maybe go buy bike helmet / swim cap / lap counter/ Tri group membership? Oh and pay the trainer for next session in my program, and maybe for a Tuesday workout if I have one
Saturday - my nephew wants to try to go horseback riding, so we'll leave around 0545, ride a couple of hours, home, then take the dogs to get baths, then my friend helps me with make up before I go for the photos. WOOT! Doubt I'll get any formal exercise in... so I'll get back on track Sunday.
Vitamins in except bedtime iron; still working on water but I think I already have 64oz;
B - pre workout - Syntha 6 Chocolate Cake Batter protein w/ water
- post - 1/4c cottage cheese with BIG strawberry
L - 3 small pork ribs, 1/4c steamed squash, 1/4 - 1/2c green beans
S - 1/2c cottage cheese and 1/4c SF jello w/ fruit
- Quest chocolate brownie
D - shrimp "po'boy" on flatout w/ 1Tbs tartar sauce, 2 small tomato slices; 3 peppers w/ 1 laughing cow cheese
S - turkey pepperoni w/ LC cheese
Calories - 1348
Carbs - 90
Fat - 59
Protein - 134
Sugar - 28
Fiber - 39
Carbs - 27%
Fat - 36%
Protein - 37%
What a Day! :) on May 27, 2012 8:42 pm
Today has been a good day!!! I slept ok last night, not great. Woke up early so I decided to go ahead and get up. I dressed in my bike shorts, sweat pants, DriFit shirt and went to my folk's house. After I helped get my mom in her wheelchair for church, my dad went out and worked on my bike for me some (the handlebars keep rotating so the brakes are on top!). They left for church and I left for a ride.
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I rode 5 miles! It took me about 30 minutes, but I had some drama along the way - my hat flew off, there were more hills than I expected (even though they were small) , my chain came off a couple of times and about the last 1/2 mile my handlebars loosened again and were wobbling. But I made it 5 miles!
Then I put Rio on his leash, let him get some water and we walked an easy mile. I let him chase squirrels a couple of times. It took us about 20 minutes.
Once I was home, I turned the AC way down and let Rio rest on the vent while I changed into my swimsuit and shorts. Then it was to my parent's house for a swim. I let Rio get in with me since my folks weren't home :) .
After just a minute or 2 of him swimming, I put him out and started laps. I swam about 213yds (half freestyle, half back stroke) and then I tread water for about 6mins. I felt great!!
By the time I put on a load of laundry it was time for my parent's to come home, so instead of going home to shower and change I just waited for them so I could help my mom. Then I went home, showered, put on some dry sweats / T and went to take a nap. I dozed off and on but didn't get a very sound sleep - I'll hope for that tonight!
Work was fine.... kind of a slow day but I'll take it! I am tired and my back is kind of achy... don't know if it is from exercise or monthly. Blah.
Tomorrow's plan - maybe swim, bike , walk again; work for the Memorial Day holiday
Tuesday - was supposed to workout with the trainer, but have to cancel due to $ (this was an extra workout since the usual is canceled for the week); so I will have to go to the gym on my own
Wed - work and exercise on my own
Thursday - work and exercise on my own
Friday - PAYDAY!!!! - gym on my own, counseling
Vitamins all in except bed time iron; over 100oz water in;
B - mint cookie (.75 scoop) / water
L - foldit w/ .75Tbs Tartar sauce, 6 shrimp, 1Tbs salad cubes, 2 small tomato slices, 2 peppers w/ LC cheese
S - homemade cheezits (1 slice cheese)
- quest apple pie
D - 9 shrimp, 3 small peppers w/ LC cheese, 1/4c steamed squash, 1/4c green beans
S - 1/2 cottage cheese 1/4 cup SF jello w/ fruit
- Quest PB&J
Cals - 1180
Carbs - 82
Fat - 37
Protein - 120
Sugar - 33
Fiber - 52
Carbs - 29%
Fat - 28%
Protein - 43%