Saturday, February 13, 2010

Ten Months, and the Honeymoon's Over.

It's February 13, 2010, my ten-month "surgiversary."

On my nine-month surgiversary, I weighed 191.9. This morning, I weighed 190.0. So I've lost about 2 pounds in a whole month. Apparently my RNY "honeymoon," the period of rapid weight loss that usually lasts for about a year, is totally to' up and ovah.

I consider 2 pounds a plateau, or what we in the WLS community refer to as a "stall." However, labeling this simply as a "stall" obscures some of the craziness that's been going on with my weight over the past month.

My weight has been as low as 186.4, on January 23. Over the next 2 weeks or so, my weight crept back up to 194, then back down again. Over the past week, I've been weighing in the high 180s, usually between 187 and 188. For some reason, this morning I went back up into the 190s decade. ::Sigh.:: My weight has wildly fluctuated and seems to be completely out of my control.

I'm not sure what, if anything, I'm doing to cause this. About a week ago, I decided to give more calories a try. My daily calorie goal, at least for the next week or so, is 1,000. That's 100-200 more than I'd been eating before, and I've been reaching it by adding a morning protein shake. I've been exercising quite a lot, mixing cardio, yoga, Pilates, and the occasional traditional resistance workout. The only day I missed this week was Sunday, and that's because I was traveling. I need to buy the body fat analyzer, I guess. I'd be more comfortable with my body weight staying the same if I knew my body fat % was improving. In any event, the whole "calories in/calories out" line is not true for me whatsoever. I may try the 3-day liquid diet sometime soon.

If this stall can be tied to my nutrition intake, the only thing I can think of is sugarless gum, which I do not log. My thought with the gum is that since chewing gum burns calories, I don't worry about counting the minimal calories in it. The problem is that I burn fewer calories chewing the gum than I take in because I chew so much. I can go through 2-3 packs in a workday; it's almost become a replacement for compulsive eating, a transfer addiction. However, sugarless gum is generally a good weight loss habit because it keeps me from eating other things. (In fact, it's often featured on The Biggest Loser as a nifty weight loss tool.) I've gone some workdays without it, and too often I've eaten nuts or something otherwise off my daily plan when I could have just chewed the gum. I may try to give it up again, or at least cut back. It's an expensive habit, anyway.

Perhaps the stall is a result of being obese almost my whole life. Susan Maria Leach recently posted about this on her message board. She said that people who grew up normal-sized but became morbidly obese as adults "tend to drop down in weight like a rock to often below goal, and quite a few of these folks have to hang in and actually slow weight loss. . . . Some even have trouble keeping enough weight on." Conversely, people like me "are the ones who really have to fight for goal weight and have a greater tendency to top out heavy. IF people are going to gain most or all of the weight back, they are usually from this group. . . . [S]ince this group never had a set point for the body to use as a reference, it's tougher for the body to get there and stick it." Susan Maria emphasized that these are just trends she's recognized over the years; they aren't the Gospel of Gastric Bypass or anything.

Nonetheless, she might have pinpointed what's going on with me. I was chunky by the age of 5. I was wearing size 22/24 when I was 13. When I graduated high school, I was rejected health insurance because I was 330. My lowest adult weight was 210, and then I was squeezing into 18s. Now I'm 190 and wear size 14 on the bottom and usually a Medium top. My body is like, "Whaaaa? What's going on?!"

As I mentioned in a post earlier this week, it may simply be unrealistic to expect to become normal. It's sad, but I guess I have to play with the cards I was dealt. I'm going to keep fighting for my goal, but I may have to come to terms with the disappointing reality that some degree of fatness is my fate. I don't want to get so upset about the last 35 pounds that I stop being grateful for the first 150. If I can lose 2 pounds a month this year, I'll be 170 by the end of 2010. That's not so bad.

That's it. Ten months, and I'm bracing myself for life after the honeymoon. Or perhaps more accurately, I'm grieving its death.

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