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hunger

This tag is associated with 8 posts

Bite Me

So, I took a little time to settle in to my new job/apartment/downtown O-Town life. And despite my best efforts to explore the coolness of Canada’s most conservative city, I’m still coming up wanting. Which is fairly frustrating since I’m pretty much wanting most of the time with this band in my belly!bite me embroidery

My biggest challenge at work is finding time to top up my tummy between the endless and sometimes unnecessary meetings I’m forced to focus on before the kick-off of my ‘real responsibilities’. It’s certainly been a struggle holding back the hunger. You see, despite dropping nearly 30lbs and at least a dress size, I still don’t want to be the fat girl stuffing her face in a meeting. But I’m booked up most of my mornings and to keep myself focused fuel is a must!

I’ve done my best to (sometimes not-so-subtly) announce my augmentation but I can’t go ’round telling the entire team of more than 1200 peeps that I’ve resorted to surgery to drop a few dress sizes. As such, I’m starving most of the time to the point that I’ve actually felt faint on more than one occasion.

So, what I’d like to focus on here is my top five favourite snacks for the busy bandster:

  1. Almonds are your friend. Well, as long as you don’t have a death-inducing nut allergy they are. Buy a big bag of plain roasted almonds and those snazzy 100 cal size Ziploc bags and make up a bag for each day of the week. Make sure you don’t fill the bag – almonds are a very healthy but high-cal treat. Use about 8-10 almonds per bag and keep them in your pocket.
  2. Peel and slice small apples and put them in one of the Ziploc bags with a squeeze of lemon and cinnamon. Add some Splenda if you’ve got a sweet tooth.
  3. Keep some Kashi ‘chewy’ granola bars in your bag for munching in the elevator. Give yourself a few minutes to chew these bad boys though cause they’re quite stiff on the ol’ chompers and most certainly a pain to push through the tummy if not chewed properly. My personal fave is the Dark Chocolate Cherry. (Relax! It’s much better for you than it sounds!)
  4. Prepacked cheese sticks are handy too. Armstrong makes a mean herbed one that I think I might love. Team them with some low fat Triscuits or some of those great whole grain and seed bread crisps from the good people at Lesley Stowe’s. Check out their website for some ‘crispy combinations’.
  5. Yogurt is high in protein and terrific for the tummy too. Try to stay away from the low fat and premixed fruit flavours though cause they’re often high in calories and sweeteners. Go for Greek yogurt if you can find it and add your own fresh peeled fruit or field berries.

What about you? What are your helpful hints for home-made snacks?

Movin’ On Up

Things probably look a little different ‘round these parts. Up until this morning, I’d been using iWeb to build my blog. Although iWeb produces pretty sites, Blogger provides some additional functionality I simply don’t have the experience to implement myself with iWeb. So, I decided to up-sticks and moved on over here.

Moving truck

I’ve stuck some nifty gadgets in the left-hand navigation which means I can spread the word about my Slimband journey a little bit further afield without much effort. And the good people over at Google are going to help me track my progress. I’m pleased as punch.

Sadly, I can’t export any of the comments from the previous version of the blog. So, make sure you click the ‘follow’ in Followers section and feel free to comment anytime and forward my posts to friends and family. I really appreciate all the support!

In other news, I went to my first official family dinner since my surgery.

At first I wasn’t even gonna go. I just didn’t want to sit there and watch everyone eat all of the food I wasn’t allowed to have. But my dearest Gam prepared something even I could enjoy: some Salisbury Steak with mash(ed everything).

I’m not supposed to eat the beef but I took half a pattie, mashed it up with the potatoes, turnip and carrot and armed with my newfound food confidence I sat down and took a full hour to eat it. It was delish! I kept the whole meal around 2/3 cup of food and had no trouble at all.

That being said, it’s back to mushies tomorrow for another three days. Don’t want to do any damage I’ll have to pay for later. I’m pretty hungry now though…Perhaps it’s all this moving around…

Hungry Like The Wolf

The past couple of weeks have certainly been strange. I’ve eaten less in the last two weeks than I would have eaten in a weekend in the past. With the exception of Temper Tantrum Tuesday, I haven’t really felt particularly hungry. Until today. At around 3pm, a little over three hours after my last mushy meal, I was stricken with the most intolerable hunger I may have ever felt.

All at once I had terrible hunger pains, I was lightheaded, felt panicky, got a headache and was super thirsty. It was like nothing I’ve ever felt before. It’s what I imagine happens when one’s blood sugar drops (AKA hypoglycemia). Since I’ve been getting very minimal levels of both sugar and protein, it seems a likely diagnosis. But, a doctor I am not.

Chili ingredients

Thankfully I had some Peach Medley in my purse so I scoffed it down as quickly/slowly as was physically possible (ie in about 15 mins). I felt okay for another 30 minutes when the hunger returned like it never left in the first place. I managed to find the deli counter in hopes of snapping up some soup but the only choice that even remotely resembled something I’m allowed to eat was chilli. I was certainly concerned.

I’m supposed to be strictly on mushies but since I was starving and didn’t happen to have any food left in my bag, I listened to what I felt my body was telling me and started eating the chilli as slowly as possible. I followed the bandsters’ mantra of taking small bites, very slowly and remembered to chew, chew, chew and chew again. I managed to eat about 1/4-1/3 of a cup and felt MUCH better within a few minutes.

I’ve been hungry before, but never quite like this. It was such an overwhelming feeling. My entire body was swooning, I needed something and I HAD to have it. Not like a craving where it was something I’m not supposed to have, but like my body telling me I was missing something and I had to get ASAP.

On the plus side, this prompted me to finally pick up my multivitamin. I’ve been meaning to do it since I moved on to full liquids. Since I’ve still got to crush any medications, I went out in search of a chewable. I ended up settling on Quest‘s Her Daily One Chewable Multivitamin on Slimband‘s unofficial recommendation. I picked them up for $14.99 CAD at my local Superstore. I looked for them online but couldn’t find them anywhere so was pleasantly surprised to see them in the specialty food section.

SweeTarts

They taste okay. A bit earthy both in taste and texture. I was told they tasted like SweeTarts but that was a bit misleading. I mean, they’re no Flintstones Vitamins and I didn’t spit them out. But they weren’t entirely easy to swallow.

Gimme More

I’m mad. I mean, grinding my teeth, scream at the top of my lungs, throwing myself down and pounding my fists on the floor mad. I’m mad because I let myself get to the point where the only way I can drop the extra person I’ve been carrying around my whole life is to get a band wrapped around my stomach. I mean, seriously! WTF! Who effing does that, right?!

I’m sure it seems drastic to some…like the kind of thing an addict would do. Well, I’ve never felt more like an addict than I do today. Nothing could have prepared me for the impact of realizing the extent of my disordered eating. I literally can’t stop thinking about food. I’m fidgety, I’m clenching my teeth, I’m cold, I’m irritable and I want to scream and cry about everything. I feel pathetic.

Everywhere I look there’s a food ad, or a drive-thru or a major supermarket, or a cupboard full of goodies. It’s unbearable. And I literally CAN’T eat any of it. I’m on a clear liquid diet and I can BARELY get that down. I’m eating what I’m supposed to and I’m full and I’m nourished. So I really shouldn’t want to eat. But I do. More than I’ve ever wanted to eat in my life.

I guess most of all I feel defeated. Like the war that’s been waging in my body has finally ended and I’ve lost. Miserably. And the casualty has been any joy I ever found in food because I’ll probably never feel that same joy again.

Yes, I’ll be able to eat real food again (in about a month apparently) but it’s always going to be a struggle. I’m always going to have to kinda force it down and hope I’ve chewed it properly because if I haven’t, I’ll barf. Oh, and I must never eat more than a cup at a time because if I do, I’ll barf. And I’d better stay away from white bread, pasta and rice because if I don’t, I’ll barf. To top if off I’ve got to make sure it’s correctly proportioned or I won’t get all the nutrients I need. Because if I don’t, then my hair might fall out!!!

But the real kicker in all this is that the Slimband food plan is nothing more than a smaller-portioned version of The Bodydoctor food plan or The Low GI diet. I could and have done both without spending $16,000 on a cable tie!

Hmph. Well, I’m frustrated and I’m exhausted. I guess that’s the mental side of the journey taken care of then.

Sticky Situation or How Mary Kay Night Cream Saved My Tummy

Monday’s surgery recovery went quite well. Only woke up once through Sunday night from the dreaded gas pain but decided against the midnight demerol and awoke in the morning feeling quite good. I only had a few pains to the left of my rectus abdominus so it wasn’t much of strain getting out of bed. In fact, I could actually do my morning squirm before I rolled myself out of the sack (you know the one I mean, where you twist and stretch your ENTIRE body in a most inhumane way and make involuntary moaning noises in the process?). It felt awesome!

Stomach muscles

That being said, I gotta say, it’s difficult to fully appreciate the impact of wounded abdominal muscles until it happens to you. Now that I’ve spent the last 3 days wandering around my house like a hunchback with my torpedoes at the ready, I now know the full extent of the power of core stability. I shall be investing a great deal of time on this area as soon as humanly possible to ensure I never feel this way again.

I’ve been suffering some major irritation from my bandages over the past couple of days.

Feels like those mother-effers are stuck on with Super Glue®! Since yesterday was Day 3, I was looking forward to taking them off. I had no idea what a chore it would be!

I started to peel the tape away from my very thin flesh and realized that if I’d kept going I was going to need skin grafts which would neither speed up nor aid in my recovery. I did a Google search to seek out some assistance in removing the surgical tape only to stumble across this article from eHow.com. Talk about advice from the Department of the Bleeding Obvious!!!

But I’d once tried a similar method in the waxing incident of 2002 and decided to be a bit more inventive. I raided my mother’s medicine cabinet and settled on two tried and tested beauty products that really are second-to-none: Mary Kay Extra Emollient Night Cream and Q-Tips®. It took me 30 painstaking minutes of delicate prepping to get the bandages off with no additional removal bruising at all. I highly recommend these products for any bandage removal project.

One note, I was pretty weak for most of the day and getting pretty tired of the clear liquids. Bordering on gagging just from the pure monotony of it all. And the smell of the stocks is really starting to get to me. Had a few mentally hungry moments but no real physical ones. Looking forward to full liquids on Thursday!

I’m Off To See The Wizard!

Well, today’s the day. I’m leaving in approximately 10 minutes for the 4.5 hour drive to TO. I’m really a bit overwhelmed with it all and am struggling to feel anything. I’ve got a twirling feeling in the pit of my stomach but I’m not entirely sure if that’s my concern of starvation due to my prohibition from food or drink (not even water) for the entire day. I’m certainly hungry but it’s the no drinking that really concerns me…well, not really. It’s not like I’ve got nothing for my body to live on! No food or drink allowed

The really shocking thing about this whole process so far is I’ve actually lost a whopping 7 lbs on the pre-op diet.

I feel a bit like a contestant on The Biggest Loser. It’s funny because most of the images I found whilst Googling “no food or drink” had images of burgers and fries in them. Not only am I not allowed to have those TODAY, I won’t be able to even consider eating them for about 3 months. Shock, horror!!

I guess what surprises me most about the image is that burgers and fries are such a part of North American culture that a strike through them  both is the clearest way to tell our people not to eat something. It’s like they’re the most recognizable food in our culture. Things that make you go hmm, eh?

Pre-op Day 6

Well, today was a lot easier than yesterday. No real cravings worthy of a rawhide chew toy. I have had a piece of two of Stride Uber Bubble™ and it’s helped to curve the cravings a few times. Sweet and chewy which is pretty much all I needed. What a relief! Big fan. BIG.Stride Uber Bubble

Managed to get through an entire day of TV without any snacking. Highly unusual for a woman of my stature so I’m quite pleased with myself. Getting slightly nervous at the thought of the pure liquids stage post-op but I guess if I can do this I can do that.

One things I’m getting used to is the dull ache in the pit of my stomach widely associated with hunger. As most skinnies know it’s not overly painful, simply an annoyance I’ve come to tolerate. That being said, let’s see what happens when I can’t eat from Midnight on Thursday. I’m sure I’ll be breaking out the rawhide then!

Pre-op Day 2-5

Been doing okay so far. Been following along as I should. Broke the diet on Saturday for a birthday party but didn’t really stray too far…unless you count the two cupcake tops and the copious amounts of alcohol I jammed into my system. At least I only ate the tops of the cupcakes right? Well,  I went straight back to the restriction the next day and have been following it to a tee since then. It’s definitely been a challenge.

I’m pretty much hungry ALL THE TIME. Today, was the hardest day so far. It honestly didn’t matter that I’d just eaten, I’ve been absolutely ravenous. I mean, hunger pains worthy of chewing off my own arm. I’ve also been pretty shaky and I can’t seem to concentrate so I’m pretty sure it’s the withdrawals I was expecting from all the fat, sugar and carbs I’ve been gorging on for the last six months. I remember it from when I did the Body Doctor program last year (I even had to take a day off work then).

But I’m sticking to it. It’s my health we’re talking about here so I gotta make sure I do what I’m supposed to do.

I’m even getting adventurous with the barrage of bland that I’m entitled to indulge in. I cooked a chicken breast in some chilli flakes, garlic and ginger to top off my spinach salad and it’s actually quite good.

That being said, the diet is pretty strict: pretty much greens with some kind of protein with a splash of balsamic vinaigrette. BUT I’m allowed protein shakes as snacks if I get too hungry. As such, I’ve been hunting around town for a protein shake I can actually stomach and I gotta say there’s a HUGE shortage of tasty protein drinks in Canada. I’ve search all over the net but can only find American brands that come recommended for taste. The two I’m most interested in is Nature’s Best Isopure Low Carb and Whey Gourmet. Both have a variety of flavours but they don’t seem to be widely available in Canada.

I’ve done some digging and apparently the Isopure isn’t here mainly due to a change in Canadian legislation a few years back regarding the term ‘low carb’. Apparently our government took action against this term in reaction to the low carb fad diet trend of the last decade. I think it sends a pretty strong message to the public but it’s also sending a strong message to American suppliers. Either they spend the money on separate labelling for Canada or lose the market. Many have simply chosen to pull their products from the market as with Isopure.Shopping

Although I agree with the sentiment, we are living in a global marketplace these days where products are generally available across borders and this only created another barrier to be broken. In this case, it’s a shame because it really only gives Canadians another reason to run to the border to do our shopping in the US… Especially now that our dollar has been reaching parity so often! I mean, I’m all for supporting Canadian merchants in tough times but if we can’t get it here I’m happy to jump on a plane or take a road trip to get the goods I’m after.

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