Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Where's Diana?

I'm in Fairbanks. My sister had a mild stroke last Wednesday. I flew up on Thursday and she didn't seem to be that bad. Her speech was very slurred and difficult to understand, It was a left-side cerebral stroke so she was partially paralyzed on her right side (she's right handed). I thought she'd have a full recovery.

Then the "natural progression" of the original stroke has changed it from a "mild" stroke to a catastrophic event. Everything has become increasingly much worse each day. Now she can barely mutter, she can still shake her head yes and no, but is often confused by the question. Her right side is completely paralyzed. Saturday they said she has expressive aphasia, but she still understood everything we said.

Now there's some receptive aphasia too, where she doesn't understand what we're saying. It seems to come and go. She can't write with her left hand since the signals from her brain to her hand aren't working, although she has a tight grip in the left hand.

This is my beautiful, wonderful sister that I love more than anyone in this world. She's always so classy, so sweet and kind to everyone and always does the right thing. She's one of the funniest people I've ever met and she always gets my jokes. We would get into laughing fits when we were together. I'm so glad I spent ten days with her last July.
This is my only sister. She's seventeen years older than me but we've become very close in the last ten years, since our mother became very ill and died. She's the sister I spent eight days in the in Anchorage in a hospital, never leaving her side as we watch her husband of 51 years die of massive coronary heart failure.

Two weeks ago we talked for about three hours on the phone. One of the things we talked about was the horror of a stroke, not being able to speak, and being paralyzed. We both said it would be a living hell and would much rather die. She has also said for two years that she just wanted to die because her heart was so broken and she was so lonely since her husband died.

She was barely eating a bite of food since she came into the hospital. Two days ago she decided to completely refuse all food, water and the medicines they had started her on. I know what she's doing, she's trying to kill herself the only way she knows how. She wants out of her living hell.

This is my sister that has always been thin so it probably won't take long. The doctor's are talking about moving her to a hospice. It's breaking my heart. She's 73 which seems so young, but I know it's her choice and it's what she wants. Even if she worked really hard in rehab, she would still have a lot of paralysis and they don't know if the speech will ever come back. This would be unacceptable to my very active and independent sister.

My nieces, 45, 47  and 49 are begging her to stay, for them. I want her to stay for me too, but I really just want for her to be out of this nightmare. Who will I call on Saturdays and talk to for hours about everything? Who will I laugh with until I'm bent over in tears and a coughing fit from the laughing? I miss her so much already. Life really does suck sometimes.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tuesday recap

That stomach thing
I'm pretty sure the stomach bug I had was actually food poisoning from a nectarine or raw spinach that I ate Sunday morning. I could be wrong, but after reading about food poisoning it sounds like that was what happened. I don't think I was contagious. My husband didn't get sick (he didn't eat spinach or a nectarine).

Today was much better and by this afternoon the only thing wrong with me was my broken wrist.

Enough said about my health.

About my crazy shopping trip yesterday where I tried on at least 30 pairs of pants. This was brought on by three weeks of watching several re-runs of "What Not to Wear" when I was home with my first cast. After gaining back almost fifty of my eighty pounds lost, I had become a What Not to Wear "before", a worst-dressed woman. I only worked three days last week and looked like a bum every day.

For the past year I've barely bought any new clothes because I was going to lose thirty pounds, and get back into my size 10 and 12 clothes. That obviously didn't happen. If I did buy clothes they were of poor quality because this weight was just temporary. Just for the record, I really hate clothes shopping. It's like being tortured, especially shopping for pants.

Somehow I seemed to skip size 14's on my way up and down the scale. I have several clothes in size 12, a few 10s, quite a few in size 16, but hardly anything in size 14. Not sure how that happened.

I had planned to shop Saturday, but I didn't have time. Then you all know what happened Sunday.  I just felt a need to try to look semi-professional at work. It makes me feel better if my clothes fit me.

Terrible sad news
I saw someone today I hadn't seen in a few months. I knew they were diagnosed with cancer the last time I saw them. We had a long talk today. The cancer they have isn't a good cancer. I know all cancers are bad, but some are worse than others. This one has a very low survival rate. Not good odds.

As they were talking to me, telling me they thought they were going to die, I thought I was going to burst into tears. It hurts even more because they're young with young children. It broke my heart.

You just never know when the rug is going to be pulled out from under you on something like this. This person was leading a very healthy lifestyle, totally fit, not at all overweight, didn't drink or smoke, ate healthy food, then Bam!, you've got cancer. You have to wonder how cancer picks it's victims.

My exercise
I don't really exercise that much. Some people might think I'm an exercise machine, but I'm really just average. I go to the gym on most days (made it there this morning), some days I am an exercise machine, but most days (like today) I'm just average.

My workouts burn calories, work my muscles, but a lot of the time, they're nothing spectacular. I usually spend an hour working out, 30 minutes cardio, 30 minutes weights (or less if it's upper body since only one arm these days). Sometimes I'll do more, occasionally a little less. I'll never quit working out unless I'm bed-bound or dead. It's part of what I've done for 3 1/2 years and what I plan on doing forever. Just saying though, it's not a big deal. I probably talk about it too much so I sound like some big exercising person. I'm not. Just normal.

Also, I know I can do a million squats and lunges, and I'll never get slim hips and thighs. It's not my body type. Big hips, big thighs, that's me,even if I did weigh 135.

Last thought of the night
Good night and have a great Wednesday. :)

Twenty pairs of pants later...

Around 3pm yesterday I finally started feeling better. A little bit nauseous if I I moved too fast or even thought about certain foods, but much more normal.

Breakfast was an egg and Canadian bacon on a Thomas light muffin. Big mistake. It made me really sick (still makes me sick to think about it). Lunch was five low-salt saltines. Dinner was homemade chicken soup (leftovers). I went to bed hungry, but hunger beats nauseousness any day.

Around 4 pm I tried to go to the gym, but only made it to the parking lot. I still didn't feel quite right, I was getting hot, sweaty flashes, then freezing cold. I decided it was probably a stupid idea to workout so I left.

Then I decided to torture myself with a pants shopping trip to Macy's. My first trip into the dressing room with twenty pairs of pants (I could barely carry them all with one hand), and nothing fit right.

I've noticed my fat has come back in different places this time. My hips and thighs seem bigger and my waist smaller. I've been this weight many times in my life, usually going up or coming down, but I don't remember having this problem of not being able to find pants that fit. 12's are too small and 14's are too big. I'm sort of wondering if it's my age. Gravity sucking everything down.

I guess this means I need to do more lower body workouts, which are not my favorite. My old trainer told me everyone hates squats and lunges. You're working the really big muscles in the thighs and butt and it hurts. No kidding.

I finally found two pairs of pants that fit me perfectly. This was on my third trip to the dressing room. By this time I was hot, sweaty, tired and a wee bit angry about trying on all these clothes and I didn't like anything. The brand that fit so well is Charter Club (I think it's a Macy's brand but not sure), and a style called Slim It Up. This is what is says on the tag: "Curves appear slimmer and firmer. Slim It Up with lockstitch control panels tummy appears flatter."

I also bought three tops and a dress. I rarely wear dresses to work (or anywhere), but I think it would be fun to shock everyone with me in a dress.

Almost 5 a.m. (yes, another bad night of sleep, up since 3:30 a.m.). I'm going to try the gym again, I feel better, just a little bit nauseous, but not terrible. No coffee this morning and no eggs (gross...what was I thinking?). Maybe saltines for breakfast. Then back to work today.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Still not back to normal

At least I'm sitting upright, and not in the bathroom. I ate breakfast about an hour ago and feel really nauseous and slightly dizzy. The room isn't spinning out of control, but I don't feel good.

I'm staying home from work today. I tried to read a few work emails this morning and just scrolling through them made me feel nauseous.

If you haven't figured it out by now, the one thing in this world I really hate is being dizzy and nauseous. Its one of the reasons I've never been a big drinker. I can't stand the feeling of drinking too much alchohol. That's exactly how I feel right now, like I drank I drank a lot of hard liquor. I've had maybe two glasses of wine in the last six months.

I've been eating really healthy for months (or is that years), with a few Ambien-induced slips, but usually on healthy food (except that piece of cheesecake and potato chips last week - yuk, cheesecake - the thought makes me want to throw up!).

I'm guessing this is just some stomach bug I picked up somewhere and not something I ate. I thought it might have been my fresh organic baby spinach in my blackberry smoothie yesterday morning, but I've been eating the same brand for months. It's pre-washed and I think it's safe. I don't cook it, but maybe I should steam it a little before I put it in my smoothie (that is, if I ever have a green monster smoothie again - that thought makes me want to hurl too).

My plan for today is lots of water and very little food. Only because whenever I eat anything it makes me feel really sick. I'm thinking about going to the store and buying saltines. That's right, white flour and salt. I really don't care at this moment about healthy, whole-grains. I just want something to calm down my stomach.

No gym yesterday, although Saturday was one of my best workouts ever. Somehow I managed 61 minutes of "vigorous" activity according to my BodyMedia. Getting even a minute of vigorous activity is difficult since it has to be 6 METS or more, which usually means at least jogging at 4.5 or higher on the treadmill.

I was on the elliptical and I think it helped that a coworker and friend of mine was on the elliptical next to me. He's a guy and about 20 years younger than me. I was working super hard to keep my heart rate up in the 140 range (131 is my 80% HR).

I still totally love my new Polar FT60 (it was 50% off at Amazon and it's really magenta, not purple). I finally ordered the Flowlink for it, which will enable me to download my workouts to my computer. I didn't think I needed that, but I've since changed my mind. I guess I'm sort of a gadget geek. 

I also ordered a frozen yogurt maker at the same time (really need to go back to work and stay there so I stop buying stuff!). I tried making frozen Greek yogurt bars using Stevia (NuNaturals--the only brand I like). It tasted great, but the texture was weird.

I was buying Yasso frozen Greek yogurt bars at Costco, but it was hit and miss on whether they had them in stock. Usually a miss. I love Costco, but if you find something you like, you're never guaranteed it'll be the the next time. The Yasso bars also didn't have any fiber because I'm sure they strain out the fruit pulp to make the bars creamy like ice cream. I liked the chunks of fruit in mine, but there wasn't anything creamy about them. The Yasso also contain a stabilizer with guar gum, locust bean gum, carrageenan, and soy lecithin. I looked all these items up and they're all plant based ingredients, not chemicals. I'd still prefer my own homemade bars, where I can control what's in them...Greek Yogurt, preferably Fage 0%( although I tried Costco's brand of Greek yogurt - didn't like it), fresh or frozen fruit and NuNaturals Stevia. Three ingredients.

All this talk about food is making me feel sick. I looked at a few blogs this morning and the ones with pictures of food, I couldn't even look at them.

My weight was 179.2, but I know that's just because I've been sick. Not eating much and living in the bathroom. I'm pretty sure one good meal will shoot it right back up to 181-182, where I've been sitting for a couple weeks.

The sun is shining. I might try to go for a walk. I think the gym isn't a possibility today. The thought of the elliptical sort of makes me feel seasick.

I'm sounding more and more like an old person. Constantly complaining about my aches and pains. I promise, my next post will be strictly about health and weight loss. I'm even getting bored with my health issues.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Knocked down and out

I'm finally feeling human after a really bad bout of either a stomach bug or something I ate.

I haven't been that ill since I drank rum and cokes at college party, and never touched them again. It makes me gag to even think about it, and it was over forty years ago.

It hit me suddenly at 11 a.m., starting with the room spinning out of control and me throwing up almost non-stop for three hours. Which was really awful because the only thing in my stomach was a nectarine. I drank water just to avoid the dry heaves, which just about killed me.

I even thought about having my husband take me to the emergency room, but I couldn't stand the thought of getting in a car or sitting in the ER for hours.

That was an awful experience. It seems like lately it's always something with me. Broken wrist,sleep issues, and now a stomach thing. For someone that tries to be healthy, I'm sure sick a lot. I'm getting kind of tired of it.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I am exhausted

This has been a hard week, even though I Wednesday was my first day back at work. Sleep has been elusive. I can fall asleep, but wake up at 1:00 am, or earlier if I go to bed earlier. Then toss and turn until it's time to get up. It's killing me.

The sleep doctor I saw yesterday, who was wonderful, said my tonsils are huge, and my mouth is too small. Isn't that funny, the fat girl has a tiny mouth?

He wants to do a sleep study, which I dread, but he said he's almost positive I need to have my tonsils removed. He emphasized the surgery is minor, a fifteen-minute procedure, but the pain afterwards is pretty serious. He said I'd lose weight. I told him to sign me up now. Sounds like fun weigh-loss surgery.

I've actually known I've needed a tonsillectomy for years. Every doctor that has ever looked in my mouth and made me say "ahhhhh" has commented on my huge tonsils. I just never connected it to waking me up during the night. The problem is the breathing. Because "of my age" (sick of hearing that by the way), he said the muscles aren't as taunt as the use to be, then with the tonsils and my small mouth, it's causing me to stop breathing.

Thankfully he said a CPAP machine wouldn't help. That's a good thing because I had no intention of getting one.

As soon as my wrist heals, I'll do the sleep study, and then my tonsils removed. At 56. If it'll help me sleep, I'll do it. Right now I'd just about sell my soul to the devil for a good night's sleep.

Went to bed weighing 179, woke up weighing 181.4, now 182.4!

Forgot to hit publish last night (!). Now up to 182.4 this morning. No late night eating yesterday, and calories at 1300. At this rate...well, you get the picture. Late for the gym, but leaving in five minutes. My post written at 10pm yesterday:

Tuesday was a lot of last-minute "got to do this before I go back to work" chores. I was running around all day.

I went to my regular hair salon and had my hair color fixed. It's normal now. It cost a fortune but it was worth it. I had to see the most senior color specialist to figure out how to get the ash (greenish-gray) out of my blond highlights. It was painless, love the colorist, been to her before. Painless but pricey. Lesson learned: trying to save money on my hair always winds up costing me a lot of time and more money. I also had two inches cut off by my regular stylist (same salon). Much happier with it now.

Then I went shopping for work clothes. D-i-a-s-t-e-r!!! I hate shopping. I've never understood how anyone can think shopping for clothes is fun. Even in the best of times when I'm what I consider a "skinny" weight, I hate it. Since this isn't the best of times for my weight, it was totally not fun. I've never in my entire life stood in a dressing room and liked what I saw staring back at me.Yesterday was worse than usual.

After looking at probably hundreds of dress jeans and slacks, and hating all of them, I finally tried on three pair of jeans. I hated them (notice how "hate" is a running theme about me and clothes?). Size 12's and 14's. Too small or too big. Too tight in the hips, too loose in the waist. Too long, even with three-inch heels. Just too wrong in every way.

I came home with three new pairs of dress shoes. Doesn't that sound like a fat girl? You can always find cute shoes. At least I bought something.

About my weight. Another disaster in that area. I had to run to the store last night at 7pm to buy trouser socks. Since I wore flips for most of the summer (dressy flips, but still, flips?), I decided to start dressing a little better for work. Flips were never really appropriate, but I was on a "I don't care how I look" phase for most of last summer. Flips certainly aren't appropriate in my office in September with the rainy season starting.

As I was leaving for the store my husband asked me to pick him up "a piece of cake". WHAT? YOU WANT ME TO PICK YOU UP A PIECE OF CAKE?!!!". Yes, that was me yelling. Why not just go ask a crack addict to pick you up some crack. What the hell?! He said he just wanted something sweet, just a small piece of cake. And some potato chips too please (!!!).

He has never asked me to do this in our 23 years of marriage. Probably because I've either been on a diet or should have been on a diet or was thinking about going on a diet for those 23 years. Reluctantly I agreed (yes, I need my head examined). Occasionally I try to be a sweet wife, but this was the wrong time and the wrong thing.

The store I was going to was Fred Myer, one of those stores that has a lot of everything, including trouser socks, cake and potato chips. They didn't have any pieces of cake, but they had pieces of cheesecake. He likes cheesecake (and unfortunately so do I). I felt like I had the will of steel. I could buy this junk, and I wouldn't eat it. I hadn't eaten anything unhealthy for weeks. One piece of caramel, pecan cheesecake (my personal favorite...you can see I was subconsciously trying to sabotage myself), and one bag of Kettle chips, vinegar and salt, also my favorite.

When I got home with my purchases, around 9pm, my husband  was asleep. I hadn't eaten since 9am, before my hair appointment. I was exhausted and starving.

For some really weird reason, I wanted to weigh myself. I hadn't weighed myself for three days. I never weigh at night, because of course we all weigh more at night than first thing in the morning. Still, I got on the scales. Surprise, I was 179. I weighed three times. Could that be right, 179? Yes, it was right, three times and each time 179.0. I broke the 180 barrier.

Then I ate a nice, healthy dinner of chicken breast and Brussels sprouts. Then I ate the piece of cheesecake and the bag of potato chips. This morning, 181.4. I gained 2.4 pounds overnight. It's probably partly the salt, but still...why?

I could blame this on my husband. I would actually like to blame my husband, but this is nothing to do with him. It's something to do with me. I went about twelve hours without eating. That was stupid. I brought crap food into our house that normally would never be here. That was me, not him. He would never do that, yet he asked to do it and I said okay. Why did he ask? That alone is really odd. And why on earth did I agree. Normally I would say no way. You can buy it and eat it, but I don't want to have it in my sight. I wish I wasn't like this, but it's a fact of life and one he's accepted.

I don't have the answers and honestly, and I'm still perplexed by my behavior. Maybe I was tired, hungry and not thinking straight. Maybe I had temporary insanity. I don't really understand what happened, why would a sane, reasonably intelligent person make such a bad decision?

I'm back at it today. I guess I'll just put that in my memory bank as a lesson learned.

It's almost 10pm. Time for sleep, or at least, my attempt at sleep. I saw a sleep doctor today about my inability to sleep through the night. Which will be in a later post. I have to at least try to sleep now.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Tomorrow's dry run for going back to work!

I just got back from the best workout I've had since I broke my wrist over four weeks ago. It's partly because I took the entire weekend off from exercise. Two days and no gym and no walks. I read Jen's post about not working out for three days on Saturday, but I didn't take it seriously. I remember thinking, "I could never take off three days from working out!".

I wound up taking Saturday and Sunday off because,  it was hot and I was tired. I couldn't remember the last time I either didn't go to the gym or go on an intense walk, trying to get in my 10,00 steps.

The days off really really paid off because today's workout was fantastic. My new Polar heart rate monitor, a FT60, really helped too. I love this thing. It really helps keep me in my zone, plus I love the pretty magenta color. My old Polar was a pale pink and didn't have all the bells and whistles this one has on it. I'm in love!

I'm still using my BodyMedia. I'm just as crazy about it as I was when I got it on July 27. This past weekend was the first time I took it off for most of the weekend. I've had it on all day today, and just checked the stats: 2,773 calories burned, 11, 229 steps, 1 hour 25 minutes moderate exercise and and amazing 33 minutes of vigorous exercise. I'vd only eaten 979 calories wish s a little low. I usually keep it between 1200 and 1500 caloreis. daily.

About work, I'm heading back to work on Wednesday. I made the decision last Thursday when I was finally able to straighten my left arm, the one that had the full cast on it for three weeks. It took a couple days of stretching exercises to get it back to where I could actually straighten it out.

I can type with my left hand now, I just can't use my left thumb since it's encased in the cast and it can't quite reach the keyboard unless I stick my elbow up in the air. It's a 100% improvement over not being able to use my left hand at all. Nine fingers beat five fingers any day.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm looking forward to going back to work. It hasn't exactly been a picnic being off work the last four weeks. Especially while I was in the full cast with my arm at a 45 degree angle.

The dry run tomorrow is that I've had an ongoing discussion with my husband about if  should keep with mornngs and do after work workouts.  With a cast it's something to think about. I notorously am bad at nighg workouts so tomorrowbefore my 8 a.m. haircolor and cut, I'm going try to make the gym before the hair apportionment.

We'll see if I can get up early, get to the gym and come home, hook up to my Cast Cooler (and my vacuum cleaner),shower and get ready, then get to the hair salon by 8 a.m. It's going to be a challenge. I'm really going to be happy to get my old hair color back because I really hate it. now. Maybe pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

National Moment of Remembrance for 9/11

Not sure how I missed this, probably because I've banned myself from watching the news this past week. This is a lot more important than anything I could say about weight loss.

Taken from the Dodge City Daily Globe:

This year we mark the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, a day that changed America forever. To commemorate this occasion and pay tribute to those we lost, the United States Senate, in an overwhelming demonstration of unity, unanimously passed a resolution (S. Res. 237) establishing a national Moment of Remembrance on September 11, 2011. I write to request that you join us in making this Moment of Remembrance a symbol of solidarity throughout your city and across the country.

 During the Moment of Remembrance, every person across the country is called upon to stop and remember those we lost in the September 11th attacks. The Moment of Remembrance will take place for one full minute at 12:00 p.m. on September 11, 2011, and cities and towns, firehouses, churches and other institutions across the country are called upon to to sound sirens and ring bells during that minute. These sirens and bells will be a signal for each person to stop and remember the people we lost and demonstrate the perseverance the American people have shown since that fateful day.

Taken from City of Auburn, WA events:

Governments and businesses, houses of worship and railways, fire and police departments, and others are called on to ring bells and sound sirens as we observe this Moment of Remembrance. At the same time across the country (1 pm EDT, noon CDT, 11 am MDT, and 10 am PDT) we call on you to reflect on the lives lost and those affected by the tragedies of 9/11.

That's what I was going to say...why I may never reach goal

Do you ever have a post idea rolling around in your head, then you read almost exactly what you were thinking on one of your favorite blogs?

After three and a half years of blogging that's happened to me a few times. Sometimes I even write my post then find a similar one written by someone else. Then I wonder 'Did I read it and think it was my idea when I actually plagiarized it?'.

This time I'm pretty sure I hadn't read this before. It's a topic that people don't talk about. I was going to write the post a couple days ago, but then I read Helen's post on Doing a 180, "I don't have what it takes" on Wednesday. There were my very thoughts written in Helen's words. She was openly honest about her thoughts that she may never reach her fitness and weight goals.

My title was going to be "Why I'll never reach goal". What I was going to write was very similar to what Helen wrote. Basically, I'm not sure I have it in me to get to my goal weight of 135 pounds.

You can read Helen's post to know how I feel, with the exception of the thyroid problem, the rest of it is very similar to my own story. Except I've been on a diet since I was thirteen years old and wanted to lose five pounds to get down to 120.

The only difference between when I was 13 and then in my fifties is that the amount of weight I wanted to lose has changed. When I was 52 I needed to lose 100 pounds. That means I've either been on a diet or thinking I should be on a diet for about 43 years. Or a lifestyle change, thank you Weight Watchers for that little gem.

It doesn't mean I'm giving up or that I'll stop exercising and trying to eat right. It just means I'm rethinking trying to reach a weight I was in high school. Maybe that's not realistic. Maybe weighing 150 at 56 years old wouldn't be such a bad thing. It's something I need to seriously consider.

I still need to lose 31 pounds to get to 150, but I was 152 two years ago so I know it's possible.

I haven't seen 135 since 1997 with the help of Phen-Fen (a weight loss drug that works, but kills). I was literally starving myself to death (800 calories a day and not hungry). I was doing high impact aerobics five days a week and I was a vegetarian. I lost 107 pounds in seven months, from 237 to 124. I was almost dead and looked awful (my hair was very thin from the sudden weight loss), but I was wearing size six jeans, which are still in the back of my closet.

My point is that I'm not giving up on getting healthy, but I might be giving up on weighing 135.  Kind of what Helen said.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A purple cast this time

I had my doctor's appointment this morning. The doctor couldn't really see any healing in my scaphoid bone. When I looked at the x-ray it looked like it was actually worse than before. Of course, I'm not an orthopaedic surgeon, but even he said he didn't really see any improvement but he wanted to try another month of my wrist in a cast.

I'm really disappointed. Even though my doctor had warned me my scaphoid probably wouldn't heal on it's own in a month, if ever, I was still hoping. This particular bone, the scaphoid, tends to not heal easily because it doesn't get a good supply of blood. My doctor told me this fact at my last appointment, and I had read about it on numerous websites in the last three weeks. Still, I thought with all my vitamins, supplements, healthy eating and regular exercise, there would be a miracle and it would heal. I was wrong.

I'll keep up the exercise and healthy food, if not for my scaphoid bone, then for the rest of me.

Getting the dirty, pink cast removed.

 This wasn't a staged picture of pain. It hurt like heck after the cast was removed.

Not happy (and I have bad posture!).

I guess I'll go for a walk now. I need to get my arm moving and hopefully get the blood flowing to my wrist. Even though it may not heal, and I'll wind up getting surgery on it anyway, I'll still need to be healthy for the surgery.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Listening to our inner voice

We all have that little voice in our head telling us the right thing to do. It's the voice that told you it's time to buckle down and get serious about your health. It's the voice that cares about you, even when you don't think you care for yourself. It's the cheerleader, the voice that constantly tells you to exercise and eat healthy.

My inner voice told me yesterday that my goals for my weight loss were too aggressive. They were doing me more harm than good. Every day was a challenge to meet them and almost every day I failed. On the rare day I did meet my exercise goals, I was practically dead from fatigue.

Even though I'd love to consider myself "Very Active", it was a path to failure. I wanted to stay on a two-pound a week loss schedule, but if I moved less, that meant I'd have to eat less. 1,500 calories consumed and 2,500 calories burned daily are my new customized goals. I set attainable exercise too, 90 minutes of moderate exercise daily (not all of this has to be gym time), and 10,000 steps.

Last night at 8:30 p.m. I realized I only had 8,500 steps. Not happy. Food had been perfect, and I had almost two hours of moderate exercise, which included gym time and some housework. My inner voice said, well, what can you do to fix this? Too late to go for a walk. The gym is closed so I couldn't go there (I wouldn't anyway that late at night).

We were watching The King's speech on DVD (great movie) when I decided to walk in place and watch the movie. In about 15 minutes I made my 10,000 steps. My husband thought I was a nut, but nothing new there. My kitty was annoyed because he couldn't sit on my lap, but he got over it.

When it was time for bed, I couldn't sleep. Exercise that close to bedtime is never a good idea for me. After tossing and turning for about an hour, I finally got up and took an Ambien. I hadn't taken one for three nights. I'd sworn off Ambien because of some bad night eating experiences where I thought it was a dream, but it was real (strawberries and hummus).

Before I took the Ambien I had a conversation with myself. I realize this sounds a little crazy, but I told myself that the Ambien couldn't make me do anything that I didn't want to do, and I did NOT want to get up later and eat. I'd eaten almost 1,300 calories of healthy, nutritious food. I wasn't hungry, so there wasn't a need to eat more. I would use the Ambien as a sleep aid and not an excuse to eat mindlessly. I was in control of my actions, not the drug.

I woke up at 5 a.m. feeling rested and hungry. My first thought was "Did I eat anything last night while I was asleep?". From my hunger pains I was pretty sure that was a  no, but I went to the kitchen just to make sure. During my sleep walking episodes I always left evidence, like dirty dishes in the sink or strawberries strewn about the floor (which became cat toys and I'm still finding strawberries in the oddest paces, all rotten and gross now). There was no evidence of sleep walking and eating. The kitchen was spotless, just like how I left it last night.

Maybe I am in control of my own destiny. At least last night I listened to my inner voice for once. Perhaps I will do that more often.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Modifying my goals

Just returned from the gym (45 minutes cardio, 40 minutes right-handed weights). I'm sitting here hooked up to my vacuum cleaner with my CastCooler. Greatest invention ever! Sucks the sweat out of my cast in about 15 minutes. Also worked when I didn't get the cast cover pulled up all the way and the shower shot full blast down the inside of my cast. Nothing like feeling a puddle of water on my fingers inside the water-proof cast cover. The CastCooler was worth every penny.

New weight loss plan
I originally set up my BodyMedia  for Very Active, 60 minutes of moderate exercise and 30 minutes of vigorous (like jogging or StairMaster). Burn 2900 calories a day, eat 1900. This was before my broken wrist and cast. It was difficult to attain, but doable.

With the cast, it takes a herculean effort to make these goals. I've made it a couple of times, but I've failed many more times. Failure to meet a specified goal is damaging to my spirit.

I customized my goals today and this sounds much easier, but still challenging:

I have to face the reality of having a cast. Vigorous activity isn't advisable. I can still do the StairMaster and elliptical, but I just have to go a little slower. A heart rate of 140+ shouldn't happen. It's really hard for me to accept this, but it's just the way it has to be for now. I feel a little bad for myself (and stupid) that it took me almost 4 weeks to figure this out. Guess I'm a little stubborn.

No real plans for the rest of today. Just take it easy and enjoy the incredible weather we're having here in the Northwest. Sunshine and 78 degrees.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

I need a miracle

Next Tuesday the cast comes off. The orthopedic surgeon said there will be one of two outcomes of my four weeks in a cast:

1. Scaphoid bone looks like it's healing, which is unlikely but possible. If it's healing, then they'll put on a new cast for two more months.

2. If it's not healing, then I'll need surgery with screws to make it grow back together.

I wanted an option three where it magically grows back together and on Tuesday I get my left hand and arm back. Surgery horrifies me even more than two more months in a cast. The doctors told me it wouldn't completely heal in a month. They were sorry, but it was a severe fracture, almost completely broken.

I was reading more about the scaphoid bone today and came across this article. My scaphoid is broken near the forearm, and my cast includes my thumb extends almost to my shoulder.

Fracture Near the Forearm

If the scaphoid is broken in the middle of the bone (waist) or closer to the forearm (proximal pole), healing is more difficult. These areas of the scaphoid do not have a very good blood supply.

If your doctor treats this type of fracture with a cast, the cast will probably include the thumb. It may extend above the elbow, as well.

Source:  http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00012

I'm not sure if I mentioned this in a previous post, but the doctors told me my scaphoid bone showed an old fracture that hadn't healed properly, and the new fracture was right next to it. Sort of sounds like I'm screwed....pun intended.

No plans for today. Yesterday was exhausting. I spent an hour and a half at the gym. An hour of cardio and almost a half hour of lower body workouts. I can still do lunges and still hate them as much as ever. Same with crunches, they still make me nauseous.

I can do the elliptical one-handed too. Just figured that out yesterday. I thought it would be too hard, but if I don't do my normal hill routine and stick with levels 6 - 8, Im fine. I had a fear of falling off at first, but I didnt. I like it a lot better than the stationary bike which isn't my favorite.

The sun is out today so I'm heading out to pick more blackberries, then either the gym or a walk. I haven't decided for sure. My life sure isn't very exciting these days (not that it's a thrill a minute normally).

I tried the Natural Bliss Coffee-mate creamer this morning. I'm not a fan. It's great that the ingredients are natural:  non-fat milk, heavy cream, and sugar. I appreciate natural versus artificial ingredients and corn syrup that they use in their regular creamers. It's just that the one tablespoon at 35 calories didn't really make my coffee taste that much better. Probably because my mug is 12 ounces, so it wasn't really enough. I'm certainly not going to spend 70 calories (2  tbsps.) on a cup of coffee. I can have a piece of fruit or a cup of blackberries for that price.

Question for anyone that's had a cast. Can a cast cause swelling three weeks after it was put on? I noticed my upper left arm, the one with the cast looks bigger than my upper right arm. I measured my left arm, right where the cast ends on the upper part and compared it to my non-casted arm. It's a full inch bigger! I measured it three times to be sure. The cast is super tight around my wrist, but at the top there's a lot of of room between the cast and my skin. Just seems odd to me that the cast would cause swelling after three weeks. Maybe it's always been like this and I just never noticed.

The eating has been pretty good without the Ambien, although I ate a piece of pizza last night. My husband ordered it. I finally caved around 11pm and ate a piece. It had extra cheese on it and pepperoni and sausage. I was able to stop after one piece. I was completely aware of my actions, unlike the hummus and strawberries from Monday night during an Ambien induced sleep walking incident that my husband witnessed.

I guess I'd better get going on my walk and blackberry picking. Perfect September weather for a walk, sunny and 66 degrees.