10 days post op

Holy cow, I have been sleeved for 10 days! There are a few things I can tell you, liquid diet isn’t that fun, you will wish to exercise, you will be achy, coughing will hurt, and you will be so proud of the choice you made!!! The first week, I dropped 9.6 lb! 

Yesterday, I tried a tiny bit, maybe 2 oz, of baked potato with some light butter and Parmesan for dinner. It was so good. I was so thrilled to actually chew something. Then for my PM snack, I concocted a chocolate protein pudding! It has 12 g of protein in 1/2 cup. Score! It’s nice to have things with some texture, don’t get me wrong, liquids do go down really easy. But I have a hard time going SLOW with the liquids or water. When it’s a bit thicker, I slow down and enjoy myself. I feel like I get to taste the flavors that are exploding in my mouth (like tonight’s chicken tortilla soup). Needless to say, slowing down and trying to sip my drinks/dinners/shakes, has been the #1 thing for me to learn. Continue reading


Old Navy, What?!

I needed to get some new jeans. So I went to the strip mall to hit Lane Bryant to see what size I am.  Next door is Old Navy, so I figured what the hell, let’s check it out. I’ve been dying to be able to shop at other stores for clothes. Why not do a little test and see where I “fit” now.

Continue reading

End of February recap-How’d I do?

I am trying to track my measurements, weight, BMI, etc each month. And I figured I’d recap it.
Started at 282.6 and ended up at 276. I lost 6.6 lb for the month of February. My BMI in January was 45.6 and in February it ended at 44.4! Need to get it to 30… then lower!
Measurements, I lost 6.75 inches this month for a total of 50.75 (for most measurements since the beginning) and an additional 3.75 in new locations I just started tracking this year! For a total of 54.5 inches! That’s almost 5 feet! Holy shit!!! I am happy with that! 🙂

Rob and I going out for our 8 year anniversary.

Some things I have been having trouble with, is having the motivation to run. I’ve been really slacking on my C25k training and guess what?! It’s in less than 2 weeks!! AGHHHHH! I am just a *tad* bit nervous. But I’ve heard the Shamrock Run is so busy and distracting that the 3 miles will fly by, I hope so. I did belt test and am now a Senior Green belt! 7 weeks away from being in the intermediate class for Taekwondo! Excited about that! Below is the video of my board break. I love Ax kicks!

Goals for March. Loose 5 inches, hit 271.2 on the scale, and  finish the Shamrock Run (goal of 45 minutes, but finishing is the main goal).

January’s results

Two weeks, no blog. Yep it’s bad… I don’t know why I don’t blog when things get “bad” but I do. I know I need to be held accountable to those weeks, but honestly, I don’t feel like doing all the number crunching to give you the actual weigh in numbers. Last week I was up 3.4 lb, this week up 1 lb. Total up 4.4 in 2 weeks. AGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!
Of course this coming week we have a birthday party (I will not eat cake, I will not eat cake, I will not eat cake) and Rob and I will be going out on Sunday night for our Anniversary. Needless to say, I am already worried and it’s only Monday afternoon!!! I spoke with Jeannine (my WW leader) and asked her if it’s cheating to weigh in on Sunday morning so I can enjoy dinner at Portland City Grill Sunday night. She said yes and that she absolved me of the shame I might feel by weighing in a day early. I love that woman! 🙂 So I will be weighing in at (gasp) 7:30 AM Sunday. So 6 days to diet this week.

On a much more positive note, I did my measurements from the beginning of the year today. I was very happy to see I have lost inches, even though my progress the last 2 weeks has been slacking.
Neck- no change
Bicep (R) -.5″ (L) -1″
Forearms (R) no change (L) no change
Bra Strap -2.5″
Chest +1″
Waist -2.5″
Hips +1″
Quad (R) -.35″ WOW!!!
Calf (R) -.5″
Total inches lost in January 8.5″!!!  
Weight Lost in January 3.4 lb (eh).

So I will try and keep up the positive attitude and keep my mantra in my head: It’s a journey not a race.

Friday check in!

Tonight I am seeing West Side Story at the Keller, which means dinner out with the gang! Good thing is I planned for it! On Monday, I made a chart with the plans for the week: activity and possible hurdles. This has really worked! Here it is (basically):
Monday: Tread N Shred at Crunch (30 min) & Taekwondo (45 min)
Tuesday: Day 1 of week 1 of Couch to 5k (30 min)
Wednesday: Taekwondo (45 min)
Thursday:  Day 2 of week 1 of Couch to 5k (30 min)
Friday: Rest Day; Dinner out!
Saturday: Taekwondo (45 min) & Day 3 of week 1 of Couch to 5k (30 min)
Sunday: Day 1 of week 2 of C25k (30 min)

Knowing my plan, has helped me stay on track! I am down 4.0 so far this week! I went to WW and checked in and I am down 50.2 total (although it’s not an official weigh-only Mondays)! So there is some motivation for keeping on track!!! I also have tracked all week! Not skipping a thing! It’s really helped me, and I think the scale noticed. I might even do some unscheduled exercise today with the Kincet during “nap time” just for fun! Who would have thought. 🙂

1 year down!

Today is my 1 year mark on my journey to a healthier Melissa. I am very proud of committing to this, and sticking with it (in some way or form) for this long. Normally I burn out after 2-3 months and give up. I am very happy to say that I have changed my life(style) not just did/am doing a diet. In this period of time I have lost over 46 lb. I did gain this week (+2.4) but I think that was because of such a big loss last week and being sick. I was dehydrated and was warned when I weighed in last week, I could gain. Ann was right. But I am not stressing over it.

I have looked at my blog from the last year and have noticed what was working and what wasn’t working. Working: gym & tracking. Not working: just Taekwondo & trying to eat right. So I am back to hitting the gym 2-3 times a week and I am back to tracking food. I am game planning my week too, seeing (ahead) what the hurdles will be and knowing how to over come them. This week we are going to see West Side Story, which means eating out. So If I hit the gym (changed to Crunch today) twice and Taekwondo twice before Friday, I’ll be in good shape.

But I wanted to write about what I’ve accomplished in the last year besides the obvious scale victory.
1. Size 18 pants!
2. Smaller shirt size (22/24-darn boobs)!
3. Speaking of boobs, smaller bra size too!
4. Being able to do the elliptical for more than 1/2 hr without fear of dying (kidding).
5. Just saying “no” to cookies and junk.
6. Making better choices when out to eat.
7. Joining Chandler in Taekwondo and succeeding!
8. Speaking of TKD, Ax and Roundhouse kicks at my head level! Nuff said!
9. Balancing on a balance ball on all 4’s for over a minute (close to 2).
10. On the ball, getting on to just my knees for the count of 5 (need to be at 20 when I test for black belt).
11. Feeling good about looking at myself!
12. Buying Ladies (not women’s) XL workout pants!
13. Donating a ton of FAT clothes! Woot!!!

There are more, but those are listed on the other list. 🙂 Until next time, friends!


My list…

I saw a post of a blog and she got the idea from one of her friends, and I loved it! For every pound lost, give a reason to have lost that pound! I looked over her list and I agreed with 85% of her list. But I will give you my list, the first 48 of the journey! I look forward when I can list 50, but until then. I start with the this year’s progress!
  1. Sit on the floor comfortably without pinching my nerve in my hip.
  2. Walk through the pew at church without having to side step
  3. Lose the double chin
  4. Rediscover my jaw bone
  5. To shop at any store!
  6. Paint my toenails without having to put my foot up on the counter!
  7. Being able to see what color it is without having to bend over!!
  8. Hold a plank position for more than 1 minute
  9. Do more than 1 real push up at a time
  10. Fit in narrow seats
  11. Not have back fat
  12. Not have my legs touch in the middle
  13. Go jogging for fun, not for a fitness test (high school=nightmares)!
  14. Get to a healthy weight so I can see my future grandchildren!
  15. Find my collarbone and show it off
  16. Not just wear jeans & t-shirts!
  17. Run a 5k
  18. Train for a half marathon
  19. Train for a century bike ride (100 miles)
  20. Have tall boots fit over my calves
  21. Wear heals and not complain the minute they are put on!
  22. Not have my arms wave back at you when I wave
  23. Prove that I wasn’t meant to be FAT!
  24. Earn a Black Belt in Taekwondo
  25. Be smaller than I was as a Freshman in High school (271 lb)
  26. Feel good in my exercise clothes
  27. Have a healthy glow
  28. See my toes from a standing position (I suppose that goes with toenail polish).
  29. Make healthy changes to my favorite recipes because I want to, not because I have to
  30. Wake up ready to go, and not want more sleep
  31. Have more flexibility mentally and physically
  32. Prevent knee surgery
  33. Not be ashamed of myself
  34. Enjoy looking in the mirror
  35. Shop in the “regular” section of department stores
  36. Have positive things to say about myself
  37. Increase stamina
  38. Fit comfortably in chairs at events (ie: giants games,convention center, etc.)
  39. Feel like a legitimate athlete when I am out exercising 
  40. Look like a legitimate athlete when I am out exercising
  41. Inspire people
  42. Take joy in taking care of myself
  43. Try things I’ve wanted to try, but haven’t due to weight.
  44. Know that I’m worth it 
  45. Finally know I DESERVE it
  46. I no longer qualify to be a contestant on the Biggest Loser!!
  47. Be able to be a bone marrow donor on Be the Match
  48. Feel good about donating all the fat clothes! See ya!
So there you have it! The first 48 things in *my list* of reasons to lose this weight! I will try to keep adding to it as I lose. As I close on 2011, and reflect on where I was when I rang in 2011, and where I am now, on the cusp of 2012. I am in awe of myself. For example, when I began in Taekwondo in July, I began learning how to balance on a ball on all fours. I could hardly do it. Now I can do it for 1-2 minutes! Now I am working on getting on just my knees. By the time I test for Black Belt I will need to last 20 seconds. Last week, I was able to do it for 5 seconds! Progress!!! I look forward to sharing more progress in 2012! And in April, I should be moving into the Blue Belt program! So progress continues! Have a very Happy New Year! Much love,



For the last 4-5 years, Mom,Michelle and I hit Lane Bryant’s 50% Black Friday Sale. This year, I knew I was going to need to get some clothes after this year’s weight loss. When we finally made it to LB this afternoon, I was grabbing jeans to see what size I was. I figured a 20, since I had been in 22s for a while. Nope! I fit into size 18! HOLY SMOKES! Granted they are tight, but with another 5 lb I am sure they will fit like butter. So by the time I get the jeans for Christmas (Thanks Mom!), they should fit! I am so excited!!!


Weigh in & measurement progress

This week I weighed in, down 2.6; total of 42.4 lb! Sweetness! I am now officially 7.6 away from my December 1 goal of 50 lb! So I am trying *not* to focus on the numbers… but it’s SO hard! I decided to do my measurements, since it had been a few months since I did them. That was a surprise! I have lost 42.5 inches! That’s 3 and a 1/2 feet!!!! HOLY COW! So I took a snip it from the WW etools. I thought the graph was pretty cool to see…going down! You can see my August “vacation”, but still, very happy to see. Now, to get to the purple line (50#).

I realize this might seem a bit “toot your own horn” but hell, it’s my blog & journey! And I am very proud of sticking with this for 11 months! I have never ever stuck with a diet this long, and I think it’s because I am looking at it as a lifestyle and not a diet. I am having my cake and ice cream at parties and I don’t feel bad! If only I could remember to track more often. I know this is a key to success, so I don’t know why I sabotage myself by not tracking… and I suppose I should add more exercise to that as well. But that’s ok.

I am still kicking it (literally) at Taekwondo, and I am even more proud on the balance ball! When I began in July, I could barely balance on that damn thing (on all 4’s). Now I can hang out on all 4’s for a good 1-1.5 minutes! I am even starting to try and get up on my knees only (a requirement for Black Belt testing in 2 years). I managed 5 seconds on Monday! Proof my core is getting stronger! Oh, and even cooler-I did a jump roundhouse kick on Monday! Holy smokes, jumping and kicking! I never thought I’d be able to do that! So I am very proud of where I have come. And I can’t wait to see where I am in 6 months!

I did make the Lentil Soup in the slow cooker yesterday that was a recipe from the Weight Watcher Weekly. It was delish! Recipe here Give it a try! Very filling and satisfying! Until Monday (or so), Have a great week!!!

Reflections, 1 year later, Part 2

Chandler testing out the mask

So we had a tour with the Child Life person at the hospital and was given a bag with things to get Chandler mentally ready for surgery. They gave us bandaids, alcohol swabs, gloves, mask, a doll with a hospital gown on as well as a couple beanie babies and even a mask that they will use for administering anesthesia. Since both Chandler & Lincoln were there for the tour they both got a bag. It was so awesome. We played with those things, Chandler liked talking like Darth Vader with the anesthesia mask on. And he was comfortable with it. Whew.

Chandler & Dad in pre-op

The morning of his surgery we went to the hospital, he was going to be having surgery around 9 am, he was pushed back due to an emergency. So we got to the hospital, and were all checked in. He got changed into his outfit and we waited. He was all smiles as we waited. He was nervous when they finally gave him some meds to make him calm and loopy (see video in link below-it’s funny). 

Watching Star Wars

We waited for him to come out of surgery with his preschool teachers. Our pastor offered to come as well, and it was so sweet. Grandma Brown had Lincoln at the house, but she knew we’d be well taken care of since Chandler would be under her friend, Jane’s, care. Jane was such a blessing to Pat, and was there right after Lincoln was born. So when Dr. Wheby came out to give us the scoop of how his surgery went, we were in great company. Turns out Chandler’s spine had an unusually thick filum terminale, which is a cord that anchors the cord to the tail bone area. Normally it’s about 1mm thick and acts like a rubber band. Chandlers, however, was 5 mm thick and was more like a rope; thus the spinal cord didn’t have room to move freely or be elastic. She just cut it, so he has a dangling spinal cord. 🙂

Dad surprises Chandler in the garden

Chandler had to lay flat for 24 hrs, and it was not as hard as I thought it would be. But man, the bed sucked for me. I totally couldn’t imagine having to be there for more than 1 night. He had a hard time coming out of the anesthesia, couldn’t calm down, had the shakes really bad…nothing a mama wants to see! Once we got to this room, Jane got him some Morphine, and he was much better, asking for his DVD player and Star Wars toy that was in the car (for post surgery fun). He was good having the IV in his hand, and was brave when they pulled it out.
Once he was cleared to be more vertical, the next morning, he got to go in the wagon and see the garden,and then it was time to be discharged and head home! 24 hrs in the hospital! Amazing!

Recovering at home on the couch.

When we got home, he did a full Star Wars (originals) marathon! We had to keep Lincoln off him, which was a hard one to do.

Dr. Monica Wheby & Chandler at his Post-Op check, cleared for activity!

After 4 weeks, Chandler was enrolled in Taekwondo at Family Kicks Martial Arts. When he began TKD: he couldn’t bunny hop, balance longer than 3 seconds on 1 foot, his run was really choppy/spastic, His kick was about 8 inches off the ground. Needless to say, he was like a 3 year old (per his PT eval).

Ax Kick, when he began 7/11

Now, 1 year later (11 months since starting TKD), he is a yellow belt! He’s confident, has balance, jumping capabilities (he jumps from the 2nd step at the house!), his gait is much more fluid, he has more range of motion in his kicks. It’s truly amazing where he is now. I never (ever) regret the decision to do the surgery. I regret that I didn’t listen to my mother in law, who suspected he has a tethered cord when he was 8 months old. I am so grateful to all those doctors who helped us help Chandler. I feel like our family was so blessed to be able to help Chandler. I know there are so many out there who are not either as lucky or cannot afford medical care.

So, I am thankful for all those who prayed for us, who visited Chandler, and have been helping us work with him to become the young boy he’s meant to be. I am so thankful to his Speech teacher (Mr. Minear) and his Kindergarten teacher (Mrs. Bacos) and especially Master Jim Null & Master Adrienne Null. They have made Taekwondo a form of physical therapy that he loves. Watch out world, Chandler’s got plans to be a black belt! And if he’s anything like his parents, he’ll be determined to do it!

Training w/ Uncle Vino, check out the height 3/11

Link to many photos related to his surgery