August 24, 2011

Combating the Freshman 15 a la Hungry Girl!

I just received the daily newsletter from "Hungry Girl", and if you don't get it, I would like to share the tips she's provided for combating those 15 extra pounds we tend to get stuck with when starting college.  Please read below and also subscribe to her website for tips and tricks for keeping off the pounds and making the right choices post WLS.  Also, and I"m sorry for the shameless plug, BUT... check out the "Hungry Girl" show on the Food Network!!!   Here's her post.

Congrats on heading off to college! As far as snacking goes, vending machines and late-night studying can lead to some not-so-smart food decisions. But don't worry. I've got a little study guide for guilt-free dorm-room snacking...
Protein-Packed Picks - Stock up on snack bars with lots of protein and fiber -- these are hunger-fighting machines. I love Larabars, KIND bars, and Luna bars. Mini Babybel Light (those red-wax-encased cheeses) and light string cheese are great on the go, and they're perfect for mini fridges. Fat-free Greek yogurt in individual containers is another smart fridge stocker. And jerky is a great, go-anywhere, protein-loaded snack food.

Produce Power - Make a habit of stashing fruit -- like pears, bananas, and plums -- in your dorm room. My absolute favorite snack is a Fuji apple -- crisp, slightly sweet, and great on the go. Cut veggies are a perfect way to put that mini fridge to use -- I love baby carrots, sliced cucumbers, and jicama sticks. Great when you need to do some quantity crunching. And keep a jar of salsa on hand for dipping!

Sweet Spot - Avoid candy bars from the vending machines! If you find yourself craving something sweet, stick with hard candies, like lollipops and Jolly Ranchers. They take a while to eat, so you're less likely to go overboard with them. And they're typically fat-free and low in calories.

Whatever you do, don't wait until you're super-hungry to eat. If you do, you'll be more likely to eat whatever you can get your hands on (pizza, chips, whatever). So keep that mini fridge stocked at all times with smart snacks. And have an awesome time at college, smarty-pants!

This article is complements of Hungry GirlHungry Girl Inc., 18034 Ventura Blvd. #503, Encino, CA 91316.  All rights reserved.

August 23, 2011

DIVA-Tude Tuesday!

Good Evening Diva's and Divo's!

Once again, it is DIVA-Tude Tuesday!  What are you doing to express your inner Diva?  For me, today has been one of those days where I have to wonder what the heck is going on around here!  I woke up feeling blue, continued through the day just not feeling like my usual self.  Came home and had some dinner with the family, and I still don't feel much better.

I don't have a Diva's day every day, but I never stop believing in the woman I have become because of my life-changing decisions and my fortitude to continue to move ahead!  I am proud of me, and although I feel like I am in a funk, I recognize this and move on!  On to my next idea to take over the world!

Tell me what you've been doing to express your fabulous inner Diva!  I want to hear from you, both guys and girls so make sure to post your comments below.  I will be sure to respond.  Thanks!


New Post from Katie Jay of NAWLS - She's feeling What I'm Feeling -- Loss

Please read this really great post by Katie Jay of NAWLS.  So many of us experience this type of loss and use food to comfort us since it our old standby.  Katie has a great point of view, and some good tips!

If I'm Being Honest...
by Katie Jay, MSW, Certified Wellness Coach
Director, National Association for Weight Loss Surgery
Every few years, something happens in my life that makes it very hard to do my job. In 2007, it was a
lower body lift, followed, 11 days later, by bowel obstruction surgery.
This year, it's my only child's high school graduation and transition to college, followed
by my husband and I moving from Wilmington, NC, to Northern Virginia. Oh yeah, and menopause.
If I'm being honest, I want to go buy a bag of little powdered donuts, lay down on my futon mattress (we haven't bought a bed yet), and eat until I pass out. I know, it's not a good idea. In fact, it's a really horrible idea. And while I won't act out on this desire today, I'm not surprised it bubbled up. Food still has the power to numb me out, dang it!
And I'm hurting.
So how can a person like me, a life-long foodie who is sensitive to carbs and prone to depression, feel
okay in the world when it feels like my world is a shifting landscape -- unsafe and unpredictable.
How can a person like me survive this life chapter (because part of me knows 'this too shall pass'),
which feels like so much sadness and loss, without using food as a drug?
Because every time I do, the scale goes up. My blood  sugar goes up. My pants size goes up. And my mind starts down the path of doom and hopelessness.
Right or wrong, here's what I am doing. No judgment, please, I am gloriously imperfect.
1. I am minimizing the damage. If I feel I must eat something off my food plan, I use foods (notice I
said "use," like an addict) that will do the least harm.
2. I am not bringing home packages of anything. If   I know I'm going to do it, I order one thing at a
restaurant, or buy one serving at the store.
3. I am choosing healthy comfort foods that I love, and eating them whenever I want to eat -- even if they are a few more calories. Things like homemade sweet potato salad (roasted sweet potatoes with the skin on, olive oil, crushed rosemary, sea salt); and full-fat Greek yogurt with stevia and walnuts mixed in; and meatloaf with gluten-free bread crumbs and agave-sweetened, organic ketchup; and fresh berries with a drizzle of heavy cream and a few drops of  stevia liquid.
And while I'm doing this, I am also doing the following:
1. Attending extra support groups and reaching out to friends who are safe.
2. Getting extra support (did I say that already?).
3. Using an amount of support that matches the amount of stress in my life. (Enough support is critical!)
4. Not telling myself no one cares or understands -- some people certainly do care and understand. And besides, *I* care and understand. It is *my* job to find others who will honor who I am, comfort me, and not judge me.
5. Not telling myself to keep my sad mood a secret -- some people will accept me as I am, sad and hurting, and love me anyway.  Naturally, lots of the people I have told about my sadness have promptly tried to fix me:
"Don't worry. It's great that your son is mature enough to be on his own."
"Don't be sad. You can Skype him!" 
"Don't worry so much you start to hover. He'll like you more if you don't pester him all the time with
phone calls and texts to check up on him."
"It's a part of life. Get over it."
Yes, people have actually said these things.But, I persist in speaking my truth. I want to be honest. I am going to share my feelings, because I don't want to eat them. And I'm going to be human. Making a
mistake or two or five along the way.  Here's what I want you and all my beloved friends and
relatives to say to me, or to ask me:
1. Say, 'I can see you're hurting and I love you.'
2. Say, 'I hear that you're feeling loss and sadness, how can I support you?'
3. Ask me, 'What do you need, in this moment, to be fully present in your life?'
4. Ask me, 'Would it help if I ...' Cook for you? Come over and go for a walk with you? Help you unpack while you cry? Tell you how it felt when my child left home for college? Give you a hug?
5. Write to me and say, 'Be with yourself. Be with yourself. Be with yourself. Deep down you know how to move through this. You are loved and I support you.'
If I'm being honest, what I really want today is your words of encouragement. Is that too much to ask?  Would it be too much if you asked for that from the people in *your* life?
Join with me and take your self care to the next level. Be with yourself.  Deep down you know how to move through this. You are loved and I support you.
From Small Bites, the email newsletter for the
National Association for Weight Loss Surgery.
Subscribe today and get your F'REE report,
How to Regain-proof Your Weight Loss
Surgery at
(c) 2011  National Association for Weight Loss Surgery,
Inc. All rights reserved.

National Association for Weight Loss Surgery, 609A Piner Road, #319, Wilmington, NC 28409 

Da Plane! Da Plane!

I don't know how many of you have feared flying because of the overwhelming stigma associated with "fitting" into a seat.  Obese people have often taken the wrap if they accidentally "spill over" into someone else's seat where that person could complain and the obese flyer would have to purchase an additional seat.  If that obese person didn't have the cash to shell out for another seat, he/she could end up without a seat on the plane!

At my heaviest of 325, that was a constant worry for me.  It caused me so much anxiety on flights that it just made my trips much less enjoyable.  Airlines really pack the passengers in on the planes these days and I can't tell you how many times I have literally prayed for an upgrade to First Class where I would be more comfortable and not infringe upon anyone else's flying "space".

I just got back from some work travel and I will have you know that I was able to rock the seatbelt with 12 inches of extra space!  That has never ever, never, ever, happened to me.  I was also able to sit in my seat comfortably without touching the arm of the lady sitting next to me.  I was so excited, I wanted to bust!  I immediately texted my hubby before our departure, but he couldn't understand my excitement... after all, it was just an airline seat.

I wanted to share this bit of jubilation with you, my subbies, just to let you know that if you are are on your WLS journey, or are considering the surgery, but have not committed to acting upon it, this goal is so attainable.  I have lost a total of 98lbs and I feel so good.  I get loads of compliments.  My clothes fit so much better, and I have so many more shopping choices.  But I have to tell you that it is the small milestones like this that have made this journey so worthwhile to me.

Please post your comments below and let me know what you think about the whole airline seat ordeal and your feelings or fears of flying -- past or present!  Thanks so much!


Men vs. Women: Who Gains More Weight After Marriage and Divorce?

Give this article a good read if you are contemplating marriage or are already married and are wondering why your waistline is spreading. Good information on habits that women pick up, but not much on lifestyle changes. Decent story nonetheless! Give it a read and post your comments below. Men vs. Women: Who Gains More Weight After Marriage and Divorce?

August 21, 2011

New Beginnings for Junior Diva

Hubby and I dropped off the Junior Diva at her college dorm Friday afternoon.  It was a day that I was excited about, but a little sad, too.  She got busy setting up her room, and we went to the grocery store and bought items to help fill her full-sized fridge.  I never had a full-sized fridge in college, so this was indeed a luxury for me.

She'd given me a list of items to purchase for her, and wow was I surprised when at the top were items like, "strawberries, mandarin oranges, carrots, mini cucumbers, and lean cuisines!"  I am glad she made those choices because it made me feel more comfortable about leaving her.

And that is what it is all about -- leaving her at school to begin her new journey.  Gosh, I was so tempted to call her every five minutes.  Then I wanted to text or Tweet, or Facebook her, but I stopped myself each time.  I want her to have the full college experience and I don't want to be a worry-wart.  Her brother, who is three, keeps asking where is his sister.  I have explained to him several times over the past couple of days, but he doesn't quite understand it yet.  Luckily we have web cams around so we can always skype and get them talking again.

I miss my Junior Diva, but she is off kickin' butt and takin' names!  Best wishes and many blessings, Junior Diva!  I love you!