I’ve hit it! The dreaded STALL. I heard it would happen, I’ve read many posts on the forum about it, but I still don’t get it. I’ve never exercised harder or more regularly than I have the past two months (hardly missing a day), and burning 300-500 calories just in the gym. I eat so little at each meal it’s not funny. With this program, I’ve lost 3 lbs in the last month and have lost nothing for the last two weeks. All those old feelings I used to have of “why can’t I lose weight when I eat so little?” are creeping into my brain again; and that’s when I used to just give up thinking it was hopeless.
But here’s what I have come to learn: It isn’t just calories in, calories out. Sorry to those of you who think it is, it’s not; it wasn’t for my mother, it isn’t for my husband and it’s not for me. We’re all wired differently, and I think I have finally accepted that. My husband is 6 ft tall and weighs more than me… by 2 lbs!!! That’s right, he weighs 153 lbs and although he has to work to be at that weight he eats about 3 x what I am eating in volume; probably around 2500-2800 calories a day. He also runs 3 miles a day (has for years). I’m 5’3″ and weigh 151 lbs, and eat 1200 calories a day and also run/walk 3 miles a day. Go figure.
For 25 years, I felt sorry for myself because I couldn’t eat what other people ate (including my husband, my mother and my best friends, none who were or are heavy). And when I did eat SOME of it, I started packing on the pounds (and continued to do that for many years). Then the more weight that went on, the less I moved, and then I really couldn’t get take it off. I think, for me at least, a lot of my weight issues probably go back to the crap I ate when I was growing up (but I have two sisters and a brother without weight problems) so a lot of it also just has to be how my metabolism works and that I certainly didn’t help it out along the way. At this point, I may have done so much damage to it or it simply is wired in a way, that no matter what I do, I will lose very slowly.
So, like my mother who never exercised, ate junk, and was never sick or fat, I too have an odd metabolism and just need to accept it for what it is and work with it. (Enter WLS which has allowed me to do that!) It’s a lot easier not to get as discouraged when I feel so good about how far I have come; I feel good about being able to work out for a solid hour in the gym. I feel good when I’m shopping and looking in the small and medium sizes and buying things because I need them or really really like them, instead of “Hey! It fits so I’ll buy it!” I feel good when I get dressed because even though I have fewer clothes in my closet, I have more choices because everything fits (or fits better as in the green dress above!). I feel better about everything, really: being in social situations, sex, and just life in general. So even though I am in a stall, I don’t feel like I’m in a hopeless situation anymore.
I think this particular stall is temporary, so I’ll just keep truckin’ on; I’m not in a huge hurry and I am down to my last 10-15 lbs or so that I want to lose, so I’ll be patient. To be honest, it’s so validating; I feel like I want to shout to everyone SEE?????????? I did try to do this without surgery and it was near impossible!!! So many times I was told over and over I could eat 1800 calories a day, take a 30 minute walk and lose 2 lbs a week. HAH!!!
TO TELL OR NOT TO TELL: Speaking of shouting from the rooftops about this surgery, there was a fascinating thread on the Vertical Sleeve Forum a couple of weeks ago of should we tell people or not about having WLS. There must have been over 100 people who commented and as near as I can figure out, it’s split 50/50. I certainly understand it; I personally have chosen to tell my husband, a few close friends and my sister. I am very happy with that decision as it works for me, although like the others, I have become such a supporter of this life-changing option that I also want to tell anyone and everyone who will listen. But the main reason I keep it private is that I don’t want people to think of the surgery every time they see me, and I don’t want to be judged by people who don’t know me (and my metabolism challenges!) or think this surgery is the easy way out. If I had a serious medical condition, I would not share that either, because I think sometimes the condition overshadows you as a total person. For me, I will share with those close to me and that works. But I completely understand others who feel the need and desire to share how these exciting times can be for all of us. I do have to admit, I would love to become a spokesperson for this surgery, and tell people who have tried WW, JC and Nutrisystems that for SOME people, those good programs will never work for you and you are not a failure……and there IS a way!!!
East Hawaii has been magical this past week: perfect blue skies, gentle warm tropical breezes, the beautiful weather people think about when they dream of Hawaii. I’ve been inside quite a bit going through boxes and boxes of things, getting ready for our move. One of my projects is going through photos…..I never have to worry about having enough BEFORE photos…..wow, looking back over the last 10-12 years of photos of me at my heaviest has been very humbling. Why is it that sometimes you can’t see how bad things are until you are out of them? For 10 years at our beautiful home on the ocean (pictured above) I don’t think I ever took a good photo…how could I at 200+ lbs? So one gorgeous day we took a drive to our old place; it was nice to get out and enjoy the outdoors a little and I have to say, it sure feels great to have a photo taken when you’re not worried about how fat you will look!
Hope everyone has a good week; sending lots of aloha from your Hawaii ‘Stall Central’……
A hui hou!
Queen of Crop
MichelleMay 20, 2012
I feel the same way – if I could’ve done this without surgery, I would have, but I couldn’t. I just had surgery this past Monday and couldn’t be happier with my decision! I had been stuck between 274-280 lbs since January even with working out and eating better. I did my 2-week pre-op diet and lost 12.6 lbs – down to 267 the day before surgery. I’ve lost 6.4 lbs this week for a total of 19 lbs in 3 weeks. I could not have done this without surgery!
I’m glad you’re doing so well – even with stalls! I enjoy reading about your adventures!!
JoniI wMay 20, 2012
I’ve been the same weight for 2 wks now and I’m just 4 wks postop! I was just looking at the Hilton Head Change Your Metabolism Diet book because someone mentioned on VSG board that the recipes really fit for us sleevers. I didn’t buy it, but read the intro which sounded exactly like what you are describing!
staceyMay 20, 2012
You look wonderful! Have you thought about upping your calories for a day and not exercising to shock your body out of this stall? Do you think your body is in starvation mode, with all that working out , burning that many calories,(eating 1200 cal, burning what 4-500, 600 at the gym) it sounds like you are not getting enough in.
It’s like your body tells itself to hold on to every little bit for you are not feeding it.
We are the same height and watching you lose had me thinking… I think you look great the weight that you are at. I am 177 and want to go down to 140 but I am reconsidering, you look amazing at 151. Just saying….
Love your blog!!!
queenofcropMay 24, 2012
Hi Stacey! Wow, no, I never thought of upping my calories and not exercising! But I do think my body is wondering what’s going on…..I have stopped exercising on Sundays and going to a yoga class instead……so I’ll see how it goes in an another week or so….today I was 150 so that’s something. I do have to say, I am very happy at this weight and I have no problem if I don’t lose much more. I am now officially in a size 10 and I am buying some really cute clothes that I want to wear for a long time. So even though 150 sounds like a lot to some people, like you, for me, I’m happy. I think if I could lose maybe 5 more lbs and stay there and all my blood work is good, I may just try to maintain for a while.
Thanks as always for your nice posts.
Jane EarnestMay 21, 2012
I am four and half months out and have it a stall – of course it is the one that goes from 201lb so it is more fustrating than any other one I have experienced to date.
I was upset this morning until I read the paper and found out a younger friend of mine passed away – came into work to find out a woman who works for me part time had also passed away over the weekend.
The stall which prevents me from being below 200 suddenly doesn’t seems so bad
queenofcropMay 24, 2012
Wow, I am so sorry for your loss. I don’t know about you, but I feel such a stronger sense of mortality since having the surgery….it’s almost like I don’t want to put anything off; I want to live the fullest life I can RIGHT NOW! And the Life is Short statement really makes much more sense now. And how exciting for you though that in a very short time you will not see that 2 number again! Congratulations!
BrendaMay 21, 2012
I so look forward to your post every Monday morning when I come into work
after Sunday. I think you are a perfect spokesperson for this surgery.
I know I will miss your blog at the end of your year. I hope you find a way to continue. Your advice and your own struggles relate to so many people that I’m sure you don’t even realize it. I still plan to have the surgery the beginning of the year and I would love to stay in touch with you during that time where I’m sure I will have plenty of questions and feelings I will want to share with you. You look fantastic and so happy in your photos.
queenofcropMay 22, 2012
Thanks Brenda…..absolutely, please do stay in touch! I’m not sure how I will end the blog; I enjoy writing it and there never seems to be an end of interesting topics related to this. You can email me anytime at email@example.com And yes, I am very happy; who would have thought that I might be the happiest in my life at 58 years old? So happy you are following the blog now as well as the forum; you will be so prepared by the time you have your surgery! I thought about it, researched it and a few weeks later I had it done!
DanaMay 22, 2012
Another great blog post! Powering through the stalls seems to be one of the biggest challenges for VSG patients. My NUT reminded me that I may go through the three week stall. I’m in my third week but I’m refusing to get on the scale until next week because I really want to see the scale move, even if it’s only a pound. At the beginning, I think it’s so important to see that scale move downwards, even though I know in my head, that the weight has to come off with the healthy choices I’m making, and how little food I eat.
I noticed in your earlier blog posts that you were having a problem with one of your hips. I am as well. Are you still having issues? If not, when did you see some alleviation?
Keep up the great posts! I do also enjoy reading about your adventures in Hawaii. I have to go to Oahu this summer for a business meeting. I’ve been a few times to both Oahu and Maui but never the Big Island. Would love to some time. I think all of Hawaii is beautiful.
queenofcropMay 22, 2012
Mahalo for your nice comments; I’m so impressed that you are not getting on the scale!!! Wow; it’s the first thing I do every day. But I don’t get discouraged easily and I’m at a weight now that if I don’t lose another ounce, I’ll be fine with that. Thanks also for asking about my hip; in fact I’m disappointed that it still bothers me and I am taking a series of acupuncture treatments for it. I had my 3rd one today and I think it’s helping. It certainly isn’t nearly as bad as it was last year though!
Please check back this coming Sunday because I am going to write more about that; in fact, I’ll be writing about all of my body parts!!!
The Big Island is very different than the other islands; especially East Hawaii (the Hilo side). Not as touristy and very naturally beautiful. I hope you can experience it some day.
A hui hou