Sunday, September 26, 2010

Heading To Paradise

Strangely enough, the past three years I have jetted away after AFL grand final weekend, and this year is no different. First was Tokyo, then Gold Coast, last year was Cairns and now this Monday I am going to Bali. The last three years have all been for work, so this year will be so much more awesome because I am going for fun!

Some of you might remember the gorgeous girl behind the (now defunct) blog, Chips, Choc Milk and Chin Ups, she lost a stack of weight and and looked smoking hot (and she still does). Anyway, she is marrying her lovely beau in Bali next week and I am lucky enough to be invited to their special day. Even more exciting, I am going with B and we are meeting Amanda and her boy over there. I just love those guys so much and I know we are going to have a blast. I just feel so sorry for B having to sit next to me on the plane, I am going to annoy the hell out of her with my excited chatter.

We have an amazing week planned that involves shopping, swimming, cooking class, massages, mojitos and, of course, the nuptials of the bride and groom. I'm thinking it'll be just like Eat, Pray, Love, except with less prayer and more cocktails...

So my bag is packed and I have bought my insect repellant, hand sanitiser and Imodium that was recommended to me. Now I just need to slap on some fake tan and shave all my 'areas' and I am ready to go.

Stay tuned for photos, but here is a sneak peak of where we'll be...

Friday, September 24, 2010

Behaving Badly

Over the past few weeks I have reverted back to some pretty bad binging behaviour. I am really not a hundred per cent sure what has triggered this and it really could be a number of things. I have been putting a lot of pressure on myself to lose weight and that has meant being hungry a lot and exercising a lot. Teamed with a boring and unfulfilling job, having no money and this cold weather, I have been using food to fill a void. Unfortunately it's not working and I obviously just feel worse.

I want to feel better and I know I can get on top of it again and this is how I plan to do it:

  • Get a fill in my lap band- booked for 16th October
  • Hide the scales for a while- they just mess with my head
  • Only do exercise I enjoy- more fresh air, less gym sessions
  • Eat when I am hungry- no starving myself
  • Focus on the good things in my life- I am very blessed and I need to remember that
  • Stop comparing myself to other people- No good can come of this, we are all different
  • Appreciate how far I have come- I have lost over 45 kilos, I am not a failure
OK, I just need to take a deep breath and try to re-group. I already feel better just knowing that I have a plan.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

How Things Have Changed

I was lucky enough to skip out on work for a few hours on Monday and have lunch with The Candid Bandit and The Deluded Princess. TCB had the lap band 6 months ago and has lost 28 kilos and TDP is shrinking away for her wedding next year and has lost 38 kilos. I think all our minds were a bit blown and we saw this photo taken on Monday and how much we have all shrunk over the past 18 months. 

l-r: me, TCB, TDP 

I have just worked out that collectively we have lost 113 kilos (248 lbs). I am so freaking proud of us!!!

For comparisons sake, take a look of the awful photo of TCB and me taken on New Years Eve 2008. I wasn't even at my absolute biggest here and some of my body is cropped out of the photo!

See the look on my face, I knew this was going to be a terrible photo...


 Here is one more I just found on facebook taken that same night. Man I remember how embarrassed I was when I saw those photos.

I vividly remember talking to TCB on the balcony of the bar we were drinking in, right before the New Year was rung in, and we were saying how much our lives would change if we got the lap band and how wonderful things would be. I think we were right!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Updated Progress Pictures

I thought it might be time to update my progress pictures and see if there is any difference. I have lost 12 kilos since my last pictures and I thought there would be more of a difference, but I guess the changes are more subtle these days. It looks much better when I compare my first and last picture! 

Unfortunately I have moved house since I last took progress pictures and I didn't think the new tenants would want me to barge in and stand in front of the pantry in my trackies and a singlet top with a camera. I also wish I could go back in time and choose a more flattering outfit for these photos, but I knew I'd always have black trackie pants and a white singlet top no matter how fat or skinny I am.

Fingers crossed the next 10 kilos comes off my belly!

Click to enlarge- if you dare!

1. 129.7 kilos (285 lbs)
2. 107.1 kilos (235 lbs)
3. 94.8 kilos (208 lbs)
4. 82.8 kilos (182 lbs)

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I don't have many photos of myself from the past because, like any fat girl, I avoided the camera like the plague. While I was unpacking my new house I came across an old photo album of when I was 18 (11 years ago) and was in my first year of university. I had recently lost quite a bit of weight and was feeling great and having the time of my life. Looking back on the photos now, I wasn't quite as thin as I remember being, amazing what the confidence of being 18 will do for your head! I am not quite sure what I weighed here because I didn't have any scales (my how things have changed), but I have a vague memory of weighing myself once at my grandparents and seeing 90 kilos.

The photos are blurry because they were taken in the olden days before we had digital cameras and because I don't have a scanner I had to photograph the photos. Yeah, I am great with technology like that...

Also, remember this was 1999, the fashions were bad and the eyebrows were thin!

Just a night in drinking with friends, back when I drank VB and painted my nails blue...

I have no idea why someone would have taken this photo, maybe I was talking to someone exciting? 

I cannot get this photo to turn the right way around. I think we were doing a centurion with cask wine that night. Classy.

At a 60's party, I just remember being relieved that I was able to get a costume to fit at the op shop.

I had just crashed my scooter into this tree while flying down a really steep hill. You can't see, but my legs are all bleeding and I am crying/laughing. I had no fear back then, I thought I was invincible!

Me at a ball, and yes, I have spilt alcohol all over my dress.

So seeing these photos makes me realise that I am probably smaller now than I was back then. I don't know why I remember myself as being so much thinner, maybe because I was happy and I felt good, so it just didn't matter. It goes to show that I really don't need to aim to be a particular weight or size, I just need to get to a place where I feel good in my body.

Here is a photo taken of me last night for comparisons sake, it wasn't meant to see the light of day because I was only taking it to see if my new jacket fit. Conclusion: no it does not fit. I also changed my hair after seeing this photo, digital cameras are better than mirrors for checking yourself out before you go out.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Mind Games

I have been needing a fill quite badly for a while now, but it’s hard to get time off work when you have a new job, but I bit the bullet, and organised to leave work slightly early for an appointment. I have to say that I left that appointment reeling and my mind has been going around and around in circles ever since.

I have done quite well with my weight loss over the past 4-6 weeks and the doctor I saw (not my usual doctor) was happy to see my progress, but I explained that I was struggling a lot with hunger and that the only way I was losing weight was by ‘dieting’ and exercising a lot, but that I wasn’t sure how much longer I could keep that up. I certainly didn’t get to 130 kilos by being good at dieting! I could see right away that she didn’t believe me and seemed to think I was trying to get an over-fill in an attempt to lose weight faster. She lectured me on the dangers of being over-filled and I completely agreed, but when I can eat a whole bloody steak sandwich and still be looking for more food- I am not over-filled!

Then she asked what my goal weight is and I said that I wasn’t too sure, but I was aiming for 65 kilos (143 lbs). She was surprised and said that I really shouldn’t aim any lower than 75 kilos (165 lbs) and that at 85 kilos (187 lbs) I had already exceeded the weight loss goal they had for me. I was quite shocked to hear this, as no one has ever discussed weight loss goals with me.

I told her that I had been overweight my entire life, so I have no idea what my goal weight should be, maybe I will get to 75 kilos and feel like that is a healthy weight, but for now my focus is on 65 kilos. Her argument was that 65 kilos would be a healthy weight for other women my age and height (5 ft, 5 in), but because of how much I used to weigh, it was unrealistic for me. So I left the appointment feeling quite despondent. At my current weight I still can’t fit into ‘normal’ sized clothing, I am still at risk for health problems, I am still struggling with my fitness and I am still uncomfortable in my body. So it seems bizarre to me that I should be thinking about finishing with losing weight.

I know it is my personal choice if I decide to continue with losing more weight, but the problem is that now I am second guessing myself. At first when I left the appointment I was angry and feeling more motivated than ever to get to 65 kilos. A few hours later my mind started playing tricks on me... Suddenly the thought of not having to ‘diet’ anymore sounded really nice. I maintained my weight very easily for 4 months of this year and it was a pleasure being able to eat whatever I felt like, in moderation of course, and not gain any weight. I kept active, but only doing activities I enjoyed, not doing mindless gym sessions. So I started to think about how much nicer life would without having to think about losing weight. I could just be normal again.

Now all I can think about is if I should slow down the weight loss and think about moving to maintenance mode in the next 5-10 kilos. I know deep down that I want to keep going with this weight loss and I am not where I need to be just yet. I just wish the temptation wasn’t put in front of me because it has completely messed with my head!

Monday, September 06, 2010

The Loose Skin Issue

I know one of the things that a lot of overweight people are fearful of when they think about losing weight is loose skin. I personally couldn't give a shit if I am left with loose skin because it means that the fat is gone. It still astounds me a little when some people say they don't want to get a lap band or lose weight because they are scared of having loose skin. Whether you are fat or thin, you still have the same amount of skin, it's just whether it is filled with fat or not that is the difference.

Us lucky apple shaped girls are more likely to have a problem with loose skin and I am finding that it is starting to become a bit of an issue for me. My skin is certainly not 'loose' yet (still too much fat in it), but it is very floppy and soft and there is NO way it is going back into place. I always knew this would be the case for me because of my body shape and if I ever get to a healthy weight I will probably have a tummy tuck, but that is a long way away.

The reason it is impacting me now is because it is making exercise difficult. Be prepared to spit your coffee out at your computer screen in laughter when I tell you the following embarrassing stories...

I recently decided to try and jog on the treadmill at the gym and not once, but twice in a 5 minute period, as I was jogging my stomach flopped up and hit the emergency stop button on the treadmill and I almost went over the top of the treadmill. So I decided to put my running career on hold.

Then just last week, the weather was bad and I didn't want to leave the house to go to the gym, so I decided to finally try the 30 day shred DVD I bought ages ago and AJ did it with me (well what else is he going to do when my fat arse is jumping about in front of the TV?). So AJ notices that I am doing squats when we are supposed to be doing star jumps (or jumping jacks as Jillian calls them) and he calls me out for cheating. So I explain that when I try to do a star jump my stomach is almost hitting me in the face, so I have to do squats instead. Of course when we realised how hilarious/gross that was we went into fits of giggles and couldn't even move for ages.

I am finding that this issue is holding me back from moving ahead with my exercise so I knew I had to come up with something. Luckily I remembered what a blogger friend (Cinders I think?) had told me what ex-Biggest Loser host, Ajay Rochester, did while she exercised (before she had the tummy tuck). She wore her bathers while exercising. Brilliant. So on Sunday morning I put on my brand new sports bra, my bathers and my gym gear and decided to give jogging another try.

It worked perfectly, it was almost like I had no excess stomach at all and it all held perfectly in place. I was able to give running a proper try and my fat stomach didn't hold me back at all. I was able to run about 1/4 of the 4.2 km track and I plan to be able to jog the entire track by the time I turn 30 in December. OK, that doesn't even sound real to me that I could jog 4.2 kms... I havea lot of work to do between now and then!

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Cooking Up A storm

One of the things I missed the most when I was travelling was good home cooking. Since I have moved into my new place I have spent any moment of free time cooking lovely home cooked meals. Here are some of my staples, some of which I cook on a weekly basis, and they are all lap band friendly!

Sorry I haven't given exact measure on things, I really just add what I have in my fridge and I often mix and match ingredients depending on what I have. Also, sorry for any mistakes, this is just off the top of my head. I don't have the attention span to follow recipes!

My recipes are not fancy, they are just simple and quick week night meals using normal ingredients that I tend to have in my fridge and cupboard. I love reading about what other people are eating, so I hope this gives other people some ideas too!

Coriander= cilantro
Capsicum= peppers
Zucchini= courgette

Red Lentil Soup

375 g red lentils
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 red capsicum, diced 
1 bag fresh baby spinach leaves
2 medium zucchinis, diced
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 sticks celery, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
1 x 450 g can condensed tomato soup
500 ml chicken stock
1 tbs coriander paste

Place lentils in a large saucepan and cover with water
Cook the lentils until soft (do not allow the lentils to dry out)
Fry all the vegetables (except spinach) in olive until soft, then add to the lentils
Fry the chorizo, slice and then add to the lentils and vegetables
Add chicken stock, tomato soup, spinach and coriander and simmer until soup has thickened
Season to taste

*I have added chorizo or bacon when I have it for extra taste

Vegetable Curry

1 tbs olive oil
4 tbs Pataks chicken masala curry paste
400g canned chopped tomatoes
1 onion, finely sliced
Cauliflower, cut into florets
2 Carrots, sliced
2 zucchinis, finely diced
Green beans, halved
1 red capsicum, diced
3 potatoes, cubed
Baby spinach
Pita bread
1 tbs chopped coriander
Low-fat sour cream, to serve

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat
Add onion and cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes until softened
Add curry paste and cook, stirring, for a further 1-2 minutes
Add tomatoes, vegetables and 200ml water, bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until vegetables are tender
Add spinach and coriander and stir through until spinach is wilted
Warm pita bread in the oven
Serve topped with a tablespoon of light sour cream stirred through and warm pita bread 

*You could add lamb, beef or chicken and just use whatever vegetables you have in the fridge

Sausage and Potato Quiche

1 tsp olive oil
6 eggs
½ cup of low fat milk
2 lamb and fetta sausages
2 medium potatoes, sliced
1 red onion, sliced
Fresh baby spinach
1 tbs basil paste
1/2 cup of low fat cheese

Heat the oil in a saucepan and cook the red onion over low heat until caramelized
Add the spinach until wilted and take off the heat
Boil the potato slices until just soft (salt the water)
Cook the sausages in a saucepan and slice thinly
Beat the eggs and milk together with a fork in a bowl until mixed
Add the onion, spinach, sausages and basil and stir until mixed
Place potatoes into a lightly greased pie dish
Pour mixture over the top of potatoes
Sprinkle the top of quiche with cheese
Bake in 180 degrees oven for 25 minutes

*I think this would be awesome with some hunks of brie in the mixture before baking, but that is not very healthy of me!


1 tsp olive oil
1 chicken breast, diced finely
1 red capsicum, diced finely
1 red onion, diced finely
Spicy salsa
Light sour cream
Light cheese
Light tortillas
1 packet of burrito seasoning

Coat chicken in burrito seasoning (add chilli powder for extra spice)
Heat oil in saucepan and fry chicken
Add capsicum and onion and cook until soft
Place a couple of tablespoons of mixture onto half the tortilla
Add salsa on top of the chicken mixture
Add sprinkling of cheese
Fold tortilla over mixture and close
Place tortillas on oven tray (or use flat toasted sandwich maker grill)
Bake in 180 degree oven until golden (approx. 5-10 mins)
Serve will tablespoon of light sour cream


1 tsp olive oil
Pita bread
Tomato paste
Light cheese
Fresh baby spinach
Basil paste
1 red onion, sliced
1 red capsicum, diced
Black pitted kalamatta olives, halved
2 lamb and fetta sausages

Heat olive oil in a saucepan and cook onion slowly until caramelized
Add capsicum to saucepan until soft and take off heat
Cook sausages in saucepan and then slice thinly
Spread a tablespoon of tomato paste on pita bread
Add a teaspoon of basil paste and spead out over pizza base
Sprinkle pizza base with cheese
Place a handful of fresh baby spinach on pizza base
Add cooked onion, capsicum and sausage to the pizza base
Add halved olives to pizza base
Cook in 180 degree oven for 10 minutes

* I used lamb and fetta sausages, but just use any meat or none at all. I think this would be even yummier with some goats cheese sprinkled over the top too.

A few other things I have been cooking lately:

* Red wine and beef casserole in the slow cooker
* Chow Mein
* Lentil patties
* Sausage and egg burritos
* Fish wraps
* Barbecued Portugese chicken thighs with grilled corn 
* Chili con carne

Friday, September 03, 2010

Coming Clean Part II

A couple of weeks ago I decided it was time I should tell one of my close girlfriends about getting the lap band. So I realised that now almost all my closest friends know, but I just had one more friend I wanted to tell. I actually wasn't too nervous about telling her because she is quite an open minded person and we both love talking about any topics regarding health, fitness and weight loss. She is thin, but constantly battles the desire to get off 5 kilos, but she has certainly never been overweight.

So we were having dinner and drinks one night after work and I decided to just tell her about the lap band. I was a little apprehensive, but I was pretty sure she'd be cool with it and she was. She was excited and all 'go you' and 'i'm so happy for you' (she's American so she's enthusiastic like that). She was interested and wanted to know all about it and seemed to be really fascinated by the whole process. I did mention that the main reason I hadn't told people was because of the shame I carried about having surgery to control my eating and she couldn't believe I would feel ashamed and saw it as no different than having any other kind of surgery.

It was so wonderful to be open about my surgery and not feel like I constantly have to hide it from a good friend. It's especially great because now I don't have to worry about the way I eat in front of her or if something gets stuck. I am still not going to be announcing the surgery to people at work, extended family or acquaintances, but now almost all my close friends know and while I feel slightly exposed, I am mostly relieved.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

September Weigh In

September 1st Weigh In: 85.5 kilos (188.1 lbs)
Weight Lost In August: 3.6 kilos (7.9 lbs)
Total Weight Lost:
44.2 kilos (97.2 lbs)

This has been a crazy month because I moved house and started a new job and sometimes it was hard to focus on the whole idea of weight loss when so much other stuff was going on. Nevertheless, I worked extra hard this month to get myself back into routine after living like a nomad for so long.

I do have to say I am a bit disappointed in my weight loss this month, a week and a half ago I was half a kilo lighter and for no conceivable reason my weight has jumped back up and won't budge. I have been almost 100% with my eating this month, I've only had one or two treats for the whole month and I kept up with my exercise, so I was expecting big results. 

I think what is most disappointing is that eating healthy and exercising felt harder than ever this month, my mind and body did not want to participate, but I pushed on. Anyway, I really don't want to dwell on the disappointments because I am still extremely happy with my progress so far and I know I'll get there.

I have to say that there is not a day that goes by when I am not so incredibly thankful that I have been able to lose so much weight. Every single day I find new things I can do, that I wasn't able to do when I was at my biggest. Every single day I find that I can do more than I ever thought I could. Every single day I am grateful to have a body that is strong and fit enough to support me through everything life throws at me.

Last weekend I was at the footy at the MCG and I really started to realise how different every day events are when you are not morbdily obese anymore. I remember how much fear I used to have about doing simple things like going to the footy. It would take so much extra planning and I would have so much anxiety that I never enjoyed myself. A few examples of how different life is 44 kilos lighter...

* We were running late and ran half way around the massive ground trying to find our gate.
* I easily slid through the turnstile to get into the ground.
* I bolted up the 6 flights of stairs to our seats.
* I could comfortably fit my bottom in the tiny stadium seats.
* I didn't have to make sure I got the aisle seat so that I had enough space.
* I could go to the bathroom or to get a drink without fear of needing to take the stairs again.
* I didn't flinch at the idea of walking back into the city instead of getting the tram home.

I can't ever state enough how grateful I am to have the life I have now. It really was worth all the blood, sweat and tears.