Follow Me In My Determination To Change

I thought if I shared my journey I would be more likely to succeed.

Monday 27 December 2010

Christmas on a Diet

This was actually not too bad a deal. I had a small plate for Christmas lunch and didn't even finish it I was full. Late afternoon I did pick at cheese for a while but again not too much, I did feel uncomfortable for a while a definite reminder I can't just keep eating.

I had another try at champagne and failed, so I'll stay off that a while longer. I had lovely walks although no true exercise and on boxing day the best walk ever with friends on the beach.

On Christmas Eve I went for an Indian Curry with my friend, her husband and our daughters, it was the best.  I am very lucky.

My Best Christmas Present

My last posting I had reached a plateau and was miserable. But I did start the exercise and last week I was able to stop the iron tablets as my blood count was back to normal (but I still feel tired), but finally two days before Christmas I got back on the scales. I hadn't weighed myself for almost 2 weeks so was hoping there would be some movement and there was. 2.5Kg. I was so happy. Then yesterday I weighed myself again and I had hit the magic 97Kg. Why magic? Well it is 21kg (half of 42) and my halfway point. I am half way there.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me this far and keep going I need to. I spent Christmas with two very special friends both of whom have achieved their target weight this way. I was much bigger than them to start with but I know with every one's help I can do it.

Wednesday 22 December 2010

Plenty of Exercise This Weekend

Today I woke up and made myself leave bed within 20 minutes of the alarm going off. I was meant to be getting away for Christmas today but the snow is getting in the way of that.

Yesterday I began with my 5 miles on the cross trainer and then spent 2 hours digging a path for the car so that today I could drive off to chuch and then onto the airport. Today the airports were not giving much away at 6.30am so I did another 5 miles on the cross trainer and then went outside. More snow had fallen over night but not too much, I reckoned.

So when the doctor says, "have you exercised" I can say yes.

Friday 17 December 2010

Not Happy At All

I have said it twice but being at home does not help me. I know I am not perfect but I have tried and in the last 3 weeks I have only lost 2Kg and that includes the big fat zero I have lost this week.

I have started the exercise and I know that will take a while to kick in, and I am sure iron tablets don't help (no need to go into details here), but I am disappointed. Week 9 and no weight loss.

My normal reaction to disappointment would be to go eat something, that isn't going to help either. So I have to 'suck it up' and not lose heart. I reached my mini target of 100Kg and then have just stuck there.

Please Santa, motivation in my stocking.

Thursday 16 December 2010

A Week At Home

Most people I know think my biggest challenge is travelling and living in hotels all the time. WRONG, my biggest challenge is being at home.

There are just 12 steps from my PC in my study to my fridge. If I am interacting with others, i.e. a teleconference or a webcast or even just an active email or IM trail then I am OK, but I am also a procrastinator and a great way to do that is to have a quick cup of tea, and how better to spend the time whilst the kettle boils but to check out the fridge?

So this week i have tried hard. i have filled the freezer with ice pops, < 20 Kcal and a great stop gap, and trying to not eat more than every 3 hours.

I have managed to start each day with the cross trainer so better than nothing.

Saturday 11 December 2010

The Workout Begins

So the doctor says I have to exercise. So today I dragged the cross trainer into the house and that was easier than dragging myself onto it, but I did and managed a whole 6km, but it was a good start and lets see how I manage tomorrow. I need the weight loss to speed back up again if I am going to be as he wants in 4 months.

I am at home for a whole week so should get me into a sort of routine. At least I don't have to worry about pigging out over Christmas.

All Systems Go

Had my 6 week check up with the surgeon, except I was two weeks late due to me being away with Work.

The doctor was pleased I have lost 18Kg and that means i have made my 100Kg, my first goal! Whoppee!

However he wants another 18 - 22Kg by the time I go back at 6 months. So it seems he wants a little less than I had thought but I will stick with the 42Kg for now (like the number) and see how I do.

The nutritionist was also pleased and gave me info on my body fat. I started with 51.8% and have a goal of 25%. At this check up i was 45% so a good start.

however doctor said I have to exercise hard now, at least 3 times a week in the gym or swimming.

Saturday 4 December 2010

Tired and Emotional

Last week was my busiest week of the year. I should have been on a real high, it was the first time most people had seen me since the op, and I felt I looked great.

There was a lot going on and I was tired, and it got to me, and I let it. Each morning the alarm went off early, I couldn't get myself out of bed and I just lay there worrying about the day ahead. Then I got stressed and simply didn't enjoy it like I should have.

I have great friends and they got me through it, and as the last day approached I thought I would have my first drink to celebrate. Disaster. One sip of champagne and the bubbles stuck in my throat, so I tried a brandy, I could suck the ice but the brandy stayed on the top like oil on water. These were both on empty stomachs so later after food I tried red wine, which was the most successful but not really, and finally Guinness (it contains iron, it should have been medicinal); another failure.

Basically I was just tired and it set off a vicious circle, hopefully I can relax and get past this, it wasn't me and I ended up in tears one night, when surrounded by friends. I am not concerned, I know it will pass, just want it to be quick. I am a worrier but stress is a step too far.

And to those wonderful friends, who got me through it. Thank You.

Sorry for the Slow Update

Sorry it is so long since my last update. Thanks to all those who sent me emails of encouragement, and thanks Tigger (whoever you are) for the comment. Good Luck to you.

So after my fail weekend I lost just a 1/2 Kg, but that is OK, if I had lost more I would think it wasn't an issue. This last week however I have lost another Kg and am now less than 1Kg off 100Kg.

I see the doctor on Thursday which will  be 8 weeks so I hope he will be pleased with me and then I get a real target and I have to start the serious exercise.

Thursday 25 November 2010

Fail, Fail, Fail

On of the factors for this route to weight loss is my lifestyle. When I am away from home I eat food that is too rich and when I am at home I eat the right food but far, far too much of it.

If this was me, I would be happy
So now nearly 6 weeks post op, I can tolerate most food but still just a little at a time. This is my busiest period of the year and I have simply failed in my effort to be good.

Last week I worked 2 days at home plus the weekend, and still vsiited the fridge every hour or so. No big deal as it only contained cheese triangles, activa drinks and very small portions of chili but it is habit and I wasn't even hungry. This week I have been at a conference and hardly ate at all, and then practically had to drag myself to bed at 7.30pm.

Big Failure, must do better

Saturday 20 November 2010

First Exercise

Six week after surgery I am supposed to start real exercise. I am in the sixth week, so not quite there yet but today I decided to cycle to the village to post some letters. It is only 2 miles there and back but there is a hill at my end.

It was harder than I expected and I couldn't tackle anything that needed me to work the stomach muscles but I did it, just had to walk up the hill bit.

So the exercise will have to start with getting fit first. still you have to start somewhere and I enjoyed the fresh air.

I Can't wake up in the Mornings!!!!!!!!

I have been on the iron supplements for a week, and yes they are helping. I am able to stay up and function later than I was but still tucked up in my bed by 10.30 each evening. The issue I have is getting up in the mornings.  I know that to many of you that is normal, but not for me. I am an early person, and do most of my work, and defiantly my best work, early in the day. Now the only thing I do well first thing is hit the 'snooze' button on the alarm clock. This might not seem a big deal, and you may just say 'take it easy, don't worry', but you see I do worry, I am a worrier.

My biggest issue is flying, I do a lot of flying, most of it is domestic travel and should be less stressful, but in the last few weeks, I haven't been able to sleep, which I crave, because I am worrying too much that I won't wake up when it is time for my flight. Yesterday my flight home was at 7am, so I set the alarm for 5am, but was awake from 3.30am making sure I didn't hit that snooze button. Just to make sure I did wake up, I also had my iPhone set (twice), the TV alarm and a hotel 'early morning call'.

So I need the tiredness to get packing, so I can go back to being alert the minute the alarm rings, and tick that worry off my list.

Almost at a Special place

Week 5 over, in some ways it has gone fast, in others it seems such a long time ago; but now 5 weeks since I had my operation and 7 since i started the weight loss. as you know my target is to drop 42 Kg and it is going well, but small incremental targets are also important. If we talk in terms of my food mountain I am working on a bag of flour a week, i.e 1.5kg or just over 3lb.

This week I have done it again and the official weigh in is 102.5Kg but that says to me that in less than 2 weeks I will go under 100Kg and that is something i would dream about. Still a long, long way (bad pun) to go, but a very important milestone.

Monday 15 November 2010

Finally Weight Loss in Pictures

I have promised this since the beginning but I have been too tired, but I had enough energy today for a to-do list and even got a few things ticked off.

This was the 42Kg I have set myself as a target.

Remember the weeks mentioned include the 2 weeks pre op liver diet

After 4 weeks I had lost 10.5Kg - one quarter

After 6 weeks 14Kg - one third

Still have a long way to go, 2 thirds or 28Kg but it looks good

Saturday 13 November 2010

Weigh In at 4 Weeks Post Op

Just under 104 Kg, 14Kg off or one third of my target! 4 weeks post op and 6 weeks after the start of the pre op diet.

This is good, still loosing even though I feel like I am eating all the time. I am eating every two hours and feel as if I never stop. I know the portions are not very big but I do feel as if it is all I am doing..... eating.

I am not doing any exercise yet, except walking. I can't do anything until the doctor gives me the all clear at about 6 weeks. However I do still have that little pain in my side but not as often, and I think it is mainly when I have been driving or sitting very low.

So everything is on track and I am getting there slowly, just what I want .

Taking Food Seriously

So today, I decided to take the food unit counting a bit more seriously. I am at home for a few days so thought I would cook a few meals properly.

I cooked traditional Irish vegetable Soup with a little chicken. Chicken in Piri Piri Sauce and Chili Con Carne; and whilst I had the oven on I baked a potato.

Then when it was all cooked I bagged it all up for the fridge and freezer. When your portions are as small as I am eating the food goes a long way.

Doesn't sound too exciting does it? But if you know me, you will know how unlike me this is. So I made a real effort and hope I benefit from it.

I Am Not The Problem

I thought I was going to blog everyday, I thought I would be on the scales every five minutes, and I thought I would have the most organised diet of any post op patient.

I was wrong, 4 weeks in and it is all I can do to finish the work day, all the things I do outside have been relegated in favour of sleep or simply doing nothing. In a previous post I went to the doctor and he said it was me being inpatient. But I have had surgery before and bounced right back so why not this time?

I did persuade him to take my blood and test to see if there was a problem, and yesterday I got a call to say, yes I do have an iron deficiency and that means the oxygen isn't getting around my body properly and yes it makes you tired. In a way I am really pleased, it means I can take an iron supplement for a few weeks and I will be OK. It is not simply me being impatient.

I can't blame it all on people not taking me seriously. I was very ill in hospital and on the last day they did say if my blood count was not good enough they would give me a blood transfusion for this very reason. however on that last day it was fine, so I got away with it. They did say to have my blood tested when the stitches came out but I forgot the paperwork on the day and they couldn't do it. I popped back into the hospital a few days later and they said I looked so much better so not to worry. perhaps if I had done it properly we would have known earlier I needed a little help.

So no big deal, I will be fine soon, and with some more energy.

Monday 8 November 2010

Doing As You Are Told!

At 2 weeks in, I thought I was great, weight was falling off and I was getting back to normal, apart from the being tired.

I went to the doctor last Thursday, my 3 week point and he said all was fine. He told me I needed to rest more and I have tried a little, but I think I have been a little too ambitious.

Over the weekend I had a pain every time I stood up, and I have to say I was getting worried. At one point yesterday my daughter thought I should go back to the hospital, but there was no ongoing pain just a sudden sharp pain that soon passed.

However today I have not had the pain, although I have been moving gingerly. Perhaps I do need to take things slower and not be in such a rush to be back to normal. I have been through too much to get it wrong now.

More About The Operation

I can't tell you how much the hospital has been good to me. The doctors made everything clear and always had time to answer questions. My surgeon Mr Michael Van den Bossche is just excellent.

You can read about the clinic here but the case studies here don't show my procedure, the gastric sleeve although they do talk about it.

Thursday 4 November 2010

Three Weeks Post Op

Three weeks today since the op and a quick check up with my local doctor. He says I am doing really well and the picture of health. so healthy he let me have my flu jab today.

I changed my Lansoprazole tablets - melt in the mouth - disgusting strawberry - makes me gag, for beautiful capsules. need to take these for a few months till the stomach heals completely.

I complained about being tired and he told me that was normal, but my lifestyle isn't, and prescribed time out at least twice a day.  He took a blood test for my benefit but doesn't expect any issues.

The nurses were full of questions neither had ever had a patient with this specific procedure before.

And best of all - weight is now -12.5Kg - just 29.5Kg to go!

Tuesday 2 November 2010

Back to Work

Today was my first day back at work. I was in London and had my laptop which I am sure got heavier as the day went on. I think I need to change to a wheelie laptop bag tomorrow.

I also thought I would walk from Baker Street to Piccadilly which was about 1.5 miles but oh my, did it tire me out.

However the biggest issue of the day logistically was food. Dinner last night was fine, Sainsburys had hot food and I had chili and rice although I hate to throw away food, it was far, far too much. I had yogurts for breakfast, then a milky coffee for a snack, soup at lunchtime and then another yogurt for the next snack. Then I had to wait till I got home for some fish. I need to plan better when I am on the road for these last 3 weeks of the post op diet.

So finally I am back in my own house. tonight I will be in my own bath and then my own bed. Heaven.

I am so tired.

However I also have to say thank you to my daughter, my extended family in Guernsey and my friends in Denmark, who looked after me and made sure my first few weeks were comfortable and relaxing.

Sunday 31 October 2010

Bored Now

Apart from being ill and then just so tired, all I have had to worry about is what to eat. You start with a very strict diet of pureed food and then slowly reintroduce other consistencies until at about 6 weeks you can eat anything (just less of it). However you do need to make sure you have enough units of protein, carbohydrates, fruit, vegetable and calcium.

At the moment (about 2 ½ weeks) my stomach is still healing, and so you feel full even quicker, and if you eat too much you feel bloated and full. The hospital say use a ramekin dish as a portion and that is fine in the house, but in a restaurant, it is hard to tell how much of the tureen of soup served is enough. On both occasions this weekend, (once at a dinner where I was served soup and the other 199 guests sent to a self service buffet), and again yesterday, I have eaten too much. Being full and uncomfortable after soup is not something I expected.

Apart from the liquorice I have been very good. I have tried to introduce other things but am not as patient as I think I should be. I am also learning, like the fact that low fat cheese does not melt, it simply becomes plastic. I can laugh but in itself it is another good lesson, I don’t need to eat processed so called diet products, I can eat the real thing, now the portion size is smaller.

I have also developed an affinity with babies; this pureed stuff is not very exciting at all. Take a lovely meal of new potatoes, gorgeous ham, tomatoes and cheese and it looks like something regurgitated. 

I also need to learn that I can’t drink (even water) at the same time as eating yet. What I need to learn first is patience; roll on 6 weeks.  All moaning aside, I do feel better and my skin is less dry already. 

And the big rest is now over, back to work on Tuesday, where I will juggle food unit counting between all the catching up.

Friday 29 October 2010

First Slip - oops

I am feeling so much better. I am still feeling tired but generally great. Wednesday I left Guernsey where I spent my first 10 days. I was really pampered, looked after and had a great time. I was able to walk everyday, the weather was in the main sunny but breezy autumn days, and I even got to walk across my favourite beach.

I took the short flight to Southampton and spent a day with my daughter. I went back to the hospital to get some paperwork and they were so pleased with me I didn’t even have to have the follow up blood test they had previously suggested. I even drove which was a little naughty, you are supposed to wait to the 2 week mark and this was the day before.

Thursday I drove to Heathrow where I met a great friend and travelled with him to Denmark where I am now for the weekend. It is a big occasion for his company and I wanted to be part of the Celebrations. I will be good and I know I won’t be eating all the food, drinking all the wine and beer but I will be amongst friends and marking the event.

However last night I slipped up. In Scandinavia a favourite sweet is liquorice pipes. I remember these from when I was a child in the UK and last night as I sat around a table with friends they were all eating them. I was so tempted and thought perhaps I could just suck one, and then perhaps chew it into lots of little bits. Well let me tell you it was a definite lesson on my limits. It went down, but then repeated all night and left me with a horrible overeating uncomfortable feeling. I won’t be doing that again, although perhaps if I had washed it down with the whisky everyone else had?

It was a good lesson and hopefully I will learn.

Tuesday 26 October 2010

It Is All About The Numbers

So I need to loose 42Kg, I have already explained that as an 'almost' geek, 42 is a very important number.

I intend to create a graph of my progress and update every 1 or 2 weeks. This will also be accompanied by a 'food mountain' photo.

So I had 2 weeks on the pre-op - liver reduction diet and I lost 5Kg I was ecstatic. It is not yet 2 weeks since my operation but I ave in to my friend badgering me and weighed myself on Monday. I had lost another 5.5 Kg so a total of 10.5Kg.

10.5 is exactly 25% of 42! Now I don't want you to get excited, I am very big so the first weight will always come of quicker, also I had a little bit removed, and I doubt I ate much the first few days. So this weight loss is not indicative, but it is encouraging and a great boost.

For those of you who know me through work, I may be 25% there but it is a bit like 'Half Way to Fusion' :o)

If I lose an average of 1.5Kg a week from now on which is achievable then it will take me 21 weeks (half THE ANSWER) to get to my target. That takes me till the end of March. Now again this is my target and the doctor may have something else in mind when I see him for my follow up.

But for me, my friends who like Math(s) and for all the geeks out there, the numbers are in my favour.

Monday 25 October 2010

On The Mend

Gosh, didn't realise how much this would take it out off me. I am recovering at my friend's in Guernsey and they have been fantastic. 

I am looking at the big picture, I have been fat for a long time and the damage just got worse. Today I went for a walk in the late autumn sunshine here, and passed what is my favourite cottage on the island. It is a simple, traditional Guernsey stone cottage which I pass every time I walked to my favourite beach. For many years it has been left to deteriorate, to the state of almost inhabitation, but this summer someone took it in hand and slowly they are rebuilding it. By next summer it will be finished and it will be beautiful again. I hope the same can be said for me.

As for me, the first week was bad, very bad, I really never expected this. I had no energy, and would sit staring at nothing for up to half an hour before doing anything, even just getting up to go to the toilet or get out of bed. Then exactly a week later I woke up. It was so surreal, I was on a telephone call and felt awful and then suddenly I felt fine, it was like switching on the light. I would be lying if I said I was 100% I am not but now the recovery is in full swing. Not back at work for a week yet and I think that is probably the right length of time. Stitches came out today so that is another step forward.

Wednesday 20 October 2010

The Right Kind of Advice

I have had lots of messages of support from friends for which I am so very grateful but one of the best I have had is from my silversurfers, they sent me this card, and wow is it true.

Day 7 today and still very little energy, quite a shock as to how lethargic I am, but time is the best healer, I just need to take it.

Tuesday 19 October 2010

Not That Bad

Please don't read the last two postings and feel sorry for me, this was my choice and the hospital stay was not all bad news.

On the first day when waiting for the op, I thought about having two weeks off work and not having to think about Fujitsu and then I looked at the ceiling! I was still in contact with the outside world at that point and there were a few funny tweets about Fujitsu air conditioning. Funny thing is I didn't notice it again until it was almost time to go home.

Then on Saturday when I was back in my room my lovely daughter came to visit, she is a student and therefore Saturday afternoon means sleeping off the hangover, which is exactly what she did.

Then on Sunday she had a lovely dinner in the staff canteen, she is now considering visiting someone else, anyone else, next week so she can have dinner there again!

When Things Don't Work Out as Planned

Back in my room everything seemed OK. I looked a bit worse than I expected, a few more tubes. My mum had died just 2 weeks before and I thought it would be bad for my daughter to see me like this so I asked the hospital to ring her, and tell her I was just very tired and not to visit me that first night.

The get you into a chair straight away so that you can move your legs, it helps with recovery. I had a morphine pump and in the past I have found these make me sick so didn't expect to be on it for long. In fact after an hour I was so 'spaced out' I asked to come off it.

Things were looking good until about 11 o'clock when I asked to go to the bathroom, after 4 steps I felt very faint and they put me into a wheelchair, next thing I know the room is full of people, alarms going off everywhere and people shouting at me.

I had passed out. Obviously it looked bad as they had pads on my chest and a crash cart out but I am sure they were just precautions. They gave me a few more drips and took lots of blood for emergency tests and after about an hour decided it was just a crash in my blood pressure which had dropped to 69 (I think 90 - 120  is good). They think it was caused by being very dehydrated and put it down to the delay in my op and me being Nil by Mouth for almost 24 hours.

I spent a few hours under the care of the HDU (High Dependency Unit) and then Friday morning it was decided to move me to ITU (Intensive Treatment Unit) so they could do more tests, like take blood every hour or so and a CAT Scan (Computed tomography) to check for embolisms, all was OK, a lot of gas and blood in my abdomen but nothing too serious. My sugar levels were very high and I was still dehydrated so I stayed on the drips for a couple of days but eventually only 2 days late they gave me the all clear and said I could go home. I have to keep an eye on my Hemoglobin which was 78 but eventually climbed to 94 (and I have no idea what it means).

My actual op really was a success and I have about 12 stitches to be taken out next week and I have a lovely bruise. I feel very bloated but that is the gas still inside my stomach. I walk like an old man but walking well, and I have an ache in my back from lying down so long, but all that will be an old memory in a week or two.
So a bit longer in hospital than I intended, but I am out now and recuperating at a friend's house in the Channel Islands.

The Operation

Instructions said be at the hospital for 6.30am, nothing to eat after midnight. So there I was at 6.15 outside the hospital very nervous. Inside were already 2 other people and by 6.25 all 5 patients for the day were ready and waiting.

I was very disappointed to find out that I was actually last on the list. No real reason just not being very patient. The doctor came to speak to me and explained that 2 of the operations were what they call 'restructuring' or a revision to previous surgery. My procedure has only been around for about 3 years and previously it was sometimes necessary to have followup operations.

About 11 o'clock a nurse came to tell me that there had been a complication with the first op and they were still in theatre so my op was likely to be late afternoon. I tweeted 'Your doctor would like to apologise for the delay in your procedure which is due to operational issues with the previous patient.', I was bored but not too worried. About 3.30 they told me there was a change in plan, I was going 4th and would be next down. Then the nerves started. I was upset for whoever was meant to be 4th apparently they were bumped in my favour. I don't know for definite but the general consensus was that I was paying for the op and she may have been an NHS patient. I do feel really sorry for her but I would have been furious if after all the preparation and cost I had been made to wait.

They came to get me just before 4 I think, and down I went to anesthetics, the anesthetist I had was more jolly than I saw before and he did put me at ease, then as quick as anything I was out.

I woke up just an hour later, apparently the operation was very straight forward and very fast. A success.

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Reading this for the first Time?

This evening I am preparing for my operation and if all goes well I will tell everyone tomorrow what I am doing. I don't want it to be a surprise and I am not hiding it from anyone, afterall hopefully people will notice.

So if you have seen my Facbook or Twitter and been interested enough to follow the link, welcome. It makes more sense if you start at the beginning.

Last Supper

So I am here in Southampton ready for my operation tomorrow. Getting a little nervous but also excited about what it all means for the future.

I arrived on a flight from Brussels and the taxi I got from the airport was number was 42 so that should be a good sign.

I have spent the evening clearing my inbox and watching the Chilean Miners being rescued. God Bless Them All.

My daughter who I am staying with tonight made me my last supper. Soft boiled eggs and marmite soldiers, I love her. Not sure if Marmite is actually on the list but it was only a scraping and I know it is good for you.

Diet not that easy in a French Hotel

I am in Brussels for the 3 days before the operation, and the hotel and restaurant had more than 2 weeks notice as to what I could and couldn't eat. I know they had this because the hotel emailed me and said they didn't stock sugar free jam and could I bring my own. Looked like I was onto a winner.

Big mistake!

Cocktail reception on the first night, they offered me a I said in my last blog just a good variety of leaves but just leaves.

Breakfast yesterday, I asked for eggs boiled, they didn't have anything ready so I had to wait, and wait and today it took 25 minutes to get a soft boiled egg, obviously that includes the time they spent chasing the chickens out back.

Lunch yesterday I had to ask, and then negotiate what I could have. If you know me well I don't eat fish but I did just to have something. Steamed fish and rice, not exciting but OK. They did give me a nice fruit cocktail.

Dinner was in a hotel, very posh but oh how painful it was. For starter they gave me pate, I explained I couldnt and they said fine and took it away. After prompting someone did come and discus the main course and we agreed on steamed chicken and rice. My colleagues finished their first course and then they tried again for me, a lovely plate of grilled vegetables with.........pesto sauce, not going to work. Off they went again and another plate arrived with no sauce (I wonder if they just washed them). So as my colleagues watched me each every mouthfull, we eventually moved onto the main course.

There was discusssion about the rice, the chef called it risotto which I think contains cream or fat of somekind, but she was adamant it was only steamed, however the final plate had no rice, but some broccoli and beans. However I have to say the fruit salad was great.

Lunch today was chicken and grilled veg and it was good, I did have to wait and they did have to be reminded several times through the morning but it was good. Pity I had no fruit today.

Still only 1 meal to go!

Monday 11 October 2010

Two Days To Go

In 42 hours I will be almost ready for the operation.

Nerves are starting to creep in and my best friend worry has come to visit.

I am in Brussels for a couple of days until the evening before the op, so I hope keeping busy will keep my mind off it all.

Last night there was a reception at the hotel I am in this week and they offered to get me a salad, like in Berlin it was just leaves, to be fair a better selection of leaves but just leaves. I am here for 2 days so I hope it gets better. Again, thank goodness for my store of fruit for emergencies.

Today's Reminder

Today I caught the red eye out of Belfast and as ever it was packed. I was on the aisle, and two women boarded later to sit inside the row. The first lady was quite short but was as wide as she was tall. She tried to lift the arm rest on the aisle but that is fixed and she had great difficulty moving past it, as her height meant it was directly in line with her bottom. She was able to lift the two other arm rests but it took a good few minutes for her to huff and puff her way across.

She had a seatbelt extension and I have to say, when BMI had 1 1/2 seats in Business Class but a standard belt, I could only just use that. The lady was out of breath for a good 10 minutes.

I got off the plane quite quickly but was waiting for a friend at the back of the plane. There was a good 3-4 minute delay as this lady got herself out into the aisle and off the plane.

I don't think I would ever have got that big, my weight has its natural high, it is too high but hasn't changed in 20 years, but 'There but for the grace of God' did enter my mind.

Three more sleeps and then hopefully I am on my way to not being the person everyone dreads being sat next to on the flight.

Sunday 10 October 2010

Day Ten and getting very close

Today, I am determined to do 2 things. Get my expenses done and manage a whole day without lettuce!

I am travelling with work tomorrow for 3 days and then I fly direct to Southampton where I have my operation on Thursday.

Yesterday I got my final instructions from the hospital, which makes it all so real. I still want to do it but at the same time it seems so permanent, no going back. when I was 33 I had to have an emergency hysterectomy, I was very upset that it meant I could no longer have children even though I had already made up my mind I didn't want any more. So I want to be slimmer, I don't want to eat too much, but the thought of not having the option of a binge seems very final.

But this is what I want, and it is not about food, it is about health, being healthy, avoiding the problems my mum suffered and eventually died from, and then the benefits of health and being able to join in with more of life.

Friday 8 October 2010

Goodbye Mum

Today we said goodbye to my mum, the main motivation for having this procedure in the first place.

It was a hard day in so many ways and it was the end of the day before I got a chance to eat, there was a reception in a local pub but nothing I was allowed to eat. So my brother in law Chris poached me some lovely eggs and I made a salad (for variety) with toast croutons.

Goodbye mum.

Day 7 - Perfect End to the First Week

End of week one, by this time next week I will have had the operation.

I had a black tie dinner today in the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel in London and I had sent them the diet sheet in advance. They were brilliant I had a small salad starter, chicken, rice and vegetables for main course and fruit for desert, all wonderfully presented.

Thank you hotel it was great.

Wednesday 6 October 2010

Day Six

Porridge again. I will start to look like this.

Again conference buffet and a good selection of salad including pickled red cabbage.

Flew back to London and had a Boot's Shapers caesar salad, ditching the croutons and the dressing, not exciting but ok. At Berlin airport I did have a small bread pretzel, I am allowed 2 slices of bread so it was ok, in fact it was more than OK it was lovely, almost made up for having to walk past the currywurst stand.

Day 5 - A problem with the language

Day 5 started very early as I was flying to Berlin, the obligatory porridge and then off to the airport. I was there to man a stand for my company, and the conference provided food. As with yesterdays’ buffet there was enough to satisfy my at lunchtime.

In the evening in the hotel restaurant, I asked for a green salad with tomatoes and red onion with no dressing. The girl said she understood, well if she didn’t she should have asked i could have managed that in German myself. So imagine my surprise when this arrived! Colourful I suppose in a way, but a lot was quite bitter and after a few mouthfuls I gave up.

Thank goodness for the emergency apple in my bag!

Day 4 Still Doing OK

Monday I was speaking at a conference, that was entitled 9-9, 12 hours and this included a lot of breaks with catering.

Lunch was a buffet and there was enough salad and a little chicken to make it ok. The evening included a 3 course meal so again my friend was despatched to the kitchen to make arrangements. He knew the chef here as well so I expected a treat, and I got one. Not quite as good as the 'Rainbow Salad' as it is now called in Jytte's restaurant but not far behind.

The evening was a little more difficult as lots of drink around and I ended the visit sitting up around a very famous table till the early hours of the next morning and a lot of great whisky and champagne was on offer, but I stayed good.