Saturday, November 12, 2011

Three Weeks aka What in the Hell am I Doing?

My surgery date was scheduled for Tuesday, November 29 - which means I started the 3-week prep on Tuesday, November 8. I knew this was going to be tough, and while I'm currently just on day 5 of it, I'm really hoping it eases up a bit - and soon!

Here's what I'm allowed in a day:

  • 2 protein shakes (mixed with water or skim milk)
  • 1 serving Quaker Weight Control Oatmeal
  • 4oz sugar-free Jello
  • 4oz applesauce, or 3oz fresh fruit
  • 6oz Dannon light & fit yogurt
  • 3oz lean protein (chicken, turkey, or white fish)
  • 2 cups fresh veggies or 1 cup cooked
  • 1 tbsp light salad dressing
That's roughly 800 calories. In a day.

The thing is, I can't stand oatmeal. Am I allowed to substitute anything? Nope. Don't have to eat it all, but you can't switch anything up. Joy. So far, I've not gotten desperate enough to eat the oatmeal, but we'll see. 

Choosing a protein shake flavor has been an adventure. I'm a relatively picky person when it comes to "drink additives". I've never liked the Crystal Light type products, I'm not a big fruit flavor person, but beyond that they just taste like chemicals to me. So I started with some samples from Syntrax: chocolate truffle, cappuccino, and fuzzy navel, along with Unjury's chicken soup flavor. The chocolate truffle was pretty darned good, slight after taste for a while, but nothing too annoying. The cappuccino was a bit coffee strong for me at first, but it's grown on me. The fuzzy navel flavor, however, was an unmitigated disaster - I managed to choke down about 80% of it, but never again (shudder). I was mostly disappointed with the chicken soup flavor too, I was hoping it would taste more like regular chicken broth, but it was either slightly weak, or too salty, or something - just kind of "meh". I have a few more sample packs, so it might grow on me, but I suspect I'll be drinking lots of chocolate truffle and cappuccino, as I went and bought the giant barrels of those today.

Would you have thought? A de-boned chicken breast lasted for 3 dinners, since it weighed in at 8 ounces. (!!)

The goal of this diet is three-fold: lose a moderate amount of weight pre-op, shrink the liver which will make nudging it out of the way during the laparoscopic procedure easier, and finally - to measure your compliance to food regulations. They expect you to lose 3% to 5% of your body weight during this time. I don't think I'm going to have an issue with that, as that would be 10 to 16 pounds for me - and as of this morning (after 4 full days on the program), I'm already down 9. Eeek!

The hardest part of these 4 days has been the shift in energy. I've been walking around basically feeling light-headed all the time. I've been having to monitor my blood sugars very closely, as the combination of very modest food intake, and continued exercise (40 minutes on the treadmill), can cause some crashes if I'm not careful. I may have to adjust my insulin dosing tonight, as my waking BG was just 92 (it's dropped every day since starting), and lower than 80 would be a problem.

Others in the program say it gets better after 3-5 days, so hopefully I'm just about to turn the corner. But if not, I have just 3.5 days more at work before I go out - I'm burning some vacation time before going out on short term disability the day of surgery.

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