Archive for the ‘The Beetus’ Category

So, I had my four month followup with my surgeon yesterday.

I was pretty worried that things had blown up… as I said, I have been struggling here of late and I feel myself backsliding to my old eating habits.

Imagine my surprise when Dr. McPhee used the word “remission”.

As is, “Brian, you’re doing great… your diabetes is in remission, you’ve exceeded your weight loss target for four months, and your blood work looks great. Do you really want to throw that away for a Tastykake?”

I remember looking at him and saying to myself, “Say what?”

Then it sank in and I was overcome with this sense of relief.

Then joy.



I have achieved my primary goal of having bariatric surgery.

It kind of makes all I went through in the program worthwhile. All the tears I shed, the pounds I shed and regained and shed again. The physical pain of the surgery itself. The digestive issues post-surgery.

If I had to do it again, no question. It was all worth it to hear those words.

I would be horribly remiss, however, if I didn’t thank you all for your support. Yes, you, my friends, family, and even you, anonymous reader. Your support has given me the strength to get this far. I thank you with every fiber of my being. One of the things we were told before surgery was that you can never underestimate the need for a powerful support system.

I have that in spades.

Thank you so much.

Onto the next challenge… keeping the beetus in remission.

Song of the Day: The New Song – Howard Jones

Currently reading: Hidden Order – Brad Thor


Sorry I never got to write yesterday. We got busy with doctors appointments and errands and whatnot. It happens.

I did manage to spend most of the day out yesterday. First off, I had a foot doctor appointment. I managed to keep Stubby in check, but Wayne’s next door neighbor is a little ulcerated. Dr. Miller unroofed it and we’re doing the Betadyne and bandaid treatment until it dries up. This was a regular appointment, so I also got the toenails trimmed and all that.

Afterward, we went to visit Supportive Partner Woman (Practiced good eating habits!)’s mother. Had a nice visit over lunch, well, Mom ate, SPW and I kind of watched and chatted. Afterward, we took the car to the Three Minute Car Wash. This is a Reading, PA institution. You drop your car at the entrance and they clean it inside and outside, and clean it well, all for around $12 without any extras. It”s in a sketchy part of town, but the quality of the cleaning is far superior to some of the other full-service car washes in the area (cough, Cloister, cough) AND it’s less expensive.

Then it was off to the Lego Store at King of Prussia. It’s like Mecca for Lego geeks. We looked around and considered the new Architecture series release, the Imperial Hotel, but opted instead for the Palace Cinema. It’s pretty cool and bears a resemblance to The Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. I think that’s the real reason we went with it. It was a double points period, which means more VIP points for later. It’s like free money, so you can’t turn it down.


Some really yummy tomato soup at Wegman’s

After that, we went looking for a place for SPW to grab a bite. I had my trusty pudding and Jell-o in the car, so I was good, but she needed to forage. We swung by Gino’s, which was a big fast food joint in our youth, recently resurrected as an “upscale” burger joint. It smelled fantastic, but SPW was underwhelmed by the menu and we hit the road for Collegeville and Wegman’s (insert choir of angels singing). This is a rather new Wegman’s and it’s in a huge retail complex that features an Eastern Mountain Sports, Best Buy and a Movie Tavern location. This Wegman’s actually has a pub with a sit down menu, and a huge cafe area. SPW managed to located a few tasty items and we found an organic tomato soup that was right up my alley. It was spicy instead of salty and really sit well with the pouch, which I think we will call Joe. I also brought in my pudding cup. Shhh.

It was my first meal out since Red Robin a couple of weeks ago and while it was only soup, it really went down well. I couldn’t finish it all (no surprise) but that’s OK. I have some more of that yumminess for today.

On today’s agenda will be registering for the 5K in January.

Yup… I’m we’re really going to do it. And you’d better believe that when we get those finisher medals, we’re wearing them. Other than that, not sure what’s on the agenda. A walk, for sure.

OH… one other thing that I wanted to share. The last three days, my blood glucose has been at 88. It’s weird, but three days in a row, slightly different times, same number. I guess consistency is key.

Have a great day and get out for a walk!


Happy Easter to everyone!

Hope that your day is filled with family, friends and food. I’ll settle for the first two 🙂

8549862800_7ea4c5bc75_bI’ll even throw in a cute picture of baby bunnies and a chick. Literally.

So, yesterday was a good day. Still no progress on the pressing issue, but maybe if I stop obsessing about it things might just move along. My mom and sister stopped by. They were suitably impressed by how well my incisions are healing up. They think I look healthy.

I actually even managed my recommended fluid intake yesterday. I managed to down two liters of water. That was the first time since the procedure I accomplished it. It took all day, but that’s too be expected. Small sips on a regular basis. I also attempted pudding, and that went down well, and tasted pretty good to boot. Not only that, my sugars came in at 101 (even though I’m off the meds, I need to stick once a day to make sure things are staying where they are supposed to be). The coup de grace was that I managed to sleep flat in bed and scored over 7 hours of solid zzzzz.

One other thing I accomplished was to take a walk last evening. I was bored and thought maybe I’ll walk to the end of the block. When I got there, I decided to keep on going and got in a half mile. It wasn’t very fast, but it was the most I’ve walked since the middle of last week. It felt pretty good, actually. I still need to be careful due to the reduced amount of intake, but I’m going to try to do it again. I chose to take the uphill portion first, rather than later in the walk, just to make sure I’d be OK. And yes, I tool my phone with me.

That’s always a good habit to get into. I always have my phone with me while I’m walking. Not only does it provide music, it’s a good thing for security. If you fall or are otherwise injured, you can contact someone readily, or if you see suspicious activity. It’s also useful if you go walking in natural areas and see something photo-worthy.

At any rate, I’m going to go and get started on today’s fluids. I hope that you all have a happy Easter, or if you don’t celebrate Easter, a happy Sunday. And I’ll leave you with one of my all-time favorites:

Song of the Day: Gimme Some Lovin’ – The Blues Brothers

Yeah… now it sets in.

I got the call this morning that my arrivale time at the hospital will be 8:50 AM. That means the procedure will probably go down around 11:00. Basically, I have less than 24 hours until my life changes forever.

That’s not entirely true… my life has changed already. I’ve made the adjustments to my eating and lifestyle. I’ve had my psychological session. I sat through classes on diet, learned the correct way to exercise and learned a lot more about the way the body functions (or malfunctions in my case). I also learned just how many people are rooting for me.

That last was the biggest lesson.

I never saw many people as being good friends. Sure, I had acquaintances, but I always saw my fat as an obstacle to true friends. I just assumed that people were talking about me behind my (broad) back. It wasn’t until I got involved in the Disney community that I started feeling accepted. I say “started” because I still harbored some serious doubts about my own self-worth. I think I will always struggle with that, but I can deal a lot better than I used to.

Dealing with life as a more normal sized person will be a big change. I’m going to have to put myself out there again. I’ll need to learn to not assume I’m too fat to do something and try it again. It will be nice to no longer have to request a table in a restaurant because I’m too fat for a booth. Even fitting in the break room seats at work won’t be a challenge. It will be even nicer to not forego a ride that I previously passed on due to fat.

Even buying clothes won’t be as much of a hassle. No longer needing to shop at Thornton Melon’s Tall and Fat will be a nice change of pace.

The biggest positive change I see is the elimination of the insulin. I think insulin makes you fatter… I don’t necessarily have any scientific proof to this, but it seems that I can do more exercise that I did three years ago and lose a lot less weight. In 2010, I could lose five pounds a week, now I struggle to do that in a month. Main difference? Insulin.

I know I’ve thanked everyone for their support, but there are some that really deserve some credit that I never thanked before. They would be the coworker who would talk shit about my weight and think I didn’t hear him. The comments about me not going to the beach because people would try to put me back in the water, well, they hurt at first. Then they really pissed me off the more I thought about it. It inspired me to take steps to improve my health. So, I’d like to give out a big thank you to him. The real irony is that the individual in question isn’t exactly what you would call svelte.

Anyway. That’s some people for you. Luckily, not everyone is like that.

I might write another post tonight, or at least tomorrow morning. I’ll keep you posted throughout the process.

I wonder if SPW ever thought of doing this for me?

I wonder if SPW ever thought of doing this for me?

Haven’t written for a few days. To be honest, I haven’t wanted to do much more than sleep. Consequence of the liquid diet, I’m sure. No energy. That’s beside the point. 48 hours from now, I’ll be hopefully all recovering and mainlining the morphine like nobody’s business. I’ve had to promise that I won’t let Supportive Partner Woman (Page designer of uncanny skill!) confiscate my phone. Apparently, some folks feel that any status updates or texts that I make while high will be amusing.

I’m not sure how to take that.

Anyway, I had to work last night and wanted to stop and pick up some unflavored protein powder on my way into the office. I trudged through SaveMart and located what I was looking for… some strawberry flavored powder as well as the unflavored powder. As I walked out of the door, my nose was assaulted with the smell of freshly baking pizza from the pizza shop across the way.

That’s just not fair.

At all.

Anyway, as I was getting ready for work, I thought, “What the hell?” and actually attempted to button my jeans at the waist, rather than the hips. To my surprise, it could actually be done. Go figure. It wasn’t comfortable in the least, but it’s a little victory. I’m all in favor of those.

In other news, the unflavored powder mixes pretty well with tomato soup. I’m looking forward to trying it with regular chicken broth… it will be less sodium for sure.

So, one more work day tomorrow, then I’m off for four weeks. I’ll be sure to keep you all posted, and even some scale pictures when it finally stops saying, “One at a time, please.”

Thanks again for all the support.

Today's summary

Today’s summary

After doing a night on third shift, my first stop was the Rec. Did a smidge over 30 minutes of cardio, which is 10 more minute than I did yesterday. Maybe tomorrow will be 10 more minutes. We shall see. Wasn’t my best distance or time, but I still need to take care of Wayne while getting my work in. If I don’t, then bad things happen and I get even fatter. I don’t want to be that guy.

The hardest part of the shift change is going to be establishing a time when I should go to the gym. Ideally I should go before my shift, get the endorphins going and that will make surviving third shift that much easier. The downside is sleep, or lack thereof. I often joke about plenty of time to sleep when you’re dead, but I’ve grown to appreciate some quality shuteye.

I also thought I forgot my insulin kit last night. As much as I am looking forward to never needing to use it again, it still keeps my going for right now. Turns out I left it in the gym bag. Another stellar recall achievement by me!

At any rate, I need to grab some of that shuteye I was talking about.

As many of you know, Evil Wayne (not to be confused with Vegan Wayne) has caused me some problems of late. Namely a giant blister that left me short a toenail and a good part of toe.

I’m pleased to report that as of 6:00 tonight, Wayne is actually looking pretty good, all things considered. Looks like the wound is scabbing over nicely. This is a good thing that I’m attributing to my much better controlled glucose levels.

It took me a lot to understand what was involved in getting the sugar under control. See, I’m a huge carb junkie. I love carbs and would scarf unbelievable amounts of pasta and bread, not to mention snack foods. That’s a big no-no if you’re battling The Beetus. I didn’t understand that at first, figuring I was OK because something didn’t have much actual sugar in it. Well, maybe not, but the 40g of carbs are an issue. It makes a huge difference. Have I eliminated carbs? No, but I’m eating a lot less of them.

It really came to my mind again today when I was told by a friend that she had been diagnosed with Type-2 (that’s the type I have). I hope that she will use me as a resource, since I’m a pretty good example of what not to do when you’re diabetic. Or, I was. I’m just so excited that the toe is getting better pretty quickly so I can get back to the gym at full speed. I’m just going to make sure that I protect the toe with a moleskin wrap. Blisters just slow me down. Plus, the surgery date is three weeks away. How’d that happen?

I’m still really excited and freaked out at the same time. I think it’s fear of the unknown that get’s me freaked out. I actually don’t mind the anesthesia… it puts me out pretty good and I usually don’t have much memory of what’s going on. This will mark my third time going under general anesthesia, so I’m getting kind of used to it. The part that’s really freaking me out is the possibility of a catheter. I’m just not thrilled with the idea of getting some tube run up through my junk. Of course, talking to some post-op patients at the clinic, not all of them had a cath done. I’m hoping I’m one of the lucky ones. I guess we’ll know in a few short weeks.

So, we’re supposed to get a boatload of snow here in the northeast. If you’re in the area, please be careful when driving and especially while shoveling.

The next post will be #200. Guess I need to come up with something awesome. Wish me luck!


Song of the Day: Bright Lights, Bigger City – Cee-Lo Green

So, another good workout today. I hit 3.25 miles and averaged 3.12 mph. It marked the second day in a row I waked more than 3 miles. Of course, Wayne was feeling left out and decided to sprout a blister roughly the size of the Hope Diamond. Sigh.

Every time this happens, I’m so tempted to just say, “The hell with it!”

Somehow, I manage to pull it together and keep plugging away.

It’s what I do.

So, tomorrow morning, I’ll call the podiatrist, play my trump card. See, The Beetus is sort of like a head of the line pass at the doctors office. Apparently, they don’t want me to lose another toe, maybe they lose merit badges in Doctor Scouts for dismemberment? No idea. Hopefully he can get rid of the dead skin and we can get the ball rolling on the healing.

So, other than that, I’ve managed to burn some calories, walk some miles and behave.

In other news, I did go to Save Mart and browse a rather impressive selection of protein powders. I picked up five pounds of vanilla and two pounds of banana cream powder. The banana cream mixes well with Greek yogurt and gives you a nice shot of protein in a smooth mixture.

So, until I see the podiatrist, I’m in the Boot of Shame. It sucks, but what can you do? I’ll keep you posted.



It was a low point this morning.

No, I didn’t have a food relapse or anything like that.

I stuck a 40 on the glucometer after my cardio. For anyone keeping score at home, that’s about 57% of my suggested low end. The scary thing is that I didn’t really notice it until I got off the treadmill. It was a good workout up until that point. I did about 30 minutes with an average speed of 3.1 mph. I was also wearing my new trainers. They felt pretty good and no evidence of Stubby or Wayne acting up. I’ll give them a good once-over when I get home for the night.

I decided to let off some steam last night and went to see a movie after work. One co-worker was really driving me nuts and I needed the break. I opted for A Good Day to Die Hard. I wasn’t expecting anything socially redeeming and I was not disappointed. It wasn’t the greatest entry of the Die Hard franchise but it was big, noisy and violent with lots of car chases, gunplay, and weapons-grade uranium. If I had to summarize, Blah, blah, blah, kill the bad guys and blow shit up, blah blah blah. If I had to rank all five entries in the series, it would be the first one (Alan Rickman FTW), followed by all of the others.

Another halfway decent food day yesterday. I opted for a turkey wrap for lunch… it was pretty good and not totally swamped in mayonnaise. There was even some bacon (YAY!), which I never complain about. I’m not quite sure why I like bacon as much as I do… good thing I don’t eat it as much as I would like to.

So far today, I’ve had two bananas, a protein shake, and some sugar tablets. I also had some candy to get the sugar levels up. I also had a nice chef salad for lunch that was really fresh. Plenty of veggies and also some good protein. Gotta love that it fills you up and doesn’t kill you calorically. Not sure what dinner will be, but I’m sure I’ll think of something. I was going to do some chili, but I neglected to soak the beans. Duh. All part of my senior moments.

In the good news, I’m still soda and caffeine free. Not sure how I’m managing to do it, but suffice it to say, I’d like to continue. I still feel pretty good, though, and that’s a plus. The blood sugar thing, other than the lows, is also a positive development. I like it being on the low side.

I’m just going to keep moving forward. It’s the only way to fly.


Day four of no caffeine.

I won’t lie… it’s been very hard. I actually dropped a coin in the vending machine yesterday, but got it back. The headaches have pretty much subsided. The worst day was Wednesday. It felt like there was a little man jackhammering away inside my skull. I’ve found that the best way to get through is to drink so much water that you wind up irrigating yourself like a personalized Tennessee Valley Authority.

I did take precautions against water intoxication. I’ve discovered the joys of PowerAde Zero. This stuff is like liquid crack. It really helps quench the thirst after a workout, and it doesn’t have any sugar or carbs. Highly recommend the orange flavor. Just a warning… it doesn’t mix well with protein powder.

Today started out on a down note. I managed to sleep through my alarm, so I didn’t make it to the gym. I brought my workout clothes, so I can go after work. I’m breaking in my new trainers that arrived the other day. So far, pretty comfy, but not suitable for gym use until broken in. I’ve made the mistake of being too eager with new sneakers… the blister on Wayne was not too much fun, nor was the time I had to spend wearing the Boot of Shame.

I’m pretty proud of myself, though… I managed to start working my way through the DVR backlog and didn’t eat any snacks whilst parked in front of the tube. I went to bed, my sugar was 83, so I had a little snack (a carb balance wheat tortilla, some shaved ham and a piece of cheese), I also succumbed and took some cough syrup, as I’ve been suffering from a nagging cold these last few days. Well, I woke up with a sugar reading of 204, all from a dose of really nasty tasting cough medicine. Sigh.

Today is a Friday, which means no meat. I have to wonder, though… why are eggs allowed, but chicken is not? What are eggs, other than unfertilized chickens? Regardless, I have some of my yummy clam chowder. I’m really pleased with how well it turned out. Supportive Partner Woman (also trying to quit caffeine!) liked it as well. Always glad when a recipe is a crowd pleaser.

Not sure what I will do for dinner. I guess we’ll see how I feel after my workout. I’m really craving pizza for whatever reason, but that would not be a smart move. It would be fine with one slice, but I’m sure there would be a whole pie in my future and that is not cool. I’d like to think I could control myself, but probably not.

Anyway, that about does it for the day. Hopefully I have a good workout tonight, and can get a couple in over the weekend.

Hope you have a great weekend, everyone!