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Ok...First Challenge Blog....accomplished!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ok...First Challenge Blog....accomplished!

This is my first Challenge Blog, we will see how it goes.

"How has my year been so far? & Have you made progress in the areas you wanted to address?"

When I think of where I was and where I am right now...all I can say is WOW!
This past year has seen my health take a big step forward after years of going down a spiral staircase. My Diabetes was not in the control it needed to be in, having 8.7 A1Cís; glaucoma (with laser surgery failing in helping with this); weight just kept increasing regardless of what I would do; mood swings and depression from everything feeling out of control; and the list goes on.



My Doctor had enrolled me in a weight management program that I had been in for a couple years. It did help having that support, but not quite enough. They dangled the carrot...lapband surgery for only 25 recipients out of 500-700 people. Well, there was no way I would be chosen, but extra help with dieticians, doctors and nurses, I am no dummy I was in! So I did all I could and took all the support I could get. Was able to lose a few pounds over this time frame and was happy with these results. After so long of having nothing, I was perfectly willing to accept something!

I am so glad I did.

Today marks a number of ĎA hahí moments.

I found Spark People and made so many friends who care and support me in numerous ways!

Surprisingly (to me at least) I was chosen as one of the lucky individuals to have the lapband. I donít think this would of happened without this amazing program, as I (we) could not have afforded it. It was like I had won the lottery! It has been one of the best things to have happened to me. I have lost a significant amount of weight in a short time, all under the direction of dieticians and doctors, and it really works out to about 1-2 lbs a week. So SAFE. I am able to fit in a size 14 jean today, which I have not worn in over 20 years! My A1C is going down to a 7.9; have an eye appointment in May that will tell me how my glaucoma is progressing; and my mood is generally much, much better! I have more energy and able to do so much more.



My painting has progressed to the point that I have people who request me to teach them and look up to me! Yeah! I am branching out on my own and learning all I can. I am going to learn from an artist from Florence, Italy this summer and I am so excited!!!



My family is happier. Happy Wife & Mother = Happy Husband and Son (happy dog too!)

The house is clean...most days.

I have time for my friends, usually at the gym, zumba or for a coffee.

Life is good, so Yes! I have made progress in my areas that I wanted to address.
And my year has been GREAT!

In fact I have come along way....



Hugs,
Angela

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

QUICONQUE 4/22/2011 12:12PM

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BOVEY63 4/20/2011 12:32PM

    I am so happy for you Angela - you deserve all the good that comes your way.
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Your paintings are beautiful and I always look forward to seeing pictures of new ones.
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I hope your year keeps on getting better and better!
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KLOE23 4/20/2011 11:59AM

    Congratulations!!! What an amazing blog with such great insight. I am so proud of everything you have accomplished and see only great things for you in the future! Keep up the great work and you are going to meet all of your goals and then some you didn't even know you should have! AWESOME!!!

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Jamie emoticon

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/20/2011 9:45AM

    Oh, my goodness, YES! You are doing an OUTSTANDING job of getting healthy! I am so proud of you for moving forward with CONFIDENCE and DETERMINATION! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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THEEXERCISER 4/20/2011 8:51AM

    Great Blog keep up the good work!

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GEMINI-SKY 4/20/2011 5:41AM

    GREAT First Blog for your Challenge ....

You should keep this blog somewhere visible for you, so whenever you get "Down", You can look at it. You are AMAZING and have a Ton to be Proud of...Look At YOU ! ! !
Heck, I'm So Proud of You, too ! ! !
Thank You for sharing this with us...
Florence??? I was there in 1974. You're going to LOVE IT ! ! !
The Duomo, the bridge Ponte Vecchio, the Uffitsi to see Botaceli's "Birth of Venus" The Red Tile roofs as seen from the Vinyard Hills....Can I go with You ????
Remember, Only ONE glass of wine a day ! ! !
Hugs to you Angela....

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LYNMEINDERS 4/20/2011 5:12AM

    WooHoo...you have done so so well...
I am so very proud of you...and adding Florence to it all as well...Yay

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CAROLEDENTON 4/20/2011 2:13AM

    Well no wonder you are excited to go to Italy! Oh what fun! You have had one heck of a year, may he next year be even better yet! Great Blog! emoticon

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/19/2011 9:59PM

    You are doing remarkably well.
Congratulations, angela. Keep on keepin on!
Hugs
Debbie

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CHAS1949 4/19/2011 9:46PM

    Your blog was wonderful!! I love your story and am glad I can follow here. You are doing so very well!! Keep going...don't look back!!

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SURENDERISNOTME 4/19/2011 9:32PM

    Great first blog! Keep up the good work on your journey!

HUGS
Debbie

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NOMORESTALLING 4/19/2011 9:14PM

    WOOT! WOOT Angela! Loving the energy and the complete turn around. And oh how I envy you! studying with a painter from Florence Italy! How did you manage that one!
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DEE0973 4/19/2011 9:05PM

    Congrats on your success thus far....Good luck with the continued journey

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Yes, it is True...it snowed.

Monday, April 18, 2011

It snowed all weekend. Have over 20 cm of the white stuff, it was grey and gloomy. Today the sun is shining and it is quite blinding with all the white. A warmer temperature today of -8*C. I am HOPING it will melt, but then we run the risk of some flooding if it melts to quickly, as we have had a lot of precipitation this year. I have figured out that the first snow was early September and it is now April...That is 8 months of winter!!! emoticon
The last year has been very unusual weather wise --- not nice at all.
I am getting very low on my Vitamin D and the pills are not quite what I mean.
So if you can't send me some sun...
Send a hug.
Angela
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CAROLEDENTON 4/19/2011 2:30AM

    Angela, I'm getting close to knowing how you feel. My friend reports that Tacoma, WA (thirty miles south of us) had a dusting of snow this a.m.. It is crazy! We are expecting temps of 34 degrees tonight! Ever so often we get a flicker of Spring, ahhh how nice. Well, I'm going to be sooo happy to go to Hawaii next month, you can't imagine!! I'm sending warm thoughts your way!

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/19/2011 1:02AM

    Merry Christmas! errrr happy Easter and Stay warm, Angela! It does look like a pretty Christmas card in the picture.
Hugs
Debbie

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CHAS1949 4/18/2011 7:26PM

    We got teased with a few hours of sunshine and now Rain, Rain, Rain!!! This year has been crazy everywhere!!

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LYNMEINDERS 4/18/2011 4:57PM

    Big Hugs coming your way.... emoticon emoticon emoticon

the weather has been terrible here as well.....there was a skiff of snow on the mountain above our house yesterday and it is still April.....lol....and still waiting for summer.....this winter is going to be a really long one this year...hopefully summer will be worth it....

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/18/2011 1:28PM

    Wow! It is the OPPOSITE here! We have not had measurable rain in Lubbock County for 8 straight months...except for an inch of snow in December. There are wild fires all over the state of Texas, with some firemen losing their lives protecting people from the devastation! Don't you wish we could swap some wet and dry weather and even things out!? emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BOVEY63 4/18/2011 12:41PM

    I'd love to send you some sun, but we don't have any either. It snowed here Saturday and is predicted again tonight through Wednesday - not sure how much but any is too much.
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I guess if I look on the bright side, I did get in some cardio by shoveling.

Here's hoping for little snow and lots of sunshine!
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Comment edited on: 4/18/2011 12:41:55 PM

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GHODGE6 4/18/2011 12:00PM

    Hope the sun finds you and warms you thoroughly.

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GEMINI-SKY 4/18/2011 11:52AM

    No Snow here but it's so COLD and MUDDY....
I can't wait either, for the Sun to Shine and get us Warm...
How about a Hot Bath and a Glass of Wine????
A Smutty Novel and a warm kitty on your lap????
At least my mind is Warm ! ! !
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Here's Some Spring Flowers for YOU ! ! !

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MARTY728 4/18/2011 11:48AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Please do not freeze! Do you know what the difference is between a warm day in the Canada and a cold day in Florida is? About 5 degrees.

I am simply being an idiot, so please do not be offended because no offense was intended.

I sincerely hope Mother Nature gives you a break soon! emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/18/2011 11:50:11 AM

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SYLPHINPROGRESS 4/18/2011 11:40AM

    Feeling a little gritchy, darling? There will be a spring and summer. I promise. There will be sun. I promise.

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To Each Their Own...and loose change.

Friday, April 15, 2011

I was able to attend my monthly Lap Band support group last night. A very crowded, informative meeting this time around. Mind you I find them all informative, just not crowded. It is amazing how many people have the support available to them and don't make use of it. To me that is like having a million dollars in your pocket and eating out of the garbage can...Why??? Wouldn't you rather eat something better than that? Oh well to each their own.

I came away with a lot of information, some I am still processing. Hoping I won't have data overload and the whole thing crash and I retain nothing. That has been known to happen from time to time... emoticon

I learned that the most valuable thing you can have is 'loose change'. Why and what is it? Well think of exercise as the 'money' and think of 'loose change' as all the little things we do outside of our 30 minutes or 1 hour of exercise. We all know that money is valuable, but what we take for granted is the loose change. Think that every time you do something 'extra' it counts, so that means for every time you bypass the elevator for the stairs; or walk around the airport rather than sit in a chair to wait for your flight; or even stand as opposed to sitting at the Doctor's office you add up loose change. Before you know it all those little coins could equal or surpass your 'money' and pay off in a lot of positive ways. So having been one that stopped picking up pennies off the street, I am going to restart that habit and start looking for loose change. Hey, if i stoop to pick it up that is one extra toe touch than before.

Another interesting tidbit that I learned via Chef Dave on youtube.com is that the diet for lap band and for gastric bypass is and should be THE SAME. Whoa, I thought it would be different, I mean I have my stomach with a belt, they don't have all their stomach....makes sense to me. Check out Chef Dave for great recipes that weight loss surgery patients can use.
Here is one on Quick and Easy Breakfasts
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVpSTBdA8
j4

For Canadian patients, who have received the Allergan LapBand, you can contact your program director or doctor for the access code to the new website support group from the company. Right now it is not for public use and you have to get a code to join. If you can make use of it. I am just exploring now and loving it.

Now for lapband recipients, did you know that flying and travel can cause your band to tighten in flight and that you should not eat to soon to flying so that you don't have extra restriction on the stomach from the band. This was news to me!
Also when travelling you need to have your card to show security, as they may detain you with 'what is in your body'...

Now there was alot of other things I learned as well, but I still need to assimilate them.

Hugs!
Angela

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GIGALENA 4/17/2011 7:51AM

    Angela this blog taught me a few things, even though I do not have the lapband. I am so happy you are doing so wonderful and taking all the support you can. Keep up the great work. Hugs!

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EARTHGIRL145 4/17/2011 12:10AM

    Support groups are so important! I go every Thursday. Thanks for all the information. I didn't know about the traveling issues and airport security. I'm going to look into that more. LOL

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CHAS1949 4/16/2011 7:56PM

    Thank you so much for sharing your lapband information. Those of us who have not chosen it, are learning more and might think more seriously about it.

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QUICONQUE 4/16/2011 5:15PM

    Great advice, thank you!

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MARTY728 4/16/2011 2:27PM

    I really like reading your experiences with the Lap Band. I am considering it if I do not get the weight off this year.

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TEXAS_GRL 4/15/2011 6:44PM

    I really like the loose change analogy.

Keep on sparkin~

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BOVEY63 4/15/2011 6:19PM

    I love the "loose change" analogy - we can use that in so many areas of our lives. All that loose change could add up to our own pot of gold!
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I hope you have an awesome weekend. My sparking will be hit and miss - computer is acting up and it won't be replaced until next week. Also my best male friend, of 35 years, is coming up tomorrow to help me celebrate my birthday and I am so looking forward to time with him.
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MISSILENE 4/15/2011 2:40PM

    Thank you for the blog. It was very interesting. I hope my band does not call attention to me when I go on the plane next month.

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/15/2011 1:50PM

    WOW!, WoW, wow! A lot of valuable info indeed. Dada overload? Don't worry about that. I'm all ears even if they don't work. All the info you offer is great info. thanks.
Debbie

P.S. i feel you should share the flying and tightening of the band with the lap banders teams... just my thought.

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/15/2011 10:54AM

    Oh, you are doing SO WELL with your lap band! Who knew how SUCCESSFUL you would be with this! Hurray for you and all that you are putting into it! You're doing an incredible job, and not just assuming that surgery can "fix" everything! You are putting the effort and work into MAKING it work, and that, my friend, is emoticon!!!

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BAKERICLISA 4/15/2011 6:42AM

    Sad to think that people look for the 'quick fix' and not take it as a lifestyle change and go for the support. Good Luck!

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GEMINI-SKY 4/15/2011 6:36AM

    I hope that site goes public. Sounds like you learned some very important info last evening.
Good for you for going to the meeting.
OXOX
PS Love your analogy for Loose Change. I bet I can find some more around here ! ! !

Comment edited on: 4/15/2011 6:37:34 AM

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LYNMEINDERS 4/15/2011 5:49AM

    WooHoo....a lot of good tips you got last night....awesome...something fresh to ponder for you....

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Wouldn't it be nice....

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Wouldn't it be nice if all clothes were labelled and sized the same?
Then if you went into the store and you put on a pair of jeans, the size it said you KNOW you would be.
I am very happy this morning that I fit into two pairs of size 14 jeans. That means I am down again in inches. (*note to self: measure!)
But at the same time I also had two pairs of size 16 jeans (different makes) that there were no way I was getting into.
So again I am taking the positive (and perhaps vain) side and saying Yahoo! I am down another size!
But I am saying...Wouldn't it be nice...
Hugs My Friends!
Angela
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOVEY63 4/12/2011 12:49PM

    Clothes sizes is something that has always frustrated me. I can try on an XL shirt that is tight and then a L that is too big - don't even get me started on pant sizes. I can understand somewhat when it's different brand names, but it even happens with the same brand.
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Congrats on your success and great attitude!
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Leanne

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MISSILENE 4/11/2011 8:00PM

    Thats kind of funny, and it happens to me too. It is like the scale at the grocery store. Which ever one says less is the one I go by. Those people in China are very small. My son lives in Tiawan and he has trouble buying clothes. He is thin and very tall. There are some people that never buy new clothes, they just wear them big..ha ha emoticon

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GEMINI-SKY 4/11/2011 7:28PM

    I just saw on a news show the other day, that cloths makers have changed sizing. The example they gave was...What was a 14 in now a 10. It's supposed to make one feel better. Ani't that a pile of bull puckie ! ! !

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LYNMEINDERS 4/10/2011 10:17PM

    I fully agree with you my sweet.....our sizing is different tou yours and a 10 her is about a 4 in your sizing I think.....
I can buy clothes that range from size 8...your 3..... to 12 or 14 here...depends what it is and who makes it....
I am sure the chinese think they are making it for their own sometimes with sizing....lol....

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LINDA! 4/10/2011 7:22PM

    Congrats!! It is so exciting to see the inches disappear. Keep up the great work. emoticon

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RESULTS361AP09 4/10/2011 5:34PM

    I totally agree with you! Maybe we should all stage a revolt & get the manufacturers to use the same sizing system. Good for you on going down a size. Keep up the good work!!

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DKELLEY35 4/10/2011 5:21PM

    I agree whole heartedly, It is very frustrating, no two brands follow the same sizing chart. It means that you have to try everything on, You can't just say I'm this size and buy it and take it home. I wish there was some kind of standard that they all had to follow.

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CHAS1949 4/10/2011 4:14PM

    I totally agree with the size issue. I know one of the stores where I purchase clothes is really far off...... they are almost two sizes off. It feels good to think I wear that size, but going in another store bursts that bubble.....

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/10/2011 2:39PM

    Another Wowser. You're doing good. I can't get into a 14 yet but maybe soon. Keep up the terrific work Angelea. I'm so proud of you. Send me a sample of a days menu please. I'd like to see what youa re eating.

Last night we ate out and Changs Mongolian grill. I ahd shrimp and salmon with spinach, onions, mushrooms, bell pepper in a garlic/ginger marinade it's cooked ona grill like a stir fry all good stuff and no rice or noodles. Loved it but only ate about 3/4 c. of it and I was full.
Cottage cheese with rin sed mandarin oranges for breakfast, Bloack beans with salsa for lunch, protein shake for snack and that that i told you for dinner.

Debbie

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BARBIE176 4/10/2011 2:26PM

    I couldn't agree with you more! My husband just goes in and buys a certain size of jeans every time and every time they fit. I go in and try on about 3 different sizes and none of them fit right. It is the most frustrating thing ever! I did go shopping not too long ago though and I bought some size 12's that are awesome. Then on the other hand I have some size 14's that there is no way I will fit into, at least not and be able to breathe! My measurements don't really reflect much gone, but yet the clothes say otherwise so I am just trying to resolve myself to be happy and think positively that I am making progress!

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TEXAS_GRL 4/10/2011 1:42PM

    Oh yes the frustration of varying sizes. You would think there would be some standard. I get all excited I can fit into 1 size only to find a pair of pants that won't fit. We need to start a petition or something.

Hey my friend you are rocking it!

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A-NU-ME-N-2011 4/10/2011 1:24PM

    AWESOME !!! and yes it would be great. I don't measure either but should cause I lose more inches than lbs.

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MARTY728 4/10/2011 12:59PM

    emoticon emoticonMen have the same issue.

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SHELLEY147 4/10/2011 12:51PM

    emoticonYAY! Sizing can drive a person crazy!! My daughter hates that I make her try everything on...but not all are the same. She wears some L, some 2x tops (poor thing has my boobs!)....bottoms can be anything between a 12 and 16 depending on where and what brand we get.

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MUEHLBBO 4/10/2011 12:49PM

    I so agree. I have no idea what size I wear. I hate trying on clothes. Right now I'm wearing anything from XL to 2XL. Who knows what size I am. All I can say is that like you, I know that I'm down in size. Keep up the great work.

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Am I a Lemon?

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Am I a Lemon? Feeling a little squeezed....

Just kidding!
I had my second lap band fill today and am surprised at how good I feel. I now have 5.6 CC in my AP Small (10cc) band. I have not felt hungry this afternoon and am so very happy, as this is my problem time.
But what also made my day was when I go to see the Doctor, they weigh me. Now I have been stuck and fluctuating a bit. NOT today, thank goodness.
I finally am down! May be a pound, but to me it is huge! As now I can mentally refocus on getting where I want to go.
Also got my blood test results back and my Diabetes is getting better. My A1C has finally dropped to 7.9. Still high, but when your up at 8.7, this is good. Very good. All other results were very good to.
Picked up an extra Zumba class, so going 2x a week. Have also been trying to run on the treadmill for a few minutes during my walks. I send you people who run a huge emoticon emoticon emoticon!!! It is so hard, I don't know how you do it, but emoticon!
I know this week will be even better.
I am going to take this moment to thank all of you friends for your encouragement, inspiration, and every kindness imagined that you show me on a daily basis.
This is for you.

Hugs and blessings to each of you.
Angela

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EARTHGIRL145 4/10/2011 11:03PM

    Glad to hear about your success! Keep up the good work!
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MINDY502 4/9/2011 10:36PM

    Way to go on your checkup and glad to hear you are doing good. Keep on sparking!

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LITTLETEAPOT17 4/9/2011 8:36PM

    I am so glad you shared with us! Just knowing that there are other people going through this journey with me keeps me encouraged and accountable! Congrats on your good news...I look forward to hearing from you with more successes in the future! thanks again for sharing....Paula

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CHAS1949 4/8/2011 5:29PM

    You are doing so well!! I am glad your scale is cooperating as well :) You are on your way to a wonderful, heathy future!

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TEXASGIRL48 4/8/2011 2:11PM

    That is wonderful news. Your A1c will go down everytime. It is such a great feeling. When I had my band mine was 7.2 the next one it was down to 5.?something. Last January it was down to 4.9. I'm sure with the Zumba classes your weight will go down for sure. Keep up the great work.

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BOVEY63 4/8/2011 1:27PM

    Congrats on a great checkup!
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I can't even imagine going through this journey without the awesome SparkFriends like you - it's what keeps me going in the right direction.
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Have a wonderful weekend Angela,
Leanne

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MARTY728 4/8/2011 8:29AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GROEDER 4/8/2011 5:29AM

    I love to read GOOD NEWS!!!!
Best wishes as you continue your journey.

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GEMINI-SKY 4/8/2011 5:23AM

    Good For You Angela ! ! ! I'm sending you Big Hugs and Kisses. You always inspire me daily and I thank you for it.
OXOX

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TIBURONA 4/8/2011 12:38AM

    Good news all around. The A1C numbers are pretty good since they always want us to be under 7! Just keep going.
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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/7/2011 10:19PM

    I am SO GLAD you are having so much SUCCESS! It looks like you've made the best choice for YOU! emoticon

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SURENDERISNOTME 4/7/2011 10:08PM

    I am glad to hear you are doing so well. I just got my lab results from my doctor yesterday. The doctor and I both were very happy. A1C was 6.4 all my other results were in normal range. Best test results I have had in 2 years.

HUGS
Debbie

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LYNMEINDERS 4/7/2011 9:31PM

    Right Back at ya....you are an amazing encouragement to people.....

Well done at the Dr's...that is awesome....I am wrapped for you.....
Moving forward now in big leaps....

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PURESTILLWATER 4/7/2011 8:20PM

    Awesome. emoticon

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/7/2011 8:13PM

    Woo Hoo! all good news coming from you. I am so very ahppy for you. 1 pound is a big difference. Keep up the good work!
Not being hungry is what makes all the difference. Now you are making me thinking like I can't wait until i start getting my fills. I have to thank you for leading me to Quinoa. I am ahving it in most of what i a eating now including cottage cheese, Quinoa and pears or aplesauce for the extra protein because we can't always fit in 15 grams of protein in our meals.

I asked my surgeon how am I going to know when I need an adjustment? she replied you will be feeling hungry ALL OF THE TIME. So I am hoping i don't get to that.

Hugs and BLESSINGS.
d

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