As I stated last week, my plan was to begin the “Five Day Pouch Test” a week ago Monday, and that is exactly what I did. I won’t go into the details of the steps here, but feel free to check it out at http://www.5daypouchtest.com/index.html, which is part of Kaye Bailey’s “Living After WLS” website and blog. I talked about that website a while back, and it really is a great resource for anyone who has gone through weight loss surgery. I realize I come across as someone with a very low tolerance for normal or “helpful” websites, and 99.999% of the time I am, but deep down I guess I’m just a giant queer. But you know, sometimes after four to six weeks of living like a damn Viking, you have to cool your jets and just detox for a while. That really is what I needed to do in order to get back on track. I honestly hadn’t really GAINED any weight even though between graduation, doing the wedding, finishing school, and all of the shenanigans in between, I definitely SHOULD have. Somehow I managed to fluctuate within the exact same three pounds for most of that period, which still isn’t a good thing when I obviously need to lose quite a bit more weight. So I did the pouch test…….well, kind of…..I mean I started out and got through most of the first day doing just my protein shakes, but that night I was like “oh fuck THIS” and had some cannelini beans with a little bit of light Italian dressing. I repeated pretty much the exact same thing for the next two days, and after that I worked in some eggs, and pretty healthy salads and fruit in smaller than usual quantities. I didn’t do the pure protein regimen, but I DID get the really bad carbs worked out of my system, which was exactly what I needed. The white carbs and slider foods get ahold of you like crack, so it’s important to work through those withdrawals for the first couple of days and soldier on. Part of the reason I didn’t follow the pouch test too strictly is because I wanted to begin something that I could sustain for a couple of weeks….sticking to a mostly vegetarian diet, with lots of beans, greens and fruit. But even with my modified version I did take off nine pounds as of Saturday. I’ve stuck to it for the most part since then, and I’m finding it’s a great way to drop some weight and refocus. If you do start this process, know this…….your sensitivity to fats comes back very quickly. At least that’s how it worked for me. Not that I was ever immune to dumping syndrome if I ate too much fat, but I had ramped up the amount I could handle at one time. The other night I found a can of Spam that I had bought on sale a while back (I know, gross, but I went through a weird canned meat phase after surgery), and I was feeling like having some meat after so many days of veggies. I cooked a couple of very thin slices and put a scrambled egg on top of them. I didn’t get sick, but about halfway through a very small portion I started getting the telltale “sweat on the upper lip and forehead” that is the precursor to the crazy train. Lesson learned….no matter how much you might want to eat something, your built-in behavior modification reminds you that it ain’t worth it.
The weight loss is a great side effect of this five day “refresher”, but I’m sure many people will agree with me when I say that the REAL point of it is to get you back into that post-surgery mindset. If you’re anything like me, you take off a bunch of weight, start to feel really confident (which is good) and allow yourself to slip into less physical activity, more wine, more carbs, etc. Before long, the old “bargaining” mindset pops up from time to time…….”if I eat x-amount of this unhealthy food now, I know I can be strict for x-amount of days to make up for it”…….you know what I’m talking about, it’s the food junkie rationalization that forced you to get the surgery in the first place. I hate this over-used term almost as much as I hate children, but it truly is a “slippery slope”. So the pouch test puts you back in touch with what it was like right after surgery. A couple of days of mostly liquids followed by soft proteins not only “tightens you up” a bit, but it takes you to that magical place where you allow yourself to get hungry enough to think “oh damn, those canned Progresso cannelini beans sound DELICIOUS!”. I went back to egg day in my mind, where one stupid egg was like a banquet. Truly monitoring every bite you take, and forcing yourself to keep from grazing during the day, has a very positive result. Oh, it’s not that much FUN for the first few days when you’re jonesing for some carbs like you were Pookie fiending for some rock in New Jack City. But once you get past that stage you begin to appreciate the simple proteins and flavors that are inherent to only being able to eat a few bites at every meal. I’m still on a serious bean kick, so that’s probably what I’ll have for dinner tonight. Then, as is my custom, I’ll buy a ton of beans and immediately become sick of them, and move on to something else like eggs or tofu.
Yes, as I ramble on about an actual surgery related topic, I wonder to myself…….what in the fuck has happened to me? I honestly want to tell people what a great tool the 5 day pouch test is, but sadly, that is about the most exciting event in the past week or so. I feel like ever since school ended a couple of weeks ago I haven’t been able to figure out what in the hell to do with myself. No carbs, no liquor, lots of vegetables and tofu, regular sleep, extra hours in the office…….no good can come of this. It’s like the Merv Griffin episode of Seinfeld……”You know, I’ve been buying the generic wax beans, and if you take off the label you don’t even know the difference”……”Okay, we’ve officially bottomed out”.
I have to get involved in some kind of crazy activity here pretty quickly before my brain totally turns to shit. I’m not a nice enough person to volunteer for anything…I don’t have enough money to cover green fees to play as much golf as I’d need to….the next opera I could be in probably isn’t until the fall. I guess I could shoplift a PS3 and GTA IV, that would kill some time. Sometimes I just get into these very introspective phases where I just become boring and predictable as hell. Maybe it’s the old age. And by introspective, I don’t mean I get all intellectual and ponder the mysteries of life….what I mean is I get fascinated by my own mental regression.
Basically, when I get this boring I find pretty much everyone else just as boring, but fortunately I have a fucking GIFT for looking right in someone’s face and giving them the false impression that I’m hanging on their every word, when in reality, I’m usually thinking about that scene in Superbad where Jonah Hill goes “oh, and the thing about my back is that it’s located on my COCK!”. So obviously, I just run down the list of all of the things that could be located on my COCK…..and that is how I get past listening to people. Very, very few people you will ever meet are worth listening to…..
“Oh, and the thing about my mailbox is that it’s located on my COCK!”
“Oh, and the thing about the Harlem Globetrotters is that it’s located on my COCK!”
“Oh, and the thing about global warming is that it’s located on my COCK!”
“Oh, and the thing about that dangling participle is that it’s located on my COCK!”
And then when that all runs out, because people tend to talk to you for a really, really long time, I just go back into my memory and think of the greatest album names of all time. For example, Killdozer’s “Intellectuals Are The Shoeshine Boys Of The Ruling Elite” comes to mind………..and then, thank god, they eventually run out of steam because they see something shiny or their cell phone rings. I just can’t deal with all of those al dente psyches.
So anyway, did the five day pouch test, lost some weight and gained some momentum, got more boring than I’ve been in a very very long time, the C.H.U.D. comes into town this Thursday, and I turn 39 on the 4th of July. Seriously, if you can come up with a birthday that is as cool as the 4th of July, be my guest. Christmas would be a shitty birthday because you get screwed on presents, and I know many would say Halloween is cooler, but people don’t get the whole day off work like July 4th or you’d have a point.
I’ll have something worth posting after the birthday shenanigans that will happen this weekend, and then NEXT weekend I’m off to Nashville for the most insane throw-down, kickass wine event in the United States…..