Well, I went and had my one month doctor's check-up.
After the day I had had at work, I was very nervous about what the scale was going to show when I got there. I was hot, a little dehydrated, and I just knew that the slight swelling I noticed around my ankles from standing all day were going to add some outrageous number to the number I was hoping for.
You see, I had spent all afternoon taking my students to an outdoor learning situation where staff from local state parks taught about the environment and nature. The content is good stuff... but it's very hard to pay attention when it's 95 degrees, we're sitting in direct sunlight for over an hour, and there are bees and bugs constantly flying around. I only had one bottle of water, that I drank after the excursion...and I had been on my feet the entire time we'd been there. My class all sat on tarps at the various stations, but because of the giant grasshoppers and swarms of sweat bees that just wouldn't leave us alone, there was no way I was going to sit on the ground.
Anywho, by the time we got back to the school, I was tired, drenched in sweat, and my ankles and fingers were slightly swollen from the excessive heat and lack of water.
Not the smartest idea, not taking more water, but I prepared to face my fate on the scale and plead my case to my doctor that the swelling was skewing my weigh-in results.
I got to my appointment about two minutes before the actual time of the appointment which was supposed to be 4:15. But, then Jelly and I sat, and sat, and sat some more. Jelly started getting really impatient after sitting for 30 minutes. I started getting really impatient after sitting for 45 minutes. Finally, at 5:10, we got called back.
The first stop was the scale. I took off my shoes, handed my stuff to Jelly, and said a quick prayer before stepping up on the scale. For a split second, I felt like a contestant on The Biggest Loser. Like my fate rested on what the number was going to show me. Was it enough to convince my doctor to let stay on the medicine or was I going to be sent home empty handed?
The numbers rolled for a few seconds...and then....
I actually let out a big "OH YEAH!"
That's the exact same number I had received on my weigh-in on Wednesday. That told me straight away that there's a good chance I've lost some weight since then... because I'm pretty sure a weight at 5PM after the day I had was going to be a little off from my actual weight.
The nurse wrote the number down, but didn't say anything. I was a little disappointed. I figured this nurse would know that I was there to get a weight check, she was the nurse I saw at my first appointment, and surely my chart told her that's why I was there. I expected a "good job" or something.
She showed Jelly and I in to a room and started typing on her little tablet. It was then she looked up and said "You weighed 262.4lbs a month ago, you've lost 11lbs in a month... that's amazing!"
Finally, a little recognition for my hard work. Yes. Yes I did. I did lose just about 11lbs in a month.
She then dropped a bombshell on me. My doctor (or nurse practitioner, actually) that had prescribed me the medicine in the first place no longer worked in their office. I'd be seeing a new nurse practitioner. A male.
I was a little upset by this. I'd really liked the nurse practitioner I'd seen on my first visit. She'd been through weight problems of her own. She was encouraging and motivating and wanted to help me lose weight. What if the new guy hated diet pills and refused to give me anymore?
The nurse took the rest of my vitals...blood pressure was great, so that was a relief.
The new guy finally came in. A huge, burly man. Dressed in blue jeans and a white shirt. If it wasn't for the stethoscope wrapped around his neck, I would have assumed it was a patient that had stumbled in to the wrong room. My nerves got pumped up again. Here was a man that was very large, in weight terms, would he be willing to prescribe weight loss pills, or would he be one of those doctors that thought they were the devil?
He didn't really say much to me when he first came in, he barely glanced at me before sitting down. He looked at my chart and then asked why I was there (still not looking up from the computer). I told him that I had been prescribed the weight loss pill, and was there for my one month check up. He then asked me if I'd actually lost any weight. In a tone that almost sounded sarcastic... like he was expecting a thin me to be sitting there. He had no idea what I looked like a month ago, so why he was talking to me like that I wasn't sure. It's not like he'd even looked at me at all since walking in the room.
I then told him I'd lost 11lbs. In a month.
He typed a few things on his computer, and then finally looked up at me.
Finally, a smile moved across his face. I wasn't sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing. I'd only been with this guy for two minutes, but I was already starting to feel like this would be a huge mistake. Like I couldn't stay seeing him. He wouldn't be the kind, caring, supportive APN like I'd seen the month before.
He looked me in the eyes, and said "That's very good! Eleven pounds in a month, even with a pill, is a big success. Apparently, the pill is working."
Phew. OK. Maybe this wouldn't be so bad.
He then went on to ask how I was doing with eating and exercise. I told him I'd been maintaining a 1200 calorie diet...and he scoffed. He immediately told me that there'd be no way I could maintain that.
I then scoffed myself and said quite proudly "Apparently I can, because I've gone an entire month eating that way and it's become somewhat of a habit. I eat three meals a day, and every single day my calories are right around the 1200 mark. I don't feel hungry or deprived, and I 100% believe that I can maintain eating that way for as long as I need to. The problem will actually come when I have to up that calorie amount."
He sat there for a second quite stunned. He looked at me carefully. He let out a sigh and then.... APOLOGIZED. For what, I'm not exactly sure. Maybe for his stiff upper lip attitude, or his nonchalance for why I was there, or for doubting that I was able to follow through on my commitment. But, after the apology, he softened...quite a bit.
He told me that he was very happy with the progress I've made, and that he hopes that when I see him again in a month I would have made the same type of progress. He told me that he saw determination in my eyes, and that was something quite rare when it came to handing out diet pills. He told me that way too often, people come in wanting weight loss pills and expecting them to be the fix-all and cure-all to their problems. They continue to eat like crap, but then wonder why they're not seeing the results they wanted. I, apparently, wasn't one of those people. He told me that if I had, indeed, already starting putting the habits into place with my eating...then half of my troubles were already passed me. That as long as I stayed as committed as I was in that moment, then I would definitely lose the weight.
Finally. Just what I was wanting to hear.
He asked me how I was doing with exercise. I laughed, and then looked to the ground. I bit my lip and told him that was one area I was still struggling. I told him that I had gone on a few 3-4 mile walks in the month, but that was about it. But, that I was a teacher and on my feet most of the day.
He then laughed (a friendly laugh this time) and told me that our jobs weren't exercise. If they were, neither him nor I would weigh what we weigh. But rather than give me a lecture on how important it was for me to exercise, he simply told me that losing 11lbs with just changing my eating habits was a huge feat. And that if that was the case, just imagine what I could do if I started making exercise a habit.
If I could lose 11lbs in a month with hardly any exercise, I could definitely increase that number significantly if exercise became my focus for this next month.
He then smiled, tapped a few more keys in to his computer, and told me that my next month's prescription would be waiting for me at my pharmacist. And to make an appointment in another month.
And that was it. He said goodbye and walked out.
When I walked up to the counter to make my next appointment, I asked the receptionist if the wait would be so bad the next time. She then informed me that the other receptionist had made a big boo-boo that day and had overbooked the APN several times, which had put him in quite a mood. Well, that explained a lot. She told me that next time, I shouldn't have to wait so long...and that he'd probably be in a better mood.
Driving back to the school to pick up the kids from their practices, I really started thinking about what had just happened. It hadn't all gone as I'd planned, but I at least received the affirmations that I was hoping for. I had made great progress. I had exceeded the expectations set before me. But, I knew that most people lose the most amount of weight the first few weeks of trying. The second month was going to be a challenge, to pull off similar or better numbers than the first.
But, I decided to myself that I would stick the course, up the ante, and take myself back to the doctor a month later down at least another 11lbs...hopefully more. I'm just getting started. I have a very long way to go. There's no reason that I should start losing momentum yet. I even decided to set myself a mini goal.
I weighed 262.2lbs on my first visit to the doctor.
I weighed 251.4lbs on the first month's check-up.
I want to see 239lbs or below on my next visit. Meaning that I need to lose 12.4lbs before I go back on October 9th (my next appointment).
I hate to set goals like that, but it also gives me something to focus on. Commit to. The appointment is in 4 1/2 weeks from now. That means I need to lose at least 2 3/4 pounds each week between now and then.
Knowing that I can walk in to my next appointment having lost 24lbs in two months would be freaking awesome. And I believe it to be totally doable.
And I'm going to work my tail off to do it.
Commit. Focus. Stay strong.
My new mantra for the next month.
Right now, it's time for breakfast.
Have a great weekend!!
Till next time!