Monday, September 30, 2013


I have been using a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) devise when I sleep since about 2001 or 2002. I wear a clear mask that blows a steady stream of air over my nose. I only breathe through my nose when sleeping. I guess that's a trained ability. Besides, if you breathe through your mouth it makes a silly sound and it's nearly impossible to keep the stream through your mouth. I have seen first hand a mask that covers both your mouth and nose, but I don't have the slightest idea how that helps.

I know that the stream of air keeps you nose passage open and helps you not snore. Its used for a condition or effect called sleep apnea which simply means your not getting enough oxygen when your sleeping. It's primarily used by obese people, but I used to snore when I was thin too, so I think anyone could benefit from using one. I started using mine after an all night sleep study at a local hospital.

An oxygen tube can be connected to the devise, but I just use regular air. A better explanation of the whole deal can be found at

Anyway, my point is that I always sleep with my mask. I take naps with it and I travel with it UNLESS I fall asleep on the couch watching television. I'm the type of person that has to be moving all the time. If you slow me down and make me sit, outside of driving or in class, I fall asleep. I fall asleep at the movies all the time unless I have some cold tea or a water bottle to sip on.

I just fell asleep on the couch watching World War Z. It's not the movie. I love the movie, but the couch is super comfortable and I was watching the movie for the second time. I watched it last night On Demand (pay per view). It was worth watching again. The rental lasts two days. Anyway, I woke up with the worst frick'n headache.

Last January when I was in the hospital they recorded my oxygen at a level in the 90's when I used the CPAP, but in the low 80's when I went without which I guess can be dangerous to your overall health.

So now I have a headache and I'll have to take some acetaminophen. With my bad liver I am allowed to take acetaminophen every once in a while, but only two tablets twice a day if I have too. I know two tablets will take care of this stupid headache today. AND, then I'll finish watching the movie... without falling asleep.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Feeling better

The seroquel worked and I felt better by the evening. I was still happy to go to sleep and leave yesterday away. I feel okay so far this morning.

My weight was from 429 or 421 in the Western Hills nursing home in January 2013. I'm not positive since I was still coming out of a psychotic state and I don't know if I read the chart right. The beginning on January, when I entered Swedish Hospital, I could have been as much as 10 pounds heavier.

In 2012 I had completely given up, having gone from 335 slowly to 350 and then I gave up and stopped weighing myself and started eating like a regular person. My metabolism can't handle that.

I didn't eat anything while I was in Swedish for 2 1/2 weeks with what started as a severe case of cellutitus and then the infection reached my blood stream which can easily have fatal results. I hated the food in the nursing home and I only really ate fruit for 1 1/2 weeks. By the time I got out of the nursing home I probably weighed somewhere around 404 or so. My home scale only goes up to 400. It kept showing an error until one day in February. I was 390 by the end of February. I wasn't going to lose this chance to kick off a diet to help my body in about a dozen different ways. I became devoted to making my self healthier for good.

I've lost between 8 and 10 pounds a month consistently. That per month goal has given me the chance to eat whatever I wanted occasionally, but only a little bit. Most of the time I just concentrated on high protein foods and never anything after 6pm. At some points in each month I would stabilize or gain a few pounds, but then I would pull it out by the end of the month.

This morning I weighed in at 312.4. I have two days until the first of October. It is possible for me to lose 2 more pounds by then and start the month at 310. That would put me at 10 short pounds to my first awesome goal. I'll be leaving the 300's behind two months early. Yup. I feel pretty good this morning.  

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Having a panic attack

I thought it might be good or terribly stupid to write while I'm headed into a panic attack. This won't take long. I feel weird. I can't explain it, but I'll try. Everything around me is going okay, but I feel like I need to run. No where in particular, just run. I feel like I need to be out of my own skin. I may have to call my psychiatrist, but I know she'll tell me to take an extra dose of seroquel so I will on my own. Maybe I need to sleep this off. My chest is tight and my breathing is short. I'm bouncing off the walls. I have to go.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Updated Bariatric Progress Log

Just a quick note. I painfully updated my Bariatric weight gain/loss Progress Log at

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Found a new Bariatric Vitamin !!!

I should probably start with a slight revision to my previous post. I could just go in and edit it, but it's important enough to post here. In January 2013, when I was in the hospital for a very bad case of cellutisus (skin infection) I lost track of time. My wife tends to give me information bits at a time in case I can't handle the truth. I hate that, but she's kind of right. I do flip out when I learn about something I don't remember. This is one of those times. I guess the reason that I lost track of time while I was in the hospital for two and a half weeks is because I went psychotic. Not bad psychotic. I just lost touch with reality for a couple of weeks. I do remember all of the time spent at the nursing home, so  I must have been better by then. Opps.

My big news for all bariatric patients is that I finally found a new supplement to replace the Optisource who changed their formula or taste into butt. Twinlab makes a series of supplements for us that tastes great. The big chewable multi-vitamin pill tastes like berry sweet tarts! I found them at Spouts Market (formally called Sunflower Market) . Great stuff. They have a full line of bariatric vitamins and supplements.

An important part of weight loss is obviously exercise. Of course exercise burns calories, but not as many as you would think. Losing weight is still about good calories being used or burned in greater relation to those required to maintain or gain weight. Basically, you have to eat less and exercise because it helps you burn fat not muscle. For a long time I have had problems with my left knee. I run on the treadmill and hike on a regular basis and my knee would be on fire and I couldn't maintain my regiment. I went to a respected orthopedic surgeon expecting to have my MCL worked on. Instead he took x-rays of my knees and showed me something interesting. I have stage 3 out of 4 bone on bone arthritis. I have the same contact on both knees, but only the left one hurts now. He told me the right would eventually start hurting as well. The long term solution is a knee replacement, but I have to lose about a hundred more pounds to be eligible. The short term solution is to get a single injection of Synvisc one Hylan G-F 20 directly into my knee. He said it creates a temporary barrier between bones. It should last six months. Some of my friends have told me it can last much longer and you can always have another injection. You have to be tender on your knee for 48 hours, but after that you can do whatever you want to. SIX MONTHS WITHOUT PAIN! I'm in! Now I'm just waiting for my insurance to approve it which they most likely will. If I had only known earlier. So much pain could have been avoided. Anyway, with my new reduced weight my running and hiking are much easier aside from the knee pain. I'll really be able to hit the gym soon. Sooooo happy! I'll let you know how it works.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Weight loss

Hello folks,

In 2012 I watched my weight slowly go from say 330 to 350 to 360 and then I stopped weighing myself. I knew I had completely sabotaged my lapband surgery which is proof positive that the surgery isn't the magical solution that many believe it is. It's easy to stretch out the upper pouch to the point where you can almost eat as normal people.

I'm not sure how much weight I was when I first entered the hospital for a severe case of cellutisis on my left leg on January 4th, 2013. I imagine that it was somewhere around 430. I lost lots of weight for those first two and a half weeks because I was too sick to eat and the food tasted bland and just yucky. When I went into the nursing home I seem to remember 429 being entered on my chart. I do remember being told that I was somewhere around 421.

Once I got home in February my scale showed an "error" because it only went up to 400. After a week or so I finally got it to work and I was just under 400. Today I scaled out at 321. It's unbelievable but I have for the last several months been aiming for 10 pounds per month. I've been close to that each month, but I think it's been more like 8 pounds per month. By the end of this month I should hit 310 because my body took some time to get used to being around 320 to 325 pounds. That usually makes it easier to drop some quick weight.

I know that the "rules" say that you should only eat three meals a day of no more than a 1/4 cup, but I don't really pay attention to that. I don't exclude anything because I don't want get cravings. I do eat ice cream and a few bites of an Arby's beef and cheddar. I eat pretty much anything, but I don't eat more than maybe a 1/2 to 3/4 cups of food. My best loss days are when I don't snack and I have discipline at dinner time and after dinner. I think you lose the most weight while you sleep.

I have also resumed my weekend mountain hikes and I have also restarted my tri-weekly gym workout. It's important, but not really because you lose a lot of weight working out. I does make you feel stronger and more limber, but losing weight is more of a calorie in and calorie out. Sure you burn some calories working out, but eating less burns more calories. Especially if you eat less at lunch and dinner. You can completely sabotage your good discipline from the day if you eat a late fatty dinner of more than 1/2 cup. If you eat right at bed time or if you get up for a snack, you will gain weight.

I don't really follow those strict rules of high protein of 1/4 cup only three times a day because I am still losing 8 to 10 pounds a day without any cravings at all. Oh yeah, drinking hard liquor and beer completely messes up your weight and messes up my liver. Do I ever drink? Yeah, sometimes if I'm watching football with my brother or something, but I milk one beer during the whole game. I never have more than one drink every week. Most of the time I do not have any. Those become my good weeks. This week will be a good week. I imagine I will hit about 317 this week.

I will easily scale out below 300 by Thanksgiving. That will be a cool day. One note about my bipolar mood swings. The mornings have gotten better, but I have to take a seroquel in the afternoon otherwise my mind races too fast and I become combative. In all I would say that I am doing okay.    

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Bipolar moods swings

I continue to believe that most people don't understand. Sure, everyone has ups and downs, but it is the extremes that endanger bipolars. It's like you're out of control of your own mind. My biggest problem regardless of which swing I am in is racing thoughts. Not regular multilevel thinking, but thoughts that nearly scream in your head. They totally exhaust me. Especially when my moods swing within one day. I just want some quiet so I can think clearly. It usually takes extra doses of Seroquel and that makes me sleepy. Sometimes that's good, but if I have tasks to complete that day it is discouraging.

Their are exterior triggers... sometimes. I was trying to remember my hospital stay for cellutitus infection in January. I can remember a bit, but there are huge holes in my memory until I was transferred to the nursing home. My wife told me I went into full psychosis. Damn, I thought I was past that. The last time I went into full psychosis was in January 2008. It took them over three weeks to bring me out. I can remember the waking nightmares. It was truly scary. I don't remember this past January. Maybe that's good.

I have been having waking hallucinations that are usually quick and I have to scratch my head to remember how real they seemed. I had an incident where a child ran in front of my car. I stepped on the brakes before I realized it was not real. My psychiatrist is beginning to wonder if I should be driving. Maybe I made a medication error. Maybe I just need to concentrate on being in the moment. Maybe my mind was elsewhere. I don't know. My PCP thinks they may just be momentary peripheral vision which he considers normal. I'd like to believe that prognosis.

All that being said, I feel generally okay. I have it find more to do in the mornings. My mornings seem to be the hardest. By the afternoon I'm usually writing which forces my mind to go into a different world, a different sphere of reality. I really think the depression of the Winter and all of the physical and family trouble is behind me. I wish I was manic as long as I was depressed, but it doesn't seem to be. I'm not necessarily depressed, thanks to the increased and new meds, but I am diffidently not hypo-manic. Maybe for a few hours of the day. I can say that the new Trileptal has helped stabilize me to a point, but it also puts a weird taste in my mouth.

The bariatric vitamin of choice was Opti-sourse, but they changed their recipe and now they taste just as gross as the others. I'm trying to mix them in orange juice or keep a chaser very close by. I'll admit to not taking them as often as I am supposed to. This may hurt me in the short term because I am continuing to lose weight at the rate of 8 to 10 pounds per month. I haven't been particularly good in the last week and it has resulted in a September first weigh in of 322 instead of my goal of 320. Two pounds isn't much so I can't whip myself too hard.

I guess that's it. Finances are stable for once this year, but that may be short term as my cars all seem to be taking a crap all at once. Oh well, that's life.