Another day of following the prescribed regimen, and once again the bathroom scale is down. I am quite pleased with that, but more important, I am feeling lighter today. The shirt that I am wearing, which a month ago had my belly hanging out, is now much more comfortable. It is a good day to be going to the tailor to be fitted for a few custom dress shirts and pants, and possibly a vest and even a sport jacket. I will not be buying a suit at this time, but the rest I am ready for. I will not spend thousands of dollars at the tailor… but it is likely that I will spend more than $1000. I’ll be sure to take my American credit cards!
Something that has been weighing on my mind is an issue that I only realized fully the last time I had lost most of my weight. At a certain point, if I do lose all of the weight, I am going to have a lot of excess skin and might need cosmetic surgery to remove it. If I am ever going to have the body that I really want to have, then that is a reality that I am going to have to face. I have been obese since very shortly after I got out of the Army, which is now over twenty-five years ago. It was a nice thought that my skin would bounce back because I was young… I am not so young anymore. I have never liked the idea of cosmetic surgery, but I remember how much of that skin was left – in my belly, in my chest – and I will not want to spend the rest of my life with it. Also, if I do go through that, then maybe I can look at the surgery as a delineation point – WAS fat, AM slim. Maybe that will be the daily reminder of why I cannot eat like I once did.
I have my check-in meeting with my diet buddy this afternoon. It will be our first meeting in three weeks – she was off traipsing around Yukon… if traipsing is something that one does in the Great White North. According to her words, she needs to debrief. I suspect that while my last couple of weeks have seen me down, she will not have been so successful. That is not uncommon when one is on vacation. I have already decided that when Leslie and I are in Cuba, I will be suspending my diet program. That does not mean that I will not try to eat sensibly, but I will not be taking meal replacements with me. I rather suspect that eating sensibly in the tropics, where fresh fruits and salads make up a good part of the diet, will be easier than eating sensibly north of 60°, where a head of lettuce can cost $20.
For those of you who are wondering if it would even be possible to stay on my meal-replacements-only program at an all-inclusive resort in Cuba, the answer is yes… and I know that because I have done it. In 2017, when I first went through the program, Eduardo and I spent a week at the Be Live Turquesas resort in Varadero, which is only a couple of kilometres from the resort Leslie and I will be at. I had four meal replacement shakes per day, and whenever someone asked if I wanted a drink, or if I wanted to join them for a snack, I just told them I was recovering from a bit of a stomach bug, and I was taking it easy. I remember the fear when we went into Havana, and I thought that I had forgotten my shakes at the hotel (in Varadero). I was so relieved when I discovered at the restaurant that I had not in fact forgotten them. I do not plan to subject myself – or Leslie – to that stress. I will be eating in Cuba, and when I come back, I will continue from where I left off.
It is interesting… when I started this journey (again), I was reading my old journals from 2017 and 2019 nearly every day. I stopped doing that after maybe ten days or so… but thinking back on that trip, I decided to open up my first journal. Days 26-34 were spent in Cuba, and I got through it. It is amazing to look back on a trip like that and realize that I lost 3-4 pounds during that week. Okay, it is hard to be precise, because I had only registered my weigh-in six days prior to the trip. The first time I went through the program, I did it through a hospital bariatric clinic, and was not getting onto a bathroom scale. I was only registering my weight when they weighed me. On Day 21 I had lost 33 pounds, and by Day 35 I had lost 41 pounds. For those of you keeping track, I am currently on Day 64, and have not yet lost the full 40 pounds… but I am not on the same strict program that I was on, and I cannot expect to see the same drastic results. Yes, I plan to achieve the same results (minus the long, slow descent back into obesity), but it will take longer.
Tomorrow morning, I am driving to Montreal for the weekend. I am looking forward to seeing my friends, but I am also looking forward to the relaxing alone time in the car. I will switch off between podcasts and the audiobook that I am listening to (remember when they were called books on tape? I am getting old!) and podcasts, and I will be smoking cigars as I like. I will do my best to not cheat on the program, which means that I will be taking a good number of meal replacement bars with me. Still and all, I know that I cannot follow the program the way I normally would, and I am hoping that when I weigh myself on Tuesday, I will not be more than a pound off from what I weigh tomorrow. Here’s hoping!
While it is cloudy out, the temperatures are going to 11°c, and the wind does not seem so bad. When I get back from the tailor, I will be enjoying a cigar on the balcony.
Have a great day!