Monday, 14 April 2014

2 Months Post Op

Started typing this before the new Game of Thrones episode and had to stop to watch it.. and WOW. Can't wait for all of my friends to catch up! Anyway, moving on to less exciting topics..

Back to Work
On Thursday I will reach the 2 month milestone since my surgery. It's hard to believe it's already been 2 months! How time flies. I can also see that I've come along way over the last couple of months so time certainly does make a difference. 

Last week I made the decision to return to work and what a great but challenging decision that has turned out to be. As much as I love my own company and my alone time, I started driving myself a little crazy just sitting at home all day; most days. 

I work in a sales role and my job is generally always busy and requires me to be proactive and chase new business along with maintaining an existing client base. I quite enjoy my work but it's challenging on a normal day so I always knew that going back after an extended break was never going to be easy. I was really lucky in that my employer allowed me to start on half days to see how I went. I'll admit, I got to 12pm each day and felt as though I needed a nap! I know I used to get a little tired by the afternoons but this was a completely different feeling. By Friday I was completely exhausted and in need of a quiet and relaxing weekend. 

This week I've set a new challenge for myself to work full time hours (but will leave earlier if I need to). Today has been my first day full time and it was a struggle. I am sure there are going to be plenty of spelling and grammatical errors in this post given how drained I feel. My energy just completely disappears and it becomes an effort to even speak to anyone let alone concentrate on my work. It's actually extremely frustrating because I would give anything to just feel normal again! I just have to remind myself that it has only been 2 months since I had life-changing surgery and that I've come a long way over that time. I'm sure it will get easier as the days go by to work again and I've picked a great week to start back full time with the Easter holidays coming up this weekend (also pretty excited for an excuse to eat chocolate.. not that I need one!)

Exercise
For as long as I can remember, I have always exercised regularly and either ran, walked or went to the gym most days. This is something I really missed over my time at home. It's amazing what exercise can do for your mental state. After losing my sister, I found that I struggled with anxiety at times.. often for no reason at all. Exercise is probably the thing that helps me the most whenever I start to feel this way. I've also learnt to focus only on the things I can control and let go of those that I can't. But exercise certainly played a big part in helping these feelings.  

The week before I returned to work, I made sure I went for fairly long walks each morning to both keep busy and try to build up my fitness again. The Sunday before going back to work, I had my first gym session in about 2 months. I have a circuit type weights program that I usually do and decided to try this but with slightly lesser weights than normal. It's fair to say, I found it difficult to walk for at least 3 days following this. Yesterday I gave it another go and am finding the same thing today. I know that this is going to take time as I've had a considerable amount of time just doing absolutely nothing. 

I also attempted to go for a  run on Saturday. I woke up, the sun was shining and I felt like I had heaps of energy so I thought I would be fine. I ran about 500 metres and had to stop and walk. I've lost a lot of my fitness and will have to work to get this back. Although, the walk I did was my longest yet and I felt fine afterwards. Next week, I will just try and run a little bit further and I'm sure that in time this will also get a lot easier. Positivity and motivation can go a long way!

Back in exercise mode on a nice sunny day


Alcohol
One of the questions most people seem to be asking me is "have you had anything to drink yet?" (alcohol wise). As someone who loves a glass of wine of a night time, the answer to this is "yes". I have had a drink. I haven't asked my surgeon or dietitian if this is ok because I'm sure they probably wouldn't condone it just yet (and might not be happy that I'm writing about it!). I have however, only had 1 or 2 glasses at most so I haven't been "out" as such just yet or tried to push my limits at all. I have been completely fine just having a glass of wine. I don't think I noticeably feel the effects any more or less than I used to. I'm yet to try any spirits, beer or cider.. but baby steps! 

Chocolate Protein Peanut Butter Balls - Recipe
Finally, I had somebody ask me today for the recipe of my chocolate peanut butter balls. I got this recipe from a friend (who I'm sure wouldn't mind me sharing). I think she also took it from another website so I'm not claiming to own the recipe by any means. Here it is:

1 tbsp cacao powder
4 tbsp natural peanut butter (although I've only been using 3)
3 tbsp water
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
1/2 cup oats
1 tbsp honey or agave
1 tbsp stevia

Just process all ingredients in a food processor, roll them into little truffle sized balls and put them in the fridge! Easy!

Look forward to posting another update soon. Thanks for reading!

6 comments:

  1. It takes a long time to come back from surgery. Take your time and find something that's easy exercise wise and build on it. I started with walking after my big op and then built this up. You need to forget where you was and focus on now other wise you risk pushing to hard and making yourself worse. The key is small steps but constantly pushing for new ones.... You will get there :-)

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    1. Sorry for the late response.. but appreciate the comment :) I've been doing exactly that and just starting slowly back into exercise. now I'm back at work it's hard to find the energy but I'll get there. Definitely don't want to be taking any back steps! Thanks for the advice

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  2. hi im 6 weeks post op and really struggling with food and energy. I had my whole stomach removed, gall bladder, spleen, half of pancreas and half of my colon. Food is so hard to eat still as it drink. I an only 44 and hoped my recovery would be quicker. I feel tired all the time and dizzy. I have 2 ggod days and one bad day. Have u any advice please? thank you xx

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    1. I'm so sorry for the late reply.. i normally get email notifications when i get comments but for some reason I haven't been getting them. I'm sorry to hear that you're struggling but it sounds like you've had really serious surgery.. I am sure it's just going to be a matter of time. I've found myself getting frustrated at times when i can't eat certain things.. or struggle to keep things down. The most frustrating thing has been my lack of energy. But I can honestly say that I am even better now that I was when I wrote this post. I am finding the days at work much easier and feel my energy slowly coming back. I also still have bad days. I think you just have to work out which foods work for you and start from there. If i have too much sugar i feel terrible. I also can't do bread just yet because it gets stuck and makes me sick. I'm slowly learning though and the more I can be in control of my diet, the easier things are getting. Sorry this probably isn't the best advice but I don't think there is any quick fix unfortunately. Might also be worth getting your vitamin levels checked by your GP. I hope this slightly helps!!

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  3. Thanks for posting the recipe for the peanut butter protein balls, those looked amazing and I'm going to try making them this weekend. I'm so glad to hear that your recovery is going well and hopefully your transition back into work is smooth. I'm still pretty sensitive to sugars, but hoping I can return to ice cream and wine soon. Glad you're doing well!

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    1. No worries, definitely worth giving them a go! Thank you.. it was hard initially getting back into work but it's getting easier each week luckily :) Oh I'm the same.. I can have a little bit but if I overdo it, it's not much fun. Great to see you're going well also! I've been a bit slack on my blog posts.. but will hopefully have another one up soon

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