DebbyK’s Creamy Coconut Butter

Hey Your Fit Day Friends!

Do you cling to smells from childhood that make you feel good? I do. I’ve always loved the smells of vanilla, mint, and cocoa. So much so that as I got older they just became my go-t0 scents. For instance, as a child my favorite ice cream was mint chocolate chip. And then when I got older and ditched the ice cream I started chewing Extra™  Peppermint gum.  It was the only gum I would chew, and I’m still chewing. I’m addicted. It’s that sweet mint-vanilla-y flavor that I can’t live without.

And around the same time, I started wearing Palmers™ cocoa butter, as well as vanilla scented oils.

Put the three together and I was a like a walking piece of Good and Plenty™ candy wrapped up in a cinnamon bun! Mmmm!

Good and Plenty Candy
Five Cents was all it cost for an aphrodisiac!

Then I started noticing how I was attracting people like flies on a strips because of how I smelled. Random guys in the gym would say I smelled sweet, like a mint chip cookie, cinnamon muffins, or peppermint candies.

And one time I was in the huge shoe department at Macy’s, in San Francisco, where the same sort of thing happened. Two women strolled by me and stopped at the same display I was perusing. And as soon as they were right next to me one of them said to her friend “hey, I smell chocolate chip cookies baking, let’s go to where they are and get us some”. Hmmm, I couldn’t smell any chocolate chip cookies baking, and neither could my girlfriend. So I looked over at them and said “I’m sorry, but I think your chocolate chip cookie is me!”. Well, apparently I wasn’t quite the chip they were looking for and off they left, in a huff, determined to find their cookie.

Here’s what I’m talking about

What’s your reaction when you open up a jar of vanilla beans and taken a whiff? Or how about when you walk into a home and smell a cake baking, or even better, when you open up the door and take a whiff straight from the oven.   Drives you crazy, right? Well, it makes me feel like I just want to bake a batch of mom’s chocolate chip cookies, brownies or some pumpkin pie right this minute.  Wanna know why? Well, smells bring back memories. It’s true. And it gets better. It turns out certain smells stimulate sexual arousal in us.  I mean, the title of this book says it all…  Scentsational Sex: The Secret to Using Aroma for Arousal . I haven’t read it yet, but I just ordered it from Amazon. And I’ll be sure to have a cup of vanilla tea in hand when I read it. And I’m hoping that I can get back to you with rave reviews too, if you get what I mean! (Please note that I make a small commission on the sale of this book).

According to Dr. Alan Hirsch, the neurological director of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago, men are attracted to olfactory memories and of smells like licorice and doughnuts, pumpkin pie with doughnuts, cinnamon buns, buttered popcorn, and the list of sweetness goes on.

Cinnabon
I bet this Cinnabon™makes you feel sexy!

So mom was right: the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, one Cinnabon™at a time!

Women aren’t too different:

  • Good & Plenty candy combined with cucumber (Loved them both as kid, ate them separately, but if it helps I will consider eating cucumber as I chew my peppermint gum)
  • Good & Plenty candy with banana bread (OMG! who doesn’t love the smell of banana bread) Are you feeling it yet?

 

  • Pumpkin pie, coffee, vanilla, and grilled meats also kindle the fire, so to speak. Well that makes perfect sense to me! ( I get ravenously primal when I smell grilled meat; and feel all nostalgic and cuddly around the smells of baking cookies, cakes, coffee and vanilla) Taking notes?

Well, I guarantee that a fresh, warm, buttery batch of DebbyK’s coconut butter will have the same effect.

So, blend up this buttery brew, take a whiff and let it be your viagra. You may just find yourself carrying around a jar in your pocket!

As promised here is my recipe for how to make coconut butter.

Coconut Butter
Coconut Butter is my Drug!

DebbyK’s Creamy Coconut Butter

Prep time: 5 min

Cooking Time: 15 min

Servings: 32

Serving size: 1 Tablespoon

Gather:  6-8 cups Dried shredded coconut

Vanilla (optional,  but suggested if you want to attract a mate)

What you need: Measuring cup, high speed blender, spatula

Steps:

  1. Gather your shredded coconut and a measuring cup

    Organic Coconut
    Shredded Coconut on my homemade sushi platter
  2. Put 3 cups of coconut into a high speed blender. I use an old Osterizer.
  3. Start blending on a low speed, and using a knife keep pushing the coconut down into the middle. Within a few seconds the coconut will start to fly around.
  4. Immediately add another cup while continuing to scrap down the sides into the middle and increase the speed to HIGH or if you have many setting, 1 or 2 below the highest. It should combine rather quickly. If not be patient. All dried coconut has different moisture content, and is aged differently, and some combine faster than others.
  5. Organic Coconut ButterWhen the coconut starts getting creamy add another cup, 1/2 cup at a time while continuing to scrape sides down with the knife, and pushing it towards the middle.
  6. As you continue to add the coconut the butter will become thick and you will think that it will never get smooth and creamy. But be patient. (See picture, Step 6, left)
  7. Coconut Butter
    This is the point where it starts to get more creamy. This is good enough to eat NOW!

    At this point I like to wait til the butter gets very creamy until adding additional coconut. Then continue to add 1 cup at a time, adding slowly so the coconut is incorporated. It should look like this (See picture Step 7, left)

  8. I use 6-8 cups of shredded coconut to make 16-20oz’s of butter.
  9. Once you have 2 to 2 1/2 cup of butter in your blender you can add vanilla to taste if you want, do a quick blend, and you’re ready to jar it up.

    Coconut Butter
    Creamy goodness!
  10. Well, that’s it! Now you are ready to eat your coconut butter!  But if you’re like me it’s already half gone…Enjoy!
  11. And if you’re just too darn lazy tired to do it yourself then I’d be happy to make you a couple jars. Just email me at debkaplan@sbcglobal.net

 

 

Here’s a short video of Step 3

Notes:

  • The blender may get hot. I wouldn’t worry too much about it. You can turn off the blender and rest it for a few minutes if you want.
  • If the blender gets too hot it can burn the coconut butter. You’ll know this if it starts to turn brown.
  • After pouring all the goodness into your jars you’ll be left with residual on the sides and bottom. Don’t let that go to waste. Scrape all of it down to the bottom and then take 1/3 cup of HOT water and pour it in. Put the blender back on the base and blend high speed til frothy. Pour  ‘milk’ into a mug and heat it up with a sprinkle of cinnamon drop of liquid stevia or splenda if you use it.
  • And there you have it…more liquid goodness to start or end your day…!
  • OH! Forgot…You don’t have to refrigerate the coconut butter. It has anti fungal properties and will keep for quite some time on the shelf, if it even lasts that long, which I bet it won’t. If you want to feel safe then you can also freeze it too. It hardens at below 70 degrees F.
  • To get your butter silky and smooth again, just put the jar in a pan of water, best in a double boiler, on low heat and it will melt. Stir occasionally.  Watch it so it doesn’t burn. If you forget about it and it turns a golden brown don’t worry, it’s still yummy!

    Coconut Butter
    Don’t forget that gooey goodness at the bottom of the blender

Nutritional Facts:

Serving Size (15 g or 1 Tablespoon)

Servings Per Recipe 32

Calories 120

Calories from Fat 90 (75%)

Total Fat 10 g

Saturated Fat 9.5 g

Monounsaturated Fat 0 g

Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g

Trans Fat 0 g

Cholesterol 0 g

Sodium 4 mg

Potassium 0 mg

Total Carbohydrate 4 g

Dietary Fiber 0 g

Sugars g

Protein 1 g

So, there you have it. My liquid gold which I refer to as Coconut Crack!

Enjoy, and and make it Your Fit Day with DebbyK!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Healing Benefits of Coconut Butter

Coconut Butter
“Oil that is, coconut oi, liquid gold”

Hey Your Fit Day Friends!

You’re probably asking ”Hey, hey, where’s  DebbyK ?” Well, if you’re  getting my newsletters then your in the know.

What? Not subscribed? What the…? Get your crazy self over to my sidebar and click on that link so I can bug you with my my fitness and fat loss tips, and coming to you soon, my yummy recipes.

Kay now!… that’s settled…and thanks for subscribing.

So, here’s the four one one on why I’ve been out of touch with my fitness blogging and updates: For those of you who just recently subscribed I’ve had 2 major surgeries in the past year. For the first one I traveled far far away to the beautiful land of India for my hip resurfacing surgery, where they put a shiny new cobalt ball in my hip. That was last October.  The 4th to be exact. It’s been a year already, OMG!

Well, thank god I’m not in pain anymore. But I’ll tell you it’s been a big freakin deal trying to get my body feeling normal again. And after a year I”m not nearly as in shape as I was. But that’s because when I got back I had to have another freakin surgery.  It’s like I’m under construction from the bottom up. Now I know how Michelangelo felt painting the Sistine Chapel.  It’s that painstakingly slow to rehab. So don’t sweat it if you have a bad day with your program. It’s all cumulative. Just keep pluggin’ away. K?

So, first surgery’s down, and then seven months later I had to go under the knife again for shoulder surgery. That’s only five months ago. Have you had shoulder surgery? Well, don’t. It was a BIGGER pain in the A#$ than the first one!  Don’t ever get it. Because it feels like somebody’s pounding and drilling into your shoulder with a hammer, incessantly, minute after minute for at least six weeks. Not that I’ve ever had that happen to me, but if I did…hmmm…actually, come to think of it…well, you get the point.  OK! I know…not much of an excuse for not blogging.

But don’t worry, while I was gone I was thinking all about you and what would make you feel warm and fuzzy. And considering my condition ( since it’s really hard for me to do fitness videos for you like I promised-and I’m really sorry for not having kept my word- even if I were to make workout videos, seriously, if you did some of the exercises like how I’m doing them now you’d be exercising like a one winged flamingo) I thought it would be in your best interest to wait a bit longer for the kick butt workout videos. So instead, I’m going to make you some yummy stuff to eat.

Well, not actually make you dinner and desert, as in you coming over to my place and having tea and all…

Rather,  put many of my yummy healing treats and foods that have helped me keep this body happy, healthy, fit (considering) and lean for the past 30 years – not to mention during my surgeries – here on my blog. No Reservations Required!

Yummy stuff… like savory meals, and gluten free sweets, muffins, pies, cakes and butters.

Yup, you read that right….

And because I’ve been getting so many requests for DebbyK’s Coconut Butter recipes (I have many yummy flavors)  I’ve decided to share one of my addictions basic recipes with you.  My liquid gold.

Why Butter? Why Not Butter! Yum…

So while I was recovering after my shoulder surgery I began to research more about healing through nature and how our hormones play a big role in regulating our recovery. I knew that good fats, such as Omega 3’s, are vital in our body’s defense against aging and inflammation.  But just as important as Omega 3’s are saturated fats. If I wanted to give my body the best chance at a strong recovery I would need more FAT.

… Actually, more saturated fats.

Wait, I know what you’re thinking, that fat’s not good for you, and it will make you..well… fat. Or drop dead. Or both. Especially saturated fat. I’ll die of a heart attack THIS SECOND, right?!

Now that’s ridiculous. I mean our paleolithic friends ate tons of fat… in meat, nuts and seeds. And they weren’t fat.  But of course they weren’t sitting at their computers all day checking Facebook, reading blogs and munching on chips (Put those down and keep reading).

Well, that’s another blog altogether. In the meantime a good place to learn about fats, healing, and optimal health through diet is over at  Robb Wolf’s website where you can also read up on why we need more of these good fats in our diets. And while you’re there make sure to read up on the the ‘Paleo Lifestyle’.

OkeeDoKee! Back to the fats. Fats such as coconut oil, red palm oil, grass fed butter and ghee, and coconut butter-a saturated fat- are all really good for you and should be the bulk of the fats and oils you use when cooking.

So you’re probably wondering what this here coconut butter has to do with my yummy healthy recipes that I’m putting together for you. Well for one, it’s become my go-to staple fat for much of my baking. And snacking…I don’t lie.

But coconut butter is so delicious that I don’t only use it for most of my general cooking like I’d use butter, plain virgin coconut oil and red palm oil for stuff like stir fry, soups, etc. That would be like melting gold to make one nail and then  pounding it somewhere into the frame of your house.  You don’t get the real beauty of it. A waste. No Can Do.

Nope.. I eat it by the spoonful…straight from the jar. I want the full sensation of this liquid gold.

Coconut butter
This doesn’t last long in my house!

But the best is when I warm it up in a double boiler before I dip my spoon into the jar, and wait til it becomes really smooth and silky. And then, as my lips wrap around the spoon and the fat molecules explode in a crescendo of gooey goodness on my tongue, it warms my senses and brings back memories of sticking my fingers into Mom’s gigantic blue-ringed ceramic mixing bowl filled with cake batter…which makes me dip my spoon in for more.

Come to think of it maybe I am an addict.

Oh, I digress…when you make my recipe, coming up in my next blog post, you’ll know what I’m talking about. It really is like eating cake batter or vanilla frosting or even cookie dough. And there are endless other ways to melt into a blissful state while eating this treat: like putting a dollop in tea or coffee; dipping with fruit; or icing cookies, cakes and pies. OH MY!

And not only does it taste good it has many healthy and healing qualities.

Ninja of Oils

Coconut oil is the ninja of oils. Aside from tasting like heaven,  check out this laundry list of it’s super duper qualities:

Weight Loss:

Coconut oil is an MCT (medium chain triglyceride). Instead of storing it as fat you burn it as energy. It’s like eating a piece of candy that won’t stick to your thighs. How’s that for liquid gold?  It’s a super-food which will make you feel energized after eating it. So don’t be surprised if you start running sprints up and down your office hallways.

Coconut oil stimulates your metabolism, so it helps with energy levels and may help you to burn more calories each day.

Coconut oil, and it side kick the creamy butter, is a key nutrient that has helped many of my clients, including myself, to lose body fat while using the Carb Backloading  and/or The Carb Nite Solution: The Physicist’s Guide to Power Dieting (Please not that I will receive a small commission from the sales of these books).

Boost Your Immunity:

Coconut oil has been shown to boost your immunity as well as kill harmful bacteria and viruses. Flu seasons coming, so stock up!

Coconut oil has been shown to kill the Candida Albicans yeast with it’s anti fungal properties.

Healthy Skin:

Coconut oil boosts moisture and elasticity in your skin. I would even consider that an anti aging remedy. Now I’m definitely down for stocking up!

Heart Health:

Coconut oil has been shown to reduce cholesterol and heart disease.

So, Eat Up America! This is one saturated fat you don’t want to miss out on.

Click HERE to get the recipe to my Liquid Gold Creamy Coconut Butter

Enjoy, and and make it Your Fit Day with DebbyK!

 

DebbyK’s Hip Surgery _Day 8

HI Your Fit Day Friends

Wow! What a difference a day makes. !!

This last night I could actually sleep on my side. And why is this so great?  Because I’m a side sleeper and this side sleeper loves to curl up, and you can’t rightly do that lying on your back or stomach. Well, really, I can’t do that now either.  But hey, even though I still couldn’t get through the night without waking up, at least I’m moving in the right direction; and mentally I know it won’t be too far off when I’ll be all curled up and cozy snuggling with that pillow!

And…NO rubber mattresses…. and NO coffin-like small beds here at the Fisherman’s cove!!

I would have loved to have slept in late surrounded by all this comfortableness but as it was I woke late. So as fast as I could-which obviously was not very-I made it down to the Buffet to have my protein/Green Vibrance/coconut water super shake, delight in some Swiss decaf, as well as order my buffet breakfast…which I would enjoy later…after my exercises and a walk.(Exercises are below)

As I enjoyed a my shake, my imported instant decaf, and a glass of fresh pressed coconut water, I talked with  Dale the Dining Manager.

DebbyK and Dale Hart, Dining Manager at Fishermans Cove

Dale has a very interesting family history, and as I journeyed back in time with him he entertained me with stories of British rule and the East India Trading Company.  Dale was like the human cliff notes on these subjects, just two of the many that we touched on while I stayed here at FC.

I would have loved to lounge and listen but I wanted to get my upper body workout in and do my hip exercises, and my butt and leg was killing me from sitting so long, so off I went.

Back up in my room I did this routine, which is keeping me strong:

Quicky Workout: Using Bands and body: TIME: 32 minutes

Equipment: Tubing with handles(Green is usually medium strength); Tubing circle band with handles (or tie Thera Bands together); and YOU!

Click on links below to watch Video Explanations

Do this for 4 rounds

Pushups on floor( I did modified pushups)X30 reps

Triceps Dips on bench X 30 reps

Robin Hood Band Pulls for rear of shoulder and arms (Using Circle tubing, just pretend like you’re going to shoot with a bow and arrow, keep your front arm up in air in one position, and the pulling back part of the band is the exercise, using a band or tubing)  X 20 reps, alternating arms

Do these exercises for 4 rounds:

Alternating Arms using tubing with handles

Band Shoulder Press X 20 (Using Tubing with handles)

Band Chest Fly X 15

Do these exercises for 3 rounds:

Alternating Arms

Band Rear Delt pulls: (Holding band, bend over with slight bend in knees, pull band out to side, keeping arm straight. Raise arm up and slightly back, and then down while keeping the tension on the band. You should be feeling the muscles in back of shoulder working)X 15 reps. Use tubing with handles

OR: Band Side Lat Raises

Band Back pulls (Quick explanation: Band is attached to doorknob, and standing straight with arm bent and to your side, pull back like you’re going to open a door)

Do these exercises 3 rounds:

Band Bicep curls X 20 reps ( I looped my band around a door handle)

Band Triceps Overhead Extension X 20 reps(Check out link for explanation)

Do this exercise 3 rounds

Side bends X 20 each side

Ahhh! That felt good.

After my workout, which took about 32 minutes, I showered, took some pictures of how my body looks after 8 days, and then put on a dress that would be nice and cool, that I had ordered  from Thailand on ebay.  YUP! I bought a dress from around the world, just to re pack it to take it back around the world again! And it was one of the best purchases I have ever made. Here’s a picture of the dress:

DebbyK…Happy to be walking…

 

 

My Rx of the day was to walk before my lunch, rest while eating, and then walk again after resting. So my friendly FC staff came to help me carry my lunch down to the pool area. I’m getting so spoiled here. But trust me, it helps you heal knowing that there is so much love around you while so far from home.

My good friend Prabhu, from Day 7 (Check it out if you haven’t met him already), set out with me and videotaped and shot all these wonderful pictures.

First we took a little stroll along the cobblestone walkways.

Walking along the cobblestones

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I stopped to look at the butterfly garden, where I couldn’t find any butterflies… but I did find some ducks…

Looking for Butterfly’s
I get excited when I see duck!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below is a picture of the lovely cottages. When I come back next year I would love to stay in one of these so I can listen to the waves crashing on the shore. I’m such a water baby, and anything and everything about the ocean resonates deep within me. No wonder, I’m a Cancer!

Next time I’m staying in a seaside cottage!
Lovely Cottage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And everyone who works here is always smiling and happy. And their smiles make you happy. It’s like happy healing heaven here!

It’s hard not to smile here!

 

Posing without my crutches!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m just SOooooo happy that I can walk…

Enjoying walking!…

Prabhu was kind to carry my iphone and Flip video. Actually he had a system down pat; just like a double fisted gun-slinging cowboy, quick for the draw.  He just kept snapping away…

Posing without my crutches on a walk through Fisherman’s Cove

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then it was on to visit the spa.

The Spa Jiva at Taj Fisherman’s Cove

I thought maybe I could get a unique Indian facial or buy some nice Indian products that you can’t get in the U.S..

Asking about facials

But as it turns out they used Japanese products, and I was on a budget anyway, so I just hung out there for a few moments and enjoyed the AC before moving on…!.

 

Beautiful Welcome Flowers at the Spa

I had to snap this picture of the petals. It was pure art to me. I’m wondering how many times a day they tend to this masterpiece to keep it fresh.

 

 

 

 

 

 

By this time my hip was telling me it was time to rest and my stomach was screaming for food so it was back to the lovely pool area for me…where I could be worshiped like a Goddess… on the Taj!!

Pool view from my lounge chair
I’d rather be eating the food than lifting this plate!

And then I sat back and relaxed and enjoyed my afternoon yummy snack food…

Offering to the Gods! They didn’t take any, so I ate it all…!

 

 

…stir fry veggies and an omelet… and of course the yummy fresh coconut water and meat right from the coconut!!

Yum Yum!
Stir Fry veggies and omelet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After some more relaxing it was time to exercise my hip again so Prabhu and I headed towards the beach. I was itching to stick my feet in that Indian Ocean. So off we went.

 

Ahhhhh!

When I came back from the beach my feet were like elephants so Prabhu made sure I was comfortable and brought me a bucket of ice to soak my feet in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shells Praghu picked up on the beach for me. Thank You!

And  then I laid out and ogled the shells that Prabhu scooped up at the beach for me. These were worth way more than the fifty bucks than those polished shells the conch man wanted to sell me. My shells were priceless!

 

 

I was pretty wiped out so I did ordered room service and blogged. Here’s what I had for dinner. I just can’t seem to get enough of that soup that I had on my first night here. BTW: I’m still trying to get the recipe.

My yummy meal of grilled fish, steamed and stir fry veggies and Masala Fish Soup

 

 

 

And here’s a final video where I’m showing off some of my ‘hippy’ moves in bed! ; and my thoughts to you on why I came practically around the world to get my hip done. Watch the video…

 

With that said I hope you continue following my journey…

….and do my workout of the day, above. They really work.

I’ll try to post a workout with each blog, as well as pictures and videos.

Would you like that? Let me know in the comment box below…

 

Your Friend and Trainer,

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day

 

 

 

 

DebbyK’s Hip Surgery_My Healing Potion!

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

Well Day 7 got off to a good start. Especially after my tour of the resort and walk on the beach with the conch man.

And like I said in my last post, I was dying to put my butt in those lounge chairs by the pool and relax. I mean, shorten the word RelaX and what do you have?  Rx: A prescription for healing…So that is exactly what I intended to do.

And that’s not hard to do when your greeted by my friend Prahbu, the pool attendant-or should I say ‘pool boy’, which is how he referred to himself.

Then as I was laying back and taking this all in I noticed all the coconuts above me. Wow! Look! Complementary coconut water!! I was kind a hoping that one would just fall into my lap, without, of course, knocking my head off.  And I must have been thinking aloud because Prabhu immediately took notice and offered to fix me a treat.

I mean a real Paleo treat. Something that was so yummy and refreshing that I ended up having another…..and another….and….well, watch the video:

Paleo Treat: Fresh coconut cut up after I drank the fresh juice out of the shell!

I am so grateful for everything Prabhu has done for me today. He even went the extra mile and brought surprised me with this fresh treat from the coconut he felled for me.

Hey! It doesn’t get better than this!

He, works really really hard. Not just here at the pool where he provides ten star service to all the guests who park it by the pool; but everyday, from early in the morning into the wee hours of the following day.

You see, Prabhu, like most of the  men who live near the resort, has been a fisherman since he was a little boy. He grew up in the village at the far end of the beach. Remember? In the video ?

He told me that his father died when he was five, leaving his mother to raise he and his younger brother.  Since he was the older brother he became a fisherman to help support his family, and he never got to finish high school or enroll in college, like his younger brother has done. But that’s OK with Prahbhu.

So now, every night after his 1-8pm shift at the pool, he heads three miles out to sea in a small boat, with his friends as hired fishermen, to set lines, wait, and haul in the catch; which is then split among the group. Sometimes he doesn’t get back until 3am.

And if the catch is successful and he has fish to bring home, his mother cleans it and then walks the five to six kilometers to market, to sell it. Of course in the monsoon season they don’t go out to sea.

Hard working hands…Prebhu is also a fisherman at night.

And check these out (left)… the hands of a real working man.

And on most days, after getting in so late, Prabhu tells me he is up early with his friends, playing beach volleyball, soccer or cricket and being super active.

On the day I met Prabhu it was after one of those long nights, and early athletic mornings, and he was happy and full of energy, despite a ‘no catch’ night.

Prabhu may work long hard hours but he loves his life. He is engaged to be married in February, is genuinely happy, and living the life he wants. Prabhu says he wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m glad for that, since his commitment, caring, and genuine love for people, topped with his energy, transcend his work, all which make a great recipe for healing…my healing potion!

When I think about it I can’t imagine having been sent home on Day 3 day post op for recovery, like they do here in the U.S.  So, coconuts aside, I’m sure I wouldn’t have had this experience in the U.S.; especially when I’d be recovering in my apartment, by myself, for the most part.

What’s so special about recovering here in India, and what I’ve found that I’ve needed, is the constant ‘companion’ who’s always at your service…all day, all night..any hour. (Achem! for those of you who are letting your minds wander, please, this is a PG rated blog….!)

Potions For Healing

India is truly full of love, peacefulness and positive energy; and it shines through in all the people who I’ve met and befriended.

And this has become my elixir for healing. OK… Of course, not to mention I’m eating Paleo-healthy tasty Indian food, drinking lots of coconut water, and doing my daily exercise routines that I’ve been posting in some of my blogs. Mix all of this together and you’ve got yourself the best recipe for healing, as well as a happy and healthy life.

Hey! Are you doing the same, and following my fitness routines that I’m posting in my blog?!! Because I guarantee that if you do you will be strong and fit and lean and you’ll be ready to take on any challenge that comes your way…Like I have.

So stay tuned for my next post where I personally give you a walking tour of the Fisherman’s Cover resort AND the beach. You won’t want to miss it.

My Question Is This…

Have any of you had this kind of experience in India or another foreign country? I’d love to hear from you.

Leave your comment below.

Your Friend and Trainer

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 7 Post Op Hip_Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore!

Hi Your Fit Day Friends!

So by now you’ve had a tour of my room here at Fisherman’s Cove. After my yummy meal I settled in and tried to get a much needed nights sleep. I woke up at about 5:30 wanting to toss and turn, but couldn’t roll over, so instead I decided to move myself smack to the middle of the bed so I could have more support around me and hug my buffet of feathered body pillows.

But….then I had to go to the bathroom. Now this can be traumatic and send anyone who’s  just had major surgery-and has spent most of the night trying to get as snuggled as one can after surgery-into a  panic! I mean, there’s a lot of energy and gymnastics involved to get from your bed to the bathroom; especially when you’re bunked down in the middle of a king size bed in a cave of pillows supporting your every limb. So I had to think hard if I really needed to go. Yup! I did.

Well, at least I’m getting better at it and it’s less painful than two days ago. But moving this limb still feels like a ton of bricks. So I didn’t get much of a restful night… but I’m excited to show you around this healing haven.

OK! Last night when I arrived at Fisherman’s Cove it was dark so I had no idea of just how paradisaical this place is. But when I woke up and opened my window here’s what I saw:

Room 217 Fisherman's Cove Taj Vivanta

I just stood there-like a stork on one leg- and took it all in. I mean, when I looked out the window form the Apollo I saw guys hanging from the side of the building cleaning the windows of the Rain Tree hotel, a parking lot, a two lane road packed with honking vehicles, and a post apocalyptic glow from all the smog.

From the moment I arrived my senses were tantalized with the cachophony of birds, the thick humid air,  rustle of palms in the occasional breeze, and the crashing of waves along the beach, in the distance.

I couldn’t wait to get downstairs and check it all out… starting with the breakfast buffet that comes with the room! It’s an ‘all you can eat’ buffet, and they will cook anything to your specifications. So I ordered enough to carry me through my late breakfast/brunch, with enough for an afternoon meal too!

The Fisherman’s Cove is used to having us Hippies and it’s their unofficial custom to provide excellent follow up care for those of us who stay here after the Apollo Hospital.

And boy did I really got the royal princess treatment from the moment I checked in.  Which suits me fine. In fact I think ‘royal princess’ is in my blood. I mean, according to my mother, I’m  a descendant of Count Dracula-which could explain my nocturnal  habits-so I believe that would qualify me as having Romanian princess blood running through my veins!

Anyway, while sitting at my table I got personal visits from many department heads of staff  who came over to introduce themselves, and to make sure my first night was grand. It was just like holding court! One right after the other they came, to make sure that all my accommodations were met.

Really, I felt honored.

First the IT manager came over and said that he was ‘at my service’.

Then the hotel manager came over to greet me.

Then the head of housekeeping came to let me know that he would be bringing more pillows. He also suggested more towels, more water, a raised toilet seat

My Personal Privy

and a bath mat so I wouldn’t slip on the lovely marble. Who’s to complain. And when I got back to my room that late afternoon this is what I saw! (left)

And this:

No Slip Bath Mat at Fisherman's Cove

 

At the breakfast Buffet Chef Manas made me my omelet, a farmers market bounty of grilled veggies, and whipped me up my protein shake made with coconut water and my Green Vibrance mixed in (great for healing); plus he sent me up to my room with two extra

Green Vibrance protein shake made with coconut water; Glass of coconut water

large glasses of fresh pressed coconut water. I downed the protein shake and a glass coconut water, had some decaf coffee and then headed back to my room to do my exercises and eat my yummy meal and drink more coconut water that chef Manas had sent along with the meal. I was O.D’.ing on coconut water! Not a bad thing under the circumstances!….

DebbyK’s Workout in a box!

Here’s what my workout looked like. I did it in a really small space up in my room, like a 5ft x 6ft space…in about 45 minutes. And that was with hobbling. So you can do this, and probably much quicker, too!

Do Max reps til failure

Set One: Do one right after the other

Bench Push Ups

Bench dips

Robin Hood Pulls( Video coming)

X 3 Rounds

Set Two:

Band Shoulder Press Alternating Arms X 4 sets

Band Chest Fly alternating sides X 4 sets

Band Rear Delt Pulls alternating sides X 3 sets

Band Close Back pulls Alternating sides X 3

Band Biceps alternating arms X 3

Band Tricep overhead extensions alternating sides x 3

Side bends 20 per side

Made to order omelet and veggies from Breakfast Buffet_Fisherman's Cove Resort

After getting my body moving I showered and ate my yummy omelet, inhaled some more fresh coconut water, and headed back down to show you the lobby, and then I decided to take a buggy ride and check out what will be my paradise for the next five days.

But first, here’s the video I took this morning of the beautiful lobby and what I saw last night when I arrived:

Magical Mystery Tour

Then I went exploring in the buggy and took a short walk on the beach with the Conch Man, who offered to walk with me, and who is one of many that come daily to sell their shells to tourists. Well, looking around there was only me, and one other lone guy reading his book on lounge chair, so I really I think he just wanted me to buy his conch shells. But I really wasn’t in the market for shells.

After I got back exploring from the buggy ride my legs and feet were pretty swollen and I was getting pooped. Yup! Me, worn out, done in, after twenty minutes! But those chez lounge chairs by the pool were looking really comfy and inviting. And seeing that it was my job post surgery to relax and repair, I decided to take advantage of the complementary services and headed on over to sit on one by a tree, and take in my first day here instead of heading up to my room. What an amazing place this is.

As Indian custom would have it I was greeted by the pool boy who showered me with care and made a special Indian treat.

You definitely won’t want to miss the next blog post and video!

So stay tuned…

And while you’re waiting…

…why not do the ‘DebbyK! Workout In A Box’, above.  It’s just one of the many I have designed for those who are limited in space and time challenged. And they’re really keeping me in shape while I’m recovering.

If you have any questions on how to do the exercises then leave a comment below. I will be posting a video of these exercises soon, so keep checking back.

Your Trainer and Friend,

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day

 

 

 

DebbyK’s Hip Surgery_ Eve of Day 6 Post Op_My Emerald City of Healing

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

OK, so driving to the Fisherman’s Cove Resort was pretty straight forward. Or so I thought. I mean, I asked the driver, the same one who picked me up from the Airport-who was digging my Extra brand peppermint gum-if he knew where we were going. Yes Mam, he said.  So, great, I assumed that meant, yes, Mam, he did.

So off we went.  As you saw in my last blog there was tons of traffic getting out of the city. Click here  to see me all dressed up on my last day at the Apollo, or if you just need a recap. And to check out how crazy it is driving in India, watch this video  of traffic coming head on into us as we are leaving Chennai !

Anyway, after driving for about 20 minutes as we made our way out of the city, we headed towards the beach resort areas. Along this stretch is where the film stars, foreigners, IT execs and the wealthy own homes.

There’s not much traffic, considering the one lane road, but even so the roadside is still lined with vendors, restaurants, and emporiums and lots of neon; as well as stray cows, cats and dogs. Really, we were dodging cattle who were just meandering down the road, just following the crowd. Occasionally they would break into a trot and head into the road. We actually had to dodge them.

I wondered how did they know where they were going. They just seemed to be following the crowd. Nobody tapping their butts or taking an interest in them. And when I looked back everybody was passing them. They were just following the crowd! Well, apparently they had better GPS than my driver…

As I shifted focus back onto the road I noticed that even along this stretch, away from Chennai, the buses were packed with commuters coming from the city. I mean, packed is an understatement.  Absolutely NO room. And everyone was just frozen into position once on the bus. But no matter. I don’t know how they did it but they would just make room at every stop for more  people.

And it seemed like nobody ever got off the bus…only on. So whoever is standing at the door just pulls the person in.  I mean the doors are closing and folks are just yanking bodies in, arms still hanging out the door. Packed… in 100 degree weather. Having good breath control would definitely be an asset here.

I bet we’d seldom see that in the U.S.. We’d  just wait for the next train or bus; or we’d be driving by ourselves in our minivan!

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

So, we’re driving along for about 35 minutes and it’s dark by this time and I’m looking at all the signs along the road. They were all really interesting to me.  And it’s also dark by this time. There’s also tons of visual stimulation and you either have to know where you’re going or be looking in 3 places at once, while driving. Well, I’m glad my driver was keeping his eyes on the road.

Anyway, right then is when I notice an overhang sign that says ‘Taj Vivanta’. It was obscure because every few feet there’s an overhang sign advertising resorts and restaurants, or whatever; and likewise, the roadside realty is littered with signs on the left hand side too. (Remember, it’s opposite over here in India). So you can pass your destination turn if you’re not sure of where exactly it is your going.

Hmmm! I thought, maybe we’re here. So I ask my driver how long it will take to get there,  and he says about an hour. Ok!… Maybe not.

Anyway, back to that sign I saw. There were some smaller words underneath that I could barely make out, but what I thought to be “Fisherman’s Cove”, the name of the resort. But I could have just imagined that, wanting it to say Fisherman’s cove. But my gut feeling was like, it was Fisherman’s Cove, and I thought… we missed the turn!

Not wanting to think my driver doesn’t know where he’s going, or give the impression that a hippy chick, who’s never been to India-but has great intuition-does, I cheerfully say, after seeing the sign, ‘So, have you been here before?’.

He says: NO!

Okee-Dokee! Thinking that there may be some other sign that is will jump out and say ‘Turn here for first timers’, I perk up a bit and have this inkling to pipe up and say, ‘Turn…back there’!. But I don’t, wanting to believe I can just relax; that he knows where he’s going. I mean he’s the driver after all, and this Apollo-to-Fisherman’s Cove transfer has been set up by the international coordinators at World Med Assist. So the driver must know where he’s going, right?

Well, after another 10 minutes he stops on the side of the road and leaves me in the car. ‘Right back’ he says. He dodges traffic, chats it up for a few moments with some men, dodges more cars coming back, and hops back in.

Meanwhile, even though I’m wearing those fashionable TED stockings for circulation and to prevent an embolism from sitting too long, my legs, feet and butt are starting to swell.

So, we make a U-turn India style, right into head on traffic, and head back. He says it’s back in the other direction about 5K and apologizes for wasting my time. Well, yes, I would have liked to have been at the Resort where my leg could be up and I was filling my hungry belly with some fresh seasonal fish;especially when check in was at 2pm and it was now pushing 7pm. But oh well. He got me here safely. And here in India I was learning to just ‘go with the flow‘. Nothing we can do to change anything now.

However, piping up was prudent at this point and so I put in my .02$ and said that I had seen a sign that said ‘Taj Vivanta’; and Fisherman’s Cove was a Taj Resort… so I would be sure to point it out to him.

Well, he was pretty surprised that I even saw the sign. But hey, I’m on an adventure and I’m looking at, and for, everything I can. And I just had this gut feeling from the beginning that I should be on the lookout.

So keeping my eyes out I piped up again when we approached it, and we made the turn…into a long stretch of darkness; what would be my paradise for the next five days. What I was expecting was a nicely paved road with well lit signs guiding us into my Shangri La.

Um, well…thank goodness for the late model Toyata minivan I was in and it’s superior shock absorbing suspension. Because with all the lumps and bumps in the road it literally saved my a#@!

But within moments we pulled into the land of OZ.

Here’s a video of my room, and a glimpse of what lies behind the curtain!

Oh!…and the beautiful gift I got from the Taj.

Oh! And  a picture of my friend Chef Manas Mallock,

My good friend Chef Manas Mallick at Bayview resteraunt, Fisherman's Cove, Taj Vivanta

the Bay View restaurant,

Bayview Resterraunt at Taj Vivanta, Fisherman's Cove. First night, first meal
Boulibaise at BayView Resteraunt at Fisherman's Cove, The Taj

and my first meal, that was so yummy and to die for; and for which I’m desperately trying to score the recipe.

Yummy veggies to order in olive oil, from Chef Manas Mallick, Fisherman's Cove Resort

 

 

 

 

 

So stay tuned for Day 7, where my Emerald City of Healling awaits…

Thank you everyone for your support and kind loving words. You are my motivation. You are all helping me heal.

Your Trainer, Friend, and sometimes personal shopper,

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day™

DebbyK’s Hip Surgery_Day 6_ I’m Leaving The Hospital PLUS Bonus Day 5 Video

Hi Your Fit Day Friends!

Hallelujah!

Last night was soooo much better  What an improvement. I was able to sleep on my non- op side and even got into that position without having to be ‘tucked-in’ to bed by the nurses. I mean, yeah!, it’s nice to have turn down, but it’s so nice to have this little bit of normalcy back in my life, like getting into bed by myself.

And here’s something else that was pretty normal; Reading myself to La La Land.  Last night I was craving a good read and was able to read myself to sleepiness. Now, that’s getting back to normal-ness! So I was blessed to be able to read my book for an hour.

I slept for about 2-3 hours and then, all by myself, I was able to turn on my back, and doze in and out until about…you guessed it… 630AM!, when the nurse came to take my BP and temp…again. Can’t wait til that is over. I mean, by now I would think that they know I’m alive!

Speaking of alive!  When I first arrived at the Apollo and they were taking my heart rate and pulse during the intake, after having been run around the hospital for all those pre-op tests. And they were alarmed by my heart rate and pulse readings and said I was abnormal, and that they would have to give me medication. I was like, WHAT? What are my readings?

HA! get this: My HR was 44 and my pulse was 46. This is NOT my waking up metrics either. These were the mid-day numbers. The nurse was concerned and left. And when she came back she said they would give me meds to get my heart rate up!. I was like, “NO Your NOT going to put me on anything like that. These are normal readings for me. My waking pulse is often 36bpm-38bpm. Forty four is not uncommon for me. Please, check with the Doctors. I’m athletic. I have a happy and healthy heart!!”

Well, after some explanations and background of what I did on a daily basis they finally got it, and said they had never had a patient who had such low readings.

Things You Do On Check Out Day!

And, what a far cry from the last week: Last night I was actually cold upon falling asleep and even had to ask for two sheets, the AC turned down, and a towel put over my chest and shoulders. This is a sign telling me that my body is starting to regulate its metabolism; normalizing itself from all the meds and anesthesia that were pumped through me. I was told that all those crazy buckets of sweat that I was pouring out were partly due to my body purging itself of all the toxins.

And… when I got up…, yes!, I am regular, again. Maybe a bit too much information, but for those of you Hippy’s out there or anyone else who is having surgery you will totally understand.

However, my body is still bloated like a fish. What a weird feeling.

But I know in a few weeks I won’t look like a Macy’s Day Parade balloon!

Then I did my exercise routine which took about 20 minutes. There is no Physio today because I’m leaving and there is so much else on the schedule for checkout!

And here’s my Happy Halloween Treat for all of you who are still looking for an outfit… This is my walking outfit that I wore on Day 5 that I forgot to post in my last blog. And please…don’t steal my outfit for Halloween. It’s an original!

Do you like my slippers?

Check, Please!

So, although there was a lot to get get through before I left, it was a pretty relaxed checkout.

First, I had a visit from the international patient coordinator. I gave her great reviews and told her that if I had all the money in the world I’d come back to Dr. Bose for surgery. In fact, I was told that the Apollo Platinum ward is a VIP ward. So it makes sense that even if I had all the money in the world I would still come here to be healed!

BTW: This is also this is a Specialty hospital for cancer and many in this wing were here for cancer treatments.

Next I was visited by the dietician again. We discussed things I may want to wean myself back on to.: like nuts. Bummer. I was ready to dive in and munch away. But she said only about 3-5 a day to start. And to think I brought a pound and a half with me!. Well, I don’t want to mess up what’s working, so I’ll go slow. That seems to be the mantra from Dr. Bose too… Balance, Deborah! I can still here his voice…

SIDE BAR: Regarding coconut oil for those of you who may follow a Paleo method of eating and will be traveling to India for surgery, or pleasure for that matter. You can eat Paleo style. But many here are concerned about cooking with it. “It’s bad for my heart”!! they tell me.  “Well, yah! If you’re eating tons of Omega 6’s and sugars and processed foods, then, yes it is. But if you’re eating whole foods, no processed foods, no added sugars, and exercising, then cooking in small amounts of coconut oil is fine”, I tell them!

But buyer beware in India. As it turns out the first few days that I was having them cook my omelet in coconut oil little did I know that it was 2nd press. As it turns out it is difficult and very expensive in Tamil Nadu, as well as other regions,  to get 1st press coconut oil. It’s very expensive. So they cook with olive oil and vegetable oil, and of course butter. When I found this out I opted for no  coconut oil, and just some olive oil with my veggies and grilled fish. I mean, I really needed fat.

So, I’m not sure if the dietician was concerned because she knew it was 2nd press or that she just thought coconut oil, even organic virgin, was bad for you. I got that from many Indians here; that coconut oil had way too much cholesterol and you’d die of a heart attack.

Apparently there is a big drive from the Ministry of Health to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure and obesity, all which are creeping into their society.Hmmm! I wonder why? Could it be the full page adds for Chinese food and pizza and Western style treats that have infiltrated the Indian homes, and are advertised in all the local papers? Just like the U.S. of A!!

So If you are sticking to Paleo, and you prefer coconut oil,  make sure you ask them what oils they are cooking with. And if you ask for coconut oil, make sure to ask for 1st press, unrefined. In fact virgin coconut oil is abundant in some and non existent in others. Every region is different. So make sure you ask.

The Final Hour

Dr. Bose finally made his rock star appearance. And this is exactly how I feel when I see him. I grow weak and am often lost for words. Although he would probably beg to differ on that one.

The TEAM, who put Humpty Dumpty back together again! Dr. Bose, immediate right of me

Actually his entire team that was there during my surgery and helped with my recovery, came in to see me off. Dr. Bose went over all the post op meds, set me up with my Xrays, Echo, CD of my films, and a goody bag filled with bandages and rubber gloves; as well as some notes and documents for the airlines, so I wouldn’t find myself on the NO FLY list as I beeped my way through the gates.

Then he gave me general post op flying procedures:

Drink lots of water every hour.

Get up and walk every hour.

Do your leg exercises every hour.

Rinse and Repeat.

He was kind enough to do this little exit video for me:

The great thing about going on a medical vacation is that World Med Assist coordinated all of my transfers; from landing in India to shuttling me to Taj Vivanta Fisherman’s Cove resort. So all I had to do was wait for my driver to arrive.

Within a few moments after Dr. Bose had left they said my driver would be here soon.  I thought I’d have about an hour, which is much needed when hobbling. So Durga, my buddy, helped me pack up.  Since I was going to be on my own I strategically packed my bags so that I could get at things easily for the first few days at the resort

I am so positive and happy.  Those of you who are my close friends know that I was going through a tough period. The pain of an arthritic hip and not being able to do what I love athletically, which affects my profession as a trainer, can bring you down emotionally and drown your spirit.

But I feel so different now. Months before I left for India I just let it all go; I gave myself over to my hip, Dr. Bose, and India. And when I did that it was like a weight was lifted from me. I knew this would be an emotional journey as well as one that would free me to move forward, take action and start a new life; physically, emotionally and spiritually.

In fact, it may seem odd, but I have not missed home while being here. Because home right now is here. Not to say that to hear from my family and friend and long lost acquaintances and high school buddies hasn’t been wonderful and instrumental in my healing. Because it has.  Thank you all so much. I love you!

But I am here in India;  She has become my home since I stepped off the plane; and I am focusing only on the present.  And when I leave, India will be in my heart and soul forever; India, Dr. Bose, the Apollo, and all the friends I have made here.

With that said, I will miss everyone here at the Apollo. And as much as I thought just four days ago that I wouldn’t be ready to be without my Apollo ‘A’ Team, I am ready to move on. Besides, I really need to feel a sea breeze and breathe some clean air, and not have my arm yanked and pulled every 6 hours!

So, with happy face, I said my goodbyes and was off.

I didn’t leave until 5pm.

Late check out. But hey, no extra charge!

My journey is just beginning. Can you tell by the smile on my face?

DebbyyK! Saying good bye to the dancing statue

Here’s some pictures  of me leaving the Apollo:

Me and Durga. She was such a great caregiver and friend. I miss her..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then it was off to Fisherman’s Cove Resort

Stay tuned for part 2 of Day 6. You won’t want to miss this. It’s where the magic begins…

With much love,

Your Trainer, Friend, and sometimes Personal Shopper

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day!,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What Saved My Butt, Literally!

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

I’ve been getting tons of emails requesting the links to the pillows that I used for traveling.

One thing I especially liked about these pillows is that they’re really versatile. I mean not only were they great for the plane, where I could place them underneath my butt, against the small of my back, behind my neck, and against the hard side when lying with my butt against the arm rest. But at home they are great for reading in bed and propping yourself up and supporting your neck.

So I decided to put together a long awaited products and equipment page on this website that I’ll continue to update.

And if we will be using certain equipment or products for a workout or recipe I’ll make sure to have the links directly on that blog post, for your convenience.

So click on over here to check these pillows out. The blue C Curve neck pillow would make a perfect holiday gift, along with a book or cozy blanket; or maybe even a plane ticket to that favorite tropical island you want to bring your sweetie to!!

Remember, I try everything out before I suggest them to you. I know it’s only my opinion, but I rarely guarantee something. And I guarantee you will not be disappointed with these finds.

I’ve already had three people who have bought them based on my experience. If you do happen to get one or all of these, let me know how you like them and be sure to leave a comment for all the other readers too!

Thanks you guys!

Your Trainer, Coach, Friend, and now Personal Shopper!!

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day!

 

DebbyK’s Hip surgery_Post Op Day 5_And a workout for you!

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

Wow!

It’s Sunday here in India. Surgery was last Tuesday and I can hardly believe I am 5 days post op. Sundays are pretty quiet outside my hospital window… I noticed a lot less traffic and honking. Really I never thought I’d get used to all the noise.

I mean, it’s not like one or two cars are blowing their horns. It’s a parade of musical beep! beeps!; from every car, bus, Tuk Tuk, bike, motorbike; and at every moment, all night long, at different decibels…It’s like a symphony tuning up their instruments…but for the entire symphony! You never get to that quiet moment just before the first note plays.

So it is in India… in the streets, with the traffic, with cars. They just keep a honkin’ and  a honkin…!

But it’s more like they’re talking to each other. It’s really the way they communicate on the road. As a passenger, I eventually began to understand just how this language works and how they’ve created a system that works for them.

Like when there is a red light, they don’t sit idling. They turn off their engines and wait patiently. And the honking subsides for a moment….But just for a moment! As soon as traffic starts moving ahead, even if we are still stopped, the honking begins.

In the US people would be getting out of their cars and shooting each other!

HA! Now, the boom box noise up and down my street in Oakland won’t seem so bad!

1001 Nights

OK! Well that’s what ONE night feels like right now.

I’m sure those of you who have had major surgery can relate to the emotional ups and downs and the waxing and waning of pain. It’s been a ride so far.

I’ve never had a problem actually sleeping. I’ll admit I go to bed too late most nights and wake up too late. And I love to read for over an hour before I close my eyes. It brings me to another place. Then I get really sleepy and  just zonk out. Once out I usually sleep til  morning.

Not to mention I’ve always been a warm sleeper. Even as a kid. My metabolism is pretty high and I’ve always tended to get warm during the night, throwing off my sheets a few hours after falling asleep.
But surgery brings a whole new meaning to sleeping. For me the nights are the worst and as the night approaches my body becomes restless from the days of inactivity, belly full of food and plumbing that doesn’t quite work as it should.

Let me give you a snap shot of how the nights go. Because these are my most challenging times.

Sleep never really comes. I try to meditate before I fall asleep, thinking about things apart from my body; places I’d like to be, or ideal places I’ve been which make me calm. Like swimming in the rock quarries in Rockport, Mass.

So I try not to think about my body;  where my right leg is unable to move, where I’m stuck in one position, where even the slightest twitch of my op leg solicits a burning pain.

What happens is that I end up falling asleep for a bout 2 hours. Then I’m awake, my body drenched, and I”m lying in a pool of sweat.

Once I’m awake I become aware of how constricted I am, being unable to move about, and I become claustrophobic. I ring for the nurses. They graciously come to my side and ask how they can make me more comfortable. The only solution, which helps for a few hours, is to change the linens, reposition me, and try for a few more hours.

So each night has been like this. Broken sleep, less than 8 hours. Long nights.

Finding Normal

Last night I got about 7 hours of broken sleep. I will say there was less pain than the previous nights and the pain level is about 50% better. As much as I will miss the nurses here at Apollo I believe the Fisherman’s Cove Resort will be much better for me. I’ll have a big queen bed, no plastic bedding, a pillow buffet, along with the sounds and the breeze of the Bay of Bengal.

With that said, after finally getting out of bed at 10AM I successfully went to the bathroom (Yoo-hoo!), washed up, put on some shorts (looking quite stylish over my TEDS),

Day 5_DebbyK!_Body finally starting to morph back

and began my morning regime. It takes me about 20 minutes or so and here’s what the workout looks like:

Table pushups 20

Walker pushups 15

Walker dips 15

3 Rounds

Green Band Chest/Rear delt pulls 20 X 3

Green Band one arm shoulder  presses (alt arms) X 3

Green Band Side Lat raise (alt Arms) X 3

Green Band Bicep curls (Alt Arms) X 3

I also walked around my room with the walker and cleaned up and moved things around. It’s funny to think about, moving things around as activity. Just these small things makes you begin to feel normal again.

Next I asked the pantry if they’d be kind enough to make me a protein shake with my Green Vibrance, nuts, mango, whey protein powder, ice and water. I also had some veggies and an omelet and a hard boiled egg. I was trying to get as much good fats as I could for healing and they weren’t allowing me nuts yet.

The shake hit the spot…

I feel a bit more like Debby today too. And even though my body is still swollen (your should see my legs, both of them), Debby K_Day 5 post opsurprisingly enough I can still see some upper abs and there is a bit less water retention. But I’m not worried. My body will slowly bounce back, I’ll build more muscle, and again, train to get back into the best shape of my life. New life, new goals, new inspiration.

BTW: In India, the doctors and PT work on Sundays. At least in the Platinum ward at the Apollo.

And I have heard that this is the place that the elite of India come to get mended. I’m still waiting to see some famous Indian movie stars!

But all kidding aside Dr. Bose’s assistant, Dr. Bis, came in to check on me, and we decided to put me on a week of anti imflamatory, called Etoshine 90, instead of Ibuprofen, which will help bring down the swelling. I only have to take it once a day and it works for 24  hours. Much better than Ibuprofen.

I asked Dr. Bis about the numbness in my pelvic area and my right op leg, up near the groin. And what he told me was something like that in order to keep my body anchored to the table, while they’re yanking, cutting, and pulling at my femur and hip, they tape these blocks to me and they have to, like, I’m imagining,  press them into me. So there’s some bruising. It’s like someone took a bat and socked me hard with the blunt end.  Not a pleasant feeling. And coupled with the numbness it’s just plain weird!

But he assured me that the swelling around my groin area is normal and will go down as I begin to move more. And sorry, no pictures. You’ll just have to take my word on this one!!!

Downs and Ups and Getting the Toxins Out

Being on the other side of surgery is such a trip. You can wake up and hardly move, your muscles screaming. But each day gets better and better by the hour, and I’m finding that 12 hours makes such a difference. And by this evening a lot of my pain (we’re talking relative here!) had subsided.

I can’t wait to see how much better I’m feeling and what I can do by tomorrow!

On the flip side I think my body is waking up and rebelling against all the anesthesia, drugs and toxins they pumped into my body. Under normal circumstance my body is extremely clean.  I eat whole foods; no sugar or grains. I take no drugs and use no pain killers, even when I go to the dentist. I don’t drink alcohol or take any medications. I basically stick to Caveman/Paleo lifestyle (OK! well I still do some Splenda!) So all of this stuff pumped through me for four days was a huge shock to my body.

So that might explain why nausea had started to overcome me and I had this lingering nausea all day long. It was like I was floating outside of my body. And I never, ever have nausea.  I felt like I should eat again in the afternoon to keep the protein coming in,  but I was so full from the last few days, even though I finally became regular, that the thought of eating another bite made me, well, nauseaus!

Then in the afternoon the dietician popped in to check on me. I wish I had a picture of her because she always looked so elegant in her colorful sari’s. And I have to admit, she does a great job of making sure you’re getting what you want to eat. But believe it or not it is still a very ‘western’ plan that they push, with carbs being the main source of ‘energy’ to get you better.  I don’t do well with grains since they upset my stomach but I got the  push for rice and grains again.

I politely declined and said I was fine, that I had been eating my way for many many years, and as long as I got my eggs, fish, and veggies, enough fats, some fruit in my shake, all would be good. I was talking to someone who at first didn’t understand why I would want to eat so many veggies for breakfast, without carbs like rice to go along with, and believed that only carbs gave you energy. Well, I wasn’t going to go all caveman and Paleo on her…….but finally she was OK if I was OK!

NOTE: From what I’ve seen and heard here in India, there is a lot of snacking at home going on with American packaged foods and a push from the Ministry of Health for more exercise and less eating of carbs. In fact, many of the  nurses were inspired by what they called my ‘fitness body’ and asked for a program to help them get into shape. Right on!

A OK!

But it’s all good. Because at the Apollo they want you to be happy and they’ll make your food to order if what is on the menu doesn’t jibe your dietary needs. So, for dinner I was craving something light, like soup. My friendly pantry server (below, left) said the choice was cream of tomato or some other cream soup.

Head of Pantry at Apollo Hospial, Chennai. He took care of me above and beyond....Everyone eats cream in their soup and purees all the veggies. He asked me what exactly I would like. So I suggested a vegetable broth with vegetables. They did a great job: a broth with spices and finely chopped celery and carrots. Kinda like chicken soup without the chicken.  It hit the spot and did the trick.

Veggie Soup at the Apollo Hospital

I had 3 bowls!

Where else can you get made- to-order meals while recovering from major hip surgery. This place is heaven!

But by Day 5 I was also itching to get beyond these four walls. Although I felt like I might not be ready for Fisherman’s Cove and on my own, I new that I’d be well taken care of at the resort and kept envisioning myself walking on the beach. I thought about sinking my swollen toes into the sand and cooling my feet off in the ocean.

That day will be here soon…

So, stay tuned.

And in the meantime try out my workout at home, in your hotel room, at the park or even at the gym. It’s getting me back into shape with very little time commitment.

Be sure to leave a comment.

You can also tweet me @debbykfitness and friend me on Facebook. The Facebook button will be coming soon!

Thank you everyone for all your kind words and support, tweets and Facebook comments…

Your Trainer and Coach,

DebbyK!

Make It Your Fit Day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DebbyK’s Hip Surgery_Post Op Day 4

Hi Your Fit Day Friends!

Day 4. It was a ‘regular’ day. Hurray! Well what I mean is, if you’ve ever had anesthesia, and have been pumped full of fluids and pain meds, you’re probably not!

Regular that is…if you get my drift!!

Ha! Finally…

But, still, I’m not getting much sleep and just accept this for what it is. It’s got to get better, right? Last night was better, but still pretty hard.

Instead of sleeping with the bed raised, my PT, Pondian, suggested I might try and lower it a bit. So I started with the bed at about 30 degrees angle. I’m not sure at this stage in recovery that I will truly find that optimal sleeping position since the sweating and ripping pain in my thigh poke their heads in at their convenience. It’s like someone tapping you on the shoulder every 2 hours and asking you “do you feel that?”

But I sure do hope I find it soon. I just keep imagining being me three or four weeks from now. But really, wouldn’t it nice to have a remote like Adam Sandler had in the movie ‘Click? Remember that? How cool would that be, to be able to fast forward your recovery and wake up 10 days later at the Fisherman’s Cove Resort!

Trying to forget about my body was what I needed.  Someone and/or something to take me away from it all. I remembered that I had downloaded Peggy Huddleston’s Healing tapes to my iPod, so I turned to her for some meditation and relaxation techniques. It really helped. I replayed it at least three times, following her cues which helped me to relax my entire body, while the sound of a heart beat thumped in the background.

I bought this at a suggestion from others who have been in my same situation. I highly recommend this CD set, even if it’s just to get away from the daily grind and there is no surgery pending. The heart beat alone lulls you into another world. I’ve made it really simple and attached the link where you can pick this up at a great price:

Peggy Huddleston’s Relaxation/Heali ng CD plus Instructional CD

It really relaxed me and lulled me into sleep, at least for a couple hours!

I know this discomfort can’t possibly last, no way….

But hey, I have a new hip and I know this just comes with the package.

Swimming Anyone?

At 2AM I woke up. My legs were swelling and I was sweating buckets again, and my stomach distended and in a lot of discomfort.

I was sopping, so I rang my bell and I asked the lovely kind nurses to change the sheets. BTW: The nurses were there in less than a minute. And As I waited for them to change the linen, I went from the inconvenient sleeping position of my bed, to the possible, yet very uncomfortable option of sitting in a chair. You know, the one that I was doing here, in Day 2. So I hung out as best as I could, leaning onto the good side of my tush and waited til I could hobble back into bed.

Since I was off pain meds and wanted to keep that ways so I could start getting the toxins out and stay regular (sorry if too much information), I asked for some Ibuprofen. Actually it’s what the nurses finally suggested, after first trying to pump me with more Ultracet /(Tramidol).

But I just didn’t want that sick-to-my-stomach feeling, and nausea, that has been plaguing me throughout the day; and plumbing problems to boot. And the Dr. suggested I try to get off the pain meds if I could. I wasn’t exactly in pain if I didn’t move. It was the fact that I couldn’t move, other body parts were getting numb and sore, like my heels, and if I tried to move the pain at the incision felt like it was tearing and ripping. But a good NAISD would certainly do the trick. So I held my ground, and got the Ibu.

There has also been an issue with getting enough cold packs, after asking for a few days. Finally, I think it was Dr. Biss, Dr. Bose’s assistant, said they could get me the gel packs that you can freeze, like the two I brought with me. That was during the day when he came to visit. But it seemed like hours before they actually could find them from the hospital.

So for those of you on your way to the Apollo, either bring a few that you can rotate around the clock, or ask them to bring some down from the hospital. Otherwise you get the old brick kind.

And on Day 8 I did come to find from the doctors at Apollo that there is another NSAID that relieves pain and is better than Ibuprofin. I’m not sure why the nurses couldn’t give it to me. I could be because it’s an Rx and they need the doctors signature. It’s called Etoshine 90.

So if you’re coming to India or getting surgery or in pain and already take Ibuprofin, you may want to look into this, but do your research first.

Good Morning, Sunshine

At 6AM, right on schedule, lights go on, cuff around my arm, pressure building up in my bicep and thermometer under other arm as the daily regime of tests continues. Hmmm! Just wondering…how is it really possible to get good sleep around here unless you go to bed at 8pm! Hard to do when dinner is served at 7:30pm. But it’s par for the course and of course compulsive me I has to ask for my metrics…and all was perfect, by the way!!

After that doozy of a night I slept in ’til 9:30AM

For this morning PT I was walking much better, felt better than Day 3, and walked up stairs. On Day 3!! Look at me now…:)!

And that afternoon I was walking at a much faster snails pace. And then after PT was over I didn’t feel like getting back into bed so I started doing stuff around my room.

First I went to the bathroom. Then, since I was just a few steps from the kitchen, I ‘crutched’ myself over there. And after walking around in the little kitchen area I felt pretty capable so I just started doing stuff…

Next I made Tea. And it’s easy to do with these cool ninja tea makers that everyone has. You just add a bottle of water, click a switch and in 1 minute your water is done. They need these in the US!

Then I brought stuff over to my bed. For instance, my  coffee mug that has a seal-able lid, that I brought with me from the US. It’s great. You can basically dump it upside down and nothing will spill. Like a sippy cup for grown ups! Not a plug, but you can get it at Smart and Final store!

After that I did more band exercises, pushups against the table, and dips on my walker. I was on a  little roll…

Oh, and check this out: I can lift myself out of bed using my triceps. You know, like how gymnasts lift themselves up a few inches when they are doing floor exercises, with with their feet out. But of course I can’t keep my leg straight and lift both my leg and my body off the bed. What I can do is get to the side of the bed easier by using my triceps muscles and maneuver myself to the side of the bed and then lift myself up when my feet are hanging off the side of the bed. Good for the core too.

Aaaaand! Almost forgot: I put on my pants by myself tonight after graduating to real clothes this afternoon. I’m out of the hospital gowns and can wear my own cotton tank that I sleep in at home. I brought my JPL tank top, the one I got from my little brother when he worked at JPL in Pasadena. It keeps me close to him. I know his spirit is close by and his energy is helping me  heal

And check out my PM PT session:

Day 4 of hip surgery is generally your first shower day. For some reason I waited til the afternoon. Mmmm! It felt so good to be fresh and clean. Feeling fresh after 3 days of not showering and sweating a tsunami can make anyone’s attitude change for the positive. I’m much cheerier and people are noticing.

Dinner was fish again with classic Indian spices, made to order, with my veggies, but I was too full to finish it all. Going from being extremely active and burning thousands of calories during a day to hardly moving my body doesn’t know how to digest all of this food. I sure do hope my body is using it to rebuild me and make me strong.

And after dinner I turned on the TV which I thought I’d never do. But I needed some diversion and I don’t watch it back in the States. So this was a treat to get to watch the European and Asian news channels, which were in English.

A Matter of Time

I do have to say that the fist three nights post op were not tear free. It is an emotional ride and pain can bring anyone down, no matter how brave and strong. So I just let the tears come when they do and know it will get better and consider it as a natural detox for my mind and body, knowing it too will pass and I will become myself again.

Same said for my body . It has morphed into something and someone I don’t recognize. But I look in the mirror and there I am, DebbyK. Strong, dedicated, motivated, and someone who never gives up. I can train my body back into it’s fit lean self.

I am still visualizing walking at Fisherman’s Cove resort, where I will be going next; and doing things myself. From what I accomplished on my own today I believe I will be able to do most everything soon, except maybe driving and laundry and grocery shopping.

And when doing my exercises I visualize my shiny  new BHR doing it’s job. I can’t wait to see what I can do 1 week from now.

I know and believe I will come back stronger, and slowly my body will morph back. I consider this just another challenge; and what an exciting challenge. I mean, hey, I can build my body into anything I want again. It’s all up to me. I have thirty years of knowledge in the fitness and wellness industry behind me, so there’s  no stopping me now!

And over the past several months all of the new systems I’ve been using,  like TRX, Kangoo Boots, Ultimate Sandbag,  have been new ways to train my body. And I’m really excited to create some great new workouts using my own body weight and these new innovative systems to get back into shape and prove that you don’t necessarily need a gym to get the body you want. For the first 6-12 weeks it will be mainly my body weight, TRX, bands and maybe the Sandbag with minimal weight for Core only.

But no worries! These are workout you will be able to do too. And I promise that they will get you into shape. Just follow my progress after surgery, you’ll see…!

All you need is YOU! OK! And me and my blog to help you through!!

So stay tuned and follow my blog and follow my workouts. Because if I can do it after a hip surgery, then anyone can. And I’ promise I’ll have some great workouts for you soon.

Now, back to resting my bod…

Your Trainer and Friend,

DebbyK!

Make it Your Fit Day with DebbyK!