Dieting and Exercise Wasn't Working So I Cheated a Little - La Jolla, CA

I have completed part one of a two part process....

I have completed part one of a two part process. Today, I had my inner thighs done. I was awake the entire process, which is what I prefer since I don't want to be put under and not know what is going on. I also got marked up for tomorrow's procedure on my abs/love handles. I will follow up with that information after I get the lipo done. So to give you a little idea of why I chose this procedure, here goes.

I have never been skinny. As a child, I was chubby. I grew hips after my senior year of high school so I was no longer square, but had the start of an hour glass shape. And my thighs and I fought a lot. I was tired of ruining my favorite pants because my thighs rub together and I have a hole on the inner thigh. Up until I joined the military, I was sedentary, but the military made me challenge myself physically and I am in better shape now in my 30's than when I was in HS and college. I was always unhappy with my stomach. When I saw my stomach compared to others, it was not flat and I had a crease at my belly button separating my belly into a top belly and a lower belly. I grew to accept the crease, who wants a pot belly anyways? But as I got older, the lower pouch got bigger, while the top stomach flattened or grew with my weight loss/gain. After returning to the states from overseas this month, I decided this was the best time to do it since I was on leave, it's America so there are standards, and I was financially able to do this so I may as well get it done now and make myself happy than sit and think about it for another year.

In trying to decide what procedure I wanted to do, I googled and read about 30 websites before I decided on which clinic I wanted. I also got on realself to read what other people had to say about the procedure. Then I looked at pictures to see what bodies like mine looked like post surgery. I decided on tumescent liposuction at Pacific Lipo since they wouldn't put me under. Yes, it's a PA doing the procedure but he was very competent with what he was doing. He was upfront about being a PA, I asked how he got into plastic surgery and I had no issues since he was very honest. Since this is the only thing this clinic does, I felt comfortable with a PA doing the surgery vice a MD. I have family in the medical field, MD/PA/PT and my thought is if the doctor is comfortable allowing a PA to do the procedure at his clinic, then I'm comfortable. Plus, being in the military, my thought has gotten to be that all doctors aren't competent either so since all the current reviews I read were positive, the results would be good. Also, I head back out of California in June so I don't have time to come into the office for facetime follow ups, I can do them via email and telephone which is good for me when I head back overseas for another year.

Now onto the procedure itself. Today's thighs had minimal pain. I had to get an extra injection while I was laying on my stomach as he was suctioning out the fat from behind, but I guess that's a sensitive area. The work while I was on my back was fine. There was a ticklish section, but it was only mild discomfort. On a 1 to 10 pain scale, I'd say during was maybe a 3, right now, I'm sitting at a 3 as well. It might be that I have a high pain tolerance too. Nothing to complain about. I was done with the procedure before noon, and it's 5pm now and I feel fine. After I was done, I had lunch in old town with a friend, I ran some errands, now I'm sitting in my room trying to figure out what to do. I changed out my pads at 4 and the two holes in the back didn't really drain, maybe too much sitting. My holes in the front had major leakage. The pads were soaked! I called the clinic to ask what I should do since the post-op instructions were pretty vague to me. I feel fine so I wanted to clarify things so I don't overdo it and cause damage. Basically, I was told I could go walking, rest, just don't exercise. I should take it easy. Kind of tough for someone who leads a very active lifestyle. I'm supposed to be national parking this weekend for Memorial Day, we'll see if my body will let me.

Tomorrow I go in for my abs and love handles. I'll post about that when I get home from the procedure. I'll also get pictures on here as well. I've been watching everyone else so I figure I'd share as well. I'm still undecided as well since I haven't got my tummy done yet. Hopefully, I can update that once I'm done and can see the results.

Basic Stats:
33 yo single female with a dog
5'3" 167 pounds
I'll get my measurements on here tomorrow. I forgot to ask for a copy when they taped me.

Basic Stats (pre-op): Upper waist: 34" Lower...

Basic Stats (pre-op):
Upper waist: 34"
Lower waist: 39"
Inner thigh: 26" each

Day two is over and I had my stomach done. Nine incisions later, I've got a slightly bruised but flatter stomach. Not too sure about the love handles though since I was too busy plugging up leaks to be looking at myself after my shower. Needless to say, no post op pics until I stop leaking everywhere. It's kind of gross. I do notice that my compression garment is a bit looser on my torso than on my hips. We'll have to discuss getting something that fits my top part better since my thighs and butt aren't going to shrink to a medium when I have my follow up next week. Now about my operation.

My stomach fat is ticklish! I was laughing during a good portion of the procedure. There was a little pain when he gave me the lidocaine shot up at my ribs, but that was it. There was mild discomfort during the medicating and suctioning of fat, but nothing too bad. It was most uncomfortable as he ran across the centerline of my stomach but you gotta do what you gotta do. I was hoping for less incisions but there were hard to reach pockets of fat. Rod told me I could either have less holes and random fat pockets since the probe wouldn't be able to reach or he could do it right. I opted for do it right and the 9 holes. Overall, it took less than 2 hours to do my belly. Rod called me that afternoon, but I missed the call since I was on another line. He was checking up to make sure I was okay and gave me his cell phone number if I had any concerns.

About 6pm, I took a couple tylenols since my stomach had a good bit of achiness to it. It felt like I had overdone it on an abs workout. That's the only pain medication I've taken in the last 3 days. I've got the antibiotics that I'm doing, and the 4 days worth of steroids, but no other pain medication. I am taking arnica montana orally and applying a topical gel to help with the bruising. My bruises are in the netting pattern from the sock thing they had me in for my thighs and stomach. There is one bruise on my belly that is really deep too. I'll let you know how well the arnica works for my bruising. Tomorrow if I don't leak so much, I'll try taking pics so you can see the bruising and what I look like 2 days after having my stomach done.

I washed my garment this morning since I had all sorts of blood leaking on me last night so it feels so much cleaner today. So far, no blood on it today so I shouldn't have to wash again. I'm pretty mobile today. I've gotten my oil changed, bought parts, replaced a light bulb and the windshield wipers on the car. I got some shocks too but a mechanic will be doing that work for me. I don't know how and I'm not that mobile. There is some stiffness getting into the car, but other than that, I feel fine. I am 'rubbing' on myself to help with the drainage and also to soften up some of the hard lumps I feel. Overall, I'm happy I got the surgery done. I'll be even happier when I see the results - i.e. stop leaking so I can actually see myself.

I've posted some new photos 2 days post-op. I...

I've posted some new photos 2 days post-op. I have 2 sites that are leaking really bad, notice by the big pad catching the fluid. You can see what the bruising looks like. Overall pain, about a 2. It feels more like stiffness from a tough workout, no major pain. Rod called me yesterday for a follow up. He says since I'm so active, he recommends I sleep on my belly to help keep my tummy wrinkle free and the swelling more even. That's the toughest thing since I usually sleep on my back or curled onto my side with my dog. My arms went numb last night so I'll have to find a better belly position to sleep in.
Today, I hit the road for Vegas, then onto Colorado and Utah. I'll update at the end of my long weekend and maybe by then, I'll stop leaking and I can get some new photos on here.

It's been over a week and I'm still leaking at 2...

It's been over a week and I'm still leaking at 2 sites. Rather annoying. I went in for a follow up yesterday and Rod is concerned with the amount of sitting I do since he doesn't want the crease to come back to the middle of my stomach. I do admit, I have been sitting a lot since I'm doing a lot of driving, but I've tried to sit upright. Sometimes, I'll suck in my gut or puff out my belly just so the wrinkle can't form. There hasn't really been much pain, but I have noticed that I'm getting itchy. I've read other people mention it so it must be normal. Also, he mentioned I need to start elevating my legs when I'm laying and also massaging myself to get the fluids moving out of me. I've started that. I'm okay with massaging the thighs and legs, but rubbing on the belly isn't as easy since it hurts more. I'll have to suck up the pain so the swelling will go away.

My right thigh has been my biggest leaker. I ran into issues of tape irritating my skin so my garment has been holding the pad in place. FYI, paper tape can still irritate skin contrary to what the packaging says.

My activity level is still decreased from normal, but I'm still out and about. Last weekend, I did some short hikes while on my national parks tour. The challenge with that was keeping myself upright as I was maneuvering steep trails. There was some tummy pain as I was walking and I took some tylenol, but other than that, I feel okay. No excruciating pain that kept me bed ridden.

I'm still having issues sleeping on my stomach. For some reason, my lower back hurts when I lay flat on my stomach. I'll try putting a pillow underneath my belly and see if the pain goes away. I'm not home right now, I'm on vacation in Lake Tahoe. And yes, I'm going hiking this weekend. Once I get home and back to a mirror, I'll post new photos. You can see how my bruising is doing, and check out my new shape. I think taking the Arnica has helped. The purple isn't as bad and my coloring is improving.

Week 3 Update: Okay, so I flew cross country this...

Week 3 Update:
Okay, so I flew cross country this past weekend and am hanging out in New England. I am now a little puffier than I was previously, and to top it off, I wore the wrong pants so now I have some uneveness on my swelling. My jeans compressed on my lower belly and I wasn't sitting up right on the flight. Now there's a noticeable indentation, so I'll have to lay on my belly to even it out. My holes are no longer leaking and they are scabbing up and closing real nicely. Still not cleared for my high intensity workouts so I'm sticking with walking. I was told that as long as my holes scabbed over or closed, I could go swimming at the 3 week point. That's tomorrow, but I'll have to see if it's weather permitting. I may be able to go back to my normal level of activity at the 4 week point if my doctor says so. Overall, I'm feeling pretty good. The bruising is all gone. I can see where my body is working towards my new shape. I'll update the pics so you can check my progress.

One month update- For those following along,...

One month update-

For those following along, I've reached a month since my surgery. One month and 2 days, actually, I'm a little late. So here's the latest news:
All bruising is gone. I do have hard spots, specifically lower left quadrant under my belly button, the top portion above the belly button, back side where my obliques should be, and top of my thigh by the adductor muscles. I just keep rubbing before bed - hopefully, they go away.
I will be sending my doc pictures and doing my one month follow up over the phone since I'm now on the East Coast for work and won't be going back to California for about a year. Hopefully, I get cleared for regular exercise. I'm way behind on the workouts. Medium workouts aren't cutting it for me. One thing to note though, I was at a concert last night and I had on a lighter garment than my regular 'fat' suit. My stomach hurt while I was jumping around! When I got home and put on my regular 'fat' suit and tried it, no pain. I guess I will still need a good amount of support my stomach when I start back on the workout. My thought is the connective tissue hasn't regenerated enough so I will still need a good amount of support for the skin to 'hold' onto the rest of me. :)
The new pictures I'm posting will be the ones I send my doctor. Progress is looking good so far. I know there will be swelling off and on which I've accepted. My tummy is a lot lumpier than 2 days post op (as visible in my photos). I'm not where I want to be, but with diet, exercise, and time, I'll get the body I desire.

At the 2 month point now. I still have 'fat' days...

At the 2 month point now. I still have 'fat' days where I swell up, but overall, I'm happy. I no longer wear my garment 24/7. I wear a compression garment when I work out since my tummy feels strange if I don't - tingly when I run. Also, if I plan on sitting for extended periods of time, I'll wear it to prevent creasing. If I feel bloated before bed, I'll wear one to sleep too.

My greatest disappointment with the entire process is the fact that the scale didn't go down. Somehow, I got it in my mind that if you suck the fat out of my stomach, I'd be lighter. Not true. I weigh the same as I did when I went in for my procedure. I like my new shape but I was really hoping the scale would drop. I'm a numbers person so that scale really insulted me. If fat weighed more than muscle, I'd be super happy.

I'm back on the diet and exercise thing. I've even downloaded an app for my phone to help me track my eating and exercising. I've started including some running on top of my long walks and I still bodyrock from time to time. I have one more big move before I'm settled in somewhere for the next year. I've been living out of hotel rooms for the last 6 weeks so my diet has been really unhealthy and high in sodium - hence the swelling. Once I'm in a home with a kitchen and not eating out of the microwave or in restaurants, I can really focus my diet and start cutting weight. I'll also be in a routine and I workout more often when I know my schedule. My goal is to get down to 140 pounds. That was my weight when I graduated high school before I grew hips and curves. I'd like to get down to 120 but with my bone structure and muscle mass, that's not attainable and I'd probably look disgusting at that point (all skin and bones).

I'll continue to post at the 3 month, 6 month, and 1 year point so that those following along can see how my body adjusts to lipo. Thanks for reading. :)

I've been meaning to post but got busy. I did...

I've been meaning to post but got busy. I did take pictures on the 3 month mark though so at least I got that part down. I'm happy with my stomach but I am a little bit self conscious about the scars. They're still a bit dark so I'm hoping the Maderma lightens them get back to a normal color. Up until last week, I was working out 4-6 days a week but work picked up so I've fallen off that band wagon. I plan on getting back into a routine starting after the Labor Day weekend. And I'll start a new food plan. I had to wait since I had another move. I think I've finished moving for the rest of the year so I can unpack my stuff and get into a routine.

I've minimized my time in the garment. Definitely wear it when I work out, but it's only occasional wear for everything else. It's 100+ degrees everyday, I think that's part of the reason I don't wear my garment as much anymore - too many layers.

As for weight loss, I'm hanging out between 163-165 lbs. Not much difference from my pre-op weight. I need to rev up my workout and diet plan to get to where I want to be. The fact that I have already spent them money for my stomach's new shape means I'm going to focus and work to get that scale down as well.

I've been meaning to post but got busy. I did...

I've been meaning to post but got busy. I did take pictures on the 3 month mark though so at least I got that part down. I'm happy with my stomach but I am a little bit self conscious about the scars. They're still a bit dark so I'm hoping the Maderma lightens them get back to a normal color. Up until last week, I was working out 4-6 days a week but work picked up so I've fallen off that band wagon. I plan on getting back into a routine starting after the Labor Day weekend. And I'll start a new food plan. I had to wait since I had another move. I think I've finished moving for the rest of the year so I can unpack my stuff and get into a routine.

I've minimized my time in the garment. Definitely wear it when I work out, but it's only occasional wear for everything else. It's 100+ degrees everyday, I think that's part of the reason I don't wear my garment as much anymore - too many layers.

As for weight loss, I'm hanging out between 163-165 lbs. Not much difference from my pre-op weight. I need to rev up my workout and diet plan to get to where I want to be. The fact that I have already spent them money for my stomach's new shape means I'm going to focus and work to get that scale down as well.
Rod Davis

The team at Pacific Lipo is very professional. Emails are responded to within a couple hours during normal business hours. They are more than happy to answer questions over the phone. Rod is very good, he's focused while he's working but he'll be more than happy to explain anything if you ask. I'm a bit nosey and I wish they had a mirror on the ceiling so I could watch what was going on. After care is provided free of charge. It's included in the flat fee so I didn't have to go to a pharmacy and get my antibiotics or pain meds. My first compression garment was included too. They welcome return visits for follow ups at no charge as often as you like. If I were in San Diego long term, I'd come by for periodic check ups to make sure I was healing okay. Rod says it takes at least 9 months to heal. Payment was easy. When I initially called, they told me about care credit and I signed up for that. They took a $1000 deposit when I booked my appointment, and then collected the rest of the payment today. Wait times were non-existent. I showed up at 915 for my 930 appointment, was out of there before 1130. They offered to let me sit and rest but I felt fine so out I went to continue the rest of my day.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (21)

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Hi i know its been a long time, but how are your results now? . Its just your build is similar to mine
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do you happen to have "puckering" around any of your incisions? my scar below my belly button looks "pin-tucked" and I am 2 months post-op. great review- thank you!
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Thanks so much for the detailed info and all the pics - these kinds of reviews really help! You really do look fantastic - try not to obsess about the scale numbers. I know it's hard not to, but as long as you look that good, who cares? Keep us posted! I'm looking at doing this soon and will probably check out the guy who did yours.
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You look FANTASTIC! From having a belly to the ideal hour glass shape, what an improvement. Thanks for being so detailed with your recovery time and showing your photos over the last 3 months.
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congrats on your surgery your results look amazing. I'm having my surgery done in October and super excited as I also have a wedding to plan for. I got to get this body right. :)
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Hi, thanks for answering my question...and your notes on your experience! I will probably think of other questions, again thanks for sharing. Jenn
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About the swelling: my daughter did lipo 6 months ago and told me that she saw the true results close to the third month. I was planing on having mine done before going on vacation, but she told me that the first month I was going to be very swollen and in the second a little less and that by the third month I was going to be good to use a bathing suit, so I decided to do it after I came back. She has been careful of what she eats and exercises when she gets a chance. She did lost weights but not immediately after.
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WOW!! you are looking really good, and it just going to get better
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Hey crzydvl! I just saw the pics!! You look great and you can totally see the difference over the two months. As for your update, I know EXACTLY how you feel. I am also disappointed that the scale has not moved. I am working out 3-4 times a week, sweating like never before, cooking more than eating out...doing everything I can.

Which app did you download? I have been using myfitnesspal (I used it before and lost weight). However its been a few weeks now and nothing seems to be working. I read on here that for the first 3 months or so its typical to either not lose or in some cases even gain weight becuase the swelling is taking the place of where the fat used to be. But to hang in there and stay true to eating right and exercising.
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Ok lady...its almost been 2 months...time for new pictures!! Hope you are doing well :-)
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Hey - Glad to hear things are going well. I just started working out on Monday and it feel so good to get back in the gym I can't even begin to tell you. It totally wears me out though LOL, but its good to start sweating again :-) Also, I wanted to tell you that I started to follow your tip of sleeping on my stomach to reduce the swelling on my stomach and it Works Wonders!!! It's tough at first as I am also a back/side sleeper, but I am much happier in the morning when I look at my tummy.
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Hi crzydvl - Just checking in on you! How are things going? Are you still on your trip?
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Hey Spare Tire, things are going good. I still have some hard spots on my tummy that I rub just before bed, but nothing too major. I'm no longer vacationing but I'm now on the East Coast for work. I'll be sending my pics to the doc next week for my one month consultation. Hopefully, he gives me the go ahead to start working out.
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Wow...your belly crease is all gone now. I think you got great results. However just thinking about all that 'leakage' business gives me the willies and is making me rethink my desire to have lipo done.
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Same here. My doc told me not to take certain Vitamins, Aleve (Naproxen), or Ibuprofen two weeks prior to surgery to prevent blood thinning. I also picked up some Arnica Montana Gel and pills to help with the bruising and swelling but didn't end up using it until around Day 7 or so.
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Wow, you results are great esp considering you still have some swelling. Did you take any supplement before hand? I'm getting Smart Lipo next month
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I took nothing prior to getting my smart lipo done. In all honesty, the week before I showed up for surgery, I was on a cruise eating away and having a beverage here and there. I got the pamphlet about what not to take prior and oops, I had taken naproxen (Aleve) on 2 days of the cruise since I was sore from doing boot camp. The only thing I take now is the Arnica and I use the Arnica gel too. Good luck next month. What are you going to get done?
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You are rather active!! I have been more active around the house than anything else. I am constantly going up and down the steps and I have walked around my neighborhood. I have also driven to the store a few times for short errands. It kinda hurts to get in/out of the car becuase my skin is so darn sensitive (even with the garment on). Like you, the garment doesn't fit me perfectly so it kind of pokes me in wierd places...does that make sense? I have a short torso so it kind of buckles a little, but yet the small is just a bit too tight at this point.

I have also been trying to sleep on my stomach. So its good to hear that is the advice he has been giving you. My doctor just told me to keep rotating to make sure the swelling is distributed evenly.

My other challenge is that I still have not been able to go to the bathroom. Have you had any luck in this area? I finally called today and got permission to use a laxative. I was dying over here :-( TMI I know...
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So far, I'm out and about. I walk a little slower, and my gait is funny since my thigh is leaking so there's a pad soaking there. The garment is holding me together. I've driven 1200 miles in the last 2 days and I'm doing just fine. No major complaints - well, my thigh is swollen, but that's explainable.

I'm having the worst time sleeping on my stomach. As I'm not used to it, it's causing my lower back to hurt. Go figure. I flip myself over a couple times at night just to even myself out. I do notice that if I lay on my belly, I don't leak as much in the morning than when I sleep more on my back.

No bathroom issues to report. I eat a pretty healthy diet full of fiber and plenty of water. My system flushes itself. Hope things are going better for you. I'll continue to post as I can while I'm out on my travels!
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How did your tummy procedure go?
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The tummy procedure went well yesterday. I have 9 holes of which 3 are currently leaking pretty good, especially the centerline lower belly hole. There is some bruising so I got the arnica pills and the gel and I've started using those this morning. The procedure lasted just under 2 hours yesterday. I was wrapped up in netting and an ace bandage under my compression garment when I left, and it took half the morning to get rid of the lines from those things after I showered. My lower thigh hole was gushing today as well so I've done a bit of leaking in the bathroom, hehehe. I'm back in my compression garment and I may need a smaller one next week. This works for my thighs but the belly region will definitely need something a little tighter. By the looks of things, my stomach has definitely gotten smaller. Not sure about the love handles though. I have to get a better look when I'm not busy trying to stop my holes from leaking. I'll have new pictures taken when I'm not leaking so badly. Maybe by the weekend?
Initially, I was sore - kinda of like too many sit ups. I had problems getting up when I was laying on my back. If I laid on my belly, I did a push up to get up so that was a lot easier. I did take some Tylenol yesterday for the stiffness but I'm fine today. I feel better when I'm up on my feet rather than resting on my belly. I did some shopping this morning, changed out a lightbulb for my car, replaced the windshield wipers. Doing basic things but no real exercise. I'm supposed to be national parking this weekend, so I think I'll be able to do some light hiking. I'm going with my 62yo mother so I'll be moving her speed! What will be challenging is sitting in the car for the long drive to Colorado. We will be stopping every few hours but sitting upright will be interesting. I'll do it though so I can avoid wrinkling my stomach.
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