3 WEEKS POST-OP UPDATE
So if you are like me, a female that competes in physique competitions, or you are someone that actively works out and diets, you probably are familiar with the all time struggle of having NO BOOBS. I am sure you have heard all the phrases from women like us:
- If all the fat in my body could go straight to my boobs, that would be great.
- Moment of silence for all the boobs lost on fitness journeys.
- Let me tell you a joke that’ll make your tits fall off, oh I see you already know it.
The list goes on, but you get it. In my situation, I went from a perky C cup to a well developed chest with a well earned split down the center. Don’t get me wrong, chicks with chest splits represent nothing but hard work in my opinion. For awhile, I was very comfortable with my chest being as small as it was. I hardly wore bras, and nothing ever got in the way. Like many things in life, opinions and desires can change, & for me that is where I found myself.
In January of 2015 I began my research on breast augmentations. I was planning my wedding for June, and I knew I would want to do it shortly after that so I gave myself plenty of time to weigh all my options and make my decision. That’s my first piece of advice to you ladies, don’t rush this decision. You are altering your body, don’t make that decision in a week.
The topic was foreign to me so my research literally started at ground zero. I am not going to detail all of the options that you have with this procedure because you can find it on the internet. I am going to detail things that helped my decision, the route I took, & the things I would have wanted to know going into it.
I did reach out to a few women who somewhat talked about it openly on the internet for help & they know who they are. Don’t be afraid to ask someone that you are certain had the procedure done for help. Chances are, they are going to be happy to help you. Just a few nights ago I sat awake in bed messaging a girl in a different country because she reached out for questions. So second piece of advice: Ask for help!
Finding a surgeon was probably the biggest piece of the puzzle. For me, I knew that I wanted to try my best to find a female surgeon that I felt comfortable with. Nothing against male surgeons, I just knew that’s what I had wanted. How the surgeon communicated with me and my husband was key in my decision. The follow-up from just the initial consultation was also a deal breaker. I luckily was able to find a surgeon that, 1) listened to me 2) talked to me & not at me 3) followed-up with me even before I committed to her & 4) was willing to accommodate to meet my needs and concerns. You want to go into this with zero doubts as to who will be cutting into your chest.
My next decision was going “over the muscle” or “under the muscle”. This decision took the longest for me. Typically surgeons have a “preferred way” of doing these procedures and you will find that is what they will recommend to you. You want to make sure you ask your surgeon to leave that preferred opinion aside and really think about what will be best for you. I ended up going “under the muscle” for the following reasons;
- When I compete again, I don’t want to see the entire outline of the implant due to extreme low levels of body fat
- I wanted more of a natural look since my chest was as developed as it was.
- I didn’t want the implants to obstruct the visuals in a mammogram completely.
There is a lot more information out there with the pros and cons of going either way, but those were my three tipping points that led to my decision.
I was told that the pain and recovery would be worse with going under the muscle but I wasn’t exactly prepared for what that meant. (Keep reading)….
Picking a size was also a stressful ordeal. Having your spouse or significant other certainly helped and keeping in mind that ANY size is going to look terrifying at first simply because you aren’t used to it. I ended up going with 450cc silicone. I chose silicone over saline because of the way it felt, and to be honest, saline is kind of a thing of the past. It is really hard to identify a bra size based on CCs alone, but I can say that it looks like I will end up with a D cup. I am 5’6” and 150lbs with a pretty wide back.
The last decision I had to make was the type of profile I wanted. This is the information that I hope will help you! The idea of “high profile” implants was terrifying to me. I went into this thinking I would for sure end up with moderate plus or just moderate. Like a lot people, I assumed “high profile” meant porn-star. Ladies, it doesn’t. Have your surgeon describe and explain it to you. My surgeon’s preferred way of surgery was actually a moderate plus profile however, with me and how I am built, she suggested high profile and was able to explain to me why, and calm my irrational fears about it. It doesn’t mean your boobs will sit up extremely high and round. Make sure your surgeon can accurately explain why something may be better for you than others.
So now let’s get to the fun part, the week leading up to the procedure and the procedure itself. Your surgeon will detail out things they expect of you days leading up to the operation. If she says to do something, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem, just do it. Personally, I didn’t lift at all the week leading up to my surgery. I had my augmentation done on July 17th, which was a Friday. The last time I had touched weights was the Friday before that. I didn’t want any of my muscles to be sore or tight going into this. People say it’s a common procedure, which is true, but anytime you are put under and cut open, it is going to take a toll on your body. Don’t ignore that.
The night before the surgery I was extremely nervous and scared. I am truly terrified of needles so the IV process was causing me great anxiety. I didn’t sleep a wink that night but it was ok, because I slept a lot on Friday. Make sure you prep your house and have all of your laundry done. If you are like me, I take on the house responsibilities such as kitchen, laundry, food prep, cleaning. So I wanted to be able to rest knowing things were done.
I showed up to the hospital about 40 minutes early. This actually worked in my benefit as my surgeon had been running ahead of schedule. My operation was scheduled for 9 am & they asked you to arrive 2 hours prior. I was being wheeled into the operating room barely conscious at about 7:40am. The operation was quick and the next thing I know I was sitting straight up with three strange people surrounding me looking terrified while trying to get the surgical bra on. Apparently I woke up and immediately started BAWLING. They say that whatever emotion you feel as you are being put under is what will come out when you wake up. Well for me, the IV in my hand and that whole ordeal had me terrified. When I first woke up, I couldn’t feel a thing. I could tell that my chest felt “heavy” but I didn’t have any sudden pain just sitting there, besides I was basically high as a kite. As soon as they moved me into the wheelchair within 5 minutes my pain was at a 10 on the scale. That’s when I felt everything.
They will make you wait typically anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour after you wake up just to monitor you. I wasn’t allowed to leave until I peed since they said I went through two bags of fluids. Let me tell you, peeing & wiping was a struggle. Be careful on the car ride home & try to avoid pot holes and bumps the best you can. Those hurt. If you have an awesome husband like me, he will go through a drive through and get tim-bits for the both of you to snack on.
I don’t remember much of that weekend or Friday afternoon other than seeing them for the first time and being petrified. It will seem like they are up to your chin and all the way in your armpits. It’s the swelling. Don’t be alarmed. Just stay covered up & keep the sports bra on that your surgeon had you wear. It was really easy for me to actually regret the decision the first few days following the operation because of the pain and how they looked. Trust me, that phase will pass.
In my experience the first 7 days post op are the hardest. We use our chest for so many things that you don’t even realize. Getting in and out of bed took time. Getting dressed required help. Don’t even think about washing your hair, personally, I made a trip to my stylist and paid her to do it for me. Opening up containers or bottles is hard. Sitting down and getting up is hard. Everything you do the first 7 days will seem hard. The medicine that you take post op is so important as well. Your surgeon will tell you exactly what to do and how often. DO NOT STRAY FROM THAT. You don’t want to write another $6k check because you forgot an antibiotic dose and got an infection. Keep up on the pain meds as well. If you let them wear off, the pain will hit you like a truck the first 7 days.
After week 1 I started to feel a lot better pain wise. Physically, I felt like I looked awful. Surgery will also greatly affect your body and normal bodily functions. Be prepared to feel super sloppy and gross for 1-2 weeks. Oh and expect to experience constipation. Listen to your body as well in regards to eating. I didn’t track anything or follow any type of plan, I simply ate as I felt like I needed energy. Don’t be surprised if you end up needing a lot more calories than you would typically need. That is your body’s way of healing itself.
At the end of week 2 I had my first post op meeting with my surgeon. At this point I was moving a little better, the swelling was a bit better, but they were still pretty high up. She cleared me for light cardio and lower body work. I ended up waiting 3 days after she cleared me to go back to the gym. Physically I was just still exhausted.
My first day back at the gym was ROUGH. Everyone had told me that your strength wouldn’t be shit and to not be discouraged or surprised but man, I was taken for a big surprise. I did some leg work which involved lunges, extensions, seated hamstring curls, body weight squats, and hack squats. I don’t suggest the hack squat being just two weeks post op. The compression on my shoulders I felt in my chest and immediately stopped. With the extensions and hamstring curls, keep your hands and arms loose and not tightly gripped on the handles. When you grip the handles you are engaging your chest a little bit and that can hurt as well. I attempted cardio that first day and nearly passed out. I survived 5 minutes after that workout before I had to get off. Don’t count this as a failure, biggest thing I have to do is cut myself some slack. Not even a month post op, I can’t expect to be superwoman.
I continued at it the next few days and gradually worked my way back up with cardio. Leg training I completed three times that week and that was more than enough. Right now I am sitting at 3 weeks post op and can comfortably do steady state cardio on any machine. Barbell squats are not in the picture and anything really dumbbell related is also not in the picture. Those will come in the next few weeks. Don’t plan on training chest any time soon or for awhile. You won’t want to & it is not suggested. Arms will be last to happen again as well. Upper body probably won’t occur until the one month mark. Again, don’t push anything, you don’t want to spend another $6k because you went back into the gym to soon instead of waiting another week.
My incisions are probably the only thing I can say I don’t like from this operation. I went with the typical Inframmary Incision. (Under the folds of the breast). The incisions and placement are completely fine, it is the healing that has not been favorable to me. When I have deep and big scars they usually are keloid. It is nothing drastic, but they are there. I knew that was a risk going in as I have had keloid scars my whole life so it wasn’t a deal breaker to me. It is under my boobs so they won’t be seen anyways.
At the 3 week mark, they have dropped down a bit more and have softened up quite a bit. For the first two weeks it felt like I had bricks on me. Don’t let that scare you. They will get better. I have heard from a lot of different people and surgeons the time it usually takes for them to fully drop and it all varies. Some say one month, two months, 4 months, one year. I think it is totally dependent on the individual. Just give them time. Keep in mind that there are foreign objects in your body and when they cut into your muscle and place them underneath they have to firmly settle into those pockets. It is not going to be an overnight thing.
Also, know the difference between discomfort and pain. Yes, you heard me, discomfort and pain. They are different. You will feel these, it will feel strange, but that doesn’t exactly mean pain. You will know if it is pain and when you feel that stop whatever you are doing no matter what it is. Above all, listen to your body and give it the time it needs to heal. It may take a month or two, or even three, but it will be worth it. Each day I am thankful I made this decision & each day certainly gets a little better.
I never thought I would be sitting here typing a blog on my own personal “boob chronicles” but hey, that’s the beauty of life. It is constantly changing. I will post another blog in a few weeks with updates so subscribe to my blog to follow along.
Lastly, love the skin you are in. Both my husband and I loved the way I looked before and we love the way I look now. Until next time;
“Calm your tit, just one tit, leave the other one crazy, and out of control, that your party tit.”
Two websites I found helpful in my research were:
- Realself.com (just search breast augmentations)
- Justbreastimplants.com (they have a forum)