Life After Weight Loss Surgery

March 3, 2018, it seems like yesterday the day I had my gastric sleeve for weight loss. I was so excited to be finally get rid of the extra person I had been carrying around for the last 20 years.  I had tried all types of diets, crazy exercise regimens, and diet pills which although they worked, and I would lose some weight but it would never last long term. The pounds would always come back plus more in addition. 

I wasn’t always big, growing up I wasn’t exactly skinny but was average with a flat stomach and round hips. I ate what I wanted and pretty much didn’t gain weight. All thru college I stayed a nice size.  But once I graduated and got a “real Job” sitting in an office with a vending machine right down the hallway and fast food easier than cooking the weight just seemed to appear out of nowhere.   So long story short I went from 128 to 280 at my heaviest.

            Along with the weight came high blood pressure, borderline diabetes, and no stamina. I could not even ride a bike one block without feeling like my heart was going to jump out my chest.  Surgery was my last resort. It was not an easy decision because every time I would mention weight loss surgery to people the reaction was always “are you sure you don’t seem that big, just exercise and go on a diet”.

People who don’t have weight problems will never understand what it’s like to be considered “obese”.  When you are a person who loves food it’s like a drug that you just struggle to quit. The cravings can get so bad that it’s all you can focus on until you get it.  I can remember times when I would get up in the middle of the night just to go to the convenience store to fulfill a craving.

            After surgery I can remember for the first time not having any desire for food. I was not hungry, no cravings for junk foods. It was great! I lost 85 pounds the first year.  Then comes year two weight holding steady but to my surprise my cravings for junk food starts to come back. The doctors didn’t tell me that before surgery….

woman in gray tank top covering her face with her hand
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Here comes major surgery and then all exercise stops. I did not exercise for the entire year. Realizing that I am a big stress eater, 2020 was definitely a stressful year. I was eating things that were not good, but I didn’t think it was enough to make a big difference to my weight loss. At the same time, I would not get on the scale because deep down inside I knew I was messing up and I was afraid of the numbers.

  My clothes started to fit just a little tighter and my face started looking fuller. It was time to get on the scale ……….215lbs. Not good; weight gain of 20 pounds. Yes, you can gain all the weight back after surgery. Although the size of the stomach is small if you eat the wrong things and no exercise the weight will come back. a bunch of calorie dense snacks instead of real food the weight will come back.

            Weight loss surgery is not a quick and easy.  Don’t get me wrong I am still happy that I got the surgery. I definitely don’t have any regrets. It was one of the best things that I could have done for my health. I write this article so that you know that the work of being a healthy weight is a lifetime journey. When people see me and ask how you do it and I say I had weight loss surgery I sometimes get a strange look.  It’s like the person is thinking oh you took the easy way out. Then the next thing the person says is “Oh I know someone who got that done and they gained all the weight back”. Not what I need to hear.  

            Well, I’m glad to say I am back on track with healthy eating, and regular exercise.  There is no easy quick fix when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off.  It’s all about making your mind up and being determined to love yourself enough to protect your health. You must research and find a combination of methods that work for you.  In my opinion, there is not one quick method to this health thing. I am still learning what works best for me.  I have adopted an 80/20 rule.  Eighty percent healthy and twenty percent somewhat healthy. I have also started intermittent fasting. What this means Is I have a set window each day when I allow myself to eat.  It has only been a week but so far it seems to be working. My stomach has shrunk and my cravings for junk has decreased. 

Stay tuned for my updates on my progress!

268lbs
184lbs
240lbs

#gastricsleeve #weightlossjourney #foodlove #healthychoices     

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