31 Year Old Mom Sleeved Across the Border - Mexico

I wasn't always overweight. Growing up I was a...

I wasn't always overweight. Growing up I was a very competitive athlete, playing basketball 10-12 months out of the year from the time I was in fourth grade through high school. Then comes then a bunch of grief and trauma along with quitting all sports. I ended up finding myself spending time with a self-proclaimed bulimic/over eater and learned a lot of unhealthy eating habits for the first time. Then comes college and since then I just have never been able to truly get this weight off. Within a matter of one year I gained about 80 pounds and then proceeded to fluctuate between being 80 pounds overweight up to even 125 pounds overweight. I am tall at six feet and with my athletic frame my healthy weight was approximately 175. Throughout the years I struggled with many different pills and diets and I would get down 20-40 lbs for a while. At one point I completely changed about three years ago my eating habits. I began cooking and eating very healthy meals daily that were under 500 cal and yet I still couldn't drop my weight pass a certain point. It seemed I became hypersensitive to anything that went into my body and if I wasn't careful I would just shoot right back up to where I was feeling discouraged, frustrated, and just overall in happy with who I was.
I had friends who had bariatric surgery and had wonderful results and at times people encouraged me and asked me if I thought about it. Of course it was one of those things that you think about but you don't tell anybody that you're thinking about it because you have to shame over the fact that you are this size in the first place. Then I had another coworker who had went through a lap band procedure down in Tijuana, Mexico. Overall she was happy with the surgery but was expressing that she was wanting to go back down and have a revision surgery done to convert her lap band into the sleeve. I was sick of how I looked and felt so I just made a decision spontaneously at Thanksgiving and said I was going to do it. That day I called made an appointment and placed my deposit (day after Thanksgiving) and started slowly weaning myself off of caffeine and changing my diet the beginning of December. I trained my body by cutting back as much as I could throughout December and then starting on January 1 I went on the pre-op diet for a full two weeks. So from January 1 on I was very strict with my pre-op diet and lost a total of 20 pounds prior to my surgery. I flew down to Mexico by way of San Diego on January 16 and had my gastric sleeve that day.

I am now 8 days post op and since beginning my pre-op diet have lost 25 lbs. My incision points are healing nicely and I have minimal bruising.
My friend had went through International Patient Facilitators so that was the surgery consulting company I went through and she set me up with Dr. Sergio Verboonen at the Obesity Goodbye Center in Tijuana, Mexico.

Soft Foods?

I think I got a little overconfident because I was feeling so good. I have been drinking chicken broth and tomato soup and added a few crackers. I've also tried mashed potatoes and gravy, really moist tuna fish w/ mayo, and an egg white omelet with cheese. I felt like I handled it all well and honestly could only get down several small bites but I guess I got a little skid shy. A friend who is a RN and has a lap band scolded me saying that my incisions haven't healed and I could cause a leakage.
So today I vowed to regress and made some homemade smoothies with my protein powder and picked up some more drinkable soups and liquid yogurt. Ugh, that food was amazing, especially those mashed potatoes. Unfortunately I have received three different diet plans and they all vary greatly. One of the plans from my doctor said that I could start potatoes my second week...any thoughts?

Feeling great!

Just a quick update! It's now been two weeks since my surgery and I've lost another 5 lbs so I am sitting at 30 lbs lost since 1/1/15...just 30 days. My incisions are all healing up beautifully and I feel like the swelling is about gone! I've also slowed down with incorporating foods this week. I've had a few cases of killer heart burn and boy it sure is easy to feel like something got stuck (food) if I'm not caseful and boy that hurts like a beast in my chest!

19 Days Post Op Pics

Wow, the energy!

It's been a wonderful 5 weeks since my surgery now and with exception to a few hiccups along the way, I couldn't have asked for a easier recovery. Between week 2-3, I made the mistake on eating a few triscuits and not chewing them completely and as a result they irritated my stomach and I had horrible chest pains and nausea. I ended up vomiting blood stained bile and later the triscuits. When I started feeling horrible I'd emailed my doc and he responded back within the hour putting me back on fluids for a day. That scared me and I really eased up on my transition back to normal. My main side effects have been almost daily heartburn and constipation but I know I am struggling with getting my fluids in like I should. THE BEST SIDE EFFECT OF LOSING THIS WEIGHT IS THE INSANE AMOUNT OF ENERGY! I have been walking when the weather cooperates and easily go 3.5 miles in Colorado with lots of steep inclines. I am very excited now that I am go to go on real excercise, my son and I are joining this awesome club.

AND THE BEST PART: I am officially down to 253.4 lbs. When I began my pre-op diet, I was 294 lbs and lost 20 lbs during the pre-op fast. A total of 40.6 lbs in 7 weeks equating to 5.7 lbs lost per week!

An unwelcomed side effect

I forgot to mention in my update earlier about another nasty side effect I am not excited about. ACNE! The last two weeks I've started breaking out like I did during puberty...well maybe not quite that bad but I definately have about 5 pimples that are popping up. I've read its normal for this to happen between months 1 & 2 due to hormones being all wacky from the rapid weight loss and once that eases up, skin should return to normal for the most part. But seriously I feel like I am a teen again with these blemishes.

Not a moment of Regret!

Just checking in now that I am 2 months post op. I am feeling amazing these days and now I am officially down to 244 lbs which means I've lost 50 lbs. I am eating just about anything just not much. I have been using MyFitnessPal and trying to track everything and have determined that I can consume no more than 300 calories before I feel like exploding I am so full. My 5 yr old son routinely eats me more than me and I've just accepted that we can easily buy one meal when dining out and still have leftovers! I am simply wearing stretch pants since almost all my dress pants and jeans make me look like I am wearing a soggy diaper underneath, haha. I seem to drop several pounds and then stop and level out for a week.

I've been working out and even found myself doing CrossFit. I have been playing basketball which I haven't done in a decade and I feel amazing. I forgot how satisfying it is to ache from working out.

14 week check in

The weightloss continues to slow down for me now that I am 3 1/2 months post op. I literally didn't move but a lb in over 3 weeks! I am officially 235 lbs meaning I've lost 59 lbs since 1/1/15...day 1 pre-op. I am down to a size 16 pant and XL tops. My goal was to be 229 lbs by my son's birthday on 5/4 but it doesn't look like I will reach it. Overall, still 100% happy I did it! Attaching a quick pic.

6 months post op

Sitting at 6 months post surgery right now. My body is really making me work for any weight loss anymore it seems like. I have lost a total of 67 ish pounds since starting mysel journey. I am 227 lbs. Now that it is summer and not flooding rains in Colorado, my son and I are hiking over 10 miles every week in the mountains, by the end of the summer my goal will be 16 miles each week. It's a great workout with amazing views!

7 months and 80 pounds lost!

It has now been 30 weeks since my surgery, 7 months! The weight definitely came off quicker initially and then it felt like it stopped after about 60 lbs lost as I hit my plateau. It has taken a lot of motivation to get me through the rut / plateau but I am back to losing and very happy! Between 7/10 and 8/14, I dropped another 10 lbs. Granted I am getting in 25+ miles a week between running and walking but the work is really paying off! My stomach is still quite small and I fill up quickly. I have only over ate a handful of times and each time I end up throwing up and wanting around with a distended stomach which is absolutely miserable.

I am now down to a large pant - size 13/14. Went and bought jeans at Vanity and end up leaving with 31x37s!!!!

My goal isn't reached yet, but 80 pounds down and 4 pant sizes is a great place to be. I still want to lose another 40 lbs but I am really feeling I can get there and will keep pushing my body.

My birthday is 9-17 and I will be 32. My goal is to be down another 10 lbs so wish me luck! ????

8 months and 90 pounds have come and gone

Well I guess it's time for another update now that I am 8+ months post op. I am officially down 90 pounds since beginning my pre op diet on 1/01/15 and down 70 pounds since my surgery! I am wearing between a size 12 - size 14 or size large. I am working out 3-5 times a week at the gym and started doing a lot of weight lifting to help firm and tone.

I am 204 pounds so I literally have 5 more to lose and I no longer be in the 200s! My current bmi is 28.4 and it's amazing to know I am no longer obese! My goal is to reach this over the course of the next month.

My actual goal is 170 pounds. I can't believe how much closer I am to this goal, now! 34 pounds to go which means I am 3/4s of the way to my goal weight and I am at 36 weeks post op.

LIFE IS GREAT AND I HAVE ZERO REGRETS!

1 Year Post Op Update!!

Greetings from Colorado! It's hard to believe I celebrated 1 year post op this past weekend. I am blown away at the changes in my life. Before starting this journey I was weighing 294 pounds but my highest weight was 302 pounds. That completely blows my mind that I had weighed that much at one point in my life considering I had been an athlete growing up. I ended up doing 15 days of the pre-op diet and had weighed 277 pounds approximately the day of surgery. Well since my surgery a year ago, I have developed a passion for hiking in the beautiful Rocky Mountains and over the summer would easily hike an average of 14 miles on the weekends plus running / walking throughout the week. I definitely had my periods of feeling stuck but then out of nowhere the scales would move again! This lead to 100 pounds down in 1 year and I'm now sitting at 194 pounds with a BMI of 27. Now my goal is to lose another 25 pounds and really work on toning this body back up but I am already thrilled with the woman I am today! Thank you!

By the way, the dress is my prom dress from high school!

One year post op, down 100 lbs!

Mexico Bariatric Surgeon

Dr. Verboonen was very personable and checked on my and the other clients several times. His team is very caring and they do a wonderful job offering support and encouragement. His Nursing team was wonderful, they are so dedicated. They don't do surgeries every day so when there is a surgery the nurses stay there around the clock so I had the same nurses the entire time I was there. I was up walking several times the same day after my surgery. My surgery went very smooth and was finished in 40 mins.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 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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