2 Years Post Gastric Bypass

I started this post in June.  Six months ago. Then its title was 18 Months Post Gastric Bypass.  And I wrote a total of two paragraphs.  Six months flew by!  Since starting Allergic to Sugar, life has evolved into something completely different.  Something fucking wonderful.

You know how Facebook does  On This Day – and then there’s TimeHop – and you get to see all those memories from 1, 2, 6 years ago etc … well if that woman who now on appears my 2 and 3 years ago posts was told that life would be like this, she would have said “FARK OFF, NO WAY”

Three years ago, I was sad, upset and angry. With myself.
I was happy with my life but I was incredibly disappointed in myself and how I had let my health get away from me.  I didn’t enjoy not being as mobile as I used to be.  I did enjoy wine and potato chips but I knew that they weren’t doing me any favours.  I couldn’t exercise away those choices I was making.  And that right there folks, is one of my biggest learnings from the last 2 years.

What I’m going to have a quick blog about today, is what I’ve learned in the last 2 years but probably more specifically the last 12 months.  These last 12 months have definitely been harder and where I’ve had the bigger learning curve.

The first 12 months were my honeymoon period.
I didn’t have much of an appetite and the weight went quite quickly.  I didn’t have a lot of head hunger and so I didn’t think about food all that often – in fact, I had alarms to remind me to have my breakfast and my lunch.  I drank my water and did my little exercise programme and everything was groovy.
I also read A LOT.  I read a lot about nutrition and about self-care and about how taking care of your body meant taking care of your mind.  And how journalling helped.  And that was cool.  I like journaling.  As you have probably worked out.  So that was the first 12 months.

Then we hit January 2017.  And I thought about what I wanted from the year.  Or rather what I didn’t want.

Number One.  I didn’t want a lot of loose skin.  But I also didn’t want to have to find $20,000 to get rid of it.  I was going to have to find a way to work it off.
But let’s be real kids.  I am a 42-year-old woman.  As much as I want to think and hope that my body is going to bounce back from years of abuse, we all know that I am fucking kidding myself.  Still, the old girl isn’t doing too bloody bad!

Number Two.  I wanted to continue to learn more about nutrition and to develop a plan that worked for the both of us.  A bit of scheduling, a bit of preparation on Sundays, lots of food for the week.  With the occasional piece of pizza and the odd doughnut thrown in.  And looking back, I think we have done this bloody well!!!

So I said I would blog about what I’ve learned, so here we go …

  1. I have to be a little selfish.  For me to make health and fitness a real part of my lifestyle, I had to prioritise those activities.  It is a balancing act, especially with a 9-5 job and a small business and dogs and a partner and a Netflix account but I have to get done the things that have to be done and then everything else around it.  That’s why we are at the gym at 5 am.  I will still be there if you need me but I have had it drummed into me … “you cannot pour from an empty cup”
  2. I need routine.  I make a plan for the week sticking to pretty standard gym times and meal times and the other things that we do individually and this allows me to plan ahead.  I also need that feeling of accomplishment – by sticking to the plan I made and the routine we devised.  I choose a time to plan how I will be awesome during the week – this is my date with myself, its Me Time.
  3. I can’t starve myself healthy.  I have to eat a little more – not necessarily all at once but spread throughout the day.  Weekdays I eat as soon as I get home from the gym and then every 3 or so hours.  For me, being healthy and improving my fitness happens mostly in the kitchen.
  4. I cannot out train non-nutritious food choices.  I absolutely cannot do enough squats to support eating 2 doughnuts a day.  Just kidding, I couldn’t manage two doughnuts a day – but you know where I am going with this right?
  5. Work on establishing healthy habits slowly. Pick one and ace it – for example increasing water.
  6. Muscle doesn’t make you bulky, muscle makes you lean.  Teamed with number 3 above, its one of the things I am really really glad I understand.  With more muscle, my metabolism works better and I can burn more calories watching Outlander.  That’s a win if I ever wrote one.
  7. Your opinion of me is none of my business.  As much as hearing other people call me obsessive or selfish or up myself hurts my feelings, that’s your issue and not mine.  Rest assured your words do hurt so congratulations on that but those wounds don’t last forever.

If I could go back and talk to the girl who sat on the end of the bed in the Southern Cross Hospital wondering what on earth the next few years would be like, this is what I would tell her …

  • Invest in yourself. Be selfish with your time.
  • Use your honeymoon period wisely.  Be prepared for things to get rocky.
  • Find a nutritionist who understands that pizza is a food group, a trainer who appreciates you want to do a little running and a psychologist who knows you get a little fucking crazy. Regularly.
  • Be friends with people who will call you on your bullshit. Who will pick you up when you stumble. And who will celebrate your wins like monkeys with new bananas.
  • Focus on your sleep more than your steps. Take care of your skin.
  • Get as close to natural and real as possible – with your food, exercise … and social media.
  • Love yourself.  You are enough.

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