Just Call Me A Cheater

 

Recently I was asked a very point blank question by a friend, “do you think if I have gastric bypass surgery that I’m somehow “cheating” by not losing weight the natural way?”

I’ll admit at first I was offended. I mean come on, I’ve not only HAD gastric bypass, but I’ve also had gastric sleeve surgery and here she was asking ME if I thought it was cheating? Seriously, yeah offended, but then something really amazing happened……

I took a big step back and started to explore this question for myself

Was I a cheater? Had I taken the easy way out and had surgery?

Looking back, I didn’t really look at this question fully with my sleeve surgery for a few reasons:

  1. My sleeve was done improperly so while yes I had a tiny portion of my stomach removed (10-15%) in the 2 years following my surgery I adopted a strict clean eating lifestyle. I ate high protein, only green vegetables (meaning low carb), and any other carbs were “clean sources” like quinoa, sweet potato, rice cakes, my only real fat source came from natural peanut butter. VERY clean diet and I rarely cheated and if I did it was meticulously planned out to the nines. I was to hyper focused on weight loss. After all, I had had this surgery to lose weight, little did I know this “cheater’s way out” really was cheating me in a way by not being what it should have been. BUT what I learned in those 2 years was invaluable. I learned how to exercise properly, life weights effectively, understand HOW to eat for my body because trust me the second I stopped eating this way I gained. I essentially (even though undergoing the sleeve surgery in 2014) was still trapped in the yo yo dieter’s nightmare that I thought I escaped by having bariatric surgery and as soon as life stress took its toll or I ate more than 1 cookie I blinked and gained 40 pounds!! Soooo in this scenario did I take the cheater’s way out? I would say HELL NO!!

was gastric bypass a cheater’s choice for me? That then becomes a new frontier for me to answer and suddenly I am faced with admitting that I couldn’t lose and effectively keep weight off on my own, but what does that really matter in the end? Does that mean because I’ve had gastric bypass, I’m somehow less of a person? Less of a woman? Less of a wife? Mother? Friend? I don’t think so!! In fact, I would say, YES I took the cheater’s way out, I allowed a surgeon to alter my body so that I, for a season don’t feel hunger. I now have a buil- in moderation control so I can no longer overeat myself into oblivion with some of the foods that are issues for me like: chips, cake, cookies, ice cream. I’ve allowed my body to be altered in such a way that if I eat too much of my sinful desired things like baked goods, I’m spending 30-60 minutes in the bathroom in sheer agony wishing for death as my bowels rapidly evacuate whatever sugar poison I’ve just consumed.

 

But even more than all of this the number 1 thing I’ve cheated is DEATH!!!! Sure I worked out pre gastric bypass but I still had high BP and since I had gained weight my unstable cholesterol was edging back up into a range where it was make a choice or go back on medication. AND with my history of having a stroke in my background, high cholesterol is NOT something you want to have to deal with! Also, the 40 pound weight gain I experienced in 4 short months was triggering a rapid increase in my migraines and me and migraine pain do this dance where when it gets really bad, I become borderline suicidal, so I was NOT in a good place health wise, so you see my decision to move forward with gastric bypass was the right decision for ME. I can’t answer my friend’s question for her. I think that question requires each individual to really ask themselves this deep soul searching question because I can tell you that this question will ALWAYS be asked by those who are just ignorant of its implications  to those  of us who have already had the surgery and by those who are just judgmental people who think that yo-yo dieting or excuse me “clean eating”  and fitness are really the only way to go and for some yes this may be their calling, but for others of us it is not and that’s ok. At the end of the day, there are several options out there to get healthy, all have benefits and all have consequences, choose your level of happy and choose your level of consequence and run after it. Let’s all cheat death together in our own way!!

Recently I was asked a very point blank question by a friend, “do you think if I have gastric bypass surgery that I’m somehow “cheating” by not losing weight the natural way?”

I’ll admit at first I was offended. I mean come on, I’ve not only HAD gastric bypass, but I’ve also had gastric sleeve surgery and here she was asking ME if I thought it was cheating? Seriously, yeah offended, but then something really amazing happened……

I took a big step back and started to explore this question for myself

Was I a cheater? Had I taken the easy way out and had surgery?

Looking back, I didn’t really look at this question fully with my sleeve surgery for a few reasons:

  1. My sleeve was done improperly so while yes I had a tiny portion of my stomach removed (10-15%) in the 2 years following my surgery I adopted a strict clean eating lifestyle. I ate high protein, only green vegetables (meaning low carb), and any other carbs were “clean sources” like quinoa, sweet potato, rice cakes, my only real fat source came from natural peanut butter. VERY clean diet and I rarely cheated and if I did it was meticulously planned out to the nines. I was to hyper focused on weight loss. After all, I had had this surgery to lose weight, little did I know this “cheater’s way out” really was cheating me in a way by not being what it should have been. BUT what I learned in those 2 years was invaluable. I learned how to exercise properly, life weights effectively, understand HOW to eat for my body because trust me the second I stopped eating this way I gained. I essentially (even though undergoing the sleeve surgery in 2014) was still trapped in the yo yo dieter’s nightmare that I thought I escaped by having bariatric surgery and as soon as life stress took its toll or I ate more than 1 cookie I blinked and gained 40 pounds!! Soooo in this scenario did I take the cheater’s way out? I would say HELL NO!!

was gastric bypass a cheater’s choice for me? That then becomes a new frontier for me to answer and suddenly I am faced with admitting that I couldn’t lose and effectively keep weight off on my own, but what does that really matter in the end? Does that mean because I’ve had gastric bypass, I’m somehow less of a person? Less of a woman? Less of a wife? Mother? Friend? I don’t think so!! In fact, I would say, YES I took the cheater’s way out, I allowed a surgeon to alter my body so that I, for a season don’t feel hunger. I now have a buil- in moderation control so I can no longer overeat myself into oblivion with some of the foods that are issues for me like: chips, cake, cookies, ice cream. I’ve allowed my body to be altered in such a way that if I eat too much of my sinful desired things like baked goods, I’m spending 30-60 minutes in the bathroom in sheer agony wishing for death as my bowels rapidly evacuate whatever sugar poison I’ve just consumed.

 

But even more than all of this the number 1 thing I’ve cheated is DEATH!!!! Sure I worked out pre gastric bypass but I still had high BP and since I had gained weight my unstable cholesterol was edging back up into a range where it was make a choice or go back on medication. AND with my history of having a stroke in my background, high cholesterol is NOT something you want to have to deal with! Also, the 40 pound weight gain I experienced in 4 short months was triggering a rapid increase in my migraines and me and migraine pain do this dance where when it gets really bad, I become borderline suicidal, so I was NOT in a good place health wise, so you see my decision to move forward with gastric bypass was the right decision for ME. I can’t answer my friend’s question for her. I think that question requires each individual to really ask themselves this deep soul searching question because I can tell you that this question will ALWAYS be asked by those who are just ignorant of its implications  to those  of us who have already had the surgery and by those who are just judgmental people who think that yo-yo dieting or excuse me “clean eating”  and fitness are really the only way to go and for some yes this may be their calling, but for others of us it is not and that’s ok. At the end of the day, there are several options out there to get healthy, all have benefits and all have consequences, choose your level of happy and choose your level of consequence and run after it. Let’s all cheat death together in our own way!!

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