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  1. #1
    Gastric Sleeve Member Ann2's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Name
    Ann2
    Surgery date
    08/18/2014
    Surgeon
    n.a.
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    5,247
    Said "Thanks" 3,173 Times
    Was Thanked 3,154 Times in 1,785 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 3,240 Times
    Blog Entries
    3

    Default FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    A year ago yesterday I was sleeved at age 68. I knew I had the energy for one last shot at getting healthy. Like so many of us, controlling my weight was the one thing in my life I’d been unable to manage. Failing at that was a tremendous embarrassment and disappointment to me, not to mention the cause of mounting medical comorbidities that had almost sidelined me from life.

    A year ago I’d already been on this forum for 9 months. I could not WAIT to get my WLS show on the road. I’d already lost almost 20 pounds on a 2-month 1,400 calorie diet of my own and, later, my surgeon’s 14-day pre-op diet. I’d been practicing for months the behaviors I’d learned here—eating slower, chewing more, no more soda, a lot less coffee, no NSAIDs (ouch!), walking more (yea, Fitbit!), and my favorite tool of all—planning meals and tracking my food and drink on www.myfitnesspal.com.

    Fast-forward to yesterday morning, my first surgiversary. I weighed in at 143 pounds. I feel great, physically and mentally. I look so much younger (I’ll be 70 years old in December). And I truly feel like I’ve been reborn.

    The New, Temporary Avatar

    I’m on the down-low about having had WLS. Basically, only hubby and two friends know about this. But so many online VSG friends want to know what I look like, so enjoy my new avatar while it’s up. It’s coming down soon. Tough titty.

    BTW, I’ll put up a full-body shot of me later. Again, tough titty. But this morning I didn’t have on “the right outfit” to show off my skinny ass. And hubby’s not here right now to take a good photo of me.

    How I Lost the Weight

    I was lucky—had no complications, had a great surgeon and team, healed well and recovered fast, and have had more non-scale victories (NSVs) than you could shake a stick at. I’m full of gratitude and amazement at all of WLS’s benefits for me.

    Below is a list of things I did (mostly pretty well) that led to my success. As always, your mileage may vary. This was my experience. Yours will be yours.

    • Ate the minimum amount of protein—at least 60 grams to start with (hit that target on Day Five post-op)
    • Ate protein first at every meal
    • Drank 8 glasses of water daily (or at the very least 8 glasses of liquids daily)
    Protip #1: Dehydration slows weight loss and makes you feel like crap.
    Protip #2: Our kidneys work overtime when we’re losing weight rapidly and need lots of water to function well.
    Protip #3: You can actually die from dehydration.
    • As healing happened and restriction eased, added healthy (colored) veggies, then non-starchy fruits, then whole grains
    • Took my vitamins/minerals and Rxs daily and on schedule
    • Ate 3 meals a day
    • Chewed my food well and ate more slowly
    • Didn’t drink 15 minutes before or 30 minutes after a meal
    • When I got hungry (not bored), I added one or two snacks of healthy food
    • Didn’t graze between meals (note that “a snack” and “grazing” are different things)
    • Avoided / minimized highly processed, high-carb foods and slider foods like potatoes, white rice, white breads, crackers, cookies, chips, ice cream
    Protip: These foods slow weight loss and, for some people, trigger binge eating.
    • Moved more than I used to move and gradually kept moving even more
    • Followed the Number One Exercise Rule for Old People: Don’t injure yourself!
    • Got some sunshine daily, which kept me full of happy thoughts and Vitamin D
    • Tried to sleep 8 hours a night
    • Minimized stress—for me, this meant I stopped sweating the small stuff and learned that most stuff really is small stuff
    • Am seeing a shrink, even though I’m not crazy, to understand better why I couldn’t or didn’t care for my health better prior to WLS and to learn how to do better in the future (as the saying goes, they operate on your stomach, not your head).

    Unsolicited Advice:

    I’ve been at or below goal for 4 months now. Here are some things I learned while losing weight and during maintenance (at which I’m still a newbie). Some of these things have surprised me. And as always, your mileage may vary.

    • Don’t feel pressured into telling the world you’re having WLS. Do what is best for you. Just know that “telling a few people” may not be the best way to keep your WLS private. There are a lot of mouthy people out there.

    • Don’t overeat, but don’t starve yourself either. As your healing continues, eat more healthy food and raise your calories gradually. Otherwise, you may wind up reaching your weight goal but only able to maintain it eating 1,000 calories/day. Ugh! At 143 pounds, my daily maintenance calorie budget is 1,700 calories/day. I am over the moon about that. I think it’s because I didn’t starve myself while I was losing weight. I ate 800 calories during Months 1-4, 1,000 calories during Months 5-6, and 1,200 calories during Months 7-8. As my calories went up, so did my protein grams. I still aim for 100 grams of protein daily.

    • Post-op, don’t just eat to lose weight—also eat to become healthier. Learn more about nutrition—macronutrients, trace elements, vitamin and mineral supplements. Read articles and good research. As smart as I thought I was, turns out I didn’t know nearly as much as I needed to know to care well for myself.

    • If you’re craving sugar, you’re probably already eating sugar. The only way I know to kill those cravings is to cold-turkey the sugar.

    • Don’t let anyone pressure you into having WLS. This is a life-changing deal. A year down the road you’ll probably be able to eat pretty much anything you want, although not in massive quantities at one time. And you’ll need to always be vigilant about your nutrition, meal-planning, eating behaviors, etc.

    • WLS won’t prevent binge-eating or emotional eating. It will discourage it, but it won’t prevent it. There are plenty of WLS patients who’ve learned to eat and drink around their tools. I personally know folks who’ve wasted their sleeve, bypass or band with (sigh) sweet tea, Mountain Dew, beer, Wheat Thins, ice cream, chips and dips. What those drinks and foods all have in common, other than being high-calorie and lacking in nutrition, is that the sleeve cannot challenge them. They move rapidly through the sleeve and into the small intestine. You can eat that crap all day long and never start to feel full. Remember, it’s a shame to waste a sleeve.

    Very, very best wishes to everyone out there considering a VSG or other form of WLS. You can change your life with WLS if you use your tool well. But you must understand it’s only one tool in a bigger healthcare arsenal that you must acquire and use daily.

    Thang ya. Thang ya verra mudge.



    Dr. consult: 235 lbs
    My pre-op diet: 224 -11 lbs
    Doc's pre-op diet 216 -19
    M1 postop 205 -30
    M2 193 -42
    M3 184 -51
    M4 174 -61
    M5 167 -68
    M6 162 -73
    M7 156 -79
    M8 151 -84
    M9 148 -87
    M10 146 -89
    M11 144 -91
    M12 143 -92
    M13 142 -93
    M14 140 -95
    M15 139 -96
    M16 137 -98
    M17 135 -100

    Read the secret to my success.

    Second Surgiversary thread


  2. Gastric Sleeve Surgery With Weight Loss Agents
  3. #2
    Gastric Sleeve Member tomigyrl's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Name
    Tomi
    Surgery date
    06/23/2015
    Surgeon
    Dr. Matthew R Crouthamel
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Last Activity
    08-17-2016 03:51 PM
    Location
    WA, USA
    Posts
    195
    Said "Thanks" 283 Times
    Was Thanked 215 Times in 119 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 40 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Ann - you are BEAUTIFUL! That smile - stunning! While I only know you online you are a gorgeous woman, inside and out. You'd be a fool not to know already that I have a bit of a girl-crush on you.

    Thank you for all your candor, great advice, encouragement, humor, and for just...being YOU! You've crushed this journey and served as an inspiration to me and so many others. Your constant re-typing off all this great advice has helped served as a reminder of what we're all supposed to do.

    Selfishly, I hope you stay on this site, serving as a successful mentor to the noobs. You were one of the first to welcome me, and I'll always be thankful for you unwavering encouragement.

    Congratulations, lady!




  4. #3
    Gastric Sleeve Member Midas's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    01/28/2015
    Surgeon
    Doctor Who
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    169
    Said "Thanks" 139 Times
    Was Thanked 72 Times in 58 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 70 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    You've come a long way, baby!! Thanks for sharing your insight along the way. You are gorgeous!


    First doc visit: 290
    Surgery date: 264.6

    1st month loss: 15 (weight: 249.6)
    2nd month loss: 8.4 (weight: 241.2)
    3rd month loss: 9.2 (weight 232)
    4th month loss: 11 (weight 221)
    5th month loss: 10 (weight 211)
    6th month loss: 7 (weight 204)
    7th month loss: 4 (weight 200)
    8th month loss: 4 (weight 196)

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  6. #4
    Gastric Sleeve Member jrzygmom's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    07/29/2014
    Surgeon
    Dr. Onopchenko
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Last Activity
    03-27-2017 01:05 PM
    Location
    North Wildwood, NJ
    Posts
    101
    Said "Thanks" 131 Times
    Was Thanked 60 Times in 48 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 149 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Ann - congrats on your surgiversary! You are amazing and an inspiration to so many! By the way, love the pic and had scrolled through a few other posts and didn't realize it was you at first, cause I was used to seeing your alter ego's pix! ;-)

    Thanks again for all the info and tips!


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  8. #5
    Gastric Sleeve Member
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    04/27/2015
    Surgeon
    jon schram
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Last Activity
    10-07-2015 02:54 PM
    Posts
    9
    Said "Thanks" 0 Times
    Was Thanked 4 Times in 3 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 0 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Great advice, thank you! Congrats!


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  10. Gastric Sleeve Surgery With Weight Loss Agents
  11. #6
    Gastric Sleeve Member
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    07/29/2014
    Surgeon
    dr almanza
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Posts
    143
    Said "Thanks" 174 Times
    Was Thanked 52 Times in 46 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 2,650 Times
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Your gorgeous! Didn't realize it was you @ 1st! What a smile! Thanx for sharing! Gotta love those commen sense Midwest girls!



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  13. #7
    Gastric Sleeve Member cathbas's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Name
    cathi
    Surgery date
    03/05/2015
    Surgeon
    Dr Rantis
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Last Activity
    02-22-2017 01:23 AM
    Location
    chicago area
    Posts
    868
    Said "Thanks" 141 Times
    Was Thanked 504 Times in 371 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 363 Times
    Blog Entries
    13

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Well you DO look like Marilyn!! so that is a Great avitar!! So nice to see your happy smile...
    to hear your fabulous advice..and you wise quips..
    Thank you from the bottom of our sleeved hearts ! We need you!! Cant tell you how many times..your comments helped me in tough moments in the begining and staying the course throughout..your comments keep me signing in and want to be just like YOU!!

    Congrats for your 1st year!! please do not ignore us newbies, now that you have all upped and gotten more beautiful!! We love hearing from you!!
    have a great anniversary!! and again..THANK YOU!



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  15. #8
    Gastric Sleeve Member Dawn306's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    08/12/2015
    Surgeon
    Jaime Ponce de Leon
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Last Activity
    09-11-2016 03:20 PM
    Posts
    27
    Said "Thanks" 17 Times
    Was Thanked 11 Times in 6 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 216 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Ann, thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. I have just started mine - got my sleeve surgery one week ago today. I wondered if I waited too long to do this. I am 58 years old. My husband, being the super supportive guy that he is, is eating and drinking the same as me. He also wants to lose weight, but he didn't get the sleeve. He is 75 years old. Your story touched me because it showed me that it's never too late. Those of us who have been successful in so many areas of our lives, but who just couldn't win against the weight often beat ourselves up for not being able to control ourselves. I have long since stopped beating myself up over it, but once I relaxed and didn't worry so much, I gained another 20 pounds! Arggh! But no more. I figure this time I will lose it (again), and keep it off....with the help of the sleeve, and of people like you who unselfishly share what you have learned with the rest of the community. Again, thanks, and congrats on the weight loss!


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  17. #9
    Gastric Sleeve Member Victerria's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    11/23/2015
    Surgeon
    Dr. seger
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Last Activity
    07-17-2016 11:45 AM
    Posts
    21
    Said "Thanks" 33 Times
    Was Thanked 17 Times in 11 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 30 Times

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Hello there and thank you so much for your beautiful write-up. So practical and with so much great advice. I am 60 and just beginning this journey. I am on a 3 month diet as per insurance requirements and follow the low carb very closely, drinking my water, etc. In addition I have started walking 5-6 times a week 2 miles . I am reading all these posts and was concerned because most are so much younger than me. I am so encouraged by your posting and your picture is truly beautiful. I have only told my immediate family and two very close friends (one who had the sleeve). I don't want to be a a fish bowl with the world watching me as I go this journey. Thank you so much for posting this!



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  19. #10
    Gastric Sleeve Member kenson's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    01/13/2014
    Surgeon
    Dr. Karl Strom
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Last Activity
    03-23-2017 01:34 PM
    Posts
    737
    Said "Thanks" 4 Times
    Was Thanked 189 Times in 162 Posts
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    Blog Entries
    27

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    So nice to put a face to the person who always dishes out common sense around here! Your tips are priceless, love the way you've written everything out. Congratulations on your success~



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  21. #11
    Gastric Sleeve Member
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Name
    Karen
    Surgery date
    04/30/2015
    Surgeon
    Almanza
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Last Activity
    03-08-2017 03:36 PM
    Location
    Mississippi
    Posts
    42
    Said "Thanks" 44 Times
    Was Thanked 31 Times in 20 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 32 Times
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Thanks for sharing your story, victories, and your beautiful face picture! You look marvelous!


  22. Said thanks:


  23. #12
    Gastric Sleeve Member
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    07/07/2015
    Surgeon
    Broussard
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Last Activity
    02-17-2017 04:13 PM
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    117
    Said "Thanks" 83 Times
    Was Thanked 98 Times in 57 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 3 Times
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    I didn't need to see your picture to know you are a beautiful person.

    Congratulations on your anniversary and thank you for sharing what you do.


  24. Said thanks:


  25. #13
    Gastric Sleeve Member missemily516's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Name
    Emily
    Surgery date
    12/23/2013
    Surgeon
    Channing Chin
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Last Activity
    02-03-2017 04:57 PM
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    370
    Said "Thanks" 4 Times
    Was Thanked 111 Times in 82 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 15 Times
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Hey Ann thank you for sharing your face, you are beautiful! It's hard to believe that it has been a year for you - it seems like just a few months have passed since you had your surgery! As usual, your post is thoughtful and helpful, and you are very much appreciated on this site!
    "A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms"



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  27. #14
    Gastric Sleeve Member
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    10/10/2014
    Surgeon
    Almanza
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Last Activity
    12-07-2016 02:46 PM
    Posts
    82
    Said "Thanks" 8 Times
    Was Thanked 18 Times in 17 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 1,591 Times
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    I started reading this only looking at the picture and heading and not paying attention to the name of the author. I didn't make it very far before I started thinking that the writing style was very similar to Ann. Sure enough, scrolled back up and saw it was indeed you! You have such a flair for writing and one of the few who type with proper spelling and punctuation. Lol.
    Your journey has been remarkable and I have enjoyed your posts since I joined the boards last August. I can always count on you to give honest and helpful advice and to "tell it like it is". Good for you! And thank you for passing on all your WLS (and other things) wisdom.




  28. Said thanks:


  29. #15
    Gastric Sleeve Member Catlover's Avatar
    I have had a gastric sleeve.
    Surgery date
    04/06/2015
    Surgeon
    Dr. Mario Almanza
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Last Activity
    05-16-2016 07:32 PM
    Posts
    183
    Said "Thanks" 258 Times
    Was Thanked 113 Times in 84 Posts
    Said "Welcome to Gastric Sleeve" 177 Times
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: FIRST SURGIVERSARY: Hullo, good life. Buh-bye, 92.6 pounds!

    Well, I would only be repeating what so many have already said, so I will only say THANK YOU< THANK YOU beautiful lady. You are one awesome woman!! You have helped so many and as one of the old broads following in your foot steps you have proved it is never to late. Awesome job!!



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