Find out what Kay did to begin her weight loss journey, how VSG helped her and her tips to live a healthy fit life.
Please introduce yourself to our readers (i.e. your name, occupation, hobbies, etc.).
Hello, my name is Kay. I recently quit my job working for the local school board in the district nutrition office and started my own business a few months ago.
My hobbies include traveling, visiting museums, reading, attending outdoor festivals, crafting and thrifting.
What sparked your weight-loss transformation journey?
My weight-loss journey has been ongoing for as long as I can remember because I have had weight issues for as long as I can remember. I have tried everything under the sun to lose weight, and I’ve even succeeded a few times.
But each time it was short-lived and each time I gained more than I lost. I was averaging a 20 lbs gain each year over the past three years until I gradually crept up to my heaviest weight in June of this year (2018).
I knew I was getting bigger because my clothes were getting smaller and my energy level was less than that of an 80 year old slug. I could hardly walk a few feet without getting winded and feeling severe pain in my feet and ankles. Before I knew it, I’d developed a slight limp from the pain and also to keep from putting so much pressure on my heels (which hurt me more than anything).
I knew it was time to do something when I couldn’t keep up with my little niece at her 3rd birthday party. She wanted me to come play a game with her (it was a Chuck E Cheese’s), which I did, but between the walk from the table and the minor physical activity I exerted by playing the game with her, I was wiped out.
Breathing like I had just finished playing a game of football, I limped back to the table and sat there until her party was over. I felt so miserable but more than anything, I was angry and embarrassed that I let myself get that far gone before I did anything about it.
That was the day I made up my mind to have weight loss surgery.
What was your beginning and current weight or measurements?
My highest documented weight was 305 lbs. 305.4 lbs to be exact. At my last weigh in, I was down to 231.6.
How long did it take for your weight-loss transformation from beginning to end?
I had my surgery on July 17, 2018, about 4.5 months ago as of the time of this post. The pre-op portion of the surgery, which consisted of a liquid only diet began 2 weeks prior to surgery.
That was the beginning. I am nowhere near the end, but satisfied with the progress I’ve made and how far I’ve come.
Which physical activities did you participate in during your journey?
I’ve engaged in light cardio and strength training activities occasionally. I go to the gym from time to time and hit the elliptical and treadmill for my cardio and for my strength training,
I’ll hit the weight machines for my legs. I also use my own weights at home for my arms. Once I lose about 25-30 more pounds on my own, I plan to hire a personal trainer.
How did your eating habits change?
My eating habits have changed immensely. I now only eat about an eighth of what I used to. That’s mainly because the size of my stomach has been reduced to only be able to hold around 4oz at a time.
I also began practicing intermittent fasting about 2 months after surgery, so that restricts my eating even more.
I usually eat 2 meals a day, occasionally 3, but they are extremely small meals.
What do you typically eat for breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner?
Since I follow a 16/8 fasting schedule, I don’t eat breakfast. My first meal usually takes place between 12-3 or 4, so I guess you could consider that lunch.
It’s usually a Tyson Teriyaki Chicken Thigh or 2 oz deli meat, 3-4 Cracker Barrel Cheese Cubes and 6 Blue Diamond Nut Thins.
Dinner is usually another chicken thigh or a small bowl of taco meat, cheese and sour cream. If I want something a little more filling, I’ll add a small piece of baked potato to my taco bowl or some veggies with my chicken thigh.
I also love dark chocolate chips with either pecans, cashews, or both as my snack. Those are only some of my common meals.
Though I can only eat like a baby bird, I still love to cook and experiment, so I’ll try new things and only eat a tiny bit of it.
What is your favorite fitness activity?
I haven’t gotten heavy into fitness just yet, but my all-time favorite fitness activity is dancing.
Zumba, Dance-Based Workout DVDs, or just twerkin’ around the house, it doesn’t matter to me, I just love to dance!
What do you do now to maintain your physique?
I’m not in maintenance mode just yet, but once I get there, I would hope that the gym and/or regular Zumba classes are part of my maintenance.
How did you develop and sustain the willpower to avoid the bad stuff (i.e. junk food, bad drinks, lack of activity, etc.)?
My tool (what we in the weight loss community call our new stomach/pouch) has made it almost impossible to eat too much.
As a result, I’m very selective with what I eat.
I need what I eat to be filling. Junk food is not; it runs straight through you. So I try to make sure I fill up on as much protein as I can, which is needed in order to help me complete my fasts.
What advice do you have for someone looking to get started with their fitness journey but not sure where to begin?
My advice for someone looking to get started with their journey but not quite sure where to begin is to just start!
It doesn’t matter, as long as you start. Don’t sit around procrastinating because the longer you wait, the more of your life you put on hold. If I could go back in the past 3 years instead of just letting time go by, I would.
I feel like my life was put on hold and now I’m playing catch up. Don’t play catch up later. Start today.
There are resources everywhere and people more than willing to help. Social media can be your best friend, so use it. But whatever you do, don’t procrastinate.
What do you think is the biggest misconception about this journey?
That’s a great question, especially about the path that I decided to take because there are TONS of misconceptions about weight loss surgery.
I’d say the biggest misconception is that some people feel like it is the easy way out. I kind of laugh when I hear or read that somewhere because it speaks to the level of ignorance that exists in the world today.
It also speaks to our backwards logic to me. First off, there is absolutely NOTHING easy about undergoing weight loss surgery of any sort, but even more so with vsg because it is permanent and not temporary.
So that means my internal organs have been permanently rearranged and 70-80% of my stomach has been removed FOREVER.
Second, there are numerous possible side-effects and complications associated with wls/vsg. Hair loss, dehydration risks, permanent scars, acid reflux and vitamin deficiencies are only a few.
Third of all, for multiple periods of time, a person is physically incapable of eating. So I’m not sure what’s easy about any of that, but none of it sounds easy to me.
As far as the backwards logic, let’s suppose that it was the easy way out. When did it become wrong to do something the easy way? Wouldn’t that make more sense? I thought doing things the easy way was called working smarter and not working harder…..But maybe that’s just me….
Do you have any fitness inspirations? Who are they?
I don’t have any online fitness inspirations per se, but I do enjoy reading posts and viewing pages about people who were severely obese but are now physically fit and healthy.
I also love reading about people over 40 who are really fit. I’m not 40 yet, but I’ll be there in a few years and it’s a goal of mine to be in the best physical shape of my life by the time I’m 40.
How can readers learn more about your transformation and journey online (i.e. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.)?
Readers can learn more about my journey by following my social media pages. I am on Instagram and Facebook, both of which are @pearshapedweightloss.
I also have my own website coming very soon, Pearshapedweightloss.net. I’m going to share the launch on my social media when it is active, which again, will be very soon.