Molly January

Is my body just waiting to get fat again?

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Okay, folks, that is the question I asked my PCP yesterday. I asked because it seems like the past two months have been a real struggle. My exercise has moved indoors because of the weather, but I still get over 7 hours of cardio a week and do resistance. My eating patterns haven't changed. Now...I weighed 8 pounds less in the doc's office  yesterday than I did last year at this time, but I feel like I've been struggling to maintain and the scale has moved up two (gasp!) pounds. It's not much, but it panicked me. So let me give you the highlights of what PCP said.

 

First, his answer to my question. An emphatic yes. My body is just waiting to get fat again. In addition, he said:

 

--Calories in vs. calories out is like a bank account. I may need fewer calories than other people, but I will gain weight if I put more calories in my mouth than my body needs for fuel.

 

--When he trains for marathons, if he eats in excess of 1500 calories he gains weight.

 

--What  happens to many of his patients who have had bypass is that after the initial weight loss, they start to judge themselves and be hard on themselves as the weight loss slows or ends. That leads to overeating, which leads to stretching the pouch, which leads to the ability to eat more which of course leads to regaining what was lost.

 

My ears perked up at that last statement--I have been extremely judgmental and very hard on myself these past few months. I told him what I heard him say and that I related to it, confessing that I have been beating myself up, and even wondering why I spend the time exercising and watching what I eat if I'm going to regain it all anyway. He said:

 

--You don't have to beat  yourself up. But you do have to be disciplined the rest of your life.

 

Now, here is what I liked about this conversation. First, he didn't say, "there, there, look how well you're doing. You're 8 pounds lighter than you were last year at this time." Second, he did acknowledge the struggle. He did echo what all of the veterans on TT say--it is a constant vigil and requires discipline, not whips, but discipline. Third, he did say that my scale's estimate of my body fat percentage (around 22%) was excellent, as most women my age average about 35% and call themselves healthy, and on the way out he did tell me that I am doing an awesome  job and no one can take that away from me. I added in my head, "Except for me!"

 

There seem to be a few exceptions--Julie comes to mind whose metabolism kicked way up post-op--but the fact is that I must remain vigilant. I must remain disciplined. I must remain positive. My body is just waiting to get fat again. No judgment. Just the way it is. Love to hear feedback from the vets and wonder if any of this will be helpful to newbies as they contemplate what lies ahead.

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To be fat again....

 

That is one of my biggest fears. I know that it could become a reality should i ever start to slack. I am hard on myself at times. Yet there are days where i am a little more relaxed. Losing the weight for me after gastric bypass was easy. It came off fairly fast  as i did 100% as i was told by my Dr and then some. My main struggles, has always been my brain. I wasn't fully prepared mentally, for what was about to happen to my body. My brain sure didn't know what to do with the new image in my mirror or pictures. Even at 2 years out, there is days where i still struggle with body image. 

 

I know i look good in clothes, but naked i'm ugly. My husband changed after i lost the weight. He started making negative comments early out. More weight i lost the more he seem to withdraw from me. Now we hardly speak to each other and he has slept on the couch downstairs every night for several months. I feel like maybe it's because i am so thin. I thought that if i wasn't fat that he would find me beautiful. That he would think i was wonderful for becoming healthy and going to the gym like i do. But then i seen none of that matter to him. Body image for me is so hard to deal with. I feel like i wasn't good enough when i was fat. And now that i am thin...i'm still not. 

 

So this is another reason i am so hard on myself at times. I get so scared that my metabolism will slow down all the sudden. That even though i go to the gym 5 days a week, my body will eventually betray me. It will always be my greatest fear that after all the hard work and struggles. One day i will wake up and be back inside my big body. I fight so hard to stay positive. Sometimes my life is unbearable with stress. I throw myself into activities to get my mind off of the crap. Some days i win and other days i lose. I still weigh myself every morning and at times even hope i have lost a pound. That's just NUTS! I don't need to lose weight and i have been trying to gain. I am up 2 pounds since Dec 23rd thanks to my commitment of lifting weights. 

 

I have to eat like a horse to get my body to gain and build muscle. I hate it and fear that it could send me back into obesity. I'm constantly wondering if what i am doing is the right thing. Should i gain that 10 pounds of muscle? Do i really need to weigh between 125-135? I mean i know i would look much sexier if i had my curves back, as i have none at 119 pounds. So this is my daily mental struggle. I don't want to go through life always second guessing myself or living in fear of gaining all my weight back. Why is it so hard to just have a healthy brain after wls? Not saying everyone is this way as i see many on TT with zero issues. I guess i will always wonder if the day will come that i am 100% happy with who i am. 

 

All i know is no man is gonna do it for me. And no food or certain number on the scale either. Happiness is gonna have to come from me accepting certain things. I'm working very hard on changing and i won't give up on myself. Obesity will not claim me again. 

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I hear both of you! I'm terrified of gaining weight. I constantly ask myself "do you really need this or that?" Food just doesn't taste as good as it once did. I don't know if that's a head thing or not. I normally eat the same thing everyday. I keep picturing my cells filling up with fat. I still follow the rules, protein first, no drinking (still set a timer to make sure I'm over a half hour out), take my daily vitamins and supplements. I can't believe people get slack about "the rules", it's what we signed on for when we made the wls choice. I get scared because I can eat more than a year ago. 4 oz is pretty much it. Someone saw me eat a banana for a snack the other day at work (I don't ususally have a food at work-I do protein shakes) and actually told me it was the first time they saw me eat anything in 6 months-they thought I was anorexic!

I think we will always have to watch closely what goes into our mouths if we want to succeed at this game. I'm constantly asking myself if I'm hungry or thirsty. Or telling myself to have this, not that. Or counting out the calories in something (every once in a while it pops out when hubby is eating something unhealthy, I'll ask, "do you know how many calories is in that?!" With me it's so much a mind game!

I do know I have to stay vigilant every minute. It's almost like there's a good angel on one shoulder and the bad angel on the other. I know I'll go down fighting:)

Julie, I am so sorry you have an unhappy experience. Just remember that happiness comes from within; someone else can't make you happy nor can all the food or exercise in the world. You are amazing!! You've done an awesome job of getting healthy! You are truly a beautiful person!

Lois

Edited by Cheesehead

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I think most of us struggle. When I started working with a trainer he scared the crap out of me because he told me I had to eat more fat and carbs or the strength training would fail. That once you discounted the weight of all my extra skin that my fat ratio was so low there wasn't anything to burn to build muscles.

Now my first inclination was to blow him off because I just spent 2 years fighting to lose the weight. At the same time, however, 2014 had a lot of downtime due to various complications.

I really don't want to gain weight, but I don't want to be a weak little old lady, either!

I'm pretty sure most of us have our obsessions running overtime. I'm very lucky in having a man in my life who loves mehowever I am -- the only thing that riles him up is when I obsess out loud about it too much. He pretty much told me one day that I didn't give him much credit if I expected him to love me based what I looked like -- naked or clothed.

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Beauty most certainly is in the eye of the beholder. if we do not find ourselves to be beautiful in aour own eyes, we carry that relentless critismsm with us where ever we go. I am finding more reasons to be happy with myself every day since the surgery. However, I am no where close to forgiving myself for what I did to my body 200lbs ago. Julie, you have thrived at reclaiming your sense of self through a two year fight with obesity. You won! It sounds like through that fight you became aware of some problems in your relationship with your husband. I am really sorry about that because he should have been thrilled about your improving health and happiness. Since he seems unwilling or unable to love you healthy and happy, F--- him. You still have quite a bit of life to live. Far too long to be assaulted by people who are mad because you made a great choice for yourself. From what I have seen you look great in clothes, and based on the new profile pic, probably look great naked too. You just continue being strong and making the decisions that are best for you and your happiness. Eventually, those choices will lead you to a set of eyes that will behold you and will let you know just how beautiful you are.

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Ok....now to address the topic...:) I am very new to all this but I feel that almost everyone's body is waiting to get fat in our society. The normal lifestyle is one that encourages behaviors and a diet that leads to weight gain. Some bodies can be geared to burn fat calories more readily than others but overall it's a struggle for everyone to be healthy. I feel it becomes easier when you learn to love or accept a new normal, like regular, relatively intense workouts, and calorie control. I believe that these are things that have been less of a norm for us and as a result, more of a struggle to fit into our lives as an acceptable, preferable norm. I consider myself to be a recovering drug addict. Food wa my drug of choice and I will struggle with that for the rest of my life. If I take my eyes off of that truth I am more likely to relapse and face failure. As dark as that perspective may seem it has helped me wrap my brain around my new normal and the daily choices that come with it.

Edited by Magic_t98

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I love the book, Oh The Places You'll Go

 

I'm afraid that some times
you'll play lonely games too.
Games you can't win
'cause you'll play against you.

 

 

Gaining and losing weight is a reality for everybody, rather they have WLS or not. So to me if I gain, it is normal and if I lose also normal. Now, gaining back 100% of what I lost, not normal but a few pounds here and there is within my expectations. I can't see myself never gaining anything for what I hope are the next 50+ years of my life

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Sounds like you have a great NUT.  I like mine but she would never be that informative/directive with me.   She is much more touchy feely.

 

That said, am I afraid of being fat again...You Bet Your Butt I Am!

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Sounds like you have a great NUT. I like mine but she would never be that informative/directive with me. She is much more touchy feely.

That said, am I afraid of being fat again...You Bet Your Butt I Am!

Papa G, if that was addressed to me I was talking to my doctor not my nutritionist. My nutritionist would not be as direct either. My doctor is not touchy-feely at all! Edited by Molly January

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Papa G, if that was addressed to me I was talking to my doctor not my nutritionist. My nutritionist would not be as direct either. My doctor is not touchy-feely at all!

 

Got it.  Makes sense.

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There is a good reason most of us have this fear of regaining our weight. Personally speaking I have gained and lost 100 pounds three times in my lifetime. Many of us have this type of history.

Heck, I'm not even done losing yet and already worry about what happens 3 years down the road. I just know that I can't go back to weighing 360 pounds as I had an awful quality of life.

I am working as hard as I can to instill the positive habits and behaviors while my tool makes it easier to do so. I thank each of you for sharing your sucess and struggles as this strengthens us all.

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I know i look good in clothes, but naked i'm ugly. My husband changed after i lost the weight. He started making negative comments early out. More weight i lost the more he seem to withdraw from me. Now we hardly speak to each other and he has slept on the couch downstairs every night for several months. I feel like maybe it's because i am so thin. I thought that if i wasn't fat that he would find me beautiful. That he would think i was wonderful for becoming healthy and going to the gym like i do. But then i seen none of that matter to him. Body image for me is so hard to deal with. I feel like i wasn't good enough when i was fat. And now that i am thin...i'm still not. 

 

 

Julie, my heart breaks for you. As a divorced woman who is engaged to be married again, I can tell you that being with someone who doesn't value you will not serve either of you in the long run, and not communicating will not make things go away. I do not know you or your back story, but reading about your husband sleeping on the couch I can't help but see my situation in your words. 

 

WLS can make or break relationships. Have you sought couples counseling? You are young and beautiful and do not need to stay in something that sucks all of the happiness our of your life and makes you doubt yourself. Just as WLS patients say that they are so happy with surgery and wish they'd done it sooner...that is also how I feel about having ended my dead end marriage. *hugs*

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The Idea of gaining weight is a constant thorn in my side. I stabilized at 129-131 for about a year. Initially I was concerned because family and friends said I looked too gaunt. I was also concerned because my clavicle bone became so pronounced and noticeable. My face also went from a full round look to a sunken in look. I was so self-conscious. Now after my 2 year mark I began putting on some pounds. This morning my weight was 138.8 (2 years & 7 months post-op). Now I am concerned because I do not want to gain anymore. (I am satisfied with my size.)

 

Recently I was informed that I am going to need a total hysterectomy next month. So that brings about more worrying. I know of women that gain weight after a hysterectomy. I do not want that to happen.

 

I think by being in this WLS club we are going to constantly have fears. I have also come to the conclusion that I can only be me. As long as I like me it does not matter what others think, feel, or say.

 

I am grateful for this website, because my fears,concerns, and questions can be addressed here in a positive and appropriate manner.

 

 

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I'm glad I have found this post. I am creeping up on the two year mark. I was 158 at my lowest. 135 was original goal. My body just said "uncle" at nine months out.

 

Since the cold weather has hit, I have creeped up to 172. I was running outside before to maintain. I am so terrified that i am going to get fat again. I feel like I am the only person in the world who could screw up weight loss surgery!

 

I am seriously considering moving South so I have the ability to exercise outside everyday. I am that obsessed about it. The gym and treadmill aren't working.

 

I really thought that I was going to get off this bad-mouthing of myself about weight once and for all. Boy, is weight a lifetime struggle!

 

I am trying to not be too hard on myself and pray the weather breaks soon.

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and my dr did tell me to plan on gaining back 10-15 pounds. That is normal. I just didn't expect it this soon.

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I feel you, Colleen, and am in that exact same boat with you. I had my surgery at the end of March 2013 and lost 99 pounds by December 2013. I maintained that loss until October of 2014 when the weight started creeping back on. I hopped on the scale this morning and discovered that I'd gained 19 pounds! I'm putting the blame on sugary drinks, drinking with meals, not watching my portion sizes, and not exercising. I KNOW what I need to do to maintain, but I've been giving in to laziness and the malaise of the cold and stormy weather.

 

I made a promise to myself that I am going to follow the rule about drinking with meals (which should help me with those portion sizes) and banish sugary drinks from my diet. I'm going to use those baby steps to kick-start my devotion to maintenance. The exercise will be a lot easier when the weather improves.

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