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Dr. David Kim Kim Bariatric Institute

Big Ben’s Weight Loss Journey Week 2

It’s been two weeks since my gastric sleeve surgery and my new adventure just gets better and better every day.

My heaviest pre-surgery weigh-in with the great Dr. Kim was a whopping – and embarrassing – 346 lbs.  Yikes.  That number even shocked some of my closest friends and family.  At 6’3” with a closet full of baggy threads, I guess I was able to obscure my sizeable girth fairly well.  But trust me, chairs shuddered in my presence as recently as a month ago.

I’m happy to announce that I’m already 30 lbs lighter and counting.  No, I didn’t lose 30 lbs in two weeks.  For me, the loss process started 3 weeks prior to my surgery as I started an all-liquid diet to prepare for the procedure.

Losing weight is a glorious thing for someone who has battled their weight for years.  When you’re losing weight every day, and working towards an amazing yet very attainable goal, you wake up happy every day.

It’s such a great feeling when you realize that there is no denying that your clothes are getting too big.  I’ve dieted before with some success, but this is different.  In the past, I might have relaxed after losing 30 pounds.  But with the sleeve, I know that this is just the beginning.  Losing 120+ lbs is exceedingly attainable for me with the sleeve if I hold up my end of the bargain by exercising regularly.  But back to how it feels to be heading in the right direction… losing weight on a daily basis is a liberating process to say the least.

I can’t help but get ahead of myself and wonder how much weight I’ll ultimately lose in this process.  I don’t really have a number in mind – I just want to be happy and healthy. Recently, I’ve been doing some thinking about all of the things that I’ll soon be able to do without thinking twice.  Here’s a quick list:

  • Air travel. As a big man, catching a simple flight comes with major league anxiety.  Squeezing into a tiny seat, hoping the seat belt click happens without much fanfare and worrying about the poor soul next to me who is folded up into the fetal position have all been flight concerns for me in the past. Soon, that won’t be the case. I can’t wait.  I might even become a Southwest Airlines junkie who flies around for sport.
  • Water parks with the kiddos.  My kids love to swim and would love to get their water park on… but truthfully, I just haven’t felt comfortable going. You got the troubling swimshirt decision and the unease that accompanies onlookers pondering your bizarre male pregnancy.  It just hasn’t been a consideration for me.  We swim as a family at home, but not in public.  I can’t wait to hit the water park with my little sea monkeys.  They’re going to love it!
  • Playing basketball. I’m not particularly good at it, but I love, love, love to play.  It’s really the only exercise I’ve ever really enjoyed in adulthood.  Unfortunately, I just got too heavy to play at some point.  At 40 years old, I’m not exactly trying to put on a show, get in a competitive league or play with college kids or something.  But I’d really love to be able to get out and run full court with a bunch of fellow 40-year olds for some good, old-fashioned Saturday afternoon roundball cartio. Very soon, that will be a reality for me. I’m stoked!

Those are just a few of the things I’m looking forward to.  For most people, they are just common every day things that folks might even take for granted.  For me, they represent a magnificent light at the end of a tunnel.  Based on the poor direction of my health before my sleeve procedure, that light might as well have been an oncoming freight train.  Now with my sleeve, that light represents a wonderful future that I can’t get to fast enough!  Thanks, Dr. Kim!

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