Today (2/3/2017) marks my 4th month since surgery (Oct 3, 2016), and to say that it’s been a REAL STRUGGLE would be an understatement. This has absolutely been the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life…harder than 6 years of college, harder than 3 years of grad school, harder than the years of work I’ve had to put into my career, harder than buying a house and car…I almost would do those things over again than this past year leading up to the surgery and what I’ve had to do post-surgery.
I’m being facetious of course…but anyway, the above pic was taken yesterday at the gym. I posted it because sometimes when I look in the mirror, I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished very much. And I’m not fishing for complements, I’m being very sincere…even though I’ve lost a total of 73 lbs so far (15 pre-op, the rest post-op), I don’t see the results in the mirror. Everyone around me can see it, but in the mirror I only see a very slight change. The doctor explained that is normal; he said that I probably wouldn’t visibly notice any significant change until at least 6 months post-op.
That can be extremely discouraging if you don’t take extra steps to celebrate the non-scale victories (NSVs) – things that you accomplish related to your weight outside of what you see on the scale. The scale can be a liar because there are changes in your weight that might not be attributed to you not working hard enough -such as an increase in muscle growth (which is more dense than fat), hormonal changes (that monthly heffa comes uninvited with heavy baggage), natural temporary stalls in weight loss, etc.
So, from today on out, I’ll be posting my NSVs to get you to think about your’s. And the best way to figure out what your NSVs are is to take lots and lots of pics and compare them with your before pics. That’s the only way I see I’ve lost anything.
Another way to recognize your NSVs is to try new activities, ones that maybe you would not have tried previously because of your weight. Even if it’s just participating in a social activity, just being more outgoing is an NSV if you have been shy in other areas of your life because of your weight.
Another great way to recognize your NSVs is by measuring yourself with a tape measure and/or by seeing how you look in your clothes. If they are getting baggier, then that tells you something. Buying new clothes is a good feeling, at least for me. A note for bariatric patients though – you’ll be losing at a pace that is not conducive to constantly buying new things. Don’t be afraid of going to second-hand consignment shops and looking at online sites like Swap.com or social media groups where you can buy clothes at a discount. Of course, you can always check out my Poshmark store where I’m trying to get rid of my clothes.
I also want to hear about your NSVs! Let’s celebrate them, big or small!
Continue to check back as I talk about more of my NSVs!