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My gastric sleeve story: Week 22

I am writing a double blog this week as I have been in America for my Dad's wedding. The first thing I will say is that I had an absolutely amazing time! I have never had so much fun in my life, it genuinely was the best holiday I’ve ever had.

I bought a seatbelt extender from Amazon a year or two ago as I have always been terrified of the seatbelt not fitting me on the plane, as usual I took it with me on this trip but there was absolutely no need for it, the belt fit me with plenty of room to spare! The journey there seemed to take forever, I was too excited to sleep on the plane and it was an 8 hour flight to Chicago and then a 4 hour drive down to St Louis where my family live and where we were meeting my Dad.

We stopped at a roadside diner on the way and I could not find anything vegetarian on the menu so I asked for a lobster salad without the lobster! I could not believe the size of the portion when it arrived, the plate was about one and a half times the size of our standard dinner plates but it was piled as high as possible and came with a bowl the size of our cereal bowls full of blue cheese dip. By the time I had eaten the few mouthfuls I could manage, the meal still looked completely untouched and the waitress kept asking me if everything was ok, she seemed quite offended!

Once we had been there a few days I came to realise that every place sold food in these portions and most of it was deep fried or covered in batter or cheese. I really struggled as a vegetarian to find any options which surprised me, everything seemed to involve steak or seafood. I lived off chips and cheese sauce or Caesar salad without chicken the whole time I was there.

As for staying away from alcohol, I don’t know how I ever thought I would get away with that one, my family are huge social drinkers and most days we started off with a drink in a bar straight after breakfast! During the day we were drinking cold beers and in the evening we were on cocktails!

I hoped that as we walked so much, swam a lot and danced most nights that it would even out but when I was getting towards the end of the holiday I could feel my swimming costume was tighter and I felt bloated.

On the day I left I weighed myself and I was 16.10lb. On the day I got home I was 17.4lb!! I had put on over half a stone in a week! I was absolutely mortified and stuck to 500 cals a day for the next few days. I think a bit of it was caused by constipation and bloating as within a few days I had lost 5lbs and am almost back to where I was and seem to be losing 1-2lb a day at the minute which has been a relief! I am certain that alcohol is one of the biggest factors in why I got to 20-odd stone in the first place and also why most of my fat sits around my abdomen. It’s hard to get my head around the fact that a drink can make you put on weight but when I look at the calories in one Budweiser and think that I was having a least 3 each day as well as 3-4 cocktails each evening, the maths adds up as to why I put on so much weight.

Since I have been back I have been having a boiled egg and a slice of avocado on toast for a late breakfast, skipping lunch and then having Quorn fillet and salad or a halloumi salad for dinner and drinking as much water as possible and I think that is helping in shifting the weight gain a lot quicker than I thought I would.

I only have 2 weeks before our family holiday in Spain so I want to lose another 6-7lbs at least before then. That’s my last planned holiday this year so I’m hoping once that is out of the way I can start a proper exercise routine and possibly join a gym. I have been riding my horse as much as possible which has been fantastic.

Hayley's gastric sleeve story

Starting weight: 20st 1lb

Current weight: 16st 13lbs

Weight loss this week: +1lbs

Total loss to date: 3st 2lb*

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*Weight loss surgery results and benefits vary and are different for each individual. As such, Healthier Weight cannot guarantee specific weight loss goals.