I think today should be all about Becky Sawtelle. No wait, let’s give her the entire rest of the week. She deserves it! For most of Becky’s life she struggled with her weight and finally decided to have gastric by-pass surgery. Dr. Jamie Loggins, from the Central Maine Bariatric Surgery Center did the procedure the end of January.

When I wrote an update in March she was not happy with how things were going. Here’s what she had to say: “I had a really strong relationship with food. Now I can’t eat whatever, whenever, and how much I want. I miss that.”

I’m delighted to tell you that Becky is doing much, much better. “The past two weeks has been a huge breakthrough. It’s such a really good feeling to be able to eat and not be sick. I think I just needed to get my stomach used to normal food again. I feel much better and I just love having the weight come off.”

Becky has lost 70 pounds! If you compare the two pictures below, you can see that her face has slimmed down a lot.

Becky in March

Becky in March

For those of you who want to see more, I think we’re going to have to wait until she gets her new wardrobe.

Becky the end of April

Becky the end of April

Health improvements About a month after her surgery, Becky started a new job in Orlando, Florida. She came back to Maine last week to check in with Dr. Loggins and was really excited to get a great report. Her blood levels were perfect — she was worried that she wasn’t getting enough protein, but she’s fine. She used to have low back pain. That’s gone. She used to be tired a lot. That’s gone. Her feet don’t hurt anymore. She’s also no longer pre-diabetic. Well done Becky!

When her sister Sandy saw her the first thing she said was WOW! “She looks great!!,” she told me. “Looks healthy. Her arms are firm so I can tell she’s been working out. She actually had a glow. Very proud of her!”

Exercise routine Becky has been working out — a lot, she says. “I go to the gym every day. I’m swimming, doing the elliptical and the treadmill. I also started taking group classes, which I never would do before because I’d be the fattest one in them, and I’m not anymore. It’s such a great feeling to be in the workout room and look in the mirror now.”

What Becky is eating She’s found several things she can eat with no problem, but in much smaller portions than she used to. Steak, chicken, oatmeal, mandarin oranges (snack of choice), yoghurt, chili, and protein bars that she breaks into small pieces and stores in the freezer because she can’t eat the whole bar at once. Fast food used to be a staple in her diet and now she can’t even stand the smell of it, and no cravings for it at all she reports.

Weight goal When Becky returns to Maine in August for her next checkup she expects to have lost a total of 100 pounds, leaving only 30 more to go. She looks better and feels better and is very encouraged by all the positive reactions she’s getting. “My hard work is paying off,” she says. “The reactions motivate me to keep going. I don’t ever want to be that heavy again in my life.”

Please, take a minute to tell Becky what a good job she’s been doing and while you’re at it, wish her a happy birthday — she’ll turn 42 Saturday, May 18. She’s already given herself the best present ever — a healthier Becky.

Happy Birthday Becky!

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