Getting Into Pre-Op Shape
Many people incorrectly assume that life change starts only after bariatric surgery. Life change should start quite a while BEFORE weight loss surgery to have the best outcome! Read on to get some great tips on how to get yourself into pre-op shape!
Surgery of any kind takes a toll on our bodies. So, it only makes sense to prepare our bodies for it as much as possible. Getting into pre-op shape helps build heart and lung health. They will be working overtime after surgery to heal and repair us, so we should help them out as much as we can! It is also wise to build the strength and stamina that we will need, especially in the early days when our mobility might be affected. Strengthening our arms and legs will help us not use our abdominal muscles to move around, allowing them to heal.
How soon should we start? Ideally, 6-8 weeks before surgery, we should begin intentionally preparing our bodies – focusing on exercises that build our strength and flexibility. If you are not accustomed to exercising, start slow. The last thing you want to do is injure yourself! Ease yourself into it. You’re going to be exercising a lot from here on out! Research online to find ideas for beginner exercises to try.
Start eating healthier too. Avoid the urge to fill up on all your favorite unhealthy foods “one last time.” Focus on increasing your intake of lean proteins and anti-inflammatory foods. Start taking your bariatric vitamins as early as your surgeon recommends. These will aid your body in healing quicker.
Don’t forget about preparing yourself mentally. It’s totally normal to be anxious before surgery. Try journaling, counseling, or talking to bariatric surgery support groups. While you’re working on flexibility, why not try incorporating some yoga and meditation? Yoga can pull double-duty for you, helping improve flexibility AND decreasing stress and anxiety.
Most importantly, follow your surgeon’s instructions. There are usually a LOT of things to do in the weeks leading up to surgery. Some of them may sound silly or unimportant but do your best to complete everything that’s been asked of you! Getting your mind and body into the best pre-op shape can likely result in you being released to go home sooner and set you on the path to reach all your weight loss goals! You got this!