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Life Can Be Normal. Even If You Travel



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Ever since I started thinking about a sleeve, my biggest worry was, "Will I be able to lead a normal life again?". I see that question asked a hundred different ways in this forum. Let me add my experience.

I should mention that "normal" for me looks different than "normal" for most Americans. I get to a lot of places, and eat a lot of different foods. I was terrified that I would not be able to function in that lifestyle.

Today is my 6 week anniversary, and life started getting back to my "normal"

I am writing from my hotel in Singapore.

On this trip I have survived 3 airline meals, and 3 formal hosted Chinese dinners with 5 to 7 courses. I managed to get through it without insulting my kind hosts, or throwing up, I actually had some wonderful little morsels. I hit all of my Protein targets with 3 conventional meals and one Protein Bar a day. I didn't have to make a bunch of dietary demands, pack a ton if supplies, or turn my hotel into a "shake factory".

Tonight I had a few treasured hours to myself, so I went to my favorite Hawker Center where I have spent many hours sitting with friends and locals surrounded by the smoke and clamor of a bunch of busy Satay stands.

I managed to eat a few of my favorite Satay and some of my favorite Sambal Stingray.

I just wanted to assure people that life post-sleeve does not have to be bleak or ordinary. These are actually "soft" foods. (OK the satay is marginal but I get promoted next week).

I really miss the cold Tiger Beer that goes with this meal, but I know I will back to that eventually. In the mean time I am down 53 lbs and feel great.

This has been a great life-altering decision for me, and I did not have to give up much at all.

I hope the attached photos make it through.

Sent from my iPad using VST

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This post made me so happy! Thank you for the reassurance and congrats on your weightloss!

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yes, so when was it that you were taking me with you somewhere?.. LOL jk

that post makes me SOOOOOOOOOO happy, though! :D i love traveling & sampling food! how awesome! :) YAY! lol

and congrats on the weight loss! that's AWESOME!

mind if i am nosy & ask what you do that allows you to travel? :) or was it just vacation time? :) (my apologies if that is too personal or rude, it wasn't intended to be, am just curious)

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Being able to be normal or return to a semblance of normalcy is something that concerns most of us. Tha k you for this update, we needed to hear it.

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So the recipes to these? They look delicious!!!!

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Thank u thank u I am worried that I may not be able to eat as usual it's nice to know this surgery is all about moderation

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mind if i am nosy & ask what you do that allows you to travel? :) or was it just vacation time? :) (my apologies if that is too personal or rude, it wasn't intended to be, am just curious)

I don't mind. I run a foundation that does work all over the world. I travel over 300,000 miles a year (10-12) times around the world. Sometimes I find myself in Bali, other times in Beruit or a conflict zone in South Sudan. I make Anthony Bourdain look like a lightweight. It seems glamorous, and has its wonderful moments, but it is a brutal lifestyle that would have killed me if I had not gotten the sleeve. There's zero time to pamper yourself and you eat what you can when you can. A sleeve was a big gamble since I could not afford to make the focus of my life the 6-inch tube that used to be my stomach.

I am fortunate to have had a tolerant sleeve and a fast recovery. I think it also helps that I have steadfastly refused to make this operation the center of the universe. You can create your own reality by choosing not to make this a big deal ( or you can do the opposite).

Over the next 3 months I am traveling to .Montreal, Mallorca, London, Jordan, Santiago, Taiwan and Panama. If this information helps reassure people, or helps them better manage their own journeys, I will drop the occasional post. Now I have to get ready for another 16-hour day on 4 hours sleep (again).

Thanks to all for the support.

Sent from my iPad using VST

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This is really great to read, as on my 6th week after surgery, I am traveling, and I so hope I am where you are in terms of feeling well and stomaching food well.

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Your traveling sounds fantastic and I'm so glad to read this!! I'll be in China and Korea towards the end of the year and was wondering in my mind how it might be.

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Glad to read this post... Looking forward to a few bites of satay, bulgogi, kalbi, etc... But will take it slow (only in 4th week and still on soft/mushy)... Wish you safe travels!

-Sarah

Sent from my iPhone using VST

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Glad to read this post... Looking forward to a few bites of satay' date=' bulgogi, kalbi, etc... But will take it slow (only in 4th week and still on soft/mushy)... Wish you safe travels!

-Sarah

Sent from my iPhone using VST[/quote']

What's the name of your foundation?

Sent from my iPhone using VST

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Your traveling sounds fantastic and I'm so glad to read this!! I'll be in China and Korea towards the end of the year and was wondering in my mind how it might be.

Traveling in Asia I am reminded how little Protein is in the diet here. When you have a hosted at a formal dinner you get lots of courses and most of them are veggies and carbs. The idea of just eating Protein is really against the whole Ying and Yang thing. I am finding the best bet is to suggest a "casual seafood restaurant" for dinner. That will typically get you to a Cantonese place with lots of steameb and braised fish that is perfect for a new sleeve. That will work anywhere in the east side of China from Beijing to Hainan.

The other good bet is to opt for "Hot Pot" that way you can cook your own protein at the table and skip the veggies.

Korea should be easy. They love the protein there.

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Traveling in Asia I am reminded how little Protein is in the diet here. When you have a hosted at a formal dinner you get lots of courses and most of them are veggies and carbs. The idea of just eating Protein is really against the whole Ying and Yang thing. I am finding the best bet is to suggest a "casual seafood restaurant" for dinner. That will typically get you to a Cantonese place with lots of steameb and braised fish that is perfect for a new sleeve. That will work anywhere in the east side of China from Beijing to Hainan.

The other good bet is to opt for "Hot Pot" that way you can cook your own protein at the table and skip the veggies.

Korea should be easy. They love the protein there.

Actually, there's a ton of protein options in authentic Chinese cuisine. Totally get where you're coming from though, yes you have a base of white rice, but contrary to the Americanized (overly greased, commonly fried) Chinese dishes in the states, my family's cuisine both here and in Beijing and Hong Kong consist largely of steamed fish in soy sauce (As you mentioned, yum!), lots of silken tofu (soft and great protein), chicken and shrimp stir fries, lots of great bbq plates (pull the skin off the roasted duck, great steamed salted or soy chicken), lobster, steamed dim sum (har gow, remove the skin) etc.

I find it so interesting though - my family orders most of the steamed, healthier dishes that we commonly cook at home but when we've gone out you notice most people order the fried stuff.

And I love, love LOVE Korean food but unfortunately for me my favorites are kalbi - the chewier the better. The spice and the chewiness of that cut of meat probably won't fare well with my new tummy. Let me know what you eat when you go there!!

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Also, I loved your original post. It has encouraged me more than most posts I've read on here! I too travel a lot for business, though not as much as you, and it's a passion of mine. Being able to experience local cuisine (in moderation of course) is one of my favorite things in life.

I wouldn't consider it life if I had to sneak Protein bars to survive while exploring a new city or country and I love your outlook on not making it the center of your universe, something I think is so easy to slip into.

I'm going to Greece for my first time in early October and knowing you've travelled a ton, let me know if you have any great suggestions! I'll be about 6-7 weeks out. Thanks so much for the hope! :)

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