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Walking as exercise after surgery



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I'm a newbie here with bypass surgery scheduled for February 2019. Like many of you, I've never been big on exercise, and I know that will become a big part of my life post-surgery. I can definitely commit to walking every day, but I can't see myself going to the gym. Would a brisk walk every day be enough, or is it going to slow my weight loss? I'd appreciate insight from those on the other side!

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I'm a newbie here with bypass surgery scheduled for February 2019. Like many of you, I've never been big on exercise, and I know that will become a big part of my life post-surgery. I can definitely commit to walking every day, but I can't see myself going to the gym. Would a brisk walk every day be enough, or is it going to slow my weight loss? I'd appreciate insight from those on the other side!
I had my bypass in December. Walking in the beginning was great but I love the gym more. Walking is a great form of excercise, it should not slow your progress at all. Good luck with your surgery and your new journey.

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Posted (edited)

It's the only real exercise I can sustainably perform. So it's my main squeeze...

The way I see it is I have to walk in every day life so I'll just lose what I was always going to lose with it (no accelerated weight loss) but if I hit the gym for 18hrs 9 days a week then break my ankle I will gain back the 50 extra lbs I unnaturally lost.

That's my lazy humble opinion.

BUT

strength training will do wonders for the skin/muscle tone and cardio increases endurance. Do what you can, at the pace you can sustain.

Safe Journey 🎈

Edited by GreenTealael

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, Recidivist said:

I'm a newbie here with bypass surgery scheduled for February 2019. Like many of you, I've never been big on exercise, and I know that will become a big part of my life post-surgery. I can definitely commit to walking every day, but I can't see myself going to the gym. Would a brisk walk every day be enough, or is it going to slow my weight loss? I'd appreciate insight from those on the other side!

I was a true couch potato pre surgery. Committing to exercise was a necessary evil that I was not thrilled about. Exercise/activity does not mean you have to step inside a gym. Start slow. Do it even when you don't want to. It gets easier if you make it a habit. You will find you are stronger than you give yourself credit for.

Use your activity/exercise to replace. stress/emotional eating, head hunger or eating out of boredom. Make it a time to process all the changes and mental battles with weight loss. This is the time you carve out for yourself. Don't let anyone interrupt it.

  • Get zumba videos online and dance your butt off
  • walk and make it about the destination. Take photos.
  • As you get stronger and have more energy challenge yourself to do more. Plan a hike with beautiful views. Make exercise an adventure and not a chore.
  • Buy exercise equipment at a thrift store. (stationary bike, dumbbells or a treadmill)
  • Find your inner bad@ss!

You never know where this journey will take you. Who knows how you will feel about exercise six months or a year from now. Many changes coming your way.

Edited by Healthy_life

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Part of this will be your mindset changing. What you WANT to do physically will shift. For instance, today I deliberately chose the bus rather than other transport, even knowing that would mean a mile walk to the office and then a mile walk back. I also randomly chose to take my dog on a much longer midday walk while on a conference call - altogether I walked 5 miles today, pretty effortlessly.

Before surgery, I would never, ever have done either of those things on a whim. Almost 100 lbs later, it’s just a nonissue.

I will say that you need to figure out your exercise groove. My sister needs to find a gym and sign up for classes, the financial commitment and schedule is what motivates her. Meanwhile I need an open pool pass and opportunistic walking. Neither of our routines would be sustainable or enjoyable for the other.

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I was worried about the skin as I am not able to do weight lifting or anything over 15 lbs even after the incisions heal from surgery as I still have a fist size incisional hernia the doctor will not repair until 8 months later that limits me. This is what motivated me to finally do this surgery as I has other surgical doctors that would not repair until I lost 50lbs. The incisional hernia is a previous mesh repair that was cut through for another surgery and became a hernia with weight gain. It's all so frustrating as I know lifting weights is my fastest way to weight loss but I have been limited here for quite some time. I am also needing a shoulder rotator cuff repair and will probably have that surgery in 6 to 8 weeks and this again will limit me. My only choice is walking. I do have a treadmill and a stationary bike. Just not sure when it is ok to use bike? The nurse at the hospital told me not to use the treadmill for awhile but my house is small and I feel like a hamster in a wheel walking circles in my house. I am thinking this morning I will go ahead and use my treadmill and just keep it flat and slow, I don't see any harm in this? Anyone else used there treadmill 9 days post-op?

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1 hour ago, Coexister said:

I was worried about the skin as I am not able to do weight lifting or anything over 15 lbs even after the incisions heal from surgery as I still have a fist size incisional hernia the doctor will not repair until 8 months later that limits me. This is what motivated me to finally do this surgery as I has other surgical doctors that would not repair until I lost 50lbs. The incisional hernia is a previous mesh repair that was cut through for another surgery and became a hernia with weight gain. It's all so frustrating as I know lifting weights is my fastest way to weight loss but I have been limited here for quite some time. I am also needing a shoulder rotator cuff repair and will probably have that surgery in 6 to 8 weeks and this again will limit me. My only choice is walking. I do have a treadmill and a stationary bike. Just not sure when it is ok to use bike? The nurse at the hospital told me not to use the treadmill for awhile but my house is small and I feel like a hamster in a wheel walking circles in my house. I am thinking this morning I will go ahead and use my treadmill and just keep it flat and slow, I don't see any harm in this? Anyone else used there treadmill 9 days post-op?

Sorry to hear about your rotator cuff and hernia issues. Lower body exercise works. Check with your dr to see if you are released to do treadmill or bike. Walking is great exercise. It will help you heal from surgery.

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1 hour ago, Coexister said:

I am thinking this morning I will go ahead and use my treadmill and just keep it flat and slow, I don't see any harm in this? Anyone else used there treadmill 9 days post-op?

Hmmmm, two things:

1. If your doc/nurse said no treadmill, do what they say. You can contact them and say you feel great and would like to start on the treadmill, but it’s not a great start to unilaterally contradict your doc’s explicit recommendation. Sets you up for a bad precedent, because there are going to be a LOT of things in the next few months that the doc recommends and you don’t want to follow. The introduction of solid foods being a huge one - most people struggle with feeling just fine and ready to eat, granting yourself a hall pass early is just going to start you down a slippery slope.

That said...

2. Everyone’s doc is different. I didn’t have any explicit restrictions on exercise, and while I didn’t go on a treadmill, I do live in a city and was easily walking three or 4 miles a day going from client to client by nine days out. So I won’t say it’s across the board a bad idea, just that your doctor may have very specific reasons for saying you shouldn’t be on a treadmill.

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Thanks to all for your advice and insight! I think walking will be my primary form of exercise, but I might try out a gym at some point. To be honest, I've avoided gyms during past diet attempts because my size embarrassed me, but it might be a different experience after losing weight. We'll see!

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Why don't you see yourself going to a gym?

Post-op, gym is my second home.

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using BariatricPal mobile app

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Don't limit yourself to just walking. As you loose weight, you'll be able to do more and there is little calories burn in just walking.

Eventually walk three miles, then interval training to run that 3 miles (5k). Big difference in calorie burn, and when you run it, you'll be able to do it in about 40 minutes give or take.

Weight loss is a challenge on your muscles. You'll want some gym visits to maintain tone, or even build muscles.

Find some cardio classes. For me, walking is was always just too slow of a calories burn.

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using BariatricPal mobile app

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Thanks, WJGO. I'll play it by ear and see how it goes. I'm turning 60 this year, and the gym has just never been my thing, in large part because of all the young, fit bodies around me and the occasional competitive atmosphere. Perhaps I just need to find a gym that is more laid-back where I won't feel so self-conscious.

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Posted (edited)

I am 55 yrs old and started walking about 3 miles a day after having surgery. After about 6 months I started running. I was running up to 4 miles 3 times a week. I would have liked to run more but I have had re-constructive knee surgery on my right knee twice and have very little meniscus left. I ran 2 organized 5K's in 2018 so anything is possible. I tried the gym but just couldn't get into it. I still walk about 3 miles a day and run during warmer weather.

IMG_0370.jpg

Edited by dathvick

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Dathvick, you are one inspiring Dude; keep it up cause you have your act together!

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My doc had me up walking same day as surgery. She told me she wanted me to walk as much and as often as I could and that my goal should be walking a minimum of 1 hour per day (ideally all at one time). I started with only being able to make it about 5 minutes. Today I can walk 60+ minutes at one time on some days.

I would love to be able to jog/run. It's one of my goals for 2019.

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