I always joked that I had reverse anorexia, meaning that I saw myself smaller than I was. I never saw myself as a size 32 pant/ 4x shirt person. I never truly saw myself as I was mostly because I refused to weigh in, I was so afraid of what the scales would say. In the summer of 2009, I tried getting on the scale at the gym and my weight didn't even register. This meant that I tipped the scales at over 350 pounds. It was shocking. I was taking meds for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and depression. My last set of blood work also indicated that I was nearly diabetic. I had to wear tennis shoes everyday because I had heel spurs and it hurt to walk and stand for any period of time.

I went to a weight loss surgery seminar in October 2009 and began my weight loss journey tipping the scales at 364. I met with Dr. Mickey Seger at BMI of Texas and started my nutrition visits with their dietitian. My insurance situation was different than most as I wasn't even on my husband's insurance yet. That would happen in January 2010, but my patient advocate assured me that we could do all the prerequisites needed for approval. I was approved for surgery in February 2010 and began the 2-week liquid protein shake diet that served as the first step in my new life. On March 2, 2010, I had Gastric Bypass surgery and I was walking around the hospital that night - just as Dr. Seger said I would. I call that day My New Life Birthday. My new life meant new changes so I started my new life by implementing the food requirements that the dietitian laid out during the pre-op and becoming active.

In May 2010, I was challenged to do the San Antonio Rock & Roll ½ Marathon in November 2010. With 6 months ahead of training, I started barely being able to walk my first half mile. Every week I gradually increased the walking distance and eventually running a few yards. My goal for ½ marathon was just to finish and with the hope of finishing it in under the 4 hour time limit. My time for the San Antonio Rock & Roll ½ Marathon was 3:56:57. I knew the minute I was done that I wanted to do another one and planned to do the Dallas Rock & Roll ½ Marathon in March 2011, only 4 months after my first. Again, my goal was just to finish and hopefully this time under my San Antonio time. I pushed myself during my training and started running more. My time for Dallas Rock & Roll ½ Marathon was 3:34:52, taking 22 minutes off my San Antonio time. But one of the best parts of the Dallas ½ was that I was able to run from mile 7 to the end (mile 13.1) nonstop. In November 2011, I did my 3rd ½ Marathon and ran at least 12 of 13 miles. From not being able to walk a mile to now being able to run a ½ Marathon - weight loss surgery has changed my life.

So far I have lost 176 pounds and have my life back. I haven't taken any meds since getting out of the hospital after surgery (except for daily vitamins). I can stand for hours without my feet or knees hurting. I live each day to the fullest not afraid to try something new. My new life now includes a daily gym regimen, which I actually enjoy. I now look forward to what's next in my life!