Over the last eight years I have cared for hundreds of people who have suffered from the disease of morbid obesity. Through dieting, exercise, counseling, and surgery we have worked together to treat this condition in an effort to improve the quality of life and longevity. I have noticed over the years that the most successful people have several habits in common. Let’s take a closer look at these habits.
- Successful people never come to surgery expecting an operation to do all of the work. They have made a decision to change their lifestyle, and they look to bariatric surgery to just give them a little boost. They want the surgery to help them with their change, but they don’t expect the surgery to do the changing. This is an important distinction.
- Successful people often have something to remind them not to go back to a lifestyle that will cause recurrent obesity. It may be a picture of themselves before surgery. Sometimes it is a child they want to be around for. It can also be a parent whom they saw suffer from obesity related medical problems and they don’t want to repeat that experience. Whatever the reminder, successful people often have a constant motivator to stay on track.
- Successful people prioritize exercise. It is not the first thing to get cut if their schedules get hectic. Regardless of how busy work gets, how many errands they have to run, how tired they are, how many demands their children are placing, or how their bodies feel, they exercise without excuse.
- Successful people also tend to make exercise fun and do it in community. They sign up for 5K or 10K races (which they walk or run). They walk with friends or exercise at the gym, where they are around other people. They take aerobics classes or get a personal trainer. They don’t view exercise as drudgery or a chore.
- Successful people don’t snack and graze on foods. They don’t senselessly put food in their mouths out of boredom or because food is available. They conscientiously choose healthy foods and they tend to know how many calories they are consuming at meals.
- Successful people tend to surround themselves with supportive and encouraging people. They seek support from family, close friends, or support group meetings as opposed to accepting the negative energy of nay-sayers.
- Successful people take responsibility for their fate. They recognize that their eating and exercise decisions directly impact the scale. They know that at any time in their lives they can regain weight, and that their bodies are prone to do so. With this understanding, they never make excuses or feel sorry for themselves. They just do the right things to stay healthy.
Carl Lowe, Jr., MD