Life Changing Surgery
One of our club members, Vicky has shared her personal weight loss journey and running aspirations.
In April 2020, came to a decision that would change my life forever. I was about to turn 30 and was in the worst shape of my life. I weighed over 23.5 stone (149 kg), I woke up gasping for air in the night, I was out of breath walking up the stairs. I struggled with most activities. That decision was to have gastric bypass surgery, a weight loss procedure which reduces the capacity of the stomach.
I have always loved exercise, but being the weight that I was, I lead a very sedentary life. I had attempted running a few times over the years, but by the time I was running more than 5 minutes, my knees, back or hips would hurt. My biggest aim for losing weight was to get into regular exercise.
On October 3rd, 2020 the day had arrived and I had my surgery. I went to a private clinic in Turkey and was very well looked after. The recovery wasn’t too bad; I was up and walking the same day. I had a strict diet to follow for 3 months, starting with liquids, then puree, then soft foods. It was like learning to eat all over again. Once I was cleared to exercise, I started walking for an hour per day. I then gradually increased the exercise, with the cross trainer, and started doing run-walk sessions on the treadmill. As the weight was coming off, the running became easier, and a regular part of my week.
Once I had been running regularly for a few months, I decided to challenge myself to a 5k race – and came across the Newcastle Frontrunners LGBT 5k run. I loved the atmosphere of an inclusive, fun race, and knew straight away that I wanted to see what it would be like to join the club. Within a few weeks I had signed up for a trial. I love being part of Newcastle Frontrunners, not only because it’s an LGBT friendly club, but also because every person I have spoken to shares a joy of running, and post-run cakes on a Wednesday. It’s extra motivating knowing you’re going to run with a bunch of friendly faces and I know it will keep me motivated as the dark nights draw in.
In total I have lost 10 stone 12 lbs (68kg), gone down 7 dress sizes, and even dropped a shoe size. I take part in 10k and 5k races, I alsorun regularly with my Frontrunner buddies. My goal for next year is to increase my distance and take on longer running challenges. I am excited for what’s to come, and forever grateful for the decision to take control of my health and movement.