Activity & Exercise After Weight Loss Surgery
Activities and exercise regimens are critically important to a patient’s physical and mental health. Not only does exercise assist in losing weight but it also releases mood improving endorphins that fight stress and brighten the day. Longer-term, once they have healed, patients will be able to return to their activities and most likely perform some that they haven’t in many years such as:
- Taking a long romantic walk with their spouse or significant other
- Playing with their children or grandchildren for the first time in years
- Tying their shoes with no difficulty at all
- Fitting comfortably into a plane or movie theater seat
- Being able to perform and complete a cardiovascular workout
- Playing sports
While the responsibility lies with the patient to stick to a proper diet and exercise regimen, most of our patients are able to experience an array of activities that they haven’t in years. As a result, the sheer enjoyment of being able to perform these newly found activities may keep their weight loss on track.
With all activities and exercises, also comes risk. These risks usually revolve around overexertion and injury. Exercise should be started in moderation, slowly building up to greater and greater difficulty levels. Patients may also opt for low-impact activities as they lose wright, to minimize stress on their joints. Swimming and cycling may be preferable to running on pavement for several months after surgery. Some beneficial low-impact exercises may include:
- Cycling or Spinning
- Ballroom dancing
- Yoga, Pilates and Stretching
- Rowing or kayaking
- Water aerobics
- Brisk Walking
No matter what exercise is being performed it is important to remember that overexertion is not worth it. While you may be excited to see the next step in your routine, injuring yourself can set you back for weeks – be careful!
Exercise is not always easy to maintain. There are days we just don’t feel like doing it. We suggest that our patients find a partner to work out or play sports with. Team sports can also be a great motivator as you meet new people and enjoy the outdoors.
Remember exercise is a significant part of a successful surgery. Find activities that your really enjoy and relish the thought of finally being able to perform them to your fullest abilities.