Lisa Discovers a New Passion After Bariatric Surgery
When Lisa Farmer crossed the finish line of her first 5K in December of 2014, she was flooded with emotions. “It was one of the proudest moments of my life.”
Just one year earlier, at the age of 43, running at all seemed impossible to Lisa. She weighed 286 lbs. and was coping with high-blood pressure and plantar fasciitis, severe foot pain complicated by her weight. “I was working night shift and busy caring for my family. I didn’t make time to care for myself, and I paid the price.”
Lisa started to worry about her future. “I didn’t want to die from being overweight. Obesity was a disease that I didn’t have to accept. I decided it was time to make a major change.”
After trying several diet programs without success, Lisa made the commitment to have bariatric surgery. “I saw it as a journey. I started working with a trainer and following the diet plan that they gave me. I actually lost 24 lbs. before the surgery.”
Bariatric surgeon Samuel Wasser, MD, performed Lisa’s sleeve gastrectomy. Two years later and 130 lbs. lighter, Lisa’s life has changed dramatically. She no longer suffers from high-blood pressure or plantar fasciitis. In addition to the health benefits, she’s had many emotional “wow” moments as well.
“I will never forget the relief I felt the day that I didn’t need a seat-belt extender on the airplane, or the satisfaction of standing in front of my bathroom mirror and realizing that the towel wrapped all the way around me. Completing my first 5K made losing the weight that much sweeter.”
Lisa acknowledges that achieving her goal-weight after surgery was a marathon, not a sprint. “Surgery is not a quick fix. It’s a tool that has to be part of a whole lifestyle change. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.”
A big proponent of paying it forward, Lisa hopes her story will inspire others. She remains active in Virtua’s private Facebook group for weight-loss surgery patients. “There’s a wonderful sense of camaraderie within the group. It’s helpful to know that you’re not alone. You can reach out 24 hours a day to ask questions, offer support or just to vent.”
What’s next for Lisa? Not one to rest on her laurels, she has her sights set on completing a half-marathon.
Is bariatric surgery right for you?
Learn more about bariatric surgery at Virtua, or call 1-888-VIRTUA-3 to schedule a consultation with a Virtua bariatric surgeon.
Updated April 5, 2017