The Beginning

The best place to start is the beginning. I started gaining weight in the sixth grade. I noticed it but I didn’t think much of it until I had to go for my physical for school. I got on the scale and it said 148lbs. The nurse scrawled something on my chart and gave it to me to bring to the exam room for the doctor. She wrote “Grossly Overweight.” Not just overweight, not just chubby, but Grossly Overweight. I was so embarrassed and for the first time I realized that my weight was something that people noticed.

Regina - 4th Grade

The best place to start is the beginning. I started gaining weight in the sixth grade. I noticed it but I didn’t think much of it until I had to go for my physical for school. I got on the scale and it said 148lbs. The nurse scrawled something on my chart and gave it to me to bring to the exam room for the doctor. She wrote “Grossly Overweight.” Not just overweight, not just chubby, but Grossly Overweight. I was so embarrassed and for the first time I realized that my weight was something that people noticed.

After that it seemed like the floodgates opened and my weight had become something that everyone noticed. It made me uncomfortable but the more I focused on it the worst it seemed to get. I would feel bad about gaining weight and food was the only thing that made me feel better… until it made me feel worse since I knew that the food was causing the weight. It’s a vicious cycle – even as a preteen.

I was an emotional eater and a secret eater. Once my mother cleaned my room and she found a ton of cookie bags and candy wrappers under my bed. When I came home from school I was horrified. I was discovered. The embarrassment only led to more eating. It’s funny how things like that happen.

My weight continued to increase through high school and due to completely unhealthy living in college I lost a lot of weight but it was short lived and my weight returned. Through the years I’ve had many successes and equally as many failures with my weight gaining and losing literally hundreds of pounds over the past 30 years.

In 2014, I hit a point where I knew I was well over 300 lbs and it was time to do something. I’d tried every diet fad from Deal a Meal to Ideal Protein and none with any long term success. It seemed like as soon as I gained some footing I would falter and return. I started looking into weight loss surgery. During this process I discovered that I was over 400 lbs and by the grace of God my weight was my only true issue. I decided to pursue weight loss surgery.

In December 2014, I had RNY Gastric Bypass and my life has changed immensely in the process. I’ve lost over 200 lbs, gained energy, movement, and quality sleep in the process. Contrary to popular belief, surgery isn’t a quick fix, it isn’t the easy way out, and it isn’t something that you do and there’s no work involved in losing weight. This process is a lifelong adjustment that requires discipline, maintenance, support, and a dedication to living a life that is vastly different from the one you lived before.

This blog is going to cover the process of weight loss surgery, the stories that led me to that decision and the training for the New York Marathon on 11/6/16. Welcome to my journey, I’m happy you’re here.

<3 Regina

Author: Regina Bartlett

Regina Bartlett is a blogger and speaker from the gorgeous Rhode Island coastline where she spends her days with her amazing husband Jeff and their combined family of six adult children and two very tiny adorable chihuahuas. She’s active in her church, sings on the praise team, and is amazed every single day at how God has totally changed her life. Formerly 425 lbs she’s battled her weight for 30 years until RNY Gastric Bypass surgery in December 2014 where she lost 250 lbs and gained a new lease on life. She wants to share with anyone who thinks that they MIGHT be interested in surgery and knowing the real truth behind the surgery since there are a lot of misconceptions and fears. Deciding that she needed a challenge to continue with her weight maintenance she decided to embark on running the NYC Marathon in 2016 on Fred’s Team for Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Like so many people, her life has been touched by people affected by cancer. Discovering that her friend of over 25 years was diagnosed with breast cancer she had even more inspiration to run. On November 6, 2016, she completed the grueling 26.2 miles through all five boroughs of New York City and realized her 20 year dream of completing the largest marathon in the world. This blog will travel with Regina as she laces up her shoes and continues to challenge herself while sharing stories of her life and the people who have been an influence on her over the years. You’ll find stories, recipes, crafts, photographs of the wonder that is Little Rhody and countless photos of her tiny pups Sid Vicious and Taxi Fitzgerald. TL;DR: Wife, mother, writer, avid crafter, lover of Jesus and tiny dogs everywhere with a story to tell. FOR BOOKING INFORMATION please use the contact form below or email navigatingweightloss@gmail.com. Thank you!

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