A Bariatric Success Story: How Cindy Johnson Maintained Weight Loss through Activity and Accountability

January 4, 2021

After weight-loss surgery, life changes in ways you can’t anticipate. There are a million small things you no longer have to worry about on a daily basis. Now, I can cross my legs, wear boots, fit in an airplane and rollercoaster seat, fit into any necklace I pick out, and so much more.

I’ve been overweight most of my life. Even though I was generally healthy, I tried to lose weight, time and time again. Nothing worked long-term.

I watched as family members struggled with their weight and faced countless complications, such as shortness of breath and joint pain, that disrupted their quality of life. I knew I didn’t want that to be my future.

It was around seven years ago that I made the decision to have weight-loss surgery, under the care of Dr. Louis Balsama, and I’ve never looked back since. He and his team have been wonderful and caring every step of the way.

I’ve maintained a 95-pound loss and have accomplished many personal goals. I attribute two key factors to my success: activity and accountability.

I’ve taken major physical leaps that I would’ve never imagined doing before. I’ve walked 5Ks; hiked up mountains in the Adirondacks; gone on 20+ mile bike rides; gone ziplining; and tried aerial yoga (hanging upside down). My close friend, who also had weight-loss surgery, and I try to find new and exciting activities to do. One of the most memorable was a lighthouse climbing challenge, in which we climbed 11 lighthouses throughout New Jersey in just one weekend.

This kind of movement may not work for everyone; the trick is finding something you enjoy!

In addition to constantly staying active, accountability is a must. Accountability is all about being honest with yourself. You have to stick to a plan; you can’t expect to resort back to old habits and still lose weight. Support groups can help you do this. Not only do we pick up ideas on how to handle certain situations, but we also help people get back on track.

I try to attend as many support groups as possible. I also still follow-up with my dietitian, Cheri Leahy.

Nobody’s perfect, including myself, and occasionally I gain a few pounds. It’s important to know that this is perfectly normal, but it’s also important to know when to rein it back in. I know that when I get to a certain number, it’s time to get my act together.

Even if I never lost another pound, I’d still be so grateful for this life-changing tool that I’ve gained. Weight-loss surgery was worth it for me because it allowed me to rewrite my life.