Amanda Loses Weight to Have Kids

Amanda Berschied never imagined she would get out of bed at 5:30 a.m. and run a 5K before going to work. “That is crazy to me,” she laughs. But since gastric bypass she has learned that if she doesn’t exercise, “I feel crummy – exercise really gets those endorphins going.”

Overweight most of her 28 years, Amanda was able to ward off obesity as a teenager by staying active with sports. But when she got to college, the ‘Freshman 15’ became the ‘Freshman 50’ and she eventually reached 338 pounds.

Unsuccessful Diets Lead Amanda to Consider Surgery

Diet and exercise didn’t provide lasting results. “I’d lose 20 pounds, then gain it right back again.” In 2007 Amanda looked into gastric bypass, but it took two more years before she had insurance to cover the cost. “As soon as the insurance became available, I scheduled the surgery,” she says. Amanda not only wanted to lose weight to become healthier. She needed to lose weight in order to have children someday. “My husband and I talked about having a family, but because I had polycystic ovary syndrome, I couldn’t become pregnant unless I lost a significant amount of weight”

Today, 11 months since gastric bypass, Amanda has lost a whopping 165 pounds. The change in her appearance is so dramatic, sometimes she isn’t even recognized. “Just this morning someone from another floor at work walked up to my desk and said, ‘Wasn’t there another girl named Amanda who used to sit here?’” Her close co-workers have noticed other changes. “When I get stressed, I used to say ‘Let’s go out to lunch.’ Now I say ‘I need to go for a run.’”

Amanda is convinced that gastric bypass was the tool she needed – along with exercise and a healthier diet – to get her on the right track. “I eat a greater variety of foods, and a bigger quantity than I did at first, but now it’s about healthy choices.”

Now, Amanda Can do What She Loves

When her weight exceeded 250 pounds, Amanda had to give up one of her favorite activities. “I’ve always loved roller coasters and other amusement park rides. But I never wanted to be one of those persons humiliated because they couldn’t fit into a seat.” Last October Amanda went to Kings Island with her husband for the first time. “I hadn’t been there in 10 years. We rode all the rides. I was super excited.”

Sometimes Amanda’s excitement over her new body brings her to tears. While shopping for clothes recently at The Gap, she cried when she tried on a size 10 -- and it fit. “When I started crying, the sales person said, ‘Oh I’m so sorry.’ I had to tell her ‘No, I’m crying because I’m happy!’”

Currently at 173 pounds, Amanda is anxious to become a mom in the near future. She says the weight loss has made her feel ‘unzipped.’ “For the last few years I felt like I wanted to unzip myself and step out of the fat body I was stuck in. Now I’m unzipped. I’m me!”

Tags: Wellness and Fitness

Last Updated: June 1, 2016