While the country commemorated its independence on July 4, 2011, Marienne Bolton was preparing for gastric bypass surgery the following day. That day would be her own personal independence day: The day that, after a lifelong struggle, she would finally free herself from obesity.
Facing A Hard Reality Check
It was the culmination of a long journey for Marienne. By 2007, she had reached her highest weight of 289 pounds—“at least that’s the highest I was willing to know,” she laughs. She was wearing the upper limits of clothing sizes and it was becoming increasingly uncomfortable to travel for her job.
She also began to experience symptoms of pre-diabetes, which served as a reality check. “My dad struggled with his weight and had diabetes, and I saw how it caused complications with his health,” Marienne explains. “I thought, ‘I can’t continue this way.’”
That’s when she began to seriously consider weight loss surgery. Marienne knew that she wanted to come to George Kerlakian MD, and TriHealth Weight Management for her surgery. She had witnessed how they helped a friend, and, after further researching the program, decided it was the best option for her. “I really liked the idea of the holistic approach they took to weight loss surgery,” she says. Marienne began the process and immediately felt comfortable with her decision to turn to Dr. Kerlakian and the Weight Management team. “I thought, ‘This is my team,'” she reflects.
Finding Strength With Yoga: “I can feel muscles I’ve never felt before!”
Unfortunately, however, weight loss surgery was not covered by Marienne’s insurance at the time and she had to put her plans on hold. It was only when she changed jobs (and insurance plans) in 2010 that she could finally restart the process. When she did, she was pleased to know that the team she grew fond of three years earlier was still there for her — and they’ve been with her ever since. With a lot of hard work and help from TriHealth Weight Management, Marienne has lost more than 100 pounds to date. Though she hasn’t quite reached her goal weight, she sees that it is within reach.
She has stopped taking diabetes medication and is able to do her job better. She also has become more engaged with yoga, which she took up before surgery. “How I do poses feels so different than before,” she explains. “I can feel muscles I’ve never felt before!” Recognizing how influential yoga has been throughout her weight loss process — both physically and mentally — Marienne has even become a certified yoga instructor so she can help others who struggle with weight experience its benefits. “I want to be an example that yoga can be for everybody, regardless of your size or shape,” she says.
Marienne is also “paying it forward” by regularly attending Weight Management support groups and offering encouragement for those who are considering weight loss surgery for themselves. Her words of advice: “Always do your research. Educate yourself and find a group who you feel comfortable with.” And, she adds, “If you can use the TriHealth team, do it! They’re on your side for the long term to make sure you succeed.”
Learn more about yoga and exercising for Weight Loss in the TriHealth.com Health Library:
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