Reward System After Bariatric Surgery

When you are on a weight loss surgery journey, there are many things to celebrate. The first time you lose 20 pounds, the first time you can fit into an airplane seat, the first time you can wear a size smaller, and so many more. They are all exciting changes that are worth celebrating. As a bariatric patient, finding ways to celebrate without food can be challenging. We must get away from the mindset that food is a reward. I used to always tell myself it was alright if I ate ice cream after I lost 10 pounds. This might work for some people, but it was detrimental to me. Once I had a little, I wanted more. Since I know I respond poorly to food as a reward, I have had to find alternative things to reward myself.

 Here are a few tips if you are looking for ways to recognize your accomplishments. 

  1. Buy yourself something you have really been wanting. Whether it is something small or something you have been saving up for, this is the time to make that purchase. 
  2. Take a cooking class. This can be extremely fun, and it will help you get new ideas for creating healthy meals. 
  3. Work with a personal trainer. Use this time to splurge on something that will benefit your health, such as a personal training session. This will ensure you keep the momentum going!
  4. Get a new haircut. One of the most exciting things about a weight loss surgery journey is how much you change during the process. Many people decide to change up their look as they lose more weight. This is the perfect time to treat yourself with a new hairdo.
  5. Invite your friends over to celebrate. Don’t celebrate alone! Invite your friends over for a nice night of socializing. After all, they are probably just as proud of you.
  6. Have a spa night at home. You don’t need a fancy spa to do this. Light some candles, take a bubble bath and relax. Use this time to let your body rest from all the hard work you have been doing.
  7. Do something you couldn’t do before. This is a fun one. Find something you couldn’t do before, such as riding a rollercoaster, and go off and do it. It is an amazing feeling doing something for the first time that you couldn’t do before you lost the weight. 
  8. Take a personal day. You work hard every single day, both physically and mentally. Use this time to take a day off from all the chaos. Sleep in, read a book or watch your favorite show.  
  9. Go hiking. Getting out and being with nature is one of the most therapeutic things you can do. Get out and enjoy the sunshine. This will help you get vitamin d and keep your mood up!
  10. Keep pushing! Continue the drive you have and keep pushing. Challenge yourself to a new goal and start the process of getting there right now.  

Not every reward has to involve food or even money. Try your best not to involve food in your reward system as this will help you have a healthier way of looking at food. Use this time to be proud of yourself and celebrate your accomplishments. You are going through a significant change with this weight loss surgery and it is so important that you take the time to acknowledge how far you have come. Have fun and enjoy your accomplishments! 

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