Frank Gallagher, Communications Director for the Bicycle Coalition of Maine and the publisher of BariatricBoy.com, talks with WCSH-TV6’s Bill Green about bariatric surgery and the site.
Yesterday at around 7 a.m, I did a live shot with WCSH’s Bill Green in front of the chow line as all the BikeMaine riders tanked up for the day’s journey, talking about my weight loss, my decision to go with bariatric surgery, and how my bicycle fits into all of that. Continue reading →
Being a parent takes a lot of energy because you’ve got to be there, in the fullest sense of the word, for your kids. It’s not exactly a spectator sport. You’ve got to be engaged, full on.
When I was fat, that was hard. Damn near impossible.
At 340 pounds, I didn’t have a lot of energy to begin with, and what I did have was almost entirely consumed by the tremendous effort it took to simply move through the world in a body of that size.
Sure, we’d go out and do things, me and the kids, but more often than not, those outings were to places where they could run around and get their ya-ya’s out – the park, or the beach, maybe – but also someplace where I could sit down while keeping a watchful eye.
The key phrase there is, sit down. Full and active participation on my part was usually not on the agenda.
When I was in junior high school, which is what the kids know as middle school these days, every year in gym class we had to take something called the President’s Physical Fitness Test. We had to do chin-ups, sit-ups, the 50-yard dash, a shuttle run, and a mile run, all of it measured and meticulously recorded so your results could be posted on the gym wall alongside those of your classmates, where they remained for weeks for everyone else in the school to see.
Thankfully, the President’s Physical Fitness Test – developed in the ‘50s during the Eisenhower administration – is no longer a thing; it was replaced in 2013 with a the President’s Youth Fitness Program, which aims to boost overall fitness instead of dealing out a healthy dose of crippling public shame.
But this was not the case when I was a kid – and the fat kid, at that. Because I was the fat kid, I was always dead last, or pretty close to it, in every event. I couldn’t do a single chin-up. My 50-yard dash time was pathetic. I don’t remember what it was, but it was not good. Likewise, the shuttle run. I could squeeze out a few sit-ups, but I finished at the bottom of the pile there, too.
The worst by far, though, was the mile run: four laps around the old cinder track out behind the school. I couldn’t do it. Continue reading →
Just about a year ago, on July 5, 2017, I had bariatric surgery, a vertical sleeve gastrectomy. Last week I had my one-year follow up with the surgeon.
The surgeon was stunned when he saw me. Flipping through my chart, he said I was one of the best – if not the best – outcomes their practice had seen, ever. And they’ve done literally thousands of these procedures.
Four months after bariatric surgery – the sleeve gastrectomy, to be exact – I’m down more than 100 pounds.
Or, put another way: SW 337/CW 235/GW 190.
For those of you new to the bariatric/weight loss scene, that slashline’s shorthand for Starting Weight/Current Weight/Goal Weight, and it’s a snapshot of your progress that etiquette demands you provide if you’re going to post publicly in online weightloss/bariatric communities.
I know, that’s a lot of weight. It’s equivalent to five dachsunds. Or 200 hamsters. Or 300 baseballs. And losing that amount of weight has played out across my life in many different ways.
Some of these changes, like having more energy, were expected. Others have come completely out of left field. And it’s those little things that continue to, as the headline says, blow my mind.