We got talking with Miss Chocolate VSG(@ms.chocolatevsg), And she had to go through Vertical sleeve gastrectomy surgery, after being diagonosed with PCOS, high blood pressure, severe migraines, morbidly obese, high cholesterol and sleep apnea. She has an amazing ongoing journey. Here’s our latest QnA with her! Get Stuck In!
So tell us a little about yourself, who are you? What do you do?
I was born and raised in Dallas Texas and I’ve been married to my wonderful husband for 5 years. We don’t have any kids, however we have a dog named Melon and she is 13 years old. I’ve struggled with weight nearly all of my life and I was determined to change my mindset and lifestyle.
So when did you begin your fitness journey? Why did you decide to start?
I started my fitness journey in January 2017 and I had Vertical Sleeve Surgery on February 27, 2017. I decided to start my journey due to health and mental problems. I was diagnosed with PCOS, high blood pressure, severe migraines, morbidly obese, high cholesterol and sleep apnea. I also was experiencing deep depression and was on medication because of my weight.
From your profile we know you had a vsg? What does that mean and what’s the process like?
VSG “Vertical sleeve gastrectomy” is surgery to help with weight loss. The surgeon removes a large portion of your stomach. The new, smaller stomach is about the size of a banana. It limits the amount of food you can eat by making you feel full after eating small amounts of food. In order to be considered for this surgery you have to have a BMI over 40 and more than 2 underlining health issues. Once you’re approved you will meet with a nutritionist, psychiatric and attend classes the pertaining to the surgery and other details.
What was your lifestyle like (Before embarking on your fitness journey)?
Before surgery I was just existing in the world and not actually living in it. I was in a deep depression and my energy level was non-existing. I wanted to only do the things I needed to do like work come home eat and sleep. Sleeping was my best friend I never wanted to get out and be social. I missed lots of events, birthday parties and other celebrations.
What kind of programs did you start off with? How many days a week did you have to work out?
My physician started me on a low carb, low sugar, no fried food diet with lots of water and protein. I also was placed on a liquid diet for 2 weeks before my surgery. I did at least 30 minutes of cardio 3 times a week. With these changes I was able to lose 17 pounds before surgery.
For further details on this please see my YouTube video titled “Liquid Diet”
And what kind of program are you doing now? How much different is it from when you just started?
Not much has changed with my eating habits. I still continue with the low carb, low sugar, no fried food diet with lots of water and protein, however my exercise regimen has dramatically increased I work at 5 times a week for at least 2 hours doing cardio and weight lifting.
Did you acquire the services of a coach/Work buddy? If yes, a brief description of how they managed your workout programs and days.
I was blessed to have a good friend that is a personal trainer and she couldn’t wait to start working with me, however I was never ready. Now instead of her working me out we work out together. She started me out doing lots of cardio and made me commit to at least 4 days a week of training.
What kind, if any, type of diet/eating habits did you develop? What kind are you currently practicing?
My eating is very clean now meaning I love fruits, vegetables, baked or grilled fish or chicken. I can also eat salad every day. If I eat something to greasy or sweet my stomach is not happy and it usually will come up.
There’s a certain craze for supplements, did/do you supplement? If yes, what supplements do you use?
I’m currently taking supplements daily and this will continue. I order my meds through Nutrition Direct.
BariActiv® Calcium + D3 & Magnesium
BariActiv® Iron + Vitamin C
NASCOBAL® Nasal Spray (Vitamin B12)
What’s been the major challenge?
In the beginning after surgery the hardest part was adjusting to my food intake and water intake. I’m now knowledgeable about how much I can take in and adjusting to my sleeve.
There are cases where have had to let go of people close to them, even family, was this the case with you? Or were you always supported by those close to you?
I have an awesome support system. All of my immediate family has been very supportive of me and my lifestyle changes, however this doesn’t include old friends and extended family members that seem to not be happy with the new me. I was always a pretty and confident girl so now it’s just magnified but in a good positive way.
What would you say you have gained the most from living a healthier lifestyle and your journey all together?
I have gained a new appreciation for myself and my happiness. During this process I have realized that you have to be selfish in order to meet your goals, stay focus and be the best you can be. I’m so happy now days. When I think back at who I use to be it makes me sad and I feel like I lost most of my 20’s because of my weight.
It’s never too late and you’ve made the right turn! That’s what really matters!
So what big lesson/advice you were given?
If you want to start your healthy lifestyle journey it starts in your mind first. This change is 80% mental and the rest is easy. You have to make up in your mind that you’re ready for change and ready to work your ass off to get there.
Any advice/tips for those reading this, especially those who are yet to begin?
It doesn’t matter how far you’re off track or how far you have to go to reach your goal because 1 step forward is 1 step closer to reaching your goal and being a better you. Just START!
Knowing the journey is an ongoing one, what’s next for you? How can those interested in following your journey reach you?
I plan on reaching my weight goal of 160 – 180 and size goal or 8 -10. I also wish to do a marathon and even compete in a body building competition. I would also like to do some modeling / acting.
If you want to follow my journey I can be reached at…..