Getting Back on Track Strategies

Gail Engebretson
on 8/3/17 3:30 pm - Seattle, WA

I'm a 13 year vet but still have times when things get off track for a little while and I gain anywhere from a couple up to 15 lbs. I know it's important to just get back to the basics and all the WLS rules. But I usually need a little jump-start. I need to re-set my body - get off the craving wagon.I have a few "get back on track" strategies that often work for me. The one that works the best for me is going to just protein and green veggies for 4-5 days. That resets my taste buds and my cravings. I'll also make a big pot of dense veggie soup and eat a small bowl of that as often as I want for about 3 days and add a little protein each meal. Again, it resets taste buds and cravings.

I'd love to hear about what strategies you use. More ideas are always better. Let's share strategies and maybe we can all learn something new.


on 8/24/17 11:21 am

I'd like to stay tuned to this. I am six and a half years out, and over the last two years (very slowly) I'm up thirty pounds and I feel horrible about it. Slowly eased into eating more, snacking more, and even eating sweets, which I had stopped craving completely and written off, plus picked up a nasty little wine habit, but I've backed off that considerably. I originally lost about 110 lbs, but stabilized at 160-165 (I'm 5'10) and was quite happy with that. I'm now in a size 12 vs. an 8 and I want to get back there. I can't work out like I did back then -- 2 hours a day, six days a week -- because I'm in a much more demanding job---but I can work out normally, like four days a week an hour at a time, and I can change my habits. I have a friend who has challenged me to a half marathon in December and presently I cannot even run a mile without stopping, so there is also that!!!

on 9/4/17 8:33 am

I haven't been online here in a couple of years. Had to look up my password today to get back on. Lisa sounds like we are in about the same boat. I went from 262 to 170, maintained for I guess 18 months, and now am creeping back to that number I never want to see again.

I need to get back to basics. I still drink at least one protein shake a day, and I do better with two. But I'm letting sweets in too often, plus am not exercising as much. And really I think I'm in general eating more and more often. The good news is you can't eat a crazy amount now in one setting, but if you eat between meals it adds up!

Is there good info out there anywhere on successful ways to get back on track? I need to lose 30 lbs then maintain that loss.

         Surgery 10/1/2013  

on 9/17/17 9:30 am
VSG on 10/02/14


I am in the same boat. I had surgery October 2014 and lost 90 pounds. Over the past 14 months, I have gained back 13 pounds I started a new job and I have begun eating on the run and eating junk food etc.

In all honesty, I have become lazy. I want to get back on track. My size 8 pants are all tight and I refuse to buy bigger sizes. I like what the original thread poster said about eating protein and veggies only for a week to reset tastebuds. When I was doing well, sugar made me sick to my stomach. I could eat very little before feeling gross. Now it seems I eat it all day. It also seems like I can eat more than I used to be able to eat with the sleeve. I hope I have not stretched my stomach out.

We have worked to hard to go back. I would love some support from you guys. Let's set some goals together


HW:230. Surgery: 10/02/14. SW:220. CW:198 



Debra Welker
on 9/17/17 2:47 pm - Kaukauna, WI

I also had to look up my password as I havent been on here in a long time. Im struggling trying to keep my weight down. I initially lost 100 pounds, kept it off for about 10 years but in the last 2 years ive been up at least 20 pounds. I read alot about pouch reset, 5 day pouch test which Ive started probably 10 times and cant get through the first day. I cant seem to do liquids only. I also picked up a wine habit and know that is the culprit because it makes me crave bad foods. UHG. I need to get it under control so am hoping this is a good place to start.

on 9/18/17 9:54 am - Toronto, Canada
RNY on 08/17/12

I'm 5yrs out and was doing fine until I got a job with a food company (insert eye-roll here) It's a great job and a great company but I've gained about 20lbs in the 2 yrs I've been here and that slow creep makes me very nervous.

I hadn't logged into this site in about 3 1/2 yrs but am so glad I did, this topic is exactly what I needed!

Gail Engebretson
on 9/18/17 5:08 pm - Seattle, WA

Everyone - thanks for chiming in. It seems to me we all know what we need to do - go back to the basics - no liquids with meals or for at least an hour after and then lots of water in between to keep that full feeling, protein first, eat your meals in 15-20 min. cuz if you eat too slow the stomach starts emptying before you're done. Also make sure you are completely full but not overly full - if you stop too soon you're more likely to start snacking soon after your meal. The "full trigger" needs to be flipped.

So there are a few other tricks and strategies that have been mentioned, like eating only protein & veggies for a week, cut out the sugar etc. but I think that maybe the most important thing we can do is just enforce the rules. Maybe if we just strictly follow the rules other things will fall in place or at least it will make it a little easier to work on other strategies once we have the basics back.

So here's a challenge for myself (since I'm going through one of my "off track" stints) and for each of you and anyone else reading this thread. I will follow all of the rules above to the T starting right now and see if I can do that 100% for at least 1 week and then report in. Being accountable can be very helpful.

How about you?

Debra Welker
on 9/18/17 5:36 pm - Kaukauna, WI

I did great today. A smoothie for breakfast, 1 hour water aerobic class. Vegetable soup with chicken for lunch, and salad and baked haddock for dinner

Gail Engebretson
on 9/19/17 8:53 pm - Seattle, WA

Fantastic Debra! Great choices. I also had a really good day. My pledge to follow the basic rules of the pouch has been spot on. Had one glitch during my dangerous afternoon time and grabbed a cookie but otherwise protein, fruits and veggies rule the day.

Kathy S.
on 9/20/17 11:56 am - InTheBurbs, XX
RNY on 08/29/04 with

Hi Everyone

You have already taken the hardest step by saying enough is enough and now I want to get back on track. I maintained 118-125 for over 10 years after losing 200 pounds. Due to a personal tragedy I gained and hit the 190 mark a year ago. After several starts it finally clicked and I am back to goal losing 60 pounds of regain. Here are some steps that helped me and I hope they will help you too! You may have several starts and stops but don't give up, don't beat yourself up. IT WILL CLICK!!!


Remember when we were preparing for surgery? How many meetings, classes and such did we attend? We were told the more prepared we were the better our chances were for success. And they were right. Go through the house, car and work place and get rid of trigger foods. Stock up on foods that will keep you on track. I removed every bad carb/sugar temptation and replaced it with lots of protein, veggies, grains and fruits.


Get back to journaling. This will help you identify when you feel like eating, stress factors and any triggers in your life. Once you identify these factors, this will help you put tools in place to keep you from eating. It became clear I was not taking time for me anymore. I worked my day job and then spent the rest of my time caring for my husband. It was easy to reach for fast, prepackaged food. Since I purged my home I have to eat clean as there are no other options LOL

Use a tool to track you're eating and exercise like Getting Started with Health Tracker. Once I started to track ever bite and drink it became clear why I had gained.


Make a list of goals for yourself. Make them realistic and small. Some of mine were move more, purge all junk from my home, eat more protein.


In general, a long term post-weight loss surgery eating plan includes foods that are high in protein, and low in fat?, calories, and sugar. Important, vitamins and minerals are provided as supplements. (if you had a different surgery adjust this to your food plan).


Water is our Best Friend. I have to say I never went back to pop or any bad drinks, however I was drinking tea like crazy. What is wrong with drinking tea? I was either using sugar or 3 equals and 3 sweet n lows per 32 ounce glass. So I was either pushing to be diabetic or get cancer. I found once I started carrying a bottle of water around 24/7 (yes had one at my bedside) I lost the cravings for the sugar and I KNOW those artificial sweeteners are not good for me. Look I am old and if you add up all the artificial sweeteners I have consumed I am sure I am at the rat in the lab getting cancer threshold.


I can't say enough about how key this was for me. The reason I kept my weight off for almost 10 years was no matter what, I kept moving. If I could not go to the gym I would walk. I loved Zumba, bootcamp workouts, lifting weights. When I stopped, the weight started coming back. So for me I am starting slow to avoid injury by walking and using some of the workouts on my Demand TV. Find something you love to do and it won't feel like a pain in the *** to do daily.


If it's an option "run" don't walk to a support group.

Keep me posted on how you are doing.

HW:330 - GW:150 - MW:118-125

RW:190 - CW:130

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