Exercise After Weight Loss Surgery

18 December 2020
A woman in a pink tank top running on the beach, engaging in exercise after weight loss surgery.

If you’ve recently undergone, or are considering weight loss surgery, it’s important to understand the importance of exercise after weight loss surgery, and how critical it is to the long-term success of your bariatric fitness goals. We’ve put together an informative guide on the importance and benefits of exercise post-bariatric surgery to keep living your healthiest, best lifestyle.

Why you should exercise after bariatric surgery

Exercise plays a vital role in helping patients of weight loss surgery achieve their long-term success goals to not only lose weight but also maintain a healthier and active lifestyle. Keeping up with your exercise goals post weight loss surgery can benefit not only your physical health but also improve your mental health.

Regular exercise can strengthen your heart, improve your blood sugar, lower your cholesterol, and generally make it easier to do everyday activities.

When can I start exercising after weight loss surgery

In the weeks before your procedure, it’s important to initiate healthy lifestyle changes to ease the transition (more info here). But maintaining exercise post-operation is critical to bariatric surgery weight loss goals.

In the initial stages of post weight loss surgery, it’s important to ease into physical activity. Start with walking 20-30 minutes a day and as days go by you can increase the distance and eventually transition into jogging or running.

Types of exercise

Start off initially with aerobic exercise that is low to moderate intensity, as this is best for weight loss, and emphasise duration over intensity. If the exercise causes any pain, it’s important to modify the exercise to alleviate the pain and perform to your body’s limitations, For reference, here are some modified exercises that can work around physical or medical limitations.

Progress on strength or resistance training 4 to 5 weeks after the surgery.

When you feel up to it, try to include a variety of exercises in your workout routine that focus on increasing endurance, flexibility, and strength, and try to change up this routine every couple of weeks. Some of the best types of physical activities that are considered low impact include exercises such as swimming, cycling, yoga, aerobics, and lightweights.

Toning exercises after bariatric surgery

After about 12 months of both healthy eating and exercise, patients of bariatric weight loss surgery can expect to lose about 65 to 90 percent of their excess weight, and the drastic weight loss could lead to skin sagging, however, there are several toning exercises you can perform to help.

Strength training is great for toning and building muscle, but it will be important to start slow with this post-surgery, start with low weights and increase the weight once you can do a few sets of 10-15 repetitions. Lunges squat push-ups and other core exercises are also great toning workouts after bariatric surgery, but follow the same rules mentioned previously with these. If you’re still wondering what exercise is best for you post-surgery, have a look at our guide on Post Weight Loss Surgery Exercise.

Goals and tips for success

  • Start your initial exercise program slowly, and gradually increase its intensity and the amount of exercise slowly as it becomes easier to do.
  • If an exercise or activity is causing you pain or discomfort, modify or stop the exercise to alleviate the pain.
  • Develop specific, realistic, and achievable goals for your post-surgery exercise program
  • Choose physical activities that you enjoy doing, as this will make you more likely to continue doing them.
  • Find the time of day that works best for you to exercise, and always drink plenty of water.

With regular post-op appointments with your bariatric surgeon Dr. Siva Gounder, and your Dietitian you will form lifestyle habits that keep you healthy in the long term and help with your weight loss goals.

For more information, contact us today on (08) 6155-8822 or click here to book a bulk-billed online appointment today.

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