The Dark side of Vacations

Tom and Pals on Freemont Street

My five day min-vacation to Las Vegas is coming to an end as I write this post in the airport. My partner Brett and I love Las Vegas. We did a couple of show this trip; La Reve at Wynn and David Copperfield at MGM. I must say that La Reve goes to the top of my favorite Vegas show list; second only to “O” at the Bellagio. I guess I am a sucker for big production shows over and in the water. 

Amidst the good times there was a dark side to my vacation as a weight loss surgery post-op. Sure, there were many photo ops with Darth Vader’s on The Strip. (The skinny 5’2” Asian Darth was just not too convincing though.) I am talking about bad habits returning and seeming normal while on vacation.  Where do they come from and why haven’t I learned to ignore them? 

  1. Grazing and snacking – I am not as grazer or snacker at home or in the office. I just don’t crave those sweet and calorie laden mid-morning, mid-afternoon and evening snacks. Just an hour after lunch on day #1, there I was munching on a Krispy Kream. I never buy donuts at home! I did OK most of the days but still snacked. Things just seemed to call my name.
  2. Over-eating –No, we did not visit a single buffet or all you can eat joint. However, I ate too often where I was uncomfortable.  I appreciate my Lapband when I do that. It tells me and makes me miserable. Why do I do that though and put myself into pain?
  3. Bad eating habits – On vacation, you think I would take my time and chew carefully. The excitement of Vegas caught me up into its madness as a wolfed down too many meals. Again, uncomfortable: Haven’t I learned my lessons?
  4. Not Exercising – NY NY had a nice fitness center. I had my opportunities to work out. I guess getting up at 9:00 a.m. and staying up late left no time to exercise. Poor excuse for sure.

Well, those are my dark sides for the past five days. I look back and realize I was not the model bariatric patient. I also look back over these five days and see how my surgery helped me. I usually ate ½ of my meal. I ate mostly seafood and high protein foods. I walked extensively, never tiring. I zip lined over Freemont Street. My weigh in tomorrow morning will tell the real story. I suspect I am up 2 pounds. 

I wrote this post to remind myself that after 2 ½ years I still have work to do and a ways to go o n my path to a healthy life. WLS folks like to talk about their successes but rarely want to show the darker side of their life. I know it’s there and I work on it every day. I suspect many of you reading this post also face similar trials. 

It’s not just a vacation thing for me. I face them daily. It’s just easier to battle at home and in my office. I have greater control because I know my environment. But nights out, happy hours and family occasions are no different than vacations. They tempt me and put my willpower to a test. It is just one of the realities of being healthy that WLS and non-WLS folks both must battle. 

May the force be with you as you battle this dark side! 

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