Patrick Thomas shares his story on his struggle to lose weight and how Dr. Oz helped him.
I need to lose weight and I don't know how.
That's not true. I know how to lose weight; I have done it many, many times. I know more about nutrition, exercise and weight management than a lot of so-called experts. I just can't stick to it.
Let's try that again.
I need to lose weight, and I can't do it alone.
I started a blog because I needed help. I hope that being public with my struggle will help me stay on track. I need to know that everyone around me knows what I'm doing. I'm not foolish enough to think that a lot of people will read it often, but I know that anyone can read it at any time. Believe it or not, that helps.
I will succeed. I will also fail. The only way to have more success than failure in your life is to respond to your failures with action. I need accountability. I have it in all the aspects of my life except one: what (and how much) I eat.
I’m not suggesting that everyone start a blog to stay accountable. This is just what I needed to do. What I have learned is that you have to have a plan to lose weight and, more importantly, you have to have a plan to stick with the plan.
Six months ago, I had no plan at all. Then, Dr. Oz said something in a radio interview that woke me up.
About three years ago, my doctor told me very plainly that I needed to look into surgical options for weight loss. My constant up-and-down weight fluctuation was never going to stop itself. She told me that I could lose the weight, but I would always be in danger of gaining it back. Sure enough, after that conversation I lost more than 50 pounds and then gained 80 back.
Still, I never considered any surgical options.
Then, six months ago, Dr. Oz was being interviewed by Big D and Bubba, the radio show I produce, and he said that weight-loss surgery “is probably the most underperformed procedure in America.” After listening to him talk about why more people should at least talk to their doctor about surgical options, I was inspired to talk to my doctor again.
It was time to admit that surgery was the best option. After meeting with my primary-care physician one more time, I set up a consultation with a local surgeon. I then went to a seminar about weight-loss surgery options. Finally, after convincing myself and even some of my friends and family members that this was the right choice, I found out that it was not an option.
Our insurance does not cover the surgery under any circumstances. I work for a small company and we have very good insurance, but it doesn't cover any weight-loss surgeries for any reason. I could pay for it myself, but I don't have an extra $23,000 lying around, and I can't finance it either. So, surgery was not an option after all.
However, I’m glad that Dr. Oz made me think so hard about it after hearing that interview, because it gave me the motivation that I needed to make a change. Before that, I was just going about my life ignoring the obvious problems that my obesity caused for me every day. I was also ignoring the enormous risk to my health. Even though my surgery plans fell through, I was resolved to make a change. I’m giving it one more legitimate try before I look into any other surgical options.
I decided to count calories and start exercising a little bit at a time. I also started a blog as a way to keep myself accountable. This is my plan. I'm going to do this and I'm going to be successful. I'm going to stick with it.
All I needed was a spark. I got it from an unexpected piece of advice that, in the end, I couldn’t follow. I didn’t know it then, but it was exactly what I needed to hear.