Book an Appointment
January 11, 2021 In bariatric surgery By Dr. Vikas Singhal

Exercise After Bariatric Surgery

If you have undergone bariatric surgery, it is essential to follow a comprehensive diet and exercise program to address your needs. This program will help you promote wound healing, minimise the risk of blood clots, enhance blood circulation, and improve your bowel function.


Reason You Should Exercise After Bariatric Surgery?

Exercises play an important role to help bariatric patients achieve success in their weight loss journey in the long term.  It also plays a critical role to help patients maintain their desired weight and lead a healthy and active lifestyle.

It is recommended that you have a comprehensive consultation with a fitness professional and your bariatric surgeon to develop a rigorous program that can address your body demands. A carefully planned and executed exercise program after your bariatric surgery (gastric sleeve, mini-gastric bypass, duodenal switch, or gastric bypass) can help you to:

  • Boost your metabolism
  • Maintain weight loss
  • Enhance your confidence and self-esteem
  • Promote bone strength and joint stability
  • Reduce risk of cancer and heart diseases
  • Improve skin elasticity
  • Improve overall physical and mental well-being
  • Elevate your mood
  • Reduce stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Develop and maintain endurance and muscle strength


How Should I Exercise After Bariatric Surgery?

You need to emphasise the right set of exercises to experience the best results after bariatric surgery. The good news is that you can achieve almost-miraculous results with exercise after weight loss surgery.

It is suggested that you should incorporate low-intensity aerobic exercise (i.e. biking, swimming, or walking) on a gradual basis. You can start with workouts up to your pain threshold, post-bariatric surgery.

It may take a few more weeks or even a month to recover if the surgery was “open.” Ideally, you should not lift more than 15 lbs during the first 5-6 weeks after surgery. Furthermore, you should not engage in abdominal exercises for the first 8.12 weeks, to prevent occurance of any abdominal hernias around or near the incision. 

After having a word with your surgeon, you should considerably minimise the calorie intake. Generally, one should not consume more than 500 calories a day. The bariatric surgeon may gradually increase the caloric intake to 1200-1400 calories a day during the first 6-12 months post-bariatric surgery.

Tips For Exercise After Bariatric Surgery

You must follow some basic tips to gain optimum value from your exercise sessions.

  • Gradually start your exercise program and slowly increase the amount of time,intensity, and repetitions.
  • You need to develop achievable, realistic, and specific goals for your exercise program.
  • You should identify the best time of the day to exercise.
  • Find an exercise partner. It will help you stick to your bariatric surgery diet and exercise after Bariatric Surgery.
  • You should always have a gap of at least 2 hours after meals before you start working out. This will help you prevent heartburn or indigestion.
  • It would help if you kept changing the type and sequence of workouts to alleviate boredom.
  • You should give at least 24 hours to your body so it can recover after workouts.
  • You should drink plenty of water, have at least 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep, and lead an active lifestyle.
  • You should walk at least 10,000 steps every day.
  • It is important for you to focus on the right diet after bariatric surgery. Your bariatric diet must include fresh fruits and green vegetables.
  • You should include a specific regimen involving exercise after gastric sleeve surgery.


Exercise Schedule After Bariatric Surgery

Whether it is weight training, yoga, dancing, or walking, there are countless exercise forms that you can easily incorporate into your daily routine.

Studies have demonstrated that toning exercises after bariatric surgery can help you improve your weight loss results. Furthermore, it can help you reduce post-bariatric surgery complications and improve your mood.

To get started, you can start walking for about 15-30 minutes, 2-3 weeks after your bariatric surgery as part of your recovery and healing process. Since your body is still recovering after the surgery, you should take things easily and avoid pushing yourself. You should avoid abdominal exercises for at least 2-3 months after surgery and allow the incisions to heal.

After a discussion with your surgeon, you should start jogging and lifting weights by the end of the second month. You may begin with both anaerobic (muscle) and aerobic (running) workouts by the end of the third month. In the fourth month, you can engage in 30-45 minutes of exercise thrice a week, which can include swimming, yoga, walking, resistance training, and dancing. 

After the sixth month, you can start exercise sessions of 45-60 minutes thrice a week. At this point, you should focus on improving the core muscles (lower back, upper back, and abdomen), upper body muscles, and leg muscles. After the first year post-surgery, you can start with interval training on the treadmill, hiking, biking, running, and swimming to continue your weight loss goals.

Bariatric Surgery and Exercise Can Help You Lose Weight

Bariatric Surgery is an excellent way to lose weight when the traditional diet and exercise programs have failed. However, it is not an alternative for diet and exercise. Once you have undergone bariatric surgery, you should eat healthily and exercise regularly to keep your weight in check. Simple small steps can help you achieve your weight loss goals.



Call us now to find out how our team of experienced bariatric surgeons and medical practitioners can help you explore a bespoke weight loss diet and exercise program.

Make an Appointment

Send your request and let one of our experts care about it.


    Comments (3)

    Your email address will not be published.