My Patients


Personal Stories

Angie - Anchorage, AK

Angie Before Gastric Bypass SurgeryThis surgery and Dr. Ellner have changed my life forever. How do you say thank you to someone for giving you a beautiful and healthy life? I wasn't really living before, I was just barely getting by. My life and lifestyle are forever changed, not just because my gut has been rewired but because this process has allowed me to be me again. I have confidence to hold my head up and make eye contact with people everywhere, I've started dating (a lot I might add), and my work has improved with my patients and I have been given more responsibility. You don't realize how people treat overweight people until your body's amazing! People are more friendly and social and I am able to enjoy them because of my new confidence.

6 Months After Bypass Surgery

I didn't believe that this surgery would be successful for me, in the back of my mind I thought that I would fail this too and be condemned to a body too large for this world. Here I am now, only 6 and a half months out from my surgery and 106 pounds lighter! I've gone from a size 24 to a size 14...I don't have to shop in the plus size department any longer. This is the most awesome adventure I've ever been on. To watch your body and mind change everyday is almost like watching a movie, it doesn't seem real but everyone around you keeps telling you that it is..."your looking so good", "if I wasn't married", "hey skinny", "I had to look at your face 3 times to make sure it was you". I will tell you something...there is nothing that will hold me back now!

10 Months After Bypass Surgery


The first 6 weeks were not easy as I felt tired and was fighting to get my strength back although I was able to go back to work at 3 weeks. Dr. Ellner told me that the six week mark had some kind of magic to it and she was so right. After six weeks I started having this level of energy that I've never experienced before, I wasn't dragging my feet at the gym and my clothes were starting to hang on me. Now, I'm addicted to the gym (I never, ever thought I would be saying that) and am disappointed when I can't go.

I focus on getting my water and protein in, take my vitamins religiously, and make a valiant effort at staying away from snacking...OK so I'm still human as I do have a snack every once in a while but I try to make sure it's something like beef jerky or a protein bar.

My health is greatly improved. I don't get winded going up the stairs, no more sore hips from sitting in chairs too tight for my rear, my immune system is much stronger (I had quite a history of sinus problems and haven't had one infection since surgery), the weight off my joints and legs has relieved pains that I had been living with so long I almost didn't notice them any I notice I don't hurt anymore. My sleep is fantastic and I need less of it, I would sleep about 10 hours a night before surgery
and now I need only about 6. I haven't had heartburn or GERD once since my surgery, I'm saving a fortune on the Tums I don't have to buy anymore. Since I have such a limited space for food I find myself choosing very carefully what I put in my mouth...this tool is too cool!

1 Year After Bypass Surgery

Would I do this again? In a nanosecond! Would I travel to San Diego and use Dr. Ellner? Absolutely, she is one of the most compassionate, confident, and reassuring doctors I've ever had (and I've had a lot). She helped me understand why this surgery would work for me and is a constant cheerleader for me and my success. I look forward to our monthly phone appointments because I know she will help me keep myself accountable without judging me, point out areas that I need to work on (yes, Dr. Ellner I promised to get more protein in...somehow!) and of course remind me of how far I've come.

I can't believe it...I will reach my goal and I will be successful at this, the one thing in my life that I haven't been able to conquer is conquered and holds no power over me anymore thanks to this wonderful tool.

I hope that isn't too wordy but how do you put in a little paragraph how your life has completely changed? I really do want to thank you for what you do and for giving me a healthy future. I feel and look so great now, I can't even imagine what it will be like when I'm at goal in another 45 pounds. I'm so excited!

Now a Certified Personal Trainer – Helping Gastric Bypass Patients

Weight loss surgery was only the first step in the beginning of a major lifestyle change for me. I needed to learn to incorporate exercise into my daily life and enjoy it. I have found my niche. I truly enjoy weight training and using the cardio equipment at the gym but have also found some other activities that I enjoy occasionally as well.

My goal as a personal trainer specializing in weight loss surgery patients is to work myself out of a job. I want to support you in designing a exercise program that works for you and your schedule and help you set realistic goals for your fitness. We will start with a fitness assessment and then discuss your goals and come up with a plan that you can do! I remind myself daily that I strive to be the personal trainer that I would have wanted in my recovery process. My hope for you is that you find a program that you enjoy, learn the proper technique, practice it and then do not need me but occasionally when you are ready to challenge your body more and need to advance your program.

Since I am a successful weight loss surgery patient I believe that I can provide a prospective and understanding that will help you feel supported. I can also give you referral information if needed and share some funny stories along the way. Believe me, if you don't laugh at yourself in this process you are missing out on part of the joy of this process.

I've been in Behavioral Health for 13 years now and am well versed in Behavior Modification, I have a Master's Degree in Psychology, and am a Certified Personal Trainer with the National Association of Sports Medicine. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or to schedule a fitness assessment in Anchorage, Alaska. 907-250-6418 or