Something that I really don’t want to admit, is the fact that I have a very unhealthy relationship with my bathroom scales. I weigh myself far too often. It’s pretty much the first thing I do, every single morning. Almost without fail. It’s not a good thing, for more than one reason.
First off, it’s not a good measure of progress. It can give an indication of how you are tracking, but there are a lot of reasons why it isn’t the be all and end all of weight loss.
If you’ve ever thought about or attempted to lose weight, you would have heard people say that fat weighs less than muscle. And this is true. So if you have started a new exercise routine and are building up or toning muscle then yes, you will likely have a higher number on the scales. I don’t like to dwell on this one though, as I don’t think the difference is huge and also I’ve seen people use it as an excuse for gaining weight when the only effort they have made is going for one or two walks.
Our weight can fluctuate quite dramatically during the day depending on a lot of things. What type of foods we are eating, water intake and how much exercise we are doing are all factors of this. Also for women, hormones are a factor. Before and during our cycle we retain water, which automatically bumps up the number on the scale.
I don’t know much of the science behind these factors, but what I do know are my own personal experiences. The scales are not a good indicator of progress.
For the last three weeks, the number on the scales has barely moved for me. I am slowly learning to not be disheartened by this for the following reasons:
I am healthier than I have ever been in my life. As I mentioned in Transformation Tuesday, I have always been unhappy with my weight. I thought that losing weight would make me happy. And it did, but not for the reasons I expected. When I finally did start losing weight, it was because I started looking after myself. I put less crap into my body and started treating it with the respect it deserved. In return my body started treating me better. More energy, better sleep and a lighter mood were the most noticeable differences. With my Elimination Diet I haven’t been able to cheat at all, but before I started that, my body started telling me when I was treating myself too much, usually by upsetting my sleeping patterns to start with.
My clothes are looser. Even though my weight hasn’t budged for three weeks, my clothes are getting looser all the time. I have had to buy a lot of new clothes because my old clothes were just too baggy. I felt like I was wearing Hammer-Pants to work sometimes, and those same pants were so tight it was uncomfortable when I first started wearing them. And now my new clothes are starting to get loose.
People I see everyday are starting to notice. I actually really like it when people notice. It reminds me that my hard work is paying off. When people haven’t seen me for a while I generally get quite a reaction about how much weight I’ve lost, but when people I see every single day make comments, that really shows me that there is a noticeable difference in my size.
My measurements are still going down. I may not be losing weight, but I am toning with my exercise and eating and that is showing on the tape measure.
Non scale victories are so much more important than scale victories. For so many of us the number on the scale is enough to set our mood for the day, especially when we have been working so hard to make it move.
I have never adjusted the strap on this top. It used to sit tightly cutting into my back. I recently wore this top again to discover that the strap needed adjusting. This is a non scale victory.
My focus has shifted. It used to be all about losing weight. I still want to tone up more but I honestly don’t know why I continue to weigh myself so often as I no longer feel like I need to lose weight. My focus is now about staying health and happy, for the rest of my life. After my elimination diet is over I will be able to treat myself, but I will know to listen to my body and not to overdo it. I really should just get rid of my scales, I’m just not brave enough at the moment. I wish I was one of those people who don’t care about their weight and size, no matter what the size. I’m taking baby steps by actively weighing myself less often and focusing on enjoying my life.
The most important thing for me to remember is this:
The scales do not measure my worth as a person. They show me a number. I may or may not like that number, but it does not change who I am as a person or what I am capable of achieving. They are an inanimate object and the only power they have over me is the power I give them.
I want to give them less power.
Smiles and sunshine