Step away from that silly piece of machinery which is so intertwined with your relationship with your body, your mood, your exercise and eating habits and your self-worth. The scale is not your friend and you’re better off without one.
“But how will I know if I’m gaining or losing weight?” I hear you say. Come on! Are you that out of touch with your body that you can’t see and feel for yourself whether you’re waxing or waning?
You need to see a number on a scale to know if you’re on the right track or not? Well then, you’ve got a lot more work to do than just throwing away that damn scale. (Call me!) But let me explain why I’m so anti weighing oneself…
Here’s a common scenario: You step on the scale and the reading is half a kilogram higher than yesterday. WTF scale? Yesterday you thought you had such a “good” day. You avoided all sugar, carbs and alcohol AND trained like a demon in the gym!
There are two usual reactions to this:
1 – Beat yourself up. Think that yesterday obviously wasn’t so “good” on the eating/training front and you need to be even more disciplined by eating even less and training even more.
2 – Think FUCK THIS and throw in the towel for a day, a week, a month, forever. You’re not seeing the results on the scale – obviously no point in carrying on with this healthy lifestyle. The end.
Or, let’s say the scale is your friend today. It shows that you’ve lost 0,8kgs since yesterday. Woo hoo! Victoria Secret Angels better watch out! Your self esteem is immediately bolstered by this small victory.
Maybe you decide to push yourself a bit further because seeing the numbers on the scale diminish is such a high. Over time this can lead down a slippery slope of weight obsession, dieting and even eating disorders and exercise addiction.
Or maybe the lower number on the scale makes you want to reward yourself just a little. I mean what’s a few cookies or a pizza going to do, right? You deserve a treat! Until you step on the scale tomorrow and you’re faced with an increase of 1kg. A whole kilogram! Where did that come from? (Insert many colourful expletives!!!)
And on and on the cycle goes. One day the scale is your bestie; the next day you want to throw it against the wall.
There are so many things that can affect the numbers on a scale (for better or worse) :
time of day (have you eaten recently or not)
different clothing vs being naked
time of the month
how much or how little you’ve trained
constipation / diarrhoea
The list goes on…
I used to weigh myself everyday. At first it was to stay in my fighting weight division for Mauy Thai and then it just became a habit that I couldn’t shake. Then I gained a bunch of weight and a
voided the scale for ages, because I was too scared to confirm how big I felt. I started a cycle of dieting, binging and purging. The scale and I carried on our love/hate relationship.
Finally a few years ago when I started this wellness journey and realised that health was more important than weight, I threw away my scale. That’s when people really started asking “How much weight have you lost?!” And I would honestly answer, “I have no idea.” It wasn’t important anymore.
What was important was that when I looked in the mirror I felt proud. When I put on clothes I felt confident. When I exercised I felt strong and fit. There are so many more substantial reasons to lead a healthy lifestyle. Weighing a certain number should not be one of them. You should never equate your self worth with a number on a scale. Concentrate on living a balanced and sustainable lifestyle. Set goals for yourself that are deeper and more inspiring than “lose 10 kilos”. Delve deeper into the WHY you want to lose weight or tone up. Keep asking yourself WHY to every answer, until you get to the real “aha” moment. That should be the true motivation to get you started and keep you going.
These days the only time I know what my weight is, is when I go to the doctor (which is maybe once a year if I have to) or when I’m doing a fitness test (also only an annual occasion).
My body and I have made friends. We’re best friends actually. And you know what best friends do? They talk to each other. Nicely. They tell each other secrets. I know what my dear body wants and needs. I know when to eat more kale and go for a run and I know when I need to spend a weekend on the couch eating all the things. Now that my body and I aren’t at war because of some silly numbers on a scale, my body doesn’t rebel against me. My weight and my health don’t fluctuate like they once did. My skin is clear. I have heaps of energy. My mood is stable. I rarely get sick. I’m stronger and fitter than I was in my 20s… and I know all of that without a scale. *
Are you addicted to your scale? How often do you weigh yourself? Comment below!
* If you are really interested in tracking your progress, rather measure yourself with a tape-measure, get your body fat percentage measured, take progress pictures and go for a fitness assessment.