The scale. It’s something that most women struggle with. I mean… I don’t know a lot of people who jump out of bed in the morning excited to get on the scale. We assign so much worth to that number. We let it determine our own worth, our happiness, and how we look at ourselves.
So what’s the big deal? Why is the scale so damn hard to have a good relationship with?
I think it’s because growing up – we were all weighed and measured. We were told what percentile we were in. We were forced to assign meaning to that number. We were taught that we should be an “ideal weight”.
I don’t think that doctor’s appointments are bad or that weighing yourself is bad – I do believe that there is simply just not enough education and time spent explaining what that number should mean.
It wasn’t until I was in high school that I learned that my friends who were many inches shorter than me were of course going to weigh less and look different. I didn’t get it. Why were all my friends 110-120lbs and why was I always in the 130s?? Was I just destined to be bigger? How was I supposed to compete with that? How would I lose the weight? How would I finally read “120” on the scale? When could my body look like theirs? Why were my hips and waist bigger? When would I be worthy?
If you have followed me for any amount of time; you are aware of my mission to educate and spread awareness. I want nutrition to be talked about in schools. I want to have programs to help young girls and women understand their bodies. I want women to realize the scale isn’t an indicator of worth. And I want women to love their bodies. Overwhelmingly. Urgently. Fiercely.
Now I’m going to change course a little bit.
I’m in improvement season from competing. I have a hard time talking about what I’m doing in my own life because I don’t want girls to look at me and do exactly what I do. Competing is a sport. It is an extreme. It is something I am very passionate about and will remain passionate about. When I talk about my weight – it is used simply as a tool. I use to let the scale ruin my day and my perception of myself. But now I can look at the number objectively (well.. most of the time). I see that number for what it is – a number. It is data. It does not define me.
If you have not gotten to this place with the scale… I SAY TO HECK WITH THE SCALE. Throw it away. Move it to another room. Don’t look at it. Say PEAAAACE.
“Well sue… how will I gauge progress or know that I’m improving? Or reaching my goals?”
Do you have a phone? Do you have eyes? Do you own clothes? Do you have a mind?
Take progress pictures. Look at yourself. Look at how your clothes fit. Think about how your body feels.
Realize how amazing it is.
Then look at it objectively.
Pictures will show progress when your brain doesn’t want to let you see it.
Because we are never taught about the scale and the number, we often think the scale is a dirty liar. When in reality, we just never learned how to look at that number.
Honestly. Tell me what that number means. Write in the comments. I dare you to be vulnerable with me. I’ll be vulnerable with all of you – The scale held my worth. The number was telling me that I was unattractive, fat, ugly, unworthy, and not good enough. The number told me I was failing. The scale told me this, and I believed it.
Sometimes when you write or say things out loud, you realize how silly you are. I’m not saying that your thoughts and feelings aren’t valid. They are very valid. I’m saying that we need to get out of our minds sometimes. We need to be honest with ourselves. We need to speak the things we think and pick them apart. Find the true meaning behind it.
What do you think when you step on the scale?
Why do you step on the scale?
What does that number tell you?
What has that number told you in the past?
Why does that number make you feel that way?
Seriously answer those questions. Write the answers down. When we are forced to give real answers to our beliefs… a lot of times they fall apart.
Some things to keep in mind:
- What time of the day are you weighing yourself?
o Your weight changes throughout the day. If you are going to weigh yourself; weigh yourself at the same time with the same circumstances (I weigh myself in the morning, before I eat, after I use the bathroom)
- How much water did you drink yesterday?
o You should be drinking at least a gallon of water a day. If you drink less water than your body can hold on to water and you can feel/look bloated. This also depends on how much sodium/salt you have had
- Is your food consistent?
o Are you trying to lose weight? Gain weight? Maintain? Does your food reflect that?
- What time did you eat your last meal?
o If you ate really late at night, your food hasn’t had as much time to digest so the scale may say you weigh more when in reality your body is still working.
- Are you working out? What time are you working out?
o If you are doing strength or resistance training – the scale could go up. This is because you are gaining muscle. MUSCLE DOES NOT WEIGH MORE THAN FAT. It’s just denser. This is why you can look learner at a higher body weight.
o If you are working out late at night, this could also cause the scale to reflect an inaccurate number. Working out causes your muscles to tear and “swell” to a certain extent.
- Quality of sleep
o Low quality sleep or inadequate amounts of sleep can be reflected on the scale.
- How stressed are you?
o If you live a high stress life or are a high stress person… that will be reflected on the scale.
- How is your digestion?
o Skewed digestion = skewed data from the scale.
- Is it your time of the month?
- If your period is coming to visit, that can be accompanied by bloat, cramping, swelling and whole lot of other things. Don’t attribute this to fat gain or think your body is doomed forever. Cherish the fact that you having a regular menstrual cycle and thank your body for being the realest.
Ditch the scale if you need to. If you chose to keep it – make sure you are taking all variables into consideration. Take time to learn your body. Take time to realize what that number truly means to you. Take time to know that if you don’t fiercely love yourself now…. You won’t love yourself at a lower body weight or body fat. Take time to see results. Take time to love yourself.
Keep doing hard things,