When it comes to weighing myself, I either do it obsessively or I do not do it at all. When I am in the former mode, I’ll weigh myself when I wake up. I’ll weigh myself a half later after I drink water. I’ll weigh myself after I workout. I’ll weigh myself after I have a BM (oh don’t act appalled, you know what I mean and I bet you do it too!) I will weigh myself every single day. I become completely obsessed with it to the point of being unhealthy.
At some point though what usually happens is even after the pounds start coming off, the scale starts going back up. I become more obsessed and neurotic. It is ridiculous, especially when the reality is muscle weighs more than pounds. Still the actual number tends to haunt me. Forever.
And so then I stop weighing myself altogether. For a year. Until the day comes that I cannot avoid the scale anymore because well, the nurse who is taking my vitals for my annual check-up does not give me an opt- out option.
This is what happened this past Friday. I stepped on the scale at the doctor’s office and closed my eyes telling myself I am better off not knowing. I hopped off but at the last second, I snuck a peek. Ok, my number was the same it was last year, if not a pound less. Which I deducted an extra ound for clothes (and another few pounds for my incredible personality). So really, I was about 4 pounds less than last year.
I realized that not knowing is not bliss. It is just straight up denial, good or bad. I always have goals when it comes to health and fitness. Sometimes it is to learn a new skill at CrossFit. Sometimes it is to train for a race. Sometimes it is to lose x number of pounds. Not knowing my weight really does not coincide with having goals. There sometimes is a correlation to what we weigh and what our fitness goals are. I know in the past, I have improved in gymnastics stuff when I have dropped a few pounds (it is a lot easier to move my weight around a bar for pull ups or do Hand Stand Push Ups when I am carrying a few less lb’s). With a race, the number is a reflection of the work I am putting I and a way to make sure that I am not putting in extra miles only to reverse that grueling work with the wrong food choices. ((I have a love hate relationship with running fyi).
Look, I saw my number and miraculously I was not traumatized. If anything, I am encouraged. I do go more off of how I look and subtle changes in my body whether it is getting leaner or building muscle. Those are the results I really strive for, far more than any number. If I am being totally honest, I still have plenty of work to do.
And I am realistic about what all that work will result in. I am not expecting to get down to 9% body fat or something ridiculous like that. I do not want to have the most restrictive diet that I am a hangry bitch all the time (that would not be good for my business). I just want to lose a few (maybe 5-10) pounds of fat, and I do not think that is out of the realm of possibility.
If this post speaks to you, then I encourage you to first and foremost be honest with yourself, which is probably the hardest and most uncomfortable step in a healthy journey. Far harder than the lifestyle changes you will make as a result of it. We all want to think we eat healthy and perfect. We all want to think we crush it in every work out. We all want to think we only drink alcohol moderately. We think we eat an “average” amount of carbs (when in actuality we are on an all carb diet yet cannot understand why we are not losing weight).
That’s where I am at. I am being realistic with myself. I am not about to go on some crazy restricted bodybuilder diet. I will probably call in a favor from a nutritionist I know (good thing I have one in the family) to see how I can make tweaks to my eating. I also intend to incorporate some extra workouts (I will have that luxury of being on my own schedule in T-2 days!) That might just be a few extra minutes of abs a day or a few extra squats or a few miles of running.
I have to do what works for me and aligns with my goals. Everyone has to do what makes sense for them. It is why there’s a big shift from “dieting” to “lifestyle”. You want to be able to sustain whatever changes you implement. We are all individuals, with different bodies, with different histories that we all need to be mindful and respectful of.
What works for one person may not work for someone else. Just because the man lifting weights next to you has gone on a high fat and low protein diet with intense weightlifting cycles does not mean that is what you need to do to bulk up. Or just because your neighbor is counting her macros and losing weight, that does not mean you have to. Or just because you go hit the stairs at a park and see someone climbing them 6 times, does not mean that is what you need to do to reach your goal.
So be honest with yourself with what your goals are. Get a realistic plan to reach them. Be open to tweaking and changing as you go. Yes, weigh yourself but do not let that be the only benchmark of your success. And if you need some help figuring this out, come talk to me. This is where I see myself helping people in my future business. (ahh yes slid in that last minute #shamelessplug).