You wake up, have a cup of coffee or go for a run, then you head for the bathroom and just before your morning shower…you weigh yourself. And in that very moment – everything is determined. Your mood is decided based on a little number that appears on a silly device that tells you, what you already know. Or have denied.
6 reasons why my husband & I ditched our scale:
Our eye sight is great
We can see our bodies everyday. We know whether we’ve put on or lost weight, we don’t need a number to confirm that. As humans, we trust our eyesight all day to lead us in the direction we want to go – and we have thus learnt to do the same with our bodies.
We are unique
My ideal weight is different to H’s; it’s supposed to be. My body finds balance at a number quite different to your body. My bones, muscles, genes and body shape all determine that, not only what I eat. To use a number as a benchmark means to forfeit my uniqueness. To me, it’s conforming to an ideal set by someone else, or maybe by me – possibly a younger me that didn’t understand that growing up means body changes – and that that’s ok. Age isn’t to be fought, it’s to be embraced, to adjust and to be ok with that.
We’ve felt our best at times when the scale has screamed otherwise
While the scale can predict a happy day, it also predicts many a sad one too. Isn’t it the absolute worst thing, when you think you’ve lost weight and the scale then announces quite the contrary.
I will never forget being 20, at my fittest just before running a 90km stage race. After weighing myself before the race, I was shocked to see that I had put on 2kg’s during my last month of training. Everything about my body looked great, I was in the best shape and yet the scale told me something that shifted the way I saw myself. Me at my fittest was not me at skinniest. I wish now, that I’d been ok with that then.
We believe in self discipline, far more than we do in self hate
By living by a number on a scale, we found that we so often got caught up in self-hatred speech. A simple number could throw our day; leading us down a spiral of negative self talk which inevitably lead to failed diets, never-be-be-used-gym-contracts, and ultimately binging (eating crap…too much of it) and then entering the shame-cycle.
Instead of falling prey to these negative thought patterns, we’ve now chosen to practice self-discipline. It is indeed an art and although at first making healthy choices may seem a bit daunting, in time they become habits and which leads to self-discipline. We’ve learnt to love nourishing ourselves with healthy, nutritious food, drinking lots of water, ditching restrictions and thus having no problem eating pizza every other weekend (or so). We don’t ‘not-eat’ anything. If we want it, we have it. But we’ve taught our bodies to crave goodness, over sugar. And to deal with emotions through positive thinking, exercise and other coping mechanisms instead of using food!
We were tired of bowing to a number
While scales can be great for those who really do need to track their weight – perhaps for health reasons; for us, they became about comparison. We got caught in a cycle that meant a daily or every second day weigh-in. It was as if we were lab rats, waiting to see results. The thing with experiments is that people rarely see results in one day – so daily weighs are a WASTE OF TIME (Ask any dietician). A weekly weigh in is more realistic in terms of actual weight gained or lost, but ultimately out goal wasn’t that either.
Our goal was, and is, HEALTHY & FIT
We both believe that ‘us at our best’ looks like this: Daily exercise, regular healthy meals, and the odd sugar craving being met. We don’t believe in restrictions but rather focus on treating our bodies with respect – and that means not practicing self-hate speech too.
We definitely haven’t nailed this just yet, but we are miles from where we once were…and we are trusting that as we treat our bodies with love, that our kids too will catch this mindset and will never learn to rely on a scale to tell themselves something they already know.
PS: This is our journey. Yours will look different. Perhaps you need a scale as it forms your accountability mechanism – if so, try to stick to a once weekly-weigh in, or see a dietician who can accurately track your weigh loss.
I work with plenty girls working towards loving their bodies – contact me, if you feel like chatting!!!