Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Archive for July 31st, 2012

Scale Back

Posted by terrepruitt on July 31, 2012

I know that sometimes people might allow the number on the scale to affect their mood and/or their feelings about themselves.  I know people can get upset when they are eating healthy and/or cutting excess calories, exercising and/or being more active and their goal of losing weight does not show every day on the scale.  I know some people get upset if their weight does not go down every day.  I know that sometimes a scale can actually affect what you eat for the day.  Perhaps the scale isn’t even moving one way or the other so you think it is ok to eat that extra whatever and you might even skip working out.  As I have said many times everyBODY has a different goal.  Sometimes we allow the number on the scale plays a more important role than it should because it is truly not the only way to measure health or fitness.  As you know if you are cutting calories to lose weight, but you are also doing some type of resistance training it could be that you are building muscle too.  While these two things are difficult to achieve at the same time it can be done, it just might take longer to see the results you are hoping to see.  But the scale might not be the best way to measure progress.  If you are one of those people who allow the number on the scale to affect you, how about taking a challenge?  How about not using the scale for a bit, while you are continuing on your path to change?  Maybe the number doesn’t affect your mood, but how about a change?  How about if you track your progress with a tape measure?

Just decide to not get on the scale for either 21 days or 30 days.  Really, that’s it, that is the challenge.  Let’s track measurements instead.  And while we are at it be aware of how you are feeling.  I know for some it is a habit to step on the scale.  You might not even realize you are doing it.  Right before you get in the shower it is almost as if it is the first step into the shower.  Disrobe, step on the scale, and then step in the shower.  Habit.  Especially if you do it early in the morning when you still might be a bit sleepy.  So in order to keep yourself from doing it out of habit remove the scale from the bathroom or remove the batteries.  Of course you will have to make sure the other members in your household that use the scale know what is going on.  You don’t want them to put the scale back or replace the batteries and then you — out of habit, step on the scale despite your best effort.

Now I’m not suggesting you share any numbers or anything.  This is not a competition to see who sees the most change, this is just a time to experience something different.  To free yourself from the scale.  To allow yourself to forget about that number.

So without that number to affect our mood, our feelings, our courses of actions we might be surprised.  We might get a different sense from our bodies and follow a bit of a different path.  Instead of being upset that the number hasn’t budged which in turn might cause us to eat more, we might just feel good and full and satisfied.  Instead of seeing the number go down and giving ourselves permission to have more, we might just sense that we’ve had enough and let it stop there.  We might stop judging ourselves by that number.  And if you want to track changes you can use a tape measure.  I was thinking you can take the measurements on day 1/August 1st and then not again until the 21st.  If you decide to do the 21 days then that would be the last day, but if you decide to do the 30 days, then the 21st could be just a check in.  Then do it again on the 30th.

Taking measurements takes a bit longer than stepping on a scale and as I mentioned in the other post you want to make certain you measure the same spots.  Having to set aside time to measure will keep you from doing it every day.  There is no need to do it every day, that is also part of the freeing oneself from the numbers.  I made a form that you can print and use to track your measurements if you would like.  The “Notes” column can be used for noting the spot where you are going to measure.  If you are measuring (as my example stated in my first post) around your calf an inch below the low part of the knee cap, then you can make that note there so the next time you measure you will remember where.

Of course you can decide to continue on past the 30 days.  Maybe you will decide to step on the scale at 30 days then try an additional period of time where you closet the scale.  I think for some removing the scale from the picture will be very freeing and even stress relieving.  For some they might want to just try something new, maybe the scale does not play a big role to them.  You could even decide to ditch the scale and not do any measurements that is fine too.  Again, as I’ve said before everyBODY is on their own fitness journey so they can do what they feel is right.  This is just a place to start.  An idea of looking at it in a different way.

So what do you say?  Will you put your scale away for at least 21 days?  If so will you take measurements?

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