The second article in the mind over body series is one that really hit me hard this morning. It spoke to me and I'm glad it did! "Take the stress out of weighing in" www.sparkpeople.com/reso
I was gone this week, participating in Operation Immersion. A 4-day conference designed to give behavioral health providers insight into the warrior ethos and issues our soldiers face. It was powerfully inspiring! I was excited that my nutrition and exercise were going to be spot on and when I weighed in this morning for my BLC, that I was going to see a loss!
Of course, life happens and apparently military MRE's are designed to be high calorie and nutrient dense to keep weight on those soldiers. Oops.
So weigh in this morning was another 4lb gain! Yikes! That's 2 weeks in a row! I was already thinking of what a failure I am, how disappointing it was and how I am going to be overweight forever.
Okay, so I indulged in a little catastrophizing before breakfast. But, that's when I read this article and answered a resounding yes to the whole thing! Yes weight loss DOES stress me out, yes my happiness DOES depend on the numbers on that scale and yes I want to change this pattern now. But how?
The first primary suggestion was to limit weigh-ins so they aren't as frequent. Give me a minute to pick myself up off the floor as that's the funniest thing I've heard in a while. I would be a daily weigher if my scale wasn't broken, as it is, I weigh in once or twice a week with my wii fit. So if lessening that number won't work, what else you got?
The article has 3 main ways to reduce the stress.
1. Be clear about what the number really means
2. Keep in mind that you are choosing to use the scale as a measure of success.
3. Use the number on the scale to actually help your progress.
How does this translate to the real world? Or at least To MY world?
The number on my scale this morning is just a number. It says that the sum of my body is currently x amount of pounds. This does not reflect my personality, my value or my worth. At the most, it reflects that this week I CHOSE to eat more and move less. (Did you catch that fantastic I-statement?). For me personally, this is a work in progress. I'm sensitive to success and lack thereof. So I'm working on it. I could do a whole other blog on this topic alone! But for now, I move on.
There are a number of ways that I can personally measure my success. I could take my measurements, I could do some push-ups and sit-ups to compare to the last times did them, I could look at the clothes I no longer fit into because they are too big. I choose to use the scale (another I-statement) but if it does more harm then good to my psyche then maybe I need to look at why I want to lose weight and choose more appropriate measures. If I am losing weight to fit into a specific outfit, then the scale is not as accurate a measure as trying on those clothes would be. I'm sensing another blog post here!
Finally, if after all this self reflection we are STILL going to use the scale. Well then do it right. Keep track of all your measurements from weight to calories consumed and calories burned. (Good thing spark has all these on the site already and completely FREE!) at the end of the month tally up your numbers and see if there are any inconsistencies. Since our bodies are amazingly complicated this can identify if there are any tweaks you can do to see more loss.
I'm coming back from this weigh in with a renewed sense of purpose. I know WHY the scale isn't moving in the right direction. It's simple really. I'm not tracking my food, I'm choosing to eat junk and I'm choosing to sit more then I move. It's not rocket science. So I'm taking this opportunity to start getting up, improving my planning and making things happen.
How do you come back from a gain? I'd love to hear your suggestions in the comments below!