Once upon a time, I weighed myself every week. I would anxiously await the scale's pronouncement. Had I been a good girl? Or had the needle crept up? The scale and I were locked in a kind of tango; only it was a neverending kind of dance that I never could win.
Not that I didn't have success for a while. Pre-Covid, I was on Weight Watchers and had lost around fifty pounds. Every week I did my weigh-in. And every week, I nervously waited to see whether my body had cooperated or betrayed me. My lowest weight was 122 pounds. Looking back, I realize it was too thin. But at the time, it felt like a success.
Pre-Covid 19, I was maintaining 133 pounds. And then, like everybody else, I got a punch in the gut courtesy Covid-19. My weekly in-person meetings went away. And then the virtual weigh-ins with the same core group of people went away. I live in a small, rural town. My nearest meeting is 50 miles away. I can't justify a 100-mile round trip every week.
After my virtual meeting went away, so did the weekly scale weigh-in. And, you know what? I don't miss it. There is something mentally freeing about not having that weekly deadline looming over your head. All of a sudden, you can focus on the habits themselves and the journey. It is no longer a constant tug of war with numbers that will always fluctuate, no matter what you do.
Because this is the truth, our weight fluctuates due to reasons beyond our control. Women especially struggle with a sluggish metabolism. Hormones, extra salt, or...well....just living can affect our weight.
I do want to lose weight. And I will do the same things I did before, cutting out sugar, exercising every day, and eating more veggies/protein. I will nourish myself by making positive choices. For me, weekly weigh-ins are not a habit I wish to continue. I love myself, round and curved or lean and thin.
But I have realized that many of the good habits that help me live a healthy lifestyle have nothing to do with the scale. I don't need to step on a scale to know how yummy a home-cooked meal is or how good it feels to stretch my body through yoga. I don't need to step on a scale to validate my own worth as a human being. Numbers don't have anything to do with how smart, beautiful, or confident I am.
Nourishing myself emotionally and spiritually won't always be reflected in the scale. But when your weekly is all that matters, those small victories get devalued because they feel pointless. However, those small habits are what make a better you on the inside. I have come to realize that my day in and day out habits are what truly matter.
So, dear Scale, I am breaking up with you. I refuse to live a life controlled by an arbitrary set of numbers. I do love my curves, all of them. While I am committed to being healthy, there isn't any need to meet some set of numbers because society says so. I absolutely will get back into the clothes I love wearing. But I won't spend precious time worrying about whatever the scale says this week...or next week....or the week after.
After I stopped worrying about the scale, it felt so freeing. I finally had that mental space back. It was no longer hijacked by obsessive thinking about my calorie count or the size of my pants. Are there habits I need to change? Yep. But none of those habits are tied to weighing myself.
So, dear scale, today I resolve to get back to journaling every day. I promise to replace mindless snacking with my favorite tea. I will start caring enough to give myself enough sleep. I will care enough to make delicious meals full of healthy veggies. But I will not let my happiness be dictated by you, an inanimate object, the scale.
I am a freelance copywriter living in rural Nebraska. During the summer you'll see me puttering around my garden. I love planting new kinds of plants and can't wait to scour greenhouses when spring arrives! I also enjoy a glass of wine!