When I say “throw your scale at the wall” I mean like seriously, pick it up and chuck it against the wall? Or slam it on the ground and see it break into tiny pieces? I know that sounds violent, and maybe I’m crazy, but if 18 years in weight loss has taught me anything, I don’t think I’m alone with this weight loss frustration.
You can do all the right things, pass on so many bad things and find yourself staring at a number that turns your face bright red, right? The easy thing to do is smash the scale, indulge in all the “bad” things like booze, cheese, cake, candy and fast food and then take a nap. Why bother, right? If you’re going to weigh XYZ, you may as well enjoy yourself….??
But you know what I realized one day?
As bad as it may feel to not see your best efforts recognized on the scale, exactly when you want to see them, that frustration, and urge to punch something is a reflection of your good efforts. It means you’re engaged and committed to making healthy choices and are actively doing something about it. That’s a good thing!
If you jump on the scale and see yourself up, or flat or whatever, just not what you were wanting and you just “humf” it off and think “meh – could have been better…” Then you know you didn’t put the work in. So frustration means you’re working. Yay for you – celebrate that!
So, then what do you really do about it because you do need see results!? You’re not passing up the booze, saying no to chicken fingers and sweating it out in the humidity to NOT see results, so how do you handle that?
I’m writing this blog now, because this week I had one of those moments where my scale almost didn’t live to see another day. So here’s how I’m going to handle it:
FIRST I’m going to keep on doing the exact same thing for another 7 days. Bodies are not calculators. And while weight loss is a mathematical equation (3500 calories burned = 1 pound of weight loss) your body does not always reflect these losses when you want to hit the equal sign (i.e jump on the scale). With humidity, altitude, sodium, hydration, water retention, you just don’t always get to see what you want when you want.
Not seeing the scale budge when you want it to is not a reason to throw in the towel, chow down chocolate peanut butter twix bars and a bottle of wine under the disillusion of “well this sh*&^%$it isn’t working anyway.” Stick with it – more than likely it will pay off.
THEN: Channel the frustration into a positive force to fuel your healthy lifestyle. Use that energy to find more yummy/healthy recipes, different workouts and more support from friends and family. Frustration and anger are powerful emotions. They are a reflection of passion. Use them to fuel something positive and keep moving in the right direction.
Great idea Teresa, but what if that doesn’t work?
Now you might be thinking — ok, great. But I’m a skeptic and what do I do if nothing budges after another 7 days? What do I if I keep doing the “right” things and my body does not budge? Well then, something you are doing may not be working, or you may be on a real weight loss plateau. For now, focus on channeling your energy and we’ll worry about everything else for at least 7 more days. Chances are, if you keep going with the same enthusiasm, you will not have to do anything different if you can make it past this point.
But just in case…next week we’ll look at some tactical plateau busters.
Stay tuned my healthy hopeful friends, together, we will get there!
Teresa Marie Howes, BS, CPT, HHP