I Step On The Scale Everyday. Here’s Why.

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Pablo Varela@pablopunk

The scale used to bring up so many negative emotions in me before I lost over sixty pounds in 2013. Self -loathing was at the top of the list. It’s like I knew inside that I was approaching 200 pounds but I wasn’t willing to do anything to change so I just avoided the scale. I barely stepped on it for five years.

One New Year’s Day I gathered the courage to step on. Then had to force myself to look down. One hundred and ninety-eight! I wish I could say the scale was wrong. I knew it wasn’t.

Disgusted with the number and motivated by the fear of seeing 200. I finally decided I was willing to do something to take control of my weight. What better time than the first day of a new year to embark on a weight loss journey I thought.

Fast forward about a year. I lost 65 pounds and dropped eight jean sizes. I’m fitter in my forties than ever before. Being off my blood pressure medication, priceless. I transformed my relationship with the scale that year too. I actually looked forward to stepping on it each week to measure my progress on my goal. But something surprising happened when I reached my goal weight. I began stepping on the scale daily. Here’s why.

1. It Keeps Me Conscious Of What I Put In My Mouth
Maintaining weight loss is easier than losing in my experience. It’s just not as exciting because you aren’t seeing numbers going down constantly. While the sacrifices are greater in the first phase, the latter phase feels less so because you can indulge more frequently. It’s also quite easy to let a cheat meal turn into a cheat week, which is where the danger of going back to old habits comes. Stepping on the scale daily keeps me conscious of my food choices without writing down every calorie I put in my mouth. Since I’m lazy when it comes to food tracking I choose to step on the scale instead. It keeps me eating clean most of the time!

2. It Keeps Me From Gaining Back More Than Five Pounds
I’ve made exercise a habit like brushing my teeth and now stepping on the scale is part of my morning routine. I’ve come to see the numbers as feedback. I don’t use the scale to berate myself, I simply use it to stay focused on my goal of keeping it off for good. It nips any weight creep in the bud. Since I enjoy a treat here and there I choose to step on the scale daily to avoid too much damage. If it goes up a little, I’ve learned to speak to myself as I would a friend and be kind. It’s liberating to take control of my reaction to the number. No more denial! Knowledge is power.

3. It Keeps Me Getting To Bed On Time
One surprising benefit of stepping on the scale has been learning how sleep affects my weight. It became clear if I didn’t get at least six or seven hours of sleep I’d go up despite avoiding excess calories and getting daily exercise. It’s like my body was holding onto fat if I didn’t get enough rest.

I also noticed I would crave high fat foods (not the good kind) or sugary foods. It was like a double-edged sword. It probably had a lot to do with my weight gain too. Stepping on the scale daily keeps me aware of my own well-being!

I don’t believe in one-size-fits-all approach to the scale. Certainly, in the beginning of a weight-loss journey once a week could be sufficient. I sometimes think once a month is better for my clients. Only you know what is the best frequency for you.

I do believe it’s a critical success factor in my ability to stay at my goal. It keeps me out of denial. Losing weight in my forties is one of the hardest things I’ve done and I am committed to keeping it off. Stepping on the scale everyday helps me stay balanced and at my goal. The scale is a tool, use it to your advantage!