One of the main reasons that people do something like a whole30 is to lose weight. But you can’t trust your scale. It LIES.
Weight loss is the constant battle, the constant desire, the constant goal.
Whether one has 100 pounds to lose or 5, doing a whole30 will certainly help kick start that journey.
But why do we want to lose weight? What’s really going on?
For some the extra pounds are obvious. We can see that they have extra mass on the body. They feel large, and squishy, and uncomfortable.
Then there are others who have an ideal image of themselves hanging before them, like a golden carrot that they are constantly running towards.
Our easiest measure of where we are and where we have been is by stepping on the scale and taking a peek at that number.
During the whole30 we don’t step on the scale, even once for the whole 30 days. Because that number, albeit easy to measure and track, tells us nothing that we need to know.
Your weight includes your skeleton, skin, organs, muscle tissue, and fat. It also fluctuates based on what is in your digestive system (hence why we love to weigh ourselves first thing in the morning), and how hydrated we are. It also can be affected by any inflammation in the body (read immune issues).
So why do we rely so heavily on this number? Because it’s an easy measure, and therefore one that has been used in media for a long time to help us figure out where we are and where we should be. (I hate the word “should”.) We learn our BMI (Body Mass Index) and it tells us if we should lose some pounds or gain some.
Part of my journey was learning my BMI. My first glimpse at how much I “should” weigh, according to my height and age, told me I was “over weight”. Learn about how much I grew to hate myself. But BMI doesn’t take into consideration some very important factors to body weight:
- Bone structure: there is a BIG difference between two people of the same height but where one has a slight frame and the other a broader frame
- Activity levels: how much muscle one has greatly impacts the number on the scale, as muscles weighs more than fat
- Weight distribution: extra pounds around ones middle are more harmful than evenly distributed extra pounds
- Other health factors and family history
So I figured out I was “over weight” and struggled for years to catch up to my own golden carrot.
I stopped getting on the scale. And I started paying attention to other things. Check out my journey to loving myself.
The scale was lying to me, and I see how it lies to my clients. We have been putting far too much weight (like my pun?) on that little number, and letting it define our personal value. If that number isn’t the one we are looking for, we easily go into despair and forget any progress we have made.
What can we pay attention to that tells us the TRUTH? What can we trust?
Here are some far more telling signs that you can pay attention to to track your health journey:
Taking body measurements can really help you to see where you’ve come from and where you’ve landed on your journey. We do like numbers, and I much prefer the numbers that show you lost inches, than those that show you lost pounds.
Your body composition
Is your middle, littler? That’s a HUGE indication of progress! Not only have you potentially lost some belly fat, but reduced bloating and inflammation are HUGE signs that your body is healthier and happier!
Your gut health
How does your tummy feel? Besides our all-favourite decrease in bloating, pay attention to signs of heart burn, nausea, constipation, diarrhea and gas. A lessening of these symptoms is a sign that your gut is healing, and this means it’s doing a better job of protecting you. Increased immune function and decreased inflammation are your most powerful disease busters!
How are you sleeping? Do you fall asleep easily, rest comfortably all night long, and awake feeling energized? How’s that mid afternoon moment? Remember that time you used to reach for another coffee, or a sweet treat to get your through to quitting time? If you’re noticing changes in this arena, you’ve made serious progress towards healing your hormones. And stabilized hormones, means stabilized cravings, meaning you’ve now stabilized your weight loss progress to continue long after your whole30! That’s what we want to hear!
Skin clearing up? Eyes shining bright? Smiling??? Personally, I don’t care how thin or ripped a person is, if they’ve got that twinkle, they are GORGEOUS. Smile on, baby. You look MARVELOUS!
Who’s in control? You, or your food?
This ones a biggy. Take a look at how you feel around food. Are you eating mindlessly, or mindfully? Are you making choices because you know they will feel good, or because you are trying to feel better? Is food a crutch to get you through a tough day, or is it nourishing your body making every day better? Are you celebrating with food, or is a celebration about what you’re celebrating, and not about the cake? Shifts in your relationship towards food give you the stamina to keep making healthier choices for a long long time. So no matter what that lying scale tells you, if you are feeling better about the food you eat, you will just keep growing, healing, and slimming down. Whole30 was just the beginning!!!
I don’t trust the scale. I don’t believe it will tell you everything you need to hear. I believe it will leave you feeling discouraged and frustrated. Personally, I cut people like that out of my life. The Debbie Downers. Who needs ’em?
Sit down and take note of all the other places you have made progress. Really give good solid, loving attention to what is better. Then with confidence, and strength, get on the scale. But only if you know for a fact that the number, won’t mean a thing.
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I’d love to hear from you! Share in the comments below your journey and how the scale has helped, or hindered, your body love!