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Are Your Scared of Your Scale?

We all have a love/hate relationship with the scale. How many times have you had a good day or a bad day, based on the number on the scale? I’ve been there hundreds, no, thousands of times! We have to work against that – and make the scale just one of the tools to help us with weight management. And “management” includes both losing weight, and just not gaining (staying even).

When it comes to “weighing in,” I have to share one of my favorite stories with you. Whenever I talk about the Weight Watchers program or weekly weigh in programs, I get two distinct responses from people: (1) I LOVE it, because you get weighed every week or (2) I HATE it, because you get weighed every week. So, fellow strugglers, read on!

Studies show that it IS important to chart your body weight, but how do you translate that to your own lifestyle? While the gold standard is weekly (recently updated to daily!), using the scale as only ONE index of your progress takes a lot of that “weight anxiety” away. Your clothes, fitted jeans, and belt notches are all equally helpful. Look for patterns in your weight, to help understand fluid shifts that alter the number of the scale (think Chinese food the night before a weigh in, or premenstrual days); You’ll learn to separate water weight (fluid shifts) from true weight – either up or down. Weigh yourself at the same time of day on an accurate scale (good news for those of you in the Weight Race!). If you can’t remember when you last bought your home scale, buy a new (economical) digital scale for consistency.

It’s time to make friends with your scale. Use it to help validate your long-term progress. Trust your personal comfort level for either a daily or weekly weight as one part of your tracking. And remember…when the scale doesn’t move UP, it’s still a successful effort:not gaining weight still takes a lot of work!