“You are beautiful!”
When I hopped onto the scale at the gym the other day before my workout, those words were scrawled across it in orange marker. It made me smile. Shout out to UO for being the nicest!
As I began my scenic run on the treadmill, I realized that I was so busy appreciating the fact that someone defaced the scale with positivity that I had forgotten to even notice what my weight read, which didn’t bother me because, since I began my current workout routine, I have been feeling so great that my weight hasn’t been much of a factor. But this all led me to wonder how often I should be stepping on a scale when I’m trying to get in shape, or just in general.
First, let me just say that in my research and self-reflection, I came up with one overarching trend that now seems obvious: everyone is different. Everyone is looking to attain different goals, everyone looks to health and fitness for different reasons, and it all means something different to everyone.
According to The Huffington Post, one reason that the scale might not be the best idea is that it does not tell you your body composition. For instance, you might have lost a pound of fat and replaced it with a pound of muscle, but the scale won’t know the difference, leading you to be all frustrated-like and throw your sweatband at someone. If you’re a person who’s in it for the body image, focus on how you feel and notice how your body is changing positively as your workout plan continues. Don’t just rely on the scale to tell you what’s up with your body.
Another reason that the scale life isn’t for everyone is that the results might stir up some angry or defeated feelings. I don’t know about you, but one of my coping mechanisms for that kind of feeling is to eat bad things until I go to sleep. If you’re trying to live a sustainable and healthy lifestyle, this might just set you back. If you want to see guaranteed-positive results every time you step on the weighing machine, do it less. If you’re working hard and being honest with yourself, you will never be anything but happy with the results.
If you are looking to lose weight, the scale can serve as a motivator. It’s only bad if you make it bad. But don’t work out just to see those numbers drop, work out to feel better and live better. Yeah, losing weight is part of that sometimes, but don’t obsess over it.