One of my friends brought her son over last Sunday afternoon and we sat in lawn chairs and talked while the kids splashed in the turtle pool. She went back to work through the winter and has lost some weight from her on-the-go retail job. I told her that every time I saw her, she was smaller. She told me that her clothes that were tight from last summer fit this year and she’s feeling good about herself but doesn’t know how much she weighs, so she doesn’t know how much she’s lost.
She doesn’t know how much she weighs.
This is an extremely foreign concept to me.
You know how I feel about weight as a measure of success, right? You know that I think it’s important to make healthy goals that give you a sense of accomplishment, like distances or speed or getting on your bike more or whatever works for you, but don’t make your goals all about the scale. I really believe it. I think that we get caught up in the relationship with the scale and we’re trapped by a number and the connotation it holds for us and it easily gets to the point that the number is never, ever enough.
I believe that, and yet, I don’t always live it.
I weigh myself so I know “where I am.” I have strict rules that I follow: No more than once a week. Always on the same scale. Never if I just ate a big meal and never the week before my period.
It’s usually always around the same number, but I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you that some days that number makes me happy and some days it makes me sad.
132. 134. 131. 129.5 that one time. I know where I was the previous week and I know what I don’t want to see and I know that it doesn’t matter but I don’t, I really don’t know how to let it go.
I even resolved to not weight myself all summer, to break the habit. And in the two months since I’ve run the marathon, I had absolutely convinced myself that I had gained five pounds, was unable to stay on track and then last week, I ran, cowering, back to Weight Watchers because Ahh!!! (I hadn’t gained one. single. pound.)
I browsed through a copy of Oxygen magazine this week (I would recommend not buying this magazine – it’s pretty bad. The “fitness” models are just thin, not muscular, and there are an ungodly amount of ads for diet pills.) and there was a spread of readers who had won a competition or something so they had their pictures printed, along with occupation, height and weight. The women who were the same height as me? None were over 120lbs. And it got me wondering if I should lose some more weight.
Then I woke up the next morning, hit myself in the forehead and knocked some sense into myself. But do you see how easy it is?
So how do I break it?