Monday, September 28, 2009

Scale Roulette

200.0. Need I say more? But you know I will (insert smiley face that I don't know how to do in blogdom). I had really good clean last 3 days; the evenings - not so much. I was pretty bingey, and so didn't bother to get on the scale at all over the weekend. If you glance to the right, you see that Friday morning for weekly weigh-in I was 197, which was a one pound loss from the week before. I'd committed to weighing only weekly to help me stop playing around with my food intake based on the scale number. But after the weekend, I knew I needed to survey the landscape, which is slightly more mountainous than 3 days ago.

Can you believe I was actually relieved when I saw the number? If you've played scale roulette over the years, you're likely nodding in answer to that question. I stepped on fully expecting more wreckage. And I realize those 3 pounds likely don't reflect true fat regain, especially since I exercised all three days. But this is how subtle weight gain starts to happen for me. And why, unless I know I'm eating healthfully with no bingeing and solid exercising, it's risky for me to not step on the scale every few days.

The scale wields so much power for me. If I'm doing really well for several days in a row, I want to peek at the progress. You know..."for motivation". But if I see good progress, I think I can have "a little something extra" that day without harm. But for a food addict, the first compulsive bite, or even a regular bite of a potential trigger food can flip the switch in my brain, and off to the races I go. And isn't perspective everything at the scale? When I was on my way down a many weeks back, 200 was thrilling as I prepared to fall into a new century. Going back up, it's awful, and I swore I wasn't going to weigh a number that began with 2 ever again. To weigh or not to weigh...that's quite a question.

My husband has been out of town since last Wednesday, and I was thinking I'd be able to really knock off the pounds because I could just eat totally clean and not be cooking for him. Problem was, I didn't cook for myself, and so I'd be starving - empty stomach hunger, at dinner time and grab a handful of healthy walnuts to "tide me over" until I came up with a dinner plan. Then a second handful, mixed with dried cranberries, and down the garden path I went. In the wrong direction. Those 2 handfuls wouldn't have caused me any problem if I already a dinner in mind and ready to prepare fast (even a Lean Cuisine on hand), but I didn't.

Another lesson relearned that I already knew. Healthy eating requires planning. I know this and usually do it. Lyn at Escape From Obesity had a great post about this yesterday...doing food prep a couple times a week to have the right food on hand. I just didn't bother, maybe because at some level I wanted a free weekend. Free weekends exact a cost and a consequence, which I'm meeting today face to face. Hubby comes home late tonight, which will restore that level of normalcy to the homefront (though I enjoy the time alone!). I will have a clean day today, go to the gym, and not beat myself up. And I'm going to give some thought to trigger foods and may write about that later.


  1. I completely understand this post. Especially the part where you talked about seeing some progress, and then slipping a bit. I had that happen all along my journey to lose 150 pounds.

    I think that the great thing about your post today is that you have taken so much time to really think about what happened, and how you can get back where you want to be!

    Have a wonderful day,

  2. Ah. Scale roulette. A game I am all too familiar with. Great post! And kudos to you for making yourself think correctly. That, in my opinion, is the most challenging part.

    I enjoy your blog and will keep an eye on the great things you post!

    Thanks, also, for your kind words on my blog! :) I love having neighbors in Blog-dom.

  3. Hi Leslie. It's all there in your sentence: "unless I know I'm eating healthfully with no bingeing and solid exercising, it's risky for me to not step on the scale every few days." So not stepping on the scale should mean that you're really motivated to do those good things.

    It's the old game yet again - if you see you have gone up you will eat clean for a while, if you see you have gone down you can eat until you go up again. The fact is that your weight will go up and down based on your eating and exercise whether you weigh yourself or not. You need to concentrate on the eating and exercise NOT the scale.

    If I lived near you Leslie I'd come round and confiscate the scale and throw it off a cliff somewhere. The scale is just supposed to reflect the other stuff you're doing, not become an integral part of keeping you stuck where you are.

    Some people on this journey only weigh themselves once a month or so at their doctors. There are other routes than the one you are on and I think you need to consider them.

    I am one of those people for whom the scale does not work. I just go by what size clothes I am wearing. Weighing scales are not necessary for weight loss.

    As this route is not working for you maybe it is time to set different goals - like aiming for a specific dress size?

    I'm sorry that I don't have any other ideas about how you can break out of this headlock. But you need to find something that will break the cycle.

    Best wishes,
    Bearfriend xx

  4. Hi Leslie,

    This was a wonderful post, and I really enjoyed reading it! Thought provoking and well written. You literally took the thoughts right out of my mind, as I have been doing the scale roulette thing of late too.

    Also, many thanks for stopping by my blog and for your very kind words.:-)

    And many, many thanks for bestowing me with an award. I am truly honored!!!

  5. I never thought of it as being called scale roulette before, but I know what you mean! Once you get back on track I know you will do a great job! Keep up the good work!

  6. Scale Roulette, wow! That makes so much sense to me. Totally with you here... :D BTW, thanks so much for the award. It's my first ever!