Monday, May 7, 2012

Why I don't weigh myself




I'm not a math person, I struggled with math in high school, and pretty much refused to take a math class at University but when I got out into the corporate world I found I was very numbers driven. I blame all those sales goals that I took very seriously and spreadsheets for just.about.everything that I dealt with for six years. Before I embarked on this career in education I was obsessed with numbers. Sales numbers. Each morning I would start my day and obsess over the numbers that came in from the day before.

Not once did anybody beat my numbers from any of the stores I worked on. Not once. And, trust me, I looked! There were over 100 stores, and on any given day I could probably give you the ballpark figure for what each store made the day before. I'm really not that competitive of a person, but for some reason this just really drew it out in me! I would get to work early and pore over every spreadsheet to figure out what was selling where and try to figure out why and how. I always joked that they should have hired me for real estate because I knew what stores would do best and where.

That obsession though? It is why I don't weigh myself. In fact, since I started training for Dam to Dam I have not weighed myself once. Am I curious? Heck, yes! I want to know so bad, but I know that as soon as I pull out that scale (that is currently in hiding underneath my sink) this training will turn into something else.

Of course I am interested in the health benefits of running and I would love to drop some several pounds, but I know that as soon as I know that number I will become obsessed with it and will agonize over it for days. That is not healthy.

Instead I take note in how my clothes fit me. Take Friday for example. Friday morning I decided to pull a pair of denim capris out of my stack of jeans that don't fit me anymore* and they fit! Or I take note when people compliment me and mention that I look good or my body is changing. Those are the things that matter much more than the number on the scale.

Also? What if I get on that scale and the number is higher because of muscle mass?  Gasp! This happened to me in 2008. I was working out a ton to get ready for a wedding that I was in and I was going to Body Pump classes all the time. Well, that was pretty much all I was doing. No cardio. Although my body changed, the number on the scale didn't move at all or it went up a little bit. It discouraged me so much that I really learned my lesson.

So, today, let the doctor weigh me when I go there once or twice a year. Other than that, I don't think that number is very important.

Do you weigh yourself regularly?

*Yes, I have a "stack of jeans that don't fit me." Don't you? This stack has it's own special place in my closet that stares me in the face everyday. It's pretty good motivation... jeans are expensive and I do not plan on replacing them with a bigger pair. 

13 comments:

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I weigh myself maybe once a week? I don't own a scale, but there is one in the gym in my condo, so I will weigh myself when I go down there to workout. I don't like the way I feel when I step on the scale - that feeling of anxiety. I, too, go by how clothes fit and how I feel in general!

Jennifer Delle Fave said...

Oh, I have a stack alright!! I do weigh myself...but I try to focus on the foods I eat and how I'm feeling. I always feel lazy and bla after too many white starchy carbs...even though they taste so darn good in my mouth! Now that the weather is nicer, I always try to get outside as much as possible.

Jess said...

Yup. Once or twice a week. If I don't, I get off track. I eat way too much, because I assume I'm losing, and then I gain ten pounds.

I AM a numbers person. I minored in math in college, and so for me, numbers help me see the bigger picture.

(And I'd rather not talk about that stack of jeans. I'm traumatized by the whole thing.)

tara said...

I don't weigh myself often unless I'm trying to lose weight. I weighed myself last week for the first time in forever and it was depressing! I knew it was time to weigh myself because my pants are fitting a little tighter! =/

P said...

My scales are broken. To be honest, that's not a good thing to me because I worry that not knowing what I weigh can lead to me being complacent, because i'm just judging what I go on in the mirror and I could be fooling myself. i know I can stand to lose a few pounds and the scales help me keep some control over that... but at the same time, i also know muscle weighs more than fat etc and it really IS more about measurements and how your clothes fit than anything else. I think we all need a mixture of both if we are trying to judge this...

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

Nah, I go by how I feel and how my clothes fit. We own a scale but I only step on it maybe once every 2 weeks and the number doesn't really mean much to me!

Mrs Xenos said...

Amber...what a great post. You're SO right.

Since I began training for my July race, I haven't lost much at all. Week by week i felt more and more discouraged.

I had breast reduction surgery this past Thursday and for some ass-n-nine reason I thought the scale would reflect all the lbs the surgeon removed. When it didn't, I felt a feeling of frustration when I have just experienced a life changing journey and had been feeling so ecstatic with the results. It's not fair to do that to ourselves...I'm with ya, girl.

Great insight.

Miss Oakley @ Observations by Miss Oakley said...

Being able to wear a pair a pants you couldn't before training = You're doing something right. Keep off the scale and on the running trail. (I'm corny.)

Stephany said...

I try to weigh myself once a week. Like Jess, I have to otherwise I get off track. Knowing I have to "face the music" motivates me. That said, I also know the number on the scale doesn't tell the whole story so I also take measurements, as well as how I FEEL. If I felt good during the week, made healthy choices, but don't see a huge drop - or gasp, a GAIN - I still have to be proud of what I did.

But for some people, it's a detriment and I'm glad you've found a system that works for you. (And YAY for being able to fit into the jeans you couldn't before! That's awesome, Amber!!)

Kyria @ Travel Spot said...

I probably weigh myself once a month. If there is a scale handy. Otherwise, I am like you. I know when the doctor tells me.

I definitely keep that stack of old jeans (and dress pants and dresses). I paid a lot of money for them and I can't just throw them away!

Kara said...

I will say that pre-pregnancy, I never weighed myself, except for the odd occasion when I was visiting my MIL. Now I keep track of my pregnancy weight gain. I'm not too sure how I'm going to tackle getting my pre-baby weight back sans-scale, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.

I really believe that it's all about feeling good! You don't need a scale to tell you that.

pinkflipflops said...

I weigh myself every day. It doesnt affect my motivation. Though it does make me say yipppppieeee on occasion and um how did that happen? sweeeet.

Shoshanah said...

I refuse to own a scale for that same reason, I know I would obsess. What's funny though is that the boy has said we should own a scale. I guess you would normally expect the opposite though, right?