There is nothing that will end a new diet faster than stepping on the scale and seeing it hasn't gone down. Worse yet, you gained weight. Not seeing the results you've worked so hard for can stall your progress. Our advice? Don't get back on the scale but re-evaluate your relationship with food.
Some of us deal with eating disorders. Those of us that deal with disordered eating could trigger unhealthy coping behaviors by weighing ourselves too often. Especially when a weekly goal isn't met. As one study put it, the obsession is essentially thanks to looming and "overvalued ideas regarding weight and shape." As a result, an unwanted weight may serve to reinforce unhelpful thoughts and behaviors. In short, stepping on the scale frequently could prompt a binge, causing unwanted... additional weight.
Weight naturally fluctuates on the daily. A five-pound increase is actually questionable. The body may be holding water weight, or the slight difference could be explained by muscle gain coupled with fat loss. This process takes time and diligence, a complete lifestyle over-haul; that's why diets and scales could fail you. They don't take into account the long game, the little things you're doing each day that are giving you more energy and mental clarity.
We're going to reiterate it this way: stop weighing yourself, or you will gain weight. Not only that, but you are taking away from your life. Do everything in your power to stay present throughout your weight loss journey. When you wake up in the morning, the first thing you think of shouldn't be stepping on the scale. Good morning mantras could be:
- Today I'll be good to myself.
- Today I will speak words of encouragement to myself.
- Today I will eat foods that my body needs.
- Today I will drink water and move.
Make healthful choices throughout the day. You will achieve everything and anything you want if you hold yourself accountable. Better yet, if you're really wanting to change your life, think about what you wish to accomplish, how you want to feel. Visualize it.
The Psychology of Weight Loss
What works for Jenny Craig fans may not translate to Zumba enthusiasts. Our lives are structured differently, and our reasons for carrying around excess pounds are unique in ways as nuanced as humanity.
For health-seekers to succeed, wellness must be personalized. That means trying different approaches. 'Getting the mind right' and finding a structure that propels you forward. Don't be afraid of failures and trying new products or tools.
Measurements Over Weight, A Solution
If you really want to map your progress, buy a tailors' measuring tape. The tape should not stretch. An inelastic tape measure will show the most accurate numbers each time. Make sure you're following guidelines. Measure in the same place every time. For example, check-ins may include a thigh measurement. (You could base this from four inches above your knee cap, for instance.)
And understand, for a successful journey, you have to throw out the scale. Because in reality, today's weight could paint an inaccurate picture of the lifestyle and diet changes you have successfully made.
Becoming healthy will not manifest, nor appear, exactly as you crave it to in real-time. It happens at a molecular level, but only if you first set the right intentions and then follow through.