Seven Reasons You Should Throw the Damn Thing Out and Never Look Back
In the interest of full disclosure, I’d like to start by admitting that I once was a junkie when it came to checking my weight on the scale. Three times a day was my norm. Morning, noon and night, I bargained with myself, taking averages. All while dolling out self-inflicted punishments and unnecessary rewards.
It was one of the unhealthiest behaviors I can say I ever demonstrated. Irrational, too, since the mere fact that the numbers changed within hours of their prior readings should have told me all I needed to know about the accuracy of the figures. But instead, I consciously chose to tie my self worth to a tainted reading. And, as a result, my mood fluctuated with every corresponding loss or gain of a tenth of a pound.
Now, years later, and 10 pounds “heavier,” I am the strongest, fittest version of myself that I have ever been. I don’t own a scale and never plan on purchasing one again either. And here’s why I want you to follow suit and toss the damn thing out for good:
- The Number is Temperamental: There are AT LEAST a dozen factors that influence your number on the scale, time of day just being one of them. What you ate/drank last night, what you did for a workout this morning, hormonal changes, etc., can all send that number up or down. The bottom line is that a scale is the most biased piece of equipment you could use to assess your health. Place it among the ranks of the opinions of your most indecisive, judgmental friends.
- You’re Only Torturing Yourself: Sharing our weight is taboo. We don’t talk about it and even shield it likes it’s our social security number when writing it on health forms. So why do we act like it’s tattooed on our foreheads, there for the world to see? Only you make it a dirty little secret if you choose to do so. Imagine the freedom you would experience if you had no idea how much you weighed.
- The Self-Induced Stress Only Drives You to Eat: I hear from many people that weighing themselves keeps them accountable. And while I get that logic, I’m here to tell you I see that the majority of the time it does just the opposite. We all know the total “screw this” mentality that comes along with a less than desirable reading. So in my opinion the best strategy is to avoid that pitfall and step away from the scale altogether.
- Wheeling and Dealing Gets You Nowhere: In accordance with point No. 3, the concept of rewarding yourself for small gains (in this case, losses) is not a surefire way towards optimal fitness and health. Nor is punishing yourself for “bad” behavior. All that does is instill a notion that the state of your body is a gamble, when it’s really anything but. If you’re serious about seeing long-lasting changes, you’ll stop giving yourself pats on the back and instead insist on nothing short of your hardest work.
- Your Expectations are Totally Unrealistic: No doubt the majority of you reading this have a number in your head you’d like to “be.” The question is, however, when was the last time you were really there? If the answer involves a reference to your wedding, a college graduation or any other moment in time that existed more than a couple of years ago, forget it. Accept now that you cannot (nor should not) attempt to rewind the clock. You are not You of Yesteryear.
- The Number Indicates Nothing About Your Level of Fitness: Any fitness professional worth a grain of salt will tell you that a person’s weight discloses next to nothing about their overall health or level of fitness. Using it as a gauge of progress (or lack thereof) is as old school as Snackwells and Richard Simmons. What worked then doesn’t work now because time has shown that there are much more accurate, effective approaches. So, while you’re at it, please throw all your fat free stuff out when you trash the scale.
- No One Cares. Really. Seriously. Think about this. When someone tells you that you look awesome, do they follow it by asking what your number is on the scale? More importantly, do you have any idea how much those celebrities and athletes that you aspire to look like actually weigh? Would you change your opinion of them if you found out they weighed five more pounds than what you deemed ideal? I didn’t think so. So again. Repeat it with me: No one really cares.
Makes sense? If you’re the least bit compelled, please join me in the movement to Scrap the Scale. Share this blog and let’s get the message out. Would love photos of you trashing the piece of crap sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.