Feb 4, 2014

I had been a slave to the scale for many years. It was an addiction. I would step on the scale every morning. If I had lost weight from the day before I would celebrate by over-indulging. If I had gained weight I would cut back my calories and carbs and basically punish myself. It was a vicious cycle and I am so glad I am passed that.

During my weight loss journey I tried a lot of things. I mentioned Nutrisystem and Jenny Craig. I am grateful for those programs because they did help me drop weight but I know now that dropping weight doesn't necessarily mean slimming down, losing inches or gaining muscle. My goals have slowly shifted and they now include lowering my body fat percentage and building my strength.

I would really like to think that the twenty-five pounds that I have gained back is all muscle. Wouldn't that be nice? I'm sure it isn't ALL muscle but I do think that a lot of it may be. I found some pictures of myself from July of 2011 and I know for a fact that I was within one or two pounds of what I weigh now. Look at the difference in my mid-section from then until now.

I do step on the scale, yes, but I no longer let it control my life and how I feel about myself. By the way, when my boyfriend saw the photo on the bottom left he said, "Your abs look pretty fantastic." Me? Abs?! Huh? I never thought I'd have abs! 

For those of you who struggle or have struggled with the scale like I did, please know that you are so much more than that number. In order to move forward and not focus on the your weight I would suggest focusing on non-scale victories. Take your measurements and document those every month. I bet you will lose inches even if you are not losing pounds. Reward yourself with a manicure if you get to the gym three or four times in a week. Celebrate a month of eating on track with a new outfit. All these things will help with your self-esteem and it will slowly get you to focus on your health, as opposed to your weight. Whatever you do, do not reward yourself with food. I did that for many years. Trust me, that can be a never-ending vicious cycle too. 

This is a life-long journey. I am learning as I go and I think the most valuable lesson I've learned this far is that weights are not just for the boys. You can't be afraid to step outside your comfort zone and you might surprise yourself! 

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