Part of the Whole 30 is putting up your scale…for a month. Now, you can weigh yourself before and after, but not during. And you know what? The thought terrifies me. And that’s a problem, y’all. I shouldn’t have a panic attack about not weighing myself for 30 days, but I’m having nightmares.
That alone tells me that it’s not a healthy habit. I think that some of us are so married to the scale that life without it is downright scary. How will we know if we can have another cookie (yes, I’ve actually gone upstairs and weighed myself to see if I could have just one more JoJo), or if we need to do 45 or 60 minutes of cardio? Or if we can get away with skipping our weight training this morning?
The thing is, the scale is actually a pretty poor representation of our overall health. Yes, it can tell us if we are obese, but I am determined to finish out June not married to my scale.
Why? Because your weight is just one factor that helps you keep a gauge on your overall health. But there are other, much better options that you can use to measure your progress.
Your Favorite Jeans
“But I hate jeans!”
Okay, okay…your favorite piece of clothing period. We’re good?
You know that pair of jeans/pants/shorts or that dress that makes (or made) you feel absolutely fabulous? Using your clothing as an indicator of your fitness is actually really smart. If you feel amazing in your clothes, and they fit you well, then you’ll know fairly quickly if they get a little tight and can reevaluate your health choices.
When you first begin to exercise, or up your training, you need to build your endurance and your stamina. If your goal is to run a marathon, then you need to start running…but you also need to focus on building the muscles you need to propel yourself forward.
This means weights, or at least some body weight exercises to strengthen your muscles so that you can go further, and run longer. As you build on your exercise routine, you should be able to record the distances that you run (or wog, or walk) and see a marked difference between days 1 and 30 (or 60, or 100…you get the idea).
Sleep may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you measure your fitness level, but as you increase your endurance and grow your health, you’ll actually start sleeping better. Healthier food choices will also help when it comes to sleep. Wouldn’t it be nice to fall asleep at night easily and wake up feeling rested? When was the last time that happened for you?
As you get healthy, this should be happening more and more.
As your fitness level increases, your energy level should match it. I found that as I lost weight, I wanted to be more active, and was excited to go on longer walks, take part in road races, and go to the park…it sounds simple, but when you’re unhealthy, often, you retreat into yourself. You may still go out, but I was much more comfortable on my couch with a milkshake and a movie.
I love having more energy. And if you have more energy, you will want to harness that, which means more exercise, healthier self…win-win.
Fitness is far more than a number on the scale.
It’s about how you feel, and how you deal with your life. It’s about waking up in the morning looking forward to your day. If you dread going out, wish you could fit into your “skinny” jeans (Admit it, we all have a pair from high school in the closet somewhere!), or just want to be an “active” mom.
Whatever your motivation, it’s much bigger than a number on a bathroom scale, which is why going without the scale is an experiment that I’m looking forward to. You should try it!