I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen a lot of posts in the blog world this week related to scales. And just for clarification, I mean the thing you weigh yourself on. It’s ironic that some of my favorite bloggers broached the subject this week because I had an experience yesterday that mirrored what they were addressing. Let me back up and start from the beginning.
Every year, my company offers optional health screenings to its employees. These screenings are administered by nurses and health coaches, but they aren’t diagnostic. The information is strictly for screening purposes only. Nevertheless, I decided to participate this year. I’m good about getting my annual checkup done, but I thought it would be fun to see what my numbers are currently. And yes, I said fun!
The tests they ran gave me my total cholesterol level (VERY low ), HDL cholesterol level (a little low but I’m going to look into that), total cholesterol/HDL ratio (in the desirable range), non-fasting glucose (VERY low), and blood pressure (normal). I got a clean bill of health!
The other part of the screening involved either a BMI and waist circumference check or a flexibility test. As you all know, I’m notoriously inflexible, so I opted for the first choice.
The health coach checked my height and weight and also measured my waist circumference. Again, everything is in the normal range…woot!
You may be wondering where this is going…I’m getting there…keep reading!
When I got back to my desk after the screening, I smiled because the old Parita would NEVER have opted for a BMI and waist check…NEVER. Why? Because up until a little over a year ago, the scale owned me. And when I say owned, I mean it scared me and caused me to behave in strange ways.
Here’s some history to help paint a picture…
I would wake up every morning, workout, use the restroom (sorry if that’s TMI), and weigh myself. Then I would go to work and input the number from the scale into a spreadsheet. This spreadsheet would be linked to a graph…you can probably tell where I’m going with this. I was so obsessed with tracking my weight and analyzing trends. This would probably only be semi-strange behavior if I wasn’t already so self-conscious. I let the number on the scale take over my thoughts, my mood, my food choices, my ability to take compliments, my relationship with Vishnu/friends/family…that scale owned me. I did everything in my power to be at the low end of the healthy weight range for my height.
I am happy to say that I ended my daily visits with the scale a little over a year ago. I was so sick of everything being tied to that one number. I now only check my weight once or twice a week. I’m not going to lie to y’all and say that the number never bothers me or upsets me because sometimes it does. But, I’m slowly realizing that weight fluctuation is normal. I am also starting to realize that for me there is such a thing as a “happy weight.” I define “happy weight” as the range that my body prefers to remain in when I engage in healthy eating and regular exercise. And if I’m going to be completely honest with you, my happy weight is NOT in the low end of the range, it’s actually much higher, and I am 100% ok with that.
The new Parita doesn’t strive to be skinny, she strives to be strong. She doesn’t do cardio for the sake of exercising, she runs because she loves it and she strength trains because she likes building muscles. The new Parita is not just concerned with what she sees, she focuses on how she feels. She doesn’t strive for perfection, she strives to be happy. And she finally realizes that the number on the scale is only one piece of the puzzle.
I hope y’all have a great night! I thought I’d end this super wordy post with more words…ha! Here are two beautiful quotes that inspire me and remind me of how far I’ve come in the past year or so…
“The most important opinion you have is the one you have of yourself, and the most significant things you say all day are those things you say to yourself.” – Unknown Author
“I was always looking outside myself for strength and confidence but it comes from within. It is there all the time.” – Anna Freud
0 thoughts on “Weighty Issues”
Omg we are one in the same. I use to be owned by the scale. If the scale didn’t go along with what I wanted I was going to have a horrible day that involved minimal eating. It was a destructive cycle and I’m not going by the scale anymore. Fit= happiness, not being skinny 😀
You are so right. Being skinny doesn’t mean much if the strength isn’t there (inner and outer)!
Yayyyy I love the new you! =) So ballsy to get a BMI test done… I got a fat caliper test once that was so traumatizing that the results owned me for years. It was a dark dark time.. but now i’ll gladly get one out of curiosity =) and i love that you strive to be strong! <3 my hero! =)
Thanks, Jenn! Being strong is so much better then being skinny 🙂
Congrats on getting past your struggles with the scale! I used to be obsessed with being at a low weight too, but then I realized that I was miserable at that weight. I’d much rather be a few pounds heavier and happy! I totally agree with Jenny that being healthy means being happy, not being skinny!
Amen to that!
Yeahhhh girl! I don’t even get on the scale, hahaha 🙂
Great post, and well done for seeing the light! 🙂 I am exactly the same now, I want to be happy, healthy and strong… actively working towards these 3 things alone keeps you looking your absolute best regardless of the number on the scales! 🙂
Yep! I like looking at my health with a broader perspective with lots of different measures. It’s more telling and it leads to a happier sense of self. 🙂
I’m glad you’re able to get above and beyond your issues! It’s important to be happy with yourself- always! 🙂
Good for you!!! (And OMG you had a GRAPH?! That has MBA written all over it. HAHA!)
I especially love that Ann Freud quote.
Have a great weekend!!
Hahaha…never thought about it, but you’re right, it does have MBA written all over it!
beautiful!! i love this 🙂
Good for you for breaking free from the clutches of the scale. I check myself weekly at the gym just to see where I am but it never dictates my outlook about myself. The weekly check in helps me figure out whether my routine needs some ramping up or I am on the right path.
Have a good rest of the weekend, Parita!
I prefer the weekly weigh ins too 🙂
It’s so refreshing to hear someone speak honestly about issues with weight as I think we all try to act like it doesn’t bother us, but truthfuly I think for most people they can say the scale “owned” them at some point in their lives! I use my scale more as a guide than anything. I know the range in which I fluctuate so if I see a change more that the norm (whether high or low) I know I’m either doing something thats effective or I need to maybe cut back and work a little harder. I try not to let it set the tone for my day, but good for you for letting go and just focusing on being healthy and happy:)
Thanks, Jess! 🙂
Great, honest post! I used to be the same in that scales dictated my life and emotions! I got so fed up and gave up weigh ins, with the exception if doctors office! After not weighing myself in like 6 months, I was pleased to find myself half a lb lighter in my last visit a few weeks ago! I’m all for going by my clothes as an indicator now, works for me & keeps me sane!
I am trying to go by the fit of my clothes too. It’s actually a great way to go. 🙂
Hi Parita, My name is Divya and I am a huge fan of your blog! I love reading about another Indian girl, who maintians the indian stuff but shows there is sooo much more! I have been so inspired by yours and a couple of other blogs, that i started one of my own! Thank you again.
Thank you so much! I am honored and looking forward to reading your new blog 🙂
I’m so glad you posted this – I actually posted about something similar on Saturday – but for me, it’s about maintaining my weight loss. I totally TOTALLY freak out, at least internally, when I see the scale move up, even if it is weight that I need to gain. I’d like to think that I can some day NOT weigh myself everyday, but it’s something that I’m working towards!
FYI: I haven’t started the weight spreadsheet… yet…
I think we all should do what works for us. I think if you want to weigh yourself everyday, you should go for it. For me, it took over my thoughts and actions..which just wasn’t very healthy! Only you know what’s good for you!!!
Such a great post! SO many people rely on the scale as their measuer of success and it’s not a good measure at all!