Come on, don’t most of us deep down, know what we need to do to lose weight?
We may not have university degrees in nutrition, and it can be confusing to know what we should and shouldn’t be eating with all the conflicting information out there, but deep down I believe that most of us know when we should be eating a little less and moving a little more; really we do, don’t we?
So why is it so easy for some of us (even when we have seen success and lost a couple of stones) to get stuck? I believe it all comes down to ‘motivation’. Motivation is the key. Staying motivated forever and ever is hard work at the best of times, but when a set of scales is involved it can become complicated!
So let me clarify this before I get thousands of comments about how wrong I am. (In my dreams!….thousands of comments…yes please! It can be lonely here you know….with just Mr Blog for company!) I have weighed thousands of people in my time, and witnessed first-hand how motivating it is to see a positive result at the scales. When you are doing great and on a roll and the number on the scales is going down each week-that can be incredibly motivating and is also great feedback on behaviour changes you have implemented in the previous week. (I have explored the best way to use the results at the scales before-click here if you want to go there.)
HOWEVER there is a very high chance that standing on the scales could demotivate you. There are only 3 possible results- a loss, a gain or a stay the same. One of those results will almost certainly result in disappointment, which in turn could result in a sense of ‘what’s the point’ which equals ‘not motivated’. Here are some other possible scenarios:
An unexpected gain could mean devastation which = de-motivation.
A stay the same after a ‘good’ week could = de-motivation
Even a loss that is not big enough could = de motivation
If you are in a fat rut (or a weight-loss plateau-you choose which you want to call it), I urge you to ask yourself this question- ‘Is standing on the scales every week beneficial in keeping me consistently motivated?’
I have asked myself the question and the answer is ‘NO! That’s not to say I will never weigh myself ever again because weighing is one of the simplest ways of getting feedback on your weight loss efforts. But I have decided that I will only weigh myself monthly, and only on a ‘slim’ day (I know you know what I mean) and on a day where I feel I can handle any result- a day when I am feeling strong and positive. This feels like a scary experiment to me and I will feed back the results honestly to you, I promise. I guess in the end I am doing it because what I was doing before –weighing each week- was not working for me anymore. So far not being preoccupied by the scales is working-I feel so much better about myself and I’m focussing more fully on my food habits and behaviours. Ultimately that’s what needs to change (and stay changed). The number on the scales can end up being nothing more than a niggly distraction.
Please comment below and share your thoughts on how the scales effect your motivation-good and bad. I’m really interested to know……