Everyone has been talking for days about the big storm we were going to have last night. At school, the teachers even sent home extra homework because school was sure to be canceled from the nine inches of snow that we were predicted to get. I could hear it raining all night long, and then this morning, it was quiet. So I looked outside to see the mountains of snow we'd gotten...
Yesterday, I was so tempted to run on the treadmill because I was dying to watch some more of Sons of Anarchy, but since the weather was supposed to get bad, I ran outside instead while I was still able to. I felt good, and went farther than I'd planned so that I could be a little closer to my 100 miles/month goal. I was happy I went a couple miles extra, so that Thursday will be a sure-thing to get in my 100th mile.
Speaking of weight, today is Wednesday Weigh-in. I was happy to see 131 on the scale this morning...
This brings me to a question I got from a reader in an e-mail last night, and I thought it would be perfect to write about today. She asked, "I'd love to hear your thoughts on fluctuations in your weight now that you're maintaining. Do you weight yourself daily? How does that affect how/what you eat? What weight 'counts' each week, etc."
My mindset over weighing in has changed quite a bit over the past couple of months of maintenance. I've always been a daily weigher, and that hasn't changed. I know weighing every day is not for everyone, but I like to see how certain foods affect my weight (like the tapenade, for example). I know that small fluctuations are normal, and I don't get bothered if I see the scale go up a pound overnight.
Since reaching maintenance, I still weigh every day, but I only "count" the weight that I am on Wednesday mornings. (I picked Wednesday just because it was the day that I started losing weight back in 2009). Throughout the past couple of months, I've seen numbers as low as 129 and as high as 134.5, but if it's not on a Wednesday, then I don't pay much attention to it.
I don't let the number on the scale affect my eating habits at all (assuming that I'm staying on plan, and not binge eating!). Since I'm doing WW, I just follow the program and trust that my weight will stay pretty steady on a weekly basis. I tend to use my weekly PP in large chunks at a time, so my weight might go up by two pounds overnight, but then I don't have a lot of weekly PP left to do that every day, so my weight naturally goes back down a little.
But I don't look at the scale one day and see, for example, 134, and think, "Oh no! I'd better eat a little less today" or "I'd better cut back on sodium" or something. I just follow the program and trust that my weight will stay fairly steady on a weekly basis.
Here is a graph of my daily weight for the entire month of February... see how it fluctuates each day?
But my Wednesday Weigh-in numbers were much more consistent: 131, 132, 130.5, and 131.
Maintenance has made me much more relaxed about what the scale says. When I was losing weight, I always used to focus on my Wednesday Weigh-in being lower than it was the previous week. Now, I just follow the program, and my weight is what it is on Wednesday, and I don't stress about it. If it's up a little, I know that's normal.
Because this is the first time in my life that I'm not actually trying to lose weight, I feel a huge sense of relief. Until December 12, 2012 (the day I reached goal weight), I was always either actively trying to lose weight, or wishing I was losing, or angry with myself for not losing--it was stressful and unnecessary, and I wasted a lot of time thinking about that stuff. Now that I'm not trying to lose, I feel a sense of freedom from all those negative thoughts, and I'm much happier with myself.
It's all kind of hard to explain, but if you've struggled with your weight for your entire life like I have, then you probably understand. I just wish I had been able to reach this place of being happy with my weight before I actually hit goal! But I guess the struggle is what makes it so rewarding to be here now.
If there is one bit of wisdom I can share from all this, it's not to put too much focus on the scale--if you're doing everything right, and the scale isn't showing what you'd like, just trust the process and don't give up! I could easily see 134 and think, "I'm up 3 pounds! This is ridiculous. I might as well just eat ____" (sounds dumb, but that's how I used to think back in the day!) Instead, I just think, "Holy tapenade!" and keep on doing what I've been doing, and trust that my weight will go back to normal ;)