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Scales Lie

by Meghann on June 1, 2011

I’ve never had a great relationship with scales. Honestly, I didn’t give a flip what they had to say. I was happy with my body and I didn’t want the scale to ruin that. If you asked me what I weighed senior year of high school or freshmen year of college I couldn’t tell you. I just didn’t care.

Then my my first year out of school my clothes started to get tighter and all of a sudden I wasn’t happy with the way I looked. I began deleting photos of myself (I was the photo queen!) and I stopped wanting to go out. I was unhappy and didn’t know what to do about it.

The more unhappy I became, the further I strayed from the scale. Only this time it wasn’t that I didn’t care what the scale had to say, it was because I was afraid of what the scale might say. Ignorance is bliss, right? Unfortunately weight isn’t something you can ignore forever, eventually I was forced to step on a scale at a doctor’s appointment and came face to face with a number I didn’t want to see.

I still remember the day leading up to the doctor’s appointment. Knowing that I was going to be weighed put me over the edge. I was full of anxiety and denial. My heart raced as the nurse led me to the back room where the scale was, my hands began to sweat as I removed any unnecessary bulk, and I became light headed as I stepped up. By the time the nurse read the number I was in so much of a fog that I barely heard her. That didn’t stop the tears from falling.

That moment was when I decided to stop ignoring the scale and instead began trying to beat it. I began my healthy journey and little by little I began to win each battle. Every week I would step up on the scale and be greeted by a small victory. I probably weighed myself more in that post-doctor appointment span of a year than I had in my whole life leading up to that point.

Admittedly, I became obsessed with the scale. I maintained my weight to a T and kept myself accountable with weekly visits to the scale via my local Publix. I never purchased an actual scale fearing my little ritual would turn into an all out obsession.

Then the numbers stopped being nice. I was up a pound, I was down a pound, I was up three pounds, I was down four more, etc. etc. I couldn’t take it anymore – I knew I had to stop. Then, sometime last October I stopped stepping on the scale. I gave it up cold turkey and never looked back.

I felt free again not worrying about what the scale had to say. I lived my life the way I wanted to and felt great about my choices. An extra dessert? Why not! Beer every night? Well, if you insist! Without the scale I had nothing to keep me accountable and sure enough I fell right back into some old habits. I ate larger portions, drank more than usual, and had unaccountable snacks just because.

Unfortunately with old habits came back old frustrations. Tighter clothes, photos I was unhappy with, and an ever mounting fear of the scale developed. I’m only human, these feelings can’t be pushed down. As much as I want them to….

I was caught in limbo of feeling free and wanting to fit into my jeans again. I was so confused, I had no idea what to do. I felt something building up inside of me ready to explode.

Last week it exploded.

It was like deja vu walking up to the scale in Publix. All those same fears and anxiety from that day so long ago at the Doctor’s Office came flooding back to me. Again, I was afraid of what the scale was going to tell me. I was afraid it was going to be a number I didn’t want to see. My hands began to sweat, my head began to spin, and I literally had to remind myself to breathe in and out.

Stepping on to the scale and reading the number was like crashing into a nightmare (I know, melodramatic much?) It was not where I wanted to be. I wasn’t happy.

All those old feelings returned to me and I panicked. I didn’t want this, I didn’t want to feel this way. I hate scales. I HATE scales.

I overreacted. This crazy person thinking this was NOT me. It was a lunatic who wasn’t happy with herself. I was happy with myself. I was happy with where I was at in life and I was happy with my body… right?

Later that evening I was joined by a certain monthly visitor that explained my emotional reaction and the feared number. I was bloated, retaining water, and in the worst state of mind. I stepped on the scale this morning and was down 4 lbs from my little breakdown last week. It was still not a number I wanted to be at, but it reminded me more than ever that scales lie.

Scales tell us nothing, which is why I’m faced with this never-ending battle of ignoring them. Truthfully the only reason I stepped on the scale in the first place was to get a weight for a before of my New Rules of Lifting for Women Plan challenge (notice how I never ended up disclosing the number). If it wasn’t for that I wouldn’t have come anywhere near the scale.

If a scale gives me that much anxiety then why should I put myself through it? No thank you.

I’m at a loss right now. Part of me wants to vow to not step on another one and part of me wants to return to see if I can get back down to my ‘happy weight.’ Luckily, the part that wants to never step on one again is much, much stronger. That part wants to kick ass at her Half Ironman in September and knows worrying about a pointless number isn’t going to do that.

I’m strong, I’m a runner, and I’m me. I don’t need a number to rule my life. I just need to keep doing what I’m doing and I’ll be fine.

I choose happiness.

Good-bye forever scale. I never want you to make me feel that bad again.

1 Meg June 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm

This is beautiful, Meghann! And so are you. Too many of us let the number define us – we NEED to realize that we aren’t a number, but a person, a soul and are defined by everything and anything but a number.
Meg recently posted..Gluten Free Blueberry Coconut Muffins

2 samantha @ fresh n fit June 1, 2011 at 1:05 pm

I think this is such an incredible post, Meghann. So many people can relate — the numbers become all that you can think about. Good for you for staying above all this and acknowledging the behavior you want to change! It’s truly inspirational <3

3 Sana June 1, 2011 at 1:05 pm

Scales make you feel like shit. The end. You look awesome and you have fun with life, that is all πŸ™‚

4 Katy Widrick June 1, 2011 at 1:06 pm

Best line:

“I choose happiness.”</strong?

Runner up:

“If a scale gives me that much anxiety then why should I put myself through it?”

I’m sure you’ll get lots of support on this one, and I wanted to be on record that I think posting this will be freeing. There’s no right answer — I have sworn off the scale before, only to return for weekly weigh-ins. I’m hoping that the same courage you’re showing here will help you no matter WHAT happens the next time you do decide to weigh in.

And if you decide to go all “Office Space” on your scale, will you be sure to videotape it?

5 Ali June 1, 2011 at 1:07 pm

High five for happiness. I think there are so many better ways to measure your body than on a scale. The way your clothes fit is a great way to tell if you’ve gained or lost weight, but most importantly, I think, is how strong you feel. Last year I had been sick and stressed and due to malnutrition lost some weight. All of my clothes were suddenly too big and I didn’t hate how I looked β€”Β but I hated how difficult it had become to get through a 5-mile run, which previously was easy for me.

I agree that a number, whether it’s a clothing size or a number on a scale, shouldn’t rule your life. Keep that attitude.

6 Amber from Girl with the Red Hair June 1, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Great post, Meghann. I am on the same bandwagon as you – back in January I wrote a post about how I’m DONE with the scale and calorie counting. When I’m on my deathbed one day, will those last “10 pounds” really matter? No, no they won’t. And that’s the way I try to look at things.

That being said, I definitely still have down days and “fat days”. I own a scale, but weigh myself maybe once ever 3 weeks or so. Last week I stepped on and saw a very high number that really scared me. But what scared me even more was how a stupid number could set my tone for the whole day.

FEELING good is more important to me than being the right weight and for awhile there I was sinking back into my old binge eating/crappy eating ways and I was NOT feeling good. For the last couple weeks I’ve been getting away from that and starting to feel better than ever.

Thanks for being so honest in this post. I think this something A LOT of women struggle with. You’re going to kick butt in your half-ironman no matter what the scale says!

7 michelle June 1, 2011 at 1:09 pm

I hate that the scale has the power to determine how I feel that day. That’s why I put the scale away. I hate how it makes me feel.
michelle recently posted..Why I Run

8 Chloe (South Beach Girl) June 1, 2011 at 1:09 pm

This is wonderful, honest, and emotional post Meghann. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing this. Right now I’m battling myself over whether or not I want to buy a scale because I have had the same issues. I’m stuck between wanting to lose weight and using that as a tool but also knowing it’s easy for me to get out of control and weight myself multiple times a day and can become an unhealthy obsession.

I think most women struggle with these same issues and that it’s hard enough to try and eat well and stay active on top of weighing or measuring ourselves to fit into our definition of “healthy”. YOU are an incredible inspiration and I am so glad to hear that just like the rest of us you are human and you have battles with yourself but you also choose to fight against those negative voices and thoughts because you know you are worth so much more. It makes me think twice about buying a scale, that’s for sure.
Chloe (South Beach Girl) recently posted..Hiking- Rivers- and Booze

9 Sarah for Real June 1, 2011 at 1:10 pm

Go Meghann!!!

This is a great decision! Though it sounds like you’re saying that not using a scale and being at your happy weight can’t go together? Maybe that’s just the flow of the post, but I think they CAN and DO go together. It’s just your happy “weight” might turn into happy “jeans” or happy “PR” instead. I like the sound of that πŸ™‚

10 Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday June 1, 2011 at 1:10 pm

I broke up with my scale a while ago. I still step on it from time to time but I can get completely obsessed with it if I let myself weigh in too regularly.

It’s unreliable and it lies.

11 Lindsey June 1, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Good for you! You are right that you are in great shape and you are strong and shouldn’t live by a number. I am not to that point yet and own a scale, which I step on weekly. I hope to one day also be able to say good-bye to my scale!
Lindsey recently posted..Almost Summer Saturday

12 linz June 1, 2011 at 1:12 pm

I’ve been facing that same scale anxiety lately and I absolutely hate it. So glad to know I’m not alone!
linz recently posted..Joe Public- A River Recap

13 Sarah @ The Strength of Faith June 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

I am NOT a fan of the scale. For me, I became entirely too obsessive and think that healthy eating and living should have more to do with look and feel than a number. I actually get frustrated with healthy living bloggers than emphasize so much on the scale. Don’t let your life be defined by a number! Let your life be defined by YOU.

14 Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run June 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

I couldn’t live without my scale. It tells me when I need to make better choices and when I’m on target. When I didn’t have it, I always made the wrong choices. And although the number I see might set the tone for the day here and there, I can fix it by making better choices and working out. When I didn’t weigh myself, I just gained weight and felt miserable all the time because I wasn’t happy with how I looked. So, I think the scale can work either way for someone. For me it’s a good thing, but for you, I can see how it isn’t. πŸ™‚
Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run recently posted..Electric Daisy Carnival Day 2

15 Paige June 1, 2011 at 8:39 pm

I’m with you, Paula! The scale helps me gauge where I am, and helps me decide if I’m on the right track or if I need to modify! You said it well!
Paige recently posted..My Fab 5!

16 Karen June 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Amen. Don’t ever let that scale dictate your self worth. That half iron man is going to require you to be in the best shape of your life, something the scale will never be indicative of. I’m sorry for all the anxiety, but can totally relate. I’m so proud of you for this post and your ability to realize you are so much more than just a number. πŸ™‚
Karen recently posted..Marathon Doctors Rock

17 Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food June 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm

Thank you so much for sharing about an issue that so many readers struggle with.

You are so right that you are not defined by a number and most certainly not by your weight! You are an amazing woman because of who you are and what you do!

Good for you for getting rid of the scale! πŸ™‚

18 RunEatRepeat June 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm

Thank you. I totally agree that the scale should not hold such importance as a measurement. You look great no matter what it said.

The numbers that matter are the number of people that love you, the number of birthdays you get, the number of times you laugh in a day, the number of races you’ve run…

19 Amy June 1, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Well said.
Amy recently posted..strawberry jam forever

20 carissa June 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm

I love love this blog! I had a mini breakdown the same day you shared your scale drama via fb. Its good to feel like we are not alone in our weight woes and when we are healthy and active that’s more important than a number!

21 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife June 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm

Girl, you are SO right. you are WAY more than a number. Besides, fitness, being able to do hard things, and feeling awesome about yourself is the ONLY measure we need. If you reaaallly want a number measure, body fat percentage is a WAY better way to know how ‘healthy’ we are.

The scale is dumb, and is there to torment those who are susceptible. Next time, at the doctor, you can ask them not to weigh you (for personal reasons), or just tell them you don’t want to see or know the number. works for me <—I went through anorexic and then bulimic tendencies for years….and was OBSESSED with the scale. Haven't stepped on a scale in months, and I like it that way, because I FEEL amazing πŸ™‚

Besides, you're amazing, and you touch a lot of lives, so a stupid little number should not dictate your worth!! <3

22 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat June 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

I am SO glad you decided to post this Meghann. You are so much more than just a number on a scale – you’re beautiful, you’re strong, you’re a swimmer, a cyclist, a runner, a blogger, a social media whiz, a friend, a blend, a daughter, a girlfriend, a chef, an Attune ambassador, a key part of the HLS, an izonOrlando star, and oh so much more!!! πŸ™‚
Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat recently posted..The Good and the Bad

23 Gavi @ Gavi Gets Going! June 1, 2011 at 1:22 pm

Thank you for this honest, heartfelt post. I know this is an issue that so many of us struggle with, and I wish you strength and positivity and self-love in this emotional time. My relationship with the scale has changed dramatically over the last four years as I lost 60 pounds and eventually became so obsessed with my weight that I sunk to an unhealthy place. I have worked really hard to develop a much more positive, loving, gentle relationship with myself over the past two years, and the scale now occupies only a tiny portion of my thoughts and emotions. It can be difficult to adjust to feeling amazing about ourselves without the number on the scale as a guideline, but I wish you all the best as you continue to focus on being the strongest, healthiest, happiest YOU possible!
Gavi @ Gavi Gets Going! recently posted..Point Reyes Weekend of Fun

24 Heather June 1, 2011 at 1:22 pm

I already said this, but I think you look way better and healthier now then you did when you were really skinny before (you are still really skinny, but before it was just too much). Your face looked sunk in, and your hair looked thinner, etc etc. Now, I look at you and see beauty, you look much healthier, and you even seem happier.
Don’t try to lose weight. In the end, weight doesn’t matter. Just focus on health. You have an incredible body that does incredible things.
Also focus on the people that mean the most to you. They love you no matter WHAT you look like, even if you gained 50 pounds! They will always love you. That’s what matters. A number doesn’t.
PLEASE remember this!

25 Heather June 1, 2011 at 1:23 pm

AND keep living life. Living life brings happiness. Please don’t start restricting! I hope that isn’t your plan!

26 mindy @ just a one girl revolution. June 1, 2011 at 1:23 pm

This is an awesome post, Meghann! Thanks for sharing your heart!

I go back and forth in my relationship with the scale. Knowing I still have about 20-30 pounds left I want to lose, I feel like I have to get on and keep track of my progress. But, then there are days that I can’t help but feel like I’m eating well the majority of the time and I try to stay active, so why should the number matter.

I’ve come to a point where I can still weigh in, but not feel like that number dictates how I feel about myself. I’m so much more than that number!
mindy @ just a one girl revolution. recently posted..national running day

27 Lucy June 1, 2011 at 1:24 pm

A very eloquent response to a very sensitive issue. Well done for being brave and writing through it- so glad to hear you’re doing what’s right for you!

28 Christine @ Burning It Off June 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

I can definitely relate. I never used to weigh myself but once I started it became an obsession and the daily fluctuations would drive me nuts… at the end of the day though, it really is not the greatest measure of progress given all the factors that affect your day to day weight, especially if you`re in the process of trying to gain muscle.
Christine @ Burning It Off recently posted..Macro-managing

29 Roselyn June 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Thank you for this. In the past year and a half I have gone through my own weightloss journey, and while I am still trying to get my pre-baby body back, I have stopped stepping on the scale. I started training for a half marathon and didn’t care what the scale had to say. I recently stepped back on it and felt defeated. Its funny how that little piece of machinery can make us feel that way.

I have decided that, while I am still a work in progress, I am no longer focusing on a number on the scale. I am going to celebrate how far I’ve come, what my body is capable of, and living a healthy lifestyle. πŸ™‚

Love your blog…keep it up. πŸ™‚
Roselyn recently posted..Potty Training Woes

30 Amy June 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Scales are for fish, girl.

How about committing to no scales just for now? It doesn’t have to be a black-and-white, no-weighing-myself-for-the-rest-of-my-life kind of deal – but for right now, ignoring the numbers might bring you some peace. Maybe in the future it’ll be a different situation, but focus on what’s going on right now and maybe that will make things a little better for you. It’s SO easy to get caught up in that obsession, too, so anything you can do to stop that before it starts will be a good thing. It’s GREAT that you stopped the cycle of negative thinking and realized that scales lie when they try to dictate our self-worth. Keep reminding yourself of that!

And thanks for sharing this. Never feel like you have to disclose more than you want to for the sake of the blog, so if you don’t want to share your current weight, don’t feel obligated to! It’s no one’s business but yours.
Amy recently posted..strawberry jam forever

31 Hillary June 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm

I totally agree with Amy—it doesn’t have to be a black/white thing, but right now, weighing yourself clearly isn’t making you feel better (or more productive!). Do what works for you, focus on how you feel, and you’ll be good. You’re strong and your body has done incredible things for you. What a great thing to be proud of!
Hillary recently posted..Super Cool and Minty Fresh

32 Lauren @ Team Giles June 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

I totally can relate to your relationship with the scale. Even when I was at my heaviest or at my smallest (now), I never wanted to step on a scale, because the numbers were all irrelevant to me…. Because if I weight 150 and I’m 5’10, I’m going to look different than say a girl who’s 5’0″ and weighs 150 pounds, right? So in my mind the number doesn’t even matter. Its how I feel IN my own skin, am I happy with how I look? Am I comfortable being me? Then whatever that scale has to say doesn’t really matter.
Lauren @ Team Giles recently posted..The USDA to change the Food Pyramid this Week

33 KCLAnderson (Karen) June 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I stopped weighing myself over two years ago and it is one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done. I know it’s not for everyone, but I know it was the right thing for me. I make better choices, and those choices are not made from a place of desperation…they are made from a place of true self love. I am certainly more fit than I was two years ago (and I have photos on my blog to prove it) and I am wearing clothes that are one to two sizes smaller πŸ™‚

My current mantra: “my body transforms positively through self love.”
KCLAnderson (Karen) recently posted..The World Peace Diet

34 Holly @ The Runny Egg June 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I’m glad you decided to post this after all — I have had a rough relationship with the scale as well and only recently have I been able to check in and not totally freak out about increases in weight.

I know when my body feels best — when my clothes fit! And that has nothing to do with what number the scale says.
Holly @ The Runny Egg recently posted..Tomato Face

35 Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun June 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I’m glad you decided to hit publish. πŸ˜‰

You’re gorgeous, strong, determined, and have so much going for you. Nothing should take that away from you. Although I know how the scale can get the best of us. Oh, do I know. It can be a useful tool…but if it ever becomes obsessive or causes anxiety like that then it shouldn’t be involved. There are so many other things to focus on for healthy living. And you are without a doubt healthy!
Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun recently posted..Self-Love Reflection- Overcoming Binging

36 Cara June 1, 2011 at 1:28 pm

Thank you for sharing your journey with the scale. It is always a touchy subject and something many of us (including myself) have struggled with. At the end of the day if you are happy, your clothes fit, and you are active and eating well that is all that matters. Don’t let numbers rule your life, because they change all the time depending on water intake, amount of strength training, etc! Unless you are legitimately unhealthy and have reason for concern there is no reason to step on a scale, because you are right… numbers lie.
Cara recently posted..Fitness update

37 J June 1, 2011 at 1:29 pm

I totally feel you on this. Love the honesty of this post and your kick ass attitude! Sometimes happiness IS a choice, and this served as a greater reminder of that.
J recently posted..Positive- confident and open

38 Rachel June 1, 2011 at 1:30 pm

I think that the phrase “happy weight” and “feel great weight” should be banned.

39 Heidi June 1, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Agree with this! Those terms just set you up to tie your emotional well-being to your weight.

40 Amy June 1, 2011 at 3:14 pm

Wow – I’d never thought about it that way but it’s true!
Amy recently posted..strawberry jam forever

41 Leelu June 1, 2011 at 1:31 pm

There’s a saying that “Scales are for fish and not for people”. Your life sounds so much freer without the number controlling it. From personal experience I can tell you that basing your happiness on a number is the best way to ensure misery.
I love this post, love your attitude and love your honesty. Rock on!
Leelu recently posted..I like to move it- move it

42 Jessica June 1, 2011 at 1:32 pm

Major scale anxiety after this past week. Ryan’s fam was down, then more company came down.. all we did was eat out. BUT… I’m not gonna bother stepping on it to see the damage, just going to get back into my usual routine and keep on keeping on. πŸ™‚ You look beautiful and you have nothing to worry about.
Jessica recently posted..Meet the Parents

43 Katie @ Life... Discombobulated June 1, 2011 at 1:32 pm

Great post!!! So very honest and TRUE. Stepping on the scale is one way to keep myself in check, but it has so much more potential to make me feel bad then it does to make me feel good. When I’m eating well, exercising, and living a generally balanced life, I FEEL better. This is the important thing.
Katie @ Life… Discombobulated recently posted..Unsettled

44 Theresa June 1, 2011 at 1:32 pm

I have a feeling I’m going to be one of your only readers/commenters that feels this way, but I actually NEED the scale. I weight myself just about every day and rely on the scale to keep me on track. BUT, I have worked very VERY hard at not letting the number on the scale influence how I feel about myself.

I KNOW that my weight fluctuates daily – but it’s looking past this daily number and seeing the TREND that keeps me going. Right now I need the numbers to trend downwards as I’m still about 30lbs from my happy weight. If I see the numbers trending up, I can look back & see that I’ve been taking it too easy. And when I get to my happy weight? Yes, I’ll back off – but I’ll still weight myself regularly…if for nothing more than to ensure I’m trending “flat”.

All that said, major kudos to you for having the strength and determination to say no to the scale for good!
Theresa recently posted..Tailwind or Myth

45 Kristina June 4, 2011 at 2:27 pm

I haven’t read through all of the comments, but I agree with this.
I’ll admit that when I was training for my first tri a few months ago, I couldn’t figure out how much I needed to eat based on my usual eating habits, so I tracked my weight on the scale. Honestly, when I dropped weight, I started to eat more. If I hadn’t done that, I’m not sure that I would have kept my weight at a healthy place.
Kristina recently posted..Hello to June!

46 Jillian @ Reshape Your Life June 1, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I know exactly how that feels. I was addicted to the scale, and it was a hate/hate relationship. I obsessed about every half pound gained or lost over the course of the DAY! Talk about unhealthy… Luckily, I ditched the scale in terms of WEIGHT, but I still use the scale once a month to see the DIFFERENCE between the month before, whether it’s higher or lower dictates nothing except whether I’ve indulged too much… Numbers don’t define me. And I’m glad they don’t define you either!
Jillian @ Reshape Your Life recently posted..Cinnamon Raisin Oats

47 Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy" Girl June 1, 2011 at 1:34 pm

Yeah girl! Way to be πŸ™‚ I struggle with the scale all the time. What you wrote about avoiding it, eating bigger portions, drinking beer, etc. – that’s the phase I’m in right now. I’m not exactly comfortable in this phase so I’m hoping I can come up with a happy medium. Thanks for sharing your story!
Jamie aka “Sometimes Healthy” Girl recently posted..Why I Love Summer Running in NYC

48 Faith @ lovelyascharged June 1, 2011 at 1:34 pm

Reading this really concreted my decision to ditch the scale. I committed to ditch it just for June because I was terrified of saying I’d ditch it forever (I’m very afraid of not knowing what the number says, even though I know that the number has no bearing on who I am). I’m feeling more and more like it was the right decision to kick that dang thing out of my bathroom. NO MORE obsession with the stupid contraption!

49 Karen @ Run Shop Travel June 1, 2011 at 1:37 pm

I definitely think that the scale is not the whole picture; but it is one of many tools we can use to gauge our health.

The closer you are to your “happy weight” the more frustrating the scale can be. I lost 107 lbs and got within 8 lbs of my goal and the scale was driving me nuts with random fluctuations. Eventually I stopped watching what I ate and gained about 55 lbs back.

Every person is different and has their own opinion on the helpful-ness of the scale. For me, I know when I am “avoiding” it, it means I am engaging in unhealthy eating behviors (binge eating) and in denial.

I think we can all agree being 63 or so lbs overweight isn’t healthy; so when I am trying to get to my goal weight, weighing in a few times a week keeps me in check.

I know not to let minor fluctuations tick me off and I have learned a lot about my body. For example, the day after a strength training workout the scale is always up from retaining water to repair my muscles. Learning this, has taught me to keep off the scale the day after a strength training workout.

I definitely think there is a fine line with wanting information and being obsessed with the number so people need to figure out what works for them.
Karen @ Run Shop Travel recently posted..Week 2

50 paula June 2, 2011 at 10:29 am

Yes, this. The scale CAN be bad for some people, but for others it is a valuable tool. Everyone just needs to find what works for them.

51 Jess@atasteofconfidence June 1, 2011 at 1:37 pm

I can relate to this so much. I recently tried to stop weighing, but I do feel a little less accountable. I really don’t think it is worth the anxiety. We are so much more than a number, and I am glad you made the right decision.
Jess@atasteofconfidence recently posted..Almost Wordless Memorial Day Weekend

52 Ashley @ The Drunk Squash June 1, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Here here! I hate the scale, it has led to too much time worrying about a number that is, ultimately, completely flawed! You can go to the mountains and immediately lose a few pounds, and that just goes to show how silly and unreliable the scale is. What really matters is happiness with yourself, and if a lingering unhappiness with your bod sent you to the scale in the first place, you can just skip the trauma of scale time and move straight to feeling better about yourself. Screw the scale!
Ashley @ The Drunk Squash recently posted..Loafin’ Around

53 Grace June 1, 2011 at 1:39 pm

Great post:) I think I am a scale avoider/ always anxious before “stepping on”. I am afraid of it but not exactly I’m not happy with being “free” from it and that it where I want to be someday. I think it’ll take a little time…
Grace recently posted..Sand Dunes- Ice Cream- and Puppies

54 Linda @ Lemons June 1, 2011 at 1:40 pm

I hate the scale, but I’m obsessed with it. I weigh myself 3 or 4 times a day, and I know intellectually that is ridiculous. Not to mention whatever number is on the scale dictates my mood for the day, which is also ridiculous because I eat a very healthy well rounded diet. I’d like to get to the place where you are, and I hope I will some day.
Linda @ Lemons recently posted..Another Scorcher

55 Kelly June 1, 2011 at 1:41 pm

I love the honesty in this post. I think almost all women have some sort of scale anxiety. I know I do. I become all consumed with the number that reflects back at me. I haven’t stepped on the scale in over a month. I won’t say goodbye to it forever but just for a little while.

56 Sarah @ See Sarah Eat June 1, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Thanks so much for writing this! I go back and forth with the scale too. It helped me a lot in my original weight loss journey but it has mostly be an annoyance as I’ve been trying to maintain the past three years. Sometimes it just doesn’t make any sense when how I feel, how my clothes fit and how I think I look does. I’m trying to worry about that number less and less. If I have a bad week, I don’t need a scale to tell me what I already know and same goes with a good week. I quit using my scale at home months ago and it has given me so much peace. But I still step on the scale at my work gym every so often to check in. I’m hoping eventually I will give that up too πŸ™‚
Sarah @ See Sarah Eat recently posted..Back to one

57 Lauren June 1, 2011 at 1:43 pm

This was really heart felt and that I why I love your blog!

Dont go by number- go by feel. Since I have been training for my half and full Ironmans, I have gained a few pounds but I honestly feel strong and powerful. I eat alot because my body needs the fuel. Keep that in mind as your HIM approaches. Throw that pesky scale away!
Lauren recently posted..Eagleman- The Goals and some sap

58 Julie (A Case of the Runs) June 1, 2011 at 1:44 pm

Strange. I had a brief email exchange related to this yesterday. My friend and I are graduating this Sunday, and she remarked that she didn’t like the way the gown fit (too huge). I told her that the site we ordered them from based them on height/weight, and then suddenly she disclosed her height and weight to me — 5’8″, 130 lbs. I wrote back saying that I am 7 inches shorter than her and don’t weigh too much less (proportionally) than that. My response was light-hearted, because by now, I’m pretty satisfied with the way my body is when I am not bloated, and my body fat percentage is right where it needs to be.

Thankfully, my friend is very great and replied that she and her husband believed me to have excess muscle weight and look like a trim, toned person. And I’ll take that.
Julie (A Case of the Runs) recently posted..Bamboodles No More- So This is How a Real Noodle Tastes

59 Michelle@ Crazy*Running*Legs June 1, 2011 at 1:45 pm

I don’t own a scale for this same reason. I will occassionally check it at Publix, but I know if I owned one I would be obsessed about it. I think it works for some people, but not all people.

While happiness is NOT defined by a number – it does feel damn good to reach your goals. Finding alternatives to numbers on scale can be tricky — but clothes fitting, and your weight getting smaller definitely beats anything the scale says!
Michelle@ Crazy*Running*Legs recently posted..Confession Wednesday- Celebrities

60 Julie June 1, 2011 at 1:47 pm

“Later that evening I was joined by a certain monthly visitor that explained my emotional reaction and the feared number”

remember that time you didn’t even get a period? it’s because your “happy weight” was probably NOT making your body very happy. embrace the few pounds you gained; you’re by no means heavy so in the big scheme of things, it’s nothing. Don’t let a number ruin your life.

61 Angela June 1, 2011 at 1:47 pm

Thank you for publishing this post! I feel like I’m reading my own words. I go back and forth between not stepping on a scale at all and living life and being happy not thinking about how much I weigh and getting on the scale every morning and feeling horrible about myself for the rest of the day when it doesn’t tell me what I want to hear.
The past few weeks I have really been trying to stop obsessing over it because like you said they do lie and they do not measure your health!
Again thank you for this and remember that you are HEALTHY and that’s what matters! Girl your a freaking marathon runner how many people can say that?!
Angela recently posted..Meet the Lady

62 Jody June 1, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Thanks for posting this! I’m a regular reader, but I rarely comment. This post really spoke to me though. I have quite a bit of weight to lose, but I refuse to be tied to a scale. I don’t own one. I hate facing them at the doctor’s office, but like you, I really just try to live a healthy lifestyle, be happy, and go by how I feel and how my clothes fit. I’d honestly rather not even know my number if I had the choice. It’s nice to know I’m not alone in feeling this way as I feel like a lot of my friends are so concerned with the scale and the numbers.

63 Lauren June 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Man I love, love, LOVE this post. Thank you for being so honest, open, and insightful! You are absolutely correct that scales lie — they may tell some of the story, but they don’t account for all of it.

I think you look great — and happy! Isn’t is sad that we sometimes sacrifice our happiness just to be more content with the number we see on the scale? I gave up sacrificing my happiness a long time ago, and I’ll never do it again. We’re human. (More accurately, we’re women — we’re biologically destined to experience weight fluctuations thanks to hormones, etc.). We’re going to be up a pound one day, down a pound the next, and plagued by the idea that our jeans are fitting a little tighter. Feeling strong about who we are — and what we can accomplish — is so much more significant than agonizing over every minute change in our bodies.

Again, thank you for this post. It was lovely!
Lauren recently posted..Run in the New Year

64 kate June 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Yay that you’re getting your period! Didn’t you write a post a while back about not getting it for the longest time and being really worried about your fertility? This goes to show that something positive might potentially come out of the number on the scale going up. Honestly, I stopped reading your blog a while back when you got upset about there only being pasta at a pasta-thon (I know you just don’t like pasta, but it seemed like you were overly stressed about food and I was concerned that I might adopt the same mentality) and when you felt guilty eating a couple of desserts while training for a marathon (I too run and eat really healthy most of the time, but it’s nice to splurge occasionally and not beat ourselves up about it)–I started reading again last fall and I have continued to be amazed at your transition–you seem happy, free, and healthy. You have a great job, a great relationship, an amazing family, tons of good friends, and you are a bad-ass athlete. Plus, your pictures actually look amazing–we’re just so accustomed to looking at photoshopped, underweight women, that real healthy bodies have become something to be ashamed of. I say kudos for eschewing this mandate that we torture ourselves to be a certain weight and just living your life happily. i hope you continue to do so!

65 Elissa June 1, 2011 at 1:54 pm

Why just today I had to step on the scale to figure out what size wetsuit to order for my upcoming triathlon. Let’s just say I weigh 10 more pounds than I thought I did. My first reaction was disbelief. How could that be possible? Then I realized that I’ve been swimming/biking/running like crazy. And that muscle weighs more than fat. Scales lie. I feel good about my body. I like my legs that are getting more strong and toned. It’s all a process. As you begin your training your body will adapt. You will lose fat and gain muscle and the scale never reflects that accurately. Maybe instead of weighing yourself as a before and after take measurements of your arms, waist, legs, etc. That should be a much more accurate way to see how your body has changed through all the training.

Bottom line, scales are dumb.

66 Rachel June 1, 2011 at 1:57 pm

It’s so weird our views of ourselves differ from how others perceive us. I see you as strong, inspirational, friendly, happy, and HEALTHY. That is an amazing accomplishment. Nit-picky scale numbers truly do not mean anything if you are happy, active and eating mindfully (that includes beer and dessert!). You are so fit and amazing to me!! Remember that you inspire others! That itself is incredible.

67 poptartyogini June 1, 2011 at 1:58 pm

love love love!! throw that scale away. i did and it is amazing. i have NO idea how much i weigh and truthfully, i don’t care. but if i did know, i probably would care. does that make sense? anyway, there’s no such thing as a happy weight as far as the numbers go, but there is a such thing as feeling good and living life and loving and being loved. can you put a number on that? i don’t think so.

68 Erica June 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Amen! Great post Meghann!!! I can totally relate to all of the feelings you’ve expressed in this post. Being at the end of my pregnancy, I am not weighed every 2 weeks at the doctors office. I hate it but understand medically why they do it

69 Erica June 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm

now* instead of not sorry about that
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70 Samantha June 1, 2011 at 2:00 pm

I’m so glad you decided to post this, Meghann! It’s a beautiful post and you are absolutely right. Scales lie and you shouldn’t base your happiness on a number. You are an incredible woman and you have a lot of great things in your life. You’re going to do a half ironman!! That’s so amazing, no matter what the freaking scale says!

I really 100% agree that you shouldn’t get back on the scale. When I was training for my first half-marathon, I purposely avoided the scale because I wanted it to be about ME and how STRONG I was. I didn’t care about the weight. When it was done, I weighed myself and saw that I only lost 2 pounds. But you know what? I didn’t CARE. I was a badass for finishing that race.

You’re awesome, don’t ever forget that!
Samantha recently posted..Stretching Before A Run

71 MaryBe June 1, 2011 at 2:02 pm

You are happy, healthy, and beautiful. That’s what our scale is telling you!
MaryBe recently posted..Mac and Cheeze and Lunch with Shrimps

72 Kara June 1, 2011 at 2:09 pm

I haven’t weighed myself in years. Not even when I got pregnant (I weighed in backwards and they just didn’t tell me) and not after I gave birth. We don’t own a scale and we never will. That stupid number can’t ruin my day if I don’t know it πŸ™‚

I love this post <3
Kara recently posted..Happy Birthday to Ms Faith!

73 Juli D. June 1, 2011 at 2:13 pm

I really think this was a brave and important post by you – and I want to give you kudos for that. It’s scary to put your vulnerability out there. In reading it though, it feels like your conclusion is just something you’re telling yourself, not something you believe yet. I think then when you truly believe and realize that your weight doesn’t define you (because it doesn’t, you define you) you will be able to step on a scale w/o anxiety because you know the number truly doesn’t matter – so what’s to be anxious about? I understand your current solution of avoiding the scale, but it seems like your battle with the scale is something bigger – so you’re not really getting to the root of the problem. You’ve had the courage to start getting there, but I would encourage you to continue understanding why a scale can make you feel this bad – when you get a handle on the rest you should be able to face your fear strongly instead of just avoiding it.
Juli D. recently posted..No Longer A Puppy

74 Taylor June 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm

I agree with this. I know the reason why I obsess over my weight and how my clothes fit and I am working through it. Everyone is different and I hope Meghann can work through her anxiety about it. At the end of the day our weight shouldn’t matter if we’re healthy.

75 Allison June 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm

I was thinking this as well. People don’t get upset at a blood glucose tester for telling them their blood sugar. People don’t mad when a HRM tells them how many beats per minute their heart is beating. Those tools don’t make people feel bad. A scale only shows you the force of gravity acting on your body. So feeling bad about that number or that tool I think goes further than just not liking a number.
Allison recently posted..Plateau

76 Taylor June 1, 2011 at 2:15 pm

I could not have said it better myself! I hate going that part of the doctor’s appointment b/c honestly I know if I’m up or down. Like you said, the way clothes fit. I cannot own a scale b/c it dictates my mood too much, if I am at my happy weight (or lower) I’m good and everything is okay. If I am not there, up by 3 lbs or more it totally brings me down and I obsess about it! You look great, you exercise, eat healthy, and enjoy life so that’s all that matters. If only we could tell our heads that and make it believe it too!

77 Jaci June 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Megahnn!! I am an everyday reader, but I pretty much never comment. I want to congratulate you and commend you for tossing the scale! I do weigh myself twice a week so that I can communicate with my personal trainer and change diet as needed (I compete in bikini competitions, so it is needed). But I have a pretty good relationship with the scale…BECAUSE it means pretty much nothing to me πŸ™‚

Good job to you for realizing that the scale means nothing, and for knowing to walk away since it’s just tearing you up. Why I hate the scale? I am 5’9 and 162 pounds. People are shocked to hear my weight because I wear a size 6-8 and am really not very big! I am PROUD of my weight becaue I am very dense and full of muscle…while I’m 162 pounds, my body fat is in the teens. Lifting weights — and lifting heavy — has sculpted me a small, strong body.

So happy for you, and I hope you LOVE the book and program!

78 Alexis June 1, 2011 at 2:18 pm

Scales do lie! I am 147 lbs (5’4″) and in the best shape of my life. 30 lbs and 10 years ago, I was fast, but I am just as fast and strong now. Scales fluctuate so much just like cameras and mirrors – up one day, down another. I refuse to let a morning weigh-in dictate to me my day. I was reading and Jenn Thiel (model for Lululemon) wrote about how when we tell ourselves, “just five more lbs and I will be happy,” we are doing ourselves a disservice because it’s pretty much saying to our minds that we are not accepting ourselves until we lose the weight. Continue to live the healthy life, Meghann – be active, eat well, and do what is best for you. Thank you for sharing!

79 Megan June 1, 2011 at 2:20 pm

Love the post.
You are amazing – beautiful, strong, healthy, vibrant.
You are a constant inspiration to others.
Take that, stupid scale.

80 Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine June 1, 2011 at 2:26 pm

I can definitely relate to this. I remember being a little kid- little little, like in elementary school- and being scared to face the scale at the doctor’s office. My mom never made me feel comfortable about my weight, and because of that, I became obsessed with it. A few years later, as a teenager, I became obsessed with the scale for the opposite reason- I loved to see the numbers go down, down, down every week, or even every day. After a lot of struggling, I finally pulled myself out of that hole, and went back to the feelings of fearing the scale. I realized that that wasn’t normal either, and around the same time I started my blog, began weighing myself once a month. Scales DO lie, but they have a lot of validity for tracking progress in the scheme of things. For me personally, it was important to become comfortable with the number as just that- a number. I can lose or gain five pounds, and while it might not have been intentional, it doesn’t change who I am. Weight and happiness are two completely different things. You are SO strong- you’re training to compete in a freaking half Ironman!! Why let the scale dictate how you feel about your body when you’re clearly in amazing shape? You look awesome, and you are awesome. If that scale makes you feel anything otherwise, tell it to go to hell πŸ™‚
Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine recently posted..Ice Cream &gt Fish Head

81 Annette (with a side of brownies) June 1, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Yes the scale is a liar. I always say the scale is evil, but the tape measure is my friend, because the scale never reflects how I look or feel. Thanks for sharing.
Annette (with a side of brownies) recently posted..Birthday eats

82 Chaaron June 1, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Meghann, this is beautifully written! Scales do lie! Congrats on choosing happiness – you’ll be so better off in the long run! You are a runner and you are strong. That means so much more than any number could tell you.
Chaaron recently posted..Returning to Reality

83 Katie June 1, 2011 at 2:29 pm

I’m torn. I’ve been so torn lately. Do I weigh myself, cry, and get over it to hopefully see motivation lead to progress? Do I keep doing what I’m doing and rely on how my clothes fit? Am I hurting myself by not checking on it?

I had doctor appointments every 6 months for a few years, so I could never escape my weight for longer than that period of time. Since last summer? I’ve been free of the scale because the appointment’s stopped being necessary (not weight related). Now? I have no idea what to do. I don’t want to wait until the doctor weighs me and makes me ignore everything they say because THAT NUMBER is stuck in my head. But I’m afraid. Genuinely afraid of how it will make me feel and how it will reduce my self-worth. Because I already am insecure about my body and disliking my shape lately. I don’t know.

Still torn. Still scared of the stupid scale. Still feeling like I can’t win.

I’m glad for you to have beaten the scale. Thanks for sharing your story.

84 Casey (The Hippie Health Nut) June 1, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Scales do lie. Your clothes don’t. I’d say if you’re doing NROL, just pay attention to your clothes. You may even gain weight, but you’ll know it’s muscle if you’ve got some extra room in your clothes….just from personal experience! πŸ™‚ Enjoy the fact that you’re getting stronger and really adding something valuable to your workouts.
Casey (The Hippie Health Nut) recently posted..Memorial Day Weekend Recap

85 Jessica @ For the Fun of Fit June 1, 2011 at 2:30 pm

The thing that a lot of people have forgotten to mention is that MUSCLE WEIGHS MORE THAN FAT! I have recently seen a transformation in how my clothes fit / how I look but I have not lost a single pound. I whole-heartedly attribute this to the fact that I’ve been lifting and working out and building up a ton of muscle πŸ™‚
I don’t really care what I weigh, so long as my clothes fit.
Jessica @ For the Fun of Fit recently posted..Hill – Mountain Workout

86 marie June 1, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Muscle doesn’t weigh more than fat. Muscle takes up less space than fat. You will weigh the same, but be leaner with more muscle mass. Every time I read “muscle weighs more than fat”, it drives me nuts.

87 Jessica @ For the Fun of Fit June 1, 2011 at 2:58 pm

True. Thanks for clarifying. I should have said – my newly gained 5 pounds of muscle takes up significantly less room on my body than my lost 5 pounds of fat. But the overall concept remains the same πŸ™‚
Jessica @ For the Fun of Fit recently posted..Hill – Mountain Workout

88 marie June 1, 2011 at 3:18 pm

I hope that didn’t come off as rude, it’s just one of those sayings that bugs me. Good work on gaining some new muscle. I think weightlifting is the best thing you can do for your health.

89 Gina @Runningtothekitchen June 1, 2011 at 2:36 pm

great insight Meghann. scales definitely do not tell the whole story. Think of all the amazing things your body allows you to do!
Gina @Runningtothekitchen recently posted..Ireland Day 6 &amp 7- Killarney

90 s June 1, 2011 at 2:40 pm

i use the scale as a rough checkpoint, more than actually following what the numbers say. i weigh myself every couple of weeks, and probably almost every time i go to the gym, but sometimes it’s up and sometimes it’s down. i try not to worry about the number too much, especially if my clothes are fitting just fine. i don’t think i could stop weighing myself entirely — i recall a particularly dramatic junior year of college when after gaining 40 lbs in a semester, i defeatedly threw my scale down the trash chute, which led to more weight gain — but i agree that the number doesn’t really matter. so, while i view the scale as a useful tool in moderation, i could see how it would also be anxiety-inducing. good for you for doing what is best for you.

91 Rebecca June 1, 2011 at 2:41 pm

One day, you won’t care about telling your children and grandchildren the number of pounds you once weighed, but the marathons you ran and the memories of races and friendships. It’s your accomplishments and personal growth that are important and determine who you are. The scale doesn’t capture any permanent, true definition of you.
Rebecca recently posted..Conviction via Playlist

92 Cynthia June 1, 2011 at 2:46 pm

I know exactly how you feel. My weight has always been up and down and I have always been obsessed with the scale. There were times when I wasn’t exercising and I refused to look at it because I was afraid. Every time I did “take a break” from the scale, I would start regressing to my old ways of bingeing and not exersising. When I did weigh myself, the scale determined my moods. If I lost weight, I was happy. If I gained weight (even by only half a pound) or if I didn’t lose any weight at all, I would be depressed for the rest of the day. Even though I am trying to lose weight, I think I am finally ready to stop letting the scale rule my life. I actually had my husband hide my scale in the attic (the one place I won’t ever go) so I am not tempted. The up and downs of my number frustrate me to no end. I need to make peace with me and try to like myself just as I am.

You are a beautiful person and I think you look great. Healthy and beautiful.

93 Kelly @foodiefresh June 1, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Megan, I’ve had a similar relationship with the scale and I’ve thought about getting rid of the scale at my house. Thanks for sharing this with your readers. It’s comforting to know that all kinds of people deal with the scale obsession, as I have often done at different points in my life.
Kelly @foodiefresh recently posted..Backpacking day 1

94 Stephanie June 1, 2011 at 2:50 pm

Get rid of that scale forever! YES
Stephanie recently posted..Race Recap- So You Had A Bad Day

95 Danielle @ InDeesKitchen June 1, 2011 at 2:50 pm

I can’t even believe I am reading these words from you. Girl, you are in FANTASTIC shape!! Who cares what the # on the scale says?! You eat well and are very active… you are HEALTHY and nothing else matters!
Danielle @ InDeesKitchen recently posted..Parmesan Polenta

96 Shannon June 1, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Great post! I have been drafting a similar post in my head for the blog but wanted to get it just right. Loved your take on the subject!
Shannon recently posted..Wawa Produce

97 ellie June 1, 2011 at 2:53 pm

As someone who is, admittedly, a slave to the scale, thank you for writing this. I struggle with anorexia and it’s so hard to not get caught up/destroyed by numbers on a machine (which, if you think about it, is an inanimate object- I don’t let my toaster oven define me/predict my day/tell me what I am “worth”- why a scale?!). It’s scary how many people without eating disorders fall into the trap of numbers/self-worth…thank you for sharing your experiences so openly. I have always looked up to you as YOU. The kick-ass athlete, strong/focused/independant woman and so “head screwed on” kinda person. I love that you felt able to say that this is something you face too because it just reinforces why I follow your blog- because you are real, genuine and so inspirational.

Enough gushy talk πŸ˜‰ Just…thank you again.
ellie recently posted..eatsleeplaugh- @MealsAndMiles I think you are awesome Thank you for being so honest and justbeing you –

98 Clare @ Fitting It All In June 1, 2011 at 2:56 pm

Amazing, perfect, beautiful post for all of us that have constantly battled the scale. Scales don’t tell health.
Clare @ Fitting It All In recently posted..That Was Weird

99 dena b June 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm

I applaude you for being so honest…I hate the scale, anything that has that much control over my day is an enemy. When I’m at the Dr. Office I tell them not to tell me the # and I do not look..I’m 42 years old and that’s the only # I care to keep track of, well that and the # of years I’ve been married..Those #’s count in life.

100 Sarah June 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm

Weighing myself is completely unhealthy for me since recovering from an ed.
I haven’t been on a scale for over two years. Even when I go to the doctor’s office, I tell the nurses that I don’t want to be weighed, and they’re cool with it. I didn’t even know I could skip that part of a visit until I asked.
The thing that really interested me about your post is the fact that you look great. Plus you obviously eat healthy and exercise enough. It’s fascinating that a number on a scale could change that for you, me, and so many other woman. That’s why I try to focus on my health instead of the number on the scale. It’s too triggering.
Thanks for your honesty, Meghann!
Sarah recently posted..On a media front…

101 Amanda June 1, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Thanks so much for posting this, Meghann. I dealt with an eating disorder in college and the best thing I have done to overcome body issues is to abandon the scale. That being said, whenever I go to the doctor and they weigh me, the number somehow affects me and I HATE that it does. So funny how the rest of the time I feel good about myself. I say, just go by how your clothes fit. If they’re a little tight, reign in the splurges a little, but don’t go crazy. It’ll all even out!!!

102 Theodora June 1, 2011 at 3:06 pm

This was such a great post, and the comments are great, too! You’re stronger than that scale. It’s also more than okay to not be okay with having gained a few pounds (but I still think you look great.) Just go by how your clothes fit–that’s a much less stressful measure than the scale.
Theodora recently posted..The Next Chapter- My Layoff Story

103 Angela@pinching and packing June 1, 2011 at 3:07 pm

Thank you so much for writing this. I have been struggling with this issue and getting back to my happy wieght so much lately. Maybe I really should just throw out the scale! The last line of this post is my favorite!!
Angela@pinching and packing recently posted..Vacation Ready – Body Edition

104 Elizabeth@The Sweet Life June 1, 2011 at 3:22 pm

Great and thoughtful post–thanks for sharing! In my experience, when I don’t want to step on the scale, it’s because I know I’ve not been eating well and that I won’t like the number. For me, my body responds exactly as I expect it to–too much food and not enough exercise makes the scale go places I don’t want it to go. But it’s not the scale’s fault–it’s my lack of discipline to keep me in the place I want to be and feel my best. This is not to say this is your or anyone else’s situation but for me, my weight patterns are very predictible and it’s a question of “do I want to be discplined and pass up dessert sometimes (or a bag of chips or a tub of hummus) and be happier with how my jeans fit or do I want to indulge and have to suck it in a bit more?
Elizabeth@The Sweet Life recently posted..Book Review- Morning Joe

105 Jessica @ Jessica Balances June 1, 2011 at 3:25 pm

Thanks for this post; I think a lot of us can identify with many of the things you said. I personally do not weigh myself because, honestly, I really don’t care what the number is. Instead, I care how comfortable I am in my favorite jeans, and if they get a little too tight, I know it’s time to cut back on extra desserts and/or alcoholic beverages. πŸ™‚

I appreciate that you showed us a more vulnerable side to your personality! xoxo

106 Courtney June 1, 2011 at 3:28 pm

I never weigh myself. At the doctor’s office, I look away and ask the nurse not to read my weight aloud. My reason? I’ve battled with an eating disorder in the past and that number will send me into madness. Instead, I focus on how I feel, how I look and how things fit. As far as I’m concerned, if these are all good, then I’m good. πŸ™‚ I think it’s all about knowing yourself and uour body in its entirety and letting the doctor know that number, trusting her to inform me if something is wrong with the number.
Courtney recently posted..A Sailor’s Life Is the Life for Me!

107 Carly (Swim, Run, Om) June 1, 2011 at 3:32 pm

As someone who spent much of last Friday tearing up over what the scale had said, I am so grateful that you posted this. Thank you for sharing your story!
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108 Shannon June 1, 2011 at 3:34 pm

I hate scales! I always go up and down and it just frustrates me
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109 Freya June 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm

I think this is an amazing, brave post. I hate the scale for exactly the same reason, and I don’t weigh myself because I’m scared to as well.
All I can add – as I’m sure, with 100+ comments before me, there’s plenty useful words here! – is that if you’re happy at the moment, then you ARE at your happy weight. Technically, my ‘happy’ weight was in the almost-dead range kg wise, so don’t ever let a scale tell you what your happy weight should be.
You’re awesome girl!
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110 SaraRM June 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm

Fabulous Fabulous post!! Standing ovation and appaulding…

111 Elle June 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm

I am struggling with this right now.

I’m happy. I’m a newlywed, I loved how I looked in my wedding gown 6 weeks ago.

4 years ago, I lost 55+ pounds. After being overweight pretty much my whole life, the last 4 years have been FUN for me in terms of shopping, taking pictures, going out, etc.

I’m not as active as I was back then. Instead of walking 2+ miles to and from class daily along with a part time job working as a cashier, I’m at a desk 8 hours a day. My workouts don’t last more than an hour. While I try to cook healthy, I have a husband who loves burgers, pizza and ice cream and doesn’t care for trying “Meatless Monday”.

I woke up last week to get ready for a client meeting and decided to wear a dress I bought near the end of last summer and loved and haven’t worn in a while. It wouldn’t zip. Another favorite outfit I also hadn’t worn during the winter wouldn’t button. I knew just by looking at the mirror I wasn’t as in shape as I used to be, but this was a wake-up call. I was convinced I’d gained AT LEAST 20 pounds since last summer.

I weighed at the gym that night–it was only 8 lbs. So now I’m struggling–do I go by what the scale says(I am about 15 lbs away from my lowest weight 4 years ago) or by how I feel? Its a struggle.
Elle recently posted..Baked Spaghetti

112 Liv @ The Salty n' Sweet June 1, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Thanks so much for this post! I’ve felt complete anxiety over stepping on a scale, but I really believe that it was because I was trying to avoid and repress the unhappiness I was feeling with my body. Back when I was at my happy weight, I easily stepped on the scale, and was even proud of the number. But as my healthy habits deteriorated, I avoided the scale more and more, just because I didn’t want to come to terms with my body.

The scale isn’t something to be feared. Right now, I’m using that number to motivate myself to change my habits and return to my happy weight. Both being obsessed with the scale and being scared of the scale are both signs of my bad mental and physical health, and I don’t plan to return to either.
Liv @ The Salty n’ Sweet recently posted..Wake Up Call

113 Melissa June 1, 2011 at 3:47 pm

These were TRUE words!!! I felt as if I were writing and thinking the SAME thoughts. You made me feel better about scale issue, thanks!

114 kalli June 1, 2011 at 3:48 pm

I am torn on this topic. I am 41 years old and the last time I got on my scale until recently was probably 3 years ago. Just recently my clothes starting getting tighter and i did not want to wear tank tops even though i work out like crazy. well i bought a scale and got on it-wow! how could i be surprised? my clothes were tight but i needed the scale to really tell me i was getting heavier. now i have lost 15 pounds and feel great and i only get on the scale once a week to make sure i am maintaining. like you i tend to start eating bigger portions and drinking which is not good. don’t find happiness or dissatisfaction in the scale but do use it to help you lose weight if that weight makes you feel uncomfortable. thanks meghan for your honesty and strength! you Rock πŸ™‚

115 Natalie June 1, 2011 at 3:49 pm

Loved this post my dear.
When I go to the doctor’s office, I tell them I would appreciate if they would just write the number down and not tell me. I then, get on backwards.
I know the anxious feelings you had, even getting on backwards!
But once I hear that little scribble of numbers on their clipboard – it’s over!
Honestly, sometimes I feel like I would rather get a shot then get on a scale at the doctors.
I say using the way you feel and the way your clothes fit is a better barometer than a scale.
Loved your thoughts on this.
Thank you SO much for being so courageous!
Natalie recently posted..Galas and Wine and Everything Fine

116 Ashley O. @ The Vegetable Life June 1, 2011 at 3:49 pm

OMG I love this post! It is sooo true I am battling the scale right now and I want to just throw it away…. and maybe I will tonight!

117 Katie @ cooklaughmove June 1, 2011 at 3:55 pm

Thanks for this post! I started thinking about my relationship with the scale and remembered when I had my bridal shower (to my former fiance, thankfully we broke up 3 days before the wedding), his mother’s gift to me was a freaking scale!!! She said something about “not letting myself go” after getting married! That was after I reached my highest weight of 200lbs and had probably lost at least 20lbs at that time.

118 Victoria June 1, 2011 at 4:06 pm

That woman is a bia! You are lucky to get away from that – SO horrible and wrong.

119 Run.Learn.Repeat June 1, 2011 at 3:59 pm

I’m working on my relationship with the scale as well! I’m really trying to worry les about the number, and more about my health. Sometimes it’s so hard to find a good balance! Thanks for sharing your experience and insights. It’s noce to know that so many other people have similar scale battles!
Run.Learn.Repeat recently posted..Old Loves- New Loves- and an Inspiration!

120 Leslie June 1, 2011 at 4:00 pm

I agree, a number does not define you! Also, I step on backwards at dr office. If I know that I am 1) eating right and healthy, occasional splurge and 2) working out 4-5 days per week or more, I can’t do anything else without being miserable so the number is not helpful. If the clothes get tight, I evaluate 1) too much meat 2) too much fat, 3) switch from cheese to feta 4) try to eat my egg white omelette without bread for 2 weeks. You just tailor your healthy eating and you usually know – yep, I ate a bagel 4 x last week when I shouldn’t have, etc.

Also, I read about a scale – like a zero scale or “no scale” that will internally take a baseline and then let you know if you are up or down from that baseline. I want to get it because that is perfect for me. It lets you know during the weekend, you went too crazy and are up 6 lbs. Then you know what you need to do that week – be responsible, make good choices.

121 Kiran @ June 1, 2011 at 4:06 pm

I remember you tweeting about this yesterday and I think we all can relate to the negative image a scale can sometimes perceive upon us. Kudos for choosing happiness. After all, life is once πŸ™‚
Kiran @ recently posted..Endeavour- Final Historic Voyage

122 Silvia @ skinny jeans food June 1, 2011 at 4:07 pm

I understand that scales can add undue pressure if you feel you have been eating not so well or more than necessary lately. Sometimes it makes sense to ignore the scale, get back to a pressure-less feeling well, tuning in to your body, eating right, exercising, giving it time until you actually feel better/thinner, and then verify it on the scale.

And yes, scales are not always accurate/correct, body weight fluctuates during the day for up to 3-4 pounds, there is water retention, lack of sleep, too much sodium, different scales give you a varying result if you step on them at the same time, a cheap scale can give you different results if if you step on it several times within 5 min, and weighing in naked at Publix won’t work that well either, so yes, you are right scales can ‘lie’ and measurements have to be taken in stride (not that this still can be frustrating sometimes to actually see a certain number). But scales are, similar to clothes that fit or not, or a garmin running watch, just a device that give us feedback. That’s all.

I mean it would be quite funny if I would say I never wear my garmin again because it shows I still did not run a marathon distance although it definitely felt like I ran a marathon.
Silvia @ skinny jeans food recently posted..The Tofu Dilemma

123 Tessa @ Amazing Asset June 1, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Thank you for this tremendously strong and thoughtful post! I know that I, and many people out there, can relate to scale issues. I have personally written two “letters” to the scale on my blog as a way of breaking up with it. You are so right, it obviously tells us nothing and makes us miserable, yet I still cling onto it like it’s some sort of life line. I wish I could break up with it easily, but it’s going to take some time, I’m not sure going cold turkey would work for me!
Tessa @ Amazing Asset recently posted..A New Month

124 Rachel @ Grateful Girl Goes Gluten Free June 1, 2011 at 4:12 pm

Best post ever! It is nice to know that other people are going through similar things to myself. You’re such an inspiration and I am positive you’ll get through this.
Rachel @ Grateful Girl Goes Gluten Free recently posted..Second day sorenesscook all day

125 Amy @ Conquering Self June 1, 2011 at 4:13 pm

Judging from the amount of comments, you can see that we alllll relate to what you are saying…how is it that in inanimate object can dictate how we feel? I find that, for me, how I feel is most influenced by how in control I feel over my health even more so than the scale. The second I feel like I’ve made a bad choice, my whole view of myself changes.

I’m working on that.
And you are obviously working on the issues you have experienced with the scale…so great job! You look amazing and you make so many healthy choices for yourself. Thanks for an incredibly thought-provoking post!
Amy @ Conquering Self recently posted..Monday Meal Plan – On Tuesday!

126 Hillary gras June 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Couldn’t agree more.

Thank you for not being afraid to post this. It is so relatable and your readers NEED the honesty that you have shown here. Healthy living isn’t always the easiest thing. Negative thoughts do happen. But we are all strong!! Thank you for being an inspiration!

127 Johanna B June 1, 2011 at 4:35 pm

thanks for having the courage to write this post. I’m sure a lot of young women needed to read this today.

128 River June 1, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Great post!

I am a weigh myself everyday, have been told off by my doctor for doing so, person.

Now proud to say it’s been 4 days since I last weighed myself. I’m just going to start off my doing it weekly.

The thing is now I’ve started doing pump classes, and lifting weights, I know I will be growing muscle (I had never lifted weights in my life before this), so I know the scale can’t show actual weight change in that sense.
River recently posted..Book Review – Kardashian Konfidential

129 Colleen June 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm

I absolutely love this post. Thanks for sharing!
Colleen recently posted..Foodie ABC’s

130 Alexis June 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm

thank you so much for posting this! I struggle with the scale everyday. I finally gave it up and took it out of my life. I can’t stand that those “numbers” control my everyday feelings. who are they to tell me how I should feel today?!
Alexis recently posted..WIAW!

131 Sarah June 1, 2011 at 4:49 pm

I’m happy you wrote this post. I can definitely relate to number stress and it’s so stupid because it really is just a number. I think it’s great that you vow to never step on the scale again. If a number causes that much anxiety and makes you feel that bad it’s so not worth it. To have a number dictate your happiness is ridiculous but I think we can all relate to this. This is a post I will be thinking about for awhile.
Sarah recently posted..Refresh

132 Laura June 1, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Hate to say it but I like the scale. It’s a great way for me to know where I am at healthwise and whether I need to work a little harder to lose some extra lbs. Also, there’s nothing better than the feeling of accomplishment knowing how much weight you’ve lost. I didn’t have a scale for years and was pretty overweight then I lost 30 or so lbs (not really sure bc I bought a scale at the end). The scale helps me keep things in check. If I get too close to 150 I’ll just dial back my eating. Easy Peasy. Overall though being in the high 140s doesn’t tend to ruin my life. I had bikini confidence at 145 lbs and 5’3″ and have bikini confidence now 10 lbs lighter. My goal weight has always been 125 but I’m pretty happy anywhere between there and 140. For me, being extremely thin (120 lbs or less) just isn’t worth the hassle. Realistic goals (for me) are super important and the scale is a TOOL that helps me get there.

133 Beth June 1, 2011 at 5:08 pm

Thank you for posting this Meghann & echoing the same sentinment that many others face. There’s comfort in numbers! πŸ˜‰ I too have a love/hate relationship with the scale. At one point I was weighing myself every day. I got tired of that battle and have moved on to weighing in once a week. I admit does make or break my day and I hate that I let it this way. But by reading your blog and others I’m slowly learning that inner & outer strength are more important than a number on a scale. Also reading New rules of Lifting for Women is helping as well. The hardest part is about trusting your body sometimes and letting nature take its course.

134 Emma June 1, 2011 at 5:15 pm

Meaghann, if you don’t mind me asking, how much weight did you gain? Did you gain a lot? Have you noticed your clothes fitting tight lately?

135 lauri ( June 1, 2011 at 5:18 pm

Powerful. Thank you.

136 Susan June 1, 2011 at 5:31 pm

Wow… thank you for that honest post. It is very encouraging to know that my fear of the scale and the number is not unfounded and I am not alone. I may not be at the best weight… but I know when my clothes fit and when I need to watch what I am eating and exercise more. I am strong and happy and I have not weighed myself since right before my wedding, over 2 years ago! It has been the most freeing feeling- that number no longer rules my world.

137 Carol June 1, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Love your post. I enjoy reading your blog because of all the fun adventures you have. I also struggle with the scale and really try not to let it dictate my day.

138 Alexa @ Simple Eats June 1, 2011 at 5:57 pm

I love this! Scales really do suck. I quit them cold turkey, too and haven’t looked back. It knocked me back into reality to get healthy though, when I saw it at the doctor’s office over a year ago. I’m glad I don’t own one, I’d go insane.
Alexa @ Simple Eats recently posted..Friday Favorites

139 Kristina June 1, 2011 at 6:02 pm

I think that it’s great to take a step that you need to take. Personally, I feel that I need a scale at times to make sure that I’m keeping UP a healthy weight. This spring, I was training for my first tri, and I really couldn’t have figured out what I needed by intuitive eating. The scale was actually a big help for me. I know that’s not the case for everyone, but I do want to share a different perspective

140 Katie June 1, 2011 at 6:27 pm

What a thought provoking post – thanks for writing it!

I have to admit that I am addicted to using my scale. Throughout high school and college, I never ever ever used a scale. Then, a year and a half after graduation, I started feeling a bit…bigger than I usually did. The work clothes I had purchased the summer after college no longer fit…uh oh. I finally sucked it up and stood on the scale in my parents’ house, and to my dismay I realized that I was at least 15 pounds over what I thought I was at. Oh holy freaking crap. Truthfully, I wasn’t eating the best things in the world: I was going to the bar and then making a box of Kraft mac n cheese or eating some of a frozen pizza when I got home. Yikes. So – I changed my eating habits and got more active with some pilates etc…and 10lbs melted right off…followed by an extra 10 in the following year or two. I love the way I look today; I think I look better than I ever have (which seems strange…I always thought my early 20s would be my best looking years).

Now, I am not actively trying to lose or gain weight…I simply find it interesting to track. Over time, I start to notice trends (which all make sense) – I gain 2-3 lbs over weekends because I tend to go out for a meal once or twice, then it naturally goes away by Monday or Tuesday. The week before my period, I gain 1-2 in water weight. Etc etc. In all seriousness, I probably don’t need to continually weigh myself, as I’m used to the trends, but I can’t help it. I wish I had the self control to NOT step on the scale every morning…
Katie recently posted..I met a celebrity! Kind of

141 Alaina June 1, 2011 at 7:30 pm

I am going through this same thing right now. It’s so refreshing to see that I’m not the only one. You look beautiful Meghann and I’m always inspired by your blog. πŸ™‚
Alaina recently posted..My First Marathon

142 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) June 1, 2011 at 7:36 pm

Amen! The scale no longer controls me, although I can’t say I didn’t wish the number was lower.
Kate (What Kate is Cooking) recently posted..Eat Your Beer

143 Marcy June 1, 2011 at 8:01 pm

As they say at Weight Watchers – the number on the scale is feedback, not failure and that’s how I prefer to look at it.

You won’t be able to “never get on a scale again” in your lifetime, i.e., doctor visits, insurance exams etc…so just realize the number is feedback for how you choose to live your life and it does not label you a failure.

144 Lauren June 1, 2011 at 8:02 pm

This is such a moving post! I think something that we ALL relate with. I love the last line you wrote, “I choose happiness.” Amen girl, truer words have never been spoken! πŸ™‚
Lauren recently posted..Our Memorial Day Open House Party

145 Cb June 1, 2011 at 8:11 pm

I think we have all been there, I played The denial game too…but I was unhappy even when I did not get on the scale…tight clothes dont dont lie so I cannot blame the scale. Only myself for getting lazy with what I put in my mouth. I enjoyed reading your post but unlike you I need that scale to keep me in check and I am ok with that.

146 Dori June 1, 2011 at 8:45 pm

I have a scale but I rarely go on it — and only when I know it will be what I want to see. Why do I care so much about some stupid number??! Sigh… thank you for being so honest in this post. It is always good to know other people struggle too, and you will get back to where you want to be — especially with this new strength training plan. You will be even better!
Dori recently posted..Memorial Day – 2010 Vs 2011

147 Peggy June 1, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Awesome, brave post, Meghann. I don’t comment often, but I had to on this one. I used to be obsessed (OBSESSED with the scale). I’d only weigh myself after working out in the morning, after going to the bathroom, and before eating or drinking anything. I’d literally come in from a ridiculously sweaty summer run, fill a glass with water, and carry it upstairs to the bathroom with me so I could weigh myself before taking care of my thirst. I moved to Prague, and the first thing I did on my first morning there was go buy a scale.
I live with my boyfriend now, who has changed my life and who won’t let me have a scale. When I weigh myself at the gym, the number is not one that I am happy with. But I AM happy. I can drink wine and go out to eat on the weekends, and then focus on getting in veggies during the week—rather than being terrified of the scale Monday morning. I’m going to work out, eat clean(ish…), and keep myself in shape, but if I have to choose between living the life I want to live, and having the number I want to see on the scale, life is going to win. I’m glad it is for you too–and don’t think you’re alone in this!

148 Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy June 1, 2011 at 9:11 pm

This is so beautifully written, and such a good reminder. I only weigh myself at the doctor’s now, because when I weighed myself at home, I would base my happiness on the number on the scale. I do the same thing with my clothing size. I wish they would just take the number sizes out of women’s clothing…I feel like guys have it much easier in that department.
Emily @ Perfection Isn’t Happy recently posted..A letter to my 17-year-old self

149 Mary June 1, 2011 at 9:13 pm

You look beautiful and healthy just the way you are – and more importantly you feel that way, too! If you feel healthy then you are, no matter what the scale says. Keep up your awesome training. You are an inspiration to me!

150 Alison (Fueling for Fitness) June 1, 2011 at 9:24 pm

I can’t believe how timely this is… I swore off the scale for months…until today. And surprise, surprise, I’m in a horrible mood. I can’t believe how much power the scale has over me, how much anxiety it causes me, when I know it’s just a number and I should be focusing on the positive and all the things my body has enabled me to do.

Anyway, thank you so much for putting this post out there. I know it’s hard, but it’s so comforting to know that I’m not alone and it’s inspiring to read your resolve on letting that stuff go. I hope you can find some comfort in also knowing that you are not alone yourself! You ARE amazing and so much more than a number!
Alison (Fueling for Fitness) recently posted..Toronto Goodlife Half-Marathon

151 hemp jogger June 1, 2011 at 9:36 pm

this is probably your best post. i loved how raw and real it was, and boy can i relate…from the bloats, not getting on the week before/early period week, anxiety, fear, happiness, sadness, etc. i gave it up awhile ago, too, but find myself getting on more often lately. its no good.

152 Julia @ The Bosky Blog June 1, 2011 at 9:37 pm

Thank you so much for posting this, I am constantly fighting this battle.

153 Jenna June 1, 2011 at 9:42 pm

what a great post!!! this made my day πŸ™‚ you are soo right!!

154 Hilary June 1, 2011 at 9:56 pm

What a great post…I am SO with you on the scale! I lost weight on Weight Watchers, which was great, but honestly, the weekly weigh-in really messed with my head and affected my mood. Since reaching my goal, I’ve abandoned the scale….it is so freeing! I know I’ve gone up and down, but I let my clothes do the talking and then I don’t freak myself out so much.
Hilary recently posted..Bits- Bites and BAM!

155 Sam June 1, 2011 at 10:29 pm

I love your honesty and applaud you for putting yourself out there.

As someone who has recently lost a decent amount of weight, I too have a love/hate relationship with my scale. It has definitely helped to keep me on track and let me know that what I am doing is working. It’s also put me in a sour mood when the number in front of me is not what I want/expected to see.

I hope to one day be strong enough to rid my life of the scale, but for now I will continue my weekly weigh-ins to keep myself accountable.
Sam recently posted..June Goals

156 Krissy - Shiawase Life June 1, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Thanks for this post, Meghann. I think it’s important and powerful when big influencer blogs like yours take the time to have raw emotions that everyone can find a ‘takeaway’ from – whether they can relate or not. You’re a beautiful woman, inside and out!! =)
Krissy – Shiawase Life recently posted..All Aboard the Choo Choo Training…

157 Heather June 1, 2011 at 10:43 pm

1. I think it’s really hard not to gain a little weight when you first start living with your boyfriend. Mark just eats alll the time.

2. I strongly believe a “happy weight” should not have to be such hard work.

3. You really look beautiful! I hope you feel wonderful too.
Heather recently posted..Vegan Strawberry Chocolate Chip Muffins

158 Elisabeth June 1, 2011 at 11:31 pm

Thank you, Meghann!! πŸ™‚

159 Elisabeth June 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm

PS – You look healthy & beautiful and you’re obviously the same inside, too!

160 Amy @ June 1, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Great post Meghann. Your honesty is brave and I must say this is one of my favorite posts of yours. And yes, they do lie because you look amazing as ever.
Amy @ recently posted..Wednesday Weigh In- Comparison Trap

161 Dione June 1, 2011 at 11:48 pm

What a great post! You should be proud of yourself for posting such a personal post. From the numerous comments above it’s obviously impacting your readers in a positive way, showing that you are more than just a # on the scale. Just remember, you are beautiful and STRONG!
Dione recently posted..Blogger Stats

162 Deirdre June 2, 2011 at 12:49 am

Thanks for this post. The scale has been my worst enemy for about 6 months now because after losing 30 pounds in the last 2 years I’ve completely plateaued. I definitely want to lose more weight but its obviously harder to do that right now. I am proud of you for putting it all out there. I consider you an example of fitness and if you also struggle with the scale then in a weird way that makes me feel better.

163 Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] June 2, 2011 at 1:37 am


164 Lisa June 2, 2011 at 2:27 am

I wasn’t going to respond but I read the comments this morning and was sort of surprised by the response.

Scales don’t lie. However they only give one piece of information in a given moment. I don’t think it’s necessary to swear off weighing yourself but it’s important to understand that your weight is just one number, out of many, that give you the full picture of your health and well-being. Others include body fat %, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, iron levels, glucose levels, etc. etc.

In fact, with your intense training coming up, you might find it a necessary and important tool to weigh yourself to ensure that you’re rehydrating enough after your long workouts or to make sure that you’re not losing too much weight due to the increased activity, etc.

As for weight in general, whenever someone tells me that they want to get down to a specific goal, I ask how they got to that particular number. Did you read about it in a magazine? Is it what your friend weighs? Was it a previous weight that you felt good at? (And if so, when was that? In HS? 10 years ago? What’s happening now with your lifestyle? Are you lifting weights? Doing more long, endurance activities? Had children? etc. etc.)

Our bodies are changing all the time and what we weighed at a certain point in our lives might not be what is the correct weight for us today, or in the future. It’s really important to keep that in mind and realize that while the scale might say a number that we’re not too happy about, it’s a reality and we have to interpret the numbers better rather than just saying the scales lie and letting it effect us so dramatically.

165 Jessica June 2, 2011 at 3:50 am

Hi! I loved todays post, ive been a reader of your blog for a year and i never really posted before, but i loved reading todays post. its so brave of you to be so open and honest with your readers and i really appreciate you for that! so thank you very much! im having a little mental breakdown with the scale too! but hopefully things will be okay! we’ll see! πŸ˜€

166 katie June 2, 2011 at 6:32 am

Love you girl!

A number on the scale does not determine one’s happiness, or control you, you know you are healthy, happy, and beautiful! U do not need a number to see this!

Amazing Post!
katie recently posted..Mango Tilapia guac Wrap

167 ~Jessica~ June 2, 2011 at 8:00 am

You voiced my own relationship with the scale exactly. I still weigh a lot though, and it determines my mood totally. But as I’ve steadily gotten bigger and bigger, noticably through appearance and the fit of my clothes I’ve gone into denial mode and carried on eating crappily while conveniently avoiding the scale. I still weigh once a week though, but I dread it as I know the number will always go up. And I’m so far away from my happy weight now that whatever it shows will depress me.

Unlike you though my body is not strong: it’s broken from years of overexercising to try to compensate for my binge eating disorder. I’m always fighting with what I want more: a thinner body or a stronger body. In the end I’ve been left with neither.

Thanks for this post. It took a lot of guts, but from all of your races and other achievements I know there’s no gutsier (if that’s a word) blogger out there.

~Jessica~ recently posted..Race Recap Raby Castle 10K 45-07

168 Kianni June 2, 2011 at 8:14 am

I don’t think we should ignore or become obsessive with the number on the scale. I think that if the scale causes that much anxiety it should be addressed. I think that we should be able to look at the scale and the number it says no matter what number it says . In my opinon staying away from the scale “forever” is not healthy since it stems from anxiety “what I don’t know won’t hurt me”, and is an avoidant behavior. If you know it doesn’t define you and your self worth, then you should be able to acknowledge whatever it says without ill-effect. I don’t think we should try to control the number either, but rather step on the scale and see what ever is and acccept it without any sort of intent to change it.

169 Lauri June 2, 2011 at 8:21 am

The scale is evil. Period.

You look great and are healthy and STRONG. You run marathons, you swim, you bike, you spin, you weight lift, youo give yourself boot camp classes. Excercise is a part of youor everyday life. You are HEALTHY!!

Lately my husband has been getting very upset with me when I use the F word. I have been reduced to tears not only by the scale but by attempting top button up a pair of shorts and having muffin top staring me back in the mirror. Luckily he supports me no matter what and gets very upset when I call myself fat. And I really don’t want my son (3 1/2) to hear me saying bad things about my body. I don’t want him to see my counting calories. The other day he said to me “Mommy, you ned to buy ice cream because we don’t have any. And I like it!” The reason I don’t buy ice cream? Because I am afraid I will binge on it. We all need to let go of our food and scale obsessions and start remembering how to just live, be happy and healthy!!

Thanks for this post, maybe it will help us all…
Lauri recently posted..I love youyou love me

170 Krystina (Organically Me) June 2, 2011 at 8:49 am

I completely agree with this post. For a long time, I basically hated myself for gaining weight after I lost so much. I thought that I was weak, fat, and a total disappointment. But, then I started running, and I realized that I could run faster and farther now than I ever could when I was thinner. So, it made me feel strong, capable, and now beautiful.

So many people (especially women) let a scale dictate their lives and happiness. We are not numbers. We are not “150lbs” or “size 6”, we are humans. It’s hard to let go of those numbers and be free. If we eat mostly healthy, move most days, and try to be happy, we will be both happy and healthy.

I’m happy you’re divorcing the scale for good. πŸ™‚
Krystina (Organically Me) recently posted..Theres the Rub

171 Marissa June 2, 2011 at 8:54 am

You need a big hug. I know what you’re going through, and its really hard. When I was deep in my eating disorder, I would weigh myself upwards of 20 times a day (when I got up, after every meal, after every bathroom break, before bed…) The numbers play with your head. They change constantly. Scales are unhealthy. I finally gave them up right before the holidays this year–and I haven’t looked back. I. Don’t. Want. To. Know. Of course, because of my stinky body dysmorphia, I always think I’m fat–so somebody has to keep weighing me to make sure I don’t drop too much weight. When I go to the doctors, I get weighed backwards so I don’t have to see. Even if the number is dropping–which is what my eating disorder “wants”, right?–it still screws with my head.

Scales are just plain evil. Why did anybody ever invent them?
Marissa recently posted..Peaches n’ Cream

172 Claire June 2, 2011 at 10:08 am

Ah! Thank you so much for this post I AM GOING THROUGH THE EXACT SAME THING! I am terrified to step back on the scale, not only because I am terrified of the number but I am terrified to become that calorie counting, weight obsessed girl, who puts not eating over everything else in her life! Although I have gained back too much weight I am MUCH happier than I was when I weighed myself DAILY and obsessed about the numbers ALL DAY long. Right now I’m trying to find a balance in my life with eating but it’s hard and taking much longer than expected. But it’s wonderful to know that I’m not alone, thank you so much for being brave enough to post this! I know we’ll both make it through πŸ™‚

Scales really do lie and besides whats life without a good beer and fro-yo with 5 too many toppings anyways? πŸ˜‰ I don’t care if it shows up on the scale the next day because in reality nobody but me will notice!

173 Wendi @ Earth, Wind and Fire June 2, 2011 at 11:15 am

I’m glad you chose no scale. In my experience, the more I focused on my WEIGHT vs my HEALTH, the more I gained weight and I was in a continuous cycle of not feeling good about myself, eating because I didn’t feel good about myself, restricting because I didn’t feel good about myself, gaining weight, confirming to myself that I shouldn’t feel good about myself so I would eat… blah blah…

I love to exercise, so that’s what I do. I exercise 5-6 times a week. I love to eat, so that’s what I do. BUT, when I stopped being on a “diet” where I constantly was counting my calories, denying myself any pleasure in what I ate, my desire to eat poorly went away. I did go through a period of rebellion because I had measure my food and restricted for years. So, I ate the crap out of things I missed until it all lost it’s luster. Then, I learned to listen to what my body was telling me to eat. And when I listen to my body, it tells me it wants veggies, fruit, etc. But when I want a cookie, I eat one. and sometimes I’m in a bad mood and i eat more than one. But I refuse to succomb to the obsession with my weight again because I am perfect as I am, no matter what weight I am and at the end of the day, I would rather live my life happily than worry about being 5 lbs lighter.

I went to the doctor yesterday and they weighed me. I told the nurse before I got on the scale, do NOT tell me what it says and I closed my eyes. I still don’t know what I weigh and I’m all the more happier for it. I’ve settled into the weight that I think my body wants to be.

174 Neely June 2, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Wow this post really helped me. I wrote a similar post on Sunday to post on my blog today and its nice to know other people struggle with this. Thank you.
Neely recently posted..The lack of perfection

175 Bobbi June 2, 2011 at 2:02 pm

I am right there with you girl!!! I DONT EVEN OWN ONE!!!!

176 Kianni June 2, 2011 at 3:42 pm

I don’t think we should ignore or become obsessive with the number on the scale. I think that if the scale causes that much anxiety it should be addressed. I think that we should be able to look at the scale and the number it says no matter what number it says . In my opinon staying away from the scale “forever” is not healthy since it stems from anxiety “what I don’t know won’t hurt me”, and is an avoidant behavior. If you know it doesn’t define you and your self worth, then you should be able to acknowledge whatever it says without ill-effect. I don’t think we should try to control the number either, but rather step on the scale and see what ever is and accept it without any sort of intent to change it. To say β€œI don’t care what the scale says”, but then be depressed when you do see what it says means that that is not the case.

177 Katie June 5, 2011 at 5:15 am

Thank you for this. I stepped back on the scale today after several months. It was horrible. But reading this helps me realise that the number doesn’t define me.

178 amyt @ Chicken Nugget Momma June 6, 2011 at 4:02 pm

I really really love this – it is so easy to become obessed. I was like that – and when the #’s didn’t keep dropping I got upset – but then realized how much more muscle weighed than fat. I just started going by how I felt, and how I felt in clothes…I am such a happier person. Scales do lie – really!!! I KNOW I am less than what the scale says……I just stick my tongue out at it!
amyt @ Chicken Nugget Momma recently posted..Ate – Eight 8

179 Tropical Eats June 12, 2011 at 4:17 pm


thank you.
Tropical Eats recently posted..Beginner Marathon Heebie-Jeebies

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