Friday, 22 November 2013

That's It..I'm Taking A Break From The Scales

I've been considering this for a while now, especially within the last month or so, of taking a break from weighing myself. When I was consistent with exercise and healthy eating I would happily weigh myself every morning. The number that would flash at me would be an indicator of my performance from the previous day. If there was an increase I would know exactly what the problem was and I would work on correcting it. Most of the time it was that I hadn't drank enough water, or I had snacked on something salty a bit too late in the evening. I was never one to let my weight, that silly little number, get in the way of my life and deeply affect my emotions.

Until now.

Having gained weight over the last year of me moving to Japan I think I have developed some deep seeded shame towards my actions. I just stopped trying so hard and became lazy. Some days I would break down to my boyfriend and say "Why? I just can't seem to do it here." He would be annoyingly truthful (annoyingly because I am a stubborn, proud person) and tell me I was being lazy. He's right, I have just become complacent and not tried so hard. I would use working full time as an excuse not to work out, I would use my lack of Japanese language skill as an excuse not to cook healthy since I can't read the labels of food.

Recently, going into the more personal territory here, my boyfriend was kissing me and it was leading towards sex. But I panicked. I felt ugly - scared to take off my clothes in front of the man who I've been with for 4 freaking years and never had a problem being intimate with before. I ran off to the toilet and said I needed to pee (which I did to be fair) but I just had some breakdown in that tiny little toilet room. Having sex was the last thing I wanted to do, because it would mean exposing my horrible body.

My body is not horrible. In fact, by some standards I think that my body is quite desirable. Sure, I'm overweight, but I'm no longer obese. I'm closer to a healthy weight than I am an obese weight. But I just couldn't mentally drop the fact that I had regained weight. I no longer felt desirable, I honestly felt like I would allow myself to have sex once I had lost the weight I had gained in the past year.

This is crazy!

The other week I made a post saying that I had gained weight after having an awesome workout week. Because I saw that I had gained weight, I freaked out and reached for junk food. I'd like to say it wasn't because I saw I had gained, but it's true. My precise weight has officially began to affect my life.

When I left the toilet I just couldn't face my boyfriend. My shoulders hunched, my eyes looking at the floor, my arms wrapped around my stomach. Needless to say he knew that I wasn't in the mood. We talked about it, because he was confused why recently I had been avoiding being physical with him. I said it's because I've gained weight, I don't feel sexy anymore. He began to say it's ridiculous, he doesn't care about how much I weigh, it's me that cares too much. That's when he said it. That's when he said the word that I hoped would never hear be directed at me.

He said I have become obsessed with my weight.

But...he's right. I have. I've become so focused on what that number says each morning that I have stopped living. I've stopped enjoying myself, I've beaten myself up when I've treated myself, I've worked out only to stop if I saw that it didn't help me lose weight, I've even closed myself off to my own boyfriend. It has to stop. I have to fix this problem before it gets out of control. Dare I say it...before I develop some sort of eating disorder.

So I'm taking a break. So long scales, adios to my daily weigh in, farewell to those numbers that have come to dictate my life.

I'm not claiming that I'll never weigh myself again, but I think I'm going to stop weighing myself until I feel like I've had 3-4 consecutive weeks "on plan". No more being awesome for 1 week, seeing no results and wallowing in self pity and a takeaway pizza box. I have to have at least 3 great weeks of exercising AND eating right and then I will weigh myself. But if those 3 weeks pass by and I'm not quite ready, then I will wait until I am.

It's time to judge myself by my actions and my feelings, not by a number.

Do you think you could take a break from weighing in? Were you happy with the results from your scale break? If you don't weigh yourself, do you feel better because of it?


  1. My dear, I came across your post via blogilates and I feel for you. I really do. I know the despondency you feel from the scale and it's great that you're moving away from it. But something else troubles me though. Why do you diminish yourself by calling yourself names? By calling this blog "hippo to hottie" you are attaching your self-worth to a size--a number. Please reconsider the identity you're building, because it may haunt your for the rest of your life, making it harder to embrace the good all around you--the relationships your are building and the kindness you are spreading. Actually, it sounds like it's starting too.

    On a personal note, my weight has creeped up again too, and some of my clothes are tighter, and yes, my 38 yo body is having a hard time losing the extra weight. Getting back on track hasn't yielded the same results for me scale-wise, either. But you know what? I'm fine with that because it's more than the number. I look at the body that I had when I surpassed my goal and the body that I have now ... now I see a wider waist and hips, but I have different muscle definition and I'm stronger than ever. At my lightest, through clean eating and exercise, my four pack still jiggled with cellulite and I still had my belly pooch--same then, and same now, except now, I have a jiggly seven pack (bizarre I know, but that's the point, sometimes our bodies just aren't textbook). I didn't get an amazing rock hard body, but I always had an incredible partner and an amazing family. I don't want to cloister myself from them because I feel bad about weight that no one else seems to notice or care about. I'm telling you this because regardless of your weight, regardless of what is said to you about your weight, you are still worth good things. It took me a long time to realize this. Your are worth the love your partner gives you and the kindness you generate. Be healthy, both physically and mentally. Embrace your time in Japan with a full heart, but don't embrace the negativity of being a "fat foreigner" or of being a "hippo".

    Keep well.

    1. Thank you for reading my blog! I really appreciate the time you took. And thank you for taking the time to write to me. While I do REALLY appreciate your advice and your observations - I don't think that the "hippo to hot" name demeans myself. Writing that I almost want to laugh, because I can completely understand your concern, but I think I am a woman of good humour and I can poke fun at myself without opening up any wounds if that makes sense. I don't believe I was ever a hippo, I guess it's just an affectionate way of saying "obese". The fat foreigner label...well that's something I'm still coming to terms with. It's hard not to feel a bit on the bigger side here when you're walking alongside thin people 99% of the time, but I know to keep myself grounded and know that I have my own self worth and I'm not below anyone for being a certain shape.

      I'm glad that you have found peace with your body, you're definitely right it's important to accept who you are and be happy with what you have. I thank life every day for giving me a body with all the right parts and all the right pieces on the inside to carry me through my journey through life. When I think about what other people do or don't have I know how insanely lucky I am and I am thankful for what I have. I'm sorry it took me so long to get back to your comment, I hope you are well!


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