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Lisa’s Tips for Beating the Scale Slowdown

By Lisa Spodak (ResultsNotTypical@worldnow.com)
Provided by WorldNow

Week 11 Weigh In:

Change this week:  -.5 lbs.
Change overall:  -30.5 lbs.

Ugh.  I knew this would happen.  I was prepared for it — but I’m still bummed out.  I only lost a half a pound this week.  And it was barely a half a pound – when I re-weighed myself after brushing my teeth, it was a totally flat weigh-in.  I’d already recorded the half pound loss, so, that was my official count… but, still.  UGH.

Now, I know any loss is a good loss… and every week that I stick to my plan is a step in the right direction.  But it’s hard to stay motivated when you feel like you’re working hard and making good decisions and the scale is not giving you evidence of that.

So, this week I’m going to concentrate on some of the things that are a testament to my success regardless of those annoying little numbers on the scale.

  • Up until a few weeks ago, every trip up the stairs to my 5th floor apartment included a stop on a landing to catch my breath.  Now I can go all the way without stopping and I’m not nearly as badly out of breath as I used to be.
  • The last few times I flew on planes before I started my program in February, I had to ask for a seatbelt extender.  It was totally humiliating.  On my trips to Houston and Las Vegas in April, I had no trouble with the seatbelt!
  • People keep asking me if I got my hair cut or if I’m wearing makeup.  It always makes me giggle because it seems to be a fairly common way of commenting that I look different and asking if I’ve lost weight without asking if I’ve lost weight.  It’s okay – I’ve lost weight!
  • Since the weather is starting to get nicer, I went through all my fall and winter clothes to get rid of everything that either already didn’t fit me or surely wouldn’t fit me by next fall or winter.  Before I knew it, I had two big shopping bags full of things to donate to charity.
  • In the past when I had any kind of disappointment or setback, it would be a reason to further abandon my plan and go on a horrible binge.  After reading the scale this week, I pouted to myself for a moment… and then hurried to the bathroom to brush my teeth so I could rush off to the gym and start the week right.

Obviously, your victories will be different from mine.  And sometimes it’s hard to notice them, even when they are happening all around you.  Here are a few tips to get past the scale doldrums:

  • The scale, even when it’s giving us information we like, is fairly fickle… so many different things can affect those numbers: water retention, exercise, one big meal at the wrong time. Instead, focus on things completely within your control: set goals based on the number of times you write down everything you eat, the number of times you exercise, the amount of water you drink a day, etc.
  • Take your measurements. Sometimes, even when the scale isn’t budging, you’ll see that you’re continuing to lose inches.
  • Take pictures! So many of us who are struggling with our weight, sneak out of as many pictures as possible. Start jumping in the frame… over time you’ll be able to see the differences that you miss in the mirror every day.
  • Choose things that are important to you — even if they are only tangentially related to your weight — and come up with goals related to them: Want to run a marathon? Set goals based on mileage on the treadmill. Love to shop? Work towards a new dress size. Love to cook? Learn how to make healthier versions of some of your favorite foods. All sorts of goals can help with your weight loss – and vice versa!

Of course, the most satisfying thing in all of this isn’t related to the scale or a dress size or any other external goal or reward.  Every week that I’m sticking to my program I’m feeling better and, more importantly, feeling better about myself.  Take a deep breath and think about the distance you’ve come and the changes you’ve made — whether you’ve been at it for a year or a few days, you’re that much closer to where you want to be.


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