Thursday, 6 August 2015

Breaking things off with my scale

So I know a lot of people will look at this title with some confusion yes I am comparing a human relationship to that which one shares with an everyday weight scale, it may seem stupid or ridiculous but give me a moment to explain and you will see why they are so similar.

A relationship can do many things, it can make your day or break it, it can build you up or bring you down, it can be an obsession or a casual thing…. See where I am going with this.

The same can be said for a scale, one simple number on that piece of metal or plastic can make or break your day, it can make you feel top of the world beaming with self-confidence or it demoralize you and stamp your confidence into the ground, it can also be something you step on once in a blue moon or every now and then or it can become a dangerous obsession…..

My scale relationship began very early on in my childhood through my mom, I would see her tutting about how her jeans seemed more snug or how she really needed to lose some amount of excess weight I could never see, she would step on the scale and her face would drop and it would send her into days or weeks of strict dieting and mood swings, not fun for a child I can tell you and it really shaped the way I started to look at my own body.

I was an overweight child and teenager and it wasn’t that I overate because I didn’t I would not eat breakfast sometimes skip lunch, but it was what I at when it came to my emotional eating that was my problem hence I had what you would term a bad relationship with food, whether I was happy or sad food was my go to in the form of sweets and chocolate, anything sugary that would boost my mood and make me feel better albeit for a short period of time…

Until at the age of 15 I decided enough was enough and I couldn’t stand what I saw in the mirror anymore and that is when my relationship with my scale got serious and I developed what is termed as body dismorphic disorder, from the very first time I stepped onto that scale I gave over a piece of myself to that scale, I lived for the numbers on that scale, if that scale went up my mood went down and my eating habits became more restricted until I reached a point of stepping on the scale up to 6 times a day and gyming for on average 3-5 hours after school, before school and in the evenings, it got so bad that after a while I even gave up gyming because the scale numbers started to climb…. Logic will tell you that was because muscle weighs more than fat and my trainer told me this but I just couldn’t get past that number….

Even at this stage I felt overweight and ugly
I went from over 90kg to 53 kg in a few short months, I was so unhappy and unhealthy that the very thought of food made me ill and looking at myself in the mirror did the same, at this time I met my ex and a few short months later I was pregnant with Loghan.

6 months pregnant with Loghan
For the first time in about a year I pushed the scale away and attempted to break away from it completely, my eating habits relaxed and over the course of Loghan’s pregnancy I managed to gain 30 kg… yikes, however I was able to lose most of it after Loghan was born naturally.

After Loghan was born shit hit the fan so to speak, things happened with my ex but we were able to work through it and we got married a few months later, by this time I had started gaining some more weight but was still fairly comfortable and avoided the scale but when I fell pregnant with Gabriel, things only got worse in my relationship and I basically ate myself sick through that pregnancy, I was grossly unhappy and when I gave birth to Gabriel I was right back to where I started at around 70 or 80 kg….

8 months pregnant with Gabriel

A few months after my ex and I split my hubby and I started dating and for the first time in a long time I was happy you would think this would have led to a weight loss but unfortunately I was so caught up with the kids and our home that I just ate whatever whenever and by the end of Jesse’s pregnancy I was over 100kg… yes over 100kg.

8 months pregnant with Jesse

1 month after Jesse's birth

I looked in the mirror one day and decided enough was enough it was time to make a change and I started various things as always they failed in short the only thing I knew that worked for me was under eating and over exercising and that was when I found the Paleo diet and the reboot page, basically reboot was a 30 day detox and a stricter form of the Paleo way of eating, I tried it and failed miserably, I tried again and still failed but did better and basically I still today have not managed to complete the full 30 days, however what this did do for me was change my relationship with food, I realised that I needed to make the decision to change for my health and for my kids, it wasn’t about the weight, I wanted to feel better and I wanted to be able to play with my kids and raise them for many years to come…

However this didn’t change my relationship with the scale though, that nasty thing came out of the woodwork again and I found myself once again obsessing over those numbers, even when I could visibly see that I had lost cm I refused to feel good about it and this severely damaged my confidence and progress.

Then one day I read a post by another woman complaining of the same issues then another and another and the solution given by the people on the page- throw away your scale, don’t step on the scale or if you have to do it once a week or once a month, the numbers are not a true reflection of your progress and overall health… light bulb moment…. How did it take me so long to realise this and get it into my head, I will tell you why, it is because society has conditioned us to follow those numbers and cling to those numbers, we are led to believe that being overweight means you are unhealthy or unfit and that is untrue, I have seen size 6 girls who can’t run 100m to save their life and I have seen larger woman run a mile, I am not saying being overweight or obese is healthy what I am saying is that it isn’t always a honest reflection, once I made that decision to let that scale go and to listen to my body and focus on getting healthy everything changed.

This is me now, I last weighed myself at 63kg a few months back
From 108 kg on 01 January 2014 I am now 63 kg (last weigh), we still have a scale in our home but I no longer use it, I no longer follow diets, I eat well, if I want a treat I will have one but I no longer deprive myself of something or tell myself no because in the end that only made me want something more and to be honest I am an adult if I want a chocolate I am going to have one, but now I have a few blocks instead of a slab and now I make our food from scratch with fresh whole ingredients instead of out of a box in the convenience isle. The results speak for themselves in the overall health of not just me but my family and I do not plan on looking back.

I broke my ties with the scale, it was probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to do but I did it and I want to encourage all woman if you are at the point of giving up, if you have tried every diet to the point of starving yourself, if your self-confidence is through the floor, take a look at your relationship with food and scale and turn that around, its hard believe me it’s hard I had so many days when I wanted to get on the scale just once but I knew that those numbers were not what I needed instead I measured myself or put on a pair of pants I hadn’t been able to wear in a long while and those results made my day, and if I have a day where my pants are feeling a bit snug, I still tut tut to myself its habit to look at your eating habits and blame them but now I am at a point of its ok next week those pants may be lose 2 days later they may be snug again, it is completely normal for weight to fluctuate by a few kg even on a daily basis you can gain or lose within a kg from the morning to the night and there is nothing wrong with that, the point is to focus on health and the way in which you approach food, I promise you it makes the world of difference, break it off with that scale ladies it will be the best thing you ever do!

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