How do you use the scale? Is it a helpful tool or is it the enemy? As my friend Mary says so often, this keto weight loss journey is about getting our heads right. And my head has not always been friends with the scale.
I went for years not weighing. It was so depressing and I didn’t know the first thing about what to do about my weight so I just avoided it altogether. After all, I knew what it was going to say–it was always a higher number than the last time.
But now I know that all that old dietary advice–like cut calories, move more, eat low fat, eat small meals–is based on faulty assumptions. Now I know the hormone insulin–not calories–is responsible for my weight gain. And I know what to do about it. YaY! Stepping on the bathroom scale isn’t such a scary thing anymore.
So here are my step by step instructions for making the scale our friend, not our enemy. Assuming of course that you’re eating low-carb healthy-fat!
- Before you step on the scale, take a deep breath and tell yourself “This is a number, a piece of information. It has nothing to do with who I am. This is a good day before I get on the scale and it’s a good day after I get off the scale.”
- If the number is lower, smile & give yourself a pat on the back. Or do a happy dance if it’s a particularly good number 🙂
- If the number is the same or higher, smile & give yourself a pat on the back. Then think about–in a non-judgemental compassionate way–what might have influenced the number.
- Have I been keeping my carbs at a good level?
- Am I eating enough fat?
- Have I been eating when I’m not hungry? (also known as eating too often)
- Have I been eating late in the day? For some people, eating late in the day makes a big difference.
- Is it that time of the month? Hormones are have a huge impact on hunger and day to day weight.
- These questions are just ways to uncover possible clues as to what’s happening. If there’s something to change, okay. That’s the next step on this journey. Or maybe there’s nothing different going on, the scale is just up. Maybe there’s not one thing to change. Just keep going, don’t give up. If there is something you want to tweak, then make a plan and go for it. Make just one change at a time though, so you’ll know what changes help and which ones don’t.
- Before you step off the scale, take another deep breath and say thank you to the scale and to your body. Yes. I know, it’s sounds woo-woo. But we’re talking about becoming friends with the scale, right? And ultimately we’re talking about becoming friends with our body.
- And this last step is as important as the ones above: Eat good keto food the very next time you’re hungry and enjoy your day. This is the keto life 🙂
Some people choose to weigh less often. Maybe it’s better to weigh no more than once a week or once a month. Or just when they go to the doctor’s office. Some people throw the scale out and go by the way they feel and how their clothes fit. And if that’s best for you too, then that’s a great plan.
For others, weighing more often keeps them on track. If you fall into that camp, it’s important to learn how to use the scale skillfully. Weighing skillfully means knowing when to learn from the number on the scale and when to ignore it. It means no matter what the number on the scale is, I’m not using it as an excuse to get discouraged and to start eating carbage again. I’m going to use weighing on the scale as a way to make me better at this low carb ketogenic way of eating.
I hope these thoughts about using the scale as a friendly tool are helpful. If you try them, let me know how it goes 🙂