Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Scale Question and Answer Time

A few posts ago I talked about not letting the scale do one's head in. I received a few emails about it and I want to share the email and my response.
Here it is:
"Just read your blog re: scales, Would LOVE your opinion on my thoughts below - here goes..
I am very anti scales.....given that there are so many reasons for variation, why should we weigh ourselves when it isnt a true indication...I TOTALLY understand that we have the control over how we interpret the number on the scales. I just think that too many of us freak about the number and become obsessive about being a particular number or losing so many kg's - a number! If we train hard and eat well and look good, why weigh? I know it's one of many tools to check progress (especially when preparing for comp etc) but when you weigh in daily and see the numbers fluctuate, i think it does more damage than good......I havent weighed myself since my last comp - i just knew that i would of been in a deep depression (post comp) knowing that i wouldnt be able to hold the scales at a weight i would be happy with...it's bad enough that the size 8's have to be put away until next comp.....gosh - i am sounding so mental right now - but do you get what i mean ???"
My answer:
I want to "challenge" you on a few points and see where the
cards fall, OK :)
1) Your weight, combined with other measurements is a TRUE indication
of where you're at. Alone, it ISN'T (due to normal natural
> fluctuations). You can't outrun a crap diet (as we all know,myself included).
> 2) If we have total control over how we interpret the number, then why
> would it do more damage than good to see a fluctuating scale, whether
> it be up or down?
> 3) Re deep depression about the scale: the scale is what it is, the
> scale has no emotion and could care less about what you think, so why
> give it the credence of basing your self worth on a number? This is
> where society has instilled in people a toxic relationship with scale weight and self worth.
> If you're fat, you're "undisciplined" and if you're "skinny" then
> you're good. You're worthwhile BECAUSE YOU EXIST, THIS IS NOT BASED
> 4) I think worrying about clothing sizes is crazier than worrying
> about the scale, especially with vanity sizing and all. Personally at
> my current weight which is 6kg over competition weight I have items
> that are XS, 8, 10, 12, M and L.
> Depending on whether you do physique or figure, a healthy off season
> weight is anywhere from 5-7kg over comp weight.
I had a charming weight to report this morning - back in the 61s with the advent of TOM and the associated fluid retention that goes with it - I even thought I looked like a bit of a puff ball in the mirror, but I'm looking forward to the exit of this fluid in good time.
Had a great training session today: 60/60 intervals at 4:30 min k/6 min k pace for 10 cycles, Heavy Leg training. I was really focusing and let out the odd grunt today - there's a big deadlift monster lurking at Fitness First! Then I finished off with 20 minutes of steady state running. Apart from being a bit of a puff ball today, I'm feeling very strong :)
My other snafu today was forgetting my bra and undies to change into after my workout. A perfect excuse to go to Lorna Jane, which is next door to the gym. I decided to buy a padded workout bra with the idea of seeing what the old chest would look like with a little more plumage. Of course as soon as I put it on, I felt like I was one massive mono boob but when I looked in the mirror there really wasn't much difference at all! I have a bit of fear about being too big but somehow I don't think that will be an issue.


Kek said...

Bravo! Funny, I was mulling over a post about the scales and weight loss and related "head stuff" myself. Haven't quite figured out what I want to say yet, so I'll stew on it a bit longer.

As for sudden (and slightly crazy) weight gains, as you know, I managed to gain almost 1.5kg in 3 days last week...then 4 days later it had vanished again, along with an extra 300g. Did it bother me? Nope. Mystified me maybe, but it definitely didn't ruin my mood, affect my workouts or send me sobbing to the supermarket chocolate aisle.

Huh, I must be cured. :)

Alicia said...

Hahahaha yes I heard a few grunts from you today when I went past with my clients :) And I can vouch that you completely SMASHED it today. see you soon xo

little rene said...

Fantastic answer Liz! I loved reading this post, you are my fitness and nutrition hero!

Have a great day :)

Lisa said...

I love a good grunt - not a good lift unless you make a noise!

Great comments re scales and size. It is true they need to be used as a tool to assist in recording progress - hard to track all that muscle we are putting on just by looking at it. Although trying to squeeze a Lorna Jane size S bra top over a big deadlifting back is a pretty good way to record change as well!

Shannon said...

Hi Boss,
I Loved your blog on the scales... very true! I love the fact that I can actually comment on your blog now instead of just nodding my head to agree with everything you write :)

Antigone said...

You rock:)
You really make sense and you really help me to keep on pushing:)
Hope you have a great week hun :)