When good habits turn bad

One of my main goals after having gastric bypass surgery has been to establish better and healthier habits going forward which will support me in maintaining my 70 kilo weight loss for the rest of my life. As with anything in health and wellness healthy habits exist on a continuum and there’s a certain point where any habit can go from being healthy and helpful to being obsessive and unhelpful.

I have, for at least the last three years, been weighing myself on a daily basis. At the worst points for periods of time I would weigh myself twice a day. While I weighed myself every single day I did only record it once a week on a Wednesday. I have a slightly addictive personality and it became something that I couldn’t not do every single day. This is when I started to realise that things need to change.

For a long time, this was just a part of everyday life and I could very easily justify it to myself. I know that part of how I got so morbidly obese was by putting my head in the sand and ignoring my weight completely. I would weigh myself, be horrified at the result and not weigh myself again for a few months. The next time I weighed myself I would be even more horrified and so the cycle continued. I figured that by weighing myself daily I was keeping an eye on it and could modify or adjust my behaviour depending on what it said.

One huge lesson I have learnt through this journey is that the relationship between what goes in my mouth and the weight that shows up on the scale is not as linear or as instant as I had previously thought. Sometimes it takes a few weeks for a bad food week to catch up with you. The scale is not necessarily a direct reflection of what your body has been through in the past few days. This is important to remember and keep in mind when you have a stall during the rapid weight loss phase after surgery.

In one of my recent posts I talked about how this second year of my weight maintenance has gone and that it hasn’t exactly gone to plan. I had got increasingly obsessive over the year with weighing myself, particularly when the scale is not doing what I want it to. I started to realise that I need to break my daily weighing habit because it wasn’t spurring me on to change my behaviour with food. Instead I was getting increasingly frustrated and I think my eating got so off track for a while there because I was acting out against the scale and what it was telling me.

I haven’t stepped on the scale for six days now and I have to tell you it’s been a hard week. Basically every time I go into the bathroom I’ve wanted to jump on just to have a little look but I have resisted. If I needed to I was going to hide the scale, or at least remove it from the bathroom for a while but I haven’t needed to. To say I’m excited to get back on tomorrow is an understatement.

While it has been hard not knowing and having that visibility of my weight everyday it has been a bit freeing too. I’m not thinking about it every day and dwelling on what the scale has told me that morning. I don’t even need to add that over the period of a week your weight naturally fluctuates around a bit and that is influenced by so many different things. Weighing myself weekly is going to be my new routine. I am in my second week of not weighing myself daily now and as the days pass I think less and less about needing to jump on that scale each day. The last few days I haven’t even thought about it to be honest with you!

What approach have you taken with how often you weigh yourself before or after weight loss surgery? Do you get like me and place far too much importance on what the scale says or do you take it in your stride and go more by how you feel? Comment below and let me know!

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