“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time”- Leo Tolstoy
It’s amazing what you can learn about yourself in 48 hours. In the grand scheme of things it seems like such a small space in time, but for me it was a little life altering in regards to weight loss. What I learned is it takes my body 48 hours to process food. Let me state this is not scientifically proven, but this is what I learned about myself. I weigh everyday. I have weighed everyday for years after reading a book that suggested it. The theory was if you weigh daily you will never be surprised about weight loss or weight gain, Yes you can argue that weighing daily is harmful. You can say weigh once a week or even once a month. That is your prerogative. As for me, I weigh daily and will continue to do so. I do adhere to the rule that you need to step on the scale at the same time everyday if you want to get an accurate reading.
After I wake up and use the bathroom I step on the scale. I use to look at the number and begin my morning ritual of brushing and flossing. Now because I have a fancy scale I make sure my phone is in the bathroom and my scale app is open. Yes you read that right. I stand on the scale bare foot and watch a little ring dance around in a circle as my weight, body fat, metabolic age, and fifteen other things are calculated. This experience is both exciting and humbling. Exciting because I like to see the numbers move, humbling because the bluntness of the readouts will hurt your feelings. This is not a scale you should own if you can’t handle the truth, or this scales version of the truth. If you are easily offended I would just stick with a regular scale that only displays weight. This particular scale is by Renphro. With all this information it provides you would think it cost $50+. No, I actually snagged it for around $20 when it was on sale. I thought it was a deal until it hurt my feelings. I want to say I packed it away and called it a $20 loss. If you know me, you know I did not do that.
I sadly take the torture each morning, and use this number to gauge what I need to do for the day. If I’ve lost my one pound for the week and the scale remains the same, I eat what I want. If the scale goes up, I need to cut back or try harder for that day. It’s a very simple process, but this process taught me something was off. One day I had eaten a lot of food and had racked up about 2800 calories. The next morning I stood on the scale and it had not moved. I took this as a sign that the weight loss gods were finally shining down on me. I ate reasonable well that day and even went for a walk. I was super proud of myself and thought well maybe I was doing so well the extra calories did not matter. The following morning I stood on the scale and it was up two pounds. What!! I had barely eaten anything the day before and I took a walk. At the moment I didn’t think about the food I had eaten two days ago, I was only focusing on the past 24 hours. At the time I just got upset and worked out twice as hard. I was able to get the two pounds back off but I really had to try hard to do it. Taking a breezy stroll just wasn’t going to cut it. Was my scale lying to me the day before? This is what irrational people do when something is off. Blame the inanimate object glaring at you from your bathroom floor.
Later in the month this happened to me again. I didn’t eat 2800 calories, but ate more than I should have consumed. I stood on the scale and nothing changed. Great I was the same weight I was yesterday. Two days later and I declared “the devil is a lie” the scale had gone up one pound. I want to tell you I became this super educated person at that moment and began to do rational things. No. I was pissed. Why was I working hard and the scale was lying to me? Why did I keep doing all this work and this scale chose to mock me? I thought about how this scale (not this exact one) had seen me naked more than anyone including myself. I don’t look at myself naked very often. Some fat people do, but I am not one of them. I had bore my body and soul to this thing each day and it kept torturing me with numbers, false readings. Yes, I became delusional. It doesn’t take very long when weight is concerned.
Now this is where the old me would have given up and just ate a bunch of crap and said the plan is not working. I did something different this time. I pulled out my journals and began comparing my weight and food logs. I saw a pattern. It only took me forty plus years but I saw a pattern. Revelation was my weight does not change the following day, it changes 48 hours later. It was taking my body 48 hours to catch up to what I had done to it. Why it took so long I didn’t know, but at least I knew that my 24 hour joy was false hope. False hope that was telling me what I had done 24 hours prior was ok when I knew it wasn’t.
Having this little piece of information in my pocket I made some changes coming out of month one. I knew my body would react in 48 hours so after a larger calorie day I knew I needed to workout hard for two days to get it off. Some of you are thinking why didn’t you just stay your ass off the scale? If I was that strong I wouldn’t be fat in the first place. No, this girl doesn’t have that willpower. What happened was the 24 hour weigh in still lied to me, but I was prepared for the 48 hour information. I worked out harder the day I ate the big meal and two days after. Again you might ask why didn’t I just not eat the big meal? Again I say, that’s why I’m fat because I like to eat the big meals.
You have to decide what works for you and what you are willing to do. Learning this little bit about myself I knew I couldn’t keep eating the big meals but also knew what I needed to do if I ate the big meal. I knew I would not be perfect on this journey but on month one giving up foods I loved all the time would not work. That’s what I had done before, and that’s how I had failed. Remember I did lose my allotted four pounds and actually lost six to something was working. What I did before heading into month two was add this little gem of information in my weight loss toolbox. Having the tools I needs when I run into situations helps me be prepared and ready to deal with the consequences of my actions. After all, I did not stop loving food after month one.
How To Use This: If you discover a patten write it down. You need something to have in your weight loss toolbox for when you know you won’t eat well. Thanksgiving, Christmas, Super Bowl, birthdays, anniversaries, vacations, and for my best friend Halloween. We each have that day or several days when we are just going to eat. Stop trying not to eat, that’s silly. I can’t avoid cake so I’m not about to start trying now. Eat the damn cake. Just know you are going to spend some time working out or eating better later to combat the cake. Hopefully this tidbit helps some other people. If you have a tip you’ve learned about yourself let me know. We all needs some little gems.