By W Tribe member Mel Keenan
I fell for the oldest trick in the book (again!) on Monday. I went looking for validation in the wrong place… I stepped on the scales. I wanted my healthy eating validated, my workouts validated and I wanted it in a dramatic decrease in a number on a little blue screen.
I go so long in between weighing myself, that even as I’m stepping on I’m saying to myself “what are you doing? Put your dressing gown back on and get out of here”.
But I stepped on regardless telling myself “it will be different this time, the number won’t get to me because I know it isn’t the right way to measure physical improvement – I’m only weighing myself for curiosity”.
That lasted until my left foot joined my right on the cold glass top and the arrows started spinning clockwise. A second or 2 passed and a number lit up that nasty, little digital screen. As it appeared my ability to see any of the good things about myself disappeared. I was so mad at it and disgusted in myself that I yelled out “FAT!” and literally visualised myself throwing the scales through a window.
Somewhere in my house my voice of reason (today belonging to none other than my husband) yelled back “MUSCLE!”
Now clarity did not immediately return, unfortunately. That’s the thing with overcoming self-talk, you’ve got to do the hard work yourself and believe it. The increased heart rate and strops continued on through my morning until my 15 minutes thinking time driving to the gym, where I set about putting some constructive thoughts together.
It’s Thursday now and I’ve been thinking about what I can measure from the last 4 weeks that is actually even related to my goals and values?
Well, I can finally do some incline pushups, and in fact, I’ve done a lot this week and a few pushups in a row on my toes a couple of times too. So that tells me my strength is improving and with practice, I will be heading towards doing some whole sets on my toes.
My thighs feel strong and powerful and I can push through on machines like the assault bike a lot easier. I can now squat with 40kg of child on my shoulders when 12 months ago squatting unweighted was a discomfort.
When I’m walking I’m less breathless and enjoy the time taking in my surroundings more. I’m actually seeking to get outdoors again and I’m not embarrassed to workout with park benches and where people can see me.
My midzone feels stronger and more toned and things feel more comfortable. What I can measure is that I walk taller and I hold my head high because being open and authentic and free to be myself has allowed me to connect with so many more people.
I can measure my happiness. I can agree that curiosity killed the cat and for about an hour it killed my mood too. I can see my worth is far more then what my scales tell me, even if I had to have a little slip up to come to that realisation again.