Yesterday, I had a conversation with a co-worker who has been working hard at getting healthy, fit, and losing weight. He’s actually quite active and fit; I’m surprised he’s working so hard at it, but that’s the secret a lot of us who are fit and healthy carry: it is work, and we’re putting in the time and effort.
During our conversation, I mentioned how I still need to lose some weight and I was worried because my increased tempo of workouts was likely going to increase my muscle mass to which he replied, “Are you still worried about the scale? You look like you’re in great shape with almost no body fat. Don’t tell me you’re one of those people who chases the scale, are you?”
This made me think. What the heck was I chasing a number for? I have written article after article about non-scale victories (NSV’s) and about looking at other data points to determine health and fitness. The scale is just one of those data points and is no more valued than others. Yet here I am, chasing a number.
I’m thinking that this might be coming to and end very, very soon. As I look over my body after a shower, I see that with the exception of spare skin from when I weighed over 300 lbs, I don’t have any fat on me anywhere. Sometimes I bloat from having alcohol or a bit too many carbs, but that always goes away within 2-3 days and then I’m back to being my normal, slim self. I’m fit. I run, I work out, and I’m getting stronger, faster, and healthier. My clothes fit better, and I feel pretty great. Well, except for how much I care about getting to a certain weight.
I have a physical fitness assessment in less than two weeks, and I know I will most likely be over the max allowable weight for my height which will require me to be “Taped,” which is to say that they will measure me to assess my body fat percentage. I’m curious to see how this shakes out, and I will be posting about it here.
In the meantime, while I will continue to weigh myself, it will be just to track my weight and not to try to get to a magical number that seems to be ever-elusive. If I look healthy, feel healthy, and my body fat percentage is low while I fit into my clothing properly and can continue to run, work out, and exercise, then I’m not going to worry about it. Of course, I will use it as an additional data point to measure my overall health, but no longer will I allow it to guide my diet, exercise, and daily habits. At least, for now.