Health & Fit I Got Rid of My Scale 2 Years Ago. I'm Happier and Healthier Than I've Ever Been.

19:45  20 october  2020
19:45  20 october  2020 Source:   msn.com

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I often joke that when it comes to dating and relationships, my "type" is often guys that are emotionally unavailable. If you can make me jump through hoops to win over your approval, I won’t hesitate to put a ring on it.

I used to think that this was the biggest reason I’ve never been in a real relationship. But, after I did some deep inner-reflection, I realized that the real reason I've never been in a relationships is that I am already in one: the long-standing relationship with my scale.

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Ever since I was seven years old, it was a struggle for me to like my body.

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I loved Hot Pockets and I loathed any type of physical activity. That coupling alone led to me gaining a lot of weight in a very short amount of time. I remember going on diets with my mother, drinking SlimFast shakes, eating salads, and weighing myself to make sure I wasn’t gaining anymore weight.

Over the next 15 years, I developed and battled an unpleasant eating disorder. I was clinically diagnosed with bulimia and spent many years trying to overcome it. I entered a treatment center. I went to therapy. I read self-help books. I studied nutrition. I went on-and-off meal plans. I did everything the books tell you to.

And it all worked, but only to a degree.

Because of the scale.

The scale was my source of negative self-talk. Even though the scale was meant to motivate me, all it did was equate my value to an ever-fluctuating number. And never once did it make me feel whole. Yet, at the time, I had no other barometer of success.

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When I dove deeper, I started to notice all the ways I learned that my weight—the number given to me by my scale —was how I was calculated my worth. The closer I was to my weight goal (whatever it was at the time) the worthier I thought I’d feel.

Because of my mother's push to have me lose weight, I gained the idea that I would somehow feel more lovable if I avoided becoming "fat." The world doesn’t like "fat." The world likes perfect.

This sentiment came back to me in treatment for bulimia. There I’d weigh-in every other day and a large part of my "success" was dependent on how I weighed-in for the week. Beyond that, I would obsess over every 0.2 pound I’d gain or lose. If I lost two pounds since last night—victory. If I gained them back after breakfast—failure.

a person sitting in a room: The author, as a child. © Zack Peter The author, as a child.

From my research I've found that it’s normal for people to fluctuate from 5 to 7 pounds from day to day. That's healthy. It's the obsessing over these fluctuations that causes anxiety and negative ruminations.

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I sought treatment for my unhealthy connection to the scale. And what I found was that I had to answer some difficult questions not about my relationship to a piece of machinery, but to myself. I was tired of living my life for a number. I was tired of always being disappointed in who was, as if somehow that number was a score for my character.

After realizing that the scale was counterproductive to my weight loss, I broke up with. Even though I was ending my relationship, I treated it as an act of love.

Zack Peter standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera: The author, after his breakup with his scale. © Zack Peter The author, after his breakup with his scale.

After that, I could finally breathe. It was like that first gasp of fresh air after being under the water just a little too long. The noise in my head quieted. I even noticed my body changing. I felt more confident in it. I’d check myself out in the mirror a little more. I appreciated how strong it is after everything it’s gone through. I could finally love myself without the fear of it getting robbed by a heavy salad at lunch.

After two years of breaking free from the scale, I decided to challenge myself to step on it again just to see my reaction. I looked down at the number and laughed. I weighed exactly the same as I did two years ago, without any effort to gain or lose anything. I guess my body has reached its homeostasis.

The freedom of not being tied to the scale’s demands is truly liberating. And I’ll tell you what, it looks a hell of a lot better than it did two years ago. Who knew the only thing it was really missing was a weightless smile.

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This is interesting!