Flash back 15 months ago. I was done. Done, with what I thought the weight loss journey of a lifetime. Over a year and a half; losing weight, getting thinner. At the end of this span of time, I looked back and thought, “Hot damn, 60 pounds down.” My entire journey, summarized and defined by one number. One. Number.
Here’s the thing about numbers. While possibly large in value, they are a singular point of data. They tell no story on their own, and clearly aren’t sufficient enough to describe an entire lifestyle change. Not only do numbers paint a narrow picture, but they are fleeting and ever-changing. It’s difficult to take steadfast pride in something that changes in such a fickle manner. Eat a piece of pizza, it changes. Drink a lot of water, it changes. Wear heavier clothes than the last weigh in, it changes. Despite the nature of the number, however, it still has such an emotional hold on so many of us. (Myself included on some days!) Numbers can make you feel invincible one moment, and anxious as hell the next. Yet, we continue to perseverate over them. Why? Well, they’re easy to keep track of. Unfortunately, when they’re the only thing we keep track of and take pride in, tunnel vision keeps us from maintaining them, and keeps us from making progress in other areas.
This time around, I’ve found myself surprisingly relaxed about the numbers. Do I still track them? Yes, but as one of many data points. (You’re talking to a girl who keeps an excel spreadsheet for everything, after all.) In addition to numbers, though, I’ve been taking special care to consider other victories as I earn them. Now, we’ve all heard of “non-scale victories”. It’s a term people use when they are celebrating progressions that are non-weight related. Often times though, these victories are still based on a number connected to the body, like a dress size or calories burned/eaten in a given amount of time. For me, these victories are great because they acknowledge the reality that progress is multifaceted, but they are still sometimes limiting. These days, when I set weekly goals and celebrate weekly successes, I simply focus on being well and healthy, both physically and mentally. This means that many of my non-scale victories are unrelated to the shape, size, and weight of my body.
For example, the goals on this week’s vision board were:
- 1) Cook tasty food, and pretend that I can photograph it well.
- 2) Endure that damn treadmill, and start training for my next half marathon.
- 3) Try something new everyday, whether that be eating a new food, running a new route, meeting a new person, or picking up a new book (…or buying a new pair of Fabletic’s leggings…oops).
4) Reflect with a few words in a journal, daily
Luckily, I’ve kicked all those goal in the ass this week. So, no matter what number pops up on my scale, I’ve got plenty to be proud of.
This week, think about this: what will define your journey? Will you get to wherever you’re going and say something like, “I lost x amount of pounds!”. Or, will you say something about:
– feeling pride in your newfound athleticism?
– finding ways to be creative in the kitchen?
– changing your ability to interact with loved ones in a more active way?
– having found a new group of friends who have similar goals?
– being more in tune with yourself and what makes you feel accomplished?
Speaking of cooking tasty food, this week, I was ALL about that toast life – it’s one of my favorite breakfast and snack foods, as it’s so simple, yet so customizable. Without further ado, here are five of my favorite ways to keep it toasty.
Way 1: Multigrain toast, Greek yogurt mixed with vanilla, caramelized banana coins and Wild Food Friends Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Peanut Butter
Way 2: Multigrain toast, Greek yogurt mixed with cocoa and cinnamon, strawberries, blueberries, and Wild Food Friends Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter
Way 3: Multigrain toast, avocado food processed with cocoa and vanilla, clementine segments, pomegranate seeds
Way 4: Multigrain toast, smashed avocado, grape tomatoes, red onion, cayenne pepper
Way 5: Multigrain toast, Teddie’s Smooth Peanut Butter, strawberries, blueberries (AKA, for those days when you’re an adult but PB&Js still give you life…like everyday.)
Next week, I’ve decided to stop chickening out, and write my first ever fully savory post about my new favorite poultry dish.
Until then, stay tuned and stay hungry!