I want it to be FAST, EASY, and FUN.
So when I step on the scale after being faithful to my boundaries for ONE WHOLE WEEK and see a big fat zero weight loss, I get extremely annoyed.
So annoyed that I head to the kitchen for an out-of-the-boundaries, high-calorie treat. After all, why suffer if I’m not going to lose weight?
This is an example of Bad Scale Eating. I’m eating because the weight isn’t coming off as fast as I’d like it to.
What I want is a miracle – a nice steep diagonal line on a weight loss graph, always heading down in an orderly fashion. What’s up with the flat line or – even worse – those weeks when I actually gain weight after a week of suffering?
What’s up is probably water weight. Or maybe just my body taking a little break in preparation for a big leap the following week. When I expect the scale to go down every single week – including the weeks I fudge on my boundaries – then I have unrealistic expectations for weight loss.
If I cling to those unrealistic expectations, one of two things will happen:
- I’ll get frustrated by my slow progress and quit following my boundaries in a fit of annoyance and rebellion.
- I’ll keep following my boundaries but I’ll have a terrible attitude about it. This will make me want to:
- Eat to comfort myself.
If I want to keep following my boundaries with a good attitude, I’ll need to renew my mind – preferably the minute I step off the scale. Here’s a renewing of the mind exercise you can do if you struggle with Bad Scale Eating.
Exercise for Journal
Think about your expectations for losing weight, following your boundaries, and renewing your mind. Then complete the following half-sentences with as many thoughts as you can think of:
Following my boundaries should be . . .
I shouldn’t have to . . .
I should be able to . . .
I can’t believe . . .
It’s not fair that . . .
Now go back and write the truth for each thought. Here are a couple of examples:
* * * * * * *
Belief: I should be able to eat the things I love and still lose weight.
Truth: I can eat the things I love and still lose weight. I just need to eat less of them.
OR (depending on the person):
Truth: 95% of the time, when I eat the things I love, I can’t stop. If I’m going to lose weight and keep it off, I need to stop eating the things I love until I can see those things from God’s perspective.
* * * * * * *
Belief: I can’t believe I stuck to my boundaries all week and didn’t lose weight.
Truth: Well, I did, so I might as well believe it. Weight never goes down in a nice smooth line. If I keep persevering with my boundaries, I WILL lose weight eventually.
OR (depending on the week):
Truth: I didn’t actually stick to my boundaries all week. It felt like I did because of all that suffering, but in reality, I only stuck to it until about 7:00 each night. Most nights I had a 500 calorie outside-of-the-boundaries treat. Since it takes a deficit of 3500 calories to lose one pound of weight, that nightly treat was probably enough to keep me from losing any weight this week.
* * * * * * *
If you’d like to give this a try, write out the five sentence starters in your journal and end them the way you would end them in your mind. Then apply the truth to each lie.
Note: An edited version of this Bible study can be found in Taste for Truth: A 30 Day Weight Loss Bible Study.