Hi, I'm Diana. Several years ago I lost a bunch of weight by completely changing my attitude toward food and exercise. Since then I've learned a few things about keeping it off and I'm still learning. Even if I'm constantly fighting off a few pounds, I can't imagine where my weight would be now if I hadn't made such a drastic life change. I'm a health coach for the Prevent program by Omada Health, and previously I was a Weight Watchers leader. Hopefully my silliness will help make your journey to health a little more fun. More about me here.

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The tough questions: When you're dreading the scale

The first installment of my coach Q&A series! Let's dive right in...

Q: I dread stepping on the scale. Seeing that number is demoralizing because it reminds me how much I have to lose to reach a healthy weight. How could that possibly motivate me?

The scale: our dreaded adversary. A reminder of just how much we don’t measure up. Sure it can be discouraging to dwell on the length of the journey ahead. But might there be a way to adjust our thinking and use the scale’s powers for good rather than evil? Let’s reframe the weigh-in experience to represent something else: an empowering reminder of your commitment to the small daily choices that will change your life.

Reaching your goal weight will require effort, patience, and trust in yourself - but most of all it will require consistency. And consistency is something you choose each and every day. That’s what the daily weigh-in symbolizes, your commitment to the healthy habits that will get you to your goal and beyond. 

Yes, the number will fluctuate. Yes, it’s an imperfect indicator of your success on a daily basis. But over time it provides important feedback to help us stay on track and make adjustments or seek support when needed. In fact, research shows that daily weigh ins correlate with more weight loss than weekly or monthly frequency. And those who use their scale daily are over four times more likely to lose 7% of their starting body weight than those who don’t.

Admittedly, there’s more than one path to any goal, and you may decide to keep track a bit differently by using measurements or or weighing in once a week. You are the expert on your life, and I trust you to be honest with yourself about what works.

In the end, the number itself is a snapshot of where you are, but much more important is where you’re going. Every pound lost is a victory and a step toward a longer life with your loved ones. Don’t let the length of the journey discourage you, the time will pass anyway. Be empowered by the fact that your health goals are in your reach and you have all the support you need.

The scale is a tool to help you on your way, but making progress towards a healthier life is so much more than a number. Consider this: In a world without scales, how would you track your progress? What does the you of today want to promise to the you of one year from now?

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