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The Scale, Race Photos and One Mile Run

So I was down 5.6 pounds on Friday since May 6, and I was feeling semi proud of myself.  Then I ate too much yesterday… not bad food, just more than necessary along with a 40 mile bike ride. Today,  am up 5.4 pounds. I swear I hate the scale. I hate it. I hate it.  Seriously. HATE it. I know I shouldn’t pay attention to the scale after I had a long bike ride, drank a ton of water, and I ate a ton of food.

Actually yesterday reminded me of the last time I put away my scale: during the final ramp up for Miami 70.3 last year, I had completed a 40 mile bike ride, plus a 6 mile run.  I was in absolutely the best shape of my life – I felt strong, I felt proud, and I had a great day.  The Expert and I went out to lunch afterwards.  I ate a mass of food, but healthy stuff: salad, hummus, black bean burger with only half of the bread.

On the way home, I was elated, feeling that Miami was within reach.  But once home, as I turned on the water to get in the shower, I stripped off my salty clothes and stepped on the scale.   I was up 7 pounds from the morning.  Nevermind that I had just had the best workout of my life. Nevermind that I drank 6 bottles of water, ingested tons of electrolytes, and followed it up with a 3 pound meal.  Nevermind it all.  The scale had spoken.  And I was crushed. And it was ridiculous. My reaction was like giving birth to a beautiful, healthy baby and immediately cursing the loose skin, the weird boobs, and whatever nightmare is going on downstairs.

I was reminded of that instance this morning as I stepped off the scale.

I have to stop doing this to myself. I feel tons better this week. I wore my smaller jeans on Friday (not my skinny jeans, but not my fat jeans either). I am really trying to go by feel – to be grateful for the day that I ate well, and not be impatient. I trying to make better choices, and I am succeeeding at that.  Really.  We went out to dinner at Macaroni Grill when the Expert returned home Friday night. I had 1/4 plate of gluten free pasta with red sauce, salad, and a few bites of bread.  Big change from the large pasta, 2 loaves of bread, appetizer and salad with some creamy deliciousness splattered all over it. SO. I am going to choose to be happy about my progress and choices.  I am impatient.  So I am learning to be patient.

Even after seeing the race photos from last weekend. Eeeeeek.

The bike ride yesterday was l-o-n-g.

I don’t know what Coach Monster was thinking. On February 26th (the day before Broke Foot 2012), I rode 50 miles.  That was three months ago.  The farthest I had ridden since then was 20 miles.  So my training schedule said 40 miles.

The Expert and I went out to Silver Comet Trail (flat land) and put it down. I forgot my Aquaphor.  20 miles into the ride, I was very sorry I did – and the Queen was very unhappy.  Speaking of good choices, instead of driving through and getting a giant burger and fries (one of my favorite post-long ride meals), we went to Jason’s Deli and had salad bar and soup.  Still, I ate too much. But I ate too much good stuff instead of bad stuff.

The Expert sporting the SBM cycling shorts. What a dude.

TODAY… in just a few hours… will be my first run back since the broken foot.

Yes, I ran a mile at Iron Girl (but I wasn’t supposed to). This is the first official “sanctioned” training run. It’s only a mile, but I am nervous.  My foot is a little sore from the long ride yesterday.  I am haunted by the x-ray memory from last month.  The doctor said, “Looks good!”  I looked at the x-ray and could still see the break. I was assured this is normal.  But running on this foot will be an exercise in mental strength as well.

Also, continuing to think of Kirsten Walker & her family.  Let’s continue to keep her in our prayers, and if you can contribute to our fundraiser, please consider a small donation.


  • Carrie @Tempo Life Coaching

    May 27, 2012 at 11:48 am

    This isn’t about physical toughness, it’s about mental toughness! Be stronger than the thoughts in your head. Feel those “not-quite-skinny-jeans-but-not-fat-jeans-either” and KNOW you’re making a lot more progress than the scale is saying. The scale is a big fat liar. Listen to your heart and not the liar!!

  • Heidi

    May 27, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Oh SBM – I can’t think of anything MORE destructive for the psyche than weighing in the day after a hard workout. You must stop doing this!! Pick one day a week to weigh in, which should be a few days after a hard workout so your body has recovered and is not holding onto any extra water – and stay OFF the scale otherwise. ALL you are doing is messing with your own head. I know this, because I do the same thing – and I go through the same angst – and I have learned that this really does not help me in any way. All of the pride I gain from the hard workouts and good choices evaporates when that scale gives me an ugly number. There are days when I am on and off the scale every hour, looking for positive feedback – but honestly, it’s so hollow, because even if I have lost weight, I still look at where I want to be instead of where I am.

    I think the best thing we can do as athletes is take pride in what our bodies can do, fuel them well, and focus on that instead of the number. We don’t measure the value of our friends and families by their weight – why must we tie our own values so closely with that number?

    • Cindy Bryl

      May 27, 2012 at 4:11 pm

      SERIOUSLY! What Heidi said!!! The WORST time to weigh your self is after a race or hard bike ride or run. Think of it this way. Your body is in shock from all the activity and trying to keep hydrated and digesting the food and balancing your electrolytes. Your body goes into fight mode and stores as much as it can in case you are planning to continue this insanity for a longer period of time. You know storing it up for later. GET OFF THE SCALE!!! IT IS EVIL. Gauge yourself by how you feel and how your clothes fit (but not the day off or after big activity)

  • Lynn in MD

    May 27, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    Sounds like you’ve been doing great this week. Don’t beat yourself up about the scale. Besides, muscle weighs more than fat. Definitely go by feel – how your pants are fitting, etc. Stick with it – and you will be successful!

  • Julia

    May 28, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    I have learned that if I run a half marathon the next day my scale will ALWAYS BE UP from water retention. I’ve researched this but have found nada out there…I’m guessing it has to do with muscle fatigue and my body hanging onto the water to help out with it. I now still get not he scale but say to myself “this is retention”. It goes down three days later like clockwork. I hear ya though…
    BTW – the trisuit is a gorgeous color and looks great on you 🙂

  • Kris

    June 6, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    Ditch the scale – it’s toxic! I’m AT GOAL, and found that weighing myself daily caused me so much stress that I was restricting calories, freaking over yogurt, and not fueling properly in an attempt to lose that “last” five pounds. I went to weighing once a month, and gauging how i was doing by how my clothes fit. I ate better, and was happier too!


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