Health isn’t just a number on the scale or your BMI. If you are struggling with your weight you should look for and celebrate non-scale health victories. This is especially true if you have been battling obesity and are starting to win the fight against the disease.
Actions that make you healthy don’t always translate to a change in your overall weight. Having realistic goals, both short-term and long-term, will assist you as you challenge yourself to create a healthier life.
Examples of real goals include:
- Changes in body measurements using a measuring tape
- Decreasing your amount of body fat
- Increasing bone mass
- Clothing size
- Wearing clothes that you would not wear before such as a sleeveless shirt or shorts
- Lowering your cholesterol or blood pressure
- Reducing the amount of medications you take for blood pressure or diabetes
- Feeling empowered when you don’t even want the “bad” food anymore
- Wearing your wedding ring or a special necklace again
- Having to purchase a new belt
- Fitting into a booth
- Not having to have an extension for the airplane seatbelt
- Having your child or spouse be able to give you a bear hug
- Participating in activities such as zip lining that previously you were over the weight limit
- Having energy to play with a grandchild
- Being able to sit on the floor and get back up after playing a game with a child or animal
Losing weight is difficult, and it’s made even more difficult when you use only one matrix, weight, to measure success. By incorporating real life, non-scale victories, you will have a greater appreciation of what true health means.
By Molly McBrayer, clinical manager, Roper St. Francis Bariatrics & Metabolic Services