Why We ALL Need to Throw Away the Scale NOW!

It seems almost comical that this is the post I came up with this week.

I always used to see posts like this and think PSHHH whatever!

Using a scale doesn’t work for you, but it DOES work for me.

It keeps me in check, and keeps me on track to reach my racing weight for when it matters.

But realistically, 99.9% of us (myself included) are not able to have a healthy relationship with the scale.

And if people say they can, they are probably lying.

How do I know this?

Well, because I was one of those people who thought I was in the minority. Having a conversation with Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, Nancy Clark, and Renee McGregor helped me realize how wrong I was.

In the category that could handle it, that could use it for good rather than bad……I feel like I am trying to justify myself as a superhero who is going to use their power for good not evil haha.

Anyway, my point is, it’s not really possible to have that scale staring there at you in your bathroom and not step on it OFTEN.

If you can, then kudos to you, really.

But I think most of us will end up stepping on it every day.

And then stepping on it a few times a day.

And then stepping on it after runs to see how much weight we have sweat away, feel that BUZZZZZ from seeing a number so low.

YESSS! I can go for it this evening, even if I eat A LOT, I will still be low.

And then we start weighing ourselves after a big dinner out with friends, and leave the bathroom in a fowl mood.

Right, that’s it, tomorrow I am going to eat VERY healthy to make up for today.

And then you wake up the next morning, you step on it again, and the number is MUCH higher than you want it to be.


You end up irritable, snap at your unsuspecting friends and family, or even get close to tears thinking about it.

We spend the rest of the day feeling bad about ourselves, rather than reminiscing over how much fun it was to enjoy that food last night with our loved ones.

Instead, every time you go to the bathroom, you can’t help but look in the mirror, and feel like you can SEE the extra bulge.

You spend the rest of the day eating a lot less than you should, do some extra exercise to try to make up for it, or eat what you usually would, but feel guilty.

And then a few days later, the weight is back down, and you sigh relief.

You instantly become a super bubbly, fun person again.

How do I know all this?

Well, I think you can guess right now, I was one of those people.

Steve and I had a scale in our bathroom, and as much as I pretended it didn’t matter, it did.

I would weigh myself daily, and allow it to dictate my day and especially how I felt about myself.

It never really affected my running. I was able to convince myself to keep eating a lot, even on those days that I did feel like I needed to eat less.

Thankfully, the “greater good” of having fuel to train properly was always able to overrule the nasty, mean voices in my head telling me I was going to look huge for my next race.

Huge of course, being a relative term…….I would struggle to find anyone who called me huge even at my heaviest!!!

But you know what I mean, huge for ME (or your personal version of huge).

But that doesn’t mean that it didn’t dictate my day.

Didn’t make me feel AWFUL about myself, meaning that I had to fight extra hard to keep believing in myself and who I was as a person, let alone what I could do as a runner.

And of course the scale addiction swung the other way too.

There were the long run days, where I would weigh myself after dinner, and if it said a too low number, I would eat some more.

Just cause I could, for the sake of it.

I wasn’t hungry, I didn’t really need it, but I just felt like I could cheat, and that gave me a thrill.

I loved that I essentially had those “free” calories, and as someone who just loves to EAT, that gave me more opportunity to eat extra.

So I made the most of it.

I went home for few weeks, and for the first 10 days, I had no access to a scale whatsoever.

Which felt so good.

I could focus on what I needed to do, racing my best, recovering for London, and celebrating that I had accomplished my number one running goal.

When I got to my parents house, they have a really old, INCREDIBLY inaccurate scale, that there was no point even bothering with as it could swing 5lbs based on where the dial was when you stood on it.

I decided to take this as a time to break free of my need to weigh myself.

So I did.

And booooyyy was it refreshing.

I felt so FREE!!!!

I could eat what my body needed, refuel as I should be, without having any toxic thoughts coming into my mind about whether it was going to make me gain weight or not.

And of course, I ended up running a 4 minute PR of 2:37 London marathon, while looking leaner than I ever had (in my opinion).

Obviously part of that was because of the diet changes I made, but I also think part of it was because I ate what my body NEEDED.

I have NO IDEA what I weighed at that point, and as I stayed home another week after the race, I couldn’t see anything until I got home from the US, and by that point, I had indulged for a week, so it wasnt going to be the same weight it was when I finished the race.

I was a little nervous to see the scale when I got home, as I did not want to fall back into the habit, and to be honest can’t even remember what the weight was when I arrived home, whether it was heavy or light.

But I do remember deciding that the scale needed to go.

And so I asked Steve to hide it, and he did.

I haven’t seen it since, and that feels AMAZING!

I don’t know what I weight, and to be honest, I don’t care. I am more concerned about getting my period back and HERE is how I did it.

I eat what I feel like my body needs, and I eat the foods I WANT to eat, not the foods that are going to make that number be light.

I know the priority is to fuel my body to race well, especially after I struggled in my last few races.

Now, I understand that what I shared above is a form is disordered eating, and I am not gonna lie, there is a little voice that sneaks up every now and again, wondering what I weigh, or I find myself staring at my stomach in the mirror feeling big, but as I mentioned lately, my HEALTH is more important, and fueling my body is more important. I even have some great episodes from Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, Nancy Clark, and Renee Mcgregor all about the importance of body image and loving the body you have. All in all a healthy body is the only goal we all should want.

Some stupid number means NOTHING, and we all know it can fluctuate by 5lbs in a single day, which is ridiculous that we base our mood off that one moment in time.

So do yourself a favor, join me and throw away that damn scale.

I promise you will feel better (it may take a few days), and you will feel freer than you have in a long time.

Will you join me and throw yours away (or get someone to hide it)?

Think we could be friends?

I am always this honest, real, raw. If this article speaks to you, I really believe we could be friends and I could help you with what you are working through. Drop your email below, and I will reach out to you

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  • YES YES YES YES to this.
    I tosses mine about 25 years ago and have never looked back.
    NOW? Im praying my child never ever ever falls into that cycle.

  • YEP 100% YEP! Although I would do the opposite and ONLY weigh myself one day a week so, instead of my weight dictating how I felt for a day, it would dominate my entire week! I never weigh myself anymore and it feels so good!!!

  • We have a scale at my house but I don’t use it much. Maybe once a week or so. I find that weighing yourself is everything you mentioned plus it puts stress depending on the number. There is no need to let a scale dictate your mood…as cliche as this is…it’s just a number.

  • Thank you so much for this post, Tina! Perfect timing for me as I begin counting down to my A race this fall! You are, once again, such a wonderful role model!!!

  • UGH that’s so hard… I probably weigh 4-5 times a week (and yep, I always weigh after a long run). I seriously have no idea if I could do that. Maybe I could take baby steps. Like hide it for 4 weeks or something. This is a good post and definitely gets me thinking!

  • I agree with this. I hate the dumb scale lol.

  • Sandra Laflamme
    September 26, 2016 1:45 pm

    I rarely look at mine rather judge how I am feeling and how strong I am. This is a great revelation for you Tina! Yes! Throw it away!

  • I threw mine away a year and a half ago. No regrets! AND, I haven’t ballooned up and popped buttons or busted out zippers. I’m doing find managing my weight and health and fitness without using that silly number. I cried way too many tears over the scale growing up. No more!

  • Threw mine out about 3 years ago and have never looked back!

  • At your level, there is NO need for you to step on a scale ever. For the rest of us, it’s a valuable tool as long as you weigh daily, on the same scale, b4 eating anything, and you interpret your weight in relationship to the cardinal skin caliper measure. As well, if you have ANY emotional response to the measures as opposed to objective interpretation, throw your scale away!

  • I love this and you Tina <3 Thanks babe!

  • Love this. I hadn’t been on the scale in a while a recently stepped on to see myself 7 lbs higher than I like. It’s happened to me all marathon training cycles so it’s probably just how my body reacts to training plus me eating a little more but still. I cried. Because of the number. Which is silly because I’ve run stronger this year than I have the past 2.


  • Dani Steinbacher
    September 27, 2016 12:03 am

    My take is that it all depends on what your purpose is for having a scale: if there’s a compulsive need for constant weighing and/or the number changes how you feel/eat day to day, then clearly it is limiting both your quality of life and potential!
    Personally I use it as one of many data points to monitory the physical backbone to what I want my body to do, along with overall calorie level, rest/sleep time, and most recently looking more at sleep quality and heart rate with my new FitBit.
    Weight checks are typically weekly/monthly to make sure my overall calorie balance is up to par bc I lose weight-and a lot of hard work therein-FAST when I just eat whatever I want without keeping tabs on it, but I can’t imagine it being useful to weigh in more than weekly since there are SO many factors that cause day to day fluctuations!
    Good for you recognizing the [negative] purpose the scale had in your life, and I’ll bet resetting your focus on the purpose of what your body is doing will help it serve you as an athlete as well as allowing you to be your self to its fullest =)

  • This is all kinds of AMEN! I recently reviewed a body composition scale (much better than a traditional scale), but I’ve had to step away from it. Marathon training is hard and I am running stronger than ever so I shouldn’t care about the numbers!

  • Thank you for sharing this!!! I had let the scale get me down and I would find myself overly snappy if I had “gained” weight. No matter how little I was eating or felt. Now I just eat and feel energized and healthy! I don’t weigh myself anymore. My clothes fit. I’m improving my running times. I must be doing just fine. 😉

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