Yesterday I had a pretty big Non-Scale Victory, I discovered that I’m able to buy women’s medium shirts now from Old Navy. This was a pretty big deal to me as someone who previously could barely fit into XXL women’s shirts a year ago. So I thought I would take this next post to discuss the importance of not only having goals and enjoying Scale Victories (SVs), but also being proud of the Non-Scale Victories (NSVs) and the little things along the way.
When I began my “epic weight loss journey” a year ago, I set out with a goal of losing 50 pounds which seemed absolutely insane, but I figured I should aim high. The way I saw it, it’s better to aim for something that seems impossible and at least be able to say that I tried if I ended up not making it. After a few months of consistently losing weight, I readjusted to wanting to lose 65 pounds, because 15 more seemed easy since I had already lost so much. As of today, I’ve lost 80 pounds and my current goal has become to lose 100 pounds. I figured it’s a nice round number and will put me at a healthy BMI for the first time in my adult life and probably close to 15 years. Although who knows, once I reach that goal I could change it up again! That’s what I’ve been doing so far.
My weight loss graph (so far), as you can see there’s been some ups and downs
But this post isn’t just here as a self-serving bragging ego boost… or at least that’s not where I started when I decided to write this. Apologies for my fat head, but losing a ton of weight kind of makes you a narcissist. I mean seriously, I spend so much more time staring at myself in the mirror than I ever did before. Anyway, get back to the topic here Meg. Goals. When you set out to start losing weight, goals are an important part of the journey. Whether you want to lose a big amount like I did, or a small amount like 10 or 15 pounds to look better or fit into your old clothes goals are very important. You definitely want to set a big goal, somewhere around what weight you want to end up at, but you should also set smaller goals. For me, this came in the form of smaller rewards.
Keep in mind for some stupid reason, I didn’t write these things down (I think because if I did it made all of this real) so I’m going to be going from memory as best as I can recall. My first big milestone was going to be at 25 pounds. When I lost 25 pounds I was going to give in and buy a new pair of shorts. I live in Florida, so jeans are only really necessary for about 3 months and most of the year I’m in shorts. By the time I had lost 25 pounds, my old shorts were so big on me that a belt was barely keeping them from slipping off my hips entirely. You should also know that I’m a “poor starving college student” so these kinds of purchases (meaning new clothes) were a bit few and far between for me. My next reward was to buy new bras at 50 pounds lost, now this one I cheated on by about 3 pounds because I had some extra cash and my old bras were barely fitting on the tightest possible clasp. But I figured I would lose the weight in about 2 weeks and I did. I’ve been blessed to average out to losing about 1.5 pounds a week throughout my journey.
It was somewhere around here, maybe a bit earlier, where I discovered the joy that is a Non-Scale Victory (NSV). NSVs are something that’s completely separate from your weight loss goals, they are things that have nothing to do with your weight, but rather have to do with your appearance or emotions. For me, a huge NSV was when I finally broke down and bought new jeans in January only to discover that I was a size 14. Now for some of you that may not sound big, but I haven’t been a size 14 in many years and when I started this whole thing I was somewhere between a 20 and 22. In a matter of 7 months I had dropped 4 sizes and I was so excited in the fitting room at Goodwill that I almost cried. That’s a personal tip, while you’re still in the process of losing weight and don’t want to blow a ton of money on a whole new wardrobe that won’t fit very, long shop at Goodwill and Wal-Mart! Sometimes they have really awesome stuff and it’s always cheap and even if it doesn’t last forever, you’ll grow out of it anyway!
I was excited not only to find jeans that fit, but that were a 14!
It’s important not only to track your weight and celebrate milestones as you reach them, but also to enjoy the NSVs and be proud of your accomplishments. I remember seeing this bit of “Fitspiration” that said “Be stubborn about your goals and flexible about your methods.” and I have to disagree. If I had been stubborn about my goals, I would have stopped losing weight months ago and while I’m sure I would have been happy I don’t know that I would have felt this accomplished. Once I reached my big goal of losing 65 pounds I was content with myself for achieving that much, but I didn’t want to stop. I decided that I wanted to keep at this and see just how far I could get. I realize that maybe I won’t ever get my body looking “perfect” or even good enough to pass as a model or anything, but I’m very happy with where I’m at now even if I stopped tomorrow. However, I figure while I’m at this I may as well keep working on myself and get the closest to my image of what I want my body to look like as possible. If I can make it this far, why not a little further?
From my “Fitspiration” folder, it reminds me to have patience but continue to work hard