It’s All A Numbers Game, Right?

I stopped weighing myself a few months ago. I know I should have kept weighing in every Monday like I usually do, but the number was bothering me. It was higher than I wanted it to be, is still higher than I want it to be, and I am just overly frustrated with how it all is (not) going down.

Then I started eating cleaner: Hummus and veggies for lunch, no sodas during the week, trail mix instead of chips and cookies, cut out the gluten entirely, the whole 9. I made it a point to eat what I brought with me, and keep my meals small and healthy. I started feeling better in doing so, despite still feeling tired. (that no caffeine thing is way too hard!)

Just for fun and laughs, I weighed myself on Friday morning. 186.5! Still way to high for my liking, but it’s so nice to see that number again! I go through my weekend like I usually do, eating a little more freely than I usually would but still sticking to my healthier choices over all. I even fight a bit of food poisoning this weekend.

This morning, I weighed in, and the damn thing was back up to 190. What. The. Actual. Frack.

This numbers game is starting to frustrate me.

I remember reading something on Facebook about how the BMI calculator was wrong. It went on about how the calculator doesn’t factor in a lot of health information that is important, like what your work out regime is or how steady your blood pressure is. It didn’t factor in thyroid issues, or any other medical issues that most certainly could cause a bigger ruckus than just your weight. I wish I could find that article now, but what I can tell you is this: I most certainly agree that going by weight alone is not a fair way to show how healthy or how unhealthy a person is.

Brian and I had to get our Health Assessment done for our insurance paperwork. They take your height and then your weight. They test your blood pressure, and then stick a needle in your arm to see what your blood says about you. The entire time leading up to this thing, I’ve been sweating it. I’m heavier than I was a year ago, my eating is not nearly as clean, I’m significantly more stressed out, and I don’t run as regularly. These numbers are going to suck.

What shocked me is when I got my metabolic insight paperwork back, the only two numbers that were high were my blood pressure (Hey, you are about to stick a needle in my arm) and my BMI. And even then the numbers are not that high over the necessary requirements. When they dig a little deeper they show that my cholesterol is a bit high too, but overall…I’m a pretty healthy person.

But it’s all a numbers game, right?

According to the paperwork, to be determined “healthy” my BMI needs to be under 30. Right now it’s at 33.7. That’s not a high overage. And my BP? “healthy” is 130/85 and at the time of testing mine was 132/84. Again. Not that much overage. So, why the mega freak out about being “healthy” if I am just slightly over? Why not say something like “You are a little high, you might want to consider losing some weight, eating healthier, and working on stress management” instead of “You failed two of the five required tests.”

Because analytic people read numbers as good and bad. They don’t see the fluctuation, the “in addition to” for what is healthy and what is unhealthy. The same reason why people look at my cholesterol and say “you are at 218, you are unhealthy” instead of “You are 18 points above the high end of normal. You should consider adding oatmeal to your diet three times a week to help bring that down” or even “Heart disease runs in your family, correct? You have an overall healthy lifestyle, so this could be hereditary.”

I’ve been freaking out about a number’s game that these tests and the scale keep playing on me, and it’s done nothing to help me lower those numbers and make life easier. Instead, it’s kept the scale high, it’s raised my blood pressure, and caused me to feel overwhelmed and psychotic. I’ve always been the kind of person who gets obsessed with tracking numbers like that, and this whole process has made it worse.

So I’m going to go back to my weekly weigh ins, tracking my weight and my miles. I’m going to focus on keeping a clean diet to bring down that cholesterol number, and work on de-stressing my life some so I can bring down my blood pressure, as well as find time to blog more and sleep more soundly. And I’m going to judge my health on how I feel, how my clothes fit, and how much laughter I add to my life.

After all, it’s just a numbers game. 🙂

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