The Zombies Ate My Brains

Rescuing what might remain of the grey matter.

Milestones and Other Weighty Matters

Image Courtesy Google Images

The bullet list to follow is shamelessly cut-and-pasted from Yoni Freedhoff’s site. He is an Ottawa-based MD, professor, and blogger.  I learned about his blog via my go-to nutritionist, Monica Reinagel. She wrote:

He’s also the author of a terrific book called The Diet Fix, which aims to help people stop dieting and start on a path to sustainable weight loss. and he blogs at If you don’t already follow Dr. Freedhoff’s blog or social media feeds, I highly recommend them.

Plus he’s a Canadian, so there’s that.

I’ve been following Monica for several years and if she recommends this guy, then I’m sold. Both focus on lifestyle and healthy choices all backed by science, not hype.

Freedhoff’s Public Service Announcement – a reminder to those of us making lifestyle changes.

  • Scales measure the gravitational pull of the earth at a given moment in time – nothing else.
  • Scales don’t measure the presence or absence of health.
  • Scales don’t measure happiness.
  • Scales don’t measure success.
  • And scales don’t measure effort. [emphasis mine]

He goes on to point out that many of us consider the readout on the bathroom scale as the only valid measure of improvement.  He encourages us to consider that scales do not take into account the other positive changes such as

  • cooking from scratch
  • limiting liquid calories and
  • cutting down or cutting out alcohol
  • rarely eating out
  • cultivating sleep
  • exercising as much and as often as you can reasonably enjoy
  • keeping a food diary

He says, “The answer to those questions (and of course that list isn’t exhaustive, nor will all questions apply to all people) [will tell you] are how you’re doing.”

Please don’t confuse what you weigh with how you’re doing. Though there’s often overlap, they’re definitely not one in the same.

So! How am I doing?

I’m doing great!

In the data department, I broke a weight milestone and the scales now read 10.5 pounds lower than they did at the beginning of the year, 5 pounds lower than they did last month when I got my blood-work reports.  I don’t keep a food diary, because, in spite of my love for spreadsheets, and in spite of the fact tracking helps, I’ve been there, done that, and don’t want to spend any more time behind the keyboard. The exercising bullet could use more attention, but it’s better than before.

Yay me!


Categories: Food

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43 replies

  1. Heck yeah! I am so a believer in what he says. Why people feel the urge to get on the scale every single freaking morning…..??? Why? Awesome, Maggie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s why I welcomed Freedhoff’s words with a sigh of relief. I understand getting into the daily habit. It is motivating, if the weight is dropping. But it sure can be demoralizing if it’s not, or god forbid, moving in the wrong direction.

      Now, like with my BP, which has moderated to good levels, thanks to meds, I can lessen the frequency.

      My goal is to not need the meds, but that’s not a “red line.”


  2. Definitely yay you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yay YOU, is exactly right. i needed a reminder of the points on that list. I just got back from morning yoga so that’s a “yay” in the right direction – and haven’t had a diet coke in weeks. more water. gotta do more water – i’m recently infusing with berries which seems to help.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Fabulous post, Maggie. Your lists are excellent and the advice is great.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Yay, you! A 10-lb. drop is great work. Also, it didn’t say (above) what else the scale won’t show — how exchanging fat pounds for muscle pounds will still give the same readout, which hardly seems fair if one is basing everything on the scale. Don’t let the scale become God, Mom, Sis, Bro, fellow 6th grader who pointed out your midriff bulge to you, even though you made the cheerleader squad (ok, maybe that was just my experience, lol). Well done! You know what? Let’s all get rid of our weight scales. We KNOW when we feel like crap, and when we feel and look good.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Yay, Maggie!! There’s a truckload of effort that goes into losing 10 lbs. Happy Dance around the room!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Congratulations, Maggie! So happy for you. I just realized this week that I am fatter than I was last week. No scales, just obvious. And I feel ickier. But I prefer to concentrate on those other things like the eating healthier and all than on scales.I want to get off some of this “armor” around the middle though.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Good for you! You’re surely feeling better — as you say, doing great! 😀

    We don’t even have a scale in the house. I ‘weigh’ myself with pants. lol Pants get tight, time to move more and lay off the ice cream. Pants are a good indicator for me. In my youth, I got fairly obsessed with the numbers on the scale and the whys of it all, and that was when I weighed 110 lbs-ish. I assume if I was like that then, I’d be much worse now. I fluctuate 5-8 lbs at the doctor’s office, but I don’t fuss about it, because it’s not DAILY.

    Now if only I could learn to love drinking water and cultivate sleep. Mmm, sleep. sigh

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Joey. I am feeling better, feeling lighter in mood and my ability to haul my carcass around the rock piles. That is motivating! I find too that calling this “lifestyle changes” rather than “a diet” is helpful. Labels matter, eh?

      My pants are my yardstick, too. The fact that I can spend most of my days in stretch leggings isn’t necessarily a good thing. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • Haha! I know it! No, you gotta wear some proper trousers now and again. The unforgiving kind with hooks and zips are excellent monitors of ice cream consumption.

        Feeling lighter is great, moving better is great. Labels absolutely matter! In this case, taking really good care of yourself vs. attaining some numbered goal.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. YEA you, indeed!

    I like this guy – I like him a lot! I knew there was a medical and justifiable reason I don’t own one of those infernal scale contraptions.


    I did step on a scale when I went up to my Dad’s place this summer – and was pleased with the results. But not pleased enough to go out and adopt one myself.

    I judge things by my pants. If they start to feel tighter, I’m going the wrong direction.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Excellent! I’ve been consciously avoiding the scale ever since my trip to Oaxaca. Since returning, we’ve traveled again and we’ve had multiple houseguests… all events were I have indulged with gusto. I figure that if I can fit in my jeans, all is good. Maybe I’ll start paying more attention in the fall…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Yeah I’ve done the whole ‘Weight on. Weight off’ routine more than a few times. The difference this time is, once that initial 5 lbs of fluid disappeared I’m losing more slowly due to adding a moderate amount of exercise and eating healthier in general. I didn’t want to lose based on any crazed deprivation regimen or overdone workout scheme that I would abandon once my goal is reached. It comes off slower but I consider them ‘real pounds’ lost. Life is too short to be unhealthy OR obsessed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s what I figure this recent loss of 5 lbs is all about – the initial purge of fluid. That’s also why I’ve been muttering at the scales – now they have stalled in their downward movement.

      Yup, just like you, I’m going with quality intake and more movement. Because of my blood-work report, and the “threat” of medication to deal with hypertension and cholesterol, I’m motivated to deal with this through “lifestyle changes” rather than calling it “on a diet.”


  12. We give that gravitational pull far too much importance in our life. Yikes. Years ago, I got rid of the scale. I didn’t miss it until I weighed in at an annual physical, and my numbers (cholesterol and A1C) got too close to being a problem. It took a year, but I lost 15 lbs. and the numbers all improved. I ate less, moved more, cooked all the time. Sleep…??? meh. not so much, but I’m working on it.

    These lifestyle changes make so much sense. Congrats on the 10 lbs, and keep an eye on those fitted pants !!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Van, this is so encouraging to hear – for I am at the same place – I talk about wanting to keep “my numbers” in line through lifestyle adjustments, but have doubts it is possible. I dunno, the pessimist in me, I guess.

      Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

      • The word “pre-diabetic” really got my attention, Maggie. Genetically predisposed.My food intake didn’t change much, maybe a bit more fish and veggies. Exercise made the biggest impact…I walk every chance I get. It forced me away from the computer, I didn’t realize how much of the day I spent sitting. We got a dog this past year…he keeps me going as well. Best of luck…you can make a difference !

        Liked by 1 person

        • When I went for the blood-work tests, I was fully prepared to hear “pre-diabetic” too. Instead I got borderline high LDL.

          I’ve sat behind a computer for most of my adult life – most of my jobs were clerical or admin work. It’s an integral part of my life, especially now with retirement. I’ve actually given a passing thought to getting a dog, just so I’d have an obligation to get out for walks.

          Best wishes to you, too, my dear. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  13. Great list, Maggie and very good news. progress is more important than metrics. Good luck, stay healthy.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I agree wholeheartedly that scales don’t measure effort, so I consider anything that they say to be suspect. Congrats on attaining your goal, and on knowing how to make it happen for you. You rock– less, now– but still, you rock. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Nicely done Maggie! You are approaching things the way they say works long term, and that is a great way to do it. I’ll have to check out the website you mentioned. Lord knows I need to lose some gravitational pull myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Yay you! Most inspirational, Maggie. But I’m going to confess something and that is I do most of the things already on the Freedhoff public service announcement list except the tracking which, like you, I’ve done and done and done again and ain’t doing it no more, no more! All I want now is to magically lose weight because I’m doing it all right. To hell with the good living, I want to be the slim woman I was but 3 short years ago! Tricky knees, persistent hip bursitis, blah, blah, blah keep me from heart-rate lifting and calorie burning cardio so what’s a post-menopausal woman to do? The solution is to eat less but then I get hungry and binge. And around and around I go. But I digress. I’m so impressed with your success and making all the right choices. Keep it up.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Susanne – and yes, in the back of my mind, I am bracing for relapse, or accomplishing less than I hope. It’s more or less preordained, right?

      ESPECIALLY for our vintage and with physical issues — my hips are wonky and prone to giving out. Then I sit and recover and don’t exercise at all and am all the more tentative on the next outing, or I defer outings altogether. Then the blues take over. And then there’s emotional eating.

      Then the hormones and menopause! Just the other day, Monica Reinagle answered a comment to this very question. “Eat less.”

      I don’t have to tell you, it’s really tough. For now, I’m up for the challenge, but at some point, I know, I’ll have to accept my limitations.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I hope you don’t relapse, Maggie although it is definitely hard to make lifestyle/food habit changes. I think it can be done and if weight loss happens, how wonderful. As to the “eat less” comment, I think you covered the issue in your 2nd paragraph. Eating less isn’t necessarily the issue. It’s the attachment to food to fulfill other needs that causes problems.

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Congratulations on the weight loss.


  18. So hard to do. Congratulations on your improvement. We’re using the vacation we’re on to exercise more by walking a lot and making wiser good choices. I hope we see a little improvement when we get home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is a challenge – especially when you have visitors. Family stayed with us these past five days – I resisted the treats the first couple of days, but then…
      Walking more and good choices: my preferred method. I wish you well!


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