The Scale…Follow Up


Not too happy about my 1.5 pound *gain* since Tuesday…

Well, I had my weigh-in and appointment with Dr. Ziltzer today.  *sigh*  I promised myself I would keep this appointment no matter what, and I did.  Over a month ago, when I made the appointment, the minute I hung up the phone I knew I might run into trouble with my weight this week… I have noticed a trend when I am “mid-cycle” that I tend to have weird weight fluctuations or a stretch of days when what I’m doing with my eating and exercise is completely opposite of what I would then see on the scale.  So it should come to no surprise to me this morning that after 3 days of nothing but meal replacements with one small lean and green meal for dinner, the scale jumped up 1.5 pounds on me since Tuesday.

Anyway, the medical assistant that I see now that checks my weight and vitals, etc. is pretty cool.  She was not around when I lost all of my weight, but she has been there for at least a year of my maintenance and she seems to know a lot about exercise and some of the stuff I am experiencing at my weigh-ins with regard to body fat %, etc.  So, the bad news was that I had an 8.5 pound gain since my last appointment, the largest since entering maintenance.  This puts me well into my “red zone”.  I already knew this, which is why I started back on meal replacements last week, post vacation.  So, here is where it gets a bit tricky…body composition.  If we go by the readings from the Tanita scale in the office from April, 4.5 of my 8.5 lb weight gain is “fat”.  This, I can deal with.  It also indicates a 3 lb. water gain.  Also somewhat understandable, given the amount of inflammation probably in my muscles from strength training.  So, that leaves another 1 pounds of “something”… it could be muscle, it could be more water, it could be fat.  The scale is making a lot of assumptions based on the impedance it is measuring and none of this is an exact science.  I think it is safe to say that my 8.5 pounds is a combination of all 3, the percentages are a little fuzzy.  Dr. Ziltzer did have the medical assistant come back in and do some measurements on me (waist and hip) and they were exactly the same as I was back in October, which was about 7 pounds lighter.  But, those aren’t an exact science either, based on where the tape measure is placed.

My weigh-in from 4/23  left) and today, 7/16 right)

My weigh-in from 4/23 (left) and today, 7/15 (right)

Dr. Z and I had a good talk.  I told him I was already back watching my diet like a hawk.  I told him about my new Tanita scale and how I had the ability to really track things now.  We noticed that the new scale is reading my fat % way lower than the Tanita scale at his office.  This was a bummer but not terribly surprising.  I was really hoping the two scales would be a closer match.  I think, for now, we will just say that there is a 3% offset between the two scales (i.e. my Tanita at home measured my fat % at 34.0% today and Dr. Z’s scale read 36.9%) and that I can use my readings as a reference at home so that I can monitor my progress.  I told him, truthfully, that I feel really good.  I am happy with the work I’m putting in at the gym.  I am re-motivated by watching the numbers on my new scale and playing with my new “data”.  So, I’m glad I went in for the appointment, as usual.  He always makes me feel better about things.  I’m going back to see him in about a month though and not wait so long this time.  Regardless of the body composition, my weight is way higher than I want it to be so I’m still focusing on getting back down – I just want to protect my muscle mass at the same time.

I wish I could say this gets easier in time…but it doesn’t.  It changes.  But, wow, it sure doesn’t take much to get the scale climbing again.  It is frustrating because I am far from sedentary and I don’t feel like my eating is out of control either.  Welcome to life as a middle-aged woman I guess…

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6 Responses to The Scale…Follow Up

  1. Natalie says:

    Hey Martha! Thank you for being so brave and sharing the highs (and lows) of your continued journey. You are so NOT alone and I’m not sure if you hear it enough! We’ve messaged a bit on FB groups, but you continue to inspire me. I’ve been in “maintenance” about a month now and of course, my monthly appointment landed right in the middle of my cycle this week too. I was up a pound. Scary, for me, to be UP a pound in my first real efforts at maintenance on my own. Between finishing my first half last month and expanding my workouts beyond running running running, I was hoping to have actually lost about 1 pound. Oh well, didn’t happen! We will keep focused and see better results next month, right? 🙂


    • Hi Natalie- I’m starting to put the pieces together of where your name pops up on FB! Congrats on all you’ve accomplished so far. I’m really touched that my blog ramblings inspired you a little along the way. Truth be told, I’m getting inspired by you and several others that have reached their goal weight and are running now – kinda kicking me in the butt to keep on moving. So, thank you for sharing your work too. I think I’ve got my head screwed on straight finally, post vacation. And, yes, I’m going to be back in my yellow or green zone next month for sure – and I’m looking at a calendar to pick the best day 😉


  2. Carole says:

    Hi Martha, You are so honest and open about your battles with your weight and physical activity. WOW you sure are an inspiration to me. I’m in my 16th month of maintenance and yes it is frustrating to keep the weight off. Some months it is easy to follow a food and activity plan and other months it is so so so difficult. Especially the months that my hubby and I travel, can’t get back to my routine when I get return home. Keep-up the good work. Your follower from Canada’s capital.


    • Thank you, Carole, for your feedback and keeping in touch often. Congrats on 16 months of maintenance! That’s awesome. Travel really messes me up – I usually give myself permission to just enjoy myself with the intent of “taking care of it” when I get home – but switching gears is tough! You are right…sometimes it is pretty easy, and sometimes – not so much. Good luck, keep me posted 🙂


  3. Mary says:

    Hey! I am a newbie to Optifast and I have been reading your older posts as I reach the week milestones. Regain can be extremely frustrating. But you are inspirational. Even after the intensive phase was over you are still blogging and working towards your goals despite a changing body. Keep up the good work and be proud of yourself!


    • Thanks, Mary. I try to keep up my blog because the work never ends, unfortunately. There really is no end to the amount of focus and attention weight maintenance takes – and so I keep blogging about it. Maybe not as frequently, but it is still on the forefront of my mind (or at least it should be). I’m kinda where I was last summer after our big vacation so I know what I need to do to get back in gear – and I’ve started heading that way. I’m not really down on myself…just gotta get re-focused. Thanks for commenting here and I hope I continue to hear from you and about your progress!


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