It’s All Relative

Post slugWhen I decided to get this blog going again in July, I made a conscious decision to steer it away from the usual (read: boring) Weight Loss Journey topics and more towards the things that truly matter in life, like Toast and Ramen Noodles.

But that didn’t mean I wouldn’t ever talk about the weight loss stuff. After all, it’s pretty much why this blog sprang into existence. And I’m not any less preoccupied with the topic just because I’m not writing about it regularly.

It used to be the case that when the weight loss blogger stopped blogging about weight loss, that only meant one thing: disaster. Or maybe that’s still the case. But not here. Diet #113 is still rolling along. First, check this out:

“Wow! What’s your secret?” you might ask. Well, as I’ve explained, there is no secret. The switch is either on or off, and for me it’s been on. But I will admit, cancer has a lot to do with it. I finally got back into Onederland solely because of that little issue and the thought of “throwing it all away” sticks with me. It’s a catalyst that just keeps me going.

“You’re so lucky, getting cancer and all!” I know, I know. It’s true. But I’ll try not to flaunt it.

The astute reader probably noticed that the above graph abruptly cuts off in August. That’s because I wanted to earn your awe and respect before showing you the textbook definition of a plateau:

I haven’t really changed my diet or habits, but there I am, stuck for nearly two months in the same spot. As we all know, sometimes the body just does what the body wants. Normally I’d be inclined to complain about this. But as I’ve grown older and wiser I’ve realized th. . . oh, who am I kidding. I’m going to complain about it. What’s the point of having a blog at all if you can’t rant about pointless problems from time to time?

But before I do, one more thing. The astute reader probably also noticed that there’s something missing from my graphs. Take a look again. No, not the unicorn pictures. Yep, the Y-axis is now one hundred percent label-free. I’m leaving that off because as I’ve grown older and wiser I’ve realized that the number on the scale isn’t the point.

After all, would you have reacted any differently to this graph?

Or this one?

No? Yes? It’s possible you actually would have reacted differently because of the labels. If the values on the Y-axis represented a range way above your own weight, you would probably think, “All right! You go girl!” And I’d be all like, “But I’m not a girl.” If the values on the Y-axis were way below your range, you would probably think, “Sheesh, what’s she got to complain about! I’d give anything to be her weight.” And again I’d be all like, “I’m not a girl.

What’s important is that it’s all relative. It matters less what the absolute start and end numbers are, as long as the slope is heading the right direction. The slope is what we have in common, not the Y-axis values.

And that’s also why I find it funny that I still complain about plateaus. Sure, it’s frustrating. You think you’re doing everything right but you can’t break through that next barrier (which for some reason, always ends in a zero). Yet I can’t help but notice this is the exact same emotion I felt when I hit a plateau ten pounds above this. Or the one ten pounds above that.

And I’m positive, when I finally do lose ten more pounds and flatten out yet again, I’m going to complain about it. Hopefully I remember to trot out Einstein again and remind me: it’s all relative.

8 Responses to “It’s All Relative”

Helen said
September 29, 2014 at 10:23 am

Yes indeed it is all relative. I remind myself of that all the time when I’m reading a WL blog where the blogger is around my size and is going gangbusters yet I’ve been on a plateau for 9 years.

Biz said
September 29, 2014 at 11:41 am

This sentence made me spit out my coffee!!

β€œAll right! You go girl!” And I’d be all like, β€œBut I’m not a girl.”

That’s why I like my zero scale – it just shows the minor ups and downs – although one of these days I may have to see what the actual number is!

Hugs! Love, your prettiest sister, Biz

Lynn Weber said
September 30, 2014 at 4:11 am

You got that right, and I’m so glad you’re one of mine. Love ya!

    Charlie said
    September 30, 2014 at 8:30 am


Christine said
September 30, 2014 at 8:08 am

Entertaining, as always. πŸ™‚ And hey, a plateau is better than gaining. I’ve been trying to get back “on” for a couple of months now. It’s just not happening – so I’m happy any week I don’t gain! Have a great day!

    Charlie said
    September 30, 2014 at 8:31 am

    “Entertaining,” is my goal. If it’s nothing else, it’ll be that. πŸ™‚

Heidi said
September 30, 2014 at 4:00 pm

I think your next book title should be “But I’m not a girl! Perfection.. As always you crack me up! Best blog ever!

splotchy said
October 1, 2014 at 10:14 am

Actually, where you are on the scale does matter – if your starting weight is 250lb a loss of, say 15lb is just a 6% reduction, however if your starting weight is 150lb, the same weight loss is 10% and more likely to be a/ visible and b/ lead to improved health.

My psychological con-trick-booster when my diet switch is ‘on’ is to make the length of the y-axis more or less the same as the present total weight loss – then it looks really steep and impressive and helps keep me happily on the wagon, including those depressing moments when I can’t zip my pants up.