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Day 48: The Pain of Missing Weight

Today, I woke up and weighed myself. Weight is: 81.8Kg. Yesterday I consumed 711 calories below my BMR and did 0 calories of exercise above my BMR. Total deficit is 711 calories.

Missing weight hurts. It hurts mentally, it hurts performance, it hurts results, and, depending on who you are and what you’re competing in, it could hurt your wallet.

People drop weight to put them into a competitive position, so if you miss weight, you may be putting yourself into a non-competitive position. If you are a professional athlete, missing weight means your competition is no longer a big financial payoff. If you are an amateur and a top 3 finish means funding, then you will either lose your funding or miss out on it. A UFC athlete competing for a belt who misses weight will no longer be competing for that belt. The fight may still happen, but it is just for show. Depending on the contract, the financial loss could be very significant. An Olympic aspirant, who has a chance of winning the trials at the lower weight class, will in all likelihood, not even place top six in the weight class above. Depending on where you live, the payoff from competing at the Olympics can be huge. The payoff for medaling is even greater.

If you don’t know how it feels to miss weight, imagine working for weeks or months, everyday on an assignment. The deadline comes and you aren’t finished. If you are in school, you could beg and plead with your instructor, and there’s a good chance they’ll give you an extension, especially if you can show how much work you’ve done and just need another day, even just one more hour. If you’ve been working on a project for work, as a professional, you would already have informed your boss or project manager and discussed the issues, and the deadline will have been already pushed back. But, for weigh-ins, if you don’t make it by the designated deadline, that’s it. No appeal and no pleading will work. You missed, it’s over, and you’re either disqualified, you move up a weight class, or the competition is just an exhibition. The mental anguish that causes can be immense.

Very few people compete at scratch weight, so if you miss weight, you are competing against people that started out bigger and stronger than you were when you started. So now, even though they also cut weight, if they did it correctly, they are still bigger and stronger than you. Weight classes exist for a reason, everything else being equal, bigger and stronger is an advantage, so by missing weight, you have disadvantaged yourself. If you’re up against a bigger, stronger opponent in an intense competition, you have just increased your odds of getting injured. If skill levels are equal, size and strength will make the difference.

Physical pain, mental pain, and financial pain can all result from missing weight.

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