The scale is a liar. It is a tool that often shows a discouraging number & will trick you into thinking that you aren’t making any progress. Society has convinced us that the scale is how you measure your health & any progress you’re making. Well, guess what? It’s not.
When you are overweight, you start working out/eating healthier with the intentions of “losing weight”. Technically though, the goal is to ‘lose fat’. It’s fair to say that most of the people on this world want to lose fat & gain muscle (If you don’t, then exit now).
So you may hop on a scale at the beginning of your weight loss journey for your ‘starting weight’ (this is acceptable), and then you hop back on the scale every day, or every week thereafter. And according to the scale, you’re not losing weight… This is where you’re going wrong. The scale is a terrible gauge of progress.
HERE’S HOW TO TELL IF THE SCALE IS LYING ABOUT YOUR PROGRESS:
Not losing weightFat loss vs Weight loss. The scale doesn’t take into account muscle gain when your begin working out, just ‘weight’ loss; So, say you gain 5 lbs. of muscle and lose 7 lbs. of fat for a 2 lb. total “weight” loss. This isn’t very encouraging at all to see on a scale but in reality is a HUGE accomplishment. I’ve seen many transformation pictures of people where they look like they’ve lost 20 lbs. and they have actually gained weight between the before & after picture, and look awesome. This is because muscle is much denser than fat. And not only is muscle sexier, but a pound of muscle will burn more calories in your body than a pound of fat will [Roughly speaking, one pound of muscle burns 50 calories per day vs. one pound of fat burns 2-4 calories per day].
If you are noticing your clothes fitting better or becoming baggy on you, you are clearly progressing. If your belt needs pulled two notches tighter but the scale shows you aren’t any lighter, who cares what the scale says?
You are feeling better day to day. You don’t get as winded walking up the stairs into work. You don’t feel worn out while moving some boxes around in your garage. You notice how much more energy you have throughout the day.
Your health is improving! Your blood pressure is down and your doctor took you off a couple of the medications you were on.
You’re stronger. You used to pick up the 15lb. dumbbells and now you can use the 25lb. ones for the same exercise. You can stay on the bike for ten minutes longer or run a mile 2 mins. faster than when you started.
Start looking beyond the number on the scale and gauge your progress from things that matter: how you feel, how your clothes fit, how you’re looking in the mirror, etc… Train for your ideal, dream body instead of training for an ideal weight. According to weight calculators, I am 30 pounds overweight, pushing obese. Don’t let the scale discourage you. Get off of it.
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