How do you measure your success and failures? When it comes to weight loss most people use the scale. I have to admit that I used to weigh myself every day, particularly when I started my fitness journey. And as much as I hate to admit it, I based a lot of my self esteem on that number. As we all know, or should, that is a huge mistake.
The truth is that the scale is a low down dirty liar. Ok that may make me sound bitter, the scale doesn’t actually lie it just doesn’t tell the whole truth. Now you may have also heard the saying that “muscle weighs more than fat”. Again, not true, since 5lbs equals 5lbs equals 5lbs. However, what that statement is trying to say is that muscle is more dense than fat. In other words 5lbs of muscle fits in a dress better (takes up less space) than 5lbs of fat.
Believe me I understand the need for constant feedback. When you start out on your fitness journey it can seem overwhelming, and you want to know that you are doing the right thing. I think one of the reasons that everyone relies on the scale so much is that it is really easy. However, as I said before it doesn’t give you all the facts. If you step on the scale one day and weight 140lbs and the next day you weight 139lbs you have absolutely no idea where that 1 lb came from. Obviously you want it to be one pound of fat. The same is true if you gained a pound, or two.
As I have come to learn the best way to monitor your progress is by how your clothes fit. Think about it, muscle takes up less room, so as you lose fat you should take up less room. In fact, if you add a weight training program to your routine (and you should) it is possible to add muscle and lose fat while the scale does nothing. I have seen it happen before. The scale will say the same thing, but clothes will fit better and you will look and feel better. And lets be honest, at the end of the day THAT should be the goal. You don’t walk around with your daily weight tattooed on your forehead.
Today I ask that you put that sucker AWAY and measure your fitness success by how your clothes are fitting and how you feel and how much more you can do this week than you could last week.