Most people go into the weight loss process wanting to, well, lose weight, of course. However, if you’re just getting started, the scale may be the worst choice for tracking your progress. In fact, your weight may be the least important thing to keep track of.
When you’re trying to lose weight, the scale can be a powerful tool. It is so satisfying to see those numbers go down, but sometimes stepping on the scale can feel like torture. Fortunately, you don’t need the scale to feel successful.
Instead, use these tests and tricks to assess your victories:
- Track a healthy habit — Instead of just keeping track of the pounds you’re losing, keep a record of all the things you’re adding to your life. Pick a healthy habit and track your consistency.
- Take progress photos — Take a photo of yourself wearing the same outfit, standing the same way, and in the same place once a month or every few weeks.
- Take an activity assessment test — If you walk up a flight of stairs regularly, for example, check in every few weeks to see how the ascent feels. Check in with yourself when you’re doing the things you already do every day like playing with your kids or walking up that flight of stairs and compare how you feel today to how you felt a month or two ago.
- Step into your old jeans — Feeling more comfortable in your clothes or going down a size is even more important than the scale because they’re more accurate signs of fat loss versus the fluid shifts you can see on the scale.
- Measure your body’s other numbers — Track your body fat percentage or measurements. It’s possible to reduce your body fat percentage and weigh the same, especially if you’re losing fat and gaining lean muscle. Measure wherever you want to lose weight — waist, hips, upper thighs, etc. and take your measurements every month to track inches or centimeters lost.
Having your weight at a certain number might be nice, but the scale can’t tell you how fit you are or how much muscle you have. Relying only on the scale may even make workouts feel like a waste of time, even though each one helped you burn calories, get stronger, protect your body from diseases and made you more fit than you were before.
If weighing yourself motivates you in a positive way, there’s no reason to change what you’re doing. However, if the scale makes you feel like a failure, it may be time to try something new.
If you are looking for treatments for obesity and the health problems that go along with it, schedule an appointment at VIPSurg. They can help you find the right treatment for your personal situation.