It’s a Monday morning and you’re preparing for the weekly grind. There’s much to prepare regarding work, kids, school, etc… who has the time to think about pulling out that scale from underneath the bathroom sink in order to weigh oneself?! I mean… is it REALLY that important?!
The answer to that simply depends on you and your goals. Some will tell you to throw the scale away, but why WOULDN’T you want to know how you’re doing? Well, there are alternatives to owning a scale which would be (among several aspects) to pay closer attention to your intake, regularly acknowledge the way your clothes fit, realize the need to buy different size clothing, etc.. Now, don’t get me wrong, the method of not weighing yourself can work for some but in most cases, it is recommended to weigh yourself. What some people find however, is the scale is unreliable. You get on the scale in the morning and by night time, you’re frustrated because the scale reads differently. This is not a good reason to throw out your scale or the towel, it’s just a matter of learning the right way to weigh. In fact, studies show that individuals who weighed themselves on a weekly/bi weekly basis, had more success in their healthy journey.
Those that encourage not weighing oneself at all, might simply not be on the same page as you, have the same goals or maybe they simply work differently, and that’s ok. Focus on YOUR goals.
Are you looking into maintaining a healthy lifestyle? Then you should keep track of your weight. It’s that simple. There’s a reason why every doctor visit includes weighing you and it’s not because your doctor wants to invade your privacy but rather because your weight IS an important number in regards to your health.
Hopefully this information will help you stick to a better ‘weighing’ routine in order to maximize your progress.
Weigh yourself only once a week and on the same day each time. Sticking to this routine:
*Allows your body to settle with last week’s food and drink intake (along with any fitness).
*It will give you a sense of accountability with a week to improve.
*Will help you avoid discouraging and inaccurate fluctuations.
*It will also help prevent you from obsessing over your weight.
Weigh yourself in the morning AFTER using the restroom and before you eat.
Bowel movements and food and drink intake will affect your weight so if you weigh yourself after a meal or after drinking a couple of glasses, your weight will not be as accurate.
Use the same scale each time. This is super important because scales DO differ one from the other. You can even ask your doctor or counselor to weigh you on the scale you’ve been weighed before.
*When transitioning to a new scale, compare your weights on both scales so you know the correct weight according to the new scale.
Keep in mind that your weight at that moment depends on things like hydration and what you ate. It also depends on general activity level, bowel movements, menstruation cycles for women and more. If the scale ever shows you something with which you’re unhappy, don’t get discouraged. It’s important to understand WHY in regards to YOU.
Take a few moments to assess the past week and look over your food log (if you don’t keep a log, that’s another tool to consider). Try to assess what you did or ate that may have caused the dissatisfying results.
*Did you go to an event or dinners? A lot of times, outings can end with us eating way more than we had anticipated and it’s impossible to know which ingredients are used unless we prepare our dishes ourselves. Remember, a piece of chicken can be made with spray oil or it can be made with lots of regular oil. The difference in nutritional value is immense.
Next time you’re out and faced with these decisions, just make sure to be aware of your healthier alternatives.
*Are you accustomed to working out but this past week you were too busy? Fluctuations in your physical activity play a huge role on the scale. You don’t need to exercise in order to lose weight but if your body and system are accustomed to consistent fitness, stopping that routine will of course have an effect on your progress. For this reason, I encourage those that exercise to pace themselves. Sometimes we get excited and eager and take on more than we can or should. You’re better off doing easier workouts for shorter times over the course of the week as opposed to exercising 3 days like you’re training for a marathon only to go 3 weeks without. Consistency is incredibly important.
*Have you been sleeping well? Sleep deprivation can significantly stunt your progress. A good 6-8 hours of sleep each night is recommended but it goes even beyond that. If you’re waking up, shifting a lot, if there isn’t enough darkness or whatever else keeps you from your beauty sleep, it will all affect you when you’re awake. When you lack the proper sleep, your mind and body don’t function at 100%. You may experience fatigue, anxiety, agitation, lack of focus/concentration and more. Make sure to take good care to sleep well so that you can tackle the day with the ability to make smart and healthy decisions throughout the day.
*Did you recently eat foods that bloat and/or retain water? There are plenty of yummy foods out there that can fluctuate the scale inaccurately. Whatever water you’re retaining now, makes the scale readings different than when you’re not retaining water and so forth. Try to avoid salty and bloating foods for about 24 hours before weighing yourself.
These are just a few select things that can affect that number on the scale but remember, no matter the reason, the choice is always yours. It’s your choice to eat the healthier option and it’s your choice to get up and go for a walk. It’s in your hands to maintain your own personal balance so that the scale remains just a number for you to reference and not a number over which you should obsess or get discouraged.
You’re in control and you DO have the strength and ability to achieve your healthy goals… the scale is just a tool to help you on your journey.
TIP: You can technically use any scale so long as it’s the same one each time. I recommend the Taylor 7329 which can be purchased through Amazon.