Does the Number on the Scale Really Matter?

Fitness // Louise McDonald

When we set the goal of ‘losing weight’, this can seem like one of the most important indicators of measuring progress, but is this always helpful? With many variables that can contribute to how these numbers look from day to day, what are these factors and what are the other ways of tracking progress?

Other Ways to Track Progress

Here are some points to consider before freaking out at the digits as you move through your journey:

1. Body Composition

Let’s keep this simple, if you notice that the scales are being stubborn with their reading and either sticking or even going up, this could be due to the muscle that you have developed with training. Muscle weighs more than fat, so when you have been training so hard, your overall body composition is made of tighter and leaner tissue vs. the lighter and wobblier fat.

Also read: How to Handle Early Weightloss ‘Blues’

2. Weight Fluctuates

No two days look the same here. With the consideration of undigested food, water intake and what your body has done with fluid levels, measuring your weight on a daily basis can be a real demotivator with the ever changing numbers here.

3. Clothes

Take note of how something feels at the start of your journey, keep this close at hand as your trusty and reliable source of benchmarking progress and use this as an indicator of how much ‘size’ you’re really losing. Numbers up but pants are feeling loose… yes!

4. Mirror

Observe your ‘angles’ and watch the appearance of your ‘tone’ and shape improving. Even if you’re moving slowly in terms of dropping size, isn’t having a firmer and gorgeous shape that you’re proud of something worth celebrating?

5. Body Confidence

Having improved your body composition with a nicer looking physique as your muscles develop and your body fat percentage decreases, this introduces increased confidence! 

Also read: Best Snacks for Weight Loss

6. Strength

Strength increases are a great way of marking your terrific commitment to your journey. As your strength goes up, your focus improves and you’re more likely to stick at it with confidence that you’re moving towards your goal.

7. Fitness/BMR

Consistency with your exercise offers you a much better fitness level and overall ‘well being’. With things moving positively, this includes improving your BMR (basal metabolic rate) with more calories being burned while you rest! Yay!

Boost your confidence

8. Fat Loss Not Weight Loss

Yes, it’s one way of measuring stats, but not the ‘be all and end all’ of your total result. With muscle weighing more than fat, let’s focus on not focusing on it too much, and not stressing about the delicious muscle that we now have that is waving back at you from the platform of the scales.

9. Simple Nutrition

If you’re sticking to your 12WBT Meal Plans as directed and not micromanaging this with a scientist’s approach to your day, you’re doing grand! Keeping it simple, without worry or over/under eating is perfect. The guidelines are there to use and they’re already complete in design.

10. Don’t Let It Upset Your Day 

Another reason not to get bottomed out with the obsession of the scales is for how this can make or break your day. You’ve busted your hump ALL week, only to jump onto the scales expecting a loss, but instead you see… a gain!? Whaaaaaaat? Reading over the previous points to clarify that this may NOT be a bad thing can offer you a way to still celebrate, and not start your day feeling like a failure and ready to give in.