Good Afternoon everyone!
Today I decided to post about ways to measure your progress that do not involve the scale. I decided to write this post because I feel like there are so many people out there who rely solely on their scale to measure their progress or weight loss. I used to be one of these people. Until about a year ago I thought that the scale was the most accurate and functional way to measure my progress. I used to do weekly weigh ins and often I was left discouraged and disappointed because I wasn’t making progress, according to my scale. Over the past year I have found different ways to measure my progress that do not involve the scale, in fact I haven’t weighed myself in several months and I don’t plan on stepping on it for a very long time.
Below are eight different ways you can measure your progress. I’m certain there are more than this but these are the eight that I could think of off the top of my head or that I use to measure my own progress.
1. Pictures – I suggest that everyone take before and after pictures. I don’t mean you take a picture on day 1 and then once you reach your goal but take weekly progress pictures. Weight loss is not only a physical transformation but also a mental one. Our heads are very powerful and can often play tricks on us and make us believe that we are going no where and have made no progress. Pictures speak a thousand words as some may say so TAKE LOTS OF PICTURES. There are apps you can download that will help you keep track of your progress through pictures, I use SnapTrack App.
2. Small Victories – Celebrate all the little goals, victories and milestones that you accomplish! I don’t mean go out and eat cheeseburgers and ice cream sundaes every time you reach a little personal victory but be sure to acknowledge the fact that you are getting better and have accomplished what you wanted to. Small victories can be anything such as, running a faster mile, PR in an exercise, kicking a bad habit etc.
3. Reaching a Goal – It is important to set goals for yourself that do not include pounds lost, because you will most definitely get stuck at a certain weight at some point in your weight loss journey and if you don’t have other goals set for yourself you will fail. Goals should be anything that will make your life better, happier and fuller. Examples of goals: mastering a new yoga pose, running your fastest mile yet, complete a squat challenge, do meatless Mondays for a month, no refined sugars for a month etc.
4. How you Feel – Progress can also be measured by how you feel. Maybe you used to be a person who had “Fat days” every day and now you haven’t had one of those days in a month. Maybe you haven’t had stomach pains for a while. Maybe your rings fit a bit looser or your shoes are a bit bigger. These are all things that prove that you are making progress even though the scale may not reflect the same thing.
5. Measurements – Take out your tape measure and take measurements of your waist, arms, neck and hips. Write these down and once a month you can retake the measurements and compare. Since muscles weighs more than fat but is denser which means it takes up less space than fat you could weigh more while being smaller.
6. Energy Levels – Monitor your energy levels, when we eat better and exercise a little more or bodies work with us. Pay attention to your body and how it reacts to things. You will surely notice a change in your energy levels once you start leading a healthier life. Maybe you are more alert first thing in the morning, you’re able to run after your children without getting winded after a few minutes or you can stay up later at night without falling asleep in front of the TV.
7. Body Fat Percentage – If you are working out and eating healthily your body will transform fat into muscle leaving you with a lower overall percentage of body fat. A scale can’t measure this.
8. Compliments – Don’t be afraid to accept compliments; use them to help you stay motivated and to keep going!
The scale doesn’t know how hard you worked this week, how many times you PR’d, how many miles you ran, it can’t measure how much fat you turned into muscle or how big of a heart you have. The scale does not define you or your character. So ditch the scale and live healthy and free!