Measuring Your Fitness Results? Don’t Use a Scale.
Ok, wait. It’s not that we’re scale haters, it’s just that, well… let us explain: Scales are great in the sense they’ll give you a baseline weight to start from, but far too many of the best intentions fail based on the perception of that little 1.5′ x 1.5′ platform. Again, don’t get us wrong– the scale can be a great tool… but it’s definitely not your friend and it’s certainly not in the game for your encouragement.
Here are three cheap and easy reasons why scales just aren’t all they’re cracked up to be:
1) Your weight fluctuates by pounds.
You could get on the scale first thing in the morning and weigh yourself two hours later only to find a two-pound gain. Truth: You didn’t get “fatter.” Weight fluctuates throughout the day– what you just ate, what you’re wearing, how much water you’re retaining, what’s in your bladder–the list goes on and on– and none of these factors are truly reflective of where you’re actually at in body fat, fitness level or transformation.
2) The scale is a mental bully.
Insanely, if your expectations don’t line up with what the scale reads, all of a sudden YOU’RE the failure. Never mind Junior may have been using the scale as a trampoline throughout the week, you’re experiencing hormone fluctuations or you actually gained muscle. The scale reads what it reads and we tend to magically believe that’s become the definition of our success or failure. We quickly forget we upped our endurance this week, pulled out a couple more push-ups or cinched up an extra belt notch when we put our pants on. Why? Most folks expect the numbers on the scale to go down and when they don’t, people think something in their diet or workout regimen is haywire. It’s not. The scale is just using its simple measurement of time and place to be a jerk.
3) Scales are big fat liars when it comes to gauging overall success in your transformation.
Barring the very dramatic double and triple-digit fat loss stories we’re used to seeing, many incredible fitness transformations happen in the single-digit range. You may only drop nine pounds over the course of 75 days. Fact is, your transformation is in the mirror, the clothes you fit into and the way you feel– not in numbers on a scale. Yes, scales are 90ish percent truthful in their measurement of WEIGHT, but you’re not out to lose WEIGHT. You’re out to lose FAT and get fit– and weight can be an ineffective measurement of your fat-burning success if you’re measuring up every day or even every week.
To keep from bonking into the wall of frustration, use these simple “success metric” alternatives instead:
- Good: Clothes. Say what? Yeah, this is the poor man’s scale. How are your pants feeling? Are clothes looser? Need a belt? These are all signs you’re losing fat and trimming up.
- Better: Fat calipers. They’re a bit trickier, but if a scale is the weight loss bully, Fat Calipers are the weight loss bodyguard of tough love that uses skin folds to measure what you’re trying to lose: subcutaneous fat. Measurements should be every week, same time of day, and same locations.
- BEST: A Kubex Body Scan. Our state-of-the-art body scan and body fat analysis give you more than a single digit on a display- it goes deep- giving you body fat measurements, inches lost, and more personal data than can be contained on a single piece of paper.
So maybe we’re a little tough on scales– but that’s only because we’ve seen them frustrate far too many people. Stick with your fitness program, eat right and your guaranteed results will be in the “before” and “after” pictures, not in the scale’s readout.