If you’re embarking on a transitional journey towards a fit and healthy lifestyle or are someone looking to maintain a healthy weight by eating nutritiously and being more physically active one should not concern themselves too much with the numbers on the scale and instead focus on how you look and feel. The scale can be discouraging, however seeing and feeling the changes in your body everywhere else can be very rewarding.
It’s not a race. Although losing weight can be summed into a mathematical equation of calories in (meaning calories consumed) and calories out (calories burned), losing weight, dieting and watching your figure isn’t always about what the scale reads. Sometimes losing weight isn’t about the number on the scale. Like the weather, our bodies fluctuate constantly throughout the day, week and months. Despite all the changes your body goes through during the weight loss process, it’s important how you feel overall and the positive changes you notice in your body versus what the scale reads. It seems like losing weight can be a numbers game, constantly looking at the scale for answers, but sometimes it’s possible to over weigh yourself to the point of frustration.
For Weight Loss Think Long Term
Ideally, you should weigh yourself naked in the morning once a week, before you have put anything into your system. When you weigh yourself after you’ve had coffee you have already disrupted the equilibrium of your body by adding outside food sources. Weigh yourself in the morning on an empty stomach for the most accurate results.
But be careful of weighing yourself every day. The body fluctuates too often to hit the scale daily. Your body retains all types of fluids that may add to the number on the scale but aren’t pounds of fat, such as water weight.
When it comes to dieting and working out the most important factor is how you feel. If you feel good when you look in the mirror you’re off to a good start. If you are noticing a change in the way your body feels after switching your diet to healthier foods, that’s also a good sign. Sometimes it’s more about what’s going on inside your body that helps with weight loss as opposed to what’s on the scale.
The scale is a good indicator of what direction you are going. You can check in with the scale periodically to make sure your weight is under control, but the rest of it is simply a matter of how your mind and body feel. If your spirits are uplifted, self esteem rises, a positive outlook takes over and you feel refreshed and vitalized you’re off to a good start. Chasing numbers on the scale can leave you running in circles. Trusting your gut, making healthy choices and doing what’s best nutritionally you’re on the right track for a happy, wholesome life. Stay positive!
editor’s note: Should you ever find yourself developing unhealthy eating habits, such as binge eating (which currently affects nearly 9 million people in the United States alone), please contact a healthcare professional.