More than likely, if you’re on a diet trying to lose weight you will know how much you weigh. It is something you monitor on a daily basis on a favorite scale, perhaps you even follow a routine – you weigh yourself after work, before a shower in the morning, after a workout, etc. However your method is, do you know what the number on the scale means? Do you know what exactly, other than showing you a numerical progress on a scale, what that determines?
Unfortunately, the number that we are given when we step on a scale is not just a number, but yet it represents the way that we feel about ourselves. And while it may come as a surprise to you, the number that the scale gives us may not have as much as an effect on weight loss as you may think.
When most people refer to losing weight, it commonly refers to looking slimmer and smaller – but this doesn’t always mean losing weight. While this may sound like they contradict each other, they don’t necessarily. You may be able to actually lose body fat, while gaining muscle and this keeps your weight the same. So even if you lose inches off your stomach, the scale in your morning or evening ritual may stay the same or get even show that you gained a little bit more weight. This makes relying on the scale for tracking weight loss a back thing.
The number is really not much help. Not only doesn’t tell you how much of your weight is composed of muscle and how much is fat, but it doesn’t tell you how much of that weight is contributed to from bones, organs, or water. The weight of a bodybuilder can be in excess of 200 or 300 pounds, but there aren’t many people that would call he/she overweight.
The final reason that a scale may be unreliable to get results from is because of it’s ability to change throughout the day. In fact, it changes all the time. Each of our bodies experience weight change throughout everyday, sometimes as much as 5 plus pounds depending on what we’ve eaten and drank throughout the day. Or, perhaps, the clothing that you wear makes you gain a couple of extra pounds – a pair of boots can add three or four pounds.
With all of that being said, the scale isn’t completely useless. It does at least give you a somewhat accurate portrayal of where you stand in the scheme of things. If you’re looking to lose a certain amount of pounds, like 5 or 10 for a weigh in for a sport or something similar, you definitely don’t want to rely on a scale. However, if you’re looking to lose 100 pounds, using a scale every morning or every evening in your weigh-in ritual is more than okay.