Were into a new year! You've been through the New Year, New Me stage at the beginning, you enjoyed the first weekend of the year and now its time to focus and really put in the graft to get your goals accomplished!
First things first you need to work out your calories for your goal and you can do that HERE with our calorie calculations
If like me one of your goals is to lose weight / get in shape this year then one thing I think you need to hear before you do so is
ITS NOT ALL ABOUT SCALE WEIGHT!!
At this point your probably sat there thinking what a silly thing for this site to say! And 'Of course its about scale weight! that's what we weigh on!' but its true
People all too often get caught up on the weight on the scales and this can sometimes be a bad thing to do.
I believe there are 3 real key areas when tracking your weight loss and each can be different to the other but when you keep an eye on all 3 factors you are in for success. These 3 factors are Average Weight, Measurements & Progress Pictures, and what you see in the Mirror!
The Mirror is your Friend
I woke up this morning and weighed in at 238lbs which compared to this time last year is about 30lbs heavier. Yes over the past few months I have really given up on dieting and given my self time after dieting for so long to enjoy food, and really not track my calorie intake per day
But when looking in the mirror this morning did I feel fat? did I feel or look like I was 30lbs heavier? The answer to this is NO I didn't! I actually was very happy with how I looked considering the scale said I had put on 30lbs and that's the point i want to get across here. If like me your starting a new chapter in your weight loss you cant just pay attention to the scale you need to look at yourself in the mirror and see the changes too
Remember the Weight on the Scale does not Define you!
Average Weight > Weighing Once Weekly
I also believe that average weight is a far better indicator of weight loss than just jumping on the scales once a week on a Monday morning. This isn't a true reflection of your weight loss as your weight will fluctuate throughout the week depending on numerous factors and you may find that that one Monday you jump on the scales you hit the higher side of a weigh in
This can leave you deflated, upset, and even de motivate you to continue your journey of dieting because you believe you worked hard all week for it to all be worth nothing however this may not of been the case as you may have lost weight 5 days that week but because of a larger meal or a high water intake the day before you have woke up to a high scale figure
I would always suggest to Weight daily around the same time of day, for me that is 5am when I wake up and make sure its in the same conditions for example I will weigh in the downstairs bathroom after having been to the toilet and will usually do this in just my boxers to keep it consistent
I will then make a note of my weight each morning Monday to Sunday and after my final weigh in of the Week on Sunday I will calculate my average weight by taking all the 7 weigh ins that week adding them together and dividing by 7 for my overall average I then compare this to the week before and see if I have lost weight
The benefit to me of this is in the example below.
Lets say we weight everyday this week and our average for the week before was 231lb, to lose weight we want our average to come out lower than 231lb at the end of this week. Our weigh ins for the week were
Average Weight: 229.7
In this example the weight loss for the week would be 1.3lbs but if you were to only weigh on the Monday of that week it would actually look like you had put on 3lbs this week. This could really change your mindset and put you off of dieting or it may make you want to carry on but in turn lower your calories to an amount that is far below what is needed!
I always believe and always will believe the best way to lose weight is to do so on the highest amount of calories possible as this allows you to enjoy more of your favourite foods whilst losing weight and keeping your motivation much higher. Plus you can enjoy some nice snacks with a higher calorie intake which w3ill help with cravings. Why not check out 10 of the best Low Calories snacks to eat HERE
I remember once upon a time when I was actually a member of weight watchers and during this period I would go and weigh on a Thursday evening. I would eat so well all day Thursday and as soon as the weigh in was over I would go straight for a takeaway as I had weighed in. I didn't weight on the Friday but could imagine my weight would have been considerably heavier and I would of then been chasing the next loss!
The importance of Measurements & Progress Pictures
Its so important to keep track of your progress through measurements. Personally i would suggest that every 4-6 weeks you take the time to really look at these. Take a tape measure and measure all the key areas, Biceps, Waist, Thigh, Chest, Calves, Hips and Bust are all key areas to take note of.
You may find that when you are taking your measurements to track your progress you have lost and inch here and there but your overall weight has not moved much, this is where not paying attention to the scale can be a good thing! During your weight loss you may have become more active, been to the gym more or even taken up a class and so you may have built muscle or toned one of these areas while staying around the same weight.
The progress pics can also really help show this. Try to take a weekly picture again in the same conditions. Same area of the house, same lighting, same angles and get a front, back and side on image that you can compare as your journey goes on. You will soon see the difference in pictures even if you do not notice it on the scale or in the mirror
This is why its so important to look at more than one factor when losing weight and not get caught up on just one method of tracking the amazing improvements you have been making