Since I got back from my epic holiday in France last month, I decided to record my weight daily as I attempted to shift a few pounds of cheese and chocolate.
The main reason for this was so I could show my clients, and everyone else, how weight fluctuates on a daily basis.
Many times I’ve seen people panic that the scales haven’t dropped as they expected, even though they thought they’d been doing really well.
Unfortunately, weight will never just drop in a linear fashion. All sorts of other things come into play – the amount of salt and carbs you consumed the day before, the amount of water you drank, hormones, water retention for various reasons, and for women, time of the month, to name but a few. That’s why the trend over a month is a much better way to look at it.
For me you can see the weight dropped off quick at the beginning, as is often the case when getting back to normal after an indulgent holiday. Then there’s quite a few little ups and downs over the course of the month.
Sometimes I could see why – a few times I’d done a long bike ride and eaten more food and more carbs, and once or twice went out for dinner and might have had a pudding 😉 so took in a large amount of food and carbohydrate fairly late in the evening which would have still been in my system the next day. Other times there was no clear reason why.
But as you can see from the graph, there’s a general downward trend over the month. And that’s the important part to look at.
I normally just encourage clients to weigh themselves once a week because of this. It’s best not to get too caught up in it on a day-to-day basis. Despite KNOWING that the scales will not always say what we feel they should say, even I found it a bit of a slap in the face when I stepped on and it had gone up slightly, even though I knew I hadn’t gained fat.
If you have no emotional attachment to what the scales say, you’re interested in seeing daily trends and want to weigh daily, go for it.
But if the scales can make you miserable, or get you caught up over-analysing the number you see, try just keeping a record once a week (or even less often) and focusing on other ways you can keep track of your progress.
How your clothes fit is one of the best ways, particularly if you’re weights training regularly too (which I massively recommend). Your body will slim down and change shape as you burn fat, but the scales might not show it if your lovely toned muscles are now weighing a bit more. Your clothes, however, will. Measurements and progress photos are also good, along with compliments from other people. Don’t dismiss them, believe them! Allow yourself to feel good 🙂
Don’t forget, most of us are just trying to lose weight in order to get a FEELING. Usually a feeling of happiness and confidence. By all means, work towards weight loss if you need to, but keep working on other ways to achieve those feelings too. Happiness shouldn’t just equal a number on the scales.
If you can look at things from the perspective of living a healthy, happy lifestyle (rather than just adopting a quick fix diet), you’ll be happier a lot sooner, and probably still get to where you want to be in a much more enjoyable way. Either way, you’ll be healthy and happy anyway, and that’s what really matters, right?
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