Don’t be afraid of the scale

Posted: February 9, 2011 in Health, Hints & Tips

Weigh yourselWhen you’re starting a weight-loss plan, one of the best things to do, if you don’t have one already, is to buy a scale. I’m not saying that you should weigh yourself everyday, but I think that it’s VERY important that you’re aware of what your weight is and keep track of it. This way it doesn’t go up too much without you realizing it. I check my weight once a week. Of course I’m hoping that the weight goes down or ATLEAST stays the same, but if I notice that it’s starting to go up, I can do something about it before it goes up too much.

Have you ever heard of the Weight Control Registry? Probably not, I didn’t until last week. Basically it’s for people who have been successful in losing 10 or more pounds and keeping it off for more than a year. Over 5000 people have signed up for the registry and these people answer a bunch of questions on what they have done to lose weight and maintain the weight-loss. Some people have maintained the weight-loss for a few years, others for 40 years. Some lost weight rapidly, others lost it slowly (over as many as 14 years!)

What are some of the findings?

  • 78% of participants eat breakfast every day
  • 75% weigh themselves once a week
  • 62% watch less than 10 hours of TV per week
  • 90% exercise, on average, about 1 hour per day
  • To lose weight 94% increased their physical activity, with the most frequent form of activity reported being walking
  • 98% of Registry participants report that they modified their food intake in some way to lose weight.

For a complete list of research findings click here. These are quite obviously tried-and-true ways people have lost weight and kept the pounds from coming back.

Take measurementAnother thing besides weighing yourself once a week, is to take some measurements. I made sure I measured myself at the beginning. The reason why I did this is not only because my personal trainer made me, but also because I was told that even though I wasn’t seeing my weight change on the scale, doesn’t mean I wasn’t losing inches. See, muscle weighs more than fat and if you’re exercising, you’re building muscle, especially if you are using weights! Some weeks I would weigh myself, especially at the beginning and would I would barely see a difference one the scale but then I would check my measurements and I lost a lot of inches. I only took measurements once a month but from month-to-month I could see a huge difference in my measurements, even if I didn’t see it when I weighed myself.

When you see results, whether it’s from losing inches, pounds, seeing a change in the way clothes fit you, getting complements on how great you look, having lots of energy and feeling better. These all help give you that boost, that reason to keep going and you feel good about all the hard work you’ve put into working out and eating healthy. These things help you maintain your weight and keep you from getting frustrated and giving up!

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