The Truth about The Scales
Do you have some scales at home? Do you use them? HOW often?
Chances are alot of people reading this will weigh themselves on a daily basis, and have that magic number they want to be at.
From talking to clients, friends and family, Personally, I think weighing yourself often (daily) just causes more anguish and stress to your life.
People tend to have an ideal weight that they want to be...but how did they get this number? Are they comparing themselves to a friend? Or did they read it somewhere? I don’t believe there is a perfect weight ‘number’, there is perhaps, a perfect weight range, and staying within this range should be enough without tearing your hair out to get to that ‘magic number’.
There are so many factors affecting your weight day to day such as time of day, hydration level, hormones, what you ate/ drank the day before and water retention to name a few. Listed below I am going to look at some of these in more detail and you will see you just can’t control all of these!! Accepting YOUR range and not weighing yourself so often, may make you happier, healthier and less controlled by that ‘number!’
People who weigh themselves each day start creating unhealthy habits, like skipping a meal. One common likelihood is missing breakfast if you weigh themselves first thing in the morning and your not happy with the outcome, which is setting you up to fail as you will be hungry later on in the day, leading to overeating (probably more than if you had breakfast) and you will probably choose high sugar items as will be feeling lethargic from a lack of energy.
You may experience the following thoughts, emotions and actions if you weigh yourself daily!...
If you have put on weight -
You may feel bad and angry with yourself.
‘What is the point in trying I’ll just start tomorrow.’
You go on a crazy exercise binge, usually cardio to ‘fat burn’ to see how many calories you can burn, which isn’t as effective as lifting weights and doing cardio together.
You start drastically restricting calories, skipping meals.
If you have lost weight-
YAY! Well done you! You must be able to have a small (food) treat today, after all, that one small chocolate donut is not going to put it all back on, right??
Your mind is having a constant battle of thoughts and emotions about what that magic number means! What you can and cannot do and what you must do. SERIOUSLY- it’s a stress you don’t need!!
A few pounds difference day to day is just your body doing its job and helping to regulate itself.
I suppose it’s like when you are looking or longing for something you really want i.e. partner, job, house etc, it doesn’t tend to show up until you stop worrying or stressing about it. The same happens with weight loss if you are happier within yourself you may find the weight starts to drop off. Your lower stress levels will mean you don’t hold onto fat cells and feeling better about yourself, you may naturally make healthier food and lifestyle choices.
There are so many factors that can affect your weight day to day.
This goes in a complete circle, if you are stressed your body tries to store body fat, which leads to stress next time you get on the scales!
Lack of Sleep
Sleep reduces stress levels but also controls the hormones responsible for hunger and produces the growth hormone which encourages fat loss!
Drinking water throughout the day has so many health benefits but will increase your weight- this is not fat gain though! It is our advice to drink 2-3 litres of water a day, however this can give a 2-3kg increase to weight! This is only temporary. If you have exercised you may weigh less straight after but this is due to the sweat lost during the workout and you need to re-hydrate.
Your Last Meal
What you had to eat and how efficient your body’s digestion system is will have an effect on weight fluctuation and if you have any food allergies or intolerances. Foods high in carbs or salt will cause your body retain water leading to a weight increase.
Changes in levels of hormones especially throughout a women’s menstrual cycle can cause weight gain, usually around 5 pounds but can be up to 10 pounds! Stress can also affect other hormones that can cause a weight increase.
Now I’m not saying don’t use scales at all! There is a time and a place. They can be hugely motivational but remember if you are training and working out increasing your muscle mass and losing fat mass can mean you could weigh more! However your circumference size could change. There are many other ways you can measure your weight loss and body changes, for example, how your clothes fit, how fit and strong you feel, measurements or body fat.
Don’t make it part of your daily routine! It has a place in a weight management program but it is not healthy to be in a constant worry about your weight. Focus on how you feel, if you feel hungry eat, don’t punish yourself. If you are stressing about those 2,3,4, 5 pounds you have left to lose – DON’T! Other people won’t notice any difference apart from maybe your misery and obsession with food all day! You are putting too much pressure on yourself, it is your CONFIDENCE that will make you more attractive not your weight loss!
If you feel you must use scales then have weekly or monthly weigh ins, do this at the same time and same day every week or every month as this will give you a trend of how you are doing without the emotional rollercoaster you would experience every day! Use them as a tool to help you, not ruin you!
If you are struggling with the rollercoaster of weight loss, please feel free to contact us at Build a Body for a FREE consultation and taster session to see how we can help you to achieve your perfect body without getting obsessed with the scales firstname.lastname@example.org.