Have you ever stepped on the scale and the number you see ruins your whole day? Especially when you’ve stuck to your workout routine, eaten right, and drank more water than … well… other substances? We’ve all been there. It’s super frustrating when you know you’re doing all the right things and the scale isn’t budging. The thing is, the scale is just one tool to measure your health. It’s a very popular and accessible tool, but that one number isn’t giving you the full picture. Today I’m going to give you three non-scale victories to measure your progress.
One: Take progress photos.
Yep, bust out your phone and take some selfies! Wearing the same outfit, standing the same way, and in the same place, take a few selfies to see your progress. Because you look at yourself every day, you might not notice the changes. You don’t have to show these pictures to anyone. They can be for you alone. But you might be tempted to show them off when you see some real progress that, for whatever reason, isn’t being reflected on the scale yet.
Two: Step into your old jeans.
We all have that one pair of beloved jeans or shorts that we’d really love to get back into. Imagine the day when you step into those and you don’t have to dance or wiggle or jump up and down to get the zipper up. Or, better yet, the day you find you need a belt. Feeling good in your own clothing is a powerful motivator and a more accurate signal of body composition changes than the scale alone.
Three: Measure your other numbers.
If you’re a data nerd [Editor’s note: *Meghan raises hand*] consider ditching the scale to measure your body’s other numbers. Find a cloth measuring tape and measure your arms, waist, hips, upper thighs, etc. Write those numbers down, and, like with the progress photos, do it again in a couple of weeks. It is possible to lose body fat and weigh the same if you’re putting on lean muscle. That lean muscle won’t show up on the scale, but it will show up in lost inches.
Keep in mind that the scale is just one tool for measuring your health, and not a great one at that. The scale is a blunt instrument. Many of your fitness victories will be won off the scale. You might have to get more creative with your measurements to see your progress. If you’re doing all the right things, consider giving one of these other methods a try. The most important thing: Keep moving. You’ll get there.