We all know that the scale doesn’t tell us the real story of our fitness journey. The scale is just one tool in building a healthy lifestyle. Focusing on just your weight as the scale measures it can be too limiting to sustain your motivation. A bathroom scale shows a number. It’s just a snapshot of your weight at any given moment on any given day. The journey to a healthier lifestyle is bigger than one number.
Enter non-scale victories!
Non-scale victories (NSVs) are health improvements that come from small, consistent life changes. NSVs can look like:
- Your clothes fitting better than they used to – If your clothes feel more comfortable than they used to, then your efforts are probably paying off.
- You have more energy – You may find it easier to play with children or pets, work in your garden, dance to your favorite song, or take a brisk walk around the neighborhood.
- Your sleep has improved – You might find you sleep more soundly at night. Research suggests that losing belly fat has a positive effect on sleep quality.
- You’ve reached a fitness milestone – If you find you’re now able to complete more reps, lift heavier weights, or have longer exercise sessions, then you’re probably moving in the right direction.
- You’ve lost inches – Exercise, especially strength training, can change your body measurements. Try tracking your waist circumference. Losing inches around your middle can reduce your risk of life-threatening cardiovascular diseases.
Losing weight is a popular health goal. And while it’s fine to measure your weight on the scale from time to time, the scale is far from the only way to measure your success. So look around. Notice all the changes you’ve made, and pat yourself on the back for investing the time to become healthier.
Also… keep going.