Are you getting results?
Are you trying to lose weight? A lot of people out there train hard, eat well and have genuinely healthy lifestyles, but are they achieving their goals? If you started going to the gym or eating healthy with goal of losing fat or even just losing weight in general, are you certain that you are making progress? Sometimes more than one avenue of tracking your progress is essential, since the slight results of one method (usually tracking bodyweight) don’t always tell the whole truth.
Sometimes weighing yourself alone is not an ideal way to track progress, but if tracking bodyweight is important to you, you must know how to do it correctly. Sometimes people panic from normal weight fluctuations, when all they need is proper timing. Weighing yourself the same time of the day (on weigh-in day) is of utmost importance to check results properly. Quite often people will weigh themselves first thing in the morning one week, then at night another and see that their weight hasn’t changed! This can be discouraging after a week of hardwork, but realistically a good kilogram (or pound) could have been lost since your body may fluctuate by that amount during the day thus the scales don’t show the difference due to fluctuation. Beacuse of this it is recommended to weigh yourself first thing in the morning, before breakfast, once a week. It’s also important to keep clothing minimal, if you have a private place, weight yourself in your underwear (no shoes, jeans etc – they will contribute to your weight, making it heavier than it shoud be). Also, use the same scales for each weigh-in – different scales can display slightl different results.
The next step in more accurate tracking is to measure your body. Sometimes due to muscle gain whilst burning fat (the ultimate scenario!) you can feel discouraged as the scales give the same number week after week, or even worse – you get heavier! But this could be even better than you had hoped, as it is possible to gain weight whilst burning fat through muscle growth. Muscle growth is usually common with people starting a new routine and is one of the keys to boosting your metabolism. For this reason measuring yourself is a surefire way to check your progress realistically, being sure to measure the following:
Waist: Measure around the waistline, where your the top of your pants sit.
Thigh: Measure both thighs, at the largest point.
Chest: Measure around the largest part of your chest.
Biceps: Depending on personal preference, you can measure your biceps tensed or relaxed (arm out straight, in the centre), but choose one and stick with it.
You may also measure any other parts of your body you may wish to track such as neck, calves, love handles, etc. Record all these measurements once a week and compare the numbers from week to week as well as from the first week to the most recent measurement. All you need to perform this is a simple measuring tape you can find at your local supermarket or online here at Amazon (pictured above).
The very last and probably most accurate thing to do in anyweight loss venture is to measure your body fat percentage. The best way to do this is visit your local gym, and get a professional to measure it for you with a caliper, or you can purchase a kit to do it yourself in the comfort of your own home. Then its as simple as aiming for a lower number each week! Combined with the above 2 methods, tracing body fat percentages should have you gaining a really accurate understanding of where you body is heading. If you find your results aren’t what you are looking for, than its time to look at your nutrition and/or exercise regime and adjust it accordingly to reach your goals.
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