Whether you hop on the scale daily or haven’t seen a scale since you graduated high school, how often and when to weigh yourself are important parts of any journey towards weight loss.
So many of us make the mistake of weighing ourselves at inappropriate times and quickly fall off the program as a result. The answers aren’t black and white, but there are some guidelines that can help you over the course of your journey.
What I recommend.
Too often, the number on the scale can alter your emotional state. If you are just starting out, but have been trying to lose weight for a long time, it’s important you commit to weighing yourself once per week for a set period of time. Regardless of your reaction to that number or how it makes you feel, this data will help give you a starting point for your weight loss journey.
Already weigh yourself (maybe even obsessively) but don’t see significant change?
I suggest using weekly photos and clothing as a way to “measure” yourself for a set period of time. The number on the scale isn’t everything, but body composition is and clothes and pictures are a great way to see progress even when that number isn’t moving. I have women on my program who have dramatically changed their body composition, becoming lean and tight, but only losing 3lbs.
SIDE NOTE: Unless you are competing, I think tracking fat percentages and measurements are like chasing a white horse that doesn’t mean anything. There, I said it. It’s just another form of abuse women do to themselves that can be more harmful than helpful on your weight loss journey.
What I do personally
My “tracking” with Amy Layne
After my 30 pound weight loss, my own goals changed and I started using pictures to track changes to my shoulders, waist, and bum. Since I knew I wasn’t going to restrict my eating, and the number on the scale might go up, I was able to protect myself from negative behaviours by using photos to see these changes.
Is it time for a Health Coach?
If you are serious about getting to a goal, a health coach can not only help you achieve that goal, but set realistic targets in the fastest, safest, and healthiest way possible. Weight loss is not a one size fits all prescription, and if you struggle with when and how often to weigh yourself, a coach can get you started in the right direction. What Betsy down the street is doing isn’t necessarily what you need to do and a health coach can determine the right plan for you.
One last thing about weighing yourself:
Whether you choose to weigh yourself, use pictures, or use a combination of the two, you have to look at the number on the scale factually and not emotionally. It is data and nothing more. For best results, weigh yourself at the same time every week, wearing the same thing, in the same place.
Things to consider along your weight loss journey
As I said, weight loss is not one size fits all and there are a few things to consider depending on your situation. Although these are very specific, one or more may apply to you. If you have any questions please let me know in the comments.
- If you practice a low calorie day or do any type of fasting the best time to weigh yourself is the next morning, before breakfast.
- If you are the type of person who has a bowel movement (BM) at the same time everyday, the best time to weigh yourself would be after that BM.
- If your thyroid hormone prescription is not keeping your TSH under 2.0 do not bother weighing yourself until you reach that number.
- If your cycle is different every month, or you gain significant water weight before your cycle, avoid the premenstrual weigh-in and work to regulate your cycle and reduce the symptoms during that time.
- If your IBS causes you significant constipation, seek help before getting strict about weighing yourself weekly.
Our programs are about lifestyle change. They are meant to help shape your eating and exercise habits for a lifetime. Weighing yourself and tracking your progress are important parts of your weight loss journey, but they aren’t forever. Your body will naturally settle into a lean and comfortable weight and muscle consistency during your program. Your only job will be to maintain that position using the guidelines we have setup.
Thank you for reading and if you want to read more about my philosophy, weight loss journey and/or background, you can read my story here.
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We’re so excited to be announcing the launch of our new program – The DAMY Lean. This is the program we have been wanting to develop and launch since 2008 (before DAMY was even conceived).
This program is live! Go to www.damyhealth.com/join to read more about it. It is updated often and is suitable to everyone no matter what stage of your weight-loss journey you are on.