Written by: Katie Snow
In the first session with all of my clients, the most important question that I ask them is: what is your biggest health/fitness goal right now? Usually I get the typical answer of “I want to lose __ pounds by this particular date.” Now, it is not wrong to want to bring down your weight. Making positive changes in your diet and exercise regimen so that the number on the scale goes down is a fair course of action. However, I have seen one too many times (clients, friends and even myself) become obsessed with the number on the scale as oppose to other factors such as actual body fat and physical health. This can cause frustration and ultimately lead to killing your motivation.
Let’s say you have been working out almost everyday for 3 months straight and you have really cleaned up your diet – staying away from sugary or processed foods. Physically you notice a difference in how your body is functioning – you are happier and have more energy. Excited about this change, you decide to step on the scale to see just how much you have lost, only to be disappointed with the number being a measly 2-3 pounds less than it was when you started your fitness journey. You think to yourself, this can’t be right. All your clothes are fitting a lot better and you look great naked, the scale must be broken!
Here is what happens: when you WEIGH yourself, the scale takes into account the sum of weight of your bones, muscles organs and body fat. Because your body weight can so easily fluctuate depending on daily circumstances (water retention/loss, bowel/stomach and bladder) it is generally an inaccurate way for the average “fit” person to measure their progress.
Instead of weighing yourself on a traditional scale, a fit person would be better off basing their progress off of how clothes fit, pictures, and if they like what they see in the mirror. None of these things lie. Think about it this way: two people who are the same height can weigh the same number but one looks healthy and toned while the other looks plump. This is called body fat composition. Because muscle and fat tend to weigh the same, a lot of people (including myself) will rarely see changes in their weight, however see big changes in body fat. If you are lifting weights and eating relatively well, most likely your body fat composition has gone down and your muscle mass has gone up! That’s great!
Lucky for members, Mayfair has an amazingly accurate body fat scale that has helped numerous clients and trainers get a better idea of where they’re at – making it that much easier to reach their fitness goals! And it’s free to use – just ask me J
Also remember that your body weight shouldn’t be an indicator of your happiness. If you are getting stronger, feeling & looking good that’s all that matters – the rest will follow!
To book a complimentary Mayfair Athletic Assessment contact Mayfair West at (416) 638-1010 or membership services at email@example.com