We have got to get past our obsession with the scale! Tony Horton says it in one of his 1-on-1’s (I can’t remember which one off the top of my head) = “We are so consumed with pills and potions and gadgets to make us SMALLER. That’s STUPID!”.
Focusing on SMALLER is Stupid
And he’s exactly right! Heck, if our goal was simply to get smaller, why workout at all? We should just go lay in our bed and stop eating. We’d shrivel up and atrophy into much smaller people. That’s not what we are after. Our goal isn’t to simply get smaller. Yet we gauge so much of our progress by the bathroom scale, which only tells us if we are getting smaller or bigger. It’s crazy!
We have to focus on what really matters – our body composition. What many of us are really after is losing body fat. That often correlates to losing weight, but the weight loss is just a byproduct, not the main goal. The goal is getting our body fat low. But understand that as we workout and fuel our muscles, they will increase in strength and density, which adds weight. This can mislead us when all we care about is what a dumb scale says.
And often we get so worried about hitting a certain goal on the scale that we crash diet, kill our metabolism, and burn up our own muscle mass to hit some arbitrary goal. Stop!
Get some calipers and start monitoring what matters — your body composition. I’ve written an article, “How to Measure Body Fat”, that explains in detail how to do that. And stop gauging your progress based on a scale. Start gauging your progress on 3 things:
- How do I feel?
- How do I look in the mirror?
- What is the trend in my body composition (body fat and lean body mass)?
I’m 235 right now, and I feel great at 235. If I felt and looked great at 225, so be it. Or if I felt and looked great at 245, so be it. The scale is just a number. It’s about looking and feeling great, being fit, and staying healthy.
Keep bringing it and stop worrying about a target weight. Start thinking about how you want to look in the mirror and keep tabs on your progress. No scale needed — just some privacy! :-)
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