One of the biggest struggles we all have with our fitness and health programs is knowing what to measure. There are so many variables to measure and so many tools available like calorie counting apps, devices that measure your steps and so much more that the plethora of options can lead to overwhelm.
What we want to do in this article is to go over what are the key variables you must know and what tools you need that will give you the biggest bang for your buck with the lowest investment of time and energy.
Scale Weight: But isn’t the scale bad? Isn’t a focus on numbers unhealthy and leads to a negative body image?
The truth of the matter is that the scale is simply a tool and any value we assign to it that relates to our self worth is our own perception of the situation. We can make a decision whether to be emotionally influenced by it and base our self worth on it or we can have it as a useful tool in our toolbox.
What we recommend to our clients is to simply weight yourself 3x a week (ideally under the same conditions and time) and take an average of the measurements. If your weight is going down then congratulations! The program is working!
But how do you know if you are losing fat, not muscle? Find out now!
Weights Used: Besides the obvious reasons why you should track your weights (so you know what you need to use for training!) tracking your weights is the absolute simplest tool to see if you are losing or gaining muscle mass!
If the weights you are using continually are getting better, it is a very good indicator of muscle growth simply because for all intents and purposes a larger muscle is a stronger muscle. If you combine this with scale weight, you can easily ascertain as to whether you are losing muscle or fat. The best case scenario of course is that scale weight is dropping and lifts increasing!
Tape Measure: The oldest tool in the book is a great one. For fat loss, simply measure around your belly button. For muscle gain, measure what you are interested in growing.
If you focus on these 3 measurements you CANNOT fail! Make sure you focus on the right things and train hard!