We've all been there and done that. After a week or two of eating nutritious foods and exercising consistently we get excited about our progress and can't wait to jump on the scale. You wake up in the morning ready to see how much you've improved and guess what happens? The number on the scale didn't change not one bit. You get discouraged, frustrated and realize that whatever it is that you were doing isn't worth it anymore.
Well I'm here to tell you that the number in the scale isn't the best way to track your progress. There are so many reasons why your weight could have fluctuated. Heres why!
REASON #1 YOU'RE BUILDING MUCLE AND LOOSING BODY FAT
What exactly does this mean? Well since you started lifting some weights, prioritizing protein in every meal and have been exercising consistently, you've actually been building some muscle. Lean muscle is much denser and heavier than body fat by volume. Body fat is a lot more fully and holds up more space. So since muscle weighs more than fat it will appear in the scale as if no progress happened. But in reality your body composition is changing. In other words you are getting leaner and burning body fat at the same time. Hint: This is why your clothes could be fitting looser without it appearing like if you're not loosing any weight.
REASON #2 OUR BODY IS VERY COMPLEX AND FLUCTUATES EVERY DAY
Between morning and afternoon your weight can fluctuate depending on what you ate, drank and how much you exercised. You've ever had a long weekend full of family gathering and delicious food? Here comes Monday and you've gained about 3-5 lbs? Well here's why: salty foods cause our body to retain a lot of water. This is why we feel bloated and puffy after a weekend of fun. Hormonal changes and hydration levels also play a huge impact on our bodyweight.
REASON #3 ITS NORMAL TO GAIN WEIGHT DURING YOUR PERIOD
Its normal to gain 3-6 pounds during your monthly period. This is caused by hormonal fluctuations that may cause bloating, water retention, sugar cravings and an increase in hunger. The female sex hormone estrogen spikes up during your menstrual cycle and when its levels are high it can lead your body to feeling bloated and retaining more fluid. It may seem like you're gaining weight but it is only temporary
REMEMBER: PROGRESS COMES IN MANY FORMS
I encourage you to start focusing on your behavioral outcomes. Your daily wins are far more important than the number on the scale. For example: You feel better, you have far more energy, you've adopted healthier habits, you're a lot stronger and have more endurance. Your clothes feels better and you're more motivated than ever before. These are all signs that you have made progress. Remember to celebrate these wins as you continue your transformation.
THE SCALE DOESN'T DETERMINE YOUR WORTH
Health is not about a number. Focus on your happiness, your energy levels, the strength you've built and the new habits you've created since you started your journey. Use health and fitness as a tool to live a longer wonderful life and to discover how it can help you become a better person overall.