The number on the scale is a gauge for how good or bad you are doing when it comes to living healthy. But, based on my last 36 days, there are more accurate ways to measure health than simply the number on the scale. Here's what I mean...
I wrote in a post back in early 2013 called "How to Set (and Keep) Your Goals in 3 Simple Steps" that, "You lose 50 pounds by losing one pound 50 times." While this is true, I've learned, eh, I am learning, that the number on the scale can't be the the end-all-be-all goal of life. Nope, the number on the scale is only one indicator. There are other indicators that will motivate you long-term.
When I weighed 230 pounds back in June of 2013, I mistakenly thought that to be healthy, I needed to weigh 180. While 180 pounds sounds great on paper, the fact is, I have been too focused on the number. Hear me closely on this, the number may be good, but it's not the real goal. Be careful that you don't place too much emphasis on your weight. Weight is only one indicator.
There's one major reason why a small number on a scale shouldn't be your only calculation. It's de-motivating. You became overweight or obese by your lifestyle. Likewise, it will take a different lifestyle to get you fit.
To do anything longer than a few days, you need the right motivation. When you're looking to lose weight and get in shape, the last thing you need is one more thing in life that doesn't encourage you.
You need wins, and any wins will do. It's a daily/hourly/meal-ly struggle to cut bad calories, increase the right calories and balance energy levels so that you actually exercise and burn fat.
It's simply not good enough, in the long-run, to pick a number on a scale and make that your goal. This motivated me to lose the first few pounds; but over time, and especially of late, the number is not what's keeping me in the game. Only now am I realizing that there are more important things than simply what the scale says.
Over the last 36 days of doing P90X3 and jogging, I haven't noticed much difference on the scale. My weight started at 198 on day zero and today it was 188. Ten pounds isn't bad now that I think about it. But much more important is that I'm seeing results in my face, shoulders, arms, chest, stomach and legs. They're all getting more fit! If you're a Beach Body member and want to be my buddy, you can view my pics here.
While I really want to see the number on the scale decrease, the real results are in my pictures. I must keep telling myself this. Even better, the really real results are the unseen. I'm certain I have more muscle strength. Never in my life have I exercised so consistently for so many days. I'm certain much of the reason I haven't "lost weight" is because I'm gaining muscle.
On the BMI scale, I've went from obese to overweight and now I'm almost at the correct weight on paper. However, I'm no longer watching only the scale, I'm seeing that energy level and muscle tone are what really matter. You may be in the correct spot on the BMI scale, but that may be soley because you aren't overweight, it doesn't mean you are at your peak fitness level!
I'm looking forward to day 60, with hope that there will be even more changes in my pictures. Ultimately, there may well be more weight loss to come; but the number on the scale is no longer my ultimate goal.
My new goal is living the right blend of diet and activity that keeps me excited and thriving. It's not just enough energy to "get by" but to do things in life I would have never dreamed of doing when I was obese. I still can't run a full 5K, but as of last night (my day off I might add—I don't recommend doing this!), I ran more of the 3.1 miles than ever.
Here's my point:
The number on the scale will never be enough to inspire you to a lifestyle of fitness. Dream bigger than a smaller number on your scale. Make your goal to be stronger, to run longer and to live better. Your fight should be against time and time alone; not a smaller number on your scale.
What about you? What's your next fitness goal? Talk to me.