Picture this in your mind. It’s Monday morning and as you prepare to step on the scale you are feeling super confident. You know that you killed it last week with your workouts and stuck to your meal plan the majority of the week. Suddenly all that confidence comes to a screeching halt as you look down and notice the scale didn’t move from last week, or worse the number got bigger.
How many times have you been in this scenario? For years I dreaded the scale because I was always uncertain as to what number would be revealed. In those few seconds I could be absolutely elated with my progress, or confused and defeated, sometimes even bitter. In fact, there have been times where I have almost given up simply because I was tired of trying to win on the scale.
Looking back, I can see that I didn’t make the healthiest choices, and sometimes I still slip up. It doesn’t excuse the gut-wrenching feeling I get after seeing that number hold steady when I know I did the best I could that week.
I finally realized that the scale doesn’t hold all the power. Once I came to this realization, my outlook changed. I stopped dreading the scale. Good or bad, I knew whatever the outcome was, the scale wasn’t showing the whole story. It was simply just one piece to the puzzle. What are the other pieces? Let me introduce you to your new best friends, non-scale victories.
Why is this important?
As you know by now the scale can be unpredictable. Why do we place so much pressure on ourselves based on just a number? Why do we let this number define us?
That is why it is important we look for non-scale victories. They are relatively constant, and honestly, I get more excited seeing those than the number on the scale. Non-scale victories give you a mood boost and is a better verification of the hard work you are putting in.
There are so many factors that go into your weight. It fluctuates back and forth from day-to-day. Just because you see a gain on the scale doesn’t mean you necessarily had a bad week. You could be bloated, maybe you had a big meal the night before, etc.
Examples of Non-Scale Victories
Here are some examples of what to look for to see your progress instead of the scale. Feel free to print out the printable and stick it up somewhere to keep you reminded of them.
- Measurements: It is important to measure yourself from time to time to see how many inches you are losing (I do it monthly). I like to measure my chest, arms, stomach, waist, hips, and thighs.
- Pictures: I know it can be hard to take before pictures, but you will thank yourself once you reach your goal. It will be a great visual to see how far you’ve come. I take these monthly. I first do them in a tight-fitting workout outfit, I post these on Instagram, then I do separate ones in my sports bra and shorts. Then every three months I like to take dressier photos just for fun. I’ll do a separate post on how I take these photos and tips to take your own.
- Clothes Fitting Looser: You know you are doing something right when clothes that used to be tight are now loose; or you find yourself needing to buy new clothes because everything is too big to wear.
- More Endurance/Strength: If you can hold a plank longer, run faster, do more reps, or having to increase weights, then you are making progress. A good way to keep track of this is to jot down what you can currently do then come back in a few weeks and record it again. See if there are any differences.
- People Are Starting To Notice: Have you gotten more compliments on your progress recently? Are your friends asking you what you are doing? Seeing your hard work getting noticed is the best feeling.
I’m not saying that we should completely ditch the scale, it is a good way to see your progress. I have a post coming up in the future about how often you should weigh yourself. The problem comes in when we begin to obsess over the scale and ignore the other forms of progress.
Now that you have seen some examples, have you noticed any non-scale victories in your own journey? Let me know your experience in the comments below. If I missed any feel free to tell me in the comments as well.