When to smash your scale into 1000 pieces

May 13, 2011

…down 2lbs, up 3lbs, pull your hair out, cry, get discouraged, scream, grab a hammer and smash that %^%  scale.

I hear your frustration, let me explain what’s going on;

If you have 50 pounds to lose, the scale is a great tool to use because your ratio of fat to muscle is very high and the speed at which you are losing fat exceeds the effects of a change in water gain.

But what if you don’t have 50lbs to lose anymore?

The scenario may look like this:

You lost weight, but now as you get leaner the scale starts playing tricks on you. One day you’re down 3lbs the next day you’re up 2lbs. The problem (especially if you strength train) is that you don’t have nearly as much fat as you used to, so the fat loss slows down and now your muscles; like big reserves tanks filled with glycogen and solutes that hold water in them start to affect the numbers on the scale. You are also able to hold glycogen (stored carbohydrates) more effectively as you become leaner because of the increase in insulin sensitivity. Hence why you may put on weight the day after a leg workout. Here is what you need to do.

Change your measuring tool

As you get leaner the best measuring tool I have found to be effective has not been the calipers, or the measuring tape, not even the bioelectrical impedance analysis machine. It’s something so easy even a goldfish could do it. It’s called looking in the mirror.

As hard as it is to smash that scale or to stop obsessively weighing yourself three times a day you need to do it, because you will drive yourself crazy (and maybe not just yourself). Like I’ve said it before, goals are to easy to set focus on your action steps as oppose to the results that you really have no control over. If you’re putting in the hard work and the commitment the fat will go on it’s time. It always takes longer than what you want but put in the work and commitment to the diet and it will work in the end.


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