What is the Best Way to Track Weight Loss Goals
In these modern times, fitness goals have become common worldwide and across all age groups. Just like it is important to track every goal, weight loss goals also need to be tracked. But this tracking is not limited to just measuring the self on a weighing machine(scales). Relying on scales can be counterproductive too. Once in a while, weighing on the scales is good, but people often get fixated on it and do not know it is just one part of the picture.
Getting healthier consists of improving our mood, body composition and getting into good shape, and the scales cannot measure this. So it is evident that we need to adopt a different approach to track our weight loss goals and let us understand them in detail via this blog.
Here are few methods to track your weight loss goals:-
Journaling (Maintaining a Diary)
Maintaining a diary is a great way to track everyday progress. You can note down:-
- Your workout routine (what did you do?)
- Duration of the workout
- Your energy levels during the workout.
- Your mood in general after switching over to a healthier routine
- Diet chart
This is also a great way to identify what is working for you and reset your workout and dietary habits.
Monitor your progress with photos
At the starting of your journey, please take a photo of yourself and take it periodically. It is an awesome way to compare your progress without becoming fixated on the number on the scales. Whenever you are ready, compare your photos, and you’ll be so happy to observe the physical changes in your body. This is a serious motivation and helps you push yourself even further.
Make use of technology
We have so many apps on our phones, why not benefit from them in tracking your health journey. Many apps help track your workout progress, calories burnt in the workout, and count calories in the eaten food. Some apps provide real-time monitoring too, and in some, you can store the data and offload them to analyse later. This data will also help your doctor in making suitable recommendations to further progress in your weight loss journey.
Do a self-analysis and observe silent modifications in your body and mind.
- Do you have more energy now?
- Are you able to do more within the same timeframe?
- Has your body become more flexible?
- Has your sleep improved?
- If you were unable to sit down or climb stairs etc., is there any change in that?
- Are you feeling more positive?
- Is there a reduction in breathlessness after a run or a brisk walk?
Check your clothes
Is there a favourite T-Shirt of yours which you couldn’t wear since it was too tight? Well, if it fits now, and you are comfortable after wearing it, then that’s the most satisfying result. You are shopping for new jeans since your existing ones are loose, well that is a happy shopping which will bring a smile to your face. So notice such small things, and they are pretty good indicators of the direction of your weight loss.
Body Fat testing
Body fat percentage is a good indicator of how much fat you need to lose, and a weighing machine cannot tell you that. Your scale weight will likely remain unchanged even if you are slim, especially if you’re gaining muscle and losing fat. There are plenty of options for body fat testing, including:
- Bioelectrical impedance scales
- DEXA (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry)
- Hydrostatic weighing
- Online calculators are also available
However, keep in mind the following while measuring your body fat percentage:
- Checking once a week or every other week is sufficient- Since body fat does not change much in a day, measuring every day will not show too much variation.
- Let the same person measure your body fat every time – Different trainers and different centres have a varied way of measuring body fat, so fix on one trainer with whom you are satisfied and go with them.
- Maintain the body fat values in your journal – This helps keep historical data, and few months down the line, you can know if your health routine is working out for you or not.
- Measure in the same environment – If the measuring technique is a bioelectrical impedance scale, then make sure that the Hydration, food intake and skin temperature are as same as possible each time. Each of these parameters affects body fat.
Best way to use a weighing machine to track weight loss:-
After going through the blog until now, please do not conclude that a weighing machine is a waste. It is a great way to track your progress when used simultaneously with body fat percentage. Weighing once a month/fortnightly and that too first thing in the morning is best to notice improvement.