The older I get the less important certain things become. And while I can rattle off a laundry list of things that I gladly left in my 20’s, the number one thing that I don’t obsess about in this third decade is my weight. I’ve officially kissed constant weigh ins goodbye and want you to break up with the scale too boo. Because simply put, there are many things the scale can’t and wont tell you.
1. Your Muscles Don’t Care About Those Three Digits
While many people believe that muscle weighs more than fat, the truth of the matter is a pound is a pound. However the difference is density (muscle is about 18% more dense than fat) and one pound of muscle occupies less space (volume) than one pound of fat. So basically if you’re busy turning fat into muscle the scale may not budge although you’l undoubtedly appear leaner. For instance I have been the same weight for the last 5 years although I wear a smaller size at 32 than I did at 27. Had I still been staring at the scale every morning I would’ve dismissed this obvious difference.
2. What About That Body Fat
Speaking of muscle, another thing that the scale doesn’t measure is body fat percentage. So if you’re busy waiting for the three digit number to change and aren’t aware of your body fat percentage you could be setting yourself up for various health problems. I see this all the time – someone weighing in at 125 thinking they are “naturally skinny” and therefore healthy, only to find out that they have a body fat percentage of 30% or higher – which P.S. is considered obese. So next time you’re quick to let your weight determine the status of your health be sure to invite body fat percentage to the party.
3. Inch By Inch, Size Matters
Another factor worth considering when the scale lets you down is how you look in your clothes. Losing inches matters lady, so instead of always barefoot-ing it on your bathroom scale whip out the tape measure every once in awhile too. Because muscle is denser than fat you may drop a size or two although the number on the scale only slightly drops. Using your favorite jeans as your guide totally trumps those daily morning weigh ins.
4. Fluctuations You Can’t Forget About
One morning you weigh in at 145 only to weigh 148 by lunch and 150 the next morning. Sound familiar. Well if you are constantly hopping on the scale multiple times a day, or even daily you are consistently setting yourself up for disappointment. What you recently ate, how much sodium you’ve consumed, whether you just worked out or what time of the month it is all can affect your weight. So stop letting that few pound window throw you off your game because fluctuations are completely normal.
5. Happiness Not Included
Last but certainly not least, the most important thing that the scale cannot detect is your happiness. Many people believe this lie – “If I was just (insert dream weight here) then life would be so much better and I would clearly be happier.” False. The quality of your emotional well being, the level of success you will achieve and the value you bring into this world all have nothing to do with a magical number known as your weight. So stop waiting for your weight to change and start fully living your present life. It’s time to break up with the scale. Do yourself a solid and start counting your blessings more and how many pounds you can drop less.