We tend to think that we only lose weight if there is a decrease in the number on our scale, and this is not always the case. Many times our body changes, even if the scale shows the same numbers (or even more).
Sometimes weight fluctuates up to a kilo according to our hydration levels, what we have eaten in the previous hours, the time of day, or even the time of the menstrual cycle, so the scale is not always 100% reliable.
And let's be honest, there is no better marker of our evolution than our own feeling of well-being, but since the "happiness meter" has not been invented, we often try to measure the evolutions obtained as a result of our changes in lifestyle in ways other than scale. That's why today we're sharing some of our favorites.
The tape measure is your new friend. Instead of relying on a machine, take advantage of your trusty tape measure. Perhaps the pounds will gradually drop, but if your measurements keep changing, it is obvious that you are on the right track.
Body measurements have a long history of use as nutritional indicators. Some reflect previous nutritional conditions (e.g. height), while others may reveal information about the most recent state. Some measurements can distinguish between fat mass and fat-free mass, providing separate information on muscle protein and energy stores.
HOW TO TAKE BODY CIRCUMFERENCE MEASUREMENTS?
To measure your body, you'll need a tailor's tape measure. The way to measure is simple, each area must be measured three times. Write down the three results. Measures 5 areas:
Things to keep in mind to measure yourself well:
Do not go crazy. Before you grab your sewing tape measure and act, you need to know a few things. The first is that you have to measure yourself always without clothes or always wearing clothes.
If you measure yourself naked, the data will be much more accurate. However, if for any reason you decide to do it with clothes, keep in mind that whenever you take your measurements you will have to do it wearing the same clothes, since otherwise, the inches may vary depending on their thickness.
The second thing is not to squeeze the tape measure too tightly on your body, because if you do, the results will be false. Oh, and the old gut trick doesn't work either. Third, make sure that the treadmill is at the same height throughout the tour, otherwise, the data you will get will not be representative either.
Finally, it is recommended that you always measure yourself at the same time of day. The normal thing is to do it on an empty stomach so that there is no food or liquid in your body that gives a feeling of bloating that could be temporary and mask your normal state. Come on, it does not make much sense to measure after having eaten a big plate of heavy food, for example.
Parts of your body to measure
The waist, which includes the abdominal area, is one of the main parts to check if you are losing weight or not. By taking measurements of the waist, you will also be taking into account the abdomen.
We know them vulgarly as belly and floats and we have them well signed. It is not surprising, since they are the most rebellious. The belly is where lots of fat accumulates and where there may be greater fluid retention, standing out for presenting more volume when you gain weight. When taking measurements, do not forget that the tape measure has to be at the level of the navel.
Waist: Relaxed, without putting in or taking out the belly, measure the smallest portion, near and above the navel.
Chest: while standing, with the shoulders relaxed and the arms stretched to the side of the body. Breathing held in a resting position measuring at the level of the nipples or above. For women, you can measure by passing the tape under the bust. Always keep the tape measure parallel to the ground.
To measure the perimeter of your thighs, a reference height is to pass the tape one centimeter lower than where the gluteus ends.
Thigh: It should be relaxed and while standing you should measure the thickest part under the buttock.
Keep in mind here to that if you work the muscles of the legs doing, for example, squats, this will be reflected with an increase in muscle mass, and perhaps the measurements have not changed, despite having lost fat.
Measuring these key parts of your body will not only reveal if you've lost weight, but it will also serve as motivation. If you see that you have lost weight and that you are achieving your goals, this will encourage you to continue with your plan.
Hips: place the tape measure across the widest part of the hips/buttocks and measure around the entire perimeter, always keeping the tape measure parallel to the floor.
Arms: you should stand with the arms raised parallel to the floor at the same height as the shoulders, with the forearms and the wrists bent and contracted; the widest portion should be measured.
It is advisable to write down all the results and do it once a week or once a month.
This does not mean that you have to forget about the scale, for two essential reasons. The first is that, although you do not use the scale to assess the results, it is advisable to use it once a month, to see the progress (even if it is few in relation to the kilos). And the second reason is that once the objectives have been reached, it is advisable to go up on the scale once a month to maintain the weight and not get off track.
Even with all this, there are people who are overly dependent on the numbers on the scale. If seeing a certain number on the screen completely ruins your day, a tape measure is the best option.
However, keep in mind that there are other ways to measure progress, such as an increase in energy, better sleep, getting to do more difficult workouts, etc. And these details are more important than a number.