Have you ever started a new fitness program or diet and every single morning you would step on the scale to see if it was working? When you saw the number on the scale go down, you were elated and felt proud of yourself. It motivated you to keep doing the workouts and following the diet plan. But what happened when you stepped on the scale and the number didn’t move? You probably just thought it was a fluke and you immediately begin to replay the last 24 hours to see what you did or didn’t do to cause the number to stay the same. You try again the next day and still no change, now you’re starting to feel that you are doing something wrong. By day 3 of no progress, you are totally obsessed with finding the culprit for why you are not seeing progress and your motivation to keep going is dwindling by the second. By the end of the week, you are frustrated and feel defeated and quit all together. Sound familiar?
If this is something that you have struggled with in the past, I want to shed a piece of advice for you – STOP USING THE SCALE AS THE ONLY METRIC FOR SUCCESS!
The scale only shows a small portion of the story and doesn’t reflect the healthy choices and small changes you are making to reach your results. From my own experience, I’ve also found that the scale is usually the last thing to show true progress. Your best bet is to start to focus on Non Scale Victories which are more qualitative in nature, which can include improvements to your energy, mood, sleep, digestion, skin, hair, nails, etc. This can also mean taking photos and trying on the same pair of pants each to physically see and feel how your body is changing.
When I work with my clients to help them shift from the short term mindset of the scale to a healthier and long term mindset of Non-Scale Victories, I find they stay motivated to continue with the workout programs and nutrition plans I have recommended and they tend to lose weight and keep it off for good. Why is this? Because Non-Scale Victories give you immediate feedback on your progress and you begin to notice that you feel and look better. It gives you a small “win” while you wait for the number on the scale to start to move.
If you are struggling to stay motivated because you are feeling frustrated and defeated by the scale, shift your thinking and begin to celebrate all of the things that are changing for the better as you build a healthier lifestyle that will improve the quality of your life for the long run!