Why Obsessing Over Numbers on a Weighing Scale is a Mistake
A lot of weight loss “experts” will tell you to weigh yourself each and every day if you are trying to lose weight.
The idea seems to make sense on the surface. Regularly checking your weight leads to motivation when you see positive results.
This improves your focus and dedication to the efforts you’re making, and can lead to even greater results.
But what happens to you mentally when the scale does not tell you what you want to hear?
This is where the unfortunate power of negative reinforcement goes to work.
You religiously check your scale each day, and it shows that you are not losing weight, or possibly even putting on some pounds. This “once a day” reminder that your weight loss is not happening can have an extremely negative effect on your outlook, and could even cause you to abandon your weight loss efforts altogether.
There is nothing wrong with checking your scale every day if you are on a weight loss journey. Just remember not to obsess over the numbers.
It took you a lot of time, probably many years or even decades, to become overweight or obese.
Even the most heartfelt effort, using the most efficient fat-burning weight loss techniques, is not going to create the body you are looking for overnight.
Checking the scale and recording your weight is just one of the many things you need to do for an extended period of time to reach your target weight.
There is another reason why obsessing over a number on a scale works against your weight loss.
Staring at your scale does not make you lose weight. Stepping onto your scale, waiting for the digital reading or old school needle to display your body weight and then recording that data does not help or hinder your weight loss.
However, obsessing over those numbers does negatively influence your overall results for a very simple reason.
You should be obsessing over the process, not the results.
You have found a weight loss plan you think will work for you. It has proven effective for others. You may have even seen some signs that it is beginning to work.
Focus your attention on following that plan, not on what the scale is telling you.
Whatever steps are involved, obsess over following each and every one of those steps to the letter.
The process is what creates the results you are looking for. Instead of being results-oriented (always staring at your scale), you need to be process-oriented (always doing the things you need to do to lose weight).
So instead of focusing on the numbers you are seeing, how fast or slow your weight is dropping, focus on the individual steps and efforts required to lose the weight.
Continually perform those actions that have proven effective for burning fat and losing weight, and the numbers on the scale will take care of himself.
Why Focusing on Weight Loss Over Fat Loss is a Mistake
When on a weight loss mission, one tends to feel over the moon when the numbers on the weighing scale drop. But, what exactly is being lost? Is it muscle, fat, water weight, or all the above?
The truth is, a weighing scale simply cannot shed light as to what changes are happening within the body.
And, this is why you should stop basing the success of your weight loss plan on how much you weigh. What you should do instead is focus more on fat loss than weight loss.
So, what is the difference between losing weight and losing fat? This article offers some insight on the difference between these two outcomes and why fat loss is better than weight loss.
Weight Loss Vs Fat Loss – What’s The Difference?
The body is made of several components including muscle, fat, water, bones, organs, and other tissues. Exercise and diet tend to have a direct impact on the muscle, fat, and water parts of the body.
Therefore, depending on what you eat and how often you exercise, you can lose, gain, or manage your current water, muscle, and body fat percentages.
With weight loss, you will be losing fat along with muscle mass and water. Fat loss on the other hand, simply entails losing only the stored excess fat in the body.
Why You Should Focus More on Fat Loss and Not Weight Loss
Weight loss is so possible that anybody willing to put an effort can do it. Simply follow a low calorie diet and start engaging in regular intense physical activity and you will find yourself losing weight.
Unfortunately, losing weight in this way means that you will lose both muscle and fat as well as any extra water in the body. Not only is this unhealthy but it also puts you at a greater risk of gaining back all lost weight and more.
This is why fitness experts suggest that you should aim at losing fat and not just mere ‘weight’.
What’s more, fat loss leaves you looking younger and more attractive while boosting fitness level, increasing strength, and improving overall health.
The best part of focusing more on fat loss however is the fact that you get to prevent muscle loss. Muscles offer 2 key benefits that help with fat loss. These include:
- Higher fat burning potential: Muscles contain these tiny fat-burning powerhouses referred to as mitochondria, which perform the all-important task of metabolizing fat. Generally, the more mitochondria you have, the greater your body’s ability to burn fat. So, if you want to be successful at shedding excess fat, it is vital that you preserve muscle or even gain some.
- Increased metabolism: Body muscle is active tissue that requires constant energy to maintain itself. So, the more the muscle percentage in your body, the greater the amount of energy your body will need just to function properly. This high demand on energy will see the body burn fat constantly at all times even when you are sleeping.
With the metabolism boosting and higher fat burning benefits of muscles, it is obvious that muscles are essential if you want to get into proper shape.
So, make it a point to focus more on reducing body fat rather than losing weight along with muscle mass when you decide to overcome being overweight.
The key to losing fat while maintaining muscle is to simply eat healthy as well as engage in both strength and cardio training. The scale might show no changes or even an increase in body weight while losing fat and building lean mass.
However, as long as you are losing fat and gaining back the weight in muscle, you are well on your way to being healthy and enjoying improved fitness and body physique.