How Do You Measure Up?

If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know that I tell people not to put too much emphasis on using the scale as a way of tracking your progress.  The scale is a notorious liar; it can’t tell the difference between fat and muscle, it doesn’t take into account if you’re retaining fluid, and it fluctuates like crazy.  In fact, your scale weight will fluctuate as much as 5 pounds over the course of a single day!

A much better way of tracking the results of your diet and exercise efforts is by taking your measurements.   The thing is, though, that if you’re inconsistent in how you take them, you’ll get fluctuation with them as well.  Here are some tips to help you make sure you are consistent every time:

  • Relax — don’t flex or tense up for your measurements
  • The tape should be snug, but NOT too tight.  It should not be squeezing your body.
  • Don’t suck in your tummy for the waist measurement.  That will give you a false read.
  • When measuring any body part from the waist on down, be sure to stand with your feet together.
  •  Important — take your waist measurement at the smallest point around
  • Also important — when measuring your butt, calves, thighs and  biceps, be sure to measure at the biggest point around.

The last two points are the keys to being consistent whenever you take your measurements.Start today, and take your measurements once a week.  It really is the best way to gauge results, and best of all — it won’t lie to you!


8 Responses to “How Do You Measure Up?”

  1. Greg Todd Says:

    Scales certainly do fluctuate, and so do our bodies. It drives me nuts.

  2. Marna Goldstein Says:

    I am all over the place. Sometimes I’m up 5 pounds in one day. I think that using measuring tapes, clothes and other ways is right on. Thanks for your great blog! It’s a great reminder for me and my clients. Thank you!

  3. 60 in 3 Says:

    I find that measuring my progress is best when I use a combination of:

    1. Every month, I check my weight.
    2. Every month, I check my waist size.
    3. Every month, I check how well I’m doing on my exercise. Did I up my run speed? Did I increase my weights and so on.

    These three things combined give me a good idea of where I am physically.


  4. Lady Rose Says:

    psssst you’ve been knighted! You are offiically named one of my knights of the round table, you can stop by and check out the castle. Lady Rose

  5. loseweightwithme Says:

    GREG — It drives me nuts, too. That’s why I hardly ever step on the scale. 🙂

    MARNA — I’m glad you and your clients find this blog useful!

    60 IN 3 — i like your method of measuring progress, and I like the fact that you only do it monthly. That’s perfect.

    LADY ROSE — I’m honored! Thank you so much. 🙂


  6. totaltransformation Says:

    “Important — take your waist measurement at the smallest point around”

    I’ve always lined my measurements up with my belly button. Is that wrong?

  7. loseweightwithme Says:

    Hey, John — it’s not wrong if you are consistent in taking your measurement that way!

    Thanks for stopping by,


  8. Chicken Girl Says:

    Taking your waist measurement at the smallest point is good for cosmetic purposes, but the measurement at the level of the bellybutton is the relevant number to determine whether you have a dangerous amount of belly fat.

    Whenever I try to take measurements, they always stay the same just to screw around with me… even if I’ve lost weight and my clothes are looser.

    Personally, I think the best, most reality-based assessment is to buy a pair of pants that’s a size too small and gauge how close they are to fitting. And when they do… new pants!

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