by Christie Stelly
People continue to allow a number on the scale to determine their self-worth and how they feel about their body. Join the “No Scale November” movement and enjoy feeling less stressed about your fitness journey.
“No Scale November” is an unofficial campaign started by women on social media sites, such as Instagram. The goal of the campaign is to empower men and women to ignore the scale and focus on overall health.
Rebecca Bosley, an Instagram advocate of ‘No Scale November,’ explains her struggle with the scale.
“A soft spot for me is the scale…I go through periods where I weigh myself regularly and periods where I don’t at all. What I’ve learned over the course of my recovery is that the number on the scale means nothing in the grand scheme of your happiness,” said Bosley.
A scale can be a tool to measure progress, but when it is being used daily it can become a source of discouragement. When you weigh yourself and don’t see a number you like, it can be distressing.
Many people experience the confusion of their clothes fitting looser but a higher number on the scale. One of the reasons for this is that the scale cannot account for muscle mass. Muscle is more dense than fat. One pound of fat takes up more room than one pound of muscle.
Sodium is another factor that can affect what you see on the scale. If you have consumed a higher than normal amount of sodium, your body will retain water and as a result produce a higher number on the scale. It’s what is known as “water weight”.
Stress is also a factor that can lead to increased numbers on the scale. Increased cortisol levels in your body caused by stress can also cause weight gain.
During menstruation, women may also experience temporary weight gain. A woman’s weight tends to fluctuate due to changes in hormones.
“Females, in particular, are prone to daily weight fluctuations due to ovulation and periods, often causing fluid retention and therefore weight gain…this constant rise and fall on the scales are not indicative of true weight,” said nutritionist, Pip Reed, in an interview with Huffington Post, Australia.
There are better ways in which you can measure your progress including taking progress photos, measuring yourself and going by how you feel/how your clothes fit.
The scale can still be a useful tool. Here are some helpful tips you can use to minimize the fluctuation of the number.
1. Always weigh yourself first thing in the morning, after you’ve used the bathroom.
2. Make sure you are wearing minimal to no clothing.
3. Weigh yourself once a day because the number will increase after eating and drinking throughout the day.
Weigh yourself once a week or weigh yourself every morning and average it out weekly. If you find yourself getting anxious over the thought of what your weight will be, do not weigh yourself.
It is much more important to listen to your body and recognize how you are feeling physically. Weight loss does not always have to be the goal. People that feel insecure about their weight, size or appearance should try to focus on positives and feeling healthy and strong. Eating healthy and exercising will give you strength and energy. Enjoy the benefits no matter what the scale reads.
Ditch the scale! Join the “No Scale November” movement and see how it makes you feel. Search the hashtag “#noscalenovember” to find posts related to the challenge or share your own