Other Dieting Variables to Consider

First off, let me preface this by saying that we ALL struggle with the number that we see on the scale. During a dieting phase, we want that number to lower consistently and when it does not, we freak out and think we are doing something wrong. While the number on the scale can be an important variable to gauge whether or not your diet is working in the long term, in the short term there are plenty of other variables that we NEED to take into consideration first. I have explained a handful of variables directly below.

Often before you start to notice progress being made on the scale, you will start to experience some changes in how you are feeling. When you start to eat a consistent diet that is largely based on whole, nutritious foods and keeps your energy balance in check:

  • You have more energy.
  • You do not experience crashes during the day.
  • You do not need 10 cups of coffee to get you through the workday.
  • Your workouts are better and you enjoy them.
  • You are getting better sleep.

All of these are largely impacted by your diet. If you FEEL better but the scale is not moving, you are making progress and the diet IS working.

Another way to assure yourself that the diet is working is by paying attention to the way that your clothes feel.

  • Are you noticing a slight difference?
  • Is your shirt a little looser?
  • Are you able to reach another hole in your belt?
  • Are you able to fit into a size of pants that you have not been able to?

These are all subtle signs that changes are occurring, even long before the scale moves much. If you are experiencing this, keep on doing what you are dong!

Another way to tell if your diet is working is by taking measurements. As a coach, I highly recommend clients to take measurements. It’s not uncommon for someone who might be just starting to exercise to put on muscle while losing body fat. Because muscle creates a weight increase, the number on the scale might not move as you are exchanging muscle for fat. Keep track of these measurements on a week to week basis and compare them. If you are staying the same weight but your waistline is shrinking, the diet is working!

It’s very hard for us to really gauge our own progress. We can be overly critical of ourselves and often times miss the small changes that are occurring. Since you have started your weight loss journey

  • Have people been complimenting you?
  • Are people saying that you look different?

If so, these are all tells that the diet is working and that you just might not have noticed the small changes that are taking place.

As you can see, especially in the early stages of the diet, a lot of things can take place outside of the scale moving that signifies that the diet is working. I know it’s difficult to not focus on the scale but the more that you can focus on the variables above, the more likely that you will enjoy the process even when the scale is not cooperating.

There are also A LOT of variables that can play into the number that is represented on the scale but that’s for another article. Just remember, dieting is about your appearance, your health, your energy, and your life – not just a number.