Beyond the Scale: Rethinking Success in Your Fitness Journey

Using the scale is not the only means of measuring success.  In fact, it is probably one of the most overused, and least valuable, metrics for success.  What happens when you begin to measure things that carry more value to your goals?

Now, don’t get me wrong… it is a measurement and an objective one at that.  It is a number, after all.  There’s no hiding from a number.

But, in all fairness, let’s take a look at why you would use it and why you might want to find a different success metric.

The Scale Is Important?

Depending on what your main reason is for starting to change your life (and your starting point), you might find the scale is extremely valuable.

  • It gives you a number to compare to
  • It can work as a reflection of what you’re doing on a daily basis based on if it’s tracking consistently or inconsistently
  • And it’s objective

For me, though, that’s where the pluses end…

Run Away!

If you’ve ever done a BMI ‘measurement,’ you know just how little information it gives:  height and body weight is it?

Well, the scale is very similar in that it gives you an incomplete picture as to what’s going on.  Take these two fictitious people, for example:

  • 6’1” and 220lbs of powerlifter who has 10% body fat and healthy blood markers
  • 6’1” and 220lbs of couch potato who has more than 40% body fat and whose blood work shows… well, he’s unhealthy

According to both the scale, and BMI, these are effectively the same person.  But are they?  Really?

And even worse, this is really only part of the problem with relying on the scale by itself:

For those of you who fixate on things – fixating on a number can ‘help’ you build some really unhealthy habits like cutting calories, increasing the time you’re working out, eating less of what you want, and developing a really poor relationship with food and fitness.

This can cause much more permanent damage to your body and your psyche.

Rethinking Success

The following are some of what I think make for really great measurements of success.  None of them, by themselves, are the complete story but a combination of a couple of them can be really powerful:

  • Body Composition Measurements
    • As your muscle goes up and your body fat goes down, you are going to look and feel so much better
  • Circumference Measurements
    • A simple measurement for unhealthy body fat is knowing what your waist to hip ratio is
  • Clothes
    • Are your clothes fitting better?  Do you have to buy a new wardrobe but for really good reasons?  That’s a fun problem to have!
  • The Mirror
    • The dreaded mirror.  In other words, do you look better nekkid (or naked… whichever you prefer)?
  • Your Energy
    • Do you have more energy in the middle of the day and at the end of the day?
    • Are you now able to, say, play with your kids and not get tired as easily?
  • Biometrics
    • Is your blood pressure improving?  Perhaps your fasting blood sugar levels?  Are you at less risk for heart disease and diabetes?
  • Headspace
    • Are you in a [generally] better mood?  Do you find that you handle the stressors of daily life more gracefully?
  • Habits
    • This one’s my favorite because habits are for life.  And if you build good habits for life, you are setting yourself up to live how you want and not just get by
    • Plus, you know who else watches your habits?  Your kids do!

The Challenge

My challenge for you is for you to reframe your thinking of success into things that coincide with your actual goals.  Not sure how to do that?  Email me at [email protected].

Want additional help from a professional, head HERE and set up your free consult and we’ll be happy to learn how we can help you set yourself up for the greatest success.

And, if this helps you in some way, comment what your goal is and how you are going to frame what success looks like for you!

Schedule your free intro

Talk with a coach about your goals, make a plan to achieve them.

Fill out the form below to get started

Take the first step towards getting the results that you want

By providing your phone number, you agree to receive text messages from Iron Hero CrossFit