Nancy J Miller-Ihli, PhD, TLS Certified Coach and Trainer
When people embark on a weight loss journey they very often assume that the bathroom scale will be the very best tool to measure their success. I don’t think it’s the most important metric by any means and want to encourage all weight loss warriors to consider the fact there are MANY measurements of success!
When someone relies only on the scale to monitor their progress if they hop on and their weight is up 2 lbs it’s easy to say “this isn’t working – I might as well have a cheeseburger for lunch.” If they hop on and their weight is down 2 lbs it’s easy to say “this TLS program is working great – maybe I’ll have a cheeseburger for lunch.” This highlights the fact that only tracking progress with the scale can lead to both positive and negative choices based on your results.
I am not saying you should not weigh yourself but experts agree it may not be best to weigh yourself every single day. Once a week is enough to see your weight loss trend. To get the most meaningful measurements using a scale it’s important to remember to weigh first thing in the morning after you use the bathroom because your weight has stabilized overnight and is not impacted by recently consumed foods or beverages.
TLS is a low glycemic program that targets fat loss which leads to improved body composition and overall health. Did you know that according to the literature, 1” lost from the waist corresponds to approximately 1% body fat loss? Using a tape measure can help you track your progress to a healthy body composition and you can measure pretty much any time of the day. A great initial target is a body fat percentage of 25-31% for women and 18-24% for men. If you want to be really fit then the body fat percentage target is 21-24% for women and 14-17% for men.
In addition to a tape measure and scale there are lots of other measures of success:
- How your jeans fit
- Improved sleep
- Better exercise tolerance and/or recovery
- Good digestive health
- More energy and better focus as a result of good glycemic control
- Reduced inflammation
- Fewer cravings
- Improved health status
- Good hydration
- Healthy glow
- Improved stress management
- Improved sexual performance
One final point regarding too much focus on the scale is that many people conclude they have hit a plateau in their weight loss journey when the scale doesn’t move at all for a couple of weeks. A true weight loss plateau is 4 weeks with no weight loss, no inch loss and no body fat loss.
Weight loss is a journey and it’s important to celebrate all different types of success along the way. We all deserve to be the best version of ourselves and TLS offers a healthy lifestyle to support us for a lifetime.
Dr Miller-Ihli is a former USDA National Program Leader for Nutrition for USDA. The opinions expressed here are based on her research as well as clinical experience. Dr. Nancy is an independent distributor of Market America products. These statements are her own.