Seeing sluggish results on the scale can be a motivation-zapper when you're trying to lose weight. When you've been working out and eating right, yet still see little movement when you weigh yourself, or if you simply don't feel as if your body has changed, it's easy to slip back into your old ways. But there may be a reason for not feeling like you've lost weight. Taking stock in your efforts and using other methods to gauge success can give you the motivation to stay on track.
While a scale is usually the method you use to gauge your weight-loss success, it may not be the definitive way to check your progress. While a scale can measure your overall weight, it cannot measure the loss of inches from your body or the building of muscle in your body. Instead of relying on the scale only, try other indicators of weight loss, such as body measurements from the belly, hips, chest and thighs. Or, see if your clothes fit differently. Both can help you see results and stay motivated even when the scale won't budge.
Muscle Vs. Fat
As you're exercising your body to shed excess pounds, your body begins to build muscle, as well. A pound of muscle weighs the same as a pound of fat, so when you're adding muscle to your body, the scale may not register a difference in weight. You'll notice the difference in the way your body looks and your level of energy, though. Muscle also works to increase your metabolism, so over time you'll see a difference in the amount of fat on your body versus the amount of muscle.
If you've seen weight-loss success early on in your efforts and that success has begun to dwindle, it could be the result of a weight-loss plateau. Weight-loss plateaus occur when your previous weight-loss efforts simply don't work anymore. You may be eating too many calories for your new weight, or you may be using the same type of exercise too often. When your body becomes used to a new regimen, it becomes more efficient and burns fewer calories, and you could see a slowing of weight loss.
Jumpstarting Weight Loss
When your weight loss becomes sluggish and you stop seeing results or feel unmotivated, it's time to change your routine. Any time your body becomes accustomed to an activity, such as running, it becomes more efficient and burns fewer calories over time. Keeping your exercise routine ever-changing helps to work different areas of the body so it doesn't become too acclimated to a certain form of exercise. Then, reconfigure your caloric intake, taking into account any past weight loss, to ensure that you're eating the maximum number of calories that your body needs.
- Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.