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What Your Scale Isn’t Telling You

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You’ve been training for a while, changing your eating habits, and really trying to make some lifestyle changes.

And then you jump on the scale…

And your weight is EXACTLY the same or… (GASP) it’s gone UP.

How is this possible? You have been giving up sweets and wearing out running shoes… you have been working SO hard!

What is missing? The fact that you are only looking at your body weight on the scale when you really need to be looking at your body fat %.

Today I want to look at a couple of example Inbody scans from real Movimento members to show you why knowing your body fat % is far more important than the number on your scale.

First, a bit of background… how does an Inbody scan work? The scan uses bioelectrical impedance analysis to measure your fat, muscle, and water levels in less than a minute. Safe, low-level currents are sent through the body through the hand and foot electrodes. The impedance the currents encounter are measured, and from there, your body composition is derived. You then get a detailed print out of your personal analysis.

Example #1 – Your weight has stayed the same

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So with this example member I wanted to look at someone who’s weight has stayed EXACTLY the same… down to the decimal point!

The important factors I want to look at:

Starting and ending weight = 131.4lbs

Starting skeletal muscle mass = 52.9 lbs
Ending skeletal muscle mass = 55.9 lbs
Muscle mass increased by = 3 lbs

Starting body fat mass = 34.8 lbs
Ending body fat mass = 30.6 lbs
Body fat decreased by = 4.2 lbs

Starting body fat % = 26.5%
Ending body fat % = 23.3%
Body fat % decreased by = 3.2%

You have probably heard the common phrase “muscle weighs more than fat”. This is actually NOT true – 5 pounds of muscle weighs exactly the same as 5 pounds of fat – 5 pounds is 5 pounds.

The difference is the density (composition) of the fat vs the muscle. Fat is more “bulky” and takes up more space than muscle, which is more dense and compact.

Check out 5 lbs of muscle next to 5 lbs of fat:

What often happens when you eat well while strength training is that you are building lean muscle at the same time as burning fat. You are basically exchanging fat mass for lean muscle mass.

This is exactly what happened with this example member. They gained 3 lbs of quality lean muscle mass and lost 4 lbs of fat weighing exactly the same BUT they could notice a difference in muscle tone and a difference in how their clothing fits. They saw a significant drop in body fat % – 3.2% without seeing a pound change on the scale!

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Example #2 – Your weight has gone up

The next example member to look at someone who’s weight has gone up since starting to train.

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The important factors I want to look at:

Starting weight = 175.3 lbs
Ending weight = 182.8 lbs
Weight has increased by = 7.5 lbs

Starting skeletal muscle mass = 72.8 lbs
Ending skeletal muscle mass = 79.8 lbs
Muscle mass increased by = 7 lbs

Starting body fat mass = 48.3 lbs
Ending body fat mass = 44.1 lbs
Body fat decreased by = 4.2 lbs

Starting body fat % = 27.5%
Ending body fat % = 24.1%
Body fat % decreased by = 3.4%

If this example member was only looking at the number on the scale they might be discouraged seeing the number going up… however they would have missed all of the very positive changes that are happening right in front of their eyes!

Even though this members’ weight has increased, muscle mass has increased, and body fat/body fat % decreased. Again, because muscle is more dense and compact than fat, this member would be noticing their clothing fitting better AND they are moving closer to the ideal range for healthy body fat % even though their weight on the scale is increasing!

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So if you’re dropping inches and your notice that your clothes are fitting looser and better BUT you are not seeing the needle move on the scale as much, that’s OKAY!!! Everything is going in the right direction and you are making big changes.

This is also why it’s a good idea to let go of the “ideal” number on the scale that you would like to be. If you are thinking “I used to weight 160 lbs in college and I want to get back to that”… were you in good physical shape then? Did you have lean muscle or where you just thinner? There’s a huge difference…

It is absolutely possible to be in better shape, wear a smaller pant/dress size, and feel better at 170 lbs (for example) than at 160 lbs. It all comes down to how much lean muscle mass you have.

PLUS, the more lean muscles you have the more calories you will burn and the more results you get!

The moral of the story… love your muscles and pay attention to more than just the number on the scale. Body fat %, your measurements, before and after pictures, how your clothing is fitting, and how you FEEL tell a much bigger story (and a better one) of all of the amazing positive changes you are making! Stay focused and be consistent!

Want to have more energy, increase your confidence level, move better, have less aches and pains, lose weight, and stop feeling limited (or not have the option or choice) by your physical fitness… but you’re not sure where to start?

Click below to find out how we can help you today through our personalized training programs!