It’s time to get rid of your scale

I’ve been talking to several people that look great, are making progress in their workouts, and are fitting into clothes they haven’t in years, but they are still worried about the number on the scale.

I’m going to tell you a little secret that might sound odd coming from a personal trainer. The number on the scale is the absolute last thing I worry about when training clients. I’m terrible at guessing people’s weight because I have never paid attention to it. It really just doesn’t matter.

Here’s why:

Scales tell you one thing. Your weight. It says nothing about what the composition of that weight is, how many pull ups you can do, if your spouse is attracted to you, if you have visible abs or if your clothes fit.

If you could do 5 pull ups, your spouse was attracted to you, the clothes you want to wear fit great, and you have visible abs, would you care what the scale said? My guess is not and that is the correct answer. If you did check, I suspect your weight would be much higher than you expect. Lean body mass weighs much more than fat, so lean people tend to weigh more than they look like they should.

Most people worry about their weight because they think it is an indication of their body composition. But we have all seen plenty of people that are clearly fat-I can’t say overweight-that are 120lbs. Sure, they might not be obese, but they do have fat to lose regardless of what the scale says.

There are tons of ways to measure body composition. My favorites are before and after pictures and judging how clothes fit. If your clothes fit better than they have in years, you know you’ve lost fat no matter what the scale says. Measuring body parts works great too, but is far more time consuming than trying on an old pair of jeans.

Forget you own a scale. Or better yet, throw it away. It gives you a tiny piece of information that has zero bearing on what your body composition actually is.