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Numbers mean nothing, except...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

...in context.

Unless we can place a number in relation to other numbers over time, we can't really know what it signifies. And trends over time that show progress towards a goal are very encouraging. That's why we track.

I started using Sparkpeople in December 2012 and of course was weighing myself; and in March of 2013 I got a body composition scale to track body fat and muscle mass.

KARENISHERE did a vlog recommending taking measurements. Oh, I did not want to do that. I mean, when I started Spark I was as round as I was tall, literally. Fifth three inches both ways. I had an emotional aversion to seeing those numbers - completely unreasonable and self-defeating. Karen (thank you, Karen!) was so encouraging in her vlog though that I thought I'd give it a shot.

So I have been measuring and logging for a year. Here are some numbers in context; numbers are in inches.
From May 2012 to May 2013:
Upper arm- from 16.63 to 14.75
Neck- from 15.08 to 14.13
Waist- from 40.95 to 34.88
Hip- from 51.25 to 46.25
Thigh- from 30.58 to 26.0
Body Fat- from 48% to 31.8%
Muscle Mass- from 29.33% in Dec 2013 to 32.7% today (for some reason I didn't log muscle mass till December...)

Now, someone might say "Wow! Hips over 46 inches! That's pretty big!" and they'd be right. I gots me some hips!! But taken in context of where those numbers are trending, 46.25" looks pretty darn good!

So if the scale gives a disappointing reading but I've lost inches & gained muscle, that number on the scale doesn't throw me off track. It's a blip. It happens. In fact it is happening right now to me - I'm retaining a lot of water, not sure why, and up about 6 lbs.

So don't be afraid of any of the numbers. They are useful signposts, guiding us to fit bodies and healthy lives!
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