Inch loss vs Weight loss
When it comes to weight loss, that number on the scale seems to hold a lot of power. If it’s not budging, frustration might set in. But sometimes the number on the scale isn’t the best way to measure progress. If you’re losing inches, but not weight, with your diet and exercise program, you’re losing fat and gaining muscle, which is a good thing.
When considering your weight-loss and fitness goals, think in terms of body composition – that is your ratio of fat to muscle – rather than simple weight loss. A higher amount of lean tissue means a lower risk of health problems like diabetes and heart disease. Plus, increased lean muscle tissue raises your metabolism, which helps you lose weight and maintain that weight loss. Focus on your overall fitness and well-being, rather than getting hung up on the scale or measuring tape.
In Weight loss you are just losing weight in the form of muscle mass and fat however when it comes to inch loss you are losing fat from the body and building muscle.
If you’re dropping numbers on the scale, but not the tape measure, don’t despair. Eventually, you’ll lose inches as well, but the rate at which you lose them and where may depend on your genes, whether you exercise and what exercises you do. Inches — and even pounds — are not the only measure of improvement. Cardio-respiratory endurance and percentage of body fat are better measures of true physical fitness.
I really wish that scale weight wasn’t our standard measurement of health or fitness. I understand why it’s such a popular measurement: it’s simple to take, it’s easy to compare over time, and it’s a measurement that everyone understands.
But, the scale is SO unreliable. The scale is just a number which can be deceptive in this long journey of being physically fit.
Most bathroom scales just aren’t that reliable. Research shows that they vary by 1.5% or more. That might not sound like much, but a few pounds can be enough to disappoint someone who’s been working hard to drop weight.
First off, this is ridiculous. A pound of muscle weighs the same as a pound of fat, just like a pound of steel weighs the same as a pound of feathers. A pound is a pound.
More accurately, someone might say, “Muscle is more dense than fat.”
When you notice that you’re losing inches, this strongly suggests that your body is going through a re-composition. You are losing fat, which takes up a lot of space, and are left with a greater proportion of fat-free mass (e.g. muscle), which takes up less space.
This should be SO much more exciting than losing weight on the scale because improving your body composition sets you up for much bigger wins in the future.
Take a combined approach to weight loss that takes into account both your pounds lost and inches lost.
Rather than focusing solely on weight, frame your fitness goals in terms of how you would like to look and feel. Bear in mind that a fit, muscular body can weigh more but look better than a skinny frame with little muscle.