Before you start any health and fitness regime you need to do one thing first! You want to lose weight and see some changes in your body, correct? Absolutely! However, you need to be able to chart your progress. The way that you are going to chart your progress is through a simple process of collecting some key information. This information is going to be your starting weight, and the simple measurements of key areas of your body. To properly chart progress, you are encouraged to purchase a tape measure like you would find at a craft or clothing store, a small note pad or journal, and a pen.
Measure Your Starting Weight:
Let us first begin with the obvious way to chart your progress. That is simply by determining how much you weigh before getting started on your chosen weight loss regime. Most health and weight loss professionals agree that the best time of day to weigh yourself is in the mornings when you first wake up. This should be done after emptying your bladder, and wearing as little clothing as possible. You will also lose water weight throughout the night as you sleep. Weighing yourself in the morning will provide you with a lower number, and you should make weighing yourself a part of your morning ritual. Yes, you should weigh yourself daily!
A two-year study done by Cornell University in 2015 showed that women who weighed themselves daily were able to not only lose weight, but also were successful in keeping the weight off. By weighing yourself daily, you will become aware of the relationship that exists between your eating habits and your body weight.
Body Circumference Measurements:
Tracking your weight loss is a great way to chart progress when embarking on a journey of improved physical fitness. However, there are other ways for you to chart your progress as you work to reach your fitness goals. One of those ways is to do circumference measurements of certain parts of the body. There are five major focal points of the body that we will focus on, and those areas are listed below.
2.) Right Bicep
I have included basic directions on how to execute the circumference measurements below.
- Neck – across the Adam’s apple.
- Chest – across nipple line.
- Waist – narrowest point of waist, below rib cage, above top of hip bones.
- Hips – place both feet together, circumference at widest portion of buttocks.
- Thighs – measure 6 inches above the knee cap.
- Right Biceps – maximum circumference of the biceps, measure with arm extended, palm facing forward.
When weighing yourself, consistency and timing is key and for best results, weigh yourself twice per month. Ideally, you should measure yourself on the 1st and 15th of each month after weighing yourself.
A Picture Is Worth 1000 Words
The final way you are going to be asked to measure your progress is through photography. There is a saying that says, “a picture is worth a thousand words,” and that is an undeniable truth. You are asked to simply do a before-and after photo. The starting point and the finish line. For best results, you are encouraged to use the same outfit in your after photo as they did in your before photo. You should take three photographs. The first will be a face-first photo, while the second will be a right-facing profile shot, and the third will consist of a rear shot that highlights the back and legs. These before and after photos will be a great testimony to your dedication, discipline, and success!