Three ways to track body composition progress without ever weighing yourself

As a society, we’re obsessed with knowing what we weigh, but really what does that number even mean?

Usually, the only time I step on a scale is when I’m at the doctor’s office. I begrudgingly hop on, usually holding my phone, wallet, keys, and sometimes all three as the number pops up on the screen and the nurse jots it down.

Sure, it’s “necessary” for them to keep a chart of my BMI, but I do not believe the number on that scale adds or subtracts any value to how healthy I am as a person.

Our weight fluctuates so much depending on when/how much we have eaten, when we last defecated, and how hydrated we are. The only time our weight is truly “accurate” is when we first wake up in the morning, before we eat or drink anything or even use the bathroom. And still those numbers don’t define our health. The real question we should be asking is how do we feel?

Better ways, I’ve personally found, when tracking progress is to take mirror pictures of your body. Hit all the angles – front, back, sides – just snap a few pictures and then don’t look at them for a designated amount of time. And when that time frame is up, take new pictures of the exact same angles and place the pictures side by side. What looks different? What changes do you notice? How do you feel?

Photo by Nugroho Wahyu on

Another good way to assess progress is by noticing how your clothes fit. Maybe they used to be skin tight in certain areas, but now you’re noticing you have room to breathe in them. Or maybe they used to be a perfect fit and now you’re noticing some baggy areas. I’ve found this is a true and accurate way to measure progress. Plus, it gives you an excuse to get new clothing that fits your body as it transforms.

Photo by Ksenia Chernaya on

Another more dedicated way to measure progress is by keeping a journal. This can be as detailed as you’d like. Some good things to track in your journal daily are: what you ate / how much you ate, how much water you’ve consumed, what vitamins or supplements you’ve consumed, the quality and quantity of your sleep, what you did for exercise, and most importantly – how you’re feeling.

Be completely honest with yourself, this is your journey and your experiences.

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These are accurate, non judgmental ways to assess your progress that don’t involve the anxiety of jumping on a scale and seeing a number.