Scaling Back On Weigh-Ins

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Many people live and diet by the number on the scale, but does a weight-loss program really have to be dictated by a number? When that number becomes the be-all, end-all of your success and ultimately your self-esteem, then its value starts to dwindle. If one or two "bad" weigh-ins drain your motivation and ruin your mood, then maybe it's time to look to other means to measure your progress. Many factors can cause the number to fluctuate: hormones, water retention, increased muscle mass and certain medications.

For some, however, the scale can be a useful tool in gauging the right combination of calories and exercise. Some experimentation is necessary, and weighing yourself can be helpful in tweaking your program. Keeping a spreadsheet for comparison purposes that includes your weight, calories eaten and activity level will help you check your progress. It helps to remember that weight is simply a number, not a measure of the kind of person you are or how others see you.