Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Results Are In

Recently I posted a poll asking people how they measure their journey to health. Well, the results are in and they are not altogether unexpected. Out of the 38 individuals who weighed-in on this query, no one opted for ‘mental and emotional changes’ nor for ‘verbal confirmation’ as their go to resource when examining progress. Neither did anyone voice any other ways in which they tracked their level of success as the ‘other’ option was also left without any votes. The other six possibilities that I listed tallied in the following manner:

18 votes for 'the scale' accounted for 47.4%
3 votes for 'measurements and sizes' accounted for 7.9%
1 vote for ‘BMI, WHR, or body fat’ accounted for 2.6%
2 votes for 'general physical changes' accounted for 5.3%
1 vote for ‘following through’ accounted for 2.6%
13 votes for 'an even distribution of all of these' accounted for 34.2%

Nearly half of the people who voted are basing the majority of their perception of success or failure on what the scale says. Like I said, it was not unexpected to see the results. I am honest enough to admit that it is the tool I use the most frequently.

It’s hard to be on a journey where we know that the numbers are not the only thing that matter, but which is also most easily measurable by exactly such means. No wonder stepping up onto that fickle one-inch platform is an emotional experience for so many. It’s important to remember though that there are quite a few other ways to keep track of the progress that is being made.

For me, I would like to get to a point where I am able to strike a bit more of a balance between gauging my journey according to the definitive reading on the scale and also using the more subjective measurement techniques that were listed as options in this poll. Developing more faith in the results that are suggested from loose fitting clothing, growing self-esteem, or improved flexibility can only be a good thing. Relying less on a single measure of success, and more on the general improvements that are seen while walking this path to improved health, is something that I strive for even if I am not there yet.

- 10 glasses of water
- 1 banana
- 1 toasted sandwich on whole wheat bread with margarine, bacon, and an egg
- 3/4 cup fat free peach yogurt with 1 cup Rice Krispies
- 1 Mandarin orange
- 1/2 cup dried pineapple, papaya, and mango
- 3 cups spinach salad with croutons, dried cranberries, orange pepper, mushrooms, and calorie-wise Greek feta and oregano dressing
- 2 cups steamed asparagus with margarine
- 5 whole wheat crackers with light cheese

- 1 hour Belly Dancing For Fitness class
- 35 minute walk
- 30 minutes of the C25K program (Day 1 of Week 4)


  1. Great job on Day 1 of Week 4. I just am not able to do Day 1 of Week 1. I was able to complete it yesterday for the first time. Congratultions to you. Week 4 is BIG!

  2. For me, when my scrubs are a little tight, I already know.
    Scale, or no scale.
    Go, go week 4!

  3. Crap, I missed this!!! Another blogger asked me this same question for an upcoming post for her. Cammy, over at Tippy Toe Diet. My answer will be there but if you're interested in it after the fact of your post that I missed, let me know!

  4. That old scale! I'm still addicted to mine, but have refocused on getting my cholesterol down instead of that number on the scale. Enjoy your daily menus! They help me keep things in perspective.

  5. they are what I thought they'd be too.

  6. Wow. I think your blog is brilliant. There's a reason I stumbled upon it today. Posting your measurements is awesome and inspiring. So glad I stopped in today. I do sandwiches on my blog. Nothing serious, but lots of fun. I'm following you now. Keri (a.k.a. Sam)

  7. I voted for a mix of all the things you listed. I do tend to let the scale affect my mood, but I also base my success (or lack thereof) on not just that number, but also measurements, how healthy I'm eating, and how my clothes fit and look on me.

  8. That is excellent information for people to follow. Many just love to focus on the numbers on te scale or measurements. The mental aspects of weight loss and health changes plays a large role in final results. Keep up the great work with your articles and please stop by my health blog sometime. The web address is

  9. I'm happy people seem to have gotten a lot out of this post and the one with the original poll.

    Bought For A Price, great work starting the program!

    Jody, I am interested so please do let me know when it is up.

    Welcome, Sam and Davon!