“Weight loss doesn’t begin in the gym with a dumb bell; it starts in your head with a decision.” – Toni Sorenson
When you feel it’s time to lose a little weight, diet and exercise are the way to go. And it can be exciting to see the pounds dropping off your scale! Unfortunately, stepping on the scale won’t always tell you exactly what you need to see.
Sometimes, you can lose weight and it’s not really the loss of fat – it’s just water weight. When this happens, you may see the scale volley back and forth between weight gain and weight loss. Trying to figure out whether you’re actually on your way to your goal weight can be a frustrating experience.
Luckily, there are some tips and tricks to figure out whether or not you’re losing actual weight, or you’re just losing water weight.
Here Are 5 Signs You’re Losing Actual Weight
1. CONSIDER THE LAST TIME YOU WEIGHED YOURSELF
If you weighed yourself at the beginning of the day, and lost a few pounds overnight, you might be just shedding water weight. Real weight won’t be lost overnight, but it’s definitely possible that your body can shed up to five pounds in water weight! To make sure that you’re actually losing weight, consider weighing yourself weekly rather than nightly. Your weight loss or gain will be more accurate, rather than having your scale tricked from losing water weight overnight.
2. YOUR WEIGHT LOSS IS STEADY
Water weight tends to fluctuate. If you’ve lost five pounds overnight, and then gained it back by the end of the day, you’re most likely not dealing with true weight loss. True weight loss is steadier, and will only show fluctuation in the terms of a few pounds rather than the large amounts that water weight loss can show. To make sure you’re getting the most out of your weighing sessions, try weighing yourself in the morning right after you wake up, before you have breakfast.
Make sure that you’ve already gone to the bathroom. This will show a truer number in terms of your weight loss.
3. YOU FEEL MORE ENERGETIC
With a loss of weight comes more energy. If you’re losing real weight and not just water weight, you’ll feel a burst in your energy as well as a change in the longevity of that energy. Since water weight is just a fluctuation of the water in your body and not fat, you won’t feel any significant change in your energy levels if the only thing that’s fluctuating is whether or not you’ve gone to the bathroom or are dehydrated.
When true weight loss starts to happen, you’re definitely going to feel more energetic.
4. YOU FEEL STRONGER
Fluctuating water weight is not going to have any effect on your ability to complete physical tasks. Once you start losing real weight, you’ll find that you’re able to stand for longer periods of time than you could before, or walk for longer, or run better. Strength comes in all kinds of ways, and once you start really losing weight, you’ll find strength where you least expect it.
Tasks that seemed to take a lot of your strength and energy will now be easier to complete, like climbing stairs or going for a jog.
5. YOUR CLOTHES FIT LOOSER
Since water weight tends to fluctuate, you won’t really notice if your clothes are a little looser than normal, because the water weight won’t really affect how your clothes fit. When you start to really lose weight, you’ll notice it in your clothes. You’ll go down a pants or dress size when the real weight starts to come off. This is the best indicator that the weight you’re losing isn’t water weight!
Tracking your weight loss progress can be both frustrating and exciting. Being able to tell what’s real weight loss and what is just your body playing tricks on you can help make sure that the frustration doesn’t get too overwhelming. Keep an eye out for these indicators that your weight loss is genuine, and not just your body trying to tell you that you’re dehydrated. Keep a photo journal of your progress so you can look back through the months and weeks and see the visible difference from the beginning, middle and ends of your fantastic weight loss journey! Good luck!