Weigh-Ins: How Often is Too Often?

I see a lot of debate about how often you should be stepping on the scale.  Of course, I want to get in on that debate because, damn it, I want to be relevant.  The general consensus is that if you weigh yourself more than once a week, you’re going to be pushing yourself over the brink of insanity very quickly.

I recommend that people weigh themselves once a week, at the same time every week. Weighing yourself every day can have a negative impact on you. – Jillian Michaels

Every day is too much.  Even every few days is too much. – Ryan Walters, InBody

The argument is that “over-weighing” can lead to delusions in how successful you really are in your weight loss endeavors.  But here’s the thing:  we’re all dedicated to this.  If you’re weighing yourself, I’d like to make the assumption that you’ve at least done a tiny bit of research on basic biology or you wouldn’t be losing any weight at all.  Don’t we all know that our bodyweight fluctuates?  Aren’t we all familiar with water weight and retention and how we weigh the least in the morning?  Don’t we know that hormonal changes can cause our weight to bounce back and forth from day to day?  And muscle mass — what about that?  Haven’t we seen this all before?  This applies to new losers as well.  If you know enough to start losing weight, odds are you’ve seen all this information once or twice.  Why?  Because no one in the weight loss community  wants to see anyone else fail at their goals, so we mercilessly jam the unpleasant news down their throat in preparation.

You know your weight is going to change, so why let yourself get down from one day of fluctuation?

I am a firm believer of daily weigh-ins.  So sue me.  It works for me, and I think, done properly, it could work for at least 90% of people.  Weighing in daily allows you to be in control and keep track of the trend of your weight loss – which is what you should be paying attention to in the first place, far more than the numbers themselves.  Step back and look at your graph.  Ignoring the zig-zags, is it going down? Yes? Good. You’re losing weight.  Congratulations! Only if it is not going down should you maybe start thinking about revisiting your weight loss plan to assess what might not be working.

Why Weighing Daily is Great:

  • You get a better idea of the trend.
    • Sometimes I even weigh twice a day.  Once in the morning, and again at night.  This helps me see that even at my heaviest, I am so much lighter than I was when I began and allows me to become more comfortable with my weight not being a static number.
  • Weighing in once a week can give false information.
    • What if you’d really lost 3 pounds of fat, but the day you happened to weigh in was a day you were experiencing hormonal imbalances (ladies)?  What if the scale said that you had gained 5 pounds?  That sounds a hell of a lot more discouraging than being at a 3-pound loss one day and then going up 5 pounds.  You’d have to seriously be straining yourself to put on 5 pounds of fat that quickly.  Daily weigh-ins keep things in perspective.
  • It keeps you on track.
    • I don’t know about you, but I need constant reminders or I’m not going to get off my ass.  Seeing my weight every day tells me, “Hey go work out, jackass.  This isn’t amateur hour. Put that fucking donut down.”  Your internal voice is probably friendlier than mine.

Ultimately, do what works for you, but seriously…With the right mindset, daily weigh ins are the best.


TL;DR Section for You Nerds Who Want to Read a Blog Without Actually Reading a Blog:

  • Weighing yourself daily is the best option as long as you don’t approach it with the mindset that you’re going to lose every single day.  Anyone who says otherwise is wrong and is also a degenerate.
  • Seriously, just do it.  If you really need reasoning, just scroll up literally 2 inches.  I already put it in bullets for you.

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