You may have a love/hate relationship with your scales. Some days, those flashing numbers give you a boost of confidence — and other days, it may make you feel frustrated. But the thing is — if you’re trying to lose weight, regularly stepping on the scales can be a powerful tool to help you reach your goals.
Studies show that weighing yourself daily may lead to better chances of weight loss success. Why? Research indicates that monitoring your weight may make you more aware of your habits and how they can affect weight loss.
So, when is the best time to weigh yourself when you’re trying to lose weight? And how can you stay motivated each morning?
Why your weight fluctuates
Before we reveal the best time to weigh yourself, it helps to understand why your weight changes day-to-day. If you’ve ever weighed yourself after a sweaty workout or taken the brave step after eating a large meal — you know what we’re talking about.
Your weight is influenced by a multitude of factors, weighing yourself daily is good for keeping tabs on your progress, but it is important to know fluctuations are completely normal.
Here are a few reasons why your weight might vary day to day:
1. What and how much you eat
How much you eat and the types of food you eat can make a difference when it comes to your weight. If you eat a large amount of kilojoule-dense greasy, heavy foods and weigh yourself after a meal or at the end of the day, it makes sense that you will see a larger number on the scales.
Many nutrient-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables, offer the same amount of volume and can fill you up, but they don’t weigh as much. Shifting towards an increase in lighter weight foods and a reduction in heavier foods can show positive results on the scales.
2. Your water intake
Did you know that the human body is made up of almost 60% water? With so much water in your body, losing water through sweat — or consuming it through food and beverages — can easily impact the scale. But don’t ease up on drinking water, research shows staying adequately hydrated can help with weight management.
Make sure to read up on how much water you should drink a day to lose weight for more specifics on the relationship between water and weight loss.
3. Your sodium consumption
Consuming excess sodium can lead to water retention which can influence your weight. Jenny Craig’s weight loss plans are created according to dietary guidelines and include less than 3000mg of sodium per day. Our bodies receive enough sodium from the foods and drinks we consume, without adding any extra. Try to avoid adding salt to your cooking and to your meals at the table.
4. Your exercise routine
If you stick to a regular workout schedule, you might not notice as much impact on the scales. However, if your sweat sessions are sporadic or vary greatly in length and intensity day-to-day, your weight will likely fluctuate based on how much you’re sweating, hydrating and of course, refuelling.
While switching up your exercise routine is a great way to stay motivated, these daily fluctuations are things to keep in mind if you notice a change in your weight overnight.
5. Your hormones
Have you ever wondered why you might gain weight before your period? You can thank your hormones.
Estrogen and progesterone rise and fall before your time of the month and can lead to water retention. So don’t worry if you gain a kilogram or so around that time, it’s completely normal.
6. Your scales
No, your doctor’s clinic isn’t playing cruel tricks on you – scales read differently! While you shouldn’t see a dramatic shift in your weight, know that a few kilograms up or down isn’t out of the norm when you weigh yourself on different scales.
The best time to weigh yourself for accurate results
To get the most accurate assessment of your weight, the best time of day to weigh yourself is first thing in the morning. For consistency, we recommend checking your weight at the same time each day, with similar clothing, or no clothing, after you have been to the toilet, and before you have anything to eat or drink.
Choosing the right weighing schedule
If getting on the scales every day doesn’t feel like a positive experience for you, find another schedule that works best for you. Pick one day a week to weigh yourself and try to stick to it, perhaps this is when you visit your Jenny Craig Coach for your weekly coaching session.
Understanding your weight fluctuations
As you become accustomed to your new routine, it will be easy to spot when your weight is doing more than simply fluctuating. If you’re losing weight, you’ll notice the downward trend — and hopefully feel inspired to continue your healthy habits.
And if you’re gaining — don’t worry, use your daily weights as a reminder to help you consider what might be making your weight creep up.
Looking Beyond the Scale: Recognizing the True Success of Your Weight Loss Journey
Remember, the number on the scales is just one way to measure your success. When you’re eating well, moving your body regularly, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep, you’ll feel different — in a good way!
Your non-scale victories, like more energy, or how your clothes are fitting are just as important as your weight loss successes.