National Women's Health Week:Why the scales may not be best measurement of weight loss
Don't get discouraged by what scale reads
ROANOKE, Va. – When it comes to losing weight, often women are focused on a number. Fitness experts will tell you – that’s not always the best measurement. Don’t get discouraged by what the scale reads. Russ Gibson, fitness manager at Carilion Wellness, said the goal is to lose fat and gain muscle. If you are working out, eating right, that could be happening without ever showing up on the scale.
That's why he recommends to get a body composition test done instead of just focusing on your number.
“With that you can get what your body is actually made up of, whereas especially starting a workout program you might be looking at that scale every day and get discouraged,” Gibson said. “If you can see that body composition changing over time as opposed to just looking at that scale it can kind of be encouraging to keep that going.”
Carilion Wellness offers a body composition check that can give you a more accurate reading of how much of your body is fluid, fat or muscle.
Don’t compare yourself to your male workout partners!
Gibson said women will initially lose weight slower than men because they have less muscle mass. Women naturally have less muscle, more body fat, and are usually smaller than men. For those just starting out -- he recommends taking it slow.
Start by incorporating 20-minute walks into your daily life, and work your way up. This will prevent injury and burnout. Remember, working out is about creating a better lifestyle, not just a short-term weight loss. Gibson said body weight workouts like pushups or other exercises that use your own body weight to workout are the best for beginners.
If you need more help, Gibson said to ask your doctor for a prescription for a personal trainer -- which could be covered by some health insurance plans. Carilion Wellness has a specific plan for this called fit Rx medical membership program
Developed with physician guidance, the Fit Rx Medical Membership Program is designed to meet your individual treatment needs and is only available through your health care provider's recommendation.
The Fit Rx membership program includes:
• 60-day membership for $60
• Full access to all five Carilion Wellness locations
• (2) fitness consultations and InBody assessments
• An individualized fitness plan to follow
For more information, click here.
Mother's day kicked off national women's health week.
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