Sunday is transformation day in our challenge group. Each Sunday morning we weigh in, log measurements, and take pictures. We are documenting our journey so we can see week to week where we are growing and also to evaluate and see if we are truly taking the action that will lead us to our goals.
Inevitably, on week one, there will be someone that has busted their butt! They have done every work out, avoided all the junk, and stuck to their containers. They step on the scale with anticipation only to have their hopes dashed as the scale jumps, not down, but UP a few pounds.
The discouragement and anger are real, especially as others are posting all their progress! This is one of the reason I ask my challengers to track three ways. The scale is just a tool. Often when one of the measurements isn't budging, at least one of the others has had improvement, often MAJOR improvement! However, we get so focused on the scale, we lose sight of the big picture.
How is it possible to lose inches or see progress when the scale goes up? First, we need to look at what can happen to the body when we start a new program!
1. Temporary Inflammation. When you work out, you are tearing your muscle fibers. Just small little tears that we refer to as microtrauma. Have you ever wondered why you felt sore after a workout? That's why! The cool thing about our bodies that as they heal this little tears, the fibers become stronger than they were before they were torn! ( How cool is that?) Your body adapts so that you become fitter and stronger.
When you incur injury, including microtrauma, your body releases various substances generally known as inflammatory mediators that swarm the area and perform triage, bringing in healing white blood cells and opening up blood vessels to flush out debris and toxins. In some bodies, this causes inflammation. It's not a bad thing but it can affect the scale because, obviously, the fluid is included in the weight you see on the scale. The good news is that it is temporary! After the fluids have done their job, the inflammation will die down and your weight will too. The issue for most is that the discouragement over lack of progress causes people to throw in the towel before they get to see the results they have been working so hard to attain!
2. Muscle gain. Every body is different. Some people don't put on fat easily but also find it difficult to build muscle. Others put on muscle easily and yet find it hard to shed fat and every combination in between! If you are someone that puts on muscle quickly the scale might be jumping up because the muscle gain is moving faster than the fat burning. The good news here is that muscle burns more calories than fat! So as you build muscle you find that the fat burning picks up speed and your results often seem to happen overnight. Just keep going! Once that fat burns off the gorgeous muscle beneath will shine through! It's worth the work!
3. Your nutrition plan needs work. If you’re not following a proper diet you could actually put on fat while starting a new exercise regimen. Yes, exercise burns calories, but it also increases the release of ghrelin, a hormone that promotes hunger. So if you’re not paying attention and not watching your portion sizes, you’ll probably eat more.
Even if you are consuming a low quantity of calories, poor food choices can cause all kinds of issues, usually centered on hormonal imbalances that cause your body to hold onto fat. One of the reasons I love Beachbody programs is because they come with the portion control containers and an amazing variety of plans with a large assortment of approved foods! If you stick to the plan, you WILL get results!
4. Stress can cause weight gain. Exercise is a great way to decompress and relieve stress but it is possible to over do it, especially if you already have a crazy schedule or you aren't making good choices with food and rest! "So, if you work twelve hours a day, drink more than two alcoholic drinks a night on a regular basis, smoke, sleep less than seven hours a night, have a chronic injury, eat a junk-filled Standard American Diet and are overweight, exercise will tax your body just like all the bad habits on this list and actually cause weight gain in a couple different ways. First, the inflammation process does not progress to the later phases of healing, and you can end up with chronic inflammation throughout the body. Second, you’ll increase the release of the stress hormone cortisol that, in turn, can promote fat accumulation—particularly fat around the stomach." ( Beachbody blog)
I don't want you to throw the towel in because of weight gain. I know its tempting, but it doesn't solve the problem! Take long look at this list and be honest with yourself! Do you just need to give it more time? Have you started and stopped work out programs in the first couple weeks over and over again? Be consistent and focus on being healthy instead of harping on weight lost! If you treat your body well, it WILL respond over time!
Are you truly focusing on fueling your body or are you looking to cut corners with processed reduced fat snacks and sugar free soda? Are you trying to eat as much junk as possible and still lose weight? Are you drinking alcohol regularly, smoking, depriving yourself of sleep ( I'm not talking about parenthood sleeplessness! Are you binging Netflix instead of going to bed?) Is your focus on a healthy body or the number on the scale? it matters!
Our challenge groups are a great place to start! Sometimes we have to rewire our brains! We have to learn to think about things differently. We have to learn how to treat ourselves differently. I hope if you are reading this that you feel liberated to care for yourself in a healthy way but if you need help, please message me! The outside won't change until the inside changes! It's illuminating as we study how we treat ourselves!
"If you want to know what your true beliefs are, take a look at your actions!! Robert Anthony
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"And Aubrey was her name. A not so very ordinary girl or name."(Or so says David Gates ;) I'm a wife to Phillip, a mother to Scarlett and Juliet. We live in the beautiful city of Thornton, Co. I'm a recovering red bull addict. I love to read. I hate to cook. I seek to be inspired and also to inspire others. I am a Beachbody Coach on a quest to be truly healthy mind, soul, and body and challenge others to do the same.