Saturday 4 January 2014

Do you measure up? How to take your body measurements.


As the festive season draws to a close and reality kicks in again, our thoughts turn to losing some weight.  In my previous post I talked about how important it is to set goals and measure how you're doing against those goals, so that you can see your progress or if you need to adjust your program.

So what do you need to do?
Weight - You need to get an accurate set of scales, and make sure that they're on a solid floor (believe it or not, if your scales are on a carpeted floor - the carpet pushes up against the scale causing the reading to be higher than it actually is - aha - so that's the reason!).

Now for your measurements -  you need to strip down to your underwear, stand in front of a mirror take a deep breath, roll your shoulder blades back and down, and stand up straight and tall - and breathe (don't suck in)!
Waist - The waist measurement is one of the most important ones, as it can be used as an indicator of health and is also good to use for determining your dress size. You need to measure around the smallest part of your waist, just above the belly button - make sure that the tape is straight all the way around (the mirror will help you with this).

Bust - Under your arms around the fullest part of your chest (usually the nipple line), careful not to squish too much.

Hips - Measure at the widest point around your bum, you may feel that this is almost at the top of your thighs.

Thighs - Measure at the widest part of your thigh

Knees - Measure right above the knee

Calves - Measure at their widest point

Upper arm - Measure at the widest point above your elbow

Forearm - Measure at the widest point below your elbow

You need to take your weight and your measurements at the same time of day on a regular basis, I usually weigh myself on a Monday morning as soon as I get up every week, and take my measurements on a Saturday morning once a month (when I've got a bit more time).

You will need to keep note of your figures, so I would recommend setting up a table that looks something like this;

Start date Week 1
(Full Set)
Week 2 Week 3 Week 4
(Full Set)
Upper Arm
(Excl Weight)

Remember to add in your start date, and only do you full set of measurements once a month.

From this you will be able to chart how your body shape is changing.  Weight is not a good indicator of health, but body shape is!  So please do not focus on the lbs. but focus on the inches (or centimetres - depending where you're from).

From this you will also be able to work out your 'hip to waist' ratio - but that's a whole different subject! (Maybe for another post?)

So get measuring and remember to let me know your inch loss!


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