Real People. Real Weight Loss.®

Helping Millions to Take Off Pounds Sensibly Since 1948.

Wellness Wednesday

How to Stop the Scale “Creep”

Person in pink socks standing on scale


If you’ve ever tried to watch your weight, you may be familiar with the sneaky weight “creep.” This “creep” is deceiving, because it happens very slowly. Maybe you forget to log your meals one day. No big deal. Then one day turns into a week. You may skip the gym for a couple days, then those days turn into a month. All the while your pants fit just a little bit tighter … and tighter. When this happens, it’s time to get back to basics with what works best for you. Everyone is different, but these three numbers can help you get back on track when the number on the scale creeps up.

Step it up, with a tracker. Keeping track of your steps, workouts or activity minutes can be a great way to motivate yourself to move more. Some activity trackers even allow you to invite friends to step challenges. A friend recently challenged me to a workweek step contest to see who could get more steps in throughout the week. Full disclosure: I lost … badly. I just couldn’t keep up with my friend’s daily one-mile lunch walks combined with her chasing her one-year-old son. BUT, this still motivated me to keep moving even when I didn’t feel like it. A little friendly competition goes a long way.

If you bite it, write it. Lately, I’ve noticed that my weight has been creeping up and I’m starting to inch out of leeway*. As frustrating as this is, I’ve realized that, whenever I stop logging my food, I gain. This doesn’t mean that you have to spend hours meticulously counting every calorie but, without having a general idea of how much you’re eating, it’s too easy to go overboard.

Step on the scale. While this number is by no means the only measure of how your weight-loss efforts are going, it is important to know to help keep you accountable. It’s tough to face the scale when you know you’re not where you want to be. Instead of feeling down, try thinking of the number as a motivator that fires you up toward your goal. And remember that one frustrating face-off with the scale will not totally derail your weight-loss goals, unless you allow it to.

Which numbers help keep you on track? Waist measurement? Pants size? Hours of sleep? Tell me about it in the comments section below!

*To remain in leeway, a KOPS (Keep Off Pounds Sensibly) member must stay within a range of 3 pounds over goal weight and 7 pounds under goal. A KOPS member is a TOPS member who has reached and maintained goal weight.

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