Thursday, May 14, 2009

A daily morning encounter with the scale


An occupational hazard of my profession is a predisposition to capturing data, recording it, summarizing and evaluating that data so that it becomes information, and then using that information to make decisions. It’s objective and how my brain is wired as was the subject of this prior Pierini Fitness blogflection: The power of journaling

Using the archival benefit of my journaling efforts, yesterday I decided to see how my morning bodyweight has fluctuated over the years, and how I primarily trained, for years that I have recorded information available. The following is an executive summary of that information for May 13th:

2004 – age 49 – 191.5 lbs.
A relative newcomer to bodyweight-only training with running and karate part of my training mix - training 4-5 days a week on average.

2005 – age 50 – 178.5 lbs.
A dedicated high-volume bodyweight-only enthusiast with running and karate part of my training mix – training 5-6 days a week on average.

2006 – age 51 – 179.5 lbs.
A dedicated high-volume bodyweight-only enthusiast with running and karate part of my training mix – training 5-6 days a week on average.

2007 – age 52 – 177.5 lbs.
A dedicated high-volume bodyweight-only enthusiast with running and karate part of my training mix – training 5-6 days a week on average.

2008 – age 53 – 193.0 lbs.
Focusing more on the Olympic lifts using heavier weights and low rep sets, some running and some karate - training 3-4 days a week on average.

2009 – age 54 – 179.5 lbs.
Focusing more on the Olympic lifts using heavier weights and low rep sets, currently zero running and karate - training 2-3 days a week on average. Became an intermittent fasting practitioner on February 25th.

My body fat percentage as measured by a personal home scale that uses bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) technology has fluctuated within 2 percentage points of the average for 4 of the 6 years in which I have morning bodyweight recorded information available. I’m well aware of the inaccuracies of BIA technology so I focus on relative changes in my body fat percentage rather than a particular day’s reading. I’ve learned that my morning body fat percentage is about 5 percentage points higher than my mid-afternoon body fat percentage due to changes in my body’s hydration levels.

Many “fitness experts” say that it’s not a good thing to weigh yourself daily. I say to each his or her own and to do what works for you.

What does it all mean? That’s a good question and my answer is that I have a daily morning encounter with the scale.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

5 comments:

Charles Long said...

I've been toying with the idea of getting one of those scales for a long time. I know they aren't the most accurate measure of body fat but I figure as long as you're consistent on when you weigh and measure, it should give you a good guideline as to where you are and where you're headed.

pierini said...

Hi Charles,

I believe around mid-afternoon is the best time to get a good body fat percentage measurement. I keep on telling myself to get dunked to see what that number reports. One of these days I will.

You are correct that it's the relative changes over time that matter.

Anonymous said...

I'm impressed. What is an intermittent fasting practioner and what do they do.
Pat

Franklin said...

Yup .. another daily weigher here. The scale never lies .. I accept its truth daily and adjust caloric intake accordingly.

pierini said...

Hi Franklin,

Thanks for the visit. I hope your training is going well. I'll take a look tomorrow and see what you've been up to.