As the temperatures begin heating up, it seems that everywhere you turn you are face-to-face with bikini-clad models and celebrities gracing the covers of magazines with their svelte, toned bodies.  Even the most self assured woman may experience a tinge of jealousy, guilt, motivation or any number of different emotions in response.  This reaction is not really a bad thing at all.  It’s all about how we harness our feelings toward summer and the often dreaded bathing suit season.  Learning to work on ourselves physically and increase our confidence from the inside out will make this hot weather season feel like a breeze.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of toning up and losing weight is knowing where your starting point is and developing a reasonable and attainable goal for your body.  This involves using that five-letter noun that seemingly everyone tries to avoid- THE SCALE!!!.  As daunting and intimidating as it may seem, the scale is a necessary component of any weight loss story.  Being honest with yourself about your starting weight and where you would like your weight loss journey to end are imperative.  So, first things first, hop on that scale and see where you’re starting from.
It’s important to put all the charts that say you are supposed be a certain weight at a given height, behind you. This chart is was released over 30-40 years ago and it’s terribly outdated. The sad thing is that many women’s magazines still refer to these numbers and fuel this fear in women. Times have changed. More women are working and playing that back in those days. Muscle weighs more than fat, so a phtsically active woman will weigh more than a woman who does not. It does not mean that the lighter woman is healthier or better looking.
The scale is just a number. We have to remember that. IT IS JUST A NUMBER. It will take some time to reverse the old way of thinking, but reversing it is the first step to freedom from fear of the scale. Looking at yourself in the mirror does not work. Seeing how you fit in your clothes is not an exact measure, so it doesn’t work.
There are several websites out there to help you with your weight loss goals along the way, one of my favorite being .  The site allows you to enter in your weight, your weekly weight loss goals, your normal level of activity in everyday life, every item of food you’ve consumed for the day (and it has nearly every food imaginable in its database!), and what exercise you’ve done. literally computes everything you need to know in order to help you lose weight and shape up.
It’s also important to keep utilizing your scale after you begin shedding the pounds. Getting on your scale regularly reinforces healthy habits and helps you to recognize small weight gains before they escalate.  It’s a great idea to use your scale once a week, citing that dieters who did such were 82 percent more likely to sustain their loss over an 18 month period than those individuals who utilized their scales less frequently.
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