Guys, It’s Time for Your Weigh-in (Every Morning)

Are you a 40+ guy like me, striving for a long-term blend of balanced fitness, practical good nutrition, and lifelong happiness? If so, bodyweight is a key thing to track.

People hold strong and diverging views on how often to weigh yourself, but my friendly suggestion is simple: weigh every day!

Three reasons why…

by

Are you a 40+ guy like me, striving for a long-term blend of balanced fitness, practical good nutrition, and lifelong happiness? If so, your body weight is a key thing to really stay on top of.

People hold strong and diverging views on how often to weigh yourself, but my friendly suggestion is simple: weigh every day!

Three reasons why…

First, unless you’re consciously trying to gain muscle mass (and already have low body fat), we obviously don’t to gain weight. But think about the fact that, for a fitness plan designed to span decades, even a little bit of gain over time is “sneaky” worrisome*. If I gain two ounces per month, 20 years from now I’ll be 30 pounds overweight. I’m not just doing hypothetical math here…when I was 37, I looked at photos from a warm weather vacation and suddenly thought “who’s that pudgy guy in my bathing suit, hanging around with my family?” Little by little, I’d put on almost 20 pounds since college days.

It’s so much easier to make small corrections after a couple of pounds, versus waiting for a bigger number to develop.

But also, we need to be wary of losing weight. One reality of 40+ is the natural trend (if unchallenged) to lose muscle and bone density*. So, weighing ourselves every day helps ensure that diligent cardio exercise and watching our food intake don’t go too far the other direction from weight gain, starving our muscles of what they need to keep fighting Father Time and regenerating. If you burn good calories most days, and stress your muscles via exercise, you need to be sure you put enough back into the tank.

Note: if you’re consciously trying to lose weight because you need to, good on you, man. We’re all in that mode sometimes. In that case, I actually suggest not obsessing by weighing yourself every day. Instead, stay diligent on your exercise/nutrition program and check in on weight every several days, or weekly. Once you’ve achieved your target weight, then snap back into the approach described here.

Finally, a daily weight check provides a heads-up on dehydration. If you weigh two-plus pounds less than you did yesterday…you need to replenish fluids today. If your fitness mix includes a lot of sweat, this is always a risk, summer or winter. Not recognizing it means less energy today and poorer performance in all your endeavors – and that’s not part of our game plan.

weight-zone

So for all these reasons, brothers, I urge you to think of a four-pound range, bracketing your “fighting weight” by two pounds in each direction. Weigh yourself at the same time each day. If you’re too heavy or too light for 2-3 days in a row, that’s an early signal to make a fine-tuning correction. If you’re in the range – awesome. Enjoy today knowing that you’re taking care of yourself!

“He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother.” (The Hollies, song of the same name)

* In the U.S. the average man gains about one pound per year after age 35 and throughout middle age – but that change includes about a half-pound yearly loss of muscle/bone density, so think +1.5 pounds of fat and -0.5 pounds of muscle/bone = 1 pound gain. As olderbeasts, we fight to buck this dynamic, not gain the fat, and not lose the muscle/bone mass!

You may also like

article-image
Endurance , Fitness Planning & Gear

Beware of the Myth of the “Fat Burn” Heart-Rate Zone

Does your tracker or sports watch have a heart-rate function? Or have you used cardio equipment with built-in HR measurement? If so, you may be aware of the so-called “Fat Burn” heart-rate zone.

I advise you to “mostly beware” of falling for the allure of this name, man. It sounds too good to be true. “Burn more fat with lower exertion than you would with higher exertion!” And it is too good to be true. However, low-intensity workouts in HR ranges labeled “Fat Burn” do have occasional purposes. Hence my “mostly beware” admonition.

Let’s walk through the facts and logic here, and you can make your own call.

article-image
Fitness Planning & Gear

For Fast, Clear Results: Try This 10-15 Minute “Yoga Tonic” Each Morning

TWO QUESTIONS:

1. Are you mentally sold on the idea of yoga, but just not able to do it much because of other fitness and life priorities?

In my case, I’m ultra-sold, but I still only do a full yoga practice once a week. I don’t want to displace other workouts or my rest day. But I know I’m missing out on some of yoga’s benefits from this infrequency (especially the flexibility benefit). 

2. Do you feel sometimes feel stiff and sluggish when you get out of bed in the morning? I do.

For both of these reasons, I started doing this 10-15 minute mini-yoga practice most mornings.

I’ve noticed clear improvements in my flexibility and ability to really nail and hold some key poses. And it reliably limbers up and energizes me, too. 

If you’re a seldom-yoga guy, this will bring you (physical and also mental) benefits as a standalone habit. And if you do longer-form yoga practices with some regularity but it’s not feeling like “enough,” this consistent short-form habit will set you up for better performance when you do spend longer on the mat.

article-image
Fitness Planning & Gear , Philosophy & Motivation

How to Overcome “That Sluggish Feeling” When It Threatens Your Workout Plan

There are a bunch of reasons why you might NOT work out today. Some are good, and many are not-so-good. Of all possible reasons, the one I really hate works like this.

1. You plan to work out that day. Then as the planned time nears, you start to feel a physical and/or mental sluggishness. Nothing dramatic, but you just don’t feel like working out. You start to flirt with the idea of taking the day off, considering various possible justifications.

2. But rather than explicitly, decisively declaring a day off – sometimes you need one, even if unplanned – you let minutes tick by without moving toward your workout OR deciding not to. Deep down, you might know what you’re doing, but you don’t admit it to yourself.

3. Then all of a sudden, voila, it’s “too late” for your workout. You missed the window of time you had before your next work, family or personal obligation. Even though you caused this, you don’t feel glad about the “can’t workout now” reality. You immediately feel like you’ve let yourself down.

This ever happen to you?  If so, you just fell victim to That Sluggish Feeling (“TSF”).  

I’ve devised a new response to TSF when it strikes. I don’t seek to move directly from sluggishness to exercise. Instead, I do a short, easy “bridge” activity in-between, to change my energy and get me into a better frame-of-mind to decide if I’m really, intentionally going to skip that workout. Here’s how it works.

article-image
Fitness Planning & Gear , Philosophy & Motivation

Fitness: What Men Can Learn From Women (Part 2)

Part One of this series said 40+ guys should take valuable cues from women to refine their fitness-and-health approach for the decades ahead.

Women…
1. Don’t let competitiveness become counterproductive to fitness
2. Focus more on total-body fitness
3. Seek out help and support more
4. Take nutrition more seriously

I have no intent to perpetuate stereotypes. But these patterns do fit with how many people assume women behave compared to men. So yeah, I’ll admit it in this language: Part One suggested we learn from attitudes and behaviors some might describe as “womanly.”

However you describe them, they have real benefits for lifelong fitness, health and wellness.

If anything, this Part Two makes a more cage-rattling point. Some women in the OlderBeast phase of life are “manning up” to fearlessly embrace age and double down on fitness — on “historically-male” fitness turf — more than many guys are.

1 Comment
  1. […] simply know more-or-less how much, and what, to eat so that your weight holds pretty steady (see this about weighing yourself every […]

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.