Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘scale’

Measuring Instead Of Weighing

Posted by terrepruitt on August 21, 2012

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaSo if you are participating in the little challenge of not getting on the scale for either 21 days or 30 days, today is the 21st day.  I assigned 21 days so that is would land on a posting day (I post Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays).  I will let you know that due to more “stuff” as I had posted about before, I got off to a late start on my own challenge!  So how is it going for you?  Has it been a challenge to stay off the scale?  Have you noticed that you are not obsessing about the number the scale displays because you are not looking at it?  Now the thing with measuring with a measuring tape instead of scale means you need to keep doing what you’re doing.  So if you were doing some type of cardio three times a week and adding some strength training in and weighing yourself, looking for that number to change when you stop using the scale it doesn’t mean to stop doing the other stuff.  It is just a different way to track progress.  And for some it could be a little bit of a reprieve IF they allow the scale to affect their mood.  I found it funny that today on FaceBook someone posted about the scale stealing motivation and she reminded people it doesn’t tell the whole story.  That is what I am saying too.  That is why I thought it would be nice to change it up.

I know that some people don’t even have a scale.  Some people don’t even use one.  Everyone is different.  I just hear a lot about people being upset because they didn’t lose a pound “today” and they’ve been trying so hard.  So I think that maybe for those people it is nice to try a different way to track progress.

My schedule is a bit “off” this month as I am spending time dealing with “stuff” and I have picked up a lot of classes that I am subbing for the City of San Jose.  I picked up eleven classes which is great but I have not been able to concentrate as much on my resistance training as I would like.  My numbers did not change as much as I was hoping to see when I thought of this challenge.  What about you?  Did you see a change in numbers?  Are you stopping at day 21 or going to continue on and see what 30 days will do?

Not only do I have the added class times to do I have a little bit of added prep time for each class and the travel time to and from each class.  Since I am subbing in Nia for other classes such as Zumba, Zumba Gold, Pilates, Kick Boxing, and Cardio Toning, I do try to pick Nia routines that will fit.  I am not changing Nia to fit the class, because I explained how that turned out in a post earlier this month, but I do try to pick routines that might fit a little better.  With a Zumba Gold class I might do a Nia routine that is a bit mellow or doesn’t have a lot of bow stances.  And with subbing a Zumba class I might put together a lot of the higher energy “get moving songs”. So all of that cuts into my plan.  But I’m going to buckle down a bit because I have some stuff that I needed to get done this month behind me.  I am going to keep up with this little challenge myself and see where that tape leads me.

Well?  How are you still with me?  Are doing the challenge?  How is it going?  Doing it for 21 days?  Doing it for 30 days?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Scale Back

Posted by terrepruitt on July 31, 2012

I know that sometimes people might allow the number on the scale to affect their mood and/or their feelings about themselves.  I know people can get upset when they are eating healthy and/or cutting excess calories, exercising and/or being more active and their goal of losing weight does not show every day on the scale.  I know some people get upset if their weight does not go down every day.  I know that sometimes a scale can actually affect what you eat for the day.  Perhaps the scale isn’t even moving one way or the other so you think it is ok to eat that extra whatever and you might even skip working out.  As I have said many times everyBODY has a different goal.  Sometimes we allow the number on the scale plays a more important role than it should because it is truly not the only way to measure health or fitness.  As you know if you are cutting calories to lose weight, but you are also doing some type of resistance training it could be that you are building muscle too.  While these two things are difficult to achieve at the same time it can be done, it just might take longer to see the results you are hoping to see.  But the scale might not be the best way to measure progress.  If you are one of those people who allow the number on the scale to affect you, how about taking a challenge?  How about not using the scale for a bit, while you are continuing on your path to change?  Maybe the number doesn’t affect your mood, but how about a change?  How about if you track your progress with a tape measure?

Just decide to not get on the scale for either 21 days or 30 days.  Really, that’s it, that is the challenge.  Let’s track measurements instead.  And while we are at it be aware of how you are feeling.  I know for some it is a habit to step on the scale.  You might not even realize you are doing it.  Right before you get in the shower it is almost as if it is the first step into the shower.  Disrobe, step on the scale, and then step in the shower.  Habit.  Especially if you do it early in the morning when you still might be a bit sleepy.  So in order to keep yourself from doing it out of habit remove the scale from the bathroom or remove the batteries.  Of course you will have to make sure the other members in your household that use the scale know what is going on.  You don’t want them to put the scale back or replace the batteries and then you — out of habit, step on the scale despite your best effort.

Now I’m not suggesting you share any numbers or anything.  This is not a competition to see who sees the most change, this is just a time to experience something different.  To free yourself from the scale.  To allow yourself to forget about that number.

So without that number to affect our mood, our feelings, our courses of actions we might be surprised.  We might get a different sense from our bodies and follow a bit of a different path.  Instead of being upset that the number hasn’t budged which in turn might cause us to eat more, we might just feel good and full and satisfied.  Instead of seeing the number go down and giving ourselves permission to have more, we might just sense that we’ve had enough and let it stop there.  We might stop judging ourselves by that number.  And if you want to track changes you can use a tape measure.  I was thinking you can take the measurements on day 1/August 1st and then not again until the 21st.  If you decide to do the 21 days then that would be the last day, but if you decide to do the 30 days, then the 21st could be just a check in.  Then do it again on the 30th.

Taking measurements takes a bit longer than stepping on a scale and as I mentioned in the other post you want to make certain you measure the same spots.  Having to set aside time to measure will keep you from doing it every day.  There is no need to do it every day, that is also part of the freeing oneself from the numbers.  I made a form that you can print and use to track your measurements if you would like.  The “Notes” column can be used for noting the spot where you are going to measure.  If you are measuring (as my example stated in my first post) around your calf an inch below the low part of the knee cap, then you can make that note there so the next time you measure you will remember where.

Of course you can decide to continue on past the 30 days.  Maybe you will decide to step on the scale at 30 days then try an additional period of time where you closet the scale.  I think for some removing the scale from the picture will be very freeing and even stress relieving.  For some they might want to just try something new, maybe the scale does not play a big role to them.  You could even decide to ditch the scale and not do any measurements that is fine too.  Again, as I’ve said before everyBODY is on their own fitness journey so they can do what they feel is right.  This is just a place to start.  An idea of looking at it in a different way.

So what do you say?  Will you put your scale away for at least 21 days?  If so will you take measurements?

Dance Exercies, Nia, Nia Campbell, Campbell Nia, Nia classes in Campbell, evening Nia, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Do You Measure Up?

Posted by terrepruitt on July 28, 2012

I think most people use a scale instead of a measuring tape. A scale is easy and common. We’ve been taught it is all about how much we weigh. You might be familiar with the false statement that muscle weighs more than fat. That of course is not true (that is why I called it a false statement), a pound of muscle weighs 16 ounces and a pound of fat weighs the same. The space taken up by muscle is less than the space taken up by fat, but they WEIGH the same. So measuring is another way to track changes to your body.

Professionals; personal trainers, doctors, therapist, etc. – people who measure for a living or who need to share information have a specific way of measuring. So if you were to go to one and pass on your measurements the other could document changes. So it is nice to have a standard. Because the most important thing about measuring is to measure in the same place every time so you can track the changes!

Dance Exercies, Nia, Nia Campbell, Campbell Nia, Nia classes in Campbell, evening Nia, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, NiaOne way to keep it the same is to measure from one point to the point you are going to measure. Say you are going to measure your calf, well measure from the bottom of your knee cap to the point you are going to measure and use that point every time.  This is a little more exact than “measuring at the largest point” or the “smallest part”.

Again the standard for measuring are things like: “across the umbilicus” and “1/2 way between the umbilicus and xyphoid process”. But you just really need to know where you did it last time so that you do it the same the next time.

Places you want to measure are your chest – for men and women the flexible measuring tape goes around the back and across the nipple. Then women measure around the chest where the band of the bra rests.  Measure around the hips.  Measure around the waist.  Measure around your neck. Measure around each bicep. Measure around each forearm.  Measure around each thigh.  Measure around each calf.

The chest measures are obvious; nipples and bra.  With the hips you can use over the bone or the widest part.  The waist is at the smallest part.  The neck, arms, and legs are good ones to use the “measure to the measuring point” method.  You can also use the  “measure to the measuring point” method on the waist and hips too!   Just make sure you document the measurement to the measuring point.  If you are going to measure your calf an inch below the lowest part of the knee cap, make note of that so you do it the same way every time.

Since every BODY has different goals it could be a moment to cheer if the measurements go up, or when the numbers go down.  Whichever the case it is your own personal journey and if you are working for a change in your body then measuring is a different way to track it.  Sometimes the scale can be frustrating if your goal is weight loss and you are building muscle and losing fat.  Or if you are just gaining weight and not paying attention to how much closer you have gotten to your muscle hypertrophy goal.

Stay tuned for the next post for a challenge that we will begin on August 1st.  All you will need is a soft tape measure and to continue on your own personal path of wellness that you are already on.

Do you use a scale?  Do you ever feel frustrated by the number on the scale?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »