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The Value of Self-Monitoring

Self-monitoring plays an important role in fostering lifestyle change. Research has proven that tracking one or two behaviors can help you reach your weight loss goals. Ways to self-monitor include: keeping a food and drink log, tracking planned activity, and daily weigh-ins.

Why is self-monitoring so important? Because the moment you take time to write down what you eat or how much activity you engage in, is a decision point. After looking at your food log, you may choose to eat less or skip a trip to the donut shop. After seeing how far you’ve come in your activity log, you may decide to kick your fitness plan up a notch by running an extra half-mile, or spending an extra 15 minutes at the gym.

Researchers at Drexel University found that consistent self-weighing helped individuals maintain their weight loss success by allowing them to make corrective behavior changes to prevent weight gain. Tracking calories, keeping a journal, and having a support system can impact your weight loss goals.

It may seem like a nuisance at first, but weighing in is very important to keep track of your goals. Seeing your numbers drop will not only let you know what you need to do to move forward, it can also help you figure out what weight loss tactics may work for you.

However you choose to self-monitor, keep in mind that you’re not trying to catch yourself making “bad” choices. Self-monitoring isn't about giving yourself a "slap on the wrist." It’s about building your awareness of what drives your choices, as well as what positive decisions you are making on your journey to a better body image.