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body fat vs weight question

jmhurley87jmhurley87 Posts: 49Member Posts: 49Member
Im very very confused.

Ive been reading things that say just because your scales say your over weight, that may not be the case as you can be thin and over weight.... i know i need to lose a few pounds and according to body fat calculators im 25.7%

Im not focused on my weight as much but need to lose the baby fat ( quiet a bit lol )


  • tangal88tangal88 Posts: 689Member Posts: 689Member
    So whats your question exactly? :) Are you asking if you need to loose bodyfat?

    This article shows some examples of how different amount of bodyfat look on bodys, so can give you a rough feel for where you are. Keep in mind if you have less muscle , you look fatter then someone the samesize who has more. As you add in lean muscle (you do this with resistance training, lifting heavy stuff, as well as diet adjustments with correct macros and calorie levels), you will lower your bodyfat. So you are less "skinny fat" more fit.

    Herse some picture examples, this shows the difference in lean muscle mass (i.e. adding more muscle, losing fat - NOT just scale wight) which may help you better understand.

    I really recommend you look at Stacis story link, (below) she was skinny fat, doing lots of cardio, and dieting. She starting lifting heavy weights, and completely changed her body look to a much more pleasing look, and gained weight (14 lbs)

    Scale weight ONLY is a poor indicator of actual body fat levels, or the amount of muscle you have vs the amount of fat (also counts bones and organs). The scale just weighs whats there, but it cannot differentiate between muscle, fat, bone, dinner from last night, water in your tissue from excess salt, carbs etc. It is normal to fluctuate as much as 5 lbs in a day - this is NOT fat gain or fat loss. It is water. My scale weight is ALWAYS 3-5 lbs heavier after a freeday (some call it a cheat day), or a meal higher in carbs, or sodium. This is normal. It moves back down after a few days.

    A strenuous workout, especial a new routine, or lifting weights, will make scale change higher by a few pounds as well from muscle damage, and water weight storage, balances out after a few weeks also.

    So if you ONLY use a scale to judge progress you may feel you are not making progress of even going backwards. It should be one tool only, and you need to know it is not completely accurate.

    Instead use a number of tools, incluiding scale. moirror, inch measurements, clothing fit. Many online fats calculators, digital and hand held fat scales are not accurate ether. So know they also are only a rough estimate. I can use two different online fat calculaters and get measurements of 20% bofyfat and 30% bodyfta. :)

    I am likely closer to 23%, based on inche measurements, body size etc. Perfectly great range for me.

    My digital scale however says I am 28% bodyfat because I have a good amount of lean muscle I have added to my frame. Even though the sacle says it measures bodyfat, often they can be very wrong, and many things can make them inaccurate.

    More lean muscle on your body is better, as it makes you look tighter, leaner, less jiggly, and fit into smaller clothing - my scale weight reads "high" - but I do not use scale as my main progress indicater. I actually LOOK smaller and tighter then I did when I was age 16 at this same rough clothing size (my goal range) but I weight more, and fit into smaller cloths, and look better now as I have more muscle, less fat then I did at 16.

    Heres an old post I made below, but the pictures are nice, and help put things in perspective. Main difference in girls is NOT scale weight changes - but the fact that they added muscle to their frame, and lost fat. Many times the scale did not change, or they gained weight.
    Heres some pictures that may help you.
    My results have been similar, I am 10-15 pounds heavier then my "rough goal weight" but am already AT my goal clothing size, and physically I am about 1-2 times smaller clothing wise, then last time I was at my goal weight (when I had less muscle) - So I look tighter leaner and smaller, then before at my "small" weight. (size 6/7/8)
    So to everyone else I look like I am already at my goal weight. But I am scale weight heavier, which is fine :) Ignore the scale.
    Less weight - yep you will look good dressed and may fit the smaller clothing size - but, add more muscle and a bit more scale weight - you also fit the smaller clothing size, AND look good dressed AND look good nakkid. Thats a win-win :)

    5 lbs heavier in after pic, but tighter and leaner

    Not same girl, but cute example

    Same weight, after was when she started lifting heavy

    Different girls but both size 4

    Same girl, before and after lifting heavy weights, she lost 5 lbs

    Stacy, read her story here: She is 14 lbs heavier in after

    10 lbs heavier in after

    10 lbs heavier in after

    Different girl, but both size 2

    5 pounds difference - big body change


    Fat vs Muscle
  • mspris2umspris2u Posts: 161Member Member Posts: 161Member Member
    love these examples!
  • tangal88tangal88 Posts: 689Member Posts: 689Member
    also to the OP, I see in an earlier post, you have severely cut calories, almost no protein in your diet, and you are walking daily with a small child. You likely will not get to your goals that way.

    You need to adjust your protein and carbs, and fats. Need to step up your exercise, do something more active, and also and include some resistance work. (pop in a DVD when you child sleeps, or do some free online videso like for 20 min)

    You can workout before child wakes up, after they go to bed in the PM, or while they nap.

    Trying to starve yourself to loose weight will only last a short time, then you stop loosing no matter what you do, and you will lose more muscle, as your body breaks the muscle down to fuel itself - this makes you have a higher bodyfat level, so you get "smaller" but actually have an even higher bodyfat, so "look" more jiggly and less toned.

    Adding in more strenuous, and different exercise will reconfigure your body, and also allow you to eat more, and still lose fat, and gain in some muscle.

    Track what you eat in your diary, write down EVERYTHING, thats the only way to see how much you truly are eating, and what your macros are. Look at your results after two weeks, and adjust as needed. We often underestimate potion size, or calories eaten, and over estimate what we burn exercise wise.

    But unless you have all the numbers written, its hard to troubleshot, when you don't see results. :)
  • kimmianne89kimmianne89 Posts: 432Member Posts: 432Member
    Love those examples!
  • hellosara08hellosara08 Posts: 141Member Member Posts: 141Member Member
    bump. love the response with all the pics. will definitely be referring back to this. :smile:
  • DudagarciaDudagarcia Posts: 882Member Member Posts: 882Member Member
    Love the examples :)
  • DavPulDavPul Posts: 61,895Member Member Posts: 61,895Member Member
    What's the question, exactly?
  • Anniel88Anniel88 Posts: 150Member Member Posts: 150Member Member
    tangal88 summed it up perfectly! I love all the pictures and examples. Thanks tangal for a beautifully well thought out reply!! :flowerforyou:
  • meaganh13meaganh13 Posts: 55Member Member Posts: 55Member Member
    Great visuals! Bump
  • _Bob__Bob_ Posts: 1,496Member Member Posts: 1,496Member Member
    according to the scales and charts I am morbidly obese and should have a laundry list of health problems.

    it freaked me out and so I went in and got a physical and blood work to see what I needed to change. went back to find out what was wrong with me only to find out that all of my blood work and levels were healthy.

    then the other day I was in a public restroom and I was next a really huge guy washing his hands and I asked him how much he weighted. his response shocked me, he weighed almost 20 lbs less than I do. it started a long conversation that ended with him deciding that he was going to hit the weights more.

    I still have a ways to go but the scales numbers do not reflect my health.
  • jmhurley87jmhurley87 Posts: 49Member Posts: 49Member
    sorry, my question wasnt clear lol, i was having a bad day.

    Ok im 5ft 6 and weigh 155 ( the pic with blacked out face and boobs the before is more my shape but with little extra fat)

    according to an online calculator ( yes i know thats not science but i have a caliper thing comeing in post and mates trained to use it so she gonna measure me) i have body fat of 25.7%

    I understand im over weight on scales and not on fat% although i know i need to loose lots of fat. Basically do i keep going at scales or pay more attention to fat %

    what should my fat % be?
  • jmhurley87jmhurley87 Posts: 49Member Posts: 49Member
    just done another calculator and it say 33% which sound better when i look at myself lol
  • uwdawg07uwdawg07 Posts: 372Member Posts: 372Member
    Love those pictures!! I really needed to see those right now.
  • Mistyblu08Mistyblu08 Posts: 622Member Posts: 622Member
    here is a calculation that helps figure that out :)

    total body wt x body fat percentage = fat weight
    total body wt - fat weight = lean body mass
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