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6 non-scale victories and how to celebrate them

You don't have to measure your progress by using the scale.
/ Source: TODAY

As a health and weight-loss coach, I believe in providing my clients with more than just the scale or a measuring tape to track their progress. In fact, if the scale is driving you crazy, just put it in the closet and forget about it. Instead, focus on non-scale victories!

Non-scale victories, or NSV, is a topic that came up in our Start TODAY Facebook Group (join here for daily inspiration!) and we’re sharing some of our favorites below.

1. Feeling happy to put on jeans

I tell my clients to track their progress one day a week by putting on the same pair of jeans to see if they’re getting looser around the midsection, easier to button or zip and and feeling less tight in the thighs.

One caveat: Do not start with the jeans you haven't fit into since who knows when.

Choose a pair of jeans that are just a tad snug. You'll feel fantastic when they fit you comfortably again!

2. Not reaching for tums — or your usual medications

One Start TODAY member Rebecca said that since she stopped eating sweets and processed foods for the past few weeks, she’s noticed a few positive changes.

"I am sleeping much better, no longer needing to reach for the tums, and I just feel happier!” she wrote.

Similarly, over the course of the past seven months, another member, Vicki said she’s gone off her blood pressure medication, dropped her total cholesterol from 217 to 190, and even though the scale isn’t really moving, she has “better sleep, more energy, and a newfound confidence in myself!”

Go Rebecca and Vicki!

3. Increasing weights and improved stamina during workouts

One StartTODAY member Jen said she’s been able to increase the weight she is lifting and has noticed definition in her quads and triceps.

Another member, Jessica, said she recently pushed herself up to 17.5-pound dumbbells for bicep curls, up from 15 pounds.

Who cares about the scale when you're seeing those kinds of results!

4. Unexpected (and positive) comments from those close to you

Start TODAY member Katherine said that she wears a vest at work, and the best feeling was that someone told her that her current vest was too big (a size 4X). She just went down to a size XL! Similarly, Kathleen from our group said that last week her son asked, “Mom, where did your tummy go?” Even he noticed the results of her working out for 4 hours a week since December!

5. Going up a flight of stairs without feeling winded

Even just walking up the stairs can be tiring if you feel out of shape!

However, Kristina from the group said running up a flights of stairs and not feeling winded after everyday tasks is her measure of success.

She's not alone. Pamela, who is also a StartTODAY member, wrote, “I couldn’t breathe or climb a flight of stairs. Now, I no longer have to use inhalers to help me breathe. I am a liberated woman.”

How’s that for a victory!

6. Things other than clothes are fitting much better

“A NSV for me was getting my wedding ring back on my finger after losing weight," wrote Molly. "I had gained during my pregnancy. It was the best feeling because the loss was in an area I hadn’t noticed was getting smaller — my fingers!”

Another NSV comes from Andrea who says her bath towel now wraps all the way around her body!

"It’s the little things that keep me going," she wrote.

Looking for ways to celebrate your NSV? How about treating yourself to a manicure or painting your nails yourself? It's a constant reminder whenever you see your hands that you are beautiful!

Looking for a little inexpensive treat?

Buy a single song to download that you recently heard on the radio or makes you feel happy! Reward yourself for your NSV just as you’d reward yourself when you see progress on the scale. Success breeds success — and you deserve to be celebrated!

For extra support, sign up for our Start TODAY weight-loss newsletter. Stephanie Mansour is a health and fitness expert and weight-loss coach for women. Join her complimentary weight-loss challenge here!