Thanks to all of you for the feedback. I'm glad to find all this out without having spent the money.
This brings me to the alternatives, which may or may not be worth starting another thread. It seems like photos, taking from front and side, along with measurements (expecting some to increase where there is more muscle) may be the best indication, with weighing and BMI at least giving a very rough idea. I do know that most of us aren't completely objective when we look at photos of ourselves. So maybe posting some pics on our spark pages and then asking for feedback would not be such a bad idea?
Edited by: HOUNDLOVER1 at: 11/6/2011 (09:58)
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Body Fat %: 16.0
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Allow me to throw in my own "me too". I've purchased a couple of BIA devices and they are pretty disappointing. If you haven't, read 4A's blog entry in detail if you're even considering using these devices at all. I have personally stopped using them as I find no good information, not even trend. In a word, junk.
Let me echo that the devices are unreliable. I joined a gym after I hit goal weight specifically to have a new goal to reduce my body fat percentage. I worked out hard for six months. I had obvious body changes and far more muscle definition at the same weight. They measured me again and my body fat percentage had gone up. They said to ignore it, that it was not accurate. Disappointment.
The tests have me between 27.6% and 29.9% body fat after months of consistent strength training. I use weights of 202 pounds on the leg squat machine and 55 pounds on the pull down arm machine. My BMI is 20.2 and run a 5K in just over 28 minutes. I am 62 years old and was overweight 50 of my years. I feel fit, but don't think I'll ever achieve a body fat percentage in the fit range.
My Keys to Success = Tracking! Super Foods! Step Up Cardio! And most important: Quit Quitting!!
I too get discourage by the body fat measuring devices so many variable I do heard the water test is the best method ot use and calipers are pretty good I have gone ot the tape measure I personally own a hand held device it measures way more fat then the scale or with the tape measure that even depends on which site I plug my measurements into can be any where from 3 to 5% difference.
Linda (Florida - Eastern Standard Time )
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The scale is just another form of BIA. The fact that it transmits information wirelessly has no bearing on the technology used for estimating your % body fat.
The bottom line is that if you are very obese the tape measure is the most accurate way to assess changes in body composition.
If you are not obese the changes will be so slow that it isn't worth measuring them more frequently than every 3 months or maybe even every 6 months because of the inaccuracy of the measurement technologies.
We went to a health fair yesterday where my daughter and I had our body fat measured and I have some real doubts about the measurement but have no idea what method gives an accurate reading. They used a handheld device that you hold in front of you with outstreched arms after you type in age, sex, height, weight. It then comes up with your BMI and after a few seconds with your %of body fat. My BMI was 21, %of body fat 22% and that seemed like it could be right. My 14-year-old daughter's BMI was 20 and %of body fat 20. She has no visible fat on her body at all, very muscular, very successful on the high school swim team and physically active all day. Are these devices accurate? Do they work when used on teenagers? What's the best way to measure body fat %?
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