7 Fun Ways to Visually Track Weight Loss Progress

By , SparkPeople Blogger
When you're focused on losing a certain amount of weight, it's easy to fall into the trap of getting fixated on (or even obsessed with) the scale. Although there's nothing wrong with moving and meal-planning with the goal of reducing that number in mind, paying too much attention to a daily readout at your feet can actually send your motivation into a downward spiral.

If you find yourself either thinking about or standing on the scale all through the day—and if the fluctuation of that number is having an undue impact on how you feel about yourself—it may be time to look for another way to measure your progress. To lighten the mood and up the "fun factor," consider trying one (or more) of these visual methods for monitoring your progress.

Do the Jar Juggle

AHEALTHYGAMER uses weight loss jars labeled with "Pounds to go" and "Pounds destroyed" to measure her progress. “‘Destroyed’ might seem a bit intense, but I like to think these pounds are gone for good...no chance of returning!" she says. She bought the two mason jars, some potting stones/marbles and stickers all from a local craft store for just $15. "This is exactly the kind of visual motivation I need, and now I'll see it every day right on my desk!"

Capture Your Vision

Many SparkPeople members have had success creating vision boards as sources of inspiration. SKIBUNNY1 shared her board (below) in the Vision Collage Gallery group. Create your own collage using quotes, images clipped from magazines, old photos of yourself, empowering adjectives—anything that motivates you to keep pushing toward your goals. The only rule of vision boards is that there are no rules.


Break It Down by Month

Sometimes it's tough to stay motivated when you're looking down a very long path to a far-away goal. Try printing out a month-by-month calendar, and as each month passes, note the poundage lost. This will help you visualize how each small milestone adds up to big results at the end of the year.

I saw this idea a couple times in my newsfeed, think I'll give it a try myself! 🙌🏼📆

A post shared by Jess🙋 (@futurefitmiss) on

Save & Lose at the Same Time

Health blogger Katie Mancino created this unique way of keeping track of her goals while also saving money to reward herself for all her hard work. She includes suggestions of how much to tip yourself for things like losing a pound, eating a healthy meal, trying a new workout and bringing along a workout buddy, but you can customize it to meet your goals and preferences.

Image courtesy of Katie Mancino

Charmed, I'm Sure

SparkPeople member TWEETYX2 wears a charm bracelet every day as a visual aid to remind herself, minute by minute, of her weight loss goals. Each charm represents a different source of motivation, such as a fork and spoon to remember to track her food intake, an apple as a symbol of healthy snacks, a crescent moon to remind her of the importance of a good night's sleep and a coffee mug as her reward for sticking to her diet plan.

Pin Down Your Goals

When your motivation is starting to feel a little damp, hang it up to dry! Here's a fun and motivating twist on laundry: F70176555 uses clothespins to measure pounds lost and pounds remaining to lose. With each pound lost, simply move a pin to the right for a visual representation of what your accomplishment.

Scrap It to Spark It!

The written word can also be a powerful visual motivator. SparkPeople member EMMYOS shared her experience of creating a journal/scrapbook to document her weight loss journey. In addition to personal stories and motivators, she included photos, letters, cards and excerpts from SparkPeople message boards.
"When I am feeling unmotivated or down, I open up the book and read my original entry about why I started my journey," says Emmy. "I go through old journal notes that I wrote and they strike a chord that gives me the boost I need to get off my butt and move…it gives me encouragement all over again."



What visual aids have you used to measure weight loss progress?