So body composition…what is it? Well my lovely fit friends, it is how your body is made up of muscle and fat. Let’s take a look at how my body composition has changed over the course of college and what that means for you.
I started college what I considered to be “healthy” back then. I went through high school restricting my calories to drop weight and spent endless hours on the elliptical a week. When I started college I was 137 lbs. I continued counting calories like a maniac, I even looked up the campus dining nutritional content online and manually programmed it into the calorie counting app. You could say I was obsessed. The first year of college finished with not a ton of weight gain, maybe 7 lbs. It was still a fair amount but not enough to snap me awake. I had eased up on my restrictive dieting and let myself enjoy more “naughty” foods. Sophomore year of college is when things got rough. I started drinking for the first time ever, ate all the crap, treated my body poorly and was so far from happy. I ended that year in the 150s. My highest weight was around 157 lbs and boy was I so disappointed in who I had become. So I refocused. I didn’t drop a ton of weight my Junior year but got my lifestyle back. I was treating my body a lot better and I was more conscious of the amounts of alcohol I consumed. It wasn’t until Senior year (this year) that everything clicked. For the first time I lived balanced. I went out occasionally, got all my workouts in, took rest days when needed without guilt and ate healthy with the not particularly healthy foods I loved mixed in here and there. And you know what? Even though I’ve only lost 5-10lbs in the past year, and gained 10-15 lbs since starting college – MY BODY HAS NEVER LOOKED BETTER. I have never felt healthier in my body and I have never been happier when I look in the mirror. So how can this be? You’re heavier but sexier? That’s exactly it, my friends. I have less fat in my body and more sexy, sculpted lean muscle.
How My Body Composition Has Changed…
I went in today to have my body composition tested at my university. I had high hopes and I am pleased to announce they were met. Here’s the low down on how my body has changed from Nov 2013 to May 2016…
- 6% drop in body fat
- 12.5 lbs lean muscle gained
- 7.5 lbs fat lost
- 5 lbs overall weight gained
Hydrostatic vs Skin Fold
You’ll notice that the two different body fat measurements are different. This is because they have a difference in accuracy. The skinfold assessment is taken with calipers on point on the skin’s surface, pinching the subcutaneous fat. The hydrostatic measuring (more accurate) is done in a water tank and involves many fancy calculations of air and water that I don’t understand. So! While it’s interesting to see both of the measurements, the hydrostatic is the one I’m concerned with.
Putting a Visual to the Results
Here is me Jan 2014 (left – two months after my initial body test) and now, May 2016 (right). I see less fat around my waist, no more chunky love handles and less stomach fat…and more importantly I see someone who feels good in their body!
So, what have we learned today? Weight is kinda (seriously) bullshit. I weigh more but I’m healthier, happier and fitter. This is my second post this week about weight not being a good measure of physical fitness and damn! – it’s sooo true. Don’t get discouraged if you’re starting a new fitness plan and you gain a little weight. Stick with it and you’ll be so happy in the end!