Body weight vs Bodyfat

Now, to expand on the term many people may have heard of but never really understood or applied: body fat. This is the measure of fat mass that makes up our bodies normally given as a percentage. For example: you have a man who looks slightly obese and weights 200 pounds however you have another 200 pound man beside him who looks quite athletic and well built. Now how is this possible? Well that’s where body fat comes in. Man A (obese) may have a body fat percentage around 30 while man B (athlete) weighs the exact same while having a low body fat percentage around 10. Body fat percentage literally means how much of ones body is made of of fat subsequently telling you the rest is made up of everything else in the body including predominantly muscle. Body fat can be changed from percentage to pounds with a simple calculation of overall weight x Body fat percentage. Therefore man A (obese) 200 x 0.30 = 60 pounds of fat while man B (athletic) 200 x 0.10 = 20 pounds of fat. That is 40 pounds more of fat in the obese man than the athletic man, what a huge difference! Hopefully you are realising that body fat percentage is so much more important than your weight and people can actually get discouraged when starting a training program because they step on the scale every morning and their weight may either stay the same or even go up due to the fact that fat is being burned and muscle is being built which is heavier than fat! Body fat is actually very easy to track / measure which can be done via scale, handheld device, fat calipers, and many more. To save the best for last, you may be wondering what a “good” Body fat percentage is, this number is of course subjective to different people but there are general guidelines. In men: 8% – 19% is considered a healthy range where abs may become visible 10% or lower and above 30% is considered obese. In women: 21% – 33% is considered a healthy range where abs may become visible around 20% or lower and above 33% is considered obese. Keep in mind, those numbers are just guidelines and body fat is very difficult to measure exactly without professional equipment however, if measured consistently (say every morning before breakfast) you should be able to see a change in the number even if it is not dead on. Now you know all about body fat it’s time to put the knowledge to use!

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