I am quite lucky – being tall with long arms does have advantages: in small kitchens you can reach and grab pretty much anything, in high heels you look considerably tall, and due to the height, you can be overweight without showing much. In my dancing days I’ve always been considered big but I’ve never been considered big medically.
However, about 2 years ago I weighed over 72kg and even though I didn’t look it, this was my normal weight, nothing to worry about – apart from bordering hypoactive thyroid, stomach issues, high cholesterol and sugar.
During my PT and nutrition studies and switching bread, rice, pasta for veg due, I found myself at 65kg – bear in mind I was NOT looking to lose weight, my weight was fine! At the time I had caliper measurements taken, these showed 19% body fat (woohoo!), basic electronic scales showed 22% which was still woohoo.
At Christmas one of the gadget presents received was a fancy high-end Withings Smart Body Analyser, which kept fluctuating between 26% and 28% which is normal for women but above what’s expected for fitness professionals. My weight kept moving between 62kg and 64kg, a bit too wide range for high-tech gadgetry. For my husband there was no fluctuation. Based on MY fluctuation (not on the fact that I kept accusing Withings daily in all sorts of things), the gadget went back to the store. The thought of getting a proper body fat measurement stayed. I train more and eat better, why has my body fat gone up? Or were the caliper measurements very wrong because I’ve thin bony arms?
Also another thought lingered: I know I am an apple and accumulate fat around my midriff; am I a toffee too? Toffee is what doctors call people looking lean on the outside with high visceral fat on the inside. That’s exactly the situation with Mr. Fox – high % of body fat, which is NOT visible on the outside.
So… as I’ve officially stepped into been middle-aged, the time has come to establish my toffee-ness, if any. Off to the Bod Pod testing we trot. There are several places in London offering the Bod Pod tests, mainly universities. I would have thought companies like Bupa offer this type of testing. but no. Anyway, we’ve gone to the British College Of Osteopathic Medicine. We as in Mr Fox and I. The toffee family 🙂
The test is affordable, quick and easy – no referral required, results straight away, also you receive your basal metabolic rate and active calorie count too. You go into the machine either in your swimwear or your underwear provided it is snug enough (speedos, not swimming shorts). The only thing is that starting with 4h before the test you should avoid vigorous exercise, food and drink, drinking some water is OK but not a lot. Basically the earlier on the day you have the test, the less hungry you are bound to be…
So, results 🙂 I might be an apple but I’m not a toffee! My current weight is 61kg with 17.4% body fat, which is in athletes zone. Did not expect this and am very chuffed. Recommendation I have received is to keep exercising – I need to keep my muscle mass. Decreased muscle with low body fat percentage lead to frailty, not something I’m interested in, thank you very much.
My husbands results were also positive – but I’ve been banned from sharing the numbers!
All in all, a very useful test – scales are scales, jeans are jeans but some things need to be checked. If your jeans are hanging on you but body fat percentage is above average – where is the fat? We do not want any chronic diseases, inflammation or liver damage from visceral fat!