So I picked up the Withings Body Comp + scale on the recommendations posted here. I’m used to the composition scales at most nutritional supplement places showing things like muscle mass and bone density.
My results are posted below. A little background, I’m 6’3" and have dropped 225+lbs in the past year or so, so I’m guessing that might throw off some of the readings because of, well, probably 15-20lbs of extra skin. (I joke that my birthday suit is 4 sizes too big now!)
What I’m wondering is how accurate are the muscle mass and bone weight measurements? I know they’re going to fluctuate and to look at trends, but I’m trying to guage body fat % and find an “ideal weight”. People keep asking “when I’m going to stop dieting” or what my goal weight is, and I don’t really know. 190? 10% body fat? Really I just want to be healthy and fit.
I look at the 180+ lbs muscle mass measure and that just doesn’t jive with what feels like at least 50lbs of fat still on my legs and gut. Then again I don’t really have a frame of reference for what’s normal after being so damn fat for so long.
My new Garmin scales arrived yesterday and this is what I recorded. Now, I think it’s premature to make a complete plan based on one reading, but in general I think it’s safe to assume that I can dump a good 5kg of fat but that my target weight of 70kg might be a little ambitious.
The other numbers such as muscle and bone mass look ok for a person of my age, but it’s useful to monitor them over a longer period.
I also think it backs up my reasoning that I’m not going to be a power athlete and improving my w/kg in conjunction with areobic efficiency is a good approach rather than chasing watts
I think the important point here is your last sentence. You want to be healthy and fit.
I’d recommend that you don’t chase body fat % but instead chase BMI or weight. Your current BMI (based on a height of 6’3") is nearly 31 - still in the obese range. You should be able to drop down to 200 lbs (the upper limit of the normal BMI range) and then take a look at what really want to be ‘healthy’. Certainly for 6’3" something in the 180s or 190s is a good athletic weight.
You and I are the same height and my stats from this morning were: 164.4 lbs, 42.2% muscle, 70.2% water, 9.4% fat for a BMI of 20.5. As my weight fluctuates over time the main thing that changes is the fat % - muscle and water are very consistent (per my scale, so take with a grain of salt). As you get more data points you may see the same thing with your scale - although with the amount of weight you have to drop you may also lose some muscle mass
So - use this to track your weight over time. That’s the primary benefit for this type of scale in my opinion. The fat and muscle mass is interesting, but not the critical variable. Having automatic logging of your weight and your weight trends has been invaluable for me - so while I don’t bother much with the other variables I do find great ROI on the digital scale
Get Faster with Adaptive Training
Sign up and Download the TrainerRoad app to start training. Available on iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac devices.
Ask a Cycling Coach Podcast
This is the only podcast dedicated to making you a faster cyclist. Listen to the latest episode and more.
We Are Here to Help!
Browse hundreds of articles in our Support Center or contact our world-class support team to get back on track.