Where do you measure?

Novus Spera
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2003/12/26 18:19:36 (permalink)

Where do you measure?

Hi, first off, I'm new here. I'm 28, married and a mother of 4. I am an RN by profession but right now I'm taking some time off to take care of my kids (ages 19 months to 7 years). I have been lurking here for a bit and decided to join here because you all seemed to be the best choice out there for a newbie to body building. Particularly a woman. I have a few questions that I was hoping someone here might be able to answer to point me in the right direction to the answer.

First, I want to get an accurate (I know the only true accurate method is autopsy) beginning body fat measurement. I have used two methods, my Tanita body fat scale and the Acu-measure calipers. They give me VERY different readings. The Tanita scale gives anywhere between 28 and 37% but usually around 30-33%. The Acu-measure calipers consistently give me a reading of 19-20%.

I am 5'7" and 138lbs, I do cardio interval training 7 (60 minutes) days a week (last 3 months) and have maintained a cardio routine that consists of at least 4 days per week of walking 4 miles in an hour for the last year and a half. I have just recently started weight training.

I'd like to know what method to trust so I can plan my whole diet/exercise plan accordingly. 19 and 32 are a BIG difference!

Next, where do you measure your hips? I have always measured around the widest part, which is actually the top of my legs (just over the pubis area) but I keep seeing references to measuring hips right at the top of the iliac crest (your hip bones you can feel just under the skin near your belly button)? Any ideas on that?

Anyway, of all the body building forums I have lurked at over the past month, this seems the friendliest...


6 Replies Related Threads

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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/26 20:02:10 (permalink)
    Well this is just my opinion, but given your height and weight and the amount of exercise you do I would guess that it is probably nearer the lower figure than the higher. 30-33% is overweight, not obese, but someone who looks like they need to lose some weight.

    19-20 is low and would indicate a woman who is slim, not VERY lean, but in good shape.
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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/27 04:53:10 (permalink)
    Kind of funny I actually use a Tanita scale and Calipers as well.

    Calipers are the method of choice by bodybuilders. Yet there are many different approaches of how to use them. one popular method:

    Take four different measurements and average them:
    1)suprailliac (approximately one inch above the right hipbone).
    2) bicep
    3) Tricep
    4) back. Right on your shoulder blade

    You will need someone to take the measurements for you. Usually it is preferred to take 3 measurements per area and average those. Thus, using the above technique you would be taking 12 measurements

    In my case the Tanita scale comes consistently between 1%-2% of the calipers, unless I am dehidrated.

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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/27 05:18:17 (permalink)
    i use tanita scales because they are quick and easy, but first thing in the morning and i drink lots before going to bed so i am in the most constant state of hydration.

    tanita scales seem to be more accurate on the male setting, but i just use them as a guide to fat gain/loss father than being an real reading.

    i try to do it daily so that any odd readings can be ignored.

    i,m not sure about the hip thing either. the guides always say widest part, but then show a picture of a woman with a different widest part to me. mine is top of thighs rather than the hip line the pictures show.

    but if i buy clothes to fit widest part they are too big or the hip they use too small, perhaps i should use an average of both.
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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/27 15:26:13 (permalink)
    this may help:
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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/27 19:04:57 (permalink)
    I hate my body fat scales!!! i can put on up to 6% dependant on the time of day /time of month which i'm guessing is due to water retention. Id say the mirror is the best guide alternitavely get someone to take photos and then compare them in a month
    Novus Spera
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    RE: Where do you measure? 2003/12/31 21:35:47 (permalink)
    Thanks for all the replies! I am ditching the scale as far as the fat measurment part. At least the calipers are consistant and I can measure a change with them.
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