Monday, February 20, 2012

BMI (Blessed be My Ignorance)

Taken from the CDC (Center for Disease Control) Website:
              BMI Formula: weight (lb) / [height (in)]2 x 703

Call me crazy, but isn't BMI calculating simply a new-fangled weight-height chart?  Why has this become a standard?  They say it is accurate, depending on the person.  Well what is that supposed to mean??  How do I know whether I am the person it is right for or not?  I know plenty of women who carry their weight differently.  Often, when I confess to people what I actually weight, I am told that I do not look like I weight that much.  Small consolation when people still balk when I tell them I weigh 165-ish lbs.  I try to take their shock as a compliment that I look better than what a woman of 165 lbs standing only 5' 3.5" should.  Wait one cotton-pickin' minute!  What the hell is that supposed to mean?

I told you I would be honest and in that vein I am publishing my weight.  EEK!  I squirmed a little when I typed it.  Why?  It really isn't anything to be ashamed of.  I am a work in progress and that's ok.  I think that may become my new mantra.

None of us fit into a neat little box like BMI's and height-weight charts would like us to believe.  I guess that is the bane of my existence AND a blessing.  How about that for "deep thoughts"?

Now, I am trying to find a way to better measure my health.  What's in a number?  I'm hoping that judging by how my clothes fit and how my body feels will be an accurate measure.  I am hoping, of course, that the scale cooperates eventually.  I just don't want that to be my ONLY measure of success of failure.  Honestly, I am going to try to celebrate the small things.  Skipping that ice cream sundae, getting in an extra workout, being more active in my everyday life.  Baby steps.



  1. I think that it is a brilliant concept, and the correct mindset, for one to be a work in progress. Kudos.

  2. Thanks Brent! I am hoping this becomes a safe haven for people to vent about their frustrations and how they see the world of weight loss. :) Thanks for checking it out and feel free to "follow" this blog.

  3. I never follow my BMI, just my measurements. People always think I weight less than I actually do too. I'm currently 180 at 5'7". I think it has to do with your build. I found a great podcast about a year ago and on their website they have some cool calculators. Here's the link:

    Also great job on the blog Heidi your a good writer!

  4. Those calculators are very interesting! I will be checking them out more when I get access to a measuring tape. Thanks, Shani! Miss you!

  5. BMI can be accurate if you have a 'standard' body--not too thin, not too tall, not unevenly proportioned...whcih basically no one has.

    I really like the WHR or Waist Hip Ratio. (Read more: ) It looks at the ratio of your tummy to your hips and gives you a number that you can compare to a couple of standards for various insights. It's been shown to be pretty accurate and a good predictor of various issues cause it takes into account build.

    Bodyfat is another decent one ( is the calculator I use) but it can be hard to get an accurate reading unless it's done by a pro.

    At the end of the day, though, numbers can only tell you so much. How do you feel about yourself and your fitness level?