Starting a body recomposition program without measurements is like planning a trip without a start address. I guarantee you will regret it later. Don’t fly blind! “Tim Ferriss”  Click to Tweet!

Three Simple Steps to Getting Your Measurements (From The 4-Hour Body)

Step I. Take your before circumference measurements. Get a simple tape measure and measure four locations

  1. Both Upper Arms (mid-bicep) example here
  2. Waist (horizontal at naval)
  3. Hips (at widest point below Waist)
  4. Both Legs (mid-thigh)

Total these numbers to arrive at your Total Inches (TI). Changes in this total will be meaningful enough to track.

I have created a special 4-hour body “BODY MEASUREMENT WORKSHEET”. Take your time to record this data, it will act as a guide as you begin your diet. I recommend that you return here instead of the scale to track your progress.

Download as Excel Worksheet |  FOR MEN | FOR WOMEN |


Step II. Estimate your body-fat (BF%) based on the “Eyeballing It” slider (or use the above Excel spreadsheet with skinfold calipers)

What should your body fat goals be?

The American Council on Exercise uses the following categories based on percentage of body fat:

Tim Ferriss Four Hour Body: Body Fat Goals

For Men:

For Women:


Step III. Choose the Best Tool and Schedule a Session

  • If your over 30% body-fat, avoid calipers and use DEXA, BodPod, or ultrasound, in that order.
  • If you are under 25%, still aim for DEXA, BodPod, or ultrasound.
  • If you cannot find these opt for calipers with a qualified professional and request the 3-point or 7-point Jackson Pollock Algorithm.

Professional Resources:

  • BodPod: Use this site to find BodPod assessment centers
  • BodyMetrix: Hand-held device uses ultrasound to measure body composition down the millimeter.
  • Find DEXA: About $49 use this to find a local center.


Tim’s Recommended Tools for Body Composition:

Related Posts:

Body Analysis Links:

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