Taking two minutes a day to update a fitness journal will help you perform better.
For many people getting fit and staying fit can feel like an impossible task. But a fitness journal will help keep you on track and make sure you see progress. While this may not be the most glamorous subject, it’s important to keep a record of what you’re doing and how you feel about it, because you’ll be amazed to look back six months later and see how much you’ve improved.
Keep reading and I will share a few common fitness roadblocks and help you to overcome them through a process of self-discovery. I firmly believe that keeping a fitness journal will help you on your quest to become fitter and healthier.
Did you know that fitness plans can yo-yo just like a diet? People often tell me how they start a fitness plan with great enthusiasm only for it to tail off, or they approach fitness in fits and starts and then end up feeling frustrated. I hate to hear about people sabotaging their health and fitness levels and advocate a slow and steady approach to exercise. Please try keeping a fitness journal for six weeks. I have high hopes that it won’t just keep you on track, it will also help you become more active and even happier.
When I was competing as an athlete, I kept a detailed fitness journal. My coach required all athletes on our team to keep a training journal, and he would review ours with us once a month. There are some coaches who review their athlete’s fitness journal on a consistent basis like my coach, and other coaches who only request it when there is a problem, such as injury or poor performance.
The four key reasons competitive athletes keep a fitness journal are:
If you’re saying, “I’m not an athlete so this doesn’t apply to me,” don’t worry. I’m no longer a competitive athlete, but I still use a fitness journal to keep my fitness and nutrition goals on track. I’ll show you how you can simplify an athletic journal to suit your needs, regardless of your current fitness level. I believe that keeping a fitness/activity journal can help people with any of these goals.
A fitness journal can help everyone. But if you’re not yet convinced, here are my top two reasons why an activity diary will improve your approach to fitness:
If you’re wondering how you’re going to find the time to keep a journal when you can barely even find the time to workout—relax. I don’t need an essay. Just jot down these five things every day:
After keeping a journal for at least six weeks you get to play the role of detective. It can be fun to look through and evaluate patterns in your behavior. With a fitness journal it’s simple to detect problem areas or successes at a glance. Let me share some common fitness roadblocks and patterns that people discover when keeping a journal.
Exercise patterns. Try to find a pattern of which days are your most successful activity days. Many people discover that Monday workouts are essential. If you look at your journal and see that weeks that start out with a Monday workout consist of more total workouts for the week, then you should try to always make time for a workout on the first day of the week.
Decline in activity. If you notice that your activity level declines as the week progresses, then it is important for you to discover why. Is it because you are sore, tired or just busy? Your fitness journal notes will help you to create a plan to stay consistent.
Distractions. Life can be hectic and full of surprises, but do you notice that a certain family member or friend is disrupting your workout plan? If this is the case, you need to ask them for support or invite them join you.
Emotions. Certain types of exercise can affect your emotions. Maybe you’ll notice that each time you do a particular type of workout you end up feeling uplifted for the rest of the day. Now that you know, you can try to fit in a quick blast of your favorite exercise style to turn your day around if you are low or lacking motivation. Alternatively, if you see that on gym days your mood is not so positive, you could try skipping the gym and adding a workout outside or at home instead. Finding what works best for you is the key to prolonged success.
Your individual success is based on you, and once you begin to keep a regular and honest account of your fitness you’ll ensure yo-yo activity levels are a thing of the past. I believe that my role as a fitness professional is to help people take control of their fitness, and keeping a fitness journal will help you discover how to work with your personality and time commitments to be more successful.