When I sit down with my clients and we start to look at what their goals and aspirations are, I start to form a plan for them. I take what they want to achieve, their current fitness level and exercise experiences and I figure out what we will do for the next couple of months. I do this for myself as well!
There are many reasons to document your fitness journey but I’ve narrowed it down to five and I also have a big bonus one as well that I just had to add!
Keeping your training sheets and workout journals can be over whelming but it really can give you great direction and information to how successful you are!
It Gives You a Plan:I feel that if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.
I personally like to know what my clients and I will be doing from week to week. They seem to as well!
Most of the time the exercises will be the same but the reps and sets will change. I also will throw in something different or fun(my clients dread that word!!! They know that usually means something hard or difficult!) but it really isn’t too hard just different!
I then write out a plan with exercises, sets and repetitions. This is the first part of the documentation I give my clients! I make a copy and give it to them to keep.
This serves as a roadmap to where we are headed and builds a foundation that we can build upon.
The next piece of documentation I give my clients is a printable workout journal. My hubby is an expert art Excel and made this for me! But really any workout journal will do to keep a record of your workouts!
Documenting Your Workouts Keeps You Accountable:
I keep a written record of all my weight lifting workouts. It helps me to focus and know exactly what I am doing each day. I will write down how I felt about the workout-was it good, great, meh or quick? It keeps me on track and moving forward!
I also have all my clients keep a record of their workouts-whether with my sheets or whatever way they prefer. We write down the amount of weight lifted and I may even have them write down how they felt physically and emotionally. It gives them a record to look back on and see how far they’ve come as well as where they may need to improve.
I can’t imagine walking into the gym and just casually using the machines and weights. That would be chaos to me!
It Will Help You Finish Your Workout:
Let’s say, you have 6 exercises on your list the day, for example:
Leg Curl 3×10.
Leg Extension 3X10.
Front Squats 3×10.
Single Leg Deadlifts 3×10.
Leg Press 3×10.
Adductor Machine 3×10
You get to the gym, there are a ton of people and it’s really gets on your nerves! The machines and weights are really congested. You really want to leave but then you look at your list. You’ve done half of your workout and you know you’ll be disappointed in yourself if you don’t finish!
This is what will help you finish your workout!
Don’t give up.
You can ask to work in with someone or ask them to let you know when they are almost done.
Also, don’t be afraid to ask your trainer for or find your own substitutions. One small example is instead of the adductor machine, you can do plies with weights!
Having a list will give you a map to make the most of your time!
It Will Help You See What is Working and What is Not:
If you keep a record of your workouts it will give you a database of what is working and what is not.
If you hit a plateau you can look back and see where you were having gains or losing weight and compare your current workouts with that. You can then adjust accordingly.
This also works if you keep a record of your eating.
If you are dealing with an injury, you can look back to see what caused it.
This can help you solve many issues with your fitness progress!
It Will Serve as an Encouragement:
Did you recently hit a personal record(PR)? Perhaps you bench pressed a weight you never have done before.
Maybe you get injured and you’re frustrated. Looking back on your documented PR can encourage you to rest and rehab your injury so you can get back to the gym quicker and stringer!
Have you recently lost some weight? Being able to look back on the past month can help you see what you need to do to continue with that pattern!
One Bonus Reason:
Check In Pictures:
I also want to address one other aspect of documenting your fitness journey!
It’s the one most of us hate until we achieve our goals!
Yes these SUCK! I mean really?? Who wants to take a picture of themselves while they’re fat or out of shape?
But from experience, looking back on my checkin pictures from the past, I get encouraged that I can achieve the goals I have set for myself even if I am not currently there. I see where hard work can pay off!
The thing to remember is your checkin pictures are for you and your trainer only. No one else has to see them!
You can hide them in a folder on your computer or in a drawer!
But one day you will compare your beginning, to your now and be extremely happy! Keep that in mind!!
Documenting your workout, your eating and the way you feel during workouts can seem like a lot of work, but in the long run it will be very helpful in your fitness journey!
Do you keep a fitness journal?
Do you track what you eat?
Do you take check in pictures?
How do you feel about keep track of your fitness and eating?
Let me know what you think!
I’d love to hear from you!