I am definitely a visual person. I like to see what I’ve done, and this is why using a Filofax works so well for me. It’s also why I really like to track my exercise each month. By seeing what I’ve done, I can see whether I’m doing well this month or not, and see if I’m getting a variety of exercise.
January was a good month for me. I completed the #YogaCamp with Adriene on youtube, went swimming every Tuesday, and gym/run twice each week. I’d like to say February followed, but I’ve been really bad with getting exercising done this month.
Pros of fitness tracking
Now there are two parts to fitness tracking really – planning ahead and just tracking what you’ve done afterwards. I personally do both, though planning ahead doesn’t always happen.
Planning ahead helps if you have a really busy week because putting the time aside for a workout means you have no excuses. When I was working a 9-5 job, I would go to the gym straight from work and then go home. Now I’m on a variety of shifts, I just fit it in whenever I’m not working. So many people use the excuse that they don’t have the time, but what is half an hour out of your day? I mean, it’s easy to sit and watch TV for half an hour isn’t it? If you really don’t have the time to get out to a gym (because I know travel adds up!) then just do a home workout! Planning is key to organising a busy life.
If, like me, you sometimes need a little kick up the bum to get moving, having your fitness plans written down beforehand can help. I wrote down each BBG task in my February calendar with the goal of crossing them off when I completed each workout. This worked up until half way, but then half-term happened and I was just too tired. Nevertheless, whenever I go to the gym, I have my workout written down in my phone. That way I know exactly what I should do, which muscles I’m targeting and I know roughly how long it will take. It means I enter with a plan, right down to the number of reps and weight, and do my workout more efficiently. I’m guilty of occasionally wandering aimlessly throughout the gym, not knowing what to do next. I’ve found that writing it down – either in a notebook or on your phone – can stop this indecisiveness.
In addition to this, tracking each workout after you’ve completed it shows how much (or little) you are doing. Worked out 6 days in a row? Yep, you should take that 7th off – you deserve it. Haven’t worked out all week and have an empty calendar? Go do something! My habit tracker for February is looking very empty in the exercise department, and that just motivates me to move. I’ve got a workout planned today, and yoga planned for tomorrow!
Cons of fitness tracking
Okay so if seeing a blank calendar or pages just de-motivates you even more – don’t do it. There’s no point doing it if it isn’t going to help. Some people just like to work in the moment, and whilst I can’t do that myself, it can work fine. On the other hand, if you’ve got an obsessive personality, tracking could be more harmful. You may always want to go that extra mile, and not give yourself enough of a break. Neither of these scenarios are good!