It’s a simple thing to do, but a lot of us either aren’t aware of it’s importance or are just simply too lazy…
You know how they say you shouldn’t go grocery shopping without a list? Well you shouldn’t go to the gym without tracking. Yup. That’s it. If you’re someone who’s interested in going to the gym to see ACTUAL results, you should be keeping track of your workouts. By simply going in and working on what you feel like, you’re going to be less motivated as well as have less direction while at the gym, causing your workout to suffer.
It can be as simple as jotting down little notes in your phone, such as the date, what workouts you did and how much weight you used or time you spent on each. If you want to get really serious, buy yourself a notebook that’s strictly dedicated to keeping track of your workout sessions. This way you’ll be able to quickly see how far you have or haven’t come since starting. Also, it will remind you of how much weight you used the last time as opposed to just guessing.
If you’re a weight lifter, a great way to structure your notebook is keeping a full page for each muscle group or day of workouts. That way, when it’s chest day, you can go to that page and see all of your previous work. Once you’ve filled that page, go to a blank one and start fresh.
If you’re a runner, chart your progress by marking the date, the time of day, and the weather conditions. Mark how quickly you were able to complete your run. Once you’ve gotten your time down substantially, start running a bit longer and work on bringing that time down.
Tracking your workouts will help you to make gains more quickly, as you’ll be able to see that last week you did 10 reps at a certain weight, so this week you should try a bit more weight.
The best way to get started is to challenge yourself to one week of charting your workouts. If you make it, go another week, then another. Even if you’re not going to the gym and you’re just working out at the park or going for a run, you should document what you did so that you can be as successful as possible.
After a few months, you’ll be shocked by how much further your gains have come than they had in a much longer period of time prior to keeping track.