So it’s been three months since you’ve started working out consistently, tracking your progress, logging your meals, and writing down your workouts along the way, and you’ve seen amazing improvements overall. Your mood has improved, you lost 5 pounds, your waistline has dropped by two sizes, and life is good. But no matter how many bicep curls and bench presses you do, you still have those dreaded Goodbye Arms: that stubborn bit of flab under your arms that jiggle relentlessly when you wave. No matter how many crunches and planks you do, you still have a big chunk of belly fat. Why is this happening!?
Whether your goals are to get rid of unwanted body fat, build muscle, increase endurance, or just to get healthier and feel better, keeping track of what you eat can help you get there. It took me until the second half of my freshman year of college to realize that what I put into my body actually affects how my body looks and feels. By cataloging when and what you eat, you can get some insight into the many ways your food impacts your body and mind.
Whenever you’re making a change, especially starting a new healthy lifestyle, it’s a great idea to track your progress. Tracking is an easy way to quantify your changes, and see what kind of difference it is making on your life. Keeping track of the impact of exercise allows you to see how well you’re doing and helps boost your motivation to push through and continue your new habits. In combination with Effective Goal Setting, you can easily know how far you are in your journey to reaching your goals, and it can help you to set new goals to keep your change going.
The Plank has dethroned traditional sit-ups and crunches as the new king of core exercise. If one of your goals is a stronger core, there’s no better move than a Plank. The core is more than just your 6 pack abs, it’s all of the muscles that make up the center of the body, including the shoulders and glutes. If done correctly, the plank creates tension throughout the whole body, strengthening the major muscle groups just by stabilizing and holding the position.
People in the fitness world love to track. We track our progress, our food, and of course our workouts. And it’s all for good reason: keeping a record of everything, at least for a short period of time, can be extremely helpful to your overall fitness program. While you may not want to add another thing on your list of things to do when you’re just getting started, by keeping a record of your exercise history you can be more aware of exactly what you’re doing and what effect your routine is having on your body and mind.
Together with good goal setting and progress tracking, Exercise Tracking can help provide a full picture of your fitness path and help with assessment. Using these as guides is helpful to figure out what parts of your program are working, which ones are not, and how to progress further. Also, if you’re ever feeling frustrated with your progress, looking back at your tracking systems can be a great way to boost motivation, letting you easily see the improvements and changes you’ve made over time, and be inspired to continue.
In soccer games, and Casey Neistat & Nike videos, “without a goal, you can’t score.” Your fitness routine and the sport of futbol both have this in common. You can’t hit a target that doesn’t exist, and you can’t achieve the results you want from your workout if you don’t know what it is that you want. Once you’ve found your motivation and taken your first steps, taking the time to establish your fitness goals will save you time and energy, as well as make your fitness journey a lot more rewarding.