Tracking Your Way to Fitness: How and Why You Should Track Your Progress
The well known quote “failing to plan is planning to fail” applies to everything we do in relation to fitness and healthy eating. When you have a goal, tracking your successes and failures can have a huge impact on how successful you are with reaching your end goal. If you don’t track your workouts and healthy eating, how do you know what works and what doesn’t for you? Tracking goals and having a way to analyze your successes and failures gives you meaningful data to analyze and adjust so you can succeed.
There is no one way to measure success. In fact, there are a multitude of measurements that you can combine to see the whole picture. These are weight tracking, body measurements, food tracking, and workout stats. Each of these facets combine to create a recipe for success.
Track your weight
With weight loss or muscle gain, tracking start weight and repeatedly measuring each week or every few weeks can help you discover what is working and what may need tweaking. Tracking your weight every day can be a little too much, as your body does fluctuate some and this doesn’t allow enough time for you to see full results.
It’s simple to track your weight and have a visual history using 8fit. Inside the home screen of your 8fit app, you can locate a handy weight tracking section. Just weigh yourself, enter the data, save and track your progress. You can look at and update this information at any time.
It’s important to remember not to freak out if you see a number that you’re not expecting. Look at the big picture and strive to reach your overall goal. If you are gaining weight instead of losing, or vice versa, then you will be able to look back at your training and eating habits and adjust them as needed.
Track your body measurements
The scale doesn’t always tell the whole story. An additional way to track how well you are progressing towards your goals is to take measurements. Be specific. Measure your waist, hips, biceps, triceps, thighs & calves. Often you will notice changes in inches lost or gained, depending on your goal, before you see a change in the scale. Body measurements often give a clearer picture of how you are progressing than the scale can. Just be certain you are measuring in the same place each time. Use a birthmark you recognize to mark the spot or ensure you always measure at the widest part of your calf muscle. Find a way to remember what works for you.
Track your food choices
Along with weight tracking comes tracking what and when you eat. Knowing what goes into your body, the quality of foods you consume and how you feel can impact your end goals. You can track your food in a journal or with an app. With the 8fit nutrition plan, we give you complete meal recipes and allow you to check off each meal as you make it. This is a simple, easy way to keep track of the foods you eat and the calorie content of each meal.
Another method is journaling. Writing down how the meal made you feel and where you were when you ate it can be valuable if you are looking to see how certain foods affect you. This will allow you to eliminate foods that sideline your progress and incorporate more of the foods that make you strong and healthy.
Track your workouts
To get stronger and fitter, you need to continually challenge yourself to up the intensity of your workout. Without tracking how intense you worked in the previous week’s sessions, you won’t know how much to push yourself in your current workouts. If you did three sets of eight push-ups last week, you should be trying for three sets of nine push-ups this week.
A great way to keep track is to follow your customized plan with 8fit Pro. The plan will automatically level you up as you progress. You don’t even need to think about it. You just worry about going as hard as you can in every workout. Every workout is tracked and saved under your profile, so you can look back at your progress whenever you need to. Not doing an in-app workout? You can track your run sessions, bicycling, swimming, dancing and more just by logging the session in the app.
Most of us do not have photographic memories and won’t remember our set and rep count from week to week. This is why you need to track your progress either on paper or in a digital record. Look back on it to see how far you have come and how to challenge yourself in your next workout.
Celebrate your successes
When you track your workout progress you will know exactly when you reach each goal that you set for yourself. When you meet a goal, give yourself a pat on the back. Treat yourself to a massage when you reach a weight loss goal or finally are able to do 10 push-ups without stopping. Another fun way to celebrate success is to put a dollar in a jar every time you reach a small goal. When you reach your end goal, use the money for a special treat, like a movie night out or day on the town.
Success doesn’t come overnight, but it will come. Tracking your progress can help you achieve your goals faster. The bottom line is that to truly be successful in weight loss, muscle building or even your career, you need to do the following three things:
- Make a plan
- Track what is and is not working
- Adjust your goals accordingly
The more specific you can be with your goals and your tracking of the process and results, the more likely you are to get the result you want. Give it a try for a few weeks. Track your workouts and meals with your 8fit app. We know you will see a difference.