Fitness Journal: What Can It Do For You And Your Overall Health?
As many of us already know, it can be easy to give up and lose track of your fitness goals. In fact, Healthline reports that most (73%) people do not reach their New Year fitness goals due to difficulty staying on track or over-committing until they're burned out or injured.
However, keeping a fitness journal can make all the difference in your results.
This study states that those who set realistic targets see greater fitness results. Another study revealed that tracking your progress and health parameters can lead to better results in weight loss and weight management.
What are the benefits of a fitness journal?
As Hrishav Chowdhury once said, "Each new day is a new opportunity to improve yourself. Take it. And make the most of it." In fitness and health, you can make the most of your opportunity by using a fitness journal.
Here are four reasons why.
Having a fitness log to track and monitor your exercises is a great way to keep you motivated to continue your fitness journey. This is because you have a solid track record of your results and where you're at in reaching the goals you're striving to achieve.
For instance, when you strength train with resistance bands without tracking, you may not realize how much stronger you've gotten since you started (bigger dumbbells may be more obvious than different colors). However, your fitness journal will have it laid out for inspiration to continue improving.
Another motivational benefit to having a journal is when you feel down about recent results. You can always look back and get motivated by how far you've come.
2. Prepare ahead of time with goals
When pursuing a fitness goal, such as losing weight or gaining muscle, it's critical to consider the significance of many short-term goals that lead to that one goal. For example, instead of gaining 25 pounds of muscle in one year, set multiple short-term goals of gaining 1-2 percent muscle growth every two weeks (goal is too long-term, allowing you to slack throughout the year).
A fitness journal will allow you to make short-term goals AND report on where you're at in achieving them.
Take, for instance, BFR Band's Workout Journal & Fitness Log For Goals. It allows you to break down all of your exercises and their results for each day. It also includes a section for notes, dates, muscle group, start/finish, and how the workout went. This will help you prepare and improve routines to keep yourself interested in fitness.
3. Commits you to a schedule
Another benefit to consider when deciding on how to stay on track with fitness goals is committing to a schedule. Most people fail at achieving their ideal fitness results because they can't find time between kids, work, school, and more to commit to a workout.
In fact, the New York Post reports that nearly half (42%) of respondents in a recent survey said that the biggest reason they fail to work out is that they don't have enough time to commit to it.
Having a fitness tracker helps you make a schedule for the coming week to ensure you fit in time for exercising and healthy routines. You can also create future schedules by reviewing previous routines that worked in your hectic schedule.
When you regularly fill out your fitness tracker journal, you feel more accountable for reaching your fitness and health goals. This is because you have everything laid out on paper for you and can see each day/week's results. The last thing you will want to do is record that you are where you were in previous weeks, so you'll be more inspired to reach results you'll be proud of reporting.
Ramona Shaw says the reason is simple, "When you are held accountable for your actions, you will work harder because you feel a greater sense of obligation."
Do workout journals work?
When fully committed to tracking your fitness, workout journals have been shown to work. In fact, Inc. reports that you are 42% more likely to reach your fitness goals if you write them down. On the other hand, those who don't write down their goals are more likely to abandon their resolutions in just six months (60%) or even seven days (25%).
Are fitness journals worth it?
Whether a fitness journal is worth it is up to each person individually. However, you should note that if you are having trouble reaching your fitness goals, a fitness journal can make all the difference — so it would be worth it. On the other hand, if you already reach your goals easily every time, you may not need one (although it certainly wouldn't hurt!).
What should I put in my fitness journal?
According to Snap Fitness, there are five general metrics you must include in your workout journal:
- Your mood at the time
- The workout or training methods of that day
- Your current body weight
- Food and calorie intake, and other nutritional facts
Some food and fitness journals, much like BFR Band's Fitness and Nutrition Combo Tracking Journal, have sections where you can monitor your nutrition as well. As we all know, exercising is great for you, but nutrition is what fuels your body, keeps it working properly, and gives your muscles what they need to heal quickly and efficiently.
Adding nutrition into your fitness journal ensures you're getting enough.
How will you improve your own physical fitness?
There are many ways to get fit, but it can be challenging to maintain a routine. Tracking your progress throughout your journey can help keep you on track and develop a schedule that works best for you and your lifestyle.
This is where using a fitness journal is ideal — if not, very important. You'll have access to your entire fitness experience, making it simple to improve your physical fitness in areas you may not have realized needed improvement.