Track Your Progress

If you read my posts you know I strongly encourage everyone to make goals, and write them down.  I think that’s very important to you seeing success.  If you don’t know what you want to accomplish, how will you ever know if you’re successful?  You won’t know, and that will lead you to getting discouraged and potentially quitting.  And no one wants that!

But not only should you start off by writing down your goals, you need to measure and track your progress too!  That’s something that I haven’t written about as much.  Personally, I think it’s just as important for a couple of reasons:

1) If you track your progress, say in 30 day increments, you can see if you’re headed in the right direction.  This is so important!  If you’re not making small steps towards your goal, then you have time to change something!  Whether it be your nutrition, the intensity of your workouts, or something else, that is the time to tweak something you’re doing so you can turn things around.  It might be a little discouraging to not see the progress you want, but it’s a huge opportunity to make the necessary changes!

I personally did this on my first round of Insanity.  After 1 month, I had lost no weight, so I really dialed in my nutrition, and I lost 17 lbs in the next month!  Sure I wasn’t happy about the first month, but I used that information to make a change that helped me reach my goal!

2) It can be extremely encouraging and motivating to see that you are making progress.  If you see that the early morning workouts and the change in nutrition is actually helping you change your body, you are much more likely to stick with it and reach your goal.  I know first hand how exciting it is to see that you’re getting ever closer to reaching your goal.  Whether that be a goal weight, a body fat percentage or an ability to do a certain number of pull ups for example.  Seeing that progress gives you reassurance that you’re not wasting your time and it’s all worth it.

For me, I lost 17 lbs. with Insanity and just wanted more.  I wasn’t at my goal weight yet, and I wanted to improve my strength, especially in pull ups.  So I gave P90X a try and saw a ton of progress with that too!  Having goals and then tracking along the way to see that I was moving in the right direction was incredibly motivating and kept me focused on what I had to do.

So what should you do to track your progress?  There are a couple things I think are important.  First off, take progress pictures (and don’t forget to take your day 1 pictures!).   Often times the scale might not show a ton of progress, but when you take pictures, you can visually see what’s changing.  Second, I would measure body fat and the rest of your body measurements as well to see if you’re losing inches.  You can hop on the scale too, I just wouldn’t do that every day.  Lastly, make sure you’re writing down your weight and reps on your exercises.  That’s a  great way to see if you’re getting stronger and improving in certain areas more than others.  As much as I talk about the importance of writing down goals, it is also just as crucial to track your progress!  Make sure you’re writing it down, taking pictures, and changing things up if you’re not seeing the results you want!

Right now, I track more on 90 day increments, but when I first started, I tracked every 30 days.  Here are my progress photos from my first round of P90X:

 

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