Working out is hard. Finding motivation to work out can be even harder. I have constantly struggled with sticking with a training program. I often backslide, and end up restarting everything. Recently, I’ve committed to keeping an exercise journal, and it is extremely motivating. Simply put, this is a journal where I document how I feel about my work-out.
There are multiple different ways to do this. You can simply jot down the exercises you did on a certain day. You can go farther and add details on how you felt during your work out. You can create an exercise – nutrition journal combo. Basically, you can do this however you want. Remember, journaling is for you, and only you, so be as flexible as you want with it!
I keep an exercise journal in order to hold myself accountable. Sitting down at the end of each week to plan out the upcoming week both motivates me and makes me responsible for my work-outs. I use three different levels of organization for logging my work outs, mostly because I know myself. I know that I am incredibly likely to convince myself that it’s okay to skip a work-out, I can just do it tomorrow, sleeping sounds better. Here are my three levels, along with the super fun and colorful pens I use:
1. Passion Planner: This is the planner I use for my entire schedule, not just my work-outs. However, by scheduling my work outs in this planner, I am able to plan them around the rest of my day. I am also constantly reminded of them every time I check my schedule. Check out our review on the Passion Planner here and check out their website here!
2. Training Planner: This is the planner I use strictly for scheduling my work outs. It didn’t occur to me to even have one of these until I started doing Amanda Bisk’s Fresh Body Fit Mind training program. If you haven’t checked out AB, both Cindy and I one hundred percent encourage you to do so. She’s amazing. Amanda Bisk claims that a training planner helps you to plan, track your progress, and appreciate the progress you have made in your fitness journey, and I assure you that it does all of these things. I make quick notes of how I felt during the work out, how much water I drank that day, my goals for the week, and, my personal favorite, my word of the week. This is the word that I choose to define my week. I put it everywhere: in my planner, on my fridge, on my wall, on my mirror. It’s always there to remind me to keep moving forward. My training planner helps me to stay focused on my goals. I love it and consider it a key part of my fitness. Below, you’ll see first an image that shows what a completed week looks like and second what an upcoming week looks like.
3. Exercise Journal: I use this journal at the end of each day, usually right before bed. This is where I go into detail on how I feel about my work-outs and entire journey as a whole. This is probably my most personal journal. While it is largely focused on recounting my work-outs, I’m brutally honest with myself and how I’m feeling. Changing a lifestyle is incredibly challenging, and this journal lets me vent my frustrations and acknowledge my accomplishments all at the same time. It is amazingly therapeutic and really keeps me focused on my goals.
No matter where you are in your fitness journey or why you work-out, I promise that you can benefit from an exercise journal, if only because you’ll be able to look back and see what you did the week before.
Do you use some sort of fitness planner or journal? How does it help you?