Yesterday in my motivation post I talked about recording your workouts on a piece of paper while you are training. If you are serious about meeting your training goals (losing weight/gaining muscle/training for a sport) you need to be recording your workouts on a daily basis.
First of all recording your workouts will help with the motivation factor like I talked about yesterday. When you have your numbers written down you can always aim to do better than your last workout. Make it a game with yourself to improve each and every workout. Every month take a look back and see how much you improve. When you start seeing improvements in your lifts, times, etc you will should start to get more motivation to continue to improve.
Writing down your daily workout routine with the amount of weights you lifted, sets and reps will also allow you to make sure that you are changing up your workouts and hitting all body parts equally throughout the week, month and year.
So how do I go about recording my workouts?
Well first of all you will need to go out and purchase some type of booklet that you will record your workouts with. For me I just use one of those soft cover worksheet books that we used to use in school with about 50 lined pieces of paper in each. They cost under a dollar and don’t take up much room in my workout bag. Anything will do the trick though. I highly recommend a booklet over just bringing a piece of paper each day, as with the book you will be able to look back into previous workouts and see the amounts you lifted, reps you performed, etc.
OK so you have your workout book and you now are ready to record your workouts. There are probably many different ways to do this, but I will just tell you how I go about it.
The first thing I do is write the date and time of my workout in the top right corner. After that I write the type of workout I am doing that day along the top where a title would go. An example for me would be “Chest/Arms” or “Lower Body/Core”.
I will then write down the first exercise I am performing. Beside that I will write the amount of weight I choose and the number of reps I perform for the first set. I then use a comma and repeat for the next set, and then repeat again for the third set (if I do a third set). Continue on like that until you are done the exercise. Then you give yourself a line in between the two exercises and continue the process. Here is an example of what it looks like:
DB Incline Bench Press – 50×10, 70×10, 75×8, 80×8
Triceps BW Dips – 20, 20, 18
In the above example you will notice I use short forms such as DB (dumbbell) and BW (bodyweight). Doing so makes for less time wasted writing. Beside the first exercise you can see that I used 50 pound dumbbells for 10 reps for the first set, then went up to 70 pound dumbbells for 10 reps in the second set, etc.
After I complete my workout I record the length of the entire workout and then go in the change room and weigh myself and record my weight. I weigh myself everyday after the workout in just a towel to keep it consistent. An example below…
Time = 57:00
Weight = 197
I hope this helped any beginners who were wondering how exactly to record your workouts and what you want to be recording. Keep working hard in the gym!