There are 3 Success Factors that are critical for reaching your own health and fitness goals. These are the 3 most important factors, in my opinion, to ensure success and achieve the results you are after. It doesn’t matter if your goals are to lose 100 lb. or to add 20 lb. of lean muscle, these 3 factors will help get you there.
- Why Power
I have decided to dive into each of them a bit deeper. This article will focus on the first factor; Tracking
Why should I track?
Before I get into the specifics of what you should track, I want to elaborate on the WHY.
I love the quote; “What gets measured, gets managed.” – Peter Drucker
If you are just getting started with your own fitness journey, you have got to really focus on tracking. Tracking everything as detailed as possible. Keeping a log/journal of what you are doing along the way will allow you to know what is working well and where you could improve. It would also allow you to share with me what you have been doing and I can help you identify areas where I feel adjustments can be made.
However, without any of this information, it will be rather difficult for me, or anyone else for that matter, to offer suggestions in these areas.
Do you have to be perfect with your tracking? Initially, I would say; YES! You have to come to terms with the fact that what you have been doing in the past wasn’t working and until you are more comfortable with the process, you will need everything to be as accurate as possible. Once you have met your goals, it will be up to you to decide on how accurate/perfect your tracking is. On a personal level, I track as much as possible even to this day! It helps keep me accountable to my own goals and ensures that I am on track to reach them.
What should I track?
First off, tracking applies to both your nutrition and your fitness. I’ll cover each of those below and you MUST track both! It won’t serve you in the long run if you are only tracking your nutrition or only on the fitness side, you will need to start tracking both. Your nutrition is going to have a huge impact on your weight loss journey and if you aren’t tracking it, you’ll likely find yourself hitting plateaus, losing motivation and possibly giving up and quitting. The same concept applies to tracking things from a fitness perspective.
Tracking your nutrition is key, especially if you need to lose weight and you have never tracked your nutrition in the past! If you aren’t tracking what you are consuming, fueling your body with, it is going to rather difficult for you to know where you need to improve.
You should have a daily caloric goal that you are working towards. Having a means to track your nutrition against that caloric goal will ensure that you are getting the proper amounts of fuel in your body and that you are maximizing your efforts from your workout. Again, regardless of a weight loss or weight gain goal, tracking your nutrition is equally important.
When you track your nutrition with a product like myfitnesspal (www.myfitnesspal.com), I can check out the things that you are eating on a daily/weekly/monthly basis and help you dial it in with comparison to your goals.
What is great about the MFP (myfitnesspal) app and website is that most, if not all, of the common food items are already in the ginormous database and all you have to do is either scan the bar code or search for the food item by name. This is a community driven site with respect to the food items and the accompanying nutritional details, so I would recommend that you confirm the nutritional info at least the first time you add something or only choose items that have been confirmed by several other community members. This will ensure you are accurately recording the nutritional details about the food items you are tracking.
The app and website will keep track of your previous entries, making it easier to have the same food item again at a later date. I keep my Shakeology breakfast saved as a meal since I basically have the same recipe each and every day!
My Shakeology Breakfast
- 1 Scoop Chocolate Shakeology
- 1 Scoop Optimum Nutrition 100% Gold Standard Whey
- 2 Tbsp. Natural Peanut Butter
- 1/2 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1/4 cup Oats
- 6-8 oz Water
- 6-8 Ice Cubes
If you don’t already have an account with MFP, go out to the website now or download the app on your smartphone and sign up for an account, both the app and the site are 100% FREE. Once you have that, send me a friend request, my user name is; cburn_317
Sometimes it can be the simplest of tweaks can lead to big changes and this is especially true on the nutrition side. However, until you know where you are starting from, you have NO IDEA on what you need to change.
Ready to Learn More About Nutrition?
If you want to learn more about the fundamentals of nutrition, check out the following 7-part series that I have created!
Hey, I’m Chris Coburn and I am a certified Precision Nutrition Level 1 Coach! Each day I will send you an email that will cover one easily digestible, essential building block on the fundamentals of nutrition.
The best part? They’re totally free.
To check out the free series, just click the button below.
Just as tracking your nutrition plays an important role in your journey, the same applies to your fitness.
Nearly all of the Beachbody fitness programs have the ability to track your progress along the way. For some, this means the number of reps and weight used, but for others it isn’t as straight forward and you will have to make note of the things that you struggled with or the things that you excelled at for that particular workout.
In either case, without a means to track these things you don’t know where you can/need to improve or where you have seen the most improvement along the way. I know that I get excited when I have surpassed a previous PR (personal record) on a particular exercise. This is a great confidence booster, but if you didn’t track your previous efforts you can’t celebrate those “minor victories”.
I have most of the worksheets and schedules that accompany many of the Beachbody fitness programs that you can download and print out for your own use. Grab the workout sheet for your fitness program here: Workout Sheets
Tracking your progress with photos and measurements is another great way to see the changes in your body that you normally would not see with your own eyes. This one is “optional”, but possibly the one area of tracking that will really keep you going. Once you start seeing the changes in your body happening through measurements and photos, you will find yourself even more motivated to stick with it and you will likely push yourself harder.
These measurements and photos will tell you SO MUCH MORE than the number staring back at you on the scale. Measuring your body weight is a good indicator of your progress, but it should not be your only means of tracking. Your body composition will change more than you might think and having these other areas to track, will provide additional proof that you are making progress.
We look at ourselves in the mirror everyday and more often that you probably think. We are used to seeing that reflection and because of this, we often miss the subtle changes that are happening along the way. Others may see it, but often times self-doubt on our own progress blinds you to these facts. Looking at your before and after photos and measurements along the way, is by far one of the greatest motivators to keep yourself going. Don’t neglect the impact of seeing your body change through a lens other than your own eyes in the mirror.
Here is a great video on tracking your progress through photos and how to get the best photos to show off your results!
Need help tracking?
Do you need help with Tracking? Let me know how I can help!
Need a Coach?
If you need to find someone that will hold you accountable, answer your questions, help you, and PUSH YOU for the entire duration of your workout! Luckily for you, that’s what me and my team are here for. If you don’t have a coach yet and want one, I’d love to be your coach and help you through a fitness program. I am available to help you reach your goals!