“Whatever gets measured gets done”- Unknown
I don’t know who came up with this quote but there is much truth in it, especially when it comes to being consistent with your workout and weight loss goals.
There are many factors that affects consistency (too much to mention in this article). However, one of the greatest factors that can help you in remaining consistent with your workout and weight loss routine is by tracking and measuring your daily activity.
One of the ways I do this is with my or Track & Measure Sheet (T&M Sheet).
Download my track and measure sheet I use to keep on track
One thing I realized is one of the main reasons why I wasn’t consistent in workout routine before was because I never tracked and measured my progress. I had no way of knowing how much I was progressing or if I was progressing at all. I would execute my workout, and mark it on the calendar, but this alone wasn’t enough.
If you want to increase your chances of being consistent then track and measure EVERYTHING.
The Negative Effects of Not Tracking and Measuring Your Workout and Weight Loss Activity
I want you to understand something, and never ever forget it: Consistency with your goals is more about psychology than practicality.
Let me say it again…
Consistency is MORE about psychology than practicality.
This means it’s more about developing the mindset, thought process, and internal identity of someone who is consistent, than it is about which diet plan works best it which workout program or fitness trainer is most effective.
What Happens When You Don’t Track and Your Workout and Weight Loss Activity
1. Your mind (in this case your subconscious) doesn’t take you seriously
When you don’t have a physical (or can be electronic) piece of data that you can look at and see and analyse your progress your mind believes you are not really serious.
How our mind works is anything that is documented (flows from your mind unto paper), it somehow interprets this as ‘This is important, pay attention to this‘. Therefore, if you’re just going along every day not documenting then chances are your mind will see it as unimportant, doesn’t give it much focus or attention, and it never gets done (see quote at the beginning of article).
2. It’s easy to get off-track, and even harder to get back on
When you don’t track and measure it’s easy to just get caught up in just going through the motions. Doing it just for the sake of doing, forgetting the real reason and purpose for being consistent with your workout and weight loss goals in the first place.
Today you get up you do it, tomorrow you don’t, next 2 days you do, tomorrow you don’t, and so on.
When you lose track of how well or badly you’re doing then it’s all too easy for your mind to take a casual, indifferent attitude towards the activity. Soon your body follows, you get off-track, and because of your mental attitude towards the task you have no real urgency in getting back on-track. Then you slip back into bad habits and old routines
3. It’s easy to lose your drive when you can’t see progress
The brain craves instant gratification, in this case it takes the form of progress.
We don’t actually have to be at the ultimate fitness goal we’re after to feel happy, alive, and excited. We just have to see (or at the very least feel) like we are making progress. This alone is enough to keep us going, even on the difficult days.
If you don’t document your progress, then you can’t see how you’re progressing. If you don’t know whether or not you’re progressing, then soon you will lose enthusiasm and a reason to continue. In other words in your mind starts to think “What’s the point”.
4. It’s difficult to identify areas for improving
One of the most important reasons to document is to not just track progress, but to identify areas of improvement.
You can’t improve if you don’t know what you’re looking for to improve in the first place. You can’t know what’s working or not working for you if you don’t even know whether your dropping the pounds through consistent workout or through your diet plan. More so if you’re not consistent at it.
How tracking and measuring your workout and weight loss activity helps in Staying Consistent
1. It helps to identify areas you can improve
Initially your goal should be to be consistent, whether you’re working out or on a diet plan.
However, to improve your chances you have to know the key indicators of what affects your consistency, whether in a negative or positive way (it will be slightly different for each person).
When I was consistent in my workout routine for the first 30 days straight (something I had never done before), it was an amazing feeling of Accomplishment. However, 5 days after that 30 day mark I realized I started missing days and slipping back into inconsistency. Since I was tracking my progress I was able to identify the reason why that was.
I was pumped by the challenge of going 30 days straight and proving to myself that I could do it, but once I got to day 30 the thrill of the challenge started to fade. I had to now identify a new emotionally compelling reason why it was important for me to keep consistent. This also helped me in course correcting other areas of my life I started slipping in, and even helped me to understand which routines were best suited to be done in the morning versus the evening to increase the chances of consistency.
If I was not keep track I would not have been able to identify all these different factors which helped me improve my consistency.
2. It creates excitement and enthusiasm to keep going
There’s nothing more thrilling than seeing yourself progress and getting better. It’s an exhilarating feeling words cannot describe!
When you can document your progress, and actually see how far you’ve have come, and how much you have grown over the period of your journey, it creates a strong desire, even a craving, to keep going.
One of the major reasons is it further improves your self-image, and how you feel about yourself. Once you can start to feel good, even great, about your progress and the transformation into the new you, then you develop belief in yourself that you can achieve more, which then increases your self confidence.
This was very evident with a gentleman I recently worked with. By implementing the track and measure process into his workout routine, when he started to see how consistent and disciplined he was it significantly increase his self esteem and self confidence.
Seeing progress in your workout and weight loss goals makes you feel good.
3. It creates a fear of loss
When I say fear of loss, I mean the fear of losing out on something.
When it comes to consistency, there’s nothing more terrifying than seeing how far you’ve come, miss a day or two, and start to see how slipping further will lead back to the old you.
Once you get that rush of your new self and your new that you can make anything possible, the thought of going back to the old you who lacks confidence, has bad habits, and had low self-esteem is enough to terrify you back into action.
This is why it is important to document, because when you can actually see how far you’ve come on paper, it creates a trigger in your brain that says “Hey we need to get back on track, or else we’re going to go back to the old us”. Just the thought of that will get you back on track
4. It helps to keep you focused and productive
Focus is one of those things I also struggle with, but with much work slowly but surely I am getting there. The irony of this is I discovered this by chance. My goal was never to improve my focus or productivity (at least not right now), only to be consistent.
When you track and measure your workout and weight loss goals you wish to be consistent in, it helps you to keep your eyes on the most important things, and getting them done. Your T&M Sheet can also act as a To-Do list, where you can check throughout the day your workout and weight loss routines that need to get done.
This can help you keep on-track in ensuring each activity or routine gets done by the end of each day. You know exactly what to do, and you know exactly if and when it is done. Doing this small step every day keeps you consistent, and overtime creates an empowering habit.
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