HOW TO PROPERLY TRACK YOUR PROGRESS [PART 1]
I'm guessing that you wake up early or haul your ass to the gym after work, and make conscious food choices because you want RESULTS and you wanted them yesterday.
If you are putting in a serious amount of effort with your training and nutrition, you owe it to yourself to take the ten extra minutes each week to track your progress seriously. This will help ensure you get the results you deserve.
I’d go as far as to say it’s the biggest differentiator between those that are successful and those that aren’t.
Because without proper tracking data, you won’t be able to gauge whether or not you are progressing as hoped. You won’t have objective data points from which to base your decisions off of when you stall in some area, and there is a good chance that you will get stuck spinning your wheels not knowing what to tweak to get yourself back on track.
Perhaps you’ve already experienced this frustration?
Thankfully, this 4 part series will give you everything you need to know so you can eliminate all of the guesswork and start seeing optimal and consistent gains both in the short AND long-term.
Listen, I know you want to get shredded in the least amount of time. I mean who doesn't?
But in order to do this you MUST have the proper structure and tools in place so that you can make any necessary adjustments to your nutritional requirements. Without those, not only will you be leaving huge gains on the table, but you'll be wasting a hell of a lot of time and effort.
There are 4 MAIN ways to track and measure progress and are what I use with all of my clients.
So, lets get into the first one...
tracking tool #1 - scale weight
Firstly, a very important note is that scale weight is not always the BEST tracking tool, simply because scale weight fluctuates from day to day and even hour to hour (as indicated in the illustration below). However, when used CORRECTLY it provides us with a macro-view of what's going on. In theory, if your goal is to shed body fat and get lean, the scale weight should be trending downward over time.
In order to limit the effect that these variables have on your weight reading, ensure you do the following:
Use a Three-Day Average
Get your weight for 3 consecutive days at the end of your week block and then use the average. For ease of this example lets say your week block started on Monday - you'd weigh yourself in the morning on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and then use the average weight against the average weight of the previous week.
*NOTE* I generally have my clients start their week blocks in the middle of the week. Why? Because weekends provide more opportunity to consume higher calories (especially carb heavier foods & higher than normal sodium) and therefore you'll more than likely be retaining more water than normal, thus giving off skewed weight data.
Because of all the weight fluctuation factors illustrated in the graphic above, mornings are the best time to get consistent readings.
Remember that scale weight is not the be all end all when it comes to tracking and gauging your progress. It is to be used in conjunction with the other 3 tracking tools covered in this 4 Part Series.