What we want to change we must measure – Unknown
In the modern world, we are constantly bombarded with advertising, distraction, and a million different messages pulling us in different directions. This makes change difficult simply because mixed messages can lead to mixed actions and mixed actions lead to mixed results and there is nothing more demotivating than a lack of results.
To change is simple consistently do the actions required to get the result you want. Simple yet not always easy purely because you are an individual, what works for Jasmine might be the exact opposite thing that works for Jane. This is why we must track. When we track we can identify what needs to be changed, remove distractions and mixed messages and make small adjustments until our desired result is achieved.
So what should you track and what is the best way to track it?
Tracking your training is a great way to measure progress and also to shift your mindset from what you have to lose (eg weight – On the scales) to what you have gained (eg weight – on your lifts) it also helps you with the law of progressive overload – Selecting weights that are slightly above where you currently are asking the body to adapt to the new load in a progressive fashion. We use The Evolved training app powered by trainerize which makes it easy for our members to track and see the progress with their training.
Tracking your food – This is one of the greatest skills you can develop in terms of weight management. If you are honest with the tracker and yourself it will give you a great insight into your energy balance equation which is what matters in regards to gaining or losing weight. Once you have tracked for 2-3 weeks you will have a rough idea by sight and habit of how much you need each day. Tracking food can be stressful because of the honesty and extra time needed to do it correctly when learning but once developed it will reduce stress by taking out the guesswork and allowing you to make adjustments whenever you need. We recommend our clients to track with the app My Fitness Pal for 2-3 weeks and then check in once a month based out results and check-ins with their coach.
Tracking your steps – In the modern world, we are far too sedentary keeping an eye on your daily Non-Exercise Activity (Thermogenesis) or NEAT is a great way to make sure you are getting in the bare minimums for daily movement. 10,000 steps are enough and it’s great to set yourself little mini goals along the way to keep you on track and make a little game of it. One other benefit of tracking your steps is outsmarting 1000’s of years of evolution! We have Evolved to survive without food for a long time. This means when food is scarce we will naturally slow down some of our non-essential bodily systems. For women this can present itself in the reproductive system There would have been not too many women wanting to have a baby when there was a famine if your menstrual cycle is out of sync or non-existent energy balance may be an issue. But we segway. Another thing the body does very smartly is subconsciously makes us move less. One thing that can happen when you are dropping or increasing weight is your NEAT will go up or down to adjust to the amount of energy in. If your calories are lower you may find you do fewer steps without even knowing. Check in with your steps daily and get out and walk as much as possible in short bouts throughout the day. You can use a fit bit, apple/google watch or an app on your phone to track your steps.
Sleep – Do you often wake up tired? do you get at least 8 hours of quality sleep? Do you know? Tracking your sleep will give you some solid insights into the duration and quality of your sleep. If you are wanting to improve your performance, health and weight management and you are getting sub-par sleep it will make this a lot more difficult. Knowing if you are getting enough is a great tool to measure. Keeping a sleep journal can be helpful for those who struggle to get a good nights sleep. Had a sub-par sleep? When you wake take 5 minutes to reflect on your previous day was there anything out of routine or are your current routines leading to poor sleep? Sleep cycle is a great app to measure your sleep quality and our members have had success using this to see if their routine changes have made a difference to their sleep quality.
Body composition – We know if our members focus on the process of consistent training with smart structured training that creates progressive overload, Work on and continually explores the learning process that is nutrition, and focuses on improving lifestyle habits like improving the quality of your sleep and managing stress then body composition will always improve. But once again what we want to change we must measure. Body composition is a great check in to see if your nutrition is where it should be. We use the scales, body girth measurements, Body composition scanners and photos to measure progress depending on the client’s goals, the current level of fitness, mindset and how comfortable they are with certain measurements. We know that many things can influence these measurements including your menstrual cycle, stress, training, and food but we know that with consistent check-ins its very easy to make adjustments based on the results. A little bit of honesty and ownership of your result will help you get better results but also know that you are not the number of your results. You are not defined by the number on the scales, scan or measurements you will always be defined by who you are as a person work on improving the process and being the person who has the result you want and those numbers are just a formality and a tool for change, not something that can affect you.
Compliance – When you have a proven system it only works when you do the work. Being honest with yourself and taking ownership of your results is freeing. Don’t get upset when you don’t get the result you were expecting, take a look at your data and see where you can make changes. Take it back to data and logic and it becomes less emotional. You start to realize that its only a process and you have the data to figure out what needs adjusting. We regularly get out clients to reflect back on their week. What challenges came up? What got in the way of their compliance to certain parts of the system and then work through with them to create a plan for the following week to improve their markers. This is not a training program or a diet its a learning process. Learning takes time. Give yourself a breather make sure you are consistently checking in and then work with your coach and other members in your community who have been on this learning experience for longer and work through your challenges you will get there eventually but we must track and use the data of compliance to the program to see where the biggest win and what area of your health needs the most attention. We use a weekly check-in sheet that helps you reflect on the week that was and sets goals for the coming week. You also use the Habit tracking app Done to measure weekly compliance.
Tracking is an art and art takes practice and patience. You are painting your future, sometimes you need a fine tip paint brush other times you need a roller. The secret is to be consistent and stick with it long enough to see changes. Consistent actions will always give you consistent results ALWAYS it pays to do the right things consistently.
We hope this gives you some insight into what to track and how it can help you improve your health. We have an in-depth consult session where we cover this and work out with you the places where you need the most attention to make changes in your health. This session also has a movement screen where we assess your strengths and weaknesses and what exercises would be beneficial to keep your body strong and injury-free, plus it also includes a series of personality tests so that we can recommend training and nutrition that you are more likely to enjoy, stick to and most importantly be consistent with long enough to get great results.
This is our Evolved Potential session and is for anyone who is ready to take the next step with their health and fitness book a no-obligation call with our head coach on the link below to see how this session can unlock your true potential