Whether you’ve set certain yourself certain weight loss goals or are aiming to get back into shape, using scales to measure your progress can actually be quite misleading. Your weight depends on several factors and it can sometimes contradict your fitness level or size. Muscle weighs more than fat but it’s more compact, therefore, you could drop a clothes size without losing much. It’s a better idea to put the scales away and focus on other more motivating ways to track your progress. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Wearables and other devices
There are plenty of wearables such as fitness watches and clip-on trackers. You can also use apps on your smartphone or other devices to track various aspects of your progress. With advances in technology it’s now possible to accurately monitor calories burned, count steps, time personal bests and much more. It might be worth investing in one of the best fitness trackers in 2021 to keep track of your workout.
Set specific performance goals
Set specific performance goals that aren’t related to weight. These will depend on the type of exercise you do. For instance, if you enjoy running as part of a fitness regime, you could try to increase one kilometre every two weeks. If you do resistance training you could aim towards increasing the weight. It depends on your level and personal objectives but the important thing is to set yourself measurable goals, each with their own deadline. You could try following the SMART goals model to help you.
Monitor your skills and technique
As well as counting reps, distance, and weight, it’s also important to focus on your skills and technique. This is why it’s more motivating to choose a type of workout you enjoy. You will develop a healthy attitude towards exercise and be more motivated to hone your skills in this area. If you are becoming a keen yoga bunny, for example, practise perfecting your postures in the mirror and aim to move on to harder ones. This is a much more satisfying way to monitor your progress and will help to boost your confidence.
Rely on professional assessments
Scales and electronic equipment are not the only way to monitor your progress, you can speak to actual humans as well. You could work with a trainer in the gym and they will be able to create a tailored programme for you with professional insights. Alternatively, your doctor will be able to give you health and fitness advice based on your unique medical history. You could even opt for online doctor assessments. This way you can get medical advice without even leaving your home. It’s always a good idea to speak to a doctor before any major lifestyle changes.
Take your measurements
There are reasons why you should take your measurements rather than your weight. Your weight can fluctuate and it’s not always a clear representative of your size, strength, or fitness level. If your goal is to drop a jeans size, focus on your measurements instead. These will be a more accurate indicator as to whether you’ve made any progress. Make sure you take your measurements at the same time of day, ideally the morning before breakfast, to ensure you get more consistent results.
Use nutrition apps
If you’re following a specific diet plan as well you could try using one of the latest calorie counting apps to help track your progress. Always get professional advice about how many calories you should be eating. A personal trainer, doctor, or nutritionist will be able to help you with this. You can even create a specific meal plan to help you keep track of your calorie intake and other important nutrients.
Keep a diary
Whether you’ve got specific goals for your meal plan or exercise routine, the main thing is that they’re unique to you. Keep a diary about your goals, plans, and progress and include all the information you need. This will help you remember which meals you preferred or gave you more energy, or which exercises worked for you. You can even keep a note of what motivated you on particular days. This way you can look for any areas of improvement and update your routine accordingly.
However you decide to monitor your progress, the most important thing is to celebrate every achievement. Each attempt you make is a step towards success, so even if you don’t meet your personal best one day, you are on the right track.