Exercise , in particular Pilates, has helped me manage and recover more quickly from 16 weeks of chemotherapy than I had imagined.
What I found was that consistency is the key. It didn't matter if I only did a few reps of a particular exercise, what did matter is that I did it every day. Keeping a log of the things I did really helped to keep me on track and gave me a good guideline when I could step things up.
Don't wait until the start of the week or the month, start today!
Most people get caught up in the details. i.e " I don't have a blank journal- I will wait until I get one at the store." Or " It's already 9:00 p.m. - I wil wait until tomorrow." Don't let these things stop you! Start today - no matter what time it is or what you have to work with. It doesn't have to be fancy, you can keep track on your daytimer , on your cell phone or on a napkin. The key is to write it down .
Do take a minute and think of the reasons why you are writing it down.
Here are some questions to consider:
What exactly do I want to keep track of?
-Am I logging time or reps or am I just keeping tabs on myself to make sure I work out?
Am I looking for self accountability or do I need to show this to my trainer, doctor etc.?
**Many injuries can be traced back to when you started doing a specific exercise or movement.
What is my goal or plan for my exercise?
-Do I want to lose weight? Maintain my current weight? Am I tracking progress for something?
Train for a special event?
Believe me, your workout time can slip through your fingers if you don't schedule it in.
Write down what was going on with you that day as well .
"Had a stressful day at work, did a yoga instead of lifting weights. "
Writing it down and reviewing your notes will hold you accountable and make you take a hard look at if you are skimping on your workouts.
Also jot down what you had to eat that day and notice the way you feel before and after a workout.
Congratulate yourself! It is hard to remember the first time you ran a mile in 10 minutes and it might have taken a long time to build up to that, but now you can do it with no problem and it feels great! Take a look at your journal and congratulate yourself. You can do anything you put your mind to.
The proof is in the writing. If your goal is to lose weight and you look at your journal and only exercised twice last week , then a reality check is in order. On the other hand, if you feel like you are doing everything right and still nothing has budged, take your journal to a professional and see if there is something else you can be doing. Keeping verbal track isn't enough. If you say " I work out 5 times a week and still nothing has budged - but I didn't go to the gym last week and the week before I could only stay 20 minutes, " Then again, if it's in writing you will know where you went wrong.
How about you Gather? Have you ever considered keeping an exercise log? If so, did it work for you?