Starting a diet can be fun and exciting or it can be a time of anxiety, doubt and fear. If you have ever tried losing weight only to become discouraged, beginning a diet can make you feel defeated before you even get started. The best way to begin a diet or a fitness program is to start a fitness journal at the same time. Once you begin journaling, you will never want to start your diet without it.
Keeping a journal is like taking all of your thoughts, goals and actions and putting them down on paper. In your fitness journal you will also want to write down everything you eat and drink daily and all of your activities. This way you can keep a record of all the food that you consume and all the ways that you expend energy to burn calories.
If you have ever tried dieting and exercising, you are probably familiar with the unfortunate plateau that sometimes occurs. The great thing about journaling is that you can actually compare the calories consumed versus the calories burned. You can assess your workout and whether or not you are challenging yourself as much in your 4th week of exercise as you did in your first week. By having a written testimony of what you eat and drink there is no fooling yourself when it comes to dieting.
Journaling is also a great help when you want to increase your fitness level. If you are keeping a journal, you are already writing down your workout exercises. You can set goals, record the amount of weight (if any) that you are lifting and the number of reps and sets that you do. Then as you increase the weights, the reps and the sets, you can record all of these accomplishments in your journal. This way you can really make a determination about what is working and where improvements need to be made.
You can pick up a journal from any bookstore or office supply store. If you don’t want to invest in anything expensive, you can use a series of composition notebooks. Just mark the dates on the outside and file each one away for reference. During those times, when you feel discouraged or feel like you are hitting a plateau, looking back at your old journals can actually help you to realize the goals that you have already achieved.
Journaling is one of the easiest and most rewarding parts of any diet and fitness program. I believe it is as important as diet and exercise for making effective, positive changes that will keep you fit for the rest of your life.