Exercising is hard; especially when first starting out. It’s easy to give up after a hard workout, when there are no immediate results, and when you’re extremely sore the next day. If you aren’t fully dedicated to exercising, it can easily be an uphill battle. Some days will be better than others and over time you’ll start to see progress. However, it’s incredibly important that you monitor your progress so you know where you’re doing well in your exercise regime and where you need to improve.
Monitoring changes while exercising isn’t always so easy. You perform at different levels on different days. One way of making sure that you continually get better, is to monitor your exercise. Keeping a workout journal makes it a lot easier to identify patterns of exercise. After each work out make notes of where you need to improve, where you did well, the time of your workout, and other important statistics.
Exercising vigorously forces your body to adapt. It does this by increasing your metabolism and putting out more energy into the parts of your body that need them. This is why athletes can eat so much food and still stay slim.
However, if you continue doing the same exercises every time you work out, your body will gradually get used to it. This means your body stops adapting and your metabolism stabilizes. You need to continuously challenge your body in order to keep improving.
The human body has a habit of adapting to all sorts of stress. When it adapts to the stress of exercise, we become stronger and fitter. What many people don’t realize is that our energy expenditure also adapts.
In other words we gradually burn less energy if we constantly repeat the same exercise program over many workout sessions. There are a couple of reasons for this happening. First of all our cells are also getting exercise. As our body adapts to our exercising lifestyle, our cells get better at storing and using energy in a more efficient way. That means we need more exercise to be able to burn the same amount of energy.
Another reason is that, as we become more athletic, our bodies become better at what they do. The first time you go biking, your body uses all kinds of muscles to balance itself. All of these muscles need energy to function, so we burn a lot of energy just trying not to fall over. As we continue biking we get better at it and our balance improves. However, this means that we spend less energy, as the body does not have to work as hard at balancing itself. When we keep doing the same exercises we gradually require longer sessions in order to burn the same amount of calories.
This means that in order to keep you metabolism at the max, you shouldn’t stick to the same workout too often. Instead, try changing it up after 3-5 sessions, that keeps your energy expenditure above normal.
It’s an easy enough concept to understand, but how can you make sure that you keep challenging yourself? The answer is simple: monitor your progress. Keep track of how much you lift at the gym, how fast you can run a mile, what you are before your work out, what you ate after, and so on. By documenting your performance and the surrounding circumstances, it’s easy to mix up work-outs and to identify patterns.
Monitoring your progress is easy it’s simply a case of writing down everything you did during a workout, things you should note include:
· The day you trained
· Length of workout
· Type and duration of exercise
· Heart rate level
· Estimated calorie expenditure
Also make a record of your food intake. This makes it easy to identify what type of food makes you perform better and what foods make you feel sluggish. Every person has a unique body, and even though there are general guidelines of what to eat before and after working out, this gives you a chance to find your ultimate exercising diet. Logging your food-intake gives you a chance to scientifically look at what works and what doesn’t.
Here are a few sites that give you the tools to help plan your workouts:
Monitoring your exercise gives you a chance to perfect the way you train, and gives you a chance to get the best possible results.