Best Ways to Track Your Fitness ProgressJul 18, 2021
People’s opinions on weighing themselves are all over the place these days.
Some say you have to weigh yourself daily (you don’t). Others are saying to ditch the scale altogether (you don’t have to do that either).
We’re here to tell you that it is possible to track your fitness progress without the scale.
A novel idea, right?
But seriously, why are we basing health off that tiny little data point at our toes? This number is just that; it’s data!
It can show us progress over time, but it isn’t the be-all and end-all that some of us think it is.
Relying solely on the scale can be discouraging, and the scale doesn’t always accurately reflect your progress.
How to Track Fitness Progress
Your mindset shouldn’t be hyper-focused on the scale, especially since the number you see there is something you actually have no control over.
Weight fluctuates day-to-day for so many reasons. Here are just a few examples of why your weight might spike:
You ate more the day before.
You drank more water the day before.
You had more sodium than usual.
Your period is coming.
You need to poop.
The list goes on.
There are several factors that can affect your weight.
When you’re trying to lose weight, or more accurately, lose fat, it’s important to shift your focus to controlling the things you can control (such as how much you’re eating and how often you’re exercising) and look at other factors in your life to measure your progress.
There are so many other ways to assess progress besides that little number.
Better Ways to Track Fitness Progress
You’re welcome to step on the scale as often as you would like, but we have some better and more accurate ways for you to measure your fitness progress.
Here are 5 better ways to track your progress.
Assess Your Biofeedback
Take a look at your energy levels. Do you now have more energy than before?
What about your hunger levels? You may feel more satiated because you’re eating more nutrient-dense meals.
Are you feeling less stressed or at least getting better at managing your stress?
Even muscle soreness can improve as you build muscles.
Your sleep quality is another huge indicator that you’re making progress! Do you fall asleep faster and wake up refreshed?
Look at how your digestion has improved, too.
These are all significant clues to how you are progressing!
Take Progress Photos
Taking progress photos is a great way to track your progress visually.
Now, taking photos every day isn’t going to show you much, just like it is easy to miss changes when you wake up and take a look in the mirror every morning, but when you compile some photos, say monthly, and hold them side-by-side, you can see significant changes!
You may not have realized that you have more muscle definition in some areas or that there’s less fat in others, but once you look at those photos, your progress will be clear.
Progress photos are also a great way to keep yourself motivated because you can see how far you’ve come in your fitness journey.
Look at Your Quality of Life
Once you start making improvements to your health, you may be amazed at how your quality of life improves as well.
Can you now do the things you have always wanted to, such as running, playing tennis, or rock climbing?
Can you go hiking with your children?
Can you carry your laundry up the stairs without needing to sit down after?
These are all wins.
Not only that, but you’ll likely be happier because of the endorphins you get from working out. Endorphins can help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety and make you feel more positive overall.
How Do Your Clothes Fit?
Taking body measurements is another great way to measure your progress, but we often hear our clients say that their measurements haven’t changed, even though it’s evident to us that they’re making progress.
Unless you are a flawless human, there is a good chance you have some margin of error with that measuring tape.
Measuring 1 inch higher or lower than last month can make a huge difference in your recorded measurements (or no difference at all)!
Checking how your clothes fit may be a more accurate measurement of how you’re progressing.
Just bear in mind that, for most of us, clothes have become this stretchy fabric that will conform to anything.
We dare you to pull out those old ski pants, that little black dress, the jeans, or whatever it may be for you, and see how it fits now! You’ll likely be pleasantly surprised.
Evaluate Your Mindset
Chances are you’ve had some pretty major mindset changes throughout your fitness journey.
Assessing your relationship with food is a great place to look for progress! Maybe now you’re not thinking about food 24/7, or you have less anxiety when attending family parties.
Maybe working out is no longer a chore and something you ENJOY!
These are all signs of progress.
Mindset can be a huge barrier in your fitness journey, so if you’re making more progress there than in the other categories, you know you’re on your way to seeing some big changes soon.
Improve Your Mindset
These are just five of the different ways you can see your progress without stepping on the scale.
Remember that assessing progress by various methods is one of the best ways to decrease that scale stress and get back to living and enjoying life!
Don’t let numbers rule your life.
Focus more on how you feel physically and mentally. Look at your wins and celebrate them (just not necessarily with food)!
If you want to further improve your mindset, you can check out our FREE growth mindset journal prompts.
These journal prompts will help you embrace a growth mindset to get even closer to achieving your health and fitness goals.
Click here to get the prompts.
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