Feb 20, 2019:  ~ 3 min read

Track your progress; what gets measured, gets improved

Last time I was talking about consistency and how it’s one of the most important things after starting. One of the examples I gave was about my eating habits: I stopped being consistent and it slowly went into a down spiral.

But I also mentioned that I got back on track after looking back on my logs: what I ate and how much I weighted. What saved me was the fact that I was tracking.

Tracking brings two benefits:

  1. You can go back and review your progress at any time and see what you can improve, what went wrong and how.
  2. It makes you more aware of what you’re doing.

I started this post with #1, so let’s talk a bit about #2 and we’ll use eating as the example.

I started tracking what I eat long after I started losing weight. But during that time, if someone would’ve asked me if I still munch or how disciplined I am with my eating, I would’ve said that I am disciplined; I don’t really munch much.

The key word here is really; I wasn’t totally sure. And, surely enough, after I started tracking, I realised I did munch on stuff now and then. I did eat a small desert now and then. I did eat a few crackers now and then. I wasn’t that disciplined as I thought I was. And I was wondering why I’m not making much progress, ha!

Tracking gives you reality. The real deal.

Tracking also brings perspective. How you’re doing on the short term, but also how you’re doing on the long term, on a big scale. You might have messed up 3 days, but over the last 3 months you’re doing just fine. Or vice-versa, you had a couple of good days this week and another the last week, but you surely know that for the past 3 weeks you’ve been messing up.

No more ”yea, I think I’m doing okay”. You’ll know exactly what’s happening.

Another benefit of tracking? It gives you determination to act positively, in three ways:

  1. The first is what we discussed until now: you look at your history and you see you have messed up here and there; this will determine you to get back on track.
  2. Knowing you have to write down that junk food might be just enough to make you not eat it.
  3. Seeing you’re making progress and that long positive history will bring confidence, self-esteem and the determination to keep it up.

Don’t underestimate the value and power of tracking. Pick one thing you’d like to improve and start tracking it, you’ll probably be amazed at how different the reality is to what you thought it is.

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