A statement I hear used often is, "Everyone's body is different, and we all respond to different things." That is true! So what do you respond to optimally in your training, diet, and supplementation? A lot of people can not answer that question. Well, I am about to discuss keeping a daily journal that will allow EVERYONE, no matter what body-type you are, find out what works best for you when it comes to diet, training, and supplementation.
As a competitive bodybuilder and personal trainer, I make it a point to study and analyze the philosophies of which I believe are the most successful bodybuilders from the top bodybuilder pro and national level competitors. I noticed one major thing in common, they all have a PLAN. They did not just get where they are by mistake. With proper records and documentation of their diets, training, and supplementation (DAILY JOURNALS), they have learned what works best for them so they can take that information and their physiques to the next level. Keeping a daily journal will provide the same results for you so you can achieve your master plan in fitness.
10 Advantages & Benefits In Keeping A Daily Journal
- Able to keep track of exactly what and when you are eating.
- Able to keep track of what and how you are training.
- Allows you to keep a record of your daily habits that might influence your training regime.
- Let's you see and document how you are progressing.
- Enables you to experiment with different foods, food ratios, training routines, supplements, and how you respond.
- Keep track of cardiovascular routine, H2O consumption, sleep, weight and body fat percentage.
- After time, a daily journal will allow you to go back and look at what worked and didn't work in the past. This will allow you to continue or make modifications accordingly. (Eliminates Guessing!)
- Finally helps you to understand your body and what is the best plan for you. (It's all documented!)
- Makes you more disciplined in achieving your goals in fitness no matter what they are.
- IT WORKS!
Just from personal experience I can honestly say that keeping a daily journal for about 2 years, with proper documentation of the above, has helped me achieve my greatest gains and allowed me to understand what works for me. Any time I want I can look back and see exactly what I did to bring my conditioning to the point it was when I won any of my bodybuilding contests. This is a must tool for any bodybuilder. With each competition you will become better and better when keeping a journal to ensure you will look your best the Saturday of the show and not peak the day before or after. If the daily journal is kept, you will be able to pinpoint if you needed more or less food that last week for your next show. I consider my daily journal a major component in my training.
OK! Now, let's go over the major components in creating a complete daily journal. Remember we want to be able to keep track of the variables in our day that we can control. All you need is a notebook, calculator, straightedge and something to write with. The valuable elements constituting the daily journal are:
- Date and Body Part(s) to be worked.
- Record the Time, Calories, Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fat for each item in each meal.
- At the top of the page put the total number of calories, protein, carbohydrates, and fat for the entire day.
- H20 Amount: very important to hydrate your system.
- Hours of Sleep: You would be amazed on how one extra hour of sleep could help your progress and recovering capabilities!
- Cardiovascular Exercise: How many minutes for the day
- Bodyweight: See how much your bodyweight fluctuates from morning till night. If you are dieting, you can see if you are losing too much too quick.
- Supplements: Alternate different supplements, and finally find out which ones work best for you by documentation.
- Training Routine: For the muscles worked that day.
- Comments of the Day: This is your time to reflect upon your day. How did you feel? Look? Energy? How was the workout? Any other comments. This is very important because if you looked great and had a great workout, all you have to do is look back at the last few days to see what you have been doing. Vice Versa.
Go grab that empty notebook and start keeping a daily journal. There are NO excuses to not finding the time to complete one. This will help to discipline you more and serves to make you more in tune with your body. Remember we need to have a plan and with keeping a daily journal, no one knows your body better than you do. Until next time, Train Hard, Train Smart!