Start Tracking Everything

Why Now?

I truly believe there is no time like the present. Luckily for you, the present has you reading an article on how to make yourself the human you want to be. If you made it this far in deciding to get your life together take a moment and pat yourself on the back. For real take a moment because this will be the last time I give you that opportunity. Growing up isn’t something we should be proud of, it is something you should just do. Getting started on this rest of your life journey is a horrifying step but a very fulfilling one. So let’s stop pussy footing around and get started with Step #1 Tracking.

Track Track Track.

Currently, there are probably at least 3 things that come to mind instantly that you want to improve, whether that be your health, financial situation, or  social life. If you have more that is even better. I now want you to pick one of these things and create an Excel sheet to track this. Or if you know of a better way to do track progress like MyFitnessPal for tracking calories open that up. In cell A1-3 I want you to write down a goal of where you want to be in one week or one month. That is it, now sleep on it.

How Do I Start?

For this article I am going to focus on my longest running spreadsheet, my run log. At the start of 2018 I decided I was going to run on average one mile a day. This number may not seem large to some people but for someone who has not done a lot of running recently it seemed daunting. After about a month I am currently 33 miles in an slightly ahead of schedule. I set aside 30 seconds after every run to go fill out my spreadsheet. I have a columns for the Run Number, Date, Distance, and Time. Looking at this every week I can see slight improvements in my time but what really does it for me is auto-calculation of MPH, Total Distance, and Total Time spent running.  Attached is a template of the form I use with these calculations included.

It is important to build a habit out of keeping these logs up to date and accurate. If you think you can handle doing 1 try and push yourself and go for 2. If you have a goal of getting in shape keep the Running Form updated but also track your diet in MyFitnessPal. I would recommend against trying to make a lot of changes to your diet at this point just log everything.

Benefits of Tracking

Tracking everything works in two key ways. First of all it forces one to be discipline. Everyday one needs to sit down and recap the day and make themselves accountable.. Secondly, it gives one a place to look monthly or yearly to see progress they have made. It also provides a jumping off point on where to focus next.

That about sums it up for this article. Fire up your spreadsheet program of choice and get tracking. Comment below with what you are going to start tracking or what you have been tracking! Stay tuned for the next article where I will do a deep dive on calorie counting.