Geek To Gladiator: Health Journal

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Last month I talked about my health journal which has been helping me keep on top of my fitness goals and allows me to stay accountable. I’ve been finding new trackers for different aspects of health and I wanted to share a few with all of you guys in case they help you in the future. Of course not everyone’s interested in bullet journals, but even if you create a spreadsheet for things you want to focus on can be beneficial. Personally, I like getting a bit creative and decorating my pages, but some of my trackers are very much ‘no thrills’.

Just like your fitness journey, you need to figure out what you want to achieve if you’re going to create a health journal that’s unique to your goals. What I found to be useful is to ask yourself a series of questions about your ‘dream self’ so you can shape your routines around what you deem to be the best version of you. Questions like:

  • What do I eat?
  • What are my habits?
  • What is my physique like?
  • What is my work ethic?
  • Who surrounds me?
  • How do I exercise?

If you’re creating a proper journal, then you can write these in there so you have them available to look back on when you’re stuck in a fitness rut. Remember, these are supposed to be an inspiration so even if life gets in the way, once things calm down you’ll know what you’re working towards.

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My health journal focuses on both physical and mental health, so it’s not all workout plans and meal ideas. One of my trackers focuses on daily tasks which is especially beneficial for those days where I want to do absolutely nothing. I made weekly and fortnightly habit trackers, but I’ve decided to stop using them because I felt a bit stressed using them when I didn’t manage to complete them. Maybe in the future I’ll reinstate weekly habits, but I think I’d prefer to just add them to my day-to-day journal’s to-do list. That way I can add them to weeks that aren’t super busy. For other parts of my mental health, I’ve created a list of check-in questions for days that I’m not doing the greatest. Some examples:

  • Will this matter tomorrow?
  • Will this matter next year?
  • How can I react to the situation?
  • How is the situation making you feel?
  • Have I tried talking to someone?

They’re simple questions but they help me find a new perspective. I may not be able to control the situation, but I can always control how I react to a situation.

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Now one of the biggest parts of my health journal is naturally my fitness journey. I have a 5 week gym plan which is not very useful in the current climate, but I’ll get back to it once life is normal again. I’ll also be creating an at-home version to make it harder for me to skip a workout. I’ve made a series of hard goals which I can work towards, weight goals and flexibility goals with their own rewards once I’ve managed to achieve them. Having hard goals like weight loss or a new weight-lifting PB is useful because you can see the improvement through numbers. I always say “I just want to be healthy”, but what that means can be pretty broad so you need to be able to break that goal down and follow the correct steps to achieve it.

Right now, using this journal method while I’m stuck at home has helped me stay on track and I’ve found what routine works for me. The call of ice-cream and chocolate is there, and it’s very easy to sit all day when you’re studying at home. But I’ve been working hard and I know I’m going to come out of this healthier than I was before which is a success in its own right. Hopefully once everything goes back to normal, I’ll be able to keep it up!

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