Measuring Workout Progress: Part 2
Hey guys! So this post is coming out to you a little bit late, but it's ok. If you are new to my blog, first of all...welcome! So this post is piggybacking off of my last post all about Measuring Workout Progress where I talk all about the BEST way to measure your progress at the gym.
Now, I wish I was starting this post with some good news. But I'm not. The truth is...I messed up. In December, I made backward progress, as in my measurements actually got worse than where I had started. UGH.
So if you know from my last post, I joined a new gym and started working out more consistently than I ever have in my life about 5 months ago. I was hitting the gym at a minimum of 3 days a week and I was making progress! At the time I had lost 1.64% body fat, which came out to 1.68 pounds of fat. I actually gained overall weight, but I gained 4.28 pounds of lean weight, so thats good!
Now the most recent time I weighed myself and measured my body fat, this is what happened
Weight: 145.5 = 2.9 pound gain
Lean Weight: 107.22 = 1.45 pound loss = BAD
Fat Weight: 38.27 = 4.35 pound gain = BAD
Body Fat Percentage: 26.3% = 2.5% gain = BAD
I thought THIS. FUCKING. SUCKS.
My results were worse from where I had originally started almost 6 months ago! I was sad. My confidence immediately plummeted. A part of me started to question the process. But then I had to take a step back and re-evaluate what I had done differently from the first time I took my body composition to the second time. This is what I learned:
Everything in Moderation
During the first couple of months of this "lifestyle change" I tried to be more aware of my eating habits. I knew I wouldn't be able to do a 180 and start eating super healthy for every meal of the day. And I probably never will because let's be real, I love food too much. Ya, salads and fish are yummy, but there's nothing like a giant carne asada burrito or some plain ol' Taco Bell.
Instead, week by week, I tried to do a little bit better. This meant that I was still eating my double decker tacos and still making progress. The key, however, was MODERATION. Instead of ordering pizza every week, I was ordering every few weeks.
In the month of December, I very quickly switched back to my old ways. I was busier and didn't have time to grocery shop or cook. My grocery bill for the month of December was almost nothing. I was going out to restaurants more to see friends and family. I had a trip coming up. I was stressed and busy and I thought Starbucks gingerbread lattes were the cure.
Unfortunately, I let my stress get the best of me and I ate out way more. In my head I thought, "Well I was eating fast food before and lost body fat, so it's ok." But it wasn't ok because it wasn't in moderation. I was still going to the gym, but the number and quality of calories I was consuming was detrimental to my progress.
Consistency is Key
Another thing I learned was the importance of CONSISTENCY. For a few weeks at a time, I would be super consistent and go at least 4 days a week. Then the next week I would only go 1 or 2 days. With this "schedule," I was still making some progress, but not as much as I had wanted.
By the time December rolled around, I hardly went at all. This is what really set me back, and I quickly realized how easy it is was to undo all of the progress I had made. A few months of hard work was just POOF, gone. It is true when they say that it takes tons of hard work to get abs, but is so easy to lose them. Not that I ever had abs, but you get the point.
The moral of the story is: MODERATION & CONSISTENCY. You are not going to be perfect when it comes to maintaining a diet or workout routine, and that is totally okay! You will drive yourself crazy if you try to be perfect. But do your best to be consistent. Consistently try to make better food choices. Be consistently active. And don't give up!
What helps you stay consistent with a new diet or workout regimen? Share your tips in the comments!