Tired? Sweaty? Sore?
None of these things are measurable, and more importantly none of them are indicators of a good workout. You will most likely experience all these things at some point, in various degrees of intensity during your training program, but none of them will tell you about your progress.
So how do you know if you’re getting in a good workout?
Be consistent and measure your progress. One without the other will leave you running in circles trying to figure out what to do.
What I mean by this is – if you are measuring your progress and improving, but not being consistent with how you’re working out you’ll never know how to expand on what was working for further results.
On the other hand – If you’re being consistent but not measuring then you don’t really know if that workout you’re doing is producing the results you want.
How do I measure progress?
This all depends on your goals. There are a variety of ways to measure your success in fitness but the key areas are: body composition, performance, and non-scale victories.
Let’s break this down a bit. Measuring body composition means accurately testing for changes in fat mass and lean muscle mass. At The Muscle Hut we use ultra-sound technology for this. It is extremely accurate and easily displays the changes and trends over time. We all know the scale is a terrible marker for progress, you need to be looking at fat mass and muscle mass independently of the overall scale weight.
Measuring performance can have quite a few areas – strength, power, endurance, agility, balance, and flexibility are just some performance indicators. At The Muscle Hut we track all of our strength work to be able to see progress and trends over time in different areas of strength. We also perform fitness testing that measures overall strength endurance and cardiovascular capacity. This is crucial for identifying overall improvements in performance.
Non-scale victories are probably the hardest to measure as they’re not data driven, but arguably the most tangible results. These are things like noticing changes in the way your clothes fit, decreasing or going off medications, your mental health, your energy, performing daily tasks easier, or getting better sleep. You definitely need to be intentional with recognizing these and identifying any success or progress in this area as these things build over time and you may not even notice them happening.
You don’t need to measure all of these all the time. This is dependant on your goals. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on all these areas, and to make sure you get a baseline on the measurable ones regardless of your goals. However moving forward you’ll certainly be checking some more often than others. We use Success Sessions every 8 weeks to identify any changes in these areas, test and measure the appropriate things based on goals, and then reassess and set goals for the next 8 weeks accordingly.
So before you decide how awesome that workout was because of how sore you got or sweaty you were – take a look at some of these areas and measure your results. Because the truth is any program can make you sore and sweaty – make sure it’s also moving you closer to your goals.
Get in touch today for a FREE Fitness Strategy Session!