It gives me a lot of joy to see my logbook.
I love to look at my daily stats. Initially I used to document my runs in a notebook.
Way back in 2018, I set up a dream: To run 1800 Km in 365 days. Distance been the yardstick to measure my progress, I needed to document. In those days, I was having no idea about the smart watches that help to record time, distance and many other running metrics.
Now, I have my smartwatch. All I need to do is just strap it around my wrist and run. The smart watch records my runs. Later, I sync the data from the watch to my mobile app provided with the watch. So, it is easy and fast.
However, I have not left the habit of documenting my runs.
WHY RECORDING YOUR DAILY RUNS IS NEEDED?
MEASURE WHAT MATTERS
I work on my fitness philosophy. One of the principles of my fitness philosophy is: Measure what matters.
Measuring helps to see the progress. When you are able to see your progress on a piece of paper, you jump with joy. A written record convinces the mind that you are doing a fabulous job and therefore, you keep doing it.
Many fitness enthusiasts just give up on themselves when they are stuck. They are unable to figure out how far they have come. Our mind needs to see the numbers.
When you can measure what you are speaking about, and express it in numbers, you know something about it, when you can not express it in numbers, your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind, it may be the beginning of knowledge, but you have scarcely, in your thoughts advanced to the stage of science. – Lord Kelvin
DOCUMENTING OUR WORK HELPS TO SEE THE EFFORTS
Many a times, we feel lazy or de-motivated. There are occasions when our mind is clouded by other priorities of life. And health and fitness takes the back-seat.
Amid such scenarios, when you see that you are almost there, your mind craves for the completion of the task. Many a days of mine have been save by this virtue.
FREQUENT REVIEW OF DATA DATA STIMULATES THE MIND POSITIVELY
When you view your daily runs, you see a pattern. You see the highs and the lows. You see the efforts translated into numbers. And you want them to improve and get better.
It unleashes positivity in the mind and prompts you to get off the couch and go running on those difficult days. And for the days you are on fire, you attempt for your personal best/personal record.
DOCUMENTING GIVES A PERSPECTIVE:
Our legs have limitations. And therefore, we need to keep our runs in check. By measuring, we are able to maintain the even flow through out the year without over exerting ourselves.
The numbers tell us when we we need to push hard and when we need to withdraw. The emotions and feelings are tamed not to put undue pressure on the body.
DOCUMENTING HELPS TO EAT AN ELEPHANT:
I ran and covered the distance of 1800 km. And I was shocked and surprised to see my phenomenal running and transformation. And the lesson that I learned was: Consistency beats talent.
My goal to run 1800 km became a possible task by dividing the goal into sub goals of months, weeks and days. A gigantic goals can be accomplished if you set up a system and keeping moving on that system.
In over 3.5 years since I began to run, I have covered over 5000 km of running which is phenomenal by any measure. And it all has become possible with the help of documenting and reviewing my progress periodically.
So, how do we go about creating and maintaining a log book for our running?
WHAT IS A LOGBOOK?
A logbook is diary of entries related to a specific task/activity or pursuit. The daily observations are entered into logbook to find patterns. Logbooks act as tools for analysis and review of tasks. As such, you can boost your running by keeping a logbook of your daily runs.
HOW TO LOG ENTRIES INTO YOUR RUNNING LOGBOOK?
You have two options available: Create your own logbook or purchase the ready made available online.
CREATING YOUR OWN LOGBOOK
Pick a note book with blank sheets. You can keep one note for one year. So, ideally any diary can help you to log your entries as a diary has 365 pages for 365 days.
SELECT THE METRICS FOR RECORDING:
Every runner will have a different metrics to focus on. As a beginner, I was only concerned about the distance. So, I just documented my daily distances covered.
And it works. Just jot down the metrics that you are focusing on. Your smart watch may throw a lot of data like cadence, spm, VO2 Max, HR etc. But you don’t need all that.
I prefer to measure the distance and time and document them. Rest is all available on my app or on the desktop version. I just take the print out and file them.
WRITE YOUR FEELINGS AND THOUGHTS
Simply jotting down will not give you much kick. Take some time to put some thoughts as well. Like, if you went to run on a new route. Or if you started to wear a new pair of shoes. Or you had an exciting companionship. Or you ran a special run like a event or a virtual event.
Also, you can record the milestones that you reach and make them bold.
You may also wish to jot down the medical reports in short. Like your blood sugar levels or the blood pressure. I mean few health parameters.
Did you sleep well before the run? Did you feel dehydrated? Etc.
MAKE USE OF COLOURFUL PENS
You can use multiple colour pens or sketch pens to highlight the special runs. I use black colour for uniformity and minimalism. It’s all up to you.
Are you in the habit of keeping a log of your daily runs? Let’s get to know about your feedback in the comments below: