Logging your training sessions is a key aspect to training success as it allows us to objectively assess what we've done in the past. They will often be reviewed to compare what we previously did in our training session, so we know what to do today to improve.
This data can be invaluable for seeing what has worked well for us in the past and what isn't working.
There are many ways to log your training sessions:
I prefer a good old-fashioned journal largely since it is much easier to get distracted if you pick up your phone dozens of times during your training session.
A physical journal allows one to focus on the training session while temporarily forgetting about all the other stressors and worries from life.
The Rock calls the gym his ‘Iron Paradise,’ for a reason.
Below is a template laid out. The more information the better but the most basic requirements for a training log are:
· Rest periods
Often, this is what my own training log will entail. However, the more information the better which allows us to make better informed decisions on what to do the next training session.
Relying on memory is essentially guesswork.
Extra information can be:
· Technique breakdown
· Repetitions in reserve (RIR)
· Change in repetition speed
· Notes such as weight, sleep, mood, energy, stress or soreness
· Any miscellaneous information
Out of the extra information, I listed them in order of importance from top to bottom.
Having the top 3 extra information points will help tremendously in planning progress.
Below is a sample template and another filled out:
Training Log Template
Training Log Example
The line between the weights and reps represent the point where the warm-up sets are finished and now work sets are beginning
If a letter has a number next to it such as B1 and B2, no it's not banana time but it represents a superset where you perform a set of B1, rest, then a set of B2 and you go back and forth until all sets are completed.
If it only has a letter such as A, then it is performed on its own which is called straight sets.
If it's a dumbbell exercise, simply record the weight in each hand. In the example this person did dumbbell hammer curls with 10 kilograms each side (ES).
Start tracking your training sessions and begin gathering data for your future self to assess and progress.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask and reach out!
At the gym I am also selling empty journals for those that want to purchase one ($5) or you're welcome to bring your own.
Don't forget to bring your journal!